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 HOW TO: choose the best version of Linux

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Total Votes : 6


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Join date : 2009-09-03

PostSubject: HOW TO: choose the best version of Linux   Thu Sep 17, 2009 10:16 pm

Many people swear by only one distribution (or distro) while others may recommend you try them all, but the best answer is probably somewhere in the middle of those.

Here are a few of the resources you can use to find out which distribution is best for you.

Linux Distribution Chooser – There are several websites that are designed to help you choose the best distribution. You just answer a few questions and then several distributions are recommended to you. Tuxs.org,Desktop Linux At Home, and Zegenie Studios all have helpful distributions choosers. These are some of the best starting points if you know nothing about Linux or if you just need some help narrowing down the list of possibilities.

The Linux Community – If you know what you are looking for in Linux, ask some Linux veterans what they think would work best for you. Community sites offer both advice from experienced users and thoughts from inexperienced users. Search through sites like linux forums and see what others think about different distros. Also, if you run into any problems with Linux the community sites are usually going to be the fastest, most reliable resource available to you in resolving the problems. The ubuntu forum community, for example, contains more than six-million posts in more than one-million threads.

Live CDs – Many Linux Distributions have a Live CD version. You can use these to give Linux a test run before installing it permanently on your computer. So if you try, say, fedora and decide you don't like it, you can just reboot and try another, like openSUSE or Ubuntu. Websites such as livecdlist.com are useful too, especially if you are looking for a specific function for using Linux, such as development or home entertainment. You can even use MobaLiveCD, a freeware program, to boot a Live CD in Windows without even burning a disc.

DistroWatch – If you are looking for the latest information about the most popular (and many of the less popular) distributions, check distrowatch.com. The site has popularity rankings, package information, links to more information and the latest news for several hundred distros. Be sure to read the major distribution page. It has great descriptions of the top ten distributions along with the pros and cons of each.

Make Your Own – There are also a few options for making your own custom distro. Definitely one of the easiest is the Custom NimbleX Live CD Generator. It walks you through the process step-by-step, letting you choose what software to install as necessary. Then a customized Live CD .iso file is created to your specifications! If you want to take it a step further, the truly hardcore might want to check out Linux From Scratch, a project that will help you in building and compiling your very own version of Linux from the source code.

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