Sunday, December 10, 2006

Which Linux did you try today ?

For the first timers, shift from Windows > Linux is pretty tricky. Reason being, the infinite flavors and varieties of Linux. Unlike windows, there are hundreds of distros available, each with their unique characteristics and features.

The time when I started out, there were only Red Hat and Suse. Few choices make life lot easier, and I chose RedHat and continue using it till date. Nevertheless, I do periodically check the live cds of the other distros, trying and testing and appreciating their efforts.

Here is my take on chosing the best distro for you.

  • Next analyse what you want. If you are a noob, want to experience Linux the easy way, play games, watch movies, listen to mp3s, go for Ubuntu, Mandriva, PCLinuxOS or Suse etc.

  • If you want to learn Linux the hard way, but with a stable platform, go for Fedora and Red Hat. No gfx drivers, no mp3/video support etc. You'll be compelled to install everything on your own and learn lots of stuff. You may miss out on entertainment, but nothing beats fedora/RHEL when it comes to fast and stable servers.

  • Never install and test. Try the live Cds first and see if you find the interface comfortable.

  • In case of problems, just google. The community support for Linux is amazing.

  • Finally, get a friend who knows Linux, It really helps ;)

To conclude, my personal choice. Many would disagree.
I use Fedora but lately I tried a distro called "PCLinuxOS" and was really impressed. Being a relatively experienced user, I noticed how intuitive the interface was. Even the smallest detail has been well covered.Pre-installed with all drivers, codecs and plugins, it's a must have for noobs. For instance, Linux users will know how troublesome it is, ruPublishnning flash and wma/wmv content via firefox. One has to tweak some files, download extra plugins and addons to get them work.The guys at PCLinuxOS have gone a step ahead and installed them by default in the distro. I haven't seen many distros doing that. The control centre is good and tonnes of other great features. If none of the other distros work for you, this one will surely do. This is my personal guarantee.

1 comment:

Sam said...

I just switched from Windows to Linux, and to Fedora Core 6, which I found strapped to the side of a magazine. Though I am very pleased with Linux, it did strike me as hard work. Now I've seen the errors in my ways and am switching to PCLinusOS, a distro that I have yet to read anything bad about.