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Best version of Linux for a Windows convert?

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by Eric Perry, Feb 16, 2006.

  1. hey guys, I have a spare 'puter lying around, and I want to reformat and install Linux. I'm pretty proficient in Windows, but am honestly quite the n00b when it comes to Linux. I know there are many different versions out there, and am completely baffled as to which direction to go in.

    Can anyone give me some tips as to what version may be best for a Windows guy? Also, if there's anything specific I should know, please share!

    Thanks much in advance!!! :hyper:
  2. elwood

    elwood there is no spoo

    Jul 25, 2001
    Mid-Hudson Valley, NY
    I'm interested in this, too. I was looking at Xandros, but I'm not interested in spending any significant amount of money. I think I'll try the CD version of Mepis or something first.
  3. I use slackware as my only OS. That might be diving in at the deep end though.

    Lots of people like ubuntu but I didn't get on with their package selection and changed lots straight away. I would say either fedora core 4 or mandriva as both have large communities.

    Btw: www.linuxquestions.org (not my site, but a very good resource with lots of people willing to support you...in many ways the TB of the linux world :D)
  4. THANKS Komakino, I'll check that out!!!
  5. slinkp


    Aug 29, 2003
    brooklyn, NY, USA
    My advice would be to try running off a couple different "live CDs" before installing anything, that'll give you a preview of what the installed system will be like.

    For least installation pain, a lot of people are liking Ubuntu these days.

    I'm a gentoo guy but I do NOT recommend it to a first-timer. You really have to know what you're doing and be comfortable at the command line.
  6. Slinkp gives some good advice there that I totally overlooked: a few distros (ubuntu included) have a 'livecd' version that runs straight from CD. They work a bit slower, so don't base your speed opinion of linux on that, but they're good for a look around and explore. Most allow you to then install to your hard drive.

    Personally, I would avoid ubuntu because although it is easy to install, you'll find too much missing from their package selection when you've been using it for more than a few days.

    I would recommend knoppix (www.knoppix.org I think) as a great live distro...the only drawback is they use the less popular fork of the x-windowing system.
  7. MJ5150

    MJ5150 Terrific Twister

    Apr 12, 2001
    Olympia, WA
    Eric...go for the Ubuntu. You can boot to it from CD, so it doesn't install anything on your PC. Like Komakino said, it isn't very fast since it is running from CD, but you get a good feel for the OS and what you can do with it.

    If you need a free Ubuntu CD, shoot me a PM. I've got a few lying around.

    I forgot to mention that I really like Konqueror, another Linux flavor, kind of. :D

  8. Hey Mike (as well as everyone else), thanks a TON. I'm actually browsing around now comparing/contrasting several different distributions.
  9. AhhH! You say things like that and you're gonna confuse the poor guy! Konqueror is just an application, not a Linux flavour!! It's part of the K Desktop Environment...and he'll more than likely get KDE with whichever distro he chooses.

    Also, if you don't get on with one distro, try another! It took me 3 attempts to find the one that suited me and I've never changed from it.
  10. MJ5150

    MJ5150 Terrific Twister

    Apr 12, 2001
    Olympia, WA
    Oh, OK. Thank you for the clarification. I am new to Linux as well. I was on a buddies machine a couple weeks ago, and he was running Konqueror. I asked him what it was, and he said it was a version of Linux.

    Strike my comment from the record Eric. :D

  11. Lord knows I don't need the help!!! :D
  12. I recommdend Ubuntu. It's easy to set up and use, and being Debian based, has a great software repository. I'm not crazy about the default theme though.
  13. msquared


    Sep 19, 2004
    Kansas City
    +1 on the live CD advice.

    As far as distros go, if you're new to Linux it doesn't really matter. Anything with a well developed GUI is going to be fine for you. Ubuntu is a great suggestion, and I'd throw SuSE and CentOS into the mix as well.
  14. Another thing to think about is what desktop environment to use. The most popular are Gnome and KDE, but there are some other "light-weight" ones. You can have both environments installed at once, so it should be easy to pick one.
  15. Yvon

    Yvon Supporting Member

    Nov 2, 2000
    Montreal, Canada
    suse 10.0 look great, very easy to install and very easy to use.
  16. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
    Reminds me... I should really write that ubuntu live cd that I downloaded yesterday.... I think I'll check it this weekend. I'm quite curious about it
  17. Pneuma


    Feb 14, 2004

    Good stuff... you'll want a good broadband connection if you want to use it (permenantly) to any great extent... Linux has some great ways of getting new software, and you'll do a lot of downloading checking it all out.

  18. bassjamn

    bassjamn Supporting Member

    Jan 4, 2002
    San Francisco
    I prefer Debian, It's still totally free and has a easy to use update tool(dselect) in where you can pick and choose what software packages you want. I use it at work on my desktop and laptop, right as we speak in fact :p

    Mandrake and Redhat are pretty easy to use as far as being familiar to windows. i have not used them in a few years. Though they both get pretty bloated i hear nowadays....

    +1 on KDE and Gnome, I used to use KDE it practically duplicates windows.
    Gnome is a bit different, still easy to use.

    If you get VMware, you can install any OS inside linux and have the best of both worlds. Stability of linux, while running WinXP inside it for other things. good times :)
  19. Pneuma


    Feb 14, 2004

    Just for the OPs info, Ubuntu (and it's variants, Kubutu and Edubutu) are Debian based, and share the software update method (Synaptic in *butu). They can also use some verisons of Debian packages (software files).

  20. What recording software is available for linux? Anything comparble to CUBAS SE or better?