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General*
Windows Bob - the best!
Fri 23rd Feb '07 3:48PM
4213 Posts
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Member Since
7th Apr '03
Lets break out some serious geek!

I can't belive I'm saying this having got through 3 years of uni and 4 as an engineer without using Linux, but I'm thinking of putting Linux on an old PC of mine and using it as a music and file server.


Sooo are their any forum based Linux users who can advice on what they consider to be the best Linux distro these days?

Most people I know seem to use Debian or Ubuntu but I don't really know which is best .
    

Spanners*
Misses his big brother :(
Fri 23rd Feb '07 4:05PM
4597 Posts
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Member Since
7th Apr '03
Damnsmalllinux all the way!
It's Debian based, free, only uses about 150Mb of disk space (when fully installed)and 16Mb of RAM and has lots of very easy to install custom packages. It was originally designed to run direct from a CD or flash drive without need for installing but I find it works very well as a standalone machine.
I've been working with it for about a year and a half for building Radio Lollipop sustaining client machines and I really can't fault it. Very stable, very upgradable, very small, very easy to configure (relative to linux generally) and has lots of online support.
    

Oooood
Aubergine Mincemeat
Fri 23rd Feb '07 4:18PM
242 Posts
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Member Since
15th Apr '03
someone once said to me "if you want to understand linux, install Gentoo" Apparently you have to set everything up yourself as part of the installation. He deemed this to be a good thing as you got to understand such things as compiling the kernel.

I withhold my own judgement as to whether this is a good thing.
Redhat was always easy to install.

I seem to undergo this strange deire sometimes to play with it. This is always promptly halted after I've found I've spent hours installing it, have no device drivers and am not sure of the make and model of any hardware inside the machine so can't download the drivers. Of course normally, if I do know the make and model I can never find the drivers or am thwarted by the fact I can't download them from the internet as I have no network card drivers.
 

General*
Windows Bob - the best!
Thu 29th Mar '07 9:09PM
4213 Posts
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Member Since
7th Apr '03
Right I've gone the whole way.

Bored of my 5 year old laptop not running XP very well I'm now single booting Ubuntu Linux and my first experiences are really good.
One of the brilliant things about Ubuntu is that you can run it from a CD before you install it to see how it works on your PC and if you like it without having to install it first. I put the live disk into the PC and Ubuntu popped up in a few minutes. I clicked install and pretty much all I had to do was say what timezone I was in and what my name is.
The installation took about 45 mins including the time it took to reformat the disks.
When it came up everything worked first time with the exception that unlike on my Windows PC I had to type in the name of my wireless network rather than it auto detecting like it does in XP.

This was a lot better than the last time I installed Windows where I had to reinstall after it crashed the first time and then spent quite a while buggering around getting everything to work.

The interface looks lovely. I unlike most people I quite like the Tellytubby XP look, but I prefer the lovely Ubuntu brown and orange menus.

So far I've been able to do everything that I have wanted to and there has been no need to really use the command line at all.

So what I really need now is some good Linux tips, guides and recommendations of good bits of software that I could benefit from.
    

Agentgonzo
There's no pee in catheter!
Fri 30th Mar '07 10:41AM
811 Posts
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8th Aug '06
Good tips and what software to install is really an answer to the question of what you want to do.

I've not used Ubuntu really that much, but have used Debian on a server an awful lot, so I know everything from the command line, rather than the gui.

The main thing that you'll want to get acquainted with is the package manager (apt). There is a GUI frontend for it (aptitude and another one I think). This is where you should get all your software from (if it exists in the repository that is!). After that, it's a case of what you want it to do. You'll generally find that there's a tool for doing anything that you want to be able to do.
  

Amanshu*
Giggity Giggity goo
Tue 3rd Apr '07 12:12PM
2708 Posts
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25th Aug '04
As a generally good x-windows text editor I'd have to recommend nedit. It's one of these programs that's pretty intuitive (for a start it uses a lot of the same hot keys as windows) but fully customisable. It's full of neat little gadgets and tricks such as tabbed editing and block highlighting. It'll show whitespace and has full highlighting for most languages. Plus of course if it doesn't it's relatively easy to create some!

I had to use it at university and there was really no going back after that. Generally the majority of people I've shown it to have instantly appreciated it as well!
   

General*
Windows Bob - the best!
Tue 3rd Apr '07 11:36PM
4213 Posts
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Member Since
7th Apr '03
Cheers Shu

In terms of what I want to do with Linux the answer is not much. I essentially use my laptop to browse the web with firefox whilst watching telly.
I still have my XP music PC with Office 2K3 on it if I want so really I was just generally wondering if there are any apps that were worth checking out for: Gaming, Doument Preperation, Music , Graphics, Software Development etc, etc that I might want to check out.
    

Agentgonzo
There's no pee in catheter!
Thu 5th Apr '07 10:38AM
811 Posts
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Member Since
8th Aug '06


General was bold enough to comment:
Cheers Shu

In terms of what I want to do with Linux the answer is not much. I essentially use my laptop to browse the web with firefox whilst watching telly.
I still have my XP music PC with Office 2K3 on it if I want so really I was just generally wondering if there are any apps that were worth checking out for: Gaming, Doument Preperation, Music , Graphics, Software Development etc, etc that I might want to check out.



Doc prep: Open Office. Does most of what MS office does, just without a lot of the business sharing thingies.
Graphics: the GIMP is a good photoshop replacement.
Music: I use XMMS (winamp clone), but there are probably better ones
I have no idea about gaming, apart from Tux Racer.
Software Development - I think that there's something called eclipse that's an IDE. otherwise most people just use vi/emacs/nano with gcc and other compliers.
Xine/Mplayer are the normal video players, though things like Kaffeine are better UIs (but I think that the core is built on Xine).
Evolution is also a good outlook replacement if you want that.

Hope that helps
  

General*
Windows Bob - the best!
Fri 31st Aug '07 4:42PM
4213 Posts
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Member Since
7th Apr '03
I know quite a few people use e-music on here so I thought I would share this with you: http://www.kallisti.net.nz/EMusicJ/HomePage

This nifty little app lets you download e-music in Linux.

Also I've just started using Swiftfox which is a processor specific optimised version of Firefox and it does seem a bit quicker and more stable.
    

Spanners*
Misses his big brother :(
Wed 5th Sep '07 1:31PM
4597 Posts
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Member Since
7th Apr '03
I'm using ArchLinux at work now. I wanted Ubuntu initially (on General's recommendation) but I was pushed towards ArchLinux as all our servers run it too so I only have to learn the quirks of one system rather than two.
I'm very impressed. Huge repository of apps that can sucked down and installed with their dependencies in a single command, choice of KDE or Gnome desktop and so easy to set up server daemons.
I use similar apps to AG with the addition of Kate, (KDE text editor), Kmess (MS Messenger app), Thunderbird (Mozilla email utility) and svn (command line utility for synching up the codebase with multiple developers - similar to cvs)
    

General*
Windows Bob - the best!
Thu 18th Oct '07 2:36PM
4213 Posts
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Member Since
7th Apr '03
The new version of Ubuntu Linux 7.10 Gutsy Gibbon is out today!

I'm very excited, I may post a review when I have updated.
    

Agentgonzo
There's no pee in catheter!
Thu 18th Oct '07 3:55PM
811 Posts
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Member Since
8th Aug '06
It's got spiffy graphics. They're all whooshy and twirly.
  

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