Hi guys, to make things easier for Linux noobies, I have decided to post a guide to help you choose what Linux distro to get.
Linux Distro Choosing Guide
Welcome to Linux, my friend! The Linux os' in general are very alike, and different than Microsoft. Many people have decided to move to Linux because it is more stable, and open-source. Unlike MS, Linux has many different distributions (or distros). Each distro has it's '+'s and '-'s. Here I will try to cover as many different distros as I can.
Red Hat Linux is a very popular distro of Linux. It comes packaged with many different free applications for you to use, such as the Mozilla browser and Open Office (Linux alternative to the MS Office package). It also comes with a fairly easy to install system that lets you install KDE or Gnome (depending on your choice).
-Fairly easy for the novice
-Comes with loads of Linux software
-Sometimes gets too easy for the Linux guru
-Lacks a bit in mp3 and dvd media
Red Hat interface
Gentoo Linux is a lot harder for the noobie Linux person and is more focused on the guru group. I do not recommend this distro for noobies.
-- Completely customizable distributions
-- Programs compiled optimized for your hardware
-- Excellent support from the Gentoo forums
-- Portage, my personal favorite method for managing dependencies in any distro
-- Free, as in both
-- Untainted desktop environments. You get GNOME and KDE the way they were meant to look and behave
-- One of the more difficult installations of any distro I've used
-- Long compile times, especially on slower machines
-- Lots of downloading. Broadband is more or less a necessity
-- No "true" tech support
Slackware is a pretty good distro, coming with the installations to install Gnome 2.4.0, or KDE 3.1.4. If you want you can easily install the 2.6.xx kernel if you like beta kernels. The installation is text-based, so some users may find it a bit hard, but if you've used FreeBSD or Debian Linux then you should be fine. Overall, it's a pretty solid Linux distro to use.
Interface of Slackware 9.1 Gnome
-Mandrake Linux 9.2
Mandrake is an excellent distro to get started with. It has an easy installation method and is graphical. The interfaces while using Mandrake makes a Windows user comfortable. It also comes installed with many different Linux things to use, wich makes it really nice.
-Easy installation for new users
-Comes pre-loaded with great software
-Easy for the Linux guru
-Some of the stuff installed you don't really need
-To start us off, Suse comes in two different types, professional and personal. Personal is free while professional comes with a cost. Suse pro is more business-oriented while the home edition is geared to home users. The installation is graphical, and fairly easy to do. Suse also has excellent detection rates for scanners, cameras and any external devices. It uses KDE 3.1 wich is pretty nice. It is really easy for the novice Linux person, while still challenging for gurus. Suse is probably a good distro to choose if you're totally new to Linux.
-Not a ton of new features since 8.2
-Debian Linux is great and a very stable linux os, but definitely not for the Linux newbie. Debian was developed 100% by volunteers and not just one company, like Suse or Red Hat. It can be sometimes very hard to use but in the end it's excellent for the Linux guru.
-One of the most stable Linux distros
-Made entirely by volunteers
-For the guru only
-Sometimes extremely frustrating
What is Fedora you ask? Well, Fedora is a distro of Linux sponsored by Red Hat that is said to be made to make a complete os built entirely from free software. Here is a small quote from the fedora site:
Overall, Fedora looks quite promising for a venturer in the Linux field and looks like a good challenge for the guru.The goal of The Fedora Project is to work with the Linux community to build a complete, general purpose operating system exclusively from free software. Development will be done in a public forum. The project will produce time-based releases of Fedora Core about 2-3 times a year with a public release schedule. The Red Hat engineering team will continue to participate in the building of Fedora Core and will invite and encourage more outside participation than was possible in Red Hat Linux. By using this more open process, we hope to provide an operating system that uses free software development practices and is more appealing to the open source community.
-Going to be a full os system
-Still in beta
-A few problems that come up during install and first boot that need to be fixed
Interface screen of Fedora
KDE interface on FreeBSD
**this guide was written 100% by bulio and there is no copy-and-paste whatsoever.**
Lynx - Edited some screwed up links