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Linux Distros - Took the quiz, need input


I've narrowed my choices down with the help of the Linux Distro Quiz and here's what I was recommended:

100% - OpenSUSE

95% - Mandriva

95% - Linux Mint

95% - Kubuntu

95% - Ubuntu

90% - Fedora

I'd like to put this on a laptop (HP DV1000). It's a bit old but I think it can run it. I currently run Windows 7 on it and it runs OK. It only struggles a bit when running some of the more processor intensive applications. Basically, I need to be able to do the following:

- Word Processing (Basically, everything that OpenOffice or Microsoft Office Suite does)

- Some basic photo editing (though I shoot in RAW so this may be out the window -- I currently use Photoshop Elements)

- Possibly connect my Zune to it. I don't know if there's any support for it on Linux but that would be great

- Network Testing

I'm currently a student majoring in telecommunications. If there's a set of tools I can use to do some network testing or anything of that sort, that would be great. I've looked into BackTrack but that build of Linux is very daunting for a first time Linux user.

I'd like to get to know Linux on a more in-depth level as all my experience is simply with Windows (I know). I want to really get a handle on working with Linux from both the client-side aspect as well as the server-side aspect. I realize these builds may not necessarily be the best for a look at how Linux works on the server side but I guess I'd like to get my feet with with learning the user experience.

Are there any network troubleshooting tools or suite of tools available for these builds?

Well, that's all I can think of right now. The rest is just casual web browsing so nothing TOO demanding.


  • Goineasy9
    Goineasy9 Posts: 1,114
    Welcome to the forum adrianK. If you are new to Linux, I'd try Linux Mint first. It is the easiest to set up and already contains all the extras that make it work out of the box.
    As you mentioned, Word Processing is covered by OpenOffice. It does everything I need it to do, and I've never needed Microsoft Word to fill in the gaps.
    There are many apps that can work with raw photo formats. I use GIMP myself, although I'm sure apps like F-spot are simpler and may accomplish the same things.
    Sorry, I don't know anyone who owns a Zune, It may or may not work with Linux.
    Since many networks use Linux as a base, testing a network would probably be easier using Linux than using Windows.

    Downloading the Linux Mint LiveCD and giving it a test would be the easiest way to tell if it works on your hardware. It won't affect your Windows 7 install, and , though it may run slower because it is running off of the CDROM, it will give you an idea of how it works. Also, depending on the amount of memory you have, you can even test download programs while running it, and see if they fit your purposes.

    Linux Mint may also have an option to make a Live USB stick, which may work faster than a LiveCD.

    I'm sure others will chime in with recommendations also.

    Here's the DistroWatch Link for Linux Mint, if any other links come to mind, I'll come back and post them.

  • adrianK
    adrianK Posts: 2
    Hi GoinEasy,

    Thanks for the response. I've downloaded Ubuntu and Mint and I'm going to give them both a run. I'm also going to give OpenSUSE a try as well. Are there any major differences between the three? I guess ultimately I'd like to familiarize myself with BackTrack 4 (not sure what its built on). But I want to spend a few months or so with a user-friendly version of linux.

    Again, thanks for the response and any other opinions would be greatly appreciated.
  • Goineasy9
    Goineasy9 Posts: 1,114
    Well, I just came across a post in another forum where someone said that he got a Zune working with Linux. There was no how-to, or else I'd give you a link, but, it seems that it uses the same fat/vfat format that Windows uses, so, using ntfs-3g which mounts Windows partitions should also mount the Zune.


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