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Which Linux Distro is Appropriate for me? Here's my setup: Computer : HP Pavillion dv5000 Graphics Card : NVidia GEForce GO 7400 Wireless : PRO/Wireless 3945ABG [Golan] Network Connection Audio ...
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  1. #1
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    Question Which distro is appropriate for me?


    Which Linux Distro is Appropriate for me?

    Here's my setup:

    Computer: HP Pavillion dv5000
    Graphics Card: NVidia GEForce GO 7400
    Wireless: PRO/Wireless 3945ABG [Golan] Network Connection
    Audio: 82801G (ICH7 Family) High Definition Audio Controller

    CPU
    (from /proc/cpuinfo)

    -----------------------------------------

    processor - 0
    vendor_id - GenuineIntel
    cpu family - 6
    model - 14
    model name - Genuine Intel(R) CPU T2250 (at) 1.73GHz
    stepping - 8
    cpu MHz - 800.000
    cache size - 2048 KB
    physical id - 0
    siblings - 2
    core id - 0
    cpu cores - 2
    apicid - 0
    initial apicid - 0
    fdiv_bug - no
    hlt_bug - no
    f00f_bug - no
    coma_bug - no
    fpu - yes
    fpu_exception - yes
    cpuid level - 10
    wp - yes
    flags - fpu vme de pse tsc msr pae mce cx8 apic sep mtrr pge mca cmov
    pat clflush dts acpi mmx fxsr sse sse2 ss ht tm pbe nx constant_tsc
    arch_perfmon bts pni monitor est tm2 xtpr
    bogomips - 3457.92
    clflush size - 64
    power management-

    processor - 1
    vendor_id - GenuineIntel
    cpu family - 6
    model - 14
    model name - Genuine Intel(R) CPU T2250 (at) 1.73GHz
    stepping - 8
    cpu MHz - 800.000
    cache size - 2048 KB
    physical id - 0
    siblings - 2
    core id - 1
    cpu cores - 2
    apicid - 1
    initial apicid - 1
    fdiv_bug - no
    hlt_bug - no
    f00f_bug - no
    coma_bug - no
    fpu - yes
    fpu_exception - yes
    cpuid level - 10
    wp - yes
    flags - fpu vme de pse tsc msr pae mce cx8 apic sep mtrr pge mca cmov
    pat clflush dts acpi mmx fxsr sse sse2 ss ht tm pbe nx constant_tsc
    arch_perfmon bts pni monitor est tm2 xtpr
    bogomips - 3458.16
    clflush size - 64
    power management-


    --------------------------------------------


    Things I'm Looking For-

    Power Management - When it's low on battery I want to know about it. I don't want it to randomly shut down and corrupt all the data I'm working on like it does in Ubuntu 8.10
    Speed - I spent hours trying to get a .m2st (BlueRay) file to run normally on Ubuntu 8.10. I bluetoothed it to my mum's Macintosh and it played perfectly, no hitches.
    Usability - I want something that's usable but whether it requires me to use more or less of a command line interface doesn't phase me. Providing I can bind aliases, etc. (ie, modify the .bash_alias file, etc.)
    Performance - if I play DVDs, etc I want it to support my NVidia GeForce GO 7400, not have slow/hitchy play, frame skips, lower quality graphics, etc.
    - also I want to be able to play games (ie, on wine, etc), best if the performance is solid too. Games such as KOTOR II, GTA4, etc. Nothing more agitating than slow games
    - also do not want crashes! especially with wine programs. I realise that Linux isn't designed to support windows progs, but I'd rather the application quit if something goes wrong than the computer freeze! (also in the circumstance the application does quit, I want to be able to enable logging/view a log of the incident.
    Flexibility / Support - If I install new progs I want them to work straight away. Not spend 5 hours trying to configure this setting, that setting, download this patch, etc.
    - I want good headset/external device support. I have a Logitech headset and it worked on my distro before the most recent update - it now no longer works!
    - I use a Macintosh USB mouse and it works perfectly. I don't want issues with USB sticks, external harddrives, etc
    - I also want an easy ability to switch from the GUI to the command line, etc. - I don't mean terminals specifically. If there's a console mode I'd like to be able to access it when I can. (capability to use multiple console screens would be appreciated) - ie, if I download a really buggy interface component and I need to use the console I want to be able to use multiple programs at once.
    Communication - I want to be able to bluetooth, etc, no dilemmas when connecting to the Internet / Networks / Uploading using progs like FTP.
    Text Editing - I want support for rich text editors like OpenOffice.org3
    Quality - sound/video should be optimal quality
    Online Support - if something does go wrong and I don't know how to fix it, there's somewhere where I can go to get support (whether it be online forums, etc)

    If there's other things I should be specifying please ask.

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Linux Guru reed9's Avatar
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    Power Management - this varies between desktop environments. But you can set up notifications for low power easily in GNOME, KDE, or XFCE. I prefer the XFCE and KDE power managers, to the GNOME power manager.

    Speed - I don't have a blue ray drive, so no idea. Generally speed of the system depends a lot on desktop environment and window manager again, KDE and GNOME being heavy weights.

    Performace - Are you using the nvidia driver? I have a Geforce 7600 and it works flawlessly.

    Flexibility - Most programs in most distros are autoconfigured and work straight away. But some programs will always require configuration. How can the developers guess how you want to use the program? All distros allow you to easily switch to a console or terminal. Pretty much all distros have multiple virtual consoles by default. Also look into the program screen.

    Communication - I don't use bluetooth. No idea how well it's supported, but I would wager it's comparable across distros. Connecting to the internet depends on your network card and whether it's supported.

    Text Editor - Open Office is a hell of a lot more than a text editor. But you can install it in pretty much any distro, even if they don't include it by default.

    Quality - Sound/Video depends on your hardware to large extent.

    Online support - Ubuntu probably has the largest community support infrastructure. Stick with any of the most popular distros and you should be fine. Learning to ask good questions is key to getting good answers in help forums.

    Which distro? Whichever one you like. Burn a bunch of CDs and try as many distros as it takes until you find one that works for you. There's no way for us to ever tell you what you will like or what will work for you.

  3. #3
    Administrator jayd512's Avatar
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    I agree with everything already stated by reed9. The only thing I can add (even though I don't use it either) is that bluetooth support is integrated in most newer kernels, meaning everything I've come across in the past year.
    As far as low power, it's on GNOME by default. But I don't use KDE, so while I'm sure it's there, don't quote me on that But it can be added to pretty much any WM you choose to use.
    Jay

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  4. #4
    Linux Engineer b2bwild's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by reed9 View Post
    Which distro? Whichever one you like. Burn a bunch of CDs and try as many distros as it takes until you find one that works for you. There's no way for us to ever tell you what you will like or what will work for you.
    How about LFS...
    I had kernel panic 50 times on my first LFS X_X

    I would like to mention DistroWatch.com: Put the fun back into computing. Use Linux, BSD.
    Just go through distros you like, see their features, etc.

    Or take a test here --> zegenie Studios Linux Distribution Chooser
    To find suitable distro for you.

    however, i agree with reed9 that you have to try many distros to find a perfect distro for you.
    but i have stopped suggesting that to people now.

    because some people just cant download so many ISOs quickly on low/mid bandwidth connections and neither they have time when they want a quick solution in times of troubles. because you cant know about a distro by using it for few days. it takes lot more than that.

    for beginners i mostly suggest, Linux Mint or Mandriva.
    im not saying its best, and just go for that only. but you can have a try.
    Never make any misteaks.

    Read my Blog at --> Penguin Inside Subscribe Feed

  5. #5
    Linux Guru techieMoe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Poyntz View Post
    Which Linux Distro is Appropriate for me?

    Here's my setup:

    Computer: HP Pavillion dv5000
    Graphics Card: NVidia GEForce GO 7400
    Wireless: PRO/Wireless 3945ABG [Golan] Network Connection
    Audio: 82801G (ICH7 Family) High Definition Audio Controller
    That's a pretty standard setup with Intel wireless, Intel HD Audio, and an Nvidia card. You shouldn't have any trouble running any relatively new version of Linux on it. I have similar specs on my laptop.


    Things I'm Looking For-

    Power Management - When it's low on battery I want to know about it. I don't want it to randomly shut down and corrupt all the data I'm working on like it does in Ubuntu 8.10
    This is something you set in the power management preferences. In Ubuntu, you can have it do any number of things when your power is low, including warning you, playing a particular sound or executing a script of some sort.

    Speed - I spent hours trying to get a .m2st (BlueRay) file to run normally on Ubuntu 8.10. I bluetoothed it to my mum's Macintosh and it played perfectly, no hitches.
    This likely has nothing at all to do with Linux and everything to do with BluRay. The format itself is quite proprietary and unlikely to get support on Linux any time soon. Apple has paid royalties to Sony for the privilege of being able to play back BluRay media. The various Linux distributions are unlikely to be willing to do this.

    Usability - I want something that's usable but whether it requires me to use more or less of a command line interface doesn't phase me. Providing I can bind aliases, etc. (ie, modify the .bash_alias file, etc.)
    In that case, just about every Linux distribution ever created is open to you. I suggest you start with the top 10 most popular on DistroWatch and go from there.

    Performance - if I play DVDs, etc I want it to support my NVidia GeForce GO 7400, not have slow/hitchy play, frame skips, lower quality graphics, etc.
    This shouldn't be a problem. Some distributions such as Ubuntu, Linux Mint and Mandriva will detect and install proper Nvidia drivers for you with very little after-the-fact work on your part. Mandriva actually includes these drivers on the install disc.

    You'll have to download codecs for DVD playback. In Ubuntu that's accomplished with the ubuntu-restricted-extras package.

    - also I want to be able to play games (ie, on wine, etc), best if the performance is solid too. Games such as KOTOR II, GTA4, etc. Nothing more agitating than slow games
    - also do not want crashes! especially with wine programs. I realise that Linux isn't designed to support windows progs, but I'd rather the application quit if something goes wrong than the computer freeze! (also in the circumstance the application does quit, I want to be able to enable logging/view a log of the incident.
    This is not Linux's fault, it's WINE's. If you want to play games written for MS Windows reliably, use MS Windows. Many of us on the forum dual boot for that very purpose. WINE is a half-measure at best and will never be as reliable or as fast as running a game on the OS for which it was designed.

    Flexibility / Support - If I install new progs I want them to work straight away. Not spend 5 hours trying to configure this setting, that setting, download this patch, etc.
    I recommend you stick with the mainstream distros then. No Gentoo, Arch, or Linux from Scratch. Ubuntu, SuSE, Mandriva, and Fedora generally have no issues with packages you install from their repositories. No further command-line wizardry is necessary.

    - I use a Macintosh USB mouse and it works perfectly. I don't want issues with USB sticks, external harddrives, etc
    I've never had issues with a USB mouse, and since about 3 or 4 years ago I've stopped having any issues with USB drives on my system. USB support was greatly augmented with version 2.6 of the Linux kernel.

    - I also want an easy ability to switch from the GUI to the command line, etc. - I don't mean terminals specifically. If there's a console mode I'd like to be able to access it when I can. (capability to use multiple console screens would be appreciated) - ie, if I download a really buggy interface component and I need to use the console I want to be able to use multiple programs at once.
    Pretty much any Linux will let you drop to a virtual terminal with ALT+F1 and return to X Windows with ALT+F7.

    Text Editing - I want support for rich text editors like OpenOffice.org3
    Every version of Linux on the planet will run OpenOffice as long as you have Java installed. However I very stronly recommend you not use OO.org for just text editing. If all you need is rich text there are a number of much smaller programs with lower memory requirements.

    Online Support - if something does go wrong and I don't know how to fix it, there's somewhere where I can go to get support (whether it be online forums, etc)
    You're already here. If you have any issues with any Linux you try, come back here and we'll do our best to get you up and running. We have a wide pool of expertise on different distributions. However, if you pick a relatively obscure distribution be prepared to wait a day or two for a response.
    Registered Linux user #270181
    TechieMoe's Tech Rants

  6. #6
    Linux Newbie
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    Quote Originally Posted by Poyntz View Post
    Which Linux Distro is Appropriate for me?

    Here's my setup:

    Computer: HP Pavillion dv5000
    Graphics Card: NVidia GEForce GO 7400
    Wireless: PRO/Wireless 3945ABG [Golan] Network Connection
    Audio: 82801G (ICH7 Family) High Definition Audio Controller
    There should work nearly everything. Good for beginners in my opinion is Knoppix or Mandriva or Openmamba they are all well suported but Ubuntu has the biggest community of all them.

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