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Ive had mint for a while now, and personally I think Im not half-bad at using linux. But now that Im a little more experienced, I want to look into ...
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  1. #1
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    Mint or Debian?


    Ive had mint for a while now, and personally I think Im not half-bad at using linux. But now that Im a little more experienced, I want to look into more distros that don't have user friendly written all over them. So, forgetting ease of use, which is better? This is what I will be using it for- playing/running a minecraft (bukkit) server, games on steam, web browsing, programming (java in eclipse).
    This is my logic to narrow down to these two- I like a popular distro, because its more likely to have products I want for it. Browsing product sites, like dropbox and mumble, it seems theres 3 coices. Ubuntu(and Mint), Fedora, Debian, and maybe some openSUSE. Haven't really looked into suse, and Fedora you are forced to use openjdk, a killer for a java person like me. So that leaves Mint and Debian.
    Also, how easy is it to dual-boot 2 linux OSes? When I tried to dual boot Mint with Win7, win7 went bye-bye.

  2. #2
    Administrator jayd512's Avatar
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    Hello and Welcome!

    First, don't count out Fedora. You can install install JDK and JRE if needed. See here.

    Other than that, almost any major distro could meet the rest of your needs.
    Also, how easy is it to dual-boot 2 linux OSes?
    I'm triple booting 3 Linux distros right now. And there are members here who have more than that.
    Jay

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  3. #3
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    Jay is right

    Quote Originally Posted by jayd512 View Post
    Hello and Welcome!

    First, don't count out Fedora. You can install install JDK and JRE if needed. See here.

    Other than that, almost any major distro could meet the rest of your needs.

    I'm triple booting 3 Linux distros right now. And there are members here who have more than that.
    Ah Jay, "only" triple booting? I have seven to eight distributions on each of my two laptops, but I've had as many as a dozen systems in the past, and there is a guy out there that has booted as many as 100 distinct systems installed at one time, so it is definitely possible. I average between six and eight systems over the long run.

    I do it by learning and taking advantage of two things: partition managers (and I typically set up all of the partitions when I start from scratch as soon as I acquire new hardware), and boot managers - I used GRUB for many years, now called GRUB Legacy. I actually find the legacy version easier to work with interactively, but it is at least theoretically possible to work interactively with GRUB 2 as well. GRUB 2 does more automatically; it attempts to find all bootable systems for you. When successful, it's great. When not, it's more difficult (but not impossible) to edit.

    Bottom line, though, having several systems, including a mix of Windows and Linux, is not only possible, I am doing it and have for at least a decade now.
    Brian Masinick
    masinick AT yahoo DOT com

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    Linux Engineer MASONTX's Avatar
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    Distrowatch.com has a list of their top 100 distro's. Ubuntu is 1, mint 2, Fedora 3, Debian 4, and Suse 5, so any of those you mention should be popular distro's. I am partial to the Ubuntu and Debian based distro's, but which ever one appeals to you would be best for you.
    Registered Linux user #526930

  6. #5
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    I have 3 x86_64 boxes running openSUSE, 2 running Kubuntu and one Beagleboard XM running Ubuntu ARM.

    I have a number of VM's under VirtualBox running everything else, openSolaris 10, Fedora, Mint, SimplyMEPIS, Moblin, CENTOS and Chrome.

    With VirtualBox I'm able to evaluate and work with any of those distros without having to leave the main OS. With network bridging they are all on the same subnet so I can ssh into them, transfer files, etc. as though they are actual standalone boxes. No perceptible performance differences either.

    If I fancy looking at another distro I create a VM, boot the iso, install, boot it up and attach as much hardware as I need.

    It's a more satisfactory solution than having to kill one distro in order to use another single one or having to slice and dice disk space for each one.
    Virtualization is the latest hot topic everywhere in recent years but we have been doing it on Mainframes since the early 1980's.

  7. #6
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    Another good point!

    Quote Originally Posted by Siddly View Post
    I have 3 x86_64 boxes running openSUSE, 2 running Kubuntu and one Beagleboard XM running Ubuntu ARM.

    I have a number of VM's under VirtualBox running everything else, openSolaris 10, Fedora, Mint, SimplyMEPIS, Moblin, CENTOS and Chrome.

    With VirtualBox I'm able to evaluate and work with any of those distros without having to leave the main OS. With network bridging they are all on the same subnet so I can ssh into them, transfer files, etc. as though they are actual standalone boxes. No perceptible performance differences either.

    If I fancy looking at another distro I create a VM, boot the iso, install, boot it up and attach as much hardware as I need.

    It's a more satisfactory solution than having to kill one distro in order to use another single one or having to slice and dice disk space for each one.
    Virtualization is the latest hot topic everywhere in recent years but we have been doing it on Mainframes since the early 1980's.
    Virtualization is an excellent technology to use when evaluating software. I first encountered it in the eighties and used VM/CMS. You could actually run multiple mainframe operating systems through multiple virtual instances. The performance back then was not really suitable for every day use, at least on the systems I had a chance to use.

    The same was true early on with the PCs I had in my possession, and that is why I chose the multiple boot approach. You're still going to get better performance that way, but it is a trade off between performance and convenience, as well as flexibility. If you have a lot of space., CPU capability and a lot of memory, it may not be worth multi-booting at all; just use multiple virtual machine instances. In my case, however, booting multiple system images, each in their own distinct partition, also has its advantages. I have the disk space, but not the CPU power to achieve performance that's good enough for every day use. I find a VM good for a quick look, but a multi-boot implementation a better overall fit for systems I tend to use on a fairly regular basis. That would be different if I had the performance available to me, but with 4-5 year old laptop systems, though a VM does work, it's just equal to a system running natively, and not close enough to overlook the performance difference.
    Brian Masinick
    masinick AT yahoo DOT com

  8. #7
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    We had some large customers like Rolls Royce who were heavily into VM/CMS along with MVS and they swore by it but admittedly there weren't that many.
    Where we pushed the technology out further was with hardware virtualization, dynamically slicing it up so that one partition could be assigned to a fraction of a CPU and resources could be moved around to suit requirements at any time. We should have pushed it out more widely as we only ran it on our own (AMDAHL) mainframes though we had one IBM customer (Rutherford Labs) using it.

    I can see it from your angle if you have older hardware.
    I use my 3 openSUSE boxes for different things and the Kubuntu boxes have been mainly used for SDR (Software Defined Radio) because that's the platform most of the guys develop on and it helps the discourse, though the openSUSE boxes for SDR work are fine for my use and as it turns out they are used heavily for that work. Apart from the management tools most of the distros are pretty much the same.

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