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  1. #1

    Question What is the best Distro for Multimedia stuff?

    I'm looking to install linux on my laptop, and would mostly us it for multimedia (i.e., music and DVDs) and schoolwork.

    From the sound of it, the distro I was first considering (Ubuntu) isn't that great for multimedia stuff, so I was just wondering which is the easiest/best for that kind of stuff.

  2. #2
    Linux Guru antidrugue's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Montreal, Canada
    I use Debian Sarge, I think it is exceptionnal for multimedia support (music, DVDs, movies, etc.)

    ... except you have to configure everything by yourself, cf it will not work "out of the box".

    Yes, I had some issues trying to do the same thing with Ubuntu, but it is very well possible to achieve complete multimedia capabilities as well, just look around, like by using automatix for Ubuntu .
    "To express yourself in freedom, you must die to everything of yesterday. From the 'old', you derive security; from the 'new', you gain the flow."

    -Bruce Lee

  3. #3
    Linux Guru dylunio's Avatar
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    Aug 2004
    the times I've used Ubuntu it's been rather good with multimedia, and it's become a rather nice distro too.
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  5. #4
    Linux User truoc444's Avatar
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    Aug 2005
    Southern Roots, Stuck in the Mountains
    i'm running SimplyMEPIS on my laptop and love it. even my wireless works (most of the time) but i have great multimedia support for watching movies and listening to music rippin cds etc.
    Desktop: Dual Xeon 2.8 GHz 1.5 GB RAM Ubuntu/XP Pro
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  6. #5
    Linux Guru antidrugue's Avatar
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    Oct 2005
    Montreal, Canada
    There are 2 aspects here:

    I mean, some distros like Suse or Ubuntu work better out-of-the-box with laptops.

    If you want easy, probably Suse would do the trick.

    If you are willing to work hard and you want real power: Debian.

    Check this out:
    "To express yourself in freedom, you must die to everything of yesterday. From the 'old', you derive security; from the 'new', you gain the flow."

    -Bruce Lee

  7. #6
    Join Date
    May 2004
    arch linux
    SimplyMepis as already mentioned, and I've heard PCLinuxOS is supposed to have very good MM support right out of the box.

  8. #7
    Linux Guru bryansmith's Avatar
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    Nov 2004
    I hear that Vector comes with a whole bunch of stuff preconfigured.

    5.0 SOHO seems to have quite a bit for multimedia:

    Looking for a distro? Look here.
    "There can be no doubt that all our knowledge begins with experience." - Immanuel Kant (Critique of Pure Reason)
    Queen's University - Arts and Science 2008 (Sociology)
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  9. #8
    Linux Enthusiast
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Luton, England, UK, Earth
    If you want something that you can use as a live CD as well as installed, I would recommend Kanotix very good distro.

  10. #9
    Well, you can never trust the whole "out of the box configured" claim, usually that means that if your configuration is outside of what they detect, it's harder to get things working.

    I would suggest using Slackware myself, but that is me. I rather like the low-overhead of the distro, and the fact that it gives you a lot of options.

    The reality of it all is, in terms of multimedia, all distros *are* created equal. If you know how to configure ALSA yourself (not hard, three commands, two of which spawn graphical tools)

    If you are using a big "generic" kernel like those provided by most major distros, you're going to have the same selection of kernel drivers, and to my knowledge most distros don't contain special-case drivers that you will have to get and compile yourself.

    Ultimately, I would suggest Slackware to you as it doesn't include a lot of unnecessary bulk, and most all of the configuration tools work well. It doesn't ship with mplayer (which I recommend for playing all but DVDs and MP3s) but it's a snap to install, and there is even a slackware package (at ) which makes installation as even simpler.

  11. #10
    Just Joined!
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    Jul 2005
    look out your window
    maybe its just me but i think posts like this can get a bit annoying; people asking which distro is the best for a certian thing...the answer is: all of them!

    what defines a distro is just what packages are installed really, you can install any linux app on any linux there really isnt a best distro for one thing.

    you could ask "what distro will automaticly configure everything for me" but most, like this thread, dont.

    sorry for sounding kinda harsh but thats just how i feel

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