Ok, so we all know that I've been giving Fedora a bit of a black eye lately with my BaitNSwitch and Is Fedora Still Relevant posts so I've decided to give them some positive press and enter their Spins Zone. Spins are live Fedora CD images designed with a specific purpose or function in mind.
For example, there are Spins sporting the XFCE window manager, an Appliance Operating System (AOS) version, a Fedora Electronic Lab (FEL) edition that supports high-end hardware, a games Spin and a Brazilian Spin (huh?). All Spins are available in 32-bit and 64-bit format. There are Spins for Fedora 8, 9, 10 and 11.
You'll have to have a BitTorrent client to download the Spins since they're all in torrent format.
I've used the XFCE Spin and am going to soon try the AOS Spin since it sounds intriguing. There's been a lot of buzz surrounding AOS from Red Hat and I'm curious to see it and test it since I do a lot of work with virtualization.
An Appliance Operating System is a stripped-down version of the Fedora distribution that includes only those pieces that are needed to make a functional system. The Fedora 11 AOS Spin is approximately 127MB so it's very stripped-down and a perfect testing ground for virtual appliances.
Spins, like all live Linux CDs, allow you to try before you commit, which is a great way to demonstrate a technology, software or some other aspect of your operating system or application.
To my knowledge, Fedora is the only project or distribution that offers the wide variety of live CDs profiling multiple applications and covering multiple versions.
Grab yourself a Spin, take it for a spin and tell me what you think of it.