i want to try linux. I was wondering if anyone of you guys could give me a distro which give you a more Programmer interface. a distro which will give you more space to improve as a programmer.

thanks in advance.

btw im looking at the info about gentoo..

11 Years
Discussion Span
Last Post by Covinus

If this is your first time, I would stay away from gentoo. Dont get me wrong I use Gentoo on 3 desktops, 2 laptops, 4 production servers(apache and mysql), 2 development servers, and a file server. Gentoo great distro, but you will spend many many hours just getting it up and running, not even counting any customization.
I suggest something along the lines of debian or fedora for a first timer. As for more programmer orientated, use KDE for your desktop.



sn4r3r is right about Gentoo. It's not a good beginner distro. For you I would recommend:

  • Debian. It's one of the oldest distros, is relatively easy to use, and doesn't have much bloat like the bigger distros have.
  • Slackware. Harder to use, but it will teach you more about Linux in a few weeks than other distros will teach you in months. And it runs really fast.

This is only the base, though. Distros can be infinitely customized to suit your needs, and window managers is an example. Gnome is considered very easy to use, but I would recommend KDE because it's more powerful and it was more developed for programmers. It also has an IDE built for it: KDevelop.

Another good display manager (that I've heard of; haven't actually got around to trying it yet) is Fluxbox. It has supposedly less bloat, so it will hopefully run faster than Gnome or KDE.


i think kde is cool. but can i ask you how to install this one??? im a noob you know. btw what do you think of using puppy linux???


whatever distro you are interested in, I would first look around for forums, a wiki for howto's, and user base. I would agree with joeprogrammer on debian or slackware, they both have great user base and tons of documentation.
start there and then test out other distros down the road, start googling for kde+distro of choice+howto or things like that and you will see which ones have the most docs to help you in your journey.
good luck


i think kde is cool. but can i ask you how to install this one???

KDE is standard with nearly every distro (except for Ubuntu, in which case you need to download Kubuntu).

btw what do you think of using puppy linux???

I've never used it before... but from what I can see, it looks very similar to Ubuntu or SuSE.


if u want good support and stability as well as speed and easy use debian

it runs fast (in my opinion the same as puppy, im using debian version etch on a 733mhz pc with 128mb of ram)

its easy to install things with "apt-get-(packagex)"

You can get a 40mb netinstall CD

Programming on it is good - it was my 1st full-time distro (xp replacer)

Stay away from slack - its good and has good progranmming tools but package management is a pain and version 11 of it runs slowwwwww


Ok, I'm a Linux n00b myself and I just finished a tour of the more popular distributions as I am revamping my entire rig. I ended up with Ubuntu (which, if you choose KDE as your desktop manager, Kubuntu is what you'll want.)

The setup with Ubuntu was completely painless (perhaps not so much as Suse, but I feel Suse setups may be a bit too automated, not giving the user much in way of initial-install customization.) I'm assuming, of course, that you are migrating from a Windows OS of some flavor, which is what I did.

Definitely read up on the wikis to see what your options are in terms of package management, as this can be one of the most time-consuming areas of setting up your Linux box. I can't tell you the nightmare I went through trying to satisfy package dependency with Slackware and a few other lesser distros. The benefit of package management on a Debian system comes installed with Ubuntu as Ubuntu is Debian-based.

As with anything Linux related: Research, research, research. It's open source, so the community is there and most problems you will have are already covered in one forum or another.

Be prepared with frustration and the need to possibly reinstall your OS several times before you get it right.

To read up on my misadventures with this wonderful os: CodySnider.com


i dont understand how ubuntu ppl find debian so hard

i love etch myself and they all cry "ohhh but its a text install"
(yes - theres a graphical one on the way but thats beside the point)


I dont mind text installs if there intuitive and debians is (maybe not the partitioning bit but if you can install a system like XP you can do it)

So basically dont listen to the ubuntu noobs and give it a shot


Give PCLinuxOS a try.

It's organized and many programmers use it already...especially perl hackers (we've got a ton in the developers mailing list). Overall feel, look, and stability is fantastic.

It's rocketed up to #6 at distrowatch.com and it's only 3 years old. There's a reason it's that popular. And it's the top distro that ISN'T funded by a company or sponsored by a company...that also tells you tons :D


how about zenwalk(formerly known as miniclack)??
anyone ever tried this distro before???


was it minislack never knew that?

never tried ti. If you like that though, try DreamLinux ive used it and would recommend

Frankly for most ppl ubuntu edgy eft (or debian edtch) does just fine.

I currently run a customised edgy with XGL, compiz and the "slab" menu from SLED, it looks great (better than vista) and uses less than it in terms of ram


i downloaded PCLinuxOS yesterday. when i booted the live cd it seem i was stock in dos like interface. it says dr-dos what does that mean???

This topic has been dead for over six months. Start a new discussion instead.
Have something to contribute to this discussion? Please be thoughtful, detailed and courteous, and be sure to adhere to our posting rules.