Sun 17 Apr 2005 08:33:52 PM PDT
Picking a distribution
(updated 8 April 2005.)
The most important part of picking a distribution is thinking about where you will go for help, and what distribution that source of help understands. That's true if your source of help is a vendor, a consultant, or a users group.
As a home user, you'll probably be asking your local Linux users group for help when you need it. So get on the mailing list and just "lurk" for a while. See what the most helpful people on the list use, and install that. That way if you have a question, you'll be more likely to reach someone who has already dealt with it. (see How to Pick a Distribution.)
If you're getting into uses for Linux that are different from those of your local user group, it's more important to use a list of people like you than just the geographically closest user group. For example, if you're planning to set up a Linux-based recording studio and your local LUG is all about running web sites and playing Crimson Fields, you might want to get on the Planet CCRMA mailing list, and get your Linux distribution recommendations there.
Karsten Self has a longer "how to pick a distribution" page with more info on some of the things you can do with your Linux system when you have the software installed.