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Posts tagged as “mageia”

How Many Linux Distros Are On the Top Ten?

There’s been a lot of talk recently about the number of GNU/Linux distros there are out in the wild. This is nothing new, as this has been an ongoing discussion among Linux users for at least as long as I’ve been using Linux.

In a nutshell, in case you’re new to the Linux world, some say that the overabundance of Linux distros is overkill, that it weakens the development by spreading developers out on the various distros when they could be focused on just one or two key distros. Those in this camp also claim that the huge number of distros also confuses the public, thereby acting as a roadblock to desktop Linux’s growth.

On the other side of the fence, there are people who claim that the choices offered by the numerous distros are actually good for Linux, that the plethora of distros means that users can find an implementation of Linux that’s just right for them.

I’m in the latter camp, but that’s neither here nor there. No matter which side of the fence you sit, there’s actually not nearly so many distros as there may seem.

And Your First Linux Distro Was…

Back on June 23, when we asked you to name the first Linux distro you ever used, we pretty much knew that the choice “Other” would take the day.

That’s because we wanted to be completely neutral, so the ten choices we offered besides “Other” were just the top ten distros from the Distrowatch “Page Hit Ranking,” which meant that those who started their Linux life with something other than Debian or SUSE in the pre-Ubuntu era were not represented.

Debian Tops Our Community Distro Poll

The results have been tallied and Debian got the most votes in our Community Distro Poll. We would call them the “winner,” but this wasn’t about winners and losers. It was about trying to reach a consensus on what we mean by the term “community distro.” We asked, “Which GNU/Linux distros do you consider to be legitimate community distros?” Choices weren’t limited to one; voters could choose as many as they wanted and even add more through a text box supplied by choosing “Other.”

Best Newbie Distro? You Say Linux Mint.

According to our “Newbie” Distro Poll, someone considering moving from Windows or Mac to Linux should consider taking Linux Mint for a spin. The poll asked the question, “What Linux distro would you be most likely to recommend to a new Linux user?” Evidently this was a subject that interested many of you, because a whopping 1,339 votes were cast in this poll, making it the most number of votes one of our polls has ever received.

Some Prominent Open Source Forks

Penguinistas used to worry about the dreaded fork, especially of Linux. “What if Linux forks and becomes like Unix?” was a question often being posed in the open source media. Linus Torvalds would do his best to put those fears to rest, explaining that under the GPL forks are usually to be welcomed.

He was of the opinion that if a fork improves a product and is liked by the users, those changes will almost certainly be rolled back into the originating application. If not, and the fork is indeed a marked improvement on the original, then the fork becomes the standard bearer at the expense of the original application.

Christine HallChristine Hall

Christine Hall has been a journalist since 1971. In 2001, she began writing a weekly consumer computer column and started covering Linux and FOSS in 2002 after making the switch to GNU/Linux. Follow her on Twitter: @BrideOfLinux

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