[ILUG] Favourite flavours
rick at linuxmafia.com
Mon Jul 12 15:03:44 IST 2004
Quoting Andoni (andoni at ireland.com):
> I have to set up two new servers to act as web servers hosting Apache
> & Tomcat for my company.
> Does anybody have ideas as to what distribution I should use and why?
You should use whatever works best for you, and what you can get
effective assistance with (to the extent you need assistance). Choice
of distribution tends to be A Religious Matter<tm>. You
(metaphorically) invited a "witnessing".
Note: You didn't bother to indicate the extent of your prior experience
with Linux and with system administration, making it difficult to
recommend something suitable and relevant. Ergo, you succeeded only in
getting people to vent generic personal opinions -- which tend to be
neither suitable nor relevant.
> I am sure this has been discussed before....
Only for about thirteen years. ;->
> So: is there a reason I should keep away from the free versions of Linux?
There is no such thing as a free-as-in-zero-cost distribution of Linux,
technically: All distributions have costs. Some have specific price of
acquisition (which is what you probably mean by the term "commercial"),
but absolutely all of them have costs -- if only in the equivalent value
of time, expertise, and trouble.
> If I am paying for Linux is RedHat (the most popular?) definitely the best?
You will always _pay_ for Linux or any other operating system; some have
a small acquisition cost up front, others don't. If so, the acquisition
cost is trivial compared to other costs.
It is very, very common -- but also delusional -- for people to value
software at its acquisition cost. One of the core concepts of the
open-source movement is to recognise that the primary value of software
lies in use value, and that usage value is the most relevant measure of
software's worth, in most cases.
If you have never spent time as a Unix system administrator before, you
should (ideally) spend a fair amount of time learning basic competence
while trying out various Linux and BSD distributions to find out what
suits you and your firm best. Until you do that, you don't even have
context for evaluating the offhand opinions you rather insouciantly
invited, let alone making an informed choice.
FYI: Any old damned Linux distribution (within reason) _can_ run Apache
and Tomcat -- dozens and dozens of them at any given time.
Rick Moen Age, baro, fac ut gaudeam.
rick at linuxmafia.com
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