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gphaze
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2008 11:49 am    Post subject: NOOB: is Gentoo right for me? Reply with quote

Sorry if this sounds like a complete greenhorn post, but I am a complete greenhorn with respect to Linux.

I've been trying to learn which distro is right for me for a couple days now, and have recommendations for Fedora 9 (which a buddy sez do NOT go with!), Ubuntu, and now Gentoo.

Since I know 1/2 of nothing about any of these, perhaps I should say what I'm hoping to do, and let that inform the distro I go with?

I am a 2D/3D artist using Mac OS X, happily, I might add, but want to expand what I can do in terms of open source ware. I like Gimp, Cinepaint, Inkscape, Blender3D and Scribus, and I'm interested in whatever NLE video apps might be out there for use in a PPC/Linux environment.

Now, while I am not adverse to jumping through some hoops to get things set up and running, I am not a big tinkerer. I have friends who are, who love it, and for whom it just isn't good computing unless there's something to tweak every few days. I respect those who have the skills for lots of tweaking.

I'm more the "set it up and use it every day; fix when broken" kind of user.

I have 2 G4 Minis, 1.42Ghz (one is the 1.5Ghz "stealth") both with 1GB of RAM. I also have a G3 "Pismo" Powerbook, which is a mite pokey under OS X 10.3.9. I'd like to get linux onto that great machine to see if it can be a bit zippier, which I've heard older Macs can be with linux installed.

OK..that is my tale. Thank you for reading, and I welcome advice and pointers.

gphz
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d2_racing
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2008 11:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi, if you have the time to read the handbook and to experiment then you will have a lot of fun.
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muhsinzubeir
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2008 12:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i would like to see more users using gentoo, but im a little afraid with gentoo you will learn lots computing/unix than art.But gentoo offers alot of packages, which I do remember that its package management system portage is also available in MAC{probably work in progress}.So if you find you dont have time to learn/experimenting linux/gentoo than better check that option if it can offer you something useful.

But ubuntu is a little bit simplified en most computer decision issue have been resolved for u, which will leave you deal with art rather than computing.I recently installed kubuntu+compiz on a friends laptop, as he is a fan of mac oss but got no money to buy mac book.Its also a nice linux flavor, if you have never used it you might want to try it as well so that you have a feeling what could be useful.

Gentoo is definately a nice linux flavor one of my fav till now.But honestly it takes a lot of patience en time in the beginning when you start using it.This come logically as compromize to flexibility, gentoo is so flexible(meta distro) so it can not be simplified for one specific purpose, thats the power of gentoo which is good ofcoz.On the other hand that will leave you with all computer details which you never worried in other oss ...now you will have to make all those decisions by yourself to get what you want.

Anyway, feel free to experiment otherwise you wont know what is exactly the best choice for you.En if you decide to tackle gentoo, forums is one of the best.Just dump here all questions you have, for sure other veterans will have answers en glad to help you out.

good luck.
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Januszzz
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2008 12:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hmmm, even though I'm Gentoo addicted I wouldn't go if I were you. Personally, Gentoo is too cool to not use it, but:

Gentoo in my opinion is suitable for admins' desktops, servers, hackers, or people who like to develop Linux skills. It goes pretty well in production environment as server and is the only way to go when starting with embedded.

I find it very well in managed desktop environment run through nxserver (similar to terminal services in WIndows), i.e. in company where an admin is responsible for most of the tasks.

My wife has Gentoo on her desktop and she's satisfied, but she has perfect helpdesk too ;-)

I would go for Ubuntu, as I find it perfectly suitable for desktop and far more productive than Gentoo (although only when you don't want to tweak your system a lot). I wouldn't go with Fedora - I find it as the most buggy system ever - and it is also over complicated for beginners.

Anyway, that is you who choose! After all, you can later switch to Gentoo.
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Dammital
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2008 1:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Have to go with the Ubuntu recommendation.

Gentoo is a beautiful thing in the hands of a competent sysadmin or hobbiest. You get precisely what you want, tailored to a fare-thee-well. But this well tailored environment costs you some effort, and if you have other priorities -- your art for example -- then perhaps your time is better spent doing that rather than learning the peculiarities of Gentoo.

I currently maintain three Gentoo systems and a Debian/390 image, and at one time or other have operated COL, Fedora, Mandriva, Debian and SuSE. My brother, who is also a noob and not-stupid, has been successful with Ubuntu. His experience suggests to me that you would be successful too.

(BTW all my experience is x86 and s390. No ppc, so take what I say with a grain or two of NaCl.)
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gphaze
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2008 2:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

well, I sure do appreciate the frank heads-ups you've all provided.

you are right in that my priorites lie with my art; I want to include Linux as one of the environments in which I *do* that art, and I've heard nothing but lavish praise of Linux from buds who use it....plus, since Mac OS went unix, I feel it's only natural to embrace Linux and to get familiar with that world as many important apps are written for it.


OK...Ubuntu, it is! Just so happens I downloaded Ubuntu 8.04 yesterday (before I got pointed to Gentoo!) so, I'm prbly good at least to begin doing *some*thing.

Who knows? if the ubuntu thing works and I'm ready for more, I'll probably try Gentoo, too.

gphz
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Januszzz
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2008 8:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

OK, fine!

...but when you're in trouble with Ubuntu on Ubuntu forum please do not forget to mention that you've met some strange guys who said here: ok, Gentoo is the best metadistro, but its not for you, take Ubuntu for a first-time-Linux. As stated above, take whatever flavor of Linux, provided it fulfills your requirements.

Larry the Cow - although dusty a little - is still live :D

Good luck!
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gphaze
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2008 3:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I may be back.

I was fairly successful with the live CD/install for Ubuntu 8.04 (Hardy Heron). Except that yaboot failed to install, and the whole pile froze up on me as I was trying to do simple things, like see where the control panels are.

Compounding matters, my account hasn't truly been activated at the Ubuntu forum. It *says* I've been activated, yet I can't post, therefore can't post questions, therefore am pretty stuck.

No big deal...they're prbly busy or whatever.

So, I'm wondering just how *much* tinkering I'd be in for if I went with Gentoo? Is this an everyday/necessary thing, or is it that Gentoo lends itself to those who want to tinker?

I think I'd be further along going with an install where I could get help (like here) than where there was no help (like, apparently, there).

ha!

thanks again for reading!

gphz
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bytenirvana
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2008 3:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It depends what do you want from your computer.

You have to compile your kernel, make your wireless card work (if you work on a notebook) etc. - basically you "only" have to edit some text files with the right information to start using your computer.

Instead of "put cd in. click ok, use" on ubuntu.

But after you have installed (and configured) the X Server (for graphical user interface) and decided for one of the many Desktop Enviroments (or you can give all a try!), it becomes a breeze.
Installing a program could not be easier (e.g. sudo emerge -av inkscape) you can add more places where to look for software (overlays) and you can always update your system, independent from releases.

Maybe have a look at the (install-) documentation on gentoo.org.

If you are coming from Mac OS you should maybe start with Gnome as DE, its more like OS X. (KDE is more like Windows)

And if you use a Graphic Tablet you should search for it here, to get a look what you have to do to make it work for you.
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gphaze
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2008 3:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

OK...

Now, is it possible to compile the Gentoo installation in such a way that it is optimized for the work I'll be doing (and therefore faster? leaner?).

this is one of the advantages I've heard of Linux possessing, or maybe I understood that wrong?

I can deal with a certain amount of tinkering....I did install Gimp and Mac Film Gimp back when you had to do so using the fink method, which involved typing commands and compiling.

I lived..

gphz
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muhsinzubeir
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2008 4:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

welcome aboard

well if you want to go gentoo then the first place to start will be identifying what type of architecture you have (cpu on your machine).If pentium/celeron and other 32bits stuffs would be x86 && if you have new cpu's like dual core stuffs amd64 (both dual cores from intel && AMD user amd64) etc....You need that to choose the right installation manual/handbook.
Go for manual installation dont go for the Graphical installer its not made for unexperienced users(as an excuse 8) )...but even experienced veterans cant install gentoo with that installer...graphical installer of gentoo will prevent you from getting any help ,not because users dont want to help you out but GUI tend to leave no clue of the errors :wink:

Here is the link for installation manual:
http://www.gentoo.org/doc/en/handbook/

Tip
Dont expect to get your first installation right, very few en talented ppl get it right the first place.I think got my installation right after at least 10 failed installations. :P

P:S
Gentoo can be optimized for any use I think, but i dont have specific pointers as ive never been around an artist.But gentoo is quite flexible actually you build the whole system the way you want it.

good luck...
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