What is a good distro to recommend for beginners?

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Re: What is a good distro to recommend for beginners?

Postby ChuangTzu » 17. May 2016, 21:04

Papasot wrote:I am late in this thread, but anyway I will add my bit.
My wife is what one would call a "beginner with minds". She just doesn't like computers that much, so learning anything she doesn't need is out of question - she will simply refuse. Normally, all she does is to browse the Internet, download and read some documents useful for her job, playing music, and occasionally writing a short document on LibreOffice or playing Mahjongg. That's pretty much all she does and all she wants to know about computers.
Still, she was able to adapt herself to Salix pretty easily (which I installed in her laptop without asking, ha ha ha). I even removed gdm, told her she needs to login from "that black screen with letters", then type "startx". Furthermore, I told her "changing the system language is left to the user as an exercise", which she found how to do it easily.
That was all. Absolutely no problem, I doubt she even remembers her OS is different now. Migration to Salix was so easy that I had more difficulties to convince her using duckduckgo instead of google than explaining to her what's new in this OS.

So honestly, I don't see how Salix isn't for beginners as well. Granted, I wouldn't call Salix a "distro for newbies", but even installation is so easy that a newbie could do (except of course the "mindless mouse clickers" - those aren't able to install anything anyway).


a big +1 to this
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Re: What is a good distro to recommend for beginners?

Postby mimosa » 18. May 2016, 09:11

That is more or less my instinct too, but it's not an instinct I quite trust, because for me, Salix (in the way I use it) is quite far from being a "distro for beginners".

So that's an encouraging story. Unfortunately, as far as I know, the friend I mentioned is still using Windows. :roll:
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Re: What is a good distro to recommend for beginners?

Postby Papasot » 18. May 2016, 11:42

mimosa wrote:That is more or less my instinct too, but it's not an instinct I quite trust, because for me, Salix (in the way I use it) is quite far from being a "distro for beginners".

That's the good thing about Slacky distros. They can be used by a newbie but essentially, they are far from being "distros for beginners".

mimosa wrote:Unfortunately, as far as I know, the friend I mentioned is still using Windows. :roll:

The friend you mentioned probably needs a friend who will install Salix on his/her computer, without asking, as I did to my wife's laptop. Notorious gunslingers always shoot first, then they ask questions. Not the other way around. :D :lol:

By the way, I have a 7-years-old netbook here running Slackel Openbox 32bit. Given the limited RAM (only 1 Gb), LXDE and Xfce were both rather slow (but functional), so I opted to use Openbox. A carefully configured Openbox is pretty nice and doesn't look that old at all. Not that "looking old" is a bad thing, either.
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Re: What is a good distro to recommend for beginners?

Postby ChuangTzu » 18. May 2016, 19:14

mimosa wrote:That is more or less my instinct too, but it's not an instinct I quite trust, because for me, Salix (in the way I use it) is quite far from being a "distro for beginners".

So that's an encouraging story. Unfortunately, as far as I know, the friend I mentioned is still using Windows. :roll:


Yes, friends using Windows, as common as a drunk Uncle unfortunately. :lol:
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Re: What is a good distro to recommend for beginners?

Postby Papasot » 18. May 2016, 19:33

ChuangTzu wrote:Yes, friends using Windows, as common as a drunk Uncle unfortunately. :lol:

There are people who even LIKE WIndow$ 8 or Window$ 10 (I am not kidding, some people even like them). Go figure...
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Re: What is a good distro to recommend for beginners?

Postby Nate_KS » 18. Mar 2017, 18:18

In my opinion, with the proper coaching, most any general distribution would be a good choice. In my experience, so long as the newbie is made aware that the new system will have many similarities and many differences than what they are familiar with, the transition is usually fairly smooth. What is often left unsaid is that anyone who has used more than one version of MS Windows has dealt with the same sort of transition. Most people will resign themselves to the transition.

One thing that could trip up a newcomer to Salix, is anyone who has an OpenWRT router set up as I apparently do, is the failure of Network Manager to maintain a network connection. To correct that I had to find and install the Slackware dhcp package and then change the Network Manager's DHCP settings. The dhcpcd package simply refuses to with with Network Manager on my network. It seemed to work fine if using the rc.inet1 script. I don't know if this is 100% a Salix issue as Slackware prefers the dhcpcd package at installation time and I had the same issues. The dhcp package is considerably larger which may be part of the reason why dhcpcd is favored.

Other than some UI customizations and installing some extra packages, I've not done anything to the Salix installation on this laptop over the period of the past month or so. It just works and that is a big credit to its developers. For reference, I started with Slackware 3.0 in 1996 and have transitioned through many distributions though Debian had been my distribution of choice until the past year or so. I am now recommending Salix to those interested.
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Re: What is a good distro to recommend for beginners?

Postby mimosa » 27. Mar 2017, 07:16

I have moved the recent posts here about dhcp and certain routers to the Documentation section.
viewtopic.php?f=30&t=7284
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Re: What is a good distro to recommend for beginners?

Postby DidierSpaier » 27. Mar 2017, 10:13

The information will be easier to find this way, thanks mimosa.
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Re: What is a good distro to recommend for beginners?

Postby jcoleman » 21. Apr 2017, 05:38

Linux Mint worked well for me for many years and still run a copy in virtualbox which I honestly don't use very often. It was Vista that finally made me go over the edge and take Linux seriously.
Maybe I know more than I think I do but Salix isn't a bad choice either since the help on the forum here is usually very spot on and helpful and a "stock" install of XFCE just seems to work.
Windows seems easy until something goes "south on you and then it can be a real PITA, repeat, repeat. (IT Tech for many years).
So here's a question - if Windows is so easy why did I and a bunch of other folks make a decent living supporting, fixing, etc. that OS?
PS: not all that impressed with IOS either. Just had to reset an iPad that "tanked" during an update (for an elderly friend)
PSS: Slackware also lives in VirtualBox and gets used ocassionally just because, but I still can't warm up to KDE.
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Re: What is a good distro to recommend for beginners?

Postby ChuangTzu » 21. Apr 2017, 17:31

Slack has Xfce as well. Although I am partial to Salix. Can't go wrong with either one.
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