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Call for advice

By _Christian_ ·
I am an old hand at IT, but rather new to Linux as more than a user.
I have tried installing and playing with a couple of distros, and I now need advice on a few question I hve not found the answer to (or contradictory answers)

I need to set up a configuration where all servers would be Linux based, while workstations could be any Windows based or Linux based.

I know that Linux cannot be an Active Directory server. That is not a problem, I do not need it.
But I need everything else.

I also need a very secure linux based firewall box between the internet and the network proper.

1) Which distro would be considered the most hardened as a firewall (I have seen contradictory answers), and why?

2) Is there the equivalent of a RIS server under Linux (RIS = Remote Installation Service).
If yes, how do I find it? Any feedback on it?

3) Which distro would you advise to run the other main services (DHCP, DNS, DC,...)

4) Is there anything I should know that you think is not commonly found on the Internet.

I will wait for a consensus on each question, separately.

Thanks to all in advance.

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