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What version of Linux to choose?

By fjaramillo ·
I'm a Windows admin that wants to learn Linux.
I need to be able to use Microsoft's PPTP (VPN) and Remote Desktop. What version of Linux will meet these minimum requirements?

I use PPTP to connect to Corporate Network and
Remote Desktop or Terminal Server to manage Corporate servers.


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by LMon In reply to What version of Linux to ...

People use The one they feel more confortable with. Majority use suse, mandrake, redhat, lycoris, and debian you must pick one that you feel more confortable with. They all will all you to make remote connection you must configure the settings accordingly though. Experiment with a couple of iso's then make your decision.

I have used suse and linspire. I personally like suse better. And I am in the process of installing debian see how that goes.

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by sgt_shultz In reply to What version of Linux to ...

if you can buy it, get redhat. even if you can't buy it, get redhat. try to pay though, and then you will learn faster with the support. i believe all of them will do pptp although you might have to write the script. just try it.

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by SridharPandu In reply to What version of Linux to ...

RedHat 9 or Fedora as it is called now is probably the easiest to use because it comes preconfigured with a lot of options e.g. Samba is preconfigured so that you can acess your windows netwrok. You can also access your windows partitions if it has a FAT drive. To access NTFS drives you need to recompile the kernel. There are other flavours with support for NTFS though not from Red Hat. Also consider downloading Ximian Desktop 2 (XD2) from XD2 updates the applications on your PC using Red Carpet.

Since you are a windows user you would probably like to install the following applications

1. Netscape 7.2 (includes browser, mail client, IRC client, address Book, Composer) or Opera

2. POP file for filtering SPAM

3. Monster ( - an RSS news reader for mozilla based browsers

4. Sunbird ( - a calendar

5. Ximian Evolution - an outlook like interface for mail, address book etc plus RSS readers

6. GnuCash - Personal Finance Software similar to Money and Quicken

7. GIMP an image manupulation software

8. XMMS a MP3 player (there are others too serach for them at

9. OpenOffice - (XD2 has it own version bundled but its better to upgrade)

10. GAIM - a chat software supporting AOL, Yahoo and a host of other protocols So you can chat with all your friends even when they use different chat clients

11. Yahoo IM

12. Azureus - A bit torrent download client

13. File zilla an FTP client

You can also download the ISO images of soem of these software from

The other alternatives to RH 9 is Suse. Other distributions like Mandrake and Debian are used by serious enthusiasts and the ditributions come in 15-20 CD's. I believe they are a programmers paradise. Would like to try these distros myself. Lesser known distros are Linspire (formerly Lindows), Yellow Dog Linux etc.

Best regards,

Sridhar Pandurangiah

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by oz_ollie In reply to What version of Linux to ...

All the mentioned distributions can have the packages rdesktop and pptp installed.

I have used Red Hat 5.2 to Red Hat 9, Mandrake 6 to Mandrake 9, Caldera Open Linux, Knoppix, Morphix, Gnoppix, Debian, Xandros, Lindows (before the name change), Slackware and currently use SUSE Linux 9.1 Professional on my workstations and servers.

I feel that in the current environment there are only two commercial choices - Novell SUSE or Red Hat. Novell is starting to put it's considerable marketing and server skills into it's new Nterprise Linux with the backing of IBM and HP for hardware.

These are the reasons I recommend going with SUSE Linux 9.1 Professional.

Hope this helps.

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by rindi1 In reply to What version of Linux to ...

You can use practicaly any linux distribution. Most just have a different look and feel and use different tools to get the system configured. If you come directly from Windows I suggest Mandrake 10.x, as this Distro has a windows-like look and feel, and you can download for free from the internet. PPTP should be directly installable from the distros CDs, as far as I know. Otherwise you can download the necessary tools without problems. It'll just take some configuration effort. To connect to Terminal Servers you can use the tool rdesktop. Also this tool should be on the cds, but can also be downloaded from the internet.

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by fjaramillo In reply to What version of Linux to ...

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