For Linux and Open Source in general, choice has always been abundant. However in both the Linux Server market and to a degree in the Linux “Desktop” market only a few major distributions have taken most attention. In my (future) spare time, I plan on evaluating new Linux distributions to see how well they compare for either a Linux Server (preliminary examination) and more critically: the Linux Desktop.
I want to develop a common test/evaluation plan for different distributions so I make fair assessments on their comparable value. Additionally, I do not have the luxury to test any system thoroughly over an extended period of time. The following are some ideas I have thought out.
- Partitioning, Dual Boot, Networking
- Software Selection
- Environments, Office, Multimedia, Development, Server
- Software Support
- Security and General Updates, Software Repositories, Package Management
- Basic Hardware Support
- Motherboard, Networking, Video, Sound, Power Management (ACPI), DVD/DVD-R
- Peripheral Hardware Support
- Digital Camera, Printers, Scanners, Media Card Readers, PDA’s, USB Devices
- Community Support
- Mailing Lists, Websites, Forums, Newsgroups
- General Usuability and Stability
- Default Behavior and Configuration
I think I have covered the most important issues. Hopefully I will be able to perform all the above for every distribution. I appreciate suggestions and comments to these points.