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  #1  
Old 14th January 2008, 05:57 AM
Thetargos Online
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Adventures in CentOS

So I gave in and installed CentOS onto my home server. It's been a bittersweet experience, I must admit. The installation process is much like that of RHEL or Fedora itself, so not too big a deal there. Configuration wise, though... There are a couple of rough edges (that I have seen, anyway) where things have not been so smooth. Now I notice how far has Fedora come in relation to its offspring. Some simple things like system-config* tools have evolved so nicely since even a couple releases back (FC6) that it is indeed amazing. It is actually very nice to have Fedora around and when you use any of the distributions based on it, you get to appreciate it even more. Not only because of its evolving nature, but because you actually get to see the changes.

Edit

Is not like CentOS is bad, on the contrary, but it certainly has given me much perspective on Fedora itself and its "worth". Is very different using a distribution based on Fedora than a completely different distribution, since I really got to see what's changed and what's remained. I can clearly say from which release some parts of the distro come from, which is kind of nice.

Edit 2

I almost forgot that another big PLUS for Fedora is its (big) community. I'm even thinking on proposing to these here FedoraForums to have a 'Fedora Offspring' subsection with forums for distros based on Fedora, like CentOS and others.
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Last edited by Thetargos; 14th January 2008 at 06:06 AM.
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  #2  
Old 14th January 2008, 07:58 AM
linuxpcmancn Offline
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ubuntu has so many distros based on ubuntu,such as kubuntu,xbuntu,Ubuntu Studio,Edubuntu,JeOS,gOS and etc.i have to point out the that CentOS is not based on Fedora,in some sense,it should be based on RedHat Enterprise.i dnot think it's a good idea to own too many Fedora based distros.

That's only my personal view.

pcman
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  #3  
Old 14th January 2008, 08:46 AM
lazlow Offline
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Fedora is the area that RHEL gets the vast majority of its bugs worked out. One can chase around the semantics all you want but RHEL comes from Fedora. Since Centos is RHEL with the logos removed (see the wiki), the same applies to Centos. As noted above Centos 5.X is essentially FC6 (not completely of course but real close).

Thetargos

While I would not use Centos for my desktop (I understand your situation), I do use it instead of Fedora on all my servers. Ninety nine percent of the advances made in Fedora do not effect much on a server. The advances do not outweigh the inconvenience of having to reinstall every year vs 5 years for EL5(RHEL5.X or Centos 5.X) So long as Fedora sticks with this "new" support policy (which I do understand) my servers will stay on Centos.

The biggest surprise I got when I installed Centos was the Atrpms is safe to use(in Centos) and is even mentioned in the wiki. For those who do not know I have had a big HATE for Atrpms since the FC4 fiasco days. Atrpms does have a lot of Centos packages (nvidia drivers, etc).

The Centos forum is a little lacking when compared to here.

Good Luck
Lazlow
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  #4  
Old 14th January 2008, 08:51 AM
Evil_Bert Offline
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I found CentOS 5.1 to run a bit faster on the same hardware. Can't say whether CentOS is any more stable, since I didn't really stress test either F8 or CentOS in that setup, but I'd like to think so.

The display management was better in CentOS - all the resolutions and refresh rates worked out of the box, whereas I've always been restricted to a subset in Fedora. And there was less buggerising around (that's the official term, btw) with sound setup in CentOS.

And in CentOS, Sun Java worked first time, clean as a whistle, which is a first for me, at least.

But you're right, the features have a way to go to catch up.
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  #5  
Old 14th January 2008, 09:28 AM
Thetargos Online
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Quote:
Originally Posted by linuxpcmancn
ubuntu has so many distros based on ubuntu,such as kubuntu,xbuntu,Ubuntu Studio,Edubuntu,JeOS,gOS and etc.i have to point out the that CentOS is not based on Fedora,in some sense,it should be based on RedHat Enterprise.i dnot think it's a good idea to own too many Fedora based distros.

That's only my personal view.

pcman
As pointed out by Lazlow, Fedora is "upstream" to RHEL, and RHEL is upstream to CentOS, so applying a bit of simple logic you can say that Fedora is upstream to CentOS as well
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  #6  
Old 14th January 2008, 10:30 AM
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I use CentOS for my server and love it, I set it up almost 2 years ago, and have barely needed to touch it since, it just does it's job without complaining.

I wouldn't like to use it on a desktop, because it does (compared to Fedora) feel somewhat outdated, but like you say CentOS 5 is roughly FC6, and FC6 would certainly feel outdated to F8, but for a server, if it runs, I'm happy.
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Old 14th January 2008, 10:44 PM
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Boy! How quickly do we forget how things looked as recently as FC6... I performed a server installation, but I chose to install 'Server GUI', for the simple fact that I like from time to time run GUI apps from SSH to ease configuration... Just about a few minutes I fired up system-config-securitylevel, I had forgotten how "rudimentary" that tool was in FC1-FC6, there were actually little differences, except for the addition of custom ports, and SELinux status, they are the same across the FC1-FC6 versions! But this is only a tool that not many people use for server configuration anyway, as the preferred way to configure a server is usually 'by hand' manipulation of the configuration files, anyway. Still I had to point it out.

Another tool that seems to be flaky is system-config-samba. I like to use it to build the skeleton of the configuration and then simply tweak by hand, as doing it all by hand is very time consuming, and here the GUI does actually help do things faster
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Old 14th January 2008, 11:30 PM
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If you're serious about firewall tuning, you don't use the GUI anyway.
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  #9  
Old 14th January 2008, 11:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Evil_Bert
If you're serious about firewall tuning, you don't use the GUI anyway.
Indeed, though there are good GUIs for easing configuration, more often than not you will have to fine-tune things by hand in the end.
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  #10  
Old 15th January 2008, 01:34 AM
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We use CentOS at work for our servers. Fedora isn't really server material, not if you're going to have fun with it. (By fun, I mean, hrrm, let's upgrade. Oops, networking and sound stopped working.)

I use Fedora as my workstation, but for our production servers, it's all CentOS. CentOS is designed, in my humble opinion, with that in mind, as it's based on RHEL, which is a server platform. I suppose they pay less attention to things like flash, sound and the like, (though of course, I'm sure they want it to work.)

It's older yes, but it's not bleeding edge. Bleeding edge (note the word bleeding) isn't for production environments.
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Old 15th January 2008, 04:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scottro
We use CentOS at work for our servers. Fedora isn't really server material, not if you're going to have fun with it. (By fun, I mean, hrrm, let's upgrade. Oops, networking and sound stopped working.)
If it's not broken, you're not using it heavily enough, I say. Who needs sound for a server anyway?
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Old 15th January 2008, 09:25 PM
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Originally Posted by tjvanwyk
If it's not broken, you're not using it heavily enough, I say. Who needs sound for a server anyway?
Apparently Microsoft did, as that was the driving force behind them removing DirectSound from Windows completely starting off with Vista. Apparently, sound drivers were the source of much instability (due to poorly written drivers, plus bad integration and problems imputable and inherent to DirectSound), not to mention the fact that all their products are simply one with different names and a few tweaks here and there. 'Who needs DirectX in a server, anyway?' I'm sure there was a reason why they left it out of NT4, they seem to have forgotten about those reasons with 2K, XP, Server 2003, Vista & Server 2008. I'd much rather comment out a few lines in modprobe.conf and avoid loading the sound drivers altogether at boot for a server, though 'Who puts sound chips on server motherboards, anyway?', I know most recent 'on board sound chips' are actually embedded into the south bridge, but who places outlets and inlets in the motherboard's, plus enable those features for a server motherboard?
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  #13  
Old 15th January 2008, 09:49 PM
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A lot of us are using regular motherboards for out servers. In my case, when my desktop motherboard needs replaced I upgrade the server with the old desktop motherboard. I would guess that the vast majority of home servers are similar in nature.
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  #14  
Old 16th January 2008, 05:15 AM
Thetargos Online
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lazlow
A lot of us are using regular motherboards for out servers. In my case, when my desktop motherboard needs replaced I upgrade the server with the old desktop motherboard. I would guess that the vast majority of home servers are similar in nature.
Same here, keyword being *home* servers. Besides, who runs a home server with Windows Server? It is prohibitively expensive!! . I usually disable sound on all my servers motherboards from the BIOS, anyway.
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  #15  
Old 16th January 2008, 09:30 AM
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i've got a centos 5 server at home, and whilst its a bit dated as a desktop (out-of-date thunderbird, firefox and no codecs) its lovely not to have to yum update it all the time and fix things that break.

jees i did an update from 5.0 to 5.1 just using yum - try that with fedora!

i do have a rigid policy of only using the centos repositories (have to use centosplus kernel for jfs support) so that its fully compatible with rhel5 and i'm guaranteed of no dependency hell.

frankly you'd have to be insane to use such a fast moving target as fedora for a server, and who uses gui's to configure anything anyway?
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