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Re: Why choose Debian on server

On Thursday 03 January 2019 10:24:41 steef wrote:

> having allmost the same history: i agree completely roberto
> steef
> On 03-01-19 16:12, Roberto C. Sánchez wrote:
> > On Wed, Jan 02, 2019 at 11:51:25AM +0100, Alessandro Baggi wrote:
> >> Why you choose debian on server? Where for you it is better than
> >> centos and other server distro?
> >
> > I actually started with Debian on my laptop.  As a college student I
> > was assigned a project that had to run on the school Linux cluster
> > (RedHat 6.2, if I recall correctly).  I installed RedHat on my
> > laptop since I wanted something closer to that environment for my
> > development work.  It was a real pain.  The "Red Hat way" seemed so
> > convoluted.
> >
> > A friend who worked tech support in the CS department at school
> > handed me a Debian install CD for Woody, which had just been
> > released.  Back in those days Debian's installer was notoriously
> > difficult to use, so I did not manage to complete the installation. 
> > I asked my friend for help with the install and once I overcame that
> > obstacle, I was all set.  The first thing I noticed was that the
> > "Debian way" seemed so much more sensible to me compared to the "Red
> > Hat way".
> >
> > After that, I decided to set up Debian on a spare PC in the house
> > and use it as a firewall/web server/mail server/etc.  I have been
> > trying to push Debian everywhere I go since.
> >
> > Now, before you go and think that I am biased, I will say that I am
> > actually biased :-)
> >
> > I certified as a RHCE some years ago and I can honestly say that
> > only highlighted to me how much more comfortable Debian feels in
> > everyday use both on the desktop and on the server.
> >
> > Regards,
> >
> > -Roberto
I have a friend who uses centos on everything, includeing all the 
machines in the ditches at the tv station where I was the chief engineer 
for the last 18 years of my working life. I introduced red hat 5.0 on my 
own office machine which I built from parts in 1998 or so. He borrowed 
my floppies and built a test machine a month later, and took a class at 
the uni a few months later, and today has 2 machines on his desk so he 
can keep up with both. Today, the news and weather depts all run on 
windows using programs from associated press, but everything that runs 
the tech dept on the ground floor and in the control room where 4 
channels of tv are run from, is running on centos servers he built, 
servers that can record as high as 6 streams of hi-def video, while 
simultaneously playing 4 streams. He's built 2 of those, most of the 
editing gear too. All running centos.  I went to fedora when it came out 
but got tired of being treated as an expendable lab rat, tried mandrake 
and pclos, even Mepis for a few months, them ubuntu starting with 6.04 
because linuxcnc had migrated to it, but when they migrated to debian so 
did I, nearly a decade ago. Support is generally great, and generally it 
Just works.

They've only done one thing I disagree with, and that is the requirement 
for the first operator to login at the  machines own console after a 
reboot before the x-server is started. Working on one of my machines, 
updating it and getting it ready for the next days job, its a pain in 
the ass to have to get dressed for winter weather, walk up the hill to 
the building that machine is in, and login just to get the x-server 
running so I can come back to the house and write gcode that machine 
will run tomorrow from a comfy chair, even exercising that code to see 
and correct mistakes without motor power on the machine that box is 
running. Everything here is connected to the internet by way of several 
switches on this side of dd-wrt making the net connection. In the 15 
years I've had this setup, only one person has come thru it to get into 
this machine, is that same friend and I had to give him on the phone, 
the usernames and passwords. Not another attacker has managed that and 
the logs on the router show there are still thousands an hour trying.

So my stuff has good isolation, yet every one of them has access to the 
repo's or can go browsing the net.  Such a change, in not starting the 
x=server at reboot, ready for all callers with the ssh or sshfs 
credentials is not security here, its paranoia on the part of the 
developers at debian, probaby developed from past experience with 
windblows hooked directly to a modem.

If the developers want real security, get your network thru dd-wrt, but 
don't burden us users who already have security, with your paranoia. Its 
being very inconvenient to have your paranoia forced on us the users.

Other than that beef, debian just plain works, what more could we need?

I'll probably follow the linuxcnc folks if they switch distros to base it 
on. But I am comfy with debian. And there you have it. Debian rocks, 
while centos looks way too much like winblows. My friend has at least 75 
icons for this and that on his basic screen. Ugly. But call me  biased 
if you want.

Cheers, Gene Heskett
"There are four boxes to be used in defense of liberty:
 soap, ballot, jury, and ammo. Please use in that order."
-Ed Howdershelt (Author)
Genes Web page <http://geneslinuxbox.net:6309/gene>