Forum OpenACS Development: Re: New linux distribution to replace defunct RedHat consumer?
As for professional distro, you can always trust Novell (formerly SuSE) now. Though they might go down the same path as RH did. So far I've been fairly happy with SuSE, it was never a big issue to install software and security alerts came in in a timely manner.
Otherwise I suggest Debian: it is the Linux with the clearest and most open strategy out there. It is truly open source and free. Oh and it is rock-solid and hence great for server-side software.
Red Hat still supports Fedora with people, for how long that remains to be seen. The next quarterly hiccup may see a certain cut of support...
You cannot buy support from Red Hat for Fedora though.
1) I just updated the install doc for Red Hat 9. I have not tested 5.0 install on Red Hat 8 recently but I believe it's still valid. Either platform is fine for a server, as long as you patch the critical security holes (kernel, ssh, ssl). It seems very likely that someone will continue producing rpms that work for stock Red Hat.
2) Install docs work for Debian sid, with breakage for some optional packages noted.
3) We should tie our decision of which platform to develop on to our decision of which platform to try and get included as standard on. The obvious targets are debian stable (via the whole path, so I guess this takes a few years to get there) or FreeBSD ports. Gentoo is another option but I think it has a smaller mindshare and less of a reputation as a server distribution. In order to make forward progress here, someone with regular access to a debian stable or FreeBSD machine needs to commit to doing the research and the work to get OpenACS and all prerequisites (AOLserver, tdom, etc) packaged. At that point, anybody who wants to add code to acs-core that requires new prerequisite (tdom, tclwebtest, etc) will, I propose, be responsible for getting that prereq added to the necessary packaging systems as a precondition.
as a person who heavily relay on the install docs, I'm happy to learn that you care about debian.
<Install docs work for Debian sid>
Sid is the unstable distribution, the one "where active development of Debian occurs. Generally, this distribution is run by developers and those who like to live on the edge." (debian.org/)
Why not woody or sarge? Personally, as a beginner, I do not like to "live on the edge."