In Defense of Distro-hopping

Filed under
Linux

Brian Proffitt recently tackled the topic of distro-hopping over on LinuxPlanet. Proffitt wonders whether the practice might be passe or something to be discouraged, but it's here to stay and should be encouraged rather than looked at askew.

Looking through the lens of an IT professional, whether that's a system administrator, tech writer, developer, or working in IT marketing, it's a really good idea to have an accurate view of the landscape. And you don't get that by jockeying only one distro all day every day. What I've seen happen to all too many users is a sort of Linux myopia, where the realm of what's possible is scoped to only one distro, and the understanding of what's available is dialed down to what's available in the user's chosen distro.

For most of the time that I've used Linux, I've switched distros at least every six months. It's doubly important for contributors who participate in FLOSS projects, especially distro development, to have a good hop now and again. Cross-pollination is one of the things that make open source great. Without frequent and repeated exposure to other distros and software, it's too easy to get locked into the idea that there's One True Way.

Doing it Well




re: Distro hopping

Bull.

If you're lucky enough to find a Distro that more or less works for you - stick with it. Hoping around for most people is a complete waste of time.

And I think there's a difference between exploring new OS and software and distro hopping. In the first, a VM is the only way to go, and you're just looking at new features, etc. In the second you're actually changing your daily desktop to something new every few months. Can you say productivity killer?

holy moly

that's twice in the same month we agree.

it's getting very cold somewhere very ...down.

heh heh

Big Bear

oh noes

I was thinking more like...

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 (signs of the apocalypse)

Nail Biting

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