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RE: Why did you chose Debian over CentOS?

>From: Raleigh Guevarra [mailto:deathect@yahoo.com]
>Sent: Wednesday, March 04, 2009 7:11 PM
>Subject: Why did you chose Debian over CentOS?



>Why did you chose Debian over CentOS to host dozens of websites?



I /really/ like CentOS. However, I choose Debian over CentOS for a few reasons.


Apt. YUM is getting better but I hit dependency hell only a few months ago with it. No admin should /ever/ deal with that.


Package caching. When you have dozens of servers, blindly doing updates is a bad idea but updating individually can be near impossible. Setting up a package repository so that packages you want get updated when you want them to is something that ‘unnamed north American vendors’ make you pay for and it isn’t the easiest of tasks in CentOS. It is trivial w/ Debian (I am aware of at _least_ two guides being written and commented on within this mailing list within the last 6 months). A side bonus to this, instead of pulling X MB of data for each update on each server and wasting bandwidth, a Debian package cacher pulls once and shares with the rest. I personally have not found a solid way of doing this within the YUM/RPM world. An extra side bonus, which is faster your bandwidth or your network speed? Having 30+ servers pull X MB from the internet, or one pulling from the internet and the rest pulling over the network? I love my package cacher. J


Smaller install base. The last thing you need on a production server is a bunch of unneeded packages. Fewer packages means less updates, less things to break, and more time for you to do productive tasks.


Flexibility and recovery. You really have to plan for things to go wrong. Bad drives, bad motherboard, bad whatever you will come into work one day with a server down (hopefully you have planned this in advance and your users will never know). Debian is much more flexible in my opinion when it comes to dealing with outages, backups, and recovery. Combine the above mentioned package cacher and a good backup of data and I can do (have done and will do) /a complete production ready/ rebuild on a completely different system in sub 15 minutes. That is base install, all updates, all software, and ready to go with the users never knowing they were on a different system. While I can do most of the same things with CentOS, I just have not ever been able to get the installer and updates that fast. My average time still sits between 35-40 minutes for a fresh rebuild of CentOS. Maybe 30 minutes isn’t a big deal for you, but it has been for me.


Stable. The fact people joke and make fun of how stable Debian is a testament to the devs who make certain that Debian stable _is_ stable!


Anyway, that is my 2 cents.


Have fun!


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