centos changes(patches,selinux...) between centos and a normal distribution(debian,gentoo...)

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gentOS
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Joined: 2006/02/14 14:49:56

centos changes(patches,selinux...) between centos and a normal distribution(debian,gentoo...)

Post by gentOS » 2006/02/14 15:04:33

hello i'm new from centos(i comes from gentoo) (also i don't know well the product of the prominent north american linux vendor)
i heard that the "prominent northamerican linux vendor" has a lot of features added such as package and modules signig(heard about this in some gpl3 articles) and kernel security patches(learn this on a computer security magazine)
and so i decided to learn a little bit more about cent-os

what is the architectural design of centos
i'm not interested in packages or things such as gonme or kde(unless they have NEW thing compared to others linux distributions) but how is build cent-os:
*is there selinux???
*is pax eneabled???
what are the features of centos

and what kernel patch are in the centos kenrel

Klaus69
Posts: 28
Joined: 2006/01/20 13:51:08

Re: centos changes(patches,selinux...) between centos and a normal distribution(debian,gentoo...)

Post by Klaus69 » 2006/02/16 14:47:11

You can compare CentOs directly with the northamerican vendor. SE Linuy is available ( can be installed with a single hook during installation ).

scronline
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Location: Bay Area, CA
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centos changes(patches,selinux...) between centos and a norm

Post by scronline » 2006/02/21 16:25:55

As one who's also coming back to "an rpm based distro" from Gentoo I just wanted to add a couple of things here. There's several things to consider.

1) Gentoo is a 100% compile distro, as such it takes a CONSIDERABLE amount of time to maintain. However it also has alot of packages in the portage tree so you don't have to go hunting for everything you want to install. There are quite a few downsides to this ontop of compile times. Things tend to break more often than with other distros because it is a semi-rolling system and announcements aren't exactly forthcoming about changes. This does offer a HIGH amount of customization, but it does come at the cost of a HIGH amount of administration and car. Also has a cost of system speed.

2) RPM style distros such as CentOS are much easier to update and maintain, but when you start heavily customizing it you really need to know your way around the updating system(s) as well as how each thing will react with each other. It would also be a benifit to learn how to make RPM packages or find the packages you're looking for. While this part of it can be a pain, when you have multiple servers to maintain it actually makes things MUCH easier and MUCH faster than dealing with Gentoo's slow, cumbersome, and buggy installation methodology. There are several addon repositories that can be used in conjuntion with yum such as dag's repository.

3) Debian tends to be mixture of the 2 distros in administration. While there are quite a few things I personally don't like (I've NEVER been able to go past the installation simply because it's too restrictive), but it does have a pretty good package management system as well as many things in the distro are "addons" that aren't included in the base package(s) for CentOS. Debian is kind of a rolling arch as well but handles things much better than Gentoo.

Personally, If you have specific needs for a server, ie samba, web, mail, things that CentOS are specifically built for (or even those 3rd party packages designed for XXXXXX) then CentOS is probably the way to go. If you are planning on a fairly moderate amount of customization, Debian may be the way to go if you can get past the installer. Unless you really want to learn about the inner workings of linux, need to have an extremely high level of customization, or are just a masochist I would steer clear of Gentoo. I highly doubt it will improve to the point of being anything more than a hobbist distro under it's current leadership.

Now to answer your question, if you want specific information about CentOS, you can go directly to the upstream provider's website and read about anything in CentOS. The version numbers are identical so they correspond correctly. For the most part, using this distro (or the upstream) I've never had to do any kernel compiling (rarely ANY compiling of any sort) and I figure that's best so everything fits as designed. If there's a kernel update, you can choose to take it or not depending on what your needs are and what the security flaws are.

DagonSphere
Posts: 1
Joined: 2006/02/21 21:20:23
Location: Chicago

Re: centos changes(patches,selinux...) between centos and a normal distribution(debian,gentoo...)

Post by DagonSphere » 2006/02/22 20:37:32

scronline - I have a few comments and questions for you (and anyone else with an opinion) I am currently moving from CentOS to Gentoo. Here's my comments/questions based on your heading numbers.

1. Compile times. Yes. I agree. It takes a LONG time to compile a working system. But, when I have a finished system (especially on older hardware) the system 'feels' like it's running quicker. I've tested it using the same hardware and window manager (Gnome) on both distros. Gentoo just seems to run quicker. I'm not sure why the last line of your comment states "Also has a cost of system speed" unless it pertains to compiling the system while using it.

2. Yum works wonderfully to keep your system up to date, and seems less buggy than up2date. However, the packages that are available in the default repository are older. As long as you don't stray from what CentOS wants to give you, you're in luck. But I tried to install OpenOffice 2 (to get the database program that is not included in the OO v1x that CentOS gives you) and it just wouldn't take it. I tried removing the old package and it says it's not installed. I tried installing the new packages and it says it can't because the old ones are installed. I can't seem to figure out this goofy paradox.

3. I don't have much experience with Debian. But I will say that the installer is rather arcane. Gentoo's is as well, but at least I can "emerge -s xxx | grep yyy" and find what I'm looking for. Gentoo handles dependencies rather well from what I've seen. CentOS does an OK job, till you start adding other repos into the mix. Then, it seems to get gunked up.

From a disaster recovery standpoint, I'd use CentOS as a server, definitly. I use (and will continue to use) CentOS at work as a server. Simple GUI install and prebuilt packages make it an ideal choice for a server. And the "upstream" vendors' documentation is pretty descent. Just install, update, and drop in your conf files, restore data, and you're off to the races if you have to rebuild the box.

But, for desktop use, I think Gentoo has an advantage. You don't have to compile anything if you don't want to. Install the Stage 3 tarball, use genkernel instead of 'rolling your own' kernel, and use the prebuilt packages. Two CD's get you running in a 2-3 hours. Not much more than CentOS.

CentOS is built using the i386 architecture. Gentoo can be compiled for your specific CPU. Or, just use the precompiled packages. This makes better use of the CPU, and thus gives you a faster system. Which is ideal for the desktop.

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