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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am going to set up a media server within my house to distribute burned CD's as well as burned DVD's. My initial thoughts were to use Linux as the OS, but I have heard a bunch of people refer to freeBSD. However, I have no experience with either operating system. Given that I am starting from zero in both cases, which would be the better (more stable, expandable, manageable) of the two?


What are the plusses and minuses of each?


Thanks.
 

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While I am a big FreeBSD fan, if you have no experience with either Linux or FreeBSD, i'd recommend going for a Linux distro like Mandrake or Fedora.


For this server (assuming your client machines are Windows) you'll want to use Samba which is File and Print server software that any Windows client can connect to. Mandrake and Fedora will come with this software.


You'll also want to look at software that will automount the DVD's and CD's that you put in the drive. It's not automagic like Windows. You might want to bookmark this:

reviewed.homelinux.org/en/howtocddvd.html
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you for the reply. Now I'm wondering if either Linux or FreeBSD is really the best choice for me. As the situation stands right now, I can obviuosly get Linux or FreeBSD free, but I also have a copy of Windows Server 2000 Professional that is unused.


The system I am trying to create will dsitribute APE/FLAC files around the house (not sure whether from multiple sound cards or distributing them to client PC's and then receivers). I also plan on saving my DVD's to my hard drive and then being able to stream those to client HTPC's. These will most likely be M$ based machines (Linux just doesn't seem to be there yet).


Other than those two primary uses, I could also conceive of this machine performaing trivial web-server tasks, replacing my existing firewall, being my DHCP server, etc. Just an all around useful machine.


So, my question now is: Since the initial software costs are comparable ($0), the hardware should be capable (AMD Athlon 2600+, ASUS MOBO, 512 MB, 200 GB HDD, 500W PS) is Linux or FreeBSd really offering me much of a benefit over M$ Server 2000? This will be a home server, so a little downtime every once in a while to reboot won't put me out of business. I am assuming that I could get Apache free and have it work on M$, there's bound to be some free firewall software, etc.


Any thoughts, suggestions?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Sorry, although I do have a copy of Windows 2000 Professional available. I also have a copy of Windows 2000 Advanced Server available, which I think would be more comparable to the Linux of FreeBSD alternatives.


Any suggestions?
 

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Linux and FreeBSD are unix style OS's. Windows is Windows. The advantage of using unix instead of Windows depends on the user. The learning curve on unix OS's in general is pretty steep - a product of its extreme flexibility. It sounds like you want to use Windows so use it. I'm sure Windows 2000 Advanced Server costs more than my entire HT setup!


Many people use Linux or BSD because it's actually *easier* to troubleshoot problems or tweak it just so. Fixing and tweaking a Windows machine is quite often a lot like poking at a black hole with a stick. But that's a discussion for a different forum.
 
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