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2004 Dec 30 11:55

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Re: [vox-tech] Running Multiple Distros
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Re: [vox-tech] Running Multiple Distros



On Thursday 30 December 2004 11:21 am, Peter Jay Salzman wrote:
> On Thu 30 Dec 04, 11:11 AM, Robert G. Scofield <rscofield@afes.com> said:
> > I have two questions about running more than one Linux distribution on a 
> > single machine.
> > 
> > #1:  Does the existence of a separate partition for /home mean that it is not 
> > practical to run more than one Linux distribution on a machine?
>  
> You prolly don't want to do this for exactly you suspect.  Different
> programs will have different versions on the different distros.  Different
> versions, different dotfiles.  It's certainly not going to be a good scene.
> 
> If you run two distros, you probably want different home directories.

Hmm.  The purpose of a home directory is to hold "personal"
stuff, for example your mail, documents, browser bookmarks,
contacts, development projects, VIM preferences, desktop
preferences, etc.

In theory each application should have its own unique dot-
file, and be able to deal with compatibility issues across
versions.  In practice some apps might not handle version
differences gracefully; for example I've had to blow away
~/.kde a couple of times in the past after upgrading KDE.

So if what you want to do is work with different distribu-
tions in the course of doing your normal tasks, then it
should be OK to share the home directory - but after making
a backup just in case!

> If you wanted to "test" out a distro, there's no crime in making a single
> partition system.  It's definitely not what you want to use for your "for
> reals" system, but for the purposes of taking an OS out on a test drive,
> it's perfectly reasonable to do.

For testing or rescue purposes, absolutely.

> > #2  Suppose the answer to #1 is that the second distro will break the first 
> > distro's connection to it's configuration files in /home.  Will there still 
> > be a problem if I install the same version of SuSE in the spare partition?
> 
> Ummm... not really sure.  Off the top of my head, I'd say it's OK.

No problem, I do this kind of thing all the time.

-- Rod
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