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We have several web applications built on Microsoft technologies (asp.net+mvc framework, built using VS2008, MS SQL Server).

I have recently be playing with Ubuntu (9.10), installed using Wubi, and wanted to see if I can get our apps running on a foss software stack. I have got the hang of the very basics of Postgresql and I have read that there is some support for Linq to SQL in mono (as of 2.6) as well as asp.net/MVC. However I am unsure how to go about getting Mono 2.6 up and running. Here is what I have discovered so far:

  • Ubuntu is not meant for the 'cutting edge' it is designed to be stable hence, it sometimes takes a release cycle or two for new software to make it to the repositories
  • Mono is already installed by default, but it is likely to stay at version 2.4 for at least the 10.4 release
  • You can install paralell environments of Mono, if you know what your doing.

I have had a go at setting up parallel environments, but haven't had any luck yet. (And TBH I am not certain that that will do what I think it's gonna do).

(tl;dr start here)

Is there a distribution of Linux similar enough to Ubuntu, that I wouldn't have to start the learning curve all over again, but that will let me install Mono 2.6, Postgresql, (and possibly mono-develop 2.4)?
Or should I persist with Ubuntu?

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2 Answers 2

One quick option, since packaging for mono 2.6 seems poor at present (mainly because ubuntu 10.04 will be sticking with 2.4.x, as you said, otherwise it would be done by now I'd rekon) would be to use a vwmare image with openSUSE: http://www.go-mono.com/mono-downloads/download.html has one prebuilt with 2.6.

openSUSE and Ubuntu aren't too similar, but since they both can use GNOME they share a lot. The main difference is packaging, since ubuntu uses .debs and openSUSE uses rpms.

BTW: I would highly, highly recommend using virtualisation for this kind of cutting-edge OS stuff in Linux as opposed to dual booting, as they have a habit of easily dying, especially if you're new to Linux. It also means you can test across multiple Linux distros very easily.

Quadcore CPUs are dirt cheap now. I often run a couple of VMs in the background while developing running fairly CPU intensive stuff and it handles it all extremely well.

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I have made a parallel environment script for mono 2.6 and Ubuntu, http://patrick.qmtech.net/blog/?p=14

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