I've started a new job and part of my responsibility will be looking after ~6 linux servers (they are all VM's) with more to come over time. At current these run a mix of Ubuntu and CentOS. More machines are likely to come online given time and I would rather not carry on with the current strategy of flavor and version of the month. The things which are important to me are:
- Easy installation of a new server.
- Easy installation of new software.
- Easy updating of existing software.
- Symmetrical servers (updating of an older server and installation of a new server should result in two identical servers) so that documentation is easier to write and more importantly maintain.
- A good distro wiki or other documentation.
- Plays nicely with VMWare.
What other things should be in this list?
Linuxes which I am considering are Ubuntu, CentOS and Gentoo (or perhaps Funtoo) (I welcome other suggestions however). I am a Solaris junkie and second choice for me is any flavor of BSD, so my experience with running and maintaining Linux servers is limited to Debian and Gentoo many many years ago (Woody was new and shiny) which I doubt holds much relevance today.