Centos vs Ubuntu for Virtualmin

I’m about to replace a server and have been wondering whether to opt for Ubuntu. I’ve always had CentOS servers in the past and found them to be reliable. The only downside is that the packages have been quite old (but I’ve generally managed).

I want to use Docker on the server and they seem to recommend Ubuntu (Centos’s device mapper causes issues apparently, so I’d have to upgrade my Centos kernel to 4 and then use OverlayFS). So I’m wondering whether to just use Ubuntu rather than mess about with unsupported kernels with Centos. (Would upgrading the kernel in this way conflict with Virtulamin at all?)

My main concern is stability and security with Ubuntu - is it a good distro for production servers? For Virtualmin?

Your thoughts/tips/advice appreciated.

centos is as reliable as buntu on whatever hardware and network and provider it’s on with regards to reliability!

both have good eol v. centos is the best there.

Production? They laying eggs? What’s the server doing?

Hey, I’m from Wales too :stuck_out_tongue:

The server will be running a number of sites: Wordpress, other PHP sites, Ruby sites, Postgres and MySQL databases etc. One thing I do need is PHP5.4 for compatibility reasons - will I be able to ‘downgrade’ if I opt for Ubuntu?

Gwrandewch brawd :slight_smile:

If it’s a webserver then both are good but the EOL of centos is hard to ignore.

Myself, in a same situation as you with web servers and Linux OS and EOL but also with backend software version needed as with website software and PHP version etc. Things are moving so fast and App software devs are not keeping up are they!

What is happening is Linux versions are reaching EOL but the software developers and their product that we have been using for years will soon be outdated and do not seem to be offering a solution?

Well shagged. If your a great sysadmin btw all of this is not a problem.

Hi brook, I think centos is one of the top distros for servers, without doubt. I would recommend you trying debian jessie (8) for virtualmin, and then you just do distro upgrade. Ububtu is based on debian but its not same thing. Ive been trying to run my servers on ubuntu but uhm I dont know, never had smooth life with it, and Ive been using ubuntu as primary os as version 6 and then i gave it shoot again during 12.06 and 14.06, but it was too unstable for me and had some issues with it, but that was laptop/desktop version. Since 14.06.3 I switch to debian even my desktops and cannot complain at all. as I use debian on my servers since very late version 5 and early 6, i never look for anything else. Perhaps Andreycheck would be best person around to answer your question as I know he runs his servers on ubuntu for years and regards centos possibly welshman.

Note to others a.k.a. ubuntu fans - I am not saying that ubuntu is bad, its just not my cup of tea. its just my personal opinion that centos and/or debian are better, very much more secure and stable oses, not only for servers but for every day life.

Thanks Unborn.

Well it looks like better support for OverlayFS is coming to Centos 7.4 soon :slight_smile: https://www.redhat.com/en/about/press-releases/red-hat-bridges-hybrid-multi-cloud-deployments-latest-version-red-hat-enterprise-linux-7

I would go ubuntu LTS personalty. ubuntu supports php 7 and other newer packages to give you faster performance.

I like’em all these days. Most of the stupid things Ubuntu devs did in the past they’ve stopped doing (or they’ve gotten enough attention and fixes plastered over them that they don’t look so stupid anymore). And, CentOS has SCL which papers over its most glaring fault (old packages), and EPEL which papers over another major complaint (not enough packages). The Red Hat and Fedora folks are doing good work in the container space (Project Atomic is neat), so I wouldn’t be too worried about lack of support in the long term, though it might be a little quirky right now.

In the new installer, we’re enabling both SCL (just for PHP7) and EPEL (the whole repo), by default. This has some minor negatives, in particular EPEL sometimes has repo compatibility problems, where packages can conflict or cause repo errors when updating.

I’ve spent a lot of time with Debian 9 lately, and it’s really nice, too.

I still pick CentOS for all of my production servers (and we’ve got quite a few these days). Mostly because I like yum/rpm better than apt-get/dpkg, but I also prefer the choices they’ve made in a number of areas. The RH packaging policy just leads to more predictable results in my experience. In the installer, I’ve run into several situations where I have to add special cases to the package installation to force it to do the right thing (whereas on CentOS just giving a list of dependencies is enough to make the right things happen). It’s not a big deal, but it’s a nuisance and I hate quirky/unpredictable behavior.

Let us know how your Docker work turns out. I’d like to add more container features to Virtualmin, particularly in the area of web app installation, but it’s still a little way out. And, it’d be something that would never work on old distros, at least not with the number of developers we have working on the problem (and, for some odd reason it upsets folks when new features don’t work on old distros).

hi am on debian 9 and it also does php7 and php 5.xxx which is great, I would still suggest debian regards security and stability.

really great answer! btw I was just wandering to tell you there would be soon nothing like it apt-get… command… its going to be apt install… or apt do this and that… shorter and better :wink: - ps I do not like apt-get too…