The Official RedHat 6.0 consists of a box containing a floppy, three cd's and two manuals. The manuals aren't really necessary. Just insert the installation cd into the player and the floppy into the drive. Reboot the machine and you're off. Clear Dos-like menu's guide you through the process. Do mind the language you select. This choice is irreversible and you wouldn't want to be forced to brush up on your Hungarian.
Hardware detection is flawless. You only need to select your SCSI-controller from a list, while mouse and network adapter are detected automatically. The installation of X-Windows is just about as uneventful. Only some exotic video-adapters or laptops may cause trouble every once in a while.At the end of the installation it's possible to choose to automatically start the pc in graphical X-Windows mode every time the machine is switched on. That means you never have to face the dreaded prompt. As a graphical environment RedHat has chosen Gnome.
If necessary, RedHat can also be installed from within a network running NFS, Windows, SMB, FTP or even HTTP. This does require making an additional boot-disc. A network installation can come in handy when for instance you are somewhere on site, forgot your RedHat discs but do have an Internet connection. In that case, all it takes is downloading the boot-disc from Internet and installing the rest via FTP.
Once the basic components have been installed, the machine can be configured further using Linuxconf, a graphical configuration utility that can best be compared with the SMS-console found in NT. With a mouseclick various services and settings can be easily manipulated.
The distribution contains all software you need to setup a Linux machine, be it as a workstation or a server. Should you wish to setup a firewall, the kernel will have to be recompiled. The distribution is fairly complete but does lack a few items. RedHat does not contain software to build clusters and quite a number of much needed Perl-libraries are not part of the distribution.Fortunately this isn't much of a problem as RedHat uses the heavily supported RPM-system as a basis for its entire installation. With RPM it's possible to make a bundle containing all files and configuration changes needed to install a certain application.
Support is 30 days by phone, 90 days by E-mail or fax, commercial contracts optional
Kernel version is 2.2.5
Software bundle includes demos and limited versions of commercial product