Over the years I’ve used a variety of Linux Distros: Mandrake, Red Hat, FreeBSD, Fedora, Gentoo, and Ubuntu. Distrowatch keeps track of everything we need to know about the distros, and recently there has been an enormous push in desktop Linux thanks to Dell putting Ubuntu on desktops and Compiz-Fusion bringing snazzy eye candy to even low end machines. Distrowatch gives some pretty decent stats on the main Distros but for a while I’ve wanted to know how Google sees their popularity; mainly by how many pages mention specific distros.
Using some python, a spreadsheet, and a little scraping, I was able to get my answer. To see how Google would rank different distros I’m using the number of results Google returns when searching for the Distro’s name as my numbers. I’m going to write a HOWTO on the technical aspects of what I did sometime this week, but here are the basic steps
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