Ive been a fedora user for a few years now, and you probably will like it quite a bit.
But as far as linux in general is concerned:
- Programs often install fairly easily and with minimal fuss these days. Even if you have to build them yourself. (how hard is it, really? ./configure; make && make install). done. Other than that, you can often find rpms for most of the software you would be interested in using for both distros. fedora has a pretty good sized userbase and alot of help forums, as well as many people tend to build packages for fedora (being the community redhat and all…).
just install apt-get on whatever system you are going to use and your life will be a breeze (who doesnt love apt-get upgrade?).
- Are bundled programs really all that important to you? do you have a high speed internet connection? if you do, then the bundled programs are kind of moot. (again, apt-get install is your friend).
Also, alot of people tend to mistake ease of use, and user interface with a particular distro.
Remember: KDE, gnome, icewm, xfce, etc are all window managers/desktops. the underlying linux system could care less if you had a green 12" monochrome monitor, or a fancy widescreen tv. X will care, but linux underneath will not. So, the question may be more appropriately phrased as: which window manager/desktop environment will i like better? Which one will make me feel at home coming from windows.
Cause guess what? I can make Debian look EXACTLY like Fedora look EXACTLY like Knoppix look EXACTLY like Ubuntu, etc etc. Just install the same desktop environment on all of them.
Personally, I enjoy the minimalistic approach, and installed XFCE included with the fedora core install cd’s. but you will probably feel more at home with KDE coming from candyland windows…
So for a brand spankin new user, either do as kit89 suggested, and install a few and find one you like.
Or go with something a bit more friendly up front like fedora (this is not meant to start a flame on distros), and get/learn apt-get as soon as possible. the support base is huge (a big plus when you can’t get something working). there are tons of packages for it already built, and it comes with all of the eyecandy DE’s, Gnome, KDE, and my fav, XFCE.
Remember, you can change how it looks/behaves to just about any way your little heart desires. Don’t like Gnome, then install KDE! Dont like KDE, install fluxbox! etc etc…