So im fed up with my shared hosting provider, im wasting time and money promoting proxys that are down every other day.

I want to also host several other niche sites and a arcade site in the future so im leaning towards vps hosting but i need to know the following

1) what OS should it run? does it matter?

2)compared to shared hosting whats the learning curve? Can i just pay and start using cpanel?

3)for example santrex offers quite a few options one of which is a " metered ddos protected setup" whats the advantage?

4) can you guys suggest some hosting?