Countless questions from a complete newbie

Big on Hosting. Unlimited Space & Unlimited Bandwidth

Hello, I’m aware that some of these questions may seem to be idiotic and easily answered by googling, but nonetheless posted them here for further clarification (spare me the jargon please )

I’d like to begin by saying this. I’m interested in creating several websites, and so have considered two options – a shared hosting plan or a vps. I’m considering between hostgator’s ‘baby plan’ which claims to have the features stated below:
UNLIMITED Domains
UNLIMITED Disk Space
UNLIMITED Bandwidth
Shared SSL Certificate

And a vps which has these features:
2048MB RAM
2048MB vSwap
4 CPU Cores (Equal Share)
100GB SSD-Cached Diskspace
3000GB Bandwidth
100Mbps Shared Port
1 IPv4 Address
OpenVZ/SolusVM
(Nodes are configured with the E3-1240v2 CPU, 32 GB memory, 4×1 TB WD RE4 SATA, LSI 9260-4i with BBU and a 120 GB SSD for SSD-cached enabled transfers)

So, if for example I was going to host 3 wordpress sites, and maybe 1-2 forums, is the vps enough? Or if I were to host more sites? I’m not so concerned about diskspace, but about ram. I have no idea how much ram is needed for web hosting, which is why I’m here. How many wordpress sites do you think I can host? (Assuming I have something like 10000 visitors monthly per site) Obviously I’m going to take the vps if the ram is enough, otherwise it’ll be hostgator’s plan. And, assuming the ram is enough, should I take a 1 gb ram plan instead to save $?

Also, theres several OSes I can choose from (I’m assuming they are all linux OSes), including CentOS, Debian, Fedora and Ubuntu with 32/64 bit variations. Which one is considered the best for advanced users, and which is considered the best for new users? (Assuming the websites I use are all going to use php, and maybe flash)

And.. I have the option to pay for extra IP addresses for the vps. What do these IP addresses do? Are they needed to host 2 sites/domains? (Like wordpress1.com and wordpress2.com) Or are they used for a different purpose?

Lastly, can anyone recommend me a good guide to setting up a website on a vps? (Preferably for the specific OS you recommend) Or is it so troublesome that I should just go for a shared hosting plan instead? (Keep in mind that I have no intentions of going for shared hosting first then switching over to a vps when my site gets more popular) Thanks for reading, and I’m very sorry for having so many questions.

(Any cheap and reliable vps recommendations are appreciated too)
(This vps I’m considering is from vpsnodes.com, it would be appreciated if anyone could tell me if it looks shady etc)

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