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 Other Distros Experience

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limo
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PostSubject: Other Distros Experience   Tue Jun 21, 2011 6:08 pm

Well, thanks to MattB for approving the idea of making a thread to discuss experiences with other distros.
No matter what, I think this should enrich our experiences and maybe someone at Suse would take clues if they are serious about putting suse back on track.

I'll start shortly giving my humble and simple impressions.

Meanwhile you are all welcome to start enlighting us about distros you tried, it's pros an cons.
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Freshmeadow
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PostSubject: Re: Other Distros Experience   Wed Jun 22, 2011 7:32 am

I love openSUSE for many reasons such as stability, security and the zypper utility and more. However, different distros have their strengths and weaknesses. For a unique, retooled desktop reimagining, also try the new Ubuntu 11.04 Nattty Narwahl Unity interface.
Some folks hate it, some, like me, have learned to absolutely love it. It just gets completely out of your way when you are working. I use it as my second distro after openSUSE LXDE on my netbook.
Try it out!
Cheers from rainy Guelph. Smile
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limo
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PostSubject: Re: Other Distros Experience   Fri Jun 24, 2011 1:06 am

Freshmeadow, yeah, opensuse is lovely, it is actually my first love since I started with suse 7.3 till 11.2, all KDE,
Then things started to irritate me arround that time, mainly enforcing KDE 4 when it was not yet ready and stable (there were discussions to keap kde 3.5 and make kde 4 an option), the second thing and the main thing was when novell killed the community, this is why MattB founded this forum. In the official forum it turned not to be a community, it became a parent-child relationship, (a bad parent actually), you were not allowed to suggest or criticise... they even moved some topics related to software development to off topic or general !!

So, I decided to try other distros. The first I started with was Kubuntu (Lucid)
Of course I did a usefull trick, I got all my data on an external usb drive and worked on it all the time, so I can make fresh installs as I wish.
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limo
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PostSubject: Re: Other Distros Experience   Fri Jun 24, 2011 1:38 am

Here comes my kubuntu experience.

Installation was easy, everything worked out of the box including restricted formats.
It looked nice and interesting (I just had to change the default double click to single click to open the file.
The network manager was useless, it keapt disconnecting every few minutes, and the solution to this as on the forum was to install "wicd"..

The forum is helpful, very responsive, very rich content. I think this is because of the large user base. But still, it didn't feel like the "late" opensuse forum. You are free to talk... it'sa real forum.... but I didn't feel the intimacy I enjoyed before.

My experience with the ubuntu forum came later when I installed Linux Mint and stayed onmy machine.

So, in 30 minutes my relation with kubuntu was over! I didn't like the idea of using a distro that has a deffective network manager by default. But I can't say it isa bad distro. It still deserves to be #1 on distrowatch and I believe it got this rank because it does not care about "only open" formats and software, this mekes life easier for newbies whom I think are newly converts or escapees from windoze where they are used to everything preinstalled and works out of the box PLUS the are not scared of the new unknown and how would the handle or install unrestricted formats while they still know nothing about linux.


Last edited by limo on Fri Jun 24, 2011 1:48 am; edited 1 time in total
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limo
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PostSubject: Re: Other Distros Experience   Fri Jun 24, 2011 1:46 am

Next, I installed Fedora 13 with Gnome, it was a snap, very responsive... nothing can be said about it. The only drawback, you have to workout how to support restricted formats which needed some searching and browsing to get it. (again, which is not attractive for newbees whom I believe come from windoze).

The other thing, that the default look of gnome as we all know was dull, you need to change it to something attractive or decorative.

It survived on my machine for about 2 days, as I was trying to discover gnome for the first time. But as a KDE lover... I didn't feel at home although Gnome is stable, responsive...

I don't remember I participated in the forum.
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limo
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PostSubject: Re: Other Distros Experience   Fri Jun 24, 2011 12:16 pm

So, I keapt searching... I found Linux Mint, it is the same ubuntu but much better... the take the latest ubuntu distro, debug, tweak, customize and in a month or two they release their new Linux Mint distro based on it.

Actually it survived on machine for some long time, several months, stable, efficient... easy.... the old beutifull linux as we know it. (with restricted formats working out of the box)
I used Isadora which is based on ubuntu lucid with kde as usual. I liked Isadora and enjoyed a lot.

They have their own forum, it is somewhat nice, people are helpfull and well informed. But the main support forum I relied on was the ubuntu forum. Very rich, and large userbase, but this gave me a fealing simillar to... hmmm.. someone just landed in New York, nobody knows anybody... though they really help... but in a crowded place.. you are just a user name.May be this is my problem.

Later on, they released Linux Mint Debian Edition, it is based on debian not ubuntu, uses debian repos, not compatible with ubuntu, but with debian, and it is with gnome and some others but no KDE Mad
I installed it on virtualbox on Isadora.
All what I can say it was great, resposive, stable... Just a glitch with the first update as it has broken packages... they made another release with some fixes... but some problems remained which I could sort out with the help of the guys in the forum.

Everything was working out of the box on the VM, including restricted formats.
The only draw back was gnome, I'm a kde guy since I first started linux.
I keapt doing all my work on the virtual LMDE for about a month... with gnome I didn't have the guts to install it.

As time passed I git used to gnome.... surprisingly it is much lighter than kde and faster... but still kde for me is king. Fter I got used to it I installed it with gnome on the machine. I could customize the dull default look of gnome to something better, but still kde has better look.
I'm only missing amarok, nepomuk, and digikam.

I can't say I could find full feature replacement to those, but the available packages could satisfy the minimum...

Well, generally i can live with it as it is now, I am sort of sticking to it because it's a rolling release... won't need to do all the hassles after a fresh install... the coming release will be pushed as updates, no nead to install again.

Meen while I managed to install kde on LMDE and it worked fine on VM.
Now I have a rolling releasewith kde on VM, still have to test it for sometime before doing a real install, and gnome is slowly taking me away from kde.

I'm still undecided.
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PostSubject: Re: Other Distros Experience   Fri Jun 24, 2011 8:11 pm

I know from playing with Arch that rolling release is nice. It could also be a pain updating after I quit using the machine daily. I still to find time to install opensuse 11.4 with tumbleweed on my new laptop so I can have a rolling release.

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PostSubject: Re: Other Distros Experience   Sat Jun 25, 2011 12:43 pm

hmmm.. I thought having a rolling release will install only the latest not the earlier versions you skipped, maybe some "additional" packages...
Generally I'd need a rolling release on work machines so I won't spend that time to tweak, reconfigure and reinstall my packages... it just guarantees I'm "always on" ... at least till i "have to" get a new machine... hopefully in 5 years, as a linux user, one doesn't really need the very latest hardware all the time, especially the work I do on the current machine was the work i used to do 5 or ten years ago, and will remain the same for the next 5 yrs... spreadsheets, wordprocessing, browsing... all what I needed was to upgrade this Fujitsu t 4310 to 8 gb of ram to handle some large database, but it really didn't help much to speed up processing, maybe if only they come up with a tablet with a speed double (or more) the current 2.1 GHZ
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PostSubject: Re: Other Distros Experience   Sat Jun 25, 2011 1:43 pm

If you really love KDE, another distro you could try in a VM is PCLinuxOS KDE 2010 edition. To some it is the best implememtation of KDE in a distro. In 2007 and into 2008 PCLinuxOS was number 1 on the hit page of DistroWatch. I have it on a live CD and it looks gorgeous.
It might be fun for you to try.
Cheers from Guelph.
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PostSubject: Re: Other Distros Experience   Sat Jun 25, 2011 2:05 pm

Freshmeadow, reviewing pclinuxos now, initially i like the idea
Quote :
"PCLinuxOS has a script called mylivecd, which allows the user to take a ‘snapshot’ of their current hard drive installation (all settings, applications, documents, etc.) and compress it into an ISO CD/DVD image."

But you know what... gnome is getting me slowly... it is not as bad as I thought
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PostSubject: Re: Other Distros Experience   Sat Jun 25, 2011 6:32 pm

PCLOS was always a distro that I recommended people try. I always liked it, but never made permanent residence on my machines.

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PostSubject: Re: Other Distros Experience   Sat Jun 25, 2011 9:26 pm



But you know what... gnome is getting me slowly... it is not as bad as I thought[/quote]

OOOhhhhhhh! You are being drawn to the dark side... Smile

Actually, I have used openSUSE Gnome for the past 3 years. Just this week I installed the KDE version of 11.4 on my desktop, just for a change. In my opinion, there is nothing wrong with Gnome ( but it still might be the dark side...)
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PostSubject: Re: Other Distros Experience   Sun Jun 26, 2011 12:22 am

bdquick wrote:
PCLOS was always a distro that I recommended people try. I always liked it, but never made permanent residence on my machines.

This is a puzzle... you recommend it but it never stays on your desktop! Shocked why?
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PostSubject: Re: Other Distros Experience   Sun Jun 26, 2011 12:30 am

Freshmeadow wrote:


..... Just this week I installed the KDE version of 11.4 on my desktop, just for a change. In my opinion, there is nothing wrong with Gnome ( but it still might be the dark side...)
cyclops

lol! I see we r in the same boat... both getting drawn to the other side

I only see gnome as lighter, more responsive, more... mmm.. tweakable... but KDE looks way better, more feature rich, (selecting multiple files by checkbox.., nepomuk, digikam...) some kde apps are much powerful and feature rich...

hmmm... I can't tell if I'll stay on Gnome or revert back to kde.
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PostSubject: Re: Other Distros Experience   Sun Jun 26, 2011 3:11 pm

limo wrote:
bdquick wrote:
PCLOS was always a distro that I recommended people try. I always liked it, but never made permanent residence on my machines.

This is a puzzle... you recommend it but it never stays on your desktop! Shocked why?

I've mostly just used it as a live cd. Installed it on a test machine. It worked fine for me, but I just kept going back to suse. I could find about any package I wanted for suse, and I loved the old sl-support forum.

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PostSubject: Re: Other Distros Experience   Thu Jun 30, 2011 12:41 pm

hmmm... I can't tell if I'll stay on Gnome or revert back to kde.[/quote]

Do you know that KDE apps will run on Gnome if dependencies are met? It just may mean bringing in possibly a lot of extra packages, depending on the app. My 2 cents.
Cheers!
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PostSubject: Re: Other Distros Experience   Fri Jul 01, 2011 9:59 am

Freshmeadow, yes it should, I have tried to install some kde apps on my Gnome LMDE (KmyMoney mainly) it works fine. On the same virtual Gnome LMDE I tried to install digiKam, and it was a catastroph! Unusabley slow, or better say it looks like freezing)
I think, and I may be wrong, it is easier to run a Gnome app under KDE than vice versa.
I am still undecided between kde and gnome, and still would like to try the so called unity... any guidance how to get it? I'll try on a virtualbox.
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PostSubject: Re: Other Distros Experience   Fri Jul 01, 2011 4:55 pm

To try Unity, go to the Ubuntu website and download the iso for version 11.04 Natty Narwahl. There are no longer different versions for netbooks and desktops/laptops, there is only one iso now. Here is the link:
http://www.ubuntu.com/download/ubuntu/download

Remember, Unity is different! I love it, you may not!
Cheers from Guelph.
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PostSubject: Re: Other Distros Experience   Tue Jul 05, 2011 1:06 am

I wonder if anybody knows of a rolling release distro where fjbtndrv can be easily installed to get full tablet features of my Fujitsu T4310.
I have got all tablet features previously working properly when I was on Isadora. After installing LMDE to my surprise basic features of the tablet simply worked out of the box but I'm missing a few important features like multitouch, screen rotate and buttons in tablet mode.

As far as my experience with Isadora, it needed a driver called "fjbtndrv", but I couldn't find it in the repos, moreover, I think it might need some tweeks to get it behaving properly.

I found some refferences but it refers to other ubuntu based distros, which I can't use of course.

Can anybody help? Or guide me to a good rolling release that can handle my hardware easily like having fjbtndrv in the repos?
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