Again you’ve heard nothing from me for a long time.. sry about that.. but: I’ve got some “news” for you ^^
Lately I’ve been doing a bit of distro hopping (still doing) cause there’s a new round of releases coming ^^
I started with Fedora 10 Beta Gnome Live CD. Started, looked fine at first glance, installed.. hm.. k.. what can I actually do with it? PackageKit integration looks good although it still has some rough edges (don’t remember what exactly but well.. it’s still beta) .. But still.. it’s a good idea.. gnome looks pretty good although I feel like I can’t do anything with it.. well.. I’m a KDE guy and I think that won’t change. What really bugged me was that I couldn’t install the NVIDIA driver… I tried searching the settings menu of gnome (where also installing software, … is located) .. nothing there.. so I searched in the packagekit frontend.. nothing.. manual install.. can’t start up X anymore.. something with libGl.. I found a faq stating how to install the NVDIAI drivers on fedora 9.. but well.. I thought: that can’t be sooo complex.. much easier on other distributions.. so I kicked fedora with the conclusion that I dislike the policy of only free components and making the life of those having proprietary components harder.
Note about the technique: kernel based mode settings!! nice one.. but not available on nvidia 😦 … so I just had three progressbars (overlapping) in a text mode fashion running from the left to the right of the screen…
Next one was Ubuntu 8.10 Beta.. not much has changed since the last release (minor improvements all over.. but nice).. the installer offered me to import settings from all of my operating systems (xp, vista, sabayon linux) — REALLY NICE! Boot up is lighting fast, the default wallpaper was a ugly brown one (who would have thought that ^^) with wrong color depth (at least looked like that), after installation I tried to get my NVIDIA drivers.. worked without a flaw through the hardware drivers menu… perfect.. it even offered me two options (stable (173. 14 iirc) and one of the latest beta drivers.. I think 177.78) ..
What was also nice is the gnome networkmanager applet.. seemed to work without any flaws for me (beeing connected to lan and wlan at the same time.. don’t know which 0.7 version they are using). What drove me away from Ubuntu was that it has by far less packages than openSUSE’s buildservice and that I don’t like sudo in general (I know I could create a real root account, but gksudo still asks me for my user password), as well as other minor things which annoy me in the long run. And of course: there were still some new distros out there I haven’t tried ^^
Next on my plan was openSUSE 11.1 Beta 2. Well.. what shall I say? It has still the old artwork (that will change), the KDE integration isn’t really good yet (the first thing which annoyed me when I started the KDE4 livecd was that the “show dashboard” icon was corrupted).. Another big annoyancde was that the resolution I chose in grub (1280×1024) wasn’t stretching the whole screen but staying in the middle of the screen and leaving black bars and all sides 😦 nothing seems to have visible changed since 11.0.. I know of the new partitioner module in yast and some other little improvements but compared to other distributions the progress looks pretty slow.. but here is also valid: it’s still beta.. and of course: I’ve filed bug reports (screen resolution and graphical glitches)
The last one (from which I’m actually writing atm) is Mandriva One 2009 KDE4. I have one thing to say: WOW! It has the wow effect microsoft promised for vista if you ask me ^^ The KDE 4.1.2 integration is near perfect. I have a little battery icon in the taskbar which is actually a standalone app (when you open it (right click — configure powersave)).. never saw that in other distros, mandriva control center looks pretty good again (redesigned), Mandriva has created their own startmenu (they’ve ported the look and feel of their menu from KDE3).. What I think is really nice is: I totally forgot that I’m running KDE4.. I thought it’s KDE3.. which actually means: WE ARE THERE! You can make KDE4 look and feel like KDE3.. What’s missing a bit is panel (auto) hiding and some other backports from KDE 4.2 (panel) but well.. the default configuration is just great and doesn’t eat too much space (as big as the gnome task bar). And the best thing is: it feels blazing fast!!! I have only tried KDE4 compiled in debug mode until know .. but compiled in release and with (possible) optimisations from the mandriva team it kicks ass 🙂
What is a bit annoying is the systray which has sometimes a wrong background (know KDE upstream issue — will be adressed in 4.2 afaik), a few (5 until know (~6 hrs runtime)) lags (pc stops responding for 2 or 3 seconds).
The point which may drive me away from Mandriva 2009 is their package management. It’s just awful if you ask me… I tried installing lamp through package management (plus point: it’s the first distribution I know which has a meta package for lamp).. conflict, chose the wrong solution — had to restart the package management otherwise I wasn’t able to change my selection.. it installed fine.. phpmyadmin asks for a password.. will have to investigate on where to find it ^^
Another thing which bugs me is that I can’t find opera in the repos (I have enabled all non-oss, backports, testing, ..) .. maybe there where more repos for mandriva.. but I can’t remember them.. I can just remember the depenency hell from the last time I tried mandriva (2007) ..
On a sidenote: the nvidia drivers were automatically installed because I used the one live cd .. nice!
Edit: btw: I’ve NEVER seen firefox 3.02 start up soooo fast!! it’s absolutely amazing (the whole speed of the system.. boot is just a bit slower than ubuntu (subjectiv))
So.. that was it for now.. my hands are already hurting.. was programming half day long and know writing such a big entry ^^
Just a braindump for my next entry (so that I don’t forget about it):
Touchpad: mandriva ok (no scrolling after install), opensuse 11.0/ubuntu: a mess, fedora: works as it should