Trench's further adventures in Linux

So when we last left off our intrepid hero said he was going to give PCLinuxOS another try and I did. I’ve upgrade my opinion of it somewhat. I got it customized enough to where it really looked slick. I loved that it used Synaptic as package manager. However, the latest dealbreaker was that it was missing a vital program that I need from its repository. This really isn’t a knock on PCLinuxOS I’m just not comfortable compiling my own stuff manually yet. I also have to add that if you’re a first time Linux user I wouldn’t start with PCLinuxOS. I found the install process a little confusing. Why does it need two partitions? Anyway it’s worth checking out.

Previously I also posted about OpenSUSE and how I couldn’t get past the start menu. Well I figured out how to change it to basically a generic KDE menu but I’m still not all that impressed. While the install was a snap once everything was updated I found it to be a slow and sluggish OS. I also think their repository is severely lacking. I really wanted to like this too because Novell, the company behind OpenSUSE, has some kind of deal with Microsoft that pisses off the Linux fanboys and I love to do things that piss off fanboys. However I can not recommend OpenSUSE.

I actually dropped Mandriva as my main OS as well. I loved Mandriva and I do highly recommend it but I found a Linux install that in my opinion was better. It’s actually kind of an old install for me. Over the weekend I tried out the KDE version of Linux Mint and I’ve never been happier with an installation. I know some of you hardcore Linux fans will deride me for choosing what is basically Kubuntu but I don’t care. I found this install to be more stable and useful than most of the others I’ve tried and since it uses Ubuntu’s repository it has all the programs I need.

My next foray into Linux won’t be until Fedora 9 drops.

My Linux weekend

Ok, so I spent most of my weekend trying out some new Linux distros. New to me anyway.

First up was PCLinuxOS and their 2007 release. I don’t know why PCLinuxOS is so highly touted. I found it to be clunky, buggy and ugly. Then I realized I’m supposed to be trying PCLinuxOS MiniMe. I couldn’t even get that to boot on my laptop. Not even halfway through the boot process it would lockup and cause my caps lock light to blink then it would freeze.

Then I tried DreamLinux. It really wants to be Mac’s OS-X. What attracted me to DreamLinux was its shortcut bar down at the bottom just like OS-X. I’ve never used OS-X so I don’t know how it actually compares. What I didn’t like is that the shortcut bar wasn’t customizable at all and half the tools on it I would never use anyway.

I finally settled on Mandriva’s latest release, Spring 2008. I liked it so much I installed it on my main hard drive. Dual booted with Windows of course. I got addicted to the KDE desktop and I’ve adapted to using RPMs. I also thought that Mandriva was more aesthetically pleasing that PCLiunuxOS. Now this isn’t a knock against Linux Mint my former distro of choice. I just get bored after 6 months or so and I need a change. I would recommend Linux Mint to anyone who asked what the best Ubuntu based distro was.

OpenSUSE

So last night I gave OpenSUSE a try. Trying Linux distros has become my new smoking. Anyway, I didn’t care for it. I couldn’t get past the start menu, or quickstart, or whatever it’s called. I’m too used to not having to click on a start menu to get it to drill down. If someone could tell me how to drill down just by hovering the cursor then I may be willing to give it a second try.

However I am starting to come around on Mandriva and I’ve officially become a KDE konvert. (See what I did there.) It hasn’t replaced Linux Mint as my main distro yet but I’m becoming highly addicted to Mandriva.

I tried PCLinuxOS too but now I can’t remember why I didn’t like it. I’ll have to give that another shot. I just remember something it did pissed me off.