Wednesday, July 31, 2013

The *buntus are for wusses

Ok, part of the thing running Linux... is finding out what the cool kids run, and going with that. Right?

And when you're doing it for fun, easier is not always best. I mean you want a bit of a challenge right? Then you think you're really solving problems and such.

While it's true what I said earlier... about not wanting to have to work so hard to get things working. It's also true that I want to learn. Increasing my knowledge is definitely one of the main goals in running Linux.

I was recently following a discussion thread in the Xfce forums about which distribution was the favorite of the folks (who presumably all ran the Xfce desktop environment like I do). A number of people did prefer Xubuntu... because it just worked. But those are the folks that just didn't want the hassle.

For people who know, and think the hassle is totally worth it... they seemed to prefer Debian, Arch Linux, and Fedora. I think Debian was the clear winner.

So all the *buntus are based on Debian. One guy says... if Debian is the father of all these distros, why not just run that? On a similar note, Fedora was the original heavy hitter (starting as Red Hat). And that development team has been and still is responsible for a lot of innovation and new technologies that are later adopted by the other distributions.

But in one aspect, Debian and Fedora are like night and day. Debian is well-known as the most conservative distro out there. In terms of... they don't put something into the distro until they've tested it for like two years. While that means it's rock-solid stable. It also means they make it pretty inconvenient to get recent versions of the various software components.

Fedora on the other hand, seems to be pretty well-known for being on the bleeding edge. A ZDNet article I referred to earlier indicated that Fedora was for people that really know Linux. As opposed to the *buntus or Mint which are oriented toward newcomers or people who don't want to hassle with a larger learning curve.

So I figured I'd give Fedora another try. I installed it last night and it's working just peachy. For now I'm running Xubuntu on my laptop and the Xfce spin of Fedora on my desktop machine.

But I think I'm going to want to play around with the network installer disc for Fedora. I used the live Xfce spin for my desktop installation. That gave me a pre-selected set of software designed for the Xfce desktop environment.

I think the network installer disc makes all the software available. It lets you chose each component and only choose those pieces you want. And it downloads all the pieces on the fly rather than having stale versions on a pre-built disc.

So I intend to give that a run. Maybe even tonight. We'll see. I didn't get much sleep last night.