Centuries ago, I had tried Fedora on my laptop and wondered if they are really ready for the desktop. SuSE was my rescue at that time.
Time flew and I had to get rid of Linux, cause I couldn’t sustain the vpn-ized wireless connection to connect into the corporate LAN even when I was inside the company.
Anyways, I installed Linux on my desktop. This time the choice was Ubuntu with Fiesty just out. Seriously, Ubuntu proved really nice. Beautifully done theme and home-user-lovable-click-next-to-install was amazing. It just worked out of the box. The package manager was awesome. Not only could I upgrade the packages, I could upgrade the whole distro. I moved to Gutsy and then to Hardy without even putting a CD/DVD or even wondering if that is actually and upgrade. I kept doing my work and the update manager upgraded the whole system.
Compiz was also an eye-candy.
But last week, I thought to give the other contemporary distros a fair shot. After all I was comparing the century old experience. I checked up my rack and I could only find Mandriva 2k8. So obviously, it got the first shot. Frankly speaking it still felt worse that the century old SuSE installation. I immediately got over it. I can’t explain why but this time the experience was worse than the first release of Mandriva (after the re-christening). I couldn’t stand it to even download FC9 (which was in the news at the time) live CD.
Anyways, I burned the FC CD on Windows and was all set to try FC before installing. My first impression of FC was very nice. But it was KDE that I was liking than anything specific to FC. I went for the install. But soon I realized that the usability is still a big problem in FC. So, one more distro went down the drain.
Next was the turn of my first-ever-distro. This time I thought of not to burn the CD, rather try out all-internet-no-CD installation. It was very simple to do. You just ought to be a little interested and experimental :). Anyways, rest about that in some other post.
Setting up SuSE was as easy as any of the others I had tried (ohh….each of these were very easy to intsall…I was just being critical about their usability).
One thing that I liked about SuSE which none of the other offered was install-time configuration of Windows Domain Controller configuration for login. As soon as the system was up, I could just log on with corporate id. The green theme of OpenSuSE 10.3 is very nice.
But the best and most comforting thing of coming back was YaST. How, they have managed to have such a nice one stop shop for everything. It gives you almost everything that you would like to setup on your system.
And yeah, with OpenSuSE being one of the mainstream distro I could get packages/repositories for OpenSuSE right away.
I also tried KDE4, but its performance sucked big time, so for the time being I am sitting at KDE3. As SuSE gives me the tabbed main-menu and screenlets give enough options for widgets, I don’t much that KDE4 has to offer.
There are a few things that I am not able to setup and would like to get it done properly. I am still to get a boot up splash screen (not the grub one, but the one that shows up a graphical splash during boot up). Another thing that I couldn’t setup was compiz to read the configuration from my home directory. No matter what I did in ccsm (Compiz config manager), they were not respected (yes, I followed the instructions written here). As a workaround I have put up fusion-icon on my kde session startup. This works, but I can see the ghost jumping taskbar items for compiz and emerald while they are replacing the current window manager and decorator.
Anyways, current I am pretty satisfied with my current setup and am onto wine to check out if I can work out an experiment. More may come later.