Friday, 26 June 2009

Fedora 11: Why i wish i hadn't downloaded it..

I sometimes think i might be really unlucky with some Linux Distros but I know at least one other person who has had some issues with Fedora 11. Firstly I tried the live CD, as always i try it first in Virtualbox, just to check it downloaded OK and have a quick spin. It booted OK but i was unable to get it to install, crashing out on me. OK I thought maybe it is just a VB issue, so I tried it on a spare PC, a socket-A Athlon, (2GHZ/512MB ram, 40GB x2 HDD). I tried the default partition layout: no dice. I then downloaded the DVD (32 bit version) thinking this might be better. I still had trouble installing either in Virtualbox or on my test machine. I searched some forums and tried several different partition layouts but still no luck. This is the buggiest distro I've tried in a long long time! A friend of mine tried the 64 bit version but had similar problems but did manage to get it installed. His major gripe was apparently PulseAudio sets all applications' volume stupidly loud by default, not helped by Gnomes default Pulseaudio mixer which has really been dumbed down so much. On Ubuntu 9.0.4 I have actually installed the old mixer as it allows greater control, especially on line-in and Mic-in. Somehow all of the reviews of Fedora 11 I've read online have been positive, and I can't figure out why!

Anyway, I always like to try out various distros every now and then just to reinforce why i chose my favourite - Ubuntu :) I've also I've just been trying out a nice lightweight, easy to use distro called Nonux. It's a Dutch Slackware based live CD with the Gnome desktop which makes a great combination. It has an installer and gparted (partition editor) is installed so it's good for rescuing PCs and for installing on old PCs.

Thursday, 4 June 2009

Imitation is not always the sincerest form of flattery

Monstrosity: Windows 7 Theme for Linux

I've occasionally seen a red Fiat Coupé with Ferrari badges all over it. It looks pretty tacky and unconvincing, yet on various desktop customisation pages such as Gnome-Look, Stardock and others, I've seen countless themes that emulate the complete look of another operating system.
Why would you want Linux to look or work like a hideous bloated and buggy closed-source operating system? I've also seen Ubuntu brown themes for Windows, whilst it's nicer to look at than Windows XP and Vista default themes, why not just use Ubuntu, at least in dual boot? I also find the lack of themes on OSX to be a little irritating, what if i don't like brushed metal? The only feature of Mac I emulate in Windows (on the rare occasions I boot into it) and Linux is the dock. For Linux I use Cairo Dock and for Windows I use Object Dock. This is only because I like the way it works and keeps all my favourite programs close to hand. I just don't want my whole desktop to look like or work like OSX, the Starbucks of OS's, or the Mcdonalds of OS's, Windows.