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Mandrake(Mandriva), Fedora, or SuSE

By JRod86 ·
Well, I've had Fedora Core 4 installed for sometime now, but haven't been booting into it as much as I would have liked. But, last night I did and was suddenly reminded why I haven't used it in a long time. It sucks! I can't play mp3's out of the box, much less does the soundcard work. Oh yeah, want to burn DVD's?? Not on this distro (or maybe it just doesn't work in Linux from what I've read).

Anyhoo, I'm trying to make an effort to learn Linux so I can effectively bash Windows as well, but so far have not found anything in Linux worthwhile. The only good thing I have found is that I can dual-boot easily with the Fedora Core install (what a relief that was). My question is then, which would you recommmend to me as the better of the beginner Linux versions? I am currently downloading Mandriva, and may download SuSE as well, but wanted some experienced users opinions.

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Agreed

by jmgarvin In reply to very true

One of the first things I do is get a "real" kernel after installing Fedora ;-)

What really drives me batty is that the RPM based distros (and I'm a fan, remember) can't keeps things as structured as the "real" distros. Every version something changes to the point that you have really dig down deep to see what is going on.

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I hear that.

by Jaqui In reply to very true

the from scratch is not really meant for admin tasks.

more for a learning tool.
using it to guarantee a 100% compliant system for use as development platform isn't stretching anything. no way as working admin station.

using a from scratch for a server is more work than needfull. use debian or slak instead. they have similiar install models ( minimalistic approach ) and do have more admin options for production machines.

the base from scratch is cli, with network enabled.
same as initial deb / slak install.
time used for from scratch, one full day
time used for deb / slak, about an hour.
adding a gui from scratch, with tools, another day.
in deb / slak, another hour.

the loss of tools like apt is the biggest drawback from the lfs idea, but it isn't a kill the concept for some people.
and I could get the apt sources and add it, if I choose to.
or rpm.

the benefit, besides compliance, of lfs for me is that if all workstations are blank systems, new people get to show their knowledge of linux and how well they can follow instructions.
all linux no windows, so it's a good way to weed out people who can't build their own system with the complete instruction set available in hard copy to work from.
( and boot cd with sane build environment )

I never actually recommend lfs for anyone new to linux, or as the distro for production machines.

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right-o

by apotheon In reply to very true

I'm actually planning to pick up a play system to use for a DFS install at some point in the near future (this year, maybe). It should be fun.

Expecting an hour to install X Window System components on Debian is actually really overstating the case. It takes me about ten minutes to get all the X stuff I need installed. Of course, I'm not running Gnome or KDE, else it might take an extra twenty or thirty minutes to get everything installed.

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better to

by Jaqui In reply to very true

overstate the time than understate it.
so when someone new does try they are pleasantly suprised, not upset.
and a newbie will most likely install more than they need to, which takes longer. :)

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good point

by apotheon In reply to very true

On the other hand, overstating everything leaves some people wondering why Linux is so slow and difficult. Heh.

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I may attempt to install Mandriva...

by JRod86 In reply to Mandriva is

...After last nights debacle. Things aren't working out so well with what I have going on. The dual-boot XP/Fedora machine may have to go back to a strictly MS machine and I will have to build another box for Linux.

If Mandriva is better at detecting hardware, that may be the way to go. I disabled the onboard sound and tried some of the other suggestions, but so far nothing has worked. Then, because I wanted to stay updated with Fedora, I had to sit through a LONG update process which I finally had to leave to get some other things done, so I still have that to look forward to.

Another question though. I do have room on my Hard Drive for another partition for Mandriva...If I want to give it a try, will it be able to detect the Grub boot loader and just add another entry for it (it currently allows me to choose XP or Fedora)??

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not likely

by apotheon In reply to I may attempt to install ...

Mandrake has had a tendency to simply "take over" grub and make itself the only booting OS without asking in earlier versions. I'm not sure about the latest Mandriva release, though. Your mileage may vary.

Also be aware that if it asks if you want to, for instance, install "all four disks" when there are only three, don't just choose "yes". For a long time, Mandrake has had a flaw in the installer that makes it act like there are more disks than there are, and it can hang the install. I'm not sure whether that has gotten fixed in the latest version, either.

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not anymore..

by Jaqui In reply to not likely

I actually have a mandrake bootloader* with a multiboot, the only thing I did was edit the way it boots and change the default boot option.
mandrake listed every single bootable os all by itself.
( cause I knew to use a boot partition so all linux kernels are on same partition, and mandrake adds everything from there to the boot option listing )


* lilo since I prefer it.

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boot partitions

by apotheon In reply to not anymore..

Using a single boot partition for multiple Linux distributions doesn't really give you distribution-specific configurations, though. You pretty much just get different kernels with some extra (often redundant) software installed.

. . . unless you're actually running multiple root partitions in addition to a centralized boot partition for kernels.

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yup

by Jaqui In reply to boot partitions

the only connection between versions is the boot partition.
and a shared partition for file transfer.
( use this to avoid any non compliant permisson problems from mandrake. )

I have a copy of mdk 8.2 installed, just for the 2.4 kernel to be able to use kylix.
( kylix won't install on 2.6 kernel systems )

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