General discussion


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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SuSE 9.3 pro is excellent.

by michael_orton In reply to My SUSE experience

I have just upgraded to suSE 9.3 pro.
It did cost me... all of ?8 for the 5cd's
Its easier to install than XP, thakes 40 minutes to get a COMPLETE system up an running.
It will easily set up double or triple boot with 98se/XP.
YAST2 detects ans sets up almost all normal motherboards, Intel, AMD, sound cards video cards
modems, NICs.
I have no trouble burning, ripping, playing CDs and DVD.
[I use SuSE for data recovery too.
Take HD out , stick in caddy, grab any unencrypted file even if the MS Windows system is totally trashed. Burn to CD/DVD or sent around the world by NIC!]
Its easier than XP, in most cases you don't have to find the CD that came with the device, Suse finds it and sets it up.
It found my cheap ADSL Mentor MR4c/UK router, set it up with no fuss. With XP I had to use the CD that came with it.
My home ISP doesn't support LINUX, but other Linux users are far better than the official support desk. Firefox and Opera 8.51 both work OK, and I now run 4 PCs from the one connection, mixing 98se/xp and Suse.
SuSe just about runs on Pcs fit for the scrap heap.
This is ideal if you haven't got a budget.
If you went to UBUNTU or DSL, all FREE!!!
you could use even more ancient PCs, perhaps by just sticking in some old, from recycling centre, ram, and a 10/100 ethernet card ( I pay ?5 per pair at the recycling centre). Ethernet cables, ?5 for a plastic bag full, return if they don't work.
If the PCs will run 98se, they will run Linux, very well. DSL will struggle on a 486.
When MS VISTA comes out and they drop support for XP, then will be the time to finally drop MS and switch to Linux. Save upgrading hardware too.
Personally I find 98se + Nortons Utils + loads of "free stuph" the best "Microsoft" system there is.
But its stability is mainly due to non_MS add-ons!

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Mandrake as a desktop OS

by brandonv In reply to Mandrake(Mandriva), Fedor ...

I installed the Mandrake that came with my Compaq(HP) desktop when I bought it and have been using it as a desktop PC. Works fine, sound card was detected, X config defaults fine as well. No complaints, but I really haven't touched Linux since the old Slackware.

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Mandrake is Tops

by groenem In reply to Mandrake(Mandriva), Fedor ...

Mandrake is easier to use than Fedora. I don't know about Suse, because I haven't tried it yet. Mandrake has some of its own software that makes it easy to configure your system.
The GUI interface to Add/Remove RPM programs is much better then Fedora's.
For beginners I recommend Mandrake. It feels more "polished" than Fedore and it's website has more to offer.

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on the other hand

by apotheon In reply to Mandrake is Tops

I hope you never have to do any serious manpage use with Mandrake, or need your Linux-related skills learned from Mandrake to apply easily to other distros. Lack of documentation coverage is one of Mandrake's weaknesses, as is its deviation from LSB norms.

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5 years and still a Mandr(ake)/(iva) fan

by nvargas In reply to Mandrake is Tops

I've tried Red Hat, Fedora, SuSE, Ubuntu and several other distros. It is true that underneath all of them are the same ol' Linux, but to me the easiest distro for a regular user is Mandriva.

It detects hardware quite well, the installation process has impoved a lot. I've never installed a SuSE desktop without having to tweak the graphical interface to make it work properly.

Fedora is stable, but is as fun as a soda cracker. Too spartan in terms of usability, too Geek-loves-to-read-instructions-and-solve-puzzles philosophy.

It is true that you need to go under the hood to understand how Linux works and master this great OS, but regular users DON'T CARE and WON'T CARE. They just want a OS that works as easily as possible, and Mandriva does that.

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by damian205 In reply to Mandrake(Mandriva), Fedor ...

I have been using Mandrake/Mandrive since version 7. They started to become acceptable at 9.2. I currently have Mandriva 2005SE installed and for the very first time everything just works. I have had to install Java, Realplayer, Flash and libdvdcss to get the internet and DVD playback working the way I use it. This is not so different from a vanilla install of Win XP.

I have used or installed at different times all of the following distros. Lycoris Desktop/LX,
Xandros v2.0 and 3.0, Arc, Linspire 4.5, FC3, Debian Sarge, Ubuntu, (Solaris, Free BSD 4.8, RH7.1 and Caldera Open Linux 1.3 were all experiments and SUSE 9.2 refused even to boot). Any of the above were OK but I was never successfull in getting all the necessary features to work.

Mandriva on the other hand was not especially difficult to configure, it works with my Windows network and recognised all my hardware including my TV card out of the box. I have two printers, a Samsung Laser and an old Apollo inkjet and they also worked first time and USB plug and play devices such as external drives and cameras also work corrcectly.

More importantly is what I don't have to do. E.g I haven't installed a raft of anti-spyware programs, virus scanners are for other peoples benefit when I send mail, defragging weekly is out the window (no pun intended) my browser doesn't disapppear under the onslaught of unwanted toolbars and the only maintenenace I do is to empty the waste bin once in awhile.

As far as burning DVD's goes all I do is put in a blank disc and K3B starts automatically. See for further details. Mandriva has a usefull GUI on this app so don't worry to much about the command line.

I hope this helps and I hope you find a distro that suits you. I tried for 3 or 4 years before settling on Mandriva so if you dont find one that you like first time out keep on trying. Also remember that even if you don't like a release one time, later ones may be better.

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I agree

by GBrantner In reply to Mandriva

Mandriva 2005LE has been wonderful for me. The only issue that I've had is installing on my brother's PC. He has onboard sound (disabled) and has a soundblaster Live card in the machine. Windows sees both, and uses the Soundblaster. The Mandriva sees both, but is trying to use the onboard, and we cannot figure out how to change this.

We've been through every configuration screen, but have as yet to find the answer. Neither of us are Linux gurus, so while we are testiment to how nice this distro has worked for us, we are also unable to resolve this (probably very simple) issue on this one PC.

I will not let that be a black mark as I had 3D Hardware acceleration right off the DVD for my ATI X800 Pro series card, and the few games that I have installed pay very well. All of the other apps work great;I routinely use things like K3B, The Gimp 2, the office suites, etc.

One thing that is odd is that by default, it does not install a lot of the documentation. However, go to the add software wizard, and surf that list to find and add it.

Good luck to all, and have a great day!

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Same here

by nvargas In reply to Mandriva

Have tried all of those distros, except for Arc Sarge, and Solaris. Still Mandriva does the job right. I have convinced many users to switch to Linux due to the "Mandriva Experience".

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Best Distro ummmmmmm

by eddie_dillon In reply to Mandrake(Mandriva), Fedor ...

I have installed most distros at one time or another, I like to try them all, just to see how different they are.
My advice to you is try Knoppix it should detect your sound card and most standard computer items i have tested it with and best of all running from a cd-rom, though I am suprised at fedora not detecting your sound card. Another thing, I really find no difference in fedora, SuSe, or mandrake.
If you really want to learn linux get an old computer (p3) and try a slackware version, you should have no issues with devices, it may take you some time to figure it out but with doing so you will have learned alot, I did without the help of books, courses or friends. it is anoying at first but the insight in to how a computer really works and the advantage of linux really becomes apparent. its pure freedom once learned.
Wish you the best of luck

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by apotheon In reply to Best Distro ummmmmmm

I've actually had to resort to using Knoppix as a Debian installer on a couple of laptops at work because no other distro would recognize the driver interface for the CDROM drive after initial boot, thus preventing other distributions from installing from CD.

For most purposes, I swear by plain vanilla Debian. For hairy hardware detection and support issues, nothing beats Knoppix.

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