Thursday, November 06, 2003

I've gotten a couple of comments on the whole Linux situation, and thought I'd post a few more thoughts along those lines.

I really do wanna try Gentoo again, if nothing else because of their adaptation of FreeBSD's ports system. I've done a little bit of fucking around with FreeBSD, and the ports system was cool. Well, like most things, cool when it worked. But I really liked the notion of being able to easily build from source for new installs, because I fucking hate prepackaged binaries and package managers.

Apt-rpm isn't bad for RedHat users, in fact it's pretty fucking bad-ass as long as it can find the bloody package you want (which would probably have a higher success rate if I went out and found more apt-rpm repositories).

Of course, I could deal more in source RPMs, but even though I know it's easy to do that I forget how to use src RPMs every bloody time I try, so I end up needing to re-learn and usually just end up avoiding all of it. That's kinda how I am with classes and C++. My classwork tended me more towards straight C, so I used C++ and classes rather infrequently. As such, every time I had to use classes I found myself re-learning class-related syntax and shit. I find that so annoying that one time when faced with having to use classes I just learned OO Perl instead.

Still, I'm dreading dealing with the fucking Gentoo install, which I'm not sure if I ever even had the patience to get past. With Debian, on the other hand, I got past the install, but as I recall somehow a bunch of shit I told it to install didn't install. This may have been related to the fact that it downloaded packages to /var, but neglected to tell me this when I sized /var, nor do I recall an option to stick those downloads elsewhere. I probably just didn't play with it enough, but at that point I had already had it.

Mandrake was the first distro I installed all on my own and fucked around with for awhile. It was decent. I know that they're shooting for "user friendliness," which is great in terms of Linux advocacy. Linux definitely needs to be more user friendly if it has any hopes of being dominant on the desktop (which I don't see happening anytime soon for myriad reasons).

The problem I ran into was when I tried to compile a kernel, and the GCC that Mandrake installed couldn't handle it. I figured it was because of all the optimizations that went into Mandrake, but I didn't really care since it was not long after that that I switched to RedHat.

Ever since then, I've had a mental block of "Mandrake for newbies, and not power users," but maybe that's changed nowadays. There are some people I've talked to who have used it and loved it, but it's gonna be hard to get rid of that wussy feel Mandrake has for me.

Personally, I think RedHat quit the supported free desktop because they couldn't keep up with Mandrake's version numbers (along with the fact that it probably wasn't bringing in a ton of money).

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