Friday, June 20, 2008

OpenSUSE 11 - some comments

Well, I downloaded OpenSUSE 11.0 via BT. I have always a soft spot for SUSE stuff. It was the longest distro I stuck with (> 2years) and until last year I was running SLED 10 on my notebook.

With trembling excitement, I installed it on my trusty notebook and other than a slight tweaking on SaX for my screen reso (wonder why it had problem with my LCD, detecting it at 800x600...guess Ubuntu spoiled me), everything was ok.

The Slab Menu gets some getting used to, but it is fine for me. I find it nice actually. As I work with many unicode (i.e. mostly Chinese) character files, the GNOME version seems better (from my expereince with 10.3).

The suite in OpenSUSE is simply superb, if not the best around among community distros.

Ah then what about YaST? I fail to understand what's wrong with it, coz I can work with it fine. Those who whine about how bad it is must have an issue with making stuff easy, even the ever most popular distro, Ubuntu does not have this all in one facility.

Ok, everything works as it should, it's pretty, it's polished but minus the MP3 and propreitary codec stuff. So as any self respecting geek will do I went ahead to download those juicy bits to listen to my precious MP3s.

Aha! So the numbers' change, the package manager is still ehh...yucky. Why should I be subjected to refreshes everytime I just need the GUI to add/remove packages. And yes I know I can disable the refresh but why the extra hoop to jump through?

I get time outs and such when trying to connect for updates/refreshes and to add stuff. Urggh. I know it is not line issues as I am running Fedora 9 and Ubuntu 8.04 here at work and I managed to setup, update and installed those "restricted" bits all within 60 mins with either distros.

Well, I find that the latest release of OpenSUSE is to put it mildly, just as bad as the 10.3 one. I just wonder when are they going to fix that annoying package manager. Pity that so much improvements have been touted but they still forgot to fix something so fundamental as package management.

Overall I would say OpenSUSE is a good distro, solid, nice but so as long you don't add or remove stuff often, it is a wonderful distro.

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