Testing Fedora 10 KDE Edition December 1, 2008Posted by rm42 in Computers, Linux.
My experience with Fedora has not been bad at all. I think a big reason for that is that my Thinkpad T61 laptop has practically no need for proprietary drivers. The Intel graphics card open source driver has gotten quite good and provides painless and efficient compositing out of the box. In fact, every piece of hardware, including sound, works out of the box. So, that leaves me free to compare distros by their features and ease of use. So what have I found in using Fedora 10 KDE version?
- Beautiful KDE 4.1 and artwork.
- Fast boot up – With auto-sign on enabled, it takes less than a minute from boot start until the last tray icon loads! (For comparison, on the same machine, PCLOS takes 1 minute 15 seconds.Yes it loads a few more things, like the compiz icon and the OOo icon, but still, the desktop is not even shown after 1 minute wile Fedora shows me the desktop after just 45 seconds.)
- Up to date repository – Firefox 3.0.4, OOo 3.0, Django 1.0-1., Gimp 2.6.2, etc. (I only wish it came with Python 2.6 )
- Adequate package manager. KPackagekit has had no trouble resolving dependencies so far and it is quite fast.
- Because packages are presented in a more granular way, instead of as single large packages, some nifty extra packages are discoverable, such as the Ufraw plugin for Cinepaint and the one that provides extra PDF functionality for OOo.
- Good wireless networking – connects very reliably and fast.
- Good Print Configuration tool (it really is quite intuitive, but it took me for spin at first because I didn’t think that connecting to a printer on a remote CUPS server would involve creating a new printer object on the local machine).
- I love the new KDE4 Gwenview image viewer.
- Comes with a slick translucent Folder view widget ready to be populated by dragging and dropping from the application launcher or any way you like.
- I was able to create an icon to launch konqueror as root (other applications launch as root from there if needed) [/usr/libexec/kde4/kdesu konqueror].
- So far no crashes or hangups.
The not so good:
- It is not obvious how to get some things working, like flash, DVD playback, etc. One has to know what to look for and be proficient at Googling.
- There does not seem to be a way to make “File Management” the default profile when launching konqueror.
- It does not have OOo or Firefox installed by default.
- Dolphin will not load as root using the above method.
- KPackagekit sometimes sits there for a little while with no feedback for the user to know that it is doing something.
- Installing applications like OOo involve selecting several packages instead of just one (while the granular approach has advantages, there should still be the option of just selecting one all encompassing package with sane defaults).
- Amarok does not yet have a graphic equalizer.
- It asks for the keyring password before connecting to wifi every time you boot.
Of course, both of those lists will probably grow as I use the distro more. But, using it exclusively for about 4 days now that is what I have found. Overall, I am finding it a pleasure to work with.