“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.” Abraham Lincoln

Time to Spring Clean that PC.

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Throw away that old Micro$oft rubbish, rejuvenate your tired old PC with Linux.

Choices, choices? But which particular Linux distribution to pick?

Preferably a free one, one that you can download and one that fulfils its function.

There is a myriad of Linux distributions to choose from at DistroWatch, and here are a few that I like:

Ubuntu, which comes in many different varieties, from KDE, Gnome based to the lightweight Xfce in Xubuntu.

Kubuntu is well designed, but a bit top-heavy on eye candy for my taste. The Gnome version is a good compromise, plenty of functionality without the KDE bloat.

Xfce is positively sprightly compared to Kubuntu, requires a little more work by the user, but is practical on lower specified machines. Ubuntu derived distributions benefit from extensive repositories and plenty of community support, having said that, I was underwhelmed by the recent releases of Ubuntu and I am still running 7.04, instead of 7.10 or the latest Alpha (Hardy Heron). Still a good choice to start with.

MEPIS is an interesting variety, set-up is very easy, quick, just point and click with good hardware support.

For a faster alternative try, AntiX, a cut down but fully serviceable version of MEPIS. AntiX is based on Fluxbox with IceMW thrown in for free. Fast and usable. It had no problems with my strange wireless set-up. Recommended.

My current favourite is Midiflux, which is based on PCLinuxOS, a Mandrake off-shoot, and TinyMe. Midiflux is small, very fast but will run KDE applications if needed; it is an excellent compromise between practical application support and small size. It takes about 10 minutes to install, however, Midiflux is still beta. Installation is simple, although I think that MEPIS’s installation is slightly more polished, just boot up the Live CD and click on the Install icon.

Other appealing distros are Damn Small Linux, GoblinX and Zenwalk.

Written by modernityblog

31/01/2008 at 15:59

Posted in Uncategorized

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