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Linux Updates…

It’s been almost two weeks since I installed Pinguy OS on our main desktop computer. So far, I am loving it! Everything works great. And it looks great on this computer that was built two years ago from used components that were about 5 or even 6 years old then. It has an AMD Athlon 64 3500+ 2 Ghz processor with a GeForce 6800 graphics card at 256 mb. I’d like to see how this OS would run on a new machine, because even this old beast feels pretty new at the moment.

One thing I had been slightly worried about before installing Pinguy OS over the previous Linux Mint 8 was the graphics drivers. Last spring I bought a new AOC 22″ high definition LCD monitor, which worked fine with the 185 Nvidia drivers in Mint 8. But when I had tried out the (unmodified) Ubuntu 10.04 Live CD and the Mint 9 Live CD a few months ago, the drivers that came on the CD were not up to the task of my new monitor’s resolution. (Due to my lack of geekiness, I still don’t quite understand how all this works, but happily with Pinguy OS, I don’t have to!) The boot screen only took up a third of the monitor’s real estate, and when booted it was at a much lower resolution. Everything looked HUGE, so much so that I don’t think I could have used the graphical user interface to install either distro.

But when I booted from the Pinguy OS CD a couple of weeks ago the resolution was still lower than the 1680 X 1050 of my monitor, but not nearly so much. I was pleasantly surprised that everything fit on my screen, and installing it was a breeze. Then I did a quick search for hardware drivers and it downloaded the 195 drivers that I’m using now. And the detail and resolution is gorgeous! I love the way that GNU/Linux is so incredibly customisable, and this distro takes good advantage of that. It just has a great feel to it, and comes nicely pre-configured.

Moving on– I also was excited to hear about Linux Mint coming out with their long-awaited debian edition recently. Of course I downloaded the Live CD and tried it out on my other desktop and the laptop. It’s really pretty nice. The Debian base, instead of Ubuntu, certainly has its advantages and disadvantages (see above link) but I finally decided to install it on my ‘test’ box last night. And on that machine, an HP Compaq, also about 5 years old, Debian Mint is running great! I’ve had no problems at all. Using compiz with debian involves some terminal tinkering, but my system is so quick and responsive without using compiz, I think I’ll leave it as is for now.

I like the rolling release idea of Debian, as opposed to installing a new version of an OS every six months or so. It will be interesting to see how this goes.

Another interesting up-and-coming Linux distro with a debian base is Aurora OS. This may be a good one to keep an eye on for the future. But for now, I’m very happy with Pinguy OS!

First Look at Linux Mint Debian Edition 201009

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