K.S. Bhaskar on 29 Dec 2011 09:16:48 -0800

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Re: [PLUG] Linux distributions without version upgrades

This week, I experimented with Linux Mint Debian Edition as suggested by Russ Wenner (thanks for the suggestion). ÂOf the three - Arch, Gentoo and LMDE - I got furthest fastest with LMDE. ÂThe live image booted without a fuss, it installed cleanly and I didn't have to do anything to get the GUI working. The Nvidia proprietary drivers (I do plan to switch to the nouveau drivers one of these days) went in without complaint. ÂUpgrading to current packages had a couple of hiccups, but easily overcome and nothing like the dependencies I had to overcome with Gentoo (and perhaps my familiarity with Debian package management made it easier). ÂThe most complicated was that the upgrade brought a new kernel, and as the Nvidia drivers stopped working, I had to go the module-assistant route. ÂBut it worked as expected.

The main downside to LMDE is that the packages (at least chromium and Firefox) were way out of date, and wine was not in the repositories. ÂI realize that I can solve these by playing with repositories.

At this time, I am continuing to use Ubuntu (actually Kubuntu) but I think I will explore LMDE and/or straight Debian Testing for ongoing use.

Thanks for the comments, help and advice, all. ÂBest wishes for a Very Happy New Year. ÂHappy Hacking!

-- Bhaskar

On Wed, Dec 21, 2011 at 10:29 AM, K.S. Bhaskar <bhaskar@bhaskars.com> wrote:
With a lot of help off-list from Rich Freeman (thanks, Rich), followed by his suggestion to use the minimal ISO rather than a live DVD, I was finally able to get a Gentoo system installed on an old laptop. ÂNow, I am going back to see whether I can complete the install from the live DVD.

What this exercise has done for me is to give me a tremendous appreciation for the level of effort it takes to package a Linux distribution. ÂI have a lot more appreciation for the folks at Ubuntu - and maybe I will stay on Ubuntu after all. ÂBut for now, more experimentation is underway.

-- Bhaskar

On Sun, Dec 18, 2011 at 3:19 PM, K.S. Bhaskar <bhaskar@bhaskars.com> wrote:
My next two experiments were more successful, but neither has yet got
me what I need.

Arch Linux does not have a live CD/DVD. ÂThere are a number of
derivatives, such as Arch Bang, and one intriguing derivative that I
may revisit some day, Chakra. ÂSo I decided to create an Arch virtual
machine, and once successful, to move it to a spare partition on my
laptop (I configure PCs to have two root partitions). ÂI created the
virtual machine successfully and got a text mode virtual machine, but
no desktop. ÂI thought I did the right steps, but evidently I did not.
ÂThe installation itself was straightforward.

Then I tried the Gentoo live DVD. ÂAfter a false start with a live DVD
that has a 64-bit kernel and 32-bit userland, I successfully booted
with the multi DVD for an all 64-bit Linux. ÂBoth live DVDs booted
first time around and worked as advertised. ÂInstallation to the hard
disk was a snap, although not as simple as Ubuntu, and I am writing
this report booted into KDE on Gentoo. ÂHowever... emerge bombs every
time, and I have not been able to figure out how to untangle the
failing dependencies (the output is voluminous and it's not clear
where the first / original / primary error is).

At this point, I am probably done with this weekend's experimentation
(and a pile of projects around the house that I had every intention of
getting done this weekend!).

Thanks for all the advice. ÂI'll keep you posted with further results.

-- Bhaskar

On Sat, Dec 17, 2011 at 12:29 AM, K.S. Bhaskar <bhaskar@bhaskars.com> wrote:
> Thanks for the opinions and advice, all.
> My first experiment - Sabayon Linux 7 AMD64 - was a bomb. ÂThe live
> DVD booted to give me my boot options, but failed to boot the KDE
> desktop on a Dell m6600 laptop. ÂAsking it for the messages while
> booting showed that it was in a permanent loop trying to run (or kill)
> alsactl. ÂI tried booting without boot music with the same result. ÂOn
> an older laptop, the KDE desktop appeared to hang, but a Ctrl-Alt-Del
> allowed it to finish booting into a KDE desktop. ÂThe three fingered
> salute did not work on the m6600.
> Regards
> -- Bhaskar
> On Fri, Dec 16, 2011 at 11:24 AM, K.S. Bhaskar <bhaskar@bhaskars.com> wrote:
>> To break the twice a year song-and-dance of Ubuntu upgrades while
>> retaining the ability to stay current with applications, I am
>> considering switching to a Linux distro that doesn't need version
>> upgrades. ÂMy choices seem to be:
>> Debian Unstable - this would feel very comfortable because I am a
>> long-time Debian / Ubuntu user and I am familiar with package
>> management. ÂBut... Debian Unstable does temporarily break from time
>> to time, and I am trying to find a slightly better balance between
>> stability and life on the leading edge. ÂI suppose I could experiment
>> with installing Debian on btrfs which would allow me to snapshot /
>> rollback.
>> Arch Linux
>> Gentoo Linux (perhaps via Sabayon where I can validate hardware
>> compatibility with a live DVD before I install).
>> Any words of wisdom, advice and caution greatly appreciated. ÂThanks in advance.
>> Note that Ubuntu upgrades are (usually) quite smooth. ÂIt's just that
>> between home and work, I have multiple machines, and would like to
>> simplify things.
>> Regards
>> -- Bhaskar
>> --
>> Windows does to computers what smoking does to humans
> --
> Windows does to computers what smoking does to humans

Windows does to computers what smoking does to humans

Windows does to computers what smoking does to humans

Windows does to computers what smoking does to humans
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