Getting the Desktop Back Up And Running

Me & Kleopatra
Me & Kleopatra

Due to various exigencies, my desktop got loaned out. In other words a friend’s gaming rig died, he needed something with lots of horsepower, and didn’t have the cash to buy a replacement. So he got my desktop as a loaner.

A year later, I got it back, with a far more powerful graphics card.

I mostly use it as a backup machine, a server, and to run SETI@HOME, so not having it wasn’t a huge deal. What was a huge deal was he’d installed Windows on it, and so I’m playing with Linux Distributions again.

I was running KUbuntu, which works, but… I really don’t like KDE. I don’t particularly like Canonical as a company. I refuse to touch Gnome. I also refuse to touch anything that includes Mono.I absolutely hate Unity. It’s ugly, and gets in the way of getting things done.

All of the above limit my choices somewhat. I do like XFCE, at least with Cairo. I like E17/E18. I can get along with Fluxbox. LXDE is bleh. Never seen MATE yet, or Cinnamon.

So I’m downloading and burning distros. Debian is high on my list to test. So is Solus, those guys sound like my kind of crazy. Sabayon has always fascinated me, even though my results with it have been spotty. Mageia, the Mandriva fork is another distro that fascinates me, since it is driven by community involvement. I like community involvement.

Then there’s Slackware, Gentoo, Crunchbang, and Arch (solely because it is Canadian).

I’m leaning heavily towards Debian and Gentoo, mostly because they support multiple architectures, and I have an older PowerPC iMac (Mac OS 9) that still works fine, but can’t be upgraded on MacOSX, since Apple has dumped PowerPC support. Why not get more use out of it, with a modern operating system?

So it’s play time!


Wayne Borean

Sunday April 14, 2013


2 thoughts on “Getting the Desktop Back Up And Running

  1. Hey Wayne,

    Gentoo all the way. If you’ve tried Ubuntu, you’ve pretty much used Debian.

    Not because of the “ricers” trying insane GCC flags to get an extra 2% speed but for the USE flags and being able to control what bits are installed.

    I use Gentoo for our server farm. We have a build server which does the building (duh) and then the production servers pull the binaries off it. Works great and fits in with our policy of disabling everything not needed.


    1. Jay,

      Sorry for not replying earlier, I’ve had a couple of projects on the go, including another short story that’s sold, and has to be delivered tonight.

      I’m going to run Debian first, mostly for curiosity. It is the “grand old lady” of distributions in a lot of ways, and I’ve never tried it. So I’ll go with it first, and try Gentoo second.


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