Author Topic: Mandriva Roadtest  (Read 6849 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Scott Hauser

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 18
Mandriva Roadtest
« on: February 27, 2008, 08:39:34 AM »
Hi,

I have just installed the latest Mandriva. The install worked pretty well after 4 failed attempts. The installer attempts to automatically partition and setup the drive. Then it would continue on to the calculating size dialog and hang. Because it was the only OS on a new drive, I let it use the whole drive and it would still get hung up at that same dialog. It turns out that it only partitioned off 8198 MB for its use and a separate 2 gig swap file. After two tries with failed automatic setups, I selected use existing partitons and verified them manualy. It failed one more time. On my final attempt, I decided to call the unused space a winnt file type even though it wasn't a partition. The installer then worked like a charm. It would seem the program is missing an error trap or a case else, causing it to hang on un-named free space. To DOS, Windows and all of my other Linux distros, un-named free space is simply that and ignored. I view this as a bug in the installer.

I have installed and/or tested the following distributions so I can only compare Mandriva to those I have tested to date:

  • GNU-Sense, easy to install. Easy to run, although the Kermit the Frog green theme annoys me, as does the ubuntu orange.
  • Ubuntu 6.06, my favorite of the Ubuntu distros due to its stability
  • Ubuntu 7.10
  • DSL Linux, It seems to be at its best running from the cd, not particularly attractive, and no faster than Ubuntu in spite of its smaller footprint.
  • Puppy Linux, I have been unable to even run the live cd demo with success

Mandriva is the most Windows 2000 or XP like distrubution I have seen so far, and is noticably faster than Ubuntu both booting as well as application launching.  I will stick my neck out and venture a suspicion that it is faster than XP on my P4 boxes too!

The bash is a little different than Debian distros, for example sudo -s is not recognised but su works. So I can still shoot myself in the foot.

The overall GUI is, IMO, more appealing and polished than the other distros I have tried so far. It found all of my hardware with no problems and is the closest to plug-n-play of any of the Linux distros I have tried. The 3d desktop and floppy screens are amusing toys too.  ;D

All in all, I feel it is a keeper, even if it was ugly -- because it is so fast. If you were a first time computer user and purchased  a box with Mandriva installed as the OS, you would not be missing a thing.  There is nothing you couldn't accomplish with it. Unfortunately for those of us who come from a msdos-windows background, Linux is going to be a learning curve. I have had quite a few "deer in the headlights" expressions on my face over the last three weeks.




Offline Kent Sarikaya

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 174
Re: Mandriva Roadtest
« Reply #1 on: February 28, 2008, 01:41:34 AM »
Thanks for writing about your experience and opinions Scott.

I tried installing all the small linux distros the last few days on an old 100Mhz pentium computer. None of the cd's can boot from the cd-drive on that computer. They boot fine on my newer computers. I am able to boot up from the cd drive with my Maxtor Disk Utilities CD, so I assume the drivers for the cd drive are not on the boot disks on the linux distros, at least in a way that old drives need.

I did look at puppy linux from the live cd and I didn't like the interface, looked more like a pda screen.

I was also looking at distros that install from the web, but even those need a small boot cd in the end or a USB drive and my old (1996) computer doesn't have usb.

I do have windows 98SE working fine on it though for now and got my wireless network card working. I will probably install a LAMP or XAMPP download to play with server stuff again.

Offline Scott Hauser

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 18
Re: Mandriva Roadtest
« Reply #2 on: February 28, 2008, 08:05:32 PM »
Hi Kent,

My original hope for Puppy was that I might be able to get it to work on 2 old IBM Thinkpad 600x laptops in a dual os boot. From some of my Googling I have determined linux may not an easy setup on these old girls. Thanks for the update on Puppy, I will quit wondering about it now.

For everyone,

An update on Mandriva. I am not happy with the Mandriva equivalent of the 'My Computer' (Storage Media). It doesn't display my floppy drive and I haven't been able to mount it yet. Although using kfloppy I can format a floppy. In this regard, I feel the Ubunto's app is superior.

Mandriva is fussier than Ubuntu when attempting to install FreeBasic (would you have it any other way? Grrr!) E. K. Virtanen commented on this in the FreeBasic forum that; Mandriva was a hard distro to use and recommended Ubuntu. I am beginning to think he may have understated it. I did manage to get it installed and from the console fbc will give the compiler syntax instructions. It won't compile anything yet. That will be a separate post once I have checked to be sure that all its fingers and toes are present.

FreePascal installed easily, but Lazarus fails to install. Mandriva's package installer insists that there are packages missing but neglects to specify which packages are missing. I suspect I will be forced to compile it from the source code to solve this.

She is built for speed -- not comfort I suppose... 31 seconds from grub to the desktop on my P4 2.4 ghz with 512 ram. This is using autologin. The honeymoon isn't over yet. Now if ican just get her to cook..  ;D

« Last Edit: February 28, 2008, 08:29:15 PM by Scott Hauser »

Offline Charles Pegge

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 670
    • Charles Pegge
Re: Mandriva Roadtest
« Reply #3 on: February 28, 2008, 09:35:17 PM »
Hi Scott, Kent

I have Mandriva 2007 preinstalled on an ITX box. While I have no trouble in installing and running Freebasic, won't compile from source. Nor can I compile GLFW. - missing something or other but is not specific.

With the precompiled Freebasic, the linker always comes up with an error message: something about 'ospeed' but I am advised to ignore this and it does not seem to cause any problems and  shuttling a few projects between the ITX box and MS box requires no changes except to recompile.

I installed the KDE access package which compiled perfectly and contains a very useful speech programme called KTTSmgr which is perfect for reading long articles, emails, and dodgy license agreements. It uses the Festival speech engine which is already present in the distro.

To go deeply into the technical side requires serious intent, enthusiasm and large amounts of spare time which I would prefer to use on other projects, but most of the system works very well and stays up for months between reboots.

Offline Scott Hauser

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 18
Re: Mandriva Roadtest
« Reply #4 on: February 28, 2008, 11:43:00 PM »
Charles,

Quote
I have Mandriva 2007 preinstalled on an ITX box. While I have no trouble in installing and running Freebasic, won't compile from source. Nor can I compile GLFW. - missing something or other but is not specific.

With the precompiled Freebasic, the linker always comes up with an error message: something about 'ospeed' but I am advised to ignore this and it does not seem to cause any problems and  shuttling a few projects between the ITX box and MS box requires no changes except to recompile.

This is pretty much what I am seeing too. I did find a post by a fellow in Austrailia who did finally get it to work. I believe he was using the server edition as well. I am almost wondering if the server edition contains the missing pieces. At any rate, I think I will use Ubuntu for the compiler for the time being as I would rather spend my free time learning freebasic.  Like you, my spare time is a commodity in fairly short supply.

Scott

Offline Kent Sarikaya

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 174
Re: Mandriva Roadtest
« Reply #5 on: February 29, 2008, 02:19:52 AM »
What I like about Ubuntu is their goal to release a new version every 6 months, to make each version a step close to making Ubuntu a true desktop alternative OS.
Also their forums have lots of information and with enough searching you can work your way through a lot of problems.

I do like the look and feel of Mandriva more though, can't put my finger on it, but it feels more like an OS, Ubuntu just has a strange feel to it, but it sure is easier to make it work and use.

Offline Scott Hauser

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 18
Re: Mandriva Roadtest
« Reply #6 on: February 29, 2008, 04:23:30 AM »
Re:
Quote
I do like the look and feel of Mandriva more though, can't put my finger on it, but it feels more like an OS, Ubuntu just has a strange feel to it, but it sure is easier to make it work and use.

Agreed. My only gripe with Ubuntu in either distro is slugish app loading and booting. The P4 system I mentioned earlier, boots ubuntu (to the login screen) in slightly over a minute for either version. Once loaded, the apps are noticably slower to load than apps running on Mandriva. Other than than that, I feel Ubuntu is really a pretty decent OS.

I suspect that Mandriva developers have worked very hard to improve the speed for the desktop environment, instead of focusing most of their efforts on the server side. Note that this is merely a hunch on my part, as I am such a newbie to Linux I feel unqualified to offer it with the dignity of an opinion.