Linked by Eugenia Loli on Thu 17th Oct 2002 18:29 UTC
Mandriva, Mandrake, Lycoris MandrakeSoft released Linux Mandrake 9.0 about three weeks ago. How does this version compares to the also recent SuSE and Red Hat releases? MandrakeSoft sent us the Download Edition over for a review and here is what we think about it.
Order by: Score:
Um... Eugenia..lie damned lie
by Taras Glek on Thu 17th Oct 2002 19:12 UTC

XFS / works just fine. I got a server with 2 xfs partitions & no ext2. Boots just fine..Of course I use grub, but didn't they patch lilo to boot too?

RE: Um... Eugenia..lie damned lie
by Eugenia on Thu 17th Oct 2002 19:14 UTC

All I know is that I did not create a /boot partition, but I relied on the / root partition to do the booting. I generally like XFS, so I picked XFS.
Next thing I knew is that Mandrake wouldn't load. I re-installed with the default option after that. Mandrake uses LILO. I have no idea if they patched anything or not.

700 MB ISO's
by lycoris user on Thu 17th Oct 2002 19:15 UTC

I was going to try 9.0 after succesful runs with 8.1 and 8.1, however, the 700 MB ISO's prevented me from doing that. I simply could not burn them...period. No matter what I tried it wouldn't work. cdrecord, adaptec, nero....no dice.

Oh well, after I tried for two days to get good burns I gave up and got Red Hat 8.0. Love it....except that it doesn't have any useful multimedia stuff by default...easy enough to fix with a few downloads from freshrpms...but other than that I love it.

I think I'm done with Mandrake...at least untill they provide ISO's at 650 MB again.

RE:700 MB ISO's
by ickusslime on Thu 17th Oct 2002 19:20 UTC

You dont have to burn them to disk to install from them. You can install from ISO files as well. But you have to boot off a floppy. I had the same problem. But wasnt going to waste my time downloading 2 distributions. You could also just open the ISO files and extract the contents and install from the harddrive. Makes it easy when you want to install other software form the distro,, but it does take a little space to store the isntalls.

my favourite bug/rants
by Taras Glek on Thu 17th Oct 2002 19:23 UTC

There is a very subtle bug in mdk. It makes compiling a lot of c++ stuff downright impossible..They just added the bug to their final..wasnt in the betas ;) .

/lib/cpp link is b0rken..do ln -sf /etc/alternatives/cpp /lib/cpp to fix..
Basicly this makes gcc3.2 useless for compiling kde..it b0rks.
So poor suckers install gcc2.96(the evil one) and for some reason it compiles then..Anyway just my biggest annoyance with this release..a stupid stupid bug on their part...oh btw their network config tools suck, its a major pain to get eth0 to be internal nic or eth1 to be external..they just dont let you do that.
What is cool about mdk 9 is that when you use dhcpcd(or whatever it uses), it checkes whether the cable is plugged in first, and only then tries to get an ip....very useful feature.

700 Mbytes ISO's
by valyno on Thu 17th Oct 2002 19:24 UTC

Hy,
I've dlded the 3 CD's of Mandrake 9.
I burnt the 2 CD's with Easy CD Creator.
No problem to burn.
So, try to dlde again the ISO's.
I had some trouble while installing : 3 rpm's where bad, for KDE, so after installation, no KDE desktop running correctly.
I'm waiting for the box version...

RE: my favourite bug/rants
by Eugenia on Thu 17th Oct 2002 19:25 UTC

>/lib/cpp link is b0rken..do ln -sf /etc/alternatives/cpp /lib/cpp to fix..

Wow, Taras!!! THAT WAS THE BUG we found that made my WindowMaker's menu not to work! After manually creating that link, WindowMaker was up and running again!

RE: my favourite bug/rants
by Taras Glek on Thu 17th Oct 2002 19:27 UTC

Hahah. Nice, now the trivia question is what does windowmaker have in common with the c preprocessor. ;)

RE: my favourite bug/rants
by Eugenia on Thu 17th Oct 2002 19:30 UTC

Only the menus were broken. Not the whole windowmaker. When right clicking on the desktop, you would only see 5 very default options in the menu (e.g. xterm), not the usual long menu of Wmaker. And everytime Wmaker would load, it would give me an alert window saying that it couldn't find the menu. After manually adding that link, Wmaker was fine.

RE:700 MB ISO's
by Taras Glek on Thu 17th Oct 2002 19:32 UTC

Actually mdk boot floppies can find the iso files on hd, so you don't have to extract it.

lol..I'm not allowed to post twice in 60 seconds. My typing skills might ddos the website ;)

XFS
by Hiryu on Thu 17th Oct 2002 19:37 UTC

I have successfully booted systems with xfs on / for more than a year now. THere was not even a seperate /boot

So lilo (as well as grub of course) have supported booting from XFS for a great deal of time now.

RE: XFS
by Eugenia on Thu 17th Oct 2002 19:38 UTC

It did not do it for me.

Linux
by jetexas on Thu 17th Oct 2002 19:40 UTC

Does any Linux distribution in the whole world come even close to the ease of use and compatibility of Windows XP? More importantly, is there something any Linux distro does that Windows does *not*?

BeOS, despite all of its shortcomings, did offer more functionality than any other OS. The attribute indexes and live queries made finding stuff a breeze. I think that is the biggest problem in home computing today - sifting through 20 GB of crap just to find the file you want. Couldn't something like this be achieved with XFS?

And why do distro makers feel the need to pack 5 CDs worth of stuff into their releases? Most of that junk is never going to be used anyway - like three different browsers? Who needs that? And all that crap in the KDE taskbar shouldn't be there be default, either. Remember the KISS principle and use it.

Every Linux distro I have tried has aimed to be a Win98 clone and each of them has failed miserably. Why replicate what has been done (poorly)? If you Linux guys really want to beat MS, show me something that hasn't been before. Until then, I am happy using Windows XP.

RE:700 MB ISO's
by lycoris user on Thu 17th Oct 2002 19:42 UTC

hmmm, didn't know that. I think I'll be sticking with Red Hat for a while though. It's actually quite nice, and once I get apt & synaptic going....I think it will be hard to beat.

First screenshot
by Anonymous on Thu 17th Oct 2002 19:47 UTC

* doesn't use Mandrake's default background
* use a mix of Mandrake's icons and Crystal icons. This is ugly and doesn't show the real desktop
* show linuxconf which is not installed by default and says that the stupid Linuxconf window is a Mandrake bug. This untrue. It is a Linuxconf bug.

RE:700 MB ISO's
by Taras Glek on Thu 17th Oct 2002 19:47 UTC

hmmm, didn't know that. I think I'll be sticking with Red Hat for a while though. It's actually quite nice, and once I get apt & synaptic going....I think it will be hard to beat.
lycoris user <--lol @ lycoris part

Well mdk has a weak & somewhat buggy apt-get like thing called urpmi. But i preffer mdk cos it was my first distro that got me hooked ;) ..and after 3 years of defiance in debian/gentoo..i'm back to mdk9 ;)

Aggravating
by Anonymous Coward on Thu 17th Oct 2002 19:50 UTC

Mandrake's penchant for upping the major version number irritates me.

RE: First screenshot
by Eugenia on Thu 17th Oct 2002 19:53 UTC

>doesn't use Mandrake's default background

Check the THIRD screenshot for the DEFAULT Mandrake at 800x600.
ALL the other shots are my changes, because as I CLEARLY said in the article, I had to waste lots of time to change the default look to something that pleases me.

>use a mix of Mandrake's icons and Crystal icons

The real one is worse.

>show linuxconf which is not installed by defaul

What DOES that suppose to mean? LinuxConf is included in the CDs!

>and says that the stupid Linuxconf window is a Mandrake bug. This untrue. It is a Linuxconf bug.

From the VERY MOMENT Mandrake includes this application to their OS, this BECOMES Mandrake's bug.
Do not think as a geek please. Think as a reviewer of A PRODUCT. The whole added value of Mandrake is to make sure that everything works well together. They are packagers and OS developer company. They have to make sure that everything WORKS well. Either that, or they should NOT ship that app.
Read here for more:
http://www.osnews.com/comment.php?news_id=1842&offset=135&rows=150#...

And yes, I have already discussed these issues already with a MandrakeSoft's representative.

Password Delay is GOOD!
by Anonymous on Thu 17th Oct 2002 19:54 UTC

It makes a brute force attack take much longer.

Prettier != Better
by Rayiner Hashem on Thu 17th Oct 2002 19:58 UTC

I would hesitate before doubting Mandrake's research. A prettier UI does not equal a better UI. The two are completely independent. Most businesses are still using Windows 9x, NT, or at most Win2K. All of those are drab and grey, and undistracting. I think what's worst about Mandrake isn't so much the default look, but the default organization. The KMenu is unnecessarily Kluttered and the item names are far too long. Add to that all the crap on the desktop, and it's no wonder people think Linux is ugly/unpolished.

RE: Prettier != Better
by Eugenia on Thu 17th Oct 2002 20:00 UTC

>A prettier UI does not equal a better UI

Of course not. I agree with your comment.

ouch..
by Anonymous on Thu 17th Oct 2002 20:00 UTC

Mandrake is no longer good as it used to be, when SuSE and RedHat found the market of friendly user as for desktop and business. Makdrake needs to learn how to change, instead being same as an old dog.

RE: Password Delay is GOOD!
by Anonymous on Thu 17th Oct 2002 20:03 UTC

Password delay is _only_ good if you enter an _incorrect_ password. Otherwise it is a bug.

Re: Aggravating
by JAVE on Thu 17th Oct 2002 20:05 UTC

Mandrake upped the major number because it changed from gcc 2.9x to 3.2, so that's reason enough.

RE: Ouch....
by Eugenia on Thu 17th Oct 2002 20:09 UTC

> Makdrake needs to learn how to change, instead being same as an old dog.

Exactly!

>it changed from gcc 2.9x to 3.2, so that's reason enough

SuSE did so too. They didn't go from 8.0 to 9.0. Neither Gentoo did.
Red Hat did go from 7.3 to 8.0, but they had many more changes made to their OS.

Re: jetexas
by Jay on Thu 17th Oct 2002 20:25 UTC

jetexas, it depends on how you look at it. If you mean buying a PC with XP installed, then obviously Linux is more work because you (usually) have to install it yourself.

You have to check your hardware to make sure it's compatible, so that is extra work.

But, beyond that, I have found that doing home/office type default installs of SuSE 8.1 and Red Hat 8, for example, leave me with a very well set up desktop with everything working with no problems and real ease of use.

In another direction, going the Lycoris and, yes, even the Lindows route can provide real ease of use.

Many OS News posters are people who like to tweak their systems, push the envelope, try things that ordinary users would never try. But, default installs of the Linux distributions I mentioned are very stable and easy to use.

Re: Linux
by Anonymous on Thu 17th Oct 2002 20:31 UTC

Although you are seem to be a troll, I will try to take a stab and replying to this.

More importantly, is there something any Linux distro does that Windows does *not*?
I can tell you what Linxu doesn't do. It doesn't require that you submit a cryptic cd key, it doesn't require you to register the machine with the company from where it came. It doesn't lock you into on company's vision of standards.

And why do distro makers feel the need to pack 5 CDs worth of stuff into their releases? Most of that junk is never going to be used anyway - like three different browsers? Who needs that? And all that crap in the KDE taskbar shouldn't be there be default, either.
Once again, they allowing the individual to make the choice instead of some marketing rep. at the corporate office.

Every Linux distro I have tried has aimed to be a Win98 clone and each of them has failed miserably. Why replicate what has been done (poorly)?
It's not really a clone of Win98. It was an attempt to align things. The prgrommers on the various desktop projects obvisouly thought somethings like the menu were a logical way to approach it. Also, Win98 was broken from the first release. Constant crashes with the BSOD. So the sentence should read, 'Why replicate something that was done poorly in the first place?'.

Where can I find the Bluecurve theme?!?
by Eddie on Thu 17th Oct 2002 20:33 UTC

Does anyone know where I can find the bluecurve theme? You guys are giving Mandrake more criticism tham what Red Hat recaived. I'm sure we can all just get rid of a bunch useless menu entries on K. Think about it.

radeon 9700
by Navjit on Thu 17th Oct 2002 20:37 UTC

mandrake installation does not even start on my computer because it can not identify ATI radeon 9700. Screen goes blank after perssing enter on the first screen.

Though I am not a linux user, but all I care about is GUI, which seems the same on all linux distribution for the past many years.

Navjit

RE: Where can I find the Bluecurve theme?!?
by Eugenia on Thu 17th Oct 2002 20:38 UTC

>Does anyone know where I can find the bluecurve theme?

http://ftp.ibiblio.org/pub/Linux/distributions/contrib/texstar/
linux/distributions/mandrake/9.0/rpms/freecurve-artwork-0.47-1tex.i586 .rpm

>You guys are giving Mandrake more criticism tham what Red Hat received.

Yes, because Red Hat worked better. And SuSE received more critisism than Red Hat did, but less than Mandrake 9. Because SuSE worked better overall than Mandrake 9.
At least over here, on these machines.

The overall rating on the three reviews I did, reflect that very clearly.

>I'm sure we can all just get rid of a bunch useless menu entries on K.

If that was the only problem of Mandrake, I would have switched to it, full time.

9.0 is very disappointing
by Anonymous on Thu 17th Oct 2002 20:40 UTC

As a long time Mandrake fan, I am very diappointed in 9.0. As Eugenia said, it feels dated, several thing are broken (Evolution won't work right about 1/3 of the time -- it won't go to the Inbox and shows -1 emails).

The control center is nice, but the wireless scripts are broken. I have an orinoco card that Mandrake and kept wanting to load the wvlan_cs driver. There are even types of "orinoco" in some of the scripts. When I would finally get my wifi card working ok, I would click "OK" in the Network module of the control center and it would reset all my settings, which would crap out my card.

I like the company, and I like what they've done in the past, but after trying both RH 8.0 and SuSE 8.1, they're now in third place.

re: Linux
by bas on Thu 17th Oct 2002 20:48 UTC

>Does any Linux distribution in the whole world come even >close to the ease of use and compatibility of Windows XP? >More importantly, is there something any Linux distro does >that Windows does *not*?

I know you where trolling be heh i could not resist..
Windows XP vs Linux is like a Yugo compared to and Maybach ;)

in this little and not even technical compare i assume
Linux is a distro like Debian, Slackware or RedHat.

Windows XP is not Open or Free, Linux is.
Windows XP is not real STABLE, Linux is.
Windows XP looks ugly, Linux CAN look even more ugly.
Windows XP is a a virus dream, Linux is its enemy.
Windows XP is a crackers dream, Linux is its enemy.
Windows XP is created by Microsoft, Linux is not.
Windows XP sends information to Microsoft, Linux does not
Linux can run in X or in terminal mode, Windows XP cannot.
Linux is fun, Windows XP is not.
Linux has a great mascot, Windows XP has not.
Linux is build-in lots of distros, Windows XP is not.
Linux has the biggest community, Windows XP has not.
Linux runs on mainframes, Windows XP does not.
LInux runs on wristwatches, Windows XP does not.
Linux get lots of simpaty, Windows XP get none.
Linux keeps on running, Windows XP does not.
Windows XP needs to reboot, Linux does not.
Windows XP has no webserver, Linux has.
Windows XP has no wordproccesor, Linux has.
Windows XP has not image editor, Linux has.
Windows XP has not terminal, Linux has.
Windows XP is only for home users, Linux is not.

etc...etc...

Why not try and actually use Linux or FreeBSD before making
such low-level and stupid comment?

Bas

re: Linux
by Eugenia on Thu 17th Oct 2002 20:54 UTC

Some of your paradigms are just personal opinions, or even wrong. Some of your wrong ones:

Windows XP is not real STABLE, Linux is.
Windows XP is a crackers dream, Linux is its enemy.
Windows XP is created by Microsoft, Linux is not (so???).
Linux is fun, Windows XP is not.
Linux is build-in lots of distros, Windows XP is not.(so???)
Linux has the biggest community, Windows XP has not.(so??? why do you need a community to use a PRODUCT? I am not in any community for my microwave brand)
Linux get lots of simpaty, Windows XP get none. (this is because people like you are trolling)
Linux keeps on running, Windows XP does not. (I crash Linux more than I crash my XP)
Windows XP has no webserver, Linux has.(oh yes, it does. My XP PRO does)
Windows XP has no wordproccesor, Linux has. (depends what the PACKAGER has put in there)
Windows XP has not image editor, Linux has. (depends what the PACKAGER has put in there)
Windows XP has not terminal, Linux has. (XP does have command line)
Windows XP is only for home users, Linux is not. (this is wrong. XP PRO is a workstation. .NET SErver and Win2k are the server products.)

Eugenia's favorite?
by Anonymous on Thu 17th Oct 2002 20:56 UTC

What's now Eugenia's favorite, RedHat 8.0 or SuSE 8.1 (FTP version outstanding)?

re: Linux
by Eugenia on Thu 17th Oct 2002 20:57 UTC

And to counter balance your blinded zealotry:

WinXP has very good hardware compatibility. Linux has not.
Administrating and configurign the OS is easier on WinXP.
The UI of XP is way more integrated to the OS and to the different toolkits.
WindowsXP has way more software than Linux has.
WinXP has more games and better 3D compatibility.
WindowsXP supports a better office suite than Linux does.

RE: Eugenia's favorite?
by Eugenia on Thu 17th Oct 2002 20:59 UTC

> What's now Eugenia's favorite, RedHat 8.0 or SuSE 8.1?

I am inclining mostly on Red Hat 8. But very minorly. As you can see from the rating on their perspective reviews, Red Hat got overall a 7.9 and SuSE 7.8. The battle is still big among these two. Mandrake is third IMO.

QT
by MArk Finlay on Thu 17th Oct 2002 21:01 UTC

I imagine that Mandrake didn't use QT because it is not free software. Gtk lisencing just makes it less of a headache.

Everybody pause and take a deep breath...
by Wanker on Thu 17th Oct 2002 21:03 UTC

So you don't like Mandrake. It's plain to see but do we have to turn this into a religious war? We have a bigger threat from Redmond to be squabbling amongst ourselves. You may not like Mandrake 9.0 but I do. I think it is their best release yet. I had NO troubles on installation or usage.

-The default KDE looks nice and clean feel to it.

-Menues are not confusing, but laid out in a logical format.

-Mandrake Control Centre is well laid out and the improvements to Software Management make things clearer and more straight forward than previous versions.

-Mandrake actually recognized my GForce card during installation. Although it didn't install the binary drivers, I did not have to modify the XF86Config-4 file by hand because XFdrake generates it properly.

-The programs I installed work (I installed everything but the server specific packages) and I have had no trouble with them (admittedly I have not tried all of them but the most important, desktop publishing, drawing, DVD viewing, music, photo editing, scanner, printer, finances, etc... have given me no trouble.).

Mandrake 9.0 is as user friendly as you can get. At some point the user has to take response ability for their actions. So for all of you out there who dislike Mandrake, choose a different Disto, there are plenty. Incidentally, I once tried SUSE 7.3 during the MDK 8.1 fiasco and found supermount was not included in the default installation. Does it include it now? Does Red Hat? This is a big deal if you want to appeal to the desktop user because the vast majority do not want to manually mount their CD's. Mandrake provides a consistent, predictable, and boring feel, which if you are trying to get any real work done is a plus.

There is not need to reinvent itself every year or so (like some distributions) because everything that is needed, is right in those friendly CD's. Is Mandrake geared for servers? Yes. Is Mandrake geared for the Enterprise? Yes. Is Mandrake geared for the Desktop? Yes. What makes the difference is the packages you put into the system, not the label on the box it came from. From that perspective, Mandrake has it right.

re: re: Linux
by bas on Thu 17th Oct 2002 21:03 UTC


>WinXP has very good hardware compatibility. Linux has not.
Wrong. its hardware support is mostly build on 3th party drivers.
>Administrating and configurign the OS is easier on WinXP.
Really? I fully disagree.
>The UI of XP is way more integrated to the OS and to the >different toolkits.
Luckely that is not the case with Linux
>WindowsXP has way more software than Linux has.
Agree.
>WinXP has more games and better 3D compatibility.
Hollywood disagrees.
>WindowsXP supports a better office suite than Linux does.
I dont think MS Office is etterthat OpenOffice anyway Crossover also runs MS Office.

More points?

Bas

RE: Everybody pause and take a deep breath...
by Eugenia on Thu 17th Oct 2002 21:09 UTC

>So you don't like Mandrake.

I don't like this particular version, no. It just did not work well for me.

Things have changed in the landscape of Linux. Mandrake 8.0 was great, but it is not April 2001 anymore. Red Hat and SuSE now offer what Mandrake used to offer last year, when Mandrake was "the" distro. In some areas, RH and SuSE are offering even more, in some areas less. The problem here is that Mandrake does not realize that times are changing, and Mandrake Linux should change as well. A change to a more modern OS.

And they should also realize WHO are their competitors: Red Hat or Windows? Judging from their actions and their OS, they only seem interested in keeping the current userbase, not expanding it. They should think out of the box and offer a better experience for Mandrake 9.1.

Re: Everybody pause and take a deep breath...
by Eddie on Thu 17th Oct 2002 21:11 UTC

Well said Wanker...

Eugenia, I think over time Mandrake will get to where we want it to be. All we need to is give it some time.

IHMO
by Guillaume Maillard on Thu 17th Oct 2002 21:18 UTC

Please don't blame Mandrake for bugs in gtk,qt,gnome,kde or 'what is not perfect' parts.
Mandrake, Suse, Redhat ... are just trying to make a "linux package" alias a distribution.
A linux system is nothing more than packaged "free software", it's not a product, even if big companies are trying to fix the problems/bugs in order to make it works better. Don't blame linux distributors / packager about bugs, it's mainly the fault of the developper of the apps themself.
But you know what? These developpers are just creating ,for free, code named "free software" and they really don't care about what you think; they are not creating a product but apps they like to create and improve as they want.
It's a strange world, no?

Regards,
Guillaume

re: Linux
by bas on Thu 17th Oct 2002 21:18 UTC


>Some of your paradigms are just personal opinions, or even >wrong. Some of your wrong ones:
No not wrong ones, you find them wrong that is something different.

>Windows XP is not real STABLE, Linux is.
Windows XP is not stable! period!
>Windows XP is a crackers dream, Linux is its enemy.
read the security boards..
>Windows XP is created by Microsoft, Linux is not (so???).
Lets say Microsoft is not really famous for its good/quality
product but off course you disagree.
>Linux is fun, Windows XP is not.
Linux is more fun than Windows XP as an OS.

>Linux is build-in lots of distros, Windows XP is >not.(so???)
So? that means you have choice...i like choosing

>Linux has the biggest community, Windows XP has not.(so??? >why do you need a community to use a PRODUCT? I am not in >any community for my microwave brand)

Easy but bad point..you will get to know the importance of a community once you are an developer. I forgive you.

>Linux get lots of simpaty, Windows XP get none. (this is >because people like you are trolling)
I am not trolling somebody asked me to give a few points i did..Microsoft is evil period.
>Linux keeps on running, Windows XP does not. (I crash Linux >more than I crash my XP)
Thats why you use Windwos XP because you do not really understand Unix. Believe me Linux is far more stable than Windows!
Windows XP has no webserver, Linux has.(oh yes, it does. My XP PRO does)
Sure keep on dreaming..
Windows XP has no wordproccesor, Linux has. (depends what the PACKAGER has put in there)
So?
Windows XP has not image editor, Linux has. (depends what the PACKAGER has put in there)
So?
Windows XP has not terminal, Linux has. (XP does have command line)
Terminal is not a command line..
Windows XP is only for home users, Linux is not. (this is wrong. XP PRO is a workstation. .NET SErver and Win2k are the server products.)
We where comparing Windwos XP and Linux why talk about
wk2 and crash.NET?

Bas

re: Linux
by Eugenia on Thu 17th Oct 2002 21:22 UTC

Bas, we better stop this kind of OT discussion. This is not a Linux Vs Windows news item, it is a review of Mandrake Linux, specifically. You will need to specifically compare Mandrake to XP if you want, not generic stuff please. Not on this story.

>Please don't blame Mandrake for bugs in gtk,qt,gnome,kde or 'what is not perfect' parts.

I am sorry, it does not work that way in the consumer world.

>Mandrake, Suse, Redhat ... are just trying to make a "linux package" alias a distribution.

No, these companies are pitching themselves as OS companies. Hence, the critisism.

Re: QT
by Anonymous on Thu 17th Oct 2002 21:27 UTC

> I imagine that Mandrake didn't use QT because it is not
> free software.

The reason why Mandrake's developers used a Perl binding for GTK+ for their Control Center GUI has been already posted multiple times on other Mandrake threads on this fine news site here. It had nothing to do with any license stuff but rather with the knowledge and personal preferences of the developers as with the existence of a usable perl binding for the choosen GUI toolkit (Qt had none at that time).

Also note that the free version of Qt is licensed under the QPL and GPL and thus meets the "free software" definition from the FSF.

Cheers,
A.

v I'm glad I didn't buy Mandrake
by Mario on Thu 17th Oct 2002 21:27 UTC
re: Linux
by bas on Thu 17th Oct 2002 21:29 UTC

Eugenia,

I agree but its good to compare and look at the weakness of an OS i am a Linux/FreeBSD only user and i am sure i will miss all the neat and nifty features Windows XP and Mac OS offer.
But i am sure its the other way around also..

Anyway Mandrake is aming at places i will rather not go..

Bas

v RE: I'm glad I didn't buy Mandrake
by Eugenia on Thu 17th Oct 2002 21:35 UTC
Real Linux
by Ced on Thu 17th Oct 2002 21:38 UTC

picked from various comments:


> WinXP has very good hardware compatibility. Linux has not.

Wrong. MS doesn't write most of hardware drivers, it's the hardware's manufacturers who write the drivers (unlike on Linux).

> Administrating and configurign the OS is easier on WinXP.

A small fraction of Windows is configurable and administrable. This is much more a drawback than Linux mere texte files configuration is. With Linux you can _really_ administrate your computer, that's an essential point.

> I crash Linux more than I crash my XP

Linux as a kernel (what it really is) is much more stable than its windows counterpart. If your point is about a whole OS environement, then pick up a well-built distribution like Debian and u gonna notice how Linux can be good and reliable (remember as Linux is open source, it can be made terrible or terrific).


Debian GNU/linux is a terrific Linux distribution, until you haven't used it, you can't really judge what this whole Linux thing is. Installation and configuration is maybe mostly done manually, but at least it rocks without a doubt.

MDK 9.0 hosed in less than 24 hours
by sunyata on Thu 17th Oct 2002 21:41 UTC

I have this little laptop, a PII 223mhz. Its a great (if heavy) little workhorse. I dual boot it into Win2k and a linux distro. I have tried to put Redhat 7.2, 7.3, and 8.0 on this laptop and frankly the speed was unuseable.

I have 192 megs of RAM in this machine, but I find redhat hitting the disk a bunch. So when MDK 9 was available I decided to install it to get the very noticeable speed increase. When I got the laptop it had MDK 8.0 on it. I quickly changed it to the Redhat of the day. It was impossible to use.

I almost gave up on the laptop (not being a big fan of MDK anyway) but I installed Win2k on it. The laptop sprang to life.

So anyway, I had to reinstall MDK 9.0 yesterday because it was having trouble with a new orinoco. The install was fine, everything was great. But this morning, KDE segfaults on startup, I get no other choices for windows manangers once I get to KDM, and if I log into default, I get a term and a black screen.

I reinstalled all the X and KDE packages to no avail. I am ready to go back to Redhat, but I need some tips on how to speed that dang thing up so it works on my laptop. As stated, it is impossible to use.

Gentoo of course would be sweet, but I dont have all the time to have the damn thing compile on that machine.

Any tips on Redhat?

Re Bas
by Darius on Thu 17th Oct 2002 21:44 UTC

">Linux keeps on running, Windows XP does not. (I crash

Linux >more than I crash my XP)
Thats why you use Windwos XP because you do not really understand Unix. Believe me Linux is far more stable than Windows!"

Well, I suppose if you can't run Windows XP without crashing it (as many, many people do), then I think it is also fair to assume that you don't understand Windows either. When I installed Mandrake 9 and tried to run a game and had the whole screen go blank (no amount of CTRL+ALT+BACKSPACE did anything to save it), what's there to understand? It crashed and required resetting, plain and simple. That has NEVER EVER happend to me in Win2k or WinXP. So you can talk all day about how stable Linux is until you're blue in the face, but it really all comes down to what you do with an OS that depends on how stable it is. For example, I can run a few Windows apps (not even at the same time) using Wine and bring XFree to its knees in a very short amount of time.
You might argue that the Linux KERNEL is more stable, but who the hell (besides programmers) uses just the kernel?

"I am a Linux/FreeBSD only user and i am sure i will miss all the neat and nifty features Windows XP and Mac OS offer."

Yes, and the fact that you're a Linux/FreeBSD only user is quite evident, as you obviously have no idea what the hell you're talking about.

(Eugenia, sorry for going OT again, but I couldn't resist!)

Re: Re: Jetexas
by jetexas on Thu 17th Oct 2002 21:44 UTC

Jay said:
>jetexas, it depends on how you look at it. If you mean >buying a PC with XP installed, then obviously Linux is more >work because you (usually) have to install it yourself.

>You have to check your hardware to make sure it's >compatible, so that is extra work.

>But, beyond that, I have found that doing home/office type >default installs of SuSE 8.1 and Red Hat 8, for example, >leave me with a very well set up desktop with everything >working with no problems and real ease of use.

I'm just trying to play devil's advocate here. I bought XP because ME was so bad, so I had to install it from (one) CD. Basically the CD booted up, installed XP and I was good to go in about half an hour. The last Lycoris install I tried made me manually repartition the HD including a swap partition and I also had to select the monitor I was using. All of these things were handled automagically by XP. But, if Linux offers no tangible advantages over XP (which is usually preinstalled), why should I go through all that trouble in the first place?

Re: Linux
by Eugenia on Thu 17th Oct 2002 21:47 UTC

Please stop being off topic. Any more such XP Vs Linux comments will get you moderated down. No other replies on the matter please. This is not the right story to discuss these issues.

Re: Ced
by Darius on Thu 17th Oct 2002 21:48 UTC

"Debian GNU/linux is a terrific Linux distribution, until you haven't used it, you can't really judge what this whole Linux thing is. Installation and configuration is maybe mostly done manually, but at least it rocks without a doubt."

So essentially what you're saying is that in order to make Linux stable, I have to grab an outdated distro and install/configure mostly everything manually? Yeah, ok ... where do I sign up *pffffffffft*

D'oh!
by Darius on Thu 17th Oct 2002 21:50 UTC

Sorry Eugenia, didn't see your last post until after I had finished mine ;)

configuration apps stink in the upgrades
by Darkstar127 on Thu 17th Oct 2002 21:50 UTC

I've played with the newer versions of Both Mandrake and Redhat. I run a dedicated server for web hosting. Its nothing big, just for my clan web sites and personal web sites (I use the web sites to host wedding pictures for clients). I wanted to upgrade for the newer features. I upgraded from RH 7.3. However in the upgrade on both versions, they DO NOT include Apacheconf. I use this app to setup my virtual hosts and configure Apache. While I lost this app, I was hoping the claims of "easier to use and modify" would be more apparent. I couldn't find Apacheconf, nor did I find any good substitutes for it. In the new version of Mandrake, the control center makes things easier, but it doesn't go far enough. simply turning on the web for internet or intranet doesn't cut it. I ended up going back to RH 7.3

When are the linux Distros going to learn, you need to make it easier for the end users!

just not replying...
by Ced on Thu 17th Oct 2002 21:51 UTC

So essentially what you're saying is that in order to make Linux stable, I have to grab an outdated distro and install/configure mostly everything manually? Yeah, ok ... where do I sign up *pffffffffft*

Well, if i answer you, I'll be moderated down as my post is gonna be off topic (which is true). There's also other reasons not to respond... I'm not sure according your comment that you can evaluate them... sorry

I think this is the last time I will visit ...
by ranger on Thu 17th Oct 2002 21:59 UTC

In the few times I have read reviews here, I have only ever been disappointed by the reviews. The intuitiveness of this site is worse than any piece of software they have reviewed here. First, I would like a preview button .Yes, different sites do different things different ways. You don't use a standard blog (nuke clone, slash clone etc) so I have no way of knowing how my post will come out until it's up. Then, how about threading? There are hundreds of blogs out there that support threading (even ZDNet does). Anyway, I will make do with the limitations of your site for the moment, to see if it gets any better (which it seems you are incapable of doing with an OS ;-)).

1)XFS
YOU chose to do an expert install. This means you should be able to do things like decide whether the features available in XFS are worth the possible complication. There is a warning for XFS, which is that you should not install LILO (doesn't matter where your /boot is, it's where LILO gets installed to that matters) on an XFS partition. There is and never will be patch for this (unless you convince SGI to cease support for IRIX disks under linux).

2)Wheel mouse.
Some common PS2 wheel mice have problems, which is why the instructions on the screen at this stage tell you to scroll your mouse wheel. Did you???? When I have such a mouse, scolling the wheel immediately gets it working right.

3)diskdrake
Funny, other *commercial* *proprietary* software uses a very similar interface. I am talking about Partition Magic, and Windows NT Disk Manager, Windows 2000 Disk Management etc. I have never had problems understanding diskdrake (except during a text mode install ...). Your comments on it are ridiculous (ok, so the labels on the tabs could maybe be changed, but for anyone who knows what hdX means, it's more efficient than "First disk on primary IDE channel", which probably wouldn't help a non-technical user much either).

4)Booting
You're the one who installed the software (you did an expert install, remember?). You were given an opportunity to disable it. Did you?

5)Only time I have seen Mandrake take a while to authenticate is when I have set it up with LDAP. Don't have any ideas here.

6)Default theme
I really don't see how a theme makes a better UI. In some respects less eye candy is better, I find Mandrake's theme quite a bit snappier than something like keramik or liquid. And I don't think corporate users will be limited by what any distro uses. We are standardising our linux desktops on qnix, we have a whole bunch of custom stuff (nfs mounts, custom configs, boot themes, login manager backgrounds) which we deploy via our configuration RPM (which also sets up automatic updates etc), and one of the things we do is standradise the theme.

There is more to desktop functionality than a good default theme.

7)Menu
No, Mandrake hasn't *just* reorganised the menu, they have made a consistent menu across the board (ie all WMs) containing all possible programs (not a subset), but along the lines of Redhat's bastardised limited menu, have a menu where people can find the best-of-breed tools. Many people have commented that this is a good feature, and makes Mandrake easier to use ...

8)You problems with control center were I assume mostly due to supermount. Supermount worked quite well in RC2 (IIRC), but there was one small bug. That bugfix caused some problems, and currently a lot of people suggest not using supermount. You would have had better success if you had had any CD/DVD in your drive ...

9)/lib/cpp issue
It seems there are some small issues with the alternatives system, and some of these bugs were reported too late (post-RC3 IIRC) to get fixed. Most cooker users didn't notice, and some of them only appear after an upgrade. Without knowing what you installed originally, I can't guess what went wrong.

10)Focus
Many people seem to think that because Mandrake is a desktop-targeted distro that that is the only target. You may have noticed, but Mandrake is growing very fast as a web server. Mandrake probably has the best samba support around (including ACLs out-the-box on ext2/ext3/XFS partitions). All the software? Well, someone (often not Mandrakesoft employees) took the time to either request it or package it, so it must be of use to someone, probably a paying customer.

11)GTK tools
People seem to miss the following facts:
-Qt is much larger than GTK, do you really want to have to install 50MB extra libraries so you can run a graphical config tool on a server? GTK is smaller, and a lot of it's libraries are required by other apps, like linuxconf and many others.
-Mandrake writes mostly in perl, and there are good mature bindings for GTK, while the Qt ones are not really stable. Give them good Qt perl bindings, and maybe they will switch.
-There are 11 desktops/WMs available in Mandrake. 1 uses Qt. Quite a few use GTK.
-GTK starts up much faster than Qt, so someone using a non-Qt non-GTK desktop will find GTK stuff more responsive.

12)Lack of review of any of the other features.
I would have expected an "expert" reviewer to notice some of the new features. Like the possibility to join a windows domain during installation (along with other choices for local files, LDAP, Kerberos etc). Or how about the terminal server (if you know it exists).

So, it seems there were really only two bugs of real significance here, supermount, and the alternatives (oh yes, licq also, which the maintainer uses fine, but also very late bug reports showed there were problems).

Maybe you should give Mandrake a few more days, and consider it then ....

IMHO, there is no perfect OS, but Mandrake really creates a good distro. Things that will take you (post-install) many days to set up with another distro will take you almost no time with Mandrake.

>Then, how about threading?

It is my design decision to not support threading. I wanted to add it, and lots of people emailed me asking me to NOT to. So, I will leave it as is.

>Anyway, I will make do with the limitations of your site for the moment

The preview button is something I considered doing. For the next version of the forum, not this one.

>In the few times I have read reviews here, I have only ever been disappointed by the reviews.

You mean the Linux reviews? Maybe because Linux is not ready to compete with OSX and XP. Just maybe.

>There is more to desktop functionality than a good default theme.

Nobody said the opposite.

>Like the possibility to join a windows domain during installation (along with other choices for local files, LDAP, Kerberos etc).

I don't do any of that crap here. Our main server is a FreeBSD one, and I exchange files between machines via FTP. It works for me.

>No, Mandrake hasn't *just* reorganised the menu, they have made a consistent menu across the board

The same menu across WMs, yes. Consistent and nice? Hell No.

>You problems with control center were I assume mostly due to supermount.

I don't care what it was. The whole point is that there IS a problem.

> Diskdrake. Funny, other *commercial* *proprietary* software uses a very similar interface.

Too bad for them too.

>There is a warning for XFS, which is that you should not install LILO
>which is why the instructions on the screen at this stage tell you to scroll your mouse wheel.

So, you are telling me that everytime one has to install this OS, HAS to read the instructions at the bottom of the screen, for each and every step? I am sorry, but this is _stupid_.

The reason I chose Expert because I HAD TO. I wanted MAndrake to install itself to a prearranged partition and to NOT overwrite my bootloader. These TWO options I needed, were not available via an Advanced button during the Standard installation mode. I NEEDED these two features.

> I am sorry, but this is _stupid_.

Installers should be bug-free and intuitive enough. Personally, the BEST installer I have used under Linux so far, is Xandros' installer, based on Corel's.
And yes, it should be like that on the Expert Mode as well. Because if "expert users" are the ones who can go around bugs and bad interfaces, does NOT make this very interface any better.

Good Review
by Anonymous on Thu 17th Oct 2002 22:20 UTC

I liked your review. In my opinion Mandrake 9.0 is just beta software.

>>Like the possibility to join a windows domain during installation (along with other choices for local files, LDAP, Kerberos etc).

>I don't do any of that crap here. Our main server is a FreeBSD one, and I exchange files between machines via FTP. It works for me.

OK, so you're telling me that integration into a windows enterprise network is crap???

Mandrake is aimed at the corporate desktop (and the server). One of the ways of getting there is by integrating with windows networks.

You can give Mandrake 9.0 to an MCSE, and tell him to join it to his multi-domain windows/Active Directory-based network, and anyone with a domain account will be able to log in after reboot.

Say you don't want it to be a desktop, it can be a file/print server, authenticating domain users *with no extra setup*. Or, providing a secure web server to people in the company.

OK, so this happens to be one of my favourite features, but I can't see how you can displace MS on the server or the desktop without making them obsolete by undercutting their own technology.

And I don't think displacing MS (whether on the desktop or the server) is crap. And RH 8.0 and SuSE 8.1 can't do it. Mandrake 9.0 can.

IMHO, this one feature is worth more than slightly better fonts and a theme. I see people on the samba mailing list every day who are trying to manually do this with RH or SuSE, and they take days to do what takes a few minutes in the Mandrake install.

Mandrake Linux 9.0
by Jean-Luc on Thu 17th Oct 2002 22:23 UTC

One of my buddies and I downloaded Mandrake Linux 9.0 the first day it became available for download! Not bad, once I finished modifying everything to my tastes. Anyhow I'm gonna try out Xandros Linux (www.xandros.net) when it comes out later this month. The screenshots I've seen are quite impressive, and Corel had already fixed most of the problems Eugenia Loli-Queru wrote about (Xandros Linux is based on Corel Linux 3.0, in case you folks don't know...).

>OK, so you're telling me that integration into a windows enterprise network is crap???

No, I am telling you that *I* DON'T have any use for it, neither I have such facilities to test here. Most people don't anyway. OSNews is not a company with a big Windows network to test such things. Our only server (serving as a gateway) here is a lowly AMD K6 running FreeBSD.

QT
by Anonymous on Thu 17th Oct 2002 22:27 UTC

QT has been free for a year or more now, Mark

The thing about Eugenia...
by Joe on Thu 17th Oct 2002 22:27 UTC

She is just so damn picky. I always get the feeling that she would be so critical at the dinner table that you'd never want to make her food again. Besides that, the spelling sucks. PLEASE, use kdict or dictionary.com

"Unoticed" is not a word.
http://www.dictionary.com/search?q=unnoticed&r=2

RE: The thing about Eugenia...
by Eugenia on Thu 17th Oct 2002 22:29 UTC

>She is just so damn picky

When it comes to OSes, yes, I am.

>she would be so critical at the dinner table

Not really. ;)

>Besides that, the spelling sucks

I DON'T care.

v What is straightful?
by Joe on Thu 17th Oct 2002 22:31 UTC
v More errors?
by Joe on Thu 17th Oct 2002 22:33 UTC
v Yet another mistake...
by Joe on Thu 17th Oct 2002 22:42 UTC
Matrox G550
by jun on Thu 17th Oct 2002 22:49 UTC

I have installed Mandrake 9 and my G550 works only in default what mandrake is selected , which is 1024 by 768, I cannot adjust it to 1280 by 1024, it just go blank, even if I adjust it manually. This have been like this since 8.2 and still haven't fixed. When it come to desktop its usual default by what Kde's default. Mandrake looks good only if you install
Textars rpm thems for Kde. It is very slow in start-up and accessing the file system especially if there is a disc in the cdrom drive.

I agree with Ranger
by JB on Thu 17th Oct 2002 22:58 UTC

I'm quite surprised how this review turned out. I'm really fond of this site and I keep coming back for the last couple of years, but I never saw Eugenia so unprofessional like this time. Here are just a few inconsistencies:
When you choose expert install, you should forget about writing as a normal user experience. You are warned that choosing expert means you know what you're doing.
If you want to write as a normal user, you should give Mandrake a fair go and use clean hard drive just like you did with RH and SuSE.
I don't want to go into "RH tools are better than Mandrake's" debate because that's your opinion and I respect that. I don't want to argue about your problems (I believe they are real),it's just that the tone of the review was just plain mean.
The thing is I think that for some reason Mandrake was not reviewed the way RH, Xandros or SuSE were. Maybe you expected more or maybe not, but I know you could have done it better.
My take on mandrake 9: This is just another distro created to appeal one group of users. It is never meant to be one distribution for all and you knew that before writing this review. It seems to me that if distribution is not ready to be on the desktop (in your opinion) it's bad. That's not true. This is OS related site and every OS should be reviewed accordingly. What would your review of FreeBSD looked like? "That default black (console) look is just ugly"

Agree mostly with the review
by Carlos on Thu 17th Oct 2002 23:00 UTC

From my personal experience with Mdk 9.0 so far is that, DAMN is it fast. After mucking around with various flavors of linux for awhile, it's quite a speed demon. I had Gentoo installed on this same partition compiled with all the right cflags, etc.. and it's nowhere near as snappy. IMHO, that is what Mandrake brings to the table in this round of releases. Unfortunatly, that's about it. The included apps mandrake release behave just like they should, it's just that their additions seem not quite ready for prime time.

Like the damn CD access Eugenia had. Take a look at your /mnt directory, access.. try to install a new rpm, acess... Like a previous poster said it's because of their 'supermount' kernel patch and you can fix it by turning it off, but it's still amazing this slipped by them.
Also I've had random crashes in some tools, notably when trying to change boot loaders. I go to Mandrake control center, boot, then change the boot loader. This will bring me to the screen where you can change what the boot menu points to. Every time I modify one, the darn screen will dissapear and I get stuck with nowhere to go. Did it change anything? Can I boot it? Kindy off a scary position to get stuck in.
The NFS auto search has never found my Redhat NFS export on another computer, and there's no way in that tool to type in an address of the server and pick some options to add to fstab. It either auto finds it or you do it manually. I hope you know how to do it manually ;)
The default fonts are, exscuse my french, ASS. And I don't think I know enough french to be able to explain how the default Mozilla fonts look like ;-) I've fixed them and I've got a purty desktop niw, but anyone straight off the street looking at this distro will be running scared after spending a little time with it.

Just a couple of differences in opinion with the review though. The diskdrake (partition manager) IMO is pretty good. Easy to navigate and use. Point on a partition, or empty partition, and you get a nice little menu list of what to do with it. It lets you resize even. I can use it as well as partition magic, it's about as good as you can get on linux that I've seen so far.

And the what to do menu is laid out pretty well. Whats so bad about--- What to do-->Admin, Enjoy music and vid, read documentation, etc.. and easy Redhat'ish lists afterwards. Great for doing some common tasks that you aren't sure about where to go to do. The menu's are the least of the faults in Mandrake, they're setup pretty well.

All in all, my experience has been that's it's snappy as hell, but quirky and by default ugly. It's fast enough though to justify me spending the time to fix it and use it as my primary OS. Apt-Get and synaptic and Tex's RPMS and knowledge of how to stuff by hand and you'll be good to go (no much of a ringing endorsement eh?).

Good review Eugenia, but I wish you laid into them a little more about the general bugginess of their apps ;)

RE:I agree with Ranger
by Eugenia on Thu 17th Oct 2002 23:02 UTC

>I never saw Eugenia so unprofessional like this time.

My review was the same as always.

> Mandrake was not reviewed the way RH, Xandros or SuSE were.

OH, YES IT WAS. And it screwed up on my machine on bugs that other users have CONFIRMED (MandrakeSoft told me that the control center bug is confirmed by others too).

EVANGELISM is NOT the reviewers problem. It is the fact and a review is nothing more but a written presentation of an EXPERIENCE. I have nothing against any of these companies. I write WHAT I SEE.

Your Review
by dTd on Thu 17th Oct 2002 23:04 UTC

This is a negative review of a fine ditribution and I find myself torn between a like of your honesty and and a dislike of your forcing this OS to conform to your obviously nonstandard configuration. Most of the things you are so negative about are personal opinions and shouldn't enter into a review. The fact that you, personaly, don't care for Mandrakes choice of theme shouldn't enter into this review unless you found that you were unable to change it. Your obvious misconfiguration of the default desktop environment has lead to these ugly screenshots posted on this site and should be considered a laughable attempt to skew the readers perseption. I would suggest that you let the readers descide if the default desktop is ugly by showing it to them. Your choice of blasting Mandrakes configuration modules is pretty peculiar as Mandrakes tools all start with Drak* and the tool your using is linuxconfig. Maybe you should do a review of linuxconfig instead of Mandrake as that's what seems more important to you.
I guess anyone who chooses expert intall mode needs to be an expert, which obviously your not. You like how I keep using the word obviously? I'm doing it because it's quite obvious that when you intentionaly try to break something you've proven it's quite easy. Your lack of knowledge is astounding. It's not Mandrakes fault that a professed expert doesn't know the limitations of XFS and lilo, or that said expert is too selfabsorbed to read the instructions at the bottom of the mouseconfig page.I really think asking any OS to contend with 8 operating systems being intalled on a machine is a little much, maybe it's time to invest in a test machine that has room room for the OS your installing. How can any OS compete fairly when it has to make concessions for 7 others. Your review is faulty, biased, skewed and plain wrong.
Oh and whats with bashing slackwares installer, it's my favorite of all of them, fast and efficient.
/dTd

heh, whatever
by C on Thu 17th Oct 2002 23:05 UTC

In my opinion Linux is just beta software. But at least the community understands that. Eugenia, I'm glad you don't feel like part of our community. Until you have the experience of supporting all these OSs discussed here in a corporate environment I think your comments as an end user are sufficient. Thanks for the review. Your opinions have been noted.

That being said I've used all the OSs mentioned except some of the BSDs and I'm not a debian expert. I am, however, a Linux expert.

Stability:
Linux is stable. The kernel is not 100% stable, but 2.4 has reached a level VERY close to 2.2. The end user will not notice the difference. Of course the GUI can crash and leave you in a state where you might not be able to get a console on the system without plugging in a serial cable or sshing across the network. However the underlying OS will most likely be fully intact, even if you have some minor hardware failure. Usually it takes a power outage to crash my systems, and I run RedHat, which is rather unstable for Linux, IMO. I watched my / drive cough up failures for weeks before it finally took down my fileserver, I was just lazy and didn't care, I had a backup of the only file that was important and my raid is still intact.

Administration:
Unix, and to a far lesser extent Windows, can be fully automated across a network. Unix, however, can be automated quickly and efficiently with simple shell scripts. I did a network migration, reconfiguring over 500 various unix boxes. It took me less than a week of preparation (collecting system info, getting new ips and writing the script) and less than 2 hours to complete without affecting any users currently using those systems. All unix systems, including Linux, are multiuser, except maybe Lindows. This means many people may be using the same computer even though they are no where near it phsycially, which is why stability has been such a high priority. Every client is also a server. But one thing you can't do with windows is setup an automated configuration system to handle all levels of system maintence, monitoring and configuration remotely. Why can't you do this? Because computers don't understand GUIs, and I doubt you want to monitor a few thousands systems yourself, let alone reconfigure them through the GUI. That's my biggest complaint about windows, and its honestly total BS, because with perl you've been able to fully automate everything for a few years now.

In short I'm just too fucking lazy to waste my time with Microsoft software anymore. I have better things to do, my time is more valuable than that. At least the time I spend on Linux teaches me a LOT about how things really work, instead of provide me yet another abstraction layer or excuse. There are no more excuses.

RE: Your Review
by Eugenia on Thu 17th Oct 2002 23:08 UTC

>Your lack of knowledge is astounding. It's not Mandrakes fault that a professed expert doesn't know the limitations of XFS and lilo

READ THE FREAKING REVIEW. I **know** about the Limitation. STOP WRITING such crap over here please.
I am running Gentoo with XFS on my / and ext3 on /boot for God's sake. For months now. **I** know about the limitation. I wrote this about the OTHERS.

I am so freaking pissed off now, people are taking things out of context and they don't really understand.

> Your choice of blasting Mandrakes configuration modules is pretty peculiar as Mandrakes tools all start with Drak* and the tool your using is linuxconfig

I AM USING the Drake tools. I just ran LinuxConf because it WAS THERE. It is not that I use LinuxConf as the default.

JESUS.

v Writer's Craft.
by LampEft on Thu 17th Oct 2002 23:16 UTC
RE: 700 MB ISO's
by ProgrammerMan on Thu 17th Oct 2002 23:18 UTC

The reason you were having problems burning the 700 MB images is that you were probably using 650 MB CD-RW discs instead of 700 MB CD-R discs. When I pulled down RC2, I tried a number of times to burn onto 650 MB CD-RWs and it kept failing. I ended up wasting two 700 MB CD-Rs and they burned fine.

It was kind of a waste of time anyway since I decided to stay with Mandrake 8.2 for a while longer.

RE: Your Review
by Eugenia on Thu 17th Oct 2002 23:25 UTC

>I really think asking any OS to contend with 8 operating systems being intalled on a machine is a little much,

WHAT are you talking about? They are all laid out on different partitions, some on different drives. All Mandrake has to do is just install its / root partition on the partition I will show it to do so. And Mandrake did so FINE in this respect. On the Expert mode that is, because the Standard mode does not allow you to do that.

I don't understand what the difference would have been if there were ONLY 1 more operating systems there, or 100. As long there is a bootmanager and an available partition, Mandrake and ANY other OS, should just load fine. AND IT DID LOAD FINE.

From all the other OSes I have here, the only OS that has special needs is QNX, which needs to be on a primary partition only. ALL the rest of my OSes are flexible enough to install anywhere. Even WinXP.

I really don't understand your stupid claim.

>maybe it's time to invest in a test machine that has room room for the OS your installing.

This machine has ALL the room Mandrake needs. I gave it a 6 GB partition.

>How can any OS compete fairly when it has to make concessions for 7 others.

Write your crap ELSEWHERE.
If an OS can't be installed when another OS is installed there, then that OS is *b0rked*. Mandrake isn't.

wtf
by Ced on Thu 17th Oct 2002 23:31 UTC

>In the few times I have read reviews here, I have only ever been disappointed by the reviews.

You mean the Linux reviews? Maybe because Linux is not ready to compete with OSX and XP. Just maybe.


Why the hell should Linux be always compared here as a desktop OS to compete with Windows and Mac ?! There's not such a comparaison when it's about QNX, AtheOS or any of those alternative OSes.

Let's compare Lycoris with XP and OS X if you want (Lycoris is targeted to that), but generalizing it to all Linux distributions is not a good thing. For instance, it's possible to install Mandrake as a server without any GUI whatsoever that would outclass a server install on XP or OSX. When I think there's still many people working with DOS and only DOS, tell them it doesn't compete with XP, they will just answer you DOS does the job they have to achieve. It simply doesn't have to compete with something else to work well.

RE: wtf
by Eugenia on Thu 17th Oct 2002 23:34 UTC

>Why the hell should Linux be always compared here as a desktop OS to compete with Windows and Mac ?!

Because THESE are the points of measurement today. They both even have more marketshare than Linux and they do have a better integrated desktop experience than any Linux.

>There's not such a comparaison when it's about QNX, AtheOS or any of those alternative OSes

Because UI-wise, they are not as advanced as WinXP and OSX either.

>Let's compare Lycoris with XP and OS X if you want (Lycoris is targeted to that),

I don't know in which cave you were hiding in, but if you read the article, you will see that Mandrake also targets the desktop.

v RE: RE: Your Review
by dTd on Thu 17th Oct 2002 23:37 UTC
Re: Linux by jetexas
by Frank on Thu 17th Oct 2002 23:38 UTC

jetexas wrote:

"Does any Linux distribution in the whole world come even close to the ease of use and compatibility of Windows XP?"

In a word, No. Serious Linux developers readily acknowledge that is a major objective in making Linux a viable desktop OS alternative.

jetexas wrote:

"More importantly, is there something any Linux distro does that Windows does *not*?"

Most Windows OS versions can't do alot of things that most of the major distros of Linux can do, such as function as a viable server, etc. However, there are, of course, Windows OS versions that function as server and development platforms.

jetexas wrote:

"And why do distro makers feel the need to pack 5 CDs worth of stuff into their releases? Most of that junk is never going to be used anyway - like three different browsers?"

My SuSE 8 pro comes with more than three browsers. : )

But really, it's just to make the distro more useful, and it also let's the user decide what will be installed/used and what will not.

jetexas wrote:

"Who needs that? And all that crap in the KDE taskbar shouldn't be there be default, either. Remember the KISS principle and use it."

It's hard to determine who needs which applications. It is better to have choices and options, and having (for example) multiple browsers from which to choose is a good thing. About the "crap" on the KDE taskbar, to each his own.

jetexas wrote:

"Every Linux distro I have tried has aimed to be a Win98 clone and each of them has failed miserably."

You probably mean the desktop environments, particularly KDE. The desktop environments are not germane to Linux at all, and may be used on, say, FreeBSD. You're probably aware of this but quite often the GUI desktops get confused to being the OS itself, which they aren't in any sense. The Linux operating system itself has no similarity whatsoever with Windows 98.

However, KDE is, on an aesthetic/interface level, certainly playing catch up with the Win98 interface. There is no serious dispute that the major Linux distros, such as Mandrake, SuSE and Redhat, for example, are trying to make Linux a serious and viable alternative to the Windows 32 platform on the desktop. They aren't there yet.

jetexas wrote:

"Why replicate what has been done (poorly)? If you Linux guys really want to beat MS, show me something that hasn't been before."

There is no doubt that Linux on the desktop is playing catch-up for a place on the desktop. As a non GUI server it truly excels (with the right sysadmin); on the desktop, a ton of progress has been made but a lot of work still needs to be done.

jetexas wrote:

"Until then, I am happy using Windows XP."

A good deal of the "dispute" has very little to do with the operating systems themselves and are concentrated on business practices/political views. I have used Windows XP Pro (NTFS) for just about a year now and it has crashed a grand total of zero times, is very responsive, easily networked, and (of course) has a truck load of serious commercial third party software available. In comparison, we also use BeOS 5 Pro and it, too, has crashed a grand total of zero times. Windows 98 (SE) would infrequently freeze/crash, and it would see heavy use.

Linux running KDE and Gnome, specifically Mandrake 8 and SuSE 8, have locked up quite a few times, and are decidedly less responsive, *as desktop environments running GUIs*, than Windows XP Pro, or, for that matter, Windows 98 (SE), running on the same type of hardware (PIII 800, 256 mb ram).

Linux on the desktop has a way to go before it can be considered a viable desktop platform used outside of geek circles. There is still need for quite a bit of refinement and, yes, business dealings to be worked (i.e., commercial ports of major desktop applications for Linux and whatever GUI desktop is considered the 'mainstream' de facto standard).

On the desktop Linux certainly has potential but it does have a bit of work ahead for itself.

v RE: Your Review
by Eugenia on Thu 17th Oct 2002 23:41 UTC
v Very poor...
by Peter on Thu 17th Oct 2002 23:50 UTC
v moderation
by dTd on Thu 17th Oct 2002 23:50 UTC
v RE: moderation
by Eugenia on Thu 17th Oct 2002 23:53 UTC
Re: I think this is the last time I will visit ...
by Ced on Thu 17th Oct 2002 23:55 UTC

To Ranger: yeah, I agree on most of your points.

Reviews are pretty weird here (not to say...)

v Goodbye OSNews
by dTd on Fri 18th Oct 2002 00:00 UTC
v Re: goodbye osnews
by Eugenia on Fri 18th Oct 2002 00:02 UTC
re:wtf
by PainKilleR on Fri 18th Oct 2002 00:25 UTC

For instance, it's possible to install Mandrake as a server without any GUI whatsoever that would outclass a server install on XP or OSX.

XP doesn't have a server install. OS X Server is a bit different from OS X. Mandrake is typically viewed (whether it actually is or not) as a desktop-level Linux distro, as stated in the conclusion of the review. When people start talking about Linux on the desktop, Mandrake comes up. Should the reviewers look at Mandrake in it's own isolated little world, or in the isolated Linux world, or actually compare it to other operating systems (even those that haven't been around as long as Linux, like NT-based systems such as 2k and XP)?

hmmm...
by TaiLS on Fri 18th Oct 2002 00:31 UTC

Well, I found out about the wheel mouse thing after installation. I found out that I didn't use the wheel mouse driver so I used HardDrake and switched to wheel mouse. As you stated, the mouse went crazy. Just killed the X server and started over. It was fine.

Review
by Jay on Fri 18th Oct 2002 00:44 UTC

Once again, rather than discussing Mandrake, many are attacking Eugenia because they don't like her review. This has become ridiculous. I saw in her review many positive comments about certain aspects of Mandrake along with the negative. The whole point of a review is to use it as a reference point to discuss the product. In all of these posts, I have seen only a few that give me another glimpse of Mandrake 9 - some Mandrake users agree with Eugenia pretty much and believe Mandrake is not keeping up and some think it's the best Mandrake distro ever. I haven't tried it yet, but I can use these comments in determining whether or not I might want to give it a whirl. All other comments are useless. Many do not even read it or read only perhaps the first paragraph. You can tell who reads it or not by the comments. Eugenia has always tried to view products as a user would and I have never seen her have an ax to grind. In fact, I recall she was very unimpressed with SuSE's presence at LinuxWorld, yet she gave SuSE 8.1 a good review as she found it to an excellent distro. She is not biased. If you don't agree with her reviews, stick to why and leave off the insults and baloney so we can try and get some good, informed insights and info.

Re: wtf
by Darius on Fri 18th Oct 2002 00:44 UTC

"[Linux] simply doesn't have to compete with something else [Windows] to work well. "

Actually, it does! If you were in a parallel universe where Windows didn't exist and the computing world (especially The Internet) wasn't so Windows-centric, your statement might hold water. But as it stands, we live in a world where almost EVERYTHING (on the desktop) is Windows and it becomes a problem when you start hitting some websites that are IE-only or hardware that is only supported in Windows. Of course, I am not saying this is a *good* thing (in fact, quite the opposite is true), but it is a fact that Linux has to deal with if it wants to compete with Windows on the desktop.
For example, if I go out and buy a new DVD and this DVD has 'DVD-ROM' extras that run on a computer, are these going to work in Linux? If the answer is no, then you might find Joe User getting kind of frustrated that he can't (or has to jump through hoops to) do with his computer what his next door neighbor can do with Windows.

I like Mandrake
by jmirles on Fri 18th Oct 2002 00:44 UTC

I have tried Redhat 8.0, Suse 8.0 (not their latest, though), Lycoris and Mandrake. Redhat 7.3 was good. I liked it a lot. Redhat 8.0, I don't like. I hate the menu's organization and really hate the default theme. I felt like I was going back to Windows.
SuSE is good, but frankly, I disliked their tools. Lycoris is just too bland for me. It is the closet Linux to Windows on the market.
Mandrake gives me what I want, all the apps I crave, the tools I like and KDE all the time. If I wanted to run a Gnome based distro, I would have stuck to Redhat. I perfer KDE and perfer my KDE to look like KDE, not like some Windows theme.
So I'll stick with Mandrake for now.

Mandrake 9 personal review
by Dakisha on Fri 18th Oct 2002 00:49 UTC

After deciding to go for it, and download the 3 CD ISO of Mandrake, and move away from Windows (I've used Debian before, but only a little) I was overwhelmingly unimpressed with it. I still run it, but I think it could do so much better.

I started by booting up with the cd in the drive, which went fine - It found the cd, and voila - install screen. I started off going through the menu's (Why, oh WHY don't they include a BACK option?!) in the advanced mode, so that I could handle the partitions, etc myself. Eventually I landed at the packages screen, with fairly little hassle - the main options screens went nicely - so far so good, I'm impressed. Half an hour later, I finally work out roughly what packages I want to install, and hit go.

An hour passes. I return, and it's crashed - Just locked up, nothing happening, no HDD activity, no mouse, nada. Great - well, maby somethings dodgy? Ram, etc is all fine - I run everything through a tester, and no errors.

2nd time at installing. Half way through selecting packages I click on one of the expanding + signs and I get some archaic error message and it crashes. Lovely... At this point I'm pondering just installing Windows or the like again - this thing is only supposed to be a basic system for mucking around, a PII-400 w/ 128 megs of ram and 3 gigs hdd..

Third time lucky; I've cut the package choice screen down to 10 mins now, I know excatly what I want and don't.. And eventually, it installs.. Takes about an hour, give or take 10 mins.

That was just the install - 3 times to get it in?! I've had that with Windows in the past too, but I expected better from the 'stable' OS.

Konqurer is ugly, slow and why does the simplest task take 5 seconds or more to load under KDE?! It's a P-II 450, this thing used to FLY with 95/98. The menu is cluttered, and I found it hard to know what was where, and what did what. I liked the 'What to do' section, but it could do with more work.

Packages. Gods.. What to say about packages, except they need some work! And a single place to get them from! I couldn't get libpng.so.2 installed for some odd reason, only libpng.so.3 seemed to be on the cd's - This package, and that package, and x/y/x - Erg - I hate packages, and dependencys. Give me apt-get back! It did it all for me, I just told it the thing I wanted and it went and found me a copy.


Overall, Mandrake is stable - I've rebooted it maby 3-4 times including changing a network card (It didn't like my D-link 530 initially, so moved to a 220 which it flew through with) but I was fairly unimpressed with both what was packaged with it, and the speed (or lack thereof) that it ran at.

Mandrake needs a lot of work; and I agree with most every point made in the above review.

I look forward to updating to something nicer in 9.1!


Dakisha

fix for wheel-mouse bug, RH8 vs LM 9
by Jules Verne on Fri 18th Oct 2002 00:51 UTC

While installing Mandrake 9, I experienced the same problem with choosing the "ps2 wheel mouse" option - the cursor promptly goes nuts and jitterbugs all over the screen, making it impossible to continue the install.

Acting on the tip in the Red Hat 8 manual, I then looked for Microsoft Intellimouse among the wheel mouse options, but didn't find it. I then tried "Logitech Mouseman Plus", and that worked perfectly. (My "mouse" is actually a Logitech Trackman Marble, which is kinder to my slight carpal-tunnel symptoms).

I recently tried both Red Hat 8.0 and Linux Mandrake 9.0, and my impressions are different from Eugenia's. For some reason cdrecord was broken in my RH 8 install, though I had successfully run Mandrake 8.0, 8.1, 8.2, and 9.0 on the same machine with no problems. Updating all the cdrecord tools to the recommended RH 8 ones from sourceforge didn't fix the problem, either. I also found RH8's disk partitioning tool clunkier and less intuitive than Mandrake's. After trying both distros, Mandrake 9 was my definite choice for my desktop - CD burning is a must for me, mostly for data backups.

FYI, I just installed Mandrake 9.0 on my brand-new Micron Transport GX3 laptop (mobile P4 1.6 GHz, 256MB DDR, ATI Radeon 7500 video, Intel Etherexpress NIC, combo DVD/CD-RW drive.) Installation was totally painless, and everything seems to work except for the biometric fingerprint-reader doohickey, which didn't work under the default WinXP install either.

The laptop came with Windows XP, which I was glad to get rid of; it might be pretty, but it won't let me upgrade my hardware without being branded a software pirate and having to plead with Bill Gates minions, the default browser has no cookie-management features or tabbed browsing, Win XP doesn't come with Apache/Perl/PHP (which I use for developing CGI scripts), it doesn't come with Latex (which I use for typesetting all my homework assignments and exams - I teach math and electronics and Latex does a better job with equations than any wordprocessor I've used), and Win XP doesn't have a command-line any more. Nor does it come with a C compiler for the occasional small C programs I write. And that's not even mentioning the bad smell left behind by its parent company's ethics!

Despite Linux' many failings, for me it just works better than any version of Windows. And so far, Mandrake continues to be the distro I like best.

Judging by the long-running poll over at desktoplinux.com (http://www.desktoplinux.com/news/NS3153607016.html), many other Linux users have come to the same conclusion.

One of my friends works for JPL (Jet Propulsion Labs, the place that designs and builds all those cool planetary probes and satellites). Guess what Linux distro they use at his workplace? Yup, it's official: rocket scientists use Mandrake Linux!

-Jules Verne

Very poor review overall
by Igor on Fri 18th Oct 2002 01:02 UTC

Eugenia, you have to realize several important facts:
- opinions do not belong in product reviews. Just because you don't like the default colors doesn't mean they are bad. Many people prefer unobtrusive themes to stuff like Aqua or Keramik (which gets tiring after about 10 or 15 minutes)
- Mandrake is not responsible for fixing bugs in other people's programs. Your argument doesn't cut it at all. If Linuxconf has a problem, it's linuxconf's problem and not mandrake's. It is shipped on the CDs as a convenience to you.
- Mandrake follows an open-source development policy, unlike suse. All of the drak* tools are free. They do not have millions of dollars to blow on that stuff, and do not depend on life-support from IBM, unlike suse.
- The distribution is not targeted at idiots. Yes, they tried to make everything simple, but it's not for people with a double-digit IQ. Don't review it as such.
- consistent look and feel is not that important, especially if it's as minor as GTK vs. QT. Many windows programs (media player, winamp, realplayer, 3d modelers, etc) have completely different GUIs, yet people like them.
- If you are going to review the system with substandard hardware, make it clear you are doing so. On my machine, it most certainly doesn't take 3 to 4 seconds to log in. More like half a second, and it's a semi-outdated 800 MHz P3.
- Finally, don't judge a system based on one or two minor bugs. I don't know what the problem with your DVD-ROM was, but I do know that I have not encountered that on any of my boxes. If you turned off supermount, I am sure your problems would be solved (partitioning tool has a checkbox)

Overall, I found Mandrake 9 a great distro. Just because it doesn't suit your taste doesn't mean it's not good. Please take that into account next time.

authentication
by Yama on Fri 18th Oct 2002 01:14 UTC

"Something that I find annoying with this distribution is that authenticating is slow. Why the heck it takes a whole 3-4 seconds to authenticate my password in the command line (I don't use any *DM), when loging in either as eugenia or as root? Mandrake Cooker also did the same. Mandrake 8.0 didn't (on the same machine) and other distros I have here don't do so either."

I believe that is a security feature, probably to limit the effectiveness of autologin bots (which use trial-and-error to to guess your password). I can't remember where it can be configured, but I have a similar setup on my Gentoo box. This is a GOOD thing.

... though the bugs in 9.0 are kind of alarming, I definitely like mandrake for workstations _and_ servers.. All the stuff is compiled 586 and up, and as you state they tend to use the newest/fastest compilers on the newest stable kernels..

I may wait for 9.1 or 9.2 before going off 8.2, but I'm still sticking with MDK..

v mouse problem? hardly
by Me on Fri 18th Oct 2002 01:18 UTC
Hmm
by Mike on Fri 18th Oct 2002 01:25 UTC

Boy where to start....

First off I will say that it is refreshing to see a site which takes a negative basis for thier reviewing standards. Many sites are so busy congratulating themselves and the Linux community they fail to point out the weaknesses in the various distros. Honestly I don't particularly like your writing style, but a different viewpoint is always good. (And yes I know everybody is entitled to thier own opinion and that you care not one whit about mine.)

The only true slight I would give your review is the comment involving mouse configuration. While it has been a long time since I installed Mandrake I experienced the same problem. So what did I do? I read the page for directions. This seems fairly intuitive for me, if something does not seem right look at what is on the screen.

Less important comments. On the Redhat review you chose a resolution much higher than most users would consider on a typical Linux system. Fair enough, graphical designers and movie special effects people are using Linux more and more so it would come up (though I dount they would be using a "typical" nVidia card). This showed a problem with Linux in general which you seemed to, for lack of a better term, grouch about for the remainder of the review. Again, it is your site so you can ponder on whatever you like. But then in your Mandrake review you complain because things don't fit at 800X600? And 800X600 is used by most people? Now I grant you I hang around with a technical crowd but most people I know run at 1024X768 at a minimum. I have only run across one person in recent times that still uses 800X600 and that is a 52 year old Judge who still uses WordPerfect 5. I would hardly call 800X600 mainstream anymore.

Finally I agree that Linux is not as polished as XP as a desktop. Not by quite a bit. As a desktop I would even argue that XP is as stable as Linux for the average user. I think generally an experienced Linux user can set up his machine to be more stable than an experienced Windows user though. Why do I say that? Because the experienced Linux user has a much greater level of control that a Windows user. As a desktop Linux is quite usable though. It can be very functional, maybe not as fancy, maybe not as easy, but it can be functional. Linux has also made advances in the usability area and... Oh never mind. It would only lead to more heated debate.

As a final note for all but one of my systems I use Slackware as my desktop. The one XP laptop I have is for Windows programming, got to pay the bills you know. Slackware is definitely not the easiest distro out there. But it suits my needs nicely as a person with a Unix background. Is it for everybody? No, but it is good for me, the same can be said of Mandrake, Suse,Redhatm and even Windows.

Re: fix for wheel-mouse bug, RH8 vs LM 9
by Frank on Fri 18th Oct 2002 01:31 UTC

"Jules Verne" wrote:

"The laptop came with Windows XP, which I was glad to get rid of; it might be pretty, but it won't let me upgrade my hardware without being branded a software pirate and having to plead with Bill Gates minions"

This is not correct. Windows XP permits upgrades of hardware, without being branding a software pirate or having to plead with Bill Gates' 'minions,' or anyone else for that matter. I have easily and legally upgraded video cards, ram chips, ethernet cards, CD-RW drives, installed additional harddrives, etc.

"Jules Verne" wrote:

"the default browser has no cookie-management features"

This is not correct. The installed, default browser, Internet Explorer 6, has full cookie-management features. With IE6 running, see Tools/Internet Options/Privacy.

"Jules Verne" wrote:

"Win XP doesn't come with Apache"

Easily solved.
See http://httpd.apache.org/docs/windows.html

"Jules Verne" wrote:

"and Win XP doesn't have a command-line any more"

See Start/All Programs/Accessories/Command Prompt

"Jules Verne" wrote:

"One of my friends works for JPL (Jet Propulsion Labs, the place that designs and builds all those cool planetary probes and satellites). Guess what Linux distro they use at his workplace? Yup, it's official: rocket scientists use Mandrake Linux!"

The JPL uses a variety of computer systems, from Beowulf supercomputers running Linux (with Redhat being the default distribution installed by the vendor, PSSC Labs), to desktop systems running Windows NT, et. al. The most common Linux distribution used by the JPL is Redhat.

DISAGREE
by Anonymous on Fri 18th Oct 2002 01:32 UTC

While I agree that the XFS-boot situation is indeed not good, the rest of Mandrake is top notch. My primary desktop is GNOME and I, for one, am glad to see that Mandrake has gotten rid of the crappy-looking QT based admin tools and the crappy psuedo-KDE icons. I've had no problems with prolonged load times. All my software works great. This is the best Mandrake yet.

re: >She is just so damn picky
by datako on Fri 18th Oct 2002 01:51 UTC

That's what I like about Eugenia's reviews. It's her soapbox and it's entertaining as well as informative.

Her stance is obvious and I prefer to see that that some "objective" brown-nose bullshit which obscures the real issues.

To the strident knockers:
You don't have to agree with her. If you don't agree with her, shine your own light on the problem, not attack Eugenia. If you are not robust enough to handle a little dissent then at least don't say anything you wouldn't have the guts to say to her face in public. Be adult enough to be as polite as if you were visiting her home - this isn't some kiddy D&D game.

Impressions of Mandrake 9.0 v. 8.1
by Gene Zesch on Fri 18th Oct 2002 02:29 UTC

I installed 9.0 about two weeks ago, and I have very mixed feelings. I'm running on a Latitude CS400, 400Mhx PII with 356Meg ram.
X seems more stable; under 8.1 X would freeze at least once a day.
But the system as a whole is very slow. Paging down a web site goes very slowly and jerkily, not smoothly as it did in 8.1.
And booting is much slower, a couple minutes to boot to the login and then 2-3 minutes for KDE to come up.
It seems like about twice as long as 8.1.
It reminds me of when I first put Win98 on a Pentium 166 with 32Meg.
On the plus, it did recognize all my hardware and the install was ok.

RE:Linux & XP, ISO's
by Anonymous Coward on Fri 18th Oct 2002 02:30 UTC

jetexas, you can't be serious, is Uncle Bill paying you????Windows is a virus, acting like an operating system.

Also, had trouble with ISO's, wound up burning them in Toast at 1X speed. That worked, use good media too. Burned a couple for a buddy with Nero at slow speed, and that worked for him. Cheap disks are .......well cheap. Try a slow burn speed and good disks.

People, relax
by Michalis on Fri 18th Oct 2002 02:34 UTC

Eugenia did a review. Agreeing or not with her doesn't make her right or wrong. I believe the review is fair as a review of a users experience on installing Mandrake. I had the mouse problem, which I figured out can be solved after installation . But not all newcomers are going to be willing to dig around and solve problems that simply shouldn't exist.

Linux, and as I see it, Mandrake, have matured a lot recently. I still think MDK is not near perfection and I do think it bearly keeps up the evolution in computers. But what is behind MDK matters more to me. A distro that tries to keep up and keeping it free. I love MDK and no matter what a review says, I will still use it.

Eugenia, keep up the good job. All kinds of critisism are welcome. Without it, how can there be evolution and how can we move forward?

RE: People, relax
by Eugenia on Fri 18th Oct 2002 02:40 UTC

Thank you for your comment Michali.

> But not all newcomers are going to be willing to dig around and solve problems that simply shouldn't exist.

I very well know about how to allow wheel operations on my mice, I mean, back in the day I used to do it by directly editing my XF86Config file. But that was not the point of my paragraph about the mice.

The point is that the driver does something *unexpected* for the user, and from the usability point of view, is just not right.

Mandrake 9 looks to much like beta software
by Jean_J on Fri 18th Oct 2002 02:46 UTC

My experience was close to Eugenia's review. The installation was actually OK, I almost choose default everywhere except for hard drive.
But after 2 hours of use, I experienced several bugs, the supermount bug of course, that one alone should justify not calling the software RELEASE.
Also my mouse was stuck at one point after I clicked a OK button to log as "root" on one of the tools. Even a reboot did not bring it back. I had to reboot in one of the special mode and then it came back.
The design of many administrative tools really looks like "done by programmer". Not intuitive at all. The command line is most of the time the best option.
So many inconsistency overall. For example, I played a mpeg2 from Konqueror. The player has a close button. Click on it, nothing is closed! You have to go to konqueror, click back and then the video ends.
Overall I think MDK 9 would request at least 3 months of hard work certification to be called a product!

RE: Igor
by Anonymous on Fri 18th Oct 2002 02:50 UTC

--quoted by Igor--
- Mandrake is not responsible for fixing bugs in other people's programs. Your argument doesn't cut it at all. If Linuxconf has a problem, it's linuxconf's problem and not mandrake's. It is shipped on the CDs as a convenience to you.
--/quoted by Igor--

Nope... Why the earth, would Mandrake include the bug apps in their product? Mandrake is supposed to choice the stable apps to be part of their product. Also, if they can fix then do it. The users will call/email to the Mandrake's support ticket area for this problem. Therefore, it's Mandrake's fault to include the bug apps. I suggest you to re-read what's Mandrake's goal, which they still haven't meet this goal yet.

Hence the reason I say to any newbie to avoid Mandrake like the plague. Beta quality applications, beta quality kernel modules that are promoted as "stable" and the X server, don't get me started. It is though there mission is to get the most buggy unstable crap, put it into a distro then promote it as a "user friendly distro". Redhat 8.0, IMHO comes out on top.

What do the average user have? they have a typical Celeron setup with a 810chipset, integrated "everything but he kitchen sink" or have an integrated ATI Rage Pro 128bit (which is very typical in the Dell optiplex range sold to corporations). Redhat installs perfectly. Maybe the two problems a user may face is if they have either a Winmodem or a Winprinter. Yes, Winprinters do exist, along with WinAudio.

Mabdrake 9.0 on my machine
by MX on Fri 18th Oct 2002 02:57 UTC

My machine: Celeron 500 (Mendocino) on Chaintech 6BTM (440BX), 320 MB RAM, 2 HDD (20 GB and 3.2 GB), GeForce 2 GTS, SB Live Value, monitor: LG Flatron 17 inches.
Total installation time: 39 mins.
I chose KDE just because I like it (admit that choice of DE is pure matter of personal taste, hardware limitations being the second).

Mozilla and Galeon are UNBELIEVABLY slow, take 50-70 secs to start, removed them and stick with Konqueror.

It is overall usable (I am talking about graphical environment), but the abundant choice of similar-purposed apps can be confusing for average user. I mean eg there are more than five text processors to choose from - you tell me is it good or not?

To some of OSNews posters: can you guys accept the fact that Eugenia expresse HER opinion which of course will differ from what some of you tend to think/believe in? The only thing more stupid than UI wars is the flamefest regarding mice/trackballs usability.

Keep it up, Eugenia.

Re: I agree with Ranger
by .jon on Fri 18th Oct 2002 02:59 UTC


> your obviously nonstandard configuration.

So ? Let's see. You are going to be so corrupted by obviously being a
Mandrake-Fan, that you prefer implying, that an OS only has to support
standard-configurations than accepting the critics it may get by power-users ?

The big problem with Mandrake is, that as soon it comes out, a lot of "Heh,
look I run LINUX now!" folks publish Mandrake reviews on different sites.

Mandrake-Linux has been the only Linux I used ever. I use it since version 7.2
and I even bought the Power-Packs 8.0 and 8.1. I got myself the complete
Mandrake-ftp stuff after it became clear, that they did some big hazard at
packaging the distro, leaving off stuff like 'hdparm' from the PowerPack, while
including it in the download edition. They tried to cover that as 'we considered
this in order to have enough place on the CDs'. Sorry, but I won't pay that much
money and then miss hdparm. No, download is not an option for the purchaser of a
boxed solution.

But let's see. Each time Mandrake gets reviewed the review is like: Oh, it
worked fine, cool, it detected my hardware. Well...and if someone has more
critics it is 'due to non standard configs' and becuase he wanted to 'install
too much software'. Let's face it: Power users have a higher demand, they use
more stuff, find more bugs.

Here is my road of pain with Mandrake:

Installed 7.2 - Soundcard was not supported, in contrary to their information on
the WWW page. But I got 8.0 a few weeks later... Tried to do an update over 7.2.
Installation failed.

Soundcard now would play sound, heavily distorted. It was a pain in the ass. It
was due to lacking support in kernel, still, card was being named as fully
supported. A 3/4 year without sound... Overall 7.2 and 8.0 were okay.

Then 8.1 ! Wholy shit ! Tried update. Same errors as with 7.2->8.0. Broken RPMs.
I installed it from scratch. Chose LDAP as AUTH. With server=localhost. LDAP
servers got NOT installed !!!!! Can you believe this ?! I could not login for
23 hours because I did not even dare to dream about such a mistake.
Several servers needed minutes to come up druing boot. So boot took
approx. 10 minutes each time. X would not start. "respawning too fast".
Noone, even not on #Mandrake would be able to help me. Finally 'dams'
(an employee) had a good idea. I disabled all security stuff (well, one needs
to know how to do this at first).I installed LDAP servers. But - no avail. So I
chose /etc/passwd. Now, if I had my NIC up each login would take minutes. Same
for auth at server start. If the NIC was down, all fine. If I was online ppp0
same problems. I tried so many things. Fresh install, GetHostByName() bug
hunting, installed different DNS. No luck ! I was wihtout LAN for 6 months.
I could be without in my case but still.....this sucks. I tried registering at
their bug-database, at Mandrake-Expert, my account got accepted but never
activated, for several times I tried.

Then I got 8.2 I wanted to install it. It would not at all ! I have two HDD. One
has a corrupt FAT32 in it and several Linux partitions, of which one is a
corrupt /usr (ReiserFS!), plus a BeOS and a QNX partition.
It would not write the parition table for the empty 2nd HDD. But I needed to do some
tricks with PartMagic in oderer to have the installer _not_ loop in an error-dialog,
that I could not step out.

Wow, I am tired, do not want to write more. The only reason I stay with Mandrake
is for the many RPMs I get on the Internet. This is really the only reason.
I do not want to register at RedHat. I wanted to join the Mandrake-Club, but the
company is too worthless for me, Deno, their Forum-Webmaster too arrogant and
nosey for being an official voice of a company.

> negative about are personal opinions and shouldn't enter into a review. The

Yes, personal stuff indeed belongs into a review. However, it should not be
based on them. And the review was not being _based_ on them.

> fact that you, personaly, don't care for Mandrakes choice of theme shouldn't
> enter into this review unless you found that you were unable to change it. Your

Why not ? Like it or don't. That is what a review is about. Criticism is often
subjectiv.

> blasting Mandrakes configuration modules is pretty peculiar as Mandrakes tools
> all start with Drak* and the tool your using is linuxconfig. Maybe you should do
> a review of linuxconfig instead of Mandrake as that's what seems ore important

So what ? If the DrakTools are buggy for her, why wait for Mandrake 9.1 ?

> I guess anyone who chooses expert intall mode needs to be an expert, which
> obviously your not. You like how I keep using the word obviously? I'm doing it

She *HAD* to choose it, due to too little options for the User-mode. I have the
same problem here.

> lilo, or that said expert is too selfabsorbed to read the instructions at the
> bottom of the mouseconfig page.I really think asking any OS to contend with 8

I agree. People who install by "click-through" do not deserve better. The
instructions NEED to be read, this is why they are there. Don't read the EULA,
though ;-))

> operating systems being intalled on a machine is a little much, maybe it's time
> to invest in a test machine that has room room for the OS your installing. How
> can any OS compete fairly when it has to make concessions for 7 others. Your
> review is faulty, biased, skewed and plain wrong. Oh and whats with bashing
> slackwares installer, it's my favorite of all of them, fast and efficient. /dTd

No, the review is _NOT_ plain wrong at all. YOUR assumptions to a review are
plain wrong. Why not have an OS install on a HDD with that many systems ? I have
5 OS installed on my Workstation (addmittedly one has a seperate HDD), that I use
daily. I do not have installed them because I am a 'reviewer' but because I need
three of them daily and two of them are for my personal enyojment to have some fun.
(Windows, Mandrake-Linux, AmigaOS (Amithlon), BeOS and QNX)


Mandrake Menus really suck !
by .jon on Fri 18th Oct 2002 03:12 UTC

I wanted to add to the previous post:

The Mandrake Menu system is a nice idea, badly impleneted.

Whenever I want to arrange the menus as *I* want them it won't
stay like this.

Whenever I install stuff as root it won't go to my users menus.

So I use roots menu for all users (well, it's me (root) and me (jon))
However, as soon I change a slight point in jon's menu all (!)
is jons menu and roots menu is a seperate menu.

Hate it.

I also hated, that some of the Mdk-Wizards would not work
after I replaced the Kaffe Java with IBM's. Which was the
only way to get Java really work.

Mandrake is a loud company not living up to their standards.

As a customer of two boxed and a 2CD special offer set I was
disappointed by their customer support. Howeverm they seem to
help out fine any 'downloader' of their distro.
That customer support is bad has been confirmed to me by my local
Linux reseller, maybe the most cabable computer-shop in this city
(its big, its the capitol ;-))

I don't agree with the article at all..
by Anand on Fri 18th Oct 2002 03:24 UTC

I have been an avid Red Hat user and have also used Debian a lot recently including Debian 3 rev0 release. But I was bowled over by Mandrake 9.0. The ISO images were downloaded with considerable ease thanks to my DSL connection and I burned them easily on 700 MB CDs. The install on my Compaq Presario laptop was a breeze.
Now for the real news : even my wife who is an avid Windoze XP fan, is now switching over to Mandrake Linux as she likes the awesome interface. This was using Gnome 2.
I do a lot kernel mode work so don't really bother about the distro. But mdk 9.0 is AWESOME guys. I think it is the most sophisticated linux distro I have seen to date, as goes the ease of use, the attractive look and the applications.(using ISO images 1 & 2).

Please reconsider
by anonymous on Fri 18th Oct 2002 03:38 UTC

Generally, I think your reviews are insightful and interesting. However, I think you should consider taking steps towards improving the professionalism of your articles. In particular, poor spelling is often perceived as an indication of laziness, apathy or ignorance (or some unfortunate combination thereof). It is especially difficult to overlook when you could easily leverage the many spell-checkers and dictionaries available to the modern computer user.

Also, it is rather disingenuous to respond to criticism of your spelling with "I DON'T care". You should care; you are selling advertising, and a sense of professional responsibility would dictate that you serve your clients as best you can. Not to mention that if Mandrake or RedHat responded to YOUR complaints about their products with "We DON'T care", you would rake them over the coals!

Anyway, keep up the good work, and strive for excellent work!

RE: Please reconsider
by Eugenia on Fri 18th Oct 2002 03:41 UTC

>poor spelling is often perceived as an indication of laziness, apathy or ignorance

I already fixed 4 spelling mistakes I found earlier. I can't find any more, and it is late, I am tired, and to be honest, I _really_ don't care about spelling and grammar. What matters is the MEAT of the issue. Not the candies.

linuxconf
by Igor on Fri 18th Oct 2002 03:48 UTC

--- posted by Anonymous ----
Nope... Why the earth, would Mandrake include the bug apps in their product? Mandrake is supposed to choice the stable apps to be part of their product. Also, if they can fix then do it. The users will call/email to the Mandrake's support ticket area for this problem. Therefore, it's Mandrake's fault to include the bug apps. I suggest you to re-read what's Mandrake's goal, which they still haven't meet this goal yet.
-----------------------------

If Mandrake thorougly tested each and every app that came with their distro, it would take them years to get every release out the door, and would also impact the release quality negatively. The linuxconf issue is a small cosmetic bug, and does not affect the functionality at all. Besides, Linuxconf is not a part of the default install and is on the CDs for people who want to use it for some obscure reason. Fixing non-critical bugs like this is very low priority, considering that they have a myriad of other issues to resolve (such as the same supermount problems). You should try subscribing to the mailing list sometime and seeing how difficult it is to make everything work well.

Also, I will bet money that I can find about several similar bugs in the software bundled with Redhat or Suse. I doubt that they do any more checking than mandrake does. But then, Mandrake is a much smaller operation compared to redhat or suse and actually makes money instead of flushing it down the toilet.

RE: linuxconf
by Eugenia on Fri 18th Oct 2002 03:53 UTC

>If Mandrake thorougly tested each and every app that came with their distro

You do not understand. THIS is their added value. To make sure that everything works fine on the packages they include. This _is_ the job of the packager/OS.

>Also, I will bet money that I can find about several similar bugs in the software bundled with Redhat or Suse.

Who said that they do any better? They probably don't. I did find problems with SuSE as well. I couldn't load nethack for example.

But the fact that neither RH and SuSE don't do it perfectly either, is not to say that someone shouldn't do testing. From the moment they include these apps on their OS, it *becomes* their responsibility. If they find bugs, their devs should track down their problems and send over the diffs to the developer and include the fixed version on their OS. _That's_ how it should work. And if it is way too much work, they should consider that do not include 3 or 7 CDs full of software. Less is better. Just do it right. According on the resources of each company.

RE: linuxconf
by Anonymous on Fri 18th Oct 2002 04:19 UTC

Igor,

Just like I said to re-read about Mandrake's main goal? If you re-read and our answers/points are already covered, which you have failed to understand.

...
by rajan r on Fri 18th Oct 2002 04:26 UTC

Eugenia: First of all, why all the Mandrake utilities are written in GTK+ 1.x when the company ships KDE as the default DE?

IIRC, it is in GTK+ 2. But anyway, it is so because there isn't any QT bindings for Perl.

jetexas: More importantly, is there something any Linux distro does that Windows does *not*?

Well, if you want to have something you can brag about, you can recompile your entire OS.....

Anonymous: * doesn't use Mandrake's default background
* use a mix of Mandrake's icons and Crystal icons. This is ugly and doesn't show the real desktop


Oh right, you aren't suppose to theme the OS, even though that was one of the features it claimed to have... (Besides, Eugenia's desktop looks a thousand times better than Mandrake's default).

Anonymous: * show linuxconf which is not installed by default and says that the stupid Linuxconf window is a Mandrake bug. This untrue. It is a Linuxconf bug.

I never tried Linuxconf on Mandrake 9.0 yet, but it was problem free on Red Hat Linux 8.0. Same compiler, almost same kernel. Mandrake bug? Yeah.

Taras Glek: Well mdk has a weak & somewhat buggy apt-get like thing called urpmi. But i preffer mdk cos it was my first distro that got me hooked ;) ..and after 3 years of defiance in debian/gentoo..i'm back to mdk9 ;)

He/she isn't comparing on that part. He/she says he couldn't install the distro because of the size, therefore picked Red Hat and was happy ever since.

Anonymous: I can tell you what Linxu doesn't do. It doesn't require that you submit a cryptic cd key, it doesn't require you to register the machine with the company from where it came. It doesn't lock you into on company's vision of standards.

Most Windows XP users would have never seen the Activation thing, it is done by the OEM. However, it is actually quite easy and fast with a Internet connection, while a hard if you do it by telephone (it is a 50 digit number).

Registering is optional, and since when Linux doesn't lock you into the community's vision of standards?

Anonymous: Once again, they allowing the individual to make the choice instead of some marketing rep. at the corporate office.

Okay, AdminA wants to move the Windows installation to Linux. He chooses Mandrake. He gets 5 CDs with software he has no idea what they are about. To make matters worse, there is no easy way to install them, nor are most of the software decriptively named (ask you non-Linux using mum what's Everybuddy).

Eugenia: It is my design decision to not support threading. I wanted to add it, and lots of people emailed me asking me to NOT to. So, I will leave it as is.

I actually much prefer threading. However, I notice people agianst threading don't like its complexity. Unfortunately, with what we have now, and the amount of post we have, threading would be a better choice.

When I first came, threading would sound insane, but as of now, with the amount of hits and posts it gets, threading would be a good idea. Plus, a database for registaring users (would be much much better).

Eugenia: Our only server (serving as a gateway) here is a lowly AMD K6 running FreeBSD.

Which explains a lot of problems........

Jules Verne: The laptop came with Windows XP, which I was glad to get rid of; it might be pretty, but it won't let me upgrade my hardware without being branded a software pirate and having to plead with Bill Gates minions

Actually no. I haven't seen one laptop that is able to do enough upgrades so that you would need to do the Activation again. Gawd, talk about stupid customers. Unless you change your CPU (unlikely), motherboard (very unlikely), hard disk and any other component of your choice, you get to speak with Gates' minions.

---

Can't... read.... further.....

Nice review, BTW

Re; Rajan r
by Eugenia on Fri 18th Oct 2002 05:08 UTC

>> Eugenia: Our only server (serving as a gateway) here is a lowly AMD K6 running FreeBSD.

>Which explains a lot of problems........


What problems? We never had any problems with our server... Ah... you are being sarcastic... hehe... ;-)

v Mandrake Review
by bonehead on Fri 18th Oct 2002 05:14 UTC
Mandrake9 VS Redhat8
by Johan on Fri 18th Oct 2002 05:24 UTC

I Switched from RedHat to Mandrake9 because to me RedHat8 was very dissapointing.
I never knew a distro could be so cool as Mandrake 9 is.
Keep up the good work Mandrake.
I think Redhat has lost contact with the average linux-user, Mandrake has not.

v Do you get paid to do this?
by Scott on Fri 18th Oct 2002 06:18 UTC
v Re: I think this is the last time I will visit ...
by Random User on Fri 18th Oct 2002 06:23 UTC
My 2 cents
by genaldar on Fri 18th Oct 2002 06:32 UTC

First off in order to dual boot you have to use an expert install, period. Otherwise Mandrake (along with some other distro's I've tried) will hose windows. That doesn't make you want to use an os a lot, having it wipe your system clean. In some ways its worse then windows (if I have linux installed on a second partition windows won't see it, it'll just slide into the first partition).

Mandrake did some things better then rh8 (at least for me). Redhat used grub, even though I specifically chose lilo (I don't care which one is technologically better, I know lilo a little and it works fine on my 98se, 2kpro, linux machine). Redhat defaulted to gnome, thats fine, but I couldn't find a way to change the default to kde (I switch between them along with all the window managers a lot). Normally theres a box on the login where you can select which de (or wm) but I had none. So in order for me to run kde I'd have to log into gnome, then switchdesk. Not ease of use if you ask me. Redhat didn't make mountpoints for my fat32 partitions. Yes I did expert install but I shouldn't have to make mount points.

To be honest the easiest distro I've tried, to this day is Caldera 2.4. I'm sure 3.1 was great, but its settings were so high my poor old celeron ~450 couldn't even open the kmenu to turn them down. It integrated wine, ran smoothly and while it didn't just shove you into anything it didn't make you feel like an idiot by holding your hand like you're a toddler who needs to pee (like some of the mandrake stuff does). If your asking why I didn't stick with it there are 3 reasons; 1.) Sound didn't work (this was before I found a driver), 2.) I was on dial up then and I couldn't use my modem, 3.) nothing to do. Once I played every game and dinked with every app I was done, i couldn't get more stuff to do.

Mike
by genaldar on Fri 18th Oct 2002 06:53 UTC

Sweet mother of god linux needs more people like you. Seriously when all windows users hear is rtfm or m$ is evil all it does is make us want to ignore linux even more. And when we try linux and are told our questions are stupid and we're too used to doing it the "wrong" way, we begin to wish we had never heard of linux. Then to come across someone who instead of bashing everyone else's choice, and insisting your's is the only correct one you admit its only best for you and people should use what is best for them. Oh my god that woke me up. I was reading this thread, dozing a little since its a quarter to two and I've got a five hour drive tomorrow afternoon, and your post actually woke me up. None of that your review sucked 'cause you didn't like mdk, or you don't know what you're doing 'cause you don't know linux. You made valid constructive critiscims of her review and made valid observations about computing in general (hell about life, do what is best for you is a damn fine motto).

btw I know there are many more linux users like Mike on this site and other places, but sometimes its nice to be reminded of them. Mike you and your kind of tolerant, helpful, insightful linux users are the only thing thats kept linux alive this long. And the only hope it has of continuing to survive this age of slashdot zealotry and "enthusiasts" who use linux and bash ms and ms users because its geek chic. If your ever in Minneapolis drop me an email and I'll buy you a beer, well if I'm not at school anyway.

I'm sure I misspelled a bunch of stuff but I'm too lazy to spell check it and I'm too sleepy to spell well.

RE: rajan r
by Matthew Gardiner on Fri 18th Oct 2002 07:03 UTC

Why use perl? Redhat creates a good selection of configuration tools using Python 2.2 and GTK2 without any problems.

Eugenia
by genaldar on Fri 18th Oct 2002 07:17 UTC

I forgot to say good review. Ignore the grammer nazis, the misspellings aren't that bad (I had an english professor who said if the word is spelled well enough to understand what its supposed to be, its spelled correctly). Besides some great writers are bad at using correct technics (ee cummings hardly ever wrote sentences or use capitalization). I can't believe some of the modded down comments went out of their way to "mock" you because english is a second language for you (hell it could be a tenth language for you, we don't know). I guess some people have to resort to petty name calling and down right racism.

There is no right way to spell words in the english language, there are only currently accepted ways to spell them. If you don't believe that read Shakespear, he "misspelled" a ton of stuff (if today's accepted spellings are the "correct" ones). Its called a "live" language, it evolves, only dead languages stop evolving.

my thoughts exactly
by genetix on Fri 18th Oct 2002 07:42 UTC

I'd have to agree with the author, i've come accross most of the same problems, and I agree that the tools look out of place and mandrake just looks unprofessional.

I am a Debian user and I installed Md 9.0 out of curiosity some weeks ago. I cannot agree with this review. First of all I had no problems booting Md 9.0 from an xfs partition, using both lilo and grub. In addition, I think, the installer and the control center look and feel pretty slick and professionel. There are people out there, that do not need all the SUSE & RedHat bloat. Third, if you want to have a nice KDE Theme, just go to the control center and chose one. And there are a lot more of them on www.kde-look.org. Linux is about choice and I think it is o.k. to let users chose how the desktop should look like. And, in addition, this has the advantage, that it easy to install e.g. KDE3.1. I wonder how I get KDE3.1 working on RedHat8.0 without messing up the hole system. I like OSNews, there are a lot of nice stories on the site. But lately the Distributions reviews are really becoming more and more cynic and subjective. It seems to me, that everything that is not RedHat is bad anyways.

> seems to me, that everything that is not RedHat is bad anyways

If you read my review of Red Hat, you won't think that anymore. This is not a red hat chirleader site.

My feedback (not that anybody cares...)
by UglyMike on Fri 18th Oct 2002 08:45 UTC

Eugenia is pretty negative reviewer... but that's ok! As others have said, it's a welcome change from the rah-rah reviews we usually get. I do think that if she was to review Volvo security she'd be pissed you can't drop it from a plane, ram it into a wall at 100MPH or drive over a mine. "I don't care the others cannot do so either. I'm reviewing the Volvo!!"
Some of my measely remarks:
It's written from a normal 'Newbie' perspective but using 8-OS system

Dated layout & UI / looks dated and ugly at best
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder
Partitioning tool looks horrible
as compared to what? FIPS? RH8? Suse8.1? WinXP Home?
Some valid critisism in link of course
Mouse problem.
Never had it.. click LMB/RMB/Wheely Tadaaa!!
Select XFS and you either know your stuff or you're Homer's twin
Euh, default, ext2, ext3, JFS, XFS, ReiserFS,...
D'oh, let's take XFS...

Authentication
Haven't noticed it. Could be valid when correct but nice to have for wrong PW)

Mandrake should have worked on the looks and the UI
Sure, make Eugenia happy and then piss off someone else...
This is all about personal taste!!

WindowMaker and some apps broken
Valid point

Menu layout & 7 terminals issue
Use the friggin' MenuEditor!!
It's a lot easier to delete something from the menu than to add it.

800x600
Stock SVGA is how old? 15 years?

GTK Config tools
Personal taste
counter point could be that it's 'visual feedback when working in system altering modules'

Config tools take forever to start + no refresh
Pisses me off too....

Mandrake 9.0 focus
Who cares... It works for me.

Personally, I'm happy with 9.0 Not stellar, but getting better at every new version.

Regards,
UglyMike

Perl binds to Qt very well
by Andreas on Fri 18th Oct 2002 09:31 UTC

Rajan got some facts wrong:

> IIRC, it is in GTK+ 2. But anyway, it is so because
> there isn't any QT bindings for Perl.

Of course there is! And after having expierience with both GTK+'s Perl binding and PerlQt for Qt 3 I can say that PerlQt is no less stable or advanced then the GTK+ binding, quite the opposite is true. It even has reasonable support for Qt's GUI designer which I like very much (for not too complex UIs). This is the situation today. But there was no usable Perl binding for Qt years ago when Mandrake wrote the first line of their Control Center.

Also you stated that the control center uses GTK+ 2. Thats not right. It still uses GTK+ 1. Their own little Perl GUI toolkit was never updated for GTK+ 2.

See http://perlqt.infonium.com/

Cheers,
Andreas

9.0 is a .0 for sure
by oliv on Fri 18th Oct 2002 10:14 UTC

Eugenia, you haven't encountered all of the problems with the 9.0. Another one that is mentionned on cooker's mailing list and in some bugs is related to supermount.

Supermount in mandrake 9.0 is the worst thing they could do to sell their distribution. Imagine konqueror hanged every time you go to /mnt during 10-20 seconds (// zip). Imagine that pressing the eject button of you cdrom (cdrom not accessed, not displayed in any *term or file manager window) will eject your cdrom ... and less than one second later reswallow it, so you cannot actually take the disc out.

But maybe the typical problem with mandrakesoft is the way they treat bug reports. They just don't care. I've a long time ago written a bug that last as "new" for 1.5-2 years (and was present in at least 3 successive versions). The bug was deleted without any comment/question/request-for-details from anyone. I recently went back to their bugreport system to confirm a bug reported for 9.0 by a user. Weeks after, nothing. While 2 persons are mentionning the bug (and I give a workaround), it's still classified as "UNCONFIRMED".
As a benevolent tester of Mozilla for quite some time to, I have reported many bugs. None of them have EVER been ignored, even those concerning some small CSS implementation defects. Both projects use bugzilla. But Mozilla is day, MandrakeSoft is night. Sooooo many bugs present in the final were reported in the beta and in the pre versions. They were just ignored as usual.

Do they really think I will go on spending MY time posting bug reports and workarounds? I'm trying to help them improve their product. I'm not paid for it. I do not deserve despise and disdain!

Good review
by Matt on Fri 18th Oct 2002 10:15 UTC

I liked the review. Granted, the spelling and grammar could have been better (perhaps you need an editor?), but I liked how the negative was emphasized. All too often, when Linux sites review a Linux distribution, they give it a 9.9/10 and say that it's the "best release ever!"

Ugh. I hate cheerleaders pretending to be unbiased reviewers.

People need to know which Linux distributions have ugly default themes, buggy configuration tools, poor UI during installation, etc. These things are glossed over in almost every review. It seems as though the reviewers are actually apologizers; for example, comments like, "The install could have been easier, but it's a big step forward. 9/10." Ugh. No. If it has problems, then it should be a 6 or 7, not a 9.

I used to like Mandrake, but I have become very annoyed with their amateurish, unpolished, buggy releases. Not that Red Hat is much better, but at least Red Hat has some degree of professionalism. Unfortunately, I think Linux distributions are becoming worse, not better, as time goes on. They should be getting leaner, smaller, and more functional, not buggier, bloated, and slower. Blech.

Re: Linux
by M. Sindayen on Fri 18th Oct 2002 10:18 UTC

"Every Linux distro I have tried has aimed to be a Win98 clone and each of them has failed miserably. Why replicate what has been done (poorly)? If you Linux guys really want to beat MS, show me something that hasn't been before. Until then, I am happy using Windows XP."

The Windows XP file manager is a clone of Nautilus IMHO. Microsoft Windows tried to clone the Apple Macintosh. Apple Macintosh cloned Xerox GUI. Each of this exercise was meant so that our eyes would be looking at sonething beautiful. However, the exercise means copying one others ideas.

Do you not get it! There is no innovation on eye candy, each one can just copy one another. True innovation is when you do something unusual/unique and solve a perennial problem quickly or efficiently eg Newtonian Physics, Differential Equations, EMC2 etc.

If this is a topic of who looks better then your post is meaningless and deregatory. You judge a book by its cover and not by its contents. Did you get your education telling teachers or professors how good looking you are? Or you got your education studying for it.

Poorly written review
by Nacs on Fri 18th Oct 2002 10:20 UTC

The distro was tested on one, underpowered PC with multiple.OSs to complicate matters. When undertaking something as large as an OS review, take the responsibility to test it on more than one system. And spend some time on it--examine it thoroughly--don't just whine about things not fitting on the screen because of a low resolution.

Creating an OS isn't easy--you expect the Mandrake developers to take responsibility for every package on the CD and spend months fixing it while your review itself seems to have been mashed together in around an hour.

And sorry, screaming "I DON'T care" in response to spelling/grammar errors isn't exactly the most professional/logical/mature answer.

What you wrote in this so called 'review' was nothing more than an editorial at the most--and yes there is s difference between the two.

sigh
by jd on Fri 18th Oct 2002 11:02 UTC

Hello,

When is there going to be a Linux operating system, rather than the continual mess of Linux distributions?

Distribution != Operating System in my opinion. A control panel, some icons, a colour theme, and a whole lot of packages does not an operating system make!

v To Eugenia
by Ced on Fri 18th Oct 2002 11:20 UTC
Is it any surprise???
by DrXym on Fri 18th Oct 2002 12:16 UTC

I posted a number of comments on LT questioning the wisdom of the rapid, nay rash speed at which Mandrake 9.0 beta cycle sped through. Some people chose to take issue bleating it's been available in the 'pressure cooker' for so much longer, blah blah blah. Well this is the result!

It is absolutely impossible to release a quality product the size of an entire distribution when you're releasing 1 beta every 10 days with the entire alpha/beta/rc phase taking two months! Major bugs will be missed, the whole thing will lack polish and compared to other distros it will look shoddy. Mandrake 9.0 is shoddy.

I really used to be a great fan of Mandrake, using all the way through to 8.1 but I came to the conclusion that each release has become more bloated, more messy, more buggy and there seems to be no one at the wheel reining it all in. They never learn. They would do well to produce a point upgrade that addresses bugs and usability and little else. Forget adding this kewl new feature, just fix the broken ones it already has.

Re: Perl binds to Qt very well
by rajan r on Fri 18th Oct 2002 12:34 UTC

Andreas: Of course there is! And after having expierience with both GTK+'s Perl binding and PerlQt for Qt 3 I can say that PerlQt is no less stable or advanced then the GTK+ binding, quite the opposite is true.

When was Manrake 9.0 released? 3 weeks ago. When was stable PerlQT released? 17th Spetember. Doesn't give Mandrake much time to migrate, true? As for stability, I have yet to see GTK+ with Perl crash, but with Python, it is a day in day out process (I still haven't figured out the problem). maybe I could relearn Perl and try out PerlQt and compare it with GTK+.....

Andreas: Also you stated that the control center uses GTK+ 2. Thats not right. It still uses GTK+ 1. Their own little Perl GUI toolkit was never updated for GTK+ 2.

Dang, I hate it when I'm wrong. (I hated Control Center anyway, never used it). Besides, there is Perl bindings in the process for GTK+ 2 right now. Only that it is much easier to migrate to PerlQt than to GTK+. Think Bonobo/CORBA.

Excellent Greek Support
by GE on Fri 18th Oct 2002 12:50 UTC

MDK 9.0 has excellent Greek support. Perhaps it is not important for everyone but it is important if you are Greek! Installing Greek ttf fonts automatically update Openoffice, Ghostscript and Cups. Also it has greek support in the Console, plus greek versions of OO and Mozilla. The best Greek support in Linux thus far.

RH 8.0 needs manual tweaking in order to setup everything correctly.

Very Annoying Bug
by Chris on Fri 18th Oct 2002 13:18 UTC

This is a bug that I have recently encountered that is VERY annoying. The first time I installed Mandrake, I configured my HP Deskjet 930C during the install and everything worked great.

But, about a week later, I reinstalled it and decided to wait until after the installtion to install my printer. When everything was up and running, I went into the control center and it detected that it was an HP 930C and I clicked Yes. It downloaded and installed everything, but guess what, I can't print! My printer isn't listed anywhere in any app. And, when I go back into the contral center and click on Printer, nothing shows up, it's just a blank screen.

I hope they fix this in 9.1.

~Chris

gtk stuff
by AdamW on Fri 18th Oct 2002 13:26 UTC

Just a note on the GTK+ interface to the MDK tools. As someone said, it's done this way because perl has good GTK+ bindings. Why use perl? Because the programmers Mandrake has prefer to work in perl. Resources aren't infinite. Personally I use GNOME so they look pretty much in place, but given the choice I'd prefer tools that look a little out of place but are fast and that work (Internet Connection Sharing, for instance, is pretty much a killer Mandrake feature - I have no clue how the hell to setup packet forwarding and so on, but I just turned on the Mandrake firewall, activated ICS, set my other PC to DHCP, and bang, both have internet access) to, say, YaST2, which I always found hideously slow and unreliable. (Why oh WHY does it update EVERY SINGLE CONFIG FILE IT CAN PRODUCE every time you exit, whether or not it was changed?!)

The developers have said they weren't ported to GTK+ 2 for 9.0 simply due to time constraints - there's a *lot* of Mandrake utils, it will take quite a while to move them all across. This is apparently being done for 9.1.

Otherwise I have to say it's pretty much a fair review, and Eugenia did a good job of noting the major flaws with MDK 9. (You might want to write up the supermount bug too, Eugenia, in the interests of more users finding out what's going wrong. Try accessing a few files on a supermount'ed CD. For many people this breaks CD drive access completely. It's a stupid supermount bug that was introduced in the late RC stage.) It would've been nice, however, to concentrate on some of the positive stuff - notwithstanding the bugs, MDK is comfortably my favourite distro, and it'd be nice to give it credit where it's due. Personally I love the excellent work that was done on integrating OpenOffice into the Mandrake structure, I love urpmi (who said it was flaky? Explain?), and I think Frederic Crozat does an excellent job packaging GNOME and related stuff for MDK. I also think the printer support is great.

Oh, as for the major version change - there was quite a discussion about it, but I think it was valid. Not only did the GCC version change, but so did a bunch of other fundamental stuff, including major version changes to *both* major DEs (GNOME went from 1.4 to 2.0, KDE from 2.2 to 3.0). I think this is enough to justify a major change for MDK.

Mandrake, XFS and Lilo
by Bill Pechter on Fri 18th Oct 2002 13:31 UTC

The problem is lilo (even with the RedHat XFS direct from SGI) can't boot if lilo is installed in the XFS partition.

Put it in the master boot block and it's fine. This is an XFS problem related to XFS keeping their file system design identical to the SGI Irix version... They can't put the lilo data in the same place as EXT2/3/Reiser...

It's documented in the XFS docs.

Bill

2 camps
by jan on Fri 18th Oct 2002 14:18 UTC

Having read the article and all the comments it is interesting to see that the comments can be divided into 2 groups: those who install it and the "modify it to suit themselves".i.e those who are skilled; and those who are not skilled and, being unable to modify it so that it works, dislike it; i.e Joe user (like me).
Mandrake is believed, by the cognoscenti, to be aiming at the "desktop" market. However the Linux community (i.e. skilled people) do not realize that "desktop" has one meaning for them and another for Joe User. This can be seen in all the introductory books; which begin by saying anyone can learn Linux, and a few pages later saying:"see yout sysadmin for info..."
BUT consider this statement from the end of her review
"our target is clearly to provide a system that is a great choice to install Linux in enterprises."
No wonder she finds Mandrake inconsistent.

re: Linux
by Shulai on Fri 18th Oct 2002 14:21 UTC

Linux is build-in lots of distros, Windows XP is not.(so???)

Ehhm... Choice?

WinXP has very good hardware compatibility. Linux has not.
WindowsXP has way more software than Linux has.
WinXP has more games and better 3D compatibility.

Because Microsoft bought half-worldŽs soul. In the case of software, lot of them cursed their own sins after MS invaded/won their own market, and they had no place for their products.

WindowsXP supports a better office suite than Linux does

So youŽll never have an OS choice because of product leverage. You can stand points from product point of view, but there are still a lot of technical and political reasons to bet on Linux (or BSDs, or Hurd, or...)


I realise that each distro does fonts ion its own way (in the absense of a good standard)... cf mandrake and redhats... and they probably hack the apps to work with thier font servers...

anyway - OpenOffice on a default install using XFCE produces unreadable fonts with _negative_ character spacing on screen.. that is the characters merge and overlap each other... opening new docs, relaoding OOo, changin fonts, sizes, styles has no affect.

but the fionts are at least anti-aliased.

so i installed OO from the tarball from the source site... and it works but i have lost all the font AA and probably easy integration to the CUPS printing system?

i menmtione dthis on alt.os.linux.mandrake with no responcse.

plus, i had the same gpm bug on 8.2... start linux itno console mode and move the mouse ,.... it goes crazy and generates mad control cde... restarting gpm solves it... again... this occured in 8.2 and now 9.0....and on two differnt computers (p-ii, asus p2b, and duron on a via kt133)... with a ms 3-wheel mouse.

t

i agree with the review that mandrake are now a bit complacent compared with the others... need a fresh round of pushing the limits!

t

how come...
by daniel on Fri 18th Oct 2002 14:43 UTC

...users think that a problem in a linuxenvironment is bound to the distribution they use? A distribution is only a collection of programs. Maybe a little bit modified but it's the same programs that exsist in other distros. And the hardware/driver-problems... lots of users think that, ie, a nvidiacard can have trouble running in ie. Mandrake but maybe runs fine in RedHat. This is upsetting. They all use the same base, linux kernel (now 2.4.19 is the latest stable). If linux is too hard for you then maybe you were ment to be a WindowsXP local user. If you intend to use linux you should dig deep and get dirty. Most questions can be found looking in the doc's that every application comes with. And if that's not enuff.. go search some mailinglists?

How do the distro's quality test?
by someguy on Fri 18th Oct 2002 15:12 UTC

I am wondering how the distributions put the packages together. Do they just have a whole bunch of people, combined with the community writing spec files and just hoping that all the packages will play nicely?

Every package included in a distribution should be considered on its own, on its merits. There should be at least 1 year of beta testing - these betas will be pretty stable for most people and bug reporting features should be built in (directing all bugs to the distro maker). Where possible, custom software should be used to ensure packages are made to conform to certain standards (eg checked against some sort of ruleset specific to the OS and checked against packages already committed to test for conflicts).

I could of course be talking out of my arse here, because I have no idea how Red Hat, Mandrake etc package their OS. Does anybody know what steps they go through internally when they put together a distro?

The reason I'm saying this, is that there seems to be a lot of human error in the packaging of programs. Perhaps there needs to be a better packaging system and programs to create packages (as in creating the spec files, not building the packages).

azazel

Booting XFS root with lilo
by mario on Fri 18th Oct 2002 15:31 UTC

Well, I would guess that the disk geometry may be the reason. Eugenia, did you install Mandrake in a slice/partition at the beginning of the disk? What kind of disk are we talking about?

Eugenia and spelling
by Sebastian on Fri 18th Oct 2002 15:45 UTC

Eugenia (IP: ---.client.attbi.com) - Posted on 2002-10-18 03:41:15

> I _really_ don't care about spelling and grammar. What
> matters is the MEAT of the issue. Not the candies.

1. Disagreed.

2. If this is your opinion, why do you care about Mandrakes "candies", in fact, according to you, it is only the "MEAT" that counts.

3. I like your review AND I like Mandrake 9.0 (My primary OS). It's Ok someone kicks their asses, because this way the developers get the motiviation to fix the issues in 9.1 ;-)

MfG

Sebastian

About XFS + Lilo/Grub...
by Patrick Leong on Fri 18th Oct 2002 16:15 UTC

Well, it seems that nobody really points that out...

Eugenia, forgive me to say some geeky details to explain why some people can make XFS work with Lilo/Grub, while some others can't...

Both Lilo and Grub can be installed into 2 different locations: the MBR of the harddisk, and the beginning of a partition. Basically, they serves as a kernel loader, but they have the extra functionality to be a boot manager. (One pure kernel loader is Loadlin in DOS.)

The purpose of a kernel loader, or a bootstrap, is well explained in FreeBSD handbook. Basically, it's a small piece of software that can be loaded into the memory and execute, so that it can bring up a full kernel.

When Lilo/Grub is installed in MBR, it becomes the boot manager of the booting harddisk. This is easy to understand. When the system boots up, it will execute whatever in the MBR of the booting harddisk, and in this case, Lilo/Grub. Mind you, though, MBR is NOT in ANY partition of the harddisk.

Now the case if installing Lilo/Grub in the first sector of the / or /boot partition. Since the machine only look at the MBR when it starts, how can Lilo/Grub be brought up to boot the machine? In fact, if you use fdisk/cfdisk whatever to make a partition "active" or "bootable", it'll install a little default program in the MBR, telling the machine to search for a kernel loader in the first sector of the partition that has been marked "active" or "bootable". Thus saying, if you have only one / and one swap partition, then either installing Lilo/Grub in MBR, or installing Lilo/Grub in the first sector of / and use cfdisk to make / bootable, they have the same effect, if the / partition is NOT XFS.

What's wrong with XFS? It's about its file allocation table. If you know a hell lot of file system, you'll know that almost every popular file system (FAT, FAT32, NTFS, ext2, etc etc) has one thing called "file allocation table", which serves as an index of telling the system where to look for a particular file in the huge disk address. Most Linux file systems, such as ext2 and ReiserFS, place the file allocation table in the first sector of the harddisk, PLUS at least one backup (ext3 seems to make a hell lot of backup FATs), so that if the major FAT is damaged, the file system is not totally inaccessible yet. However, XFS has a "feature" that, it has NO backup FAT. That means, if the FAT in the first sector got corrupted or overwritten, the whole partition is not accessible anymore, FOREVER, just like a unformatted partition.

That's exactly the problem. If people install Lilo/Grub in the first sector of a XFS partition, Lilo/Grub will overwrite the XFS FAT, and the partition is gone. That is the case for many dual-boot users, since they often have already had a boot manager installed (for example, System Commander and BootMagic), and obviously they don't want their boot manager got overwritten. In this case, they'll most likely install Lilo/Grub into the first sector of / or /boot partition, which must not be an XFS. However, if Lilo/Grub is installed in the MBR, even if all partitions in the harddisk are XFS, no problem should be made.

That's how it theoretically works, in practice, some people still have problems on this weird combo even if the criteria has been met. However, I've tested and made sure the above is right (for me) using Slackware 8.1. In Slackware 8.1, I've chosen to use XFS as /, and a swap, that's it. If I install Lilo in the first sector of /, it fails; but when I install Lilo in MBR, everything works.

So, my 2 cents here. Thanks for your patience.

For the love of God...
by gmlongo on Fri 18th Oct 2002 17:54 UTC

I have never heard so many people bitch like sore losers about a review just because they do not like what was said. Eugenia is very honest when it comes to these things, and if there is something she doesn't like, she will say it. If I didn't know better, I'd swear that some teacher let her third grade class post on this forum. "Mommy, she said some bad things about my distro....make her stop or else...oh and can I have a cookie?"

-G

v Garbage
by Anonymous on Fri 18th Oct 2002 18:09 UTC
RE: About XFS + Lilo/Grub...
by Eugenia on Fri 18th Oct 2002 18:21 UTC

Indeed, I had to put my LILO on my hdc4, not on my MBR. Overwritting my bootman boot manager that my primary Windows partition is relying on, it is the last thing I want. So, XFS didn't boot because it was not on the MBR.

"Frank" wrote:
This is not correct. Windows XP permits upgrades of hardware, without being branding a software pirate or having to plead with Bill Gates' 'minions,' or anyone else for that matter. I have easily and legally upgraded video cards, ram chips, ethernet cards, CD-RW drives, installed additional harddrives, etc.
------------------------------
I know others who have not been so lucky. Win XP's "hardware checksum" feature has bitten quite a few people, and if you call up Microsoft and eventually get to talk to a person, they tend to assume you're guilty until proven innocent.

Frank continued:
This is not correct. The installed, default browser, Internet Explorer 6, has full cookie-management features. With IE6 running, see Tools/Internet Options/Privacy.
----------------
Does IE 6 also let you block pop-ups? Block JavaScript?
Don't forget, too, that early versions of IE 6 shipped with a "feature" that automatically sent you to websites who were "Microsoft partners" when you did a search. Though I do believe they removed the feature after considerable bad press.

Dunno about you, but I don't like being led about by the nose and told which websites I should go to.


Frank wrote:
Easily solved. See http://httpd.apache.org/docs/windows.html
----------------------------------------
My statement still stands. Win XP doesn't come with Apache.
I know there are WinXX versions, I've run both Apache and ActiveState's version of Perl on Win98 SE in the past, to develop CGI scripts. Though obviously Win98 is utterly worthless as an actual server due to the lack of even basic security features.

Frank wrote:
See Start/All Programs/Accessories/Command Prompt
------------------------
This one I was wrong on, and you are correct.


Frank wrote:
The JPL uses a variety of computer systems, from Beowulf supercomputers running Linux (with Redhat being the default distribution installed by the vendor, PSSC Labs), to desktop systems running Windows NT, et. al. The most common Linux distribution used by the JPL is Redhat.
-------------------------
JPL being a large institution full of individualistic scientists,administrators,and other employees, many with completely differing computing needs, it would be very surprising if everyone used the same hardware and software.
My statement is still correct. I said "rocket scientists use Mandrake Linux", NOT "all rocket scientists use Mandrake Linux". In the research group where my friend works, they use Mandrake Linux.

In the end, it always comes down to personal choice. WinXP may be a glitzed-up Cadillac with leather seats and a satellite navigation system, but it comes with a high price tag, not all of it in dollars. Linux is more like one of those old Datsun 240 Z's - the fit-and-finish may not be great, the surroundings aren't always luxurious, there's a certain amount of noise, vibration, and harshness, but it's solid, reliable, inexpensive to own and maintain, light-weight and nimble, and will run rings around the Cadillac on a twisty road.

Personally, I like Datsun 240 Z's more than I like expensive new Cadillacs.

-Jules Verne

Disable AA
by CodeMonkeyX on Fri 18th Oct 2002 18:59 UTC

I agree with the review, the AA fonts in Mozilla are nasty, is there anyway to disable AA in Mandrake 9.0?

Thanks

Another shilling for redhat.
by v m on Fri 18th Oct 2002 19:57 UTC

accompanied by mdk-bashing. some apps may crash ( but not everybuddy- that piece of shit runs on my system, though I prefer better programs than that) but that happens on ALL the linux distros - I've tried RH upto 7.3.

I agree with the reviewer on ONLY one thing - they could have made default KDE prettier and true, RH 8.0 does that.

As for using GTK vs QT, I wondered the same, except I realize more people have GTK ( esp version 1.x) installed than QT, which they need for other window managers and many common gnu x-based apps. For people not using KDE, qt may not even be installed. I also wondered why they used 1.2 instead of 2.x.

good review
by jujubee on Fri 18th Oct 2002 20:01 UTC

Eugina I'm curios what OS do you use when you aren't reviewing one, for office applications/internet/email

Also i like the way you do reviews becuase you dont fluff the article with bullshit but you show the criticism that need to be said, I think mandrake is a great company and distro but im not about to deny its problems

Underpowered?
by Genaldar on Fri 18th Oct 2002 20:42 UTC

If a dual celeron 533 is underpowered to run a new user friendly distro is such a hypocrit. I guarantee that this same person has berated ms for making the system requirements of their newest os too high. btw mandrake runs fine on my underpowered cleron ~450, and I have 3 oses installed (gonna make it four by adding be one of these days).

Wheel mouse
by Jeroen on Fri 18th Oct 2002 20:49 UTC

Well I am sorry, but the wheel mouse works perfect. Just read wat is displayed on the screen "Move your mouse wheel to active the mosue" ... Well, when you use the mouse wheel the mouse stops jumping like crazy and works like a charm.

Dear Eugenia, Thanks for your review! It sounds like you like Red Hat 8.0 more than Mandrake 9.0, is this correct? I am buying my first Linux distro next week. I want to purchse from their website to show support for Linux. I know I can buy or burn it cheaper, but I am not looking for that now. Any advice on which distro to purchase would be great. I surf, play games, email, and a little word processing and spreadsheets. I have an IBM Thinkpad 233MMX, 96ram, 3.2 hard drive, cd, and 56k modem. It will be a dual boot with Win98SE. I would like to eventually take 98SE off completely. Your assistance is greatly appreciated!

Rubbish...
by Dragon on Fri 18th Oct 2002 21:07 UTC

This was obviously not a normal setup for a box, this reviewer's machine was nothing like what a average person's machine would be like. So in saying that, how can this reviewer review Mandrake from a average person's point of view?

How many average joe/jane users have Beos, a Windows FAT32 partition, a Windows NTFS partition, and use the Beos bootloader as their boot manager? I don't know many, yes I know that there are poeple that do that.. but not many that just use their computer from day to day for "normal" things.

From what I have seen, MDK 9.0 has been good to the majority of poeple I know, plus it works great on the machines I have intalled it on.

Plus you used the expert install... maybe it'd go a little smoother and all if you used the one the normal user used... and installed it on a "clean" machine... maybe one with just Windows on it. I also don't know many that would dive into linuxconf, which I didn't relise was installed unless you choose to or something.

From what I see things that caused "Eugenia - It did not do it for me." and similer comments is mainly because... you already had alot of things set up that created this messy install/setup/performance.

In a way this "review" reminds me of a extended troll without the offencive language, with a few big words, and maybe a rare valid point.

The main thing that turns me off to this written text is the fact that the machine it was done on was setup like it was.


btw, if you want to use a boot manager that can boot Beos, Windows.. and Linux..yet still be able to do all that XFS stuff using lilo probably would have been the better answer ;) I thik this first part is only for the personal edition I am not sure... but hey at least I know how to STFW. But seeing as you don't have the "average" users machine I am sure you know all about searching the web too...

in Windows:
1. extract zbeos file from BeLaunch (Windows boot utils for BeOS/x86).

in Linux:
2. copy zbeos into /boot/ directory in linux (there should be boot.b, chain.b, vmlinuz*, ...)

Use Mandrake Control Center (NOT linuxconf.. I know its tempting.. but NO.. mainly because I know it will send you on a fit of whining again)... or edit /etc/lilo.conf with a text editor, and set up the following:

other=/dev/hda1
label=BeOS
alias=b
table=/dev/hda

Just tack that on to the last bit of lilo.conf and of course replace "hda1" & "hda" with whatever device Beos is on. Of Plus you can also download the Linux version of Beos from www.bebits.com ;)

But of course if you were the average user... you wouldn't have to do that... or even have to worry about it.

What did not work for you... seems to work for most.


lol, of course... I'd love to hear you whine about it if you installed Windows, it would wipe out your mbr and put its own crap on it.

speed requirements
by jodie on Fri 18th Oct 2002 21:11 UTC

I always had the impression that linux was the solution for older hardware, but according to the zealots I need a 2 gigahertz machine and 500 mgs of ram to run KDE? Sorry, but windowsXX with its user interface runs at a more usable speed in a slower hardware. Why is that hard to admit?


Set-up, jodie
by Jay on Fri 18th Oct 2002 22:16 UTC

Dragon, what point are you trying to make? It is your post that sounds like a troll. She made a 6 GB partition for her install. What difference does it make which bootloader she used? What has comes out of this thread is something I have never quite seen before - Mandrake zealots! You all conveniently fail to mention the positive comments she had on certain aspects of Mandrake. All it sounds like is that Red Hat and SuSE have shot ahead a little bit and Mandrake has not quite kept up. Who knows, perhaps 9.1 will be different.

jodie, it was, at one time, the case that Linux was great for running on older hardware. But, you have to remember, that Linux is the kernel and, when we usually talk about Linux, we're talking about different distributions, some of which have lot of bloat compared to what they used to have. You might want to try Lycoris if you want something that is familiar to your Windows experience or, if you are looking for something really fast and pure Linux, try Vector Linux.

In other words ...
by Anonymous on Fri 18th Oct 2002 22:46 UTC

Mandrake sucks. Mandrake is ugly, unprofessional, and half-baked. Until Mandrake decides to hire some real UI designers, it's always going to be bad. I'm running Red Hat 8.0 as we speak and it has to be the most well done Linux I've ever used. This is only after a couple of days of using. I know it's better because I clicked on a .jar file in Nautilus and it opened up in File Roller. OH MY GOD! I actually didn't have to associate the file with the application manually. It's just little finishing touches like these that make using an OS much more pleasant. Mandrake obviously does not believe in minor but important details. My prediction: Mandrake will no longer exist in 2 or 3 years.

Re: Jay : 6GB Partition, Zealot, Troll?
by Dragon on Fri 18th Oct 2002 22:50 UTC

I never said anything about the sizes of partitons, the bootloader was one of her gripes, and my point was she was not on the "average users" machine or doing "average user" things. Yes I was only addressing the negative.. but hey.. so are you for me, I was also giving her info on how to get it all working.

I too run Windows, BeOS, and a few different flavors of Linux. I am not bias to Mandrake, I like them all. One advantage I noticed in mdk though is the fact it is built to run on pentuim class machines, optimized a little more for modern machines. The only downfall being you can't run it on older hardware such as a 386. Redhat and SuSE are built to be able to run on 386s and up. One advantage of this (if you install it right) is that you can use your old hardware thats laying around.

What the others have shot ahead in is pretty goop, colorful junk and all. Otherwise.. I feel they are all about in the same level, they all are built on the same gcc 3.2 they all just about offer the same packages and I dont' see were any one is truly superior in any way.

Now about the bootloader, Be, the company behind BeOS is gone. The operating system, the real one, is not longer being developed and things are falling behind. The bootloader is part of this package. Now that the development stopped, and development on other things are going on the bootloader has shown a first sign of a dead os. It cannot boot up a XFS system... now thats just one thing I know. But.. one of many to come.. probably in a short amount of time. Lilo.. and Grub.. and probably others.. can boot just about anything out there. That is my point on the bootloader, as she mentioned having problems booting and whatnot and a few things about XFS, and not wanting her bootloader which is gradually becoming outdated overwritten.

That is why I suggested fixing lilo to work with BeOS.

v MY GOD MEN!!!!
by yeyo on Fri 18th Oct 2002 23:25 UTC
v j j j j jay
by yeyo on Fri 18th Oct 2002 23:46 UTC
v HYPOCRITE
by Anonymous on Sat 19th Oct 2002 01:14 UTC
For the newbie
by Alex on Sat 19th Oct 2002 01:57 UTC

I suggest SuSE. They cost only $49 with free shipping if you purchase ther next version. They also will sent you the most coprehensive documentation and even fun stuff like stickers.

Here's a loq quality picture that should give you an overview of what to expect: http://ratedpc.com/sourcefiles/reviews/Suse8point1/pics/box-content...

SuSE also has by far the best configuration tools in general and have an attractive stable and speedy desktop enviroment. If you buy it you also get 90 days of limiteed e-mail support which can come in handy.

I would definetely recommend this distribution, it's manuals are like a treasure chest and they are written in a way that you can understand. SuSE also comes with all the applications you will ever need, however you shouldn't install all of them, it will get too crowded.

Eugenia,

When I first read your review I had since several weeks been running Mdk9 on several machines, both professionally and at home. Reading the review upset me somewhat, I didn't think you where being fair when compared with what other distributions provides. I got the impression you had something against Mandrake. Especially when considering that my own impressions of their newest offering has been very good!

But...

I went ahead and read the other reviews you put online. This did put things more into perspective. Reconsidering my opinion about the Mdk9 review I realize that I actually agree with most parts. I haven't been subjectet to all these problems, but they are probably there, and they shouldn't!
GUI issues normally upset me alot, I mean I have strong opinions about bad GUI design and reconsidering your points I think you are SO right. I guess the last few years of living through "getting the platform right" (which is what I consider has happened with Linux) have caused me to lower the threshold for how bad a GUI can be designed and still be bearable. But the times are over with babying of the distributions. Usability is getting to be the top priority in the coming years (if it hasn't always been). If you get the underlying system working nicely but for Joe User the system is a complete mystery (from usability perspective) we are NOT king of the hill.
So my opinion is mainly, and this goes for most new distributions: The platform is working now, focus on usability, consistency and eyecandy (I actually think this is important :-).
That's all

Regards,
Robert

Best PDF creation ever on Mandrake 9.0!
by Ronald on Sat 19th Oct 2002 09:02 UTC

Dear OSNews readers,

I have been waiting for this for years and now it has finally arrived! You can create top-quality PDF files with Mandrake 9.0 because TrueType fonts are embedded in the PDF files. I believe this is the first distribution to have this!

Many praises to the developers of drakfont!

Ronald

Piece of cake
by Camel on Sat 19th Oct 2002 11:58 UTC

I'm a newbie and I'm just evaluating Mandrake Linux in order to leave Windows completely
I don't know what you guys are using, but I have a PII 350/128mb, I have 2 HDs, one with WinXP/Win98 the other with Mandrake 8.0.
I downloaded 3 CD ISOs and burned them on 700mb CDs using Nero under WinXP.
No problem at all, very smooth indeed!
Booted and chose to upgrade, it took 45mins for 3 CDs, and Bingo! Everything was ok for me.
Windows isn't even close when it come to installation!

Re: WinXP and Linux, or Cadillacs and Datsun Z-cars
by Frank on Sat 19th Oct 2002 18:06 UTC

In reference to upgrading hardware components with Windows XP "Jules Verne" wrote:

"I know others who have not been so lucky. Win XP's "hardware checksum" feature has bitten quite a few people, and if you call up Microsoft and eventually get to talk to a person, they tend to assume you're guilty until proven innocent."

I install new hardware all the time for clients running Windows XP and this had occured a grand total of zero times. Regarding Microsoft it is doubtful the person in question has ever called them so their comments regarding how Microsoft treats people when speaking to them are, at best, ad hominem.

"Jules Verne" previously commented that there was no cookie management extant with the default browser of Windows XP, Internet Explorer 6. This is categorically incorrect and was factually corrected by the present writer; specifically, I wrote:

"The installed, default browser, Internet Explorer 6, has full cookie-management features. With IE6 running, see Tools/Internet Options/Privacy."

To which "Jules Verne" responded:

"Does IE 6 also let you block pop-ups? Block JavaScript?
Don't forget, too, that early versions of IE 6 shipped with a "feature" that automatically sent you to websites who were "Microsoft partners" when you did a search. Though I do believe they removed the feature after considerable bad press."

Of course, this has *nothing* to do with the false claim that Internet Explorer 6 does not provide cookie management. As such, the best response, such as it is, from "Jules Verne" is to offer a response that has nothing to do with the initital statement, hence the informal fallacy of a red herring on his part.

In short, he wishes to divert attention away from the fact that he either (a) doesn't know what he is writing about or (b) is willing to intentionally misrepresent the information.

But to entertain one of the red herrings, yes, Internet Explorer 6 most certainly permits the user to "block" (i.e., disable) Javascript. With IE 6 running, see Tools/Internet Options/Security. It seems doubtful if the person that made such error-laden statements has ever spent anytime actually using the browser in question.

"Jules Verne" wrote:

"My statement is still correct. I said "rocket scientists use Mandrake Linux", NOT "all rocket scientists use Mandrake Linux"."

This is contextually not accurate. The statement, in its full context, indicated that it was, and I quote, "OFFICIAL," that the JPL uses Mandrake Linux. The honest read may simply read the thread in its normal and full context. I never stated, nor even addressed, that "all rocket scientists" (or even some) use Mandrake Linux--indeed, quite the contrary. The statement I wrote was to correct the false statement that it was "official" that the scientists at the JPL use Mandrake Linux, when it is specious if even some of them use it, let alone all or most at the JPL. Context is vital if you are to avoid eisegesis.

Point of fact, the best evidence indicates that the JPL doesn't use Mandrake *at all*, let alone to it being the "official" distro of Linux.

"Jules Verne" continued: "In the research group where my friend works, they use Mandrake Linux."

This is highly doubtful, as most "my friend" stories tend to be. The JPL uses a variety of operating systems for various purposes, with Redhat Linux being the installed OS in Linux environments.

The unqualified and false statements aside, I really am not interested in addressing any individual's statements, particularly when the source doesn't evidence even an introductory familiarity with the operating systems in question, and, as is typically the case, does not hestitate to offer false statements and red herrings in order to "save face" regarding their lack of knowledge.

The moral is that the OS cheerleading that takes place too often is more marked by immaturity, deception and technical ineptitude than by a calm and factual assessment of the actual facts.

For those considering Windows XP, it is very stable, has a coherent and unified interface, you are able to legally-- and without pleading with Microsoft--to upgrade the hardware on your computer, and, yes, you can control how Internet Explorer manages cookies and other configuration options, as with other browsers. The distinction is that IE 6 renders fonts and layout better than other browsers extant. Linux is a great OS, particularly in a server environment and it excels at this. On the desktop, it has a bit to go before being a fully viable alternative to either Windows XP or Mac OSX.

I like Mandrake and it's still what I will propose to newbies
by rainbow on Sat 19th Oct 2002 19:05 UTC

I have been using Mandrake for 3 years now and I like it. With every new version of it, I see it advance. I don't care about the looks of it. It does everything I need and it does it well. It detects all my hardware and installs the drivers and the programs for it. (And this on 2 portables and 1 Intellistation)
I don't see what is not to be like about the Control Center. It's functional. I also don't see what's wrong with the partitioning tool. It's crystal clear to me how one needs to use it. (The intellistation has a combination of IDE and SCSI disks in it). When I first saw it, I immediately saw that it was an enormous improvement over fdisk, cfdisk or this other one that was a little better than these two. As far as I'm concerned DiskDrake is very functional to get the job done. (I have already set up a RAID array with it, piece of cake)

I was disappointed with your review and after reading your review of Redhat, I was convinced you would love Mandrake 9.0. It's a pity, you didn't. Life goes on and I'm sure Mandrake will keep going as well.

As to spelling and the use of language in general: You are writing for the general public, you cannot just say you don't care about that. It's your right not to care about it, but then you will need to hire somebody to make sure that it is corrected before it goes online.

Just my two cents,

Jo

regrets to Frank
by Jules Verne on Sun 20th Oct 2002 06:42 UTC

I am sorry for "Frank". Apparently in his little world, you can dispose of anyone else's opinions and/or experiences by simply labelling them falsehood.

I'm not too surprised that "Frank" is so willing to assume my friend who works at JPL is fictional; since he evidently has the social skills of an underfed buzzard, he probably has no real friends, only made-up ones.

Sorry, Frank. I do indeed know two individuals who had major problems with Win XP following hardware upgrades, and I do indeed have a friend and former office-mate who works at JPL, and his research group does indeed use Mandrake Linux on some of their PC's, as a result of which he is considering installing it on one of his home PC's.

I am quite willing to believe that none of "Frank"'s clients has had a problem with hardware upgrades on WinXP. Statistically that does not prove a thing. You can go out and find a thousand people over seventy years old who have been smoking since their teens with no occurence of cancer; that hardly proves that smoking tobacco is unrelated to the occurrence of cancer.

I have no interest in continuing this dialogue with someone so closed-minded, so I'll leave Frank to continue his little fit of self-superiority by himself.

-Jules Verne

MDK Review
by stingx on Sun 20th Oct 2002 14:44 UTC

The drivel is thick in here. Eugenia, I think your review of the latest Mandrake, was neither less complete, nor more overly critical, than your reviews of the other distros. A review should point out the benefits and the shortcomings so that a prospective user has an idea of what he is getting into. Good job. Too much whining here and it seems to come from OS zealots who wouldn't agree with you no matter what you write.

Peace.

Some very good points.
by Marc on Sun 20th Oct 2002 17:32 UTC

I think that this article hit the nail on the head perfectly, from an end-user approch. Your typical end-user does NOT want the headache of customizing everything in KDE, or getting the install screwed up a dozen times because the mouse options flake out the install, or having 6-7 terminals listed, etc. The end user doesn't care about dozens of options, they care about simplicity. True, Mandrake will not conquer the desktop OS till they've done that. As for a tech-user, I do enjoy that kind of flexability and I will continue to use Mandrake over the other distro's because the have it more tegether than the others. But in the case of gaining the end-user market, Mandrake needs to make many changes to make the user feel comfortable and not confused.

Addendum
by Mike on Sun 20th Oct 2002 17:38 UTC

Let me also state I think this is a good review, as have been the other reviews by Euginia I have read in the past. In an earlier post I said that I did not care for her writing style, which is true. But that does not mean I did not like the content. So I have been thinking on this for a while trying to come up with exactly what I did not like.

Euginia, and this is an honest question so please don't consider it a flame. Do you intentionally glaze over the favorable impresions but expound upon the unfavorable ones? As an example, you spend 2 paragrahs complaining that Mandrake uses the default configuration for KDE and Gnome, another 2 or 3 expounding upon the menuing system, but only a casual refernece to the other WM options. In short you seem to ake offense whenever something does not go right but take it as a foregone conclusion when things do go right. Is this on purpose? In a perfect world everything would go right the first time but this is not a perfect world. The levelof effort to even get this far is an impresive feat IMHO.

Put another way. My impression of the article was that of someone who kept a notepad beside thier computer, whenever something went wrong they made a note of it. Then 12 days later they took that notepad and wrote up a review. X went wrong (3 paragraphs), did not like Y (2 paragraphs), Z needed this (5 paragraphs), everything else seemed OK though (5 sentences). Ther result is an article of pros and cons where I am clearly presented with the cons but have to dig for the pros.

I am also almost concerned about your incredible knowledge in some areas but then shocking inability to read directions. I hate to dwell on it but it is the dreaded mouse configuration example again. A newbie would go "Oh jeez, if a reviewer with 6 different OSes on her computer can not even get the mouse to work right, how can I?" Where in reality if you just read the screen this would not have been an issue. You went through multiple distros and THREE different mice and never thought to read the screen? Shame on you. Simliarly you discuss your XFS difficulties as if everyone would have this problem whereas most would not use XFS. This could have been mitigated by a simple note that the default (Ext3?) filesystem did/should not have this problem, if you use XFS though be aware.

That said I wish to make a quick comment on the commentors (including myself). Leave Euginia's spelling alone PLEASE. English is not her first language IIRC, would you rather she post in her native language? I am sure there would be fewer spelling errors, or if there were errors, most of us could not spot them. If you want to complain about spelling go to /. at least English is the native language for those yahoos. I am sure she has gottent the message after the last 20 comments on spelling in the last couple of reviews. Te question to ask yourself is "Did the spelling or grammatical errors make the article hard to understand?"

Mike

Oh yeah
by Mike on Sun 20th Oct 2002 17:39 UTC

And can we bring the topic back to the review and or the reviewer? This is not the place for OS wars.

Addednum2
by Mike on Sun 20th Oct 2002 17:43 UTC

My spelling is awful is it not? Typos shall be the death of me I am afraid. Sorry needed to say it.

I luv Mandrake but the install won't start on 9.0
by Yann on Mon 21st Oct 2002 06:31 UTC

Something about not being able to load a ramdisk. But the 8.2 install worked fine...

There doesn't seem to be a fix for that either. People have had this on 8.* and 9.0 but mandrake as payed no attention to the problem.

I never liked RedHat because I found it ugly, and I don't like SUSE's stuff to much but untill a new mandrake comes out I'm
forced to go with RedHat (downloading right now)

My first impressions of Mandrake 9.0
by RobT on Tue 22nd Oct 2002 08:50 UTC

Can't say that I agree with the article, can't say that I don't.

I agree, in that what Eugenia states is her experience, and none of it is made up.
Mandrake have work to do to fix those bugs.
It is their own fault if a final product still has bugs in it that were known for a long time.

I do think the article was picky on things that don't matter, but then, it's nice to read that, since this way, the reader can form an image of what the writer wants and expects, how he (she in this case) thinks, in other words, from what viewpoint the review/report is written.

To me, it was a report on how Mandrake 9.0 installs and behaves in everyday use in 1 particular case. No more, no less.

It is not, however, an article on which to base your choice of an OS, Mandrake vs Suse vs Redhat or so.

I like Mandrake. It works for me.
More importantly: it's fully open source, I can download the ISO's, burn them, copy them for my friends and colleagues etcetc. It has all the config stuff in the right place.
Unlike Suse, which you can download via ftp only, not full iso's, and they have done too many things to the setup/config files, which is supposed to 'bind their customers' to them. I will not be one of those.
This is my reason for linux instead of MSwindows.
I wish to be free.
And not caught up in contracts and licences that lead me to purchasing more in the future.

So I will not even try Suse, unless I can LEGALLY get/download full iso's that I can pass around.

As for Redhat, it's on my download list, ... the one thing I have against them, is that they first said: linux is not for the desktop, then saw Mandrake's advances into serverspace because of friendly tools, then changed their minds.
But that is merely a minor gripe, so I'll give them a chance, next time I have some spare time, and after I download the iso's.

Anyways, here are my observations with Mandrake 9.0.

System: asus a7v333 duron1GHz 512MB ddr2700 60GBmaxtor gf4ti4200i sblive5.1 dvd cdrw haupauge wintv-fm realtek ethernet
Installation as update, expert:
no problems, just very very slow, 2 hours or so??
I don't know if it was checking on each package and checking again, but anyway..
Finally, there was a problem with the graphics, nv driver is dysfunctional or so? Luckily, someone on a forum posted recompiled nvidia drivers, put those in and they worked fine, incl 3d.
Since now my dma was working as opposed to mdk8.2 which didn't recognise the chipset of the mobo (same in redhat7.3, which was later, and btw should have recognised it and be able to use dma on it, but that's just aside), since it was older than the mobo, I didn't feel like keeping the old stuff around, so I did a clean install:
-clean install (formatting root partition)
40 min's or so, and voila:
again the same problem with the graphics card. I had saved the other one, installed the nvidia drivers again, moved the xf86config-4 to the right location, and all was well.

Everything working, except for watching encrypted dvd's for which I installed the necesssary extra's.
All ok. No problems with supermount, or anything else. Stable, no probs with Evolution, font importation or anything.
Even got starcraft working without any hassle, just typed wine StarCraft.exe and it worked... that's a first...

Printer works fine: epson stylus color (720?)
Scanner doesn't: hp 4200c (this is known to be a problematic device with linux, hp seems to want me to buy some new equipment.. I know some people managed to get it to work, and someday I will)

Other machine: duron700, kt133mobo 384MB, 15GB hd, dvd-rom audio onboard, gf2mx
Install without any problems, even nv driver was ok.
Put the nvidia driver for 3d, ... the only problem was to have 1152x864 instead of 1024x768, it just wouldn't.
Until I managed to do stuff with the modeline (some value had to be a multiple of 4...) like the log file mentioned.
Apart from that: all works.
Including the epson laser printer.

I made copies for 2 colleagues: one mentioned that this was his best OS install experience ever, beating any other win or lin install he ever did. Everything worked for him, he has an NForce machine.
Other colleague has a K6-2 machine, also worked fine, easy install etc. No probs. On a second pc, he didn't get the adsl settings right, so still has to fix that.

Overall: not perfection, but not bad.
I do recommend Mandrake to any new linux user.
I will not recommend Suse (see reasons above).
I may recommend RedHat, if I find that they don't force you to use the commandline for any network or other setting etcetc...

What does linux offer that windows does not, cannot and will not (sorry Eugenia, but I just have to comment on that too, forgive me... or just erase these last lines..;-)
FREEDOM.

I can do anything I want with my machine, under linux. Note that I cannot with windows (don't have XP, just 98se, and my tv card doesn't have any sound, if it starts at all).
The scanner is a minor point, it's not mine, and some fuzzing around will probably fix that.
I'm willing to live with those inconveniences, they are mine.
Windows inconveniences however, are not.
I chose, with linux, to be the sysop on my own machines.
Instead of having some company in Redmont control them.

But a lot of people should probably stick with winXP.

With china and india, I think linux will have a large enough userbase to make sure there will be drivers for any equipment. That's all that counts for me. (btw linux has better driver support for many things, like older (>2 yrs)canon all in one printer-scanners andsoon, ask canon and they'll tell you to upgrade...)

Qt
by Janne on Tue 22nd Oct 2002 13:25 UTC

"I imagine that Mandrake didn't use QT because it is not free software. Gtk lisencing just makes it less of a headache."

Good god! Where do these people live? Under a rock in Mars? The Qt-licensing argument was long ago. It's been solved. Qt is licensed under the GNU General Public Licence (AKA The GPL). Now go and write that down 1000 times!

Sheesh, how much longer will people claim that "Qt is not free software"? I would assume that people who follow Linux and it's developement would FINALLY understand that Qt is FREE SOFTWARE that is licensed under the GPL!

BETTER THAN RED HAT 8.0
by MANUEL on Tue 22nd Oct 2002 15:08 UTC

I am new at Linux and installed Mandrake 9.0 two months after installing Red Hat 8.0 and it seemed to me to jump from Hell to Paradise. A tutorial at the first run, sound board correctly recognized, with RD8 no, DIVX film running under Xine, with RH I had problems, main menu well organized and easy to browse (KDE), with RH you can get lost and with Gnome I found no way to configure the menu, half the time to install it, PDF file immeditely recognized and displayed and I could continue....I am only at the beginnng so I don't know if there are bugs.

PROBLEMS WITH MANDRAKE 9.0
by MANUEL on Wed 23rd Oct 2002 11:02 UTC

Even if I still think it's a very good product I found:
1) Same wheel-mouse problem as Eugenia (mouse jumping crazy)
2) The boot loader recognized windows but not my Red Hat partition so I cannot acces any more RH from the boot manager
3) Graphical redraw problems with menus (not critical)

I do like the graphic interface and i do NOT think it looks old at all!

QT and MANUEL's problems
by RobT on Thu 24th Oct 2002 07:12 UTC

QT is only GPL'ed if you use it for GPL programs, last time I crawled out from under my rock, I read that if you take it as gpl, you may never reconsider and make a non gpl program out of it.

Manuel: the mouse problem is not a problem, with all systems I have installed, I had a wheelmouse, and by just doing what it says, namely moving the middle mouse button (up, down, clicking, just do different things for a second or so), it will all calm down, and then you will see it all works as it is supposed to.
This article plus comments is the only place I have come across so many mouse problems, I guess other people read better, or at all?

For the bootloader problem, just edit your /etc/lilo.conf file according to your setup, and run the command 'lilo', all as root.
Search on the web for examples, it's not hard to figure out what you have to put in lilo..
Oh, what you can do is mount (man mount to find out more) your RH partition, and there check what is stated in the lilo.conf file, just add that to your mandrake lilo.conf.

Graphical redraw problems: no idea...

Reviews for comparison
by RobT on Thu 24th Oct 2002 07:19 UTC

Like I said before, IMHO Eugenia's review is more a snapshot of a single user on one system only.
For comparative reviews of RH, MDK, Suse, and soon also Lindows, have a look here: http://www.extremetech.com/article2/1,3973,646049,00.asp
There are links to the individual articles.

I don't want to talk down on Eugenia, she did a good job on putting the finger on the sore spot(s), which needs to be done to get things improved, but the above linked articles are more usable comparisons for people who want to figure out what the best choice is for them. Again: imho.