Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sun 1st Mar 2009 17:26 UTC, submitted by kaiwai
Hardware, Embedded Systems Long-time OSNews reader Kaiwai has written down his experiences with his Acer Aspire One, Linux, and Windows. He concludes: "After a hectic few weeks trying to get Linux to work, I am back to square one again - a netbook running Windows XP SP3 as it was provided by Acer when I purchased it. I gave three different distributions a chance to prove themselves. I expected all three distributions to wipe the floor with Windows XP - after all, these are the latest and greatest distributions the Linux world have to offer. There has been at least 7 years since the release of Windows XP for Linux to catch up to Windows XP and from my experience with Linux on this said device - it has failed to step up to the plate when it was needed."
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RE: Eeepc 701
by lemur2 on Mon 2nd Mar 2009 22:09 UTC in reply to "Eeepc 701"
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I just finished putting Eeebuntu Base on my Eeepc 701. It works well. I've had this thought for a while now, and i know i'll probably get flamed for this. There is a *huge* developer base out there. Having people pour their work in ONE distro would probably avoid this "Linux sucks on netbook" issue we have. I've found that Ubunutu may not be perfect but it has suited my needs in the past. If it was understood that app devs and hardware companies made sure that their stuff works on ONE distro which is widely agreed on i think the Linux ecosystem would be a better place. Then the other distos can copy the bits from the ONE that works.

They all work ... eventually. They all share essentially the same codebase. Firefox on Ubuntu is not different than Firefox on Fedora ... they don't re-write Firefox 100 times over just to be different.

So what are the differences?

Basically ... the release cycle and testing philosophy is different. Fedora is "cutting edge". RHEL is "stable" ... follows on from code that Fedora got the kinks out of. Debian Sid is like Fedora ... but using a different package management system. Sid is a "rolling release" ... which means that it takes on the latest code when it becomes available, and often breaks other packages in so doing. Debian Testing is a "feature frozen" version of Sid taken at some point in time, and being worked on to make it stable. The latest version of testing is called "Squeeze", and it was a copy of Sid taken when Debian Lenny was promoted from Testing to Stable.

Ubuntu is likewise drops of Debian (every 6 months) that are "fresher" than standard Debian stable. After release, there is a promise that the version will be maintained at that feature freeze point for some defined period of time. "Long Term Support" versions are supported for longer. Hardy (8.04) was the last LTS version, Intrepid (8.10) is the current release version, and Jaunty (9.04) is the current development version, which will be released at the end of April.

Arch Linux is a "rolling release". It always has the latest packages. These will be more "cutting edge", but are necessarily less well tested than what you will find in more "stable" distributions.

It is all cut from the same cloth, but it is different in terms of its stability, and in terms of its currency ... which are somewhat mutually exclusive characteristics when you think about it.

You decide what is good for you ... you decide how close to the cutting edge you wish to go ... you decide how involved (or not) you want to be in the testing process. It is all about choice.

Deciding on "one standard distribution" would remove the choices that you do have ... but in another sense it is pointless anyway because it is essentially all the same evolving codebase anyway.

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