Home > Linux > Quick Review of the Vector Linux 3.2 Release Quick Review of the Vector Linux 3.2 Release Eugenia Loli 2003-02-07 Linux 18 Comments A short review of the newly released Vector Linux 3.2 was posted at MadPenguin. About The Author Eugenia Loli Ex-programmer, ex-editor in chief at OSNews.com, now a visual artist/filmmaker. Follow me on Twitter @EugeniaLoli 18 Comments 2003-02-07 6:23 pm Screenshots, anyone? 2003-02-07 6:34 pm Oh… It’s just too hard to click that Vector Linux link, isn’t it..?! 2003-02-07 6:43 pm in regard to the line about Slackware being as friendly as a coiled rattlesnake, I think that statement is very accurate and can only hope Vector changes that. It is definitely unfriendly, and the outdated docs on the main Slack website only serve to add to the frustration of trying to learn the distro. The main thing that impressed me was the fact that after I chose the XFree version, I was able to graphically set up and test the X server. The only way I was able to get X to work in Slack was to go to the LILO config screen and enable something called the ‘framebuffer server’. (And to this day, I have no idea what the hell a ‘framebuffer server’ is.) This works ok, except that the console is changed to the same resolution as the X server, which royally sucks. Vector has also added a nice menu-driven final configuration screen to the installer which allows you to set up you networking, time zone, mouse, LILO … If I’m not mistaken, don’t the latest Slackware versions have this too? Since Vector is supposed to be 100% Slackware-compatible, I assume the DropGnome would work on it, which would be cool .. KDE 3.1 and Gnome 2/2.2 on an easier-to-use Slackware box might be a winner 2003-02-07 6:46 pm Not to be overly critical of the author, but someone over there really needs to review their markup formatting prior to public release. The open href tags and unneeded line breaks really make the article unprofessional (not to mention their rant on the Slackware newsgroup) and difficult to absorb. Once you manage to stumble through the article, it becomes readily apparent this is YALIR (Yet Another Linux Installation Review). Why are these still en vogue? -fp 2003-02-07 7:57 pm Agree on the markup formatting. And the Vector Linux home page itself has this huge (file size-wise) image in the upper left corner that is annoying to those of us using dial-up. In the same vein, some posters would do well to do a little spell checking (of course my spelling is purfect). As to the complaint about it being an installation review: 1.) For any newbie-friendly distribution this is going to be an issue and should be addressed. Admittedly, when a long review is 2/3 devoted to that one is left wanting more on usage issues. But this is a self-described short review. 2.) He clearly is impressed about how easily it dealt with his historically problematic notebook. Whether this extends to a good experience for the user after the installation … well, as they say in academia: “More research is needed” [or at least more published results in this case]. 2003-02-07 9:31 pm Clearly this distro is still not ready for the desktop. I’m sticking to Windows XP, at least it has anti-aliased fonts 2003-02-07 10:35 pm Clearly you are not ready for real computing power, stick to Windows XP, at least it has bugs, virusses and random crashes. 2003-02-08 12:53 am … this doesn’t seem to recognize a Realtek 8139 network card, I don’t even find the module. 2003-02-08 4:47 am What are you talking about? I have a realtek 8139 and I have no problems using debian or any other Linux distro…so WTH is going on? 2003-02-08 7:20 am that review in full… – alt.os.linux.slackware were nasty to me – vector linux configures x – it’s 230 MB and includes kde – the end *sigh* how about fewer links to articles with so little content? 2003-02-08 10:19 am The whole purpose is for you to give it a try. Don’t like it then tell us why or what didn’t work tell us we will try and fix. We are a community of people doing our best to bring Linux to the masses and it is happening by inches and centimeters but it is happening…. 2003-02-08 12:16 pm I mainly use it on older hardware P166s etc with 32-48 megs of ram an small HDs. It looks good, runs brilliantly and breathes life into PCs that are normally discarded. I highly recommend it to organisations who refurbish PCs for disadvantaged groups. There is even someone who is putting together a Computers For Kids Vector distro – directly aimed at needy families without computers. Give it a go and provide some useful feedback. There is a genuine need what this distro can do. regards rob PS It flies on modern hardware too 🙂 2003-02-08 1:12 pm Re: Well… The 8139 driver is called 8139too and can be modprobed for (modprobe 8139too) or if it’s built into the kernel, like many distros do nowadays, then just run “ifconfig eth0” and it should give you a working network interface. Then again, I’ve never used Vector Linux, so I dont know what their installer looks like. Re: New linux on old desktops The main bottleneck of using an old P166 with little RAM is not the distro usually. You can turn off services you do not require, use an optimized WM (Oroborus for example) and a fast FM (ROX-Filer comes to mind) but the real pain comes when you try to get on the internet. Mozilla is out of the question. It’s slow even on my 1.4ghz Athlon. Phoenix, Konqueror and Galeon offer some relief but once you try them with some plugins, they’ll slow down to a crawl. Your best bet would be to get a dedicated X server with about a 1ghz CPU and lots of RAM and then turn those P166 boxes into thin clients and export the X server over to them via LAN. I bet this would be the cheapest solution when building a network of workstations for some company. Beats the hell out of buying a full-blown machine and a Windows XP license for every user 2003-02-08 1:57 pm The main bottleneck of using an old P166 with little RAM is not the distro usually. You can turn off services you do not require, use an optimized WM (Oroborus for example) and a fast FM (ROX-Filer comes to mind) but the real pain comes when you try to get on the internet. Mozilla is out of the question. It’s slow even on my 1.4ghz Athlon. Phoenix, Konqueror and Galeon offer some relief but once you try them with some plugins, they’ll slow down to a crawl. Perhaps, but by including xf336 as an option it helps to lower the overhead too. Vector includes opera and dillo browsers and the dfm filemanager which are fast and work well. Phoenix was the real suprise – runs without problems on the P166s with 40+ megs of ram but is very slow to startup. Your best bet would be to get a dedicated X server with about a 1ghz CPU and lots of RAM and then turn those P166 boxes into thin clients and export the X server over to them via LAN. This is something I’ve yet to explore but as the donated computers are destined for disadvantaged individuals a lan is not an option. We may be getting some P200s soon (woohoo!) and this will open up more possibilities 🙂 2003-02-08 3:32 pm >>>… this doesn’t seem to recognize a Realtek 8139 network card, I don’t even find the module.>>> Hey Juliako when i installed it, i tryed to set it up as a Static IP and whatever is supposed to look for networking cards did not run, but with i selected DHCP it found my card and set it up to load… 2003-02-08 5:36 pm Hey Juliako, I have the same NIC, setup with a static IP. Mine wasn’t recognized during install either. I found the correct module, 8139too, then added a new line at the bottom of /etc/modules.conf: alias eth0 8139too when I rebooted, it picked-up the card (I had already setup the IP and everything during install), and worked fine. Regards, Howard 2003-02-10 2:46 pm I bought vector about a year ago. It seemed like an unfinished product. The 386 version didn’t work at all. The 586 installed and ran okay, on a 75mhz pentium with 40mb of RAM. Frankly, I don’t get all this “linux breaths new life into old hardware” stuff. You can buy old copies of NT4.0 for $10. From my experience, NT 4.0 runs circles around any Linux on 486s and old Pentiums. That is, unless you want to run Linux without GUI. 2003-02-10 3:43 pm Robert wrote: >We are a community of people doing our best to bring Linux >to the masses and it is happening by inches and centimeters >but it is happening… Sounds fine, Robert. But I have just two questions: 1. Why don’t your iso images contain packages? If one uninstalls just one package he/she has to install all Vector again to bring this package back. A strange approach for such cool guys, isn’t it? 2. Why passwd and groups contain Robert?