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Originally posted by kierl I would like to point something out to people complaining about certain distros(i.e. Gentoo) not having "pretty installers".
There IS a reason they don't... actually there are 3 that apply the most
1) The developers are too busy enhancing the operating system itself. Tell me, would you rather have a poor operating system with a nice installer? Or a great operating system that requires some work to install?
2) There are too many options during install to make a graphical installer practical. This applies mostly to source-based distros such as Gentoo and Sourceror where you have to not only specify what you want installed, but exactly how it is to be installed(i.e. make flags)
3) They are trying to teach you something, like how to use your OS at a more advanced level. Before I installed Gentoo, I was always running into things that I couldn't fix, or even diagnose properly. I learned enough just by installing Gentoo, that I can now fix or at least diagnose almost any problem I encounter... As opposed to whining to the Gentoo team every time something goes wrong. With the greater knowledge gleaned from performing an advanced install you can become a problem solver, instead of someone that just sits around waiting for everyone else to solve all the problems for you.
If I were interested in starting a flame war, or at least waking people up, I would start this w/ a statement like "this does not deserve an argument", meaning "this is inarguably correct", but deliberately including the implication of "this doesn't deserve to be dignified w/ a comment" for its startle effect.
Instead, let me begin w/ a straightforward I agree! Well, maybe I might disagree w/ #1 & say "both" -- why can't I have good OS & a good installer.
I think this once again illustrates the need for a separate category for the "beginner" or "transition" distro of the year. Everything M. kierl says is true for intermediates & veterans. Beginners & Winders(tm) users are a different matter. Philosophically, I am in the camp that believes in bringing enlightenment (pun intended) to the poor benighted souls still in the clutches of the Evil Empire(tm). So I want a distro that they can "just use" & I can just teach from. Since I am committed to the non-commerciality of Debian, that teaching distro looks like it might be Mepis.
I know that some people are uncomfortable w/ the idea of the ignorant -- idiots who don't even know, let alone care, when they are being raped by the Devil Incarnate(tm) -- getting their unappreciative hands on our beautiful OS. If you feel this way, perhaps you might ask if what you really fear is losing some of your elite status. If GNU/Linux were to displace Winders(tm) as the dominant desktop / workstation OS, then we will be a different kind of elite. No longer the minority bound together by in jokes & "us against them". Instead, pioneers that will be generally looked up to, respected for their experience, & sought after for their knowledge. Employable by all kinds of organizations.
For those of us who will miss "the good old days" there will always be BSD (Slackers, you are in luck -- you have it easier than others); the rest of us will adjust to the changes & go on. And if we become the majority, there will changes. Many of them will be in the category of "prettying up" & will smack of dumbing down. Let us hope that they will apply to the GUI, & not affect the the kernel's excellence.
Thank you for your patience w/ my ranting & please keep the discussion flowing, this is a great thread.
"There are too many options during install to make a graphical installer practical." Hmm, so the distros that do have a graphical installer (SUSE, MEPIS, PCLINUXOS, Fedora, etc.) have done ... the impractical? Clearly,"impractical" does not equal "impossible."
Bottom line: a quality project has consistency of approach, and a thoughtful attention to details. It's good all the way through. Just possibly Gentoo hasn't gotten around to that yet.
Achieving a quality product takes a lot of work, and on the way to that end, both developers and users get to learn more about the nature of the problem, and possible paths to a solution. So Gentoo (and others!) have work to do, and the rest of us are along for the very interesting ride.
Originally posted by ShakyJake I think I read somewhere that the 2005.1 Gentoo release will have a much more friendly installer. I'd also like to see a graphical front end for Portange/Emerge (maybe one exists now?)
It will be friendlier, I am sure. Every one gets a bit nicer. The Gentoo newsletter says not a GUI, though (not nearly ready for that yet).
GUI for portage? Porthole, Guitoo, Kportage, Kemerge, Portagemaster, rtkemerge, and a few others. Faster to CLI, though. Just like apt-get or urpmi. Gui's available, but cli is faster (not the case with other apps, but package managers seem to be faster on command line.
Distribution: Slack 9.1 with slackware-current packages...
Re: Fedora rulez
Originally posted by linux_man_2004 People, people, we don't have to argue. Of course Fedora is the best. It has always commed to us with the newest things available (and stable). Fedora 3 (the newest) uses kernel 2.6.9 (by default), whereas Slackware uses a very old 2.4.* kernel and ofcourse the software within is very, very old. We also mustn't talk about the speed because Fedora 3 beats every other OS.
You piss me off.
I'm not even going to explain, as it isn't even nearly worth my worthless time.
Originally posted by LinuxLala I voted for Fedora.
But I am equally impressed with Ubuntu and CentOS.
I'm using both fedora 3 (home box and one of my laptops) and ubuntu (hoary) on another laptop. I've never used CentOS, but since it's a redhat clone, I'm not surprised you like that one as well.