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flebber 08-06-2011 08:01 PM

Best Debain Laptop Distribution
 
Hi

I was hoping for some advice on what the best debian laptop distribution would be.

My main criteria for "what is good"

1. Ease and "Trust" of install - It will be a dual boot computer which already has a linux partition which this will format and re-use.

2. The least amount(or none) post install configuration with display settings/drivers, numlock on by default etc.

3. Minimalist on the software, sensible selection, this will largely be a development environment. Would be happy to have to configure Java, Flash, Chrome but still not to have to spend large amounts of time on this.

4. Powersave - Its for a laptop, I don't want it chewing power hungrily. Or reasonable management tools to configure this.

5. Community - I will chose a distro with a better community even if it isn't techncially as good as another.

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts.

Edit: I am a little out of touch with linux developments in the last 18 months 2 years.

sycamorex 08-06-2011 08:07 PM

If you've tried *buntus, Linux Mint, what comes to my mind is Crunchbang
http://crunchbanglinux.org/

flebber 08-06-2011 09:56 PM

Will have a look, intially I went looking for sidux initially but seems dead, and knoppix after all this time knoppix still has no built in installer seems a shame. Mint comes in debian as well.

widget 08-06-2011 10:14 PM

With what you say you want, Crunch may be the way to go. If looking at Ubuntu I would suggest Lubuntu.

If looking to do a minimal net install of Debian (I would do that) and then install the Lxde stuff from your tty login after the minimal install.

You will have some config to do if you have a certain look you want. You will not, I think, get a lighter or faster OS out of Crunch.

flebber 08-06-2011 10:57 PM

Crunch would have no reason not to be stable would it. On the distro page it has a warning
Quote:

CrunchBang Linux is not recommended for anyone needing a stable system or anyone who is not comfortable running into occasional, even frequent breakage. CrunchBang Linux could possibly make your computer go CRUNCH! BANG!
Then in the blog post http://crunchbanglinux.org/blog/2011...ler-r20110207/ it says it using debian stable not testing wich seems to me to indicate there should be no concerns, well really except the name and warning :-)

flebber 08-06-2011 11:30 PM

CrunchBange a bit too minimalist. cant enable wireless network. I need something a bit more user oriented. I used the openbox version.

j1alu 08-06-2011 11:38 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by flebber (Post 4435669)
Will have a look, intially I went looking for sidux initially but seems dead, and knoppix after all this time knoppix still has no built in installer seems a shame. Mint comes in debian as well.

sidux is now called aptosid:
http://aptosid.com/
about the details of the fork i don't know.
If i understand you correct you search for stability. aptosid is based on Debian-unstable (still very stable...)

I for one would go for Debian. It is there now, and it will be there in the future (as far one can tell). It is stable, it is light on resources, it is easy. It also has a strong focus on free software (some like that, some not), and as far _i know its the only community project (neither by a company nor by a few only).

Have a look at the app "powertop". Have a look here: https://wiki.ubuntu.com/ReducedPowerUsage

flebber 08-06-2011 11:52 PM

the netinstall would be the best way to go?

widget 08-06-2011 11:58 PM

Mint and Ubuntu are both built on Debian. Why add the bloat?

Do a net install and add your very own bloat.

I haven't looked at Crunch since it was based on Ubuntu. Just do not see how someone else can set up an OS, for you, better than you can.

If you want OpenBox (I think that is what Crunch uses) do a net install of Debian and use OpenBox.

flebber 08-07-2011 12:22 AM

Only one problem, I have downloaded and burnt netinst to cd, when I am going through the configuration settings in the graphical install my wireless network is not detected.

Is there a way to get around this?

craigevil 08-07-2011 12:47 AM

take a look at the install guide, look for the install firmware section
t

flebber 08-07-2011 12:58 AM

Only problem is I am stuck mid install

widget 08-07-2011 01:16 AM

You will need a wired connection. This is Debian and they do not ship any non-free stuff at all.

You need to have firmware-linux installed. Well you have firmware-linux-free but not firmware-linux-nonfree. Firmware-linux is a meta package that hs both as depends. The non-free package is kernel modules that Debian removes from the Linux kernel because they do not meet Debians definition of free.

Just their way. At least you can get them now without too much hassle. Lenny still had none of that kind of thing in repos that had anything to do with Debian directly.

flebber 08-07-2011 01:31 AM

I don't have a wired connection.

So I guess its back to the question, whats the best debain laptop distro to install with the added requirement wireless drivers enabled by default.

mark_alfred 08-07-2011 03:27 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by flebber (Post 4435708)
Only one problem, I have downloaded and burnt netinst to cd, when I am going through the configuration settings in the graphical install my wireless network is not detected.

Is there a way to get around this?

Possibly. Go get the non-free firmware, extract the files from it and put these files (along with the original compressed file) on a usb-stick. Then, next time you install, do so with the usb-stick inserted. If things work out right, then Debian will detect that your wireless card needs non-free drivers, and will then scan your usb-stick for these (if the usb-stick is not there, then the Debian Installer will prompt you to provide the non-free drivers via inserting a "removable drive" -- IE, a usb-stick -- best to simply start with it already present).

I recently installed, and I ran into these issues, so I know it can work. This is described at Chapter 6, section 4 of the manual.


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