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Libranet 2.7 Classic Free Edition
Reviews Views Date of last review
4 23072 03-01-2004
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Recommended By Average Price Average Rating
100% of reviewers None indicated 9.5



Description: Libranet 2.7 Classic Free Edition. Yet another Debian based distribution...
Keywords: Libranet Debian apt-get SingleCD CDBased


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Old 02-12-2004, 06:51 PM   #1
Mega Man X
 
Registered: Apr 2003
Distribution: Ubuntu, FreeBSD, Solaris, DSL
Posts: 5,339

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Would you recommend the product? yes | Price you paid?: D/L | Rating: 9

Pros: Great hardware detection, easy to install and configure, fast and stable. Very newbie friendly!
Cons: Some advanced users may be upset with the installer, since there's no way to choose single packages.



I've to start saying that this distribution was a big surprise for me. Apparently there are not many peoples using it, or at least they don't tell anything if they do. Meaning that I was expecting nothing but another modified distribution, but Libranet really impressed me. Let's begin from the beginning:

1 - Install
The installation is pretty simple. In fact, it's one of the simplest I've yet done with Linux. New users can end up with a fully operational system in a few minutes answering a couple of questions made by the installer. Advanced users may even use parted to resize the HD. Ext2/3 and ReiserFS are the fs available to use.

By default, ReiserFS is chosen, showing that this distribution really is optimized for speed. The hardware detection is excellent and identified all my exotic hardware (a lot is onboard stuff as the network card) without a single problem and also loaded the correct modules for me.

I've choosen the minimal installation to see how minimum it was. When installed, it had taken between 300-400mb from my harddrive with a basic Linux system installed and X. There're only two noticeable problems with the installer that most likely, only advanced users may complain about:

1) You don't have any options to install single/individual packages, only groups and

2) the minimal installation has also installed X server and IceWM. This can be bad for those who wish to set up this distribution as a server only. For a server, X is not necessary, in addition, more services running == less security. But then again, for a new user who wishes to use this distribution as a desktop, it's wonderful.

2 - Configuring:
Most of the configuration is done during the install. This includes harddware detection, sound, video, monitor and Internet connection.

Another big surprise with this distribution is the "adminmenu" and it's graphical interface "Xadimmenu". Basically, everything can done from there with the same ease as a Windows Environment, as configuring your firewall, installing/removing packages from CD or Internet, sound, video, network, printers, time, Disk/CD/Floppy, managing users and desktops as well the X-Windows system.

For more advanced users, there's even an option to Recompile the kernel or restore it's defaults, configure modules, enable/disable APM and configuring PCMCIA.

Another good thing was the desktop environment. I was expecting a big, heavy gun as Gnome or KDE for the minimal installation, since this distribution is more target(I think) for newcomers, but I was wrong and it came with IceWM(showing again that it's made to be easy of use, since it "feels" just like win9x and is very, very fast).

3 - Package manager:
Libranet, as being Debian-based, uses apt-get. Apt-get is an extremelly powerful package manager to keep both your system and packages up-to-date installing packages from either the cd-rom or Internet.

Since this distribution is 100% compatible with Debian, you have at your disposal nothing but around 12.000 packages/applications to choose from, since Debian is the biggest distribution so far in this category.

To sum up, I'd recommend this distribution ratter then Mandrake or Redhat for a newbie. It's very stable and the guys really wanted to make a fast distribution, optimizing since the fs to the desktop environment for speed, the installation is easy, the configuration tool really works (and it's the best I've used) and the package manager(apt-get) is awesome for installing/removing/upgrading packages.

I use Slackware 9.0 most of the time in my main machine and I always wanted to use Debian there, but it was nearly impossible to install all my hardware with Debian, and I thought that the other options around Debian-based (as knoppix) were either too slow, expensive (for the commercial ones) or not very customizable.

Again, Libranet 2.7 came as a big surprise. I just did not give it a 10 because the minimum install includes X (though, you can remove x-system with one command) and the options for the packages during the installation are a bit limited (but it's easy to fix with apt-get to add/remove what you want to keep or add).

Libranet 2.8(non-free release) has even 3D acceleration right out of the box for supported cards. Tip: "Keep an eye on this distribution"

www.libranet.com

-- Megaman X
 
Old 02-14-2004, 11:34 PM   #2
masinick
 
Registered: Apr 2002
Distribution: Debian, sidux, antiX, SimplyMEPIS, Kubuntu, Mandriva, Fedora, Xandros, Arch, and many others
Posts: 560

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Would you recommend the product? yes | Price you paid?: D/L | Rating: 10

Pros: Very complete system, excellent software, easy to maintain
Cons: Could provide easier partitioning and CD switching during installation


Libranet, in my opinion, provides, out of the box, the most complete selection of free software of any vendor software products. Only vendors who add in costly commercial software offer more out of the box. This software works well, has an easy to understand installer, includes disk partitioning tools and everything else you need to get the job done.

The lastest releases are even better, but Libranet has been improving each release since I started using it (whch was during 2001). I've yet to see them move backward, I look forward to what's ahead.
 
Old 02-16-2004, 11:48 AM   #3
eeried
 
Registered: Jan 2004
Distribution: Xubuntu Dapper - Debian Etch - Puppy Linux
Posts: 136

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Would you recommend the product? yes | Price you paid?: D/L | Rating: 9

Pros: easy install for newbies
Cons: can't see any at the moment


There's no point repeating what has already been said.

I'd like to confirm that this version is excellent for newbies. I'm a complete Linux newbie, and read some reviews and some forums before chosing Libranet, rather than rush to get Mandrake. Furthermore I wanted a Debian-based distro. This Libranet version doesn't seem to be bug-ridden (unlike the latest mandrake), and it isn't bloated (unlike Mandrake again).

As I don't have a fast connection to the internet, and no CD burner either I ordered my Libranet cd from http://www.linuxcd.org/ and paid 1,99/$ plus post.

It's true you can't choose your packages -- the 2.8.1 edition allows you too, but you have to buy it. Well, you can always remove the stuff you don't want afterwards.

Tip: I used the support pages for the 2.8.1 edition to install my classic edition. The guide isn't absolutely necessary but it's rather reassuring to know what you're up against.

Grub is really great -- up to then I'd only heard about Lillo -- and it deals with dual-boot marvellously. I have both Win98Se and Libranet on my small machine (harddisk: 8GB and Ram: 64MB; Pentium II, 450MHZ).

Installation of Libranet is much easier and quicker than
that of Windoz!

Partitioning (I didn't use automatic partitioning, because I wanted to have control, and see how it all worked) was much quicker and easier than with fdisk (DOS).

Setting up my pop, dial-up connection was a cinch. Again it's much simpler than doing it on Windoz. I was amazed.

No need to worry about installing drivers from CDs or the internet. Install Libranet and everything's there.

I installed it on a neighbour's machine, with the same speed and success.

Only regret: Opera is there (what for, really) while the Gimp is not. Well, you can train in removing stuff, and in installing software! -- that's the way to learn! I've already removed opera and a few other things.

Once I feel more at ease with Linux, I'll get the newest version, and don't mind if I have to pay for it. The Libranet team have been doing a great job, and their good hard work needs rewarding!



 
Old 03-01-2004, 04:22 AM   #4
nickellis
 
Registered: Feb 2004
Posts: 10

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Would you recommend the product? yes | Price you paid?: D/L | Rating: 10

Pros: Easy setup, loads of software, multiple desktops, great bootloader
Cons: none seen yet


I have tried Debian, LindowsOS, Madrake and Suse, and none of these have been as simple to install as Libranet. The installation basically managed itself, only asking me occasional questions. For a newbie like me, this is excellent. It happily detected all the hardware as well, which is a huge improvement over both Mandrake and Debian (which didn't run at all!).

The software bundled in is extensive and useful, although perhaps there is even too much - do I really need three different terminal emulators and three different browsers? But being able to install and work straight away is a huge bonus, and one that resolves most newbie's fear of the linux thing.

One comment - a developer version would be great. MySQL, apache and PHP pre-installed would be fantastic. Then I really could have sat down to work straight off.

Nick
 




  



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