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adamt222 02-27-2011 06:53 AM

Best Distro for dual-boot Macbook (rolling distro preferred)
Hi all, I have recently installed LMDE on my Macbook. I chose it primarily because it is a rolling distro.

The install went well, with one minor hiccup, the Broadcom wifi firmware/drivers were outdated or not part of the base, and I needed to run an ethernet cable in order to update things so that I could have wireless internet.

On this macbook (13.3") I'm not sure which version it is (5,2)? I have used Crunchbang 9.04 with much success, but wanted to replace the software since 9.04 is an old version.

A rolling distro appeals to me, and the lightweight, power-user-friendly aspects of Crunchbang also appeal to me.

But I'm told the newest Crunchbang distro "Statler" is not a rolling release, but it "could be" if I enable the testing branch. Is this something that's easy-to-do and/or "worth it"?

So, anyone could weigh in on this, I'd appreciate it. While I like the usability and features of LMDE, it is a LOT of software and not really fast "operation-wise" for a new install. While I like the simplicity of Crunchbang (and the speed of it) I remember how much of a headache it was to get sound working properly on this Macbook.


snowpine 02-28-2011 03:54 PM

Arch is the "best" rolling release distro, in my opinion.

I do not consider Debian Testing a true "rolling release distro" but rather the development branch of Debian.

I am a moderator on the CrunchBang forums, so I follow development closely. There are a few people experimenting with Testing and/or Unstable, right now it seems there are a few problems since Squeeze was released, things are changing very quickly. One possibility you might consider is sticking with Squeeze/Stable but enabling the "backports" repository. This will allow you to install newer versions of certain backported applications while keeping your stable core, best of both worlds if you ask me (I am not a big fan of rolling release).

snowpine 02-28-2011 03:58 PM

Another suggestion I just thought of, if you are basically happy with LMDE, but want the CrunchBang user interface, is to simply install the Openbox windows manager over your existing LMDE install and copy the configuration files from your previous CrunchBang 9.04 install. This would give you the benefits of both LMDE and CrunchBang, in my opinion.

Regarding your Broadcom wireless issue, the Debian Wiki has some good instructions, they should probably work for LMDE as well:

adamt222 02-28-2011 09:16 PM

Thanks for your feedback snowpine. So far, I am liking LMDE, and have already installed Openbox and migrated my old settings (from 9.04) - a minor (but important) difference is that LMDE puts some file (namely "firefox") within the /opt directory as opposed to /usr/bin.

Either way, the Macbook is 6,2 and the Network controller is Broadcom BCM43224 (according to lspci) , so your links
proved a good read, however, I'd have to somehow get the driver compiled/built onto USB stick first to get the most use out of it since (without that driver,) there is no wireless internet.

As for Arch, I didn't know previously that it is a rolling release. I think I'll give it a try - thanks.

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