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Self explanatory title, I guess. But, its been how long(?) since I last distrohopped? Umm, yeah, since Slackware 13.37 released. I loved it then, and I love it now even more.
There was a time when I use to hop for more and more with unsatiable desire and lust for that perfect one! I know, perfect is subjective, but there are objectively flawless for the most part right? So, I guess I found my preference after much effort groping in the dark. I started it with Ubuntu 9.10. While it was okay, but I couldn't understand why people said and claimed Linux to be stabler than even Windows. lol.
Then, its been a series of venturing into the wild, hopping and jumping here and there, finally resting onto one.
My box has seen world changing since then, through hangs, OS reinstalls, viruses, trojans, poor programs, non-efficiencies around other OSes around me in various boxes of people, but man, this remains adamant.
No hiccups at all. I once used to terrify my brother saying dont make me angry else I would format your Windows and install Slackware and all your data will be lost! (LMAO, as a jovial threat) But, now it is this box which has Slackware since 13.37 and he just HATES stuff happening over at the other side of the OS, being dual boot. He is a digital artist who needs propritary software. And I find him sticking to the pc on some software BLENDER and extolling it to me how awesome it is and how he forgets about the system at all while working on it in any way. No nagging issues. lol.
Note to aspiring Slackware users : I don't understand why people nag about difficulty issues with Slackware since I know nothing much about linux and programming myself but yet can get install almost any software I like and configure ordinary stuff like a breeze in no time. And how cool is that, if you configure something for say, one hour, and it stays the same for one year? Yes. That is why even something worth few hours is worth a long time. I forget after configuring something. This is how stable and cool Slackware is.
So, this is it. All praise to the developers and contributors and to this fantastic community around it. I could go on and on, but lets stop right here.
I started with Slackware 3 and then had to deal with what was available on CD-ROM in the stores. So I wasn't a distro-hopper by choice. In 2000, with better Internet access, I switched to FreeBSD, because it had a direct FTP install option available, complete IPv6 support and is a true Unix system. (I did also play around with some early betas of Gentoo.)
Since 2005 Slackware 10 made a sneaky comeback, taking over one machine after the other. The first machine - an old laptop, for which FreeBSD had dropped PCCARD-Support completely - was very easy to setup by reading the Slackbook. Still knowing some stuff from Slack 3 also helped. After migrating another old machine for Asterisk experiments, I noticed that the long-term supported Slackware installations didn't need continued hand-holding. Long story short, the migration of all other machines including newer ones in production use was finished by the end of 2008. Then I never looked back.
My experience with Slackware has been rather different.
I feel probably no Linux distro. is perfect, there have been variations in the quality of almost any distro., over time, and everyone has their own reasons for choosing a Linux distro.
I Started using Slackware prior to version 7.
I believe it was around version 7.2 that multiple Slackware experts couldn't even get X Windows started on my machine. One of them suggested I try various other distros, including Mandrake, and SUSE. That wasn't openSUSE in those days, it was actual paid-for SUSE, off the shelf, in a box.
I ended up with what had been called the "Professional" version of SUSE, under which, X-Windows ran just fine on the same machine where X-Windows on Slackware wouldn't. In fact, the SUSE installation procedure itself, determined how to configure X-Windows, and ran X-Windows during the installation.
Although some people characterize SUSE's hardware handling as being quite opposite from my experiences with it, I have since found SUSE ( open or otherwise ) to be excellent with hardware.
I've tried RedHat, Gentoo, Ubuntu, quite a variety of Linux distros, various Unix-ports or Unix-like systems.
Speaking as someone who worked as a Unix Kernel Engineer both on AT&T and Berkeley kernels, so I feel I have a good perspective for evaluating Unix-like systems, I don't believe I have found anything that's, over time, as consistently good with the hardware as SUSE.
I've even used an attempt at installing openSUSE, as a form of diagnostic tool for uncovering potential hardware/firmware problems. It's uncovered problems of that sort in major brand name computer manufacturer's machines, such as a faulty AHCI implementation. That's in cases where people who did nothing but install RedHat for a living, couldn't get Redhat installed on that machine. It was Ubuntu 11.something which misidentified even the type of controller in use on my machine, as well as on some other people's machines.
Having worked on actual Unix Kernel's, I have the least trouble applying classical Unix principles to SUSE, compared just about any other distro.
I've stuck with some form of SUSE for many years.
It's not perfect, I feel 12.1 was a big, temporary slip in quality, but in the long haul, I've been quite happy.