I bought a copy of Red Hat 9 today. I've got the hang of installing new linux distros. Just don't format over the /home and /usr/local partitions and remember where you wrote down the phone number for your ppp connection. And don't forget that the modem is /dev/ttyS4, not /dev/ttyS0; that mistake cost me an hour.
My review: Not much different than 8.0. It feels more like a point release. Does not come with Windowmaker, so I'm not sure how well that will work on a older machine. I'm back to using Bluecurv-themed Gnome. It works okay.
Problems with Gnome 2:
- No shortcut key to logout. (I submitted a bug report on that.)
- needs to run 'xrdb $HOME/.Xdefaults' on login. (Fixable)
- Not as fast loading as Windowmaker (but faster than Gnome 1.x).
- No native gtk music player. Xmms simply isn't good enough; it looks like crap.
- Fonts in Open Office need fixing. I hear that Ximian is working on this.
To make a usable system, I have to install the following software in /usr/local:
- Phoenix with nice fonts - browser.
- Flash plugin for Phoenix.
- mpg123 - tui mp3 player.
- mplayer and w32 codecs - video player.
- scripts for '/sbin/ifup ppp$N' and '/sbin/ifdown ppp$N'.
- BladeEnc - mp3 encoder. (Yes, I know about Ogg Vorbis; but until both of my mp3 players support it, it doesn't work. I keep waiting for Apple to release a software update for the iPod for Ogg.)
Overall, I'm suprised at how few things need to be in /usr/local. I went through and cleaned up that partition for the first time in years.
- Try to get my iPod to play nice with linux. With previous kernel versions, using the firewire card caused kernel errors. Ick.
- Get dvd playback to work nicely. The easy solution is to go buy a video card with mpeg-2 decoding on it. Why does software decoding work so much nicer under Windows than Linux?
It snowed this morning! In April! Crazyness!