Re: thinking about installing Debian
Welcome! I also used to use YDL and switched to Debian. Actually, I had been
using Red Hat / Fedora on my x86 box for a long time and on a lark, decided
to give Debian a try. I was sooo happy with how well my x86 box performed,
that I immediately made plans to replace my clunky old YDL PowerBook
installation with DebianPPC and haven't looked back since. Here are some
observations I've made as a switcher:
1) I never realized just how customized Red Hat / Fedora / YDL actually are.
A lot of "standard" Linux instructions have to be alterred for Red Hat's
special way of doing things. This is less often the case with Debian.
2) I was actually pretty surprised to see that both my machines were
*significantly* faster under Debian than RH/F/YDL.
3) If you use multiple platforms, it's really neat to have things set-up
exactly the same on both. My Powerbook setup is identical to my x86 desktop
and any little tricks I learn on one box can almost always be used on the
4) Apt-get is absolutely wonderful! Yes, I know you can use apt-get for RPM
distros too, but I'm tellin' ya -- it just ain't the same. Here's the
difference, Debian maintains their own official repositories of over 14,000
(!) packages -- and they work! The other day I saw a new program I wanted to
try called amarok. So I fired up a console, typed "apt-get install amarok"
and was happily running the program about 1 minute later. For me, this is
the single best thing about Debian -- no more RPM dependency hell.
Application installation is actually *easier* than Mac or Windows.
5) Now for the bad news. Debian's a bit of a pain in the ass to install. The
new beta installer ( http://www.debian.org/devel/debian-installer/ ) makes
things a bit easier, but you'll still have to tinker with things and use the
mailing lists, etc to get things going. But once you get it set-up, get X
working, get your sound, network, etc. all up and running, you'll have a
lean, mean, and FREE (http://www.debian.org/social_contract.html) Linux
Good luck! And let us know if we can help with anything ;-)
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