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Re: The Real Problem With Debian

On Tue, 1 Oct 2002, Rick wrote:

> Debian is supposedly a great OS, it is configurable, custimizable, and
> powerful, but Debian is ultimately misleading for many people.  Debian is an
> OS that may be used on a server, or a developer's computer, so he can really
> feel the balls in his system, but it should not have been used on my
> computer, or a couple of my friend's computers.

Sure.  You can't be all things to everyone.

> The Real Problem With Debian is that it is MANUAL.  Everything must be done
> manually, now although there may be a script or two to ease things along,
> these often DON'T WORK.  I have spent two weeks fighting slackware, trying to
> get it to work with my printer, and sound card.  Then I spent two weeks
> fighting Debian, trying to get it to work with my mouse, printer, network
> card, and sound card.  After installing Mandrake, everything worked
> instantaneously, sound, card, network, printer, EVERYTHING.  It ran faster
> too, I don't know why, but it did, and it had newer programs, like KDE3.xx.
> Which distro do you think I stuck with?

That's great.  Use whatever works for you.  That's the power of Linux.
although I obviously like Debian the best, I run Mandrake, Red Hat, and
Slackware too.  (Mostly under VMware nowadays.)

> This is not an attempt to convert any Debian users on this list, but it is a
> statement.  I spent a month fighting Slackware and Debian, and 45 minutes
> fighting Mandrake.  Full balls is nice, but how about having a system that is
> full balls, but ALSO is as easy to configure as mandrake?

It's funny you should say that because my recent upgrade from Mandrake 8.2
to 9.0 is the first one that *didn't* go horribly wrong or need a
reinstall.  In contrast I've been regularly updating my home debian box
for about five years now without a reinstall.  Different strokes for
different folks I guess.

Well there was one thing.  In 9.0 they forgot a symlink to cpp which
prevented me from logging in to KDE.  (which is a pretty huge blunder I
think.)  All the GUI tools in the world can't help with this.  I had to
get in there and fix it myself, manually just as I would have with Debian.
(Assuming debian ever did anything that silly :)  At least thanks to
Debian I knew what to do.  Someone who relied exclusively on pointy clicky
stuff would have been lost.

> People on IRC tell me that my hardware is flaky, yet it works perfectly with
> Mandrake.  People on IRC were rude, and even elitist, and made fun of me more
> often then helping me.  A stark contrast to the helpfullness of the folks on
> the mailing list, odd.
> The ironic thing is that my computer was so stock, it was Lynksis NC100 card
> (tulip module) with a ESS1969 Solo card, a s3ViRGE 4mb video card, and a
> Logitech USB wheel mouse.  This should not have taken me two weeks to
> configure on ANY distro.  The point is that Debian is flaky, it is too stark,
> some call configuration tools "bloat", and call guis "evil", but
> configuration tools are the way of the future, and guis have been around for
> 20 years.  The problem is that these are the same people that work on Debian,

Well I work on Debian and I maintain webmin which is a bloated GUI
configuration tool. :)  So don't tar everyone with the same brush.

> it is too bad some of the corporate "customer comes first" mentality didn't
> get into Debian.  I donated $4 to Debian, more then many can claim, I guess I
> got EXACTLY what I paid for.  Good luck to all of you, and thanks again.

I like to say Debian is your second Linux distribution.  So go and enjoy
Mandrake and get used to the system.  I have a feeling you'll be back
sooner or later.

Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar@debian.org>
It's a girl! See the pictures - http://www.braincells.com/shailaja/

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