I don’t always have luck with Ubuntu and its many offshoots. Sometimes the alternate-install CD works where the live CD doesn’t. I’m trying to fill out a drive that now has gOS 1.0.1 and Wolvix Hunter 1.1.0 on it with a third distro for comparison purposes.
I tried the Xubuntu Gutsy live CD. It booted fine. I still didn’t have panels (a problem that seems to affect some machines and not others … and which cropped up in 7.04 but has not been dealt with as of 7.10). I went all the way to the “copy files” part of the install, where the installer died. I could’ve done my “install 6.10 and upgrade” method of getting Xubuntu on this box, the Maxspeed Maxterm thin client (VIA C3 Samuel CPU), but I didn’t feel like it.
So I returned to my old friend, Ubuntu 6.06 LTS. I did the install — it crashed once (I think I did more partitioning than the installer could handle in one pass) but ran fine the second time. I’m doing 173 updates right now … and that will take the rest of the day.
I don’t know if its just me and a view skewed by when I discovered Ubuntu, but I think of 6.06 and the first LTS as a very significant release for Ubuntu. Sure the system has gotten better and better in the three subsequent releases, but having the system working at this high level and supporting it for three years is very big. 6.06 also marked the first release of Xubuntu. I still think 7.04 is the best Xubuntu, at least for my hardware, but I’m pretty impressed with the current Ubuntu 7.10 on my Gateway Solo 1450 laptop. Besides the working ACPI management of the noisy fan, the option to turn off tap-to-click on the Alps Glidepad (aka touchpad) makes 7.10 the best distro for this laptop thus far. Not that I don’t boot into Debian Etch most of the time (I can handle the tap-to-click, even though I wish Debian would allow me to turn it off). That and Puppy 3.00, for which I’ve now managed the noisy fan quite nicely with a cron job. I could easily port that job over to … just about anything … and have a lot more freedom on what I run on the laptop.
And I had another strange thing happen with Zenwalk 4.8. The live CD boots fine on the converted thin client, but the install CD won’t boot. Yes, I checked the CD; it boots on other boxes. And with Zenwalk, you can’t install from the live CD, so I’m out of luck as far as Zen goes.
I had a short Wolvix piece ready to go, but I held it back to work in it a little more. I really like Wolvix thus far. The install is clear, although the GRUB entry it generated for gOS was less than ideal. It won’t be a problem to fix it, though. I’ll see how Ubuntu 6.06 handles GRUB.
Wolvix runs very nice. It’s got that great Xfce snappiness. One thing kind of bothered me, though. Firefox took a little longer to load than in other distros. And after FF was loaded and closed, it didn’t load any quicker after that. That’s why I need to do some a-b-c testing on the same box. If I find that the FF load time is normal, my love for Wolvix will grow. Once Firefox is loaded, however, it runs as well as or better than anything else I’ve slapped on this box. And I love the default install’s inclusion of Fluxbox in addition to Xfce. The implementation of Fluxbox is as good as or better than Vector Linux’s.
Thus far, Wolvix is one of the easiest-to-install Slackware-based distributions I’ve seen so far. And I really like the software choices. The Hunter version offers more software than the smaller Cub, and it’s a nice mix overall. Light and heavy browsers, image editors, and word processors. I hate to see a “light” system ship with OpenOffice and the GIMP. At least Wolvix helps you out with AbiWord, Gnumeric and MtPaint.