Archive | reviews RSS for this section

Ubuntu-gnome 17.04

I have already reviewed Ubuntu-17.04.  However, the Ubuntu folk (i.e. Canonical) had already announced that, starting with 18.04, they would switch their mainline version from the Unity desktop to the Gnome desktop.  So I decided to also test out the 17.04 version of Ubuntu with Gnome desktop.

I installed Ubuntu-gnome in an already existing encrypted LVM.  The machine that I used actually has two hard drives, with an encrypted LVM on each drive.  So this was a different LVM from the one that I used for the mainline Ubuntu (with unity).  Currently, both versions of Ubuntu are installed on that machine.

Read More…

Ubuntu 17.04 – a review

Ubuntu 17.04 was announced a few days ago.  I had already decided that I would install it, and do a little testing.  So, once I saw the announcement, I started a download.

Downloading

To download, I followed the links from the announcement to the download page.  From there, I selected the torrent download.  I was using the “vivaldi” browser, and it gave me several options with the torrent link.  I chose the option to open the file.  And that started the download with “ktorrent”.

I also downloaded “SHA256SUMS.desktop” and “SHA256SUMS.desktop.gpg”.  Next, I checked the gpg signature with

gpg --verify SHA256SUMS.desktop.gpg SHA256SUMS.desktop

which showed that I had a good download of the checksum file.  After the torrent download had completed, I checked its validity with

sha256sum -c SHA256SUMS.desktop

That reported that the downloaded iso file was ok.  It also reported that some files did not exist.  I ignored that.  It was just that the checksum file had checksums for other isos that I had not downloaded.

Read More…

KaOS-2017.01 — a review

I have previously reported on KaOS, in 2015.  I have actually kept it installed since August 2015.  When I saw the announcement for 2017.01, I decided that it was time for a re-install.  I’ll note that I could have just updated the already installed version, but it seemed like time for a fresh start.

What is KaOS?

KaOS is a rolling distribution, based on KDE.

I am a KDE user, with openSUSE Leap (currently at 42.2).  But I also keep openSUSE Tumbleweed installed for looking at what will be coming up.  And I’m using KaOS as an alternative view of what is going to be showing up in the future.

I have not used KaOS extensively, except for occasion testing and occasional updating.  I’m expecting to continue that practice with the new install.

Downloading

I downloaded from the download site listed on the announcement.  I then checked the md5sum for the download.  There did not appear to be a gpg signature that I could check.

Read More…

Solus-2017.01.01 — a review

I saw the announcement of the new Solus release on Distrowatch.  So I decided that it was time to take another look at Solus.

Downloading

I used the available torrent to download “Solus-2017.01.01.0-Budgie.iso”.  I then separately downloaded the sha256 checksum file, because that was not part of the torrent download.  And I noticed a file “Solus-2017.01.01.0-Budgie.sha256sum.sign” which looked as if it might be a gpg signature for the checksum.  So I downloaded that, too.

Unfortunately, I could not find the gpg key that I would need to check the signature.  So I had to just trust the checksum.  Just before composing this post, I did another search for the gpg key, and finally came up with a link.  So I added that to my keyring, and was finally able to verify the checksum file.  The needed key still does not appear to be on the public keyservers.  But at least I could find it with a google search.

Installing

To install, I wrote the iso file to a USB flash drive, with

# dd_rescue Solus-2017.01.01.0-Budgie.iso /dev/sdd

(note that “/dev/sdd” is the device usually used by a USB flash drive on my main desktop).

Read More…

Geckolinux-422 — a review

Geckolinux is a distro that is based on opensuse.  The maintainer uses the handle sb56637 (at least at sourceforge).  He use the suse studio site to build his releases.  His releases version amount to opensuse that is configured to his liking.  The releases are iso files for a live session, and can be installed.

In the move to the Leap series, opensuse no longer provides live versions (except for Tumbleweed).  So I have occasionally recommended geckolinux to people looking for a live version that they can test.

I saw the announcement of the 422.161213 release, via a link at Distrowatch.  I proceeded to download the bare bones version.  I was not fully satisfied with the result, so I tried the XFCE version.  I wasn’t happy with that either.  Yesterday, I rechecked the site, and I see that there is now a more recent 422.161228 release.

Read More…

OpenMandriva Lx 3.01 — not really a review

Hmm, I have been neglecting this blog.  It’s time to catch up.  I’ve still been doing stuff, but have not recently blogged about it.

There’s not much to report here, so this will be a short post.

I saw the recent announcement from the OpenMandriva folk, and thought that I would give it a try.  According to the announcement, this release comes with Plasma 5 with Wayland support.

Download

I downloaded the iso and the checksums.  I then used the checksums to verify the download.  This is not completely satisfactory — a gpg signature would be better — but at least it is a download check.  And that all worked out.

Read More…

OpenSUSE Leap 42.2 RC2

Release candidate 2 (or RC2) is now out.  It was announced earlier today:

As you might expect, I downloaded the iso for the DVD installer, and “burned” that to a USB flash drive.  I then did an install using it.

The install went quite well.  I followed the same general method as in my install for RC1.

Nouveau graphics

I noticed one change.  Early in the install, I was told about “Mesa-dri-nouveau”.  This is a new package, broken out from mesa.  The notification asked me whether I wanted to accept this package.  If I did not accept, then 3D would be emulated in software.

I accepted the package.  I cannot test it otherwise.

Unfortunately, it does not work well enough with my nvidia card.

Read More…

OpenSUSE Leap 42.2 RC1 — a review

I’m a tad slow reporting this.

Release candidate 1 (or RC1) for 42.2 was announced on Tuesday.  I downloaded the DVD installer, and proceeded to install on three computers.

For the most part, everything went well.  I noticed a couple of cosmetic issues.  And Plasma 5 still won’t run under “nouveau” (with a Nvidia card).  But at least there is a good workaround for that.  I’ll discuss these in more detail below.

Versions

Gnome shows as version 3.20.2.  To find that, I logged into Gnome, right-clicked on the desktop and selected “Settings”.  On the window that showed up, I clicked “Details” to find the version.

Read More…

OpenSUSE Leap 42.2 Beta3

Beta3 was announced yesterday.  So, naturally, I prepared to download and install.  We are getting close to final release time for 42.2.  The biggest change for Beta3, is that Plasma 5 (or KDE) is now at release 5.8.

Download and install

As with prior development releases of 42.2, the download and installation went smoothly.  I followed my normal practice of “burning” the DVD image to a USB flash drive.  I then booted that flash drive to start the installer.

I have done three installs.  Two of those were yesterday, and the third was this morning.

Encrypted LVMs

As with my previous installs, I have  been installing to an encrypted LVM (two installs), and to an unencrypted partition but using the home file system from an encrypted LVM on the other install.

Read More…

OpenSUSE Leap 42.2 Beta2

Things are moving along toward the 42.2 release.  It seems not too long ago that I reviewed Beta1.  And now Beta2 is available.

Download and install

I saw the announcement on Thursday morning.  I immediately started a download.  As is my practice, I used “wget” to download the sha256 checksum file, and “aria2c” to dowload the DVD installer iso.  Once downloaded, I verified the gpg signature on the sha256 checksum file, and then used that file to verify the downloaded iso.  That’s probably redundant, because “aria2c” does verification checks during the download.

Next, I wrote the downloaded iso to a USB flash drive.  I used an 8G flash drive, and wrote with “dd_rescue”.

Rebooting the system, I hit F12 during boot.  For that computer, it brings up a BIOS boot menu which allowed me to select booting from the USB flash drive.

Read More…