Putting On the Fedora (for Real This Time)

Previously I posted about setting up a test Fedora 8 installation to see if it could work as my primary system. I was intending to replace my existing Ubuntu Feisty system and had to decide between Fedora and Gutsy. Well the decision was easy and now Fedora 8 is now my main system.

Generally I was pleased with Ubuntu but it had some problems as I detailed earlier. The only problem that was fixed in the upgrade from Feisty to Gutsy was the OpenOffice Base issue. USB sound and the scanner problems still exist. To be fair usb sound is a problem in most Linux distros and still exists to some extent in Fedora. And there are fixes for the scanner problems on the forums.

Installing Fedora went well, my hardware was mostly set up correctly. There were a couple of things to sort but I was generally happy. I selected all of the applications I wanted at installation and didn’t include what I didn’t want (like games). I selected to install both KDE and Gnome. After installation I had to run the updates and  force it to detect my second printer.

The usb sound problem exists in that I don’t have system sounds although they work when tested. This is no real loss as I usually end up turning them off. More importantly I have sound in all the applications I have tested including Firefox which is something I couldn’t get with Ubuntu.

The most serious problem was the operation of my Wacom graphics tablet. It worked fine with Ubuntu and was recognised but not configured correctly under Fedora 8. Although it worked it was jumpy and couldn’t access the whole screen. I searched the forums and found a fix and after editing xorg.conf it appears to be working as it was previously.

Ubuntu wins in terms of package manager. The default Synaptic is without a doubt the best package manager out there. The Fedora option is slow and clunky by comparison. Adding support for mp3 and similar codecs is more difficult in Fedora too. Unlike Ubuntu it doesn’t give you the option, you have to find and install them yourself. Fortunately the forums and other sites have all you need. The Fedora8 Tips and Tricks site was very useful for this and similar issues.

I have been using both KDE and Gnome and now seem to have settled on KDE. This is probably not surprising as many of my default applications are KDE ones. Krusader and digiKam are good examples. They work well under Gnome so it probably shows I prefer the KDE way of doing things.

So is that the end of Ubuntu for me? Well no as I have installed Gutsy as a test system and intend to install KDE 4 on it and give that a try. Wonder where that will lead?


Author: Jim

A sixty something living in the Hawkesbury Valley on the edge of Sydney Australia.

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