Fedora 11

I finally got around to installing F11 on my Dell 1520 laptop this week so here are some of my experiences and impressions. I looked back at my post on F10 before I wrote this and I must say although 10 was good the installation of F11 went very well.

This time I only installed KDE and not Xfce. Not that I have any problems with Xfce, I will use it on my older desktop as KDE is a bit heavy for it. I stuck to the x86_64 version as I haven’t had any problems with it in older versions. I can’t see the point of having a 64 bit processor and running a 32 bit system.

The installation didn’t start off well as it stalled when anaconda started. I had to use the basic video driver option on the dvd. It then went as usual. I didn’t need to do that in previous versions but it didn’t worry me as I intended to install the nVidia drivers anyway. They are needed for desktop effects and GoogleEarth.

The installation went well, I selected KDE and then added and removed some of the optional apps. Next step was to install yum-presto. This is one of the big advances in F11, or maybe that should be little advances as it reduces the size of updates. With presto only the actual changes are downloaded not the whole package. For those of us with slower connections or limited downloads this is a great improvement. The downloads are reduced by up to 80% but I gather the average is about 60%.

That done I updated which took a lot less time than usual. There was some problems getting started as I got some strange errors from the repos but I gather that was due to the heavy load. I sorted itself out and I haven’t had any problems since.  Then it was time to install the other apps and drivers I wanted.

Next was time to customise the desktop. The new artwork looks great but  … well lets just say blue isn’t my favourite colour. Unfortunately only one theme and wallpaper is installed with KDE so I installed kdeartwork from the Fedora repos. This adds many more themes and some wallpapers although I use one I found elsewhere or one of my own photos.

After setting up Conky and restoring my backups of data and some config files, Amarok databases and the like I was almost ready to go. The only real issue I had was my bluetooth mouse. I hate using the touchpad and wanted to get the mouse working asap. I found that although Kbluetooth4 was installed by default Bluez wasn’t so there was no Bluetooth service. That fixed I tried to get the mouse recognised. I had to restart before it would work. Kbluetooth4 let me set it up but after each restart I had to do it again, it showed in the status as “not trusted”. I couldn’t find anywhere to change it but after a few restarts it brought up a dialogue and asked if it was trusted and has been working ever since. I was then able to disable the touchpad as I have found my self bumping it in the past and ended up typing somewhere else on the screen.

The end result is I have working system in little time with no real problems after the Bluetooth was sorted. KDE looks great and runs better than ever. Some of the KDE apps have been updated and just keep getting better. I have seen reports of problems with sound but that seems to be mainly Gnome, mine worked out of the box on both speakers and headphones.

In my opinion this is the best Fedora ever, isn’t it great that we can say that every version. Well done to the Fedora team.

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