Sunday, November 23, 2008

Shifting to Debian

Well, it has been a long time and no post. So I reckon it's time for an update.
Since I need a stable and usable system, I wasn't willing to upgrade to Kubuntu Intrepid. I heard a lot about Debian from friends and I knew that it's a great distribution, so I thought I'd give it a try.
I went to the site and downloaded the latest torrent for the testing DVD.
The installer was very friendly; I chose the expert gui mode.

It was simple and straightforward, it even allowed me to choose what modules to load. As an example, I could load a pppoe module to set up my networking.
It simply asked me if I wanted to install non-free software, I answered yes and it installed all the codecs and drivers I needed. No questions asked. No need to google forums to find out which packages to install to get my mp3 working.
It automatically detected my video card, installed the open source radeon driver and set up the optimal video mode. I was impressed.
It installed Gnome by default, but I downloaded the kde packages with one command from the Romanian Debian mirrors. In 4 minutes I had kde. Great.

I disabled the services I don't need and now it boots really fast.
KDE works better. I can see everyone's avatars in kopete (I couldn't under kubuntu), and even amarok works great (even with crossfading).
I was really happy with it.

I enabled the unstable (sid) repositories and installed qOrganizer with one command. Yes, there is a qOrganizer package in the Debian repository, and now Ubuntu has one too.

This is what my desktop looks like:

After I configured my system, I went on and compiled kde4 by hand from the SVN repositories. It wasn't hard and SVN is a lot better than the release.
But it's still not good enough for me (I'm too picky).

So, in conclusion, Debian rulz! :)