Fedora has great documentation. It's one of the many reasons that the Red Hat-sponsored community project's operating system is a compelling choice for your desktops, laptops and maybe even servers if you like to tinker.
I'm not unhappy with the battery life of my HP Pavilion g6-2210us laptop. I get a whole lot more out of it than I did my previous Lenovo G555. But I'm always on the lookout for more optimization, and right now I'm focusing on the hard drive, which throws off more heat than I'd like (but not so much as to be a problem).
tuned and made it run at startup.
There is an error in the F19 Power Management Guide in how to do that.
The correct command (run with rootly privileges) to make
tuned start at boot is:
# systemctl enable tuned
The last two words are reversed in the docs. And yes, I did file a bug.
Korora is to Fedora as Ubuntu is to Debian. Got that?
That means Korora adds on all those helpful bits that a Fedora user just might want. Everything from multimedia codecs to Steam, Adobe Flash to VirtualBox -- you get it all in Korora, though most of it isn't terribly hard to add to "virgin" Fedora.
Just like Debian: There are plenty of things that ship in Ubuntu, but the halfway knowledgeable user with a little time on his/her hands can do most if not all of it on top of Debian.
But just like with Debian and Ubuntu, it's nice to have something like Korora to give us a complete out-of-the-box experience.
The only difference between Korora and Ubuntu? Nobody's ever heard of one of them.
Never mind that. In the next cycle, Korora is upping its game. The Korora 20 Beta builds are now available, and I'm happy to see that Xfce has been added to the list of available desktop ISOs, which already included GNOME, KDE, Cinnamon and MATE.
I'm downloading the Xfce and GNOME ISOs now, though what I'm really looking for is something with a 3.13 Linux kernel so I can put it through its paces on my still-needs-help-suspending AMD-running laptop.
My Fedora system has most of what is in Korora, though not Steam (don't care), Jockey (do care and WANT it) or VirtualBox (could be worth a play). But I've thought for a long time that Fedora needs its own Ubuntu/Mint, and Korora looks to be fulfilling that role very nicely.
MLED, aka the Microlinux Enterprise Desktop, is Frenchman Nicolas Kovacs' attempt to bring together various bits and pieces of the Slackware community, including Slackbuilds, slackpkg+ (which I confess I've never heard of until now) and more to create what he calls a "full-blown production desktop."
Yes, that includes multimedia codecs.
You get MLED by installing Slackware, then importing "tagfiles" (first time I've heard of this concept) and doing more than a bit of configuration, choosing KDE, Xfce or MATE along the way.
It's not as easy as a full-blown ISO but not as hard as finding all the bits on your own.
Kovacs talks about why MLED is based on Slackware here, and I agree with pretty much everything he says.
If you're looking for a long-term-support distribution with extremely conservative underpinnings, Slackware is a compelling choice, and it looks like MLED will get you from zero to desktop that much more quickly than assembling the bits on your own. I'd prefer this to be more automatic, but those are the Slackware-fueled breaks, I guess.
I've been using Fedora Linux for the greater part of this year, starting with F18 and upgrading via Fedup to F19. For most of that time, I've used the closed-source AMD Catalyst driver as packaged by RPM Fusion instead of the open Radeon driver that ships by default with Fedora and most every other Linux distribution.
I'm not proud of it. But the differences in performance are too big to ignore.
Things that stink with both drivers: Neither the open- nor the closed-source driver will resume my HP Pavilion g6-2210us laptop after suspend. (The machine uses the AMD A4-4300M APU with AMD Radeon HD 7420G graphics.)
Things that stink with the open driver: Only the Catalyst driver delivers working 3D acceleration, meaning without it I can't run GNOME 3 at all, most games look like hell, and a certain wonkiness crops up here and there on various web pages.
With Catalyst, my glxgears frames per second are 100 times greater than with the open driver. I don't know what glxgears fps numbers really mean, but 5,200 has got to be better than 50.
Things that stink with the closed driver: In Xfce, many application windows have lost the borders on the left and right sides. I can't explain it.
I also cannot successfuly use UEFI secure boot with the Catalyst-enabled kernel, though I can do so without Catalyst installed. It's not Secure Boot itself that is stopping the boot. It just hangs at some point -- after some IP tables lines in the dmesg, I think. The solution is keeping EFI but turning off Secure Boot.
Aaron Toponce is one of those insightful writers about Linux that I like to follow.
Now he joins those publicly leaving the Ubuntu project after what he refers to as a long line of disappointments in the project and its parent company Canonical, the last of those being the "trademark aggression" exhibited over the Fix Ubuntu site, the heavy-handedness for which SABDFL Mark Shuttleworth has apologized.
SABDFL apology aside, Aaron states many reason for leaving Ubuntu as a contributor and user (he's running Debian on everything, if you want to know). Those reasons include swapping GNOME for Unity, the Unity Lenses and the Amazon shopping "app."
He ends (but please do read the entire post):
I can't be associated with a project like this any longer. Effective immediately, my blog will no longer on the Ubuntu Planet. My Ubuntu Membership will be cancelled. My "UBUNTU" license plates, which have been on my car since August 2006, will be removed, in favor of my Amateur Radio callsign. I wish everyone in the Ubuntu community the best of wishes. I also hope you have the power to change Ubuntu back to what it used to be. I have no ill feelings towards any person in the Ubuntu community. I just wish to now distance myself from Ubuntu, and no longer be associated with the project. Canonical's goals and visions do not align with something I think should be a Unix. Don't worry though -- I'll keep blogging. You can't get that out of my blood. Ubuntu just isn't for me any longer. Goodbye Ubuntu.
I found Aaron's post via Benjamin Kerensa's post on the need to establish a Ubuntu foundation. The idea is intriguing, but I doubt anything will come of it.
As I've been saying lately, there are a few hundred other Linux distributions out there, and even close to home there are a number of fine Ubuntu-affiliated/derived projects like Xubuntu, Ubuntu GNOME, Kubuntu and Lubuntu that offer compelling desktop systems and are run by engaged, growing and inclusive communities. And there's always Mint, Debian, CrunchBang, Slackware and many, many more.
More for technical than philosophical reasons, I'm running Fedora with Xfce. Until my hardware runs better (i.e. suspend/resume works), I need the latest kernels and video drivers, and Fedora offers (in my experience anyway) the easiest, least painful way of getting them. And while Fedora also has a strong corporate parent/overlord in Red Hat, the relationship between company and community is much less frought.
Just to make sure that nothing suits my needs better than what I'm running right now (that being Fedora 19 with Xfce and GNOME), I did an Ubuntu 13.10 installation this week and have spent a bit of time putting the Unity-driven Linux distribution to the test.
The installation was easy. Ubuntu is very good about that. And from the standpoint of actually knowing what's going on during the install, Ubuntu beats Fedora handily.
While the installation process was easy and smooth, I was unable to boot the finished installation with UEFI Secure Boot on my HP Pavilion g6-2210us laptop, which has admittedly "difficult" UEFI. I had to turn off Secure Boot to successfully boot Ubuntu 13.10 in EFI mode. Since I'm now having trouble with Fedora 19 and Secure Boot on this same hardware, I'll chalk that up to an overall Linux kernel problem with secure boot as it stands today. Luckily you can just about always turn off Secure Boot in the computer setup/BIOS, so this shouldn't be a problem.
Ubuntu's Unity desktop environment is snappier than billed. But for me it's just a little bit "broken" compared to and Xfce 4.10 and GNOME 3. For instance, as far as I can tell, in Unity you can't drag windows from one workspace to another. It's also hard to tell when you've minimized a window, though this is also the case in GNOME 3.
Call it a reality check.
After installs of Debian Wheezy, an unsuccessful upgrade to Sid, and more installs -- Ubuntu 12.04 and 13.10 -- plus some Debian Sid-derived live-disc tests (Siduction, Aptosid), I've decided that Fedora is where I should be right now.
Probably due to my hardware being so new and Debian Stable being so relatively old, my idea about returning to Debian didn't work out as well as I could have hoped.
And then I had trouble with X in Siduction and Aptosid.
Onward, upward. Ubuntu 12.04 wouldn't boot after install, probably also due to its age relative to my HP Pavilion g6-2210us.
Ubuntu 13.04 with the proprietary fglrx driver ran well enough that I still have it on the test drive, a separate 320 MB disk that I swapped into the laptop.
But Unity isn't for me, and I don't see much of an advantage at this point in Ubuntu GNOME 13.10 vs. Fedora 19 with GNOME and Xfce, which is what I'm running once again.
I found GNOME 3.4 in Debian Wheezy much more responsive than GNOME 3.8 in Fedora 19, but the other problems with graphics I had in Debian canceled out that speed improvement.
And the way I have it set up, Xfce 4.10 in Fedora is probably the best desktop environment I've ever used. And I do still have GNOME 3.8 to test when I wish.
I continue to use the proprietary AMD Catalyst driver from RPM Fusion, just as I continually hope for the eventual return of working suspend/resume to this laptop.
That's all I'm really missing.
And the pace of Fedora, which makes even Debian Sid look extremely conservative, offers the best chance of getting there as quickly as possible.
And as I've said before, for all of its forward thinking and new kernels, Fedora 18 and 19 have been remarkably trouble free.
For new hardware, especially when using UEFI, extra especially when dual-booting with Windows 8, I recommend Fedora without reservation.
Amid all the talk about the Steam gaming platform coming to Linux, and more specifically Ubuntu, I just learned that Steam is waiting to enter the RPM Fusion repository for Fedora GNU/Linux users.
These things happen in predictable patterns. Due to hardware issues I land in Fedora, and after six months it's time for something else.
Not that Fedora 18 and now 19 haven't been great, because they have.
But I'm wary of my AMD APU-based HP laptop's trouble with suspend/resume and 3D acceleration. I had both working for a very short time during the AMD Catalyst 13.6 beta's brief run.
But before that I had neither, and now I have decent 3D with AMD Catalyst but seemingly no hope of working suspend/resume with this AMD A4-4300M APU and its AMD Radeon HD 7420G graphics.
And I'm getting tired of new kernels coming into Fedora, some with Catalyst support, some without. And it's past time that this AMD GPU (I think it's the Trinity family) get better support from the kernel and the free and proprietary drivers.
What I'm saying is that if the hardware support I need is not going to come soon, I'd like something more stable while I'm waiting.
So I started auditioning new Linux distributions yesterday.
And when Debian 7.1 and 7.2 Live DVDs both allowed me to successfully suspend/resume my HP Pavilion g6-2210us laptop, I was firmly pulled back into the Debian camp. To my "home" distro.
I thought you could take care of turning off suspend when the laptop lid is shut under GNOME 3 by using GNOME Tweak Tool. That doesn't work.
Automatic suspend when the lid is closed doesn't work for me because suspend/resume doesn't function on my HP hardware, and I'd like to close the damn lid every once in awhile without having to do a hard boot afterward.
It's the little things.
In a terminal:
Once you're in
logind.conf, uncomment (i.e. remove the
#) on this line:
Then change "suspend" to "lock"
It should now read like this:
Save and close the
Once you reboot, closing the lid should lock the screen and not suspend the laptop.
Note: Xfce doesn't suffer from the same inability as GNOME 3 to control what happens when you close the laptop lid.
Alternate instructions if you want to use vi and sudo:
Open a terminal and type:
$ sudo vi /etc/systemd/logind.conf
Change this line:
to this (remove
Save and close the file in vi, then reboot.