OpenSUSE 11.3 – my first impressions.

As it turns out, I couldn’t stand the wait.

Over the weekend I replaced my trusty installation of Linux Mint with the latest and greatest OpenSUSE. What follows are some first impressions — the best I can do right now as I’m still trying to figure everything out…

The installer is tricky.

Unlike the dead-simple Ubuntu installers that I’m used to, OpenSUSE expects the user to be a little more knowledgeable about what’s going on.

I actually got hung up in two spots. First was the disk partitioner, which left as is didn’t seem like it would let the installer do anything.

Then, right before hitting the “install” button the user is asked where they want to install GRUB, a boot loader for Linux. The default option is not the master boot record but instead one of the partitions on the boot drive. Not knowing any better I chose the default and ended with a system that wouldn’t boot.

It took me an entire reinstallation with GRUB on the MBR to fix it. Lesson learned.

linux-n0b1.site?

This is apparently the name of my computer. I’m hoping there’s a way I can change it.

KMail & Kontact…

KMail seems very spiffy. Though my email now resides on remote IMAP folders I like that KMail lets you choose either Maildir or mbox to store mail locally.

I’m less impressed with Kontact. The address book is fine, but at least one of the recurring events in my calendar are a day off for some reason. And though there’s support for both a journal and pop-up notes, neither hook in to the notes on my hosted SyncML server.

Restricted codecs are a click away.

Here’s the click. I’m still having issues with a couple of video formats, and will have to get back to you on this.

Amarok is pretty fantastic.

I’ll have to devote a separate post to KDE’s legendary music player.

Choqok is a very good microblogging client.

But unless I’m missing something it can’t dump everything into a single stream like Gwibber can. Oh well…

You don’t need Nautilus for Dropbox.

Ignore the stated requirements for Linux; Dropbox works just as well with KDE’s Dolphin File Manager — just follow these instructions.

No performance issues to report.

I haven’t loaded up my desktop with Plasmoids yet, but overall KDE seems very snappy on my Lenovo all-in-one.

Like I said I’m still trying to figure stuff out, but I’ll be happy to take any questions for anyone considering the switch to either SUSE or KDE. Likewise, if you’ve any tips for me, don’t hold back…

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