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rurwin
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Which Debian distro for the desktop?

Tue Jan 22, 2013 3:23 pm

For the desktop PC, not the RaspPi.

I was on Ubuntu until I decided to give Mint a try. Now my version of Mint is aged and decrepit. Unlike Ubuntu it doesn't do the rolling update thing, so if I'm going to have to do a backup and DVD install, I might as well consider my choices. I'd prefer to stay with Debian, because I like apt-get and because the RaspPi uses it. I'd like the rolling upgrade and I'd like something up-to-date rather than ultra-stable. But I honestly don't have the time to be fiddling with configuration stuff all day, so I think a raw Debian installation, although tempting, is probably not the best option. Community is not an issue; I was involved with Mandrake, posted a couple of queries on Ubuntu, and never surfaced with Mint.

So what are my choices?

Spid
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Re: Which Debian distro for the desktop?

Tue Jan 22, 2013 3:30 pm

Lubuntu 12:04 Long Term release, with the LXDE Desktop similar to Raspbian in look and feel.
I will always assume you are running Raspbian for desktop and Raspbmc for XMBC !

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penguintutor
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Re: Which Debian distro for the desktop?

Tue Jan 22, 2013 3:44 pm

I've tried lots of distros in the past, but used to be primarily a Ubuntu & Xubuntu user before Gnome 3 and Unity. I now mainly use Xubuntu and Kubuntu.

xubuntu is fast. The window manager is similar to lxfce used on the Raspberry Pi, but with a few more bells and whistles. Works well for running on low spec hardware.

kubuntu looks good with KDE 4, but is a bit of a resource hog. Lots of configuration options so you can get it working how you want to, rather than how the Gnome team / Canonical think you should.

I've heard good reports about Mageia and I'm thinking of trying that with KDE next time.

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rurwin
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Re: Which Debian distro for the desktop?

Tue Jan 22, 2013 11:48 pm

I'm not too bothered about having a small footprint; this PC is getting on a bit, but it does have 64-bits, dual cores and 2GB of RAM. I'm certainly missing the KDE printer interface with its print in booklet-form filter. Is it really down to Ubuntu or Mint? Is nobody else doing a decent Debian desktop distro? In that case it's looking like Mint Debian or Kubuntu.

(I think Mageia is RedHat, no?)

stevhorn5
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Re: Which Debian distro for the desktop?

Wed Jan 23, 2013 12:03 am

You might want to have a look at Bodhi Linux

http://www.bodhilinux.com/about_bodhi.php

stubright
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Re: Which Debian distro for the desktop?

Wed Jan 23, 2013 8:44 am

Here's a list of 34 Debian/KDE based distros from Distrowatch (in order of popularity according to page hits)

http://distrowatch.com/search.php?ostyp ... tus=Active

I'm not saying they're all good but it's a starting point. I use Mint Debian on my laptop and Ubuntu 10.04 on my desktop (but my desktop will change once 10.04 support ends).

Nr90
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Re: Which Debian distro for the desktop?

Wed Jan 23, 2013 9:34 am

Regular debian is also a solid option. It takes only slightly more effort to configure (mainly wifi and graphic card).
Plus if you go with wheezy now, you'll be on a distro that will be stable for the next 3 years.

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penguintutor
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Re: Which Debian distro for the desktop?

Wed Jan 23, 2013 4:30 pm

I think Mageia is RedHat, no?
Mageia uses RPM packages.

One of the reasons I moved away from rpm based distros was the inability to perform a upgrade without re-installing. Mageia uses urpmi which is able to perform distribution upgrades, although I've not tried it myself yet.

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rurwin
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Re: Which Debian distro for the desktop?

Wed Jan 23, 2013 5:21 pm

Things might have changed now, it was a long time ago, but when I was forced away from Mandriva onto Ubuntu, all the problems I was used to experiencing with dependencies disappeared.

Thanks stubright, that's a fascinating list. Linux Mint and Mageia are the only non-root distros to be more popular than the main root distros, and by a very healthy margin too. SnowLinux is a long way behind, and it's based on Debian Stable.

Mint Debian is based on (and 100% compatible with) Debian testing, and it has a rolling upgrade. It's still Gnome, but I suppose I could do something about that if I could be bothered.

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