Tag: KDE

KDE Neon 5.9.2

kde-neon-5-9-2

It seems like I keep hearing about this distro so that means I had to take if for a spin. Right off the bat things were looking good. Ubuntu LTS base, up-to-date KDE, and minimal preinstalled software. The install was quick and painless. After rebooting back into the installed distro I was notified that I had updates available. The software updater is decent and ran without a problem. The only issue I could find is with the logon/lock screen and I know this affects all KDE distros. If you set the wallpaper and user image, the logon screen shows the wallpaper but not the user image and the lock screen shows the user image but not the wallpaper. It’s a small quirk but it is rather irritating. That aside, this distro is pretty great and it has earned its way into my list of distros I want to try on real hardware.

Goodbye 2016, Hello 2017

Over the last year I’ve tried a number of distros/OSs and felt I need to wrap things up with what I liked, didn’t like and what I am looking forward to. So without further ado, here goes.

Best Distro 2016: Linux Mint MATE 18.1
My main machine runs Manjaro XFCE 16.10 but I have had some issues with certain updates. For anything I use that needs to be reliable, I go with Linux Mint MATE. It works and I don’t need to worry about an update leaving me dead in the water.

 

Biggest Letdown 2016: Manjaro LXQt
I really want a good LXQt distro but this not it. It has so much promise but keeps letting me down. Whether it is updates that just won’t install or weird design choices, I want to like this but I just can’t.

 

Best DE/WM 2016: XFCE
I really like Fluxbox but can’t find a good distro for it. It looks like KDE5 and Budgie are coming around but they are not there yet. I also like MATE, but run into the occasional quirk. XFCE is so solid though. It is customizable (is that a word?) and relatively low on resources (I’d call it mid range for resources). XFCE is my daily driver and I prefer it over everything else right now. Whether it is LinuxMint, Majaro, Xubuntu, or Debian; XFCE is great.

 

Best OS 2016: Linux
This is pretty obvious. I’m not a complete Windows hater like some but Windows 10, while nice at times, really irritates me (quit reinstalling “Modern” apps I removed!). But that is nothing compared to OSX. OSX is good for basic things, but I need more out of my PC. If I didn’t, I’d just use my tablet. OSX blows Windows out of the water for running Photoshop and Premier but mapping a network drive, have fun with that. Chrome OS is getting better as well (I can finally run Team Viewer!) but it is still a bit too limiting.

 

Now that I have closed out 2016, here is what I am looking forward to in 2017

 

DE: Budgie
I wish I could say LXQt but it seems only ROSA has figured out how to make a decent LXQt distro (seriously, give ROSA a shot). I started playing with Budgie using Manjaro’s spin and while it had rough edges, I could see a lot of promise. As Budgie has matured it keeps getting better. I have a machine I use just to store VMs I’ve tested and it runs Ubuntu Budgie Remix. While it hasn’t been pain free, I really like what I see. With Budgie getting an official Ubuntu spin I think it can only get better.

 

Distro: Lubuntu
I quite like Lubuntu and I am really hoping that when they switch to LXQt I finally get an LXQt distro I like. I know they keep delaying the move but I hope to see it this year. Both Lubuntu 16.04 and Lubuntu 16.10 have been working great for me so I can only hope for a great LXQt based Lubuntu this year.

 

Some other thoughts going forward

Fluxbox
Bring back Manjaro Fluxbox or create an Ubuntu spin. Fluxbox is great but is really in need of some love. I’ve kept my Manjaro Fluxbox install running on an Acer C720, it is absolutely great but requires careful updating to keep in one piece. I’ve also built a Fluxbox setup from the Manjaro Net install just to learn more about how it works. I have tried the same with Ubuntu but have not go it dialed in yet. Besides Manjaro (whose Fluxbox spin hasn’t been updated since December 2015) the only other distro I have tried with Fluxbox is VSIDO (I’m open to suggestions) which was rough.

KDE
It is so close to being great again. Maybe 2017 will be the year it gets back to being my favorite DE but it needs to cut down on resources and run a bit smoother.

Gnome
I’ve never been a fan, I don’t expect Gnome or Unity to win me over any time soon.

Cinnamon
Cinnamon is good and always getting better but the resource usage gets me. It also has a bit of a dated look which I don’t mind if the resources match.

Chrome OS
I really want to see Androids apps come to Chrome OS and run stably. Chrome OS is great but it is lacks the apps to be a full fledged PC replacement. Android apps can fill this gap but stability is a must. My Chromebook is rock solid and I want it to stay that way.

OSX
I’ve given up on this OS, it will never work the way I need it to.

Windows
Don’t become OSX, let the user decide what they want to do. I still uses Windows (almost daily), and don’t like the direction Microsoft went when Windows 8 came out. Windows 10 has started to rectify the problems and they need to stay the course of listening to users.

 

To wrap this overly long post up, here are a few things I have in the works

Fedora 25 LXDE- hint it is just as good, if not better than Fedora 24 LXDE.
Pixel Desktop – I’ve only started playing with it but I always love a new (ish?) DE.
Manjaro LXQt 16.10 – I’ve been having issues but hope to wrap this up soon.
Something with Lumina – I’ve used this with PC-BSD and Manjaro, not satisfied yet.
RetroPie – It is awesome, I’ve actually spent too much time with it lately.

2 Birds 1 Stone

macbook-lm-18-kde

I was looking for some hardware to install LinuxMint KDE 18 on and I found it. I’ve had a Macbook Air that I don’t use because I find OSX to be incredibly irritating. So I decided to dual boot it. After getting rEFIt setup I proceeded through the install like normal. Everything works great. I just had to get the wifi drivers installed as the MBA uses Broadcom. It’s been a while since I liked used KDE or my MBA but now I can say I enjoy both. The MBA is a great piece of hardware (but not as good as my Dell XPS 13) with a terrible OS. I only wish this had a bigger hard drive so I could dual boot a couple of distros at once.

LinuxMint KDE 18

LinuxMint KDE 18.png

Before it was released I had heard that LinuxMint was making a green theme. Not sure what happened as I see a lot of blue. I also see a lot of extra junk I don’t want. I started cleaning up only to realize I needed to allocate more resources to the VM as it was running terribly, not that this is weird for KDE (or Gnome for that matter). I then reboot and it decided that it was going to hang up multiple times while trying to enter my password. Not sure why that happened as it is running normal now. After reading that you probably think I hate the distro, actually after some cleanup I think it is great. Once it settled it felt much more usable than the other KDE distros I have tested. The only lasting issue I have is finding some good hardware to run it on physically. I’m also a little worried that I hear the LinuxMint team is having trouble managing this spin.

Manjaro 16.06 KDE

Manjaro 16.06 KDE.png

The first thing I noticed about this is the installed packages have been changed and cleaned up which is a good step. There is still a bunch of junk I could do without but it is a step in the right direction. Also the panel no longer disappears when 3D Acceleration is turned on in Virtualbox. Continuing with things that are fixed, when the screen locks it let me log back in normally and I am not seeing the constant crashes like the pre release. The only problem I ran into is Chrome is not passing the validity check so I could not get it installed. I tried it again the next day and it installed properly. Overall this has come out much better than I expected.

ROSA Fresh KDE R7

ROSA Fresh KDE R7.png

It’s like the LXQt version but more shiny and it comes with KDE4 so it is stable. It could benefit from less preinstalled but it is not the overwhelming amount most KDE distros have. It is a good KDE distro but I am not sure how I feel about urpmi based distros. Pacman and apt-get have spoiled me and makes yum, dnf, and urpmi just feel slow. One issue I have is this distro is rather resource heavy.

KaOS 2016.04

KaOS 2016.04.png

Wait wasn’t there a KaOS release a month ago? There was but this one seems to actually work. KDE isn’t crashing like before and I haven’t had the wallpaper reset yet. It looks like the VirtualBox Guest Addtions are still broke as I had to install them manually. If KDE is your thing and you only use 64-bit then KaOS is worth a look.