Update: Under The Weather

Hey folks, just a quick update to let you know what’s been going on in the last week or so. Unfortunately I’ve had some strange stomach virus for about 10 days and it’s not shifting very quickly. I hope to be over it soon but this has put paid to a lot of my plans lately. I wanted to attend the Linux Expo in London next week and even announced it here in my last post. Sadly the illness and some other developments have meant I can’t go after all πŸ™ I was unable even to record our usual weekly episode of the Linux Outlaws podcast last week but I’m very happy to report we recorded 2 episodes last night to make up for it, they should appear over the next few days. The other secret podcast project I keep teasing you with is still in the pipeline and hopefully will see the light of day very soon. I can’t wait to be able to shout about it, so you’ll be the first to know I promise.

I’ve held off distro hopping whilst ill but I have been downloading and burning distros ready for the off. I noticed the release of Mandriva 2009 the other day and after enjoying 2008 a hell of a lot last year, I think it’ll be my first stop on the journey. I’ve also downloaded PC-BSD 7 and I hope to finally make good on my many promises to try BSD properly on the desktop. It’s quite an exciting prospect and I must admit gives the kind of buzz I had when first encountering Linux years ago. I know it’s just another Unix-like OS really but it’s something completely new for me and it’s not every day you get a chance to try something for the first time. I’ve been reading up on the PC-BSD website and I must say their documentation looks very good, I hope to find the transition easy enough. We’ll see.

Hope to be back to fighting fitness soon but I don’t know how long it’ll take. Apologies to anyone who might have been hoping to meet up at the Linux Expo but I’m sure we’ll get other chances. If you are going along have a great time, I’m very jealous. I’ll probably back up my data and move to Mandriva 2009 over the weekend so I’ll report back ASAP.

Till then, y’all come back now πŸ˜‰



  1. Dan, is your machine KVM capable? It makes trying out lots of different distros a lot easier πŸ™‚

  2. The machine is KVM capable yes and I’ve enabled the option in the BIOS but I never managed to make it work properly no matter what guide I followed. I’ve used Qemu, vmware and VirtualBox over the years and virtual machines are great. I find though that things tend to work in VMs because they all present genric hardware, no driver issues and so on. I think in order to really test a distribution properly and get an authentic experience, the only way is to throw everything into it and use the software full time on a physical machine. It teases out all kinds of little quirks you wouldn’t see on a VM and I think it’s more authentic somehow, since readers are looking to discover if these operating systems are right for them on their computers.

    Thanks for the suggestion though it is a good one and I appreciate it, in many ways it would be a lot easier and quicker but I quite like packing up my stuff and moving on every so often πŸ™‚

    I’m actually writing this from Mandirva 2009 and KDE4, I’ve already found some interesting quirks with screen resolutions and more. I’ll report back soon

  3. I hope that you are getting better.
    I am looking forward to hearing about your impressions of PC-BSD; more particularly: How much the FreeBSD it is based on comes through, and how you find it to work with. PC-BSD and DesktopBSD are both KDE-based. I find DesktopBSD to be very much like Pardus, actually.

  4. I’m looking forward to trying BSD, I don’t know much about it so it will be a real eye opener I hope. I liked Pardus a lot so I’ll add DesktopBSD to my hit list thanks πŸ™‚

  5. Hi Dan, first of all I want to say I found your “another day another distro” series very helpful as a new linux user, and this is the first place I look for reviews of new distros. It sounds like you had yourself a rough week, so I hope you’re feeling better.

    I’ve been using Mandriva 2009 and I’ve seen some quirks as well, but it looks so good I don’t mind fixing some things. If it’s not to late, you might want to consider the GNOME version instead, as it seems to be the more polished version this time around. I’ve also had to use noapic on some distros (MCP southbridge bug I think), and this one froze at certain points without it, so if that happens try noapic. Good luck, and hang in there.

  6. Thanks Steve that’s very kind of you and I appreciate the well wishes πŸ™‚ As for Mandriva 2009 I am actually running the Gnome edition now after first using the KDE4.1 version for a few days, I must say I prefer the Gnome version. I’ve had some major problems with support for the sound card in my Dell m1330 which is fully Linux compatible and had to install a new kernel to fix it. The distro still impressed me in some other ways. It’ll all be in the huge write up to come very soon πŸ˜‰

  7. As I reported on DW too, I was set back by the sound problem with Mandriva 2009 GNOME. And changing the kernel didn’t change the problem for me.
    Strange, because PClinuxOS 2008 GNOME sounds (literally) very well, no buzing or so.
    And the *buntu’ s don’ t have any problem with my very common sound card…

  8. That’s interesting, I found I could only get sound with a new kernel but then the buzzing on the input was annoying, managed to mute it. As you say I haven’t had this problem with any other distro. It seems to be a bug in the kernel on the Mandriva CD, must be how they compiled it I think.

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