I recently built a new budget workstation for about for about $500 or so. Of course, the OS was free (in all senses of the word!). This is my first foray into OpenSuse; my last experience was with Novel Suse 9.2, which ran great until the PC died. For some reason, I just hadn’t tried Suse again in all these years. And I’m sorry I missed out, because it’s great!
My thoughts on Linux distros are basically that Linux is Linux. A distro is a different choice of lipstick and heels. It’s actually more complex than that, but not terribly more complex. So basically, you can make any Linux distribution do whatever you want. Pretty much. At least that’s where I start from. So Linux distros, to me, are basically artistic expressions of their respective communities. And there’s plenty of technology in art. And OpenSuse has plenty of art in their technology.
What differentiates Suse perhaps most is the excellence of their Yast admin tool. Not only is it known for being robust and complete, but I think it’s actually attractive. Indeed, the distro seems to hum along without much complaint at all.
If I had to find a gripe, it would simply be that the “Geeko” is kind of ugly. I don’t really get him. But whatever; he’s original.
Suse Enterprise Linux has grown quite a bit these last few years. Novell was recently acquired (I forget by whom), and Suse is now in a more favorable environment. They have a larger budget and more creative license than they ever had before, and the company appears to be flourishing. In fact, they’ve even started making music videos that help with their marketing.
Here’s one of my favorites, which is a parody of Maroon 5’s “Sugar, Yes Please.” Ylvis did a song called “What does the Fox Say?”, and Suse thought people would like to know what the “Geeko” says. Oh, by the way, he’s really a Chameleon. (I still don’t get it, but the video is pretty funny. “Geeko” can dance!!)
Without a doubt, my favorite video Suse video is this one:
I hadn’t heard of the Bruno Mars video this parodies, and so these lyrics were the ones that stuck in my head. Only later did I learn that Uptown Funk was actually a thing before Uptime Funk was. Who knew?
So I was primed to try OpenSuse again. I’m using this workstation primarily for development and occasionally for watching DVDs and basic net surfing. It’s part of a flock of workstations in my office, but right now it’s perhaps the prettiest.
And lately, it’s been the most musical!