So I tried Gnome 3 for a few hours and found it too frustrating. I didn’t see any giant advantage it had over projects like Mate, XFCE or Cinnamon, so I went with Cinnamon instead. I hunted for a nice tropical looking wallpaper, and then I added my normal GKrellm2 and screenfetch/scrot packages, and voila!
I was alarmed to see that the standard install did not include gcc and development libraries. It didn’t include a lot of stuff like full-blown Vim. There was a minimal vim install, but that was it. So this distro seems to aim at a new user perhaps? Maybe someone who’s just going to use web and email type stuff? The install didn’t take that long, so maybe that’s what they’re going for? However, that said, Python3 was included by default! (Also Python2.)
So far, no large gotchas. I’m not very familiar with yum, which has been superseded by dnf apparently. dnf-2 is apparently a python script, so I like it already! It looks like dnf is part of the python site packages, and it appears to use both python2 and python3 code at this point. Maybe Fedora is transitioning to python3. I don’t know. I haven’t used Red Hat since about 1996 when they were using the Metro-X X server! That was quite a while ago! So I have lots to learn. I’m excited to see they’re using python so extensively however.
I have to say, this is one of the prettiest distributions I have seen. There must be some talented designers and artists working on this project. Now, that said, I already said I didn’t care for GNOME 3. But that could just be about me being too old a dog for a new trick like that. It was pretty, but I didn’t really care to try such a different way of accessing the desktop. I just wanted to get up and running doing what I’m used to doing. So I was surprised that so many of my daily tools were not installed by default. XV, vim (or vim-enhanced, it’s called now), gkrellm, and any other desktop alternative than Gnome3. But about 5 minutes googling and I got up to crawling speed with dnf. So no biggie I guess. My stuff is easy enough to install. Apparently, when you click on something that requires a library, now, dnf gets launched in the background and snags the library you need, and you are up and running with a small hesitation. I did that with YouTube. I clicked on a blank flash screen that told me I needed a plugin. I clicked on it anyway, and about 60 seconds later, I was watching my YouTube video. Pretty cool! Flash had apparently been installed in the background and plugged into Firefox while I stared at the screen. Not sure how that happened. I assume Firefox did not come with flash already installed.
I guess the downside to all this glitter and beauty is that you lose some transparency. But again, part of that is about me being new to this distribution. No, it ain’t Slackware. But they’re definitely not aiming at a Slackware audience. However, this distro might work for a Slackware user like me. A grey-beard type guy who likes his text editor and writing code, but who also likes taking screen shots!
My biggest challenge is now that I don’t have enough desk space to put all these computer boxes! I am going to need another desk to start putting more boxes on…