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supermario

2008 Testimonial

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Mandriva Users,

 

I've been an Off and On user of Mandriva Linux ever since 2005LE came out. I've tried a handful of distributions ranging from Ubuntu to Mepis to OpenSuse to Mandriva to PCLinuxOS etc. I've never really had a full fledged Linux PC or laptop for that matter, but the only ones I've really considered keeping were Mandriva, Suse, and Ubuntu. They all have their strengths and weaknesses as everybody whose played around with them would say. Here's my story on Mandriva.

 

Like I said earlier, 2005LE was the first Mandriva product I had ever tried. It was an amazing OS, everything worked out of the box on my Gateway laptop, including the 3d acceleration with my Radeon 9600. Amazing. But then, I heard the horrible news, Mandriva, was a FRENCH product. Noooooooooooo! It's true folks, as an American, I could not use this “evil product†ever again. Out it went. Foolish I know, but hey, thats what happened, plus, in order to be on our network you had to have XP Pro.

 

Anyways fast forward to August 07, Mandriva has a Spring Live CD, I figure I should try this out on my brand new HP DV6500LE. From what I could see, everything appeared to work except for my 8400GS and my audio. Needless to say, the CD went into the trash. At this point in time due to kernel versions and alsa, newer hardware wouldn't function properly. Hey 3 years on and off, I'm still a “newb,†thats fine with me. I finally began to read the descriptions found at distrowatch.com, where it talks about the packages included with each distro, I guess I should have done that long ago, but whatever I do it now.

 

Fast forward one more time to February 08, I decided to order me a copy of Mandriva 2008 from osdisc.com(thought it was the powerpack.) The only reason I bought it was because it, to me was the latest and greatest, and is now Brazilian, I'll fight anyone who says its still French!;) So I get my DVD in the mail and decided to install it. Urpmi was a pain in the a**. Konsole was taking forever and a day to set up. MCC sucked, it would freeze all the time. I did manage to get some PLF repos installed and was able to install the greatest browser on earth Opera and Flash, and win32 codecs, you name it, I had a fully functioning laptop. I did have a few problems though, flash wasn't working right and video playback was choppy. On day two, I decided to reinstall Mandriva, and i soon discovered the syntheis.hdlist.cz, wow konsole was flying, MCC wasn't freezing anymore, I had everything working fine within about an hour and a half. I'm afraid to do a system update because I don't know how long it will take to get my system up to date. Only problem I had was 3d acceleration, why wouldn't it work, I mean MCC detects it correctly, what is the problem. I found Adam W's blog and tried his method method, and boy did it fail. Just before I threw in the towel I told myself I had to give it another try. I read his blog entry over and over and over again. This time it worked, I had selected the wrong packages the first time around. My video playback isn't as good as it was in Vista by no means, but its a lot better now with the nvidia driver.

 

For those of you considering Mandriva, Give it a shot. Let this be a lesson to everybody, with a little hard work, google, and the community, you should be able to have a working desktop. As for myself, I've only got a few more kinks to iron out and i should be set, I might even try out gnome. Don't give up on Mandriva or any other Distro out there, believe me, it won't give up on you, all the answers you need are a few keystrokes away.

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and i soon discovered the syntheis.hdlist.cz, wow konsole was flying, MCC wasn't freezing anymore

 

I have had some trouble with mcc freezing momentarily on my 2008 install. Can you elaborate?

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I have had some trouble with mcc freezing momentarily on my 2008 install. Can you elaborate?

 

Well, when you add the urpmi using konsole you normally do this

urpmi.addmedia main [url="ftp://fr2.rpmfind.net/linux/Mandrakelinux/official/2008.0/i586/media/main/release"]ftp://fr2.rpmfind.net/linux/Mandrakelinux...ia/main/release[/url] with media_info/hdlist.cz

 

thats fine and all but, it would appear to me as though konsole would freeze or time out. It would also give me issues using MCC. I understand that one of two things could be happening, 1 the server is slow or 2 MCC is not working correctly. if you imput that link into your browser you'll see that the "hdlist.cz" file is pretty big, over a meg in size. so i figured that if my path to that server was slow then i should pick another and another and another. they all give me a huge problem until i went with this

 

urpmi.addmedia main [url="ftp://fr2.rpmfind.net/linux/Mandrakelinux/official/2008.0/i586/media/main/release"]ftp://fr2.rpmfind.net/linux/Mandrakelinux...ia/main/release[/url] with media_info/synthesis.hdlist.cz

 

if you look at the file its about a third in size(synthesis.hdlist.cz)

 

adding the urpmi repos went a lot faster, and when i began to download rpms i was able to get them really quick. i don't know if this may help you. i think the only difference is one includes a discription and the the other doesn't.

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i think the only difference is one includes a discription and the the other doesn't.

 

AFAIK this is correct.

 

Similarly if you are setting up repo's using the wizard in MCC it should ask you which version of hdlist you want to use for the repo's, re-iterating the same arguement as above.

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Mandriva was created when MandrakeSoft and Conectiva merged, hence the name. So it's Brazilian and French too. It was true when 2005LE came out and it is true now. So whatever your problem is with the French it still applies.

 

When I tried Opera Flash wasn't working right for me too. From other posts I read and because Flash was working perfectly in Firefox on the same system I guess it's more of a Flash or Opera issue than Mandriva's fault.

 

Hdlist.cz files also has changelogs and file lists in them not just descriptions. Working with (much) bigger files takes more time. So depending on the bandwidth and the speed of your computer it might had looked like Konsole was frozen.

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There's nothing wrong with it being French, I will continue to tell myself that it's BRAZILIAN, nothing wrong with lying to myself :P

 

I read elsewhere that its an opera problem because it doesn't support the newer flash. If you have 9.25(i think thats the latest) downgrade to an earlier version of flash. On the flipside, you could upgrade to 9.5beta and all should work well with the new flash version. I haven't tried it out myself, thats what I read.

 

I understand that the hdlist.cz files are way bigger, but could you explain to me why downloading files using those mirrors were fast but loading the hdlist.cz took ages?

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Opera 9.50 beta is still quirky with both flashplugin and (especially) javaplugin... but it's getting better. My biggest complaint were crashes out of the blue when using the embedded M2 mail client. Nothing to do with Mandriva, and nothing to fix yourself- it's a closed code application.

And yeah, the Mandriva headquarters are based on the capital of Brazil... namely Paris! :P

Edited by scarecrow

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I'm pretty happy with Mandriva 2008 in the sense that it basically works out of the box without too many problems. Internet browsing in particular is much less painful than with older versions, thanks to improved media support.

 

However, there are certain annoyances which I can't really understand, like shipping Mandriva with LinDVD as a recommended DVD player software but not recognizing that it conflicts with artsd, which is in turn set by default to seize control of the audio hardware indefinitely. The result? An "out of the box" installation of MDV2008 won't have any sound when playing DVDs until someone reconfigures artsd to auto-timeout. That's not hard to do, but how many newbies are going to think of that?

 

Other than that, I find that it works nicely without too much effort on my part. One of the biggest problems with Linux has always been the fact that you need to do so much reading in order to get up to speed on how to configure your new OS, and any improvements in that area are welcome.

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I understand that the hdlist.cz files are way bigger, but could you explain to me why downloading files using those mirrors were fast but loading the hdlist.cz took ages?

You mean downloading hdlist.cz files takes more time then downloading packages?

Hdlist files are big. The last time I checked the hdlist file of main/release was about 30M and the hdlist file of contrib/release was about 50M. Most packages are a way smaller then this.

Besides these files need to be processed and merged into the existing database of urpmi. So maybe it's not the downloading itself what takes ages.

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