View Full Version : Why is it so hard to get started with Fedora 2?
12th October 2004, 04:04 PM
I am new to Linux but want to try installing it and using it. Started with RH9 which was not easy for me - I could never get my PCMCIA wireless card working among many other things. Then tried Fedora 2 wihich was more frustrating. Finally I tried Knoppix 3.6 and was amazed at how well it recognized all my hardware including the wireless card and was running beautifully - though limited in capabilities. Why is it that the more advanced versions of Linux like RH9 and Fedora need so much knowledge of Linux to be able to install and use? Are these meant for computer experts only? I do not believe that Linux will get out of this circle of users until ordinary people can install it and use it even if they do not need all the power of this great open system. Is there an effort to do this? I am convinced that it is certainly possible after I used Knoppix.
12th October 2004, 04:37 PM
Linux distributions that try to use the very latest versions of the kernel and softtware are often frustrating to use because the support for various hardware is either missing or imperfect. While the Redhat series of distributions did not try to be on the bleeding edge of software versions, the Fedora series does. So you can expect trouble. I agree that Linux is unlikely to appeal to users who expected completely automatic installation and gui driven administration. To make such a polished distribution, you need elaborate consumer testing before the offical releases. I think only a commercial venture (which Fedora is not) could afford to do such testing. And even the one commerical firm that can afford to do such testing often makes simple mistakes. Since there are many millions of people using that product, the fixes and work arounds are quickly discovered and publicized. Each Linux distribution has fewer users so the word doesn't spread as fast. One amusing thing I notice about Linux is that the very fancy hardware setups often work better than the simple ones. For example, many people find it difficult to set up Fedora Core 2 to use a simple modem connection (not connected to a router, etc. ). Perhaps the people who test Linux tend to be very advanced users and thus have very advanced equipment.
Configuring computers is in a rather primitive state of organization. If you have 100 yes-no choices about how to configure your machine, you already have two to the one hundreth power possible configurations to test. It rather resembles the state of programming before things like subroutines and object oriented programming were discovered.
You often have the feeling that I can change this without affecting that, but you can never be sure.
12th October 2004, 06:24 PM
There are over a hundred distributions (versions) of linux out there, and if you're looking for the easiest to install and run with the best hardware support, and Fedora Core 2 doesn't work with your hardware, try another distribution. SUSE 9.1 and Mandrake 10.0 are very popular, give one of them a try.
12th October 2004, 09:27 PM
Niether of my wireless pcimcia cards work with any disto I have tried with, they only work with windows. I'm glad you got your wireless card to work with your machine though what type is it?
12th October 2004, 09:54 PM
Yes wireless seems to be more difficult to get to work with Linux. Weird because it feels like you cannot buy a laptop today that do not have a wireless card.
And yes nartad, I agree that Linux is more complicated to set up than Windows. It is easy to install Linux but to get all the hardware working properly can take some time. But it is extreemly rewarding to have a Linux system that works 100%, I really get the urge to format my NTFS partition :-)
13th October 2004, 03:44 PM
My wireless PCMCIA card is DWL-650H made by D-Link. It is recognized, configured and works well with KNOPPIX 3.6 - the only distribution that seems to work well for me (with my limited knowledge of Linux). Unfortunately it works off a CD (slow) and I have not had much success in putting it on my HD. I wish the other more powerful versions could be like this one for hardware configuration and installation.
13th October 2004, 10:42 PM
I have ran Suse 8.0, MDK 9.0/9.1/9.2/10.0 and now Fedora. I have to say that Fedora is much easier to install than MDK. It also works much better, has more software and is a lot of fun. I currently have 2 machines running FC2 and one with Suse 9.1. Mandrake was always hard to install, especially selecting the software.
14th October 2004, 06:04 AM
Suse is nice but it has some really ###### stupid issues like not installing gcc by default (with personal) and not installing pkg_config now isome installs wont freaking find pkg_config at all. Its even worse on the desktop it tries to run the powersave daemon which is obviously for mobiles on a freaking desktop! Its totally insane. I'll have to try knoppix again, hopefully they made hdd installing better.
14th October 2004, 06:45 AM
How about Mandrake 10.1?
Anyone tried the beta?
14th October 2004, 07:09 AM
The drivers are available (http://www.seattlewireless.net/index.cgi/DlinkCard) for your card. If you would like us to help you configure it just start a thread.
14th October 2004, 10:55 AM
Fedora For Fun (Games, mail, office, browser)
Debian (the server machine....the Rock :)
15th October 2004, 12:58 AM
Mandrake has some really wierd behavior on my laptop, it will allow the trackball to work during install and then sometimes the trackball wont work afterwards. Fedora seems to be the only one that really behaves on my laptop but it's somewhat more difficult to install because of my Mobile's lack of dvd +r read capability. In fact I'm going to try and get that running now..time to get rid of suse for the 10th time. Anyone happen to know what ftp to use to get fc3t3 installed over the internet?
27th October 2004, 09:22 PM
Linux distributions that try to use the very latest versions of the kernel and softtware are often frustrating to use because the support for various hardware is either missing or imperfect.
However, Knoppix 3.6 had a newer version of Linux 2.6 than Fedora Core 2
(2.6.7 vs. 2.6.5 if memory serves...). Knoppix came up fine on my Shuttle SN95G5,
where FC2 would hang trying to start networking. FC2 also couldn't completely
identify the nVidia 6800GT. That's fine, but why was the 'vesa' X server chosen over
the 'nv' server (lspci showed it as nVidia)?
Sometimes you are better off with the latest versions of the kernel and drivers.
The overall installation really 'lives or dies' with respect to the installation scripts
and hardware detection (pci databases, etc.).
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