You may know that my current laptop Sony VAIO VGN-NR21Z has 4 operating systems installed. Three of them are Linux: Debian, Linux Mint and Mageia.
Debian WheezyXfce sits there as a guarantor of boot stability. It controls the GRUB records. As usual, it is a rock solid distribution without much fun in it, although I have an issue with a mounted network drive: like some other distributions before, Debian switches off the wireless network interface before unmounting the shared drive. Thus, the unmounting process hangs for about 10 minutes before the computer can finally shut down.
However, that is not the point of today's article.
Until recently, my laptop had Mageia 3 KDE and Linux Mint 15 Cinnamon installed.
Mageia 4 KDEMageia 4 was released recently, and you've probably seen my quick screenshot tour of the GNOME edition of it. At the same time, I made a fresh reinstall of my own KDE 64-bit system. Am I satisfied with the results? I'd say yes.
Mageia still performs well. Some issues I had with Mageia 3 are no longer here, for example shadows in Firefox menus. Of course, some other issues have now appeared. You can't live without it. I discussed some of these issues on Mageia's forum, but I think you may wish to know about them and their solution.
- Mageia Control Centre requests a root password when it is started.
- Mageia's standard battery indicator no longer has percentage on it. You can install Enhanced Battery Monitor and activate it instead of the standard battery indicator, if you need battery percentage shown on top of the battery icon
- The default Pidgin version 2.10.8 has issues with Facebook chat. It is not a Mageia-specific bug, as Pidgin developers acknowledge that on their site too. As a workaround, Kopete messenger is available in Mageia 4 by default. It is slightly different in the interface, plus performs slightly worse. Slight learning curve is also required. Alternatively, Pidgin 2.10.9 is already available in Mageia repositories.
- Opposite to my choice on Mageia 3, I decided to keep the default icon-only taskbar. The main reason for me to use the "classic" taskbar was to see separate elements there for Chrome(-ium) and Chrome(-ium)'s "application shortcut" for Gmail. Since I switched from Chrome to Firefox some time ago, I see no reason to use the classic taskbar.
Linux Mint 15 CinnamonWill I upgrade my Linux Mint 15 Cinnamon soon? The answer is "no". There are 2 reasons for that.
- First, "don’t touch what is working". Mint 15 Cinnamon works well for me. It has more applications that I would need to backup before re-installing compared to Mageia, thus making the upgrade process more difficult.
- Second, the next version, Mint 17, will be based on Ubuntu 14.04, which in its turn will be an LTS (long-term support) version. Mint 15's end of life is after the Mint 17 release date. It makes sense to wait for few more months before upgrading, and move directly into the LTS version.