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From the ThinkPad (again)

I am once again writing a post from the ThinkPad. No, not a good one - an old one, a ThinkPad 390. Those who read this blog regularly know about it. Those who don't, do a search for "thinkpad". (grin)

I was training a new hire at work today and we got to talking about Linux. One of the flavors he mentioned was Linux-Mandrake. He posed the question "I wonder if that still exists?" I checked LinuxISO. Yep it do - and it's still one of the most popular distro's out there.

I tried (and failed) to load SuSE 9.1 Personal on the ThinkPad 390. Didn't work. Never got through the install unfortunately. But after discussing Mandrake, I downloaded it, burnt the discs and installed it on the laptop. "Why not?" I sez to myself. Guess what, it worked.

Granted, this is d-o-g s-l-o-w considering the computer I'm on right now, but it does work. The install detected 99% of everything with the exception of the sound card. Once I get that to work this laptop will be 100%... until I put Windows 98 back on this thing because running anything else is just too damn slow for it (hehe).

I have a plan for a 3rd PC that I'm going to build sometime in the future - and I think it will definitely be a Mandrake box. I know I know.. I raved about SuSE before. The only major problem I had with it is that I couldn't get GNOME to work on it correctly. Mandrake on the other hand has it bundled with it's download version - and it's what I'm using now as I write this. I'm also using the Epiphany web browser. Not too bad, but I still prefer Mozilla or Firefox better. Anyway, the plan for the 3rd PC is this: I'm going to upgrade my existing AMD computer from a 1.9GHz to a 2.2GHz, leaving me with a spare AMD Barton 2600 1.9GHz chip. With that I will build a cheap box and make that into the Mandrake machine. I mean hell, if it can work on a crappy old Thinkpad it can definitely work on a Barton 2600 AMD CPU(!)

More about the GNOME bundle with Mandrake 10: It comes with a fully working version of Evolution -- and I really like that e-mail client, a lot. Very cool looking and it's got just about all the functionality of Microsoft Outlook. I was impressed with it completely.

I really haven't touched the other apps yet, but I really like this flavor of Linux. I don't like it as much as SuSE, but I think this is better for a desktop (and laptop). Seems to install much smoother. The tradeoff is that the performance is a hint slower. Guess you have to decide which is more important. For me, a smoother running Linux is better than a faster running Linux.

Right now the majority of my friends who are reading this post are saying to themselves "Dude, I have no flippin' clue what you're talking about.. I don't know what Linux is.. and what the hell is a Thinkpad anyway?" That's okay. Computer peeps understand my technobabble. If you can't understand what I'm blabbing about here, don't worry. I'll write more "real" material soon. (grin)

..and I wish this laptop had a damn wheel (the wheel in the center of your mouse thing.. no such thing on this laptop, argh.)

041202

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