[Tfug] Ideas for the ultimate "Grandma Millie" distro...

Christopher Robbins robbinsc at gmail.com
Sat Jan 27 11:26:02 MST 2007

On 1/27/07, Jim March <1.jim.march at gmail.com> wrote:

I just spent about 8 hours doing a total "nuke from orbit" cycle on an XP
> laptop, which means talking them into scoring an external USB drive cheap,
> do the backup, reformat, reload, reconfigure.  I am NOT going to "rinse
> lather repeat" on the next 50+, I'll go completely bugfuck.



Ahem.  Sorry.
> Anyways.  Fedora Core 6 ain't newbie-friendly enough.  The initial
> installer
> is ghastly at times, but I can get them past that.  The problem is, once
> in
> a while the cutting-edge updates (as in, I'm now on kernel 2.6.19.xxx...)
> break something, like the package installer or the ability to mount USB
> drives fr'instance.  In both cases I fixed the issues right quick after
> searching Fedoraforums but that's not going to help a true newbie.
> Finally, I had an instance where my laptop's built-in touchpad didn't
> initialize one fine boot and Xwindows barfed all over the screen with dire
> ultra-geeky errors before dumping to a command line.  "Grandma Millie"
> would
> have a heart attack.
> Ubuntu Edgy is too unstable.  PCLinuxOS '07 looks like it's got big
> potential BUT it's still beta and I haven't pounded on it yet...any other
> ideas?  OpenSuse 10.2 had potential too, it was stable at least...but
> riddled with odd glitches in the update process.
> Where else should I look?

I'm suprised you had problems with openSUSE 10.2.  Usually it works really
well out of the box, and this release is probably the best
that I've ever seen (been using SUSE since the 9.x days).  It's
well-polished, and usually my first recommendation.  What was your problem
with the updater?  There are a few tweaks, but usually it's set it and
forget it...

If you'd like something different, what about the older version of Ubuntu
(Dapper Drake) - that would be my other recommendation.  By
now, it should be tightened down enough that it's a bit more stable for your
"Grandma Millie"s.

Mandriva is also an option, though I've never fooled with it enough to know
a whole lot about it.

Hope this helps,

Chris Robbins
Systems Programmer
Department of English - University of Arizona

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