Saturday, July 23, 2011

Living in Fedora

Well, just after my last post, I received a new desktop computer at work and decided, rather than staying in my safety zone and installing Ubuntu, that I would go ahead and put Fedora 15 on my work machine. Having been using it on a couple of laptops, the basics of yum/rpm and GNOME 3 were all pretty familiar. My biggest fear about moving to Fedora, or any other non-Debian-based distro, was feeling like I was in a foreign country without knowing the language, and without any friends. Most of the Linux users I know use Ubuntu or some flavor of Debian, and I am, frankly, quite attached to the Ubuntu support community (by which I mean the forums and IRC channel).

A cursory look through the Fedora Forum and hanging out in the #fedora IRC channel showed me that each of those is far less active (and far less n00b-friendly) than their Ubuntu equivalents. I'm not writing them off - I'm just saying that the communities are very different. Fortunately, I plan to continue with volunteer Ubuntu support, though now I'll need to have an Ubuntu instance running in VirtualBox.

So far though, using Fedora has been a breeze, and it's funny how little I'm missing Ubuntu's environment. I thought changing my primary distro would feel like some sort of breakup, but since it's free software, I know I could always return to Ubuntu if I wanted to. As it stands at the moment, though, the little usability things I don't like about Fedora (or GNOME 3, specifically) are better than the many things I do not like about Unity.

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