Friday, August 19, 2005

SUSE 9.3 Initial Impressions

I loaded SUSE 9.3 onto my test Dell D600 this morning. This is a dual-boot box, with Windows XP Pro on one partition, and SUSE on the other half of the drive, divided roughly in half between / and /home. Rather than doing an "upgrade," which based on prior experience takes a long time, I did a clean install.

As with previous SUSE installs, YaST handled things pretty easily, although I had to tweak the video settings a bit to get anything more than 640x480. Also, sound isn't working yet, although I had the same problem with 9.2 and never got around to fixing it.

One thing I noticed almost immediately is that 9.3 is more responsive than 9.2. KDE 3.4.0 Level b is noticeably snappier than previous versions that I've worked with. Also, the Adobe Acrobat browser plugin is much, much faster inside Firefox than I've seen on any other computer.

SUSE 9.3 isn't without its faults, however. I've noticed that changes to network settings made in YaST sometimes need a reboot, when they are something that should take effect after reloading the network config. E.g., changing IP or DNS settings. And, as mentioned above, sound isn't yet working and video while acceptable, isn't yet optimal.

That said, SUSE 9.3 is definitely worth a gander if you're in need of a desktop Linux distributions.

2 comments:

DanS said...

Dave,

Good review on SuSE 9.3 Pro. Now I don't need to download the ISOs to test it out because you've already done it.

Thanks.

Aloha - Dan

chip said...

I've been using SuSE 9.3 for about 3 months now and I'm pretty impressed. The only thing that sucks is it's lack of multimedia support. That is easily fixed from Packmans site. My sound card works fine although it was set by default to the lowest level? That was an easy fix.
No crashes and it is rock solid with "proven" software. I come from Windows ME and I was always doing the "three finger salute"
And it's CD/DVD burning software is the fastest on the planet!