Bonum Certa Men Certa

The Reasons Why OpenSUSE is Still Just Playing Catch-up

YaST bootNecessity, luxury, or none of the above?

OpenSUSE is not the best one can get. For advanced users, as consistently argued in some press, OpenSUSE may be a decent choice, but for those who are new to GNU/Linux (not platform-agnostic either), OpenSUSE is just another option. The connection with Novell does not help.



As we argued yesterday, many people write about their fresh installations, which they have not had much time to evaluate. Here are some of the writeups that shine light on the weakness of this latest release.

Here is one who agrees that prior experience may be needed.

The time now is 6:00pm… and I’m tired… and guilty… because I haven’t done much of my ACTUAL work. But still, this was fun, and openSUSE looks good, looks really good. But like I said above, the distro is not for the faint-hearted or pure beginners. I have installed openSUSE earlier, and that experience helped (because openSUSE is not like other distros). I’m still a newbie or a noob, though, and so, I have struggled where others might fly through. Still, I think the distro looks/feels solid and I can’t wait to actually start working with it… tomorrow!


Kevin Dupuy, one who belongs to the OpenSUSE Project, expresses some displeasure as well.

I don’t see the value add for PackageKit vs. our own updater. Unless this is all about being as close to possible to GNOME upstream, in which case I don’t think that’s a case for which we need to be degrading user experiance. It is a desktop enviroment, we are supposed to be free to change it in whichever way we would like to make it better, and more openSUSE-ish. And although I’m reserving full judgement on openSUSE 11.0 GNOME until I get the full edition and live with it for a few days, I’m unfortunately not that impressed with it as of yet.


There are some more such examples. Bill Beebe, who has been writing about SUSE for a long time, has a few difficulties too, but some are not SUSE's fault.

I'll probably break down and purchase a copy of Mandriva. I haven't purchased a boxed distribution since openSUSE 10.2. I want the comfort of the complete distribution with all the necessary codecs on DVD when I overwrite Ubuntu on europa.


Lastly, there's some criticism of YaST, not having adopted Qt4 yet.

Frustratingly for a nitpicky user like me, not all the applications bundled with OpenSUSE 11.0 KDE4 have been ported to KDE4 yet- so they stand out like a sore thumb. Some essential applications- like Konqueror- have been ported, but others- like YaST- have not. They still work but it’s not as visually pleasing as it would be if it were all KDE4.


The other nags appear to be related to a 'development phase' KDE4, but that will hopefully get sorted out soon. It's not an OpenSUSE issue.

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