Mandriva Linux One 2009 – Post Installation Impressions

After trying out the Mandriva One 2009 KDE Live CD, I have installed it on my laptop as my primary OS. The installation was a snap. It took less than 10 minutes to install the system. But after the login, there were a few things that did not work quite as expected.

1. There was no CD burner software installed. Yes, it is in the repos but how can something so basic be missing from the default install. What will a person without Internet access do?

2. MP4 movies did not play on either Dragon Player or Movie Player. This was expected, but they did not play well even after installing the codecs. Fortunately there was a mention about this in the errata and I could get things playing now.

3. The laptop screen brightness kept dipping every 5-10 minutes. This one was a real annoyance and was solved with help from the Mandriva Forum.

4. There was no notification when I used the volume controls placed in the front of my Dell Inspiron 6400. The volume actually reduces, but I have no idea to check the current volume using these buttons. The volume control in the system tray shows only the PCM volume. Can PCM and the Front volume be synced somehow as it is done in Ubuntu? [Update: I actually figured this out. Right click on the speaker icon from the system tray and click on Select Master Channel. Select Front and then click on OK. Now the speaker volume levels increase or decrease every couple of key presses. But not for every press]

5. I have to start kpowersave manually to get suspend work when I close the laptop lid.

6. One positive thing I noticed is Mandriva never crashed at any time. I never had to do a hard boot anytime in the past three days.

In the past three days I have been using Mandriva One 2009 KDE4 as my only OS and I am just evaluating whether I can use it for my regular day to day work as an average user. I have this whole week to decide and next Monday I would make the call.

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7 responses to “Mandriva Linux One 2009 – Post Installation Impressions

  1. Mandriva is a great distro. It is my guest OS of choice for VirtualBox on XP.

    However, I wouldn’t recommend it to beginners because of some pretty poor implementation issues.

    1) You have to manually install the printer setup program (system-config-printer). This is something that should be included by default, not just included in the special pay version of Mandriva. Once installed, it eventually found my printer, and I was able to print successfully.

    2) The system prompts you with confusing and dangerous messages. After doing a security update through the graphical utility, urpmi prompted that there were orphan utilities that could be removed by typing “urpme –auto-orphans”. Well, thats bizarre, shouldn’t the package management tool do that auto-magically? So, I did it manually, and by doing so, installed most of KDE 4.1 – woops.

    My complete review: http://psr.tumblr.com/post/56055552/mandriva-linux-2009-is-perfect-for-virtualbox-on-xp

  2. 1. system-config-printer is not installed in the KDE One edition due to space issues. However system-config-printer is installed with the Free DVD, the Gnome One edition and the Free 3CD. So you are wrong when saying that only paying customers will have it by default

    2. You hit an infamous urpme orphans bug feature. Fix are currently done in order to fix this issue.
    see :
    https://qa.mandriva.com/show_bug.cgi?id=45054
    https://qa.mandriva.com/show_bug.cgi?id=45210

    Mandriva is a great distro for beginners thanks to all the utilities available 🙂
    http://club.mandriva.com/xwiki/documentation/2008-spring/Mastering-Manual-EN.html/Mastering-Manual.html/advanced.html

  3. @Fabrice, PSR never said that only paying customers get the printer config tool.

    Something as basic as this should have been included. If at all it was for space issues, something else that is not used by a majority of users could have been removed.

  4. Still cannot figure out how to find and install the system-config-printer tool. It isn’t in the software list in install or remove software window.

  5. I like look and feel of mandriva but since I can’t test printe, canon faxphone l80 its inconcievable that I’d pay first-isn’t that like buying a car without a test drive?
    Ben

    • @bchavers, Mandriva 2009.1 is available in three editions. You only need to pay for the Powerpack edition. The other two are free. You can give a try with the One edition and if you are satisfied, you can pay for the Powerpack.

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