Thursday, June 11, 2009

Fedora 11

I decided to try out the latest Fedora, 11, over the weekend. The biggest reason is that the company I work for "sanctions" the use of Fedora on corporate machines. Rather than go through the trouble of installing Fedora 11 on my company notebook I decided to take the lazy way out and run the Live CD on europa.

I know that europa is getting on in years; I purchased all the parts to the machine Christmas 2003. Over the years I've upgraded the video card and replaced one of its two drives. The primary drive, the one on which Windows XP is installed, has worked tirelessly since initial installation and power up. If I'm to believe Palimpsest, Fedora 11's latest utility, then that drive has some problems.

Which, I suppose, is to be expected after such a long period of use.

As is usual I've just poked around Fedora 11 a little bit, noting the obvious in-your-face deficiencies. One of the biggest worth noting is the wildly inconsistent default font sizes that come on the Live CD, and I assume, would get installed. Note, as but one example, the poor placement of controls on the Firefox upload image dialog due to the inconsistent default font sizes.

Some may so "So what? Just pick the proper sizes and move on." I answer back that other distributions have solved this problem already. For example, Mint 7 and OpenSolaris 2009.06 don't have this issue. In point of fact the Mint 7 desktop experience kicks Fedora 11 to the curb. And laughs. Fedora 11's default font problems are just another indicator of the sloppy quality in this release.

I'm not the only one to ping Fedora 11 over it's questionable release quality. Ryan Paul of Ars Technica noted in his preview that quality issues "prevent me from giving Fedora 11 the strong endorsement that I have typically given to new Fedora releases in the past."

For now, I think I'll stick with Fedora 10 on my work system, and Mint 7 on the home system. I don't have time or patience to go looking for more trouble.


  1. Why would you blog about something when you haven't even made the effort to install it? One minor issue on a Live CD and you dismiss the distro. Well done!

  2. Why dismiss based on the Live CD? Because 1) that's the first exposure anybody has with a given distribution, and 2) the UI should be a lot more polished than it is, especially for a distribution associated with a major high-profile Linux vendor such as Redhat.

    And frankly, experience shows me that if the Live CD has issues then it's a pretty good chance that the installation will have issues. And that link to the Ars Technica article speaks specifically of installation issues as well.


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