First Time Linux

2009.1 Spring

As with earlier distribution releases, I was happy with 2008.1 Spring and saw no need to immediately upgrade to 2009.0, so I thought I'd wait until 2009 Spring came out. When it did come out, of course it came with the very newest KDE 4.2 (as seen in the KDE live CD). I wanted to stick with KDE 3 though, at least until KDE 4.3 comes out, but apparently it's possible to install 2009 Spring with KDE 3, so I went ahead. Even though the desktop wouldn't change, at least I'd get important updates to programs like OpenOffice, Ekiga and so on. Unfortunately I jumped too soon and got a release with significant problems for me:

So what to do? Most of those problems I could live with, or wait to get fixed, apart from the screen problems and the eclipse problems. So after reading more about the recent Intel driver problems, I bit the bullet and downloaded 2009.0.


As with the failed 2009.1 attempt, for 2009.0 I downloaded the One iso for Gnome, because I didn't want to install a confusing mix of KDE 3 and KDE 4 packages. I got this iso straight from the http link on my local mirror, rather than try an old torrent file. It still came down in less than 20 minutes though. After checking out that all the basics worked (including video playback!), I selected to install and to overwrite my root partition. The questions it asked were fairly straightforward, so apart from a worrying blank white rectangle which remained for several minutes (I thought this was the Intel drivers again!), it booted back into a new Gnome system.

There followed a(nother) lengthy update process, where I removed packages which I knew I didn't want, added my repositories, did an update, and then added back in lots of other stuff like java, eclipse, mplayer, openoffice math, gcc and so on. And then, bit the bullet and installed the magic task-kde3 package which pulled in all the KDE 3 desktop stuff. It did surprisingly pull in some KDE 4 config files, but not much. But then I could select KDE from the login screen and get back to looking not very dissimilar from my old 2008.1 desktop.


No earth-shattering changes here, but we do get the latest Firefox 3.0.10 and OpenOffice 3.0.0, and also Ekiga 3.0.0 (what is it with all these version 3s?!). At the moment there are several niggles, and the list is unfortunately growing, not shrinking...:


So far, a complete waste of time. I wish I'd kept 2008.1 while it was working. In fact I'm tempted to go back to it, apart from the fact that I've spent so much time trying to get 2009.1 and 2009.0 working...