[sclug] Desktop distro recommendations

Chris Aitken chris at ion-dreams.com
Mon Apr 5 08:32:42 UTC 2004

Patrick Kirk wrote:

> Hi all,
> Just installed Linux on my desktop for the first time in years.  Its 
> Debian Sarge and X didn't start.  No sound or USB mouse either. Now I 
> know I could start wading through logs looking for clues but this is 
> 2004, I did 2/3 of that in the 90s and hated doing it then and I'm too 
> old to go through all that again.
> Can anyone recommend a desktop distro that meets the following criteria:
> 1. Recognises a Nvidia card and is capable of getting at least 
> 1024x768 without me spending hours on Google.  Even Windows 95 could 
> get its gui started so I really do not want to muck around with X 
> servers that don't start without manual intervention.
> 2. Recognises a SIS 730 motherboard that Win 2k recognised in 1999 and 
> just loads its sound system without asking me any questions.  I hate 
> the whole idea of understanding how sound works.  It should just work.
> 3. Sees a USB mouse during installation and installs it without asking 
> me endless "Is your mouse on /dev/ps/aux or /dev/pt/mouse or 
> /dev/ttySn?" questions.
> I know I could get Debian working if I worked for a few days at it. 
> But the very idea of configuring X brings back painful memories of 
> Linux in the 90s and I'm sure things have moved on!
> Thanks.
> Patrick 

Things have moved on, and provided you know the requisute info, you 
should be able to get X working in 30 mins to 1 hr. There is no need to 
reinstall another distro after the hard work has already been done!

Nvidia have released the source code for their drivers, although the 
sarge version of Xfree86 happily runs on its own version - use the 
'nv'driver. Have you  installed hotplug, and various other USB apps?  
You will need this for the USB mouse, and then just set it up (if it is 
an intellimouse) as IMPS/2 on /dev/psaux or /dev/mouse.

Things will never 'just work'. Even with something like Mandrake, you 
can still load it on and end up without sound, or ethernet, etc. You 
need to find out what sound chip your PC has, and deal accordingly. Sort 
X out first - and then worry about sound. You'll need (as before) V sync 
& H sync rates for the monitor, and some other stuff. The nvidia card 
will not be an issue.


-------------- next part --------------
A non-text attachment was scrubbed...
Name: signature.asc
Type: application/pgp-signature
Size: 254 bytes
Desc: OpenPGP digital signature
Url : http://lists.tmdg.co.uk/pipermail/sclug/attachments/20040405/897f8aba/signature-0001.bin

More information about the Sclug mailing list