View Full Version : Libranet 2.8 (commentary and short review)

5th June 2003, 18:11
Since runderwo asked me to do this....

From the start of the install, it pretty much looks like your typical debian install. Ncurses based, but it does have an autodetection program set up to detect pretty much everything for you, or you could select the manual. With system, it detected everything perfectly, except of course my Parhelia (and I think my WinTV wasn't detected, but I don't remember). (I have a SBLive5.1, Adaptec 19160 SCSI controller and the above mentioned items.) Once you're finished with autodetect or manually configuring your hardware, you'll start to see the real difference between Debian and libranet. A GUI pops up to start selecting which packages you want. It's much like tasksel, but mouse driven (I think GTK). It's a bit more specific though. It lists things like KDE Desktop, Gnome Desktop, Fluxbox, XFCE, etc. Then of course Development, and other generic categories. Then you do the install, and after the reboot, it will pop up with GDM 2.4 and for some reason I noticed that the default session is IceWM rather than Gnome or KDE, but you can still set either as your default.

Other than that it's pretty much stock Debian Sarge, with the exception of a few things like XFree86 4.3.0, and kernel 2.4.20. It also has the nvidia drivers pre-compiled for it, and probably some other things I'm forgetting.... should have written this while I was using it still... I'm in RH 9 now.

Xadminmenu/adminmenu is really cool. This is a libranet specific program that'll let you do anything from re-compiling your kernel to installing the default modules, to installing Alsa, setting up internet connection sharing and firewalls. It also has a Disk/CD mounting utility and general administration stuff. Package installation is also there, either a little terminal will pop up, asking the package name you want to install, or you can use Synaptic, which comes as default. The one problem I found with it was that it wasn't a GTK2 app... :-( Though looking at it in Synaptic showed that the dependancies were libglib2.0.... but it also said libglib1.2 as one as well... go figure...

Hope that answers most of your questions. It wasn't quite as easy to install/configure as Xandros was. I would say it'd make a good distro for anyone who was really interested in playing around with their system. Xandros I think is more for people who don't really play with their system itself and would rather just have a desktop OS that sits there and just works for you. Granted Libranet will do that very thing, but it does come with some nice tools (like the easy "click here to recompile your kernel" option) I liked it.

I'll probably give it another go if I can ever figure out how to get the new Parhelia driver to work under it. (I suspect I had problems because I still had the old driver floating around somewhere, but who knows....)