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Who Switched from Another Distro, and Why? 
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Post # 299543
Post Re: Who Switched from Another Distro, and Why?
I've been using Linux on and off - sometimes more off than on ;-) - for quite a few years. I started with a boxed openSUSE (still SuSE Linux at that time), later Libranet, and when that ceased to exist moved to Kanotix. When Kanotix went (almost) dead I moved to sidux. (Which is now aptosid.) A nice distribution, but irc/forum support with an attitude and I got tired of having to keep upgrading the system. While you have a very current system (newest versions of everything) that worked quite well, you must upgrade at least every few weeks or so, otherwise you can end up with an non-upgradable system. After a break of about a year or so I moved to SimplyMEPIS 8.5 and then to 11 when it came out. I really like it so far. :-) A nice and reliable, usable system with a stable base with more recent versions of end-user applications on top, plus a nice community and great documentation. And upgrading is optional, if you'd like to stick to an older version of a certain application for a while, you can. Although security updates are always recommended of course.

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Sat May 05, 2012 5:30 pm
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Post # 299622
Post Re: Who Switched from Another Distro, and Why?
timkb4cq wrote:
I switched from Mandrake Linux in 2006 after getting frustrated with RPM dependency hell (not much of an issue anymore for major rpm distros but it was then). Mandrake at the time was a thriving distro with a large user base. I used Ubuntu on a second computer in 2005 but never could get comfortable enough with it to switch my main machine over.

I think you'll be happy with MEPIS if you try it. If you don't - well it's easy to switch. Takes 10 minutes to install MEPIS. Most distros take less than 30 minutes these days - and you can install multiple distros on the same computer and use a shared data partition.


lucky9 wrote:
This forum lets a perpetual newbie like me run a solid, stable, up to date Linux OS without much hassle.

I take a look at other Linux operating systems at times and have never seen a reason to change. I doubt that there is a good reason to do so.
Stability is big for most of us. We might 'play' with others, but we always come home to Mepis. I guess we just like the idea of an OS that will always work.


This has been my experience as well and couldn't say it better.

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Mon May 07, 2012 5:48 pm

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Post # 299635
Post Re: Who Switched from Another Distro, and Why?
My first, and still favorite, distro is Mepis, but I don't use it for daily activities. Mint 12 is my choice among many others, because of its functionality and ease of use. Why did I abandon Mepis? I spent untold hours trying to get it to reliably print without success. Both Ubuntu and Mint print "out of the box" and that sold me on making a change. After using Cinnamon in Mint, KDE seems clunky and illogical (read activities). Mepis is a cult and the members are knowledgeable and responsive when a noobie confronts a problem. The Forum is the best and I still read it almost daily because it has both useful and entertaining information. When the new release occurs, whatever it's called, I'll definitely try again to make Mepis my main distro. I hope it happens soon before the fall from 34th to 58th accelerates and it falls completely off the Distro Watch chart. :bawling:


Mon May 07, 2012 10:21 pm
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Post # 320993
Post Re: Who Switched from Another Distro, and Why?
Why did I switch? Which time?

I've been using Linux for about 10 years. Started with Slackware and have tried a lot of the others (off the top of my head: Sidux, Arch, Debian, Ubuntu, Suse[box], OpenSuse, Fedora, The one with the Dolphin, The one that starts with a K that was one of the first live distros, Mint, antiX).

Switched the last time becaus my new soundcard buzzed with vanilla Debian stable.

Why Mepis over the others? (these experiences are up to a decade old):
Slackware: fun to set up--once.
OpenSuse: broke during update an hour after install.
Box Suse: liked it. learned a lot from the books. hd crash iirc.
Fedora: I think that's the one I installed to try Gnome 3.
Sidux / Arch: needy. constant, necessary updates.
Ubuntu / Mint: tried too late. too accustomed to the "normal" Linux way. LOW signal-to-noise ratio in the community.
Mepis: iirc, I left at the switch to Ubuntu base. Never loved KDE. eventually came back.
antiX: whoa-this-is-going-to-take-all-day-to-set-up factor.

KDE is a little involved for a guy who just wants to launch and use the same five programs every day, but Mepis is painless to install and requires little or no configuration. Great people. Nice and stable, but not so stone-aged I can't compile something when necessary. I've got a baby now, so anything from the "Hobby OS" side of Linux is out of the question.


Wed Jul 31, 2013 3:37 pm
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Post # 321013
Post Re: Who Switched from Another Distro, and Why?
I will admit do doing a bit of distro-hopping as I was learning Linux. Actually started with Mepis 8 then tried (in no particular order):

Ubuntu/Kubuntu (honestly the browns turned me off right away, then Unity was the real deal killer)
Fedora (nice but every six months big time changes)
Arch (too difficult for a noob)
PCLinuxOS (actually kind of like this one)
openSUSE (only used on one HP laptop 'cause nothing else would install. Was good, very solid)
Puppy (cool, but too minimal)

Settled on Mepis 11 for the two reasons. One, it just worked, as they say...and two, this is probably the most CIVIL and HELPFUL support community of any Linux distro out there.


Wed Jul 31, 2013 11:46 pm
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Post # 321018
Post Re: Who Switched from Another Distro, and Why?
ShayHill
Are you talking about Knoppix? It was the first distro I tested as well. Most likely still got the disk somewhere.

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Thu Aug 01, 2013 12:22 am
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Post # 324386
Post Re: Who Switched from Another Distro, and Why?
I came to Mepis from Red Hat. I have since left Mepis for Mint. Mepis started out being so easy, but after M8 it started to become more difficult to get it to work with my hardware set up. I found that I came to Mepis "because it just worked" and went to Mint for the same reason. In order to get Mepis to work I have a laundry list of items that need to be fixed post install just to get to the desktop (at least as of M11). Not so in Mint. So, like all things in life, nothing is constant, and I have changed my preferred distro.


Wed Nov 06, 2013 11:39 am
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Post # 324392
Post Re: Who Switched from Another Distro, and Why?
Like a couple of other responders, I was a Linspire user (originally Lindows, but MS sued them and 'won' the suit by giving Lidows $10M to change their name). I switched to Mepis when Linspire climbed into bed with MS and disappeared! After some looking around, I discovered Mepis, liked it, and have been a Mepis user every since. Every once in a while I try another distro, but am never happy with the results, so back to Mepis.

I now have 4 computers; 3 homebuilts and a laptop. I have installed Mepis on all of them and never had a problem getting it to work. I currently use Mepis 12 (11.9.92) as my main distro on all of them, both the 32-bit version and the 64-bit one. WW calls "Mepis 12" a Beta, but I have found no way it differs from a released version.

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Wed Nov 06, 2013 4:22 pm
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Post # 324395
Post Re: Who Switched from Another Distro, and Why?
todd1094 wrote:
How many folks out there switched to MEPIS from another distro of linux, and why? I am intrigued by MEPIS, and have certainly seen the testimonials and commentary from many in the field who are impressed by it. But I have been an ubuntu user for five years, and am hesitant to switch for a couple reasons. One is the natural fear of abandoning the familiar for the unknown. The second is the feeling, however illusory, of safety in numbers -- i.e., I figure that with so many ubuntu users, chances are someone has encountered most any problem I might face when using it. MEPIS seems to have a smaller user base. I wondered if anyone else had the same concerns but overcame them.


From another distro, or to another distro? :-)

I'm somewhat of a "newbie" to Linux. The first computer I bought myself was an Apple II, later upgrading to an Apple IIe. When I got tired of swapping floppies and wanted a hard disk drive, I figured out that I was better off going to an "IBM Compatible" PC and built my own (buying a case, motherboard, CPU, 640KB of memory, clock/calendar card with serial and parallel ports, 5MB (not GB) Seagate hard drive, Hercules Compatible Mono Graphics Card, etc. and installed DOS on it.

Eventually (fighting it every step of the way), I moved to a newer machine with a 386 CPU and installed Windows (3, then later 3.11), and I upgraded machines and Windows versions from there (to Win 95, XP, Win 7)

I'd used Unix at work in the past, but my first taste of Linux came when I purchased a laptop for my wife on Ebay that didn't have a legal copy of Windows installed. So, I decided to test drive a *lot* of different linux distros on it and ended up with Mepis (one of the 3.x releases).

Many of the others I tried on it were faster (it was a very slow laptop with a 300Mhz PII Mobile). But, Mepis was just more user friendly and looked nicer (how an operating system looks and feels is a very important consideration to me). I upgraded the Mepis version on it through 6.04 Beta 4, (slow, but worked), as anything newer than that beta was virtually useless with a laptop that slow. I left 6.04 Beta 4 on on it for a long time until finally replacing it with a newer laptop.

I bought my wife a newer laptop later (a Dell 1720 with a faster Core 2 CPU with 1GB of memory that she still uses today, that has Mepis 11 on it -- upgraded from Mepis 7, Mepis 8, etc. over time).

I also started using Mepis on my desktops beginning with the Mepis 3.x releases, and I've stuck with Mepis for personal use since then (using multi-boot setups with Windows and Linux distros on them).

Right this minute, I have Mepis 11 installed on more than one desktop, my netbook, and my wife's laptop.

But, frankly, I also have other linux distros installed on my machines now, too. For example, newer releases of Kubuntu and OpenSUSE.

I've just remained loyal to Mepis because I've been using it for a long time. But, I would not suggest it to new Linux users, as the software available for it is just too outdated anymore compared to the [many] other choices. Fortunately, volunteer packagers here try to make newer versions of software available in the Community Repositories. But, there is only so much they can do because of dependency issues with a release like Mepis 11 using an older Debian Squeeze base.

Even though I've been using Mepis for years, it's not been uncommon for me to spend hours resolving problems trying to get newer versions of software working with it in the past (due to dependency issues with older versions of some libraries, etc.). I've still got "broken" versions of software that I've never taken the time to try and fix due to problems after updates to newer versions of other software.

So, even though I suggested Mepis to linux newbies for years, I avoid doing that kind of thing anymore, as I feel it's just going to give Linux a bad reputation when a newbie has to go through conflict resolution trying to install newer versions of software with Mepis 11 unless they can figure out how to work through dependency issues -- making hard choices as to what to keep or discard to get something newer that they want to use working.

Of course users with newer hardware (not all users that want to try Linux have older models supported by Mepis 11) may also have issues with a distro as old as Mepis 11, unless they're very experienced with Linux and want to upgrade to a newer kernel, drivers, etc. So, I don't regard Mepis 11 as suitable for recommending to new Linux users anymore (even though it was great for that purposes with earlier releases).

Now, I haven't tried to use Mepis 12 yet. So, that may be one way to get newer versions of some software, as the volunteer community packagers are adding newer versions of software to the repos now.

But, given that Mepis 12 has not even gotten to the Release Candidate Phase yet (even though the Debian Wheezy was released 6 months ago), makes me very hesitant to suggest it to anyone other than someone very experienced with Linux and willing to work around problems with it (as I don't even want to install it for production use myself given all of the problems I've seen reported in the forums here, even though I've been using Mepis for years).

Frankly, I'm afraid that Mepis just isn't going to be around much longer (and wondering if we'll ever see a production release of Mepis 12 for that matter, as Warren appears to have other priorities anymore from what we've seen from development progress of Mepis 12 so far).

Basically, I continue to use Mepis 11 only because of loyalty and habit, since it's the first linux distro I started using for personal use years ago with the 3.x releases of it. But, for new linux users, I'd suggest something else instead (Kubuntu, Linux Mint, Korora, OpenSUSE, etc.) with newer kernels, drivers and software available; with more frequent updates and more developers working to resolve any reported issues.


Wed Nov 06, 2013 5:37 pm
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Post # 324445
Post Re: Who Switched from Another Distro, and Why?
I've pondered some comments here aand am approaching Mepis from the perspective of an XP user with hardware that I want to continue running for some time yet. Thinking back, I tried xandros from a magazine disc for a while, others before that beginning with Red Hat, but Mepis for a lot longer, resuming my focus again after a period of study where XP was more practical, Endnotes particularly. Mepis sat mostly unused for a year or so.

Apart from a bit of updating the repositories and tweaking (double-click icons, Thunderbird etc) installing is a far cry from XP et al where so many additional installations and drivers are needed to get operational, let alone applications.

Mepis seems a good fit for the XP 'power user' but linux generally isn't necessarily quite ready yet for the mum or pop wanting to avoid commercial and proprietory lines when microsoft or apple is their only experience of computing . That said, my own shift to open source has made it easier and this seems a key avenue to attracting MS users and providing some transition. Still, it's a big jump, starting with partitioning of course and the plethora of new applications, sometimes esoterically named.

I've certainly looked at other live compilations again recently and still think Mepis is ideal The only downside for me is lack of 3G wireless support. My dongle is actually quite nice in that it contains the win drivers and setup, hidden, and has space for an SD card to double as a USB drive if desired, which I've done, mostly just to provide a label to avoid confusion.

I know linux originates from unix and web server roots, account and access security reflecting this, that various branches have evolved remaining relatively close to the core progression of the linus range, that GUI features are increasingly replacing command lines, that it supports a lot of older hardware, but beyond that, despite good ovreall IT skills centred around office, HTM,Lgraphics etc and once even having a unix account hosting a homepage, I'm still trying to get my head around the technicalities of how linux functions and how one might customise or even develop certain features. Naturally, the average computer user would struggle.

Still, Mephis 11 is packaged nicely, with a helpful community who have assisted me get up and running with generosity and wisdom. I also particularly like the multiple desktops and their smoothness of operation, one that's actually useable, and the desktop grid snapping for open windows is nice too. Adding acocunts with Thunderbird is painless.

Retunring to an earlier point, I think it an ideal distro for XP refugees in particular, something to consider as time goes by. Those persisting are perhaps more likely to enjoy a bit of tinkering, to a point, have a system and application set they've refined and find convenient and less likely to just buy a new 'box'.

Admittedly, hardware issues seem s one of the obstacles for new users but in reading the forum I suspect these primarily tend to arise with atypical system configurations. Frr issues like printing, I don't print so avoid any potential worry. That said, they are cheap and I'd buy one known to work well with linux and Mepis if so.

Apart from a little tweak with Synaptic for current repositories and the reading required, with kind help in the forum, I found the manual handy in refining the software side, using suggestions there for any instalations.

I'd like to try a Gnome interface but an earlier run put me off, confusing what I was dealing with, more than just a new 'skin' in any case and so more getting head around linux required there...but in short, while the learning curve is there and reducing, Mepis offers instant usability, stability and potential to learn from the outset and I trust it continues to develop a solid niche. I don't want a 'dumbed down' linux so mepis offers plenty to explore while I simple get on with normal activities.

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Thu Nov 07, 2013 9:58 pm
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