Vector Linux 6 - Review
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Thread: Vector Linux 6 - Review

  1. #1
    AO BOFH: Luser Abuser BModeratorFH gore's Avatar
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    Vector Linux 6 - Review

    Vector Linux 6.0 isn't exactly new, but a couple of things have me doing this anyway:

    1. I don't know too many people on here who use it, so I might as well just write a review to tell you about it.

    2. I'm using it right now to write this. May format later to try something else, but, I do like it right now.

    Now that that is out of the way, let's start:

    Vector Linux is basically Slackware Linux with a different installer, and this newer version of it, actually has a GUI installer I haven't used before.

    The installation is pretty fast even on my now dated hardware. The GUI installation is very easy to use, and I didn't even read any manuals to do it. I just popped in the CD and rebooted.

    It's actually pretty nice, and since Vector relies VERY heavy on Slackware I'm sure it could be used on Slackware.

    Vector Linux unlike other based on something distros doesn't use anything from Ubuntu. Just Slackware. In fact, Slackware packages (.tgz tarballs) can be installed on Vector Linux without any changes. Just grab a tgz from something like LinuxPackages, and install it. Nothing needs to be changed.

    By default, you basically have XFCE. I personally don't use XFCE only, because I like KDE and Gnome and Enlightenment, but, it works well and isn't the typical XFCE I'm used to in other distros. It's VERY custom.

    It has a bar at the bottom like KDE or Gnome, and has desktop icons out of the box.

    It also has slapt-get installed, which means the Slackware Debian based tool is easy to keep things updated, and also, a way to install other packages. I loaded up the configuration file in Vim and then checked what it used as an update and extras link, and went to it with Seamonkey to look at the packages. I grabbed a BUNCH of them, and decided to try out the tool and see what it would be able to handle.

    I was kind of shocked at how fast it went. It took about 30 seconds for this thing to download, AND install, ALL of Window Maker and other tools. In under a minute it grabbed a whole window manager for me. I was pretty impressed to say the least.

    What about Irssi? It took seriously 2 seconds. I know, I timed it. I typed this:

    slapt-get --install irssi

    (Counted two second and it had downloaded and installed the package). So speed is for sure on this things side.

    It's REALLY fast. I've used FreeBSD, Slackware, SUSE, all those in the last month, and I'm still shocked at how fast this thing installs packages.

    So, final verdict?

    If you like Slackware, or want to try out Linux but don't want to use your best hardware or fastest box to do it, give this thing a try. It's FAST and it is fairly easy to use too. It's based heavily on Slackware to the point that you don't even need to change a thing from a Slackware package to install one, and of course you have Slapt-get.

    The install? not very long, easy to understand, I'd personally install this one by itself unless of course you have Windows installed, then it can find your Windows partition and add it for you.

    It can also find Windows NTFS based stuff and even has tools for NTFS. I didn't have any Windows partitions on this machine, but from experience with others, it's as simple as telling it which partition is the Windows one (Which is easy because it'll either be NTFS or Fat32 unless you're using an incredibly old version of Windows) and it adds it to fstab so you can load it up at boot time and see your Windows partition.

    If you like Slackware and have another box lying around you want to try something similar out on, give this a try.
    Kill the lights, let the candles burn behind the pumpkins’ mischievous grins, and let the skeletons dance. For one thing is certain, The Misfits have returned and once again everyday is Halloween.The Misfits FreeBSD
    Cannibal Holocaust
    SuSE Linux
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  2. #2
    Senior Member isildur's Avatar
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    Nice review Gore. I have never tried Vector as I thought Slackware had about the simplest installer out there. I thought it was a commercial only distro though, is that not the case. I wonder if one of the Gnomes built for Slackware will install over Vector? Do you still use cfdisk to partition?
    Only trust Pipe-smoking Penguins.

  3. #3
    Antionline's Security Dude instronics's Avatar
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    Hey gore,nice review.

    Just a question though. I use slackware 12.2 as my main Desktop and Laptop along with slapt-get at times. Other than the gui installer which you have mentioned, is there any other thing that makes it different from slackware?

    I too am looking into different distros lately out of curiosity. I must say that me, once being a SuSE fan cannot imagine ever using anything else other than slackware ever again. The new opensuse doesnt feel right, i tried debians but didnt really like them (lets also not mention the bubunti versions). But back to subject... except for the gui installer that vector offers.. is there anything else that might actually wake an interest?

    Cheers.


    //addon: Im downloading vector now to play with. Since you made a positive review of it, then something must be really cool on there.
    Last edited by instronics; June 2nd, 2009 at 08:58 AM.
    Ubuntu-: Means in African : "Im too dumb to use Slackware"

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    AO BOFH: Luser Abuser BModeratorFH gore's Avatar
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    The only commercial ones are ones they sell with extra stuff. And the extras can be downloaded anyway, which is how I got KDE working. They have it all on the slapt-get extras mirror.

    As for partition stuff, you can use whatever really. I think I used their own stuff though. And Slackware software like Gnome should work fine because everything is laid out the same way as in Slackware, so it should be treated like any other package.
    Kill the lights, let the candles burn behind the pumpkins’ mischievous grins, and let the skeletons dance. For one thing is certain, The Misfits have returned and once again everyday is Halloween.The Misfits FreeBSD
    Cannibal Holocaust
    SuSE Linux
    Slackware Linux

  5. #5
    AO BOFH: Luser Abuser BModeratorFH gore's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by instronics View Post
    Hey gore,nice review.

    Just a question though. I use slackware 12.2 as my main Desktop and Laptop along with slapt-get at times. Other than the gui installer which you have mentioned, is there any other thing that makes it different from slackware?

    I too am looking into different distros lately out of curiosity. I must say that me, once being a SuSE fan cannot imagine ever using anything else other than slackware ever again. The new opensuse doesnt feel right, i tried debians but didnt really like them (lets also not mention the bubunti versions). But back to subject... except for the gui installer that vector offers.. is there anything else that might actually wake an interest?

    Cheers.


    //addon: Im downloading vector now to play with. Since you made a positive review of it, then something must be really cool on there.
    There's a few time savers like not having to mount stuff when you pop in a CD, and other things like the Vector admin tool, which is really easy to use.

    I think the admin tool would be a decent upside to look at.
    Kill the lights, let the candles burn behind the pumpkins’ mischievous grins, and let the skeletons dance. For one thing is certain, The Misfits have returned and once again everyday is Halloween.The Misfits FreeBSD
    Cannibal Holocaust
    SuSE Linux
    Slackware Linux

  6. #6
    AO's Filibustier Cheap Scotch Ron's Avatar
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    I must say that me, once being a SuSE fan cannot imagine ever using anything else other than slackware ever again. The new opensuse doesnt feel right
    instronics, can you elaborate? I have several suse 10.3 servers that I had planned to migrate to the new version/release. What does slackware have on suse? what doesnt feel right with the new opensuse?
    In God We Trust....Everything else we backup.

  7. #7
    AO BOFH: Luser Abuser BModeratorFH gore's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cheap Scotch Ron View Post
    instronics, can you elaborate? I have several suse 10.3 servers that I had planned to migrate to the new version/release. What does slackware have on suse? what doesnt feel right with the new opensuse?
    I know the system requirements went up, which is probably from the new KDE which has a lot of flashy stuff, but any new machine can handle that. Also, SUSE and Slackware are related. SUSE started as a German version of Slackware on CDs before it was common to have CD installations.

    In that area it makes Slackware and SUSE cousins almost. Though SUSE has all the nice tools to get things done without doing them by hand.
    Kill the lights, let the candles burn behind the pumpkins’ mischievous grins, and let the skeletons dance. For one thing is certain, The Misfits have returned and once again everyday is Halloween.The Misfits FreeBSD
    Cannibal Holocaust
    SuSE Linux
    Slackware Linux

  8. #8
    Antionline's Security Dude instronics's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cheap Scotch Ron View Post
    instronics, can you elaborate? I have several suse 10.3 servers that I had planned to migrate to the new version/release. What does slackware have on suse? what doesnt feel right with the new opensuse?
    I started off with SuSE 6.3 (or 6.4, dont remember, its a long time ago). I was fascinated. That was the time when i migrated away from windows. During 7.3 was the peak of my SuSE experience. I even went to Germany for 5 weeks to attend the official SuSE seminars in system and security administration. Everything was really cool. After Novell bought SuSE, i got pissed of a bit at some minor changes (non really being important) such as crippling the mp3 support, reducing the default bits for encrpytion, and the cripling of codecs for movie formats. (I presume it had todo with the laws in the US). Ofcourse i could solve these issues by compiling those said packets by hand at that time, but i was dissapointed. The old SuSE i remember, had everything out of the box. I then (due to work reasons) had to go into Gentoo and Slackware. There i learned the hard way that my knowledge on the OS was actully.... extremely low. No yast, no rcthis or rcthat. No SuSEFirewall (which is still one of the best firewall scripts out there out of the box for linux)and so on. After i got around doing everything by hand i sort of fell in love with slackware. Hard to describe in words... it was just an entire different world. It tought me how to get along whith really hardcore dependcy issues (which yast used to take care of on SuSE). Also no more custom packets or the whole RPM stuff. It was only until recently that i discovered slapt-get in general.

    As i mentioned, theres no real important reason for it all. But the feeling once i got my own slackware up and running was.... great. Mind you that I am talking about desktop use at the moment. Sure, i have an online OpenSusE server on a dedi, simply because my knowledge on administrating SuSE is way better than on any other OS/Distro and administration is simple. But here at home, nothing could ever replace my slacky with its flux box. I guess whilst the rest of the world is evolving and moving forwards, im going back in time with the way i use my computers. Flux instead of kde, mcop instead of amarok, cdrecord instead of any GUI apps.

    Using slackware keeps me in shape and really close to the system. I would not use slackware on a production machine, simply due to my lack of knowledge. But im working on getting there. It was also thanks to slackware that i succesfully setup an openBSD test box at home. The knowledge i gained from slack is really helping me alot especially now that im getting more and more interested in BSD flavours.

    And last but not least (i know this is really NOT important, but hey) slackware is EPIC, and im darn proud to be a slack user (Gettinig my webcam to work on my Vaio was a real adventure, but i loved every step of it).

    Cheers
    Ubuntu-: Means in African : "Im too dumb to use Slackware"

  9. #9
    AO BOFH: Luser Abuser BModeratorFH gore's Avatar
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    In other words:

    He likes getting tied up and spanked

    I understood what he was saying because I do the same thing. I think SUSE Linux 8.1 and 8.2 Professional, were probably two of the best OSs ever released on Earth, EVER.

    And if you didn't have neat graphics, it didn't matter, you could try Yast instead of Yast2 and get the text mode version of Yast. It just worked. Something that doesn't happen much now.

    I understand fully what he means by how it's changed. Some of the changes were good I think, as Novell made Yast2 open to everyone so it could be ported, and Yast2 is probably the BEST sys admin tool ever that I've seen, but also they did cripple MP3 support for like 2 months.

    They did fix it I might add, where you could download updates to add MP3s and all that, but yes for a time, SUSE, Fedora, all them, had no MP3 support because of licensing.

    I wasn't bothered much, I re-ripped EVERY CD I own as OGG and called it a day. (Actually a week, I have a LOT of CDs) so on my FTP server, running Slackware 12.0 with a current uptime of almost 150 days, I have every CD ripped as OGG, MP3 320 KBPS and 128 KBPS.

    By the way, just my opinion, but FreeBSD is much nicer than OpenBSD. FreeBSD has an install much like Slackware, and has pkg_add which works like Debian's Apt-Get, and I think you'll like it.

    pkg_add -r AnyPackage out of the 15,000 available, and it grabs it and all dependencies.

    Just Remember BSD is more source code than Linux. You install patches to source, and have to add another app to get binary patches you don't have to compile.
    Kill the lights, let the candles burn behind the pumpkins’ mischievous grins, and let the skeletons dance. For one thing is certain, The Misfits have returned and once again everyday is Halloween.The Misfits FreeBSD
    Cannibal Holocaust
    SuSE Linux
    Slackware Linux

  10. #10
    AO's Filibustier Cheap Scotch Ron's Avatar
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    Pretty much all my sys admin work on *unix is done from the command shell (bash or ksh). Other than occasional web browsing or GUI email client, I live in the black screen.

    Well... I take that back, I use Gnome for moving files around sometimes because drag and drop is easier, but other than that, I'm a command line glutton.
    In God We Trust....Everything else we backup.

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