I’ve just spent a few hours chilling out with Feisty on my notebook. I’m using a Dell Latitude D600 machine. So far I’m really digging some of the nicer touches in Gnome and I think I’m enjoying the NetworkManager integration (we’ll see, it’s been a problem for me before).
Firstly, as looks go, Feisty isn’t that different from Edgy. Similar bootsplash and Gnome theme. I’ve been a fan of the bootsplash since I first saw it on Edgy, the text is a little thicker now and has a more pronounced light outline. It looks a little softer too, I’m liking it. I have no real opinion on the Human theme, I never use it long enough to notice when it changes. It’s not that I don’t like it, I just like blues better,
I found that both the Universe and Multiverse repos are enabled by default. They should be, since (IMO) you need them to really get the full range of applications and use of your machine. Still, there are some things worth having that aren’t available in the standard repos and you need to go a little further. I found out about Medibuntu whilst doing a little research and added it. You can find out how on this page https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Medibuntu. This allowed me to install the
w32codecs and a few other non-free/proprietary apps/whatevers.
I checked out the new Restricted Drivers Manager. It was exactly what I expected, useless for me! I don’t have any hardware in this machine that would require any restricted drivers. Hopefully I’ll finally get the Nvidia card I’ve been talking myself into and out of for months and I’ll be able to test the utility out on my desktop.
I was able to test the new Codec manager. This is a gem! It really simplifies getting mp3 and other proprietary codecs on your machine. All you have to do is try to play a file (mp3 for instance). It will just prompt you download/install the codec and you’ll be ready to roll. NICE.
One of the nicer, user friendly features is hidden, I don’t know what the logic behind this is, but I have to assume there is some. If you want to check out the gnome-control-center (without typing that whenever you want to use it), you’ll have to use the menu editor (System > Preferences > Main Menu) and enable it. You’ll find it under the Preferences heading, just check the box next to Control Center. The control center isn’t new, but it certainly looks a lot nicer than the version that shipped with Edgy. Just another enhancement.
If you’ve ever used session management in Gnome, check out the updated session manager. You should be pleased. Nuff said.
I can’t say much about the desktop effects on this machine, I’ve always had problems with Compiz and Beryl on it. It just has older hardware and compositing
desktop window managers just don’t run well. I look forward to playing with it on my desktop machine later.
All in all, the beta release is working VERY well on my lappy. I’m monitoring a few things for problems and will address them in another post later on this week. I’ve posted “too soon” in the past and I want to be sure things are working properly for me before I say they are.