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Linux Daily

Daily usage of linux, raw style

I’ve been trying a lot of distros on the aa1 recently, I’ve tried all Ubuntus from 8.04 till 9.04, sidux, slitaz, madbox, and now Kuki Linux.

Kuki linux is made specifically for the AA1, so I was expecting something nice. I only tried it live from usb, so this is what I got.

On hardware performance and recognition, everything kinda works. Webcam, audio, baterry recognition, wireless (good performance btw) no problem whatsoever. Wired I didn’ try but it should be working.
In terms of graphics I was initially very disappointed with the streaming flash video performance. Then I read the release announcement more closely and it seems they have a “special” xorg configuration that boosts the performance tremendously. I was skeptical, but stupidily so. The xorg configuration they made is great, I mean it’s as good as it gets. I had just tried Ubuntu 9.04 before and flash video was terrible. With their conf you can get daily show with no problem whatsoever, facebook videos with normal quality rolling beautifully, youtube not even worth mentioning. Fullscreen works great too. Glxgears outputs ~570fps. Gentlemen, they did it, hat’s off!
Card recognition depends on which one you’re looking at. The left one works great. Hot plugging working by default, and it’s really fast, wait where’s the bold, oh, really fast. You plug the card in and dare I say in less than one second Thunar pops up. My balls dropped. The right one isn’t working out of the box, but according to this post on the forums they have a solution, so it’s just a matter of making it to the distro. Strange bug though, after I tried the right card reader and then put the card back in the left reader, it stopped working. Not too worried honestly.

Software wise, you get the general assortment of xfce (4.6) apps. You know, mousepad, the ex xarchiver and shit. Then I think they made weird choices on programs. Ok, I take that back, it just comes with programs I don’t like. Audacious for audio playing, Mplayer for video. Ever heard of vlc? Bah. Also comes with this thing called “Zim Desktop Wiki” I have no idea why. A lame looking ebook reader. No office apps as of yet, not even abi word. But I’ll confess my ignorance, i don’t know what are the plans for the future on this end and I didn’t bother to look up. Either way, if you install this, you’re on your own, but this is ubuntu running underneath so installing anything I’m sure is dead basic.
Oh, almost forgot. Networking done by wicd which is awesome. I fucking hate network manager and this was really good to see. Works wonders.

Now the visuals. I was really happy when I saw that the login screen. I don’t have a screenshot but it looks really nice. The color looks really good on the screen, the fonts are beautifull. Then you login, and the background doesn’t flicker or anything, it goes straight to the desktop in this really awesome integrated experience. Sad part is, you walk beautifull to reach this sad thing

Holy shit. Why so sad?

Holy shit. Why so sad?

No I don’t know if it’s just me, but I hate xfce. Seriously. Thunar (the file manager) aside, it’s horrible. Look at the font on the clock. Doesn’t it break your heart? Virtual desktops are vertical instead of horizontal, no option to change it. Bah. The icons on the desktop have no reason to be uncool, but for some reason they just look terrible. Maybe it’s because of the color background behind the name of the file. Maybe it’s because they look realistic and the rest of the desktop looks like ugly cartoons. Now look at this

Please stop, I can't take it anymore

Please stop, I can't take it anymore

Window border is horrific. Default gray makes me so sad I wanna cry. It’s this kind of prison gray, innit? Oh man it’s just awfull. You know, after coming from Ubuntu 9.04 using the awesome dust theme I look at this and just make a sad face. And really after trying madbox my standards in terms of looks just exploded thru the roof, just look at this

Now this is what Im talking about

Now this is what I'm talking about

So ok, let’s make a conclusion. I couldn’t test suspend and hibernation, but I think that’s working out of the box in Ubuntu 9.04 so I guess it’s working, but anyway. In terms of what really matters, kuki wins big time. Performance is great, hardware recognition getting very close to perfect, boot time is good too. I didn’t try it, but I used the same kernel in ubuntu and it was good then, since kuki uses even less services and shit it can only be faster. Where it loses is in using xfce which i hate, they should have sticked to lxde godamnit!, and on the desktop appearance. But this can be worked out, although I never saw any good looking xfce desktop to be honest. It’s one of those things you can leave for last, but guys, aim for the top, for the ubber distro, and do something about it. After that you can all demand preferential treatment from us, the idiots, because you godamn deserve it. Gentlemen, it took a long time but we’re getting very close. Hat’s off!

Ps: I wonder what happens if I stick that xorg conf on ubuntu 9.04 running lxde or something.hm

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