Distrowar: Fluxbuntu vs. MiniMe

Posted by jun auza On 1/30/2008
Fluxbuntu and MiniMe are ultra-lightweight versions of two equally popular Linux distributions namely Ubuntu and PCLinuxOS. Fluxbuntu is keeping it light by utilizing a Fluxbox window manager as well as other unhefty pre-installed applications. Meanwhile, MiniMe uses a KDE desktop but with minimum out-of-the-box software packages.

It is time once again for our monthly distrowar. As usual, I will be the sole judge, and it’s only me who can decide which will be declared a winner or a loser.

Two distros that I have recently reviewed will take the stage. Ladies and gentlemen, it’s Fluxbuntu 7.10 (RC) vs. the MiniMe edition of PCLOS for today’s main event.

I know that it is quite unfair to compare the two, as Fluxbuntu is a distribution on its own, while MiniMe is just a preview of the soon to be released PCLOS 2008. But what the heck! As I always say, this is all just for the spirit of fun so we’re going to push through. Just fasten your seat belts and prepare for battle!

Distrowar Arena (Test Machine Specs):
Board: Intel Corporation D102GGC2
Processor: 3.40 GHz Intel Pentium D
Hard Drive: Samsung 80GB ATA with 8GB allocated to VM disk
Memory: 2GB DDR2 RAM with 256MB allocated to VM memory

Tale of the Tape:
Distro Name: Fluxbuntu / Weight: 306MB (i386.iso)/ Country Origin:USA/ Distro Origin:Ubuntu/ Package Mgt.:DEB/ Default Desktop:Fluxbox/

Distro Name: MiniMe/ Weight: 297MB (i386.iso)/ Country Origin:USA/ Distro Origin:PCLinuxOS/ Package Mgt.: RPM (APT)/ Default Desktop:KDE /

Speed Test:
Installation Time- Winner, MiniMe!
Boot/Start-up Time - Winner, Fluxbuntu!
Responsiveness- Draw!

Decoding:
MiniMe just blew me away with its super quick installation, while Fluxbuntu needed some extra time to fully complete its set-up. Fluxbuntu boots faster (measured from Grub menu to the main desktop) which took about 44 seconds. MiniMe consumed around 53 seconds at boot. MiniMe is very responsive even with its KDE desktop, and Fluxbuntu as expected is the same way receptive. Hence, my verdict for 'responsiveness' is dead heat.

Aesthetics:
Default Theme- Winner, Fluxbuntu!
Extras- MiniMe!
Artwork- Winner, Fluxbuntu!

Decoding:
Fluxbuntu’s default theme and artwork is a winner for me because I just love its clean and simple default look. It truly reflects its ultra-light character. MiniMe is plain looking but it is highly customizable, that is why I gave it the upper hand in the ‘Extras’ category.

Features:
Pre-installed Applications- Fluxbuntu!
Available Packages from Repo- Draw!
Ease of Use- Winner, MiniMe!

Decoding:
Fluxbuntu has a better and greater line-up of pre-installed software applications compared to MiniMe. But, both have plenty of available software packages from their respective repositories. I find MiniMe a lot easier to use based on the ease of installation, newbie-friendly KDE desktop, and very reliable, complete and comprehensible Control Center.

Stability:
Hardware Detection- Winner, MiniMe!
Software Management- Draw!
Error Handling- MiniMe!

Decoding:
Due to some known issues with Fluxbuntu, MiniMe won 'hardware detection' and 'error handling'. MiniMe just works without giving me that much of a hard time configuring all the necessary hardware devices. Software management is a tie since they both performed well in dealing with software packages like downloading, installation, updating, and uninstallation.

Final Score:
MiniMe = 5
Fluxbuntu = 4
*Winner, MiniMe!

Conclusion:
MiniMe won by a very slim margin, a point to be exact. It is not really a convincing win by MiniMe so I would like to give Fluxbuntu the benefit of the doubt. The conclusion was just based IMOP (in my own opinion). Therefore, I would appreciate to hear some views from our dear readers who have tried both MiniMe and Fluxbuntu.

So, that is it for now. Till then and see you on our next Distrowar! :)

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