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There’s Something About Pardus 2008

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Because Pardus 2007 left a lasting impression on me, I have been eagerly waiting for its next release. So when the stable version of Pardus 2008 came out just recently, I never hesitated to try and test this promising distro from Turkey once again.


From Pardus project's website:
"In compliance with the main goals of the Pardus project, Pardus 2008 has lots of new features for ease of installation and use, both at the infrastructure and interface levels. In addition, Pardus 2008 provides enhanced hardware support, stable and reliable Linux infrastructure and numerous applications on a single CD. You will go through a brand new experience of freedom, using Pardus 2008"
So what are the improvements and new features of Pardus 2008? Read on to find out...


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 256 MB allocated to VM memory

Installation:
Unlike the previous version, Pardus 2008 is only available in installation "Kurulan" edition and doesn't have the Live CD "Calisan" option. In my case, it's no big deal as when I'm testing a distro, I always want to go directly to installation to really know how well it handles my hardware. However, the Live CD can be handy at times as it can both function as a rescue CD, and as a way to try a distro without even touching the hard drive.


Once Padus 2008 was loaded, I was greeted with their logo and a brand new fresh orange background as seen on screenshot. Then, a boot menu appeared with the default language set to Turkish, so I had to press F2 and changed it to English. --I really find it great that Pardus supports plenty of languages. Next was the installation process that is handled by YALI (Pardus custom-made installer). It started with accepting the GNU/GPL license; followed by checking the CD's integrity, keyboard layout set-up, time zone set-up, creating user accounts, partitioning, bootloader set-up, the summary of installation, and lastly, installing the system.



Surprisingly, Pardus 2008 installation took about 40 minutes to complete compared to 20 minutes in the previous version.

Look and Feel:
Pardus puts on a new look in this 2008 version as seen on its sleek installer and login menu. Just like before, Kaptan Desktop Wizard appeared at first login and helped me configure my mouse, panel, wallpaper, network connection, etc. For "panel", I was given an option to use Classic, Modern, Next Generation, and Transparent, and whether to use the enhanced Kickoff style menu or not; -- "Classic" for those who wants a lighter and faster desktop, and "Transparent" for those who wants a more stylish desktop. I personally like the classic look, but as before, I used transparent to see how my hardware can handle the added eye-candy. For wallpaper, there are plenty of good-looking backgrounds to choose from, however, it's interesting to note that there are no leopard-themed wallpapers this time around. By the way, Pardus 2008 is still using the updated KDE 3.5 as its default desktop environment.



Software/Features:
Pardus 2008 has plenty of changes and improvements on its custom applications such as:

-faster package management system (PiSi)
-YALI includes a new and improved partitioning interface
-Kaptan Desktop has been completely rewritten
-new graphical display manager

It has also updated most of its important software applications:

-Updated KDE 3.5.9 Desktop Environment;
-Updated Linux kernel (2.6.25.9);
-Important infrastructure improvements including gcc 4.3.1, glibc 2.8, Python 2.5, Java 6;
-The most recent, fastest and most capable internet browser Mozilla Firefox 3.0;
-OpenOffice.org 2.4.1;

…and plenty more;



Stability/Hardware Detection:
Pardus 2008 had no trouble detecting and configuring my virtual machine hardware. Everything was functioning well like the audio, display, and Ethernet. Changing the screen resolution is really much easier now thanks to the new graphical manager. It is also possible to painlessly tweak some of the hardware preferences using the very reliable Pardus Configuration Center (TASMA).



Conclusion:

Pardus 2008 is not perfect and has some minor issues that need to be fixed. However, its overall stability is intact and it really made some significant improvements over its previous version. Also, its speed has improved (not including the installation), it has a more polished look, and it is even easier to use than before due to enhancements in several of its home-cooked system tools and applications.

In my opinion, Pardus is definitely the best government funded Linux distribution at the moment. I hope our very own Philippine-made Bayanihan Linux in the very near future will at least equal what Pardus has achieved.

To those who are still looking for a user-friendly, efficient, and stable Linux distro, why not give Pardus 2008 a try. --The download page can be found HERE.

6 comments

  1. Great review as always. I've been using Pardus 07 because everything just works, e.g. wifi, audio... After reading this review I want to upgrade to 08 but I'm afraid that some of my hardware may not work well as it is right now. Anyhow, I think I'm gonna do the upgrade if time permits. Thanks.

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  2. I wish that Pardus had more available packages in the repositories. It's a bit too obscure for me at the moment. Apart from that, it looks nice.

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  3. Thanks for a great review. I used Pardus 2007-3 for a while but then I kept switching distros. Since Pardus 2008 was released I'm using it on my main PC. Sure it has some minor issues but show me a distro who doesn't. I love Pardus 2008. It's fast, stable, looks great everything works out of box and offers almost everything a home pc user can ask for. Thanks to everyone who spend all their energy and time to create this great distro. I wont be switching distros to find what works for me anymore. I find the one I need. I'd recommend it to everyone who wants a great distro. Thank you again for taking your time and reviewing Pardus 2008. Keep up with the great job.
    Best regards.

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  4. It is a pity that the 'minor issues' mentioned in the review were not touched upon, as the forums are very friendly; actually wanting to help newcomers. All of my (very few)'minor issues' were resolved with the help from very knowlegable and patient people. There is not 26000 programs to choose from it is true, but everything most people need is there - adding the 'contrib' repositories helps. This Distro is better than all, including Ubuntu, and deserves praise and promotion, and it is quite beyond me why Pardus is not in the top five on Distrowatch. There again, I've finally found the Linux for all of my machines, as have thousands of others, after disro-hopping close to 350 different operating systems.

    Tony(UK)

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  5. It is the best linux distro to be compared with ubuntu.

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  6. ubuntu is nice who said,
    it hardly recognises my 17 inch crt screen and says that is an 16 inch lcd, ubuntu always messes with my nvidia, but not mandriva,or suse . now the logitech keyboard and mouse . every operating system can never satisfyan individual whether open or closed the source coding may be (understood). i blew my western digital hard disk because of my country's power issue that burned my ups,and a side cabinet fan.

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