[lug] RFI Debian vs. Slackware

B O'Fallon bof at americanisp.net
Fri Oct 6 20:00:23 MDT 2000

"J. Wayde Allen" wrote:

> I've never really seen an interface like Yast or dselect for the Red Hat
> system, but it seems like there should be one.

First of all, my thanks to all of you who took time to answer.

I found a copy of Debian 2.1 and installed it to play with. Installation went
OK (but was exceedingly slow compared to any other distribution) after I
figured out to use the single CD selection rather than the multiple CD one to
find the packages ... (Yeah, I know, RTFM. But that way is not much fun, for
you learn the answers too quickly and don't get to reinstall everything a
couple of times. <g>).

The dselect package system is pretty slick, and in fact, I think I like it
better than any other packaging system I have seen. It's nice for installation,
but even nicer for removal.  I stripped my installation from 680 MB to 208 MB
today and it seems to work fine. What I really like is the display of how
essential a package is to the system, and how easily it can be removed. YAST
allows some of this, but then turns around and reinstalls everything you
selected to remove because it seems that on SUSE, EVERYTHING is dependent upon
everything else.

My only complaint is that Debian seems to lag behind datewise in their packages
(I did take a look at the 2.2 distro to see how much they actually were behind
compared to others). However, some may view this as a strength, and this
supposedly contributes to the stability of the system. Each to their own, but I
would like a little more cutting edge system.

So I think that I will probably go with Slackware in the end.

BTW, there is a graphical equivalent of RPM under Gnome, called Gnome RPM. It
will show icons for all packages installed on a system, and allow finding out
info such as version, files, and file locations, as well as adding or removing
them. Unfortunately, every time I've tried using it under RH 6.1, it has
crashed and I ended up using the text-based version, but it does seem like a
good idea in theory.

Again, my thanks to all those who took time to reply.

B. O'Fallon

More information about the LUG mailing list