Debian Lenny

Some weeks ago the hard drive on my work PC failed, with a temperature error on the hard drive. I swapped the drive out but then had to decide which distro to install. I had started my Linux life with Kubuntu, experimented with Debian Sid + Experimental, before returning to Kubuntu. Given Debian Lenny’s imminent release, the logical progression was to try that.

I downloaded the ISO using Jigdo (see How to Download Debian with Jigdo) and ran the installer. It really was simplicity itself and, except for the lack of a live CD, the installation was at least as simple and maybe simpler than Kubuntu. In particular I love the fact that the partitioner gives you intelligent options, rather than the Kubuntu installer’s all-or-nothing approach.

Having installed Debian Lenny, I was struck by just how like Kubuntu it is, hardly surprising given the Debian parentage of Kubuntu. What was surprising though, was just how easy everything was - I simply added non-free and contrib to the repositories, installed Java, Flash, the Win32 Codecs, and the MS Fonts. To improve its looks I simply did:

$ sudo apt-get install kwin-style-crystal kde-icons-nuvola

And then I activated Crystal style and the Nuvola icons in the KDE Control Panel. The Crystal style takes a little bit of tweaking to make it look like Kubuntu (if that’s what you like). To complete the effect I also installed Compiz, and Openbox, so that I have a choice of three Windows Managers - Slow, Medium and Fast!

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