July 11, 2011
There has been news of a Mandriva fork, Mageia, Here and there for the past few months. I tried Mandrake a long, long time ago but not beyond simply installing it. Recently, I have been trying out a few distributions and tried out Mageia as well.
Mageia has gotten me really excited for some reason. To me they seem like a group of dedicated rebels who decided to take their fate into their own hands. They were not happy with the direction and future of a project they loved and decided to fork it. In a few short months they have released a very nice distribution.
I just love their artwork. It just resonates with me at many different levels. This is the first thing that attracted me to Mageia. I also like the European (primarily French) roots of their distribution. It’s a bit different from Fedora, Debian, etc., and reminds me there’s interest in, and passion for, Linux outside of the US.
Installing it in a VirtualBox virtual machine (VM) was very simple. Using Mageia’s control center, I was able to easily install KDE4 desktop environment. Initially I didn’t like the customizations they made to it, such as classic menu, but since KDE is so configurable, just right-click and change to the new menu was all it took. Installing applications is interesting as well because you are given choices for dependencies. For example, if a package you are installing has a dependency which can be satisfied by two or more packages, you are asked to choose which package to install. This is the first time I have ever experienced this and was very refreshing (even though half of the time I have no idea which one I should choose).
I will keep Mageia around for a while in VMs and then take it out for a spin on physical hardware. I have played with it for a short while and I like what they have to offer.