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Distribution Watch Review: Caldera OpenLinux Workstation 3.1 Beta - page 4

The good: surprising progress for an early beta

  • March 29, 2001
  • By Scott Courtney

I'm not a distribution bigot, by any means. Each distro appeals to a particular kind of user, and they each have something unique to offer. I've seen RedHat and SuSE and Mandrake, but Caldera remains my personal favorite because it works well for the things that I need to do. The new OpenLinux Workstation 3.1 will be a significant upgrade for Caldera users, and well worth the wait since eDesktop 2.4 was released last year. If you tried Caldera's "Technology Preview" release, as I did, and were disappointed, you will be pleased to know that the 3.1 beta is much more stable and usable even in its early stages. The engineers at Caldera have not been idle these past few months.

Will OpenLinux Workstation 3.1 be a compelling reason for users of other distributions to switch? I really can't say. Personally, I think the LIZARD installer beats just about everything else out there, especially for a novice-to-intermediate user. I've used LIZARD to successfully install Caldera on systems where Mandrake's installer stopped cold or crashed. Advanced users, though, may feel confined by Caldera's graphical installer and may prefer a text-mode installation tool. Caldera offers a non-graphical installation, but I didn't get a chance to try it in the 3.1 beta.

For existing Caldera users, the upgrade is likely to be a no-brainer. This is an extremely easy way to build a web development workstation or desktop client, with all the latest bells and whistles. There are problems today with the beta, but Caldera's past history suggests that these will be fixed by release day. OpenLinux Workstation 3.1 promises to be a worthy upgrade to Caldera's excellent Linux distribution.

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