April 18, 2019

Distribution Watch: Gentoo Linux 1.2: Getting Better Every Day - page 4

Back in the Saddle with Gentoo

  • July 10, 2002
  • By Dee-Ann LeBlanc

Once I get the system installed and booted, I can go on to configure my desktop. I click on Gentoo's Linux Desktop Configuration Guide and kind of follow the instructions. While the person who wrote them prefers KDE, I prefer GNOME, so I type emerge --pretend gnome to get a glimpse of just how much work my machine needs to do at this point. It's a lot, as suggested. But, well, I do kinda like to have a GUI available so I type emerge gnome and then go do something else for a while.

The configuration phase in many ways is like the installation phase. Emerge this, emerge that, and do a bunch of stuff by hand that you're used to being able to gloss over with handy dandy tools; for example, Gentoo makes us configure X by hand. But that's okay, this distribution's for developers. What I find ironic about that is that all of the compiling is so easy that us non-developers get through that without a problem, but building a Linux system manually doesn't seem to me so much a developer thing.

I'm not complaining! It's just an observation. The power in Gentoo is that with Portage, the developer can have various parts of the filesystem set up with compilation defaults that make life a whole lot easier while creating new software. That doesn't really come out in a basic installing and configuring discussion.

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