Mepis 3.3 v 6.0

July 26, 2006

Using Mepis 3.3 on the network at work, I was able to easily download Mepis 6.0 and burned it on to a CD, creating my very first live CD thus saving a buck or two from ordering. Actually it took some time to download since the network kept stalling. But otherwise the process was fairly painless.

So now I’m looking at the new Mepis running on another machine via the live CD. To someone like me who is familiar with Mepis, the destop does not look very different from earlier versions. The 3.3 version has many more things on the desktop than later versions. Some things taken off for version 3.4-3 were put back on for 6.0.

When reading a review by Rees, he was talking about some of the applications he was adding, including GIMP. Looking at my 3.3 menu, GIMP is included, but I see it was left off of the 6.0 distro. In fact, the 6.0 version is quite a bit lighter on applications compared to 3.3. Having 6.0 run from Ubuntu seems to be mostly to take advantage of the Ubuntu repositories so that a person can download the applications that they like. The 3.3 version actually offers more applications and more choices than the latest version. For instance, in addition to Firefox and Thunderbird, 3.3 offers all of the KDE software (Konquerer, Kmail).

So to a an average user, is 6.0 a superior distribution? I suppose it depends on how old your hardware is. I’m sure 6.0 has updated drivers to automatically detect devices. I’ll let you know if it does, but I’m seriously doubting whether this will improve anything with my home machine as far as getting the modem to work. Otherwise, my initial observation is that 6.0 offers a few cosmetic improvements but it really does not look or feel new to me. I can not notice improvement as far as speed, but haven’t spent as much time with the newer version.

So I absolutely can not say that I will be upgrading this machine from 3.3 to 6.0 at this time. I suppose there might be some enhance security or something, but I don’t notice any significance performance differences between this installed 3.3 and the 6.0 live CD. With things getting busier at work I won’t have as much time to play around. but at this point as far as getting the things done that I need to do, Mepis 3.3 fits the bill nicely. That may change if see some differences at my home machine. I’m especially thinking about some of the multimedia applications Rees has going and I might be tempted to do something with it just so I can sort of follow along. My work machine doesn’t have a DVD drive, so I have no need here. But the home machine it a totally different deal, so we’ll see.




  1. Why would someone choose Mepis over Ubuntu? I’m pretty happy with Ubuntu myself but I’m wondering if Mepis might be a good choice for friends who are new to Linux.

  2. I think Mepis is better than Ubuntu simply because off all the software that is included in Mepis from the start. It’s much more complete than Ubuntu when it comes to non-open source software.

  3. I find the MEPIS hardware detection to be better, and I use it mainly because it uses KDE by default and I’ve been using KDE for a while.

  4. I find the MEPIS user support to be better, too. There are a few very vocal people on the Ubuntu forums who seem to think they have something to prove, MEPIS user support seems much more professional and impartial.

  5. MEPIS forums are filled with more people who are new to Linux. Ubuntu forums are filled with people who are used to using UNIX. If I am new to Linux, who would I have an easier time talking to?

    Ubuntu is way, way over-hyped. NOT the best choice for Linux Newbies. This post was not about Ubuntu, which only proves my point. In the same way people thought of Windows as being equal to owning a PC and AOL as the Internet in the 1990’s, people are beginning to think about Ubuntu as Linux today. Compared to other distributions, Ubuntu is SORRY. It is becoming the AOL of Linux. Widely adopted because of the marketing, the hype and a misguided following.

    Okay, I’m in the mood for a rant…


  6. “…Ubuntu is SORRY. It is becoming the AOL of Linux”

    😀 That brought a tear to my eye! I’ll remember that one.

  7. Yeah, that is the surest way to insult a techie is by comparing his favorite application to AOL! It’s worse than saying something bad about his mother.


  8. I’m practically brand new to linux. I downloaded upwards of 10 distros that were spoken highly of on the internet and by friends, including Ubuntu, Mandriva, Suse, Knoppix, Slax, and a few others.

    From the standpoint of a linux beginner, here’s what I think about the few distros I tried. Each of these, even the livecd distros, I installed to my hard drive to find the one that was perfect for me.

    Knoppix was the first one I tried. It seemed cool enough as a livecd, and had a lot of handy utilities if I was looking to work on a network a lot, but I just wanted a replacement OS for windows, and Knoppix didn’t work for me.

    Slax was cool as well, but just wasn’t for me.

    Mandriva…I just didn’t like. Period.

    Suse was the first OS I tried that recognized all my hardware, a huge plus when you’re new to the system and don’t know how to configure it yourself. I liked and used it for a week, and still do. I no longer use it, but may again in the future.

    Ubuntu, though, was the one that stuck. From the second I booted the LiveCD, all my hardware was found and configured. I was surprised, especially considering I use a laptop. Also, the gnome interface I preferred far more than KDE. It’s clean and crisp and it doesn’t remind me anything of Windows XP, but as a newly converted Windows user, it was still easy to figure out gnome. It has since been my favorite distro of Linux. I’m sure there are a million reasons I should hate Ubuntu, where I a Linux expert, but I’m not. I’m just a plain-old working class citizen who got tired of Windows.

    And for the record, I downloaded Mepis three times, and never got it to boot or install on my laptop or desktop. I gave up. Maybe now that there’s a new version I’ll give it another shot.

  9. Robby, whatever works for you is good. Thankfully, there is a lot of freedom to choose what suits you best in the world of Linux. I’m glad to hear you get on well with Ubuntu, I know a lot of people do, and I hope it serves you well in the future.

    I guess Ubuntu is good for a lot of people, but as you can probably guess, we’v both been quite disappointed with it. It takes all sorts!

  10. I agree with Rees, Robby! I’m glad you got it to work, too and sorry Mepis didn’t work for you. Indeed, I would think which ever distro is the latest is going to be the one with the greatest hardware compatibility. Having so many choices is a good thing, and people can choose what works for them instead of having to be saddled with one thing. And I think that is what Linux and Open source is all about: Choice.

    Now I’m off to look at the Freespire distro.


  11. That’s what I love about Linux, too. Even though Ubuntu is what I use the most, I still try out new distros pretty regularly, just because I can.

  12. I now use mepis and think its great.

    Tried Suse first but couldn’t get everything to work, but it did convert me to linux.

    Then moved to Ubuntu – I thought it was great … BUT the last upgrade (edgy) was more like a beta in that about 40% of people had major problems with the upgrade. I was one and was left with an unworkable system – (so ubuntu – lets have less hype and major upgrades and more stability)

    So I moved on to Mepis – everything works – help is great – I am very happy with KDE – Mepis has been rock solid so far. Seems like its closely related to Ubuntu sharing the same repositories. I chose it as reviews rated it highly and I agree with them. Oh and the best tip of all keep your home files on a separate partition so when you move from one distro to another or crash you upgrade as in the case of Ubuntu, you dont loose any data. and use rdiff to regularly back them up to another disk.

  13. I’m rapidly coming to a similar conclusion as far as data storage. No matter what OS you use, having redundancy and portability in storage media is wise. I am SO liking the pen/usb/thumb/jump drives.


  14. I installed Mepis and haveing trouble getting on the Internet with AOL, so far looking good.

  15. AOL will give you fits with just about any distro, as far as I know, especially using dial-up. I’ve gotten AT&T to work but it was a bit tricky figuring it out. But that was with Puppy Linux, which has bunches of wizards to help figure things out. Mepis has a supportive community, but if you can’t get online…you’re not going to be very happy!


  16. Thanks Dick…I am going to call Aol and try to get a fix for my problem, as far as Mepis it look good can’t wait to get on the internet.

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