Fedora 17 Linux was released May 29, 2012. As many of you know I’ve been an Ubuntu Linux fan pretty much since Ubuntu 4.10 was released back in 2006. Since Ubuntu 12.04 refuses to work (more on this in another post) on my Lenovo 3000 C100 notebook I decided to give the latest Fedora 17 a shot.
Not only did Fedora 17 boot from the Live CD (the Ubuntu 12.04 Live CD wouldn’t boot even after trying every boot option I could think of), but when I installed it wireless worked out of the box (I didn’t need to tell Fedora that I had a broadcom wireless chipset).
Fedora 17 uses Gnome Shell (Gnome 3) as the desktop environment. I’ve started to like Ubuntu’s Unity interface, but Gnome Shell works pretty good on my hardware (Celeron 1.5GHz, 2GB RAM, 80GB HD, Intel graphics).
One of the first applications I tried was Gimp 2.8. Gimp version 2.8 has been highly anticipated by many long time Gimp users. I first tried it on Windows and was surprised at how awfully slow it was, but on Fedora it booted up rather quickly (on lesser hardware).
What’s new in Fedora 17, not a lot that jumped out at me. It looks like Fedora 16, behaves perhaps a tiny bit better, but still crashes applications on occasion. One annoyance that’s still present in Fedora 17 (I’m convinced it’s a Gnome 3 thing) is that the delete key does not delete highlighted files. It works under Windows and just about every non-Gnome 3 distribution I’ve tried and is just annoying that it doesn’t work (or work well if it ever does work) under Fedora 17.
A new note-taking application, Cherry Tree, has been added to Fedora. Cherry Tree looks promising, but lacks some of the features of the BasKet note taking application for KDE (but is better than gnote or Tomboy). I found Cherry Tree to boot really fast, it is an editor after all. Sadly it crashed and I lost a couple of pages of data and some code, and there’s no recovery option like LibreOffice.
There are a few updates to programs like vym (View Your Mind), LibreOffice, and most notably Gimp which I’ve already mentioned.
There’s no “wow” factor to Fedora 17, it’s just a good, stable operating system that installed without a hitch on my Lenovo 3000 C100 0761, something I cannot say for Ubuntu 12.04. If you’ve tried Gnome Shell on Ubuntu, the experience on Fedora is far smoother, but Ubuntu has focused on Unity so this is no surprise.