Fedora 9 is very interesting because they are introducing very similar features to Hardy. Fedora's Preview Release was delayed because they wanted more time to resolve bugs, this impressed me! Fedora, like Mint is committed to quality! I ran Fedora full time before coming to LinuxMint so I am no stranger to Yum or setting up multimedia myself. Our philosophies are very different but Fedora has some very innovative ideas.
Fedora 9 has a very professional look and feel to it. I don't know how to describe it very well but Fedora 9 looks like it belongs on corporate desktops. Fedora's new package management system while still a little buggy, looks good and shows real promise. The linva repo's are not available yet for Fedora 9 so I could not check out multimedia capabilities. I was able to listen to podcasts and play mp3's out of the box.
I am interested in how Fedora 9's final release compares to Hardy. Fedora has a very organized approach to development, like ours. I am waiting to see if they can get internal floppy drives to work in Fedora 9 and have looked at the bug report on it and got with the person that submitted the report. I realize that an internal floppy drive does not get much use these days but they are still sold and people still use them on occasion.
I noticed that the Fedora 9 Preview originally had some Network Manager errors sometimes at shut down and re-boot, not near as many as Hardy but still a problem. Fedora Developer's resolved the issue where Ubuntu has not. Fedora 9 does not currently have the ability to change GDM Themes. A new GDM was introduced with an option to help people with disabilities. Memory use in Fedora 9 was higher than in Hardy but I expected that because it is not a final release and has not been fine tuned yet.
Fedora 9 seems extremely secure! No sudo in Fedora and the Policy Kit seems more advanced than in Hardy. Fedora introduced the Policy Kit in Fedora 8 and has been working with it for awhile so I expected this. Pulse Audio was complete in Fedora, it comes stock with the volume control. This was not a surprise either because Fedora is the developer of this now.
Fedora's Live CD is quickly improving. Fedora 9 installed very fast compared to Hardy. Fedora did not automatically eject the CD when I rebooted but that was the only fault I found with the install. The speed of the install was very impressive! The system boot time was similar to Ubuntu. I did not time either system to compare but there was no real noticeable difference.
I enjoy seeing how different distributions deal with new technology and their ability to resolve bugs and advance Linux in general. Fedora has a completely different target audience in mind than us. Fedora is more focused on the corporate environment. I have respect for the Fedora Developer's for their choice in delaying their release to try and resolve more bugs, they set a good example. LinuxMint and PCLinux also demonstrate this same commitment to quality.
Sorry for writing a book here but this has been an interesting comparison for me.