Hi, I stumbled upon this post while looking for info on how to force Celena to upgrade Thunderbird to version 2, the Mint Installer keeps getting pushed back to the version on the repository. I f anyone can help with that I'd appreciated it. I can't setup Lightning and gdata provider with thunderbird 1.5.
Back to this posting, I sympathize with many of the views, I also find it a real pain to have to re-install rather than upgrade although I suspect that it eases the load of the software engineers.
My principal computer these days is a middle range laptop hooked up to an adsl modem router firewall (by ethernet or wifi) and a NAS. My fall back system is WinXP, simply because it does everything and I don't have the time or the detailed knowledge to tweak Linux.
I have a single 100Gb disk - After bad Win experiences I always put Data - my working files and essential personal info bkps - on a separate Fat23 partition. Weekly bkps from this partition go onto a NAS disk.
This 100 Gb space is split 25% WinXP and software, 25% Data, 30% Media (music and podcasts) and 20% for a couple of Linux distros (currently Mint Celena and Zenwalk slackware). Each Linux distro has its own fairly small home partition and in general I just re-install the / partition and leave /home with all it's settings.
I agree that the Debian installer is annoying in that it just writes over the MBR but Zenwalk is chainloaded from its partition (like WinXP) so I just have to mod the Menu.1st file.
Why don't I stick with WinXP? good question; it does everything I ask of it , deals with multimedia USB keyboard external usb soundcards, bluetooth, Nokia phone interface, Skype, Media players... mind you when it goes wrong it's very problematic.
So why do I explore the Linux world; because Windows systems turn into huge behemoths. Mine takes a long time to load (5 minutes) and about the same time to shutdown and to be honest it's just a bit boring. Windows Vista? - bloatware, Mac OX, never liked the Mac philosophy.
Then there's Linux, not boring and and more of an intellectual challenge than Win or Mac. Plus the Linux systems are lightning fast in comparison. The XFCE desktop is a particularly fast option.
All the operating systems I currently use are pointed at the same Fat32 Data file partition. This works flawlessly and means that whether I choose to work using Win, Mint or Zenwalk, I am logged onto the same central email database and the same set of working files - no duplicates.
The current developments from the Google camp are interesting also as they enable critical info (email messages, calendars, files...) to be held on a remote server and accessed by any operating system. Similar philosophy to my own in a way.
I'm still a little wary of letting go to that extent but I applaud the Google approach. Of course, in going down that road one has has to wonder about the disaster of no internet access or worse, a major crash excessive meddling by politicians.
While I'm on a roll I'll finish by saying that central repositories for important stuff like bookmarks and contact lists are also on my mind. Maybe Google addresses this but there are some things that I'd rather keep to myself. Perhaps all these bits of essential info could be accessed from a central database using opensource standards.
Anyway interesting stuff. Must get back to work - currently under Mint Celena. This system is a good compromise between MS and slackware and has the slickest network acces control that I have found. It looks and works a lot better the Ubuntu on my machine. Having tried Redhat, Suse, Fedora .... I'm happy with my current distros, and waiting for the final release of Daryna.
Hope my rambling addressed at least some of the issues raised in this post.