Sunday, April 22, 2007

On Linux and Sparc: Is this goodbye, x86 and PPC?

So, here I am at the keyboard of a newly revamped Sun Ultra 5 (aka "Cinq").
Two weeks ago, I dragged Cinq up from the depths of the lab, and gave him a place of honour on my desk. Vier had just died, and I needed a new machine to piss around with. Solaris 8 was already installed, so I fired Cinq up and headed over to Sunfreeware to grab a few things I knew I'd need.

GTK, Emacs, Lynx, Pine, Python, and all their related dependencies. Man, it took forever!

I spent much of the following weekend installing yet more packages, trying to tweak the look and feel as well as improve Cinq's functionality. By the time Monday rolled around, I wasn't anywhere near done.

"No big deal", I told myself, "I'll bring him up to speed this weekend!"

And I did.

I gave up on Solaris 8 and installed Debian "etch", via the netinstall disk.

And I haven't looked back.

It took me nearly five non-consecutive days to bring Solaris 8 up to my minimum level of functionality. It took less than four hours on a Saturday afternoon to have Debian do nearly everything I want.

As much as I love Solaris (and I DO love it), as far as Cinq is concerned, Debian's the way to go.