Episode 2 Show Notes

Show Notes for Distrohoppers’ Digest

Episode 002


<Moss>Distro-hopping: The idea that Linux is fun, and the myriad of ways people put distros together should be reviewed often. My name is Moss. I live in eastern Tennessee.

<Tony> And my name is Tony. I live in northwest England.

<Moss>Welcome to Distro Hoppers’ Digest.

<Moss>We love checking distros out — new distros, new versions of older distros and maybe even some old distros we’ve missed. I have my preferences, and Tony has his. Perhaps together we can find some common ground to share with you.

<Tony>The idea of this podcast is that we will each install a new distro to our chosen hardware for 3-4 weeks and use it as much as possible, perhaps even as our daily driver. We record all our trials, tribulations, fixes, what we like and what we don’t.

<Moss>I like to find distros which would be kind to a new user, especially one who is hoping to move over from another operating system, such as Windoze or MachOS. We intend to give as much information as possible on each distro, and will also divulge what hardware we are using and how we think the hardware may have affected the rating.

<Moss> Welcome to Distrohopper’s Digest, Episode 2, recorded on May 29, 2019. For this show, we are reviewing Fedora 30 and Linux Lite 4.4. We’d like to hear from you what you’d like to see us take on — be it Debian, Red Hat, Arch, Suse, Mandriva, Slackware or Gentoo based distros. You can reach us at the mintCast Telegram or Discord, or our email address, which we will tell you later in the show.

On to this month’s first distro, Fedora 30.



Fedora 30


<Tony> As Moss said my installation for this episode was Fedora 30 all the main testing was done on a Dell E6220 i5 CPU, 8Gig Ram and a 128Gig SSD.

Installation is fairly straightforward if you are installing to the whole HDD/SSD however if you wish to install alongside another OS then things get a little more complex, unlike Ubuntu/Mint you do not get an automatic option to install alongside of the current OS and if you have not pre partitioned the disk this makes it even more complex. I suggest if you plan to dual boot you look at a Fedora install video a couple of times before doing it.

Once started the install on this machine was about 15 minutes although on first boot the updates took about the same again.

One thing to note is the auto partitioner will create boot, swap, system files and Home partitions and on my 128G SSD I was left with 65 Gig for my files.


As far as the hardware support everything on the laptop worked out of the box, I needed to configure the trackpad in system settings but everything else seemed to work fine.


Fedora uses the DNF or Dandified yum package system and many of the commands are the same or similar to the apt equivalent in Debian based systems so the transition to an RPM based system is not as hard as you may at first think. You can also use Flatpaks and Snaps after installing the snapd package although for some reason I was unable to get Flatpak to work and despite several attempts at following the instructions on the Fedora Magazine site this wouldn’t work. I did manage to install Snapd and use Snaps to install several applications I use without much of an issue.

Application Issues: The dnf install of mumble in Fedora 30 was broken, but luckily the snap version worked without a problem. This issue was fixed just before the show after an update.

There is no software centre in the cinnamon install, and all the software I installed during the test period was done through the terminal, not very new user friendly. I have later found out that you can install the Gnome software centre, but it seems strange for the spin team not to include this by default or have a software centre specifically for the Cinnamon spin.


Gnome – 1.5Gig on boot

Cinnamon – 1.1 Gig on boot

Mate – 800mb on boot


There is a great Fedora community out there and the Fedora Magazine had loads of information about the project. I’m sure with more time and commitment to running Fedora full time I would find lots of help to get things working.


This was an issue for installing as a dual boot, but once I worked out that I would need to create a partition to install alongside an existing OS then while the custom install process wasn’t familiar to me it was no more difficult than it is in Ubuntu/Mint.


Fedora is a rock solid distro and I had no issues with stability during use, so no complaints there. My main issue with Fedora is that there is no LTS (Long Term Support) version of Fedora and you will only have about 13 months between install and having to update to either the next or most recent release as updates stop a month after the your release number+2 so on release of F30, F28 was end of life a month later. If you want a LTS based system you would need to buy a Red Hat support package. This would not be an ideal solution for someone moving from windows to Linux and wanting a longer period between major updates. And having found that the OTA update from F29 to F30 broke my install this is definitely something to consider if you just want to install and use as a day to day driver for as long as possible before having to go through any major upgrade process. However in my case as I normally do a completely fresh reinstall of a new full version of a distro, and I know many other experienced Linux users are prone to do the same, this may not be a major issue for those more likely to be looking at installing Fedora. However it would be nice to have the option of either a LTS for those wanting an element of stability and a rolling release version of Fedora for those wishing to be always on the cutting edge, without the need to be constantly doing a fresh install.



Ease of Installationnew user friendly install scores 4/10

experienced Linux users 8/10

Hardware Issues 9/10

Ease of Finding Help (Community, Web) 7/10

Ease of Use 9/10

Plays Nice With Others 7/10

Stability 7/10

So what do I think of Fedora generally, I think it is a well designed and put together Linux, Despite some issues with the install, after you get past this Fedora is a great distribution and I could probably see myself using it, if for any reason Linux Mint was not available and there was no option on something that was as fully featured with a longer term stable release.



OpenMandriva Lx

ClearOS – Aimed at Server users

So now, let’s speed on over to our other distro review this month, Moss tell us about Linux Lite 4.4



Linux Lite 4.4


I install my test distros on a partition of my 500 Gb hard drive, on my Lenovo ThinkPad T430, running an i5-3320M processor at 2.60 GHz and with 8 Gb of RAM.


For me, an installation includes the full installation and all updates. If I can manage it, I then replace LibreOffice (if provided) with SoftMaker Office, install my preferred VPN (Mullvad), and set up Grub Customizer (if available) or other Grub management, and then install my printer (Brother MFC-J491DW), which is not always a straightforward thing.

My installation started 15.21. I found they used the Ubiquity installer, which is very common in Ubuntu-based distros so newer users already familiar with Ubuntu should not have any issues.

The installer found and used my primary display without prompting.

Installation Completed 15.32, followed by reboot and updating.

Now the Display had to be set (my 32” TV is my main monitor, I turn off the laptop screen).

The Welcome screen takes you through steps clearly and simply, and shows you exactly what it’s doing during updates. Updates include latest versions of Firefox and LibreOffice, and it’s running kernel 4.15.0.

Icons are flat colorful and unique, reminiscent of Deepin

Flash is installed during updates

Updates completed 15.49, reboot 15.49.30

Boot completed 15.51.10, so about 1:40 for the boot time.

I was prompted to install updates again. Could not connect to repos. I kept trying to install drivers, set restore point, or install language support but kept being taken back to install updates and being told it could not connect to the linuxliteos repositories. Not being able to set a restore point is a serious issue.

No problem connecting Firefox

gDebi runs normally, installed my apps

Printer installed, no test print, still choking on finding linixliteos repo

16.22 – Removed LibreOffice, did autoremove

16.26 – We Have System


I had a few issues.

First, it could not connect to the linuxliteos repos (although it has no problem connecting to the Ubuntu repos), and without that, I couldn’t complete updates, get device drivers, or set a restore point. In fact, during my first three weeks of using Linux Lite, the repos were offline on three separate occasions, confirmed by the developer in the forum.

Two, I did get the printer installed using the Brother installation tool, but did not get a test print so I think there is still a printer issue. Otherwise, it went well.

I had no difficulty installing SoftMaker Office, Mullvad VPN, Stacer, etc., and no difficulty removing LibreOffice, as is my wont.

4/22: I got the linuxliteos repos to load, got the setpoint in, and did my Timeshift save. I installed Kodi, to discover that they have an older edition, 17.3, and then that would not close, I had to reboot. I attempted to follow the Ubuntu instructions for installing the current version, 18.1, using Terminal, and it failed. I attempted to fix what failed, and was not successful.

4/23: Linux Lite identified my broken file but could not repair or replace the file OR delete Kodi. Very nice for me that the Software Manager is just another name for Synaptic. And Snap is already an Editor’s Choice for installation. When I restarted Synaptic, it both removed Kodi and installed Snapd. The version of Kodi in Synaptic is 18.1, but I tried two more times to install it and came up with broken packages. I got the snap-store installed (thanks Tony or I wouldn’t have known this), rebooted… and there was no Kodi in the Ubuntu snap-store. I did get Midori installed and looked for a few other things. I got my 3 KDE games (Kmines, Knetwalk and Kmahjongg) installed, but could not find PySol-FC or anything but a CLI version of Nethack. I went back to Synaptic and found Nethack X11 and PySol-FC there. So I have a full complement of my usual games. After this, I tried again to install Kodi via Terminal, and it attempted to install 18.1 but still returned the error code.

There might be something broken in Kmahjongg, it loaded the window but no game. Kmines worked fine. PySol-FC did the same as it did in MX — loaded the screen fine, made config adjustments, and locked the system as soon as I attempted to move a card. KNetWalk didn’t load at all. XNethack works just fine, except I keep dying LOL.

4/24 I found that all the files were working for Kodi after an update. I moved my ~/.kodi folder from Linux Mint and went to bed.

4/25, I discovered that moving my ~/.kodi folder had overwritten the BIN Kodi files, so I reinstalled. Installation went smoothly. Now I need to see whether I have my config stuff, and need to activate Trakt.tv and real-debrid. Should be a piece of cake. No cake. I got real-debrid no problem, followed instructions for Trakt.tv and got “Installation Failed”, no idea what to do next. Ah well, no TV for Moss.

Next I’m going to follow a proposed solution for the printer issue. OK, that was a bust. I need to reboot to Bodhi and find out what steps I should be taking, they should be the same steps.

4/26: Solved the printer issue in Bodhi. Had to run “sudo apt install bodhi-printing”. I went back to the LinuxLite forum and saw there was no further help given, and posted the Bodhi fix to see if, perhaps, there was a “sudo apt install linuxlite-printing” command I should do… waiting again. I still have to fix the Trakt.TV issue, but I think something in the latest LinuxLite updates may have done something there.

While I do not yet have the printer completely installed or one tiny piece of Kodi, I thought I might as well check the memory and installation size. Remember, this includes Softmaker Office instead of LibreOffice; I don’t know the difference in size between the two office packages.

Memory used: 714.2 Mb (including running Stacer)

Hard disk used: 9.9 GiB

4/27: I checked the forums for answers to my questions. The maintainer, “Jerry”, informed me that 1. They don’t support KDE, and 2. I should contact the Kodi forum for help with the Kodi issue.

4/28 (4/27): “Jerry” had suggested that I let him in a remote window to look at the printer issue. I declined, as I don’t like people remoting to my computer. He replied today, “If you don’t trust me, why do you trust Linux Lite? I could have put anything in it.” Good point. Maybe I should end the review here.

Rather than that, I just stewed on it for a few days. I kept booting to and updating Linux Lite from time to time.

5/3 Forgetting I had already done this, I copied ~home/.kodi from Linux Mint. Maybe it will work this time.

5/4 I successfully completed Kodi install, watched CBC The National. Everything is set up now except Mumble, no rush on that.

On May 15, I got a new Brother printer, the MFC-J491DW. On May 16, I installed this printer, and it worked right the first time. So perhaps my problem with the earlier installation might have been fixed by running the installation again, as the maintainer suggested.

Also, when I started using Linux Lite 4.4, the startup music (which is striking) coincided with the splash screen… a month later, it usually precedes the splash screen by a few seconds, and there is a blank grey screen between splash and desktop for a few seconds; on a few occasions, it has coincided with the grey screen.

And the file manager does not allow me to show hidden files, although there may be a keystroke command to fix this.


Unlike most Debian/Ubuntu based distros, running Synaptic does not prompt you to enter your password, and does not run as root. I literally had to open the terminal and type “sudo synaptic” to be able to save changes. And I got an interesting error message:

“(synaptic:29331): Gtk-CRITICAL **: 04:07:19.758: ../../../../gtk/gtktreeview.c:5573 (gtk_tree_view_bin_draw): assertion `has_next’ failed.

There is a disparity between the internal view of the GtkTreeView,

and the GtkTreeModel. This generally means that the model has changed

without letting the view know. Any display from now on is likely to

be incorrect.”

[There may be some confusion: The Program Manager is a version of Synaptic, and it runs fine but does not seem to provide you with the full Synaptic experience. These comments have to do with actually running Synaptic itself, not the Program Manager.]

I installed the entire KDE suite, which works great with WINDOWS and with other Linux distros, and had no better luck with most of the apps than I had with KDE games, and wound up having to “sudo synaptic” to remove them all, followed by “sudo apt autoremove”. Stacer reported that I had 12.2 Gb of disk space used after doing this; on 5/22 Stacer reported 10.4 Gb of hard drive in use.

All this aside, Linux Lite has run extremely well and gives no other issues of which I am aware.


Memory Usage: 585/7678MB (7.62%)

Disk Usage: 11/116GB (10%)


The forums were easy to find and easy to use. Most of the issues were answered by the developer, “Jerry”, and my questions were not always met in as friendly a manner as I’ve come to expect. With my autism, this could be partly the way I respond to things.


Grub-Customizer is not available in the repo but adding the ppa is simple. I have had no issues with grub-stealing behavior.


Solid. I look forward to future editions.


I couldn’t help thinking that the desktop looked a lot like Deepin, so that would be a good choice.


Ease of Installationnew user friendly install scores 8/10

experienced Linux users 6/10

Hardware Issues 8/10

Ease of Finding Help (Community, Web) 8/10

Ease of Use 9/10

Plays Nice With Others 9/10

Stability 9/10

Final Thoughts:

I think that anyone who likes the way this distro looks will be quite happy with it. There will be a few issues from time to time, like the repositories going offline (I hope they fix those issues soon), but it runs well and should meet the needs of both new and experienced users. I prefer, however, to recommend distros with larger communities.



Robert Rowe

Very enjoyable and informative! Thank you, gentlemen!

Carl Barbre

Hey guys great first episode! I have a question about adding another distro to my laptop. I am currently using Linux Mint 19.1 Mate and would like to try out Fedora. What is the best way to do this? Should I wipe the drive and start from scratch or can i just install without affecting my current installation? I don’t believe there is any partition structure since I wasn’t planning on dual booting. Looking forward to hearing from you and listening to the next show

Tony replied

Hi Carl,

Thanks for the feedback, yes you can dual boot a number of Distributions on a single hard disk, however If you plan to install Fedora as the second OS I would suggest creating a second partition on your current disc by resizing the disk into two partitions using GParted while in a Live Linux Mint environment. Shrink the first partition leaving yourself space for future updates and new applications. Then, with the now unused space, format it as an ext4 partition that Fedora will see. If you have a large spinning drive, say 500Gig you can allocate 400G to Mint and the rest for Fedora if you’re just creating space to try new Linux spins.

The reason I say do this before trying to install Fedora is that the Installer is not quite as user friendly as the Mint one if you were doing it the other way around. You may want to do a bit of research on the net and watch a YouTube video or two on Dual booting and how to install Fedora 29/30 as even I had issues with it, and I’ve installed Debian and Ubuntu and it’s variants of Linux such as Mint many times over the last 12 years.

BIG WARNING before re partitioning your drive back up any data you can not afford to lose as it can go wrong as I found out recently and ended up wiping the SSD and having to start from scratch. Luckily for me it was a test machine with nothing invested than a little time all the data on it was backed up elsewhere.

For information if at any time you want to do a Windows/Linux Dual boot you need to install the Windows side first as it wont see any other OS and will wipe the drive completely. Linux however particularly Ubuntu/Mint are dual boot friendly and will see any other OS and ask if you wish to wipe the entire disk or install it alongside the existing OS, If you want to multi boot, it gets more complex as my co-host Moss will tell you from experience.

If you have the resources i.e. multi core CPU and 8Gig of Ram or more and a decent amount of spare disk space you may wish to consider doing a VirtualBox install which you can run from within Mint. The advantage of this is that you can play with different Linux spins without the risk of installing to hardware and risking your precious data, and only go for a bare metal install when you feel confident about the OS and the install process. If you create a large enough virtual drive you can even practice installing a dual boot virtually, before doing it for real. Again YouTube is full of informative videos on how to do this.

Moss said

As I think I’ve stated, I have four different distros, each on their own section of my 500Gb hard drive. So yes, you can run more than one distro. A Linux distro takes up very little space on a modern hard drive, so you should have plenty of room. However, you may have to play with your Grub to get to choose which distro to boot to, and I don’t know Fedora’s way of doing that. Most Debian-based distros can use Grub Customizer, but I don’t know that there is an .rpm version of it.



<Moss>Our next show is scheduled to be recorded on June 19, 2019. Visit our website at https://distrohoppersdigest.blogspot.com/ and follow us on MeWe, and also at the mintCast Discord and Telegram groups, and we can be contacted at [email protected] . We love our listeners: if you have any feedback on our program, please contact us.


We would like to thank all those who make this project possible, starting with Hacker Public Radio for allowing us to use their Mumble server;

Archive.org for storing and helping to distribute this program;

Audacity, which we use for recording and editing the show.

Josh (@All_about_Code) for designing and donating our show logo.

All those who work on the teams which are creating, adapting, and maintaining the Linux distros we have reviewed this episode;

Mid-Air Machine, creators of the song, “Streets of Sant’ivo”, used as our music under Creative Commons license;

Thanks to Linus Torvalds for the Kernel, Richard Stallman for the GNU Toolkits, and all those who have worked behind the scenes on Free and Open Source/Libre Software;

We shall be back next month. Thank all of you for listening and for your responses.

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