Elive Gem: Disappointing Luxury
Elive was the distribution I was most looking forward to using for many reasons. The screen-shots and video on their website looked awesome. The distro uses Enlightenment 17 (E17) as it main desktop. Did I mention that it looked really awesome! I didn’t even mind that you had to make a compulsory donation of 10 bucks minimum to download the distro. Everything went downhill from the start. The Live CD refused to start up even after burning at the lowest possible speed to avoid errors and using up 3 disks. Apparently, the distribution has a problem handing laptop drives and newer hardware. This was mentioned nowhere before downloading the OS.
But this is fine. I like rummaging through forums and finding the solution to a problem. Apparently the developer doesn’t really consider it worth his while to respond to queries in the forum. I mean what kind of moderator has only 160 odd posts on his own forum! This is turning into a rant so I will focus. To actually see the OS running off the live CD, I had to use Virtual Box. Even in the Virtual Box the whole process of setup is quite unlike the more modern distributions of today. The interface uses the non GUI kind of installer in many places and the partitioning, while it looks simple, failed to partition my Virtual Drive.
I really feel that the developer needs to be more involved in troubleshooting the distro especially since people have paid for it. Most distros that I know of show that they work and then ask for a donation. Tour below.
The Elive CD starts up to this screen where you can choose your boot options
After you choose the boot options, this screen is displayed.
Why the installer asks me this question is beyond me. Whats the problem in configurng synaptic? I have not seen or read this issue anywhere. Although I am pretty sure that Elive is the only distro highlighting this non-issue.
This screen allows you to choose the looka nd feel of the desktop that loads. Night style was my choice but the default is lighter and more cleaner.
A default username and password is automatically created for you and you kust use that for the first login. The warning just below the credentials is made to sound quite dire. I really dont know what the developer is thinking as I know for a fact that a new linux user would never be able to install Elive and giving this warning to seasoned linux users is just stupid
Choose your resolution in this screen.
The SLICK login screen of Elive. It looks soooo cool. Sigh…
This is the menu that appears on a left click on the desktop. Enlightenment 17 at its best I think. In spite of this distro totally pissing me off, I really like E17 and would like to use it in some other more stable and better supported and FREE linux distro.
This is the menu that appears on right click. Oh man… I am so pissed that I am not using this!
Mplayer is the default media player with a nice skin thrown in. I didnt try to play anything but this is anyway not my main use of my system.
The default terminal. I do love the slickness of the interface and since enlightenment is lighter than Gnome and definately lighter than KDE, the speed is also quite good.
The default Elive desktop. Does it look good or what! Alas, I will never be able to use it even after paying for it. I think the app bar at the bottom is AWN although I didnt check. Not as slick as WBar used in gOS. There are little lights that twinkle every now and then in the background. Nice touch.
Starting the Elive installer by clicking on the last icon in the app bar at the bottom. If I hadn’t read where it was, I am pretty sure that it would have taken me quite some time to find it as there are no popup names on the icons in the app bar. Pretty non-ergonomic I say.
Elive recommends using Reiserfs instead of ext3/4, Maybe thats why I got all the errors and couldn’t install. I dont care… ext3/4 works fine everywhere else and since I have never used Reiserfs, I am not comfortable using it now. Especially with such a buggy distro
An info message that more or less confirms that you are going to have problems in partitioning.
Adding a new entry is definately not for first timers since you actually have to enter the device name like hda or hdb and be aware of the naming conventions. Why cant the partitioner be easier to use? Why I ask you… WHY?
You have the option to select your partitioner.
Elive installer error. One of the few errors I faced that prevented me from installing this on the vitual machine. It was not possibel to get the live CD going in my laptop as Elive has issues in handling my DVD drive.