koko: Linux(en?)

“Genghis Khan and his brother Don
Could not keep on keepin’ on”
(1971) “You Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere” – Bob Dylan

(What is the plural of “Linux”?)

I guess it was trepidation from memories of upgrading to Fedora 19. I kept checking out the subsequent releases, 20, then 21, then 22, then 23, but not doing much with them. “Enough is enough” I said to myself, and even put my toe in the water with the beta release of Fedora 24. Five months later, I wonder what was holding me back. Though much has changed between 19 and 24, getting going with 24 really didn’t seem that hard.

Adjusting to dnf instead of yum, especially since dnf eschews an equivalent of –skip-broken, took some reworking of FedoraInstall.sh (a script I’ve maintained for myself since Fedora 14(?)) and scripts it depends on, but wasn’t that big a deal. Otherwise, it is hard to remember anything old that was that big a deal.

One of the things I’d been wanting to try are certificates from LetsEncrypt.org. So far it has been more trouble that I hoped. First it seemed I needed to enable DNSSEC, so I figured out how to do that. Then I started trying to use certbot to actually get certificates. certbot seemed to not be really ready, at least for Apache & Fedora, but after trudging along I figured out how to modify httpd.conf to make progress. But not enough progress. I set things aside, hoping that certbot really would update itself and start working better, also waiting for Firefox 50 and default support for LetsEncrypt. “Some day soon”, either or both of those things will happen or I will force myself to forge ahead, anyway.

I can’t say that recent Fedora experience has been fun, but it has been OK. All the apparent attempts at reaching a broader audience make it seem less like “real UNIX” — how can gcc/vi(m)/emacs be optional packages?

Early last year I first became aware of Arch Linux, helping a friend get through his “UNIX II” course. Though bare bones without installing packages, Arch was/is refreshing in its simplicity. Dealing with Arch also made me more appreciative of the “kitchen sink” distributions. If I was first getting started with Linux, I might choose Arch. Then again, if I had chosen Debian instead of Red Hat to get started 20 years ago, I might now be using Ubuntu instead of Fedora.



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