[xubuntu-users] (no subject)

Irena & Richard Jenkins rjenkins at alphalink.com.au
Thu Jan 18 12:13:50 UTC 2007

As a user of several Xubuntu distributions ... both for the x86 and  
ppc platforms I want to raise the issue of the future of the  
distribution.  When first developed, Xubuntu was targeted at the user  
whose machine was a little 'below par' when compared with the usual  
home and/or office machine.  IIt was aimed at machines that lacked  
raw horsepower and or memory resources to cope with the steeply  
increasing resource demands of either KDE or Gnome.

Lately, I find that Xubuntu is becoming more of a **different**  
distribution ... and has lost its focus on doing more with less.  It  
has replaced KDE with XFce ... touting its ability to do the job with  
fewer resources.  However, the selection of packages leaves me  
bewildered.  As examples I note that for browsers and email ... the  
common programs are Firefox and Thunderbird.  I have nothing against  
these two programs ... but it has to be admitted that they are large  
and quite resource hungry.  At home I replace them with the mail  
client sylpheed and the browser epiphany.  No trouble to do this ...  
and the change results in a significant 'speed-up' of my internet  

Now why were the large programs included in the basic cdrom for  
xubuntu and installed automatically onto the desktop?   Additionally,  
why are they so important to Xubuntu that if you try to remove them  
you are warned that you will be throwing out the meta-package  

It's precisely this sort of change that makes me wonder if Xubuntu  
developers have 'lost the plot' ... and are content with rendering  
something different rather than something really useful to those of  
us who are still plugging away ... with older machines ... keeping  
them going until they are just fit for cannibalisation.

I am writing this on a mac ... but my preferred portable computer is  
an old 366 MHz celeron with 96 meg of ram.  This machine will only  
run 6.06 Xubuntu .... with careful choice of packages.  It does run  
them well providing internet feeds ... whether by dialup, wifi or  
ethernet.  Later Xubuntu (6.10) does NOT run well on this machine ...  
and I despair of getting 7.04 to work with any speed.  My other  
desktop an iMac 350MHz with 256 Meg of memory also suffers if I do  
not change the email and browser clients.

So, what about it developers?  Is there a basic minimum specification  
for hardware ... that you recommend for your distribution ... and are  
you brave enough to specify it?


Irena and Richard Jenkins
Canberra, Australia

Irena & Richard Jenkins
in Canberra or on the road...

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