A First Look at SimplyMEPIS 6.5

By Steven Vaughan-Nichols  |  Posted 2007-04-04 Print this article Print

Review: Want a solid KDE-based Linux desktop that can work hard even when you're hardly working? We found it in SimplyMEPIS 6.5. (DesktopLinux.com)

I have a nomination for the "Worst possible situation for reviewing an operating system" award. Review it, SimplyMEPIS 6.5 Release Candidate 2, while stuck in a hotel room 2,000 miles from home, with food poisoning. Trust me, in a situation like this, you are not in the mood to put up with any crap from your computers operating system. Youve got enough going wrong with you without any thing else going wrong. So, there I was in Salt Lake City, sick as a dog, with my faithful IBM T40 ThinkPad. This system uses a 1.5GHz Pentium M processor with 1MB of Level 2 cache, and a 400 MHz FSB (Front Side Bus). It has 512MB of DDR (double data rate) SDRAM (synchronous dynamic RAM) memory, and a built-in ATI Mobility Radeon 9000 AGP 4x with 32MB of VRAM (video RAM) for graphics.
MEPIS gives Ubuntu-based Linux a "Dapper" look. Click here to read more.
The T40s came from the factory with one of three different Wi-Fi cards in a Mini PCI slot; mine came equipped with an Intel PRO/Wireless LAN 2100 3B Mini PCI Adapter. It also has a built-in 10/100 Ethernet port. In my case, I also use a NetGear RangeMax WPN511 Wi-Fi card because of its faster—802.11g—performance and because the card itself has better range than any Centrino-based laptop Ive ever used. On this system, I had zero—nada—trouble installing the new distribution. Despite what you may read elsewhere about how hard installing Linux is, installing a modern Linux, like MEPIS, which is based on Ubuntu, is a snap on 95 out of 100 systems. I dont even recall the last time I had to do anything more complicated than hitting the enter button when installing Linux. Thats a good thing, because I dont think I could have done much more than that on this particular go-around. Read the full story on DesktopLinux.com: A First Look at SimplyMEPIS 6.5 Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest open-source news, reviews and analysis.
Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols is editor at large for Ziff Davis Enterprise. Prior to becoming a technology journalist, Vaughan-Nichols worked at NASA and the Department of Defense on numerous major technological projects. Since then, he's focused on covering the technology and business issues that make a real difference to the people in the industry.

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