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I wouldn't say I'm *new* to Linux, having wrestled with compiling Slackware on my old 586 nearly half a decade ago, but my experiences with it are so old that ...
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  1. #1
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    Looking for application advice


    I wouldn't say I'm *new* to Linux, having wrestled with compiling Slackware on my old 586 nearly half a decade ago, but my experiences with it are so old that I am for all intents and purposes a clueless newbie at this point. As I now have a dedicated gaming computer that I can shovel all of my Windows-only stuff onto, I'm free to put Linux up on my little Shuttle box that I use for my daily stuff, web-browsing, music-listening, mail-writing, file-sharing, the basics that don't require high-power graphics.

    I've decided that Fedora is looking like my best candidate for a distribution right now, because going back through compiler hell isn't something that I'm too keen on doing at the moment, some easy and lazy installing is more my speed. While several other distributions seem to be sleeker and more secure, the work needed to be invested in getting them up and running is more than I have time to dedicate. right now.

    But even with that hurdle behind, I have no idea whatsoever about what the good applications are, and which the bad ones are. I looked at the listing of equivalent applications up top, but the list on its own isn't a very good guideline for what applications are the best at what they do. What's even more confusing is that some apps have different versions up for grabs at the same time, with no particular guarantee that new means 'good' instead of 'barely-working beta'.

    So, basically, I'm soliciting opinions on which things are the best choice to go with, starting down at the basics.

    GUI: Gnome, KDE, or something else, and which version? I want something that looks nice (or can be made nice with skins) and has as intuitive and un-annoying an interface as possible.

    Browser: I'm a Netscape user, and am very fond of things like tabbed browsing, popup blocks, and cookie blocks.

    Players: I play MP3 files regularly, as well as avi and mpg files for TV shows I download.

    Transfers: I usually bittorrent files, but sometimes hit the file-sharing networks to peek for hard to find stuff, so a good p2p program would be appreciated.

    Email/newsgroups: I don't do too much with these, but would like to find a program with a nice, clean interface to use in case it's needed.

    Screensaver: Just for eye-candy. I'm especially fond of the Macintosh screensaver Darkside which did great OpenGL routines.

    Instant messaging: I use Trillian for integrated ICQ/AIM/IRC access, anything for Linux that handles those connections well will fit me just fine.

    Image work: I use ACDSee as a viewer and Photoshop for an editor, ACDsee for its uncomplicated browser, Photoshop for its power. I don't expect any freeware to match up to Photoshop by any means, but a nice multi-format viewer to replace ACDSee would be good.

    DVD Player: As long as it plays the things without errors, it'll already be a step above the one I have now.

    Thanks in advance for the advice, and any words of wisdom to help avoid common pratfalls would be appreciated, too. Since my last Linux GUI experience involved a junky, low-res screen with a big X for a cursor, all of my information is waaay outdated at this point.

  2. #2
    Linux Guru fingal's Avatar
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    Xmms is good for mp3s and other common audio formats. I use mplayer for DVDs, but installing can be a pain and you might get more joy from using Ogle. The Gimp is the best Gnu package for graphics, though you can install Photoshop on Linux using Wine (which is not a Windows emulator, apparently). Open Office is very good for a lot of word processing and spreadsheet stuff. As for your desktop environment, wars take place over which is the best... KDE 3.2 or 3.3 or Gnome. KDE looks more familiar to someone migrating from Window$. If you like Netscape you'll probably love Mozilla (which can also be used very successfully for e-mails, or so I hear).

    That should get you started. Others will no doubt fill in the bits I know nothing about
    I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it. - Pablo Picasso

  3. #3
    Linux Guru
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    Re: Looking for application advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Kitsune
    GUI: Gnome, KDE, or something else, and which version? I want something that looks nice (or can be made nice with skins) and has as intuitive and un-annoying an interface as possible.

    Browser: I'm a Netscape user, and am very fond of things like tabbed browsing, popup blocks, and cookie blocks.

    Players: I play MP3 files regularly, as well as avi and mpg files for TV shows I download.

    Transfers: I usually bittorrent files, but sometimes hit the file-sharing networks to peek for hard to find stuff, so a good p2p program would be appreciated.

    Email/newsgroups: I don't do too much with these, but would like to find a program with a nice, clean interface to use in case it's needed.

    Screensaver: Just for eye-candy. I'm especially fond of the Macintosh screensaver Darkside which did great OpenGL routines.

    Instant messaging: I use Trillian for integrated ICQ/AIM/IRC access, anything for Linux that handles those connections well will fit me just fine.

    Image work: I use ACDSee as a viewer and Photoshop for an editor, ACDsee for its uncomplicated browser, Photoshop for its power. I don't expect any freeware to match up to Photoshop by any means, but a nice multi-format viewer to replace ACDSee would be good.

    DVD Player: As long as it plays the things without errors, it'll already be a step above the one I have now.

    Thanks in advance for the advice, and any words of wisdom to help avoid common pratfalls would be appreciated, too. Since my last Linux GUI experience involved a junky, low-res screen with a big X for a cursor, all of my information is waaay outdated at this point.
    The problem is that there is so much choice, so the "best" for one person is not necessarly the best for another.

    A quick overview of my choices:

    GUI: KDE

    Browser: Mozilla / Konqueror. Mozilla has all the features you said.

    Players: XMMS for streaming radio / MP3, Xine for movies, dvds, etc

    Transfers: xmule

    Email/newsgroups: I use Knode for news, i dont use a mail client (yahoo mail account )

    Screensaver: Blank, Black screen,

    Instant messaging: Not really used, except i use *****X (command line) or KSirc for IRC.

    Image work: Not really used, though linux does have "The GIMP".

    DVD Player: Xine.

    Jason

  4. #4
    Linux Engineer Nerderello's Avatar
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    here's my two cents worth.

    I run Fedora Core 1

    GUI - KDE (although I sometimes use Gnome for old times sake)
    Browser - Firebird or Opera
    Transfers - most of the time I use those built into the web browsers, but sometimes I use gFTP
    Email - either Opera M2, or Thunderbird and of course web-mail thru a browser.
    Screensaver - comes with the GUI
    Instant mesaging - I heap this into the same category as mobile phones. I don't use them.
    Image work - GIMP is really quite good. You can do most of the things that you can in Photoshop.
    DVD player - Xine

    have fun

    Nerderello

    Use Suse 10.1 and occasionally play with Kubuntu
    Also have Windows 98SE and BeOS

  5. #5
    Linux Enthusiast Opnosforatou's Avatar
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    Dec 2003
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    Vleuten, The Netherlands
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    I run Fedora Core 1 as workstation

    GUI - Gnome
    Browser - Mozilla
    Transfers - gFTP or sFTP
    Email - Evolution
    Screensaver - Random
    Instant mesaging - Gaim
    Image work - GIMP with Wine:Photoshop.
    DVD player - Xine
    Audio player: XMMS

    on my Slack :

    GUI - KDE,
    Mail - Pine


    ---[ MS09-99896 - Vulnerability in All MS Windows OS ; Using Windows Could Allow Remote Code Execution. ]---
    Hardware: Asus P4P800, 1GB, P4-3Ghz, Asus V9950, Maxtor ATA HD\'s, 3Com GBit lan, Audigy ZS Plat.

  6. #6
    Just Joined!
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    Egypt
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    GUI: KDE 3.2

    Browser: Firefox (its a slimmed down mozilla)

    Players: xmms

    Transfers: apollon (it connects to kazaa , gnutella , openft)

    Email/newsgroups:Kmail

    Screensaver: the matrix

    Instant messaging: kopete (its like trillian)

    Image work: kuickshow (viewing) , Gimp (editing)

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