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Thread: Libranet: Love at First Byte

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  1. #1
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    Libranet: Love at First Byte

    Story by Jon Biddell

    Editor's Note : Somewhere in an alternate universe, there's a Linux user group called the WFTL-LUG. As with many such groups, we occasionally get into discussions about which Linux distribution is your favorite, much like car buffs discussing whether an Acura trumps a Mercedes. You might also recall that we ran a very spirited poll on this website a little while ago on that very subject. So I put out a challenge. I asked if people loved their distro of choice enough to champion it in a series of documents that cover an intro to that distribution, installation tips, and package installation help. Jon Biddell was first off the mark with his introduction to Libranet. -- Marcel Gagné

    Many many moons ago I was, sadly, a Windows user. And I was miserable. The servers I managed were running NT4 and had to be rebooted once a month, my personal workstation needed reboots daily, and more often than not several times a day.

    I started “playing with” Linux in 1998, looking for something with more inherent stability and configurability than Windows had at the time, and was led into what could only be described as the “dark arts” of Debian. An extremely powerful distribution of Linux, but not for the faint-hearted or the new Linux user. So I eventually settled firstly on SuSE, and then Mandrake.

    Pretty graphics, reasonably easy installation, good mixture of programs, but still something was missing. There was no “meat”, nothing that would allow me to easily make it MY operating system.


    In 2003 I read about this thing called Libranet in, I believe, Linux Journal. I had tried a few other distros such as Lycoris and Lindows (now Linspire – thanks Bill !!), but nothing seemed to grab me the way Libranet did.

    I downloaded version 2.7, which was their free version at the time, and it would be fair to say that life hasn't been the same since. I quickly purchased version 2.8.1 for the princely sum of $CA30, and here is where the real love affair with Libranet began for me.

    Full Review @ Tux Magazine

  2. #2
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    Libranet... nice.

    Is there a difference between the download version and the purchase version?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gruntled";p="5554
    Libranet... nice.

    Is there a difference between the download version and the purchase version?
    They usually make an older version available for download. Their E-mail tech support remains top notch though.
    Steve

  4. #4
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    Really is a great distro. I quit using it because of the
    people on the Libranet forum.
    Its no better than Ubuntu or Knoppix and it is $$$$ for the latest edition.

    Knoppix seems to update often and it keeps getting better. Ubuntu installs easy.

  5. #5

    Download == 2.8.1, latest version == 3.0

    Quote Originally Posted by Gruntled
    Libranet... nice.

    Is there a difference between the download version and the purchase version?
    Libranet typically makes their previous version freely downloadable and charges for their latest release.

    There have been some significant improvements to their latest release. However, as far as Debian repositories go, if you download a Debian release and you have a high speed network, in a single evening you can upgrade even an old release to the very latest applications with relatively little effort.

    It then comes down to fwo other factors:

    1. Are you willing to support a commercial company for the convenience of their excellent packaging and administrative tools?

    2. Are you able to install and maintain Debian packages on your own?

    If you like convenience and management tools, the Libranet 3.0 software contains the very newest applications and, hands down, the best Debian-based system management tools available. You can add, remove, and configure devices and applications VERY easily with Libranet, and easier than ever with Libranet 3.0.

    However, you can get all of the same applications simply by downloading any Debian ISO images (including old Libranet ones), then upgrading the software through the Debian archives to make your system current.

    If you're cheap, get a free ISO image. If you want to support a GREAT company, buy Libranet 3.0. I recommend it if you can afford it.

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    Sounds nice. Are you missing anything in the free version (any non-free software?) that is in the paid version?

    I see highlights on the Libranet site that refer to the "Libranet Adminmenu"... anything else over a regular Debian or Slack install?


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    You can do all that stuff in Slackware its called a terminal

  8. #8

    Not the same

    Quote Originally Posted by mcangeli
    You can do all that stuff in Slackware its called a terminal
    Perhaps you did not intend your comment this way, perhaps you did, but there seems to be some sarcasm there that might be better placed in a Slackware thread. This is a distro specific thread and we are discussing Debian-based distributions.

    I like Slackware; it was the first GNU/Linux software that I ever ran, and I still try it out from time to time. Slackware is stable, faster than most distributions, and just what the true enthusiast likes.

    From a packaging standpoitn, Slackware is great for those who frequently build their own software. From a learning perspective and from a hobbyist perspective, that's great.

    However, from the standpoint of ease of management, Slackware doesn't come close to what several of the custom Debian distributions provide. The main free Debian software kit still needs a lot of usability work, in my opinion, but many great projects have emerged from the excellent packaging system. No Slackware terminal can touch either the ease or the speed at which you can manage a good Debian system, and in particular, the Libranet administration tools make those tasks that much more easily done. Libranet has put a nice interface around all of its management applications and no longer has that hacked together look. It's always worked well; now it looks clean as it's doing its great job. Slackware can't touch that aspect, in my opinion. You're free to differ on that, but please take it offline with me or invote me to a Slackware thread and keep it out of here please.

  9. #9

    Just an older version, that's all

    Quote Originally Posted by Gruntled
    Sounds nice. Are you missing anything in the free version (any non-free software?) that is in the paid version?

    I see highlights on the Libranet site that refer to the "Libranet Adminmenu"... anything else over a regular Debian or Slack install?

    The newest version has management applications that have nice clean consistent graphical interfaces, but the tools are mostly the same. The applications are simply newer versions than what was in the previous version. You can get most of it simply by pointing to the latest Debian repositories and upgrading the software.

    The main value of the new software is convenience and appearance; new software and cleaner management interface.

  10. #10
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    Your bad Mark!

    Mark, we all know that you are the Board Founder, Chief Admin, PHP guru, Linux wahlla and you play first chair banjo in our drum and bugle corp and are one of the few Slackware users left on Earth, but two mistakes in one post! Well that just isn't allowed, I guess we will have to have janne_oksanen give you a lapdance ASAP.

    I have taped two 10 foot polls together and I still would not use them to touch Libranet. That puts me back on topic!



    Ubuntu

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