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An Unfortunate Divorce from CLI


I have been using Linux for several years now. As a newbie, I relied heavily on the GUI (and my install discs, for that matter), but as time progressed, I realized that I could use the terminal well and knew how to find help in various forums if I needed it (e.g. I did not know about cnetworkmanger--a great CLI app). Unfortunately, I recently switched to Linux Mint because I wanted to try something different than Ubuntu which I had been using for a while. I like it, but when I looked for help in the forums, I was ridiculed for even considering using a non-GDM boot. Even the most experience forum admins refused to answer my question, and others decided that it would be alright to start posting in the thread referring to me in the third-person. This not intended to be a rant against Mint--I do still use it, but I am sad to think that we have forgotten our roots. The stability of Linux is in the CLI, and it has great apps that can make us all happy. We just need to not forget what we have; the GUI is nice, but CLI is good, too.


  • Photonyk
    Photonyk Posts: 2
    I can understand your frustration, but different distributions are really tailored for specific uses. Linux Mint, in my opinion, is meant for users who spend most of their time in the GUI. Why else would you want a distribution that has so many tainted packages attached to it? I agree though, if you want to run Linux Mint without GDM, you don't deserve to be ridiculed. It is a matter of personal preference.

    If Linux Mint uses the same runlevel (level 2) as Ubuntu does for it's graphical desktop, you should be able to achieve a non-GDM boot by going into the /etc/rc2.d directory and renaming S30gdm to K30gdm (The numbers after S and K may be different for you).
  • Rovanion
    Rovanion Posts: 73
    I feel ashamed of the Linux Mint community. I'm always hanging out in #linuxmint at irc.spotchat.org and I've never seen this attitude. It happends that we talk about Arch and all other CLI stuff. But I've never gone to the forums so I really don't know what the attitude is over there.

    But I'm only wondering. If you were looking for some change from Ubuntu why turn to Mint? Mint and Ubuntu are the same sytem except for the GUI which is what it seems you're not interested in.
    Sorry if I'm totally wrong here but wouldn't some change better be going to Gentoo or Archlinux?
  • kandieyman
    I concede your point. I guess I was not trying to escape Ubuntu so much as evaluate some of the third-party spin-offs. Truth be told, I am too afraid to try Arch or Gentoo (although I think I would like to try Arch) for two reasons: 1) I have grown accustomed to the Ubuntu community support and hardware support, and I do not know how Arch compares; 2) Since I use the terminal and only GDM to execute X apps (firefox, openoffice and evince), and I do not know Arch commands, I would be worried about being able to find my way around. If anyone would care to offer insight, I would be happy to hear it.
  • Rovanion
    Rovanion Posts: 73
    Sorry for taking so long to reply.Haven't been looking around the forums for a while.

    To awnser your first question I'm going to state that the Arch support community is one of the best out there. It's active and everyone on there runs and commands their own system so you're chances of finding help is extremely good. In addition to that the ArchWiki is very potent even having guides for individual laptops some times, atleast it has had for the two laptops I have tried. As far as hardware support goes. The hardware support is as good and better than in Ubuntu, but not out of the box. You will have to pick the graphics drivers for Xorg yourself as an example.

    For your second question the awnser is that the commands are all pritty much the same. It does all depend on what applications you wish to run. The one difference that always will be inbetween distros is the package manager. In Archlinux it's conveniently called pacman.

    But fallow The http://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Beginners_Guide and you will be just fine.
  • i92guboj
    If you truly want to get into command line, Gentoo or Arch are two very effective shock treatments. The Gentoo handbook (which you will be following to install it if you decide to try) will give you a basic insight on how it all works.

    I am not that experienced with arch, but I know that the arch community is knowledgeable enough, and you will surely have a great time with it if you decide to try it.

    About your issue with GDM, I know nothing about Mint (or any other Ubuntu alike for that matter), but anyone that is screaming at you just because you want to ditch GDM can never be considered a guru or an expert. I am not saying that everyone should stop using GDM, KDM or whatever they like. All I say is that it makes perfect sense to want to run without it, if that's your desire. Anyone yelling at you because of that is just a lamer, not because s/he uses GDM, but because they should respect your opinion. That's what free software is about.
  • kryptikos
    I just read your experience in the Mint community and that's disgustingly sad. It is one of the things that I have noticed recently in Linux...think I might blog about this in fact.

    Linux is about choice, and I wholeheartedly respect if someone wants to just use the GUI. However, it's like driving a car, anyone can drive an automatic but not everyone can drive a standard. Anyone who can drive a standard can most certainly drive an automatic. The CLI is the standard.


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