The reason I prefer Fedora over other Linux distributions

fedora logoAs you may know from my previous posts and tweets, I am a Linux user. I use it everyday at home; however, my office PC is still hosting a Windows OS (I am doing my best to migrate to Linux there too). There are lots of distributions to choose from when migrating to Linux and people sometimes ask why I’ve chosen Fedora over more that 100 other distros. Well… There are a few reasons:

The installation process

Beside Fedora, I like Arch too. But the problem with Arch is that the installation process is very complex. On the contrary, Fedora’s Anaconda provides one of the coolest and easiest installation processes you may have ever seen. By less than 7 clicks, the OS will be installed on you machine.

An up-to-date OS

There is something you have to choose when deciding to work with a distro. Do you want being stable or up-to-date?

Most debian-based distros like Debian and Ubuntu (especially the LTS version) are very stable; but, since I am a developer, I prefer an up-to-date distro over a stable one. Although Fedora doesn’t have “the most” up-to-date kernel and packages; but, it’s fine. The kernel version it uses is usually one version before the latest (Fair enough).

For instance, if the latest kernel version is 4.8.7, Fedora uses 4.8.6. While stable distros like Debian are using 3.18 or 4.1 which are the long-term support versions.

However, if I want to be on the cutting-edge, I will go with Arch which always has the latests; but, most of the times (90%) Fedora is OK.

Built-in apps

One of the coolest things about Linux is the ability to customize everything. Some people change their window manager to their favorite and this is OK. But one of the reasons I’ve chosen Fedora is that it has most of the apps and services I use out of the box; so, I have to install just a few other apps to get going. For example, GNOME is the window manager I use and it has it built-in. I also have a setup script that I run every time I install a fresh copy of Fedora. It installs and configures everything I need in few minutes.

DNF

There are lots of package managers out there. Apt, pacman, yum, portage and a lot more and I have worked with most of them. I don’t know why but I really like DNF. DNF is the new package manager for Fedora that replaces the old yum. It has everything I need and very satisfied. I also like pacman which is Arch’s package manager. But, since I am on Fedora most of the times, I use DNF much more than pacman. DNF has lots of functionalities and very easy to use. Another cool thing about DNF is the group installation feature. For example you can install everything you need to start developing C/C++ applications but using the following command:

sudo dnf install @c-development

Conclusion

The fact is that, Fedora doesn’t have the community Ubuntu has; but, It’s a very smooth and easy to use Linux distro. It provides tools and everything you might need to do something. From development tools to educational applications. It also has a reasonable app store and a pretty impressive package manager which can be used to install any software.

If you haven’t tried Fedora before, give it a try https://getfedora.org

A way to (temporarily) solve the X11 crash when updating systemd-udev

Fedora 24

Fedora 24 is released a few month ago and I’m a big fan of it. I use it as my primary OS and very satisfied (Maybe I blog about why I like Fedora over other Linux Distros in the future). My main computer is a HP G62 with hybrid graphics (An Intel HD 4000 and an ATI Readon).

After upgrading to Fedora 24 (I usually perform a clean install), I’ve noticed that X crashes whenever I update systemd-udev package. I have searched a lot over the internet but couldn’t find anyways to solve the problem until today when saw this post. I realized that this is a known issue (Bug #1341327 and #1378974).

However, I found a way to temporarily solve this and upgrade systemd-udev. Whenever you saw an update available for systemd-udev, simply do the following:

  • Logout to Gnome login window
  • Press Alt+Ctrl+F2 to launch a new terminal
  • Login as root
  • Upgrade the systemd-udev package by using dnf upgrade systemd-udev
  • After the upgrade process finished, press Alt+Ctrl+F1 to get back to the login window. Done!

I know this may sound ridiculous; but, by the time of this post, there is no other ways 🙂

Hope it helps

How to install VirtualBox on Fedora 23

VirtualBox is probably the most popular visualization product ever. It’s free, open-source and cross-platform. I used VirtualBox on plenty of operating systems such as Windows, Mac, and Ubuntu Linux and was very satisfied.

Linux distros such as Ubuntu, Debian, etc. prefer to be more stable rather than being up-to-date while, on the other hand, distros like Fedora, Arch, etc. are always running the latest version of Kernel. For apps like VirtualBox, that need to install a kernel driver alongside the app, being compatible with always-up-to-date distros is such a difficult work. It’s not as easy as a sudo apt install VirtualBox. In this post I am going to show how you can install the latest version of VirtualBox on Fedora 23.

I always keep my machines OSs up to date. My Linux machine which has a Fedora 23 complies the same rule. The Kernel version on it is 4.3.5 (The latest Fedora update to date) and VirtualBox doesn’t offer a driver for this specific version; so, lets see how we can Install and run a virtual machine on it.

By default, Fedora dnf/yum repositories don’t have VirtualBox; therefore, you need to add it manually:

Create a file name virtualbox.repo in the /etc/yum.repos.d/virtualbox.repo and add the following lines in it:

[virtualbox]
name=Fedora $releasever - $basearch - VirtualBox
baseurl=http://download.virtualbox.org/virtualbox/rpm/fedora/$releasever/$basearch
enabled=1
gpgcheck=1
repo_gpgcheck=1
gpgkey=https://www.virtualbox.org/download/oracle_vbox.asc

Then simply do a sudo dnf check-update to update the repository cache and check for updates.

After that, Install VirtualBox using the following command:

sudo dnf install VirtualBox kmod-VirtualBox-5.0.14-1.fc23.x86_64 kmod-VirtualBox

Note: At the time of writing this post, VirtualBox 5.0.14 is the latest version.

In addition to that, you need to install the kernel headers so you can compile the VirtualBox kernel driver:

sudo dnf install kernel-devel-$(uname -r)

This will install the appropriate kernel header according to your current kernel version.

Now you need to compile the kernel driver. To do that, simple run the following command:

sudo akmods

Akmods checks the akmod packages and rebuilds them if needed.
Restart you computer, run the VirtualBox and you’re done 🙂