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openSUSE 11.3 [Review]

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SUSE

openSUSE is one of those few Linux distributions that gives you a choice of desktop environment while you are installing it, and doesn’t treat KDE or Gnome as a primary option. Both environments have equal support from openSUSE and are equally customized. Until a previous version (openSUSE 11.1) the installation would not even have a default desktop environment selected, and you would need to select one of KDE or Gnome before installing. Even now all that has changed is that the option of KDE comes selected by default, to ease the choice for new users. Besides Gnome and KDE, the openSUSE DVD version even offers XFCE, LXDE as an option along with a minimal X Windows environment, or text-mode for servers; all on the same DVD.

This might not mean much for newcomers to the Linux world; however this does show that openSUSE is all about choice, as much is reflected in this major choice of desktop environments. Additionally the openSUSE website offers many choices for obtaining the linux distro as well, you can choose between two kinds of live CDs, KDE-based or Gnome-based, or you can go for a DVD version without the live OS. Each of these if further available in 32-bit or 64-bit versions and can be downloaded via bittorrent or direct download. For those who want a full selection, the DVD version contains all the desktop environments mentioned above, and a offers a humongous collection of software.

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