Review: Mandriva One Spring 2008 LiveCD

I’ve been sampling GNU/Linux distros for years now.  I’ve played with Red Hat and the old SuSE.  And I think Mandriva One Spring 2008 is a joke.  Its realistically performs no better than those old distros.

What I Guess I Liked

Mandriva did give me the option to use Compiz during boot up of the Live CD.  Definite advantage there as some don’t even ask.  You just get it or you don’t.  I really like options.

What I Really Abhorred

The Live CD recognized my wifi card (Broadcom 4318 POS) successfully.  Its a real shame they didn’t include a reasonable way to find, oh, a wifi hotspot.  That’s a huge ding.  I treat this from a newbie (though I am not one) angle.  If the distro can’t do that much,  how easy with it be with other things?

Secondly, money.  I don’t pay for Linux.  I don’t pay for software.  So I’m not going to pay for a version of Mandriva that supposedly offers more when other distros give me the same (or greater) capabilities for nothing.


This only being a Live CD review, I can’t knock Mandriva too much.  There’s a very good possibility that it would have recognized the card and given me the tools I need to get online.  Mint and Ubuntu don’t recognize the card until they’re both installed and connected via ethernet.  The first distro that beats even that will win me over for a few months.

I’ve never been a fan of Mandrake, Connectiva, or Mandriva.  So perhaps I am biased.  I wouldn’t recommend Mandriva to anyone.  Go with Mint if you want very easy.


10 responses to “Review: Mandriva One Spring 2008 LiveCD

  • ZaPun

    This is bullshit. You didn’t even try.

  • muddygeek

    Heh, wow, thanks for the comments, I guess. The point of my site is to be critical of Linux and operating systems in general.

    I’m more impressed how many hits I had in one day from this post. Now its time to clarify…

    This was a review of a LiveCD. I’ll have a full fledged installed Mandriva install review later. Yes, I’ll still ding Mandriva for not only charging for a full copy (whereas Ubuntu amongst others does not) and if the wifi is difficult to install.

    Finally, I would _not_ recommend Mandriva to _anyone_ but that’s my prerogative. I feel that there are better alternatives. I do try to be reasonable with my suggestions though. If Windows makes sense, I go with it. Or Mac. Or Linux.

    So if you were unhappy with this review, well, I don’t care much if you check out my full review later. Otherwise, please come back and give me a shot.

  • tim

    I also have Broadcom wireless, and it works great in Mandriva 2008.1. No distro is allowed to included the Broadcom firmware because of licensing issues. Drakconnect easily sets up wireless using the native driver or ndiswrapper.

    As for One vs. Powerpack. They are the same. Only difference is Powerpack includes a few commercial applications like LinDVD and Cedega. What free cost distro gives you LinDVD and Cedega out of the box? The One CD is in no way crippled in comparison to a distro like Ubuntu.

  • FACORAT Fabrice

    1. you dn’t have to pay for Mandriva. You can use the Free ( 100% Opensource ) or the One edition, and you will have access to all the packages, except the commerciales ones : which is normal IMHO.

    2. Concerning the wireless, I don’t understand why you find it difficult to configure and select a wireless network. Maybe you were looking for a precised program ( Network Manager ) whereas Mandriva is using its own program ( net_applet and drakroam ).

  • MuddyGeekGeekBoss

    Yup, MuddyGeek is a Geek, dork, whatever you want to say.

    How can you call it a review?

    You didn’t even find where the wifi software is before you start criticizing it.

    Mandriva has 3 basic versions – One (100% free beer), Free (100% freebeer AND freespeech), and PowerPack (which another writer comments has some proprietary software).

    Mandriva is one of the easiest Linux distros to use of the 25 or more I have tried. My one beef is, it runs slower than PCLOS. So, I would only recommend it for people with plenty ram and good processor (1Gb ram and at least 2Ghz processor). Then, your laughing.

    Try the Mandriva control center. PCLOS borrows it. It is really second to none!


  • muddygeek

    I absolutely love the distro wars. This article has brought more comments than anything else.

    I didn’t notice any speed issues compared to others I have tried.

    The Control Center is a nice feature and works well. However, wifi still remains my primary issue with this issue. I never encountered anything to let setup a Broadcom card. At least in Ubuntu or Mint, it will automatically download the firmware and install it. Mandriva didn’t.

  • Nova

    Lol, this is what happens when a noob writes a review. You didn’t even try did you. And the worst thing is that your so called review is among the top results in google. And is the sole reason why anyone would find this and give you a response.

    Mandrake is fine. Actually very nice visually. Therefore also slower since it use more system resources. Ubuntu on the other hand does not have all these visual effects on by default. Therefore one might think it’s faster.

    When it comes to hardware, there are always something which does not work out of the box. When it comes to software, you can more or less get the same software no matter what distro you use. Especially when it comes to distro with larger comunities such as mandriva. Ubuntu comunity is most likely bigger, but the garbage on the forum eqauls to it’s size.

    My seven old year niece could write this review.

    And why on earth do you compare a live cd with other installed linux versions? It’s like saying that the Ubuntu Live suck because my windows live runs faster.

    But atleast you admit that you truly are a geek, Muddy Geek. :-p

  • Andy

    So, help me out here guys- the mandriva one cd has full complete access to all of the stuff in the repositories? Also, how does this distro run on an i386 (lghz p3) as compared to something like ubuntu 8.04.

    • muddygeek

      Yep, Mandriva One has access to it all. Now, Mandriva does offer some programs that you do need to pay for. So pay for them and download them. That simple.

      I don’t do any benchmark testing (that is, a standardized test to compare machines by usually placing a numerical value on their performance) on distros when I test them. I may describe at best how they feel to me. Ubuntu 8.10 Alpha felt faster than Ubuntu 8.04 to me. Phoronix seeks to benchmark and compare distros. In fact, Ubuntu 8.04 and Ubuntu 8.10 were put up against Windows XP and Vista in both 32 bit and 64 bit flavors. To answer your question, Phoronix compared Ubuntu 7.04 to Fedora 9 to Mandriva. 2008.1. While this shows the actual results of all 28 tests, I think the important part is that Ubuntu won out in 14 of those 28. Mandriva won in three.

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