Upgrading to Feisty Fawn: Living up to the name

Last week, I felt the itch to upgrade my laptop’s Ubuntu distro to Feisty Fawn, with the end in view of installing ubuntu-miminal package and then choose which X applications to install, which would not be too resource-hungry given my laptop’s make.

The other day, I scratched it. But the itch became a bit stingy because of the glitches I encountered along the way. First, the installer download was very slow; oftentimes, connection got lost. Second, it was very difficult to buy a CD that our CD writer would burn without any file-read error afterwards.

Actually, it was the second problem that really upset me. I wasted money, time and effort burning a lot of ‘broken’ (?) CDs. What upset me more was my decision to use an installer CD that I suspected to have a read-error problem. I managed to proceed with the installation but when I was already in the package installation stage, the file-read error popped out. Grrr!

What should I do, I asked myself in an imploring manner. Don’t fret, Dong. Be feisty!

Aha! I got an idea. Since I was connected to the Internet with fast connection, why not install Breezy Badger (5.10) with server option first and then upgrade from there to Feisty?

So here’s what I did:

  1. Install Breezy Badger (5.10) with server as option. (Meaning, base system and no X app would be installed.)
  2. Upgrade to Dapper Drake (6.04) through the Internet. (Which was very fast, giving me an average bandwidth of 150kbps.)
  3. Upgrade to Edgy Eft (6.10) through the Internet. (Which was as fast as the previous version.)
  4. Upgrade to Feisty Fawn (7.04) Beta. Expectedly, the connection was relatively slower. But a beggar in me could not choose. I lived with it.
  5. Install xorg-7.2 and related packages like xfonts. (I thought that xfonts would automatically be downloaded and installed along with xorg.)
  6. Install icewm and related packages (e.g., icewm-themes). Yes, I’ve loved IceWM because of its default keyboard shortcuts that work almost like Gnome as well as its cool toolbar.
  7. Install X packages alternative to Gnome and KDE:
    • rox (file-manager)
    • eog (image viewer)
    • xpdf (PDF reader)
    • XChat (chat client)
    • centericq (terminal-based Yahoo! Messenger client and more)
    • raggle (feed reader)
    • mutt, postfix, fetchmail, procmail (mail package)
    • xterm (I have refrained from using Konsole nor Gnome-Terminal; Of course, I’ve missed the multi-tabs feature of the two but I can live with a number of xterms taking up my desktop space.)
    • OpenOffice 2.2 RC3 (LOL, this is the only resource-hungry app that I can afford to have.)
    • Firefox (LOL, “the other only” resource-hungry app that I can afford to install.)
    • xmms, cplay (music player)
    • xine (movie player)
    • links, dillo (two low-profile browsers I frequently use aside from FF)

Nope, I’m not using any display manager. My runlevel defaults to 2. I fire up startx from the first tty.

And I didn’t install usplash, either. I don’t want to confuse people that I’m using Ubuntu but my machine looks like I’m running a very different distro. 🙂

As a result, I’m now using a machine that hosts the latest Ubuntu kernel (2.6.20) and runs very fast, with an average of 60 processes started. Before, the number was over 100, which left my system crawling.

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