I have tried a lot more distros counting more than 2 dozen. I never liked any distro as much as opensuse. I was using opensuse since version 10, and kept myself updated until version 10.3. I made decision to change to opensuse 11 when it was released, but for the first time I didnt like the opensuse 11. It never looked as polished as its predecessors. I still don’t know why wireless doesn’t work on my laptop with Intel wireless 3945 chipset. I thought may be some problem with 3945 drivers and tried it on other laptop with broadcom chipset. The situation remains the same. And I didn’t have enough time to figure out the problem and resolve it. So I just switched back to opensuse 10.3 and still distribution remains the same. Impression of KDE and ease of use, flexibility and configurability it provided was way more than gnome.
The story changes when I decided to try fedora 9, despite the fact that I had tried all fedora versions and it never seemed as usable and easy as opensuse, it didnt have many repositories compared to those for opensuse. But this time things were about to change and infact it did. I installed fedora 9, configured livna repository, figured out quickly that /sbin is not included in user environment path. And was able to install Nvidia proprietary drivers with ease. Installing compiz-fusion and make it work was a breeze. Livna has enough packages if not many for normal day to day life computer use and an amazing stability with single feature kept in mind to work. For example, nvidia drivers had worked like charm on opensuse but nvidia-settings. Laptop LCD brightness couldn’t be controlled by software resulting in less efficient powermanager.
Fedora just changed the situation, nvidia-settings worked everytime I wished and LCD brightness is controlled by software . SELinux is enabled by default making it more secure and yet easy to configure to allow access by providing the command in SELinux denial messages. I always wanted to have latest kernel, not only the security fix but feature updates as well which was a bit difficult in opensuse. Once I tried to update the kernel from KOTD repo but it had a lot of dependancy problem. The fedora 9 provided me kernel update from 2.6.25 to 2.6.26 which again caused me to love it.
It was obvious to me that the motto “Just Works” of fedora 9 was “just working” and it was more polished than my long loved opensuse.
I am still emotionally attached to opensuse and I’ll try opensuse 11.1 when it gets released. But now the view has changed and Fedora has special 15GB space in my laptop 2.5″ SCSI Seagate 120 GB HDD and will remain there for now.