Review: OpenSUSE Leap 15.4 - The return of the old Gecko?


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Apr 24, 2016
With my distro-testing mana running low, I am being quite sparing and careful in choosing which new releases to sample and write about. So far this spring-summer season, I've only really touched Kubuntu and Fedora, and both were sort of average, at the end of the day. Well, it is time for a fresh round of testing, and I've decided to go for openSUSE. Leap 15.4, to be more precise, yes.

OpenSUSE has always held a special spot in my heart, as SUSE 9.2 (or so) was my first distro. And it was a brilliant Linux player until about version 12 or so. Since, things haven't been that brilliant. But ever anew, my hope kind of flares up, and I wonder if openSUSE can recapture the majesty of its golden era, and perhaps take the whole of the stagnating Linux desktop up with it. Begin, we shall.

OpenSUSE Leap 15.4 isn't the best distro around, and surely not the best Gecko I've tried. But it was stable, fast, there were no errors, and it brings significant improvements in pretty much all areas compared to its many predecessors, enough for one to have a sane, solid baseline to work with. For years now, I had to dismiss openSUSE outright, but 15.4 is good enough to consider keeping around.

I like the theming, the improved package management, the overall no-nonsense approach. But there are also a lot of little bugs and errors and hassles that don't belong in a polished, professional product. Still, I am mildly optimistic at this point, and would even suggest you give Leap a spin. Perhaps it will revive some of those forgotten emotions from the good ole days.

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