Blog Post

K-volution

I can’t help but sit here right now, while KDE 4 is building away on my new computer just for KDE 4, and think about the past 13+ years with Linux.

In 1994 I bought a Packard Bell computer from the Navy Exchange. This computer had all of the bells and whistles. A super large 15″ CRT, a 10 pound keyboard, a 2-button mouse, some big time non-surround sound speakers, a 28.8k v.32 modem, and Windows 3.1. After a week of using the computer, I had nothing but problems with the Modem and the sound card. So I went and bought a killer external modem, about the size of one of today’s PCs and got it to work somewhat. Well after another week of tinkering, I decided to use the superfast Internet connection on base and search for fixes. My search query was “how to fix microsoft windows,” and one of the first links I came up with was Slackware. After reading up on it over the next couple of nights at work, I decided to use some of those floppy disks and downloaded everything I needed. I went home, installed Slackware, and within 6 hours I was up and running, with sound, and my modem even let me connect to my ISP. I was in heaven.

Over the years I have played with many distributions and different desktop environments, but there were those few distros that always stuck in the back of my head, and of course my favorite DE, KDE. I have used KDE since that lonely day it came out in 1996 and created one hell of a buzz. I have seen it go through good, bad, really bad, better, and ooh that’s nice. Distro wise, I was typically a 3 or 4 distro kind of guy. First and foremost, it was Slackware. From Slackware I fell in love with Debian, then Suse, and so on. But one distro has really stuck out in my mind, not because I got a free Tux doll, but because I thought it was the greatest KDE system I had ever seen. Anyone remember Corel Linux? Came with Word Perfect and all of that goodness. It was the first distro I had work out of the box.

Well now I am sitting here playing around with my KDE 4 desktop and just reflecting back over all of the upgrades I witnessed with KDE and all of the releases. Maybe it is the holidays that have me reflecting back, but it is kind of neat to see where you started and all of the changes that have occurred since then. Nowadays many people have heard of Linux, and I remember back when I started using Linux, nobody had even heard of Microsoft really. Pretty cool stuff.

Oh well, just a quick reflection on the past as I sit here and wait for the building to finish 🙂 Everyone have a safe weekend and happy hacking!

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  • Steve Terek

    I remember Corel Linux well. I installed it on a Windows 95 machine. I couldn’t do much with it; well – I couldn’t access the internet because I just didn’t know how to get the modem working. I didn’t have the time to tinker, and looking for drivers through Windows, then switching to Linux to try, then looking for more answers – well, I just didn’t have the time. So I abandoned it. But I loved KDE. It had the best startup sound I had ever heard. Since I upgraded to Windows XP I lost it all. Now I have time to tinker; I want to move to Linux, and with so many great distros around, it should be a great experience. But I want that early KDE startup sound (or the whole sound theme, if available). Have you, or anyone out there, still got those great sounds?

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