On Monday, 19 February 2018 8:36:04 PM AEDT Mark Trickett via luv-main wrote:
> All computers need a system administrator. You and he need to both
> learn. It is a bit like a toaster, fail to clean and the crumbs get
> mouldy, a health risk, and the prospect of starting a fire. Too many
> expect to just turn on the toaster and not clean now and then, and
> treat the computer the same. They do not deserve even the technology
> of the stone age.

Hmm, I don't think I've ever cleaned a toaster.  :-#

A friend once had a bad smell when he used his toaster and found a burning 
mouse inside it.

> > @Andrew, he's happy to use libre but apparently there's just times when
> > word is the only option
> If Word is the only option, then the option is poorly stated or needs
> to be discarded. Word is a problem with no solution, except the demise
> of Microsoft.

There is Wine to run Windows apps, but Word tends to use all the latest 
features and might be difficult to run on Wine.  There are a variety of VM 
technologies to run a Windows VM.  I personally prefer KVM.

> > @Russell would you also suggest Debian meets those requirements you
> > listed?
> Russell is a Debian developer, at least at times. As to your needs,

Yes, so I might be biased.  But I chose to develop Debian because it worked 
better and haven't seen evidence to the contrary.

> look at the various distributions, but remember to scratch under the
> surface. The desktop matters, whether Gnome, KDE, Mate, Mint or other
> lightweight option. Then remember that most will support most
> applications, and can be given a different theme and background for
> the eye candy. Look to the functionality first, that is what you and
> he have to live with.

KDE works well for me.  GNOME worked OK last time I tried it but as I use 
Kmail for my email it made sense to go KDE al the way.

One thing that seems to be missing is a light weight window manager with 
functionality like Windows 3.1.  It would be nice if there was something that 
ran on systems with 128M of RAM (which incidentally ran KDE quite nicely in 
1999) and had a nicer UI than twm.

> As to whether the Debian package management, or the Red Hat derived
> ones, you need to find what works your way. The reason I go for Debian
> and such is the package management tools, especially the handling of
> dependencies. This is less of an issue with the higher level package
> management front ends for Red Hat based systems, but it is built into
> the base level and fully available with the Debian package management
> tools.

Also Debian has packages for almost everything you can imagine.  Fedora has 
much less support for various packages and RHEL has even less.

> Do be aware that there are other package management means, from Gentoo
> using source based and compiling everything, to the way Slackware uses
> tarballs, tape archives, a collection of concatenated files, usually
> also compressed, and a small amount of extra detail, but not to the
> levels of the RPM or DEB packages.

In most cases recommending Gentoo or Slackware is a bad idea.  If you need to 
ask which distribution to use then Gentoo and Slackware aren't suitable for 

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