You Don't Want To Use RedHat As Your Daily Driver!!
RedHat Linux on Personal Computer Review
4 min read
It was Exam days. I was just scrolling through the google news feed and my eyes got into a very appealing headline. RedHat Linux can now be downloaded and installed for free. If you don't know RedHat Linux is an enterprise Linux and it needs the dough to get it into your hardware. I was like a dog with two tails. I was always fascinated by the term 'Enterprise Linux'. And wanted to try something different than a Debian-based distribution. Something that others rarely use. That time I didn't care about my next-day board exam and just hit the blog. In no time I downloaded the RedHat Linux iso file and get ready a bootable USB drive.
Disclaimer: RedHat is one of the greatest contributors to the Linux Kernel. And RedHat Linux is mainly created for servers and high-performance computing. So, using it on a personal computer was never going to be a good idea. But, what's wrong with trying right?
I inserted the USB, hit the power button, and began the installation process. The installation flow was very confusing. I had to go back and forth between some screens and it was not so smooth. You don't see what needs to be done next. And, it's very likely that you miss some steps.
Things you need to do to install RedHat and other Linux are not the same. You don't have to log in to your account and activate your subscription in the other Linux. You don't see software selection and the Kdump thing in other Linux installations. I had to perform installation twice because I chose 'Workstation' at first and it didn't have a GUI. Later, I choose 'Server with GUI'. And the hardest part was choosing a security policy. There were so many security policies that it was a very hard choice to make. But hey, you believe I am a genius right? Yes? You can say that again!
I chose NONE. And proceed with the normal installation. Since it was a network install, I had to make sure that the internet connection was fast.
Red Like Rose
The desktop look is beautiful. RedHat comes with Gnome Desktop Environment by default. The wallpaper was looking so nice with the RedHat Enterprise Linux branding on the bottom left of the desktop. RedHat used Wayland for display management. It also supports the touchpad gestures to reveal menus and switch desktops. You can do a certain level of customizations using gnome-extensions and gnome-tweak-tools. It's nothing out of the world but it gives the 'Linux Vibes'.
RedHat Linux comes with the nouveau driver for Nvidia Graphics Card. But, it can be easily replaced with the official Nvidia proprietary driver.
Overall, The UI feels so smooth, Looks nice in red, so the GUI experience was good. But it didn't last long.
The Game of 'Thron'
It's not all sunshine and rainbows. I was enjoying the looks but the real pain was waiting for me. You can feel the real pain of RedHat Linux as a daily driver once you step into package installation. I couldn't find the most essential software in the RedHat package repository. For this, I had to add and enable multiple third-party repositories but still, lots of packages were missing. There is no promise that you'll get the packages you need. I had to install snap to download very common applications like Spotify, Intellij, VS Code, GIMP, and Inkscape. This shows how painful it is to install the software in RedHat Linux. There is no straightforward way to install applications and for every app to install it's very possible that you'll either fail completely or the way to get it is jagged.
Also, I don't know why but my Bluetooth was not functioning properly. Every time I want to connect a new device or reboot my system, I had to restart the Bluetooth service. Since it was working great with Arch Linux, I can say that device driver availability is also not good.
All of these issues compelled me to replace the RedHat Linux with Pop OS. I am not saying Pop OS is the best distribution for your personal computer but RedHat is definitely not.
RedHat might be the best option for the servers; I think it is; as it offers high security, stability and very good tech support. From my 10 days of RedHat experience on my personal laptop, I can say that it doesn't worth a try.