Later today Fedora 16 will be officially released, I am using F14 which is becoming quite long in the tooth, so now is probably a good time to evaluate my upgrade path.
Back in May after some testing I deemed F15 unsuitable for desktop/workstation usage and made the decision to skip a release. It was a first for me, the single one Fedora release I ever skipped, since RHL 9, when I moved to use Linux as my primary desktop. What's the status now, one release later? I acknowledge not doing any testing, had to fight with F14 day by day to get some work done, but I read enough so from what I can see: GNOME Shell is still the same, Xfce is still the same, KDE is still the same. Nothing new, nothing better. So I see ahead another skippable release, which is not that bad considering F14 still has a workable paradigm and is not self-expiring shareware, the applications are the problem and they are what matters most.
So after judging I came with the following strategy: skip F16 also, keep using F14 one more month until its EOL in December and then continue to use it unsupported a couple of months more until F17 Beta. Postpone any decision until then and with the bits released download and evaluate. What can happen by then:
- Xfce has a release in January, it may become good enough. Considering the current status and the TODO, the expectations aren't high;
- GNOME may become sane and usable again. Highly unlikely;
- I may lose faith and accept defeat, give up on the Linux desktop, go to W7. It would be sad after so many year;
- I may get into BDSM and start using something like Openbox, saying goodbye to any possible productivity;
- get some kind of strange revelation and give KDE a try.