I’m done with the inefficiency of Windows and am going to slap Linux on my laptop. The last time I was a Linux user I wasn’t a Chinese speaker. Any recommendations as to which of the well known distributions (Mandrake, Red Hat, Debian, Knoppix or its Taiwanese conversion, etc.) is most Chinese friendly? I need to use Big5 and GB code (BPMF and/or hanyu pinyin) and would prefer an input method that is ‘intelligent’ – able to accept strings of characters at a go and guess how they fit together a la Window’s Simplified Chinese IME.
Mandrake should be one of best Linux distributions for Chinese languages. The distribution comes with Chinese supports.
You might also try these guys:
Back around 2000, not too long after the Microsoft “NSAkey” flap, the Chinese government announced that having source code control over the operating system was today’s version of the 1950s’ “two bombs and a satellite”. So they created Red Flag Linux.
Betcha every time you type in “Taiwan”, it’ll insert “(renegade province of China)” next to it in your text.
But, anyway, if you want NATIVE native-language support, I’d bet they make the most effort toward it. (No idea if that’s true, just a guess, since that and “security against the running-dog capitalist lackey NSA” are probably their main goals. )
BTW, you might try doing a Google search on “Chinese Linux” – that’s how I found their home page (they were what I wanted to look up, but I figured a more generic search might turn up other interesting items, and it does).
I tried red flag back to 2000. It was a very bad distribution, it came with KDE 2.0 if I did not forget. In addition, the installation setup was kind of buggy. It can just exit in the middle of setup. There are also some other Taiwanese Linux distributions. I never try them but could be better.
Most recent distributions are all based on unicode and have a lot of localisation functions, mostly on the plane of the desktop manager. for gnome and KDE, it is just going to the configuration screen and select your favorite language.
(most programs for gnome use .po files so if the translation in your preferred language is not available you can translate it yourself and sent it to the author),
on this page you can find a list of linux distributions that are developed in Taiwan/China/HK (all extra information is welcome)