Linux WiFi… snarl…

Amazon uses Red Hat Linux for almost all of its servers and developer desktops – some lingering RH7.2, lots of RHEL3, an increasing amount of RHEL4 – and so I decided to play with the new Fedora Core 6 on my usually-WinXP laptop. Since my apartment network is entirely WiFi, I downloaded the 3.8GB ISO image to my PowerBook last night, burned it onto a DVD this morning, and tried installing it this evening.
So far, not so good.
As I mentioned, it’s WiFi only here, and I made the mistake of telling the installer to leave the Ethernet adaptor enabled. This caused the installer to hang, probably waiting for me to plug in a cable, and I had to power-cycle. Unchecking the Ethernet option allowed the installation to complete. However I wasn’t able to get the WiFi to work: I’m going to have to try again in the morning. The standard network configuration tool seems pretty lame: it doesn’t allow you to search for available networks, for example. A quick search just now suggests that there are some better tools out there; if so, I hope that they’re bundled, because I’m getting tired of sneakernet with CD-Rs.
Once it’s all working, I plan to install J2SE 1.5, NetBeans, and the full Spring distribution, and play with the sample Spring apps. I’m starting with NetBeans because it’s what I’m used to. Eclipse is more widely used at Amazon, but NetBeans is starting to get a little traction, mostly because of the profiler.