Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

What's New in Symphony OS 2006-12

Filed under
Linux
Reviews
-s

The Symphony OS project released a new version of their unique system on December 13 to the surprise and delight of many in the Linux community. Many feared the revolutionary new desktop might be doomed due to a lack of funding, but developers chugged along through hard times and presented us with the culmination of months and months of work. Their labors show through in this release. As we're fans, Tuxmachines took Symphony OS 2006-12 for a bit of a test drive. So what's new this time?

For those new to Symphony OS, their site describes Symphony OS as follows:

SymphonyOS is a whole new type of Operating System, based on an advanced GNU/Linux base system Symphony provides Linux's renowned stability and immunity to Windows viruses along with what we consider to be the easiest to use interface out there, our Mezzo Desktop Environment. Installing applications is also a snap with our OneClick software store (we call it a store.. but everything there is free). You can see the latest news weather and other important information at a glance on your desktop with our desklet system and breathe new life into old hardware as all of this is designed to work on much lower end hardware than KDE or Gnome.


        

However, that's a bit outdated as One Click has now been replaced by Synaptic and is listed on the Programs page under Tasks as "Install Software." Synaptics is a wonderful program for installing software, usually. I didn't have a lot of luck with it under Symphony today. Errors varied, but I wasn't able to complete an install of anything. Perhaps it had to do with running off the livecd.

The Settings menu brings a lot of new abilities to Symphony OS this release. Previously, we only had Desktop Manager and Configure Login Screen listed, but this release we have several more. Other than those mentioned, also listed are:

  • Network Connection
  • Manage Users
  • Manage Disk Drives
  • Manage Services
  • Time & Date
  • Manage Share Folders

During my limited testing, these modules performed well and completed their intended function, except Manage Sharing Folders. This applet gave the error of needing Samba or NFS installed. Some of these apps were fairly complete while others were a bit minimalistic, but all add to the user experience and show the system is beginning to grow toward a viable desktop option.

VLC has been renamed to "Media Player" in its menu this go 'round, but unlike last time, it didn't function very well. In fact, it wouldn't open. Trying from the commandline found errors about modules and skins missing.


        

All in all we were quite pleased with the progress despite a few glitches here and there. This is still considered alpha code, so bugs are not only tolerated but expected. I love the new wallpaper and was glad to see all the new functions in the menu. Firefox has been updated to 2.0 and Synaptic is a wonderful choice in software managers. I didn't fully test the harddrive installer, but few posts seen on their site mention problems with dual boot setups and sata drives. If you've never booted Symphony OS, then you really should see it for yourself. It's definitely different from all the others. If you're a fan and haven't tested it as of yet, then again, you should probably see the new features. As always, we anxiously look forward to their next release.

Related Links:



It uses UnionFS

This CD's built on Slax's framework, and uses UnionFS to overlay the read-only filesystem in memory (like Knoppix does since v3.8, and other live CDs). (The UnionFS overlay can also be done from a loopback image saved on a hard drive or USB key.) So the filesystem acts as if it's completely read-write.

The problem with Synaptic seems to be related to a buggy package management system. The same error occurs using apt-get from the command line.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

More in Tux Machines

The Machine with Open Source Carbon OS is the Next Big Thing – if HP can deliver

HP has recently been facing some serious difficulties and has opted to betting all its resources on the new PC called ‘The Machine’. Probably the most intriguing thing about the machine is that it will rewrite basic computing on a very fundamental level. While the topic has been covered extensively, I realized we haven’t actually touched it here and thought it was about time. Read more

YEAR of the PENGUIN: A Linux mobile in 2015?

It's nearly impossible to sum up an entire year of developments in something as large and nebulous as the world of desktop Linux, especially in a year like this one which has seen some the best releases that projects like Mint, Fedora and openSUSE have put out to date. At the same time the distro that's closest to being a household name, Ubuntu, has been nearly silent since 14.04 arrived in April. To paraphrase author Charles Dickens, the past year of Linux releases has been both the best of times and the worst of times. At the very moment that Linux desktops seem to be reaching new levels of sophistication, polish and "just works" ease-of-use, the entire future of the desktop computer (by which I also mean laptop) feels in doubt. Read more

Jolla's Sailfish OS Update 10 Is Now Available

The tenth update to Jolla's Sailfish mobile operating system is now available. This update is version 1.1.1.26 and is codenamed Vaarainjärvi. Read more

Forget Google's robot cars, now it's on to ANDROID cars

Google is planning a big push into in-car infotainment systems with an upcoming version of Android, sources claim. "Android M" – the version to come after the current Android 5.0 "Lollipop" – will be available in a formulation designed specifically to run cars' built-in screens, Reuters reports, citing anonymous insiders with knowledge of the plan. Google made its first advances toward the automotive world at its I/O developer conference earlier this year, when it unveiled its Android Auto software. The first Android Auto–compatible cars are expected to arrive early next year. Read more