Zenwalk is a Slackware based distribution that is aimed at giving it’s users a fast, stable, and to easy to use machine. It has been ranked 18th on Distrowatch for the past 6 months. Zenwalk 5.2 was released this month so I decided to give it a try on my Dell Inspiron 1150 system. This notebook is few years old so it is a good machine for an agile distribution like Zenwalk. The 1150 has a Pentium 4 2.4 Ghz Celeron processor with 1 Gigabyte of RAM. It runs pretty well under Ubuntu provided I don’t turn Compiz on. Being that Zenwalk is based on Slackware and uses XFCE window manager I was hoping it would run faster.
Zenwalk uses the latest release of XFCE version 4.4.2 for it’s desktop. I found the simple blue wave theme to be pleasing to the eye. The Tango icons are really sharp looking even when they are made to look big. A bottom XFCE panel provides easy access to browsing (Iceweasel), email (Icedove), multimedia (gMplayer), shell (Terminal), file management (Thunar), system configuration (XFCE Settings Manager), and volume settings (XFCE Mixer). You can autohide this panel if you find it gets in the way by going to Settings>Panel Manager.
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