I spend more time looking at the family trees of Linux distributions than I do looking at my own family tree. I find it interesting to see how distributions grow from their parent distribution, either acting as an extra layer of features which regularly re-bases itself or as a separate fork. New distributions usually tend to remain similar in most ways to their parent distro, using the same package manager and maintaining similar philosophies. When I look at the family trees of Linux distributions one project stands out more than others: PCLinuxOS.
OpenMediaVault is a NAS/SAN Linux distribution that I first wrote about on this site back in January 2013. That was when the version 0.4.11 was released.
The latest version, a milestone release, is OpenMediaVault 1.0. It is based on Debian 7 and uses that distribution’s ncurses installer, just like Ubuntu server.
This is a distribution you want to use if you are looking for an easy-to-use and feature-rich solution to set up a NAS for yourself. The browser-based management interface on this latest edition is a lot better than the one that shipped with previous editions. And it is also responsive.
Normally, I would feel a little bad giving such a scathing review of a piece of software that someone, clearly, poured a great deal of time and dedication into, especially when that software is completely free and Open Source. But not for ratpoison. If it is possible for a small piece of software to be one man's nemesis…I have found mine.
We’ve been keeping an eye on the development of Android-x86 for a little while now, with the release of 4.4 seemingly imminent for some months now. In the past we’ve managed to use dodgy hacks of Android on proper computers or an emulated version via the ADK, but this promises to be one of the first complete ports of the mobile operating system to x86.
Android-x86 is straight-up Android. There are no extra Linux repositories or a custom desktop to accommodate a mouse and keyboard on a standard computer or laptop. What you get is the standard Android 4.4 interface that can be used by touchscreens along with mouse and keyboards. Android actually has some level of mouse support already included in its code anyway, so the main changes revolve around the actual porting of the kernel and components, along with support for the kind of hardware you only get on PC such as wired networks.
The live disc is handled quite differently from a usual Linux distro. Starting it live will get you into an instance of Android that you can easily play around with: it acts exactly like any Android device would if you’d turned it on for the first time, asking for settings and login details. All of this will not be saved so it serves well as a test of the system more than anything else.
It's a mystery why Quod Libet is not a more popular media player. It's been around for years and the developers have constantly worked on it. The last major update was done back in May 2014, and the software is stable and full of goodies.
Quodlibet is a Latin phrase that means "what pleases" and it's used in music to describe a piece that's a combination of multiple melodies. The name seems to relate very well to the media player and it's actually quite catchy.
What impresses me considerably about XFCE in Peach OSI is its fresh appeal. Its integration leaves nothing of standard XFCE out, but it rolls in a list of design features. The result is a user experience that is very pleasing. Much of Peach's appeal to more seasoned Linux users comes from its preconfigured layout. Newcomers to Linux will like its desktop appearance and intuitive operation.
In some ways, Scrivener is the very embodiment of anti-Linux, philosophically. Scrivener is a writing program, used by authors. In Linux, one strings together well developed and intensely tested tools on data streams to produce a result. So, to author a complex project, create files and edit them in a simple text editor, using some markdown. Keep the files organized in the file system and use file names carefully chosen to keep them in order in their respective directories. when it comes time to make project-wide modifications, use grep and sed to process all of the files at once or selected files. Eventually, run the files through LaTeX to produce beautiful output. Then, put the final product in a directory where people can find it on Gopher.
Gopher? Anyway …
Canonical is planning to bring the Unity 8 to the desktop, but it will take a while until this task is accomplished. Until then, users can test the new Ubuntu Next images, which incorporate Unity 8 and the Mir display server.
Ubuntu developers have been working very hard on the new Unity 8 desktop environment, but their progress has been limited so far on the mobile phones. With the work that’s being done for Ubuntu Touch RTM and Ubuntu 14.10 (Utopic Unicorn), the implementation of the new desktop is now on a back burner.
Though personally I don’t like Linux operating system resembling Windows (I had really bad experiences with Windows and lost a lot of data in the past at a critical phase in my student life and OS resembling Windows reminds me of the same), but I have seen Zorin OS to be quite popular among the new users, specially those who are converting from Windows to Linux. Even I used Zorin OS for sometime in the past, but once I upgraded Zorin to the next release, it became Ubuntu and all Zorin specific customization are lost. However, the recent Zorin OS release is supported for 5 years (till April 2019) and possibly you don’t need to upgrade it for quite sometime, given the customization I am recommending in this article.