The release of Ubuntu 10.10 has insured that many derivative distros have also been updated. One of the less known but very useful ones is Pinguy OS 10.10. Pinguy OS takes generic Ubuntu 10.10 and adds quite a bit of additional software and value to it.
If you are totally unfamiliar with Pinguy OS, you might want to peruse the full review of the 10.04 version I did on Desktop Linux Reviews. You can also get more background on the distro from its creator on the Pinguy OS site.
Here’s a brief sample of that:
Ubuntu is a great OS and undoubtedly the most popular and easiest Linux based Distro to use but even with its default setup and chosen programs it’s still lacking functionality and ease of use for most new users. So what I decided to do was build a Distro that looks good, could do everything most user would ever want to do and that was very simple to use.
I started out by listening to what my friends and family wanted to use their PC for and found the most user friendly programs for the task they wanted to do. After a while I got a good idea what most people use their PC for and what programs where the easiest to use. Like using Shotwell for easily uploading images to Facebook, gtkpod for putting music, photos and video on a ipod/iphone and mvPod for converting the video to a iPod friendly format.
Here’s a sample of what’s new in this release:
Update Wine to 1.3 from 1.2
Added zeitgeist datasources
Installed the missing firmware packages that haven’t been added.
Fix java sound.
Change default wallpaper and login
Remove usb-creator due to people having problems
Fix TED menu entry
Added virtualbox-ose-guest-x11 to 10.10.1
Here’s what you’ll need to run this update:
- 700 MHz x86 processor
- 384 MB of system memory (RAM)
- 8 GB of disk space
- Graphics card capable of 1024×768 resolution
- Sound card
- A network or Internet connection
Don’t worry about installing Pinguy OS 10.10; it uses the same installer as Ubuntu. It’s very easy and fast. Total install time for me was about 10 minutes or so.
Note that you can opt to download updates while the install happens, and you can also install third party software. I recommend doing both; it will save you time later on after the install has finished.
Next, I’ll look at some of the software included with this distro, and I’ll share my experiences using it.
Pinguy OS 10.10 comes with a pretty good selection of installed software including the following applications:
Oracle VM VirtualBox (excellent for distrohoppers!)
There’s plenty of stuff to choose from and there are thousands more applications available in the Ubuntu Software Center. However, given what is included, I doubt many people will really need to browse around for much additional software. Pinguy OS 10.10 pretty much hits all the bases as far as desktop software goes.
Using Pinguy OS 10.10
If you’re expecting something similar to the default Ubuntu 10.10, forget about it. Pinguy OS 10.10 has two Docky bars that sort of remind me of Mac OS X. There’s also the system monitor Conky that some folks will love to keep an eye on. It lets you know what your system is doing at any given moment, and even lets you know how much space you have left on your disk.
The wallpaper has been changed in this release to an attractive beach theme. I like it a lot better than the old one with the bridge in the background. This one is a lot cheerier and much easier on the eye.
I had no problems running Pinguy OS 10.10. It seemed reasonably fast to me and I didn’t see application crashes or other signs of instability.
Given that the Pinguy OS 10.10 desktop is a bit more juiced up than generic Ubuntu, it might be a good idea to make sure you have a little bit of extra RAM in your system to keep things even speedier. It never hurts to go a bit beyond the base requirement in a distro that like this that comes with extra desktop candy.
Pinguy OS 10.10 falls somewhere between Linux Mint 10 and Ultimate Edition 2.8 in terms of features and software. While it’s not as well known as some of these other distros, it’s definitely worth a look if you crave more than generic Ubuntu.
If you’re already running Pinguy OS 10.04 then this release is definitely worth a look if you’re thinking about upgrading. Since it’s a Live DVD distro, you can boot into the DVD and try it before you make a decision about doing a full install.
What’s your take on this distro? Tell me in the comments. For full distro reviews, visit Desktop Linux Reviews.