Lubuntu 14.10 Review

I’ve used LXDE for the first time with this Lubuntu 14.10. Of course I’ve heard of LXDE before; for it’s a very lightweight desktop, modular in approach. LXDE didn’t appeal me before for it’s bare bone nature. I am a openbox fan, for it’s extensive customization-ability. You can change every little aspect of the openbox window manager by changing the configuration file. It’s pretty straightforward. And LXDE uses this openbox as it’s window manager.
Lubuntu 14.10 comes with a traditional look and feel. It reminded me of Windows XP. No extra bells and whistles; just plain and simple traditional menu-driven interface. It’s what just works for most of the users, except those touch interface fans on their desktops. Well, good for them.
Lubuntu 14.10’s memory and CPU usage is the least among the Ubuntu-flavors. It’s lightning fast. Honestly, I haven’t seen so much responsiveness in my whole Linux-career. Everything just works. And works smoothly.
Lubuntu 14.10 comes with decent default software choices. Abiword is there for word processing instead of LibreOffice writer, which comes default with many other distros. Gnumeric is for spreadsheet purposes. Obviously, you can install LibreOffice or others of your liking if these defaults doesn’t suite you.
GNOME Mplayer is there for media playing. And Audacious is there for music playing. Leafpad is there as a text editor. Xpad is there for sticky notes. And LxTerminal as a terminal emulator.
All the default softwares has been chosen to keep the default installation light and low on resources. You can replace them with the ones you like. LXDE is often termed as being a ‘modular’ desktop. You can install GTK+ or Qt apps as you like without the tension of overburdening it with extra dependencies.

What Impressed me:

  • Ultra lightweight in nature. Works like a breeze.
  • Unlike Xfce, the default themed interface looked great. It soothes the eye and very pleasing.
  • Infinitely customizable, especially the window manager, openbox.
  • The traditional interface, no surprises; thus being a great alternative for Windows-refugees.

What Pissed me off:

  • Sound wasn’t working on the fresh installation. This bug should have fixed before released. By the way, it’s easily fixable.
  • There was no volume control applet in LxPanel and also the volume control keys weren’t working. These can be fixed easily.
  • By default, the time indicator in the LxPanel only shows the current time, no date or anything. But you can make it to your liking simply. These should have been there by default though.
  • The notification showed horizontal lines in it. That’s a well-known bug though. Execute the following command to fix that:

sudo rm -f /usr/share/themes/Lubuntu-default/gtk-2.0/images/panel-bg.png

Without few little annoying bugs, everything worked as intended. The default file manager, PcManFM is super responsive. Folders would open even before I was finished clicking on them! Overall, it was a great experience using Lubuntu 14.10 and I would recommend it to anyone with a modest hardware, like those of laptop, notebook, netbook and old hardware, etc. Download Lubuntu 14.10 from here.

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