This week has been a rather busy week in the world of Linux. With the release of Ubuntu 12.10 and all of the versions from Canonical I was tempted to do a full round up of the options within the Ubuntu family but then I found Slackel Linux and I must say…I was quite impressed.
Slackel is a Linux distribution and LiveCD based on Slackware and Salix. It is fully compatible with Slackware and Salix but the difference is that it includes the current version of Slackware and the latest version of KDE in the repository. Thus users of Slackware and Salix can benefit from the Slackel repositories, to use the latest version of KDE. Slackel disc images are offered in two different forms, Installation disc image and Live disc image. Slackel is developed in Greece by Dimitris Tzemos.
The 64bit download was very fast and at just over 960MB it was not overly cumbersome either. The installation was old school and there is no LiveCD option with the Distro. While it was old school, the directions were not confusing and I did not have to head off to any forums to figure out what I did wrong in the setup. As always I build a Virtual Machine for the install with 4GB of RAM and 20GB HDD partition. It was a quick and very slick setup process taking less than 30 minutes including the download!
The initial boot took less than 30 seconds to bring me to a clean KDE Desktop but what really impressed me was the included list of software.
- Firefox for the Browser
- KMail for Email
- Clementine for Multimedia
- Calligra Office for Productivity
- Full Codec Support out of the box (including Windows Wireless Drivers)
Having not played around with Slackware for a while I will admit that I was a bit confused in looking for the apps that I wanted (namely the package manager). I was a bit perplexed when I opened up the manager and found that there was only the installed software included. I did a quick update of the repositories and to my liking I was able to locate all of my usual suspects and started to install them without question.
The layout and feel of the Distro is very solid and getting past the text based install, it runs very, very smoothly…so much so that I downloaded the 32bit version as well and will be running it on my Netbook as my daily driver (sorry Ubuntu…I have to try new things).
If Ubuntu is my own preferred and “perfect desktop” then I would have to say that Slackel has earned the right to be a very close second. Having tried out dozens of Distros in the past several months…all in search of the one that could unseat Ubuntu…I was very surprised that at least at this stage, I think I may have found the one that could do all that I want it to do…and much of it right out of the box without tweaking!
For that…Slackel earns itself: