I was intrigued by the recent appearance of yet another Ubuntu derived linux flavour, GreenOS or gOS which has got some publicity due to being installed on a few super cheap desktop PC’s being sold by Walmart in America.
My interest was in how efficient this would be on older or lower spec hardware, its claimed main advantage and whether I could install it on some of the computers that I refurbish where I currently install Ubuntu variants anyway.
The interesting thing is how well configured the desktop is for applications that people would use rather than what geeks would use and the predominance of web application, particularly from Google and even including a Facebook link and Skype. I’ll try installing it on a few lower spec computers but in the short term I installed the closest thing available on an existing Ubuntu machine (see method used here) which merely gave me the gOS desktop and theme but not the same experience as the distribution itself.
I have to say that due to the lower memory overhead I saw the fastest loading of Gimp and Open Office that I’ve ever seen and the modified E17 desktop was easier to configure than the xfce based Xubuntu flavouring that I’d tried on a few low specification computers.
All I have to do now is donate a few computers with it on and see how well received (or not) it is when real people use it.
Both thumbnail pictures are clickable to reveal much larger versions.The first shows the main gOS desktop whilst the second shows the close approximation available to existing Ubuntu users.
Further Update: gOS 2.0 has been changed for its inclusion on the Everex Cloudbook by been altered radically by being based around gnome rather than E17. This has not been made available as a download as of yet.
Even further update (6th April 2008): Gos space 2.9 is available aimed at the My Space generation which seems to feature a compiz-gnome and AWN dock affair married with My Space web apps which takes Gos in an entirely different direction altogether.Obviously this requires a better than basic spec for compiz effects which rather leaves the cloudbook out of the running yet again.See review.