Chakra GNU/Linux: A Review With Screenshots6:22 AM
The Chakra GNU/Linux website claims it strives to keep to the principles of KISS and bring a bundle system that is known to well support GTK applications.
The Live CD starts with a nice verbose screen that lets you know how the various processes are doing on startup. This used to be a very common default among Linux distributions but in recent years has stopped. I like it; it lets me know exactly what is going on as the system starts up.
Followed by this is the trademark beautiful Chakra startup screen. I would include a screenshot of this but there are so many I will instead refer you to the many screenshots of it available in Google images.
The default desktop for Chakra GNU/Linux is simply beautiful. In fact I have not seen such an attractive and clean KDE default desktop in a long time. The desktop folder includes links to some of the applications a new user may need immediate access to, such as the bug reporting tool, forums, and documentation.
The favorites menu provides links to the most commonly used applications, such as the browser Konqueror, installation program, text editor Kate, and package manager AppSet QT.
The System menu provides shortcuts to backup tools, the KDE Info Center, the file manager Dolphin, and the rest of KDE's standard system tools.
The Development menu in Chakra GNU/Linux provides several development tools, including QT Assistant, Interface Designer, and Linguist.
The Graphics menu is very bare, only providing GPS applications, a screenshot application, and an image viewer.
The Internet menu includes QT applications for Bluetooth, an IRC client, a network folder wizard, and the browser Konqueror.
The Multimedia menu is also bare, with only the Bangarang media player and Kmix sound mixer.
I don't know why the Settings menu is bare. Perhaps if I installed the system it would have filled out. However since I was running this in a virtual machine I was unable to make it past the time/date settings, which featured a globe that required more advanced graphics than I was able to share with the virtual machine. However, I do think that if this menu is normally bare it should be removed from the system.
The utilities menu features all your standard KDE utilities. There's the Kate text editor, Ark archiving tool, Klipper clipboard tool, and more.
The Chakra menu provides links to several useful webpages, such as a link to the bug reporting tool, to download the source code, documentation, and forums.
Chakra GNU/Linux is a very beautiful and clean installation of the KDE Plasma desktop. It keeps default applications to a minimum, allowing the user to create their own system. In this way it is a little reminiscent of Bodhi Linux, only it doesn't take things quite so far as to expect the user to build the desktop as well. Easily seen links to bug reporting tools, forums, and documentation along with a graphical installer would make this a system I would definitely recommend to a new user, especially one accustomed to Microsoft Windows since the interface is very similar to Windows (but much prettier :D). Users with low spec systems should be warned, however - this system is not meant for slow machines. Overall though I like what Chakra GNU/Linux has done - they have created a completely free open source desktop with minimal default applications, a beautiful interface, and easy to access, highly visible tools for new users. Congratulations to the Chakra GNU/Linux team for pulling off such a beautiful and easy to use distribution.
xjonquilx | Mepis, Ubuntu, Fedora, Linux, Oh My!
- Arch Linux - "It is what you make it" (h-online.com)
- Tomorrow's Windows is Yesterday's Computing, a GNU/Linux Catchup Job (techrights.org)
- Desktop Linux: KDE (brighthub.com)
- A Complete Review of Bodhi Linux With Screenshots (xjonquilx.co.cc)