GoblinX, a Beautiful Brazilian Distro

Posted by jun auza On 2/08/2008
GoblinX is a Slackware-based Linux distribution that features a highly customized desktop. According to Distrowatch, the primary goal of GoblinX is to create a more pleasant and functional desktop, standardizing all icons and themes to make it easy for novice users to learn about available applications.

GoblinX is currently offered in 4 flavors: The GoblinX Premium - the most complete edition of GoblinX but is not available for free. The GoblinX Standard - this edition provides some of the most popular applications and features. The GoblinX Mini - same as Standard edition but uses XFCE desktop manager and doesn't have as many applications as the Standard edition. The GoblinX Micro - provides only a few applications and uses Fluxbox window manager.

I’m quite intrigued with this Brazilian-made distribution upon reading several positive reviews, so I tried it myself. I got the ISO installer of GoblinX 2.6 “Mini” which is only about 153MB in size. The download page can be found HERE. I then tested it on VMWare Server which was installed on my Xubuntu workstation. I used the default 256MB of VM RAM, 8GB of virtual storage, and utilized only a single processor of my Intel Pentium D 3.4 GHz machine. So, here’s my own view of GoblinX.


Installation:
GoblinX is a Live CD and its installer can be accessed using the main menu, and then clicking the "HD Installer" icon. After it, a unique custom-made installer, none like I’ve seen so far will appear. I find it a little bit buggy but I managed to stay out of trouble. I installed the system using the default settings. However, I configured the root and the user password first. A few clicks later, the installer takes care of copying the necessary applications and then set up my hardware without any problems. After the installation, I rebooted and found out that the Ethernet was instantly working together with the audio, CDROM, and USB. I also changed the screen resolution without having any setback.



Look and Feel:
Just read the title of this article and that’s my impression of GoblinX in terms of looks. It utilizes an XFCE desktop and a polished and customized default theme called MurrinaGoblix. All the artworks and the overall desktop appearance are just pleasing to the eye. I know that anyone can appreciate and say that they look very artistic. The developer really took some time to make GoblinX attractive.




Software/Package Management:
Despite its size, GoblinX is loaded with some valuable software applications out-of-the-box. It has office programs like Abiword and Gnumeric Spreadsheet; a popular image editor called Gimp; Firefox web browser; Audacious audio player and Movie Player for entertainment. Flash and other important non-free packages were not installed by default. However, plenty of extra software applications can be easily added using Gslapt Package Manager; it functions almost the same as Debian’s apt-get.



Stability:
Minus the minor predicament during installation, I would say that GoblinX is pretty steady as with majority of Slackware-based distribution. It is also very fast and responsive, and I’ve never encountered any more trouble while running and testing it for several days. I can also assume that it can run stable and secure for an extended period of time which is ideal for those who want a reliable OS for productive purposes.



Conclusion:
GoblinX 2.6 “Mini” Edition is honestly worth the try. I would recommend it to both beginners as well as advanced users. It is very lightweight and fast, which would be good for low-end computers. It has great hardware detection and Slackware-like stability. Those who have higher end machines and want a more complete desktop should get the Standard Edition instead, I think. All things considered, I will without doubt give GoblinX a “thumbs up”.

It can’t be that hard to fall in love with GoblinX, because it’s simply beautiful.

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