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Linux Deepin (formerly Hiweed GNU/Linux) is an easy-to-use Chinese distribution based on Ubuntu. Its features include pre-configured Chinese applications and tools, such as Chinese input method, the LibreOffice office suite, Chinese-English and English-Chinese dictionaries, and Chinese TrueType fonts. It also delivers a highly customised GNOME 3 desktop and a large number of usability enhancements.

Deepin Homepage   Deepin 12.06 Review


The Fedora Project is an openly-developed project designed by Red Hat, open for general participation, led by a meritocracy, following a set of project objectives. The goal of The Fedora Project is to work with the Linux community to build a complete, general purpose operating system exclusively from open source software.

Fedora Homepage   Fedora 17 Review


Hanthana Linux is a Fedora remix suitable for desktop and laptop users. Hanthana comes in the form of a live DVD for regular PC systems (i686 and x86_64 architectures). It includes all the features of Fedora and loads of additional software, including multimedia players and codecs, graphics, development, educational and entertainment programs ready for use right after installation.

Hanthana Homepage


Hybryde Linux is an Ubuntu-based distribution for the desktop. Its most unusual feature is an option to switch rapidly between multiple desktop environments and window manager without logging out – the list includes Enlightenment 17, GNOME 3 (GNOME Shell and GNOME 3 “Fallback” mode), KDE, LXDE, Openbox, Unity, Xfce and FVWM.

Hybryde Homepage


Kororaa Linux was born out of a desire to make Linux easier to use for non-experts. While it has a long history based on Gentoo, in 2010 it was reborn as a Fedora remix and live DVD using a customised KDE as the default desktop. It includes various tweaks and extras to make the system “just work” out of the box.

Kororaa Homepage   Kororaa 17 Review


LuninuX OS is an Ubuntu-based Linux distribution designed to be beautiful, clean, simple, fast, and stable.

LulinuX OS Homepage   LuninuX OS 12 Review


Mageia is a fork of Mandriva Linux formed in September 2010 by former employees and contributors to the popular French Linux distribution. Unlike Mandriva, which is a commercial entity, the Mageia project is a community project and a non-profit organisation whose goal is to develop a free Linux-based operating system.

Mageia Homepage   Mageia 2 Review


Parsix GNU/Linux is a live and installation DVD based on Debian GNU/Linux. The project’s goal is to provide a ready-to-use and easy-to-install operating system based on Debian’s testing branch and the latest stable release of the GNOME desktop environment. Extra software packages are available for installation from the distribution’s own software repositories.

Parsix Homepage


Pear Linux is a French Ubuntu-based desktop Linux distribution. Some of its features include ease-of-use, custom user interface with a Mac OS X-style dockbar, and out-of-the-box support for many popular multimedia codecs.

Pear Homepage


Pinguy OS is an Ubuntu-based distribution targeted at beginning Linux users. It features numerous user-friendly enhancements, out-of-the-box support for multimedia codecs and browser plugins, a heavily tweaked GNOME user interface with enhanced menus, panels and dockbars, and a careful selection of popular desktop applications for many common computing tasks.

Pinguy OS Homepage


PureOS and PureOSlight are GNU/Linux live CDs based on Debian’s testing repository. These are desktop distributions that can be used as live media (CD or USB) or as full-featured operating systems installed on a hard disk.

PureOS Homepage


Sabayon Linux is a Gentoo-based distribution which follows the works-out-of-the-box philosophy, aiming to give the user a wide number of applications that are ready for use and a self-configured operating system. Sabayon offers the user an easy-to-use workspace with a captivating look, good hardware detection and a large number of up-to-date software packages installed by default, with additional software available from a repository.

Sabayon Homepage   Sabayon 10 Review


Ubuntu is a complete desktop Linux operating system, freely available with both community and professional support. The Ubuntu community is built on the ideas enshrined in the Ubuntu Manifesto: that software should be available free of charge, that software tools should be usable by people in their local language and despite any disabilities, and that people should have the freedom to customise and alter their software in whatever way they see fit.

Although Ubuntu comes with Unity by default, it is very easy to just install Gnome-Shell from the software center and is a very popular distribution for Gnome users. The same goes for all Ubuntu 12.04-based distributions.

Ubuntu Homepage   Ubuntu 12.10 Preview


Arch Linux is an independently developed, i686- and x86_64-optimised Linux distribution targeted at competent Linux users. It uses ‘pacman’, its home-grown package manager, to provide updates to the latest software applications with full dependency tracking. Operating on a rolling release system, Arch can be installed from a CD image or via an FTP server. The default install provides a solid base that enables users to create a custom installation.

Arch Homepage


The Debian Project is an association of individuals who have made common cause to create a free operating system. This operating system is called Debian GNU/Linux, or simply Debian for short. Debian comes with over 20,000 packages – all of it free. One can get the latest stable Gnome Shell from the testing repositories.

Debian Homepage


Frugalware Linux is an independently developed general purpose desktop Linux distribution designed for intermediate users. It follows simple Slackware-like design concepts and includes the “pacman” package management utility from Arch Linux.

Frugalware Homepage


Gentoo Linux is a versatile and fast, completely free Linux distribution geared towards developers and network professionals. Unlike other distros, Gentoo Linux has an advanced package management system called Portage. Portage is a true ports system in the tradition of BSD ports, but is Python-based and sports a number of advanced features including dependencies, fine-grained package management, “fake” (OpenBSD-style) installs, safe unmerging, system profiles, virtual packages, config file management, and more.

Gentoo Homepage


Manjaro Linux is a desktop-oriented, user-friendly distribution based on Arch Linux. Some of its more pronounced features include an intuitive installation process, automatic hardware detection, special Bash scripts for managing graphics drivers, and extra desktop configuration options.

Manjaro Homepage


The openSUSE project is a community program sponsored by Novell. Promoting the use of Linux everywhere, this program provides free, easy access to openSUSE, a complete Linux distribution. The openSUSE project has three main goals: make openSUSE the easiest Linux for anyone to obtain and the most widely used Linux distribution; leverage open source collaboration to make openSUSE the world’s most usable Linux distribution and desktop environment for new and experienced Linux users; dramatically simplify and open the development and packaging processes to make openSUSE the platform of choice for Linux developers and software vendors.

openSUSE Homepage   openSUSE 12.2 Review


Vine Linux is a supreme Linux distribution with integrated Japanese environment for desktop PCs and notebooks. Project Vine was founded by six members of the Project Japanese Extension (JPE) in 1998 and has been developing Vine Linux with help of many members and volunteers.

Vine Linux Homepage


Bridge Linux is an Arch Linux derivative that includes a GUI and standard applications. It comes in four separate editions with a choice of GNOME, KDE, LXDE or Xfce desktops.

Bridge Linux Homepage


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  • Diogo Campos

    Go Debian, I choose you! :)

  • Adonis K. (Varemenos)

    Thanks for this article! I was looking for a raw ubuntu-gnome3 experience and hopefully i will find it in deepin 12.06. For the record, the article could be read easier if you turned it into a table. for example: [name][based on][description]

    • alex285

      Deepin has a modified Gnome Shell. This is waht you want

      • Adonis K. (Varemenos)

        Actually im waiting for but until then i might give it a try. Hopefully beta stage will be upon us soon

        • alex285

          This is it. I think they won’t use the other site, coz of the name. By the way I am using it for a week now.

          • Adonis K. (Varemenos)

            ohh ok, cool then.
            I won’t ask if its bug free cause im sure its not but did you encounter any ‘deadly’ bugs yet?

          • alex285

            Gnome Shell freezes a lot, but I use Ricotz PPA. It’s hard to spot bugs because they give you 100updates a day. But in general isn’t very stable for me.

          • Jeremy Bicha

            Yeah, Ricotz’ PPA tracks git directly so it’s not for those who want stability.

          • JJ

            With gnome 3 ppa, it is quite stable and no issues at all. It is almost close to the Fedora stability. Not as snappier though.

  • Brandon Watkins

    I love vanilla gnome 3 on arch :)

    • Marcio

      Arch linux is very nice!!

  • diamond_gr

    Regarding openSUSE, it’s not sponsored by Novell. Attachmate bought Novell and there are 2 separate companies. openSUSE sponsored by SUSE.

  • Eduard Gotwig

    Are you kidding me? No elementaryOS?

    • Bill_Toulas

      Just a question. Does elementary provide the Gnome Shell package in its repositories? I didn’t include it because I think it doesn’t. Does it?

      • alex285

        I think, but its default is Gala

  • ThatMattRogers

    OK folks, I prefer to use gnome Shell but I have a netbook. what would you folks recommend as a lightweight GS fronted distro? I realise that this might be a bit of a contradiction in terms when compared to an e17 fronted Puppy based distro but I figured that there would be something that’s a little lighter on resources. Any thoughts?

    • Bill_Toulas

      Gentoo will definitely have the best performance :)

      • ThatMattRogers

        I’ve never delved into Gentoo before, I hear that setting it up can be quite involved. Would Sabyon be a good choice in that case or would it be better to dive straight into Gentoo and build what I want from there?

        • Bill_Toulas

          Sabayon will be a great choice for performance but Gentoo will be even better. If you are ready for extra difficulty, go for it! If not, go with Sabayon :)

    • PromoteCommonSense

      Depends on how much RAM you have, but Ubuntu 12.04 running GS 3.4.2 instead of Unity works quite well with 1GB.

      • ThatMattRogers

        I’m running 1gb ram and a 1.6Ghz Atom N450, I’m running Pinguy at the moment (with all of the annoying Docky stuff disabled and my own choice of extensions) which is running OK but it can get bogged down on occasion.

        • PromoteCommonSense

          Ubuntu 12.04 running GS 3.42 should do fine with that. I run it on my eeePC netbook with the same configuration. It definitely out-performs Unity.

    • furrball

      Arch or Debian are fast with Gnome Shell for me

  • sabri unal

    Go pikachu or “Seni Sectim Pikachu”

    Too many distro! ı tested PearOs 2 days ago.

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