Strange Distrowatch review – and how to solve most of that reviewer’s problems

Forum Forums General Tips and Tricks Strange Distrowatch review – and how to solve most of that reviewer’s problems

  • This topic has 23 replies, 12 voices, and was last updated May 3-11:45 pm by linuxdaddy.
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    Wallon, there are other French speakers here, just not that many. There may also be more who don’t interact here. By helping translate, you make it easier for every one of them that follows in your footsteps.

    I have learned to write scripts that are easily translated. I test them in Spanish, but only to make sure it looks like Spanish, because I have forgotten most of it since the Spanish classes i had 50 years ago.

    If each of us add a little effort at things we are capable of, the overall system improves a little with each one, and like a clock ticking away the seconds they add up over time.


    BobC, did you know words …

    Wallon, I can cite as an example what I was able to detect, several people here in Brazil use antiX, some of them for a longer time than me, but unfortunately they do not interact here. People who come to know antiX through me, I always recommend and ask to register here on the forum, I always say that they will be very well received here, but unfortunately, few are those who register and still participate. You can be sure that you make a big difference and contribute a lot to antiX, with each sentence that you correct or manage to make an even better adaptation to the languages ​​you know and speak. In addition to the important topics created by you in this community.

    I did not know the antiX of the past that was mentioned by you in this topic, although I would very much like to have arrived here in the first version, so, I have no reference. I just hope you are not missing an operating system that needed to use the terminal to adjust the time and day.

    (Original text in Brazilian Portuguese)


    Skidoo, obrigado por mais esta aula, sobre o Alt + F2 xkill [Enter].

    BobC, sabias palavras …

    Wallon, eu posso citar como exemplo o que consegui detectar, várias pessoas daqui do Brasil utilizam o antiX, algumas há mais tempo do que eu, mas infelizmente não interagem aqui. As pessoas que passam a conhecer o antiX através de mim, eu sempre recomendo e peço para fazerem o cadastro daqui do fórum, eu sempre falo que serão muito bem recebidas aqui, mas infelizmente, poucos são os que fazem o cadastro e ainda participam. Pode ter certeza que você faz grande diferença e contribui muito com o antiX, a cada frase que você corrige ou consegue fazer uma adaptação ainda melhor para os idiomas que você conhece e domina. Além dos importantes tópicos criados por você nesta comunidade.

    Eu não conheci o antiX do passado que foi citado por vocês neste tópico, bem que eu gostaria muito de ter chegado aqui logo na primeira versão, então, eu não possuo referência. Eu só espero que vocês não estejam com saudades de um sistema operacional que para ajustar a hora e o dia era preciso utilizar o terminal.

    (Texto original em idioma Português do Brasil)


    @All – It sometimes looks like threads here end going some unexpected places… I made the original post as both a criticism to the DW review and as a way to try to help both that reviewer and anyone else with similar problems… and it ended up also being a place to talk about where antiX usability is and where it’s going… What a nice surprise!

    I do agree that out of the box, the first layer of the menu has too much going on (@Marcelo- that’s what people generally mean when they say antiX’s menu is too crowded, not that it has too many entries on all the submenus). That is partly solved with grouping all icewm first layer menu itens into a single menu ( we now get 1 first layer entry instead of 3 – but in my option it should be more clear and say “icewm configuration/settings”)… I’ve always said that the refresh/update menu entry should be inside the applications sub-menu instead the first layer, saving a first layer line and placing right where it’s logical it should be.
    I do like – and it’s a general UI practice- that the most common apps are accessible right from the first menu layer- but they would, in my opinion look better all grouped together, without any separator between them… “Recent files” is also a usual first layer menu entry… as is “run” and “exit”… “Kill” (a running app) also is handy from the first menu layer- since most users don’t really are into keyboard shortcuts…
    My default (fluxbox) first layer of the menu is a bit strange, but, also in my opinion a nice cross between simplicity and having almost everything a user can need in a daily basis- it has 3 “sections”, divided by separators:
    1- App-select (or rofi)- as “search for apps”, and “recent documents”;
    2- All the default apps you can choose from control centre (with their generic names, like “text editor”, “web browser”, etc) plus the calculator and word processor, in alphabetical order
    3- “All applications” menu (that includes the refresh menu entry), “run”, “kill a window”, “Control centre”, WM (fluxbox, in my case) settings and “exit”. [Change desktop should probably be in this section, but I moved it to “All applications”, like toggle on/off conky- I could even remove that, in my particular case, because mine is always off].

    Also, all menu entrie’s icons are gray, except the ones on the second section and “exit”- so users can quicky see what are apps and what is OS’s related stuff (I used only default icons, provided out of the box for this)

    This leaves me with 18 lines of first layer menu entries, plus 2 separators… Many people could consider this bloat…

    I don’t currently use desktop icons, but I do get their appeal, I used them for many years- and I do understand that the majority of Linux that come from others OS’s (even other Linux distros) find it counter intuitive- but hey… you are running an OS that run on about 100 meg of RAM, while most other distros, even “lighter” distros run on at least more than double of that- you must be aware that you lose a bit of “costumer service” when you shed all that extra resource usage- so skimming the fixed threads on the forum in order to learn who to do stuff that was much easier on other OS’s (and almost none force you to use the terminal) is not a high price to pay for all this lightness.

    When I see DW users commenting stuff like “why don’t you have that wi-fi thingy to select why wi-fi networks, like MX, *butu, etc have?)- well, it’s there, but turned off by default to save resources- isn’t antiX’s low resource usage the reason most people begin using it? (But even that seems to be a already solved problem- since antiX is getting the connection manager to automatically fire up if the OS does not connect to a network- how cool is the Dev team?)



    Well, let me add some thoughts here. I feel developers of antiX do really a great job. It’s about “performing the splits” (this is a German metaphor standing for the attempt of satisfying two completely contrary requirements, like the legs getting stretched to the utmost opposite direction) between low resource consumption on the on hand and high degree of convenience for the user experience on the other. And all this summed up under the proposition of efficiency and highly sophisticated workflow design, garnished with a dressy design and a high grade of flexibility. This is something you will scarcely find combined all together in other operating systems. antiX provides the ability to max out so called outdated hardware, rendering it to a well functioning and reliable everyday working tool again, expanding its lifecycle and providing evidence there is something we can stand against throwaway society.

    The ubiquitously pretended need for more and again more speed, memory, cores, bus width, to put it in a nutshell: pressure to incessantly increased computing power is a mere phantom, driven by unreflected usage of ressources. We have it, well, so let’s throw it out of the window, waste it as if there was no tomorrow. I well remember the days when programmers were able to drive the very utmost out of limited hardware by means of low-level optimising, getting very close to physical hardware, even writing parts of it in assembler to speed up processing and squeezing functions into really small ammounts of memory. I’ve seen things on merely 486dx or 386/87 generation of processors, like rendering of virtual, realistic images from CAD construction drawings, raytracing etc. Even playing high fidelity music files, wysiwyg creating scores and reading them while transfering to midi and playing simultaneously, using so called dedicated programmable soundcards, and judder free watching and processing movie files was state of the art. When looking at “modern” Computers, I don’t see literally nothing really new, which could legitimate in any way the recent amount of system requirements other operating systems exempt from antiX (and very few others) claim to be necessary for convenient user experience.

    There is nothing special about trimming an operating system to minimum resource consumption by means of spartan features, but when it comes to offering a contemporary user interface and a comfortable user experience at the same time, this antiX is way ahead.

    Well, there ARE legitimate use cases where very powerful hardware is essential, especially when it comes to professional special applications. Also computer games often push even modern hardware to its performance limits. But the everyday user, writing some letters on his/her hardware, playing music and movies, chatting, surfing, doing whatever you want, even producing music, really doesn’t need this power, it is simply wasted.

    You may call this personal opinion, but my opinion is based on long term experience, covering any kind of OS’, from Microsoft systems, MacOS to different Unix/Linux flavours. You might think, this kind of “performing the splits” is something you can get from any Linux flavour, but indeed you can’t. OK, yes, you could in theory. But practically I wasn’t able to install a recent Ubuntu or whatever _usable_ on the very systems, which do run on antiX flawlessly on a per everyday usage basis, providing powerful computing experience still, even with hardware being 20 years old. Admitted, this needs some aditional fine tuning, but isn’t it worth the trouble when you could save some fully functioning hardware from getting scrapped for a mere phantom modern society blindly follows?

    Do the long-time antiX users necessarily have to feel uneasy by addition of less purist features? I don’t think so.
    Simply since both the purist concept and the maxing out of resources for user convenience are based on the same foundation: A higly efficient system base, covered by slightly different styled surfaces only. This is a proof of flexibility antiX provides.


    I have not been able to run windows programs that require the .net framework. In my experience, Wine would not run those windows program. Is there a way to do this?

    You might give “winetricks” a try.

    sudo apt-get install winetricks

    It’s long ago I’ve run it, but I believe to remember “.net” programs do work properly when using this wine addition.


    One of the most annoying things is THE BLOAT! ***, even the minimal version is so bloated, that when you open menu you are going to get stroke.

    Yes. Too many programs. I have read that too much free software will sometimes cause a stroke in some individuals.
    Particularly those who work for Microsoft. But has been reported to happen to others.

    After few weeks of usage I am still having problems finding what I need in the menu.

    Better to lay off taking the initiative to customize your own computer.
    Remember: your life just might be at stake. Don’t push yourself too hard. We wouldn’t want you to stroke out.

    Forgive me for the sarcasm, guys. I gotta laugh.

    Also, I’ve never heard of software bloat being used in that context.


    Thanks for the laugh! That was hilarious!

    I’ve always said antiX is not for everyone. Some folks are just better off moving on to something else. But for those who are willing to pitch in and get to work on their own systems antiX is fantastic. I compare it to “Bare bones” computers where a person may not want to start from scratch but start with a partially assembled computer and then tweak it with some custom add-ons.

    As for those of us who complain about the menu not being to their liking – change it. It’s not that hard to do. And beside that there is a “Personal Menu” built in to the antiX system, ready made for your own personal tastes.

    Personally, I find the menus in KDE and Cinnamon extremely difficult to work with. Talk about getting lost! in antiX you can make up your own menus! Or skip the menu entirely! How cool is that? But, like I said, not for everyone.



    I’m not too concerned about adding some more user friendly apps to antiX and that it might somehow become something other than what antiX has been. But I do hope we can always easily turn off what we don’t need so that we can continue to run this fine OS on older equipment lacking in resources.

    I have been able to get MX linux to start up with around 100Mb. And using Fluxbox you can actually use an MX system on an old computer like a Pentium-III. But definitely on a P4 or a dual core netbook with only 1GB. But antiX works on these machines OOTB. That continues to amaze me.



    in antiX you can make up your own menus! Or skip the menu entirely!

    For people that dislike antiX menu and don’t want to/don’t care to learn how to change it, my advice, if using the default icewm desktop is adding app-select and put it’s icon right next to the start menu- it’s a organized list of (almost) all applications in your system- with icons and description… If you put desktop’s session icon next to it, you can quickly do anything you want in your system just clicking one of those 2 icons (you can even type “exit” in app-select and exit the OS from there, no second icon needed)…
    If app-select is too slow on your system, use rofi – it starts faster on slower systems and even shows the recent apps you used first… – no need for “confusing” menu’s at all… How much “hard work” does that imply? Probably a lot, for someone that thinks the toolbar is too difficult to customize in antiX, when there are several GUI’s to do it…
    And I do like my ideas of making “system related” menu entries show up gray, to any user can differentiate them from “regular” applications…



    A bit late to the conversation. but it seems some new comers are quick to blame on things. consider for the most part antiX and most
    linux distros boot once and work out of the box on most things. I recently had to factory reinstall and update my wife’s Windows
    10 HP computer and it installed tons of shareware demos and had to reboot on everyone of them over 50 times and had to uninstall all
    that shit.

    Normal == 🙂
    depends on the surrounding crowd ?!

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