A Complete Review of Bodhi Linux With Screenshots

9:54 PM

Bodhi Linux was recommended to me as a possible solution to try after I mentioned having system resource issues with Ubuntu One. I have to admit I've been rather curious about Bodhi as I have read several rave reviews on it.

 

Bodhi Linux describes itself as a distribution that pushes user choice and a minimal environment. True to its aim, Bodhi comes with very few programs pre-installed and offers the user a choice of desktops as well as wallpapers during installation.

 

The Live CD

 

xjonquilx | Mepis, Ubuntu, Fedora, Linux, Oh My!

 

As you can see above, the Bodhi Live CD starts out just like the Ubuntu Live CD, asking the user to select whether they want to boot in to the normal Live environment, graphics fail safe mode, or the first boot disk.

 

xjonquilx | Mepis, Ubuntu, Fedora, Linux, Oh My!

 

The Live CD then allows you to select what theme you would like to use. In this example I choose the netbook/tablet theme.

 

xjonquilx | Mepis, Ubuntu, Fedora, Linux, Oh My!

 

The Live CD then allows you to choose what wallpaper you would like to use, as you can see above.

 

xjonquilx | Mepis, Ubuntu, Fedora, Linux, Oh My!

 

The default netbook/tablet screen is very pretty but partially useless to me, mostly because some of the buttons link to an on-screen keyboard and full-screen application menu. However, if I was on a tablet PC and not a netbook, I would think this layout was great (and plan to try it out should I get a tablet PC in the future).

 

The Installation

 

xjonquilx | Mepis, Ubuntu, Fedora, Linux, Oh My!

 

The installation option is not an obvious one on the netbook/tablet theming, which can present issues for users completely new to Linux. However,  it can be found in the Desktop folder. The installation is exactly like the Ubuntu installation. On this screen I'm asked to select my preferred language.

 

xjonquilx | Mepis, Ubuntu, Fedora, Linux, Oh My!

 

On the screen above I'm asked to select my time zone.

 

xjonquilx | Mepis, Ubuntu, Fedora, Linux, Oh My!

 

On this screen I'm asked to select my keyboard layout.

 

xjonquilx | Mepis, Ubuntu, Fedora, Linux, Oh My!

 

On this screen I'm given the choice between installing the operating system alongside the existing operating system installation (helpful if you're already running a different Linux distribution or Windows), formatting the current partition and installing the operating system from scratch, or specifying partitions manually.

 

xjonquilx | Mepis, Ubuntu, Fedora, Linux, Oh My!

 

Next is a screen where I can enter in my desired username and password information.

 

xjonquilx | Mepis, Ubuntu, Fedora, Linux, Oh My!

 

Finally the Bodhi Linux operating system is installed.

 

After installation, the operating system asked me to reboot. Following a reboot it walked me through selecting a theme again (this time I chose the laptop theme), selecting a wallpaper again, and selecting what software I wanted installed by default (I checked them all off). After that I was greeted with a desktop that looked like this:

 

xjonquilx | Mepis, Ubuntu, Fedora, Linux, Oh My!

 

I was pretty pleased with the Laptop theme layout. I found the gadget bar at the bottom annoying, but it was easily turned off via right clicking.

 

The Pre-Installed Software

 

xjonquilx | Mepis, Ubuntu, Fedora, Linux, Oh My!

 

Bodhi Linux comes with Midori web browser by default. It seems like it's a mostly basic, low resource consuming, decent web browser.

 

xjonquilx | Mepis, Ubuntu, Fedora, Linux, Oh My!

 

Bodhi Linux comes with a full set of system configuration tools, including LXAppearance, which is quite reminiscent of Ubuntu's Appearance system settings menu.

 

xjonquilx | Mepis, Ubuntu, Fedora, Linux, Oh My!

 

Bodhi Linux also comes with the Synaptic package manager to provide easy access to installable/installed software.

 

Conclusion

 

Bodhi Linux appears to be a very fast, clean distribution that focuses on giving the user as much choice as possible. It is my observation that it has been quite successful in this endeavor. While I don't think it will be replacing Fedora 15 on my netbook any time soon I do think that if I acquire a tablet I will probably be installing Bodhi Linux on it.

 

Congratulations to the Bodhi team for pulling off a very clean, fast, aesthetically pleasing distribution.

 



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16 comments

  1. [...] A Complete Review of Bodhi Linux With Screenshots Bodhi Linux was recommended to me as a possible solution to try after I mentioned having system resource issues with Ubuntu One. I have to admit I’ve been rather curious about Bodhi as I have read several rave reviews on it. [...]

    ReplyDelete
  2. I would not call this "complete review". This is "how to install".

    Rubbish post about rubbish system.

    ReplyDelete
  3. It always surprises me to see other bloggers leave such "rubbish" on other people's blogs. I have never done it to you, perhaps because I was raised better.

    When you have something constructive to say, please comment. Otherwise, if you don't like it, don't come to it.

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  4. Bohdi also a a web-based installation system availible.

    Midori was chosen, not because it's a particularly goot browser, but because it's small, and the split between firefox/chromium/opera is pretty even, but a big enough that you really don't want to duplicate them on systems with fewer resources.

    I found a few quirks in in though. Some segfaults with the noveu driver and amd64 cpu (but it recovers fairly gracefully), and for some reason alsa decided to set my webcam as the default audio device. Niether are deal breakers (as they are fixable or tolerable), and it certainly is improving (having tried both 0.3 and 1.1).

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  5. I think that Midori was the best "small" browser I've tried. It certainly had quite a few features I didn't expect out of such a small browser, such as Speed Dial. Thanks for visiting and letting us know about your experiences with it.

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  6. The best thing about bodhi is that it remains lighening fast even after installing tons of softwares :)

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  7. And that is why I plan on writing a follow up review on this system. This post was just getting rather long so I had to wrap things up a little. Thanks for stopping by.

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  8. I am an expert linux user, using it for more than 10 years. I am not happy with most linux distros today. They are getting heavier and heavier day by day with bloated graphics and softwares. I have used RedHat, Mandriva, SUSE, Gentoo, Ubuntu and many others abut after giving bodhi a chance, I had to stuck with it.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Thanks. I appreciate this.

    Referring to the 'I would not call this "complete review". This is "how to install".' comment, let's say instead: "OK so far."

    (I don't agree with the second line, which is not only gratuitous but unforgivable.)

    I downloaded Bodhi and have tried every "theme" available while running off the CD. Granted, I haven't installed it, not wanting to disrupt any of the running systems I have, but so far I've been wildly disappointed by the promise of "giving the user as much choice as possible".

    Maybe this is different after actual installation, but certainly not when running from CD. Ubuntu, Kubuntu, Xubuntu, Mint Gnome, Mint XFCE, and Mint KDE all allow much more configuration even before being installed.

    I'm extremely intrigued by Bodhi, but what research I've done shows a severely limited set of themes, all seemingly full of big, shiny buttons, wood-grain effects, and fancy wallpapers.

    I'm using Ubuntu 10.04 with no wallpaper at all. I have a "panel" up top with application icons and that's it. I love the look.

    The "Cerium" theme for Enlightenment is the only minimal one I've seen and I'm not sure that it's even complete.

    It really looks like a person using Bodhi/Enlightenment has to download tools and build a theme/icon set from scratch, and I for one am completely uninterested in this.

    Which gets us to the point: If you do a followup on configuring Bodhi (especially in a minimal way), I'd love to see it.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Thanks for coming by. :)

    As for the first comment here, there's some history there that I don't care to discuss. Just rest assured I had reason to say what I did. If what I said is a sin, so be it. I can forgive if it happens to me, which it doesn't because... well, I don't go around posting things like that.

    It's actually the geek factor of Englightenment that appealed to me. And I do loooove minimal environments. Hmmm... I might write something about that. Thank you for such an intriguing idea!

    ReplyDelete
  11. @ Dave Sailer
    "I’m extremely intrigued by Bodhi, but what research I’ve done shows a severely limited set of themes, all seemingly full of big, shiny buttons, wood-grain effects, and fancy wallpapers."

    By choosing the "Bare" profile " and the "Default" theme, you will get a "clean" install. Then, just populate a bar with the usual/preferred tools, as seen at Kde or Gnome2. For a wallpaper, clicking your preferred pic its enough. From LXAppearance, pick up your preferred Gtk style/icon. Excluding the preferred pic, everything above mentioned is part of the installation.

    So, following installation, there is really anything needed to be download, regarding themes/profiles.

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  12. Thank you for your comments.

    Personally I would like to try going even more minimal than what you described. I will definitely check out the minimal environment though and if it isn't as minimal as I would like it to be I will tweak it.

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  13. Thank you too, Jonquil, you're welcome.
    Going for a minimal environment is what I would really encourage anyone new to Enlightenment and willing to learn a little beat about it. You will quickly discover how powerful it's in terms of customization, and I guess you'll enjoy the time while playing and building your favorite Bodhi look and feel.

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  14. Sorry for the late reply. I've been pretty busy with work recently.

    I actually just posted an update to this review. A minimal environment is what I created, but I loved the digital clock and calendar gadgets on Bodhi. They were so lightweight and non-distracting. Visually appealing too. I also somewhat liked how the task bar was kept hidden behind full screen windows but I kind of wish I had an auto hide like option there, but I didn't see one (maybe I should try Googling that one when I have the time). Anyways, it's all a little old school for my tastes with the most recent generation of desktop environments but I think I will test it out on one of the old machines I have laying around here.

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  15. [...] A Complete Review of Bodhi Linux With Screenshots (xjonquilx.co.cc) [...]

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