Tag Archives: trisquel

Trisquel 7.0 LTS Belenos

There are many different Linux distributions available, but not all of them are focused on providing a truly free software experience. What do I mean by free software? Well, I don’t mean free as in free beer. I mean free as in the freedom do what you want with it. Here’s a snippet from GNU.org’s definition of free software: “Free software” means software that respects users’ freedom and community. Roughly, it means that the users have the freedom to run, copy, distribute, study, change and improve the software. Thus, “free software” is a matter of liberty, not price. Trisquel is one of the few distributions that really believes in providing users with free software. So if that matters to you then Trisquel should definitely be at the top of your list of desktop distributions. You won’t find nonfree software in it, but you will find lots and lots of free software that will meet the needs of almost all desktop users. The latest release of Trisquel is version 7.0, which has been dubbed “Belenos” after a Celtic sun god. Hey, it’s hard not to love a distro with such a cool name. Trisquel 7.0 is also a long-term support release, and I’ll […]

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Trisquel 6.0 LTS

Trisquel 6.0 LTS was recently released so it’s time to give it another look. Trisquel is a popular distro for users that prefer to use only free software. You won’t find proprietary software included in Trisquel, it’s dedicated to the idea of truly free software.

Here’s a bit of background from the Trisquel FAQ that explains the philosophy behind this distro:

“There are literally hundreds of GNU/Linux distributions designed to fill every conceivable niche. Only a handful of them are entirely free software; Trisquel is one such distribution. That’s why Trisquel is endorsed by Richard Stallman and the Free Software Foundation.

The popularity of GNU/Linux has skyrocketed in recent years. The major distributions are attracting large numbers of new users, but their distributors are not taking the opportunity to effectively teach these same users to value and protect their freedom. Our software is being advocated on purely utilitarian grounds (such as portability, stability, security, customizability, and lack of cost), so the casual observer is led to believe that “Linux” is just another OS, albeit a useful one. While it may appear to be a reasonable compromise for big-name distros like Ubuntu and Fedora to include some nonfree firmware, drivers, and applications in their mostly-free systems for which no complete free drop-in replacements exist, time and experience demonstrates that this only perpetuates the problem. If we want free software alternatives to emerge, our community must actively reject the non-free counterparts.

Trisquel is different. We naturally want to bring you an operating system that is tight, beautiful, and robust. We want your software to be feature-rich and work exactly as you expect it to. But we’ll never compromise your freedom, either.

Free software, unlike proprietary, respects its users essential rights, to ensure they can:

run the program, for any purpose
study how the program works, and adapt it to their needs (which requires having access to the program’s source code).
redistribute copies so they can help others, with or without a fee
distribute copies of their modified versions to others, so that the whole community can benefit. Again, access to the source code is a precondition for this.
Free software is a matter of freedom, not price, although free software is usually distributed at no charge. Think “free” as in “free speech”, not “free beer”.

Many free software programs are copylefted. Copyleft is used by some free software licenses (most notably the GNU GPL) to protect the freedom to redistribute the program by requiring all modified and extended versions of the program to be free as well. It is a reversal of the typical use of copyright law (prohibiting others from reproducing, adapting, or distributing copies of a work), hence the name. Non-copyleft free software also exists. It is better to use copyleft in most cases, but if a program is non-copylefted free software, it is still basically ethical.”

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Boot Menu

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Boot Menu

What’s New in Trisquel 6.0 LTS

Here’s a sample of the new features in this release:

  • Linux-Libre 3.2
  • Xorg
  • Abrowser 19
  • GNOME 3.4
  • LibreOffice 3.5

If you aren’t familiar with Linux-Libre, here’s a brief explanation of what it is and what it has to offer in Trisquel:

Linux-libre is an operating system kernel and a GNU package [3] that is maintained from modified versions of the Linux kernel. The aim of the project is to remove any software that does not include its source code, has its source code obfuscated or released under proprietary licenses from the Linux kernel. The parts that have no source code are called binary blobs and are generally proprietary firmware which, while generally redistributable, generally do not give the user the freedom to modify or study them. It is a prominent example of free software.

Abrowser now comes with full HTML 5 video support, as well as PDF support without a plugin, and it also supports instant messaging web applications on WebRTC.

GNOME 3.4 contains a number of improvements though it goes beyond the scope of this review to list them all. You can see a full list here.

There’s also a list of LibreOffice 3.5 features and fixes.

Suffice to say that this release of Trisquel contains some good stuff that makes upgrading to it worthwhile.

System Requirements for Trisquel 6.0 LTS

Once again, I was not able to find a list of Trisquel hardware requirements. The same thing happened when I went to write the last review for version 5.5. I urge the Trisquel developers to include a list on the downloads page or in the documentation. Perhaps it’s somewhere on the Trisquel site and I missed it? If so, please post the requirements in the comments below.

Since Trisquel 6.0 LTS is based on Ubuntu Precise, you might want to use that as a baseline for hardware requirements for this release.

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Login

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Login

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Download

You can download Trisquel 6.0 LTS from this page. The file I downloaded weighed in at 728.9 MB. You can download Trisquel 6.0 LTS in 32-bit or 64-bit versions.

Note that you also have the option of downloading a version called “Trisquel Mini” that uses the LXDE desktop instead of GNOME. The mini version weighs in at a reasonably petite 500 MB.

There’s also a NetInstall version, and a Sources DVD, as well as a version with extra translations called “Trisquel i18n.”

If you’re a distrohopper then you might want to try it in a virtual machine via VirtualBoxVMWare, or Parallels before running it on real hardware. And if you’re totally new to Linux, then you might want to check out some of the books about linux available on amazon.

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Installation

The Trisquel install is fast and easy, it uses the same installer as Ubuntu.

Trisquel 6.0 LTS is a live distro, so you have the option of booting into it and using it without having to do an install onto your computer. If this is your first time checking out Trisquel, the live desktop is a good way to get a peek at it.

You can peruse a slideshow while your Trisquel install is completed.

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Install Erase Disk

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Install Erase Disk

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Install Download Updates

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Install Download Updates

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Install Disk Selection

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Install Disk Selection

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Install Slideshow

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Install Slideshow

The Trisquel 6.0 LTS Desktop

The Trisquel 6.0 LTS desktop is well organized, and relatively uncluttered. You’ll find four icons on the desktop:

Computer
Home
Network Servers
Trash

At the bottom you’ll find a panel with icons for the Trisquel menu, home folder, and web browser. Over to the right you’ll find icons for instant messaging, networking, volume, date, and to show/hide windows.

The Trisquel 6.0 LTS menu is old school, but that’s okay because so am I. You’ll find the usual application categories, software and system settings, places, lock screen, log out and shut down icons. It’s very simple and easy to use, even if you’ve never touched Trisquel before.

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Desktop

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Desktop

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Menu

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Menu

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Nautilus

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Nautilus

Linux Software Included in Trisquel 6.0 LTS

Here’s a sample of the linux software included in this release.

Games
AisleRiot Solitaire
Chess
Mines
Sudoku

Graphics
GIMP
gThumb Image Viewer
Simple Scan

Internet
Abrowser
Evolution Mail and Calendar
Pidgin IM
Gwibber
Liferea Feed Reader
Remmina Remote Desktop Client
GNOME PPP
Transmission

Multimedia
Movie Player
Brasero Disc Burner
OggConvert
Pitivi Video Editor
Rhythmbox Music Player
Sound Recorder

Office
LibreOffice
Dictionary
Document Viewer

Linux Software Management Tools in Trisquel 6.0 LTS

The Add/Remove applications tool is found on the Trisquel menu. It’s broken down into the usual application categories, and you can search for applications. You can also see how popular an application is based on its star rating.

To update your system, just go to System Settings and scroll down to the System menu, then click on Update Manager.

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Software Management

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Software Management

Trisquel 6.0 LTS System Settings

Trisquel 6.0 LTS System Settings

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Update Manager

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Update Manager

Problems & Headaches Found in Trisquel 6.0 LTS

Trisquel 6.0 LTS installed and ran very well for me. I didn’t see any noticeable problems or issues while running it. It seemed to be quite speedy and stable during my use.

If you’ve run into any problems or issues, please share them in the comments below. It’s always helpful for readers to know about possible headaches before doing their own install.

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Abrowser

Trisquel 6.0 LTS Abrowser

Where To Get Help for Trisquel 6.0 LTS

If you’re having problems, please post your questions in the comments below or register for the DLR forum. Other readers might be able to assist you. You might also want to check out the Trisquel 6.0 LTS documentation or discusson forum.

If you’re new to Linux, you might want to check out some of the books available about it at Amazon. You can learn quite a bit that you will probably find useful later on. You can also save lots of money with deals on laptops and tablets, desktops and monitors, components, and computer accessories.

Final Thoughts About Trisquel 6.0 LTS

As with the last release, I’m very pleased with Trisquel 6.0 LTS. It’s a fantastic distro for anyone who believes in truly free software, and it’s still a fine choice even if you aren’t a free software purist but just want a great distro to use on your computer.

Trisquel 6.0 LTS is well suited for beginner, intermediate or advanced Linux users.

What’s your take on Trisquel 6.0 LTS? Tell me in the comments below.


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Trisquel 6.0 LTS comes from the Desktop Linux Reviews blog.

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Trisquel 5.5

When it comes to Linux distributions, it’s truly different strokes for different folks. Some folks want software that is truly free, meaning that they can do with it as they please. That’s where distros like Trisquel come in. Trisquel is based on Ubuntu, but it provides only free software. You will not find proprietary software included with it.

Here is the official Trisquel take on free software:

Linux, the kernel developed and distributed by Linus Torvalds et al, contains non-Free Software, i.e., software that does not respect your essential freedoms, and it induces you to install additional non-Free Software that it doesn’t contain.

Free software, unlike proprietary, respects its users essential rights, to ensure they can:

run the program, for any purpose
study how the program works, and adapt it to their needs (which requires having access to the program’s source code).
redistribute copies so they can help others, with or without a fee
distribute copies of their modified versions to others, so that the whole community can benefit. Again, access to the source code is a precondition for this.
Free software is a matter of freedom, not price, although free software is usually distributed at no charge. Think “free” as in “free speech”, not “free beer”.

Many free software programs are copylefted. Copyleft is used by some free software licenses (most notably the GNU GPL) to protect the freedom to redistribute the program by requiring all modified and extended versions of the program to be free as well. It is a reversal of the typical use of copyright law (prohibiting others from reproducing, adapting, or distributing copies of a work), hence the name. Non-copyleft free software also exists. It is better to use copyleft in most cases, but if a program is non-copylefted free software, it is still basically ethical.

I did a review quite a while back of Trisquel, and I’m please to note that they’ve recently released Trisquel 5.5.

Live CD Desktop

Trisquel is a live distro, you can boot into it and try it before you install it.

What’s New In This Release
Here’s a sample of the new features in this release:

GNOME 3
GTK 3
Linux-libre 3.0.0
Abrowser 11
LibreOffice 3.4.4

GNOME 3 has certainly caused its share of controversy since being released. The Trisquel developers have treaded very carefully indeed in this release. Rather than use GNOME Shell, they have opted to use the GNOME 3 fallback interface. I’ll have more to say about this in the desktop section, but it’s something you should be aware of if  you are considering Trisquel as your distro of choice.

Linux-libre 3.0.0 is a project designed to help produce truly free Linux distros:

GNU Linux-libre is a project to maintain and publish 100% Free distributions of Linux, suitable for use in Free System Distributions, removing software that is included without source code, with obfuscated or obscured source code, under non-Free Software licenses, that do not permit you to change the software so that it does what you wish, and that induces or requires you to install additional pieces of non-Free Software.

Our releases can be easily adopted by 100% Free GNU/Linux distros, as well as by their users, by distros that want to enable their users to choose freedom, and by users of those that don’t.

So those of you who are very concerned about free software can rest easier now.

Abrowser is an unbranded browser that uses free add-ons from the Trisquel site rather than Mozilla’s site (since that site may contain non-free add-ons).

ABrowser

ABrowser is an unbranded version of Firefox that uses Trisquel’s free add-on library.

LibreOffice 3.4.4 includes numerous improvements, here’s a brief snippet of highlights from Softpedia:

· ability to work with and import SVG files;
· import filter for Lotus Word Pro documents;
· import filter for Microsoft Works documents;
· easily format title pages and numbering in LibreOffice Writer;
· enhanced Navigator Tool in LibreOffice Writer;
· better ergonomics for cell and sheet management in LibreOffice Calc;
· PDF import support;
· slide-show presenter console;
· better report builder;
· comes bundled with lots of great extensions.

System Requirements
I poked around on the Trisquel site but, oddly, I could not find a specific list of system requirements. Trisquel actually has some good documentation, so I was surprised that I could not find a simple list of system requirements. It’s possible that I may have missed them though. If you know what they are, please post them in the comments section below.

Since Trisquel is based on Ubuntu, use Ubuntu’s system requirements as a general rule of thumb. Please note that there are different versions of Trisquel. The system requirements obviously will differ, depending on which version you choose to run. I picked the home version for this review.

Trisquel, for home users.
Trisquel Edu for educational centers.
Trisquel Pro for small and medium-size businesses or companies.
Trisquel Mini, mainly for netbooks and older computers.

The Desktop
The first thing I always notice in a distro is the desktop wallpaper. I know, I know. Who cares, right? Well, I do. Some of them are great, some are awful, and some are just bland. Trisquel has a very pretty default wallpaper. It’s a shot of some tree tops with an evening sky full of stars. It sets a pleasant tone and feel for this distro. Then again, I’m more of a night person at this point so maybe your mileage may vary. You early risers might not like it.

Trisquel 5.5 Desktop

The desktop after Trisquel was installed.

The Trisquel developers opted not to use the default GNOME 3 interface, fearing that it would require users to install non-free drivers to use it. So, instead it uses GNOME panel 2x.  Here’s the official take from the Trisquel site:

This release is our first to be based on GNOME 3, GTK 3 and also Linux-libre 3.0.0. GNOME 3 was a big challenge, because as it is designed by now, it is not usable for our community. The new default interface of GNOME 3 is GNOME Shell, a program that requires 3D acceleration to work, as it relies on graphics composition. Sadly, many graphics cards today still lack a libre driver providing acceleration, so many users who would choose free drivers will be redirected to a fallback desktop environment. We think that this way many users could feel compelled to install non-free drivers to be able to use the new desktop, so we decided to use the fallback environment as default, and improve it when possible. Luckily this fallback is a GTK 3 implementation of GNOME panel 2x, and not only is it very usable, and even more stable than the original, but it is also accessible, something GNOME Shell is currently lacking.

One other advantage of using the fallback as default is that we were able to use it to provide the same desktop layout that many Trisquel users have become attached to. You can of course adapt and customize it with panels and applets as usual.

I know that some will disagree with this, while others will support it. I think it was a very wise move on their part. Frankly, I think this Trisquel desktop is more usable than GNOME Shell. It’s fast, stable, and you can quickly do what you need to do versus the pain in the ass that is GNOME Shell.

Desktop Panel

The panel on the Trisquel 5.5 desktop.

Panel Menu

The panel application menu.

I’ve gotten less angry about GNOME 3, but I still very much prefer the fallback desktop in Trisquel to GNOME Shell. Everything just works the way it should, so I think long-time Trisquel users will be quite happy about it. I’m not sure what will happen down the road, but for now Trisquel’s desktop is a pleasure to use.

Bundled Software

Here’s a sample of the software in this release.

Games
AisleRiot Solitaire
Chess
Mahjongg
Mines
Sudoku

Graphics
GIMP
Document Viewer
gThumb
Simple Scan

Internet
Abrowser
Evolution
Pidgin
Gwibber
Liferea
Remmina Remote Desktop
GNOME PPP
Transmission

Multimedia
Movie Player
Exaile Music Player
Brasero Disc Burner
OggConvert
Pitivi Video Editor
Sound Recorder

Office
LibreOffice
Dictionary

Software Management
Trisquel’s software manager is easy to use. To get started just click the Trisquel button in the bottom panel, and then click the Add/Remove Applications selection on the menu. Applications are broken down into the usual categories, and you can search for applications. There are star ratings, descriptions, and screenshots available (if you click the screenshot button in an application description).

Add or Remove Applications

The Add/Remove Applications tool is filled with truly free software.

Adding & Removing Software
If you want to add or remove a software application, just find it in the Add/Remove Applications tool. Click the checkbox next to it to add the application, or uncheck it if it’s already installed. Then click the Apply Changes button.

System Settings

The system settings menu for Trisquel 5.5.

Problems & Headaches
Trisquel worked very well for me, I didn’t encounter any noticeable burps or slowdowns while using it.

The only potential problem I noticed was that the install seemed a bit slow compared to other distros based on Ubuntu or Ubuntu itself. I’m not sure why, but I don’t consider it all that big of a deal because I have plenty of other things to do while the installer is running. I just turn my attention to other tasks and let the installer run.

The install itself is quite easy so don’t let my minor nitpick about it here bother you.

Install

You can watch a slideshow that touts the virtues of free software during the install.

Boot Menu

The Trisquel 5.5 boot menu before installation.

Where To Get Help
Please take a moment to register for the DLR forum; everybody is welcome. Feel free to post a message in the forum and we’ll do our best to point you in the right direction. The forum contains discussions about Linux, as well as other topics. Please stop by and say hello when you have a chance.

You might also want to check out the Trisquel FAQ, Mailing Lists, Forum and Documentation.

Final Thoughts & Who Should Use It
Trisquel 5.5 is a great choice for those who prefer to use only free software, without any kind of proprietary stuff. The developers have clearly taken the time to go out of their way to cleanse Trisquel of potentially offensive proprietary software. While some folks won’t care about this, others certainly will appreciate it. Even if you aren’t a free software purist, Trisquel 5.5 is definitely worth a download.

I found Trisquel to be a genuinely enjoyable distro. It’s what I would call a well-ordered and well developed distro. It accomplishes what the developers set out to do, and it does it in a very attractive package.

Trisquel is suitable for beginner, intermediate or advanced Linux users.

What’s your take on this distro? Tell me in the comments below. Visit Eye On Linux for Linux opinion columns and distro quick looks; visit JimLynch.com for other technology coverage.

Summary Table:

Product: Trisquel 5.5
Web Site:  http://trisquel.info/
Price: Free
Pros: Provides fully free software; uses GNOME 3 fallback interface instead of GNOME Shell.
Cons: The installer seemed a tad bit slow; those wanting to use GNOME Shell might be disappointed.
Suitable For: Beginner, intermediate or advanced Linux users who prefer truly free software.
Rating: 4/5


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Amazon Digital Deals
Great deals on music, movies and TV shows, ebooks, software and video game downloads.

Amazon Outlet
Online shopping for overstock, clearance, and closeout products.

Amazon Warehouse
Find deep discounts on open-box, like-new, and used products.

Trisquel 5.5 comes from the Desktop Linux Reviews blog.

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