ZorinOS 16 is exactly what a Linux desktop distribution should be

Jack Wallen provides the newest model of ZorinOS a go and comes away together with his thoughts sufficiently blown and a unique opinion on what Linux distributions needs to be.


Picture: Zorin.com

Up to now 20+ years, I’ve used and examined extra Linux distributions than I can keep in mind. A lot of these variations on an open-source theme have been good. A few of them have been excellent. Just a few of them have been nice. However solely a handful have been really impressed. Of that lengthy checklist of distributions, I might think about the likes of Pop!_OS COSMIC, Deepin Linux, Linux Mint and elementaryOS to be of the inspiring kind.

SEE: 5 Linux server distributions you ought to be utilizing (TechRepublic Premium)

And now, I’ve one other distribution so as to add to that checklist: ZorinOS 16. 

To be completely trustworthy, I wasn’t anticipating a lot from this distribution. Sure, it is impressed me up to now. However I’ve all the time felt ZorinOS to be a type of working programs attempting too arduous to be Home windows. It all the time gave the impression to be clinging to the notion that the Home windows GUI was the superior manner of doing issues. And I get that. The overwhelming majority of desktop PC customers are acquainted with Home windows. It is what they grew up with and what they know. And alter is difficult.

That notion of ZorinOS was completely modified with the discharge of the sixteenth iteration of the platform. This new launch is strictly what a Linux desktop distribution needs to be: It is stunning, productive, steady, clear and enjoyable. Sure, enjoyable. The builders have added simply sufficient particular sauce into the combo to offer their newest launch a little bit of much-needed pizzazz. So ZorinOS is not a Home windows wannabe … it is Linux, pure and easy. Even higher, it is precisely what fashionable Linux desktops ought to try to emulate.

I downloaded and put in the “Core” version of ZorinOS and put in it as a VirtualBox visitor, and wow, did it impress.

It is all concerning the UI

ZorinOS 16 “Core” means that you can choose from 4 completely different desktop layouts (Determine A): Two which can be Home windows-inspired and two which can be GNOME-inspired.

Determine A


Choosing your desktop format of selection in ZorinOS 16.

I went with the GNOME utility overview feel and appear for my take a look at, however any of the alternatives are rock strong. I additionally (giddily) enabled the Jelly Mode. What’s Jelly Mode, you ask? Jelly Mode is a throwback to the previous Compiz desktop days. As soon as enabled, when a window is moved (both by you shifting it, resizing it or minimizing it) it wobbles as if it have been made from, you guessed it, jelly. It is a very enjoyable function that makes me lengthy for these good previous days of the Compiz dice and extra eye-candy delights.

You possibly can allow Jelly Mode within the Zorin Appearances app, underneath Interface (Determine B).

Determine B


Enabling the Jelly Mode in ZorinOS 16.

The ZorinOS 16 UI is completely implausible. It is the right combination of enjoyable {and professional}. It is clear, it is easy to make use of and it is completely rock strong. Nothing concerning the UI will get in the way in which of you being productive.

And talking of being productive …

An ideal choice of apps

Many Linux distributions have opted to go the “minimal” route by not together with many of the apps we generally use. It makes good sense: Builders wish to give customers a selection in what’s put in on the desktop. However when a person new to Linux logs in for the primary time, you need them to have what they should get their work achieved. That is one other space the place ZorinOS shines. Out of the field, you may discover LibreOffice, GIMP, Firefox, Evolution (for e mail), Firefox, GNOME Maps, Cheese (webcam software program), Pitivi (video editor), Rhythmbox (audio participant), GNOME Climate, a sound recorder, a handful of straightforward video games and extra. 

SEE: Rust: What builders must find out about this programming language (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

Any person may hop onto ZorinOS 16 and discover the whole lot they want, with out having to put in a lot of something. Positive, you would possibly wish to add the likes of Zoom and Slack, each of which will be discovered within the GNOME Software program app (Determine C). So, with a couple of fast clicks, you’ll be able to have the precise software program array essential to satisfy most each want.

Determine C


Putting in Slack from inside GNOME Software program on ZorinOS 16.

You possibly can join ZorinOS to Android

The icing on this already-delicious cake is that it makes connecting the desktop to your Android gadget a no brainer. With Zorin Join (Determine D, which I will be protecting subsequent week), you’ll be able to pair your cellphone and your desktop for simple sharing of content material. You possibly can handle your textual content messages, management your cursor (so the cellphone acts as a trackpad), ring your cellphone, mount a folder from the cellphone to the desktop, share recordsdata and extra. 

Determine D


ZorinOS 16 linked to my Pixel 5.

After working with Zorin Join, I am really stunned extra Linux distributions aren’t together with an identical device by default. Sure, KDE has KDE Join, and there are different apps obtainable for this objective, however ZorinOS 16 completely nails Linux/Android sync/connectivity, and each Linux desktop developer ought to take observe.

Who’s ZorinOS 16 for?

Anybody. Interval. That is how good ZorinOS 16 is. It does not matter what degree of talent you’ve gotten, ZorinOS 16 is able to assist make your desktop expertise a pleasant romp via the world of Linux. Because it’s based mostly on Ubuntu 20.04.3, it consists of all the standard Ubuntu user-friendliness underneath the hood. However don’t be concerned, if you’re new to Linux you should not should trouble with issues just like the command-line interface, because the ZorinOS 16 desktop UI will maintain your hand simply sufficient to maintain you from getting misplaced within the muck and mire higher suited to the Linux devotees. 

ZorinOS 16 is pretty much as good a desktop working system as you may discover. That may sound like hyperbole, however I actually can not consider a desktop OS that’s as stunning as it’s useful and usable. In case you’re searching for a brand new desktop distribution to problem what you suppose Linux is, give ZorinOS 16 a attempt to see if it does not in a short time win you over.

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