Review by Goblin[RFD]
If you choose one of the mainstream distro’s out there such as openSUSE, Ubuntu, Fedora, you will see plenty of testimonials and reviews about them. You can read pages of glowing (and in some cases no so glowing) reports of their functionality and features.
With that in mind, Openbytes concentrates on looking at the lesser known distro’s, and in fact at the time of writing this, NimbleX 2008 was not even mentioned in the top 50 on distrowatch. Thats a shame, and Ill explain why.
The iso image is approximately 200meg in size, which is quite amazing when you consider that some of the opensource games that have been reviewed here are larger. After burning the image to disk, I booted the LiveCD for some NimbleX goodness to see if it was as fast as the site was claiming.
Even booting off the LiveCD was fast, and instantly my Netgear hardware was detected, I wasnt put into the horrible 800×600 resolution that so many distros have done to me in the past, infact as soon as the KDE desktop boot option was loaded, I was ready to rock!
Before I continue, Ill list some of the features that our NimbleX has:
The default desktop is KDE, however there are Enlightenment 16+17, EDE, IceWM, Fluxbox, Openbox and TWM to choose from. Koffice is included for your productivity, as is the Gimp for gfx and Transmission for all you evil Bittorrent users! Theres a host of other software included with the distro, and from the LiveCD with no “fiddling” I found myself ready to be productive!
NimbleX also has “out of the box” bluetooth support, however I was unable to test this feature, due to not having a bluetooth facility on the test machine.
So does it fly? Yep it sure does! milliseconds to load apps, and smooth execution. I was always impressed at the speed of Ubuntu (contrary to reviews stating it was slow) but NimbleX is much faster.
So who would it appeal to? You can install NimbleX to USB stick and since its a tiny distro, those will little storage space can have a fully functioning OS. NimbleX only requires 128meg to run, so older machines will benefit from the distro’s small requirements. NimbleX will certainly be a consideration when I am salvaging an old system back to functionality.
So am I a convert? Yes and no. Yes because Ill certainly find a home (or two) for this speedy little distro, but no because it wont be installed on my main rig. I am very happy with Ubuntu (Hardy Heron) and having used it for a while, very comfortable with it. I dont think many people change distro’s on a whim, however if you are a first time Linux user, or using an older machine, I dont think you can go far wrong with this little gem.
I think this is a great little distro, fast, great “out of the box” compatibility and similar enough to Windows so as not to make it alien to any new user. A great deal of thanks and respect needs to go out to the contributors to the NimbleX distro, and it puts MS to shame that a little distro can provide fast out of the box functionality for free. Can someone remind me why people buy MS products?
But wait! theres more! From the website you can customize your own NimbleX distro before download, there are wizards available that allow you to choose packages etc depending on what you want to use NimbleX for and once all your options are assembled into the ISO you can download it. (your personalised distro remains on the system for 12 hours). Can it get any better than this?
I really hope this distro gets the credit and usage it deserves. Get yourself over to the site now!
– A great distro, that is small in size, fast, and hassle free!