Ubuntu has been the focus of Linux world for a long time. But, it received a lot of criticism when it shifted to Unity interface. The interface came kind of a shock to many devoted users of the old Ubuntu. This caused many users either to shift to other distributions or flavors of Ubuntu itself. Now, there is a similar story which many new users don’t know about.
Gnome was the popular girl in the high school of Desktop Environments. But due to rapid changes, while shifting to version 3 from version 2, many Gnome users felt that the old Gnome was still worth staying around. Both the groups had a similar background. Gnome 2 is basically today’s mate. Enough history for now, today, we will be reviewing the Ubuntu mate.
Installation Of Ubuntu MATE 16.10
Most users by now should be able to install any distribution by themselves. But, just for the sake of new users, we will start with installation.
When you boot from the DVD/USB, there is no grub menu. It directly jumps to this screen. Language, try and install. You need to check if it is compatible with your hardware. So, we recommend you to try it first.
This is the first thing we see after that step. The wallpaper is a definitely not my favorite. But let’s get to appearance later.
Click on the install Ubuntu icon on the desktop and select language before clicking on continue.
You will be asked to download updates if you are connected to the Internet and to install things which are necessary to play mp3 and flash videos. Make sure you check that if you want those features.
Select the partitioning method that suits your needs. The installer will show you the partitions that will be affected. Confirm the changes and continue.
Select timezone. Just click on your location on the map.
Select your keyboard layout.
This is the final step. Enter your details. Just remember that this is the chance to set a short password. Afterward, It will be difficult to set short passwords without editing the configuration files.
Wait for the installation to finish. I love this slide though. After installation, restart.
Mate is a lightweight Desktop Environment. It has a traditional feel. There is a panel on top. There are the applets on the far right. The application menu has a categorized list of all installed applications. We will later see which apps are provided by default. The wallpaper can be changed by right-clicking on the desktop and selecting desktop settings. We can access themes from the settings. There are enough themes that will let you customize it according to your preferences.
If you are not a fan of default statement. You have the option of custom theme.
If you are not a fan of default themes. You have the option of custom theme.
As we discussed earlier, this is supposed to be a lightweight OS. So, most of the default applications are lightweight ones.
The default text editor is Pluma. It has everything a text editor has, although nothing fancy like Gedit or Kate.
The default terminal is an obvious mate-terminal.
We have a file manager called Caja.
The default browser is Firefox.
Features Of Ubuntu Mate
All the above things are provided by almost every beginner distro out there, But this distro has some things that are not usually available by default.
Task manager is kind of a relief for the users who were users of windows. It is similar to windows task manager.
This is provided by default in case you want to tweak your system like a power user. This allows more control over the system but is complicated for first-time users.
I know that this is kind of new. Usually, no OS except for distros related to education provides this. But this is really useful.
We have control center which has more than enough options to have complete freedom to set up your system.
An interesting setting is mate tweak. You can configure options related to mate desktop such as panel or desktop icons here.
I am using Ubuntu mate for four days to see how stable it is. I am kind of surprised that not even a slight error has shown up since. Probably the reason for this kind of stability is that mate has been around for many years now. Anyway, this is best for people who want traditional desktop experience and this is also for those computers which are not able to run modern operating systems anymore. This is really lightweight considering that the ram usage was around 400 MB. This is also useful for introducing new people to PC world considering its simplicity. So, If you belong to any of the above categories, then go get the live image and install it now.