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Technologically speaking, Ubuntu is a pretty good Linux distribution. But sometimes you might wish that the user experience in Ubuntu could be better. There are plenty of Ubuntu-based derivatives that try to solve this problem in their own ways, but one distribution that’s gaining some special attention is Deepin.
Interested? Here are five reasons why you should try Deepin, especially if you’re new to Linux.
Based On Ubuntu
First off, Deepin is based on Ubuntu, which provides many under-the-hood benefits. Since Ubuntu and Ubuntu-based distributions are widely used across the Linux community, you’ll know that all packages are supported and updates are guaranteed (especially security updates). Additionally, any packages that you find online that are made for Ubuntu can be installed in Deepin without any worries at all. While Deepin might not be very popular, you can feel good using it.
Deepin’s Own Desktop Environment
One of the biggest benefits of using Deepin is that it doesn’t have the Unity desktop environment that Ubuntu uses. Instead, Deepin has its own desktop environment under the same name that provides an extremely simple, elegant design. The high amount of simplicity won’t be much of a turn-on for more experienced Linux users, but it’s perfect for beginners where less is more. Plus it looks good and is intuitive.
The desktop environment just has a dock along the bottom of the screen, which holds shortcuts for your favorite applications as well as indicators for things like network, sound, and battery.
For the nerds, you may like to know this desktop environment has been rewritten in HTML5 and Go languages, which makes it very modern and easy to manage.
Custom App Store
Deepin also has its own custom app store, which in my opinion looks better than the Ubuntu App Store. You have a lot of categories on the left side; “Upgrade”, “Uninstall”, and “Installation” tabs along the top, and then a nice display of various featured applications.
Clicking on an application will fetch a description and screenshots. It’s easy to browse and install software with this, which is also important for new Linux users.
Custom System Settings
The custom system settings dialog in Deepin makes looking at system settings much less intimidating. Launching the system settings just displays a panel that appears from the right side of the screen. It will then display various categories, each of which will show simple and elegant configurable options. This is easily my most favorite system settings implementation, and it’ll be a joy to use for anyone.
In line with simplicity and elegance, the custom installer (which installs the distribution onto your hard drive) is perfect for new Linux users. All you have to do is type in a username, a name for the computer, your password, and then choose which hard drive you want Deepin to be installed on. That’s it — it’ll take care of the rest.
Of course, when you choose which hard drive to install to, there’s also an expert mode so that you can do a few other things such as specify where the bootloader should be installed and perform some partitioning. However, it defaults to simple mode so new Linux users won’t have to worry about all that.
Getting started is easy enough — just download the ISO image file, write it to a USB drive, and then configure your BIOS to boot from the USB drive rather than your normal hard drive. You’ll be trying out Deepin in a live environment where you can play around with it as much as you want and it won’t make any permanent changes to your computer.
Thoughts On Deepin
As you can see, Deepin is a very interesting Linux distribution to try out, especially if you haven’t tried out Linux before. It’ll be interesting to see how this distribution progresses, and I seriously hope that it gets more popular because it definitely has the potential to be huge. More people just need to know about it.
What are your thoughts about Deepin? Do you think Deepin is a good choice for new Linux users? Let us know in the comments!