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-   -   Zeven Steps to Heaven? (https://www.techsupportalert.com/freeware-forum/linux/11562-zeven-steps-to-heaven.html)

MidnightCowboy 31. Mar 2013 12:00 PM

Zeven Steps to Heaven?
 
Apart from the testing versions, Debian Linux is known for its stability and strict adherence to the use of free software. It also has a reputation for not being so user friendly as say Ubuntu based distros. Some other distributions use Debian as a base, Solus being one notable example and of course there is always LMDE.

This is how Mint describes the differences between LMDE and their mainstream release.

Pros:
  • You don’t need to ever re-install the system. New versions of software and updates are continuously brought to you.
  • It’s faster and more responsive than Ubuntu-based editions.
Cons:
  • LMDE requires a deeper knowledge and experience with Linux, dpkg and APT.
  • Debian is a less user-friendly/desktop-ready base than Ubuntu. Expect some rough edges.
  • No EFI, GPT or secureBoot support.

Another that has been around for a while is a German disto called Zeven OS Neptune. A new version has just been released that seeks to make Debian more user friendly, so Neptune 3.0 includes flash, codecs and a raft of other stuff all pre-installed to make life easy from the outset. The Neptune ISO can either be burned to a DVD or USB. This creates a live version you can try out on your existing system before deciding whether or not to make a full install either in place of Windows/your existing Linux or as a dual boot alongside it.

I dual booted Zeven Neptune alongside Windows 7, replacing my existing Linux in the process. Everything went smoothly and I really like how Zeven implements the KDE desktop. Chromium is the default browser but if like me you prefer Chrome this installs automatically from the downloaded package. Everything worked out of the box except when I installed Clementine it would not play radio streams until I installed some more Gstreamer stuff, but the Muon Package Manager handled all this and I was soon up and running. There is also a Muon Software Center for even easier program management.

The focus of the distro is in German although there is of course an English language install option and also an English forum where support is timely and constructive.

So, if you want to try a distro that is fast, looks gorgeous and works without falling over every five minutes, give Zeven OS Neptune 3.0 a try.

wdhpr 31. Mar 2013 04:27 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MC
So, if you want to try a distro that is fast, looks gorgeous and works without falling over every five minutes, give Zeven OS Neptune 3.0 a try.

Good looking desktop
Nothing surprises me when it comes to the ingenuity of the German people. For me, I prefer Gnome and if Mate and Cinnamon remain viable as Ubuntu's Unity and Gnome 3 scamper to find their identity (just my opinion) I will enjoy my Minty operating system for years to come. Further more Debian is the foundation from which many successful distros have been built upon and KDE seems right at home with Debian. With that in mind KDE will always remain as a option and that's not to say its second best, just that I've become comfortable with Gnome.

MidnightCowboy 30. Apr 2013 07:22 AM

Nice review of Neptune here:

"ZevenOS has come up with a KDE distro which is perfect blend of aesthetics and performance. The interface looks professional and attractive, application interfaces blend well with the default theme. Every bit of the distro shows the hard work and attention to details put by the developers. Everything works out of the box and I found it to be really stable (remember, it is Debian!)".

http://mylinuxexplore.blogspot.com.b...asten-kde.html

MidnightCowboy 24. Mar 2015 02:58 PM

Zeven OS Neptune has just been updated to 4.3 and this release is very refined and easy on the eye.

Screenshot

If anyone is looking for a distro that has been around for some time and is built to be rock solid, then IMO Neptune and Trisquel would be the ones to try, depending on your DE preference.

Remah 24. Mar 2015 07:41 PM

MC, great copy writing - the title of this thread always draws me in. :)

MidnightCowboy 24. Mar 2015 11:20 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Remah (Post 109298)
MC, great copy writing - the title of this thread always draws me in. :)

Good that I'm useful for something. :D

If only my technical abilities were in the same league as yours I would be more worthy of the space I take up on the planet.

Remah 25. Mar 2015 03:29 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MidnightCowboy (Post 109309)
Good that I'm useful for something. :D

If only my technical abilities were in the same league as yours I would be more worthy of the space I take up on the planet.

I certainly listen to what you say about Linux distros because you take the time to work on them. I hardly ever get the time to try any of them but I read your evaluations with interest. This time, your comments about the stability and beauty of Zeven have got me interested enough to to try it.

MidnightCowboy 25. Mar 2015 05:37 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Remah (Post 109317)
This time, your comments about the stability and beauty of Zeven have got me interested enough to to try it.

Great. Let us know what you think to it.

The default look was tweaked somewhat to appear as in the screenshot I posted, but this type of customization is quickly and easily achieved for anyone wanting to create a more individual desktop.

Remah 27. Mar 2015 07:43 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MidnightCowboy (Post 109320)
Great. Let us know what you think to it.

The default look was tweaked somewhat to appear as in the screenshot I posted, but this type of customization is quickly and easily achieved for anyone wanting to create a more individual desktop.

I've installed Neptune and ChaletOS to multiboot and both were mixed bags, disappointing considering I expected a bigger improvement in ease of installation after a couple of years without installing Linix. And it's probably three or four years since I last installed Ubuntu.

They certainly run much better than they install and I've had no problems with any of the applications I've tried. :) But most of the people I help would not get through a multiboot install even if they can cope with a Windows install. :(

i was planning to do a clean install of each as well but it is hardly worth it when the main install issues are common to the underlying distros and existed last time I looked. It will be interesting to go back to FreeBSD and maybe one of its derivatives to see how much has changed there in the same period.

Live disk
Load times were about the same for both and both images were about the same size: Neptune .ISO was 1.3GB; ChaletOS .ISO was 1.4GB. Neither was an issue for me but many users will balk at downloading more than 1GB and they probably won't use much of the software.

Install
For Windows users I prefer the Neptune installation process over ChaletOS but only just. Neither was as good as they should be given their issues with basic home networks:
- Neptune needs better documentation and help. + ChaletOS website is simple and has much of the info you need.
- Neptune displayed frightening - at least for baisic users - warning messages and relatively sparse progress messages. - ChaletOS provided much better progress messages, when it didn't have a blank screen, and hid boot warning messages. The problem was that there were too many options for a beginner and not much help if I selected any option other than the default. I had one install freeze, options that wouldn't allow me to go back when I realized that another option was going to be less difficult, and strange things like recommending a WiFi connection but never connecting to it (it had the correct password). In the end, it was easier to install directly from the Live disk to avoid a problem where it tried to and couldn't unmount the Live disk and wouldn't progress any further.
+ Neptune used GParted for partition management as a separate step and selected empty partitions to install on. - ChaletOS tried to do it with its own dialogs and partition manager. It was more difficult to setup partly because it wanted to install to the largest partitions even though they were obviously in use. Many users wanting to dual boot would find themselves in trouble working which partition to use.
+ For the average Windows user, I'm not sure if it is a positive or negative defaulting to BtrFS for the system partition but Neptune does and I like it.
+ Neptune provided the option to place Home on another partition. - ChaletOS did not. This is one of the main install options that Windows users request so it would be a good idea to have it.
- Neptune had no option for a swap partition. + ChaletOS allowed a separate swap partition to be chosen.
+ Neptune requested an admin password and setup a superuser account. - ChaletOS wouldn't allow a proper name (first letter captitalized) user name.
- Neither connected to the Internet automatically through a cabled connection. They both find the wireless card, which was turned off, and want to use that. The ethernet link only connected after I manually configured the settings and then changed it back to automatic DHCP. I don't remember having this problem in the past where I remember eth devices were always prioritized over wlan. Both disabled Avahi network services discovery because the network has a local domain. I'd never used Avahi but as a Bonjour equivalent they should provide something better than disabling it for what is a common home network configuration.
-Both told me the languages need updating ... for English when they already have 1.3-1.4GB images!?

User interface
ChaletOS is clearly better looking and would be easier for a Windows user to move to:
- Neptune looks better once the desktop loads but is underwhelming while installing. + ChaletOS looks better right from the Live disk startup.
- Neptune looks really good if you prefer a monochromatic display. Generally it obviously tries to use as little screen space as possible but text is too small and icons harder to see. + Chalet looks a lot better right from booting Live. Icons are fonts are generally larger and more easily read. It has easier access to interface settings.
- Neptune main menu is cluttered and could be confusing to basic users. It is enough different to the XP to 7 start menu that it will cause problems. Again, using a bit more screen space would help a lot. + ChaletOS main menu is less cramped and slightly easier to follow.

Remah 27. Mar 2015 07:50 AM

Further info I should have added:
- Neptune often won't restart so I have to use the power button.
+ Neptune is 64-bit which I much prefer to 32-bit ChaletOS.

MidnightCowboy 27. Mar 2015 08:20 AM

Some valuable feedback there Remah which I'm sure potential users of either distro will find useful.

I too experienced the restart issue with Neptune but this went away once the system had been updated. Sometimes these things can be theme specific too.

Regarding looks, I'm invariably not satisfied with the defaults served up and change pretty much everything including fonts, font sizes, window borders and icons. Sometimes I will use a different icon theme and even change the home folder icons manually to something else. Just depends on how I feel at the time. With KDE of course even the colors for menus, highlights, tool tips and other stuff can be changed so a completely personalized look is only limited by your own imagination.

I'd always thought the language updates were the result of me having to select English for the system language but Portuguese (Brazil) for the keyboard layout but obviously not. Even so, I often have to juggle the settings to get stuff like Conky and Superkaramba to display in English, even though the system already does.

Some dual boot installs are easier than others with a simple "install xxx alongside Windows" , choice, but others are not. The good news, although granted this needs learning once, is once you have a dual boot setup it's pretty straightforward to use the manual install option to replace the existing Linux with something else.

I've never had the luxury of an automatic network connection and have always had to configure my DSL for the live + install session. Occasionally (Solus) this would still be there after the install completed but mostly I have to re-configure it all over again. On top of that, the new modem now forced upon me by my secondary ISP for mobile broadband does not work with any distro I have tried it with so when my cable goes down I'm forced to use Windows. :eek::D No doubt there is some geeky option using modeswitch or by editing the network files that the likes of you could sort out in 30 seconds but for the greater challenged such as myself, if it doesn't work when I plug it in I'll take the next easiest option. :)

Remah 27. Mar 2015 09:37 AM

Once installed, the user experience is much improved over two years ago. It will be interesting to see how they go as I use the applications for more real work.
  • I've applied updates to Neptune so I'll see if the restart issue goes away.
  • It's frustrating that the cabled connection works automatically but only after I've manually connected first.
  • I plan to get Conky on Neptune - I haven't even looked to see if it is there. On ChaletOS it doesn't pick up my CPU temperatures which is the feature I want.

Remah 27. Mar 2015 10:04 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Remah (Post 109393)
Further info I should have added:
- Neptune often won't restart so I have to use the power button.
+ Neptune is 64-bit which I much prefer to 32-bit ChaletOS.

My mistake. ChaletOS is 64-bit. I just downloaded the wrong image. :o

So I'll get the joy of reinstalling it a better comparison of performance against Neptune.

MidnightCowboy 27. Mar 2015 10:12 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Remah (Post 109403)
Once installed, the user experience is much improved over two years ago. It will be interesting to see how they go as I use the applications for more real work.
  • I've applied updates to Neptune so I'll see if the restart issue goes away.
  • It's frustrating that the cabled connection works automatically but only after I've manually connected first.
  • I plan to get Conky on Neptune - I haven't even looked to see if it is there. On ChaletOS it doesn't pick up my CPU temperatures which is the feature I want.

IMO the best way to go with Conky is this one, including the default theme pack.

http://www.teejeetech.in/p/conky-manager.html

My system needs lm_sensors installed and configured to pick up temperatures.

Remah 30. Mar 2015 12:18 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MidnightCowboy (Post 85503)
...[*]Debian is a less user-friendly/desktop-ready base than Ubuntu. Expect some rough edges.
...
Another that has been around for a while is a German disto called Zeven OS Neptune. A new version has just been released that seeks to make Debian more user friendly, so Neptune 3.0 includes flash, codecs and a raft of other stuff all pre-installed to make life easy from the outset. The Neptune ISO can either be burned to a DVD or USB. This creates a live version you can try out on your existing system before deciding whether or not to make a full install either in place of Windows/your existing Linux or as a dual boot alongside it.

I dual booted Zeven Neptune alongside Windows 7, replacing my existing Linux in the process. Everything went smoothly and I really like how Zeven implements the KDE desktop. Chromium is the default browser but if like me you prefer Chrome this installs automatically from the downloaded package. Everything worked out of the box except when I installed Clementine it would not play radio streams until I installed some more Gstreamer stuff, but the Muon Package Manager handled all this and I was soon up and running. There is also a Muon Software Center for even easier program management.

The focus of the distro is in German although there is of course an English language install option and also an English forum where support is timely and constructive.

So, if you want to try a distro that is fast, looks gorgeous and works without falling over every five minutes, give Zeven OS Neptune 3.0 a try.

MC, you're original post has proven to be spot on for me.

Ubuntu has dramatically improved usability since I last installed it 5-6 years ago. The Software Centre has made it so easy to get applications up and running on ChaletOS, even .NET applications like KeePass.

I'm finding Neptune is far less comfortable to setup to match Windows. The package manager is less help than I expected. Now I've reread your post I'll try the Muon Software Center.

MidnightCowboy 30. Mar 2015 12:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Remah (Post 109504)
MC, you're original post has proven to be spot on for me.

Ubuntu has dramatically improved usability since I last installed it 5-6 years ago. The Software Centre has made it so easy to get applications up and running on ChaletOS, even .NET applications like KeePass.

I'm finding Neptune is far less comfortable to setup to match Windows. The package manager is less help than I expected. Now I've reread your post I'll try the Muon Software Center.

Pleased you found it useful.

IMO another step forward in software centers is that included with Deepin (called Deepin Store) which even comes with a selection of skins. :) In fact the whole concept behind Deepin is so different, it is well worth look for that alone. Some users will no doubt find the customized DE too restricted but there are more choices for the various items now than in previous versions. You can also switch from a dock to a choice of panel layouts with just a couple of clicks.

Remah 30. Mar 2015 01:14 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MidnightCowboy (Post 109506)
Pleased you found it useful.

IMO another step forward in software centers is that included with Deepin (called Deepin Store) which even comes with a selection of skins. :) In fact the whole concept behind Deepin is so different, it is well worth look for that alone. Some users will no doubt find the customized DE too restricted but there are more choices for the various items now than in previous versions. You can also switch from a dock to a choice of panel layouts with just a couple of clicks.

LOL. I don't usually do any customization so it's wasted on me. But if it's only a couple of clicks for a major change then that could be worthwhile.

I almost wish I hadn't started because I can see myself following more of your suggestions and getting deep into the rabbit hole of Windows replacements. (That pun is probably wasted too)

Anyway, I'll swap Neptune out and try Deepin instead. That keeps the same installed packages as a point of difference from ChaletOS, which has a better set in my opinion.

MidnightCowboy 30. Mar 2015 02:00 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Remah (Post 109507)

I almost wish I hadn't started because I can see myself following more of your suggestions and getting deep into the rabbit hole of Windows replacements. (That pun is probably wasted too)

You might actually like Deepin then since it doesn't have a raft of customizing options, but IMO for a lot of users there is enough.

Their control panel is the most different to that found in other DE's but most I speak to find it logical and actually like the layout.

For wallpapers, a separate folder will appear in your Pictures directory after install into which you can add images for these to then appear as wallpaper choices.

MidnightCowboy 18. Aug 2015 06:33 AM

An updated release of ZevenOS Neptune, 4.4. has now been launched.

http://www.neptuneos.com/en/

With a download size of 1.8G you would expect it to contain most everything, and it does. :)

This release also contains a large update for hardware support and indeed is the first Neptune that will run on both my Intel based desktop and the older NVIDIA box.

If anyone is looking for an LTS, KDE distro based on Debian stable, Neptune is well worth a try.

Screenshot.

danielson 19. Aug 2015 09:07 PM

Is it an issue to install 64bit Linux as dual boot with 32bit Win 7 ?
Read somewhere that if you have more than 4G of RAM, it should be okay.

MidnightCowboy 20. Aug 2015 06:33 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by danielson (Post 113636)
Is it an issue to install 64bit Linux as dual boot with 32bit Win 7 ?
Read somewhere that if you have more than 4G of RAM, it should be okay.

As long as the machine is 64bit capable it will be fine. Most KDE distros have a recommendation for just 1GB of memory. What you read about is only relevant to a Windows system.

This is from the Ubuntu wiki:

All 64-bit (x86-64) CPUs should be fast enough to run Ubuntu and can run the 32-bit (x86) version as well. For an optimized installation (and especially for those wishing to run more than ~3 GiB of RAM) however, a 64-bit installation CD is available. The 32-bit version tends to be easier to use and runs into less problems.

danielson 20. Aug 2015 01:39 PM

Good.

Just tried live CD with Neptune and it wants a username + p.w.?

MidnightCowboy 20. Aug 2015 06:04 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by danielson (Post 113653)
Good.

Just tried live CD with Neptune and it wants a username + p.w.?

This was not the case with my live session.

I remember from an older release however that the live user was ‘user’ (without quotes) and password was ‘live’. Don't know if it's the same for this one but also don't know why you are being asked for it.

danielson 21. Aug 2015 01:54 AM

MC, i was trying to dual boot with Antergos before you posted and it hung on me, so i had to re-install Win 7. Kind of puts a damper on my appreciation of Linux for the time being.

MidnightCowboy 21. Aug 2015 06:22 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by danielson (Post 113663)
MC, i was trying to dual boot with Antergos before you posted and it hung on me, so i had to re-install Win 7. Kind of puts a damper on my appreciation of Linux for the time being.

I've always recommended to check the appropriate distro forums first before installing anything and Antergos has several posts about hung installations either during or at first boot. Others such as Manjaro can also cause complications depending on your partition scheme, although they've recently updated their installer so maybe this is no longer the case.

It would have been a safer bet to dual boot with something well proven to be happy with Windows such as Mint. You could always overwrite this later with another distro or use Rescatux to restore your Windows boot in the event of a mishap.

danielson 21. Aug 2015 01:39 PM

You're a wise man MC.
Is there any particular feature that you appreciate most in Neptune?
Antergos do have nice interface with their distro as well as online support.
I know aesthetics isn't everything but Neptune would need a bit of a touch up (at least from what i saw online).

MidnightCowboy 21. Aug 2015 02:49 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by danielson (Post 113678)
Is there any particular feature that you appreciate most in Neptune?

Debatable about the "wise" part but these days I'll take any compliment. :D

I guess only because it installs into both my machines. For various reasons I need to swap between the two regularly and my wife also uses them so it makes sense to have the same system in each although both are dual booted, one with Windows and the other with a second Linux. Being KDE though, personalized configurations are plentiful as they are with other KDE distros. The only potential limitations will be graphics related depending on your hardware configuration and might not permit all of the desktop effects to function.

Ratzo 31. Aug 2015 12:30 PM

Hi MC So Windows would be your primary os ?

MidnightCowboy 31. Aug 2015 12:42 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ratzo (Post 113853)
Hi MC So Windows would be your primary os ?

No, Windows takes up only about 5% of my usage time.


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