Gizmo's Freeware Forum

Gizmo's Freeware Forum (
-   Linux (
-   -   Zorin - Windows comes to Linux? (

MidnightCowboy 17. Nov 2010 02:52 PM

Zorin - Windows comes to Linux?
Question: How would you like to load Windows 7 or XP, and in less than half an hour be surfing away with no fear of infection or other nasties?

Well, with Zorin you can, supposedly. In fact they make a statement to this affect during the install process.

If you donate to the project you can even get a Vista or W2K lookalike too (are they serious? :D)

Once you've got over the initial shock you can begin to appreciate that this Ubuntu based Linux distro has been purpose built to attract Windows users to the “other side”. Looks aren't everything though so Zorin has also been designed to work out of the box for pretty much all that the average person would need.

This is not new of course for Ubuntu based offerings. Mint has already developed a loyal following and there are others too. Zorin though goes much further than this and makes no attempt to cater for those already converted to Linux although I'm certain that it will still appeal to many. No, this is aimed squarely at XP and 7 migrants who want to dual boot or replace their existing system with something that looks familiar and acts accordingly. My impression is that Zorin have done a pretty solid job in achieving this objective.

Although I've had a 64 bit capable machine for over a year I've always run x32 versions of something or other in it (don't ask me why – much of what I do has little basis in logic! :D). This time though having been persuaded by what I'd read I opted for the x64 core install, deciding to wipe Ubuntu completely and use Zorin as my primary OS.

The download is a bit bigger than the usual at 1.1GB but no big deal in the modern scheme of things and not surprising either when you consider what they've set out to achieve.

So, armed with my much worn DVDRW (there is a USB option) I set off once again into the unknown.

First impressions count for a lot in my book and there's always that air of expectation when you wait for the desktop to load first time around. Sure you can see the umpteen screenshots scattered around the net but it's still not the same as having it appear in front of you for real :)

I've said in previous posts that I felt Ubuntu was the best choice for first time Linux users with Mandriva and PCLinuxOS being more in tune for those wishing to retain a Windows type look. This opinion has now changed!

There's an excellent review of Zorin here so no need to duplicate that:

Suffice to say that installing from the live DVD is a breeze and I was soon up and running with my new system.

Windows migrants will certainly appreciate the “start menu” and the fact that the whole system has been designed to run out of the box including support for multimedia codecs. I ran through a bunch of mine in different formats and everything worked as promised.

What folks might not appreciate having just downloaded 1.1G of install disk is the further 425MB of updates now required but I guess this has to be expected for this type of distro.

A lot of customized touches have been added to Zorin including a “Look Changer” and a useful backup feature called “Back In Time” which will also allow you to recover accidentally deleted files.

Overall, if you are considering Linux and/or already have Ubuntu I would check Zorin out. It definitely offers something different and the experience for me at any rate has been first class.

Sope 17. Nov 2010 02:59 PM

Dedoimedo also reviewed Zorin here.

Jojo Yee 17. Nov 2010 04:04 PM


Originally Posted by Sope (Post 40290)
Dedoimedo also reviewed Zorin here.

Noted this conclusion:


Overall, Zorin is a re-branded Ubuntu flavor, with some extras added. But there are too many leftovers from the original system to make Zorin a fully unique, fully independent entity. The word Ubuntu, in both uppercase and lowercase, shows all over the place, inside programs and menus, making the distinction really blurred.

In this regard, for instance, Linux Mint is a far more mature fork than Zorin. However, unlike many quick conversions, with merely a wallpaper change, Zorin does manage to be a very successful, bug-free conversion. And this is a really good thing.

However, I'd like to see more focus added to polishing out the menus and brushing up the styling.

The only question remaining is that of necessity. Is it really needed, considered the competition, considered the impact Ubuntu Lucid made? Aren't all the changes merely a three-hour effort of polishing the base Ubuntu installations and repackaging it?

Zorin is a very decent choice for new Linux users, but for veterans, the choice between Ubuntu and Zorin makes no difference. For fresh converts, though, Zorin is an excellent, smooth, painless stepping stone in the world of Linux. The system runs well, it looks good, the Compiz integration is excellent, and the selection of program is rich.

If you have friends who ponder the brave new ways of freedom, you may want to point them in the direction of Zorin. It's a good choice.
From the links it says somewhere that Zorin is based on the earlier version of Ubuntu with some tweaks and addons. I don't think I'll change shoes that often, but it does have some good points to try it out. :D

eyeb 17. Nov 2010 04:29 PM

hm nice, looks kind of like mac colors too. I'll download and try it :D

MidnightCowboy 17. Nov 2010 04:59 PM


Originally Posted by eyeb (Post 40298)
hm nice, looks kind of like mac colors too. I'll download and try it :D

There is a "Mac look" too but this is part of the "donate to get" option along with Vista and W2K :)

kendall.a 17. Nov 2010 05:26 PM

Is there a way to keep my existing Windows XP on my VERY old laptop and dual boot with Zorin?

I've been thinking about playing around a little with my old laptop. (I just found it behind a desk and had forgotten about it.) In fact, I installed Time Freeze Free and have started playing around with different security programs. Now, might be a good time to try out Linux again. (My first experience with Ubuntu was not all that positive.)

torres-no-tan-magnifico 17. Nov 2010 05:31 PM

Many thanks MC for your Zorin post. Having tried in vain to repair my corrupted XP on my LT, I have come to the conclusion that I need to completely replace it with a Linux based OS.

I am more than happy with Macbuntu on my DT (I am the sole user) but the concept of keeping a Windows theme with Zorin is very appealing; my wife will have her own account and so this will make her feel more at home. :)

Will report back in a few days time when this has been installed.

MidnightCowboy 17. Nov 2010 05:43 PM


Originally Posted by kendall (Post 40306)
Is there a way to keep my existing Windows XP on my VERY old laptop and dual boot with Zorin?

Yes, Zorin offers the choice to install alongside your existing system during the install process.

1002richards 17. Nov 2010 06:16 PM

I found the graphics - sliding screens, wobbly windows, spinning menus etc - too irritating to live with when I installed it. Went back to Ubuntu, but being tempted by Mint 10 at the moment.
But that's the plus with Ubuntu ... plenty of choices.

torres-no-tan-magnifico 17. Nov 2010 07:26 PM

As I write this, I have paused the large download of Zorin and am now downloading Ylmf instead; half the download size and with the XP theme in place of W7.

Still undecided on which one to run!! Ah, the joys of computing. :)

All times are GMT +1. The time now is 08:11 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.