Exe GNU/Linux, New Distro with Trinity
No three letters look any more strange to Linux users than exe, which is why a new distro named Exe GNU/Linux caught me by surprise in today's Distrowatch Weekly. Ladislav Bodnar, our exalted Keeper of the Record, recently added Exe to the Distrowatch.com database and that was my cue to boot it up.
According to descriptions, Exe Linux "is a Debian-based desktop Linux distribution. Its primary goal is to provide a Debian variant that ships with a slightly re-themed Trinity desktop environment (a fork of KDE 3), as well as several useful scripts and utilities."
The Exe website says one of the main differences between Exe and Debian is the default runlevel, being 5 in Exe and 2 in Debian. Some of the scripts and programs not found in Debian include USB stick installer, Trinity and its setting configurations, and grub-gfxboot. "Exe GNU/Linux is free software made available under GPL."
The Exe desktop, Trinity, is as one might expect, very similar to KDE 3. While many cried out for a KDE fork at the time of the KDE 4 transition, most of all that talk has died down. Although KDE 4 still has many unresolved and inconvenient issues, Trinity hasn't taken off like MATE and Cinnamon has done for GNOME 2. Exe has a bit of competition as well in Porteus, a lightweight Linux based on Slackware. It too features the Trinity desktop and ended 2012 at number 68 in Distrowatch's PHR.
Exe ships with lots of software such as:
Amarok, Caffeine, and MPlayer
Abiword and Gnumeric
Iceweasel and Icedove
Linux 2.6.32, Xorg Server 1.7.7, and GCC 4.4.5
Basically, my first impression of Exe is that it is an interesting desktop with lots of handy features and applications. The desktop is pretty and the system seems to function well. It is compatible with Debian Squeeze and all the software in its repos. If you're looking for a something a bit different yet still familiar, then perhaps Exe is that something.