The Ubuntu-based netbook distro Easy Peasy was formely known as Ubuntu Eee. Easy Peasy uses the Ubuntu Netbook Remix graphical user interface and provides a mix of popular open-source and proprietary software. If you’re trying to stay away from proprietary software completely (not a bad idea) this ones not for you. I found it interesting that so many have commented on Easy Peasy working out of the box. Along with my questions about compatibility I was curious about the features, new appearance and day-to-day usefulness of Easy Peasy 1.5. Could the Ubuntu-based Easy Peasy be anything more than a toy?
Easy Peasy is easy to install onto a USB pen drive and now with Easy Peasy 1.5 you can install it to USB even easier. Easy Peasy 1.5 comes with a hybrid image offering .img and .iso at the same time making the process of moving your image to the USB stick with UNetBootin pretty easy. Of course you can also install Easy Peasy to the hard drive which is what I did hoping it would be my permanent OS.
After installing Easy Peasy i was pleasantly surprised by the login screen. It included shades of green and dark grey, a good mixture. I found it appealing, clear and easy to follow.
The desktop was equally stunning but I was less surprised as I had seen this running the live version. The desktop consists of a top bar, two outside columns that server as menus and a wider center column that displays results based on what is selected. The desktop is more of a graphical interface with a unique style that few other distros can be compared to as you can see in the screenshot below.
The menu includes common categories as seen on Ubuntu but includes a few applications you won’t find on Ubuntu. Applications that I found useful were Skype, Banshee, OpenOffice 3.1, Picasa, Evolution, Firefox, and Pidgin.
After adjusting my microphone settings I tested Skype and it worked first try. The interface is a little different if you’re a Windows user switching over but all the options appear to be there and it took me very little time to find everything.
I also tested Flash content at Youtube, MP3s with Banshee, and photos with Picasa, all of which came turned out excellent. I didn’t see applications that I use on Ubuntu like GIMP and a few others however these can be added immediately by going to Administration — Synaptic Package Manager.
I had a very good experience using Easy Peasy and I plan on making it into something I use everyday. I hope you enjoy the screenshots and be sure to look at our Linux PDFs and manuals.
- Bug fixes
- Software update
- UXA by default
- New green visual appearance
- Linux kernel (2.6.30) optimized for netbooks with faster startup
- More supported netbooks
- Hybrid image file .iso/.img
- Smaller harddrive footprint
- ext4 filesystem as default
A common issue with a Netbook is that they do not have a CDROM so that you must load the operating system from a flash drive. UNetbootin, the Universal Netbook Installer does an excellent job at creating an image to put on your flash drive so you can install it on your Netbook.
The first thing to do is to download the .iso image that you want to place on your Netbook. An iso is an image of the distribution that you want to install on the machine. It is important that it is not just copied, it must be installed as an image so that it can boot. Here you can see the image has been selected. Put your flash drive into the machine that will create the image. In this example you can see that /dev/sde1 has been detected.
WARNING:Be very careful not to select the show all drives, as it will show you all of your drives and it is easy to overwrite a drive that is on your computer.
Once this is set up it creates the image, unmount the drive, put it in your Netbook and boot to the USB drive and your new installation will begin.
There is also the option to download and install an image right from the Internet and place it on the USB flash drive. Just select the image you want, and click and it will be completed for you.