Would you recommend the product? yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 8
Snowlinux is available in Debian-based and Ubuntu-based versions. Glacier 4 is Debian-based with the Mate desktop. I tested the 32-bit version.
There’s no documentation, so the user needs some knowledge, such as how to partition. The installer is easy to use, but will not encrypt /home.
The Mate desktop defaults to a single panel with a Gnome-style menu and no pager. It was nice to see that the file manager Caja has been given an ‘open as administrator’ option. The shortcuts editor still fails to accept the Superkey and tries to launch Epiphany as the default web browser, but these problems can be fixed with the Configuration editor.
The software includes LibreOffice, Firefox, Thunderbird, Pidgin, Shotwell, Totem, and Rhythmbox. Codecs are installed, but not the Flash plugin, nor any dictionaries for LibreOffice. I got a critical warning for Totem when running it from the CLI, but it worked perfectly. As is usual in many Debian derivatives, I had to edit configuration files to set up USB speakers and enable xim. The firewall is not enabled by default, and the gui front-end doesn’t show what the default rules are, nor does it have adequate documentation.
I’ve never been a Debian fan — why are the configuration tools so poor compared with Fedora/Red Hat? — but this is better than most of its derivatives. If you aren’t worried about encryption and documentation, this is as good as the current Mint.