Latest Software Reviews

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  • DeaDBeeF
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    DeaDBeeF is a music player which is, in its "About" window, described as "The Ultimate Music Player". And it is if you want a basic easy to use music player capable of playing all the common audio formats. DeaDBeeF does not any kind of music collection database features, there is no file indexing or searchable database. If you like to manually manage playlists using a file file picker or a file manager and you want a easy to use music player then DeaDBeeF may be for you. DeaDBeeF is available for Linux and macOS.
  • Quaternion
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    Quaternion is a Matrix client written in Qt. It is capable of showing chat-rooms but it is not at all usable as a general-purpose chat client; it is way too buggy.
  • Xfburn
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    Xfburn is a CD/DVD/BlueRay disc authoring program written with the Xfce desktop environment in mind. It can be used in any desktop environment. It can be used to burn ISO images, create audio discs and data discs. It supports CDs, DVDs and BlueRay discs. It does not support authoring playable video DVD or BlueRay discs. Xfburn is fine if you still have a CD/DVD/BlueRay writer and you want to demonstrate how that ancient technology works when you are giving a tour of your museum or something like that.
  • ClamAV
    clamav is a GPL licensed free software anti-virus solution for GNU/Linux and BSD systems. It has a command-line anti-virus scanner and a daemon which can update the anti-virus database automatically. clamav can and should be a standard part of e-mail and file server setups.
  • OBS Studio
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    OBS Studio is a free software screen recording and live streaming application for Linux, Windows and macOS. It can record web camera streams, single windows, single monitors or entire desktops. It supports hardware accelerated video encoding using VAAPI on Linux. It is the single best and most feature-complete application for both screen recording and live screaming.
  • Spectacle
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    Spectacle is a simple and easy to use screenshot utility written with KDE in mind. It is the default application bound to the PrtSc (printscreen) key in KDE Plasma. It can also be used in any other desktop environment. It has all the features you could possible want from a screenshot application which makes it a good choice to set as a default action when the PrtSc button is pressed in any desktop environment.
  • Polari
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    Polari is a extremely simple IRC client designed specificially for GNOME. It uses the practically abandoned Telepathy communications framework to communicate with IRC servers. Polari will, by default, not run in the background so you get messages if it is minimized. There is no system tray support since GNOME 3 does not have any system tray. There are no configuration options what so ever and no useful options in the mobile-phone style hamburger menu beyond Quit which is something you will likely want to do after testing it and discovering how much of a joke of a IRC client it is compared to any other IRC client made the last two decades.
  • Nano Adblocker
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    Nano Adblocker is a web browser advertisement filter based on Ublock Origin. It is basically Ublock Origin with a few patches on top and one additional Nano-specific filter list with around 300 entries. Nano Adblocker releases trail the Ublock Origin releases and the Nano Adblocker offers shockingly little extra compared to the original it is based on. It works fine but there is no reason to use it over the original it is based on.
  • MangoHud
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    MangoHud is a modified version of the built-in Mesa heads up display for Vulkan. It is prettier and more configurable than the built-in Mesa HUD and it has handy keyboard shortcuts for turning the HUD (F12) and logging (F2) on/off. It is specially useful for games who play Windows games using Wine and DXVK.
  • NodeTube
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    NodeTube is a free software video hosting package written for Node.js. It uses MongoDB for storage, redis modules and ffmpeg for video conversion. It does not use WebTorrent or any similar technology for bandwidth reduction which means that hosting using NodeTube is quite bandwidth-expensive. NodeTube is easy to install for those who are familiar with hosting applications on Linux servers and it is mature enough to be used as a smaller personal video hosting platform. Scaling it to serve a really huge number of users may be somewhat problematic.
  • MongoDB
    MongoDB is a document-oriented database program utilizing JSON-like documents with a schema. It is licensed under a special sort-of free software Server Side Public License (SSPL). Many free software web applications requires it.
  • NAVER whale
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    NAVER whale is a Chromium-based web browser from the South Korean Internet giant Naver Corporation. It has many unique features like a toolbox with a calculator, timer, calendar and unit converter and a built-in music player. There are also a lot of not-really builtin features like stock price monitoring and exchange rate conversion which in reality access and use various NAVER web services. Most of those services are only available in Korean language. The web browser itself has English text in most menus and help texts. Some features, like the built-in music player, do not have any English translation. Whaleis overall a fine web browser but the tie-ins with South Korean web services who are only available in Korean language and the lack of translations for some of its features means that it is not the best choice for English-speaking people.
  • Alien
    alien is a command-line tool for converting Linux software packages between Debian .deb, Red Hat .rpm, Software .tgz and even Solaris .pkg file formats. The resulting converted packages it produces may or may not install and they may or may not work depending on the original package which has been converted. Converted packages who do install will, in most cases, only do so after going through some hoops.
  • Tor Browser
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    The Tor Browser is a web browser bundle distributed by the non-profit Torproject organization which includes a customized version Firefox ESR, some Firefox extensions and a Tor client for accessing the traffic analysis resistant Tor anonymity network. The Tor Browser sends your web traffic through the Tor network so the websites you visit will see a Tor exit nodes IP address instead of your actual IP address.
  • Chromium
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    Chromium is a BSD licensed web browser developed by Google. It is used as the basis for Google's commercial "Chrome" web browser product. The Linux version of Chromium is very easy to use and the fastest there is when it comes to WebGL performance. It does not come with any web garbage filtering, user script manager or style editor so you would have to install those things yourself.
  • Xfce4 Task Manager
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    Task Manager is a simple Xfce program capable of showing the processes running on a system along with grahpics showing total CPU usage, memory usage and swap usage. It is simpler than top and htop in terms of features. It be used to terminate, identify or prioritize processes. The very basics a task manager should have are covered but it does lack more advanced features like GPU monitoring, listing a processes open files and things like that.
  • Xfce 4.16
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    Xfce 4.16 is the next iteration of the popular light-weight Xfce desktop environment. It is scheduled to be released sometime in the fourth quarter of 2020. It will have client side decorations for all the configuration dialog boxes, a more advanced optional Whiskermenu, animated panel when it is set to auto-hide and it could get support for hybrid sleep when the power button is pressed or a laptop lid is closed. There will likely be more changes before Xfce 4.16 is released around October/November 2020.
  • GFXBench
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    GFXBench is a graphics benchmark suite. There is a OpenGL only version (GFXBench 4) available for GNU/Linux. There is also a more advanced GFXBench 5 version for Android, iOS, macOS and Windows. GFXBench 4 has three different scene rendering tests (Car Chase, Manhattan, T-Rex) which it can test in various ways (on-screen, off-screen, etc). Detailed results are shown for each individual test. GFXBench produces scores for each individual test but does not produce any overall score for all the tests it runs.
  • Terminator
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    Terminator is a terminal emulator based on an old version of GNOME terminal which lets you easily meaningfully arrange arranging multiple virtual terminals in a grid within window. It has a really handy feature which stands out as unique and practical: It allows you to type in one terminal and send the keystrokes in that terminal to either all the open terminal windows or just the terminal windows within a tab. The rest of its feature-set is on par with other modern terminal emulators.
  • Lumina
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    Lumina is in theory but not in practice a very lightweight desktop environment written in C++ using Qt5. The Lumina desktop environment is made up of a desktop with a toolbar, a file manager, a non-working media player, a simple picture viewer and some configuration utilities. It uses Fluxbox for window management. Lumina does not use any of the common Linux-specific frameworks (systemd, D-Bus, Policykit, etc). Lumina is supposed to be fast and light-weight. It is, in practice, nothing close to "lightweight". It is absolutely not a good choice for weak or limited hardware or any hardware for that matter.
  • NewPipe
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    NewPipe is an Android application for the Internet television site YouTube. It lets you search for videos, subscribe to channels (using RSS) without a YouTube account, bookmark videos and download videos or just the audio from videos. It is a great alternative to using a web browser or YouTube's own app to find and watch videos on YouTube.
  • Basemark GPU
    Basemark GPU is a professional evaluation tool to evaluate and compare graphics performance across mobile and desktop platforms. Uniquely, it supports all major graphics APIs and operating systems. Consumers can check their device performance for free with Basemark GPU and the integrated Power Board online results comparison service.
  • UNIGINE Superposition
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    UNIGINE Superposition is a freeware graphics benchmarking suite for Linux and Windows. It runs a series of highly detailed graphics scenes and produces a score. It is useful for comparing graphics card performance as well as performance between different kernel and Mesa versions. There are also some mini-games included.
  • The Secret Chronicles of Dr. M.
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    The Secret Chronicles of Dr. M. (TSC) is a free software 2D jump and run side-scroller game with great graphics. It is written using SFML and OpenGL. The code-base is based on the Secret Maryo Chronicles Super Mario clone. The graphics, music and the plot is mostly not, TSC is an original game with its own charm.
  • Nheko
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    Nheko is a Matrix chat client for GNU/Linux, Windows and macOS written using the Qt toolkit. It supports sharing images and other files in chat rooms, image previews in the chat room window and end to end text message encryption (experimental). It does not have any functionality for viewing available chat rooms. It is hard to use, buggy and annoying as of version 0.6.4.
  • Sysbench
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    sysbench is a cli benchmark tool capable of doing general-purpose benchmarks of CPU, memory, I/O performance as well more specialized benchmarks. It is based on LuaJIT. It is mostly useful for testing server and VPS performance as it lacks any support for testing graphics performance and other desktop-oriented features.
  • Pure python QR Code generator
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    The Pure python QR Code generator is a QR-code library which comes with a command-line utility capable of making images with QR codes in text, PNG and SVG formats. It is a handy little tool to use if you ever need to generate images with QR codes.
  • Bandwhich
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    bandwhich is a terminal network monitoring utility capable of showing bandwidth use by process and connection on all or a single network interface. It is written in Rust and it has been in development since November 2019. It is capable of showing network use on a single interface correctly but it is wildly off when it comes to special interfaces like bridges and bonds.
  • Privacy Browser
    Privacy Browser is a web browser for Android which does more to protect your privacy than any other web browser. It has built-in advertisement blocking, tracker blocking and a easy button for toggling JavaScript on and off on a per-site basis.
  • GParted
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    GParted is a disk partition editor for creating, resizing, removing, moving and copying disk partitions and file systems. It it written in C++ and it uses gtkmm for its graphical GTK interface. It is the go-to disk partition utility on GNU/Linux systems.