Latest Software Reviews

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  • Endless OS
    Endless OS from Endless Computers is a GNU+Linux operating system loosely based on Debian with a tablet-like skin on top of a customized GNOME 3 desktop environment. It is designed to be very easy to use and people with little to no computer skills who are somewhat familiar with smartphones and tablets may feel right at home. It has automatic updates with no user interaction and license terms which are so bad they make the licenses of competing operating systems like Windows and MacOS sound free in comparison.
  • Tzclock
    tzclock, short for "Timezone Clock", is a very nice-looking configurable analog clock program for GNU/Linux desktops. It is by default dull and uninteresting and it default face doesn't even have a second hand. Don't let that fool you, it is very configurable and it is easy to make it be a very nice analog clock.
  • Strawberry
    Strawberry is a database-oriented music player made for enjoying large music collections. It supports all the common audio file formats. It has many more advanced features like metadata tag editing, album art and song lyric fetching, audio analyzer and equalizer and "scrobbler" support for a variety of services. Strawberry started as a fork of the long-dead Clementine player which was based on Qt4. Strawberry uses the more modern Qt5 framework for it's graphical interface. It is in theory a decent player. In practice it's not, it is buggy and annoying to use.
  • F-Droid
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    F-Droid is a free software Appstore and software repository for the Android operating system. The F-Droid app can be used to install a large variety of free software from F-Droid's own community repository as well as other third party repositories. Only free as in freedom to view and modify the source software is allowed in the F-Droid repository. Software with botnet and tracking features are allowed. Such applications are marked as having "anti-features" and it is possible to configure them to be hidden from the list of visible applications.
  • Tee
    tee is a small program in GNU coreutils which can redirect input to a file while piping it on to another program as standard output. This can be really useful if you want to do two things with one program's output.
  • Ristretto
    Ristretto is a simple image viewer designed with Xfce in mind made using the GTK2 libraries. It can be used to browse through the images in one folder and that's about it. Ristretto does not have any easy way of quickly switching between folders and zoom settings applied to one image is not applied to the next. It is not great as a general-purpose image viewer.
  • KDE Connect
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    KDE Connect is a KDE technology which allows you to securely synchronize and control devices. It is available for Linux, Android, Windows and Mac. A device with KDE connect can be used to control music playback or send SMS messages or transfer files and many other things on another device running KDE connect.
  • Jami
    Jami is both a peer to peer voice over IP client program which supports secure voice and video communication over the Internet using SRTP to carry communications data and a custom protocol for service discovery using a distributed hash table (DHT). Jami does not rely on or need central servers to call other people using the same program. Jami is a great choice for making secure phone calls over the Internet using Android phones as long as those you want to talk to are also using Jami. The Linux version is utterly useless.
  • CoreCtrl
    CoreCtrl is a graphical system monitoring and performance tuning program for controlling a machines performance characteristics as well as it's fans. It has a global as well as per-program profiles for CPU governor and GPU performance levels. It has graphs for monitoring and several information layouts which show detailed incriminating information about the system it's running on.
  • Eagle Island
    Eagle Island is a typical 2D platform game set on an island with obstacles such as evil birds, man-eating plants and mushrooms. You play a red-haired hero who abuses his bird to kill all the things on the island that's out to get him. The game is non-free in terms of both freedom and price. There is a free to play demo as well as a paid full edition available on Steam with versions for Linux and Windows and something called "mac OS".
  • Gentoo Linux
    Gentoo Linux is a source-based Linux distributions for very tech savvy hobbyist who like to tinker with their operating system. It uses a BSD-style ports system called portage for package management. Gentoo is highly configurable and can be customized in ways other distributions can not. All software is compiled during installation and the way programs are compiled can be tuned with USE flags which decide what libraries and features will be included in a compile. Installing and maintaining Gentoo requires a lot more work and manual labor than most Linux distributions.
  • IceWM
    Ice Window Manager is a very light-weight all in one desktop environment and stacking window manager made for the X window system. The name implies it is just another window manager but there's more to it. IceWM has a built-in configurable panel with a menu, window switcher and a clock. This makes it possible to use it as an alternative to desktop environments. IceWM eats less than 20MB RAM making it a great choice on resource-limited hardware.
  • SpeedCrunch
    SpeedCrunch is a very efficient and easy to use free calculator program for Linux, Windows and macOS. The homepage describes it as a "high-precision scientific calculator" and while that's true it is also the by far best general-purpose calculator available on Linux platforms. It's a great choice if you are looking for something to assign to that Calc(ulator) key found on many modern keyboards.
  • LXQt
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    LXQt is a very light and simple desktop environment built using the Qt libraries. It consists of many small individual components like a panel program, session manager, hotkey daemon and a few more. LXQt lacks any window-manager of it's own though there is a LXQt configuration tool for Openbox. It is a great choice if you want a resource-light nearly fully featured desktop environment with a panel.
  • Dissenter
    Dissenter is a "Free Speech" web browser made by Gab Ai. It appears to be a fork of an old Brave version which itself was forked off an old Chromium version. It is available for Windows, macOS and there are .deb and .rpm versions for Linux. The Linux version is not very useful since it doesn't even run or produce a web browser window.
  • Debian
    Debian is a community-made Linux distribution focusing on being very stable and predictable. It has a two-year release cycle and new major versions of components are not introduced during the life-cycle of stable versions. The versions of both programs and system components found in Debian are older than they are in other distributions for the sake of stability. The current version of Debian is Debian 10 Buster.
  • KolourPaint
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    KolourPaint is a pretty simple drawing program and graphics editor similar to Microsoft Paint. It has the basic tools tools required to paint and draw but no advanced features like layers, masks or anything on that level. It has a user-friendly interface and support for a huge amount of graphics file formats. It can be used to both create art and do image editing but it's lack of features makes it rather cumbersome compared to more advanced software. It is more like a kids toy than a full-featured graphics editor.
  • Liar Liar
    Liar Liar is a visual novel game starring a young heroine named Yukari who's decided to kill her boyfriend. Her quest to do so has some obstacles who need to be murdered. The game is free to download and play but it is not free software. There are Linux, Windows and MacOS versions.
  • GNU Midnight Commander
    The GNU Midnight Commander (mc) is a text-based console file manager. It is easy and efficient to use and very powerful. It supports mounting remote file-systems using protocols like sftp and samba. It has a traditional two-folder view with a row of function shortcuts on the bottom. It is second to none when it comes to file-management (except perhaps mv/cp/rm in a pure shell).
  • Exaile
    Exaile is a database-oriented music player with smart playlists and some advanced tagging features. It supports browsing music indexed into it's database by artist, album, genre, data and combinations of those but not by folder or folder tree. Both browsing a music collection and dragging songs or albums from it to the playlist is really slow, notably so, if the collection's large. Exaile's also got a radio browser with a large amount of stations pre-configured. Exaile is fine for browsing radio stations and that's about it. It's interface is unacceptably irreponsive and too sluggish to use it as a general music player.