Zorin OS, an Ubuntu-based operating system aimed at Windows users who are switching over to Linux, has just received a Lite version designed for people with low-end hardware.
Unlike its big brother, Zorin OS Core, the Lite edition is not exactly based on Ubuntu 13.10 (Saucy Salamander), but on Lubuntu 13.10. This means that the preferred desktop environment is LXDE, which is especially made for low-end machines.
“Zorin OS 8 Lite is the latest evolution of the Zorin OS Lite series of operating systems, designed specifically for Linux newcomers utilizing old or low-powered hardware. This release is based on Lubuntu 13.10 and uses the LXDE desktop environment to provide one of the fastest and most feature-packed interfaces for low-spec machines. This new release includes newly updated software out-of-the-box,” notes the developer in the announcement.
The Zorin developers have always marketed their products as the perfect Windows alternatives and they’ve had some success with this strategy. Their operating systems are regarded as good replacements, with familiar interfaces that can help people running away from Windows OSes to better adjust to a Linux distribution.
Now that Windows XP is no longer being supported by Microsoft with security updates and other patches, many users will look to replace that with a new solution. The Lite version of Zorin OS might just be the OS, mostly because it has some ridiculous system requirements.
Lubuntu has the lowest system requirements of all the Ubuntu systems in the family and its developers have managed to keep them low for a long time. If Zorin OS Lite has the same requirements, then users with a Pentium II or Celeron system and 128 MB of RAM will most likely be able to run the OS.
The developers had to make some adjustments to the distribution, because it's made for low-spec computers. The window effects had to go and a few other modifications were also implemented. Visually, it's almost identical with the full Zorin OS distro, but you must decide which version you need.
It's also very likely that the Zorin developers will also launch a new version of their operating system after Ubuntu 14.04 (Trusty Tahr) is made available on April 17. There is no fixed schedule for the Zorin releases, but it will take a couple of months at least.