Wednesday, August 20, 2014


Decided to take a look at a live session of the Wheezy-based Handy Linux (with Xfce 4.8) after reading this article: HandyLinux 1.6 - A sample of what you can achieve using the power of Debian

Very nice-looking presentation of Xfce on the desktop, as you can see.

I downloaded handylinux-1.6.1-686.iso. Got the md5sum and verified it:

steve[~/Downloads]$ md5sum handylinux-1.6.1-686.iso
6a82e0dc7aeec0e6135eb27bad708fc0  handylinux-1.6.1-686.iso

Created the flash drive:

# dd if=/path/to/archlinux.iso of=/dev/sdx

# dd if=/home/steve/Downloads/handylinux-1.6.1-686.iso of=/dev/sdb

With the flash drive plugged into the HP G72 notebook, I booted with the "[EN] Test HandyLinux" option.

First thing that popped up was the Keyboard Selector window. I chose "us English US."

The next window that popped up was the Welcome to HandyLinux window.

The Handy Linux Main Menu simplifies things a bit too much for my tastes.

It's easy enough to get to the Applications List from the Raiders tab.

Or just add the Xfce Applications Menu to the panel.

When I opened up Chromium, everything was in French, including DuckDuckGo and Gmail.

I went to Settings > Show advanced settings... > Languages > Languages and input settings button. In the Languages box, I put English (United States) at the top.

That took care of any language issues in Chromium.

Some comments by Gary Newell in the above-mentioned article (might be important for anyone planning to install this distro):

Incidentally, whilst running the live version of HandyLinux everything worked fine but after installing the full version to disk the HandyLinux menu wouldn't start when I clicked on it.

I therefore ran the menu from the command line and the message that appeared stated that the file "/home/user/.config/user-dirs.dirs" could not be found. To resolve this issue I ran a search for the user-dirs.dirs file using the following command:

find / -name user-dirs.dirs

The file was found in /etc/skel/.config/user-dirs.dirs. I therefore copied that file to /home/user/.config/user-dirs.dirs using the following command.

cp /etc/skel/.config/user-dirs.dirs /home/gary/.config/user-dirs.dirs

After copying the file, the menu started to work correctly.

As you can see in this screenshot, Handy Linux's repos are pure Debian Wheezy (plus backports):

Handy Linux is another attempt to make Debian easy for folks new to Linux. For the experienced Debian user, Handy provides a quick-and-easy installation, loads of default applications (my download was about 1.2 G), and Debian underneath, with the Debian repos available. Nice for folks who love Debian and who want to get a machine up and running quickly.

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