Exe GNU/Linux revisit


Back in August of 2020, I decided to give the operating system Exe GNU/Linux a shot on my Lenovo laptop.  It’s been eight months now since the change and I thought I’d share how the experience working with this OS has been.

The short answer, I’ve been very pleased with this operating system.  It has performed extremely well on my older Lenovo T61 laptop, staying very responsive and snappy the entire time.  Although I know very little about the whole Systemd controversy (as discussed in my last post about Exe), I’ll admit that its absence seems to allow my laptop to function just a little bit better.

I notice the improvement in performance the most when I’m using the Fotoxx photo editor.  When running it under any other OS I’ve had installed (like Q4OS and PCLinuxOS for example), I always got a “low memory” warning when I launched Fotoxx.  I don’t seem to get that warning message when I use it under Exe.  So, there’s obviously a difference there.

The other thing about Exe – or at least Devuan which Exe is built on – that I noticed is that the repositories are kept right up to date; at least in regards to the Trinity desktop environment.  When using Q4OS, it would take quite a while for updates from TDE to make it into the repositories.  With Exe, however, updates from TDE are pretty quick to show up.  Back in November of 2020, TDE announced the release of version 14.0.9 of the desktop.  I didn’t happen to check for system updates until the first week of March, but there was the upgrade to TDE waiting for me.  It was a real nice surprise.

I’ve updated the OS twice now – once in October and again just a week or so ago.  Both times, the upgrades completed without any issues.  This included a kernel upgrade, too.  I’m not saying that I had any major issues with upgrading Q4OS, but it was nice not having to deal with them in Exe either.

Vivaldi on TDE
Vivaldi on TDE and Exe

This being my Vivaldi blog, I’ll also add that the Vivaldi web browser performs better under the Exe operating system and Trinity desktop.  Previously, I had significant slowdown of Vivaldi under other operating systems; so much so that I found it too cumbersome to use.  But now, the only time I get significant slowdown is if I have many tabs open at the same time or don’t shut the browser down after a week or so of use.

As for KOffice, I’ve been using it as my office suite since installing Exe and it has been working great.  I’m really surprised at how stable this version of KOffice has been.  I haven’t had any reason to install any other office suite so far.

TDE Office Menu
TDE Office Menu

To summarise it, I’ve been very happy with my Exe operating system.  Performance has been exemplary and it’s been extremely easy to maintain.  I’ll be sticking with Exe and Devuan for the foreseeable future.  I highly recommend it if you haven’t tried it for yourself.

Join the Conversation

  1. Thanks for this exe article. It is likely that I’ll break away from Debian and / or Ubuntu for all of my main
    working Virtual Machine Desktops. I’ve had *horrible* problems due to the systemd monoculture
    disease. Ruins performance. Ironically, designed to speed up startup performance in host installs
    it degrades virtual machine startup and management when I’m working with multiple machines to
    levels that really kill productivity in virtualized environments. Stuff like memory fragmentation and
    additional unnecessary overhead to virtualised memory management in most host virtualization
    systems that I use. Ugh.

    I’ll give that distro a try. If you want speed, do try some of the in-ram filesystem linux distros
    based upon live DVDs. A “puppy linux” 64bit variant : Fatdog is a favourite. A huge bonus is
    that you are using permanent memory that stores only the *differences* to the main system,
    when configuration changes and updates need to be persistent. Fatdog used ROX, which also
    reminds me of the old Acorn RISC OS computers that I used in a research establishement in
    the late 80s / early 90s.

    The puppy linux system has a builder for other base linux distgros Maybe its possible to turn
    it in a puppy style Live DVD target, running in an aufs ram-based filesystem, also. Just a thought.

    You can remaster it to fashion your own crafted Desktop experience without too much learning pain.

    1. You’re most welcome; I’m glad you liked the article. I used Puppy a long time ago on my EeePC 701 for a while. It was nice. Thanks for mentioning it, I should check it out again sometime. I really don’t know much about the whole systemd thing. All I do know is that I get better performance on my laptop without it.