Tag Archives: 2005

Lindows 5

The next release of the popular Linux distro. The Lindows name flew too close for Microsoft’s likening, and after a couple of legal BS, Lindows was rebranded as Inspire. Should have renamed it to Linsta instead as Windows Vista was due for release next year.


The OS has also received a slight makeover also, bringing it closer to Windows XP Luna style of interface.

We are also treated to a redesigned installer which aims to make it even more user-friendly. Here it explains the different elements of Inspire

After a reboot, we are presented with a new splash screen.

Another EULA with a few more options to configure like the time zone.

After the installation has been completed a tutorial is then shown which guides the user on how to use various elements of the OS.


The Linspire 5 desktop. The Launch button to the bottom left acts as a Start menu of sorts and shows applications that are currently installed on the system, with recently used programs being displayed at the top section of the menu.

As with the previous versions there are dedicated buttons for the help center, file manager & internet applications.

Right-clicking on the desktop, the create new menu lets you create a new document from here. But this seems limited and does not include links to office applications that you would expect. Still, you can create shortcuts to applications.

The icon set for Lindows, also includes some Microsoft-inspired logos with the MSN logo.

The Mozilla-based browser

Sometimes we run into this error, the only fix is to reboot the virtual machine. 

Password prompt when a screensaver is currently running, by default the user account is root.

The mini calendar that appears when you click on the clock is located in the taskbar. This predates the Windows 7 calendar by around 4 years.

KDE Control Center

This serves as the Control Panel of sorts, various settings in relation to the user experience can be changed here but anything advanced will require the use of the terminal.

As in the previous versions, you select an option from the left panel which will open up its page.

A look at some of the included screensavers

Changing your user icon, they seem styled by the ‘smiles’ design that was popular of the era, they also seem to vary in size compared to the Windows XP account pictures.

You can change the appearance of the splash screen that appears upon boot.

Also here’s what happens when a program crashes or quits.

Installed Software

OpenOffice 1.1 – The default Office productivity suite, designed as a replacement to Microsoft Office and is compatible with most of its file formats.

LSongs – Music and media player that looks a lot like iTunes

LTorrent – A Bittorrent client

Lassist – A collection of organizer-like applications that include a calendar, reminders and an address book. Not sure if pronounced as L’assist or L-Assist

Lphoto – Organise and view photos imported from a digital camera

Trying to play a DVD video using the built-in media player turned out to be near impossible out of the box. Additional software will most likely be required since DVD is a protected format (MPEG2 was still patented). VirtualBox seemed to have a problem accessing the disc, as the Vm would frequently freeze and become unresponsive. Since DVD was in its prime when this operating system was released, not having native support was a serious setback for many casual users.

Additional Software

Additional software can be installed, but it’s difficult to locate them once installed as they do not appear in the Launch menu. I don’t know if there’s a launcher that I’m missing or if they are being installed in a separate location but whichever software I install cannot be opened using the Launch menu. The only thing I can do is locate it through the file manager and create a shortcut to it.

So after messing around in the launcher settings, there is a program group that exists in the Launch menu, known as the KDE menu. This is hidden by default but you can drag this to the Run programs menu which will allow you to run older applications or applications that don’t conform to Linspire’s menu structure.

Maybe this was to push users to use their CNR store/packages?

Firefox 1 can be installed and works fine but the install sets the location by default to the desktop?

SimCity 3000 failed to install which gave an error. Chances are the libraries used in this distro version are too new and we need to apply the fix that was done in Ubuntu 4.04. The text installer only seemed to work instead of the GUI install that came up in Mandrake.

Alpha Centurai was installed and worked fine but had no sound. Postal was also installed and worked fine, but still no sound. I guess the sound libraries had changed in this version, breaking compatibility,