Pros and Cons of Elementary OS – A Brief Distro Review

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Elementary OS is one of the top Linux distros on DistroWatch. I have looked at it very briefly a while back but have never completed a review. This is my take on elementary OS and the Pantheon Desktop Environment.

You can download Elementary OS here:


  1. Dude… if you want to give your opinion on a distro just please make the effort and install it on a hard drive, not on a virtual machine, please. This "review" is only good for telling that Elementary OS and virtualbox are not very good friends.

  2. A few things:

    Enabling a live desktop is not too hard, as can be seen here:
    As you're pretty savvy in using a computer and tweaking things, I'm sure it won't be too hard for you, and then it'll be done and you probably won't have to do it again.

    You can also install Elementary Tweaks from here:

    This way, you can do other things like enable the minimize button, edit the theme, fonts, etc.

    Sure, you don't have these things out of the box, but it's very quick and a one-time thing so it never has to be done again.

    Also, MacOS, all Linux Distros I've seen(including Mint) and W10(while watching the video in Movies & TV app) have a "dark mode" going on. It's simply in every single OS at this point. eOS does the same thing as everyone else in that area.

  3. I have elementary as my only OS in my old laptop, never felt the need to put anything else. I also use it for development stuff. And its definitely not slow. I have used a lot of other popular distros, but this one is just fast. The epiphany browser in fact loads pages a tad bit earlier than firefox but that difference is negligible. The only complaint I had with epiphany was a problem with youtube, where is heats up the machine while playing videos. That is the only reason i downloaded firefox. I really like the curated apps. Some of the non curated apps that are from the Ubuntu repository are broken. I wish that most of the Ubuntu apps in the App Center get replaced by more great elementary apps, and they are making slow and steady progress. And my bluetooth doesn't work as expected. Other than that I love the experience.

  4. I'm watching this video on elementary OS and its running smooth in 720. I think the problems you are having with speed is due to the VM. This machine I'm using is low end and this OS runs great.

  5. Through extensive testing, I noticed that Elementary runs MUCH worse in a Vbox than on actual hardware (my virtual box is running from a 6 core Xeon X5670, the actual hardware I tested was a 2007 core2duo). Still, wouldnt use it on the daily. Too unstable.

  6. im using elementary os and its fast on my 5 years old computer,you are using elementary os on a virtualbox so dont exept it to be fast,you will need a modern computer to run it very well,it has 3d animation and its beautiful and the web borwser is good its again virtualbox

  7. Elementary ships with the newly introduced Alpha line of computers (Litebook, Litebox, Centurion – but there are caveats. Hardware issues need to be ironed out and WiFi has been reported to drop dead. Still, the fact that a low-cost entry of Linux machines has entered the market is great news. Now, if they could only offer other alternatives to Elementary in second-generation models, like Ubuntu and Linux Mint.

  8. I enjoy Eos. I like it so much I wiped my Macbook Air and use it as my primary environment. I had tried Ubuntu (hate the interface), Linux Mint (issues with Cinnamon), and Solus on my MBA, and none of them seemed to stay out of my way enough to get stuff done. I missed the simplicity of apt-get over eopkg on Solus and the much deeper Ubuntu repos.

    Once I set up ppa and .deb handling, installed all my stuff, for the first time in ages I feel like I don't have to be constantly fiddling with it to accomplish things. 🙂

  9. Honestly, how on earth you are doing review on Virtual Box? I mean for gosh sake, isn't this distro about graphics and mac-like experience?This distro by definition supposed to be without any VBox , can you look at it and review from that perspective? otherwise there is nothing to review really …

  10. just as others have stated, elementary works like rubbish in virtualbox, and for some reason it wasnt perfect on my dell xps 13 either, but when i installed it on a pc with a core 2 duo and just 250gb of spinning rust, i was convinced that its really lightweight. Since then i have had a chance to install it on multiple low power systems and its now my lightweight of choice

  11. If you want to be a reviewer for anything, go about it the right ways. You must know even as beneficial as VirtualBox might be to use, it slightly differs from a physical computer. Elementary OS is lacking software yes, but it is damn great to look at and use from time to time until it gets better. So far, I am having a great experience trying it out.

  12. DuckDuckGo is absolutely a replacement of any search engine or Google for those who don't know another. I've been using it for a long time without any issues, and it is equally good as any other, Google, Bing or Yahoo. It is like I don't need to use Google at all. And the added value is that your privacy is not at risk.

  13. good review man! I tried to install (I am fairly experienced) and I got the error "Radeon Invalid ROM contents". the os freezes and crashes randomly and always when I watch video. thoughts (as far as I know my drivers are up to date)

  14. Thank you, a very good review in my estimation. He pointed out some things that I found it well . I tried to elemental set up baby fileserver sort of like a nas to you as a media server and I was surprised how sluggish it was even though it was and older PC that the previous life was used as a camera DVR server .

  15. Good review:)

    This is my distro and right now I'm kind of looking at reviews out of boredom.

    The reason that you had problems with it being sluggish is because each distro has to test and configure their system in Virtual box. Elementary is a small team and simply do not have the manpower to do this. The Solus team has the same problem. I've heard that OS runs poorly in Virtualbox for the same reason. I just checked the memory usage and it's running at 632mb. That's not bad. It used to be lighter,though. Those articles on the website are referring to the previous releases of Luna and Freya. I wouldn't recommend Luna because support expires this April, but Freya is supported until 2019.

    I use Linux as a consumer OS and Eos is great for that. I like the fact that they don't have a lot of software and utilities installed. I usually use the terminal for that stuff anyway. I don't have to yank a bunch of garbage off and reinstall what I want. Plus, the fewer apps you have the less chance of a bad update wrecking your system.

    Now, here are my cons.

    I don't like the homebrew apps. I got rid of them all and replaced them with what I usually use. The Email app is completely broken. Gmail refused to open it because it said it was insecure. The only use I had for Epiphany was downloading Chrome. So, I guess it is the exact replacement for Explorer/Edge:)

    I also didn't like the fact that PPA's weren't enabled by default.

    The file manager is a bit simplistic. Even worse, you cannot replace it with another or it will break the desktop. I think the lack of integration with other file managers is, like Virtualbox, is rooted in the fact that it is a small team.

    I hope I was helpful.

  16. I had tested KDE and GNOME, i feel more warm with Gnome (theme, view), but i hate the file-Manager, on other side i love dolphin (split view) Do you know any good looking GTK3+ file Manager for Gnome with functions like dolphin?

  17. Gday First time to your channel. Currently testing out some new distros on my Toshiba Chromebook 2 CB35, I went from old mint to Elementary OS 4.0 and your spot on , naked , no programs , no minise and for some odd reason I cant connect to wifi when WPA/WEP is enabled , but turning off all security for wifi it works , ill be replacing it with something else, not sure what yet

  18. I'm running elementary OS on a emachine i purchased in 2009. 150Gb HDD, 2gb RAM. AMD. and i have absolutely no reason to buy a new computer. sad hearing that your specs don't work how they should. I'm sure it's something that you overlooked.

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