A free, open-source, lightweight, and easy-to-use GNU/Linux distribution for old computers
BunsenLabs Linux is an open-source and free GNU/Linux distribution offering a lightweight and easily customizable computer operating system for those who love to use the Openbox window manager as their desktop environment.
BunsenLabs Linux is based on the stable branch of the Debian GNU/Linux operating system, but also includes various custom configurations and additional packages. It is the successor of the CrunchBang Linux distribution.
Boot options and supported architectures
BunsenLabs Linux's boot menu options allow users to do a fresh installation of the operating system on their personal computers, both using a graphical installer and a text-based one, as well as to run the distro in live mode, including failsafe and directly from RAM.
There are also various options for advanced users, among which we can mention expert installation in text mode or graphical mode, text-based or graphical rescue modes, memory diagnostic, and hardware detection. The OS is only supported on 64-bit systems.
Clean Openbox desktop with a handful of pre-installed apps
The BunsenLabs Linux desktop is clean, and we were expecting that from the successor of CrunchBang Linux, which was used the Openbox window manager by default for the graphical desktop environment. In live mode, you are welcomed by a first-run screen that gives you a few basic info about the system.
Only a handful of apps are pre-installed in BunsenLabs Linux, including the Mozilla Firefox web browser, VLC media player, FileZilla FTP client, Transmission torrent downloader, HexChat IRC client, Synaptic package manager, GParted partition editor, LibreOffice Writer, and Gnumeric spreadsheet editor.
We can also find the Evince PDF viewer, Xfburn CD/DVD burning software, Mirage image viewer, Xfce's screenshot utility and scrot command-line screenshooter, Htop task manager, Thunar file manager, Geany text editor and IDE, as well as the Terminator terminal emulator and the File Roller archive manager.
We find BunsenLabs Linux a great replacement for CrunchBang Linux because it's as lightweight and easy to use. The OS comes with only a few apps, but you'll find everything you need to get started, so it's not a bloated operating system. You'll be able to install all the apps you need in a few minutes after installation.
The live system isn't persistent, but you can at least run it from RAM and there are lots of useful boot options for advanced Linux users. We recommend BunsenLabs Linux for fans of the Openbox window manager and those who like simplicity and cleanness We don't recommend it to those who don't like keyboard navigation and the Linux terminal.