Mageia originally forked from the Mandrake project in 2010, Mageia 1 was then offered for download in 2011. The bugs are out, things are stable, and now is the perfect time to try Mageia!
I will first review the installation process, which can be started while booting, or from the Mageia live desktop. New users will surely be thrilled with the conveniently simple installation wizard.
If you plan to install Mageia 2, there are two installation options available. Users can choose to download the DVD ISO, or the Dual-Arch CD ISO. For this review I decided to try the CD, using the popular KDE desktop edition.
If you are installing from the live desktop, you can double-click the install Mageia 2 icon that sits on the desktop. You can then follow the convenient installation wizard to finish to process. Mageia 2 uses a two stage installation. I personally find that the two stage installers perform faster than other installation methods.
Due to increased performance of Mageia 2, the minimum installation requirements have been significantly reduced.
If you have chosen to install from the DVD version additional options may be available. You may choose to install additional desktop environments during installation.
Mageia 2 KDE Desktop
Hopefully you all love the Mageia desktop as much as I do. The icon set, theme and wallpaper look shockingly well together. Even the main menu has seen some mild customizations.
Mageia 2 is using KDE SC 4.8.2 which brings a respectable list of improvements as I will explain throughout this review. The user interface is basically the same old KDE that users will remember. Mageia 2 does however present a pleasant new look.
Users will find a panel along the bottom of the screen. This panel contains a main menu, and several important launchers. You will also find a system notification area on the right hand side of the panel. As usual, users can also add widgets to the panel, or the desktop. The desktop contains a few file management icons, this is done using a maximized folder view widget if I am not mistaken. The interface is highly polished, and very embracing. Everything just seems to go very well together.
Mageia 2 KDE Menus
Most users should already know what to expect when it comes to the menus, but some may not. The KDE menu is extremely easy to use, and easy to configure.
Understanding The Menu
You will find multiple categories, each containing several useful applications. A simple right click on any menu item will provide you with the options to un-install the item, or add it to your favorites. You will even find a sub-menu for all of your recently used items.
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