Snowlinux 4 Glacier - The winter is coming

Updated: April 6, 2013

I am such an attention who ... I mean, what a plucky title! So appropriate. Anyhow, I received a lot of emails, i.e. more than one, telling me I ought to review the Snowlinux distribution. And it does sound interesting. Somewhat like Mint, a combination of Debian and Ubuntu, and other fancy stuff.

Then, you also get a whole range of desktop environments, and I chose Cinnamon here, so it really should be interesting. For me, Cinnamon has always worked well, improving the desktop experience. Let us see how Glacier handles here. Now, I could have chosen version 3 for the review, which is based on Ubuntu LTS, but I went for the latest, which has its roots in pure Debian. Follow me.

The diesel engine won't start in cold temperatures

They tell us. With Snowlinux, I had an awful lot of trouble getting it to boot. I tried various methods of writing the image to a USB drive, but nothing helped. Eventually, I was forced to use a DVD to get underway.

Desktop, live

The desktop is fairly pleasing, dominated by white and gray. There's that Push to start slogan, that feels quite all right. I would have made the white to gray gradient more, well, gradual, but this could be intentional. Anyhow, what's the first thing one does when they power a new distribution? They connect to their network for some fun.

Wireless, wait, what?

And this is when everything went wrong. Snowlinux 4 has no firmware for my Wireless card, which is Intel brand, but it does have a driver for the wired card, which is also Intel. This means that if I wanted a modern laptop experience, I had to search for the driver somewhere and manually load it.

No wireless

No fimrware

And while fiddling with the command line, I also realized there was a home directory named lars lurking in there. Lars von Trier, in my computer? Perhaps a remastering leftover. Damn.

lars home directory


We have the Trisquel situation happening all over again. Yes, you can blame me for not being attentive enough, reading, checking, learning, subscribing to some ideology, or not selling my kidneys to the God of Assembly. Should we blame Debian? Perhaps. Does it matter? One big no.

The simple fact is, in Year 2013, I refuse to bother with any manual hacks that might somehow infuse my perfectly legitimate hardware with life. If a distro does not support my boxes because of religion, so to speak, then it has no place on my boxes. As simple as that. Shame, because Snowlinux looks a blast. But this is the cockblock in perfect shape. Enticing, so enticing, but nothing exciting happens. And I just know it would have worked so well, but someone else will tell that story, someone who does not mind being at the pointy end of the software ideology spear. Maybe next time.


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