My adventure with Crunchbang

Lately I’ve been thinking about installing a Linux distro on my thrusty but ailing netbook, a Samsung NC101. After some intense research via Google and countless hours of Youtube videos I found one particular distro I really liked: Crunchbang Linux. It’s quite a minimal distro but highly functional and it also looked quite nice to my eyes. It’s based on Debian which means that there’s a lot of apps for it and the support is generally good. I decided to download the current testing version, Waldorf, since I’m just going to use the netbook mainly for browsing and writing.


I wrote the iso to a USB stick and played around with for a few minutes before I hit install. I was a bit worried that I’d completely break my computer but the installation went fine. It took about 10-15 minutes and then the system was up and running. I was also prepared for some tinkering with the settings and such but everything worked right out the box, even the brightness and volume controls. Color me impressed!


After the installation I decided to remove a couple of apps2 since I’m not going to use them anyway. With a couple of sudo apt-get remove, sudo apt-get autoremove and some fiddling with the Openbox menu it was done in a matter of minutes. The default web browser, Iceweasel, wasn’t really for me so I replaced it with Chrome. I also change the default font in system montoring tool Conky to a monospaced one. I’m probably going to change a few more things, but so far I’m happy with the default experience.


While my goal is to keep the netbook as clean as possible there was one3 additional app that I just had to install: ReText. It was the only real Markdown editor with syntax highlighting that I could find. My favorite distraction free editor FocusWriter is available but since I want to keep my app count at a minimum I decided to only install ReText. I’ve heard that a Debian-compatible version of UberWriter is in the works so I might switch to that once it’s out.

Crunchbang Linux (Waldorf)

Closing thoughts

In short I really love this distro. It’s fast, light on the resources, highly customizable but at the same just works. The battery life has gone down from around 5 hours to 4.5 hours, which isn’t that bad at all. In fact I’m really impressed by that too. I wholeheartedly recommend it to people who want to make the jump to Linux but don’t want to use something more resource-heavy, like the current main version of Ubuntu, while still maintaining an all-around functionality for most users.

  1. The system specification is as followed: 1.6 GHz, 1 GB RAM, 160 GB HDD with Windows XP (previously) installed. 

  2. Abiword, Gnumeric, xfburn and a few others. 

  3. I also installed Dropbox but that’s pretty much a given thing. 

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