ALT Linux MATE is a free, open source GNU/Linux distribution based on the Mandrake Linux operating system using MATE as its default desktop environment. It’s geared towards low-end computers.

ALT Linux is known for being an independent Russian operating system forked from Mandriva Linux and distributed into multiple editions and engineered to provide users with a solid computing environment.

Distributed as bootable Live CDs

It is distributed as Live CD ISO-hybrid images designed be deployed on USB thumb drives or blank/RW CD/DVD discs. The Live CDs allow users to start an existing operating system, run a memory test, or use the persistent mode to save their live session and reuse the boot medium whenever they want (only compatible with USB sticks).

MATE offers a classic desktop session

The MATE environment boots almost instantly and offers a traditional session, inspired by the one used on the GNOME Classic desktop, comprised of two panels. While the top panel is used for launching apps and access the system tray area, the bottom panel allows users to interact with running applications and quickly switch between virtual workstations.

Default applications

Among the default MATE applications, we can mention Caja file manager, Atril document viewer, Eye of MATE image viewer, MATE player, Engrampa archive manager, MATE calculator, pluma text editor, MATE Terminal, and MATE System Monitor.

Users will be able to browse the web with the Mozilla Firefox web browser and use the Midnight Commander app to visually manage files. In addition, the distro includes the Kerberos ticket watcher, XTerm terminal emulator, dconf editor, a screenshot utility, a character map tool, a log file viewer, a disk usage analyzer, and a dictionary.

Bottom line

Overall, the operating system proved to be yet another clean and fast ALT Linux edition, this time powered by the traditional MATE desktop environment. It includes the right amount of applications and can be deployed on old computers.

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