Ade Malsasa Akbar contact
Senior author, Open Source enthusiast.
Thursday, January 2, 2020 at 14:07

Trisquel 9.0 is a new version in development of Trisquel GNU/Linux operating system based on Ubuntu 18.04 LTS. On the end of December 2019, a good news comes that the 9.0 ISO Image is already available for us to test & report bug. This is a short review I made from LiveCD session of Trisquel 9 beta dated 12 December 2019 so you can see what's new, unchanged, and missing things. In short, I do not find any problem with this Beta, instead, I feel it is already smooth and useful. We really wish final version released soon and I hope this article introduces you well to Trisquel 9. Enjoy!

(A beautiful desktop of Trisquel 9 LiveCD Session)
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  1. About Trisquel Beta
  2. Download
  3. ISO File & Size
  4. ISO Contents
  5. User Interface
  6. Start Menu
  7. LibreOffice & MATE Apps
  8. Unchanged, Missing, and New Things
  9. More Details
  10. My Opinions

1. About Trisquel Beta

Trisquel is a completely free software desktop operating system based on Ubuntu GNU/Linux that is endorsed by Free Software Foundation. Trisquel Project begins in 2004 (16 years ago) in Spain. Current Trisquel is version 8.0 available for all and next one is 9.0 still in development. Trisquel 9.0 codenamed Etiona started its development since April 2018 according to official announcement. In late 2019, there is a good news in Trisquel Forum announced by chaosmonk that Etiona ISO image beta version is already available for testing purpose. Everybody can download and test Trisquel either in LiveCD or Installed mode thanks to this. has many articles about Trisquel you can read here.

2. Download

Currently, the beta ISO can be downloaded at Please note that when the final stable released, this download link will change.

3. ISO Image File & Size

Trisquel 9  in 2020 is available in two architectures, 32-bit and 64-bit,in contrast to latest Ubuntu that does not support 32-bit anymore since 2018. The file names:

Note I: I strongly recommend you to download via direct link i.e. not torrent link as new ISO published frequently.

Note II: Jenkins is the software on the server that automatically-continuously produces Trisquel ISO image from thousands of software packages. If you wonder how Trisquel developed, see excellent explanation here.

4. ISO Contents

Like Ubuntu and previous Trisquel versions, we can see contents of the ISO file before we download it. This means we can see what packages and their versions contained within each ISO without downloading the ISO at all. This thanks to MANIFEST file that accompanies every ISO. Read MANIFEST 32-bit here and read MANIFEST 64-bit here. For example, picture below shows that Trisquel 9 64-bit ISO includes Linux (libre) kernel version 4.15.0 because the MANIFEST file says there is linux-image-4.15.0 package name.

(Picture 4.1)

5. User Interface

Here is how Trisquel 9.0 looks like for now. It is the same as Trisquel 8.0 anyway: a Redmond-like MATE Desktop Environment with start menu & with 3 controls on each app window. Of course, you still can put icons on desktop by drag-and-drop. The user interface theme is still the same too. If you are familiar with Trisquel 8.0, you will find no difficulties in operating the 9.0. However, the wallpaper is still using 8.0's one.

(Picture 5.1)

6. Start Menu

Actually, the start menu is not different to the prior version. But I love to present all 7 sections here so you can see. Picture below shows menu ites from first section (Internet) to seventh (Other). There, you will notice several new things which are Back In Time, Electrum Bitcoin Wallet, Viewnior Image Viewer. And, you will notice also there is one thing missing, which is, Synaptic Package Manager.

(Picture 6.1)

7. LibreOffice and MATE Applications

Trisquel 9.0 includes LibreOffice 6.0. It features MATE 1.20 hence all MATE Applications in it reach that version.

(Picture 7.1)

8. Unchanged, Missing, and New Things

(UNCHANGED) There are many things 9.0 keeps from 8.0. The biggest example is most apps are still the same except they are updated, the inclusion of MATE Tweak Tool with several profiles. Of course, this insight is just from this 9.0 Beta and this might change over time until the final stable version.

(MISSING) Synaptic Package Manager is absent here. I hope in the final version it will be included out of the box.

(NEW!) Back in Time

It is a backup utility software that is user-friendly. It is very interesting however, as Ubuntu and GNU/Linux Mint already have similar tools called DejaDup and Timeshift respectively, then now Trisquel follows them by this tool. This is a good news especially for people who need regular-automatic backup with their computers. Back In Time is a well-documented software, as you can see its Website, Docs, Wikipedia, and HTG, MTE, among other resources available.

(Picture 8.1)

(NEW!) Viewnior Image Viewer

It is a lightweight image viewer with crop feature. I think it is smart choice as this could replace Shotwell. See more information at its web.


(NEW!) Electrum Bitcoin Wallet

It is one among most popular Bitcoin wallet tools. I think the Developers want to reach more modern users with this especially those who trade digital currency.

9. More Details

  • Kernel: 4.15
  • Codename: Etiona
In short, Trisquel 9 uses Systemd as init, Linux-libre 4.15 as kernel, and MATE 1.20 as desktop environment. More technically, it does not include either Snapd nor Packagekit nor Flatpak, the background processes that often "eat up" bandwidth without user's concern.

(Picture 9.1)

10. My Opinions

In my last 2018 review, I said Trisquel 8.0 was successful freedom because it is the only one oldest desktop-oriented free distro with latest basis (Ubuntu 16.04 LTS at that time) and active community (Trisquel Forum). Limited to this beta of 9.0 LiveCD, I feel it is smooth already to use and I don't find problems. I see that the desktop operations are functional, we can do things we do everyday like accessing files, writing documents, web browsing, mailing, playing video & audio, and many more. I can say that this new version would benefits all users because it keeps the user experience by its Redmond-like user interface (unlike radical changes between Ubuntu's Unity and GNOME) so no user --either existing or new-- would need to re-learn to use it. I wish the development goes well and quickly releases the final version. I wish I contribute to the whole community by publishing this review. Thank you all Trisquel Developers!

This article is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.