Ade Malsasa Akbar contact
Senior author, Open Source enthusiast.
Saturday, December 23, 2023 at 00:10

This article presents a compilation of ten distinctive features of deepin OS served as a gentle introduction for computer and laptop users. It is a stylish, modern, innovative, well-designed, simple and easy to use yet powerful and configurable system everybody can love. If you want to know deepin in brief, then this article is really for you. Please read on!

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About Deepin OS

Deepin OS (formerly Hiweed) is a beautifully designed, easy to use computer operating system for desktop, laptop and server and other embedded devices originated from Wuhan City based on Debian GNU/Linux first released back in 2004. Learn more on the Distrowatch and Official Website.

1. DTK+ - Its Own Programming Framework

If we speak about being a platform, if Microsoft Windows has WMF, Apple MacOS has Cocoa, then Deepin also has its own namely DTK+ (not to be confused with GTK+, it stands for (Deepin) Development Toolkit). In simplest explanation, DTK+ is the material where Deepin Desktop Environment is created from. Since 2023, DTK+ is already based on Qt6 framework. Applications and games created with DTK+ will have native look and feel just like how deepin OS itself. 

(Screenshot of deepin OS with Launcher opened to the left and File Manager running over the desktop wallpaper area which is developed using C++/DTK+)

2. DDE - Its Own Desktop So Beautifully Designed

deepin is very beautiful. It is beautiful, simple, innovative, multitasking, full of surprises and at the same time configurable in every place. Everything in it is beautiful, its desktop, sounds, wallpapers, icons, effects, workspaces, applications, help, even terminal, and they provide Settings in most apps instead of removing them. Any long time GNU/Linux user will be able to recognize that DDE is not like any existing desktop environments, it's not similar to KDE, not GNOME either, it has its own style with modernity far ahead the others.


(Screenshot of deepin exposing its multitasking feature with four programs showing Settings, App Store, File Manager and Browser; notice the five spaces above it having each own wallpaper)

3. Beautiful Help - Integrated, User-Helping and User-Guiding Documentation

deepin greets every user with a very artistic and beautiful Welcome Video when computer starts. We know Windows, macOS and even Ubuntu do not have that. This video will further give user Next buttons to instantly adjust the configuration as he/she wishes, such as switching to no-effects mode for low-end computers, with a short tutorial text below every step. We think this surpasses those Welcome Screens on Ubuntu, Linux Mint, Manjaro, even elementary OS. 

deepin has a great built-in documentation called Manual that explains its own system as a whole not losing to Microsoft's as well as Apple's. All deepin applications are integrated with Manual. That means, Manual can also be opened by running any application, simply click menu button, click Help. The content is also nicely documented and it looks very modern and stylish so everyone who reads it will get refreshing feelings.

(Screenshot of Welcome showing the video and Manual offering the documentation of the whole deepin OS)

4. Settings and Utilities -- Innovative Design and Help for the User

deepin presents innovative designs on its essential tools and utilities. We picked here 3 essential tools a computer system cannot live without.

Deepin Control Center is the heart of deepin where the user find all configurations in simple, yet comprehensive set of options accessible with what most computer users are accustomed with, clicks and drag-and-drops. To us, with this deepin successfully and cleanly managed to make easy most of user configurations in graphical way. The best way to illustrate this is that deepin has an integrated bootloader picture options which one can change simply by drag-and-dropping a wallpaper into the picture.

(Screenshot showing Deepin Control Center showing Boot Menu with instruction to switch the picture by drag-and-drop)

Deepin System Monitor already has two great features built-in, one is download/upload speed indicator for each process, and another one is built-in system service manager. The first one surpasses KSysGuard and GNOME SysMon and this will be very interesting to desktop users including us who want tool better than nethogs

(Screenshot of System Monitor showing a list of several applications running at a time with system load indicators on the left and visible Upload / Download indication in the list)

Deepin Disk Utility is a disk management tool native to deepin OS. Its strength lies in the simplicity and cleanliness of the user interface on top of standard partitioning abilities such as writing partition tables, formatting, deleting, and resizing, as well as LVM supports and disk health reader. It also emanates refreshing vibes for us who perhaps feel bored with GNOME's or KDE's counterpart.

(Screenshot of Disk Utility and Health Check of our humble 320GB hard disk drive)

5. Complete Applications Suite

deepin includes a full set of applications, plus games, most modern users will need and does not include those they don't need. This challanges elementary OS' slogan and we believe deepin surpasses it. To explain this in simplest way, after mentioned tools above, deepin is the only major OS which ships with an application named Downloader which like a combination of both "Internet Download Manager" and "uTorrent".


(Screenshot showing Deepin Applications at a glance from Browser to Font manager; this is the full screen Launcher)

6. Screen Capture - Screenshot that Features Annotation, OCR and Recording in One

deepin is years ahead by its Screen Capture which features screenshot taking, video recording with voices, annotations, and also optical character recognition (OCR), a feature to extract text automatically from picture to copy or save as plain text file TXT. Also covered with deepin style, this Screen Capture is also powered by helpful documentation as well as good integration. Try to press Ctrl+Shift+? when running it then shortcut table guide will show. Try to run Image Viewer and the ocr feature can also be exercised here too. We do not know any other major distro today who features OCR like deepin.

 (Screenshot of deepin OCR system showing its ability to transcript picture into text from the left to the right)

7. File Manager -- Simple yet Powerful, A Mix of German and American Styles

Deepin File Manager features a simple user interface yet complete abilities for daily folder and file management similar to Windows Explorer (by showing all devices in one place) and MacOS Finder (by its simplicity). Speaking about interface, it's more similar to GNOME Nautilus (by its left panel), but about abilities, it's more similar to KDE Dolphin. Not only that, but Deepin's is the only one file manager which is capable to do search as file chooser dialog (the dialog always showing every time one saves/opens a file). Note: KDE was born in Germany and GNOME was born in the California, US. 

(Screenshot of File Manager presenting a full overview of the computer in the first view; by contrast, Dolphin and Nautilus both do not have this overview)


8. Settings Everywhere -- Even Terminal Got Configuration Options

deepin is simple enough for casual users to use, and configurable as well for power users to tinker. Take example the Terminal for it is designed to be easy to understand but still includes Settings.


(Screenshot of Terminal and its Settings with three sections visible Basic, Shortcuts and Advanced)

9. Start menu -- Unique Mix of Microsoft's and Apple's Styles

deepin presents two styles of start menu, one is fashionable mode that looks like a floating dock and this is the default, and another one is efficient mode that looks like Windows panel. The menu itself is presented in two styles as well, one is simple mode that looks like Windows', and another one is full screen menu that looks like Android.


(Screenshot of deepin showing its second choice of the user interface, Efficient Mode)

10. Feedback System

The last in this list is the User Feedback. Although it features no graphical window, it automatically helps the user to quickly report or send a suggestion or request a feature to deepin developers and the community. To run it, one should open the Launcher and find User Feedback and it will briefly scan for the system then send the report using Browser and if it is failed, user will be invited to register, join and contribute back to The Deepin Project. deepin deliberately made it very easy for their users to be a part of the community by this. Lastly, dear readers can read an example of our feedback published on the deepin forum by clicking here.


(Screenshot of the process of sending a User Feedback to deepin developer team after logging in; visible here the log file size and OK button)

We hope you enjoy this article!


This article is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.