Just when I think an Operating System can’t impress me much more, along comes Armbian on the Asus Tinker Board. This is an Ubuntu based system that runs shockingly well, and has many similar configuration options to the ubiquitous Raspian OS as featured on Raspberry Pi 3. The major differences lie in the speed and performance of this Xfce environment, which outpaces every other OS I’ve tried on this device. (Including Xfce on other distros on this device.)
5 out of 5 – Perfect Fit On This Power Scale
In A World Of Sketchy Arm Based OS Letdowns
If I seldom hand out perfect scores it’s because of systems like this one, which not only raises the bar for users, but for admins as well. The interface is sparse but pretty, the tools are few but excellent, and the software boutique boasts configurations and software packages just right for the advanced Linux enthusiast. You can easily switch between lean and mean using synaptic, or go full featured with the actual Ubuntu Software Center. While the Xfce environment isn’t perfect for everyone, it is the perfect place to start with this all around impressive distro which offers tons of easy customization out of the gate.
But what can this mean for makers?
After all, an operating system is just one part of the equation for them. The development environments are all possible, and in this environment it’s a pleasure to work with every tool I’ve tried so far, including the security ones that lagged on my Tinker to Kali conversion. The video even seems just a bit quicker and all around I can’t praise these developers enough for the incredible effort on this distribution. If you are using any sbc compatible with this build, I urge you to have a 3 amp power supply and try this OS ASAP. (No sound? No problem just go to youtube, then with a video playing click the volume control on your desktop and select chromium, and the rockchip miniarm codec.)