Zorin Is A Linux OS That Looks And Behaves Like Windows 7

Zorin Is A Linux OS That Looks And Behaves Like Windows 7

If you’re building a computer for a relative or friend and wish to avoid the cost of Windows 7 you might look into Zorin — the Linux OS’ elements such as the taskbar, file system, start menu and desktop all work just like Windows. This combined with Zorin having the WINE Windows Emulator preinstalled means that the end user can install Windows programs easily.

I downloaded the ISO (around 1.14GB) and ran it from a DVD. Windows emulation worked well and although the familiar copyrighted logos are missing otherwise it looks and runs just like Windows 7 for average computing tasks.

In addition to WINE Zorun also comes with Play-On-Linux, another Windows emulator I’m not very familiar with. The OS also includes lots of standard open-source/freeware apps and there is a software centre that functions just like the Ubuntu software centre but with a slightly smaller catalogue.

You can also change the look of GUI from the “Look Changer” in the control centre to mimic Windows XP, Vista, Mac OS X, or a vanilla Linux GNOME interface. Zorin’s Background Plus makes it easy to use a video file or screensaver as your background.

I like that it has the security of Linux built on the extremely likable interface of Windows 7. Depending on how well it recognises your devices. I had no problems running it on my Lenovo laptop, but your mileage may vary.

Zorin OS [via Freeware Genius]


  • You know, I’d actually be interested in testing this out on one of my old lappies, but the public test of Win 8 is due out any day now and I doubt I’d have the patience for it!

  • “Zorin having the WINE Windows Emulator preinstalled”

    Please, for all that is holy, stop referring to WINE as an emulator. It’s even in the name (acronym) – WINE Is Not an Emulator.

    And if anyone, anywhere, ever mistook what is basically KDE tweaked, horribly mind you, I’ll eat my hat sans ketchup.

  • PlayOnLinux is just a frontend for WINE, including a bunch of scripts to easily install specific software (mostly games).
    If you’re a Linux newcomer, I recommend you to look at Linux Mint 12 (Lisa), and try out the Cinnamon interface.

    • While Mint is a good OS, 12 is buggy on my PC. Those with ATI/AMD video cards, watch out, it’s not quite ready yet. But I’ve used Mint since Gloria, they’ll get it right soon.

      At the same time, I have the latest Zorin & Ubuntu installed, and have no video issues. Everything is fine.


  • I’ve used the latest version of Ubuntu, and it’s a fantastic OS, plus I’ve tried out several other distros, and yet they all have that Windows 95 feel to them, as it’s just DOS with pretty pictures over the top.

    I think if Linux wants to succeed in drawing people away from commercial OS offerings, Linux needs to fully drop the CLI history and just go for a GUI built from the ground up using everything the *NIX community has learned over the last 40 years. Perhaps that would make it more “noob friendly”, but then again it may not.

    • There is the problem… the people capable of doing this (ie *Nix enthusiasts) use CLI because of its power. You will never be able to drop the CLI but building better GUIs is a worthwhile goal IMO. Telling them to drop the command line will get you ignored lol

      • Thats the thing though…… “Linux” isnt trying to draw people away from Commercial OS’s. If it were you’d see it on the shelf along side Windows.

        An unsavvy computer user isnt going to look for an alternative to Windows (or OSX) they’ll stick with what they know. Anyone looking to use something more reliable, powerful and effectivly free, will and do look for those alternatives.

    • That’s what many of us Linux users wants. The serious users aren’t lazy, we like to get our hands dirty. If Zorin (or any other popular Linux OS) were to become like Windows, the fun (& security) would be gone. We don’t want that.

      The latest Mint & Ubuntu runs quite well on my PC, and I have a fully usable desktop in half the time that it takes Windows 7 to get there. As far as installing programs, just Google what you want to do, usually there will be clear instructions as to what to do. All the way down as to what to enter in the terminal to get going.

      I’ll get around to Zorin, but with the upcoming release of Windows 8 Consumer Preview 3 days away, I need a week or so to wait to try it out. Looks like it’ll be a good OS.


  • After checking out the site a second time, I decided to go for this one. Actually, I tried this out in VBox once, and wasn’t satisfied. Note that some OS’s just runs better as the “real deal”.

    So I installed it, updated it, installed my faves, this is a cool OS. I chose the XP look. This OS is better than both Mint & Ubuntu (although the startup options says “Ubuntu” instead of Zorin. Doesn’t matter, it’s what’s inside that counts.

    It’s a great one. This OS has a lot of potential. If there is any Windows user that wants to switch, this is it. Easy to run, you choose the browser (Opera won’t install), the look, and you’re ready to roll.

    And like with my other Linux versions, Zorin boots fast. After I get Windows 8 going, I’m going to check out the forums here. This is going to be a busy week for me.


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