SiNG one.zero

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SiNG is a desktop computer operating system specifically designed for use on modern multi-core 64 bit PCs, Laptops, and Netbooks with HD/widescreen monitors.

The custom SiNG desktop makes for a simpler and more productive environment, while at the same time maximizing the usable vertical screen space on modern widescreen screen layouts.

Although SiNG was developed for use on multi-core 64 bit PCs, you don’t need the power of a 64 bit multi-core processor to run it. SiNG really only requires 256MB of memory, and takes steps to minimized the memory footprint of the operating system to give you more resources to run applications.

SiNG is built from a combination of Debian and L/X/K/Ubuntu, and is 100% compatible with the current Long Term Support Version, which provides system and application updates until 2020.

System Requirements :

  • DVD: 64 bit Intel Compatible PC, laptop, or Netbook with at least 1GB of memory, a working DVD drive, and the ability to boot in legacy BIOS mode.
  • USB Flash Drive: 64 bit Intel Compatible PC, laptop, or Netbook with at least 1GB of memory, and the ability to boot from USB devices.

www.On-Disk.com Review:

SiNG one.zero is the first 64 bit desktop operating system release I'm aware of designed to maximize speed, and efficiency, while minimizing power consumption to extend battery life.  Even more impressively, it's not a minimalist release, but built specifically for modern 64 bit PCs, Laptops, and Netbooks with widescreen displays.

How good is it?  I'll just say that it's now the operating system running on my work development PC, my personal laptop, and a family Netbook.  Here's why.

SiNG Desktop:
The SiNG desktop is derived from JWM (Joe's Window Manager).  It's impressively lean, yet beautiful.  Something anyone who ever used JWM wouldn't expect to find.

The desktop is characterized by the huge application launcher (start button) in the upper right corner.  At first this seemed to be overkill, but then I discovered the genius behind it. You can quickly launch the application finder without precision pointer control...great when using a touchpad.

All of the desktop controls are contained in the control bar on the right.  This not only maximizes vertical screen space, but makes switching between virtual desktops, selecting minimized applications, and moving applications quicker and easier than I've ever experienced before. I even noticed that you can right click on a window in the virtual screen selector (sometimes called a pager) and drag windows from one virtual screen (virtual desktop) to another.  I found this to be faster than using the menu option under the window icon decoration menu.

I was a initially concerned new users may not catch on as easily until I saw my 11 year old doing homework research on the netbook with SiNG. Since I hadn't had a chance to show him how it works, I asked if he had any problems using it.  He looked up at me as if it were a stupid question and just said "no".

The desktop background is different than most.  It consists of whatever picture you want to put on it, and nothing more.  No icons, or fancy desktop gadgets which are normally covered up as soon as you open an application.  If you just click anywhere on the background a quick launcher pops up for starting common applications.

Another feature I found helpful was that you can right click on taskbar entries to launch corresponding window menus.  I found this a lot faster and more convenient than needing to give a window focus  to move it somewhere else, or close it.

Notable Internet Apps:
The betas played with various software options which were outside on what I'd consider main stream.  The final contains a more familiar software set, including:

  • Mozilla Firefox which is modified not to auto-play flash or html5 content.  Mozilla is the only fuly functioning browser at the moment.  Since Google Chrome no longer supports mozilla plugins, including Java, but Mozilla does still have the ability to use Google Apps, Firefox is a must-have browser.
  • Thunderbird complete with calendar support (lightning), and VLC media player with bluetooth control support for use with bluetooth headsets.
  • Google Chrome is installed, and Chrome apps show up in the application launcher.  The cool thing is that each app can be launched in it's own window from the application launcher just like any other installed application.  It comes with the standard Google Apps installed, as well as Netflix. I must say, Netflix in it's own application window is pretty cool.
  • Skype is installed, sort of.  The skype launcher is installed.  If you want to use skype it'll automatically download the software and walk you through entering your account settings.

SiNG uses VLC for playing both movies and music.  I hadn't realized how good of a music player VLC had become since I had previously only use it for playing downloaded videos or DVDs.

SiNG also allows includes a bluetooth remote control system for computers equipped with Bluetooth or WiFi. It allows you to control the VLC Media Player by switching to the next, previous, or any other media within your current playlist, as well as browse your media library, activate your other playlists, rate your media, adjust volume, and more. On the mobile device, it can display information about the current media, including cover art (depends upon the ability of the mobile device).

Nice Extras:

  • Some time back Mozilla had an HTMP editor also available, which is still present in the Mozilla Seamonkey build, but not available independently.  SiNG allows the direct editing of HTML documents and text input fields with the  Xinha Here! Plugin, something I hadn't seen before, but quickly fell in love with.
  • The SiNG desktop theme is shared by all GTK 2, GTK3, and QT applications (Gnome and KDE apps), allowing SiNG to use incorporate some of the better applications across the board instead of sticking to either the Gnome or KDE side of the tracks.
  • The newer versions of Firefox and Thunderbird tend to look out of place on other desktops, but fit in nicely within the look and feel of SiNG one.zero.
  • VLC Media Player - Incorporating VLC ins't unusual, but how well it fits SiNG is.
  • Kill, yes, Kill.  Every once in a while we all do something that immobilizes an application.  I mistakenly opened a huge archive file in the text editor which isn't designed for it, and which it would never be able to load.  Of course it froze up and wouldn't respond to closing, but it was easy to kill by just right clicking on the corresponding taksbar entry on the right and selecting "kill".
Office: The pre-installed office lineup consists of:
  • The standard LibreOffice Suite
  • Scribus for desktop publishing
  • Kibikaboo is an application to help writers organize their notes, sources, etc.
  • Calibre is an E-Bbook manager and reader.  It allows reading most e-book formats.
  • Evince, the obligatory PDF reader. 

Internet/Network Connections:

SiNG uses the standard connection manager.  To access it, click it's small icon below the application launcher, and above the virtual screen manager. This allows for standard connections such as ethernet, WiFi, mobile broadband (WWAN), and PPPoE devices, and provides VPN integration with a variety of different VPN services.


The custom SiNG desktop screams, and definitely out performs all other 64 bit desktops I've used.  Yet it's in no way a minimal operating system.  The most powerful applications are included, you just have a little more oomph to run them.

I've mentioned the background is just an image you select.  Video memory can often effect the speed of any desktop, especially on systems with shared video memory.  Instead of wasting video RAM, SiNG lets you use it for running graphical applications. One way this is done is by using the standard SiNG background image, which is just 145 bytes, not Kbytes, that's 145 bytes.

Extended Laptop Battery Life:
The high contrast, bright windows, and default background make for a very bright video display.  I found myself being able to turn the brightness way down on my laptop, which gave me hours of extra battery life.  In testing I was getting nearly twice as much battery time under average lighting conditions. In a bright sunlit room I was still able to turn down the screen brightness by 1/4 to extend battery life.


SiNG is designed to be the only operating system installed, and is expected to install to a bare hard drive.

However, SiNG uses the Ubuntu ubiquity installer that is capable of installing along side other operating systems, or instead of currently installed operating systems. There is however a particularly odd install quirk.

During installation the Ubuntu installer will make you to enter new user information and a password during the install. This information is not used at all, but the installer won't continue with the installation until you enter something.I just presses the same key a few times to get something in the spaces and pressed the continue button and it began copying files.

Once installed, you can initially use SiNG with an admin account (username "admin") and a password of "password". These can, and should, be changed from the users option in the "System" category in the application launcher.

Other system users can be added if you wish, or you can just use the admin account as I do.  The admin account uses a standard sudo option to run privileged applications, but is a little more efficient than I find on normal system user sudo setups.



Many items are available on a variety of media.  Below is more information about these options:

Notice: We only ship top quality Kingston USB Flash devices.

In addition to optical CD/DVDs, USB Flash Drives are very popular.  They can be used in nearly any computer built since 1999, and are very useful on newer netbooks and computers without optical drives.

There are currently two major types of USB Flash Drives we currently use.  The standard USB 2.0 drives from Kingston shown on the left, and the next generation USB 3.0 Flash Drives from Kingston shown below on the right.
Both types of drives can be used in any USB port from the early 1.1 specifications of the late 1990s through to the latest USB 3.0 specifications that came out in 2010.  The only practical difference between the two is their speed when plugged into a USB 3.0 port, which allows the Kingston USB 3.0 Drives to save and read data 5-6 times faster than the Kingston USB 2.0 Flash Drives.

The Mobility Kit, shown here on the left, consists of a small "Micro" SD Card which inserts into a small USB Flash Drive adapter, or standard SD adapter. This allows it to also be used as a standard SD Card, or USB 2.0 Flash Drive. This is a great option if you want to be able to use it in the widest variety of computers and hand-held devices, or if you just want a nearly invisible USB Flash Drive that doesn't stick out.

When ordering flash media it is strongly recommended to select either the Priority Mail or Express Mail delivery option.  Although you are allowed to select first class mail at checkout time, we will not replace any items lost in the Postal System.  In most instances undelivered orders are returned to us and we can contact the customer, let them know, and arrange re-shipment, but not always. Priority and Express Mail packages can be tracked Online so if something goes wrong we can track them down.

Flash Drives and Media Kits are ordered from Distribution on Mondays and Thursdays, with shipments generally taking three days to arrive. Please allow up to a week for these items to be processed, pre-tested, and shipped to you from www.On-Disk.com.

32 Bit, and x86 refer to Intel, and Intel Compatible, computers. These include computers using Intel, AMD, and VIA processors.

64 bit, x86_64, and AMD64 designations refer to a 64-bit extension to the existing x86 architecture. A 64 Bit Intel, or Intel Compatible, computer can run either a standard 32 bit operating system, or a 64 bit optimized version.

The performance gain from using a 64 bit operating system is virtually imperceptible in most instances. Where we could possibly notice a difference would be when the computer is under a heavy load such as when running high-end applications which may require massive system resources, or a highly over-tasked Internet Server. This is because the majority of the performance gain is due to the road the internal data travels on being twice as wide as on 32 Bit hardware, as well as newer/faster hardware that supports it. In normal computing environments, very little performance increase can be attributed to the CPUs enhanced 64 bit instruction set itself.

One remaining drawback to using a 64 bit operating system is that there are still instances where hardware support or software may not be available.

PowerPC, often abbreviated as PPC, was used by Apple's Macintosh lines from 1994 to 2006 (before Apple's transition to Intel). If you have an older Apple, or Apple Compatible, computer from this time period look for products offering PPC options.


The computer type option on software pages (not operating systems) is fairly easy to select. Just match the computer type with the operating system installed on your computer. If you are not sure if you have a 32 or 64 bit installation use one of the methods below:

  • Microsoft has a guide for Windows 2000 and newer versions: http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;827218 All older versions of Windows are all 32 bit.

  • Under Linux run uname -a in a terminal window.

  • Computers without a working operating system: Pay attention to the display when the computer is turned on, it will normally show one of the designations listed above. Otherwise you may need to press whatever key it tells you to use to enter the BIOS (AKA startup options). Once in the BIOS the type of CPU should be displayed.

Basic Shipping Info:

Orders ship out twice a week, on Tuesdays and Fridays. They are processed in the order in which they are received, not based upon the shipping option selected during checkout.

Please Remember, every item is custom made for you after you place your order. It's not like purchasing a copy of Mirosoft Windows at a retail shop where all they need to do is put it in a box and ship it to you.

We do not work weekends or holidays.  We are a small family business, with the emphasis on family.

Basic Shipping Costs:

(note: Orders of 3 or more items will be slightly more. Their actual cost is shown during checkout.)

  • USPS First-Class Mail to US addresses - $2.37US for 1 disc in basic package, $2.66 for 2 discs. Delivery for most addresses is within 4 business days. Military and outlying possessions may be longer.

  • First Class Mail International to Canada - $2.37US for 1 disc in basic package, $2.66 for 2 discs. Most orders will arrive within 7 business days, but a minimum of two weeks should be allowed for shipping.

  • First Class Mail International to anywhere else in the World - $3.60US for 1 disc in basic package, $3.85 for 2 discs. Most orders will arrive within 2 weeks, but consideration should be given to the distance, Customs and the postal service in your country.

Flash Drive Shipping:

Flash Drives,  SD Cards, and CF Cards are ordered from distribution weekly, and normally ship from www.On-Disk.com in anywhere from 1-7 days.

When ordering flash media it is strongly recommended to select either the Priority Mail or Express Mail delivery option.  Although you are allowed to select first class mail at checkout time, we will not replace any items lost in the Postal System.  In most instances undelivered orders are returned to us and we can contact the customer, let them know and arrange re-shipment, but not always. Priority and Express Mail packages can be tracked Online so if something goes wrong we can track them down.

Returns and Exchanges:

Every order placed at www.On-Disk.com is a custom made product.  We make it specifically for you after you order it.  With this in mind, once the media has been created it can not be returned, exchanged or canceled. Certain exceptions can be made depending upon the circumstances.  This is left up to the sole discretion of www.On-Disk.com

Replacement Guarantee:

If a disk or other media arrives at your location and is un-readable due to shipping damage or quality of the burn and or data load, we will replace the damaged items. If the damage is due to shipping, we may ask that you return the items to us in it's original packaging so that we can asses our shipping procedures to ensure disks arrive at their location safely. If it's not apparent that un-readable media was damaged in shipping it may be returned in any appropriate media packaging.

There is no Replacement Guarantee for free Quick Ship discs, or other free promotional or courtesy items we may periodically offer throughout the year. We simply don't have the manpower to help troubleshoot or re-send free disc products.

21-Day Limit:

You must notify us within 21 days (3 weeks) from the ship-to date if there are any problems with your order. There will be no refunds or replacements made after 21 days.

If you're not sure what the ship date is, you'll find it within your order history. Simply visit the "My Account" link at the top of this page.

Help Ordering:

If you need help ordering please contact us so that we may assist.

More Information:

If you need more information about a product please contact the product Developer.  Their homepage information will be linked to from the Developer box in the menu on the left.

In some instances items are added to our catalog per customer request.  In such instances there will be no Developer Info box showing in the menu on the left, and any product information included in the listing was found on the product developers website, which you may want to visit for updated information. These Custom Requested listings are not maintained or updated by www.On-Disk.com.

Technical Support Options:

No-cost technical advice and support is available for nearly any piece of software, including operating systems. In many instances you will also have support available locally. The key is to know these options exist, and have enough basic information to be able to find them.
Whether looking for assistance with a computer operating system, or software running on the computer, there are outstanding free options available.
The first place we can begin seeking help is Online.
Most operating system and software developers have Online forums in place specifically to assist you. These Online support forums allow you live and on-demand access to a wide range of technical guidance from industry experts. You can usually find support forums by visiting the developer's website. In some cases you can just do an internet search for the item you are needing help with, followed by the word "forum" to find relevant information. In most instances, for the products we have available, a link is provided for you under the "Support" tab on the listing page for that particular item.
The advantage of support forums is in the numbers and expertise...your situation can be viewed by many people, and only one needs to know the answer for you to find a solution. Online support forums are also followed, in most instances, by those who actually write the piece of software, or have a hand in developing the operating system. These folks are the "real-deal", not just an hourly paid employee on the other end of a phone somewhere.
Nearly every Linux, BSD, and Open Solaris distribution has a user forum to help with any problems that may come up. There are also several very good general content forums such as :http://www.linuxquestions.org and the Nixcraft Linux Tech Support Forum - great places to get help with just about every operating system other than Microsoft Windows, as well as applications that run on them. For the more technically adventurous there are forums such as The UNIX and Linux Forums and http://www.unixforum.co.uk/.
MAC users have the great MAC OSX support forum available to them, as well as the Apple Discussions, and MAC Forums.

And don't feel left out if you use Microsoft Windows, you have Online support forums at your disposal as well, but you do need to be on the lookout for forums created just to sell you antivirus or spyware solutions. The most reputable is the Microsoft Forums. For assistance with a non-microsoft product under Windows you may sometimes get better results at other locations such as the Tech Support Forums.
Another great place to get free technical support is through local user groups. Since the early days of computing groups of people have been getting together to explore all the geeky things they can do with their computers. In the past few years the number of user groups, and members of existing groups, has exploded fueled by the growing popularity of Linux and and open source software.
There are several types of computer user groups, and to find ones that meet near you. A quick internet search can help find a group near you. For instance a simple search like linux user group gives excellent results. I selected Linux User Group (also known as LUG) because from my experience a Linux user group can, and usually will, assist with just about any computer or gadget related problem you might have. LUGs normally have regular meetings which everyone is welcome to attend, as well as "Install Fests" periodically throughout the year. An install fest is an event where they will even install your Linux selection onto your computer for you, as well as give you advice on which distribution may best suit your circumstances.
Although it's great to have face to face conversations with the people who are helping you, the majority of assistance members give each other usually takes place on a mailing list, which offers real-time answers to questions. Using the mailing list for support can be a great lifeline if you happen to live some distance from the nearest group and can't attend regular meetings.

Product Licensing:

Product Licensing terms are set by the individual software developers.  Please see the Developer's homepage for complete licensing information.  Their Developer's homepage is linked to from the Developer info box in the menu on the left.

In some instances items are added to our catalog per customer request.  In such instances there will be no Developer Info box showing in the menu on the left, and any product information included in the listing was found on the product developers website, which you may want to visit for updated information. Licensing terms of all Custom Requested items appearing in our catalog allow for re-distribution under their terms which we must honor.

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