This distribution comes with 5 CD installation media, and there is no DVD iso image available on the download site. All the five CDs are required for installation and changing CDs during installation is a real pain; they also slow down the installation process. The logo used by Asian resembles adobe's logo in blue color.
According to the poject website "AsianLinux is one of the complete Linux Distributions developed in India. It has a lot of additional Entertainment & Development tools as compared with other Linux Distributions. It consists of Mozilla Firefox Browser with Flash Plugins & Java Runtime which makes it fully compatible for Internet Applications"
The test machine that I am using is pretty old; it is an AMD Athlon 2600+ XP, 1 Gig RAM, 64 Meg ATI 7200 with 15" LCD capable of 1024x768@75Hz
AsianLinux does not come with a live CD mode. So you have to install the distribution before you can check it. I think it is pretty outdated, and some users will be petrified by the fact that they have to install the distribution first. Anyways this is a personal opinion, and the standard installation method was the norm before MEPIS changed the whole landscape.
The installer application gives you an option to check the validity of the installation media. This is a really long process and I recommend users to just give it a pass.
The installation asks for user language, keyboard, and partitioning. In the partitioning application there is no option to resize an existing windows partition. It picks up any existing swap partition, and the user is left to just select the root partition.
Then the user has the option to select networking options, timezone and boot loader. The options are reasonably defaulted and should not be a concern for a newbie. Then comes the software package selection.
Redhat based, anoconda package selection is one of the best; its simple and yet provides you with full flexibility. I advise that users give a complete thought to what they want to install, as using yum/pirut at a later stage can be a unpleasant experience.
Thereafter the installation process starts, and its a really lengthy process, it took more than an hour to finish.
The installer does not give an option for creating default user. So on first login you have to log in as root and create a new user by using KUser application. It should not allow root to login.
Asian Linux reminded me of my first encounters with linux. The look and feel is similar to what Redhat had around 10 years ago. There is nothing good for this section.
Xorg configuration was completely screwed up. I was getting 800x600 @60Hz and the color depth was only 16. The driver was correctly loaded to radeon though.
Being a 5 CD install, Asian Linux provides you with lot of software. But the majority of the application software provided is outdated; open office 2.0, firefox 188.8.131.52. And so on.
Win32 codecs and libdvdcss were installed by default. So the user can easily watch movies. But when I tried to play MP3 songs, the only thing that i got was static noise. The sound card was properly configured and auto test produced correct sound.
Fedora 6 was one of the early adopters of compiz, still there was no eye candy provided by default in Asian Linux.
I would recommend to stay away and clear from Asian Linux, until you are feeling too much nostalgic. If you feel good about Redhat 7/8 and want to relive the same experience over again, then you should check Asian Linux. In one word, it is simply outdated.