March 19, 2018

Linspire Linux Gets A KDE Plasma Edition For The Free Version

Freespire, the free version of the recently-ressurected Linspire operating system, has posted a news release stating that due to popular demand they have released a KDE Plasma flavor. Released as version 3.0.8, the iso download contains updated versions of pre-packaged software including:

  • Kernel 4.13.0-36 
  • Chromium Browser 64
  • Remote Desktop access
  • App Grid app store
  • Abiword
  • Gnumeric
  • Clang compiler
  • All security updates up to / including March 7, 2018
Freespire's KDE Plasma announcement Tweet
For those new to Linspire, their webpage states:
"LinspireOS is a 64 bit Linux based OS, that is geared towards the business, education and government worker. It has all the applications business users will need for work, research and deployment among very high end desktop systems. With LinspireOS you can host the entire line of legacy applications that may still be in use in your environment as well as facilities for deploying web apps. LinspireOS is certified in many states to run government intranet and web based applications. LinspireOS is the ONLY Debian and Ubuntu based system that is certified by Oracle and IBM to host and deploy their respective cloud technologies. LinspireOS is deployed by 4 out of 5 US military branches and is in use by the NOAA and the National Weather Service. LinspireOS is also used by many local law enforcement agencies as well as deployed by over 100 school systems in 50 states as well as 20 school systems on the African continent."
To be honest, I was not familiar with the affiliations listed above.

Freespire running XFCE desktop.
Photo courtesy of

Changes for KDE Plasma

Specific to the KDE Plasma release is the replacement of Abiword for office duties and Geary for email use with Plasma's Calligra office suite and Thunderbird for email. It's a bit of a surprise that KMail / Kontact was not used here, and I would be curious as to why. However, I suspect that concerns about stability may be culprit here.

Plasma is only an option for the free version 

As of the release announcement, the KDE Plasma version is only available for Freespire, the company's free version of their flagship (and XFCE-based) Linspire. We'll have to wait and see if Plasma becomes part of their commercial offering in the future. I suspect it will be based on community feedback from the free version. This model seems akin to Red Hat's Fedora releases, which often act as a testing bed for what might land one day in their commercial versions.

Of course, it's great that there's now a KDE option for those who prefer it. The more Plasma, the better in our books. We will continue to follow Linspire as they attempt to resuscitate and grow the brand going forward.


- Freespire announcement
- Linspire Homepage
- Freespire on Distrowatch

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