What Happens to CutefishOS? Users Are Concerned Whether the Project Is Still Alive

What Happens to Cutefish OS? Users Are Concerned Whether the Project Is Still Alive

The suspension of active development on the Cutefish OS has led to concerns among Linux users that the project no longer exists.

Cutefish OS, a new Linux distro, broke onto the scene in September 2021, seeking its place among the Linux distributions with the best user-friendly desktop experience. There are already proven names like elementary OS, Zorin OS, Deepin, etc.

However, the distribution found a way to stand out from the rest by providing its developed desktop environment, CutefishDE, based on the QT framework.

The developers of Cutefish OS set out to create a desktop environment that felt as close to macOS as possible, and to a large extent, they succeeded.

Cutefish OS CutefishDE Desktop Environment

The attention to detail is evident, and the overall experience working with the desktop environment is excellent. The distribution is available in two flavors: Ubuntu-based and Debian-based.

Unfortunately, Cutefish OS has never been able to release a stable version. The most recent is Cutefish OS 0.8 Beta, released on January 30, 2022.

However, there have been growing concerns among Linux users recently that the Cutefish OS project has been practically discontinued. Several circumstances cause these worries.

First, a quick look at the project’s GitHub repository shows that the Linux distribution has seen almost no active development in the last two months. Furthermore, Reddit users have reported that their emails go unanswered when they try to contact the Cutefish OS developers

It is assumed that future distribution development has been stopped due to a lack of funding. Unfortunately, this has always been one of the main reasons that otherwise promising open-source projects have been stalled.

However, the reaction to these concerns has been lightning. In the traditional Open Source manner, there are currently proposals to clone the project and to build a new team to continue its development.

First, of course, we must clarify that, for the time being, all of this is still at the preliminary stage of opinion probing, and no actual steps have been made.

Unfortunately, the lack of an official statement from Cutefish’s developers makes things somewhat unpredictable. However, we hope to see more clarity on the subject in the coming days.

Finally, we want to emphasize that it would be a pity the Linux community lost such a promising and gorgeous desktop as Cutefish OS. So, all we can do now is wait and hope for the best.

Bobby Borisov
Bobby Borisov

Bobby is a Linux professional with over 20 years of experience. With a strong focus on Linux and open-source software, Bobby has worked as a Linux System Administrator, Software Developer, and DevOps Engineer for small and large multinational companies.

8 Comments

  1. I’m not sure about the distribution itself, if forking, I think it’s better to spend the energy to develop the CutefishDE and try to get it into multiple distributions, I think that can increase adaptation of the DE by end users.

    For me personally, I have been looking for a replacement for Plasma5, much due of memory leak issues in multi user environments, the issue for me to switch to CutefishDE is of course the early stage it’s in and the CSD as it limits my customization needs and that the title bar has different heights based on the content in the title bar, which reminds me about ugly ms-windows and the different windows decorations for each application.

  2. Interesting – so then you didn’t see the new release on SourceForge the day before you posted this? And shouldn’t your title be “What Happened” not “What Happens”?

    To be honest, I’m not very impressed with linuxiac…

    • Hi Bruce,

      I can assure you that before publishing any story, our team thoroughly investigates it. I guess you just haven’t had the time to look in-depth at the two changes you mentioned.

      The update in the “terminal” repo is related to one of the language files, notably the Spanish one. A specific change in the “dock” repo has had 11 lines removed. So, this concludes the distribution’s development work over the last two months.

      You can see from the link you provided how work basically ceased a few months ago after a year of continuous development. Furthermore, as mentioned in the article, the lack of developer feedback makes things pretty unclear.

      Thank you for reading Linuxiac!

  3. Why is a project like this defined as a new distro (actually, two of them) ? Wouldn’t it be a lot less work to create it as a script that you run after install of, say, Kubuntu to make the UI and settings needed ? Put any new binaries into the Ubuntu/Kubuntu repos.

    We have too many distros.

  4. A new post on github indicates that Cutefish OS may be back with a new (coming soon) website openfish.org that uses French registrar gadhi.net instead the old cutefishos.com which used Alibaba in China. Hopefully this update will make any new software repositories more reliable and shielded from potential political interference or censorship.

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