If you just want to donate to the project without purchasing any product you can donate here.

Your donations will be used for the following purposes
Finance the distribution
Pay for things like website maintenance
Purchase Equipment
Fund the work of developers

Why donate? Black Lab Linux is free of cost to download and funding is necessary to keep Black Lab Linux free to download as well as aid in costs of maintaining a distribution

How much should I donate? Anything you want to donate, the amount doesnt matter.

Why Black Lab Linux

Black Lab Linux is the only Linux distribution that truly focuses on ease of use for the general computer user.  We can serve as an introduction to the world of Linux and we are there for the countless millions of users that discover Linux each day.  Most new users to Linux want 4 things from their everyday systems.  This is what we call the pillars of usability.

  • Consistency
  • Dedication
  • Functionality
  • ease of use
Lets break down those pillars and show you why Black Lab Linux should be your choice for your computing needs.

Built on a completely open source foundation,  the Black Lab Linux team believes in Free and Open Source Software development and have pledged ourselves to remain a complete open source project.  While we may incorporate some software that is proprietary.  It is included for compatibility with current industry trends.

First though, lets break down some misconceptions about Black Lab Linux.

Black Lab Linux is just a themed Ubuntu

Thats wrong.  Sure back in 2007 when we got started and people were going mad just re-branding and spinning Ubuntu we got pooled in with that crowd.  Black Lab Linux even then pulled itself apart from the rest by offering features and a UI style that set itself apart from the other Ubuntu derivatives and even now we have further evolved.  Some people have called Black Lab Linux a "better Ubuntu then Ubuntu" with rock solid stability and features that other Linux distributions do not have.

Black Lab Linux is old

Black Lab Linux is not a bleeding edge distribution.  We focus on stability and functionality.  Having the same base as Ubuntu offers our users to remain compatible with Ubuntu, run all Ubuntu applications and any application that is written for Ubuntu.  With that we do continuous development on the core system.  We always use the same base as the Ubuntu LTS releases but we also update our kernels, we update our core libraries, and we also update our applications to the newest stable releases so users are always up to date.

The Black Lab Linux team doesnt respect copyrights and tries to mimic other OS's

The Black Lab Linux team does indeed respect others copyrights and trademarks.  We dont try to mimic other OS's at all we try to make our own style and UI enhancements.  Our inspirations on ease of use come from, BeOS, NeXTStep and SGI Irix.  The three most important OS's in terms of ease of use, resource management and viability.  Most OS concepts have not changed much in the last 20 years.  Other companies may add flashy new interfaces, add a paint job and lots of eye candy.  Our design goals are to keep it as simple as possible and create a user experience that stays out of the way, that is full of features and that does not use system resources to animate useless animations and desktop effects.  So whether you work hard or play hard.  Black Lab Linux allows you to use your system resources on your applications and games and not on rendering the desktop.

Black Lab Linux and PC/OpenSystems LLC just want our money and dont care about Open Source.  They just want us to buy Linux!!! Grrrrrrrr

The Black Lab Linux team is very committed to open source and open development.  All the changes we make are published by us on our Sourceforge page.  This is so users can scrutinize, recompile and make changes to the existing source code.  We are members of the Open Invention Network and PC/OpenSystems itself makes many contributions to different open source projects whether monetarily or through code submissions.  Our community edition is made available FREE of charge from this website.  If you want to help us out by donating to the project or by purchasing a LiveCD or LiveUSB Flash drive, we thank you very much but its NOT a requirement.  Now, we do offer Black Lab Enterprise Desktop and Black Lab Education Desktop as our two commercial offerings.  With this you get paid support, on site support or remote support.  We also bundle in commercial products that we cannot distribute for free like the Oracle Java stack and Adobe Reader.  We also build in features that make sense in the commercial world but not so much to the average user.  We had three reasons for going into the commercial Linux world instead of using one of the "standard" commercial Linux distributions.

1.  All the commercial companies make outstanding servers, but they have deemed the desktop market as unprofitable or not worth the effort.

2.  There are no commercial desktop offerings and the free Linux based desktops dont offer the quality of support most companies want.

3.  Upgrade cycles.  Most free Linux desktops are only good for 6 months before developers start targeting the new versions so users are expected to upgrade.

Concepts of Usability

Our pillars of usability are also our concepts of usability.  These are concepts that users and customers want out of their experience.  While other companies and Linux distributions dont respect the user and treat them as constant beta testers.  The Black Lab Linux team works towards common standards.  These include;


Most users coming from a Mac OS X or Microsoft Windows world are used to a consistent user look and feel of their operating system and they demand it.  In Black Lab Linux we offer one of the most popular desktop managers called XFCE and it is set up in a way to make the transition from Windows and Mac OS X very fluid and seamless for the user.  If you work in a corporate or education environment Black Lab Linux demands very little retraining and many of your applications either have a superior open source equivalent of your commercial application or those applications can be run under several different emulation types that (depending on your system) can give near native speeds.  This means you will suffer no lag or any significant speed decreases.  With many corporate customers running Black Lab Linux or some different release of Linux you know you are getting quality.


With Windows and  Mac OS X you get support from Microsoft or Apple.   When you contact them they don't ignore you, they don't say "Too bad".  With Black Lab Linux you get the same type of dedication that you get with Microsoft Windows or Mac OS X.  We will help you with any problems or missteps you may have.  We are 100% dedicated to you to make sure your experience is the best you ever had and we have phenomenal response times.  Many inquiries and results are handled the same day.  We have the most dedicated and friendly staff you can find.  Also, being a part of the Linux community is fun.  With the Black Lab Linux forums and Linux forums all over the world you have the most talented, friendly and dedicated communities in the world.


Most Linux distributions, Ubuntu, Fedora, Linux Mint, OpenSUSE dont come with any multimedia playback possible or they are very limited in functionality.  With Black Lab Linux you get full multimedia playback of various formats: Windows Media, Apple Quicktime, Flash, HTML 5 as well as DVD and Blu-Ray.  For audio playback you also get full functionality including: Windows Audio, Apples AAC and Real Media.  This allows you to play all multimedia either hard drive based or on the web.  For web browsing we use the popular Google Chrome browser so compatibility is ensured with all of your banking or personal sites.  We are also one of the first Linux distributions to bundle the popular Steam gaming client.  With HD capable graphics we offer a stunning user interface with unprecedented clarity and crisp graphics that's unseen with anything on the Linux market today

Ease of Use

Black Lab Linux is designed for users by users.  We understand that coming from a different operating system sometimes incorporates a rigid retraining process.  You have to rethink your workflow and how you do things.  Black Lab Linux is one of the only Linux distributions that users say is just as easy to use as a Mac.  We designed the user interface so users can jump in without a manual and feel comfortable and knowledgeable on how the system works.  Every part of the system is recognizable for any novice or advanced user.  But, of course if you need a manual we have some available.  With Black Lab Linux you are immune to all Windows based spyware, adware and viruses.  While Linux users are not immune to cracking efforts we definitely offer better protection than Windows based systems.   We have a built in anti-virus program and an easy to configure firewall.  With Parental Controls you can monitor your children, decide what content they can enjoy and even shutdown the computer at bed time.

With Black Lab Linux you can be assured that you get the same quality that you enjoy with competing commercial operating systems.  

Black Lab Linux is free to download and use,  so you have a no cost entry to the world of open source.  If you need a live USB key for installation or if you work in a corporate environment and need more corporate based features, that is available as well.  Black Lab Linux install media is $25.00 USD.  We look forward to showing you the many features that you can enjoy with open source technologies.

Welcome to the world of Black Lab Linux.