MakuluLinux Shift – A Multi Desktop Distro that Fully transforms you between Different Layouts. 

Shift is an Extremely complex Distro to build, nothing like it exists anywhere. We are aware that some other Distros can change the layout of the desktop in some form or other, however, those are merely simple overlay theme changes or moving of a panel or dock. Shift takes it to another level, We don’t just switch to a different layout, we COMPLETELY remove the old one, the Wallpapers, Themes, Icon-sets, Cursors, Extensions, Effects, Panels, Docks etc are completely uninstalled, and then the new sets of Wallpapers, Themes, Icon-sets, Extensions, Cursors Effects, Panels, Docks etc etc is then installed, once the removal and install process is completed, only then do we start to transform the Desktop Style to look like another desktop, including Placements of Menus, docks, panels, icons, theming, color grading, setting up extensions and effects etc etc. The whole process can take between 10 and 30 seconds depending on hardware, and ALL of this is done OFFLINE, no scripts or packages are downloaded… It is truly impressive that it is done so smoothly that the end user simply thinks a theme overlay change has been implemented, they are completely unaware of all the complex scripts that had just been activated on their system.  

Not only do we completely transform the system, but we give the end user the ability to save his own desktop layout style, complete with his chosen icons, wallpaper, gtk theme, shell theme, panel/dock settings, all extensions, favorites etc etc. He can with 1 click save the layout and again with one click restore the layout he saved. No scripts to run, no manual to read, no skills needed other than to click a button.  This in Essence is what Shift is, a Transformable Linux Distro that lets the user mimic a different look with the click of a button without losing his profile information, preinstalled applications or their preferences. 

Shift comes in Both Ubuntu and Debian Variants, as well as in Both 64Bit and 32Bit. Once you select your preferred Desktop layout, you will find that Shift is an extremely Well Designed and Stable Distro, Offering you many features. From the Touch Gesture System that allows you to run Shift on Virtually any touch device, to running Windows Applications out of the Box to Access a Huge software selection in the Software center with SnapD and Flathub support. It really is a distro that is designed for everybody, be it for Work, Entertainment, Touch, developing or whatever your needs are, Shift is designed to make life easy and comfortable.   

Shift Debian vs Shift Ubuntu : 

With Shift running on the Gnome framework and being quite complex we have tried to design it in such a way that the system won’t easily just be broken with regular updates from Debian or Ubuntu, this is something We have spent a great deal of time on, safety checks and triggers to prevent breakage, HOWEVER, We are running on a Gnome Framework and Shift does use quite a lot of Extensions and Gnome is notoriously known for breaking extensions with Major updates ( thankfully this happens only around once a year ) and this is where the difference between Shift Debian and Shift Ubuntu comes into play. Shift Debian gets system Core updates from the Debian Testing repositories, Thus Gnome framework updates come more regularly to the Debian version of Shift, so there is Always risk of extension incompatibility,  Luckily we can fix these quite easily, however there is no guarantee to the end user that one of his favorite extensions wont experience some downtime until fixes get patched through. I guess this is always a risk on any distro that gets updates from Testing repo, that’s why it’s called “Testing”.  The Ubuntu variant of Shift gets its updates from the Focal repo of Ubuntu ( 20.04 LTS ), which is now locked on the current Gnome version for the remainder of its life, therefore there is absolutely near Zero risk of extensions breaking, making the Shift Ubuntu Variant the “Stable” Shift distro while the Debian Build I would label as the “Testing / Unstable” build. In conclusion. Debian Shift is targeted to more experienced Linux users who prefer Debian, Whereas the Ubuntu Variant is targeted towards those more inexperienced or users who don’t want to be bothered with potential problems or prefer ease of use that Ubuntu offers. 

Difference between Previous Beta 1 and Beta 2 : 

Beta 1 was an almost direct port from Debian Shift, with some adaptation of course, but for the most part a lot was directly ported. While this did not cause any instability on the core of the system, there are major differences between Debian and Ubuntu and thus issues were reported.

The focus of Beta 2 was a 4 Part Focus : 

  • 1. Fix reported bugs 
  • 2. Implement more Automation
  • 3. Optimize the Ubuntu Variant to the same level of the Debian Variant. 
  • 4. Update the Debian Variant to have better compatibility with the new Gnome 41 framework.

Fixing reported issues was the easy part, people reported and we fixed, Implementing better automation was a little tricky, I had to first identify where users seem to get confused using the OS, or where I see users do something with multiple clicks that really could be done with far fewer clicks. Once We identified some of these it was not very difficult to find ways to automate the process more. A few examples would be : The Intro Setup Manager consisted of multiple pages that took the user through setting up his drivers, network, system backup, updates and such things, this whole GUI seemed to confuse users and seems to be looked on as a tiring process. so We Redesigned the GUI to be one page, added some nice looking icons and now users can simply move from one item to the next just moving their mouse a few cm. Another example is the Desktop Layout Manager, every time a user opens a third party app from the layout manager ( like wallpaper or theme managers ) it would close the desktop manager and the user would then need to click on the icon to reopen it again, We now automated this, when clicking on a button to open a third party app, when you close that app it automatically goes back to the desktop manager. We did the same for pretty much everything connected to the desktop manager. When users change a layout, many would not know that you can also make additions to that layout ( like moving the dock or panel, setting auto hide etc ), So we automated this process. When you change a layout it now pops up a GUI asking if you also want to change the layout of the panel or dock of the chosen layout, and once you close that gui, it automatically goes back to the desktop manager again. 

Adding Video Tutorials for users to navigate certain parts of the OS easily. These guides are easy to follow, simply watch a video. In essence we have Automated a Lot of the system to benefit the end user experience with the new Beta 2 build, the overhaul user experience is greatly enhanced. Lastly We spent a lot of time optimizing the OS, Originally Beta 1 used around 900mb -1.3GB ram on idle, Which is expected from a Gnome framework, We managed to bring this down to 600-700mb at idle, This is near Xfce Level of ram consumption, and it is UNHEARD of for a gnome framework. Considering everything under the Hood I really am extremely happy with this achievement, We have also implemented a better preload system to improve application loading, This will be evident as users will notice some memory being loaded into cached ram, also added more support for portable hosts like Laptops and Tablets ( better battery and heat monitoring ). All in All, Beta 2 is a massive improvement over Beta 1 while still being Equally as beautiful. 

Do Users need to Reinstall if they are using Beta 1 but want everything from Beta 2 ? :  

This was something we explored, to see what can be backported to Beta 1, and while some fixes will be backported and some already have, most of everything else will not. Therefore if users are happy with their Beta 1 setup, they can keep using it, however we DO RECOMMEND that users do a fresh install of Beta 2 to take full advantage of everything that has been implemented, the system optimizations alone makes the reinstall worth it in my opinion. We can’t yet say if future builds will require a Fresh reinstall or not, We will however try to find a way to maybe implement a better system where reinstalls won’t be needed. So what Else is under the hood ?  

The Software Center in Makulu Shift fully supports both Flathub and Snaps, Users can install from a selection of Thousands & Thousands of great software and games with a few easy clicks.

Shift sports a Huge selection of preinstalled drivers, from GPU’s to USB devices to Printers… Most, if not all your plug and play devices should work out of the box on Shift without much fuss.

Various Extensions have been included, some used by various layouts and a few additional that users may want to enable, Because shift is designed on the gnome framework, it support the use of gnome extensions, either make use of the current extensions or install your own, there is a huge selection available at the gnome extension web hub.

Makulu shift Also support Special Effects that give it an almost “Compiz” like feel, you can turn Special effect on/off via the Theme manager, these will enable wobbly windows and magic Lamp like effects in Shift.

Makulu Constructor Tool is included, This tool is simply AMAZING, it lets you turn your current OS back into a ISO to be installed on another Computer, preserving your desktop look and feel exactly as it was when you constructed the ISO. The constructor tool is now Fully automated, no more dozens of options that confuse users, now its a one click option. Click and the Constructor will do the rest, sit back and wait for your iso to pop out, it is completely Fully automated. There is also a nice video tutorial included.

Please Be Aware we now have 3 Builds Available, The Beta 2 Builds are ( Shift Ubuntu & Shift Debian, both 64Bit builds ) and an Alpha 32Bit Shift build.  

Some Stand out Features in all 3 Builds :

  • 8 Unique Desktop Styles.
  • 1 Click Automated Switch between Layouts.
  • 330 Wallpapers.
  • 92 Icon sets
  • 20 cursors
  • 14 GTK Themes
  • 41 Extensions
  • Huge Driver Support
  • Some Software Pre-installed and Pre-configured out of the box, namely Wine, Playonlinux on the Ubuntu Variant only.

 Information Both 64Bit Builds ( Shift-U and Shift-D ) :

  • Code Name : Shift ( Beta 2 )
  • Base : MakuluLinux-U Hybrid Base ( Ubuntu Base ) /  MakuluLinux-D Hybrid Base ( Debian Base )
  • Life Cycle : 2025 ( Ubuntu ) / Semi rolling ( Debian Testing )
  • Main Repository : MakuluLinux
  • Secondary Repository : Ubuntu / Debian
  • Desktop Environment : Gnome Framework.
  • Kernel : 5.11.xx / 5.15.xx
  • Architecture : 64Bit with 32Bit support ( 64Bit CPU is required )
  • Required Disk Space : 15Gb+ minimum / 20GB+ more recommended
  • Required Ram : at least 2GB ( 4GB+ recommended )
  • Live username / password : makulu / makulu
  • Release Date : December 2021
  • Download size :2.9.xx GB / 3.4xxGB

 Information 32Bit ( Shift-D-i686 ) :

  • Code Name : Shift ( Alpha )
  • Base : MakuluLinux-D Hybrid Base ( Debian Base )
  • Life Cycle : Semi rolling ( Debian Testing )
  • Main Repository : MakuluLinux
  • Secondary Repository : Debian
  • Desktop Environment : Gnome Framework.
  • Kernel :
  • Architecture : 32Bit 2Ghz PAE CPU is required.
  • Required Disk Space : 15Gb+ minimum 20GB+ more recommended
  • Required Ram : at least 1-2GB ( 4GB+ recommended )
  • Live username / password : makulu / makulu
  • Release Date : December 2021
  • Download size :2.xx GB

Please be aware these are Development Builds, Stable enough to use as a Daily Driver, But still Development Builds.

  • Important Things to know :
  • The layout Manager, Desktop Clock, Themes & 3D options can be accessed on the desktop, simply right click on the desktop and select themes from the context menu.
  • The menu’s can be resized quite easily, if you are using a 4K display on a smaller device, menu’s can be resized by simply right clicking on menu, open options and find the size settings, you can drag the sliders to increase the width and height, the rest of the menu will scale as you set the size.
  • When booting up in Live mode only, it may take a few moments to go past the login screen depending on your hardware, this is due to some information that is displayed before login that delays boot a few moments, just be patient and let it boot. It only delays in Live mode Boot, Once installed there is no boot delay.
  • The Intro Video shows you VITAL information about Shift, where to find features in menu’s, how to change layouts and so forth, we HIGHLY RECOMMEND you do NOT skip the intro video during Live Boot.

Final Words :
I have started a Cashflow Campaign, For the last 2 years during this Covid period we have had virtually no cashflow, We have a few Patreon members keeping the project afloat and most months I still have to fork out some money from my own pocket. During this time we managed to Deliver you MakuluLinux Shift, one of the most complex to build and most beautiful operating systems in existence, We did this without any money, Imagine what we could achieve if we actually had money ? If we could buy access to better hardware, better tools, more hands to help, spend more time achieving goals, Imagine the next OS we would produce or how much better shift would become ? I Will be showing this Big campaign advert everywhere on the website to make people aware that we are now serious, from this point onwards for us to achieve the next level we need money, there is no getting around it. So if you are in a fortunate position where you can support the project with a donation below , we ask you to please help us get to our goal so we can start rolling that ball and keep delivering you top quality distro’s.

Or You can also become a Patreon below :

Here you can watch a quick Overview Video of MakuluLinux shift ( Recommended ) :

You can download Shift here :