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The Unicorn Beyond XFCE Initiative

We announced the development of Rhino Linux just over one year ago today, and to celebrate our birthday we would like to officially present the “Unicorn Beyond XFCE Initiative” (UBXI).

Rhino Linux was designed with user control in mind. The user should have the right to choose, and that should extend to their choice desktop environments as well.

While we have continued to improve the Unicorn Desktop environment, our users have consistently asked us to provide alternate desktop environment spins, and have shown us consistently that they can create highly stylised Unicorn themed desktops on other environments/window managers.

UBXI, put simply, is a way for our users to maintain their own desktop environment packages and distribution spins. Unicorn is more than just the XFCE base it was built on, it’s an idea that helps to improve the Rhino Linux desktop experience, and Rhino Linux is more than the desktop environment the user interacts with.

We, the Rhino Linux team, hereby propose that users should be encouraged to submit their own dotfiles and theming for other desktop environments (or window managers); provided that they follow Unicorn’s aesthetic, icon theme, colour scheme and components (where required). These package submissions will then be verified by the Rhino Linux team, and if they meet Unicorn’s standards, be accepted as an official UBXI package.

Once a UBXI package is submitted, if developers really want to go the extra mile, they can create a Rhino Linux UBXI spin, so users do not need to manually install the desktop environment themselves.

• For more information on standards & packaging please read the UBXI creation/development page.

UBXI is entirely community maintained. The Rhino Linux team will continue to support and utilise the standard Unicorn Desktop, built on top of XFCE, in all official disk images.

Support, guidance and help will be given to both users and developers of UBXI, and official channels of communication will be opened in our Discord server & Matrix to prevent a lack of communication between UBXI and official Rhino Linux developers.

• If you wish to develop for UBXI, you will receive a channel in the official Rhino Linux discord server (and matrix room), and a UBXI maintainer role.

Spins and safety concerns

As with all packages submitted to the Pacstall repository, they are managed by an independent verification process that ensures that all packages are non-malicious. For packages we offer that directly control Rhino Linux, they go through the Rhino Linux team and Pacstall team. This will not change when it comes to UBXI, while they are user maintained, we will ensure the safety of individual UBXI packages.

Things unfortunately fall out of our control when it comes to direct spins from Rhino Linux. If a project does not make their source-code free and open source (thus violating the licensing agreement of our code), or does not allow you to verify the checksums of the disk images on Rhino Linux spins, then you should not install it. They may have directly altered the user experience of Rhino Linux in a way which is harmful towards the user, or even malicious.

Thank you.

Thank you for supporting us. Speaking emotionally, it is a little surreal to believe that we have all been working on this project for a year now, and I am thankful for every member of our community.

- AJStrong, Desktop Lead for Rhino Linux

- oklopfer, Systems Lead for Rhino Linux

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