Canola Media Center Works Surprisingly Good in Ubuntu 10.04 "Lucid Lynx"

Canola is a open source media center application which was primarily built for smart phones and netbook devices. To be frank, I had never heard about Canola before and so I decided to give Canola Media Center a spin in my laptop powered by Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx.

Canola Media Center

I had never heard about Canola Media Center before, and since you have such powerful  open source media center apps like XBMC and Boxee, I was quite skeptical about Canola at first.

But I was quite surprised to see the bright no-frills and easy to use start up interface of Canola. I was also surprised to see the responsiveness of the interface. And the small icon effect whenever you click, feels just perfect.

Canola provides two themes in the default installation. The green one in the first screenshot is the default choice and there is also a graphite theme which you can choose from the theme menu. Both looks good and functional.

You can assign specific folders for media files that includes movies, pictures and music. Canola will automatically scan your system for media files then and there is no looking back.

Only glitch being lack of proper keyboard shortcuts. In other media center applications like Boxee and XBMC, browsing through the application is a cake walk mainly because of the the extensive keyboard shortcuts available. More keyboard shortcuts are a must IMO.

Music playback is good and as you can see, interface is neat. Any user with a basic computer knowledge can browse through this application quite easily.

Even though the photo slideshow looks beautiful, lack of keyboard shortcuts play spoilsport here as well. You have to click on each picture in order to browse to the next one.

But even with these drawbacks and lack of extensive plugin support like that in Boxee or XBMC, I would definitely recommend Canola to anyone who is looking for a functional media center application in Ubuntu.

How to Install Canola Media Center in Ubuntu 10.04 "Lucid Lynx"?
  • Canola is not available in the repositories yet and hence you have to use Canola PPA to install the application in Ubuntu.
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:canola/ppa && sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install canola
  • Done. Let me know, what you guys think about Canola. 
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