| DistroWatch Weekly
|DistroWatch Weekly, Issue 35, 9 February 2004
Welcome to this year's 6th edition of DistroWatch Weekly. Disappointingly, the expected release of Fedora Core Test 1 did not materialise last week (there is still no word on when it might be released), but we did get a new KDE, as well as the second beta release of Mandrake Linux 10.0. At the moment it seems that Mandrake is ahead of the pack in integrating kernel 2.6 and KDE 3.2 into the next release.
Distributions with the 2.6 kernel
In recent weeks, we started getting email from visitors asking about distributions that provide the new 2.6.x kernel. Unfortunately, the current site structure does not allow for easy package-based distribution search (this feature is under development, although it will only be available to those visitors who support DistroWatch). Nevertheless, a simple "grep" query on the server was all that was needed to reveal this information. So which ones have the new kernel?
If you are holding your breath, you might be disappointed. As of today, the query returns 14 results, most of which are either development releases or specialist distributions with a particular target market. In fact, the only full-featured, general purpose distribution shipping with kernel 2.6 is Turbolinux 10 Desktop. Those of you who follow the news on this site will remember that Turbolinux 10 was released in October 2003 with kernel 2.6.0-test5. The distribution maker promised to provide a stable version of the kernel as soon as it became available and this has now happened - the users of Turbolinux 10 can either update via the distribution's update program, or they can download the full Update Kit, which includes all security and bug-fix updates since the product release, as well as kernel 2.6.0.
Besides Turbolinux 10, other Linux distributions with the new kernel include the following:
As always, it is possible that we missed something, so if you know of another distribution with one of the 2.6.x kernel series, please mention it in the discussion forums below.
- Fedora Core, development branch (2.6.1)
- Mandrake Linux 10.0-beta2 (2.6.2rc3)
- Debian unstable, not the default kernel (2.6.0)
- Gentoo unstable, not the default kernel (2.6.2)
- Arch Linux 0.6 (development), not the default kernel (2.6.2)
- Sorcerer, not the default kernel (2.6.2)
- Conectiva Linux 10-TP2 (2.6.1)
- Magic Linux 1.2pre5, a Chinese desktop distribution (2.6.0)
- Berry Linux 0.36, a Japanese live CD (2.6.2rc3)
- Bluewall Linux 1.0, a minimalist distribution (2.6.0)
- JoLinux 1.0, a Slackware-based Brazilian desktop distribution (2.6.0)
- knoppiXMAME 1.2, a bootable arcade machine emulator (2.6.1)
- LinuxNetwosix 1.0, a specialist live CD for security operations (2.6.1)
- Shark Linux 1.06-beta2, a minimalist distribution for AMD-64, in early development (2.6.1)
New package repositories
One of the more challenging aspects of Linux distributions is the question of keeping them up-to-date with the latest and greatest software releases, without sacrificing the stability of the product. Historically, commercial distributions have been reluctant to provide packages updates for stable releases, since this would require a lot of extra work without any financial return. Instead, they have focused their efforts on new releases, with all the latest and greatest included in them. Some of the most popular distributions, including Red Hat, Mandrake and SUSE all fall into this category.
Given the above, it's nice to see that some distributions are taking a more pro-active approach towards package updates. The following is an extract from a recent Libranet newsletter:
"We are very pleased to announce the release of the Libranet update-safe archive for 2.8 and 2.8.1 users. Using this archive you will be able to keep your system up to date without running into problems encountered when upgrading from the Debian archive. There are no costs involved and Libranet will continue to be 100% Debian compatible. The new archive will give users the option of running newer versions of software, and provides the Debian package management system a safe environment to work in."
Another distribution taking a similar approach is EnGarde Secure Linux:
"I'm happy to announce the immediate availability of an APT repository for supplemental EnGarde packages. These packages are suitable for use on either EnGarde Secure Community 2, or EnGarde Secure Professional v1.5. These packages are intended for the more advanced user or the user who wants to try out new and interesting packages. I've written a quick overview
of how to get started. These packages will be supported via the engarde-users mailing list."
It remains to be seen how these initiatives work out in the long run, but they certainly provide an extra incentive for those users who would like to keep their systems up-to-date.
|Released Last Week
Kalango Linux 1.0
Kalango Linux 1.0 has been released: "Slightly delayed, Kalango 1.0 final is released. Based on Kurumin 2.05, some of the changes since the release candidate 1 include: added Samba, Swat and Smbfs; replaced Kword and Kspread with Abiword and Gnumeric; added CCK (Centro de Controle do Kalango), which provides for a more intuitive organisation of system configuration scripts; added SGP (Simple Gerenciador de Pacotes)..." See the full changelog (in Portuguese).
Screenshot: Plenty of eye candy in the Kurumin-based Kalango Linux 1.0
(full image size 304kB)
KnoppiXMAME is a bootable arcade machine emulator with hardware detection and autoconfiguration, powered by Knoppix, Debian, X-MAME, and gxmame. Version 1.2, with kernel 2.6.1, was released yesterday. From the changelog: "KnoppiXMAME 1.2 has changed it's GUI/WM again. Now it's pretty GTK+ with metacity. The newest GXMame also uses GTK+. The biggest new feature in 1.2 is the 'addroms' boot parameter. Giving this boot option will start up the new addroms utility which allows knoppixmame to remaster a custom ISO with ROMs added from within itself. All filesystems are supported, but NTFS write support is still experimental." See the distribution's project page for further information.
STUX GNU/Linux 0.6.3 and 0.6.4
Version 0.6.3 of STUX GNU/Linux has been released. Changes: "Fixed bug that prevented access to disk partition used to save configuration file (for FAT32 partitions only); fixed bug in Mozilla package that prevented location bar to work properly; Mozilla 1.4 upgraded to Mozilla 1.5; updated cloop; new look and feel; introduced a new experimental service that lets you download and install 'stux packages' (applications configured to work with Stux Live CD)." See the full changelog for further details.
LinuxTLE, version 5.5 and code name "Samila", has been released. LinuxTLE is a Linux distribution created in Thailand by the OpenTLE project (web site in Thai) and based on Fedora Core with many desktop-friendly enhancements. It includes a multitude of kernel driver modules, multimedia applications, Thai documentation, a Thai-enabled OpenOffice and other localised applications. The OpenTLE project is the main driving force behind Linux adoption in Thailand. The latest version of LinuxTLE is available for free download from mirrors.
Mandows is a new Linux live CD (with a supported hard disk installation option) made in France, based on Mandrake Linux and with GNOME 2.4 as its default desktop environment. Version 1.4 was released yesterday. The new version includes a i686-optimised kernel 2.4.22, OpenOffice.org 1.1, k3b, a script to generate GeeXboX multimedia ISO images, and all the usual Mandrake utilities. Visit the distribution's web site for further information (in French) and screenshots.
ESware Linux 365 2.1
A new, freely downloadable version of ESware Linux has been released. Version 2.1 comes with an optional Linux kernel 2.6.0, as well as installation improvements, updated Spanish translations and various usability enhancements throughout the GNOME desktop environment. The release announcement (in Spanish) can be viewed on the distribution's community page.
The KANOTIX project has produced a new release of the Knoppix-based KANOTIX live CD, version 02-2004 and code name "Bug Hunter": "Compared to Bug Hunter 1 these are the differences: SMP enabled kernel due to user wish; Fritz!Card PCI/USB support via CAPI driver; fixed Eagle USB support (did not work with BH1); fixed kanotix-installer (this time installation on SCSI drives works); ALSA 1.0.1 included for live usage - will work after HD install too." Read the announcement in English or German.
Linux LiveCD Router 1.9.0
Version 1.9.0 of the Linux LiveCD Router has been released. From the changelog: "Version 1.9.0 February 2004. Added Webmin Web Manager and Shorewall Firewall; Linux kernel 2.4.24; driver for BeWAN PCI ADSL; updated documentation on /opt/doc." Visit the distribution's web site for more details about the product. Linux LiveCD Router is a Linux-based live CD designed to share a broadband connection over WiFi. It can be used with DSL, cable modem, T1, ISDN, and dial-up connections.
The Knoppix live CD has been updated. From the changelog: "V3.3-2004-02-09 (Updates). Kernel 2.4.24-xfs; KDE 3.1.5 from Debian/unstable; Mozilla 1.6 from Debian/unstable; fixed Knoppix-Terminalserver problem with new libacl; XFree86 3.4 from Debian/experimental; removed prelink (caused memory leaks under certain conditions); removed for space reasons: kjots, kcoloredit; added prism54.org drivers for wireless cards..."
|Upcoming Releases and Announcements
Hancom Linux 4.0
Hancom Linux has published development details of the company's upcoming Hancom Linux Professional 4.0. Expecting to include kernel 2.6 and KDE 3.2, the first development release is scheduled for later this month, while the final version should be available in June. More details on this page (in Korean).
The developers of the Dyne:bolic live CD are preparing a new release, version 1.2: "...two remarkable new things in the upcoming dyne:bolic. 1. Revamped PD framework: with the direct help of GEM developer Johannes Zmoelnig, IEM developer Thomas Musil and electromusician Michael Pinter, dyne:bolic now offers a full blown PD installation featuring fully functional GEM, Zexy and IEMlib extensions! 2. New Jack framework to connect input and outputs of various music programs: it will be possible to chain together different audio applications processing the output of one into the input of another, like with UNIX data pipes!" See this mailing list post for further details.
|Web Site News
Order your own official DistroWatch T-shirt from Hackerthreads.
New on the waiting list
- KANOTIX. KANOTIX is a Linux Live CD based on Knoppix technology using Debian/sid. The included XFree86 is from Debian/experimental. The main specs are: GRUB based startup from CD, ACPI support, DMA default on, additional support for DSL modems (Fritz!Card DSL and Eagle USB), optimal for HD install (you get a working Debian/sid install in about 10 minutes!), no SMP kernel (needed for some drivers), kernel with XFS, forcedeth (for nForce NIC) and device mapper patches.
- KnoppixMAME. KnoppixMAME is a bootable arcade machine emulator with hardware detection and autoconfiguration. It works automatically on all modern and not-so-modern hardware, including gameports and joysticks. It is powered by Knoppix Debian GNU/Linux, X-MAME, and gxmame.
- Shark Linux. Shark Linux is a new distribution of a Linux-based operating system. The goal of Shark Linux is to provide a stable environment with easy administration, targeting 64-bit AMD Opteron and Athlon 64 processors. Shark Linux aims to become a hardware optimised operating system with its own unique set of management tools and new functionality of the ANSI console for administrator use. Combined with ease of use and optimised code, it should outperform other out-of-the-box systems from the start. Shark Linux is derived from the Gentoo Linux project.
- Linux Guadalinex. Guadalinex is a Linux distribution based on Debian GNU/Linux and developed by the government of Andalucía (Junta de Andalucía) in Spain.
- Mandows. Mandows is a French live CD based on Mandrake Linux with support for hard disk installation.
DistroWatch database summary
- Antlinux. Antlinux will be a mini-distribution of Linux, with an eye on small footprint applications such as run-from-CD versions of Linux.
- 3DMAXX Linux. 3DMAXX Linux is a distribution bundled with many Linux hardware benchmarking applications like NBench, SPECview, and other great programs, including a soon-to-come full 64-bit Linux benchmarking suite designed to be a clone of Futuremark's famous 3DMark 01 and 03.
- Number of distributions in the database: 256
- Number of discontinued distributions: 31
- Number of distributions on the waiting list: 57
On Apache2, KDE in Gentoo
"A couple of corrections concerning Gentoo. You have Gentoo listed as not supporting httpd (Apache2). That's not true--in fact, Apache2 is the default Apache! If I were to type "emerge apache" into my command line, it will download, install, and compile Apache 2.0.48. This applies to both a stable (export ACCEPT_KEYWORDS="~x86") and an unstable (export ACCEPT_KEYWORDS="x86") system. Secondly, Gentoo includes KDE 3.2 and current versions of related packages (KDevelop 3.0, Quanta 3.2) in its unstable branch ("~x86")."
Since similar questions concerning Apache2 in Gentoo arrive frequently in my mailbox, here comes the explanation. For some strange reason, Apache2 is not listed in Gentoo's online package database. Once it's listed there, it will magically appear on DistroWatch's Gentoo page as well. As for the KDE question, the Gentoo page on DistroWatch is only updated twice a day, so there might be up to a 12-hour delay between the time Gentoo packages are updated and the time the Gentoo page on DistroWatch is updated. This holds true for other distributions, too.
"I want to mention a particular distro/modification called PCQLinux, brought out from time to time by the PCQuest computer magazine of India, and distributed free with their magazine. It is only a slightly modified form of Red Hat, and the latest version was based on RH 8."
Unfortunately, PCQuest provides very little information in terms of technical details to consider it for inclusion in the DistroWatch statistics. Sorry, as far as I am concerned, PCQLinux doesn't even exist. Not until PCQuest creates a publicly accessible page with technical information (and preferably also download links) on it. All distributions providing insufficient technical details about them are listed on the Related Links page.
That's all for this week, see you next Monday :-)
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(Tips this week: 0, value: US$0.00)
|Linux Foundation Training
|• Issue 734 (2017-10-16): Star 1.0.1, running the Linux-libre kernel, Ubuntu MATE experiments with snaps, Debian releases new install media, Purism reaches funding goal|
|• Issue 733 (2017-10-09): KaOS 2017.09, 32-bit prematurely obsoleted, Qubes security features, IPFire updates Apache|
|• Issue 732 (2017-10-02): ClonOS, reducing Snap package size, Ubuntu dropping 32-bit Desktop, partitioning disks for ZFS|
|• Issue 731 (2017-09-25): BackSlash Linux Olaf, W3C adding DRM to web standards, Wayland support arrives in Mir, Debian experimenting with AppArmor|
|• Issue 730 (2017-09-18): Mageia 6, running a completely free OS, HAMMER2 file system in DragonFly BSD's installer, Manjaro to ship pre-installed on laptops|
|• Issue 729 (2017-09-11): Parabola GNU/Linux-libre, running Plex Media Server on a Raspberry Pi, Tails feature roadmap, a cross-platform ports build system|
|• Issue 728 (2017-09-04): Nitrux 1.0.2, SUSE creates new community repository, remote desktop tools for GNOME on Wayland, using Void source packages|
|• Issue 727 (2017-08-28): Cucumber Linux 1.0, using Flatpak vs Snap, GNOME previews Settings panel, SUSE reaffirms commitment to Btrfs|
|• Issue 726 (2017-08-21): Redcore Linux 1706, Solus adds Snap support, KaOS getting hardened kernel, rolling releases and BSD|
|• Issue 725 (2017-08-14): openSUSE 42.3, Debian considers Flatpak for backports, changes coming to Ubuntu 17.10, the state of gaming on Linux|
|• Issue 724 (2017-08-07): SwagArch 2017.06, Myths about Unity, Mir and Ubuntu Touch, Manjaro OpenRC becomes its own distro, Debian debates future of live ISOs|
|• Issue 723 (2017-07-31): UBOS 11, transferring packages between systems, Ubuntu MATE's HUD, GNUstep releases first update in seven years|
|• Issue 722 (2017-07-24): Calculate Linux 17.6, logging sudo usage, Remix OS discontinued, interview with Chris Lamb, Debian 9.1 released|
|• Issue 721 (2017-07-17): Fedora 26, finding source based distributions, installing DragonFly BSD using Orca, Yunit packages ported to Ubuntu 16.04|
|• Issue 720 (2017-07-10): Peppermint OS 8, gathering system information with osquery, new features coming to openSUSE, Tails fixes networking bug|
|• Issue 719 (2017-07-03): Manjaro 17.0.2, tracking ISO files, Ubuntu MATE unveils new features, Qubes tests Admin API, Fedora's Atomic Host gets new life cycle|
|• Issue 718 (2017-06-26): Debian 9, support for older hardware, Debian updates live media, Ubuntu's new networking tool, openSUSE gains MP3 support|
|• Issue 717 (2017-06-19): SharkLinux, combining commands in the shell, Debian 9 flavours released, OpenBSD improving kernel security, UBports releases first OTA update|
|• Issue 716 (2017-06-12): Slackel 7.0, Ubuntu working with GNOME on HiDPI, openSUSE 42.3 using rolling development model, exploring kernel blobs|
|• Issue 715 (2017-06-05): Devuan 1.0.0, answering questions on systemd, Linux Mint plans 18.2 beta, Yunit/Unity 8 ported to Debian|
|• Issue 714 (2017-05-29): Void, enabling Wake-on-LAN, Solus packages KDE, Debian 9 release date, Ubuntu automated bug reports|
|• Issue 713 (2017-05-22): ROSA Fresh R9, Fedora's new networking features, FreeBSD's Quarterly Report, UBports opens app store, Parsix to shut down, SELinux overview|
|• Issue 712 (2017-05-15): NixOS 17.03, Alpha Litebook running elementary OS, Canonical considers going public, Solus improves Bluetooth support|
|• Issue 711 (2017-05-08): 4MLinux 21.0, checking file system fragmentation, new Mint and Haiku features, pfSense roadmap, OpenBSD offers first syspatch updates|
|• Issue 710 (2017-05-01): TrueOS 2017-02-22, Debian ported to RISC-V, Halium to unify mobile GNU/Linux, Anbox runs Android apps on GNU/Linux, using ZFS on the root file system|
|• Issue 709 (2017-04-24): Ubuntu 17.04, Korora testing new software manager, Ubuntu migrates to Wayland, running Nix package manager on alternative distributions|
|• Issue 708 (2017-04-17): Maui Linux 17.03, Snaps run on Fedora, Void adopts Flatpak, running Android apps on GNU/Linux, Debian elects Project Leader|
|• Issue 707 (2017-04-10): PCLinuxOS 2017.03, Canonical stops Unity development, OpenBSD on a Raspberry Pi, setting up a VPN for privacy|
|• Issue 706 (2017-04-03): Super Grub2 Disk, Snap packages of deepin applications, Subgraph OS routes network traffic for one application, announcements from Linux Mint|
|• Issue 705 (2017-03-27): Minimal Linux Live, sharing control of the operating system, new KaOS features, Uplos32 provides 32-bit fork of PCLinuxOS|
|• Issue 704 (2017-03-20): ToarusOS 1.0.4, Linux Mint's security record, Debian starts Project Leader election, Ubuntu 12.04 reaches end-of-life|
|• Issue 703 (2017-03-13): SolydXK 201701, CloudReady, Solus announces new features, KDE Connect sends text messages from desktop, openSUSE's YaST module for Let's Encrypt|
|• Issue 702 (2017-03-06): Fatdog64 Linux, elementary OS bundled with new netbook, Haiku announces new features, security and the size of a distro's development team|
|• Issue 701 (2017-02-27): OBRevenge 2017.02, Mageia 6 delays, NetBSD reproducible builds, questions about swap space, trying to steam video on a Raspberry Pi|
|• Issue 700 (2017-02-20): RaspBSD, Debian replaces Icedove with Thunderbird, Fedora's licensing guidlines, tips for switching shells, finding battery charge, getting IP address and killing processes|
|• Issue 699 (2017-02-13): Clear Linux, GhostBSD network utility ported to FreeBSD, Ubuntu coming to Fairphone, elementary OS crowd funding an app store|
|• Issue 698 (2017-02-06): Solus 2017.01.01, comparing containers with portable applicatins, Tails dropping 32-bit support, Debian Stretch enters freeze|
|• Issue 697 (2017-01-30): Subgraph OS 2016.12.30, running Ubuntu on an Android phone, Arch Linux phasing out 32-bit support, Linux Mint testing updated LMDE media|
|• Issue 696 (2017-01-23): GoboLinux 016, remotely running desktop applications, Solus adopting Flatpak, KDE neon using Calamares, TrueOS tests OpenRC|
|• Issue 695 (2017-01-16): Zorin OS 12, Peppermint team fixes installer bug, Debian refreshes Jessie media, Ubuntu improves low graphics mode, Exciting things coming in 2017|
|• Issue 694 (2017-01-09): MX Linux 16, Fedora considers systemd security features, DragonFly BSD to support massive swap space, Ubuntu Touch roadmap, Puppy's newsletter, sudo's password prompt|
|• Issue 693 (2017-01-02): Comparing small distros, fig language, video driver comparsion, Debian+PIXEL, Wayland on FreeBSD|
|• Issue 692 (2016-12-19): Bodhi Linux 4.0.0, Cappsule containers, Calculate's new Utilities package, Solus and Ubuntu MATE build new application menu|
|• Issue 691 (2016-12-12): SalentOS 1.0, openSUSE improves YaST, Fedora considers slower release cycle, KDE neon gets LTS branch|
|• Issue 690 (2016-12-05): Fedora 25, Ubuntu adopts rolling HWE kernel, running Android apps on GNU/Linux, Haiku working toward EFI support|
|• Issue 689 (2016-11-28): openSUSE 42.2, Fedora's upgrade path, plans for Korora 25, transitioning from PC-BSD to TrueOS, Webconverger's reproducible builds|
|• Issue 688 (2016-11-21): Endless OS 3.0.5, KDE neon fixes security hole, FreeBSD's Quarterly Status Report, Rolling release trial #2 concludes|
|• Issue 687 (2016-11-14): NAS4Free 10.3.0.3, Fedora gains MP3 playback, budgie-remix becomes Ubuntu Budgie, Ubuntu flavours compared, Rolling release trial #2|
|• Issue 686 (2016-11-07): FreeBSD 11.0, rolling release trial #2, Debian announces supported architectures, Simplicity switching to antiX base, farewell to Mythbuntu|
|• Issue 685 (2016-10-31): elementary OS 0.4, SUSE gains ARM support, Mint improves language support, Dirty COW explained, Rolling release trial #2|
|• Issue 684 (2016-10-24): Ubuntu 16.10, Linux popularity in different markets, Fedora runs on Raspberry Pi, Ubuntu features live kernel patching|
|• Issue 683 (2016-10-17): Refracta 8.0, making packages for distributions, Alpine switches to LibreSSL, 386BSD website publishes classic code|
|• Full list of all issues|
|Random Distribution |
rPath Linux was a Linux distribution built with the new Conary distributed software management system. Conary was designed, based on many years of Linux software packaging and distribution development experience, to automate many of the tasks that have made it difficult to build Linux distributions. rPath's mission was to provide system software that was easily tailored to suit unique application needs. rPath Linux, built with the Conary distributed software management system, was not only a distribution in its own right, but also a base technology explicitly designed to enable you to create purpose-built operating system images using the rBuilder Online technology.
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