| DistroWatch Weekly
|DistroWatch Weekly, Issue 410, 20 June 2011
Welcome to this year's 25th issue of DistroWatch Weekly! SliTaz GNU/Linux is one of those little gems in the Linux distro world - it's a small, extensible and highly functional distribution even in its default state. Jesse Smith takes a look at the progress SliTaz developers have been making on the road towards their next stable release, version 4.0. In the news section, Daniel Robbins' Funtoo projects challenges Gentoo with a new source-based distribution for technical users, the Scientific Linux developers explain the differences between Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) and their own RHEL clone, and the maintainers of Linux Mint "Debian" editions embark on a large-scale update process now that Mint 11 is out the door. Also in this issue, links to interviews with Debian project leader Stefano Zacchiroli and Bodhi developer Jeff Hoogland, a quick note on firewall applications found in popular Linux distributions, and the last call for suggestions for DistroWatch's annual package database update. Happy reading!
- Reviews: What's cooking? It's SliTaz
- News: Funtoo improves on Gentoo, Scientific Linux gains mindshare, Mint updates rolling-release editions, Debian and Bodhi interviews
- Questions and answers: Personal firewall applications
- Released last week: Tiny Core Linux 3.7, Parted Magic 6.2, AVLinux 5.0
- Site news: Annual package database update
- New additions: Funtoo Linux
- New distributions: BlueOnyx, BootMed, Jeoss Linux, quantOS, Semplice Linux, unRAID Server
- Reader comments
Listen to the Podcast edition of this week's DistroWatch Weekly in OGG (21MB) and MP3 (32MB) formats
Join us at irc.freenode.net #distrowatch
|Feature Story (by Jesse Smith)
What's cooking? It's SliTaz|
SliTaz GNU/Linux is a small Linux distribution that tries to pack a usable desktop operating system into a 31 MB ISO image. I took a look at SliTaz just over a year ago and was impressed with the speed the little distro delivers, a feat achieved with the combination of having a small foot print and running entirely in RAM. Since I last looked at the project, their website has been improved. The layout is attractive, the documentation is well laid out and has helpful examples. The site comes in six translations (German, English, French, Indonesian, Portuguese and Chinese) and there's an active community forum and an issue tracker. The distribution offers two releases, Stable and Cooking -- the development branch. Apart from the two CD images, the project also provides image files for floppy disks. The floppy images are broken into groups, allowing us to get just a text-mode minimal distro with five floppy disks, or get a more complete distro using twenty-two floppies. Whether we use a CD or floppy disks, SliTaz provides a 32-bit operating system for i486 (and newer) computers. Recently I grabbed the latest development snapshot at the time, called SliTaz Cooking-20110329.
Booting from the SliTaz CD gives us a brief boot menu where we can provide optional parameters. We have to be quick or the system will automatically begin its boot process. SliTaz loads quickly and pauses just before reaching the desktop to ask us for our preferred language and keyboard layout. We're then passed over to a graphical interface that features a dark wallpaper with wisps of cloud. The application menu is placed at the top-left corner of the screen and a CPU monitor sits at the top-right. At the bottom of the screen is a task switcher and clock. There are three icons on the desktop for accessing the file system, a text editor and one for opening the project's documentation. The included handbook gives us some good tips on getting started and installing the operating system.
SliTaz GNU/Linux - reading the project's documentation
(full image size: 141kB, screen resolution 1024x768 pixels)
The live CD logs us in as an unprivileged user in an effort to keep us from harming our own system. Running the SliTaz installer requires a root password, which can be found in the project's documentation. Prior to running the installer we should make sure we have a partition set aside for SliTaz. If we don't have a suitable partition prepared, the distribution comes with GParted to help us divide up the hard disk. The installer itself is a simple collection of text menus and we're given one question on each screen and asked to select or type a response. The first step asks us for the name of the partition where we will install SliTaz in the form of /dev/sd... If we're unsure, the installer will show us a list of available partitions. We're then asked if we'd like to use a separate partition for our /home directory. Next up we provide a hostname and set the root password. The last two steps are to create a regular user account and tell the installer if we want to install GRUB. Being small, it only takes a few minutes for SliTaz to copy its files to the local drive and perform the initial configuration.
Booting into SliTaz from the hard drive for the first time brings us to a simple graphical login screen. Signing in gives us the same simple graphical environment we had on the live disc with a surprisingly diverse collection of software available in the application menu. Included on the default install are the Midori web browser, Twitter and IRC clients and graphical tools for accessing secure shell servers and performing secure copies. There's a local port scanner, an image viewer, a simple image editor and a PDF viewer. We find an audio player, CD ripper and simple audio editor. Additionally we find tools for handling wireless network connections, a package manager, an app for viewing system & hardware information and GParted. There's a disc burning application, a program for managing the contents of ISO files and the usual collection of configuration tools for changing the look & feel of our environment.
There's a program called the Control Box, which we'll look at in a moment, and links to the project's documentation. Some of these documentation links work, letting us access the project's Handbook, but some others are dead links -- a reminder that this is a development release. SliTaz additionally includes a couple of games to help pass the time. Behind the scenes, we find the 2.6.37 Linux kernel. For some reason the distro runs a web server by default and browsing to the local server shows no index page, but there are some document pages available through the server, if one is willing to look for them. I got the impression the web server was left enabled by accident in this release. The little distro does not include popular multimedia codecs, Java, or Flash, though these items can be found in the project's repositories.
SliTaz GNU/Linux - managing packages
(full image size: 144kB, screen resolution 1024x768 pixels)
The distribution's Control Box is a small configuration application that let's us tweak the boot loader, set the system clock and manage user accounts. There are also buttons in the Control Box to launch other configuration tools, giving us short-cuts to network utilities, the package manager, active hardware drivers and a graphical mount tool. Each of these small apps offers bare bones functionality, but I found they worked well enough. Actually, the same description applies to most of the applications included in SliTaz, they're all small, fast and offer a simple interface and basic usefulness. Not the sort of programs I'd throw at a novice Linux user, but people who have become familiar with the OS shouldn't have any problem using them.
Despite its small size, the SliTaz distribution includes a graphical package manager. Though the layout isn't the most friendly, it does offer us the basic functions. On the package manager's main screen we're shown a list of all available software bundles with icons indicating whether each item is installed or not. Double-clicking on a package gives us some detailed information on the software and presents us with the option to download/install/remove the item. During installs dependency resolution is optional and enabled by default. At the bottom of the package manager's window there's are buttons for re-syncing the local software list with the remote repositories and installing all available updates. The package manager includes filters (also located near the bottom of the window), letting us narrow down our view to specific packages.
There are filters for viewing packages based on their installed/available status and by category. For instance, we can view all installable packages marked as office software. The package manager further includes a search tab, allowing us to find software by name. For people who like to manage software from the command line, SliTaz's tazpkg tool contains all the required functionality. The program's syntax is intuitive -- installing a package is done using "tazpkg get-install name", removing is done with "tazpkg remove name", upgrading software to the latest available version is done with "tazpkg upgrade". There are several other options, but I think the above examples demonstrate the straight forward nature of the program. I found tazpkg to be quick and ran into no problems with either the command line utility or the graphical front-end.
SliTaz GNU/Linux - editing images and adjusting sound volume
(full image size: 123kB, screen resolution 1024x768 pixels)
I ran SliTaz on two machines, a generic desktop box (2.5 GHz CPU, 2 GB of RAM, NVIDIA video card) and my HP laptop (dual-core 2 GHz CPU, 3 GB of RAM, Intel video card). The distribution handled the desktop's hardware without any trouble. The screen was set to a suitable resolution and audio worked out of the box. On the laptop the audio worked too and my video card was properly configured, but beyond that, I ran into issues. SliTaz wasn't able to work with my Intel wireless card and the touchpad support was limited. I could move the mouse, but taps-as-clicks and scrolling were disabled. Performance on both machines was good. SliTaz booted in under fifteen seconds and, once logged in, the system's responsiveness was excellent. Running in the graphical environment used about 70 MB of memory and the light weight applications that come with the distro provide basic functionality without requiring a lot of additional memory.
The system installer is probably the most obvious weak point in SliTaz. It's brief, which is nice, but it's missing options. It would also be nice if the installer handled partitioning (or offered to launch GParted) and made setting mount points easier. There are just over 2,700 packages in SliTaz's repositories and the amount of available software (or the lack of) may be an issue for some users. The basics are in there, but it's a small selection compared to the big name Linux projects. On the positive side, SliTaz is the smallest distro I've used that's useful as a desktop OS right away. The speed is impressive, especially when running from RAM, and the flexibility shown by the developers, for example providing floppy images, is welcome. This is a good project to look at if you're in possession of older equipment or plan to perform hardware testing, data recovery or other tasks requiring a live disc. I wouldn't recommend SliTaz to newcomers to Linux, but for people who don't mind seeing the command line occasionally and are passingly familiar with device naming, this distribution packs a lot of tools into a small bundle.
|Miscellaneous News (by Ladislav Bodnar)
Funtoo improves on Gentoo, Scientific Linux gains mindshare, Mint updates rolling-release editions, Debian and Bodhi interviews
Let's start this week's news section with some interesting information for the fans of Gentoo Linux and other technical Linux users who enjoy optimising their system by compiling applications from source code. As many of you are aware of, Daniel Robbins, who founded the Gentoo project in 1999 (as Enoch Linux) and who resigned from the duties in 2004, is the man behind a Gentoo-like project called Funtoo. In the beginning Robbins insisted that Funtoo was neither a Gentoo fork, nor a new Linux distro. But the thinking must have changed in recent months because the project's recently-revealed website now describes Funtoo as "a Linux distribution developed by Daniel Robbins and a core team of developers, built around a basic vision of improving the core technologies in Gentoo Linux." Funtoo provides "stages" that serve to install the operating system and it maintains its own Portage tree (a collection of scripts that make it easy to download, compile and install hundreds of applications). The developers do not provide a live CD, but they recommend SystemRescueCd as a good system to boot into in order to install Funtoo. In many ways Funtoo is rather similar to Gentoo; it doesn't offer an easy way to install the distribution, yet it provides excellent documentation for those knowledgeable enough to work on the command line or those willing to learn about the Linux internals. If you are the kind of user who enjoys tinkering with your computers while optimising every bit of code to absolute perfection, Funtoo could be the perfect system for you...
* * * * *
Scientific Linux is enjoying an unprecedented boom due to its being the first project to release a free clone of Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 6. Nevertheless, users should beware that Scientific Linux is not a "pure" RHEL clone as the developers add some extra applications and utilities to the system. Joe 'Zonker' Brockmeier investigates the distro in "Send in the clone: Scientific Linux 6.1 approaches": "According to core contributor Troy Dawson, the 6.x series has the fewest changes from upstream. In the default install, only yum-autoupdate is added to upstream's package selection. Users can also choose to install IceWM, the OpenAFS distributed file system, a handful of yum repositories, and Scientific Linux's tools for creating 'sites.' According to Dawson, the reduction in changes and additional packages comes at the request of the community. 'This was due to requests from the HEP community that we quit adding our own packages and start using the other community based repositories, such as EPEL and RPMForge.' In some cases, changes between upstream and Scientific are available as 'tweak RPMs,' which Dawson says 'change something after the regular RPM is installed.' Dawson says most of the tweak RPMs are not installed by default." The Linux Weekly News website has now added Scientific Linux to the list of security updates that they track and report on.
Scientific Linux 6.1 Alpha - the project has attracted community members who design the distro's desktop theme
(full image size: 299kB, screen resolution 1280x1024 pixels)
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Linux Mint has become a highly popular distribution (even threatening to overtake Ubuntu in our Page Hit Ranking statistics). Although the project's flagship product is an Ubuntu-based solution, it may be worth investigating the "other" product line - the rolling-release editions of Linux Mint that are based on Debian's testing branch. Jamie Watson takes a look at recent changes in this alternative Mint release in "Linux Mint Debian Edition Updates": "Over the past week or so there have been a lot of significant updates made to the Linux Mint Debian and Linux Mint Xfce distributions. These are 'rolling distributions' which are intended to be continuously updated rather than having periodic major releases, but with all of the activity associated with the recent release of Ubuntu 11.04 and then Linux Mint 11, they appeared to have fallen a bit behind, so these updates are very welcome. The most eye-catching of the updates is that Mint Debian now has its own logo with the Debian symbol in place of the 11 in the standard logo, and there is a new default wallpaper which includes it. Of course, most of the updates are a lot more significant than the cosmetics of a new logo. The first one I noticed was that Firefox is updated to 4.0.1, which I felt was a bit overdue. LibreOffice also got an update to version 3.3.2, the latest in the 3.3 development line."
* * * * *
Two months ago Stefano Zacchiroli got re-elected as the Debian Project Leader (DPL) for another year. So what are the main challenges facing Debian in the coming months? From "Exclusive Interview with Debian Leader Stefano Zacchiroli": "Several challenges are ahead of us. A particularly important one for me is to keep on showing to the Free Software world that an independent, volunteer-based distro can compete with distros which are sponsored by individual companies. Independence is the only guarantee that money interest will not prevail over software freedom interests and Debian has an important role to play there. Debian is, after all, one of the very few independent distros among the 'most popular distros' that cannot be pinned to a company. That does not mean that Debian lives in an ideal world where companies do not have a role to play in free software. Quite the contrary: one of our future challenges is indeed to find ways to encourage companies to contribute work to Debian, without letting that get into the way of existing Debian decision making processes and independence."
* * * * *
Finally, a link to an interview with Jeff Hoogland the lead developer of the Ubuntu-based Bodhi Linux, a distribution which offers a unique experience thanks to its custom configuration of the Enlightenment 17 window manager: "Bodhi is aimed at users interested in the Enlightenment desktop and those that like their system free from clutter. Our rapid popularity indicates there is a demand for both of these things. We believe users should be smart enough to make their own choices. We don’t lock down your desktop and make it difficult to edit things like some of the newer desktops (such as GNOME 3 and Unity) have done." The latest stable release is based upon Ubuntu 10.04 LTS. Do you provide certain repositories for software? What about updates? " Even though we base ourselves on the Ubuntu LTS release that does not mean Bodhi users are also left with software that is a year old (or more). Unlike a good deal of Ubuntu derivatives we maintain our own repository (not just a PPA) in order to provide software updates to our users. Beyond a current Enlightenment desktop we also ship current versions of a good deal of software, including Firefox and Chromium browsers."
|Questions and Answers (by Jesse Smith)
Personal firewall applications
Custom-protection-seeker asks: Linux personal firewall applications (Firedog, etc) -- are they required and/or better than what comes with a distro?
DistroWatch answers: This will depend a bit on which distro you're using and what you need for a firewall. Some distros don't include a graphical firewall configuration program in the default install, and the ones available in the repositories vary a bit. For instance, Fedora has a well-put-together firewall program called system-config-firewall in the default install. On the other hand, Ubuntu does not include a GUI firewall tool by default, but there's an easy-to-use program called gufw in the repositories. So it may not always be obvious what firewall options are available with a given distribution and how they compare to third-party applications.
To answer your question: in general, for most home users and with most distributions, you will be fine with what is provided by the distribution. In fact I usually prefer what is available in the default install as distros tend to ship fairly simple (read "easy-to-use") firewall applications that work well enough for most people. Aside from Fedora and Ubuntu, openSUSE, Mandriva and Mint all come with good pre-installed firewall tools. The Debian project is nice enough to list several for comparison in their Wiki. So I would recommend starting with whatever your distribution ships and only look elsewhere if you have a specific need that can't be met with your distro. It'll make applying security updates to your firewall program easier and other users on your distro's forums will be in a better position to help you troubleshoot any issues if you stick with the default configuration tools.
Do you have a preferred firewall configuration tool? Let us know in the comments.
|Released Last Week
IPFire 2.9 Core 49
Arne Fitzenreiter has announced the release of IPFire 2.9 Core 49, a Linux-based firewall distribution: "Today we are going to release Core Update 49. IPFire 2.9 Core 49 is a bug-fix release and brings minor feature updates. List of changes: QoS - replaced sip with rtp for VoIP; Apache - tuning maximum spare servers to 10; add 'charon' to IPSec log section; fix ID information on IPSec configuration; backup.cgi - added content length to show file status bar; add CGI to display the md-state; services.cgi - blacklist mdadm (no good idea to stop it); extrahd -add mmcblk card reader and mdadm support; extrahd - display also non-partitioned disks; add initskript to wait until slower drives are present; changed OpenVPN CGI to create a CN without a blank; change Squid init script to kill remaining ClamAV redir; lm_sensors - update to 3.3.0...." Here is the full release announcement.
AV Linux 5.0
Glen MacArthur has announced the release of AV Linux 5.0, a Debian-based distribution with a collection of audio and video production software and running on the LXDE desktop: "After more than five months of daily development following the release of 4.2, AV Linux 5.0 is here. This release balances the rock-solid reliability of Debian's stable release and fortifies it with some carefully selected packages to make it a state-of-the-art multimedia content creation powerhouse. Features and improvements: 18.104.22.168 Linux kernel with IRQ threading and rtirq-init activated; complete full-featured desktop package selection including LibreOffice 3.4; RTC (Real-Time Clock) permissions set by default on the live DVD; FFADO SVN Firewire drivers with daisy-chaining on the new Juju stack...." Read the rest of the release announcement for full details and screenshots.
AVLinux 5 - a Debian-based distribution for creating and editing multimedia
(full image size: 2,339kB, screen resolution 1280x1024 pixels)
Parted Magic 6.2
Patrick Verner has released a new version of Parted Magic, a Linux-based live CD with a collection of software designed for disk management and data rescue tasks: "It's that time of the month again. The most noticeable change is that Rox now handles the desktop icons and feh displays the desktop wallpaper. These seemed like the best lightweight choices in preparation for the new PCManFM when it's released as stable. Parted was upgraded to 3.0, but GParted is still linked against libparted 2.4 for now. All fonts should look good in Firefox if you use a language other than US English. A few other useful programs were added like ZFS Fuse, LILO Setup, Rox Filer, and FixParts. Updated programs: TestDisk 6.12, Parted 3.0, Linux kernel 22.214.171.124, GParted 0.8.1...." Visit the project's news page to read the release announcement.
Salix OS 13.37 "Fluxbox"
George Vlahavas has announced that the "Fluxbox" edition of Salix OS 13.37, a lightweight Slackware-based distribution, has been released: "Salix Fluxbox 13.37 is here, available in both 32-bit and 64-bit architectures. Everyone who has used the 13.1 Fluxbox edition, will find this release very familiar. It comes with Linux kernel 126.96.36.199, Fluxbox 1.3.1, Firefox 4.0.1 and Claws-mail 3.7.8. LibreOffice 3.3.2 is included by default in full mode installations, replacing OpenOffice.org and localization packages for more than a hundred languages are available through the package management tools. Exaile 0.3.2 is the default music player and the Whaaw Media Player, version 0.2.14, is used as the default movie player." Read the full release announcement for further details.
Tiny Core Linux 3.7, 3.7.1
Robert Shingledecker has announced the release of Tiny Core Linux 3.7, a minimalist, but extensible desktop distribution in 10 megabytes: "Team Tiny Core is pleased to announce the release of Tiny Core Linux 3.7. Final change log: new multicore.iso both Tiny Core and Micro Core installation and network tools edition; new added kernel module for NTFS to base, allows read access to NTFS partition; new GUI loadpack to load, when required, Starter Pack after boot; updated rebuildfstab now supports NTFS-3G for NTFS-3G extension, allows read-write access; updated cpanel to reflect changes in the base; updated tc-functions to better handle TCVD virtual disk; updated network GUI to record udhcpc PID for services support when DHCP is requested...." Here is the release announcement with a changelog.
DoudouLinux is a Debian-based distribution targeting young children, with a goal to make computer use as simple and pleasant as possible. The project's version 1.0, code name "Gondwana", is now released: "The version 1.0 of the project is finally ready, after a year of happy work! To mark this event, we named this version Gondwana, for the super-continent which included most of the landmasses in today's southern hemisphere, before the breakup into several continents due to plate tectonics. DoudouLinux provides tens of applications that suit children from 2 to 12 years old and gives them an environment as easy to use as a gaming console. Kids can learn, discover and have fun without dad and mum always watching!" Read the release announcement and check out the feature list for more information.
Greenie Linux 9N
Stanislav Hoferek has announced the release of Greenie Linux 9N, a beginner-friendly Ubuntu-based distribution with enhanced support for Slovak and Czech languages and extra software applications: "Greenie Linux 9N is finally here! Based on Ubuntu 11.04, Greenie uses the classic and solid GNOME 2.32.1 instead of GNOME 3 or Unity. Several new applications (FBReader, gToDo, Adobe Reader, Audacity), new versions of Firefox and all other software, and new, much darker artwork, are now in Greenie. Also we made it possible to run popular websites (Facebook, Twitter, Pastebin, YouTube, etc.) using the Run dialog. This version will come in both 32-bit and 64-bit flavours, and the 64-bit edition will be announced very soon." Read the release announcement (in Slovak, except for a brief English note at the bottom) for a detailed list of changes and new features.
Greenie Linux 9N - an Ubuntu-based distribution optimised for use by Slovak and Czech speakers
(full image size: 1,457kB, screen resolution 1280x1024 pixels)
Zorin OS 5 "Gaming", "Multimedia"
Artyom Zorin has announced the release of Zorin OS 5 "Gaming" and "Multimedia" editions, two commercial flavours of the Ubuntu-based desktop distribution designed for Windows users: "The Zorin OS team is proud to release Zorin OS 5 Gaming and Multimedia which bring a lot of new and enhanced features to Zorin OS, our operating system designed for Windows users. This release uses the GNOME 2.X classic environment instead of Ubuntu's Unity shell. Zorin OS 5 Gaming includes over 40 of the best Linux games and emulators while Zorin OS 5 Multimedia has the best software for multimedia use. Both of them also include our innovative Zorin Look Changer Premium, Zorin Internet Browser Manager, Zorin Background Plus and other programs from our earlier versions. Both editions are available for a small donation of €7 for a download and €10 for a DVD. The Zorin OS 5 Lite, Educational and Business editions will be released over the next few weeks." Here is the brief release announcement.
Andrew Wyatt has announced the release of Fuduntu 14.10, a Fedora-based desktop distribution: "The Fuduntu team is pleased to announce the general availability of Fuduntu 14.10. This release continues our tradition of small incremental improvements bringing new versions of several important packages and bug fixes to the Fuduntu Linux distribution. Included in this release: Linux kernel 188.8.131.52, Adobe Flash 10.3, Chromium 12, Shotwell 0.10.1; ext4 is now our default file system during installation; support for NVIDIA (akmod-nvidia), and ATI (akmod-catalyst) proprietary drivers; a tool to help simplify customizing your installation; a theme refresh, correcting several bugs and streamlining the look and feel; new background choices; new tweaks to improve Flash playback; bug fixes; the quarterly patch roll-up." The release announcement.
Kai Hendry has announced the release of Webconverger 8.0, a Debian-based live CD for web kiosks, with Firefox 4, designed for deployments in places like offices or Internet cafés where only web applications are used: "Webconverger 8.0 allows you to deploy Firefox 4.0.1 in a kiosk environment. This release uses a lot of up-to-date Debian packages from Progress Linux. Between 7.2 to 8.0 there are several highlights such as: Firefox 4.0.1, updated Adobe Flash to 10.3.181.26, 2.6.39 Linux kernel, a few extra locales like South African English. Security has been tightened up by removing terminals, though there are probably ways of downloading 32-bit terminals for execution that could be blocked. There is a known issue where sometimes Webconverger boots without loading the browser. This is a strange intermittent problem that needs debugging. If it happens to you, please try booting again." Read the rest of the release notes for further information.
* * * * *
Development, unannounced and minor bug-fix releases
|Upcoming Releases and Announcements
Summary of expected upcoming releases
Annual package database update|
Last week we called for suggestions for the annual package database update and this is what we have so far:
If you have software packages that you would like to see tracked by DistroWatch, this is your last chance to suggest them (either by emailing to distro at distrowatch dot com or by submitting a comment below). The next package update will only take place in June 2012! For more information please see the database of tracked packages page.
- Current list of packages earmarked for inclusion: gnome-shell, mesa3d, midori, nano, octave, openshot, xz
- Current list of packages earmarked for removal: checkinstall, hal, kaffeine, nedit, mod_perl, mod_ssl, mono, netatalk, yaboot
- Current list of packages which will be listed under a different name: OpenOffice.org --> LibreOffice, qt-x11 --> qt, xfce --> xfdesktop
* * * * *
New distributions added to database
- Funtoo Linux. Funtoo Linux is a Gentoo-based distribution developed by Daniel Robbins (the founder and former project leader of Gentoo Linux) and a core team of developers, built around a basic vision of improving the core technologies in Gentoo Linux. Funtoo Linux features native UTF-8 support enabled by default, a git-based, distributed Portage tree and Funtoo overlay, an enhanced Portage with more compact mini-manifest tree, automated imports of new Gentoo changes every 12 hours, GPT/GUID boot support and streamlined boot configuration, enhanced network configuration, up-to-date stable and current Funtoo stages - all built using Funtoo's Metro build tool.
* * * * *
New distributions added to waiting list
- BlueOnyx. BlueOnyx is a CentOS-based Linux distribution which aims at delivering a turnkey server appliance for web hosting. It comes with a web-based GUI interface which allows users to manage most aspects of the server, its sites and accounts. It is open-source software, released under a Sun-modified BSD license.
- BootMed. The BootMed Live CD is an Ubuntu remix for those new to Linux. Its main goal is to help the average Windows user to recover a computer that will not boot.
- Jeoss Linux. Jeoss Linux is a compact, install-everywhere, Ubuntu-based, server-oriented distribution. It is directly installable even on legacy, limited-resource, and embedded x86 platforms. The install process can be controlled from start to finish by the target local console, a remote serial console or a remote SSH session.
- quantOS. quantOS, based on Linux Mint, is a hardened Linux distribution for secure daily use as a desktop operating system. quantOS leverages AppArmor application security profiles, Arkose Desktop Application Sandboxing and Vidalia for creating secure Tor connections to enhance online privacy.
- Semplice Linux. Semplice Linux is a GNU/Linux distribution based on Debian's unstable branch with the goal to provide a simple, fast, lightweight and cool environment.
- unRAID Server. unRAID Server is an embedded Network-Attached Storage server operating system designed to boot from a USB Flash device and specifically designed for digital media storage.
* * * * *
DistroWatch database summary
* * * * *
This concludes this week's issue of DistroWatch Weekly. The next instalment will be published on Monday, 27 June 2011.
Jesse Smith and Ladislav Bodnar
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|Linux Foundation Training
|• Issue 763 (2018-05-14): Fedora 28, Debian compatibility coming to Chrome OS, malware found in some Snaps, Debian's many flavours|
|• Issue 762 (2018-05-07): TrueOS 18.03, live upgrading Raspbian, Mint plans future releases, HardenedBSD to switch back to OpenSSL|
|• Issue 761 (2018-04-30): Ubuntu 18.04, accessing ZFS snapshots, UBports to run on Librem 5 phones, Slackware makes PulseAudio optional|
|• Issue 760 (2018-04-23): Chakra 2017.10, using systemd to hide files, Netrunner's ARM edition, Debian 10 roadmap, Microsoft develops Linux-based OS|
|• Issue 759 (2018-04-16): Neptune 5.0, building containers with Red Hat, antiX introduces Sid edition, fixing filenames on the command line|
|• Issue 758 (2018-04-09): Sortix 1.0, openSUSE's Transactional Updates, Fedora phasing out Python 2, locating portable packages|
|• Issue 757 (2018-04-02): Gatter Linux 0.8, the UNIX and Linux System Administration Handbook, Red Hat turns 25, super long term support kernels|
|• Issue 756 (2018-03-26): NuTyX 10.0, Neptune supplies Debian users with Plasma 5.12, SolydXK on a Raspberry Pi, SysV init development|
|• Issue 755 (2018-03-19): Learning with ArchMerge and Linux Academy, Librem 5 runs Plasma Mobile, Cinnamon gets performance boost|
|• Issue 754 (2018-03-12): Reviewing Sabayon and Antergos, the growing Linux kernel, BSDs getting CPU bug fixes, Manjaro builds for ARM devices|
|• Issue 753 (2018-03-05): Enso OS 0.2, KDE Plasma 5.12 features, MX Linux prepares new features, interview with MidnightBSD's founder|
|• Issue 752 (2018-02-26): OviOS 2.31, performing off-line upgrades, elementary OS's new installer, UBports gets test devices, Redcore team improves security|
|• Issue 751 (2018-02-19): DietPi 6.1, testing KDE's Plasma Mobile, Nitrux packages AppImage in default install, Solus experiments with Wayland|
|• Issue 750 (2018-02-12): Solus 3, getting Deb packages upstream to Debian, NetBSD security update, elementary OS explores AppCentre changes|
|• Issue 749 (2018-02-05): Freespire 3 and Linspire 7.0, misunderstandings about Wayland, Xorg and Mir, Korora slows release schedule, Red Hat purchases CoreOS|
|• Issue 748 (2018-01-29): siduction 2018.1.0, SolydXK 32-bit editions, building an Ubuntu robot, desktop-friendly Debian options|
|• Issue 747 (2018-01-22): Ubuntu MATE 17.10, recovering open files, creating a new distribution, KDE focusing on Wayland features|
|• Issue 746 (2018-01-15): deepin 15.5, openSUSE's YaST improvements, new Ubuntu 17.10 media, details on Spectre and Meltdown bugs|
|• Issue 745 (2018-01-08): GhostBSD 11.1, Linspire and Freespire return, wide-spread CPU bugs patched, adding AppImage launchers to the application menu|
|• Issue 744 (2018-01-01): MX Linux 17, Ubuntu pulls media over BIOS bug, PureOS gets endorsed by the FSF, openSUSE plays with kernel boot splash screens|
|• Issue 743 (2017-12-18): Daphile 17.09, tools for rescuing files, Fedora Modular Server delayed, Sparky adds ARM support, Slax to better support wireless networking|
|• Issue 742 (2017-12-11): heads 0.3.1, improvements coming to Tails, Void tutorials, Ubuntu phasing out Python 2, manipulating images from the command line|
|• Issue 741 (2017-12-04): Pop!_OS 17.10, openSUSE Tumbleweed snapshots, installing Q4OS on a Windows partition, using the at command|
|• Issue 740 (2017-11-27): Artix Linux, Unity spin of Ubuntu, Nitrux swaps Snaps for AppImage, getting better battery life on Linux|
|• Issue 739 (2017-11-20): Fedora 27, cross-distro software ports, Ubuntu on Samsung phones, Red Hat supports ARM, Parabola continues 32-bit support|
|• Issue 738 (2017-11-13): SparkyLinux 5.1, rumours about spyware, Slax considers init software, Arch drops 32-bit packages, overview of LineageOS|
|• Issue 737 (2017-11-06): BeeFree OS 18.1.2, quick tips to fix common problems, Slax returning, Solus plans MATE and software management improvements|
|• Issue 736 (2017-10-30): Ubuntu 17.10, "what if" security questions, Linux Mint to support Flatpak, NetBSD kernel memory protection|
|• Issue 735 (2017-10-23): ArchLabs Minimo, building software with Ravenports, WPA security patch, Parabola creates OpenRC spin|
|• 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|
|• Full list of all issues|
|Random Distribution |
OPNsense is a FreeBSD-based specialist operating system (and a fork of pfSense) designed for firewalls and routers. It is developed by Deciso B.V. in the Netherlands. Some of the features of OPNsense include forward caching proxy, traffic shaping, intrusion detection, two-factor authentication and easy OpenVPN client setup. The project's focus on security brings a number of unique features, such as the option to use LibreSSL instead of OpenSSL (selectable in the GUI) and a custom build based on HardenedBSD. OPNsense also includes an update mechanism that delivers important security updates in a timely fashion.