| DistroWatch Weekly
|DistroWatch Weekly, Issue 591, 5 January 2015
Welcome to this year's first issue of DistroWatch Weekly!
It is a brand new year and the open source community is starting it off with several exciting developments. Over the past few weeks we have seen a number of interesting announcements and we share these in our News section. We begin with Debian's expanding UEFI support, including the ability to boot on UEFI-enabled 32-bit machines. We also check in with the Devuan project, a fork of Debian, and learn about how the new distribution is coming together. Last year init software was a big topic and this week we share an experiment involving Manjaro and alternative init technologies. Plus we discuss new features coming to DragonFly BSD and the Ubuntu distribution. Our Feature this week covers Manjaro's latest release. Read on to find out how the popular Arch-based distribution is doing. In our Questions and Answers column we tackle queries we have received with regards to systemd, dependencies and the DistroWatch web server. Plus, we are pleased to announce a new weekly feature, Torrent Corner, an experiment in which DistroWatch will provide and seed torrents for open source distributions. You can get the details about this experimental new feature below. As usual, we cover the distribution releases since our last Weekly and look ahead to promising new developments to come. We welcome you all to a fresh, new year and wish you happy reading!
- Reviews: Rolling in a new year with Manjaro 0.8.11
- News: UEFI support in Debian, updates from Devuan, experiments with runit and OpenRC on Manjaro, HammerFS gains a time slider and Unity gains a new feature
- Questions and Answers: Exploring systemd
- Torrent Corner: Deepin, KaOS, NixOS, ZevenOS
- Released in the last two weeks: Webconverger 27.1, PCLinuxOS 2014.12, ROSA R5 "Desktop Fresh", Raspbian 2014-12-24
- Upcoming releases: Mageia 5 RC
- DistroWatch.com News: New publishing time
- New distributions: AttackVector Linux, OPNsense. SqueezePop, USU Linux
- Reader comments
|Feature Story (by Jesse Smith)
Rolling in a new year with Manjaro 0.8.11
Last year I wrote a series of articles comparing five different rolling release distributions. I received several requests to write more about rolling release distributions and so I asked readers send in suggestions telling me which rolling release projects should be covered. With some amusement I found that every e-mail I received requested I review the same distribution: Manjaro. Some people suggested Manjaro along with another project, always Arch Linux or a derivative of Arch. However, I had already covered Arch in the rolling release experiment and covering it (or focusing exclusively on Arch-based projects) sounded as though it would become repetitive. Still, there is obviously a lot of interest in Manjaro and so I decided to start off the year with a review of this popular distribution.
Manjaro, for those who have not installed the distribution before, is a rolling release operating system based on Arch Linux. The project attempts to be easy to install and use. Often times projects based on Arch will make installing the distribution easier, but then focus on one specific goal. KaOS, for example, offers an Arch base with KDE/Qt software. ArchBang provides an Arch base with lightweight software, perhaps best suited for older computers. Manjaro not only makes it easier to install an Arch-based distribution, the project also tries to be a user-friendly, general purpose operating system, suitable for many people. Manjaro is available in several editions including Xfce, KDE and a command-line only flavour. The project further has a number of community editions with other default desktop environments. Each edition of Manjaro is available in 32-bit and 64-bit x86 builds. I opted to download the KDE flavour of Manjaro and found the KDE download was 1.5GB in size.
Manjaro 0.8.11 -- Default KDE desktop layout and theme
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Booting from the Manjaro media brings up a menu asking if we would like to start the distribution's live desktop environment, launch the live environment with non-free drivers or open the project's hardware detection utility. The hardware detection utility presents us with a text menu where we can browse through information on our computer's hardware. If people have trouble getting the distribution running this is a good place to look up information that may help with trouble shooting.
Booting to the distribution's live environment brings up the KDE 4.14 desktop. KDE is arranged in a traditional layout with an application menu, task switcher and system tray placed at the bottom of the screen. Icons for browsing the local file system, launching the project's system installer and launching a chat client that connects to Manjaro's on-line support channel sit on the desktop. In the upper-right corner of the screen is a widget for monitoring CPU, memory and disk usage. The default theme and icons have a lot of colour and icons are presented with a flat, square look. When we first arrive at the desktop a welcome window appears. This window provides us with links to Manjaro's documentation, user guide and support resources. The welcome screen also provides us with the live environment's user name and password. From the welcome window we have the ability to launch the distribution's system installer. Actually, Manjaro has two system installers, one features a graphical user interface and the other runs from the command line.
I looked through the project's wiki and user guide and found both were well organized. I particularly liked the local copy of the user guide as it covers such topics as installing the distribution, accessing more software and getting familiar with the operating system. The user guide includes screen shots to help newcomers become familiar with Manjaro.
I decided to use the distribution's graphical installer to get Manjaro installed on my system. The graphical installer begins by asking for our preferred language. We are then asked to provide our country/region and select our time zone from a map of the world. Next we are asked to confirm our keyboard's layout. (My keyboard defaulted to French Canadian and I switched it to a US layout during the installation.) Next we are asked whether we would like the installer to partition our hard drive or if we would like to manually divide up the disk. I decided to manually partition my drive and found Manjaro's partition manager to be easy to navigate and pleasant to use. Manjaro's installer supports working with MBR and GPT disk layouts and allows us to work with a range of file systems including ext2/3/4, Btrfs, JFS, XFS and ReiserFS. I set up the distribution on a Btrfs volume. One thing I noticed while working with partitions was that I had trouble clicking on drop-down boxes. All other controls responded to mouse input and I could use the keyboard to move through the drop-box options, but I couldn't click on any options in the drop-down boxes. The next screen of the installer asks us to create a user account for ourselves and then the installer goes to work copying its files to our local disk. When the Manjaro installer finishes its work we are asked to reboot the computer.
Our locally installed copy of Manjaro boots to a graphical login screen, decorated with a colourful background. Signing into our account brings up the KDE desktop once more and displays the distribution's welcome screen. As before, icons on the desktop give us access to the project's IRC help channel and the local file system. Shortly after I signed into my account an icon that resembled a red octopus appeared in the system tray. This icon indicates software updates are available and clicking on the icon gives us access to the distribution's package manager, Octopi. The Octopi package manager has a fairly simple layout. The applications window is divided into three parts. To the left of the window we find a simple list of available software packages. To the right we see categories of software we can use to filter the list. At the bottom of the display is an information window where we can find a description of the currently highlighted package and news relating to the Manjaro project. At the top of the Octopi window we find buttons for updating the package database, queueing package upgrades and applying all waiting actions. Right-clicking on a package allows us to install, remove or upgrade the selected item.
When I first began using Manjaro the package manager reported 45 packages could be upgraded. These packages, totalling 187MB in size, all downloaded and installed without any problems. Throughout the week I made occasional trips back to Octopi and found the package manager worked quickly and I encountered no issues. I did find that for each batch of actions (installing, removing or upgrading software) I had to provide the root password to proceed. This security feature usually isn't an issue, but it can get repetitive if we want to perform several actions.
Manjaro 0.8.11 -- The Octopi package manager
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I tried running Manjaro on a physical desktop machine and in a VirtualBox virtual machine. In both environments the distribution performed well. When running on physical hardware I found networking and sound worked out of the box, my screen was set to its maximum resolution and the desktop was responsive. Manjaro was quick to boot as well and performed tasks quickly. When running in VirtualBox the distribution offered a similarly good experience. Manjaro integrates nicely with VirtualBox and was highly responsive. In either environment the distribution required approximately 440MB of memory when signed into KDE.
The distribution ships with a useful collection of software. Since I was running the KDE edition of Manjaro it was not surprising to find most of the applications were either associated with the KDE project or the Qt toolkit which is a key component of the KDE desktop. Manjaro ships with the Rekonq web browser with Flash enabled. We are given the Konversation IRC client and the Konqueror web browser. Manjaro ships with the KMail e-mail software, the KGet download manager and the Blogilo blog post writing software. In the application menu we further find a cloud storage client, the Calligra productivity suite, the KOrganizer personal organizer and the Okular document viewer. Manjaro provides us with the Dragon Player media player, the Juk audio player, the KsCD audio disc player and the VLC multimedia player. The distribution also provides popular multimedia codecs. The k3b disc burning software is included too. Manjaro offers us the digiKam camera manager, two configuration panels (one for the KDE interface and one for the underlying operating system) and a hardware information browser. Digging further through the application menu we find the Ark archive manager, the KGpg and Kleopatra encryption utilities, the KUser account manager, a text editor and a calculator. Manjaro ships with a printer manager, the GParted desktop partition utility and a remote desktop viewer. Development utilities, including Qt Designer and Qt Creator, are available too. In the background I found the distribution ships with Java and the GNU Compiler Collection. Behind the scenes we find the Linux kernel, version 3.16, keeping everything running.
Manjaro 0.8.11 -- KDE and Manjaro configuration panels
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I feel there are a few applications included in Manjaro that deserve special mention. The Manjaro Settings Manager, for instance, presents us with a nice interface from which we can launch configuration modules. From the Settings Manager we can open modules to install kernel packages and additional language support. There is a module for finding information related to our hardware. One module allows us to install additional driver support and clearly distinguishes between open source and proprietary hardware drivers. Two other modules let us work with user accounts and adjust the system clock. Each of these configuration modules have simple interfaces and are straight forward to use. The Cloud Storage Manager synchronizes local folders with on-line accounts. I did not play with this feature much, but the Cloud Storage Manager claims it can synchronize our files with such on-line services as Dropbox and Google Drive.
There were some applications that did not work well for me. The Blogilo application helps users write blog posts and upload them to various content management systems such as Wordpress. While I think Blogilo can be a useful tool, I found that the application would crash (losing my work) every time I clicked the program's Preview button. Further, I found that while VLC would play video files, the Dragon Player application (which is the default video player) would not play videos.
Finally, I think it is interesting Manjaro ships with the Calligra productivity suite. I realize Calligra is a capable and flexible collection of applications. I also see the logic in including Calligra in the KDE edition of Manjaro since Calligra is associated with the KDE project. Still, Calligra has fewer features and is less popular than LibreOffice and I wonder if Calligra is the best tool for the job. For people who do prefer LibreOffice the popular productivity software is available in Manjaro's software repositories.
I found it easy to like Manjaro. Part of the appeal I think is in the friendly style of the distribution. The website is pretty easy to navigate, there are lots of options (both on the website and in the distribution itself), but those options are presented in a clean manner. The installer is easy to navigate, the default desktop theme is a good combination of modern design (flat icons) and traditional layout. I like the colours in the default theme, it's attractive without being distracting. There are lots of useful applications included and Manjaro presents us with plenty of functionality. I like most of the configuration utilities and I found the package manager to be fairly straight forward.
Manjaro 0.8.11 -- Browsing the Manjaro wiki
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There were a few problems as I mentioned above. The default media player didn't work for me, but there is a second media player that filled the role nicely. The Blogilo application crashed consistently, but nothing major broke during my trial. Calligra's word processor worked well enough for me and, for those who want LibreOffice, it is available in the repositories.
The one thing I would like to see improved upon is the default package manager. For more advanced users I think Octopi will be a good fit. For less experienced users I think an interface similar to Mint's software installer or Ubuntu's Software Centre would be a better fit. Still, Octopi worked quickly and was functional. There isn't anything wrong with Octopi, I just think there are package managers out there easier to explore.
All in all, I like the general style of the distribution, it is fast and flexible. Manjaro offers a lot of choice without being overwhelming and most of the options are presented through newcomer friendly interfaces. It seems to me this is a distribution that is easy for novice users to get up and running, while there are enough features and options to keep more advanced users happy. That is a hard line to walk and I think the Manjaro developers have done a good job.
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Hardware used in this review
My physical test equipment for this review was a desktop HP Pavilon p6 Series with the following specifications:
- Processor: Dual-core 2.8GHz AMD A4-3420 APU
- Storage: 500GB Hitachi hard drive
- Memory: 6GB of RAM
- Networking: Realtek RTL8111 wired network card
- Display: AMD Radeon HD 6410D video card
|Miscellaneous News (by Jesse Smith)
UEFI support in Debian, updates from Devuan, experiments with runit and OpenRC on Manjaro, HammerFS gains a time slider and Unity gains a new feature
The upcoming release of Debian "Jessie" is expected to feature support for UEFI. Steve McIntyre is currently working on fixing the remaining bugs in Debian's UEFI implementation. McIntyre posted a blog outlining his work with getting Debian to boot on UEFI-enabled machines, reporting, "I've been getting lots of requests for adding i386 (32-bit x86) UEFI support in our official images. Back in the Wheezy development cycle, I had test images that worked on i386, but decided not to push that support into the release. There were worries about potentially critical bugs that could be tickled on some hardware, plus there were only very few known i386 UEFI platforms at the time; the risk of damage outweighed the small proportion of users, IMHO. However, I'm now revisiting that decision. The potentially broken machines are now 2 years older, and so less likely to be in use. Also, Intel have released some horrid platform concoction around the Bay Trail CPU: a 64-bit CPU (that really wants a 64-bit kernel), but running a 32-bit UEFI firmware with no BIOS Compatibility Mode. Recent kernels are able to cope with this mess, but at the moment there is no sensible way to install Debian on such a machine. I'm hoping to fix that."
Following plans by the Debian project to adopt the systemd init technology, a group of developers and administrators has decided to create a fork of Debian which will use alternative init software. The Debian fork is called Devuan and the project released a newsletter that outlines the status of the project. To date, Devuan has set up code and package repositories and posted articles on how to remove systemd from Debian. The Devuan project is offering to sponsor projects that are creating alternatives to systemd services. The newsletter also discusses a number of active projects working on alternatives to systemd.
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Over on the Troubleshooters website there is an interesting experiment involving the Manjaro distribution and alternative init software. The author has adjusted the Manjaro distribution to boot (and shutdown) using a combination of runit and OpenRC. The guide outlines the steps involved to get a working desktop operating system with these alternative init technologies. If you are hoping to learn more about init technologies, this experiment is a good one to explore.
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One of the nice characteristics shared by advanced file systems such as Btrfs, ZFS and Hammer is that snapshots of files can be taken and retrieved at a later time. Snapshots help protect against data loss and can help detect troublesome changes to configuration files. Unfortunately, the commands to browse and restore snapshots can be complex. With this in mind, a friendly "Slider" application has been created for the Hammer file system and DragonFly BSD. DragonFly BSD Digest reports: "John Marino has created something very useful: a graphical tool for Hammer file history. It's called `Slider', and it uses curses to work in a terminal. It shows historic versions of files and can restore those old versions as needed. This was already possible in Hammer, of course, but it required a sequence of commands that were not straight-forward." To learn more about the Slider application and how to install it, please see John Marino's mailing list post.
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Some people find the Unity desktop a strange environment to navigate. This is likely due, in part, to the fact Unity hides application menus by default. An application's menu only becomes visible when the user's mouse pointer is moved to the top of the screen. Unity developer Marco Trevisan is working to enable permanently visible menus in Unity to make the desktop easier to explore. According to Web Upd8, the new always visible feature is expected to be included in Ubuntu 15.04.
|Questions and Answers (by Jesse Smith)
Trying to understand the systemd debate asks:
With all the controversy about systemd going viral these days, what is needed is an (at least partially) objective guide to the issues involved for people who do not already have their mind made up. I haven't really been following the controversy closely, but certain points keep coming up again and again.
1. systemd goes against the UNIX Philosophy of simplicity and modularity and doing one thing only and doing it well. I'm wondering if there are not counter-examples to this in Linux already -- what about the X window system and what about GRUB2? What about some of the desktop environments, especially GNOME and KDE?
2. Dependency issues, which seem to be of two types. First, is not one of the reasons systemd was introduced in the first place was to resolve certain dependency issues at boot-up time? What dependency issues? Does this make systemd more fragile in the sense that one dependency-related bug can render the entire system unbootable? This feature needs to be distinguished from the issue of application software itself being dependent on systemd in order to run, which is of course is one of the big bones of contention. (If GNOME needs systemd but KDE doesn't, would this not be a big advantage for KDE?)
3. A lot of people bring up the alleged problem of the execution of systemd binaries during boot-up, some of which might be (or contain) back doors. The standard reply seems to be that one can enable logging, even if it is not the default, and inspect what is going on with your system. What gives here?
I'm sure there are other points, these are just the ones that stand out in my own mind. I realize that this is a powder-keg of an issue and DistroWatch would not have to take sides. But some objective guidance to the issues for the Linux neophyte would be nice.
DistroWatch answers: This is a lot to tackle so let's dive in and try to address this subject one point at a time.
First, the argument over the UNIX Philosophy. The UNIX Philosophy is a set of guidelines that people have found useful when it comes to designing software. The UNIX Philosophy is not a strict series of laws or rules, but rather a set of design suggestions which are likely to result in better software. Usually when people talk about the UNIX Philosophy they are referring to Mike Gancarz's nine guidelines. These include such suggestions as "make each program do one thing well" (as opposed to performing many separate tasks), "choose portability over efficiency", "store data in text files" and "use shell scripts to increase portability". The systemd project, most would argue, does the opposite. The systemd project is actually a collection of many different utilities (so many tasks are tackled by one project), systemd is not at all portable, configuration data is placed in text files, but systemd creates binary logs and relies on binary executables instead of shell scripts. In short, systemd flies very much against the UNIX Philosophy.
Whether systemd not following the UNIX Philosophy is good or bad is a matter open to debate. As the original question pointed out, there are other open source projects which bend or break some of the UNIX Philosophy guidelines. Many of the projects which do not strictly follow the UNIX Philosophy are quite popular. Btrfs, for example, is not really portable outside of Linux and takes on multiple tasks. The LibreOffice suite, GNOME and KDE are large collections of programs and one could argue over how portable or focused they are.
But the thing to keep in mind is that the UNIX Philosophy is a set of guidelines and not all design suggestions are appropriate all the time. Sometimes it makes sense to choose efficiency over portability, other times it does not. Sometimes it makes sense to design a program to be a filter that can be used in a chain of commands and sometimes it does not. Whether a program follows the UNIX Philosophy or not is not really important in and of itself. What matters is how the project's design affects its users, system administrators and developers. Declaring a program does not follow the UNIX Philosophy is a hollow argument unless it is followed up with why that is important in this specific case.
The systemd developers have decided to choose efficiency over portability, to use binary programs over shell scripts and to store data in binary format instead of text. They have gone for large programs with more features over small ones. Whether these decisions are good or bad will depend on one's perspective.
Next, let's look at dependency issues. The systemd init software does tackle dependencies differently than past init software such as SysV and Upstart. Actually, systemd tackles a lot of low level issues that other init software either did not do or didn't do particularly well. If you want the details behind what systemd is designed to do and why you can read this detailed blog post. The systemd unit configuration files make it easy to put dependencies in place with relatively little effort. This makes it a bit easier to tell which services need which other services. As to whether a dependency problem in systemd's configuration could prevent the operating system from booting, yes it could. However, the same could be said of any init software. If you do not properly set up dependencies for boot-time services, regardless of which init software you use, things stop working.
Looking at software which relies on systemd components, I suppose software which is more portable (ie can work with multiple init implementations) does have an advantage over software that is tied to one init implementation. For example, if GNOME becomes tied exclusively to systemd and KDE can run on many different platforms, then that does make KDE's potential audience bigger. However, it also means a little more work for the KDE team. Portability adds a small degree of complexity and extra work.
I think the more interesting question is, with systemd spreading, will we see more software require systemd in a few years? Five years from now will Oracle databases only run on distributions with systemd (or a systemd compatibility layer) in place? Might we see the Apache web server use systemd as a dependency? I think systemd could become widely used enough that an increasing number of products rely on it. I suspect that systemd compatibility layers will become common on distributions (and the BSDs) where systemd is not the default init software.
Finally, regarding the allegations of back doors in systemd, my feeling is this: The systemd source code is open source. If someone wants to claim there is a back door in systemd (or any other open source project) then they should provide evidence if they wish to be taken seriously. To date, so far as I know, no one has found a back door in systemd. Until one is found I think such rumours should be ignored.
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Change in the wind asks: Now that Debian has voted to include systemd as the default init, does DistroWatch have any plans to migrate to another operating system?
DistroWatch answers: As some of our readers know, the DistroWatch web server currently runs Debian Wheezy. At the moment, Debian Wheezy probably has about two years of official support left in its life cycle and, after that, Wheezy may enjoy unofficial security support the same way Squeeze is getting extended support now. In short, we can (and probably will) continue to run Debian Wheezy for another two to four years, based on Debian's past support cycles.
This means we have plenty of time to wait, observe and test. We will be able to experiment with Debian Jessie, and possibly the following version of Debian after Jessie, to see how they perform. As we get closer to Debian Wheezy's end-of-life we can experiment with other server solutions too to see if something else may work better for us.
The short answer is: Debian Wheezy is currently serving us well and we have a few years yet before we need to make a decision regarding what operating system we will run after Wheezy. We are going to take our time and see what unfolds over the next year or two before a decision is made.
Bittorrent is a great way to transfer large files, particularly open source operating system images, from one place to another. Most bittorrent clients recover from dropped connections automatically, check the integrity of files and can re-download corrupted bits of data without starting a download over from scratch. These characteristics make bittorrent well suited for distributing open source operating systems, particularly to regions where Internet connections are slow or unstable.
Many Linux and BSD projects offer bittorrent as a download option, partly for the reasons listed above and partly because bittorrent's peer-to-peer nature takes some of the strain off the project's servers. However, some projects do not offer bittorrent as a download option. There can be several reasons for excluding bittorrent as an option. Some projects do not have enough time or volunteers, some may be restricted by their web host provider's terms of service. Whatever the reason, the lack of a bittorrent option puts more strain on a distribution's bandwidth and may prevent some people from downloading their preferred open source operating system.
With this in mind, DistroWatch plans to give back to the open source community by hosting and seeding bittorrent files for distributions that do not offer a bittorrent option themselves. This is a feature we are experimenting with and we are open to feedback on how to improve upon the idea.
For now, we are hosting a small number of distribution torrents, listed below. The list of torrents offered will be updated each week and we invite readers to e-mail us with suggestions as to which distributions we should be hosting. When you message us, please place the word "Torrent" in the subject line and please make sure the project you are recommending does not already host its own torrents. We want to primarily help distributions and users who do not already have a torrent option. To help us maintain and grow this free service, please consider making a donation.
The table below provides a list of torrents we currently host. If you do not currently have a bittorrent client capable of handling the linked files, we suggest installing either the Transmission or KTorrent bittorrent clients.
All torrents we make available here will also be listed on the very useful Linux Tracker website. Linux Tracker maintains a list of distributions we are currently seeding and have supported in the past.
|Released Last in the last two Weeks
Kai Hendry has announced the release of Webconverger 27.1, the latest update of the single-purpose, Debian-based Linux distribution designed for web kiosks - now with updated Linux kernel, version 3.16.7: "Webconverger 27 release. Webconverger wishes you a happy new year and gives the gift of a better web experience. Highlights of Webconverger 27.1: better Intel support, we do recommend NUC hardware and this update will give more flexibility with external displays; rebranded to our new logo and do check out our refreshed website; includes Firefox 34 with accompanying security fixes; new 3.16 kernel for better hardware support; new tabswitch= API, a convenient function to switch between tabs when used for digital signage; important Flash security updates, so important that Mozilla blocked versions below 188.8.131.525; Gujarati font support." See the complete release announcement for more information and screenshots.
Bill Reynolds has announced the release of PCLinuxOS 2014.12, the last build in the current series of PCLinuxOS releases before some major upgrades: "PCLinuxOS 2014.12 ISO images have been released for Full Monty, KDE, MATE and LXDE. Highlights include Linux kernel 3.18.1, FFmpeg 2.5.1, MESA 10.4.0, SysVInit (no systemd) and all popular applications such as Firefox, Thunderbird and VLC have been updated to their latest versions. Please note if you have been keeping up with your PCLinuxOS software updates then there is no need to install fresh from a 2014.12 ISO image. These images are final releases based on legacy technology. Future releases will default to GRUB 2 and will support UEFI and GPT partition formats." Here is the brief release announcement.
ROSA R5 "Desktop Fresh"
Ekaterina Lopukhova has announced the release of ROSA R5 "Desktop Fresh" edition, a desktop Linux distribution featuring an intuitive KDE 4.14.3 desktop: "The ROSA company is happy to present the long-awaited ROSA Desktop Fresh R5, the number 5 in the "R" lineup of the free ROSA distros with the KDE desktop as the main graphical environment. Changes in comparison with the previous release: KDE 4 desktop environment has been updated to version 4.14.3.; Firefox has been updated to version 34.0, ROSA repositories also provide Firefox ESR 24.8.0 with classical UI theme; fixed video playback problems in KLook and TimeFrame caused by migration to GStreamer 1.0 API; fixed issues with video preview in Dolphin; fixed problem with copying large files by means of kamera KIO slave...." Read the rest of the release notes for further details and system requirements.
Just in time for some holiday hacking - version 2014-12-24 of Raspbian, a Debian-based distribution designed for the Raspberry Pi single-board mini-computer, has been released. What's new? "Fix regression with omission of python-pygame; new firmware with various fixes and improvements; new UI configuration for LXDE; various package updates; python3-pygame preinstalled; 'nuscratch', scratch running on the Cog StackVM; miscellaneous other changes." Read also the "Merry Christmas! Got a New Pi? Read on!" post on RaspberryPi.org with useful tips on setting up a new Raspberry Pi. As usual, Raspbian is available for download either as a standalone image for USB storage devices or as part of NOOBS, a beginner-friendly compilation of several popular operating systems designed for Raspberry Pi.
Anke Boersma has announced the release of KaOS 2014.12, an updated build of the project's Arch-inspired, rolling-release Linux distribution featuring the KDE desktop: "KaOS is very proud to announce the availability of the December release of a new stable ISO image. It marks two major milestones for this distribution. Since its inception almost two years ago, a need to be ready for UEFI installs has always been a priority. That was tied to getting a modern Qt-based installer that could handle such UEFI installs. With this release, both are implemented. The new, Qt5/Python3-based installer is a joint effort of several distributions. In May of this year, developers of Netrunnner, KaOS and Manjaro got together to discuss the possibility to work jointly on a brand-new, Qt5-based installer. The idea was born to create Calamares. By June the coding started and by August a first, raw usable version was put into testing." Continue to the release announcement to find out more.
KaOS 2014.12 -- Showing welcome screen on KDE
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Stephan Raue has announced the release of OpenELEC 5.0, a n updated release of the distribution designed for media centres - now with the news Kodi 14 media centre software a build for Freescale iMX6 devices: "The OpenELEC team is proud to announce OpenELEC 5.0. OpenELEC 5.0 is the latest stable release, which is a feature release and the successor of OpenELEC 4.2. The headline change is the update from XBMC 13 (Gotham) to Kodi 14 (Helix) and the big switch from XBMC to Kodi branding. Both project teams have conducted a major find/replace but if you spot residual mentions of XBMC anywhere please let us know. The name change affects more than the GUI; all references in code have been changed and in the OpenELEC filesystem /storage/.xbmc will be recreated as a symlink to /storage/.kodi to ensure hardcoded paths in add-ons or scripts continue to work. For information on Kodi 14 you can find here." Read the release announcement for further information.
Version 14.12 of NixOS 14.12, a distribution that uses a custom package manager, deploys a unique file system layout, and offers various innovative features, has been released: "NixOS 14.12 'Caterpillar' has been released, the third stable release branch. In addition to numerous new and upgraded packages, this release has the following highlights: systemd has been updated to version 217, which has numerous improvements; Nix has been updated to 1.8; NixOS is now based on glibc 2.20; KDE has been updated to 4.14; the default Linux kernel has been updated to 3.14. If users.mutableUsers is enabled (the default), changes made to the declaration of a user or group will be correctly realised when running nixos-rebuild. For instance, removing a user specification from configuration.nix will cause the actual user account to be deleted. If users.mutableUsers is disabled, it is no longer necessary to specify UIDs or GIDs." Read the brief release announcement on the project's home page, with further details available in the release notes.
Deepin 2014.2, the second update of the Ubuntu-based community distribution with a custom, HTML 5-based desktop environment, has been released. The "live mode" functionality has been removed in this version, so it is no longer possible to test the distribution before committing to a hard disk installation. Other features of the release include: "Enabled brand-new Deepin themes, making the system interface more beautiful; newly added the feature of drag and drop re-ordering to the residing icons in Dock; newly added four kinds of re-ordering modes in the Launcher (by name, by category, by installation time and by frequency of use); newly added the functions of Icon, Cursor and Fonts setting in the Personalization Setting module; improved multi-screen display function; strengthened the network function and added the function of state memory; simplified the operation of choosing time zone in Control Center and newly added the function of daylight saving time...." Here is the full release announcement with screenshots.
Happy New Year! The honour of the first release announcement of 2015 goes to ZevenOS, a desktop Linux distribution whose latest release, version 6.0, is based on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS and which features the Xfce desktop environment with a desktop theme that resembles the much-loved BeOS operating system: "I am proud to announce the release of ZevenOS 6.0 – the 'Good-bye' edition. Good-bye because its released at the end of this year and will be the last ZevenOS version for a long long time. This release is based upon Ubuntu 14.04 LTS and will be supported for 5 years. As ZevenOS 5.0 was released more than a year ago this new version brings in many changes like Linux kernel 3.13, X.Org 7.7 and PulseAudio 4.0. All the tools you love from ZevenOS are back again in updated versions. OpenShot was updated to 1.4.3 with the new melt backend, Inkscape to 0.48.4, AbiWord to 3.0. Brasero was replaced by Xfburn and we now also include the sysctl speed patches and zram enabled by default to gain more overall speed. ZevenOS still is the best linux distribution with a BeOS touch."
Chih-Wei Huang has announced the release of Android-x86 4.4-r2, an unofficial port of Google's Android mobile operating system to Intel and AMD x86 processors: "Android-x86.org is glad to announce the 4.4-r2 release. This is the second stable release of Android-x86 4.4. The 4.4-r2 release is based on the Android 4.4.4_r2 (KitKat-MR2.2) release. We have fixed and added x86-specific code to let the system run smoothly on x86 platforms, especially on tablets and netbooks. Features include: upgrade the kernel to the latest stable version 3.18 with more drivers enabled and support for more modern hardware like Intel's Baytrail platform; initial support for UEFI booting, the installer still doesn't work with GPT partition table; improve suspend and resume; merge updates from upstream; bug fixes. This release contains two files - one is the traditional ISO file that can be booted on devices with legacy BIOS, the other is the EFI image that can be used on more modern devices with UEFI firmware." See the release notes for further information and known issues.
SparkyLinux 3.6 "GameOver"
Pawel Pijanowski has announced the release of SparkyLinux 3.6 "GameOver" edition, the project's special edition designed for gamers: "SparkyLinux 3.6 'GameOver' is out. GameOver is a special edition of SparkyLinux targeted at game players. It has been built on the top of SparkyLinux 3.6 'Annagerman' and it's fully compatible with Debian's 'testing' branch. What is under the hood of GameOver 3.6? Linux kernel 3.16.7; all packages upgraded from Debian's testing repositories as of 2014-12-31; lxde-common 0.99.0, Openbox 3.5.2, PCManFM 1.2 3, Iceweasel 34.0, VLC 2.2.0-rc2; Steam and Steam Launcher 184.108.40.206; Desura for Linux; WINE and PlayOnLinux. The Liquorix repository is enabled as default, it lets you upgrade the Linux kernel up to version 3.18 and WINE up to version 1.7 after installing SparkyLinux on a hard drive." Read the rest of the release announcement for more details and screenshots.
Arne Exton has announced the release of ExTiX 15.1, an updated build of the project's Ubuntu-based distribution featuring the GNOME 3.14 desktop: "ExTiX GNOME is now based on Ubuntu 14.10 'Utopic Unicorn'. GNOME has been upgraded to version 3.14. (not in Ubuntu's repositories). All packages have been updated to the latest versions by 2015-01-04. Linux kernel 3.16.0-21-exton is used (kernel.org's Linux kernel 3.16.4). Google Chrome is included; this makes it possible to watch Netflix movies. It is not possible in Firefox (in Linux). I have also installed BlueGriffon web editor. 'BlueGriffon is a new WYSIWYG content editor for the world wide web. Powered by Gecko, the rendering engine of Firefox, it's a modern and robust solution to edit web pages in conformance to the latest web standards.' Comparable only to Dreamweaver (in my opinion)." This brief readme file, published on the project's SourceForge page, provides brief information about the release.
* * * * *
Development, unannounced and minor bug-fix releases
|Upcoming Releases and Announcements
Summary of expected upcoming releases
New publishing time|
As many of our loyal readers may know, DistroWatch has typically published new editions of DistroWatch Weekly on Monday mornings, around 8:00am GMT. This has worked well for us in the past, but we are making some small changes and are planning to share our news and reviews with you a little earlier. Starting immediately, we are going to publish our Weekly newsletter for your reading pleasure at 1:00am GMT Monday morning. We hope the early risers among you will join us each Monday morning with coffee (or other breakfast beverage) in hand.
* * * * *
Distributions added to waiting list
- AttackVector Linux. AttackVector Linux is a new distribution for anonymized penetration and security. It is based on Kali and TAILS, which are both based on Debian.
- SqueezePop. SqueezePop is a Debian-based distribution featuring the Openbox window manager.
- USU Linux. USU Linux is a distribution featuring three branches, Desktop, Mini and Netbook.
- OPNsense. OPNsense is based on FreeBSD and includes most of the features available in expensive commercial firewalls.
* * * * *
DistroWatch database summary
* * * * *
This concludes this week's issue of DistroWatch Weekly. The next instalment will be published on Monday, 12 January 2015. To contact the authors please send email to:
- Jesse Smith (feedback, questions and suggestions: distribution reviews, questions and answers, tips and tricks)
- Ladislav Bodnar (feedback, questions, suggestions and corrections: news, donations, distribution submissions, comments)
- Bruce Patterson (feedback and suggestions: podcast edition)
|Linux Foundation Training
|Reader Comments • Jump to last comment
1 • New Publishing Time (by Al on 2015-01-05 01:28:58 GMT from United States) |
I like it! It helps me get my DistroWatch fix sooner. Nice!
2 • PCLinuxOS: Love it! (by Doug on 2015-01-05 01:59:49 GMT from Australia)
Just wish to thank the capable people at PCLinuxOS. This system has now become a stable (as far asd I am concerned) OS that is easy to use & manage. I have been a happy user for quite a while now. Recently I needed a program to access my phone: requested it, & next thing there it was! Love the support.
Keep up the good work!
PCLOS is a good candidate for inexperienced users. It also has a useful monthly magazine, great for tutorials or advice.
regards, a Happy PCLOS User.
3 • Systemd binary logs (by vw72 on 2015-01-05 02:38:14 GMT from United States)
I don't quite understand the problem with the binary logs. Straight text files still need a program to access them, whether cat, less, cp or an editor of some sort. How is that any different than using the viewer for systemd? After all, whether text or binary, it's all stored as ones and zeros and needs to be converted by a program to be read or printed.
BTW, as for the new publishing time, I like it!
4 • New Publishing time (by Platypus on 2015-01-05 03:18:03 GMT from Australia)
"We hope the early risers among you will join us each Monday morning with coffee (or other breakfast beverage) in hand..."
Now I know the Americas are the centre of the world - no wait - the universe, but in Australia we have been up working hard while all the Americans are still sleeping. Ha! that means a couple of things: 1) We get a visit from Santa first 2) we begin the new year first and 3) we get to read DistroWatch first thing Monday morning. It's a great move because now I don't have to wait until Tuesday to read.
PS Great explanation on systemd.
5 • Systemd. Again. Oh God. But anyway... (by Davidnotcoulthard on 2015-01-05 03:23:24 GMT from Indonesia)
The "Goes against the UNIX philosophy" argument is bloody ridiculous.
Did anybody complain when people went against GNU's philosohpy (i.e. the OS actually being used), when developers started putting non-free software in the system?
Few people did. And those who did are viewed today as, in some ways, radicals, according to my observation. And yet those who say that Systemd is bad "because it goes against the UNIX philosophy" can claim to be using a valid argument, probably whilst using non-free programmes in their systems?
I'd rather see Yuji Ide win the World Championship.
(Oh, and GNU's philosophy is definitely more than a mere suggestion. By far).
6 • More Rolling Distros? (by Alan on 2015-01-05 03:41:37 GMT from United States)
How about Pisi Linux? The developers are trying hard to maintain the old Pardus spirit, and it probably deserves more attention.
paldo and 0linux are also interesting, but more niche offerings.
7 • Further Reviews (by Alan on 2015-01-05 04:10:02 GMT from United States)
Addition to #6: Void Linux is another candidate.
A good Live Distro to review is AUSTRUMI. It still has the best FVWM desktop I have ever seen.
8 • Going against the UNIX philosophy (by Henrique Rodrigues on 2015-01-05 05:45:30 GMT from United Kingdom)
systemd does not go against the UNIX philosophy. If that's the case, then GNU coreutils also goes against the UNIX philosophy. You know, one package, multiple binaries, no shell scripting...
systemd is mostly an umbrella project with many small projects underneath it, including the init system called systemd. All the components are quite small and can be replaced by alternatives, if needed, although no one has done it so far. I'm assuming alternatives are not needed and that's fine.
Regarding systemd's binary logs, you can still access them using text mode tools and absolutely nothing prevents you from disabling binary logs and having text mode logs only. But there's added value in having binary logs as well: accountability. Everyone, including a malicious user, can tamper and change text files. Not so with binary logs.
Please don't dismiss systemd because you heard somewhere that X, Y and Z are true. They might not be. And no, I'm not a systemd fanboy, I just don't like to hear the same misconceptions being repeated over and over again.
9 • Good review (by Smellyman on 2015-01-05 07:05:21 GMT from Taiwan)
Love me some Manjaro. I used Arch for years, but have moved to Manjaro just for some of their ease of use and tools they provide.
One niggle though, KaOS isn't based on Arch. It is independant.
10 • Great publishing time ! (by Frederic Bezies on 2015-01-05 08:45:42 GMT from France)
It is good to get my distrowatch weekly so early on monday morning !
@6 : paldo is a great little distribution. Even if they're using a mono based package tool.
0linux ? Will be useful to french speaking user, as it is in french only. I know about this, I tested it back in 2011 or 2012 :)
@7 : One rolling without systemd for systemd """haters""". It uses runit and it is a great distribution, even if I'm not a big fan of xbps package tool.
@8 : I think everybody will still hear this and other "please trash systemd" arguments this year again.
@9 : It only uses archlinux tools like pacman. Like Chakra in some ways.
11 • PCLinuxOS highly recommended (by Tony on 2015-01-05 08:49:15 GMT from United Kingdom)
I have to agree with Doug, I tried lots of other excellent distros like mint and Puppy but I always end up using PCLinuxOS for the day to day running of my business and have done so for the last 6 years.
Stable, large set of apps, fast, very helpful and friendly forum.
12 • SystemD (by TinfoilHatLinuxUser on 2015-01-05 09:50:03 GMT from United States)
I Dont trust it, not yet anyway, I will wait and see what comes of it, if the Fears are unfounded then SystemD will survive, if their is enough truth to the criticizem then i believe there will be more forks in the next year or two
13 • Devuan (by Paraquat on 2015-01-05 09:57:03 GMT from Taiwan)
I know we've beat the systemd debate to death, so I don't want to resurrect it. At this point, most people have made up their minds. So my main interest at this point is not to convince anyone that I'm right (I'm anti-systemd, for those who don't already know), but rather to look at the alternatives.
Like Distrowatch, my temporary solution is to not "upgrade." Currently, I'm using Ubuntu 14.04 as my main workhorse desktop distro, which still relies on Upstart for init purposes. I was using Ubuntu 14.10 (which also runs Upstart), but went back to 14.04 to make sure that an update didn't suddenly leave me with a systemd desktop without asking. But this "solution" is only a temporary fix - unless Mark Shuttleworth has a change of heart, Ubuntu has systemd set in its sights.
I've been experimenting with other distros. At the moment, I give PCLinuxOS my highest rating as a non-systemd distro. It's not flawless though - there are a few packages missing from their repositories that I sorely miss, but that won't be an issue for everybody. A few packages I was able to compile from source, but there are a couple more that won't compile due to dependency problems. So even though I'm 98% satisfied with PCLinuxOS, it needs to advance a little more to make me happy.
Slackware is non-systemd and works well as a server. For desktop, Salix is a good Slackware-based distro that has package management. But it's lacking quite a few packages that I really need. Still, it's very usable, and is worth considering.
Gentoo - ah, so near and yet so far. Great package management, big repository, but the compiling can drive one mad. Only suitable for people with a very fast machine. But it's certainly a great distro in many ways. Unfortunately, the premier Gentoo-based pre-compiled distro, Sabayon, has decided to go with systemd.
Still not tested yet - Void Linux. But it's on my list.
Which brings me to Devuan. I've subscribed to their mailing list, and I'm very excited to test their first alpha release which might be forthcoming in about a month. I've been in the Debian/Ubuntu camp for many years now, so I have great hopes for Devuan. I'm even going to do something I seldom do, and contribute money to the project.
14 • Korora and Simplicity editions (by Justiniano on 2015-01-05 10:06:07 GMT from Philippines)
Kudos to Korora and Simplicity for their timely beta releases. Looking forward to the full editions of Korora for robust workstation and Simplicity for everyday applications.
15 • @#13 (by TinfoilHatLinuxUser on 2015-01-05 10:22:07 GMT from United States)
CentOS-6.6 is still supported and does not use SystemD, but CentOS-7.x does use SystemD, i put it on a laptop and it runs good enough for daily casual use, i may change to some other distro later on but so far CentOS is working nice enough for my purposes, i will keep an eye on Devuan and i know trusty old Slackware will stick with it's BSD style init scripts
16 • @12 more forks and more users ? Or more wasted resources ? (by Frederic Bezies on 2015-01-05 10:25:31 GMT from France)
I can understand your fear. I'm using systemd on my archlinux since october 2012. So, I'm a big bad user :)
Only time will tell us if there will be more forks. But all those forks are wasting resources. Instead of proposing one or two alternative to systemd, like runit and OpenRC, I think some coders will say : "Hey ! I've the true alternative to systemd" and spent money, time, and resources in dead-end projects.
Wheezy will stay supported until spring or summer 2016. What will Devuan look like in 18 months ? Will it be alive ?
17 • UNIX philosophy and systemd (by jb on 2015-01-05 11:01:43 GMT from Poland)
This questions is very well answered in this Distrowatch report:
Updates from Devuan
Now, compare that to systemd's "solution" of hijacking udev and forcing other distros to
fork it in self-defense (see: udev, vdev, uselessd, etc).
The maliciousness and technical blunders of systemd is beyond any doubt.
Anybody who cared to follow systemd discussions on lwn.net should be clear about it.
18 • Alternatives that lack systemd (by Davidnotcoulthard on 2015-01-05 11:17:32 GMT from Indonesia)
@13 BSDs will also serve you rather well, I reckon. It ain't GNU, though (but I don't think you (should) care about that).
19 • Torrents (by Terence on 2015-01-05 11:18:36 GMT from United States)
This is something I am grateful that Distrowatch has stepped up to do. I know in the case of Kaos, it's aggravating when I want to download a distro, but cannot download in a timely fashion.
Thanks again for offering this service.
20 • @16: (by dragonmouth on 2015-01-05 12:22:51 GMT from United States)
"But all those forks are wasting resources"
Don't you think that the 285 active distros in DW database and 270 others on the waiting list is not a vast waste of resources?! Why can't the Linux Community limit the number of distros to a few dozen? Because one of the major tenets of Linux is CHOICE. So, in the name of CHOICE, Linux has become Balkanized and is getting more so every day. At this point, the waste of resources from a few more forks due to systemd alternatives is not going to matter.
21 • @18, @16 (by Paraquat on 2015-01-05 13:26:02 GMT from Taiwan)
"BSDs will also serve you rather well, I reckon. It ain't GNU, though (but I don't think you (should) care about that)."
Yes, I'm keeping PC-BSD on my short list of non-systemd OSs to try. I should have mentioned that, so thanks for pointing it out.
"Only time will tell us if there will be more forks. But all those forks are wasting resources. Instead of proposing one or two alternative to systemd, like runit and OpenRC, I think some coders will say : "Hey ! I've the true alternative to systemd" and spent money, time, and resources in dead-end projects."
Basically, there are three init systems that are likely systemd alternatives: runit, OpenRC and sysvinit. All three don't step on each other's toes - you could easily replace sysvinit with OpenRC or runit without forking a distro. That isn't the case with systemd which is riddled from top to bottom with dependencies, which is why a complete fork is necessary to get rid of it.
And the sad thing is, these dependencies aren't necessary. It's only there because the systemd developers want to play hard ball and force everyone to use their system and their system only. The uselessd project is essentially an attempt by one developer to create a systemd without the dependencies, and I wish him luck though I think he's swimming against the tide (or tsunami).
So if you want to complain about "wasted resources," I suggest you place the blame on those who caused the problem in the first place. Hint: it's not the Devuan folks.
22 • PCLinuxOS (by Eric P on 2015-01-05 13:29:09 GMT from United States)
I remember a time when I used PCLinuxOS way back and the biggest issue I had was the developers telling me that if I wanted to use the system for development (with a few recent packages), I was basically out of luck due to that not being their use case. I understand the sentiment, but remember feeling that the response was pretty weak and unprofessional.
I remember being put off by the response that I got at the time, but I also remember it being a solid OS for day to day use. One of my favorites at the time as I recall.
23 • slackware a good alternative for me (by kennedy on 2015-01-05 14:13:39 GMT from )
Fear of systemd has made (forced) me sit down and learn how slackware works. I am surprised that working with slackbuilds to get the packages that I need for my daily use is not that hard. I now have a system that is very similar to what I have always had in Debian and Centos.
24 • Torrents Table (by vaithy on 2015-01-05 14:28:29 GMT from India)
Thanks for providing Torrents link.. If the link is provided in separate Tab or page , it might help many.. as readers are not going expect clik the link in the middle of the page while reading..
25 • About waste of resources. (by Frederic Bezies on 2015-01-05 14:56:43 GMT from France)
@20 : I think on waiting list, you can remove at least 10 to 20 entries. Cleaning up this waiting list is time consuming but useful.
Forks related to "no-systemd" and new "no-systemd init" will add a little waste. Choices ? Too many choices will afraid new users. They will ask themselves : Why is there so many distributions ? Why is there nearly 300 ? It is like asking why is there so much spoken languages on Earth ?
@21 : What about upstart ? Is it already dead ? Is there no more linux distributions using it ?
Who to blame about wasting resources ? To ubuntu-based forks creator ? To people who are not speaking english, spanish, french, german, hindi and chinese ?
Devuan is another fork. Only time will tell how it will survive besides Debian and other main distributions.
26 • Simplicity X uses KDE 4, not KDE 3 (by Andy on 2015-01-05 15:29:40 GMT from United States)
According to comments at Simplicity's website, the "X" version uses KDE 4, not KDE 3 or Trinity. The KDE 3 mention was a "typo".
27 • My loves (by Bederic Frezies on 2015-01-05 15:45:11 GMT from Canada)
I have a poster of Lennart above my bed, he's so dreamy, and of course, I also love systemd.
28 • Slackware, systemd (by Gerald E. P. Morris on 2015-01-05 15:55:13 GMT from United States)
Having used a systemd based rolling release distro, Arch, on an ARM based device in my home network, and having Slackware on the rest of my machines, I 've had plenty experience with systemd and assure all still tormented by doubt: CHOOSE SLACK!
Slackware offers a CLEAN, TRANSPARENT UI which any literate person can follow after an hours initial study, giving the user a reliable operating system WHOLLY under the user's control, not that of malicious corporate employees hired to excrete mal-coded binaries which undermine UNIX, GNU and even basic sound engineering philosophy and practice.
29 • General things (by Corbin Rune on 2015-01-05 16:45:25 GMT from United States)
I'd agree with Jesse that Manjaro tends to be a pretty decent system to work with.
(Had it on my machine for months, although I recently went back to base Arch.)
As far as GUI package management goes, there are always other options. Although, in my own case, I tend to stick with the command line, pacman's plenty to handle business. (Athough for anything AUR, I'd have to say go old-school, and learn to work with makepkg first, then mess with an AUR helper once you've learned biz a bit.)
As far as @28, and the systemd bit in general: Hell, while I can see the urge to go for Slack or something else that defaults to non-systemd, it's not as if Arch can't be made to work with an alternate init system. (I won't speak for Debian or its descendants ... considering I've not used 'em in a while.)
30 • Systemd (by Cray XMP on 2015-01-05 16:46:35 GMT from France)
Systemd is not about choice but is a corporate interest from Red Hat forced down people's throats.
In the guise of standardization it is an attack on diversity which reminds me of 'Embrace, extend and ex...'
Since Canonical is hooked to Debian (as a fork) and Debian TC seems to be mostly from Red Hat, the die is cast from Debian derivatives.
All the RHEL clones will fall in line by design and ... CentOS has already been gobbled up, despite its community !
Systemd is far more than an init alternative as it invades GNU/Linux with its growing prerogatives and dependencies. It is becoming a product bundling with no way out.
A single entity is in charge thanks to its massive ressources : Red Hat. It is M$ all over again.
I despised M$ attitude and abandoned their ecosystem many years ago. I thought of Linux as a safe haven so I, for one , would not let things go and stand still.
Definitely, corporate interests are not user interests. Any alternative that brings back choice is a necessity for GNU/Linux.
31 • systemd from an under-tinfoil hat perspective (by jg on 2015-01-05 17:09:14 GMT from Poland)
IMHO systemd provides en entry point for introducing into linux capabilities or functionalities similar in their end result to .exe files in Windows. After the recent Snowden revelations, we all know that looking for a patched and safe Windows system is unrealistic - the system is designed precisely in a way to be always open for external intervention. So who may need such functionality? Obviously all those biggest corporations and governments which are now fed up with Microsoft milking them so much more each and every year while there is less and less to go around. The big corporations, monopolists, government agencies they all must have systems that guarantee that all their users can be always monitored and if the need be, blocked out. There is no way a corporation will knowingly allow theft of intellectual property - and this is a chance for Red Hat to finally provide a product that offers both real security from external attacks and ability to monitor and spy on users the way a particular Big Brother sees fit. Then of course is the issue of making systemd so complex and riddled with dependencies so as to get rid of any competition by making them incomapatible. As in the case of the Heartbleed bug, who will have the time to review the 2122650973rd version of systemd to check if its all 2599 functionalites or subsystems are really needed to speed up the boot time
and by all means do not use systemd internal web browser but for strictly business purposes?
32 • The evil corporations (by far2fish on 2015-01-05 17:10:29 GMT from Denmark)
"[...] not that of malicious corporate employees hired to excrete mal-coded binaries [...]"
I have never understood this argument. A lot of the work done in the open source community are done by corporations. A few well known examples:
1. LibreOffice which was forked from Open Office, which was previously known as Star Office, and its origin was StarWriter, a commercial product written 30 years ago.
2. Firefox. The Mozilla project started when the Netscape Navigator became open source.
3. Linux kernel contributions from Red Hat, Google and Intel - just to mention some of the top names.
You can argue that LibreOffice was forked because the way Oracle treated OpenOffice after purchasing Sun, or that Google kernel development for Android devices happens on its own timetables.
But apart from SCO Linux attempts to patent Linux, I can't recall any situations where corporations have have any negative effect on contribution.
33 • Here we go again... (by Frederic Bezies on 2015-01-05 17:45:05 GMT from France)
@27 : besides trolling, what is your point here, Cykodrone ? You're so predictable... You know what ? You're the worst troll I've seen since 1997, on my first internet day. Besides bashing people, what is your contribution in Free Software world ?
@28 : "Having used a systemd based rolling release distro, Arch, on an ARM based device in my home network, and having Slackware on the rest of my machines, I 've had plenty experience with systemd and assure all still tormented by doubt: CHOOSE SLACK!"
It is true that there is only ARM hardware nowadays :)
@30 : again, big bad Red Hat and good old other distributions ? Tell me how much RH-based distributions are listed on Distrowatch : 10 ; Fedora-based ? 23 (RHEL and CentOS are in it)
And how many Ubuntu-based one ? 67... So, big bad RH ? Well not really. So just use any free BSDs, you won't have big bad RH pulling you a gun against your head and threatening you to use Systemd.
@31 : Just a question. Systemd is LGPL v2 licensed, or am I wrong ? So, any pressure from governments and any others lobbies to insert backdoor code could be seen, couldn't it ?
@32 : Well said. But you know, you can say anything, some people won't hear it.
By the way, I won't post anymore in this thread of comments. Both zealot sides (like Cykodrone) just want war. I will help distrowatch by looking at dead distributions in waiting list.
34 • UEFI (by UEFI booting on 2015-01-05 18:11:20 GMT from United States)
I want to boot a LiveCD or install DVD for a Linux distro, but I cannot make it boot. It is UEFI based and I try legacy bios, but It does not boot. IT just goes straight into windows. How can I deal with UEFI. Is there any idiots guide to UEFI? Thanks in advance.
35 • @33 (by jg on 2015-01-05 18:11:51 GMT from Poland)
The value of this free discussion is to point out possible threats to free expression as some of us may seem to discern in systemd. LGPL v2 or any other is no guarantee in and of itself - if the system is GPL licensed but designed to spy on the user, what will you do? Re-design it? Do you have the time? Resources to sustain you in your maintenance work throughout the 100th version? Be realistic, but by all means do not loose your faith in humanity.
36 • choices of init (by Job on 2015-01-05 18:15:52 GMT from United States)
I believe every distro should keep all inits in their repos. If a distro chooses to make one init a default it should also provide info on how to replace it.
37 • and_why_not? (by gee7 on 2015-01-05 18:21:15 GMT from United States)
"Don't you think that the 285 active distros in DW database and 270 others on the waiting list is not a vast waste of resources?!
Why can't the Linux Community limit the number of distros to a few dozen?"
would you curtail the pleasure that thousands of users get from messing about with operating systems?
Perhaps you would also like to ban the production of commercial films, except for the most profitable 20 which are usually produced by the USA?
Or limit the number of companies that are able to sell rice? Or ban people from starting their own charities?
Generally speaking, there is little liking for control freaks in the Linux world (and perhaps that is one of the reasons why some people distrust systemd).
Sometimes I spend a few hours using Momomga Linux, which stands at number 258 in Distrowatch ratings, and I have found it to be an operating system that has never crashed or had bugs.
I also have installed gNewSense which stands at 166, and at one time this was my most used operating system, and I did all of my work on it.
I keep Haiku installed, which is at number 162 in the ratings, although I rarely use it, and in this case it is just to keep an eye on how the system is developing.
Having the freedom to use and enjoy different operating systems is one of the major elements that makes the open-source software movement so interesting.
38 • @ tinfoil hat types (by M.Z. on 2015-01-05 18:29:52 GMT from )
I can understand some healthy skepticism about the place of corporate heavyweights in the Linux ecosystem, but would it really even exist without their backing? Perhaps some non corporate open source OS could exist as a pale shadow of what Linux has become, but it would be fairly hard to provide constant support & updates without paid workers. I'm glad that Linux has supports that believe in it enough to give away their work, but I think most developers need to make a living & deserve decent pay. Attacking Red Hat like it is MS or Apple is both inaccurate & counterproductive. If the Red Hat folks wanted something that they could truly control, then they picked the wrong platform because GPL projects are forked all the time. Any control that top corporate backers have over Linux would at most be a temporary illusion because of the ability of the community to fork.
Also, if you are afraid of what the code in SystemD or anything else does, well then look int who is auditing the code. If the code is GPL it can be audited. All that is required to prevent backdoor attacks is an audit be an independent third party, so it would be supremely stupid to put anything malicious in GPL software. Not only that but SystemD is both big & controversial, how could you think it won't be audited by friends & enemies alike? If they code had a backdoor or was indecipherable someone would notice just like the OpenBSD folks noticed when they checked out OpenSSL after heartbleed. Given the controversy SystemD likely has been audited by third parties & will be again soon. It's tinfoil hat FUD to act like the code is designed to get you. Give us proof or stop the foolish speculation.
In summation, they community can handle most of the supposed problems with SystemD. Distros are already being forked, & some projects are proving they have a choice be not putting SystemD in their OS. And if any corporate power were stupid enough to use an init system maliciously they would lose all community backing & likely tank in the stock after having their market share destroyed by customer backlash. There is enough openness and transparency in Linux that problems will eventually be brought out & dealt with, if they actually exist.
39 • RE: #34-UEFI (by ChiJoan on 2015-01-05 19:03:28 GMT from United States)
You mention Legacy BIOS, but did not say you adjusted the boot order to USB, CD/DVD, hard disk, or similar. Did you try Mint or others that are said to work with it?
40 • @34 and 39 (by Corbin Rune on 2015-01-05 19:15:03 GMT from United States)
Depends on your BIOS, really. For example, my own box is an ASUS K55N. Unfortunately, no matter what I've tried to live-disk on here, this thing's BIOS will not allow anything but Windows 8 to boot in UEFI Mode. If your BIOS is like that,
you're bashing your head on the wall, trying for a dualboot.
Hell, the one time I managed it on here - months ago, I had to kludge the heck out of things: boot the linux iso in legacy mode, slice W8 down to one partition, gdisk and testdisk from GPT to DOS partitioning. (No, I would NOT do that last on a Win partition you've got important data on ... mine, at the time, was still fresh.)
"Secure" Boot, my nethers.
41 • Choosing a distribution based on systemd (by massysett on 2015-01-05 20:01:30 GMT from United States)
I can understand not liking systemd, but I'm a bit surprised that someone would make it a huge part of the reason they pick a distribution. I like systemd but I use Debian wheezy; I once considered switching to Arch because it has systemd but then I realized that's nuts. I don't sit around all day and start and stop daemons. I get work done. Ultimately whether or not systemd is back there doesn't impact my workflow much. I can understand why distributions are switching to it as the benefits for distro maintainers are huge, but as a user I just don't see why people get so excited about this that they hinge decisions on systemd alone.
42 • Slackware vs. systemd (by Microlinux on 2015-01-05 21:20:08 GMT from France)
As a Slackware user, I need systemd like a fish needs a bicycle.
43 • Deepin Linux (by Rebecca on 2015-01-05 21:59:08 GMT from New Zealand)
I've just tried it out in a VM - and it works fine. The only issue I have right now with it is that the dock is impossible to reconfigure beyond adding and removing icons. Means I'll probably stick to Peach OSI.
Re PClinuxOS - @22 - I still love this distro. Based on old mandriva - and you can remaster it any time you want! There's also no problem with installing development tools on it, for general web, database and utility development.
44 • SystemD on CentOS (by hughesjr on 2015-01-05 22:09:32 GMT from United States)
Of course CentOS-7 has systemd .. it is a rebuild of RHEL-7 source code. CentOS-7 can't be a rebuild of RHEL source code and change something as important as systemd. It then would not be CentOS.
But CentOS-6 will have SysV support until 30 Nov 2020. It also has Gnome-2 and not Gnome-3. With security updates for the lifetime of the distro.
45 • @34 @39 @40 @41 (by JT on 2015-01-05 22:21:20 GMT from United States)
@34 @39 @40
I've got a ASUS K55N, and I was able to get Kubuntu and Fedora (Triple-Boot) onto it. All are using UEFI, although I had to reinstall Win8.1 in order to get UEFI-mode to work properly, it does work, and disable Fast-boot.
In disabling Fast-Boot, and making sure the computer is completely shut-down ('Restart' automatically uses Fast-Boot, and I don't think there is a way to stop it), it keeps Win8/8.1 from Suspending the OS to disk and locking the disk.
As far as guides go, to get things working, I'd suggest this one: (https://help.ubuntu.com/community/WindowsDualBoot). It should work good with Ubuntu-based distros, and it /probably/ wouldn't be much different for other distros (I'd just make sure you know what they're talking about in the guide, before trying to translate to another distro)
From an end-user who runs Ubuntu and Fedora, I completely agree with you. I honestly don't care whether the computer is using Upstart, SysV, or systemd. It doesn't affect how I work, so why would I ever care.
From a system administrator who run CentOS and Ubuntu Servers, I would disagree with you. While you still use the same/similar commands, things are different with different systems. That's not to say I dislike systemd, but different things means more I have to know in order to keep things running smoothly.
For some people, that's a breaking point; for other people, it's not that big of a deal.
46 • sticking with CentOS-6.6 (by RE#44 SystemD and CentOS-6.6 on 2015-01-05 23:03:46 GMT from United States)
at least for the life of this laptop, 2020 is 5 more years, this laptop will be ancient in computer tech years by then
47 • @20 - Too Much Choice! Exactly! (by Ben Myers on 2015-01-06 00:53:28 GMT from United States)
Psychologists have studied the problem of choices. Too many choices are confusing and lead to non-optimal results. One possibility is no choice at all. 400+ distros and counting is way too many. And this remains a serious obstacle to broader acceptance of Linux. Now multiply the number of distros by the numbers of desktops available for each distro and you have the new tower of Babel. And significant wasted duplicated resources.
48 • @34 UEFI & @Jesse (by GoingCrayCray on 2015-01-06 00:59:43 GMT from United States)
In regards to UEFI, check if your Bios, has an option to turn off secure boot. The last time I checked Linux Mint, recommends doing this for UEFI.
*Side note: I really like the new release schedule for DistroWatch.
@Jesse Smith Another fine review, on an excellent rolling release based on Arch. I like how Manjaro, delays updates, a little bit, to be more confident of no breakage.
49 • @8 binary logs (by hsw on 2015-01-06 02:52:18 GMT from Taiwan)
I see systemd as a good thing - anything that handles boot up dependencies and is able to start thing in a correct minimal order is a great idea.
I do have problem with binary log file in that a more complex viewer program is required to display them. As long as this program can be compiled separately and include in various recovery CDs then there should be no problem; probably need a copy of this viewer on BSD systems also.
I do not think that the files being binary will stop anyone modifying them, I seem to remember the viewer simply ignores corrupted records, of course this could easily be detected.
There is another argument that goes "why are you reading log files,you should have a monitoring program to do that". If we have binary logs that can be easily monitored to produce targeted alerts a real advantage over text files.
50 • Manjaro Review (by hsw on 2015-01-06 03:06:54 GMT from Taiwan)
thanks for the interesting review, I also am interested in testing desktop Arch. (I have arch on Raspberry Pi and BeagloBone Black, but these are not running any GUI).
I was going to try Ach directly, but I think I will try Manjaro first as it looks like a good way to get started.
51 • Gnome on Wayland with Fedora 21 (by Andy Prough on 2015-01-06 03:32:36 GMT from )
Gnome on Wayland is working in Fedora 21 now by installing the package gnome-session-wayland-session and logging into the Gnome on Wayland shell.
Pretty interesting experience, as the Wayland programs have some unusual graphical compositing phenomenon. I've been hearing about it for so long, nice to finally get to mess around with it.
Most programs are still running under XWayland, but a few dozen Gnome programs can now run under pure Wayland via the "command GDK_BACKEND=wayland gedit" (replace gedit with whatever package you wish to run). Right now I'm browsing DW on epiphany under Wayland. A listing of the Gnome packages that work is at wiki.gnome.org/Initiatives/Wayland/Applications.
52 • Manjaro review (by Guido on 2015-01-06 08:29:08 GMT from Germany)
Very good review. Manjaro also has a second package manager: PAMAC. This one is easier to use. You can also find orphaned packages with it. It is also important to mention that all Arch packages are first tested and then passed as a big update. And there are also very good community editions with LXDE, OpenBox, FluxBox and many other desktops available.
53 • systemd discussions on lwn.net (by bison on 2015-01-06 17:18:43 GMT from United States)
> Anybody who cared to follow systemd discussions on lwn.net should be clear about it.
The systemd "discussions" on lwn.net were depressing. Until quite recently LWN was the best Linux forum on the Internet, but the level of rancor has increased to the point where I am hesitant to read the comments. I usually come away thinking "that was waste of time." Fortunately the editorial content is as good as ever.
I am wary of systemd, but I don't really dislike the software so much as I dislike the community promoting it.
54 • PC Linux OS (by oldtimer2 on 2015-01-06 17:23:43 GMT from United Kingdom)
Been using PCLinuxOS for years and year, off and on.
It is solid, works the way it says it does and I have found the PCLinuxOS's forums to be good, when compared to others, helpful and open.
I regret that no one took over TinyFlux, which was based on PCLinuxOS, as I'd use it more if they had!
55 • Weekly (by Kragle von Schnitzelbank on 2015-01-06 18:49:02 GMT from United States)
Nice to see the week's newsletter before facing Monday morning! Enhanced Sunday evening ambience.
(The link to your list at LinuxTracker yeilds "ERROR" "You’re not autorized(sic) to access another user’s panel!")
It's burdensome to filter out so much hype at 0pointer.de ... is there a reasoned neutral source of information on this topic?
PiSi Linux is more polished than I expected from a small group.
(Paldo, 0linux and Void seem intriguing too, can one try them out live?)
56 • Your System hook to Systemd or not to Systemd :D (by Thierry N on 2015-01-06 19:57:28 GMT from United Kingdom)
Sorry if my explanation is a bit to technical
Coming from Linuxfromscratch philosophy, let me start by my conclusion:
To all LINUX developers around this planet. It is OUR DUTY to make sure that the freedom in development in open source software remains the argument Nr 1. That's said. It is absolutly a must that distributions with the "philosophy" systemd and any other "philosophy" remains BOTH available. It is VERY IMPORTANT that the choice is still existing. They are great ideas behind systemd but not only. I just start to analyses a bit the code of it. Very interesting indeed. Shure one of the argument in systemd adoption was to reduce the use of shell.OK.
How to do all those following actions (and even more) :
- load modules kernel if they are (a binary exist)
- set the date and timezone (binary exist)
- checking of the file system (binary exist)
- the name of the machine (binary exist)
- Mount your harddisk (binary exist)
- Start the dhcp service to get an ip adress from the dhcp server (binary exist)
- Start the console (binary exist)
They are plenty of other actions which have to be done...
Now we have 3 possibilities to do so:
. we reinvent and maintain a new binary to do the job and then replace the existing binary command which has to be maintain.
- we use a "simple binary" which has to be maintain which at the end call up the existing binary command.
- we use a bash script (complicated or not) to call the existing binary command
Up to you
57 • It's a new year, and the holy war continues... (by Milo on 2015-01-06 20:09:31 GMT from Poland)
@30 "...Debian TC seems to be mostly from Red Hat..."
Before people are impugned as Red Hat shills, please check the employment histories of those who were technical committee members at the time of Debian bug #727708. Or did Red Hat slip them cash-filled envelopes under the table?
Can the comments, for the love of FOSS, please be grounded in technical point/counterpoint, or at least valid non-technical considerations? The misinformation and conspiracy theories need to be put to rest. Direct that energy in a productive direction. That doesn't mean accept systemd or refrain from forking Debian, I am not asking anyone to do so, but be the change you wish to see in the world rather than hate others for seeking to realise the changes in which they see promise.
If systemd weighed the same as a duck... it's made of wood.
I've felt the same about DistroWatch comments as of late.
Speaking of parallels, as per the aforementioned, https://lwn.net/Articles/584992/.
58 • Been using systemd for a long while now (by Scott Dowdle on 2015-01-06 22:19:39 GMT from United States)
@17 - Whatever. I've been using systemd for 5+ Fedora releases and it works great for me. It has features I want and use daily. If you don't like it, that's fine. Use whatever you want... but the badmouthing isn't appreciated.
59 • Systemd (by Ron on 2015-01-06 23:32:38 GMT from United States)
I just read the Systemd blog mentioned by DWW. What I am curious about is this almost insidious desire to speed up booting by a few seconds, milliseconds, or in the future perhaps picoseconds. What's the big deal. Really I boot up once or twice a day and willingly allow a few moments to boot knowing full well I now have the cpu cycles all to myself.
Boot down, is that a word? Boot down is more important to me, which seems to take a while also. Boot down is sometimes needed in a hurry, when unplanned sometimes, etc.
So whats with it all?
P.S. be happy its a New Year.
60 • Manjaro (by jo on 2015-01-07 07:05:02 GMT from United Arab Emirates)
Manjaro looks good but the community on IRC channel were rude and horrible. So I just forgot about Manjaro :)
61 • What's wrong with having too many distros? (by Jason Hsu on 2015-01-07 07:29:07 GMT from United States)
Every so often, people complain that there are too many distros. If that's the case, then who are the people you want in the Linux Supreme Court deciding which distros should be eliminated? How would you feel if they voted to eliminate YOUR favorite distro? How much weaker would the Linux community be today if this Linux Supreme Court at one time had decided to eliminate Linux Mint because it was just another Ubuntu derivative?
It's common knowledge that Linux newbies should start with one of the top 10-20 distros. And there is a very good reason that Linux Mint is #1 even though it doesn't have the financial muscle of corporate backing - it's very user-friendly, smooth, and polished. Even though it's not my #1 pick (I prefer something lighter and based on Debian Stable, such as Crunchbang+LXDE or antiX Linux), it's the distro that I recommend to first-time Linux users.
Just because there are hundreds of Linux distros out there doesn't mean you're obligated to try all of them, or even 1% of them. You may even change your mind about a distro that you tried and didn't like. I never liked the DE-less default setup of Crunchbang, but I switched to it because it is lightweight and low maintenance (Debian Stable base instead of Debian Testing). I was able to get a setup to my liking by installing LXDE.
62 • @55 paldo rolling release (by subg on 2015-01-07 07:39:56 GMT from Canada)
Yes, paldo has a live cd/usb. Standard gnome 3 ecosystem, rolling release, unique cli package manager, and (topically) was an early adopter of systemd.
63 • @61 Linux Supreme Court? Ya gotta be kidding. Reality check! (by Ben Myers on 2015-01-07 18:22:02 GMT from United States)
First, in my everyday work, I use specialized Linux distros, and there is good reason why they are specialized. There are specialized ones for troubleshooting, forensics, cloning hard drives, kiosks, media servers, gaming (Steam), netbooks, and servers. All well and good.
Next, you have distros customized for the specific needs of a country or political regime. Fine. They know what they are doing and they know their market well.
What have I missed? All the rest of the general purpose desktop distros with heaven knows how many lightweight desktops, and the more ponderous ones like Unity, Gnome 3, etc. Why are there so many? Why the waste of resources for so many projects that accomplish the same thing? As I said, the distros and desktops have become the new tower of Babel. Some of the more lightweight desktops look a little crude and scruffy, and no, I do not want Windows Aero on Linux! But that's the tradeoff one must make in selecting a distro to fit sometimes pretty old hardware.
So I do exactly as #61 says. I download distros and try them live. If any of them have redeeming features, I keep them around. If not, bye, bye distro. So far, Mint in its variations has proven to be the best all-round with attractive easy-to-use desktops and a comprehensive selection of useful modern software. But that could change in the next year or so.
For any general purpose distro below the top 30 on the DistroWatch list? Tell me something compelling that makes me want to try your distro... Ben Myers
64 • choice (by M.Z. on 2015-01-07 18:47:54 GMT from )
All very true Jason. In fact I remember a few years ago when I was starting out with Linux there were people saying Mint was just a clone of Ubuntu with media codecs installed, so what was the point if you could just install the codecs in Ubuntu? Mint was more even then & has become a great deal more now after having time to evolve. If distro developers want to reduce duplication of efforts then they should make their project easier & friendlier for new devs to join, but there will always be people that want to roll their own just because they can. I say more power to them, & that is what the GPL says too.
All we as current users need to do to reduce confusion & indecision is point people toward a few top choices. Just tell people that Mint, PCLOS, Magiea, & are all available & easy to use so they can decide what works for them & works on their hardware. You can let newbies know that there are always other options if they want to do things in a more manual way, but if not they don't need to worry about Slackware, Gentoo, FreeBSD, or distro 300 on the DW list. If they like their new distro they may want to explore later & use something more specialized, but they don't need all the details upfront. Give people a few good choices & they will be happy.
65 • Advice to newbies (by Fossilizing Dinosaur on 2015-01-07 19:29:54 GMT from United States)
I rarely know exactly what a newbie considers mission-critical, so I recommend tools like MultiBootUSB and YUMI, so they can test live and get acquainted with several ISOs. (These tools work well with others.)
66 • systemd and UNIX principles (by admin on 2015-01-08 04:05:59 GMT from New Zealand)
The comment that "whether systemd not following the UNIX Philosophy is good or bad is a matter open to debate" suggests ignorance of the principles underlying the UNIX philosophy. They are sensible principles: the stupidity of making your system less secure, more vulnerable to breakdown, etc., etc. is very straightforward, so the only really "debatable" issue is how much of this kind of bad design is "worth it" in order to achieve other aims (e.g. booting up quickly). The original question confused the issue by citing examples like GNOME and KDE as if they showed that it can be good practice to ignore UNIX principles, whereas in fact they are merely evidence that badly designed software can be much more popular than well designed software, and that the kind of success systemd is enjoying now has been enjoyed many times before (Windows being perhaps the best example). The more major GNU/Linux distros ignore UNIX principles and embrace garbage like systemd, the more attractive other operating systems (like the BSD variants) become as alternatives. By chasing the kind of "success" Windows enjoys by becoming more and more Windows-like in every way, GNU/Linux distros are chaining themselves to that sinking ship and leaving the future of the software world to some other community.
67 • Principles and Priorities (by Fairly Reticent on 2015-01-08 07:36:53 GMT from United States)
Remember: the Linux kernel violates UNIX principles - for performance reasons.
68 • choice (by Hoos on 2015-01-08 08:09:12 GMT from Singapore)
I'm all for choice and letting "evolution" or survival of the fittest weed out the bad/pointless distros from the good or promising ones, rather than for Distrowatch to carry out its own selection or culling exercise.
Otherwise what you're saying is that we should just stick with the current known distros because nothing new can be learned, no new distros or derivatives can come up with improvements or rise above the "mere derivative" label, or forge its own identity or path with time.
Yet this is what Mint has done. And Manjaro as well, just to mention 2 examples.
I recall when Jesse first reviewed Manjaro, the review wasn't very positive. Things are so different now his latest review this issue of DWW.
So I don't know that it's a waste of resources. Maybe in some aspects. But from the chaos, some good things will surface.
69 • Manjaro (by haitechan on 2015-01-08 22:31:20 GMT from Peru)
@60: I don't know about the IRC channel but they were super friendly with me in their forum, even when I was a complete noob. It's a nice distro but I found it that used a bit more resources than Xubuntu, which is weird for an Arch-derived distro.
70 • @60 (by jaws222 on 2015-01-09 00:24:57 GMT from United States)
" Manjaro looks good but the community on IRC channel were rude and horrible. So I just forgot about Manjaro :)"
I've never had anyone treat me bad at all on the Manjaro forum. Now Arch is a different story, Those guys were horrible, but that was many years ago and it steered me towards more user-friendly arch distros like Manjaro and Antergos.
71 • what's wrong with too many distros@jason (by gee7 on 2015-01-09 09:26:03 GMT from United Kingdom)
As I meant to say but forget to add in my previous post on this @37, the fact that Distro Watch looks for and publicises existing Linux distros and adds new ones when available, is a great boon to people with busy lives who don't have much time to look for small distros themselves. Without Distro Watch, I would never have found Momomga, Netrunner Rolling, Salix and other neat distros developed by small teams.
At one time Linux Mint, which I also recommend to beginners, was a small start-up business run by one man part-time from home. New distros are what young or inexperienced developers can cut their teeth on, and Linux needs such people, who have a willingness to try, a burning ambition to code, and an enthusiasm and independence which will be a boon to the Linux world of the future.
Thank you, Distro Watch, for keeping a database of what is going on in the Linux World. Most of your readers appreciate this.
= ======= =
By the way, @37 showed the wrong location. I'm in the UK, not the US.
72 • #60 Manjaro forums (by Pmulax on 2015-01-09 12:32:00 GMT from Spain)
I'm also surprised to hear about any unpoliteness in Manjaro's forums (though anyone's entitled to a bad day.....just ask Linus). For me, Manjaro has been like Mint, though I'm sure they had going for them Arch's terrific docs, they steered away from the quite sharp and unforgiving attitudes so common in their forums. They also listen to users, as you can see following their distro's development. Check the Netbook edition, with GMA 500/3600 support and see how they treated user's opinions and feedback. I tip my hat to these guys!
73 • @60 manjaro forums (by shadow on 2015-01-09 19:51:03 GMT from Nicaragua)
Manjaro IRC channel when it has some of its regulars and "staff" about are very good at sorting issues out, Sometimes it gets a bit out of control due to different time zones coming on / going off and being an open channell it can get over run with Trolls some of whom have been about and banned regularly for years and just keep returning... The forums are much better regulated and are ususally quite quick in getting replies to issues
74 • 'Rude' - eye of the beholder? (by Kragle von Schnitzelbank on 2015-01-10 00:35:08 GMT from United States)
It's often useful to point a newbie to examples of trolling, especially by forum admins. Helps start 'em out with realist expectation, durability.
That said, some perceptions of "rude" simply do not realize just how misled they've been.
75 • sing with me: (by yikes on 2015-01-10 12:57:13 GMT from Romania)
i like big hot dogs,
to lick the shaft of,
i shave myself down there,
and paint a clown face.
Number of Comments: 75
Display mode: DWW Only • Comments Only • Both DWW and Comments
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|• Issue 1018 (2023-05-08): Fedora 38, finding relevant manual pages, merging audio files, Fedora plans new immutable edition, Mint works to fix Secure Boot issues|
|• Issue 1017 (2023-05-01): Xubuntu 23.04, Debian elects Project Leaders and updates media, systemd to speed up restarts, Guix System offering ground-up source builds, where package managers install files|
|• Issue 1016 (2023-04-24): Qubes OS 4.1.2, tracking bandwidth usage, Solus resuming development, FreeBSD publishes status report, KaOS offers preview of Plasma 6|
|• Issue 1015 (2023-04-17): Manjaro Linux 22.0, Trisquel GNU/Linux 11.0, Arch Linux powering PINE64 tablets, Ubuntu offering live patching on HWE kernels, gaining compression on ex4|
|• Issue 1014 (2023-04-10): Quick looks at carbonOS, LibreELEC, and Kodi, Mint polishes themes, Fedora rolls out more encryption plans, elementary OS improves sideloading experience|
|• Issue 1013 (2023-04-03): Alpine Linux 3.17.2, printing manual pages, Ubuntu Cinnamon becomes official flavour, Endeavour OS plans for new installer, HardenedBSD plans for outage|
|• Issue 1012 (2023-03-27): siduction 22.1.1, protecting privacy from proprietary applications, GNOME team shares new features, Canonical updates Ubuntu 20.04, politics and the Linux kernel|
|• Issue 1011 (2023-03-20): Serpent OS, Security Onion 2.3, Gentoo Live, replacing the scp utility, openSUSE sees surge in downloads, Debian runs elction with one candidate|
|• Issue 1010 (2023-03-13): blendOS 2023.01.26, keeping track of which files a package installs, improved network widget coming to elementary OS, Vanilla OS changes its base distro|
|• Issue 1009 (2023-03-06): Nemo Mobile and the PinePhone, matching the performance of one distro on another, Linux Mint adds performance boosts and security, custom Ubuntu and Debian builds through Cubic|
|• Issue 1008 (2023-02-27): elementary OS 7.0, the benefits of boot environments, Purism offers lapdock for Librem 5, Ubuntu community flavours directed to drop Flatpak support for Snap|
|• Issue 1007 (2023-02-20): helloSystem 0.8.0, underrated distributions, Solus team working to repair their website, SUSE testing Micro edition, Canonical publishes real-time edition of Ubuntu 22.04|
|• Issue 1006 (2023-02-13): Playing music with UBports on a PinePhone, quick command line and shell scripting questions, Fedora expands third-party software support, Vanilla OS adds Nix package support|
|• Issue 1005 (2023-02-06): NuTyX 22.12.0 running CDE, user identification numbers, Pop!_OS shares COSMIC progress, Mint makes keyboard and mouse options more accessible|
|• Issue 1004 (2023-01-30): OpenMandriva ROME, checking the health of a disk, Debian adopting OpenSnitch, FreeBSD publishes status report|
|• Issue 1003 (2023-01-23): risiOS 37, mixing package types, Fedora seeks installer feedback, Sparky offers easier persistence with USB writer|
|• Issue 1002 (2023-01-16): Vanilla OS 22.10, Nobara Project 37, verifying torrent downloads, Haiku improvements, HAMMER2 being ports to NetBSD|
|• Issue 1001 (2023-01-09): Arch Linux, Ubuntu tests new system installer, porting KDE software to OpenBSD, verifying files copied properly|
|• Issue 1000 (2023-01-02): Our favourite projects of all time, Fedora trying out unified kernel images and trying to speed up shutdowns, Slackware tests new kernel, detecting what is taking up disk space|
|• Issue 999 (2022-12-19): Favourite distributions of 2022, Fedora plans Budgie spin, UBports releasing security patches for 16.04, Haiku working on new ports|
|• Issue 998 (2022-12-12): OpenBSD 7.2, Asahi Linux enages video hardware acceleration on Apple ARM computers, Manjaro drops proprietary codecs from Mesa package|
|• Issue 997 (2022-12-05): CachyOS 221023 and AgarimOS, working with filenames which contain special characters, elementary OS team fixes delta updates, new features coming to Xfce|
|• Issue 996 (2022-11-28): Void 20221001, remotely shutting down a machine, complex aliases, Fedora tests new web-based installer, Refox OS running on real hardware|
|• Issue 995 (2022-11-21): Fedora 37, swap files vs swap partitions, Unity running on Arch, UBports seeks testers, Murena adds support for more devices|
|• Issue 994 (2022-11-14): Redcore Linux 2201, changing the terminal font size, Fedora plans Phosh spin, openSUSE publishes on-line manual pages, disabling Snap auto-updates|
|• Issue 993 (2022-11-07): Static Linux, working with just a kernel, Mint streamlines Flatpak management, updates coming to elementary OS|
|• Issue 992 (2022-10-31): Lubuntu 22.10, setting permissions on home directories, Linux may drop i486, Fedora delays next version for OpenSSL bug|
|• Issue 991 (2022-10-24): XeroLinux 2022.09, learning who ran sudo, exploring firewall tools, Rolling Rhino Remix gets a fresh start, Fedora plans to revamp live media|
|• Issue 990 (2022-10-17): ravynOS 0.4.0, Lion Linux 3.0, accessing low numbered network ports, Pop!_OS makes progress on COSMIC, Murena launches new phone|
|• Issue 989 (2022-10-10): Ubuntu Unity, kernel bug causes issues with Intel cards, Canonical offers free Ubuntu Pro subscriptions, customizing the command line prompt|
|• Issue 988 (2022-10-03): SpiralLinux 11.220628, finding distros for older equipment and other purposes, SUSE begins releasing ALP prototypes, Debian votes on non-free firmware in installer|
|• Issue 987 (2022-09-26): openSUSE's MicroOS, converting people to using Linux, pfSense updates base system and PHP, Python 2 dropped from Arch|
|• Issue 986 (2022-09-19): Porteus 5.0, remotely wiping a hard drive, a new software centre for Ubuntu, Proxmox offers offline updates|
|• Issue 985 (2022-09-12): Garuda Linux, using root versus sudo, UBports on the Fairphone 4, Slackware reverses change to grep|
|• Full list of all issues|
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View our range including the highly anticipated StarFighter. Available with coreboot open-source firmware and a choice of Ubuntu, elementary, Manjaro and more. Visit Star Labs for information, to buy and get support.