| DistroWatch Weekly
|DistroWatch Weekly, Issue 775, 6 August 2018
Welcome to this year's 32nd issue of DistroWatch Weekly!
The wide range of open source operating systems offers a great deal of variety and flexibility in the way we can use our computers. Linux distributions can be designed to be ultra stable, portable, fast or customizable. This week we look at some of the flexibility which can be achieved through open source platforms. We begin with a look at Secure-K OS, a Linux distribution which is designed to be run from a USB thumb drive to provide portable, secure on-line communication. In our Opinion Poll we ask if our readers use portable, live operating systems like Secure-K and Puppy Linux. Then, in our News section, we discuss a Korora community member stepping forward to provide a spin of the dormant, Fedora-based distribution running the Xfce desktop. Plus we cover elementary OS hiring a full-time contributor and ReactOS gaining the ability to boot from Btrfs storage volumes. Our second article this week discusses whether Linux is "about choice" and, if so, what that means for its users. Plus we are happy to share the new releases of the past week and list the torrents we are seeding. Finally, we are pleased to welcome the YunoHost distribution to our database. We wish you all a fantastic week and happy reading!
- Review: Secure-K OS 18.5
- News: Korora tests community spin, elementary OS hires developer, ReactOS boots from Btrfs
- Opinion: Linux is about choice
- Released last week: IPFire 2.21 Core 122, OPNsense 18.7, Ubuntu 16.04.5
- Torrent corner: KDE neon, Kubuntu, Lubuntu, Netrunner, Pinguy, Runtu, SwagArch, Ubuntu, Ubuntu GNOME, Ubuntu Kylin, Ubuntu MATE, Xubuntu
- Opinion poll: Portable operating system on a thumb drive
- New additions: YunoHost
- Reader comments
|Feature Story (by Jesse Smith)
Secure-K OS 18.5
Secure-K OS is a Debian-based distribution which runs from a live USB. The distribution is designed to provide secure communication and anonymous web browsing using applications such as the Tox messaging client and Tor Web Browser. Secure-K features the GNOME Shell desktop environment and is developed by the Mon-K organization.
The Secure-K distribution is available in three editions: Enterprise, Personal and Lite. The first two are commercial offerings while Lite is free to download and try. I decided to experiment with the Lite flavour which is available as a 7.3GB image file that can be written to a USB thumb drive.
The first time we boot from the Secure-K USB drive the system brings up a graphical screen and walks us through a few configuration steps. We are asked to provide our time zone, create a username and password for ourselves and accept the project's license agreement. The license is mostly standard material, though I did note it includes a section on information Secure-K will send to its developers, including hardware, kernel and time zone information. The password we set for ourselves must be long and complex, otherwise the configuration wizard will not proceed. I would have liked if there was an override option to allow simple passwords as the first four or five I tried were not deemed good enough.
When the first-run wizard is finished, we are presented with a lightly modified GNOME Shell desktop. GNOME is set up with two panels (at the top and bottom of the screen). This gives us the Activities menu and system tray at the top of the screen, along with an icon that offers quick access to the file manager. At the bottom of the screen are icons for opening the application menu and launching secure communication tools, like the Tor Web Browser and the Evolution e-mail client. I will come back to these tools later.
Secure-K OS 18.5 -- The welcome window
(full image size: 572kB, resolution: 1366x768 pixels)
Once the desktop loads a welcome window opens. The welcome screen mentions some extra features which are available through the Personal edition of the distribution and displays links to a tutorial and on-line documentation. I found the documentation to be brief and mostly dealing with how to set up the operating system, but I found little on how to use Secure-K once it is set up.
I tried running the desktop tutorial. It started off well by labelling elements of the desktop and prompting me to click on an element to learn more about it. Clicking on the labels caused the tutorial to lock up and crash the welcome window.
While the first time we launch Secure-K it guides us through a first-run wizard, future boots present us with a graphical login screen. The operating system remembers our settings, username and password. While the persistent storage may be less secure than a read-only live distribution, having the system remember our settings does makes work more convenient.
Secure-K ships with a fairly standard collection of open source applications. The distribution includes Firefox, the Chromium web browser, LibreOffice 5 and the Evolution e-mail application. The KeePass password manager is available along with the Rhythmbox music player and the VLC media player. The application menu features a PDF document viewer, an image viewer and the Pidgin instant messaging software. In the background we find the systemd init software and version 4.14 of the Linux kernel.
Secure-K OS 18.5 -- The application menu
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Secure-K ships with a handful of tools for securely or anonymously communicating over the Internet. One of these tools is an e-mail key manager. When we first run the key manager, it asks us to provide us with our name and e-mail address. Once this information is entered, we are told keys have been generated and synchronized with a remote server. The key manager then reports we will receive an e-mail with more information. I never did receive an e-mail concerning my security keys or Secure-K account.
Another utility included in Secure-K is DigitalArx. This application opens and asks us to accept a license agreement which looks to be very similar to the one we agree to during the initial configuration of the operating system. We are then asked to sign into our account with a username and password. At first I was not sure what account DigitalArx was talking about, or what the application is designed to do. According to the project's wiki it seems DigitalArx provides on-line storage, if we have an account. I did not sign up for an account and cannot comment on how well DigitalArx works.
The distribution features the Tor Web Browser. While Firefox and Chromium connect directly with the Internet and provide fast connection speeds, the Tor browser routes connections through the slower (but theoretically anonymous) Tor network. The Tor browser worked well for me, it is basically Firefox with automatic integration with Tor which is a good combination, in my opinion. My only concern with it was, when the Tor browser opens, it reports the browser is out of date. The Tor browser will offer to update itself, but the update process fails with the browser reporting it is unable to verify the package it downloads.
Secure-K OS 18.5 -- The Tor browser
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One package I was hoping to find and did not was a meta data remover. Some other security-oriented distributions, such as Tails, make it easy to remove meta data from images and documents. As far as I could tell, Secure-K does not have a similar tool.
After using Secure-K for a while it occurred to me I had not received any notification about software updates being available. This was slightly concerning considering the Tor browser had already told me it was out of date. Looking through the application menu I found Secure-K ships with GNOME Software for installing and upgrading applications. GNOME Software is a friendly, modern software centre and it makes browsing categories of desktop programs easy.
GNOME Software includes a tab for listing updates. This tab showed no available updates, even after I clicked the software centre's refresh button.
My next step was to switch to a terminal and use the APT command line tools to check for new packages. This check failed as I did not have administrator access. I then also discovered my user account did not have sudo access. To make matters worse, I did not get to set a root password during the initial system configuration and the root account was protected.
Secure-K OS 18.5 -- Trying to run sudo
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I searched the Secure-K documentation for mentions of passwords, sudo, the root account and software updates and found no relevant information. This further concerned me as it seems there is no way to upgrade existing packages, install new applications, or mount local drives.
If I had been able to get the APT tools working, I would have been pulling most software from Debian's Stable repositories. There are also two non-standard repositories: a Java PPA and a repository of Secure-K software.
I tried running Secure-K on my laptop and found the distribution worked well on the hardware. Secure-K automatically detected my wireless card and set screen resolution to its maximum level. Audio worked, though the volume was muted by default. The GNOME desktop worked well with my laptop, offering a fairly responsive environment.
My one concern relating to hardware was how quickly Secure-K drained my laptop's battery. Typically this (ageing) laptop provides me with around two hours of battery, enough to stream a movie on Netflix. Secure-K drained about 40% of the battery in 15 minutes from just signing in, opening a few programs and looking up information in the project's wiki. After that, battery usage slowed down a little, but I still struggled to get a full hour out of use out of the distribution.
Secure-K used about 500MB of RAM when signed into GNOME Shell. The distribution is not designed to be run from a hard drive, instead working off a USB thumb drive. The distribution requires a USB stick that is 8GB or larger in size.
Secure-K OS 18.5 -- Links to support resources
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I like the idea behind Secure-K. Being able to easily set up a distribution on a USB thumb drive so I can take my operating system with me in my pocket is very appealing. Having secure communication and quick access to the Tor network is also handy. I think the Secure-K developers are basically trying to provide an operating system that is like Tails, but more geared toward general purpose use. Tails is typically seen as a utility specifically for secure on-line communication, but probably not a platform for day-to-day use. Secure-K seems to be coming from the other direction and providing a day-to-day operating system that can also be used for secure communication and anonymous web browsing.
In theory, this is a good concept and I can see how it would appeal, especially if people want easy access to on-line storage and persistent settings.
Secure-K OS 18.5 -- The settings panel
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There are three main areas where I feel Secure-K runs into problems. The first is documentation. There were a couple of times when I wondered "What does this application do?", "How does this tool work?" or "What is the default root password?" and couldn't find the answer. I had to either work around issues on my own or figure things out by trial and error.
The second issue was my main user account not having sudo access. This gets in the way of installing software updates, configuring printers, and mounting local drives. So much of Secure-K seems to be set up with convenience in mind, but this was a big obstacle I kept running into.
The final concern I had wasn't with the software, but the license agreement. The license states the operating system sends information home to the developers about our system. Not a lot, but any data sent home largely defeats the purpose of having a system designed for secure and anonymous communication. It's like passing encoded notes in a dark alleyway while whistling loudly.
I think Secure-K has some good ideas, but it may take more time to get the wrinkles out and flesh out the documentation.
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Hardware used in this review
My physical test equipment for this review was a de-branded HP laptop with the following
- Processor: Intel i3 2.5GHz CPU
- Display: Intel integrated video
- Storage: Western Digital 700GB hard drive
- Memory: 6GB of RAM
- Wired network device: Realtek RTL8101E/RTL8102E PCI Express Fast
- Wireless network device: Realtek RTL8188EE Wireless network card
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Visitor supplied rating
Secure-K OS has a visitor supplied average rating of: 5.3/10 from 3 review(s).
Have you used Secure-K OS? You can leave your own review of the project on our ratings page.
|Miscellaneous News (by Jesse Smith)
Korora tests community spin, elementary OS hires developer, ReactOS boots from Btrfs
Back in May the Korora team announced it would be taking a break and the project would not be publishing a new version based on Fedora 28. Since then a volunteer has stepped forward, offering a spin of Korora that is based on Fedora 28 and features the Xfce desktop. "A past contributor, JMiahMan, has produced an Xfce ISO based on Fedora 28 and including the usual Korora additions. There are more details on this Engage item. You might find this blog post interesting too. There are plans to produce ISOs of the other desktops once Xfce is sorted. So even if you don't use Xfce it would be helpful if you could test this system on a live system or in a VM. Remember these are community produced, beta releases and not designed for day to day use (yet!) so we don't recommend installing them on a production system." More details and instructions for leaving feedback can be found in the project's blog post.
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Some good news came out of the elementary OS camp this week. elementary OS is an Ubuntu-based distribution featuring the Pantheon desktop environment. The elementary team has gained a new full-time contributor, Cassidy James. He has been working for System76 and volunteering spare time to elementary OS for a while now, but is making a shift to working for the elementary distribution full-time. "Thanks to the continued support from our community as well as a large private contribution, I now have the opportunity to do all of this full time as my career. I plan to continue to focus on the areas I've been working on as a volunteer, plus dedicate time to working with OEMs, app developers, and other parties to help keep elementary financially sustainable." More on this transition and the work Cassidy James will be doing for elementary OS can be found in this blog post.
* * * * *
Fans of ReactOS, an open source operating system which strives for binary compatibility with Microsoft Windows, will be happy to learn file system support for ReactOS is expanding. One of the project's Google Summer of Code (GSoC) efforts is to get ReactOS to boot from a Btrfs storage volume. Btrfs is typically only used on Linux, but ReactOS can now read and boot from Btrfs partitions. "Freeloader is now able to read files and follow symlinks from Btrfs partition. One major issue is left here - case sensitivity. Btrfs is case-sensitive file system, so paths like /ReactOS/System32, /reactos/system32, /ReactOS/system32 are different here. But in Windows world most software is written assuming that case does not matter during path lookup. This thing is solved in WinBtrfs driver, but for Freeloader it can be a bit tricky. Right now I've implemented a hack for this, we will handle this later." Details can be found in the project's blog post.
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These and other news stories can be found on our Headlines page.
|Opinion (by Jesse Smith)
Linux is about choice
When discussing the world's Linux distributions and applications, many of which have overlapping goals, a common phrase which keeps coming up is "Linux is about choice". The "choice" meme is often used to explain why there are so many Linux distributions - people can make their operating system into whatever form they wish, so they do.
The "Linux is about choice" line is also frequently used in the context of users insisting on the implementation (or removal) of one feature or another. A few examples which come to mind are: "Why does my password need to be longer than one character, isn't Linux supposed to be about choice?" and "This application doesn't let me run it as root, but Linux is supposed to be about choice!"
Before going further, I want to clarify I'm using "Linux" here as it usually is in this context: as a short-hand to refer to the GNU/Linux family of distributions, not just the Linux kernel.
Is Linux somehow about choice though and, if so, what does that mean? If you type the phrase "Is Linux about choice?" into a web search, chances are the first result you get will be a website with a giant "NO" banner at the top and an e-mail from Adam Jackson in which he strongly states his objection to the concept: "As a consumer, yes, you have lots of choices in which Linux you use. This does not mean Linux is in any sense about choice, any more than because there are so many kinds of cars you can buy that cars are about choice."
In Jackson's case though he is explaining why it is not practical for developers to ship multiple pieces of technology which might perform the same task. He points out distributions do not have the resources to ship infinite package options like the Firefox web browser alongside the Chromium and Falkon browsers. It's a good point, but I think it dodges the core concept people who see Linux as being about choice have. Most people will probably be comfortable downloading extra software packages post-install; that is not usually what the "Linux is about choice" proponents are worried about. Typically they are concerned with software working the way they want it to. They want to be able to tweak things, override default settings and not be told by their computer's software how it is to be used.
In short, when Linux users say that their operating system should be about choice, what they are hoping for is the developer of a given application or distribution will make it work the way they want it to work. And I think this indicates that the significance behind the phrase "Linux is about choice" has been altered, or even lost, over time.
I feel it is important to remember that in the early days of Linux the various distributions were created largely by and for computer enthusiasts. Many, if not most, of the Linux users of the 1990s were either developers or system administrators, accustomed to compiling code, writing scripts and working from a command line. This set Linux apart from commercial offerings from Apple and Microsoft whose operating systems were mostly proprietary and targeting mass markets. These days the open source nature of Linux may not seem unusual, but in the 90s Linux stood out from most other widely available operating systems. Today we have the BSDs, Haiku, OpenIndiana, parts of macOS are open source, and even Microsoft is releasing tools under open licenses. However, back in the 90s Linux's open source license was in strong contrast to its competitors like Solaris, Mac OS and Windows.
It is difficult to properly convey how much of a contrast the open nature of Linux distributions presented to the closed source standards of the time. With proprietary software, when you encountered a bug or wanted a new feature, your best bet was to contact the vendor and hope they addressed your concern. Then, if they made the change you wanted, it might take a few weeks to a few months for the floppy disk with the upgrade to arrive in the mail. The process was slow and entirely in the control of the software vendor. Linux, and its close cousins like the BSDs, introduced a huge change for developers and system administrators because we had the ability to download a program's source code and fix it ourselves right away.
Minor software tweaks and easy bug fixes were no longer available at the whim (and on the time table) of a distant company, they could often be implemented in a few hours. Not only that, but if you shared a problem with others, sometimes another developer would step in and help solve it with you so both parties would benefit. It was a big leap forward.
When I came into the Linux community in the late 90s, Linux did have a reputation for being about choice. Not just because there were a variety of distributions we could use, multiple desktop environments that could be installed, and a dozen different text editors. Those existed and did indeed provide a buffet of choice. But when most of us talked about Linux being about choice we were talking about the power and freedom to fix things ourselves. If you didn't like something, you could change it, given enough skill and time. The Linux community was largely made up of people who saw the open source nature of the ecosystem as an opportunity to customize it, fix it and add features as we saw fit. We had the choice to craft our software as we desired and it was a revolutionary step forward compared to using closed systems where we had to use what was sold to us.
Over time Linux distributions became more popular and gained interest from a larger audience. More polished desktop products like Red Hat Linux, SuSE and, eventually, Ubuntu did a lot to bring mass appeal to Linux. The community was no longer primarily made up of developers and tinkerers, but also included more mainstream users and businesses. With this shift in the community there also came a shift in attitude with regards to software. More and more software became viewed as something to be consumed rather than something to be cooperatively maintained.
While the growth of the Linux community brought along many advantages (more third-party vendor support, more hardware drivers, more purchasing options) there were some unfortunate changes too. The phrase "Linux is about choice" stayed with us, but I believe half of its meaning has been lost. People still expect the same level of customization Linux has always offered, but without the implied responsibility of implementing the changes they want to see on their own. Linux is about choice because we have the freedom to craft it to suit ourselves, not because someone else is going to customize it for us.
To me, the open source nature of Linux distributions is a bit like having a garden plot. I like having the freedom to grow whatever I want in it. Planting the seeds I like and weeding the rows takes effort, but I end up with the crop I want at harvest time. My operating system, like my garden, is always a product of my needs, skill and effort. Unfortunately, a vocal minority of the Linux community expects their garden to grow exactly what they want without taking time to plant seeds or do any maintenance. They are often disappointed because while they have the freedom to completely customize as they like, they have not contributed to the process.
Something I notice when spending time in the BSD communities is that they are still at a point where the end user is expected to work toward the features or fixes they want to see. One of the more common responses to requests for a new program or port is to direct people to the relevant documentation so they can get started. There is a more prevalent do-it-yourself attitude in BSD circles which seems to be increasingly rare in the Linux community
Luckily Linux is still about choice, but we should remind ourselves that freedom must be paired with the will to act in order to be useful. Having choice without the motivation to get involved will leave users living with the choices others made for them.
|Released Last Week
IPFire 2.21 Core 122
IPFire is a Linux distribution for firewalls which offers a range of security tools and is designed to be easy to set up. The distribution's developers have released IPFire 2.21 Core Update 122, which features an upgraded Linux kernel and a corresponding removal of the grsecurity patches. "The distribution was rebased from our old long-term supported kernel to the new kernel 4.14.50. Most importantly, this kernel improves the security of the system, increases performance and makes the core of IPFire more up to date and modern again. This update also enables mitigation against Meltdown and Spectre on some architectures. On Intel-based platforms, we update the microcode of the CPUs when the system boots up to avoid any performance penalties caused by the mitigation techniques. Unfortunately, grsecurity is incompatible with any newer kernels and has been removed. This is connected to the decision of the grsecurity project to no longer open source their patches. Luckily the kernel developers have backported many features so that this kernel is still hardened and secure. ARM systems won't be able to install this update due to the kernel change which also requires changes on some bootloaders." Further details can be found in the release announcement.
OPNsense is a FreeBSD-based specialist operating system designed for firewalls and routers. The project has released OPNsense 18.7 which introduces better IPv6 support, improved routing, a pluggable backup framework that features an Nextcloud option, and the ability to boot from a ZFS root volume. "These are the most prominent changes since version 18.1: improved WAN DHCPv6 and SLAAC connectivity and tracking; functional IPv6 Rapid Deployment (6RD) support; improved default route handling and gateway switching; OpenVPN default setup improvements for IPv6 and RADIUS attribute support; Dpinger gateway monitoring integration; password policies for local authentication and coupled TOTP; Monit core integration to eventually replace the legacy notifications; OpenSSH access via group and shell selection instead of privilege; pluggable backup framework with new Nextcloud option; sytem tunables are now also used as loader tunables; unrestricted VLAN usage for e.g. Xen; QinQ interface removal; firmware GUI speedup, improved error parsing and console reboot hint; ZFS on root boot support (installer support is pending, but opnsense-bootstrap works)..." Further details can be found in the release announcement.
The Ubuntu team has announced the availability of a new point release for the distribution's 16.04 long term support branch. Ubuntu 16.04.5, along with its community editions, features updated packages, security fixes and additional hardware support. "Like previous LTS series', 16.04.5 includes hardware enablement stacks for use on newer hardware. This support is offered on all architectures except for 32-bit PowerPC, and is installed by default when using one of the desktop images. Ubuntu Server defaults to installing the GA kernel, however you may select the HWE kernel from the installer bootloader. As usual, this point release includes many updates, and updated installation media has been provided so that fewer updates will need to be downloaded after installation. These include security updates and corrections for other high-impact bugs, with a focus on maintaining stability and compatibility with Ubuntu 16.04 LTS." Further information can be found in the project's release announcement and in the release notes.
Netrunner 2018.08 "Rolling"
The Netrunner team has published a new snapshot of the distribution's Manjaro-based Rolling edition. The new snapshot, Netrunner 2018.08 "Rolling", features updated KDE Plasma packages, improves GTK+ application integration into the default Plasma desktop and upgrades the Krita drawing software. "GTK Apps now use Kwin borders integrating nicely with the rest of the Plasma desktop environment. Krita is shipped as 4.x release, which got some nice overhauls and features compared to previous version. System Settings - Plasma Tweaks: Using the new sidebar Layout, we sorted all the revamped UI-related KCM modules into one section called 'Plasma Tweaks' for easy configuring Plasma to your liking. 2018.08 comes with some new Plasma Theme that has some transparency built in to allow for experimenting with the new Blur options. It also features a new default wallpaper style, because why not." The release announcement includes a list of key package upgrades and screen shots.
Netrunner 2018.08 "Rolling" -- Netrunner featuring the KDE Plasma desktop
(full image size: 1.2MB, resolution: 1920x1080 pixels)
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Development, unannounced and minor bug-fix releases
The table below provides a list of torrents DistroWatch is currently seeding. If you do not have a bittorrent client capable of handling the linked files, we suggest installing either the Transmission or KTorrent bittorrent clients.
Archives of our previously seeded torrents may be found in our Torrent Archive. We also maintain a Torrents RSS feed for people who wish to have open source torrents delivered to them. To share your own open source torrents of Linux and BSD projects, please visit our Upload Torrents page.
Torrent Corner statistics:
- Total torrents seeded: 971
- Total data uploaded: 20.9TB
|Upcoming Releases and Announcements
Summary of expected upcoming releases
Portable operating system on a thumb drive
This week we shared a review of Secure-K OS, an operating system which is designed to be run from a USB thumb drive. We would like to find out how many of our readers use such an operating system. Do you have a distribution such as Secure-K OS, Tails, or Puppy that you carry around with you on a removable drive? If so let us know which one you prefer in the comments.
You can see the results of our previous poll on upgrading software packages from source code in last week's edition. All previous poll results can be found in our poll archives.
Portable operating system on a thumb drive
|I carry a removable drive with a live distro with me: ||597 (28%)|
| I have live distros on a removable drive at home: ||984 (46%)|
| I do not run live distros from a removable drive: ||540 (25%)|
New projects added to database
YunoHost is a Debian-based distribution which strives to make it easy to quickly set up a server and host web applications. The distribution can be managed through a custom command line utility or through a web-based administration panel.
YunoHost 3.0 -- The web-based administration panel
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DistroWatch database summary
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This concludes this week's issue of DistroWatch Weekly. The next instalment will be published on Monday, 13 August 2018. Past articles and reviews can be found through our Article Search page. To contact the authors please send e-mail to:
- Jesse Smith (feedback, questions and suggestions: distribution reviews/submissions, questions and answers, tips and tricks)
- Ladislav Bodnar (feedback, questions, donations, comments)
- Bruce Patterson (podcast)
|Linux Foundation Training
|Reader Comments • Jump to last comment
1 • Portable operating system on a thumb drive (by YumaJoe on 2018-08-06 00:37:47 GMT from United States) |
I have a copy of MX Linux on a thumb drive. It allows persistence to be set up easily and can be used on garage sale PCs to test units. It also can be used for most basic computer operation on a friends computer, such as checking e-mail, without leaving a trace.
2 • portable Linux on a stick (by TuxRaider on 2018-08-06 00:46:30 GMT from United States)
i keep two, i have gparted-live-usb, and a super-grub boot-disk that will boot almost any distro, i dont use them very often unless something goes wrong and i need to either rescue a system that works but wont boot for some reason (probably my fault) or if i am making some new partitions for a PC or Laptop for a new clean install
3 • Portable OS on a thumbdrive (by Greighswain on 2018-08-06 00:49:31 GMT from United States)
I also use MX Linux on a thumbdrive. It's rippin' fast really easy to set up. Lets me travel with my system and I end up fixing friends computer problems with additional utilities every once in a while too. Aces.
4 • Portable OS on a stick (by Bob on 2018-08-06 01:16:35 GMT from United States)
MX linux is amazing on a USB. I put it on a USB and installed it to a 16G USB. It is running great on an old machine with 2G ram. It is almost as fast as my W10 with SSD and 16G of RAM.
great distro. I use to use Mint as my backup but now it is MX.
great disto solid like a rock. So far great.
5 • Portable OS (by R. Cain on 2018-08-06 01:18:17 GMT from United States)
I keep Knoppix available on a thumb drive.
6 • Portable OS on thumbdrives (by Rev_Don on 2018-08-06 01:20:52 GMT from United States)
I carry multiple Live USBs at all times. One has Knoppix and 2 others are multiboot thumbdrives with numerous distros, rescue disks, and diagnostic and cloning utilities.
7 • Portable OS on thumb drive (by Bobbie Sellers on 2018-08-06 02:33:21 GMT from United States)
Well I find your choices inadequate.
I carry a live distro or two with me when I am
looking for another used computer.
Usually I take along Knoppix and PCLinuxOS
the latter of which is my personal favorite.
When I go to LUG meetings I carry along
an assortment of Flash Drives as well as
numerous Live DVD/CDs.
When Delta Linux was published I downloaded
the iso and put it on a largish Flash Drive. Then
when I learned more about it I found that
it was not quite so ideal. I may put it on
a smaller drive but since I consider it
rather imperfect I will be in no hurry to do
this. The ideal would be a a different sort
of Flash Drive contain memory more like
an SSD but in a compact form factor
to permit booting into a modern Linux
As for what is wrong with Delta it
sticks with ext2, possibly due to the
restrictions of the underlying
8 • Portable OS on a Stick (by Mandatory on 2018-08-06 02:37:15 GMT from Philippines)
I always carry my Mint Installer on a Persistent Stick. Asides from potential promotion, I treat it as a way to use my main distro for basic purposes on computers outside my home.
9 • Portable Operating System Recommendation (by Winchester on 2018-08-06 02:52:34 GMT from United States)
Porteus & Clonezilla
Sometimes Austrumi but,Porteus Desktop & Clonezilla are the main ones I go to .... designed for USB drives.
I have PClinuxOS installed on a hard drive from a DVD ISO ..... so I haven't tried it off of a USB ..... but,I don't doubt that it works well that way also.
10 • portable linux (by FOSS freebeers2u on 2018-08-06 03:18:43 GMT from Canada)
portable linuxen is what put the OS on the map - when Windows couldn't do the same. Use them all the time: great for speed, convenience, and security.
11 • You can toss out "secure" when read: (by OS2_user on 2018-08-06 05:14:10 GMT from United States)
"includes a section on information Secure-K will send to its developers, including hardware, kernel and time zone information."
I chortled at: "The password we set for ourselves must be long and complex, otherwise the configuration wizard will not proceed."
Then goggled at: "When we first run the key manager, it asks us to provide us with our name and e-mail address. Once this information is entered, we are told keys have been generated and synchronized with a remote server."
And this "secure, anonymous" system phones home yet again! "when the Tor browser opens, it reports the browser is out of date." -- By the way, I see no way to avoid that except to put the (known) sites into "hosts" file, FIRST.
Back to even more chortling: "discovered my user account did not have sudo access. ... and the root account was protected. ... I searched ... and found no relevant information."
C'mon, folks. This is manifestly NOT "secure" beyond the name! Otherwise could be written by NSA. More than HALF of all Linux projects now have corporate funding, I've read...
12 • "Linux is about choice"??? (by OS2_user on 2018-08-06 05:18:20 GMT from United States)
After the Secure-K review in which you're not only tricked but couldn't even find a root password?
"They are often disappointed because while they have the freedom to completely customize as they like," -- BALONEY! Most distros are mere tweaking small parts, and even to do that requires years of effort. Not worth it! Your TIME is worth vastly more than the few hundred you'd spend for Windows and a few applications that someone else has done the grind work on, period. -- Except that Windows too has been progressively and unnecessarily complicated, rather than made into appliance. There's really NO alternative to the ongoing madness.
13 • live iso (by zykoda on 2018-08-06 06:40:48 GMT from United Kingdom)
With GRUB2 & 350 megabaud web USB/DVD just slows things down!
14 • @12 (by SImon on 2018-08-06 06:58:50 GMT from New Zealand)
"BALONEY"? Not at all...Jesse's claim is quite correct. Just because a freedom takes time and effort to enjoy, doesn't make that freedom irrelevant. If you own land, you can build a house on it: that's a very significant freedom, even if you decide just to keep the land empty. Similarly, the freedom to see what our operating systems are doing with our information, and modify them as we want to do so, is a very significant freedom. Your finding it easier to use Windows doesn't in any way refute what Jesse was saying.
15 • sd cards (by Jon Wright on 2018-08-06 07:07:29 GMT from Vietnam)
16 • Portable operating system on a thumb drive (by TheTKS on 2018-08-06 07:08:44 GMT from Canada)
Puppies Slacko and Xenial 64-bit and TinyCore (CorePlus) at home.
TinyCore USB and Puppy 32-bit DVD (older Slacko or Tahrpup, forget which) in the car’s glove box, if the opportunities arise: to test a used computer, to show people the OSs, for recovery.
Voted carry with, because I do, but so far have actually only used these at home. I would vote both options if the choice was a available.
As for showing someone who wasn’t acquainted with Linux (outside of my own household), so far I have only shown one of my brothers Lubuntu on his computer as a recovery option in a pinch. Lubuntu because it works the closest to Windows, of the live DVDs I had on hand, which I left with him. He thinks he’s an iconoclast but is uninterested in even considering leaving the warm cocoon of Windows (10). He mistrusts open source, scornfully thinking that it’s just something that companies like banks take advantage of to increase their profits instead of paying up for proper, proprietary software like they should. I’m working on getting him familiar with open source to open his mind, although what might engage him more is a philosophical question: what is “real” software freedom? And start him off with a discussion about a GPL vs a BSD approach.
17 • Portable OS on thumb drive (by stef on 2018-08-06 08:00:24 GMT from Romania)
I keep Septor Linux available on a thumb drive.
18 • the heck! (by some dude on 2018-08-06 08:55:54 GMT from Poland)
linux is GREAT!
lubuntu properly installed on a 16gb usb ,
i used to carry arround slax 6.12, recently, slitaz and puppy xenial and xenialdog
ITS EASY TO BE STOOPID ABOUT LINUX, ....if you use windows,
except for pre win98 users
and if you don't comperhend the freedom linux CAN give you..
and some of the (bsd,solaris,etc)
Mark Twain, poor basstard, he missed linux ,
19 • Linux Freedom (by Pat Huff on 2018-08-06 09:15:16 GMT from United States)
As I have not had a formal education in computer science, I greatly appreciate the efforts that others put into creating all of these wonderful Linux distributions. I have never found more enjoyment in computer usage until I started using the various Linux "distros". What I do mostly is refurbish old PCs with Linux (or Windows if demanded). I learn as I go at my own pace, a great retirement activity. So, thank you very much Linux Community!
20 • Failed hard drive recovery (by Perrydug on 2018-08-06 09:48:17 GMT from United States)
21 • Installed districts on USB drive (by Jay on 2018-08-06 10:18:52 GMT from Belgium)
I use Rescatux for those PC's that have problems and so on, for use I have 2 drives one with Mint 18.3 Mate and one with Peppermint which I will be replacing with Ubuntu Mate.
I have PC,s standing without hard drives, first for security and second they don't, have to be in there, so whenever I need a PC on that place I put my USB in there together with a Wifi stick.
Those I cary around together, that way I don,t need to put the password for the Wifi back in.
When I am at another location that makes it alsof easy to go online with my own apps and files.
For Window PC,s I cary a Portable Apps drive, same easy of use.
22 • Knoppix (by Tim on 2018-08-06 10:46:27 GMT from United States)
I appreciate this poll because I don’t currently use any portable distros but need one and am curious about what people are using.
Obviously Knoppix is the classic choice but I’m having trouble finding info about current versions. Does it work on both UEFI and traditional BIOS? Is there 64 bit support?
23 • @ 14 Baloney... (by OstroL on 2018-08-06 11:11:31 GMT from Poland)
"If you own land, you can build a house on it: that's a very significant freedom, even if you decide just to keep the land empty."
Sure, until the "community" decides that a road has to through your land...
Just as a "community of one man" decided that keeping Unity DE alive won't bring in enough money for him...to spend on his extravaganzas...
I tend to agree with OS2's comments in #11 and #12.
24 • Linux and choice (by Romane on 2018-08-06 13:06:40 GMT from Australia)
I read this particular feature article with interest.
Let it be clear - I have neither the knowledge nor the ability nor the skill, nor at my stage in life the inclination, to get my "fingers dirty" poking around in source code, to fix bugs or any of that schtuff. Waaaay over my head. Those who can and do have my unstinting gratitude and admiration.
But I find there is another side of the choice argument not covered in the article. I have an example where KDE has stripped away any user choice for people like myself. Because just one developer has a bee in his bonnet about not running a file manager (and other "things") as root, and despite the chorus of objections, he has thus, so far as I am concerned, crippled my choice of what I run and how. I have completely abandoned KDE, previously my go-to environment. Yes, I know where he is coming from, but he does NOT have the right to tell me how I run my computer and what I do with it. This is the forceful removal of choice.
And this is what I see has been happening in the Linux eco-sphere - the slow erosion of those finer-grained choices we (the non-programming savvy) have able to make, reducing the end-user choice to the distribution and desktop, allowing only a reduced set of configuration options via the cherry-picked selection of items in the control panel.
25 • @24, Linux and Choice (by Angel on 2018-08-06 13:35:09 GMT from Philippines)
Just started using KDE, and I agree about the silliness of no root on Dolphin, however, I simply installed Nemo for those times when I want root.
26 • poll - usb distros (by dolphin oracle on 2018-08-06 13:43:33 GMT from United States)
I carry at least 1 live-USB with me all the time, and usually 2 (1 antiX, 1 MX). The antiX live-USB system is fantastic, allow easy kernel updates, persistence options, and remastering of persistence files back into the main squashfs filesytem. and if I add apps while running with persistence, the mx/antiX/gazelle installer carries those changes through to the installed system. and the snapshot system can make an iso from a running live-USB system in necessary.
I run antiX full-time live-USB on my netbook class hardware, and I keep a MX live-USB with updates for easy installs or for when I need my apps on the road.
27 • @24,25 (by brad on 2018-08-06 15:38:07 GMT from United States)
Of course, if you use "Dolphin Configuration" under "Control", you will find that you can tick boxes to enable "root actions" for many file manipulation functions. Right-mouse clicking a file or folder after that will show "root actions", as well as "actions".
What functions are you trying to do in Dolphin?
28 • choice, preaching to the choir (by George on 2018-08-06 16:06:30 GMT from United States)
Choice is a justification to do what we want, without concern for what others might want. It's part of the popular we-know-better principle. We want a more colorful CLI package manager or a new desktop environment with reduced functionality, we build it.
Hopefully, by 2018 priorities would have evolved and matured since 1998. What hasn't evolved is a higher priority to provide an operating system for the majority of computer users out there, most of whom have limited amounts of available time.
Real progress would mean that so many mainstream computer users would be using desktop Linux that the percentage of users involved in development would be reduced. If progress over 20 years has been slow, then maybe there should be a bit more focus on the needs of those mainstream users who don't have time for a garden plot, who are challenged by their responsibilities, many of whom volunteer precious hours to local community programs. (Profit-driven corporations are kinda sorta providing FOSS to the masses, but that is a different post)
Commitment is good. There are constant calls for more commitment from Linux community leaders, similar to such calls from the local food bank, service club, and church. The Linux community continues to provide for it's own members and not so much for the great bulk of people out there. It is a responsible community. However, a service club or church with such priorities might be subject to criticism, no matter how loud the cheers of the choir.
29 • @22--Knoppix (by R. Cain on 2018-08-06 16:35:51 GMT from United States)
"...Knoppix is the classic choice but I’m having trouble finding info about current versions..."
DuckDuckGo is your BEST friend. Read everything, especially the 'References' at the end of Wikipedia; and ESPECIALLY do NOT depend on "drive-by" info you pick up from some--any--respondent who makes a comment to a 'forum' somewhere.
Start here, DistroWatch, for a good INTRODUCTION to Knoppix. You'd be surprised as to how many of your questions will be answered by referring to DW.
30 • @27, root actions KDE (by Angel on 2018-08-06 17:40:58 GMT from Philippines)
Don't know what version you are running. On KDE Neon, the root actions service menu is not installed by default, and once installed most options are not functional.
31 • yes, yes, yes.... (by tom joad on 2018-08-06 17:42:25 GMT from Germany)
I run all manner of distros from zip drives. For me, being able to run a full operating system from zip drive is one of the most endearing features of Linux.
Once I realized that was possible I was totally sold on Linux.
I have used parted magic, back box and system rescue to access the internet on occasion. I always have several copies of the current Tails with me too. I have run TENS from a zip drive, too, though TENS is really not what it could or should be. I regularly test all kinds of distros on zip drives. I have used Puppy and MX-15 for months from zip drives.
There is a downside too, ie, storage of settings, data, etc to a zip drive. There are work arounds for that but it would be nice if that feature was included.
Yes, I will be giving Secure-K a spin too.
32 • KNOPPIX (by R. Cain on 2018-08-06 18:12:25 GMT from United States)
"...There is a downside too, ie, storage of settings, data, etc to a zip drive. There are work arounds for that but it would be nice if that feature was included..."
From knopper.net, "KNOPPIX 8.1.0 Public Release"--
"...After having copied the system to flash, using the persistent KNOPPIX image (overlay feature) or an additional Linux partition, it is possible to also store files permanently in live mode. That way, personal settings and additionally installed programs survive a reboot...".
33 • @31 tom joad: (by dragonmouth on 2018-08-06 18:17:50 GMT from United States)
I assume that by "zip drive" you mean some king of a USB thumb drive, not a the diskette-type drive from years ago that came in 100Mb and 250 Mb versions?
34 • @ 24 & 25: (by dragonmouth on 2018-08-06 18:25:34 GMT from United States)
You can always use Konqueror File Manager which is part of the default suit of KDE applications. It has a regular mode and a Superuser mode. Of course, Konqueror or its Superuser mode may not be available if you are using Kubuntu or any of the other distros that try to save users from themselves by not allowing them to login as root.
35 • Linux and choice (by Friar Tux on 2018-08-06 19:40:10 GMT from Canada)
I totally agree with comment # 28 (George). Choice, for me, was simply to try a couple dozen distros and to pick the one that worked best - Linux Mint. I needed an OS that was trouble free and just worked. (Couldn't use Windows anymore as it DIDN'T work.) I tried about two dozen distros, starting with the 'big guys' first. None were 'out-of-box'. Linux Mint/Cinnamon was the ONLY one to consistently install, reboot, and work with no issues. I don't have the knowledge, or time to deal with system issues, therefore I needed a system that worked out-of-box and didn't give me any grief. As George mentioned, some of us have stuff to do in our lives instead of constantly fiddling with our OS code or the like. Mr. Lefebvre has himself a quality product, there (and a fan).
36 • Thinking Deeper About Choice & Open Source (by M.Z. on 2018-08-06 19:46:40 GMT from United States)
I tend to see a lot of shallowness & narcissism from the quarters you are talking about. The attitude seems to be, 'it doesn't matter what your real goals are or if your project can be redone to align with what I want, if it isn't exactly how I want it right now you must be a terrible developer/project/human-being etc.' Now if you really think about it, isn't that a hollow, mean spirited, & ultimately self defeating attitude? Wouldn't it be a lot better to support projects that actually did what we wanted instead of spending a lot of time & energy trying to attack projects that had little or nothing to do with the open source projects & project goals we actually care about?
For example, I got upset at Gnome because it went from being a fairly easy to use general purpose DE, to being what I view as a strange mess; however, I never attacked 'Ratpoisn' or some other random UI project for doing something different because they were never really doing anything I was interested in.
Now does the attitude displayed in @11 about laughing at password length requirements really represent a valid complaint about a project, or merely a self serving narcissism that refuses to recognize that projects may have different security priorities than our own? As the DW review mentioned there are reasons that Secure-K needs work; however, attacking password length requirements just betrays a shallow & foolish inability to look beyond ones self & view a project's security goals objectively.
Also, just to highlight the ability of projects to align with what we want, I'd point out that the #23 Unity comments aren't the whole picture. I never cared much for Unity, but if you liked it there is a continuation of the project based on the open code created at Canonical. Just because Canonical changed direction, doesn't mean that there was nothing good to come out of a project you liked, & indeed there is a decent chance that project will be reborn because of the choice of developers & freedom afforded by the open source nature of that desktop software. See here:
On the whole @14 if far more thoughtful than #11 or #12. The kind of choice & freedom being discussed doesn't guarantee that things will be done just the way you want; however, it does guarantee that open source software used in projects we don't care for or aren't interested in can be reused in projects that are more more to our liking. There are complex projects like Slackware & Arch that provide more of the manual configuration choices discussed in DW, & there are more desktop focused projects like Mint & PCLinuxOS which give an easy desktop setup. The massive level of diversity in projects is a great strength of Linux. We as users should celebrate that strength & recognize projects for what they are & what their goals are, without trying to arbitrarily attack projects for not all having the same goals & visions we care about.
37 • 34, KDE root (by Angel on 2018-08-06 19:52:50 GMT from Philippines)
Thanks for the suggestions, but I think you miss the point. I don't want to log in as root. I simply want to run things like file managers and text editors as superuser (sudo), or root (su). Yes I'm on KDE Neon, which is based on Ubuntu 16.04, but I can easily enable root password and/or login if I want to, still that's not the point, and it won't fix anything. The point is that something that was simple has been made difficult and complex in the name of security. And no, Konqueror does not work either. Kate and Kwrite are also affected, but at least all they only require is a longer, more complex command. Krusader can be installed and it works, but not my favorite. Simpler to install Nemo or another file manager, even if they come with some extra stuff as dependencies.
I'm running KDE 5.13.4. Maybe you are on older versions, prior to the changes. I like the looks and function of this desktop, so I'll keep it at least a while even with those drawbacks and a few other glitches.
38 • "Random Distro" (by Friar Tux on 2018-08-06 19:54:18 GMT from Canada)
Just a note, here, about your Random Distro side panel... the one giving a brief on the Nova Linux distro. Um, is it possible that it's dormant due to lack of interest? You see Cuba is Spanish speaking and 'no va' in Spanish means 'doesn't go' or 'doesn't work'. (This is one reason the automobile by that name never sold in Spanish speaking countries.) Thought you could use the laugh.
39 • @17 Septor GNU/Linux (by Elcaset on 2018-08-06 19:57:04 GMT from United States)
I also like Septor GNU/Linux. I carry several different distros on USB drives with me. They come in handy very often. Skal!
40 • @12 "BALONEY.." (by Az4x4 on 2018-08-06 20:12:28 GMT from United States)
Don't feed the "BALONEY" Windows troll!
Anyone who doesn't 'get it' when it comes to desktop Linux and the freedom to do things our way it provides, who loves wasting money on Windows and its "Big Brother knows best" heavy handed soon to be "paid monthly service" approach to users, isn't worth arguing with..
41 • @38 "No go" for the "No va" myth (by Peter086 on 2018-08-06 20:42:09 GMT from France)
Friar Tux, if you take a quite look at (https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/dont-go-here/), you'll see that the "No va" thing was just a joke, a urban myth. As as spanish speaking native, it never rung true, as we do difference "nova" from "no va".
We have all fallen for one myth or another....I believed for years that in the 1st Gulf War, the US had intercepted a shipment of network printers for Irak, on which they installed a boobytrapped firmware that would drive crazy their Air Alert and Contral Center's computers, though they could never find the bug, as the Pc's were effectively clean. It was a brilliant story...but false, just another popular urban myth (which is a pity as it might have been a great movie).
42 • @30, 34, 37 (by brad on 2018-08-06 21:47:26 GMT from United States)
I'm running Manjaro KDE - funny thing, it has more things enabled by default than KDE Neon, or Kubuntu. I've used all three distros, and always come back to Manjaro.
I realize that Manjaro is an Arch derivative, but it's easy to use, configure, and update. Discover and whatever else Kubuntu uses, are harder to update. Of course, it could be my laptop, but I'm running a fairly new HP Pavilion laptop. If you haven't done so already, please give Manjaro a try.
Manjaro always runs the latest/greatest software. I just updated a few minutes ago - KDE Plasma was updated to 5.13.4.
The times that I tried to install KDE Neon, there was no option to mount the EFI partition to "/boot/efi"; it wanted to mount the partition to "/boot'. I didn't like the idea that Neon would effectively take over my EFI partition - I wasn't convinced that I could access all my distributions on the computer without a lot of futzing with GRUB.
So, all in all, I saw no clear advantage to Neon over Manjaro, and forget about Kubuntu - even less functionality OOTB. YMMV...
43 • Extreme gaming PC and ,,, (by OstroL on 2018-08-06 22:37:46 GMT from Poland)
If you are building an extreme 4K gaming PC, you'd at least have to put out about $2500, that is if you built it yourself. That is without the cost of the monitor, sound system etc. Those games too cost a bit of money. Now, what operating system would you put in that extreme 4K gaming PC?
44 • Live USB - heads (by Uncle Slacky on 2018-08-06 22:39:03 GMT from France)
I carry heads on an ancient 1Gb USB stick that I use as a key fob. I used to carry Tails until it got too big and went 64-bit only.
45 • I wish I had friends that would even "try" linux (by Brad on 2018-08-06 23:06:13 GMT from United States)
I carry around some live dvds... and If I recall(gotta re-check my inventory for updates) 2 cds with small distros on them.. In case someone needs rescue or wants to see what the buzz is about.. I guess some people don't realize what "freedom" is, until they are forced to experience it eh? (when it comes to utilizing your computer and internet's full potential I mean..)
46 • Live USB (by Gary on 2018-08-07 00:01:21 GMT from United States)
Used to use Mepis. Now I use Netrunner, Bluestar, And Peaches OSI. Usually carry at least one with me when I travel. I have my computer with me and I have a system to show others what else their is besides Windows. Made a few converts!
47 • Choice, Poll (by cykodrone on 2018-08-07 00:28:55 GMT from Canada)
My OS should be a sum of parts that work well together and can be added or removed without affecting anything else, the OS and/or 3rd party apps. I don't want to beat an already dead horse, but a certain init wants to be an OS, the dependency issues it creates are just toxic, like trying to uninstall an unwanted minor 3rd party app that will cause the removal of the DE itself. That's not choice, that's bullying through software.
If you don't have a live OS of some kind for whatever reason is just crazy, it's a must for fixing Linux and non Linux machines, saved my bacon countless times.
48 • Live USB (by Gary on 2018-08-07 00:01:21 GMT from United States)
Used to use Mepis. Now I use Netrunner, Bluestar, And Peaches OSI.
Usually carry at least one with me when I travel. I have my computer with me and I have a system to show others what else their is besides Windows. Made a few converts!
49 • @42 KDE Manjaro (by Angel on 2018-08-07 02:06:59 GMT from Philippines)
Tried Manjaro several times. Never could get along with it, but not due to Arch base. I switched to KDE after trying Bluestar, also Arch-based. Liked how it is configured. But I have a laptop (i3 7th gen. Intel graphics, with enough memory) that is lagging badly and not running well with the "latest and greatest" Linux OSes. After trying several, including OpenSuse Tumbleweed, I decided on Neon precisely because it runs the latest DE on an older base. Configured as I like it, it works well for me and does not tax the laptop. Maybe when and if I replace the HDD with an SSD I will try again.
50 • Knoppix (by Tim Dowd on 2018-08-07 02:14:39 GMT from United States)
I’m sorry if you thought I was implying anything bad about Knoppix... it is actually the one I’m leaning most to trying. The reason for my questions is that the Wikipedia article is kind of a mess. It talks about the CD version in some places like it’s current and then in others it says it’s obsolete. It looks like it’s been edited together from multiple points in time in the distro’s history and I didn’t find much more on the official website. With the interest that you and another expressed about the distro I thought you could tell me more about the current state of the project, but I’ll look further. No offense intended.
51 • Distro Hoping (by Harry Hopkings on 2018-08-07 02:14:55 GMT from Canada)
Sometimes I hope 3 different distros in a day. I just download any functional distro like Linuxmint, Ubuntu Flavor, or any other when ever and where ever I need. And, installing required packages takes no longer than 10 minutes from the nearest mirror. This mainly serves the purpose.
I carry absolutely nothing.
52 • OSDisc.com sales in 2013 and 2014 (by Greg Zeng on 2018-08-07 02:24:05 GMT from Australia)
Thank you for this week's TWO (2) links, on the popularity of the Linux operating systems. As you show, Mint will always be shown often as more popular that Ubuntu, because of their one web site for many Desktop Environments.
On the OSDisc sales however, could these be shown as representing the popularity, with monthly breakdowns as well, relative to each other (not raw figures; commercial secrets, etc)? These "sales" do not reflect the advanced users (Arch-based, etc), since these users can compile from source code, etc.
53 • @50 Re: Knoppix CD (by Rev_Don on 2018-08-07 02:59:27 GMT from United States)
First, Wikipedia isn't really that reliable of a source of information. Everything in it needs to be taken with a grain of salt and verified by a minimum of 3 reliable sources that do not use Wikipedia as a source. It's a nice resource, but users need to be wary of it. It's essentially nothing more than a series of forum posts by individuals with no one ultimate fact checking source. I know I'm going to get a lot of flack on that, but it is the truth. For years the Wikipedia page for the Chevy II Nova (see comments 38 and 41 above) listed the won't go, doesn't go, or doesn't work Urban Legend as factual even going so far as to claim that accounts of it being an Urban Legend were the actual UL. It took us years to get that changed, and that is just the tip of the iceberg of it's reliabilty.
Now about Knoppix. Yes, the Knoppix CD is extremely obsolete as the last version is from Sept 2013, 5 years ago. Part of the confusion stems from people who insist on referring to all optical media (CD, DVD, BlueRay, etc.) as CDs which is what the people who wrote and edited that article have done. Some will even go so far as to refer to a LiveUSB as a LiveCD on a flash drive. That makes it extremely difficult to know exactly what they mean.
But all in all Knoppix is one of the best Live disks as long as you are using a recent (within the last year) release. If the computer that you need to use it on will only boot to an actual Compact Disk (not USB or other optical media) using the older CD version as a rescue disk would be okay, just don't use it for everyday use. If you have questions about it I would go to the source to get up to date and accurate information. They have a wonderful Forum.
54 • Freedom&choice in linux (by Grraf on 2018-08-07 07:05:23 GMT from Romania)
Truth be told these days just about nobody can be bothered to contribute anything except demands&nasty comments... sad but true
While an increasing amount of existing and incoming users fall into the above mentioned category there are some of use older/common sense driven users that still chose to contribute to the best of their ability...
As far as i'm concerned my contribution is done trough beta testing&submitting error logs as i encounter them to my distro's developers and on occasion small cash donations... i realize its not much but its the best this arch user can do for now...
55 • Linux distros and ... (by Kazan on 2018-08-07 08:40:32 GMT from United Kingdom)
Linux distros are free to users, until they become popular. They keep on being free, but the distro developer is more interested on business users. As far as the business user is still there, that distro would be around. Nobody can keep paying for servers, developers etc, if money won't come in. Mepis died, PCLinuxOS, Slackware might too.
Redhat only market to paying customers, while giving a chance to free users with Fedora etc. These users would give back free feedback, checking on bugs etc, thanking that they have a "free" distro. Only they are simply being used to make money for Redhat. Suse does the same thing with OpenSuse.
Cannonical found it can't make money any more that much, so dropped developing Unity DE, and got on the Gnome-shell bandwagon.
Right now, most probably, the only real Linuxes are Arch and Gentoo, maybe Crux. Those were originally made by enthusiasts, who don't work with the project any more. The original developer is gone, but the community is holding on. The original Gentoo developer had created another distro Funtoo. The same with Debian, where the community is holding on.
Some of these community ditros gets real donations from business, as these distros are good for business. If such donations won't come through, they'd die. Nothing can live without money to spend. The few $s from "free" users, here and there won't keep a distro alive.
(A certain proprietary OS markets itself at $125, which means it is just 34 cents per day. Not much per day, isn't it?. What if, the "free" user put aside 10 cents per day, and "donates" that to a user's favourite distro once in 3 months?)
56 • Live CD at home (by John on 2018-08-07 09:24:12 GMT from United States)
This box is running AntiX on SD plugged into USB2 adapter.
Tried to boot on grandson's recent Windows box. Could not figure out how to show it to him? Finally gave up. Ugh.
It is so nice to switch distros by just plugging a new one in.
I store persistant data on another stick or USB hard drive.
57 • Obarun installed on a thumb drive (by Gus Funn on 2018-08-07 10:22:10 GMT from Greece)
I have been using Obarun and I have cloned the whole installation on a thumb drive with an encrypted partition for the large part of the drive for my private data in case it is misplaced. Obarun has been able to adopt and run in pretty much anything I can boot with a usb stick. Runs fast and reliably. I have also used void and void-musl which is even lighter but the variety of pkgs available on an arch based distro make obarun my favorite.
58 • Linux is about choice (by TheRealist on 2018-08-07 12:41:33 GMT from Serbia)
I think as long as there are alternatives, Linux is still about choice.
If one particular kernel version is not working well for me I can still switch to a different one (can you do it with a proprietary OS?) or if I want a different init system there's also something else to choose from, the list goes on...
The thing with choice is that it can't be unlimited and once understood, you're bound to enjoy and marvel the variety this OS still has in offer
59 • @49 (by brad on 2018-08-07 13:01:32 GMT from United States)
I agree - if your computer is a little older, the latest/greatest may not be for you. Folks will use what they like, and what their computers will stand. Choice...I guess it's a good thing...
60 • Alternative idea to write your own if you don't like what's offered... (by Ted H in Minnesota on 2018-08-07 14:10:29 GMT from United States)
Jesse, your thought that people who want an OS to work a certain way should change it themselves instead of waiting for the developer(s) to do so.
That's fine - if the user has the knowledge and skill to write the program changes themselves, but for those of us who are not programmers (like myself) we cannot do so, and are left with wanting to contact the developer(s) with suggestions for changes, additions, subtractions, improvements.
Unfortunately, much of the time there is no way to contact them directly (via email), leaving only contact them only via their-way-overly structured jump-through-the-hoops, off-putting procedures on their website or forums, (which I won't do!) instead of an easily at-their-end SWITCHBOARD to steer user input (emails) to the appropriate department/programmer/developer for evaluation. (Yeah, I know they're scared of being swamped by zillions of people emailing them, but there could be a "suggestions-ONLY write us" email address...
61 • Contacting developers (by Jesse on 2018-08-07 14:23:20 GMT from Canada)
@60: I think you're demonstrating my point about people taking responsibility for their own software quite strongly, though perhaps unintentionally. You're saying you cannot change the software directly because you don't have the right skills. And, presumably are unwilling to develop the programming skills necessary to effect change. And you don't want to go through all the trouble of filing a bug report or signing up for a mailing list. And you're apparently unwilling to hire someone to do the work/contacting on your behalf.
So basically you want the developers to make their software your way without you putting in any effort to learn, contact them through appropriate channels or contribute, directly or indirectly, to their project. Why should they make it even easier for you to contact them when your attitude is to demand things for free without putting in any effort?
The usual response to this is "Well, I don't have the time/money/skills required to do this." Which is valid, most people don't. But then it's even more entitled to demand someone else do it for you for free and through the methods you demand.
62 • @61 (by Kazan on 2018-08-07 14:45:23 GMT from United Kingdom)
"The usual response to this is "Well, I don't have the time/money/skills required to do this." Which is valid, most people don't. But then it's even more entitled to demand someone else do it for you for free and through the methods you demand."
I suppose that's why most of the users go for an OS that can look after itself, or have paid developers to look after all kinds of might be faults. The same way, Redhat or Suse does with paying users. A paying user has to be replied, and his problem has to be remedied, otherwise the money would stop coming.
A known paid for OS looks after itself, by sending in upgrades, whether you like it or not, whatever the hardware you use.
Now, go to the community, where the devs hang about (ubuntu dot community dot com) and ask a question, the answer you get is "this place is not geared for help." Some of them are paid developers. No one really cares for non-paying users -- customer must pay, just like you can't buy bread for free.
63 • Well of course he would say that... (by Jeff on 2018-08-07 14:55:55 GMT from United States)
Obviously Adam Jackson would say Linux is not about choice.
The company he works for works diligently to remove choices from not only the distros that they make but from as many other distros as they can get their software into.
All the way from making your desktop themes break to 'protect their brand' by forcing you to use their theme since it is the only one that works with the latest version of their desktop to the init system(d).
64 • choice is immaterial (by Willie Buck Merle on 2018-08-07 14:58:42 GMT from United States)
Yes, only the usefulness that an OS can provide the user matters, all else is dogma.
Android, Windows & MacOS
65 • @36, @45, @61 (by Justin on 2018-08-07 15:03:51 GMT from United States)
@36: M.Z., I enjoyed your thoughts, and your analysis is spot on. It's easy for us to fall into the trap of putting down others to raise ourselves. It is always better to promote what you like; in that case you are building rather than tearing down. Tearing down is easy, which is why people do it. They haven't learned how harmful it is to themselves and how stupid they look.
@45: I hear your frustration. I don't have much luck with that either. It doesn't matter how much Linux would solve their Windows problems (generally performance on underpowered devices in my case). People don't want to see it. They have some fear/apprehension and refuse to let go. All you can do is be patient, be kind, and be helpful if they do ask, and let them be. They have the freedom to make bad choices just like you and I do too.
@61: Jesse is also spot on here. Will is such a powerful thing. No will means nothing happens. If someone is truly unwilling to make an effort, then one must accept the results of that decision to take no action (your choice is keeping things as they are). On the flip side, taking action isn't as hard as some people think. Follow the "kaizen" principle: small efforts over a long period of time create big change. Spend 60 seconds a day doing something about your problem. You'll be amazed after a few days or weeks to see some progress (however small) in the area. Expecting big change requires big efforts is a western misconception, and eventually one's anxiety or other problems crush the effort. Small drops of water erode mountains, create vast caverns, and smooth the roughest surfaces. It's just not a fast process. However, would you rather it happens never or happens eventually? Minimal effort is infinitely better than zero effort. You don't have to be the best at everything--just be a little better than yourself was yesterday.
It also goes both ways: I watched someone quit her job because she convinced herself the job sucked and everyone was out to get her. She poisoned her mind a little bit each day until the weight of it drove her crazy. The reality was she needed to adjust to the culture, she refused to, and eventually people stopped trying to help her because she became bigger than the problem she thought she was fighting. This comes back to @36's point: spend the effort to build stuff up; it's better for you in the end.
66 • @61 Jesse: (by dragonmouth on 2018-08-07 15:26:37 GMT from United States)
BUNK! You are being elitist. Your attitude is "If you can't make the software changes yourself, then STFU". As dirty Harry Callahan famously growled "A man's gotta know his limitations". Tom H in Minnesota realizes his limitation of not being a programmer and so do a lot of other Linux users. I was programmer for over 30 years and I would not attempt to try to make the changes I'd like to a Linux application. I do not know the language(s) which are used to write those applications and to learn them sufficiently to make effective changes is not a matter of days or even weeks. You make it sound like if you can code a "hello, world" program, you can make changes to Linux applications.
67 • Making changes (by Jesse on 2018-08-07 15:31:06 GMT from Canada)
@66: If you go back and read my post you'll see that is not remotely what I said. You're making a complete strawman to knock down, not addressing my point. I mentioned there are lots of ways to contribute: coding, bug reports, financial, getting someone else to do the work. At no point did I even come close to suggesting someone needs to be able to code or cannot effect change.
If a person is not able to code, and not willing to learn, and not able to contribute financially, and not willing to contact the developers through proper channels, then they have no basis on which to complain about a lack of choice.
68 • Jesse Smith (Linux is about choice) (by David J. Ornelas on 2018-08-07 16:19:04 GMT from United States)
Yes Jesse, Linux is about choice. However, it comes at a cost. Eventhough there is little or no fragmentation in the GNU/Linux file system, the GNU/Linux ecosystem as a whole is heavily fragmented with the 300+ distros listed by Distrowatch. Too much choice = non-standardization and less market share. The Linux distro may go the way of AM stereo radio if it's not careful, Google Chrome and Android notwithstanding. To compound the situation Distrowatch does NOT separate the niche tool distros with the regular OS distros, confusing and not explaining the differences to the multitudes of newbies. That is Distrowatch's choice. Linux needs consolidating and some standardization between distros, or Linux will be only deployed by geeks or supercomputers.
69 • does not separate ??? (by time on 2018-08-07 17:04:00 GMT from United States)
DW does present a page listing just "major distributions", and the search page supports filtering search results based on the following tagwords/categories:
Beginners, Clusters, Data Rescue, Desktop, Disk Management, Docker, Education, Firewall, Forensics, Free Software, Gaming, High Performance Computing, Live Medium, Mobile, Multimedia, MythTV, NAS, Netbooks, Old Computers, Privacy, Raspberry Pi, Scientific, Server, Security, Source-based, Specialist, Telephony, Thin Client
Similarly, the listing page for each distribution mentions the tagword(s) relevant to the distribution.
What further would you propose "to separate" ?
70 • I use a variety of distros and tools from a live-USB keyfobs/harddrives (by Oleg on 2018-08-07 18:33:32 GMT from United States)
I use a variety of distros and tools from a live-USB keyfobs/harddrives for ages. In the keyfob I have multi-boot anti-viruses, hd imaging tools and installation linux medias. On the USB HDD I have a working Mint (latest LTS) packed with everything I use on the daily basis, including all mentioned above..
71 • @67 changes...what? (by OstroL on 2018-08-07 19:56:08 GMT from Poland)
"If a person is not able to code, and not willing to learn, and not able to contribute financially, and not willing to contact the developers through proper channels, then they have no basis on which to complain about a lack of choice."
Like most wives! Usually the wife doesn't know how to code, not willing to learn, but would contribute financially, that is, either buy a laptop with a known OS, or ask the husband to buy one for her.
Like most children. They want to play computer games. The parents would usually buy the laptop/PC with a known OS in it.
They won't complain, as they have the choice. Choice to get what they want. Linux is not about choice, but about learning, and tinkering. Neither the wife, nor the children want to do that. Its pretty hard to find a child, who want to learn how to use a Linux distro, at least not where I live. Of course, they know Android, but they don't know it is based on Linux and don't want to know. It appears that some old(er) guys are using Linux distros, or playing with them, and that too in their spare time. At work, it is the known OS. Communicate with another known OS.
(I have used Linux distros since 2004, distro hopped all over, and now settled to Debian based distros, that is, I install the base and install a DE or not. Debian base here means Debian or Ubuntu base. I have not refused the other known OSs, for they work too.) So, I know what I am talking about. It is pretty hard to get a young chap to move to Linux, or at least try it. I had some success with Kubuntu and Neon, though.
72 • Choice (by mosom on 2018-08-07 22:35:44 GMT from United States)
If Linux is limited to those who learn and tinker a lot then the base will be small and choices more limited. Room for all types here.
I'm a non-tech yob who loves my Linux for doing the ordinary stuff most computer users do. Don't want to change my nature to be a Linux guy, just want to use Linux. And I tell other people like me that the stories about Linux being difficult or limiting are exaggerated. Really, away from the specialist/corporate areas etc, most people should just use Linux. Poorer countries and poorer people should just load up old machines with Linux. (That's one charitable initiative you may not hear about from Bill and Melinda.)
A Ubuntu derivative with a light desktop is fine for me. These days it's mostly Peppermint...but if I didn't have that I'd have Lite or Mint or whatever. No Windows, no double boots, just a nippy Linux distro and I'm good.
My only regret is that I can't grab a phone or pad and load it up with Linux the way I do with an old HP or Dell workstation. If that were possible I could keep an Apple or Android for the odd task (like the Rugby League app)...and go full penguin!
73 • @71 OstroL: (by dragonmouth on 2018-08-07 23:35:07 GMT from United States)
"Neither the wife, nor the children want to do that. (learn)"
You are making the same mistake as the Windows FUD spreaders do. MOST users DO NOT use the O/S, they use the APPLICATIONS. The learning curve for learning to use any applications on Windows or Linux or OS/X or Android or any other O/S is pretty much the same.
Before my kids got their own computers, they used mine. It had/has Linux installed on it. They had no problems in learning/running any applications that they needed to use. Even after they got their won computers, they preferred to use mine because it never crashed like the Windows PCs they used in school. My wife uses a Windows laptop and a Linux desktop interchangeably and has for a few years. She doesn't care which computer runs which O/S. She uses the same types of applications on both computers. When it comes to any kind of system tasks (updates, upgrades, software maint, etc) she leaves that up to me or my older one.
"It is pretty hard to get a young chap to move to Linux, or at least try it."
If you tell him he will have to learn all kinds of esoteric trivia before he will be able to use a Linux computer, then I am not surprised. OTOH, if you just let him run applications, he will be "using" Linux in no time. In that way, since about 2000, I've gotten many people to use Linux computers, both computer neophytes and Windows refugees. So I know what I'm talking about.
74 • Portable Slax (by Bob on 2018-08-08 02:49:24 GMT from United States)
I've got Slax 9.5.0 running but can't get past the login, and there is no forum for Slax. I can't find anything on the web to tell me how to boot into the desktop. Can anyone point me to some info? I couldn't find anything on the Slax web site.
75 • Linux is about Choice and Dolphin from root... (by Bobbie Sellers on 2018-08-08 04:53:32 GMT from United States)
Some distributions using KDE do things differently but
on PCLinuxOS64 open a Console window(virtual terminal)
and enter root with "su -" then your root password.
When you are in root at the Prompt type "Dolphin"
and the basic un-configured Dolphin window will appear.
Might want to take the time to do a bit of configuration
as the basic Dolphin is pretty ugly. and needs work to
make it handy to use.
Besides that you can use the Midnight Commander
but you can do some things more easily from the
Dolphin FM than from "mc".
I got familiar with root Dolphin when I had a bad file
and had to manually change Grub Configuration
files by renaming after a kernel update.
It is a dangerously powerful tool to use in root "/"
directories. I used to use similarly powerful
tools on the Amiga which was all root with not
a password in sight.
76 • @ 73 .... (by OstroL on 2018-08-08 07:42:01 GMT from Poland)
Naturally users use applications, not the OS. User needs the application to work out of the box, rather than fiddling with it. It is pretty hard to get the wife or the children to use a Linux distro's applications, because they don't work (and look) the same as their friends laptop applications do. Everyone would happily use an Android device, most times don't even know it is an Android device, The applications are the same for them to communicate with their friends.
Linux (kernel, distro, or whatever) is pretty good for embedded devices. Android devices are embedded ones. You don't fiddle with it, just use the apps that came with it, whether it is a phone, or a device for the car, or any other.
Linux (distro) is for learning and for fiddling, not for day to day use, except for embedded devices, or even fixed-use apps in a desktop, such as in an office. The companies that deploy Linux distros (no cost or low cost) in their offices have fixed apps that are used in their offices for office work. The workers would use them, and forget about that, after work, and go back to their known OS for their work.play. That's how the world is today.
It was very nice those days, when we could tinker with the new distro, dual boot it or even have a special Linux box for that. (I have a Linux box and all other laptops multi-boot.) The tinkering days have gone. People want to get in the car and drive, rather than play with the engine.
Lot of Linux users today are the oldsters, who had a grudge with MS those days (or maybe oldsters, who are getting a grudge today. You use the line "Windows refugees." I wonder, if there are "Linux refugees" today.) I never had a grudge, as I am not obliged to use something, if I don't want to.
77 • My live USB writing kit (by Mr B on 2018-08-08 11:03:35 GMT from United Kingdom)
I use a heavily modified 32-bit version of Linux Lite crammed full of software that helps with the task of writing (of all types). I removed games and email client etc to get rid of distractions but kept a browser to allow research. I included LibreOffice, Scrivener, Trelby, Manuskript, CherryTree Notes, Freeplane, Master PDF editor, calibre, Kindlegen, Plume Creator, Sigil, Teamviewer, and one commercial product, Jutoh, the ebook editor/creator. I can use any computer at my disposal - even one without a hard disk - and have a familiar environment to work in. I just use another USB stick or Dropbox to save my work.
78 • Choice (by Steve on 2018-08-08 11:40:20 GMT from United Kingdom)
A little late to the party but.. IMO I think the "choice" word is getting used and abused by Linux developers, I find that the top distributions do not really give you any choice regarding their software, I think real choice would be being able to choose your init software, have the ability to choose your architecture, I do not like the fact that many distributions are dropping legacy support, I myself use an old 64bit laptop but due to RAM limitations I need 32bit (until I can upgrade my hardware), many distributions also ram software down your throat, they try to compete with Windows and gain a larger user base by having that out of the box appeal, personally I have removed a ton of software in the past because it bloats the system, minimal installs are a rare thing, you choose minimal but the install pulls everything and you end up with something bloated.
I have used exclusively Debian, Slackware, and OpenBSD due to the fact that they do kinda feel like they give you more of a choice (not so much Debian recently), I feel like the choice we have had is fading away, with the likes of RHEL and Ubuntu they have paved the way for Linux to be more closed / non-free. Overall I am skeptical about Linux and its future.
79 • I don't think so sir. (by Garon on 2018-08-08 13:32:39 GMT from United States)
"It is pretty hard to get the wife or the children to use a Linux distro's applications, because they don't work (and look) the same as their friends laptop applications do."
What wife and kids are you talking about? Nobody I know for sure. What applications are you talking about? Do you really think that all applications made for MS Windows really work out of the box or looks so much better? Do you think that most pc applications written for a Linux based distro are all just trash? You are talking about two different worlds. I believe when you are talking about MS Windows you're talking about mostly playing games, and it is good for that. If your talking about serious use of a computer, well, don't throw the wife and kids playing games in that mix.
I believe that it's a bad thing to sell your wife and kids short on being able to use linux applications. I bet they could get alone just fine. Choice is a big part of the open source landscape but not so much in other systems. Anyway each of us has a choice and everyone should respect that.
80 • Korora, mostly (by B Stack on 2018-08-08 15:05:43 GMT from United States)
Jesse, thanks for the thoughtful article about Linux and choice.
The news about Korora excites me! I entered the desktop space via Korora 22. During Korora 25/26 I transition to straight Fedora because I now know how to customize exactly what I want. For auxiliary systems such as another person's laptop, I would happily use Korora because it looks nice and also includes all the nice media things right away. I'm fine with tinkering on my system, but my users just want to play their videos already and not want to fiddle with codecs or window themes.
All of the recent ReactOS news has intrigued me. I've tried ReactOS in the past, but now I need to try it again! It sounds like what Windows should have been-- with good filesystem support.
81 • @ 79 (by OstroL on 2018-08-08 15:29:12 GMT from Poland)
" You are talking about two different worlds. I believe when you are talking about MS Windows you're talking about mostly playing games, and it is good for that. If your talking about serious use of a computer, well, don't throw the wife and kids playing games in that mix."
Sure, I am talking about 2 different worlds, one that use a OS for work (and play) and one that is for fiddling about. Serious use of a computer is video editing, creating music, designing buildings, and also writing books, doing homework, making spreadsheets, project planning work and so on.
In your country, the students are mostly using Chromebooks, I hear. In Poland they use mostly Windows, especially because of the Office suite, and it is not that expensive to use. Or, one can use LibreOffice etc. In some work places, they use Windows and LibreOffice. Windows is not that expensive to buy, because of the EU laws. Laptops are really cheap, if you care to wait for a while to buy one, not the day it was released, but after few weeks. There is always some promotion in the net.
Now, if you need to use special applications such as Autocad, Archicad etc, you just can't afford to use a Linux distro. Like I wrote earlier, I am all for Linux, but I don't think, it is going to catch up, other than in embedded devices, or in fixed-app office computers. All the company has to employ is a knowledgeable IT engineer to look after the computer system, or contract a firm to do that time to time. The business doesn't have to buy an "enterprise" OS.
Internet is cheap here, even if it is used in an office. As a home user, and with quite a few computers working more than 10-16 hours a day, I pay the equivalent of 8.18 USD per month, unlimited usage. Btw, if you want to use Office 365, it'd also cost you 8.18 USD per month.
I am not arguing with anyone. I have a dedicated Linux box for quite a while. I can create live isos. I can fiddle with Linux apps to make them suit me. I can even install the Android for PC, Phoenix OS in EUFI and MBR computers other than the way, you are told by the Phoenix OS devs. (https://forum.xda-developers.com/phoenix-os/phoenix-os-news-qa--development/install-phoenix-os-3-0-2-ext4-partition-t3821121) Right now, some of my laptops triple boot with Android, Linux and Windows. I have the best of all worlds.
82 • Live USB (by Carson on 2018-08-08 16:08:34 GMT from Canada)
I carry an flash drive that uses an SSD controller for speed. On that drive I have a full Ubuntu install rather than the traditional live installer environment.
83 • Choice (by penguinx64 on 2018-08-08 16:33:51 GMT from Bahrain)
I use Linux because I choose to. I don't like being forced to use only one operating system, like Windows 8 or Vista. I'm free to choose between hundreds of different Linux distros. If I don't like the desktop environment of one distro, or it doesn't support my wifi adapter, I can choose to toss it and use something else.
84 • Thoughts On Software Choice & Serious Linux Uses (by M.Z. on 2018-08-08 18:48:26 GMT from United States)
"...I think real choice would be being able to choose your init software..."
Isn't that the same type of thing that #11 was going on about when everyone pointed out a better way to look at it besides 'it's my way or it isn't choice'? As per my #36 post, why should every 'top distro' be expected to give you your personal init choice regardless of their actual project goals? Can't you just use one of the many projects like Devuan or PCLinuxOS that give you other options more to your liking?
Also, how the hell is Red Hat producing anything other than open source software? I know they contribute to a few things myself & other don't like, but when they buy a closed source software maker that software is always released as open source afterwards. If anyone can think of a contrary case, would you tell me about it? I really don't think that Red Hat have made software anything other than more free & open source, and this 'closed source RHEL' stuff seems like FUD.
"I am not arguing with anyone..."
Aren't you? You implied that the OS of choice for many of us is just a toy/hobby thing & isn't meant for real work, & then have gone out of your way to defend that ill informed position that is based on how you use it rather than the reality of the situation. I think everyone is happy that you or anyone else is try or using Linux as a hobby project; however, that is not the whole picture & has nothing to do with the limits of how the OS can be used or is used.
It's certainly true that Windows is used almost everywhere on PCs & that it is hard to find desktop Linux in many places, but that doesn't mean it isn't used for serious desktop tasks, and it's a flat out fact that Linux does some very serious computing. If you want to know about serious desktop use of Linux you might have to ask Red Hat, Canonical, & SUSE to get even half a clue & even then the picture would be incomplete. For example there are cases where governments & other large organizations have gone out of the way to produce their own version of Linux for use on the desktop & elsewhere.
On the general purpose front of serious computing, Linux runs virtually all the top super computers in the world & almost certainly does things like model hurricane tracks & simulate the creation of the universe (big bang, expansion & cooling of the universe, etc.). Now what's more serious than that, & why would anyone in their right mind say Linux is only a hobby toy? Perhaps the list of global fortune 500 companies that Red Hat calls its clients on its website is more serious?
You could go & revise your tiny list of 'serious Linux computing' uses after you consult all the Red Hat client list & talk to everyone else doing serious things with Linux, but I' not too interested in correcting all of your misinformation for you. Just try not to imply false things based on your own myopic view of the world.
Feel free to use Linux for anything, the choice is yours. Just don't tell me that Linux isn't used for serious things, because the facts aren't on your side.
85 • Personalized mx thumb (by Ev on 2018-08-08 19:39:31 GMT from United States)
Thanks to the tools mxlinux provides, I have a copy of my entire, personalized, and persistent distro. I use the built in back up packages to make an iso snapshot of my system every 2 weeks. If I'm going to be adding something rather large and/or 'iffy' to my system, I'll iso backup right beforehand just in case. The tools that mx provides are fantastic and are part of the reason why I use it as my primary distro!
86 • portable + ReactOS (by beer with FOSS on top on 2018-08-08 21:28:45 GMT from Netherlands)
ReactOS would make a useful light, portable distro that you could run some Windows apps on - like editors and utilities. But not having full USB storage support is a deal breaker at the mo. Can't understand why this is a problem when Haiku has had full USB support for some time now.
87 • (in) Secure-K (by edcoolio on 2018-08-08 23:30:35 GMT from United States)
Where to begin??
Would I ever, ever, ever consider an OS to have security as its main focus that takes YOUR data and "send(s) to its developers, including hardware, kernel and time zone information."
I don't care what the excuse is, because there is none. Zero.
It forces long, complex passwords... but sends data out. Also, don't forget, if you use your e-mail, that "...keys have been generated and synchronized with a remote server." Really? Where? Who gets that and what do they do with it? Is it located with my personal data containing hardware, kernel, and time zone information? What else is there?
While we are at it, lets sign up for a DigitalArx account, because OneDrive, GoogleDrive, and Dropbox aren't invasive enough. I already have a Mega account.
Then we have the Tor Browser update which sends out enough information to know that it needs an update, but yet cannot actually complete an update. Great. Nice. Make sure and leave my meta data while your at it.
I appreciate that they gave it a shot, but you are far better off using whatever daily distro you normally use and add a Tails CD/DVD/USB when you need security.
To quote the Secure-K website:
We'll help you "feel secure", always.
Note that I did not put the quotes around "feel secure", it is like that on their website... and I guess that is exactly where the quotes belong.
88 • re:78 Choice (by TheRealist on 2018-08-09 00:13:08 GMT from Serbia)
@78 "I think real choice would be being able to choose your init software, "
For what it's worth, Manjaro Architect(https://manjaro.org/2017/03/27/install-manjaro-as-you-want-it-with-architect/) allows the choice the build the system either with systemd or OpenRC though, I'm not sure if it also includes an option to build Manjaro32(https://manjaro32.org/).
89 • Gecko GNU/Linux - Saves live session configuration (by Nitram Robits on 2018-08-09 01:30:37 GMT from Norway)
I would recommend using Gecko Linux as it remembers all changes made to a live system media (USB drive of course).
That said, there is no need for installing it, just put on 16 or 32 Gigs and it is a full-featured system on the go!
Have a lot of fun!
90 • @88 Choice (by mandog on 2018-08-09 02:13:37 GMT from Peru)
Manjaro Architect That is very out of date, Manjaro stopped all support for Openrc 12 months ago
When Artix was born and Artix is Arch based not Manjaro.
91 • Kids these days (by Tim Dowd on 2018-08-09 02:22:28 GMT from United States)
I thought I’d chime in now that we’re talking about what kids want and need because I’m a secondary school teacher in a Chromebook school in the US.
There’s nothing bad I can say about Chromebooks in a technical sense. They’re real computers, and kids can run spreadsheets and write papers and make presentations. Because they’re cloud centric they’re essentially interchangeable, which is enormously helpful when you’ve got 3000 of them floating around. There’s not a day that goes by that I’m not loaning mine to several different kids. Before them schools really struggled to get kids computer resources. Now we have them.
That said, from where I stand, increased technology has been a disaster for this generation of kids. I didn’t appreciate the gender bias in OstoL’s comments, but he’s right that a lot of people in the world today are using computers mindlessly. They have no difficulty moving between Windows and Linux and Chromebooks, and iOS and Android, but they’re just consuming the technology, they’re not aware of any aspect of how it ticks. This was what lead to the group in Cambridge designing the Raspberry Pi: an attempt to bring kids back to the basics of what a computer does and how you can create with it instead of just using others’ creations.
From where I sit, it’s darker now than at any other time in my teaching career because although kids in this century have never really controlled a computer, now they’re unaware that the computers are smart enough to control them. They think they’re making a choice in what media they consume and what materials are shown to them and what games they play and have no understanding that the computer is adapting its behavior to hook them.
I have young children, and I’ll be raising them to be very deliberate in how they use computers. No one has done that for this generation of teenagers though, and that’s a far scarier thing to me than what OS they’re using
92 • @ 91 Choice and so on... (by OstroL on 2018-08-09 07:27:45 GMT from Poland)
Chromebooks in the US and Windows laptops/tablets in Poland (or Europe) seems to be the standard for students these days. Everything appears to be cloud centric and the kids like that. The hand held devices are mostly Android. You see them everywhere, in the bus, in the street, in the parks. Not only the young ones, but also the older ones too, Older means 60 and more.
Btw, there's no gender bias in my comments. Men usually don't stay away from the Android device. Some do have iPhones, but not that many as they are too expensive and have less apps, compared to Android devices. Everyone is carrying a device to communicate, from very small kids to pretty old people. It is normal in this country. It is facebook, instagram, messenger, youtube etc.Office suites are used only when it is absolutely necessary, and that too can be accessed online or by subscription (when needed and for just 8.18 USD/month). Those, who use special apps knows mostly how to use those apps, and have no time for other apps. Most of those apps only work in a non-Linux OS.
The truth is, no one wants to learn how a computer works, except for few geeky minded. Too many choices with hardware and the prices are dropping very fast. No one is interested in installing an OS, other than those, who build PCs. If a computer gets stuck, they'd simply take it to a service shop.
93 • @ 84 ... (by OstroL on 2018-08-09 07:44:28 GMT from Poland)
"You could go & revise your tiny list of 'serious Linux computing' uses after you consult all the Red Hat client list..."
Why should I? Red hat is just the same as other proprietary businesses. Don't tell us about Red hat sponsored free distros, fedora etc. You know about the rich brother and the poor brother story?
You live in a different world, separated by oceans.
94 • @90 Choice mandog (by TheRealist on 2018-08-09 08:03:59 GMT from Serbia)
@90 Thanks for the heads up, my bad. I's a pity they did.
95 • @91 Tim Dowd: (by dragonmouth on 2018-08-09 12:52:11 GMT from United States)
Don't be too hard on the kids. By now, computing devices (PCs, tablets, smartphones, etc) have become everyday commodity items, similar to transistor radios, toasters or Walkmen. Computing devices are to be used, not tinkered with. How many kids do you know that are into amateur radio? There are some but they are few and far between. As you very well know, kids need to be encouraged to do activities that their peers do not. They need to be shown that such activities are interesting and can be fun. For that you need adults to assist the kids. Unfortunately, many parents are interested in technology only as far as benefits it can provide - access to Facebook, instant and constant contact, smart devices, etc. You cannot expect people like that to whom electronic devices are black boxes to spark and foster in their kids an interest in the workings of technology.
This lack of interest in the workings of technology has been increasing since the space race petered out. It seems that the country in general has lost interest in technology. Isn't that why there is an ongoing discussion in US education establishment about increasing or encouraging kids participation in STEM courses?
96 • OS on a Thumb drive (by Duane Canaday on 2018-08-09 14:50:20 GMT from United States)
I always have a copy of MX Linux on a thumb drive. I usually keep a copy of Antix as well.
I have been using Linux since Mepis was popular. USB drives are becoming my go to media for Linux installs and MX Linux is my first choice these days.
97 • Portable operating system on a thumb drive (by fatmac on 2018-08-09 15:21:30 GMT from United Kingdom)
I use AntiX as my main distro & also keep a thumbdrive with it on that I can run 'live' at any time, to fix other peoples computers - I used to have a set up with persistence too - but found I didn't use it that much, so I mainly install or use the 'live' pendrive. :)
98 • Choice (by Ain't buyin' it on 2018-08-09 15:51:54 GMT from Germany)
Sure we have a choice! We can choose to use a flavor of Linux that most documentation and troubleshooting information is written in, or we can use something after 2015 and go with systemd.
99 • @91, @95 (by Justin on 2018-08-09 16:18:30 GMT from United States)
@91 was not being too hard on them--that is the reality. My friend recently left teaching junior high in the US, and the stories he tells about his students are almost unbelievable. I hear similar things from the parents at my office that have kids in K-6.
There's a difference between wanting to tinker with your PC and knowing that you could if you wanted. I wasn't an amateur radio person, but I knew that you could do stuff; it wasn't a black box. To @91's point, the radio and current technology are not equivalent. People listen to the radio all day, but it's not the same all-engrossing, all-consuming experience that smart phones and other media consumption devices are. There's a generation that's not connected to the reality around them, and that has deep social and society ramifications.
When I was in high school, you couldn't have radios or walkmans in class. If you didn't like the lecture, you just were bored but still relatively present (and thus were learning something, albeit very little and very slowly). Nowadays, you don't like the lecture (or don't care), you just play games on your phone and check out of life. The teacher can't do anything about it, and you learn nothing. Absolutely nothing. You might as well stay home. It's terribly sad.
100 • Half agree (by Tim Dowd on 2018-08-09 16:33:21 GMT from United States)
The problem I think I and others had was assuming it was the wife who didn’t care while the husband does.
Other than that, I agree with your comments that most don’t care. But this is both a huge problem and a huge opportunity.
The problem is obvious. If one becomes dependent on computers but has no idea how they work, they’ve surrendered a significant amount of control over their lives to others. Given that computers are increasingly designed to addict and draw a person in to more and more use, generating more and more revenue, this is having huge effects on lives.
Linux has been a hobby for me and not really something my family was interested in until a perfectly good computer started to become unusable under Windows 7 and money was so tight we couldn’t afford a new one. We were shocked at how well it worked. From that point forward my family understood Linux. It was the secret to not having to throw out a computer you knew still had life in it just because it wasn’t making enough money for Redmond and Cupertino.
It has been killing me reading the comments on Distrowatch recently because they send the impression that everything with the Linux desktop sucks. Nothing could be further from the truth. We spend so much time complaining about stuff that doesn’t really make a difference that the average person reading these comments isn’t going to realize that there’s like 5 different distros that the default install is more usable and user friendly than any commercial system. They’re not going to know that every time someone here complains about having things change on them that they have plenty of options to get almost exactly what they want by just using a different distro or a still supported LTS version.
101 • lack of will--as in 'willpower'--on all fronts. (by R. Cain on 2018-08-09 18:40:00 GMT from United States)
"...Nowadays, you don't like the lecture (or don't care), you just play games on your phone and check out of life. The teacher can't do anything about it..."
In my college classes, having a cellphone ON gets you booted from class, with an "F" for the day. ANSWERING a cellphone, unless it's a call from an Organ-Donor Registry, gets you booted from the class permanently, with an "F" for the course.
The bleeding hearts are taking over the world.
P.S., different topic: most ALL people need nothing more than a Chromebook, and even that's overkill; even the computing power of a cellphone, which not one in a million knows how to tap, is overkill.
102 • @66 (Jesse's position as "elitist") (by Simon on 2018-08-09 20:44:23 GMT from New Zealand)
If someone gives you a house, you're free to make whatever modifications you want to that house. Be grateful. Whining that you're not really "free" because that generous donor is refusing to come over and be your personal builder and make the modifications for you is just lazy and entitled.
A builder who puts years of time into building a house, and then gives it to you, is not "elitist" if he then says "nope, it's all up to you now" when you ask for modifications to that house. A developer who puts years of his time into learning to code and then coding a piece of software, and who then makes that code freely available to you so that you can not only use and enjoy the software, but are also free to make whatever modifications to it you want, is not "elitist" if he's not interested in the changes you want to make to that code. The points that Jesse has been making are good points, not "bunk". If you were a programmer for over 30 years, you ought to know better.
If you don't have the will to modify the code, learning whatever you need in order to do that, fine: pay someone to do it for you. Don't whine that just because someone gifted you a house, and you can't be bothered learning carpentry, that person now ought to be teaching you or doing it for you. Learn to do stuff yourself, or pay others to do it for you. It's pretty simple really.
103 • Thumb Drive Linux (by SilentSam on 2018-08-09 21:00:15 GMT from Canada)
One of my favourite and most used tools is systemrescuecd on a thumb drive. I used to carry one with me at all times and had another at home... Now I just have the one at home since most of my infrastructure is virtual.
104 • Puppy Linux everywhere (by Rainer Steffen Hain on 2018-08-09 21:09:51 GMT from Germany)
I'm using Puppy Linux since the end of 2011 and have multiple USB Flash Drives and USB Hard Drives containing some different versions of Puppy Linux. Puppy Linux is also installed to internal Hard Drives on several Computers. My main Operating System is LazY Puppy Art Studio, which is a very specific remaster of Puppy Tahr 6.0.2. I love to run in RAM only and to run as root. Don't want to use any other Operating System anymore. On my Youtube Channel (T.A.E.R.S.H, taersh) one can find some Videos that I created with my specific version of Puppy Linux.
Just love it! :))
105 • Carrying portable bootable media (by UnReal on 2018-08-09 22:29:38 GMT from United States)
For over a decade, I have carried current "Live" versions of Puppy Linux around on CDs/DVDs.
Although USBs are prevalent and tiny, they are useless as they dont identify what is on which USB stick I might have. So, I cannot tell the difference between those which are bootables vs those which I use for data requiring insertion and mounts at some level to figure it out.
Besides that, the performance is ALL OVER THE MAP, inconsistently.
But, on my CD/DVD media I can readily see the writing I place on the surface identifying the mission it contains.
You say "but some modern PCs (although minimal, no infantesimal) do not have DVD drives": I agree. So I insert my Puppy Lighthouse/Fatdog version on another PC, boot it and start its PXE which will boot ANY PC built in this century.
But, there are professionals which will swear USBs or the greatest. Then there are professionals who are just practical drawing on the best overall solution for best option(s) of tools in their toolkit(s). And, sometimes they are both kinds.
106 • Nonsensical FUD (by M.Z. on 2018-08-09 22:51:19 GMT from United States)
"...Red hat is just the same as other proprietary businesses."
Care to explain how GPL software is 'proprietary'? Or are you in fact in a different world, separated far away from actual fact?
You seem not to grasp the very concept of open source software. Any client of Red Hat has a legal right to get the code for their OS & modify it or give it away as they see fit. That's one of many reasons Red Hat & other Linux based businesses contribute upstream to the Linux Kernel, KDE, Gnome, etc., and those contributions enhance the entire Linux community.
There is a lot more that could be said, but I'll just leave it with the simple fact that unless you can explain how 'proprietary GPL software' makes sense, your statement with look like nonsensical FUD. And of course you ignored lots of other valid arguments in @84 to leave us with that as your only defensive of your 'hobby OS' talk.
107 • Stop being an ENABLER of the mouth-breathers. (by R. Cain on 2018-08-09 22:54:10 GMT from United States)
From Jesse Smith's 'OPINION'--
"...Something I notice when spending time in the BSD communities is that they are still at a point where the end user is expected to work toward the features or fixes they want to see... There is a more prevalent [you go and] do-it-yourself [because I'm not going to do it FOR you] attitude in BSD circles which seems to be increasingly rare in the Linux community,"
I had to chuckle at this because I remembered a post here just a short while ago from someone bitching about the fact that now, in 2018, a particular BSD required him to do an installation from a non-graphical environment! He was highly offended and, of course, claimed this as the reason he will never go near BSD. I'm sure that the BSD contingent breathed a sigh of relief
There is an old (Chinese, I think) saying which you've all no doubt heard, about the merits of teaching a person to fish. I humbly submit that the mind-set of most people these days demands a modification to that venerable piece of advice:
"Give a man a fish and he'll eat today; teach a man how to fish and he'll eat for the rest of his life--and let him know that you'll not be there when, for whatever reason, he's chosen to not remember what you taught him."
You'd be surprised at how imminently effective this strategy is.
108 • @107 (by edcoolio on 2018-08-10 03:56:00 GMT from United States)
Jesse Smith's assessment is accurate.
To be specific: BSD circles are currently engaged in behavior that is increasingly rare in the Linux community.
Your opinion in regards to his assessment of the BSD communities tends to prove the point far better than he ever could.
109 • @ 106 proprietary... (by O on 2018-08-10 07:41:23 GMT from Poland)
Red hat is proprietary, period!
"WE MAKE OPEN SOURCE TECHNOLOGIES FOR THE ENTERPRISE"
Not for you, arguer, if you don't pay. You can get the poor brother's fedora, if you want, and happily send in bug reports for Red hat to earn more money and give "solutions" to the "enterprise."
The business, Linux based or not is interested in only profit, and whatever they do, they do to maximise the profit. No profit, no business. Whatever business gives "free" is tax deducted. Tax deducted means the country pays for that, meaning you pay for that "free" stuff through your own tax. The business takes the profit, mind you, always more and more.
The "other" OS doesn't confuse you with their attitude towards the user. You pay and use. You have a question, you ask. You can even telephone. There are even specialised community moderators to help you.
The Linux community is dwindling. Some official derivatives of known Linux distro have only one or two devs, working on their free time. The "sponsor" doesn't help, for it is not bringing in money. The oldsters in the fora are leaving, for age or for loss of interest. Lots of Linux centric web sites had not posted a new post for a long time.
(Btw, read the whole post, not just a fragment you care to argue about.)
@ 100 Tim Dowd
Glad to know you. We live in different countries (worlds), so its nice to get to know the other's opinion.
In the old days, we liked to find out how an OS worked, as most of them were faulty. Everyone was learning, the developers and we the users. These days these OSs are becoming boring, for most of them stay out of the way and let us use the apps. Some even auto-update without our intervention. Only, they learnt to ask, when we want it done, and some do it in the background.
Those days, I used to use lot of installed apps, but now I use a web browser to get there mostly. I use three different OS types, but the working environment is the web browser.
110 • re:proprietary (by TheRealist on 2018-08-10 09:50:37 GMT from Serbia)
@109 Red hat is proprietary, period!
"WE MAKE OPEN SOURCE TECHNOLOGIES FOR THE ENTERPRISE"
Not for you, arguer, if you don't pay. You can get the poor brother's fedora, if you want, and happily send in bug reports for Red hat to earn more money and give "solutions" to the "enterprise."
Not so, what you're paying for is only their support if you need it, not for OS. And IF you really need their enterprise solution for free, you can always grab "rich" brother's CentOS which is functionally and binary the same as Rad Hat.
On the other hand, regarding "other OS" and your argument that it is cheap for home use, 100€ is not cheap. And you must pay for it each time you upgrade hardware.
111 • @ 110 proprietary RHEL (by Kazan on 2018-08-10 10:52:04 GMT from United Kingdom)
"CentOS developers use Red Hat's source code to create a final product very similar to RHEL. Red Hat's branding and logos are changed because Red Hat does not allow them to be redistributed. CentOS is available free of charge. Technical support is primarily provided by the community via official mailing lists, web forums, and chat rooms."
"RHEL is available only through a paid subscription service or for development use in a non-production environment."
CentOS is still for the poorer brothers.
RHEL is for the rich.
RHEL - Red Hat Enterprise Linux, not for us non-enterprise ordinary people.
The business would buy "enterprise" Linux distros, when it can deduct the cost from tax. It is a cost and cost is deducted.
112 • RHEL is addicting to some. (by CS on 2018-08-10 15:52:25 GMT from United States)
You should get a load of this nonsensical FUD too while you're at it
"The (RHEL) source code will be available in the Customer Portal and through RHN Classic (for Red Hat Satellite customers). We will release the source code publicly only in the CentOS git repository."
Now what uninformed nitwit came up with that statement? Well whoever they were they managed to post it to Redhat's own website!
If you use RHEL you can't get those juicy kernel stabilizations, security updates and other fixes until and unless RedHat is good and ready to stream them into CentOS, unless you're a paying customer that is. It is well known that RHEL and CentOS diverge. The code is out there, good luck piecing it together!
Now in your mind this may not drive into proprietary software because the code is out there, waiting to be pieced together by expert developers such as yourself. I wouldn't begrudge anyone who considered this proprietary. After all, if you get hooked on those sweet sweet RHEL updates it's quite a hangover when you decide you won't or can't pay to renew that subscription.
Also, some other FUDsters will point out that not everything RedHat sells (yes, sells) these days is GPL software. You seemed quite angry in your post, I hope I haven't upset you too much.
113 • RHEL, Fedora, and CENTOS (by R. Cain on 2018-08-10 22:59:21 GMT from United States)
The "discussion" here regarding the Red Hat organization has gotten very tiresome, has disintegrated into subjective, personal ad-hominem argument, and has gotten thin(-ner). One of the keys was the subtle attempt to tag RHEL as 'proprietary', by proclaiming that the Red Hat organization is. (Proprietary). Of course it is; most ALL for-profit organizations can be considered 'proprietary'.
There is nothing in 'The License' which prohibits the sale of a Linux distribution. Indeed, Mark Shuttleworth has been very up-front--for a very long time--about pursuing different strategies to 'monetize' Ubuntu. Do you people, who have a problem with Red Hat, have a problem with that? Are you going to start excoriating Ubuntu, Canonical, and Shuttleworth when it costs you MONEY to use Ubuntu? Why not get a jump on things and fire up your 'outrage machine' now, because Shuttleworth WILL do it.
It is strongly suggested that if someone has a problem with Red Hat and its products--or indeed, any Linux which is not GIVEN AWAY, FOR FREE--that the concept of 'Freedom of Choice in Linux' should be very actively pursued--go somewhere else, and leave your personal opinions at the door in venues like this. We all have personal opinions. Most do not appreciate the 'facebook mentality'; on display here.
"Most people will accept facts as true so long as those facts agree with what they already believe."--Andy Rooney
114 • @112, et al., Free software and FUD (by Angel on 2018-08-11 01:44:00 GMT from Philippines)
"When we speak of free software, we are referring to freedom, not price. Our General Public Licenses are designed to make sure that you have the freedom to distribute copies of free software (and charge for them if you wish), that you receive source code or can get it if you want it, that you can change the software or use pieces of it in new free programs, and that you know you can do these things.".
You may charge any price or no price for each copy that you convey, and you may offer support or warranty protection for a fee.
Now I'm not rich by any means, but if I needed a "fix" of Red Hat, $49 a year would still allow me to eat, and if I needed more hand-holding, $179 to $299 would still not lead to penury. Since I'm a big boy and can fend for myself, I save all that money for the future purchase of a yacht. :)
115 • Where is Ubuntu and Linuxmint source code? (by Harry Hopkings on 2018-08-11 01:47:48 GMT from Canada)
Where is Ubuntu and Linuxmint source code?
Don't be first to reply that they are based on Debian coz lot of packages are customized.
116 • Philosophy of the GNU Project (by Harry Hopkings on 2018-08-11 01:59:44 GMT from Canada)
Philosophy of the GNU Project
Free software means that the software's users have freedom. (The issue is not about price.) We developed the GNU operating system so that users can have freedom in their computing.
Specifically, free software means users have the four essential freedoms:
(0) to run the program,
(1) to study and change the program in source code form,
(2) to redistribute exact copies, and
(3) to distribute modified versions.
117 • @115, Ubuntu Source code (by Angel on 2018-08-11 02:05:55 GMT from Philippines)
Source code repositories for individual packages can be enabled in sources.list.
118 • Free FUD (by Angel on 2018-08-11 02:09:06 GMT from Philippines)
Please also note that while source code must be made available, a fee may or may not be charged for conveying it.
119 • @115 Linux Mint Source (by Angel on 2018-08-11 02:25:02 GMT from Philippines)
It took me all of one minute to find the sources, Now I'm exhausted. Since it's free, Clem and co. should have delivered it personally to save me the effort.
120 • Ubuntu and Linuxmint Sourcecode (by Harry Hopkings on 2018-08-11 13:01:09 GMT from Canada)
@ # 117-119
Both, Ubuntu Launchpad and packages.linuxmint offers same raw source codes as Debian.
However modification and customization parts are missing.
On the top, sorce codes for the sauce and spices is missing that any one can verify against the contents of the distro they offer.
Plus, Launchpad is covered under The GNU Affero General Public License, which is not same as GNU GPL v2 or v3. It is a matter of long debut.
121 • Debian, Ubuntu, and Linuxmint (by Harry Hopkings on 2018-08-11 13:15:31 GMT from Canada)
Even though all three Debian, Ubuntu, and, Linuxmint contains confirmed positive traces, still Debian remained more transparent in many regards.
122 • @120, Affero (by Angel on 2018-08-11 15:15:18 GMT from Philippines)
Kabayan or kababayan is used to refer to a fellow Filipino. I am not Filipino. I just live here. The other word should be "salamat," and means "thank you."
I assume you mean "debate" and not "debut," but I see no ongoing debate, or why it makes any difference that Launchpad is under the Affero GPL: "The GNU Affero General Public License is based on the GNU GPL, but has an additional term to allow users who interact with the licensed software over a network to receive the source for that program. We recommend that people consider using the GNU AGPL for any software which will commonly be run over a network. The latest version is version 3."
What I am seeing in this discussion is that many free software users expect it to be gifted to them on a silver platter, and customized to their taste with no effort whatsoever on their part.
123 • @ # 122 (by Harry Hopkings on 2018-08-11 16:37:28 GMT from Canada)
@ # 122
What I am seeing in this discussion is that many free software users expect it to be gifted to them on a silver platter, and customized to their taste with no effort whatsoever on their part."
debut means come into existence. It was long a after first release.
Secondly clear up your mind,
No users expect no developer(s) to serve their free-software(s) in a silver plate.
But, every single Linux user expect developer not to serve poison.
If you can not give or share anything good,
it is well and fine, but,
Do NOT share and spread poison for free.
124 • Laymans Last (by Laymans Last on 2018-08-11 17:25:25 GMT from Canada)
There was a time where CentOS was famous as a Server,
There was a time where Debian took over CentOS.
Ubuntu came into existence with a certain specific ambitions to serve specific purpose.
Ubuntu added some extra sauce and spices to Debian.
Linuxmint debuted as a coup de grace from Ubuntu.
Linuxmint also added added some extra sauce and spices to Ubuntu.
I see no reason to volunteer for Ubuntu or Linuxmint bandwagon,
where as Debian and Devuan, both, are available in many flavors.
Reading all posts and replying some,
one can clearly see frustration and defeat.
That definitely concludes an Another Chapter.
an "Angry Man" can only do is,
just keep deleting.
Does anyone ever care?
125 • nowadays, I use xenialpup from a USB thumb drive (by Niskoni on 2018-08-11 18:48:14 GMT from France)
nowadays, I use xenialpup from a USB thumb drive.
Simplest way to install from linux to an empty USB drive from the command line :
# dd if=xenialpup64-7.5-uefi.iso of=/dev/sdX
(X being the usb drive letter in linux)
Haven't found easier :)
It boots fast, it's simple, it has everything I need : browser, abiword , drivers , etc.
It's not perfect, but puppy linux has improved a lot and you can send them your opinion or questions or bugs into their forum : http://murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?t=107331
So with all the bugs directed to them, they will improve it even more. ;)
There is a package manager, so you install many ubuntu softwares in it.
There is the possibility to save a session in a "save file" with all your settings, or no saved session at all, so it's very secure.
What else ? It's incredibly fast and light.
126 • @ # 125 (by Harry Hopkings on 2018-08-11 19:49:24 GMT from Canada)
Like you said xenialpup, there are many distros which are light-weight and performs extremely fast. And, of course, puppy family is very wide-spread. I am in many linux distro forum already, but, just locations are different.
Recently I have installed Vector Linux on demand on old hardware, and it surprisingly performed like a charm. I always prefer proper installation for required customization.
But, sometimes it is very hard to day which hdd really boots where.
I do use Ubuntu and Linuxmint to learn many things that I still do not know yet.
They always help me to convey many things to concerned without saying a single world.
The rest is in their capabilities and may be within their reach also!!!
I am a sort of distro hopper, just get to know how.
127 • Open Source & Fair Profit (by M.Z. on 2018-08-11 20:01:46 GMT from United States)
So the crux of you argument is basically that all money & profit is evil & that Red Hat engages in profit making business & must therefore be evil & proprietary? Is that suppose to make sense?
Granted plenty of corporation are evil & would be considered sociopaths if they were actual persons; however, there are all sorts of corporations out there & some aren't too bad at all. Yes there are companies that fleece both customers & employees by hocking shoddy goods made in terrible conditions in third world sweatshops; however, there are also companies that work to protect their legitimately made reputations with customers & ones that employ union labor or profit sharing to give a fair deal to employees.
Regardless of whether a company is good or bad on the whole, they eventually need to make a profit to survive. Hopefully it will be a fair profit, but regardless profit is needed both for survival & expansion.
"The Linux community is dwindling. Some official derivatives of known Linux distro have only one or two devs, working on their free time."
So you attack profit & large organizations, then bemoan that there are tiny organizations with no money. What happens if one of those small distro teams gets a legit business plan & begins to profit & expand? Is there any way to make a fair profit & open source software in your view? The creators of the GPL seemed to think so & understood that the world is _Not_ built on zero sum games.
So complying with the GPLis what creates Fear, Uncertainty & Doubt? It seems a awful lot like no one case find a bona fide GPL violation, so what's the issue? Does releasing RHEL code in a de-branded way that others could use more easily offend you? You realize that the branding & trade mark restrictions are allowed in the GPL right? Doesn't this mean that giving away code that has branding removed is doing someone a favor?
Sorry, but the rest seems to be rather speculative conspiracy theory & not worth worrying about. I'll be worried if a legit source finds a real GPL violation that isn't corrected or is flagrantly ignored.
Telling everyone how you plan to comply with the GPL would seem to be very much the opposite of spreading Fear, Uncertainty, & Doubt. If on the other hand one was telling everyone how 'its well known' that there are big differences that create 'the good stuff' & 'the cheap stuff' without a shared of real evidence, well that would be FUD.
It's a be unfortunate that people have to spend a lot of time & effort trying to justify irrational fears, which is of course done without a bit of credible evidence. Oh well, 'that's life' as they say.
Of course if anyone wanted actual evidence concerning how RHEL was complying with the GPL, they could as the devs of most of the half dozen or so RHEL based projects that exist here today. For instance:
"How do you feel about upstream?
We love them!"
Feel free to give me a more bona fide source supporting you arguments about evil conspiracies concerning RHEL.
128 • Portables etc (by Somewhat Reticent on 2018-08-11 20:26:23 GMT from United States)
The methods demonstrated by Easy2Boot, PenDriveLinux and MultiBootUSB are useful for keeping multiple ISOs on USB storage devices; several can have persistent data sections as needed. This facilitates demonstrating different Desktop-Environments, or distros configured for different hardware. It's also wise to keep one or more admin/maintenance toolkits in the mix.
These days, it may also be handy to use several separate storage devices, each with persistent configuration, to keep activities of differing purposes well-separated.
While Freed Open-Source software should not be conflated with proprietary, it's always wise to be alert for bad practices like obfuscation or scope creep.
With influence often comes temptation, especially when motivated by (potential) profit. Still, though many groups of people behave like sociopaths, remember that even a sociopath can be motivated toward constructive behavior.
129 • @ # 127 (by Harry Hopkings on 2018-08-11 20:57:45 GMT from Canada)
@ # 127
"The Linux community is dwindling. Some official derivatives of known Linux distro have only one or two devs, working on their free time."
Absolute truth of the day!
When I started using linux - users share was approx. around 5.0%, then after, starts dropping every year. As of the date it is less than 1%. Users / per / particular / distro is just nothing but the any two digit number you can guess.
"Regardless of whether a company is good or bad on the whole, they eventually need to make a profit to survive. Hopefully it will be a fair profit, but regardless profit is needed both for survival & expansion. "
Plain truth well said.
For example Canonical has to support propaganda to get Ubuntu funded.
And, if you support Ubuntu, you must be get paid too, for propaganda campaign.
I remained a long time user for Fedora which I liked it in spite of poor multimedia support. Then endless support from Cent Community driven me into CentOS and Scientific Linux. I still remember I have seen RHEL (RAW) SourceCode somewhere on some mirror, in which RHEL branding needs to be removed if anyone want to use. I was not interested at all in RHEL RAW SourceCode as I remained very thankful to CentOS community that time as compared to Fedora. Once out of blue moon, Scientic linux developer offered me awesome support.
I am pretty sure CentOS sourcecode is available to every one on all mirrors as well as on vault same as Debian.
For a short period, I was a paid subscriber to one European Distro as well. I given up because of their poor support.
130 • @123 (by Angel on 2018-08-11 22:09:03 GMT from Philippines)
Poison, huh? What I read and object to in your posts is the spreading of manure.
131 • Choice (by Rich52 on 2018-08-12 14:37:56 GMT from United States)
I do not lament the fact that I don't pay licensing fees for proprietary software. That's why I use Linux. Period. If you program for a living that's your headache. If you don't it may be because it is a hobby for you. Software is continually evolving. Microsoft is monopolistic. One shoe doesn't fit all. Many people are too dumb and don't want to learn how to program or even care how a computer works. Good for them. I don't need to ask my doctor which pill is right for me. . . as all the commercials continually try to sell us. It's nice that some people strive to make this available for everyone's use and for 'free'. You are required to do some thinking on your part that's what membership to the Linux community is all about. You be the judge if it works for you. . . no one is selling you anything.
132 • thumb drive distro (by Donavon Hyatt on 2018-08-12 20:10:39 GMT from United States)
I work out of town a lot, I carry Slax, MX, archbang,antix, just for toyin'.
Number of Comments: 132
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Pie Box Enterprise Linux was a Linux distribution that was derived from the open source software made available by Red Hat, Inc. It was built from the source RPMs of Red Hat Enterprise Linux. Only a small number of packages are modified in order to remove Red Hat's trademarks from relevant images and to skip the RHN registration step immediately after installation. All other packages remain unchanged from those released by Red Hat and there are no packages added or removed. This results in a product that was fully compatible with Red Hat Enterprise Linux. The updates and repository service was very similar to the up2date service offered by Red Hat, Inc. It was a subscription-based service under which errata are distributed that have been compiled from source RPM packages that have been released by Red Hat, Inc.