| DistroWatch Weekly
|DistroWatch Weekly, Issue 779, 3 September 2018
Welcome to this year's 36th issue of DistroWatch Weekly!
Ideally, our desktop operating systems perform quickly, provide up to date features and are secure. It is a difficult combination of demands for distribution maintainers to deliver on, but we often see some amazing technological solutions as a result. This week we begin with a review of Redcore Linux, a Gentoo-based distribution which ships with the lightweight LXQt desktop environment and several security enhancements. Read on to find out how Redcore performs. In our Questions and Answers column we discuss how to keep ISO downloads safe from tampering in order to make sure we do not try to install a corrupted operating system. Our Opinion Poll continues this topic, asking our readers how you verify the ISO file you are installing has not been corrupted. Plus we discuss Lubuntu adding flexibility to its system installer, Linux Mint Debian Edition's upgrade options and Ubuntu aiding GNOME with performance improvements in our News section. Plus we share the releases of the past week and provide a list of torrents we are seeding. This past week we were pleased to welcome Clu Linux Live, a disk management and data rescue distribution, to our database. We wish you all a wonderful week and happy reading!
- Review: Redcore Linux 1806
- News: Lubuntu makes Calamares more flexible, Ubuntu contributes performance improvement to GNOME, upgrade options for Linux Mint Debian Edition
- Questions and answers: Keeping ISO downloads safe from tampering
- Released last week: Linux Mint 3 "LMDE", 4MLinux 26.0, Linux From Scratch 8.3
- Torrent corner: 4MLinux, Archman, AUSTRUMI, BackBox, Kali, KaOS, KDE neon, Linux Mint Debian Edition, Manjaro, Neptune, NetBSD, Nitrux, SmartOS, SwagArch
- Upcoming releases: Tails 3.9
- Opinion poll: Verifying ISO downloads
- New additions: Clu Linux Live
- Reader comments
Listen to the Podcast edition of this week's DistroWatch Weekly in OGG (19MB) and MP3 (15MB) formats.
|Feature Story (by Jesse Smith)
Redcore Linux 1806
Redcore Linux is a Gentoo-based distribution which ships with a live desktop environment, the Calamares system installer, and a pre-configured LXQt desktop. This makes it very straight forward to test drive and install a Gentoo-like desktop distribution which will then provide the software management tools and flexibility Gentoo is famous for having.
I last reviewed Redcore Linux about a year ago and since then the project has made a few changes. Perhaps the most notable one is adopting security practises from the Gentoo Hardened project. This gives the operating system some added protections against common attacks.
Redcore runs exclusively on 64-bit computers and the ISO I downloaded was 2.2GB in size. If booting from the install media goes well then the system displays a graphical login screen where we can sign into the LXQt desktop using the username and password "redcore". (I will cover what happens when booting does not go according to plan a bit later.) Signing in brings up a fairly standard looking desktop environment. A panel with the application menu and system tray sits at the bottom of the screen. Two icons on the desktop offer to launch the system installer and "Ask for help". The latter icon launches the Falkon web browser and connects us to an IRC chat room where we can try to get support. Clicking the installer icon brings up a window asking if we would like to launch the selected script or run it in a terminal. Either option opens the Calamares system installer.
The Calamares installer is designed to work across multiple distributions and provide an easy, graphical interface for the user. While typically used by Arch-based projects, the Calamares installer functions well on Redcore - with just a few rough points. The installer does a nice job of collecting such information from us as our preferred language, our time zone and our keyboard's layout. The installer gives us a chance to partition the hard drive or wipe the disk and install Redcore on the freed space. The final screen gets us to provide a username and password for ourselves.
There were two minor issues I ran into while going through the Calamares screens. The first was the installer refuses to install Redcore if there is less than 20GB of free space for the root partition. This is not a bug, but it did mean I had to re-think my partition layout as I typically use less space. A full install of Redcore uses up about 8GB of disk space. The second concern I had came during the final stage of the installer when files were being copied from the install media to my disk. The installer's progress bar grew to 32% and then stopped. The installer appeared to freeze at 32% completion for about half an hour. When I checked the task manager I could see work was still being done in the background, but the interface did not reflect this and I suspect many people would give up after half an hour with no apparent progress. The installer did eventually complete its work successfully and then offered to reboot the computer.
The installed copy of Redcore boots to the same login screen the live disc displayed. Signing in brings up the LXQt 0.12.0 desktop. The installer icon is gone from the desktop, but the IRC help icon is still available.
Applications on Redcore use a dark theme. A year ago Redcore mostly used a combination of black menus and borders with a light theme for applications. This high contrast has been replaced with a dark grey that is used almost everywhere. I found this generally pleasant to look at, though it did make it harder to read hyperlinks, which were displayed in dark blue on the dark background.
Redcore Linux 1806 -- Application windows blending together
(full image size: 350kB, resolution: 1024x768 pixels)
Visually, I had two other complaints. The first was that application window edges were very thin, making it difficult to grab and quickly resize windows. I often struggled getting the mouse to line up with the border with the default look. My other concern was that everything looked too small or compressed. Fonts are on the small side and menu items tend to be close together and I sometimes clicked the wrong application launcher or menu entry. These characteristics can be changed through the settings panel.
I tried running Redcore on a desktop computer and in a VirtualBox environment. Redcore would boot and run smoothly in VirtualBox, but failed to integrate with the host environment, limiting the system's screen resolution. I could not find VirtualBox guest modules in the project's software repositories and installed generic drivers. The generic modules installed, but failed to work properly. This is a regression for Redcore as previous versions automatically integrated with VirtualBox.
When attempting to run Redcore on my desktop computer, the distribution was unable to boot at all in Legacy BIOS mode. When started in UEFI mode Redcore would display a boot menu and begin the boot process, but failed to completely start up. Instead the system eventually dropped to a rescue console. After double-checking the install media's checksum I tried to boot Redcore on a laptop computer as well with the same disappointing results. This matches my experience last year and it seems hardware support has not improved.
With my trial limited to running in VirtualBox one issue which stood out was Redcore runs the Compton compositor software for a smoother desktop experience. Having Compton running consumed a lot of CPU resources and slowed down the desktop noticeably. I disabled Compton from the LXQt Session Settings module, which made LXQt much more responsive.
The distribution used about 8GB of disk space when freshly installed and consumed 220MB of RAM when signed into LXQt with no additional applications running. This had the unusual effect of making Redcore one of the larger (on disk) distributions I have used in recent months while also requiring less memory than most.
Redcore Linux 1806 -- Running LibreOffice and QTerminal
(full image size: 83kB, resolution: 1024x768 pixels)
The distribution ships with a small collection of useful software, most (though not all) of it from the KDE/Qt family of applications. Redcore ships with the Falkon (formerly QupZilla) web browser, the Konversation IRC client, qBittorrent, the qpdfview document viewer and LibreOffice. The KGet download manager is present along with the K3b disc burning software, the mpv and VLC media players, and VidCutter to copy clips from videos. Audio and video codecs are included and we can play a range of audio and video files. There is an application called sandbox which opens a terminal and claims to have set up a protected environment. This sandbox is not explained and does not hide processes, or prevent us from affecting the file system so its usefulness is unclear. The GNU Image Manipulation Program is included along with Inkscape and a simple image viewer. A launcher for the Steam gaming portal is included too.
The distribution also features a number of system utilities such as the KDE Partition Manager, AQEMU for managing virtual machines, a printer manager and simple firewall manager. Redcore ships with the GNU Compiler Collection for building software. The distribution uses SysV init with OpenRC providing service management. In the background we find version 4.16 of the Linux kernel.
LXQt settings panel
The desktop environment includes a settings panel which features modules for adjusting the look and feel of the interface. We can adjust the theme, change fonts, set up keyboard short-cuts and adjust visual effects. There are also tools for managing user accounts, tweaking the firewall and setting up printers. The configuration modules all worked as expected and I encountered no problems with any of them.
Redcore Linux 1806 -- The LXQt settings panel
(full image size: 535kB, resolution: 1024x768 pixels)
Sisyphus package manager
Redcore uses a graphical package manager called Sisyphus. It is a simple package manager which simply lists available packages in one long list. We can enter search terms to filter down the list of packages, but otherwise browsing for items is limited. Buttons at the bottom of the window give us the ability to install or remove selected items. Another button will download all available software upgrades.
Redcore Linux 1806 -- The Sisyphus package manager
(full image size: 208kB, resolution: 1024x768 pixels)
At first, clicking the upgrade button appeared to do nothing, it just showed an unmoving progress bar at the bottom of the window. However, the system was using a lot of CPU cycles so I checked and confirmed the lower level emerge package utility was working hard in the background. Eventually Sisyphus reported it had found 215 updates and, over the next hour, it downloaded and installed them all.
Sisyphus is not a particularly attractive or feature rich package manager. It does not have a lot of filters or long descriptions of packages or screen shots, but it did work in performing basic package management.
For the most part, my time with Redcore was disappointing and occasionally frustrating. Disappointing in that, apart from security enhancements, it does not seem as though Redcore has made any significant progress over the past year. Hardware support has not improved (if anything it has become worse for VirtualBox users) and I did not find any significant new features which would suggest the project is bringing new ideas to the community.
Another thing which bothered me was the appearance of the distribution. While I liked the darker theme, the grey background without clear window borders meant that all application windows blended together. If I had three windows all open and overlapping on the desktop there wasn't any way to tell where one ended and the next began. When combined with the smaller 9pt font that is used everywhere, it meant I had to tweak most visual aspects of the interface to make it suitable for my preferences and ageing eyes.
There were some other minor problems. For example, sometimes the application menu would open at the bottom of the screen (next to its button) and other times the application menu would appear at the top of the display, far away from the mouse pointer. This unusual menu placement would continue until I logged out and signed back into LXQt.
Redcore Linux 1806 -- The misplaced application menu
(full image size: 726kB, resolution: 1024x768 pixels)
Personally I do like the idea of what Redcore is doing. Despite the various little problems I ran into, I like the overall concept. I like the idea of a lightweight distro featuring the LXQt desktop and a small collection of desktop applications. The desktop, with Compton disabled, was very responsive and I like how quick the user interface was. I also like combining a binary package initial set up with the option of accessing Gentoo's highly flexible source-based ports system. This means we can install the operating system quickly and then highly customize it over time. The focus recent snapshots of Redcore have placed on security is also welcome.
For me, Redcore was not practical, mostly because it did not work with my hardware. And there are a number of little issues (more style preferences rather than real bugs) which meant I had to spend more time than I would like tweaking the operating system. However, the focus on security, flexibility and performance could make Redcore an attractive option. Especially for people who like Gentoo, but want to get up and running without compiling anything.
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Hardware used in this review
My physical test equipment for this review was a desktop HP Pavilon p6 Series with the following specifications:
- Processor: Dual-core 2.8GHz AMD A4-3420 APU
- Storage: 500GB Hitachi hard drive
- Memory: 6GB of RAM
- Networking: Realtek RTL8111 wired network card
- Display: AMD Radeon HD 6410D video card
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Visitor supplied rating
Redcore Linux has a visitor supplied average rating of: 6.6/10 from 55 review(s).
Have you used Redcore Linux? You can leave your own review of the project on our ratings page.
|Miscellaneous News (by Jesse Smith)
Lubuntu makes Calamares more flexible, Ubuntu contributes performance improvement to GNOME, upgrade options for Linux Mint Debian Edition
The Lubuntu developers are making a number of small, yet important, changes to their distribution's system installer to provide additional flexibility. Lubuntu's Calamares installer will soon support XFS as a file system option and users will be able to set a weak password on their user account, overriding the installer's warning against simple passwords. A post on the project's blog states: "Before the last newsletter, we enabled password checking. After some vocal feedback, we asked the community on our development mailing list what they thought about it, and an overwhelming majority had the same opinion; it should warn, but you should still be able to set a weak password. While the Lubuntu team very strongly recommends choosing a strong password when installing Lubuntu, we have disabled password checking." The Lubuntu blog post also answers questions about the distribution's planned migration to a Wayland display server.
* * * * *
Canonical, the company behind the Ubuntu distribution, made the choice a few versions ago to switch from developing its own Unity desktop environment to running a customized version of GNOME Shell. While this move sparked debates in the Ubuntu community, it has allowed GNOME and Canonical to cooperate and share development resources. Ubuntu developer Daniel van Vugt recently shared some improvements with GNOME which should improve performance for GNOME users. The supplied code includes an explanation which concludes: "So this commit selects just a few areas where caching has been verified to be beneficial, and many use cases now see their CPU usage halved."
* * * * *
This past week the Linux Mint team published a major update to the project's Linux Mint Debian Edition (LMDE) branch. The newly released version 3 is only available in one edition (Cinnamon) and this means the upgrade procedure for LMDE 2 users will be different depending on which edition they are using. The project's newsletter explains: "The upgrade path for the Cinnamon edition was also opened. Timeshift, Slick Greeter and mintupgrade were backported towards LMDE 2 to facilitate the upgrade and the switch from MDM with sysvinit to LightDM with systemd. If you are running LMDE 2 Cinnamon, please upgrade before the end of the year. We'll continue to support LMDE 2 until the 1st of January 2019. The LMDE 2 MATE edition cannot be upgraded (Debian's version of MATE is only 1.16 and this edition is no longer present in LMDE 3), we recommend users perform data and software backups and upgrade their OS via fresh installations. MATE packages in LMDE 2 will also be supported until the 1st of the January 2019."
* * * * *
These and other news stories can be found on our Headlines page.
|Questions and Answers (by Jesse Smith)
Keeping ISO downloads safe from tampering
This is a paranoid question, but hopefully one that is not quite "goofy".
For years, I have been downloading Linux (and BSD Unixen) ISOs via either the "anonymous FTP" command line utility or the fancier GUI equivalent, gFTP. As I understand it, in either case, the on-line traffic between a server holding the ISO files and my client is not encrypted and could be monitored and altered by a hacker with malign intentions. Making the assumption that I am concerned, how could I maintain better security while downloading an ISO?
Either on a pay-as-go subscription or "pro bono" basis, does anyone maintain an ISO server which I could connect to via OpenSSH or an equivalent encryption protocol such as TLS?
DistroWatch answers: This is a pretty common question and not at all goofy. Downloads that are not encrypted can be monitored and even changed in transit. The good news (for you) is it doesn't matter if your ISO is tampered with during transfer so long as you verify it once the download is complete. There are typically two main steps to verifying an ISO file:
We published a tutorial on how to perform these steps a few years ago.
- Checking the ISO's hash (with MD5 or SHA256 typically)
- Verify the ISO's signature with GnuPG.
Most ISO mirrors do not have an encrypted option, but torrents almost always do. If you want to hide the data you are transferring, I recommend downloading distros through bittorrent. Recent torrents for distribution releases can be found in our Torrent Archive.
As for downloading from a server that does offer encryption, that may not help. Since just about anyone can set up a download mirror and change the ISO files they host, downloading from a third-party mirror still puts you at risk. An encrypted transfer won't help you if the mirror itself is compromised, so you would still need to verify the ISO once it has been downloaded.
In short, it doesn't matter how you get your ISO file (from a USB drive, download mirror or torrent), what does matter is you can verify the ISO file you have is the same one the original developer published. Otherwise there is always the risk that someone (the torrent creator, a person monitoring your Internet connection, or the download mirror's administrator) is sending you a compromised file.
* * * * *
Additional answers can be found in our Questions and Answers archive.
|Released Last Week
Linux Mint 3 "LMDE"
The Linux Mint team has published a new version of the distribution's Debian-based branch. The new version, Linux Mint Debian Edition (LMDE) 3, is based on Debian 9 "Stretch" and features the Cinnamon desktop environment. "LMDE is a Linux Mint project and it stands for Linux Mint Debian Edition. Its main goal is for the Linux Mint team to see how viable our distribution would be and how much work would be necessary if Ubuntu was ever to disappear. LMDE aims to be as similar as possible to Linux Mint, but without using Ubuntu. The package base is provided by Debian instead. There are no point releases in LMDE. Other than bug fixes and security fixes Debian base packages stay the same, but Mint and desktop components are updated continuously. When ready, newly developed features get directly into LMDE, whereas they are staged for inclusion on the next upcoming Linux Mint point release." Further information, such as system requirements and known issues, can be found in the project's release announcement and in the release notes.
Linux Mint 3 "Debian Edition" -- The welcome window and application menu
(full image size: 471kB, resolution: 1280x1024 pixels)
Version 26.0 of 4MLinux, a minimalist distribution for desktops (with JWM) and servers (with the complete LAMP stack), has been released. The project's latest stable build comes with upgraded packages as well as support for modern image and video encoding: "The status of the 4MLinux 26.0 series has been changed to stable. Edit your documents with LibreOffice 6.1.0 and GNOME Office (AbiWord 3.0.2, GIMP 2.10.6, Gnumeric 1.12.43), share your files using DropBox 55.4.171, surf the Internet with Firefox 61.0.2 and Chromium 68.0.3440.75, stay in touch with your friends via Thunderbird 52.9.1 and Skype for Web, enjoy your music collection with Audacious 3.10, watch your favorite videos with VLC 3.0.3 and mpv 0.28.2, play games powered by Mesa 17.3.7 and Wine 3.14. You can also setup the 4MLinux LAMP Server (Linux 4.14.64, Apache 2.4.34, MariaDB 10.3.9, PHP 5.6.37 and PHP 7.2.9). Perl 5.26.1, Python 2.7.14 and Python 3.6.4 are also available. 4MLinux 26.0 comes with some new features: Tcl/Tk (with a collection of small games) has been integrated into 4MLinux, Engrampa (archive manager) is finally able to open Debian packages, Git in 4MLinux has now both GUI and cgit web interface...." Continue to the release announcement for more details.
Linux From Scratch 8.3
Bruce Dubbs has announced the release of version 8.3 of Linux From Scratch (LFS) and Beyond Linux From Scratch (BLFS). LFS is a book that provides step-by-step instructions on how to build a base Linux system from scratch. BLFS expands on the LFS book by giving further lessons on compiling X Window System, window managers and desktop environments, as well as many popular desktop and server packages and their dependencies, thus enabling the user to custom-build a range of diverse Linux systems. From the release announcement: "The Linux From Scratch community is pleased to announce the release of LFS version 8.3, LFS version 8.3 (systemd), BLFS version 8.3, and BLFS version 8.3 (systemd). This release is a major update to both LFS and BLFS. The LFS release includes updates to glibc 2.28, Binutils 2.31.1 and GCC 8.2.0. Changes to text have been made throughout the book. The Linux kernel has also been updated to version 4.18.5. The BLFS edition includes approximately 1,000 packages beyond the base Linux From Scratch version 8.3 book. This release has about 700 updates from the previous version, in addition to numerous text and formatting changes."
* * * * *
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: 1,005
- Total data uploaded: 21.1TB
|Upcoming Releases and Announcements
Summary of expected upcoming releases
Verifying ISO downloads
In our Questions and Answers column this week we discuss verifying an ISO file has not been corrupted (or tampered with) during the download process. There are a number of ways to try to insure the file we have is the same one published by a distribution's team, or at least that the file has not been changed during transit. These approaches include manually confirming file hashes, checking signing keys or having a torrent client verify a file's contents. We would like to know what, if any, methods our readers use to confirm the file they have downloaded has not been altered.
You can see the results of our previous poll on using sudo or su to perform administration tasks in last week's edition. All previous poll results can be found in our poll archives.
Verifying ISO downloads
|I use checksums/hashes: ||606 (37%)|
| I check the signing key: ||38 (2%)|
| My torrent client verifies the download: ||141 (9%)|
| A combination of the above options: ||275 (17%)|
| I use another method to verify downloads: ||21 (1%)|
| I do not verify my ISO downloads: ||549 (34%)|
New projects added to database
Clu Linux Live
Clu Linux Live is a Debian-based live distribution which features a command line interface. The live disc can be used to rescue files, clone partitions, and share files over Samba and OpenSSH connections.
* * * * *
DistroWatch database summary
* * * * *
This concludes this week's issue of DistroWatch Weekly. The next instalment will be published on Monday, 10 September 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
|• Issue 824 (2019-07-22): Hexagon OS 1.0, Mageia publishes updated media, Fedora unveils Fedora CoreOS, managing disk usage with quotas|
|• Issue 823 (2019-07-15): Debian 10, finding 32-bit packages on a 64-bit system, Will Cooke discusses Ubuntu's desktop, IBM finalizes purchase of Red Hat|
|• Issue 822 (2019-07-08): Mageia 7, running development branches of distros, Mint team considers Snap, UBports to address Google account access|
|• Issue 821 (2019-07-01): OpenMandriva 4.0, Ubuntu's plan for 32-bit packages, Fedora Workstation improvements, DragonFly BSD's smaller kernel memory|
|• Issue 820 (2019-06-24): Clear Linux and Guix System 1.0.1, running Android applications using Anbox, Zorin partners with Star Labs, Red Hat explains networking bug, Ubuntu considers no longer updating 32-bit packages|
|• Issue 819 (2019-06-17): OS108 and Venom, renaming multiple files, checking live USB integrity, working with Fedora's Modularity, Ubuntu replacing Chromium package with snap|
|• Issue 818 (2019-06-10): openSUSE 15.1, improving boot times, FreeBSD's status report, DragonFly BSD reduces install media size|
|• Issue 817 (2019-06-03): Manjaro 18.0.4, Ubuntu Security Podcast, new Linux laptops from Dell and System76, Entroware Apollo|
|• Issue 816 (2019-05-27): Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8.0, creating firewall rules, Antergos shuts down, Matthew Miller answers questions about Fedora|
|• Issue 815 (2019-05-20): Sabayon 19.03, Clear Linux's developer features, Red Hat explains MDS flaws, an overview of mobile distro options|
|• Issue 814 (2019-05-13): Fedora 30, distributions publish Firefox fixes, CentOS publishes roadmap to 8.0, Debian plans to use Wayland by default|
|• Issue 813 (2019-05-06): ROSA R11, MX seeks help with systemd-shim, FreeBSD tests unified package management, interview with Gael Duval|
|• Issue 812 (2019-04-29): Ubuntu MATE 19.04, setting up a SOCKS web proxy, Scientific Linux discontinued, Red Hat takes over Java LTS support|
|• Issue 811 (2019-04-22): Alpine 3.9.2, rsync examples, Ubuntu working on ZFS support, Debian elects new Project Leader, Obarun releases S6 tools|
|• Issue 810 (2019-04-15): SolydXK 201902, Bedrock Linux 0.7.2, Fedora phasing out Python 2, NetBSD gets virtual machine monitor|
|• Issue 809 (2019-04-08): PCLinuxOS 2019.02, installing Falkon and problems with portable packages, Mint offers daily build previews, Ubuntu speeds up Snap packages|
|• Issue 808 (2019-04-01): Solus 4.0, security benefits and drawbacks to using a live distro, Gentoo gets GNOME ports working without systemd, Redox OS update|
|• Issue 807 (2019-03-25): Pardus 17.5, finding out which user changed a file, new Budgie features, a tool for browsing FreeBSD's sysctl values|
|• Issue 806 (2019-03-18): Kubuntu vs KDE neon, Nitrux's znx, notes on Debian's election, SUSE becomes an independent entity|
|• Issue 805 (2019-03-11): EasyOS 1.0, managing background services, Devuan team debates machine ID file, Ubuntu Studio works to remain an Ubuntu Community Edition|
|• Issue 804 (2019-03-04): Condres OS 19.02, securely erasing hard drives, new UBports devices coming in 2019, Devuan to host first conference|
|• Issue 803 (2019-02-25): Septor 2019, preventing windows from stealing focus, NetBSD and Nitrux experiment with virtual machines, pfSense upgrading to FreeBSD 12 base|
|• Issue 802 (2019-02-18): Slontoo 18.07.1, NetBSD tests newer compiler, Fedora packaging Deepin desktop, changes in Ubuntu Studio|
|• Issue 801 (2019-02-11): Project Trident 18.12, the meaning of status symbols in top, FreeBSD Foundation lists ongoing projects, Plasma Mobile team answers questions|
|• Issue 800 (2019-02-04): FreeNAS 11.2, using Ubuntu Studio software as an add-on, Nitrux developing znx, matching operating systems to file systems|
|• Issue 799 (2019-01-28): KaOS 2018.12, Linux Basics For Hackers, Debian 10 enters freeze, Ubuntu publishes new version for IoT devices|
|• Issue 798 (2019-01-21): Sculpt OS 18.09, picking a location for swap space, Solus team plans ahead, Fedora trying to get a better user count|
|• Issue 797 (2019-01-14): Reborn OS 2018.11.28, TinyPaw-Linux 1.3, dealing with processes which make the desktop unresponsive, Debian testing Secure Boot support|
|• Issue 796 (2019-01-07): FreeBSD 12.0, Peppermint releases ISO update, picking the best distro of 2018, roundtable interview with Debian, Fedora and elementary developers|
|• Issue 795 (2018-12-24): Running a Pinebook, interview with Bedrock founder, Alpine being ported to RISC-V, Librem 5 dev-kits shipped|
|• Issue 794 (2018-12-17): Void 20181111, avoiding software bloat, improvements to HAMMER2, getting application overview in GNOME Shell|
|• Issue 793 (2018-12-10): openSUSE Tumbleweed, finding non-free packages, Debian migrates to usrmerge, Hyperbola gets FSF approval|
|• Issue 792 (2018-1203): GhostBSD 18.10, when to use swap space, DragonFly BSD's wireless support, Fedora planning to pause development schedule|
|• Issue 791 (2018-11-26): Haiku R1 Beta1, default passwords on live media, Slax and Kodachi update their media, dual booting DragonFly BSD on EFI|
|• Issue 790 (2018-11-19): NetBSD 8.0, Bash tips and short-cuts, Fedora's networking benchmarked with FreeBSD, Ubuntu 18.04 to get ten years of support|
|• Issue 789 (2018-11-12): Fedora 29 Workstation and Silverblue, Haiku recovering from server outage, Fedora turns 15, Debian publishes updated media|
|• Issue 788 (2018-11-05): Clu Linux Live 6.0, examining RAM consumpion, finding support for older CPUs, more Steam support for running Windows games on Linux, update from Solus team|
|• Issue 787 (2018-10-29): Lubuntu 18.10, limiting application access to specific users, Haiku hardware compatibility list, IBM purchasing Red Hat|
|• Issue 786 (2018-10-22): elementary OS 5.0, why init keeps running, DragonFly BSD enables virtual machine memory resizing, KDE neon plans to drop older base|
|• Issue 785 (2018-10-15): Reborn OS 2018.09, Nitrux 1.0.15, swapping hard drives between computers, feren OS tries KDE spin, power savings coming to Linux|
|• Issue 784 (2018-10-08): Hamara 2.1, improving manual pages, UBports gets VoIP app, Fedora testing power saving feature|
|• Issue 783 (2018-10-01): Quirky 8.6, setting up dual booting with Ubuntu and FreeBSD, Lubuntu switching to LXQt, Mint works on performance improvements|
|• Issue 782 (2018-09-24): Bodhi Linux 5.0.0, Elive 3.0.0, Solus publishes ISO refresh, UBports invites feedback, Linux Torvalds plans temporary vacation|
|• Issue 781 (2018-09-17): Linux Mint 3 "Debian Edition", file systems for SSDs, MX makes installing Flatpaks easier, Arch team answers questions, Mageia reaches EOL|
|• Issue 780 (2018-09-10): Netrunner 2018.08 Rolling, Fedora improves language support, how to customize Kali Linux, finding the right video drivers|
|• Issue 779 (2018-09-03): Redcore 1806, keeping ISO downloads safe from tampering, Lubuntu makes Calamares more flexible, Ubuntu improves GNOME performance|
|• Issue 778 (2018-08-27): GuixSD 0.15.0, ReactOS 0.4.9, Steam supports Windows games on Linux, Haiku plans for beta, merging disk partitions|
|• Issue 777 (2018-08-20): YunoHost 18.104.22.168, limiting process resource usage, converting file systems on Fedora, Debian turns 25, Lubuntu migrating to Wayland|
|• Issue 776 (2018-08-13): NomadBSD 1.1, Maximum storage limits on Linux, openSUSE extends life for 42.3, updates to the Librem 5 phone interface|
|• Issue 775 (2018-08-06): Secure-K OS 18.5, Linux is about choice, Korora tests community spin, elementary OS hires developer, ReactOS boots on Btrfs|
|• Issue 774 (2018-07-30): Ubuntu MATE & Ubuntu Budgie 18.04, upgrading software from source, Lubuntu shifts focus, NetBSD changes support policy|
|• Issue 773 (2018-07-23): Peppermint OS 9, types of security used by different projects, Mint reacts to bugs in core packages, Slackware turns 25|
|• Full list of all issues|
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Firefly Linux was a lightweight operating system designed with netbooks in mind. Based on Arch Linux, it comes with the small and fast LXDE desktop environment, many popular applications, and out-of-the-box support for wireless networks, sound cards and graphics cards. Firefly Linux includes some non-free software, including the Flash browser plugin and Skype telephony software, while thousands of additional packages are available for installation via the distribution's command-line or graphical package management tools.