| DistroWatch Weekly
|DistroWatch Weekly, Issue 820, 24 June 2019
Welcome to this year's 25th issue of DistroWatch Weekly!
Most people use operating systems to run applications. Put another way: people are usually more interested in the tools they can use with their operating system rather than the operating system itself. This often leads to people wanting to run applications native to one operating system on another platform. As a result we often see people using tools like WINE and virtual machines to get packages working across multiple systems. In our Tips and Tricks column we discuss Anbox, a tool which can be used to run Android applications on a GNU/Linux desktop. Anbox is not only useful on the desktop, but may also pave the way to allowing GNU/Linux users to run Android applications on their mobile devices. Our Opinion Poll asks whether our readers use Anbox or a similar technology to run Android software on GNU/Linux systems. In our News section we discuss Debian's ongoing work to port packages to the RISC-V CPU architecture while Ubuntu plans to drop 32-bit packages and Zorin partners with Star Labs. We also link to a helpful guide from Red Hat which discusses a networking vulnerability that was recently discovered in the Linux kernel and how to deal with it. In our Feature Story this week we take quick looks at Clear Linux and Guix System, two experimental distributions. Clear Linux places a focus on performance and optimizations while Guix System showcases advanced package management techniques. Plus we are pleased to share the releases of the past week and list the torrents we are seeding. We wish you all a wonderful week and happy reading!
- Review: Clear Linux and Guix System 1.0.1
- News: Debian's progressing RISC-V port, Ubuntu dropping 32-bit packages, Red Hat explains networking bug, Zorin partners with Star Labs
- Tips and tricks: Running Android applications on GNU/Linux with Anbox
- Released last week: PCLinuxOS 2019.06, DragonFly BSD 5.6.0, Alpine 3.10.0
- Torrent corner: Alpine, Container, DragonFly, IPFire, OSMC, PCLinuxOS, SmartOS, Tails
- Opinion poll: Running Android apps on GNU/Linux
- New distributions: bluebuntu
- Reader comments
|Feature Story (by Jesse Smith)
Clear Linux 29590
Clear Linux is a rolling release distro that places a strong emphasis on performance. The distribution focuses on providing optimizations for Intel (and compatible) CPU platforms and often scores well in benchmark tests.
I previously experimented briefly with Clear Linux in 2017 and found it to be very minimal in its features. The distribution presented users with a command line interface by default and, while it was possible to install a desktop environment from the project's repositories, it was not focused on desktop computing. These days Clear Linux is available in several editions. There are separate builds for command line and desktop editions, along with cloud and specially tailored virtual machine builds.
I downloaded the distribution's live desktop edition which was a 2.2GB compressed file. Expanding the download unpacks a 2.3GB ISO. It actually took longer for me to decompress the file than it would have to download the extra 100MB so the compression used on the archive is probably not practical.
Trying to boot from the live desktop media quickly resulted in Clear Linux running into a kernel panic and refusing to start. This was done trying version 29410 of the distribution and, since new versions come along almost every day, I waited a while and then downloaded another version: Clear Linux 29590. The new version had an ISO approximately the same size and, after it passed its checksum, it too failed to boot due to a kernel panic.
I have used Clear Linux on this system before and, though it technically utilizes an AMD CPU, that was not an issue during my previous trial. The current situation does make me wonder if Clear Linux might have optimized itself so much that it is no longer capable of running on previous generation processors.
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Guix System 1.0.1
Since my time with Clear Linux was cut short, I decided to experiment with another operating system, this time turning to Guix System. Guix is a package manager in the same family as Nix and Guix System (formerly Guix System Distribution) is built around the Guix package manager. Through Guix, the operating system provides advanced package management features such as transactional upgrades and roll-backs, reproducible build environments, unprivileged package management, and per-user profiles. It uses low-level mechanisms from the Nix package manager, but packages are defined as native Guile modules, using extensions to the Scheme language.
The Guix System project recently published version 1.0.0 which introduced a new installer as previously the distribution was set up manually from the command line.. The developers then published an update, version 1.0.1, to fix a path error which prevented the Xfce desktop from loading in some situations. I downloaded version 1.0.1 which, when compressed, was a 244MB download. Once the ISO was decompressed, it took up 1.3GB of space.
Booting from the Guix System (hereafter simply referred to as Guix) media brings up a series of text-based menus. These menus ask us to select our preferred language and our region of the world from lists. We are then given the choice of installing the distribution manually from the command line or using a guided installer. I went with the guided option.
We are then asked to select our time zone and keyboard layout from more lists. The text-based installer then asks how we would like to handle partitioning: guided, guided with encryption, or manual. I went with the manual option and discovered the installer itself cannot be used to create, delete or resize existing disk partitions. If we need to change the disk's layout we can switch to a terminal shell and run the cfdisk utility, or run a live distribution with a partitioning tool prior to working with Guix. Once the disk is partitioned the installer then guides us through assigning partitions to mount points and, optionally, formatting partitions with the Btrfs, ext4, or FAT filesystems. We can also assign a partition to be used as swap space.
Next, the installer asks us to make up a hostname for the system, create a password for the root account and create at least one username/password combination. We can create additional user accounts if we wish. We are then asked to pick one or more desktop environments to install with options including GNOME, Xfce, MATE, Enlightenment, Openbox, awesome, i3, and ratpoison. I decided to go with MATE. The last step asks what extras we would like to enable with the three options being OpenSSH, Tor and Mozilla NSS certificates. I stuck with just the certificates.
The installer then disappeared and the screen went blank for a while, then printed a message which read: "shepherd: Service cow-store has been started." Then it looked like the installer was downloading packages and the system displays progress as packages are copied to the hard drive. In my case the copy process took a little over an hour. Once the installer finishes we can reboot the computer to get started using Guix.
The first time I loaded Guix the boot process took an unusually long time. At one point the system appeared to lock up for about five minutes before continuing. In the end, from boot menu to graphical login screen, the start-up time totalled about ten minutes. Curiously, after the first boot, Guix started up considerably faster, generally taking less than a minute to arrive at the login screen.
Signing into my account from the login screen brought up the MATE desktop. The interface uses a two-panel layout with the Applications, Places and System menus in the upper-left corner of the screen. The system tray is placed in the upper-right. The second panel houses the task switcher and sits at the bottom of the display.
Guix system 1.0.1 -- Running the Icecat web browser
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Guix System currently runs version 1.22.0 of the MATE desktop. I found the desktop was generally responsive and presented with default settings and themes. This makes the interface somewhat less appealing to look at than MATE on other distributions, but familiar and easy to navigate.
When I ran Guix inside a VirtualBox virtual machine I found the system did not automatically integrate with the host system. In particular, resizing the VirtualBox window would not resize the MATE desktop. However, I could go into the MATE settings panel and manually adjust the display to fit my monitor. The MATE desktop worked smoothly and performance tended to be good. There was some sluggishness when moving or resizing windows, but this could be fixed by disabling compositing in the MATE settings.
When running on a workstation, Guix generally performed well. Most of my hardware was detected and the distribution ran quickly on my physical hardware. My one issue when testing Guix on a physical machine was the operating system could not detect my computer's wireless card. I suspect the wireless card requires non-free firmware which the GNU project does not wish to distribute.
An issue I ran into in both test environments was I could not shut down or reboot the computer from within the MATE session. I could logout of the MATE desktop and shutdown or reboot from the graphical login screen, but I could not poweroff the machine while logged in.
When signed into the desktop, Guix used about 375MB of RAM and a fresh install consumed 3.8GB of disk space. These resource requirements are a little on the low end, but the distribution also ships with few applications and services, and resource requirements naturally climbed as I added more features.
Guix ships with a small collection of desktop utilities, including a document viewer, dictionary, text editor, archive manager and the Caja file manager. NetworkManager is included to help us get on-line, and there is a system monitor and the MATE settings panel. I did not find any web browser, media player or productivity software on the system. The basic GNU command line tools and manual pages are available. In the background we find Guix runs the Shepherd init software and version 5.1.2 of the Linux kernel.
For the most part the default applications worked well. One of the few issues I ran into was with the screen lock functionality. If I left the computer alone for half an hour, the screen would lock. When I came back, sometimes the screen would show me a password prompt and allow me to login. Other times the screen would remain blank and not respond to input. In these instances, I could switch to a text terminal using Ctrl-Alt-F2 and then switch back to the desktop (Ctrl-Alt-F7). At that point the password prompt would appear and I could access my MATE session again.
A complication some users of Guix System may have is the distribution does not have a graphical front-end to its Guix package manager, and local guides can be hard to find. The MATE help files do not extend to package management, the Guix manual page simply refers us to the Info page, and there is no web browser. This makes it is somewhat challenging to learn about this distribution's centrepiece, its advanced package manager. Even the command "guix --help" only lists the commands the package manager recognizes without any explanation. This makes it difficult to find out, for instance, what the difference is between "guix archive", "guix pack" and "guix package". In short, we should either already know how to use Guix or have a second computer available to look up documentation and examples.
I experimented a little with the package manager, usually following examples in the on-line documentation, but sometimes just running commands which looked familiar to see what they would do. For instance, running "guix refresh" appears to download package data, but then stopped with an error, reporting the user needed to set a token environment variable, which could be found on GitHub. This seemed like a poor arrangement since the distribution doesn't ship with a web browser or Git client.
The "guix upgrade" command can be used to upgrade installed packages. Sometimes this command completed silently and, one assumes, successfully. Other times the command would print a message saying the user should run two other commands: "Consider running 'guix pull' followed by 'guix package -u' to get up-to-date packages and security updates." This seems strange since "guix upgrade" is an alias to "guix package -u". This advice is printed even if the last two commands to be run were "guix pull" followed by "guix upgrade".
Guix system 1.0.1 -- Asked to run update after updating
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I further discovered that "guix search <word>" could be used to locate packages by name or description. Then the "guix install <package>" would download and install the package. I found "guix search" tends to return a lot of unrelated programs and the results typically were not helpful. Usually I had better luck using "guix package --list-available | grep <word>" to list all available packages and then filter down the ones I might want by keywords.
It is worth noting that the package manager installs programs into the path of the user who runs the package manager. In other words, if I install the Icecat web browser, the browser is in my path, but not visible to other users. Each user gets their own collection of applications. At first this may seem complicated and problematic as it means each user needs to install their own copy of programs. However, it also allows for some flexibility. I can install cutting-edge browsers and development tools while another user installs long-term support versions and conservative tools. Guix allows each user to set up their applications independently.
While Guix, in theory, allows for some very flexible and powerful package management, including roll-backs on transactions, isolated package stores for each user, and generational package versions we can move through, forwards or backwards, I ran into several problems in practise. For example, when I first installed the Icecat browser ("guix install icecat") the download appeared to have completed successfully. But then I could not launch the browser; it was not in my path. I re-ran "guix install icecat" and it again appeared to complete successfully and then I could launch the browser.
Similar issues cropped up often. For instance, after installing Icecat, I installed a few other desktop programs and then found Icecat had disappeared from my path again. The new programs worked, but the web browser did not. I simply downloaded the browser again and then it worked, along with my other applications. This happened a few times with various programs, like the GNU Image Manipulation Program and LibreOffice seemingly disappearing from my path and working again once I had run "guix install <package>" again.
A less significant problem was newly installed programs were not added to my application menu until I had rebooted the computer. I tried logging out and signing back into MATE, but that was not enough to make programs like LibreOffice show up in my menu. Rebooting though did make freshly installed programs appear in the menu.
Guix system 1.0.1 -- LibreOffice running, but not showing up in application menu yet
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Last, and probably least, I found the Guix package manager to be slow. Granted, it has a lot of extra things to do, but installing even small applications which would take a matter of seconds using pacman or apt could take a few minutes. Guix offers us a lot of flexibility and power, but it comes with a performance trade off.
I only played with Guix System for a few days, but the big issue which kept leaping out at me was the distribution's unpredictability. I was never sure from one hour to the next if a package I had installed would still be available, or if programs were still going to be in my application menu, or if software had been properly updated after running "guix pull; guix upgrade" since the system would immediately tell me to run those same commands over again. These concerns, along with the performance impact of using Guix for package management, make me think most users will not find this distribution has a practical approach.
My own findings surprised me somewhat as I have used, and enjoyed, NixOS in the past and appreciated Nix's many advanced package manipulation features without experiencing the same problems. In fact, I have recommended people run Nix on other distributions as the package manager can be dropped onto other systems like Debian and work smoothly and independently of the host system's default package manager. Nix and Guix share a lot of the same goals and designs, but the practical results were, for me, like night and day. The underlying concepts were similar, but the practise of using Nix and Guix were entirely different and the latter, in my experiments this week, was unreliable.
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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, Ralink RT5390R PCIe Wireless card
- Display: AMD Radeon HD 6410D video card
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Visitor supplied rating
Guix System has a visitor supplied average rating of: 7.9/10 from 19 review(s).
Have you used Guix System? You can leave your own review of the project on our ratings page.
|Miscellaneous News (by Jesse Smith)
Debian's progressing RISC-V port, Ubuntu dropping 32-bit packages, Red Hat explains networking bug, Zorin partners with Star Labs
RISC-V is an open instruction set for CPUs which has gained attention in recent years as more people seek to run their operating systems on open hardware. RISC-V is a potential alternative to popular CPU architectures such as x86 and ARM. Debian has a RISC-V port with many packages already building for the young architecture, but there is still work to be done. Part of the issue facing Debian's RISC-V porting efforts is a lack of available hardware for testing packages. A status update on the RISC-V port mentions: "Due to several reasons, among them the limited availability of hardware able to run this Debian port and the limited options to use bootloaders during all this time, the instructions to get Debian running on RISC-V are not the best, easiest, more elegant or very up to date. This is an area to improve in the next months. Meanwhile, there's a Debian RISC-V's wiki page with instructions to get a chroot working in a HiFive Unleashed board as shipped, without destroying the initial factory set-up. Specially Vagrant Cascadian and Karsten Merker have been working on the area of booting the system, and there are instructions to set-up a riscv64 QEMU VM and boot it with u-boot and opensbi."
* * * * *
Steve Langasek has reported that Ubuntu will be dropping support for 32-bit packages in Ubuntu 19.10 and future versions. "The Ubuntu engineering team has reviewed the facts before us and concluded that we should not continue to carry i386 forward as an architecture. Consequently, i386 will not be included as an architecture for the 19.10 release, and we will shortly begin the process of disabling it for the Eoan series across Ubuntu infrastructure." Information on this change and how it will affect people running Steam or other 32-bit packages can be found on Ubuntu's Discourse forum. The removal of 32-bit libraries may also affect people wishing to run 32-bit programs through WINE and other compatibility software, such as some console emulators.
* * * * *
Flaws in the way the Linux kernel, and some builds of other kernels such as FreeBSD's, process TCP networking have been discovered. The issue could be used by attackers to crash or otherwise disrupt a system that accepts TCP connections (which most servers and many workstations do). Patches to fix these flaws are available and many distributions have already fixed the issue. Red Hat has a detailed write-up on how the networking flaw works and offers steps to workaround the bug on machines that do not yet have the fix.
* * * * *
One of the tallest hurdles to getting new people trying Linux is the fact most computers ship with another operating system pre-installed. This is gradually changing as more companies are bundling flavours of Linux with their hardware. In a recent move the Zorin OS project partnered with Star Labs, a company based in the United Kingdom which sells laptops with Linux pre-installed. "Creating a Linux desktop experience that's accessible to everyone has always been our mission at Zorin OS. Today we're taking the next step in this mission by making Zorin OS easier for the masses to access: on new computers powered by Zorin OS. With computers designed to work with the software, we're aiming to partner with computer manufacturers to provide the most optimised and beautiful Zorin OS experience. To kick-start this new effort we're excited to collaborate with Star Labs, a UK-based manufacturer specialising in computers designed for Linux. Their critically-acclaimed lineup of laptops is now available with the choice of Zorin OS 15 Core pre-installed." An overview of two laptops that now ship with Zorin OS can be found on the project's blog.
* * * * *
These and other news stories can be found on our Headlines page.
|Tips and Tricks (by Jesse Smith)
Running Android applications on GNU/Linux with Anbox
When people learn that the popular mobile operating system Android runs on the Linux kernel, they tend to wonder: Can I run my Android apps on my Linux desktop? Unfortunately, the answer has typically been negative. While GNU/Linux distributions and Android both have a kernel in common, most of their components are different. If I may indulge in a car analogy, both airplanes and my car have wheels, but that doesn't mean my car will fly like an airplane, because their designs are very different.
There have been attempts to bring Android applications to GNU/Linux desktops and phones over the years and one of the more promising efforts toward that goal is Anbox. Anbox is a technology which puts the Android operating system inside a Linux container (LXC). This allows the unique Android components to run in isolation from the rest of the operating system and launch Android apps in their own windows on the user's GNU/Linux desktop.
Anbox is somewhat tied to the Ubuntu and UBports family of distributions. The install instructions rely on using the APT package manager, Snap packages and Ubuntu PPA repositories to get Anbox up and running. The install instructions can basically be broken down into three steps: installing the necessary Linux modules, installing the Anbox Snap, and then making it possible to install Android apps into Anbox.
In brief, here are the command line steps we need to take on Ubuntu, or a related distribution, to get Anbox working:
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:morphis/anbox-support
At this point there should be two new device files on our system. Specifically, we should find /dev/ashmem and /dev/binder now exist. We can test this by running:
sudo apt update
sudo apt install linux-headers-generic anbox-modules-dkms
sudo modprobe ashmem_linux
sudo modprobe binder_linux
ls /dev/ashmem /dev/binder
If the two devices are in place, their names will display after the ls command. Otherwise an error will be shown, indicating which file is missing.
The next step is to install the Anbox snap package. It is a large download and this can take a few minutes, even on a fast connection.
sudo snap install --devmode --beta anbox
Once installed the Anbox snap took up about 400MB of space on my drive.
The Anbox Application Manager
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At this point, assuming the package installs properly, we should have a new entry in the application menu called Anbox Application Manager. Launching this entry will open a window which shows apps that have been installed on Anbox. There are a handful of common Android apps pre-installed for us, including a photo gallery, contact manager, music player, calculator, clock, e-mail app and file manager. Some of these would open and work for me and others did not. The calculator worked as did the contact manager. The clock and e-mail apps opened, but showed only blank windows. The file manager failed to start on my machine and trying to open the music player caused Anbox to crash.
In short, I was experiencing mixed results. However, I was impressed that some Android applications were running at all. That is a big step forward.
Changing Android settings in Anbox
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Most people will probably want to try running other applications. It does not look as though Anbox can use the Google Play store to install software, but with the proper tool installed on our system we can download Android APK package files and install them. To do this we need to install a utility called Android Debug Bridge (ADB):
sudo apt install android-tools-adb
Then, once we have downloaded an APK package from the web (or other source) we can install it into the Anbox Application Manager, adding it to the Anbox window, by running
adb install package-name.apk
I tried this with a handful of applications, including a chess program (which worked perfectly), Firefox for Android (which failed to start), WhatsApp (which failed to install), and a game called Flow Free (which did not run). Again, a mixed experience.
Playing chess via Anbox
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The Anbox technology certainly holds promise. It can run some applications and I have watched demos where UBports developers have got Android packages running on their mobile platform. I think Anbox will certainly help bridge the app gap between Android and GNU/Linux mobile systems. However, the experience is not polished or entirely reliable yet. I wouldn't expect to watch Netflix or use Android's Skype app on my GNU/Linux desktop in the near future. Still, Anbox has made strong strides forward. Anbox is already running more smoothly and working better than it did a year ago and I'm hopeful progress will continue to be made.
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Additional tips can be found in our Tips and Tricks archive.
|Released Last Week
The developers of PCLinuxOS have announced the release of the project's latest stable build, version 2019.06. This systemd-free and beginner-friendly distribution features the just-released KDE Plasma 5.16 and the very latest Linux kernel 5.1.10: "PCLinuxOS 2019.06 KDE Full Edition has been released and is now available for download. Linux kernel 5.1.10, KDE Applications 19.04.2, KDE Frameworks 5.59.0, KDE Plasma 5.16.0. This ISO image comes with the standard compliment of KDE applications plus LibreOffice. Some additional applications include: Timeshift - backup and restore utility; Bitwarden - a free and open-source password management solution; Darktable - photo manipulation software; GIMP - image editing software; digiKam - image management software; Megasync - store your files in the cloud; Teamviewer - control another computer from yours; Rambox - store many applications in one place; Simplenotes - a note-taking application with markdown support; Kodi - a multimedia center; Kazam - a screen capture utility; Calibre - the one stop solution for all your e-book needs; Skrooge - banking software...." Here is the brief release announcement.
DragonFly BSD 5.6.0
The DragonFly BSD team has published a new stable version of the project's operating system. The new version, DragonFly BSD 5.6.0, introduces improved video driver support, performance improvements for the HAMMER2 advanced filesystem, and speed improvements for virtual machine environments. "HAMMER2: The filesystem sync code has been rewritten to significantly improve performance. Sequential write performance also improved. Add simple dependency tracking to prevent directory/file splits during create/rename/remove operations, for better consistency after a crash. Refactor the snapshot code to reduce flush latency and to ensure a consistent snapshot. Attempt to pipeline the flush code against the front-end, improving flush vs front-end write concurrency. Improve umount operation. Fix an allocator race that could lead to corruption. Numerous other bugs fixed. Improve verbosity of CHECK (CRC error) console messages." Further details can be found in the release announcement.
Alpine Linux 3.10.0
Alpine Linux is a community developed operating system designed for routers, firewalls, VPNs, VoIP boxes and servers. The C library used is musl and the base tools are all provided by BusyBox. The project's latest release is Alpine Linux 3.10.0 which introduces new hardware support and makes the LightDM display manager available in the distribution's repositories. Some key packages have also been dropped, removing legacy support and unmaintained items. The removed items are Qt4 (replaced by Qt5), TrueCrypt and MongoDB. "We are pleased to announce the release of Alpine Linux 3.10.0, the first in the v3.10 stable series. New features and noteworthy new packages: Support for Pine64LTS; iwd, a modern alternative for wpa_supplicant (EAP is not working yet); serial and Ethernet support for ARM boards; ceph, a distributed object store and filesystem; LightDM, a cross-desktop display manager." Further details can be found in the project's release announcement.
* * * * *
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: 1,461
- Total data uploaded: 26.1TB
|Upcoming Releases and Announcements
Summary of expected upcoming releases
|Opinion Poll (by Jesse Smith)
Running Android apps on GNU/Linux
One advantage Android has over GNU/Linux systems, especially in the mobile market, is the former's vast collection of software. With many users, whether they like Android or not, relying on Android apps it makes competition in the mobile ecosystem difficult. The Anbox project is working to get Android apps running on GNU/Linux systems, on both mobile and desktop machines.
This week we would like to know if you are using Anbox or another technology to run Android programs on GNU/Linux distributions.
You can see the results of our previous poll on renaming files in last week's edition. All previous poll results can be found in our poll archives.
Running Android apps on GNU/Linux
|I use Anbox on my desktop/laptop: ||9 (1%)|
| I use Anbox on my mobile device: ||14 (1%)|
| I plan to use Anbox in the future: ||185 (14%)|
| I use another tool to run Android apps on GNU/Linux: ||41 (3%)|
| I do not run Android apps on GNU/Linux: ||1097 (82%)|
|Website News (by Jesse Smith)
Distributions added to waiting list
- bluebuntu. bluebuntu is a distribution based on Xfce which uses the Openbox window manager and offers a classic Windows-style appearance.
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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, 1 July 2019. 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 • Ubuntu drops 32-bits (by Guido on 2019-06-24 01:35:51 GMT from Philippines) |
What a sad day! Now it is a final decision. No 32 bit support any more. I must stuck with 18.04 LTS or switch to Debian 10.
2 • Testing Clear & Guix Linux operating systems (by Greg Zeng on 2019-06-24 02:09:03 GMT from Australia)
Thank you Jesse for doing what most of us would not do: test these two Linux systems, for hours & hours. Then have both of them FAIL. I tried to use GuixSD (0.14.0) on a new test site: Distrotest.net. ("Clear" is not offered there.) Guix was so slow & buggy, that I gave up. On Distrotest.net, we are only allowed 20 minutes, plus 7 for further testing. These Linux operating systems are not my idea of "fun".
3 • Cear, Guix and the blues (by Triburcio on 2019-06-24 03:47:27 GMT from United States)
Maybe it's because Linux has reached a level of maturity, but lately I'm finding new offerings to be mostly of little use, haphazard, even childish. Jesse's review speaks for itself. Then I look at new waiting list additions and find bluebuntu. Reminds me of those people who used to put fake Rolls-Royce grilles on their Volkswagen Beetles. Really| I'm inspired to create my own distro, and call it fuschiabuntu.
4 • @ #1--Oh! You haven't heard the good news about Ubuntu's other version? (by R. Cain on 2019-06-24 03:48:56 GMT from United States)
"Latest news from the Linux Mint blog"
"Monthly News – May 2019"
"Sun, 02 Jun 2019 14:27:10 +0000"
"Will multiarch support be dropped in 19.2, given the announcement that Ubuntu is dropping 32-bit compatibility libraries in 19.10? Or will it survive via the 18.04 base until the release of Linux Mint 20? I’m asking because this change threatens to kill a large section of my games library…"
[Answer from "Clem"]:
June 21, 2019 at 2:01 pm
"It’s a very good question but it’s a little bit soon for us to answer. **It definitely means there won’t be a 32-bit version of Mint 20**, but we’ll do everything we can to ship functional versions of steam, wine and popular 32-bit libs and applications. *I can’t answer this without first knowing whether Ubuntu will address these issues*, but I can confirm these are important to us and we’ll make sure they’re not overlooked."
No further comment.
5 • Ubuntu and 32-bit support (by Alburgheiro on 2019-06-24 04:30:46 GMT from Russia)
Apparently, Ubuntu 19.10 will still provide 32-bit support but the compatibility libraries will no longer be upgraded. Instead, they will be retrieved from the 18.04 repos. In summary, Steam and Wine should still work.
6 • Clearlinux fail (by Tamada on 2019-06-24 06:03:36 GMT from Belgium)
This is kind of bad from me, but I'm actually not sad that the guys at Clearlinux get the publicity they deserve for their weird technical choices. The way they handle boot sequence, with a dependency to EFI and late loading of microcode updates is not to every motherboard or bios setup liking.
I finally managed to make it boot but It was a costly and stressful experience (bios update, then fix broken mbr with a Windows installation disc, then choosing an exotic option in the boot sequence (UEFI boot of the usb stick -> what ??) ) Honestly, that's a first. I never had to do anything remotely similar for any other distro.
If they ever want to go mainstream, they really should not require such DIY expertise from end users. They must fix that and achieve a much more failsafe and universal boot sequence.
7 • Clear Linux (by julian on 2019-06-24 07:00:17 GMT from Greece)
You tried to review Intel's operating system on a non-Intel processor! That's clear-ly interesting!
8 • Clear Linux not starting (by Pikolo on 2019-06-24 08:08:12 GMT from United Kingdom)
Is there any chance you switched the test computer to boot with BIOS instead of UEFI? I heard Clear Linux can only boot on UEFI
9 • Operating Systems (by fa-flyingalone on 2019-06-24 08:53:16 GMT from Australia)
Have to agree with @2 and @3, How many of these Distros get tested on real machines
A lot of Distros won't work on my old laptop( Core 2 ) and the same Distros also don't work on a near new desktop box ( i7 Coffeelake)
What do they test on, Do they download the iso file just like us ,go through the steps to run a live dvd or usb then install os to make sure it works,
Maybe there should a checklist for an os because some of them don't seem to care or have the experience to be offering a Distro.
Go to that problematic Distro's forum and the amount of problems and stuff ups is shameful,
or it's dead.
some Distros are consistently just a waste of time.
The effort to get them to work if you've got the patience, no not me.
Work or go in the bin !
They offer only a bad experience (for Window users who want to move on)
with no thought about the damage they do to the Linux brand.
Ahh I feel better now, Thanks for reading.
10 • Using 32-bit Still? (by The Rest of US on 2019-06-24 10:34:52 GMT from United States)
While I am sure there are use cases for your particular needs, the luddite-linux crowds constantly whining when 32-bit support is dropped is a little much isn't it?
With the exception of the parts of the global which no other technology could reach, there is no real reason to run X86 anymore, the last PC I repaired that used that architecture I saw nearly 5 years ago and it was barely alive then.
Maybe its time we just move on and stop complaining?
11 • 32-bit (by OneMore on 2019-06-24 11:55:53 GMT from United States)
64bit iso: 1500 downloads
32bit iso: 350 downloads
It seems that 32bit is still useful for a lot of people.
12 • @10: (by dragonmouth on 2019-06-24 12:21:28 GMT from United States)
No, NOT The Rest of US, just YOU. Just because YOU don't like 32 bits and YOU don't use 32 bits, does NOT mean that nobody else should use 32 bits. Why don't YOU limit yourself to working on Win 10 machines and leave US to use whatever WE want.
13 • frivolous distros (by Jordan on 2019-06-24 12:39:59 GMT from United States)
@3 yes I agree. But I also try to see it as linux lovers/likers having a bit of fun with developing and being picked up by Distrowatch, or submitting to DW for the fun of it.
It's okay. Perhaps one of them will uncork a great one at some point. Many have been doing it with Debian, Arch, Slackware, and Gentoo for decades.
14 • 32-bit (by George on 2019-06-24 13:12:11 GMT from South Africa)
Clearly there are less people willing to support 32bit and the cost outway the benefit. If some people find 32bit so important then get some funding to convince companies like Ubuntu to support it or support the distros that still offer it for as long as they can. It is an old architecture and support will die out. It is not a valuable skill for anyone to use or keep up to date as the hardware is not being produced anymore.
15 • Clear Linux (by Angel on 2019-06-24 13:21:29 GMT from Philippines)
I know it's really not my business, but I think Clear Linux deserves another review from you or someone else using Intel hardware. It seems like one one of the most interesting distros out there, and I was curious, so I downloaded and installed it in VBox, and it was as simple as any Ubuntu or Debian, except that it takes a while longer. The installer downloaded another 1.7GB, so it doesn't really install from the ISO. I like it enough to consider it for one of my regular laptops.
The website has good documentation, including a list of supported hardware from Atoms to i7s, but it does not include AMD. There's also a tool to check compatibility beforehand. Just seems a pity that what seems like such a worthwhile distro gets dismissed out of hand due to incompatible hardware.
16 • RE: 32-bit (by Sauron on 2019-06-24 13:27:28 GMT from United Kingdom)
@14. You and some others are clearly missing the point here! This is not just about dropping a 32 bit version of Ubuntu, but dropping all 32 bit multi-lib support altogether! This means NO 32 bit software or games will install or run at all, in the case of games that is more than 99% of them, NO wine and NO steam either as most of the steam games use 32 bit libs even if they are 64 bit! It's a crazy idea.
And no, a simple recompile is not an option in most cases.
You enjoy using your new 64 bit only distro, and leave us others to enjoy our multi-lib OS that will run almost anything.
After all, it doesn't affect you in any way whatsoever, even if the 32 bit libs were there!
17 • RE: 32-bit (by George on 2019-06-24 14:43:42 GMT from South Africa)
@16. If no one is willing to support it then you won't have it. There are reasons for them dropping it and some may be financial, but that is their decision. The point is you and others who want 32bit can either try and get distros to keep it or support it yourself. There seems to be some demand for it but I guess for most distros it just does not make sense to keep it due to its age and cost of maintaining. If it affects you so much then do something about it, especially if there are other people willing to join in. I am not saying that is good that they are killing 32bit, that's just the decision they made and they feel that there seems to be no compelling reason to keep it.
18 • @10 my 32bit machines keep on trucking (by DaveT on 2019-06-24 14:47:22 GMT from United Kingdom)
Good hardware keeps on working. So I have 32bit machines still running, mainly using OpenBSD because they intend to support old stuff for a looong time! And then, the servers I use do not need 64bit processors and 16GB or RAM, 32bit and 1GB of RAM does exactly what I need thank you.
19 • RE: 32-bit (by Sauron on 2019-06-24 15:12:26 GMT from United Kingdom)
@17. You're still missing the point altogether. Ubuntu doesn't maintain it, Debian does and Ubuntu includes it from upstream. I wouldn't think Debian will be ditching it for a long time to come!
As for your support it yourself comment, I don't need to thankfully, I don't use Ubuntu. I've used Debian based distro's for several years. I am extremely thankful for the work done by the Debian devs.
If I was to change base, it most certainly wouldn't be to a Ubuntu one although as many others did, I used Ubuntu for a few years.
This action certainly removes Ubuntu as the starting distro of choice for newcomers as it has been, that's the point!
20 • Loss of multilib option (by RJA on 2019-06-24 15:53:06 GMT from United States)
@17, This is terrible news for people who want to run older games on Linux!
Even Windows 10 supports 32-bit, IIRC, despite Satya Nadella having a reputation for changing things just for the sake of change!
21 • Ubuntu 32-bit support (by David on 2019-06-24 16:18:30 GMT from United Kingdom)
I can understand Ubuntu dropping support for 32-bit hardware but not their dropping the compatibility libraries needed for Wine. Most people who've commented on that have concentrated on games, but there are also some of us who have proprietary productivity software for 32-bit Windows for which there is no available replacement. By coincidence, I heard today of some-one who dual boots Linux and DOS as he has proprietary DOS software that he still needs.
22 • 32 bit (by dragonmouth on 2019-06-24 16:40:31 GMT from United States)
The dropping of 32 bit support is a lemming-like, me-too reaction, similar to the stampede to replace every init system with systemd. Monkey see, monkey do. Somebody, somewhere, for some reason decided that 32 bit Linux is obsolete and useless, so everybody is jumping on the bandwagon. FYI, there are PRE-32 bit systems still being used successfully. They may be only supported in-house but they ARE in use.
Nobody is preventing you from using bleeding-edge 64 bit distros so return the favor and don't prevent those wishing to from using 32 bit obsolete and useless distros. Linux is about choice for all, not just for bleeding edge.
23 • Clear Linux (by Teresa e Junior on 2019-06-24 18:10:24 GMT from Brazil)
No surprise Clear Linux fails to boot on an AMD CPU. It is a distro optimized by Intel and for modern Intel hardware, hence its huge performance boost over other distros.
24 • Clear Linux and CPUs (by Jesse on 2019-06-24 19:12:43 GMT from Canada)
A few people have suggested that the Clear Linux review should be retried with an Intel CPU in case running it on an AMD processor was what caused the failure to boot.
As it happens, I did run the Clear Linux compatibility script on one of my Intel machines and it reported the Intel CPU was also not compatible with Clear Linux's optimizations.
While both processors are 64-bit and support UEFI booting, neither is compatible with Clear Linux. You can check your own CPU's compatibility with Clear Linux using their script: https://clearlinux.org/documentation/clear-linux/get-started/compatibility-check#compatibility-check
25 • @23 re: Clear Linux (by Rev_Don on 2019-06-24 19:14:12 GMT from United States)
Clear does list it's requirements on the site and Jesse's AMD A4 3420 does not meet the minimum requirements. Setting aside that it is an AMD processor it also lacks SSE4.1 or SSE4.2. It's quite possible that a previous release would run on his AMD A4 3420, but that doesn't mean that the latest version would, or should be able to. That's why they post minimum requirements
26 • 32 bit (by Titus_Groan on 2019-06-24 19:21:54 GMT from New Zealand)
If 32bit is important to YOU, just use a Distro that supports 32bit Libs.
ok, there may be a learning curve for YOU, which isnt a bad thing anyway.
different packager, syntax... etc
27 • Plenty of choices (by Who Dat on 2019-06-24 19:56:34 GMT from United States)
Does anyone else find it ironic that some are complaining about the right to have their choices not infringed upon, yet demanding people to not make their own choice about what software they want to support? Most fascinating.
28 • Clear Linux, performance, compatibility (by Angel on 2019-06-24 20:01:25 GMT from Philippines)
@23, While Clear Linux is doing some interesting things, but I don't see a huge, or even small performance boost. On the contrary, the Gnome and Plasma desktops use more resources than on neon or Ubuntu.
Compatibility: I have an i3 4th gen, an i5 5th gen and an i3 6th gen. All support UEFI and are compatible, However, since two of them are on legacy boot, I can only run Clear Linux on one. The others can run it in a container or VM.
29 • android apps on linux (by ricky on 2019-06-24 23:06:11 GMT from Netherlands)
Whilst the option to be able to run those on linux is useful, there isn't anything i would want to run. Mostly in part due to the fact that the playstore is full of spyware and software plagued with adverts.
Mostly the reason i rarely use the android phone i own. I can't think of one game or productivity app that doesn't have adverts, which might be useful over something already available on linux itself.
I suppose, i you are developing apps for android, it's nice to be able to run them on the desktop... but besides that i personally have no use for it.
30 • an ounce of prevention (by Angel on 2019-06-25 01:22:26 GMT from Philippines)
"Nobody is preventing you from using bleeding-edge 64 bit distros so return the favor and don't prevent those wishing to from using 32 bit obsolete and useless distros. Linux is about choice for all, not just for bleeding edge."
@22 and others: No one is preventing anyone from doing anything. Ubuntu, and other distros that may want to, simply will not be offering some choices. That does not prevent anyone from using something that does offer those choices, if available. No one has an innate right to demand their choice from others, whether they be corporations or individuals cooking up distros in their kitchens. There are hundreds of active Linux distros. Use one that offers your choice. A choice, not a right.
Complain about Ubuntu's decision if you must, it's allowed on this and other forums. It is also allowed for you to use ancient hardware if you wish. But if others agree with Ubuntu's choice and tell you so, that is also allowed.
31 • 32bit support (by Vern on 2019-06-25 01:28:32 GMT from United States)
Read this info regarding 32bit support for Steam, games, wine and such:
32 • download statistics (by tim on 2019-06-25 01:37:55 GMT from United States)
@11 Bear in mind that many other download channels exist (download mirrors, torrents)
Folks interested in 32-bit may gravitate toward using torrents, downloading in dribs n drabs across multiple sessions, as their (possibly intermittent) net connectivity permits.
True story: in recent memory, one of my torrent downloads (it was a large gaming-related archivefile) took 6 months to complete. I was quite tickled when it finally completed, surpised that it actually did eventually complete. In appreciation, or what's the right word, I continued seeding that file for an additional year. Ignored by the FirstWorld, we fend for ourselves, and each other, as best we can.
33 • @32 variety world (by Angel on 2019-06-25 02:11:45 GMT from Philippines)
"Ignored by the FirstWorld, we fend for ourselves, and each other, as best we can." You are in the US, tim? I feel for you. Here in the First World, I have pretty good internet at an affordable price.:) But seriously, I would think that Linux people who dabble with older stuff should be familiar with torrents, or at least SourceForge. Just here on DW, I can find a large variety of torrents if I need.
34 • Anbox (sse4..) (by zykoda on 2019-06-25 06:40:56 GMT from United Kingdom)
I had to upgrade my CPU from Phenom 2 X4 955 to FX8320 to make Anbox work at all, The problem was that sse4a, sse4_1 and sse4_2 "instructions" are required. With mint 18.3, post upgrade I found some working applications. Incidentally the upgrade was not primarily for anbox, but to support 8 threads via openmp using single precision C math functions. But a double whammy this time.
35 • Android Linux frustrations (by flybye on 2019-06-25 06:51:11 GMT from United Kingdom)
Tried a couple of Android-capable Linux distros (what happened to them?) but the experience wasn't good.
@9 Linux binned: like some others, you probly have to work twice as hard to get things working. We all feel for u. It's good to express your frustrations - as you say, it allows you to move on. Good luck on your journey, may the OS gods smile on u.
36 • 32bit (by OstroL on 2019-06-25 08:42:29 GMT from Poland)
It is on the way out. And, that's normal. It would be hard for the Linux distro developers to keep maintaining 32bit continuously, and with little resources they have now. The developer teams are becoming smaller and smaller these days. The big Linux companies had sold out or selling out their firms to other business entities. If the bottom line won't hold, they's close shop. So, in a way, its best they drop support for 32bit and concentrate on what they can. Maybe, the community can help on maintaining the 32bit software, if they plan to keep on gaming, or using any other 32bit apps. Anyway, 32bit is going away, so its best to get the divorce earlier, without the hurt.
37 • no Android on Linux (by MikeOh Shark on 2019-06-25 10:51:13 GMT from Austria)
I don't care if Android runs on my Linux. I would rather run Linux on Android.
Somehow, I don't think big G would let me run firejail and iptables on their Android and they would not let me get root easily so I will stick with a flip phone that just makes phone calls. ;)
38 • RE: 32-bit (by George on 2019-06-25 10:56:16 GMT from South Africa)
@19 Then support Debian, you have a choice. Ubuntu has made theirs.
@20 Yes it is bad news for the people who use it, so these people need to make their voices heard and support distros that still include it.
39 • 32 bit drama is a non issue now. (by Garon on 2019-06-25 12:04:32 GMT from United States)
To everyone that has an opinion on the 32 bit Ubuntu decision, they need to read the link that Vern supplied. It sits everything straight. Ubuntu users won't have to worry for a long time about losing WINE or Steam, or whatever. But know this, eventually it will happen, for all desktop distros. People will still find a way to run their old software. Look at the people still playing with 8 bit machines, so I'm sure someone in the future will support a 32 bit distro.
40 • Canonical's (32-bit) Snap trickery (by Dr. E.S. Ktorp on 2019-06-25 12:28:49 GMT from United States)
In Canonical's hellish endgame, all 32-bit dependencies will be contained within snap files.
41 • RE Post 36: 32bit (by curious on 2019-06-25 13:08:06 GMT from Germany)
Then goodbye Linux.
64bit Windows still runs 32bit software, and most Windows software even today uses 32bit installers - even if the software to be installed is 64bit. So that is not going away anytime soon.
Having an alternative to Windows is a good thing. And in many cases, Linux is that alternative and even does things better, at least up to now.
If Linux developers want to stop providing an alternative, that is fine for them. When that happens, I'm done.
42 • 32 bit (by Dave Postles on 2019-06-25 13:40:11 GMT from United Kingdom)
I think that there is a sufficient number of developers continuing with 32-bit, esp. composing Debian. I'm currently using AntiX on my ancient netbook. I take it as the most portable kit on my research trips.Until recently, I ran Slitaz on it. All I need for research trips are Writer and Base. If they discontinue support for 32-bit, I'll just not use it in a connected environment (and I don't do that much anyway).
43 • @ 37 Android on Linux? (by OstroL on 2019-06-25 15:09:19 GMT from Poland)
"I don't care if Android runs on my Linux. I would rather run Linux on Android."
The thing is, both Android OS and GNU OS runs the Linux kernel. What we generally call Linux is the GNU OS running the Linux kernel. So, the apps that run on GNU OS sort of doesn't run on the Android OS, and vice versa. So, it is a question between the two OSs, not of the Linux kernel.
I believe, there should be same respect for both OSs that run the Linux kernel.
44 • *All* 32-bit Packages? (by Spencer on 2019-06-25 16:34:07 GMT from United States)
From that discourse page, it sounds like with the exception of Snaps (which get an exemption, because, of course Snaps do...) the only way to do 32-bit compiled code is going to be containers and VMs that pull from older LTS releases moving forward?
Dropping the i386 core OS stuff I get, but why do the libraries go when they're still in use? They said Steam self-contains what it needs, but that has not been my experience. It is why my 74 *:i386 packages are installed on my amd64 Ubuntu, so unless something changed very recently you need some of those just to *launch* it, and at least a few more common ones for many games to run.
Microsoft essentially reviving x86 as an option on WoA, even if meant as a stopgap, feels like salt on the wound. The world seems to be moving away from the Intel-exclusive architecture set on computers, and getting an x86 application running looks to be a much easier target than an x86_64 application when you're on a foreign architecture. If we drop all the x86 binaries when they run natively on x86_64, then what's the plan when ARM64 computers become more mainstream?
Canonical seems to have *some* kind of capacity to gather statistics on package usage, maybe? Could it make an amd64-exclusive package (*not* a Snap) and encourage using it to upload anonymized (like, use a hash of a service tag or whatever so it's still unique to prevent duplicates) lists of the i386 packages installed on amd64 systems? I'm sure we don't need some 58,000 packages maintained in i386, but what if only 300 of them are actually in common use for stuff like Steam and WINE? Would *that* be worth the effort for folks who have good reason to avoid Snap?
45 • 32-bit Support (by 32accidents on 2019-06-25 18:48:16 GMT from United Kingdom)
Steampowerd reacted already yesterday ... in future, they ‘want to concentrate on another Distro‘.
ARM64 is named 64 because it‘ not ARM32. 😉
46 • 32bit (by Jessica on 2019-06-26 00:12:52 GMT from United States)
@10 && 14. It is one thing to make ISO's and it is another thing about packages. As for the funding they do get paid it is just that they embelze the money on sceams and stuff that does not help the distro. They don't even update there own repos and rely on the community. Just shows why open source and Communisum don't mix. Screw the UK and there distros. The best solution is for the users to ditch Ubuntu for LMDE 2020 instead. Even system76 called out there stupidity. Supporting 32bit packages is not the same or take up as much time as a distro or iso. This is a major reason that users STICK TO WINDOWS XP in 2019.
Hey FOSS devs you know what project does not doe this. FreeBSD and Haiku OS. Sure Haiku is not a flexible as Linux, but with its way of packaging your far better off. Hell even AROS is looking like a good investment.
@ 16 && 17 You both have good points. Here is the thing though. IF they don't fix it Ubuntu will die. No if's or buts it will die. No support for 32bit games or Wine will kill linux for any of the Windows soccer moms. Any progress to killing Windows for gaming dies and there goes many of the base includeing me. I hope Valve pick Debian or FreeBSD. The issue is Debian gets political and you may not want to deal with that. FreeBSD seems better for the long term. Also @17 they do get paid but they waste our money on failures on phones
@22 Yup but what do you expect when FOSS gets polticial. I want to be able to run Linux on every thing from my PC to my Dreamcast. Yet only NetBSD cares about old hardware. Not even Illmose cares any more. FreeBSD's support is a joke and I get why as most devs are complaining about Trump on Twitter instead of coding to make the PowerPC ports work by defult (come on FreeBSD devs). I know most are not like me or Bryian lunduke. He is the old linux world and popey and Chris from LAS are the woke left who are running the linux desktop with there bloated apps and Gnome 3 junk. I rather use my Apple 2 GS or AROS system. Amiga OS is good for a 16bit system even if it is closed source. At least I can use it with AROS now or the open source firmware for the ST line. Linux has to compete or die. Haiku just reached Beta 1 and unlike React OS it works well. All it needs is 3d support and you got the future of FOSS instead of the joke that linux is becoming for the desktop.
47 • Android on Linux? Maybe, but not by using Anbox (by Jeff on 2019-06-26 01:09:45 GMT from United States)
There are a few useful Android apps that I could myself see using on a Linux tablet or laptop, but Anbox is not the way I would use.
To install it requires both an Ubuntu PPA and a snap package, which eliminates any distro I am willing to run.
A while back there were other ways to install Android apps on Linux in development, wonder how those projects are going?
48 • Android Linux frustrations (by fa-flyingalone on 2019-06-26 03:02:07 GMT from Australia)
@35 It was not Linux (read again) binned only the distros that don't start up or cause endless amount of frustrations in getting them to work-hours turn into days, NOT Linux,
Those Distros don't Help (anyone new to Linux).
"Good luck on your journey, may the OS gods smile on u"
Thanks for the good wishes and yes they are smiling on me, Thank You.
49 • @44, 46: 32-bit packages, Microsoft (by Hoos on 2019-06-26 04:50:07 GMT from Singapore)
Microsoft couldn't have hoped for a more effective blow against a rival (ie Ubuntu, and maybe desktop Linux as whole since Ubuntu is the face of that to the non-tech public) if they had engineered it.... or did they?
I'm being facetious. I think.
50 • 32-bit packages, Ouch! (by anon on 2019-06-26 07:20:25 GMT from United States)
Thing is, even if Canonical were to backtrack, the damage is already done. Whatever progress was made wrt attracting more companies to support linux, is now gone. Nobody is going to want to support a platform that is willing to randomly make decisions that will effectively break your software and waste your time and money in the process.
I know that Canonical does not speak for all of linux, but their distro is the most highly recommended for newcomers, and it is often the first taste that people get when sampling linux. It is the most popular distro, and it has the largest public presence of any traditional distro. When Ubuntu does something, people often equate it with linux doing something. So, if Ubuntu stops supporting 32-bit libs, then in a lot people's eyes, *linux* has stopped supporting 32-bit libs. Those of us in the community know better, and we know that Ubuntu is only one distro and doesn't speak for all us. However, what about potential newcomers who are constantly told to use Ubuntu as a kneejerk reaction by the community? What about companies potentially exploring linux support for their products and looking for the largest linux user base? What about companies, such as Valve, that already support linux and will be forced to make drastic changes due to such a drastic decision?
The real kick in the teeth is not that one distro made an extremely questionable decision - it is the overall message that has been sent regarding the lack of trust, sound decision making, and foresight being displayed by the platform, real or imagined. It paints a really bad image of the entire community, not just Canonical.
51 • conspiracies and prognostications (by Cecil the Prophet on 2019-06-26 07:55:46 GMT from Greece)
"Snap trickery"- Who are they trying to trick with their "hellish" snaps? Let me in on the conspiracy, please.
"they do get paid but they waste our money on failures on phones" Not mine. In many years using Ubuntu and offspring, they have exactly $0 of my money. Hard to keep money gained by giving away something for free.
"Microsoft couldn't have hoped for a more effective blow against a rival" -What century are you in? Ubuntu is no more Microsoft's rival than my pet cat is mine. Ubuntu is available from the MS Store, and the LTS release can be downloaded from MS pre-configured for Hyper-v.
I'll go out on a short limb and predict that Ubuntu will be doing fine 2 years from now, evewn 3. I'll also predict that the usual complainers will still be complaining about the same, or something else. As Roseanne Roseannadanna used to say: There's always something.
52 • @50--Tremendous insight: what's wrong with Linux. You'd better listen... (by R. Cain on 2019-06-26 11:34:55 GMT from United States)
@50 --"...*Nobody is going to want to support a platform that is willing to randomly make decisions that will effectively break your software and waste your time and money in the process*..."
"...The Year of Linux is the year that you look at your distribution, compare to the year before, and you have that sense of stability, the knowledge that no matter what you do, you can rely on your operating system. Which is definitely not the case today. If anything, the issues are worsening and multiplying..."
"...I find the lack of consistency to be the public enemy no. 1 in the open-source world. In the long run, it will be the one deciding factor that will determine the success of Linux. Sure, applications, but if the operating system is not transparent, people will not choose it. They will seek simpler, possibly less glamorous, but ultimately more stable solutions,.."
53 • Dropping 32-bits, Conspiracies & a True Story (by not a fan-boy on 2019-06-26 12:01:50 GMT from Romania)
it is smart? - I don't think so, but I suppose there's not many guys out there who can do the work, so is not EFFICIENT to be maintained...
Ubuntu is a knights in shining armor! They didn't screw up, it's the evil MS empire doing...
I needed a drill, but didn't want to spend money, so I concocted a Franken-Drill from some spare parts I had laying around. Sure, is not as good as a professional-power-tool, but it cost nothing and can do the job.
(I think that now I'm a RIVAL of the professional-power-tool manufacturer, just as Linux Distributions are for MS...)
I use Linux, distributions & Android, just like, sometimes I use a knife instead of a screwdriver...
I'm not saying they are bad, just that are not that good, and too bloated with useless junk...
54 • Nut jobs. (by Garon on 2019-06-26 14:19:34 GMT from United States)
#51 got it right. A lot of people never post on Distrowatch unless it to complain about something, or to talk about how this is the death of the Linux distro. It's funny in a way because you can see that all over the world people are, shall we say, a little unhinged. Some here are even talking about how Microsoft is now doing everything right. lol People need to get a grip on reality.
55 • @51 (by Dr. E.S. Ktorp on 2019-06-26 14:24:41 GMT from United States)
"Who are they trying to trick..?"
56 • amazing, clear, succinct (by Jordan on 2019-06-26 14:24:46 GMT from United States)
You're going to get plagiarized, of course. Well, at least copy/pasted. ;o)
57 • Motivation (by Somewhat Reticent on 2019-06-26 14:38:07 GMT from United States)
@50 "… Nobody is going to want to support a platform that is willing to randomly make decisions that will effectively break your software and
waste take your time and money in the process. …" except, of course, those who profit from non-standard/proprietary hardware and software. Like business sponsors/customers, right?
Bounties for Freed OSSw, OTOH …
58 • Tremendous insight, death and trickery (by Cecil the Prophet on 2019-06-26 15:37:13 GMT from Greece)
In the thirteen-plus years I've been using Linux, I don't think a year has gone by without several articles with tremendous insight either announcing the death of desktop Linux or it's final triumph and the obliteration of the Redmond bugaboo. Yet Linux keeps plodding along and doing fine, and I'm enjoying it today as much or more than ever. I expect I'll be enjoying it for some years to come, and it will go on when I'm gone. Grow or perish is for those who are slaves to shareholders.
Seems I've been tricked, according to @51. Perhaps he's right. I get snappy about little things, and my foggy mind forgets that there are such things as Arch, Debian, PCLInuxOS, Solus, Mageia, MX, and hundreds more that can free me from Ubuntu's insidious grasp. So I go snapping along, oblivious.
When Microsoft labored and brought forth Windows 8, it could have been disastrous, because every PC sold would have that incomprehensible-to-most-users thing on the desktop. When Ubuntu moved on from Gnome 2, those who didn't like it moved on to other desktops. No need to panic, although some did, as now. I expect it will be the same with 32-bit and snaps, including the panic attacks.
59 • "Linux drops 32 bit" (by 64 bit since 2003 on 2019-06-26 18:19:09 GMT from United States)
What took so long? That effort and energy will be redirected to useful things now. MSFT's insistence on backward compatibility has made their stack more than a bit of a mess. You want that too?
Steam on Linux users affected? I'm sure both of them will be up in arms.
60 • @59 64 bit: (by dragonmouth on 2019-06-26 20:48:11 GMT from United States)
"That effort and energy will be redirected to useful things now. "
More re-spins of Ubuntu. :-)
61 • 'buntus.. 32 bit dropped.. etc.. (by Jordan on 2019-06-27 00:57:31 GMT from United States)
@the whole place :oD ... the arguments on both sides of the 32 bit support dwindling off debate are persuasive and compelling. I'd feel selfish if I adopted the stance of 32 bit not being needed any longer because I and most Linux users have 64 bit machines and use this or that app to help run 32 but games etc. So I am of the mind to call it slow evolution, as evolution of all types is.. so slow that the creatures of each period know very little to nothing of the changes in store, functionally. We know of it, of course, but how many of us really are affected to much of a degree at all? I think the 32 bit folks will survive/adapt as that's the way of the world, that's the way things are. No god needed.
The multitude of Ubuntu sock puppets out there began to make me come around to the understanding that it must be just about the easiest thing to jump into, as to developing a distro; thus the proliferation. I did wonder about repository upkeep, but then dropped that curiosity for the reason that I have never nor ever will run any 'buntu distro.
But I'm still glad they're doing it because the more in the Linux world the merrier as to exposure.
62 • @23, 24, 25: Clear Linux on AMD (by R O on 2019-06-27 03:12:54 GMT from United States)
I ran the Intel scipt for compatibility testing on my Dell Inspiron 7xxx notebook with an AMD Ryzen 5, and matching GPU, and the script declares the machine capable of running Clear Linux, so maybe I will give it a shot. ;-}
smpboot: CPU0: AMD Ryzen 5 2500U with Radeon Vega Mobile Gfx (family: 0x17, model: 0x11, stepping: 0x0)
Checking if host is capable of running Clear Linux* OS
SUCCESS: 64-bit CPU (lm)
SUCCESS: Supplemental Streaming SIMD Extensions 3 (ssse3)
SUCCESS: Streaming SIMD Extensions v4.1 (sse4_1)
SUCCESS: Streaming SIMD Extensions v4.2 (sse4_2)
SUCCESS: Advanced Encryption Standard instruction set (aes)
SUCCESS: Carry-less Multiplication extensions (pclmulqdq)
SUCCESS: EFI firmware
63 • The games developers would adhere to Ubuntu, anyway (by OstroL on 2019-06-27 10:06:37 GMT from Poland)
There's only two real OS platforms for game developers, Windows and Ubuntu, so te games developers would adhere in time. Sure, Android is there, but that's different story.
64 • @61, Sock puppetry (by Kermit on 2019-06-27 11:57:30 GMT from United Kingdom)
@ 61, Arch is also spawning a few, and Manjaro may end up being "sock puppet" master to Arch, as Ubuntu is to Debian. They don't get much play on the stats pages, but there are 20 active Arch-based distros on DW's list. Manjaro has several community editions, and Archman, based more directly on Arch, also has several editions. Not complaining. Just observing. I like Archman's Plasma edition, and their DDE is quite good for those who want to run it nearer the cutting edge now that Deepin has gone to Debian Stable.
65 • All the hair-pulling over 32-bit (by Style99 on 2019-06-27 13:36:05 GMT from United States)
This is pretty hilarious considering this is just a lot of shrieking over literally nothing. I guess the fanatics and Windows shills are getting desperate to try and drive people away from Ubuntu.
66 • 32 bit (by Lupus on 2019-06-27 14:48:09 GMT from Germany)
The amount of entitlement is hilarious. If You want 32 bit work for it.
They even include the perfect tool to be using old software, Snaps. Quit your whining
67 • @65: (by dragonmouth on 2019-06-27 15:32:42 GMT from United States)
" drive people away from Ubuntu."
You've hit the nail on the head! It's all a big, nefarious conspiracy to drive people away from Ubuntu. I think you'd better make sure your there is no leaks in your tin foil hat. Canonical is doing a bang up job of driving people away without any help..
68 • 32bit (by Jessica on 2019-06-27 17:33:11 GMT from United States)
Yup the future of Gaming is dead. Linux droping 32bit support kills gaming. Kills it dead and flat. Even if you could get steam working in a snap it would be a pain and so would app images. It could work like how the competitor Itch.io does it using an app.image or some thing. Sure they could say screw Ubuntu and push there users to use Debian or bring back Steam OS 3.0. That will kill gaming on Ubuntu and kill Ubuntu as a whole. @ 65 && 66 are examples of people who don't work in the real world. Your school is not going to dump there CAD software because it is 32bit that is just stupid and yes your stupid. 32bit compatibility is why gamers use Windows in the first place.
With Windows you can run both 32bit games and even 16bit games. You two guys are dumb. Who is going to remake old Games just so YOU can have a 64bit system? @65 are YOU going to pay AVGN to remake his whole game for 64bit! That is your solution as you are taking away our software that I paid for. In my mind you are stealing my games that I paid for so YOU and Ubuntu should cover ALL THE COSTS to make all the packages 64bit. Otherwise what Ubuntu is doing is what we in America call criminal FRAUD! You are stealing software that I paid for with MY cash and I want to use what I PAID FOR. The same for every Bank or plant that needs 32bit to funchtion. They should all sue Chanonicle for theft! There are still companies who order custom motherboards for ISA to use on there SCADA cotrolers like IRAN. There were many banks that still used OS/2 until 2011 when the last one switched over to Linux from Ecomestation. Not every one is like you. Linux is suppost to bring Open Source to EVERYONE! This is just proff why Dems should stay out of FOSS. Go back to screaching about Trump on Reddit you blue check mark fraud!
69 • 32 bit (by Josef on 2019-06-27 20:16:43 GMT from New Zealand)
Come January 2038, 32-bit will run into a small 'problem', right?
Just as you don't expect 16-bit or 8-bit support any more, 32-bit must inevitably join the parade of history. Scary thought - someday 64-bit will face this too. I wonder how many bits the bus will be wide at that point, or will we have moved to something so completely different that today's computers will be considered as early calculators are now?
70 • bits of confusion (by Triburcio on 2019-06-28 00:34:06 GMT from United States)
Is it the end of 32-bit? What is the cause? Is it a plot by Ubuntu to force snaps on the unwilling, as @40 says? Is it fanatics and Windows shills trying to drive us away from Ubuntu, as @65 claims? Or worse, is it Dems screaching about Trump on Reddit that are responsible, as per @68? Now I'm really confused.
71 • bits & bobs (by lilybits on 2019-06-28 04:01:19 GMT from Australia)
@70 Isn't it all just progress: faster, smaller, broader, bigger, newer::
* DDR4 RAM
* USB 3.0
* DP 2.0
And resources can only be applied to one or a few things at a time, so some things need to be left behind - like 8, 16, and probly 32bit.
72 • bits &bobs, @71 (by Triburcio on 2019-06-28 08:19:13 GMT from United States)
"faster, smaller, broader, bigger, newer::" Well, that's good to know, although it sounds like an American car commercial pre-Arab oil embargo: "Longer, lower, wider." So it's not a cabal of do-gooders making sure no one has any fun? Although it's not really a world-as-you-know ending crisis anyhow, like the iPhone notch.
73 • @69 January 2038 = the end of 32-bit (by too old to matter on 2019-06-28 12:27:54 GMT from France)
“Come January 2038, 32-bit will run into a small 'problem, right?”
That’s 18 years & 6 months from now, right?
Man, this Ubuntu guys are real thoughtful, they know what’s good for the user and want to spare them the pain, right?
I don’t really care about Ubuntu, because I don't use it. So what Ubuntu drops 32-bit? It will be just like when Ubuntu adopted “sistemd”, nobody else done it, right?
74 • resources (by Jordan on 2019-06-28 14:59:46 GMT from United States)
"And resources can only be applied to one or a few things at a time, so some things need to be left behind - like 8, 16, and probly 32bit."
Please describe these "resources," as applied to the notion of choices wrt 32/64 bit (and software that allows for 32 bit gaming etc on 64 bit machines).
75 • Steam should support more distros (by Dxvid on 2019-06-28 18:37:13 GMT from Sweden)
If Steam is going to stop supporting Ubuntu ONLY like they do for no good reason, this is pretty great as Steam/Valve might then open their eyes and realize there's plenty of other distros.
Because Steam had the stupid idea of only supporting Ubuntu, other distros had to circumvent problems caused by this poor choice and create and maintain this package:
Steam users on Ubuntu are free to switch to another distro, Ubuntu isn't the only one. I for example play games on OpenSUSE Leap in Steam with the official NVIDIA drivers without encountering any problems:
76 • former Clear Linux supporter (by TeNiRei on 2019-06-29 00:02:43 GMT from United States)
Clear Linux performance gains aren't worth the hassle of dealing with installation and maintenance, using the odd "bundle" system via "swupd". Not only does the system force you to use bundles by cutting off access to packages entirely, but the total number of system bundles is capped! Yes, because of the "stateless" OS, the devs have to manage bundles as a finite/fixed resource.
To make matters worse, due to this limit, devs are understandably very reluctant when evaluating requests for adding a package or repo. If a Flatpak exists for your requested package, you will be told to use it, whether its optimized for Intel or not. When the entire point of Clear Linux is optimized performance, this can make you go "huh?"
That is until you realize the point of Clear Linux is NOT performance. It is a infrastructure and container management OS first, and a desktop development platform way, way down the list.
Looking for a drop in replacement for Gentoo, Arch or Debian? Keep looking, Clear is not the answer.
Number of Comments: 76
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|• Issue 843 (2019-12-02): Obarun 2019.11.02, Bluestar 5.3.6, using special characters on the command line, Fedora plans to disable empty passwords, FreeBSD's quarterly status report|
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|• Issue 832 (2019-09-16): BlackWeb 1.2, checking for Wayland session and applications, Fedora to use nftables in firewalld, OpenBSD disables DoH in Firefox|
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|• Issue 828 (2019-08-19): AcademiX 2.2, concerns with non-free firmware, UBports working on Unity8, Fedora unveils new EPEL channel, FreeBSD phasing out GCC|
|• Issue 827 (2019-08-12): Q4OS, finding files on the disk, Ubuntu works on ZFS, Haiku improves performance, OSDisc shutting down|
|• Issue 826 (2019-08-05): Quick looks at Resilient, PrimeOS, and BlueLight, flagship distros for desktops,Manjaro introduces new package manager|
|• Issue 825 (2019-07-29): Endless OS 3.6, UBports 16.04, gNewSense maintainer stepping down, Fedora developrs discuss optimizations, Project Trident launches stable branch|
|• 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|
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|• 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|
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|• 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|
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|• 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|
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|• 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|
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