Today’s Featured Distribution – Salix OS

Salix is a GNU/Linux distribution based on Slackware that is simple, fast and easy to use.

As many of you know, I’m partial to distributions with the Slackware pedigree. Salix is one that I had not tried before. My favorites up to now have been Zenwalk, Absolute Linux, and Vector Linux. However, I haven’t had any of those on any of my systems for quite some time. I’m patiently waiting for the 64 bit versions.

Now with Salix OS, I find a nice 64 bit version all ready to go. I installed it with the Xfce desktop. Installation was fast and easy using their familiar installer. No surprises here, folks. It just works. I had to do a couple custom tweaks here and there to get the system up and running, though.

After installation, I first booted into Salix using the kernel line alone. On my main system, Arch (my secondary OS) controls the MBR, and its GRUB rules. I had to modify Arch’s menu.lst to boot Salix. Once I was in Salix, I created an initrd using the README.initrd that you can find in most Slack derivatives. Nothing new here either. For you Slack veterans, this will all look very familiar to you. I re-edited Arch’s menu.lst to include the newly created initrd.gz line and away we went. Anyway, most of you will just use the LILO boot loader provided by Salix.

Salix booted up without a burp or hiss. I updated right off using the tried and true slapt-get command line package manager. Anyone who’s ever run Vector or Absolute Linux would be familiar with slapt-get. It’s a cool PM. The GUI frontend in Salix is gslapt. You can set up auto-updates with it. Makes you feel like you’re running Ubuntu, almost. ;)

After updating, I performed my usual Xfce customizations and then took a little screenie for you to look at:

Photobucket

Salix OS has the legendary stability of its parent Slackware along with some ease-of-use features, like the GUI package manager gslapt, more often found in more graphically oriented distributions. You grizzled Slackers will feel comfortable with it. You folks who’ve always wanted to run Slackware, but were afraid to, will love Salix OS. It’s not as hardcore as Slackware. It’s perfect for someone with only minimal GNU/Linux experience. That doesn’t mean it’s a minimal or hand-holding distro. Salix OS is a full-powered GNU/Linux operating system, fully capable of running your little laptop or that business server.

Go visit the excellent Salix OS website and download a copy for yourself. Give it a try. You might be pleasantly surprised. While you’re there, check out the Salix Team of hardworking individuals whose passion and labors have made this wonderful distribution possible.

Later…

~Eric

Image credits: Salix OS logo owned by Salix OS


Vector Linux x86_64 Coming Soon!

I used to always have a Vector installation on my systems somewhere.

Unfortunately, that hasn’t been the case for quite some time because I’ve been patiently waiting for the x86_64 release of this excellent Slackware-based distribution. The wait may be over soon, though. I just read THIS article over at All About Linux blogsite. I’m very happy to read that Vector is finally coming out with a 64 bit version. YAY!

Vector is a great distribution. Back in the early days of my Linux Adventures, I was very impressed with it. Unfortunately, when I upgraded to 64 bit computing, Vector did not follow suit; neither did Zenwalk, another Slack-based favorite of mine. Oh well, that’s the way it goes sometimes. However, with this news, I’m happily anticipating having a Vector install on one of my systems again soon.

I’ll also start recommending (and installing) it for my unhappy MS Windows-user family and friends. Most folks are using newer 64 bit hardware these days. It’s difficult to talk them into downgrading to a 32 bit OS, leaving some of their newer hardware’s potential by the wayside. I’ve been recommending Linux Mint or Ubuntu for these folks, as they have 64 bit versions, but I’d really rather get them going with Vector.

Well, anyway… that’s the news. Once this new 64 bit version of Vector gets released, I’ll be downloading and installing. Expect a review here in the near future.

Stay tuned…

~Eric

Additional info: from the VectorLinux Forums –> VectorLinux 7.0 Gold Has Been Released


Today’s Featured Distribution – Zenwalk (Revisited)

Today’s Featured Distribution – Zenwalk

Posted by V. T. Eric Layton on Apr 10, 2010

Ahhhhhmmmm… Ahhhhhmmmm… It’s a Zen thing.

Good morning faithful readers! Today we’re going to talk a bit about what I like to call “Slackware for the faint of heart” – Zenwalk Linux. Zenwalk is a tight, lite, and beauteous thing to behold. Only a geek can see beauty in operating systems, but it’s there. I assure you. Zenwalk (originally Minislack) is based on Slackware.

Its default desktop environment is the “little mouse that roars” – Xfce. For those of you unfamiliar with Xfce, it kinda’ looks like Gnome, but it’s a whole lot less bloated and much faster. Click HERE for a nice Zenwalk/Xfce screenie. Sharp looking, huh? It’s extremely customizable, so you can easily make it your own.

I first ran across Zenwalk about four years ago when I was experimenting with Slack-based Linux distributions. I was impressed from the very first boot up. Not only is Zen relatively easy-peasy to install, but it’s also easy to customize and operate. You don’t have to be a Linux whiz kid to drive this baby. And with all that going for it, it still has the guts of Slackware… one of the most stable distributions of GNU/Linux ever created.

Zenwalk Linux also has a few other things going for it. It has a dedicated development team, a wonderful support community, a great wiki, and excellent documentation.

Don’t just sit there. Run on over to the Zenwalk Main page and grab yourself the version of your choice. It’s free. Of course, any assistance you can offer is always welcome.

Ahhhhmmmm… you feel calmer just thinking about running Zenwalk, huh?

Peace out!

~Eric

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This article was originally published on my Nocturnal Slacker | Lockergnome blog. You can see it there by clicking HERE.


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