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Friday, October 23, 2020

Slackware-Based Fast And Portable Linux Distro

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More than a year later, the Dev team of Porteus Linux has finally announced the second release candidate (RC-2) for its upcoming version 5.0. This means you can now try the new testing version Porteus 5.0-rc2.

For those who don’t know, Porteus is based on one of the oldest Linux distros, Slackware. It was also formerly known as Slax remix when it started as a community remix of Slax OS.

Porteus aims to provide a portable, fast, and light operating system that you can boot directly in less than 15 seconds (in the case of LXDE desktop) from CD, USB flash drive, hard drive, or other bootable storage media.

Porteus 5.0-rc2: What’s New?

As usual, v5.0-rc2 is available in seven desktop variants: Cinnamon, KDE, LXDE, LXQT, MATE, Openbox, and Xfce only for x86_64 architecture.

Replacing the gtk+2 widget toolkit, Porteus 5.0-rc2 now includes gtk+3 into its 002-xorg base modules. However, some desktop environments still include gtk+2, such as Openbox, LXDE, and Xfce.

Porteus 5.0-rc2 KDE Flavor
Porteus 5.0-rc2 KDE Flavor

Built with gtk+3, Porteus has also ported its gtkdialog scripts to pygoobject3. The porting process is still in progress; hence, gtkdialog remains available for some unported scripts.

Under the hood, it ships with long-term Linux Kernel 5.4.57, which brings kernel lockdown features, support for Microsoft’s exFAT file system, and support for other hardware, such as AMD Radeon Navi 12 and 14 GPUs, AMD Radeon Arcturus GPUs, and AMD Dali APU.

Speaking of applications available on all desktops such as Gparted, Transmission, and Celluloid, v5.0-rc2 has moved them to 002-xorg or 002-xtra modules. Also, the new base module 002-xtra now contains custom multimedia packages like ffmpeg, mpv.

To streamline the startup process, Porteus has rebuilt initrd.xz scheme with a new busybox software suite and improved linuxrc program. It has also now added experimental support for RAID (Redundant Array of Independent Disks) array.

Among other small changes, it has removed its broken USB installer tool and USM package manager with no replacement as of now.

If you want to test it right now, download the ISO image of any flavor, which sizes less than 400MB.

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