Friday, December 7, 2007


For only the second time in some 12 years I am considering changing distributions. Over those 12 or so years I have enjoyed using first Slackware, then Slamd64 and latterly Bluewhite64. Those latter two are 64 bit ports of Slackware. Bluewhite64 is the more vanilla port as slamd64 has some additiions not found in Slackware itself.

In all that time my allegence has been with Slackware, or a port thereof and distributions have come and gone and some have been around forever but none have strung my head hard enough to make me change for more than a week.

The last time I considered changing distributions was about 6 years ago. I joined Arch Linux and did some 300+ packages for them but the administration team went off the rails around version 0.3. I argued with them. Left then rejoined only to leave again. That distribution is still going and my heart says give it another go but my head always brings back the thoughts of those arguments. The crux of those arguments concerned direction and if I am honest with myself I would end up back arguing again. To show how the current administrators act consider the fact I did over 340 packages for Arch Linux but you would not know it as my attributions have been removed from most of the PKGBUILD scripts and my name nor nick is mentioned anywhere on their web site. You would think with such a large contribution at a time when Arch was growing, and I believe I helped it grow with my huge contribution, would at least have got my name or nick mentioned somewhere but, and I strongly believe it is because of the current administration, I get no such mention.

Anyway, that gripe off my chest I looked around at the current state of the Linux distribution market both big players and little players. None took my attention. Not one. Well, that is not completely true. ROCK got my attention as did one of its spin offs but something stopped me from trying them. Was it my previous go, though I cannot remember trying them. Whatever it was it was something. The Ubuntu family simply turn me off so much I find them abhorant. My wife uses Ubuntu and administrating it for her, both hands on and remotely is a breeze but it is exactly that ease, and their overreliance on the sudo command, that turns me off.

Some of the middle field players i dug into insomuch as I viewed their web sites but there was always something that held me back from actually using them as my main stay everyday distribution choice.

So, for me at least, the newer Bluewhite64 which is based on the venerable Slackware will for the forseeable future remain as the distribution of choice on my desk top rig.

Now, if I had to change which one of the 300+ disributions would I choose? If I had bags of time to install it then ROCK or EDS would be my choice. If I did not have bags of time then it would be Arch or Crux Linux. Hmm, Crux I tried before and really liked what I saw but at the time I tried it its application database(s) where very small if they existed at that time at all. These days however, Crux has come along way and now has many databases spread around the Internet some of which have lots of content.

Anyway, after a 4 weeks search and read exercise I still cannot find anything to replace my Slackware based Bluewhite64 Operating System with.

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