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Devuan rising


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 PostPosted: Fri May 12, 2017 6:16 pm   
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From Distrowatch:
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2017-05-05 Development Release: Devuan GNU+Linux 1.0.0 RC2
Devuan GNU+Linux


The second release candidate for Devuan GNU+Linux 1.0.0 is now ready for final testing. Devuan is a Debian fork whose goal is to provide a Linux distribution without systemd, a controversial init system that some consider unnecessarily complex, thus violating the design principles of UNIX-like operating systems. "Just two weeks after the release of Devuan Jessie 1.0.0 RC, we are happy to announce Devuan Jessie 1.0.0 RC2. Thanks to the very good feedback received from the community, this release candidate is one step closer to our final Devuan stable release and our first long-term support (LTS) release as well.

I'm using fully installed Devuan Jesse 1.0.0RC2 to post this from my old Dell Inspiron 1545. I installed Devuan after trying it as a live session on a flash drive. That live instance worked perfectly and gave me the confidence to install Devuan, despite it being only a release candidate. Note that putting Devuan on a flash disk does not need a mkhybrid session, they say to just use dd.

The whole installation was clean once I learned that something in my past had GPT'd my Inspirons hard disk, and the GPT partition table was messing up the Devuan installer at the last install step where GRUB was to be configured (something about character sets and thus GRUB would NOT be configured - Well, that's not handy). Back to the live session, launch a terminal, sudo gdisk, toss out the GPT configuration, exit gdisk, run cfdisk and repartition as per common legacy MBR methods, and reformat; the next Devuan install pass was without any surprises.

Not even a wifi surprise. I no longer have a Broadcom based wifi card, my wifi setup and configuration during installation was easy as it could ever be: I never had to do anything for the Intel wifi card, just configure the current wifi access point. After getting the WPA passphrase entered properly, all was fine. In the KDE based distros that I used to prefer, I never had to choose between entering a WPA 'key' (as a hexadecimal number) and entering a WPA 'passphrase' (as a string of letters and numbers). KDE wifi configuration just asked for a PSK, so I was taken by surprise when my correctly typed WPA PSK resulted in failed network connection. Once I saw that the PSK was being entered as a defaulted WPA hex key, I chose the non-default passphrase and there it is.

Initially, I was concerned about using XFCE as a desktop environment, basing my concern on my using XFCE so many years ago, around XFCE 1.x, if memory serves me, but I'm liking version 4.10 of XFCE quite a bit.

I've seen users here like WICD as a favorite network manager, and WICD is standard in Devuan. I finally have a WICD configuration (version 1.7.2.4) which works properly.

In Devuan 1.0.0 RC2, the Synaptic Package Manager is default, a plus for me, as opposed to the Kubuntu method of using muon, and the derivatives of that.

There is a bit more for you, the reader, to discover.

Devuan is part of Dyne.org, and possibly some of us have used the Dyne:bolic live distro? I used Dyne:bolic during the earliest days of this LUG, and Dyne's website offers a timeline starting in 1994, so I'd think the foundations of Devuan should be as solid as any distro.

A one word review? Wonderful.

This is a systemd free distribution based on Debian, and honestly, it runs very well.

If anyone knows me at all, they know I'm not very free with any compliments, and herein, I've said 'Wonderful', 'perfectly' and it 'runs very well'. I'm hard to please for my own reasons, but this thing just works for me.

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eMachines T5246 AMD 64 dual core w/PCLinuxOS ... something recent
EeePC 900A w/ Kubuntu 14.04 32 bit
Dell Inspiron 1545 w/Devuan Jesse 1.0RC2


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 PostPosted: Sat May 13, 2017 10:35 pm   
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@ mmmna: This is nice to know. I've been a fan and a proponent of Debian and Debian-based systems since around 2001 when I first moved to them - I had used Slackware dating back to 1995, and I'd also used Red Hat, Mandrake, and Caldera OpenLinux prior to 2001, but it was in 2001 that a late friend of mine (Ralph Glanz), talked me into writing some freelance articles for Ziff Davis Media's Extreme Tech site. They actually gave me a Dell Dimension 4100 that I had for years, and a few grand the first time I wrote. I added an extra disk and had up to 12 distributions on that old machine, and that's what first hooked me on Debian - the Debian distribution itself, plus two old Debian-based distributions of Canadian origin: Xandros and Libranet, neither of which has survived - the Libranet founder ceased his work around 2005 and Xandros, if I remember, sold out to the one-time "Lindows" company from San Diego, CA. They got into the early Internet-based phones and got out of Linux.

Fortunately both the commercial and non-commercial variations of Debian, along with Debian itself, have grown by leaps and bounds since then, as have many other distributions. There's really only one thing that might be either "better" or "easier" about Windows in one respect - it's easier and simpler to get pre-packaged, pre-sold systems with applications and everything you need. But if you can install it yourself, just about any GOOD Linux based system can out do just about any Windows system, when it comes to performance, advanced features, and flexibility - but it's still not a "drop in" for most consumers, unless you call an Android phone a "Linux experience" - and it is - to a limited degree - it does have a Linux kernel; everything else isn't GNU or Linux, it's Android and a lot is hidden and obscurred, and the device collects a LOT of information about you - and me.

Ah, the days of simplicity - are they here? Go out into the woods with no Internet, no nothing, that's about the only way. I like technology and I earn my living through it, but some days, I say "I've just about had enough!"

So it IS nice to know that Devuan works well. I did not know that it had any affiliation with the age-old Dyne or Dyne-bolic, and yes, I do remember it. In fact, I went through a phase where I'd try to run as many small CD-based, in memory Linux OS as I could. Feather Linux, dyne-bolic, and even early versions of MEPIS and PCLinuxOS once splashed and played in these waters -- well over a decade ago. Those were interesting times, right about the time that Ubuntu was first being created. A lot has changed; some useful, but a lot that I can do without, so it's nice to know that Devuan is a refreshing system that is not a huge, all consuming monster, but a reasonably nimble system that, for the most part, does what it ought to do. Thanks for the information!

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 PostPosted: Mon Jun 12, 2017 1:18 am   
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Less than 2 weeks after I posted the start of this thread, Devuan went to full 1.0.0 official release. It is also a long term support release, it is so meaningful to see that kind of support; I believe they are more credible for their LTS effort..

Discovered some interesting information:
Devuan website wrote:
Distributions based on Devuan

In chronological order of appearance:

Gnuinos http://gnuinos.org (linux-libre 100% free, FSF review pending)
Refracta http://www.ibiblio.org/refracta
Exe GNU/Linux http://exegnulinux.net
Nelum-dev1 https://sourceforge.net/projects/nelum-dev1
Star https://sourceforge.net/projects/linnix
EterTICs https://gnuetertics.org
MIYO https://sourceforge.net/projects/miyolinux/
heads https://heads.dyne.org (linux-libre 100% free, FSF review pending)
Dowse http://dowse.eu/
good-life-linux https://sourceforge.net/projects/good-life-linux/
Crowz https://sourceforge.net/projects/crowz
Vuu-do http://www.mrgreenjeans.net/vuudo
If you are a fan of XFCE, LXDE or Mate, I strongly promote that this distro has many strengths to offer.

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eMachines T5246 AMD 64 dual core w/PCLinuxOS ... something recent
EeePC 900A w/ Kubuntu 14.04 32 bit
Dell Inspiron 1545 w/Devuan Jesse 1.0RC2


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 PostPosted: Tue Jun 13, 2017 11:55 am   
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You have raised my interest further. I'm going to have to put some time into grabbing this one as soon as I can. I wonder if OSDisc has any USB sticks with this software on it yet. If so, I may get one soon.

Otherwise I'll just have to download and build my own USB or DVD installation media (or Live media, if that option is also available - it's getting to be pretty commonly available). I'll check, and if I get a chance, I'll note it here unless you beat me to it.

Thanks for the very encouraging information about Devuan 1.00!

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 PostPosted: Tue Jun 13, 2017 11:58 am   
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Yes, OSDisc does have a variety of media available for Devuan 1.00:

https://www.osdisc.com/products/devuan

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 PostPosted: Wed Jun 14, 2017 3:56 am   
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Is all good, man.

So much value comes from live media sessions. Really good way to test a distros support for ones eclectic mix of processing systems. After live sessions bring joy, then we'd expect identical functionality from a proper installation. Unless, of course, you have Broadcom wifi.

I personally credit Knoppix for my first live CD, I learned so much about Linux just by using that 'immutable' source. Tinker with the live session... bing... bang... Oops, messed it up. Reboot. Ahh!

Live sessions are just genius, someone should get credit for live sessions.

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eMachines T5246 AMD 64 dual core w/PCLinuxOS ... something recent
EeePC 900A w/ Kubuntu 14.04 32 bit
Dell Inspiron 1545 w/Devuan Jesse 1.0RC2


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 PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2017 2:10 pm   
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I agree; I frequently start with Live distributions. Moreover, these days, Live on USB seems to be optimal; I can boot these quickly, and only install them if I really like the distribution and intend to keep it on my system; otherwise I can run from the USB when I want to experiment, and if persistence is also included, that's especially useful.

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 PostPosted: Sat Jun 24, 2017 8:43 pm   
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I had to install inxi separately, but it was as easy as: sudo apt-get update ; sudo apt-get install inxi.

Here is what it shows us:

Code:
inxi -Fxz
System:    Host: devuan Kernel: 3.16.0-4-amd64 x86_64 (64 bit gcc: 4.8.4) Desktop: N/A Distro: Devuan GNU/Linux 1
Machine:   System: Dell product: Inspiron 5558 v: 01
           Mobo: Dell model: 086DKN v: A00 Bios: Dell v: A04 date: 08/06/2015
CPU:       Dual core Intel Core i7-5500U (-HT-MCP-) cache: 4096 KB
           flags: (lm nx sse sse2 sse3 sse4_1 sse4_2 ssse3 vmx) bmips: 9577
           Clock Speeds: 1: 1615 MHz 2: 2465 MHz 3: 800 MHz 4: 804 MHz
Graphics:  Card-1: Intel Broadwell-U Integrated Graphics bus-ID: 00:02.0
           Card-2: NVIDIA Device 1299 bus-ID: 08:00.0
           Display Server: X.Org 1.16.4 drivers: intel (unloaded: fbdev,vesa) Resolution: [email protected]
           GLX Renderer: Gallium 0.4 on llvmpipe (LLVM 3.5, 256 bits)
           GLX Version: 3.0 Mesa 10.3.2 Direct Rendering: Yes
Audio:     Card-1 Intel Wildcat Point-LP High Definition Audio Controller driver: snd_hda_intel bus-ID: 00:1b.0
           Card-2 Intel Broadwell-U Audio Controller driver: snd_hda_intel bus-ID: 00:03.0
           Sound: Advanced Linux Sound Architecture v: k3.16.0-4-amd64
Network:   Card-1: Realtek RTL8101E/RTL8102E PCI Express Fast Ethernet controller
           driver: r8169 v: 2.3LK-NAPI port: e000 bus-ID: 07:00.0
           IF: eth0 state: up speed: 100 Mbps duplex: full mac: <filter>
           Card-2: Intel Wireless 3160 driver: iwlwifi v: in-tree: bus-ID: 06:00.0
           IF: wlan0 state: down mac: <filter>
Drives:    HDD Total Size: 1015.7GB (1.1% used) ID-1: /dev/sda model: ST1000LM024_HN size: 1000.2GB temp: 35C
           ID-2: USB /dev/sdb model: DataTraveler_2.0 size: 15.5GB temp: 0C
Partition: ID-1: / size: 91G used: 2.8G (4%) fs: ext4 dev: /dev/sda6
           ID-2: swap-1 size: 8.49GB used: 0.00GB (0%) fs: swap dev: /dev/sda2
Sensors:   System Temperatures: cpu: 49.0C mobo: N/A
           Fan Speeds (in rpm): cpu: N/A
Info:      Processes: 156 Uptime: 16 min Memory: 799.1/7914.3MB Init: SysVinit runlevel: 2 Gcc sys: N/A
           Client: Shell (bash 4.3.301) inxi: 2.1.28


This appears to be a very solid, sensible, easy to install and use system. Unless Debian 9 (just recently introduced, actually has similar updates, the Devuan installer is fast, efficient, asks good questions, then installs the system with no nonsense. Mmmna is right; this is one of the finest efforts out there. It leverages the best of Debian for sure, in terms of stability, but it retains the classic init startup and seems to add incremental value with a very nicely streamlined installation process. Worked right off the bat.

This is a winner.

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Distros: MX-16, antiX, Debian


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