SlackwareThis Forum is for the discussion of Slackware Linux.
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Working at a library I keep abusing my Inter-Library-Loan privledges, as well as my free university printing... anyone need a copy of the Samba manual, all 500+ pages? Anyway, after reading Open Sources, Free as in Freedom, Rebel Code, The Cathedral and the Bizarre, ad nauseum, I keep realizing that each of these books dedicates a chapter or a few pages, or at least a paragraph or three to every major distro except Slackware. I've been poking through google a bit and haven't come up with anything substantial, but does anyone know of a site that specifically has a history of Slack longer than say: 400 words on it?
Originally posted by tundra eh? really? how's that?
It was one of the first concieved distros, starting very early on in the piece, and is the oldest surviving distro around. Slackware and the original model created by Pat et al basically helped to create the mould used by all future distro's. Many distro's are based around around slack: SuSE originally was, and there are many others.
Originally posted by X11 I think Slack has been around before Red Hat. Slack back in the early days was the number one Linux distro for a few years straight, until Red Hat finally beat them somehow.
That comes down on who has money. Slackware is the oldest surviving distro that is still kept up to date. It was based off the very first distro made for Linux I think around '92, I forgot the name of the distro though. There was a thread on the topic somewhere on the site, lost in the thousands of posts we have here.
One of the first widely popular distributions of the GNU and Linux combination was called SLS. SLS initially required that the user run Minix, and install GNU and Linux from there. SLS was quite popular, although it required prior experience with Unix in order to successfully install it.
Soon after SLS came Slackware, compiled by Patrick Volkerding. Slackware made it incredibly easy to install a Linux-based GNU OS, and soon there were tons of people installing it on home machines. Slackware allowed the expert Unix hacks to install and tune their systems manually, while providing a nice script called "setup" that walked newer users through the install process.
Since its first release in April of 1993, the Slackware Linux Project has aimed at producing the most "UNIX-like" Linux distribution out there. Slackware complies with the published Linux standards, such as the Linux File System Standard. We have always considered simplicity and stability paramount, and as a result Slackware has become one of the most popular, stable, and friendly distributions available.
Slackware Linux is a complete 32-bit multitasking "UNIX-like" system. It's currently based around the 2.2 Linux kernel series and the GNU C Library version 2.1.2 (libc6). It contains an easy to use installation program, extensive online documentation, and a menu-driven package system. A full installation gives you the X Windows System, C/C++ development environments, Perl, networking utilities, a mail server, a news server, a web server, an ftp server, the GNU Image Manipulation Program, Netscape Communicator, plus many more programs. And Slackware Linux can run on 386 systems all the way up to the latest x86 machines.
In 1993, SLS1created one of the first organized distributions of Linux. Although it was a great start, the SLS distribution had many shortcomings (it didn't exactly work, for starters). Slackware, a godsend from Patrick Volkerding, solved most of these issues, was mirrored via FTP and pressed onto CD-ROMs worldwide, and quickly became the most widely used flavor of Linux. For a while, Slackware was the only full featured Linux ``solution.'' Other Linux distributions, both commercial and nonprofit, have since emerged and are well worth your consideration.
According to statistics maintained by the Linux Counter Project, Slackware inhabits about 38% of all machines that run Linux today. Slackware is typically obtained via FTP or CD-ROM and installed on a 80586-class computer with anywhere from 16MB to 128MB of memory and somewhere between 300MB and 9,000MB of storage. Statistical information about Linux use is available from the Linux Counter Project: http://counter.li.org/
By January 1994, Slackware had achieved such widespread use that it earned a popular notoriety normally reserved for rock stars and cult leaders. Fueled by rumors in the Usenet, gossip spread suggesting that the entire Slackware project was the work of witches and devil-worshipers!
Jokes alluding to ``RFC 666,'' demonic daemons, and speculation that Slackware author Pat Volkerding was actually L. Ron Hubbard in disguise were rampant in the threads that followed. The whole amusing incident probably helped Slackware gain some market share:
All folklore and kidding aside, Slackware is a wise and powerful choice for your adventures in Linux, whether you are a hobbyist, student, hacker, or system administrator in the making.
Distribution: Slackware, (Non-Linux: Solaris 7,8,9; OSX; BeOS)
This is one of my favorite points along the Slackware timeline:
The following was posted to the Slackware.com Forum by Patrick Volkerding (Slackware Project Lead), at 21:43 10-10-1999.
I've stayed out of this for now, but I do think I should lend a little justification to the version number thing.
First off, I think I forgot to count some time ago. If I'd started on 6.0 and made every release a major version (I think that's how Linux releases are made these days, right? ;), we would be on Slackware 47 by now. (it would actually be in the 20s somewhere if we'd gone 1, 2, 3...)
I think it's clear that some other distributions inflated their version numbers for marketing purposes, and I've had to field (way too many times) the question "why isn't yours 6.x" or worse "when will you upgrade to Linux 6.0" which really drives home the effectiveness of this simple trick. With the move to glibc and nearly everyone else using 6.x now, it made sense to go to at least 6.0, just to make it clear to people who don't know anything about Linux that Slackware's libraries, compilers, and other stuff are not 3 major versions behind. I thought they'd all be using 7.0 by now, but no matter. We're at least "one better", right? :)
Sorry if I haven't been enough of a purist about this. I promise I won't inflate the version number again (unless everyone else does again ;)