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Old 07-03-2021, 06:53 PM   #1
paracoder
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Lightbulb Introducing AllegianceOS (New Distro)


Greetings everyone!

I am posting this in General to avoid "stepping on toes" and creating invalid post count on this thread. If a mod deems it moved, so be it.


I have been debating announcing AllegianceOS (AOS for short) here as it is likely to be rather controversial.. but at the end of the day; it certainly won't be the first controversial topic to hit these forums.

To start, a basic description:

AOS is currently a 64-bit, multilib-enabled distribution based on Slackware64 -current. It attempts to offer users with more options for out-of-the-box desktop configurations, easier initial software installs, etc. A graphical post-install setup wizard is provided to facilitate the easy creation of user accounts and install basic apps you might need. The system automatically boots to X (init 4) and runs the lightdm login manager. A graphical software manager and package installer have been added, but as AOS is in Beta stages, these programs are in their infancy and need serious bug testing.

There are a few things I'd like to make clear:
  1. AOS is a subset of Slackware, not the same as Slackware itself.
  2. AOS is not supported or endorsed by anyone in/from Slackware.
  3. The multilib capability is thanks to AlienBob's packages.
  4. All base packages and kernels come directly from 'upstream' Slackware.
  5. Patrick Volkerding may be thanked for anything that works, and any bugs should be directed to me.
  6. I have pledged 10% of any/all earnings AOS may collect in the future to the Slackware project/Patrick Volkerding himself.
  7. Patrick and the core Slackware developers have been notified of this project in advance of this posting, but (so far) have not responded. AOS is thus not affiliated in any official way to any of them - do not hold them responsible for any problems found in AOS!

For years I have debated making my own builds of Slackware public, but until now have decided against it. The reason(s) I have chosen to do so are the following:
  1. I believe less advanced users should have access to stable, easy-to-use systems.
  2. I got married, and my wife is one of those users!
  3. I aim to show the possibilities Slackware Linux presents to those capable of configuring it correctly.
  4. I believe many avoid Slackware simply because of the 'difficulty' found in software installations, and I see that as something to fix.

Both XFCE and Slackware have been grossly underestimated for years by what I would consider "newer users" to Linux. In many cases they are seen as 'archaic' projects meant to keep the 'veterans' happy. I think this is a serious oversight and hope that my project can shed some light on the capabilities (and benefits) of both Slackware and the XFCE project(s). That is not to say that no future version of AOS will come with a Plasma (or other DE) option, but that is the focus of the 'flagship' AOS release.

Another factor to me (and those around me in West Africa) is the issue of download size. Here, data is charged via the data used - irregardless of speed. The cost of downloading a large ISO (4gb+) can (on some networks) exceed the average daily wages of a common worker here. This makes rolling distributions and those with large initial downloads rather cumbersome and expensive in comparison to the normal OS (Windows) being obtained via (illegal) means on a USB or other such physical media. Having a system capable of being stable even if not being the most updated basically screams 'Slackware Linux'... but Slackware isn't that friendly to your 'average user'.

Thus, AOS seeks to install a core set of Slackware packages and drop in the configuration files, icons, themes, etc needed to make it a more 'friendly' system by default. The actual default Slackware configuration files are renamed to "{name.conf}.sysdef" so they can be compared to the AOS versions at any time. Software (both command line and graphical) has been added to easier manage the installation of software via Slackware Packages (via slapt-get), SlackBuilds.org (via sbopkg), Node.js (npm), Ruby Modules (gem), and soon, Python PIP functionality will be restored. (The graphical package manager added to 3.1 supports these methods).

Browser updates can be done easily thanks to the integration of scripts written by RuarÝ ědegaard (ruario). It's also worth mentioning that the initial builds used the XFCE 4.14/4.16 builds used by rlworkman till the point where they were merged upstream, so thanks (again) to Robby Workman for all the time and effort!

The project is still very much in beta and needs a lot of work. I'm a full time developer, husband, and father of a toddler - and the only developer for AOS, so things may be updated slowly. Not all builds are uploaded to the internet as (again), internet costs here are very high. Thus an uploaded ISO implies some level of viable functionality.

I'd also like to make a 'nod' to Didier Spaier / the Slint project as it was a modified version of their lightdm package which I was able to get working with elogind, PAM, and polkit - so thank you guy(s)!

Another shoutout/note of thanks goes to Klaatu, host of GNU World Order as he has given a significant amount of his time to me in the form of both advice and ideas for AllegianceOS and some of it's core 'architectural' designs.

Note: at the most, AOS (currently) belongs in a VM or a machine that isn't needed for production. Many changes must still be made and it's performance/problems must not be seen as a reflection on the Slackware project.

The biggest thanks of all goes to Patrick Volkerding for making what I believe to be the most stable OS on the planet! I hope that my effort towards making a version based on it which 'opens it up' to a wider audience will be seen not as trying to 'enter competition' with Slackware. Instead, I hope that AOS will actually serve as a stepping stone (or training wheels) for those who want to really learn Linux, or simply use a stable OS without the headaches of initial configuration.

Please note that Slackware Linux is a registered trademark of Patrick Volkerding and is in no way associated with the AllegianceOS project.


Currently, all other information and downloads for AOS may be found at:

www.sourceforge.net/projects/allegianceos

It is currently on the DistroWatch waiting list as well.


Please send (constructive) feedback if at all possible, and I hope that this will create less problems than it intends to resolve

Last edited by paracoder; 07-03-2021 at 08:50 PM.
 
Old 07-04-2021, 12:27 PM   #2
boughtonp
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paracoder View Post
I am posting this in General to avoid "stepping on toes" and creating invalid post count on this thread. If a mod deems it moved, so be it.
Perhaps you meant to put this in Linux - General rather than than the non-technical General.

There are no active moderators here - Jeremy steps in when posts get reported, but I don't think he monitors every thread, so moving a thread means reporting it yourself.


Quote:
I have been debating announcing AllegianceOS (AOS for short) here as it is likely to be rather controversial..
Likely how? The only potential controversy I can see is why label it as a new distro, rather than what it appears to be: a flavour/blend of Slackware.

(Unless you intend to try and bypass the GPL, Slackware/Patrick is free to cherry-pick any changes you make, so any complaints about "entering competition" would be nonsense and can be ignored.)

 
Old 07-04-2021, 12:58 PM   #3
fatmac
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You could, of course, modify a distro, such as Salix, by removing what isn't needed, & any 'branding', & rename it what you want, under the GPL - various others have produced 'desktop' Slackware distros before - are you sure you want the bother?
 
Old 07-04-2021, 12:58 PM   #4
ondoho
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Why Sourceforge?
 
  


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