Author Archive for Donjan

Crowdsourcing, does it work?

After a short essay on methodology we’re curious to find out whether there are any master-snoops among our audience.
We present exhibit M, a rare specimen we know nothing about but for the fact that it was compiled from bits of Gentoo. Hence we call publicly for any hints or leads regarding this elusive distribution!

Meanwhile, a gentle reader has drawn to our attention the fact that Damn Vulnerable Linux is currently listed as a Slax derivate by the major pundit places, while it certainly boasted a Damn Small Linux pedigree in it’s very beginnings. The switch has happened, but everyone claims not to have seen when it did! Have you?

And just in case anyone needs more material, here’s our current ToDo buffer.

GNU/Linux Distribution Timeline 11.7

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  • Discontinued distros: none
  • Added 10 distros (total 380): BlueOnyx, DEFT, Greenie, Jollix, Linvo, LPS, Newtoos, PLATYPUX, Semplice, SlaXBMC
  • Added connectors: Fedora->Kororaa
  • Contributors: Analekto, Connor Wood, Galin
  • Works best with gnuclad 0.2.4

You know my methods, Watson

Greenie. An Ubuntu-based distribution that seems to be pretty popular in Slovakia and the Czech Republic, and thus probably a good addition to the GLDT.
Quick googling leads us to the official page and to DistroWatch. The latter hints at a game oriented Xubuntu fork in early 2008, rebasing to Ubuntu in mid-2008.
The official page doesn’t seem to sport any change logs or release announcements (while my Slovak is very poor, this isn’t much of a problem thanks to Google Translate).
The oldest downloads (mirror) seem to have been purged.
The forums also only hold comparatively recent posts.
Googling a bit further reveals that Greenie was known in 2007. Time to power up the Wayback Machine: voilá. Since my Slovak hasn’t improved much in the meantime, lets feed again the earliest archive link to the translator… “The beginning of the project [...] 14th September 2007″ and “Greenie Linux 1.0 is based directly on Ubuntu 7.04 Feisty Fawn.” (on a second look, that page was available in English anyway!)
Job done.

While checking out the page DW links to Greenie, Newtoos catches the eye. The Slovakian Wikipedia says something about it forking off of Ubuntu in Nov 2008.
Researching further, we see that the download ISOs share a common folder. Extracting the URL from the link address, we quickly reveal Newtoos’ release date: 2008.11.13.

If only project sites had a nicely visible change log / history section…
Two distributions for the GLDT 11.7 are done, eight still to go!

Canned Distros

After a short break, we present you a preview of the soon to be ready GLDT 11.6 in the form of conveniently packed slices for longevity and maximum enjoyment of your personal favourite distribution:
Arch, Debian, Fedora*, Gentoo, Knoppix, Mandriva, openSUSE, Red Hat, Slackware and Ubuntu.

* Note that the Fedora tree is grossly underrepresented due to the still-work-in-progress rebasing mechanism in gnuclad…

Our ToDo is your ToDo

… and your ToDo is our – wait, you can keep that to yourself!
However, here is a small list of our immediate ToDo items. Note that the information there is very incomplete, missing or might be right out false.
So: if you are wearing your contribute-to-random-cool-project-on-the-internet shirt and have a bit of spare time at your hands, we’d be thankful to everyone checking out a few of the listed names and entering verified data into our submission form. Of course, you can still keep sending in your favourite distro or scouring the archives on DistroWatch, Wikipedia or LWN.


Yo dawg, we herd you like timelines, so we put a timeline in your timeline so you can browse a timeline while you browse…. OK, OK, I’ll stop already.

Here’s a graphical evolution of the GLDT from it’s inception up to now.

GNU/Linux Distribution Timeline 11.2

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  • Discontinued distros: none
  • Added 10 distros (total 340): Alpine, AriOS, ChameleonOS, Doudoulinux, Joatha, Mythbuntu, Openwall, Parabola, SalineOS, tomsrtbt
  • Added connectors: Red Hat->S.u.S.E., Puppy->Quirky
  • Fixed: connector Ubuntu->Trisquel
  • Contributors: Abdullah Al-Sabi, erkin, Frédéric Perrin, Jose Luis, Mahdi
  • Works best with gnuclad 0.2.2


Here’s a clickable sitemap representing an overview of our current media as of January 2011.

Survival of the fittest

As the years pass, distros come and go. Some withstand the test of time, some perish quickly, and here we want to spare a moment in order to honour those who have survived this cruel process of selection: PNG, SVG and TAR.BZ2.

Explaining and observing

First the explaining …

Since there were several queries about the meaning and significance of the connector lines, especially concerning S.u.S.E/Jurix and Maemo+Moblin/Meego, here’s a small legend.

… and then some observing

Comparing the GLDT with the recently introduced BSDT further down, there has been a remarkable explosion of diversity in the early nineties – when internet access started to become ubiquitous.

Also, looking at the latest version of the GLDT, we can observe gradual shifts in forking activity, starting with Red Hat and moving to Debian, then Knoppix, with a burst of Slackware derivatives in 2004 and finally Ubuntu taking the lead particularly in 2007.

Another less joyous observation is how the Knoppix family tree is slowly thinning, with no new additions in recent years. While Knoppix itself releases regularly, a lot of its offspring seems to have been less lucky.

Gentoo on the other hand appears to have more stable derivatives, albeit similarly rare in recent years, yet the distribution itself may have lost quite a bit of momentum.

I conclude with the remark that while Fedora’s subtree of direct forks looks comparatively small, keep in mind that a lot of Red Hat based distros have switched to Fedora (and Red Hat itself too, actually), as seen by the large number of connectors in the full GLDT.