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Damn Small Linux Rises From the Dead With a 4.11 RC1 Release 101

Posted by Soulskill
from the sweet-zombie-tux dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Damn Small Linux is back from the dead, with a version 4.11 RC1 release announcement at Distrowatch and another at the DSL Forums! Quoting: 'Here is the first release candidate for Damn Small Linux (DSL) 4.11. The changes in this release are a step toward making DSL a friendly alternative for older hardware. I've fixed some bugs, updated some applications, and replaced others. Applications: updated JWM to 2.1.0 (now supports rounding); updated Dillo to 3.0.2 (much improves CSS support); added XChat 1.8.9; added sic 1.1 IRC client; added XCalc-color. Modified desktop functionality: it is now possible to switch between JWM and Fluxbox without shutting down X; added menu items to switch between DFM and xtdesk icon engines or use none at all." Here's the download page."
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Damn Small Linux Rises From the Dead With a 4.11 RC1 Release

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  • TI83 (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Dwedit (232252) on Sunday August 05, 2012 @12:19AM (#40883661) Homepage

    I just noticed that this distro uses JWM, which was written by legendary TI-83 programmer Joe Wingbermuehle [ticalc.org]. If you went to high school in 1998-2002 and had a TI83 or TI83+, you might have had some of his programs, such as the Ion assembly shell, Boxworld, Breakout, Diamonds, Dstar, Landmine, or Jezzball.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 05, 2012 @01:47AM (#40884023)

    DSL was hugely important to me. It started me in Linux, got me understanding things, learning scripting, Perl and C. Booted all into ram it was blinding fast even on an old machine. I love small light applications and I still love the idea of a whole desktop and browser in a 50MB iso. It predates Puppy and all the others. But what version stuff is it running now?

    What kernel version is it running? libc? Apart from the dispute between its owner and its lead developer (the latter went off to found Tinycore) the big problem with old DSL was compiling anything recent became a pain because it and the gcc versions in the repo were so out of date. Leaving aside security issues this began to hamper what I could do with it. Then there was the old 2.4.26 kernel.

    Is that how it has to be if the goal is to support old hardware? How old? Tinycore claims to support 486 with math processor and it has the latest *everything*, tc kernel and apps are often very recent.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 05, 2012 @02:00AM (#40884091)

    Tinycore

  • But that brings up something I've been wondering for awhile which is this....at what point would it be better to toss the hardware? I mean you can buy one of those E350 based kits for less than $150 and that thing takes less than 18w under load and idles in the mid single digits, I don't even remember what the Pi runs but its a crazy small number, so at what point does that old hardware become too much of a piggie to be worth keeping?

    Lets face it folks, while you may see the ancient P2 or P3 around occasionally most of those died ages ago thanks to the cheap caps they used back then so what I see the most of, and by most of i mean fricking insane amounts of, is those damned Pentium 4s. Those P4s frankly were NEVER good on power and just cranked the living shit out of the heat, so would it be better to keep it, thus paying the increased electricity and cooling, or just get something cheap that doesn't blow through power like crap through a goose?

    I know that while I've got a couple of P4s waiting on me to refurb at the shop, and probably another good half dozen or more gonna be given to me free by the super for parts or refurbing, the only older machine I've kept is a 2004 Sempron a customer traded in that frankly makes a great nettop at the shop. Its quiet, uses maybe 35w on average, and puts out hardly any heat at all. while that Pentium d I have in the corner may run rings around it it runs rings around my AC as well.

    So at what point is it better to dump? I hate as much as the rest to toss working gear, just about to carry a 1.8GHz P4 to the dumpster because i can't think of a damned thing to do with it and I hate tossing working machines like that, but at what point are you blowing through more in power and cooling than you'd save by keeping?

  • by jma05 (897351) on Sunday August 05, 2012 @05:38AM (#40885033)

    Good point. DSL was light, but also felt very clunky: UI and to install extra software. I wanted something with the backing of a standard package repository.

    An year or two ago, I was looking for a light Linux to run in a VM and was balancing usability with RAM usage. Here are my numbers from some old notes. Unless specified, the numbers are for RAM usage at login to Desktop at default config (I might have removed some apps I considered non-essential - I don't recall).

    Of course, these are not exactly scientific. Was sshd running for Arch?, I didn't note down. The distro version numbers were also not noted, but all distros were roughly from 1.5 years ago. They were more for getting ballpark estimates. AFAI-recall, they were all booted in a 256 MB VM (Virtualbox).

    Lubuntu - 85 MB
    Fluxbuntu 48 MB (31 MB without X)
    Lubuntu 64 MB (41 MB without X)

    Ubuntu Server 10.04 without servers and X - 145 MB (did not expect this)
    Ubuntu Mint (Gloria) 144 MB
    Debian Mint 138 MB

    ULite Desktop - 54 MB (17 MB without X)
    ULite Desktop without GDM - 26 MB

    Non-Debian (without X)
    Suse in light server config - 13 MB (incl sshd, 10 MB without)
    Arch - 14 MB

    So, Suse took the light-weight crown for RAM usage at terminal boot. For me though, Lubuntu was the sweet-spot at that time.

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