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Slackware Linux 10.2 Released 250

excelblue writes "Slackware Linux 10.2 has finally been released. This release comes with Linux 2.4.31, with 2.6.13 available in the testing packages and glibc 2.3.5. This time, they've decided to get up with times and switch to Firefox, Thunderbird, and subversion instead of using the Mozilla suite and cvs from the previous distros. Here are Torrents of ISO images."
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Slackware Linux 10.2 Released

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  • by Punk Walrus ( 582794 ) on Thursday September 15, 2005 @08:50AM (#13565486) Journal
    I am looking forward to trying this out. Slashdot alerted me to Slack fans, and I have been using it steadily in personal and professional environments for years now. I like LFS and Gentoo, just because I can tweak every living thing out of my hardware and software, but if I need a "quick set and forget" distro just to get a box running, Slackware is hard to beat.

    I don't know why people claim the installation is so hard. I guess the disk partition thing might be intimidating, but then again, I have FDisk'd so many times because Windows/DOS had issues back in the day, I find the two-tone ncurses thing to be a positive boon!

    A hearty congratulations to Pat and all the people who worked for this!

  • Re:YAY! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by RiotXIX ( 230569 ) on Thursday September 15, 2005 @08:54AM (#13565526) Journal
    But there are package management tools. They've been working on it. And they're useful when you want to mass upgrade several packages on your system without having to uninstall (yes I still don't know how to uninstall a generic when I download something, untar; make; make install : where can I find out where it put all it's stuff?). Having a database/registry of where an application put's it's files is a damn good idea.

    "Updated versions of the Slackware package management tools make it
        easy to add, remove, upgrade, and make your own Slackware packages.
        Package tracking makes it easy to upgrade from Slackware 10.1 to
        Slackware 10.2 (see UPGRADE.TXT). The slackpkg tool in /extra can
        also help update from an older version of Slackware to a newer one,
        and keep your Slackware system up to date. In addition, the new
        slacktrack utility (in extra/) will help you build and maintain
        your own packages."

    Seriously many have a perception of slackware as being dated/non-user friendly, but it's one of the most integrated/structured distros I know - it DOES move forward/evolve with the times, it just keeps it's releases at stable versions.
  • by m50d ( 797211 ) on Thursday September 15, 2005 @08:58AM (#13565548) Homepage Journal
    Others will disagree with me but I still find 2.6 kernels to be unstable more often than not (see my journal []). As a more server-oriented distribution, stability is perhaps more important with slackware than many distributions, and it's good to see Pat's priorities reflect that.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 15, 2005 @09:06AM (#13565594)
    Please be careful if you plan on using this system for version control. The default configuration of the latest version scales even worse than previous ones (using their fsfs datastore which completely sucks nuts for scalability). The devs even admit that there are scalability problems in their mailing list threads.

  • Slackware's purpose? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Zemplar ( 764598 ) on Thursday September 15, 2005 @09:08AM (#13565610) Journal
    Now that you can get a 'real' UNIX for free, what are the compelling reasons to use Slackware GNU/Linux whose primary function is to be "...the most "UNIX-like" Linux distribution out there."
  • Patricks Health (Score:4, Interesting)

    by nighty5 ( 615965 ) on Thursday September 15, 2005 @09:23AM (#13565703)
    Last time I heard he was very ill, anyone have the latest?
  • by hackstraw ( 262471 ) * on Thursday September 15, 2005 @09:50AM (#13565898)

    Slackware was my first linux distro. I learned a bunch from it when I first got into linux in 1994 with Slackware 1.something. It used the kernel version 0.99pl13. That was a long time ago.

    I'll tell you, it was the best OS I could run at the time. I also thought it was cool that the default computer name back then was "Dark Star", which is a Grateful Dead song for those that don't know. The system was very modular, and it was relatively easy to install. Yes, I installed via sneakernet on 1.44meg floppies. The second time I installed it, I downloaded it over a 14.4 modem, possibly slower.

    I did more reading when downloads took days at a time :)
  • Mirror performance (Score:2, Interesting)

    by AshPattern ( 152048 ) on Thursday September 15, 2005 @11:09AM (#13566660) Homepage
    We use slackware as our primary distro for our servers, so I set up a private mirror of slackware with a slackware-mirror-making-tool that syncs with multiple mirrors simultaneously. The tool keeps track of successful transfers and errors. Apparently, some mirrors aren't really pulling their weight ( is when it couldn't find the file on any host):

    Rcvd Err Host
    100 0
    87 0
    18 7
    8 0
    7 99
    0 105
    0 106
    0 105
  • I love my slackware (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 15, 2005 @12:43PM (#13567527)
    Thanks Patrick
  • by planetoid ( 719535 ) on Thursday September 15, 2005 @01:10PM (#13567797)
    I upgraded from the default 2.4.x kernel that came with my Slackware 10.1 distro to 2.6.13, and I now notice that glibc halts execution of programs in which it detects a memory leak (at least that's what I understand that "corrupt double-linked list (blah blah blah)" error is about, correct me if I'm wrong).

    I find it curious that this didn't happen in 2.4.x -- why would the kernel I use affect how glibc operates and detects potentially fatal memory errors? Wouldn't glibc recognize it regardless of kernel?

    Anyway, this rendered a few programs (all unofficial ones that didn't come with Slackware, of course) unusable; setting environment variable MALLOC_CHECK_ to 0 is supposed to let the program run without problem from glibc but it just segfaults. But then again, maybe that's for the better? None of those programs were must-haves; of course it would be nice if people learned how to debug their programs and be more hawk-eyed about their use of new and delete/malloc and free.

    I would go back to the 2.4.x kernel for the slightly-better stability but it didn't include hyperthreading, and Doom 3 was running like a slideshow. Doom 3 now has better performance on my Linux system than it does in Windows, and KDE doesn't take forever to start up either (like 3 seconds as opposed to the 10-15 from before). I'm pretty sure Einstein@Home, LHC@Home, and ProteinPredictor@Home also are benefitting from the significant increase in speed as more of the processor's potential is utilized when I run it.
  • by RandomJoe ( 814420 ) on Thursday September 15, 2005 @02:02PM (#13568463)
    I won't necessarily say I use Slackware because those items don't exist, but I do use it because of frustration with many of those things on other distros.

    Preface to say, I have been using Slackware since I first started with Linux, back around 1994 or so, so I've had plenty of time over the years to get used to "bare metal".

    However, I have frequently wished I could just "apt-get install whatever" so I've tried various distros over the years. Used Red Hat for quite a while, really enjoyed Mandrake, never could get Debian going for whatever reason, Gentoo is nice but I don't like to wait that long! Every one of them, though, I wound up hitting a bunch of annoying problems, mostly related to package managers. I'd be going along fine until I wanted some one thing that I couldn't find in just the right form as a premade package. After I had installed it manually, things seemed to unravel slowly from that point on. Gentoo surprised me most, everyone extols the beauty of "emerge -u world" (if I'm remembering right) and the one time I had a great system running (with no custom packages by me) I did that and X refused to compile or run after that...

    With Slackware, I just compile and install everything as I desire, and have almost never had a problem. Occasionally I have to recompile something to add this or that support that I forgot but still no great shakes. The only time I ever really got frustrated was back when I wanted to upgrade Gnome or something (can't remember exactly, I just remember it was big) and there were so many little things I had to donwload and compile I just decided heck with it. (This was one of the points where I tried a new distro!)

    And the newbie-friendly admin tools I've never really trusted (not that I gave them much of a chance). It's old hat for me to edit a text file, even my Windows desktop here at work almost always had a terminal window open, so I'm not concerned there. But the few times I used GUI tools they either saved things in a bizarre format, or they couldn't parse the edits I made, making them useless to me.

    I've never cared to follow the pack, and I really dislike a lot of hand-holding ("you-need-this!") so Slack's definitely been the long-term favorite.
  • by RandomJoe ( 814420 ) on Thursday September 15, 2005 @02:13PM (#13568620)
    While that would be the ideal, I usually take the "reinstall" as an opportunity to clear out all the cruft I've accumulated over the months or years. I just back up to the server, maybe make a dupe on a USB HD, then pull data over as I need it. After a while, I burn what's left to CD and delete.

    I'm bad at housekeeping, so having an opportunity to sit around and remember just what I did to get everything working last time (for whatever reason, an enjoyable experience to me! ;) gives me an excuse to tidy up at the same time.

    As for not even trying the upgrade, probably a leftover from my Windows years. Upgrading Windows was always an unmitigated disaster...!
  • by slashdot_commentator ( 444053 ) on Thursday September 15, 2005 @05:55PM (#13570738) Journal
    Also note that Torvald said at the onset of 2.6, that the kernel developer group would not be ultimately responsible for stability issues. (If you have a bug, and they don't see it on their hardware, its not their problem.) He expects the Linux distributors to follow up on undesirable bugs in varying configurations. That is also part of the reason for the four digit releases; they give distributors a way to track their changes to the kernel.

    So, when Patrick puts out a 2.6 kernel, if he's only going by what releases, there are bound to be bugs; which either he fixes, or you will have to go to Red Hat, SuSE, or someone else's kernel implementation for the fix.

    What it means to Slackers: just because its an even number kernel, doesn't mean its a stable kernel, or even a kernel that will not undergo significant change in a few months. Not encouraging for someone who insists on kernel stability and an entity accountable to address bug problems (the OSDL is not). Me? I don't run 2.6 kernels, though I'm looking forward to do so soon (even before 2.7 is official).

"If it's not loud, it doesn't work!" -- Blank Reg, from "Max Headroom"