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gNewSense Distro Frees Ubuntu 306 (who shares corporate overlords with Slashdot) is reporting that gNewSense has gone 2.0. For the uninitiated gNewSense is a stripped down version of Ubuntu's Hardy Heron for the free software purist. Removing over 100 pieces of proprietary code and firmware, gNewSense offers a user the ability to run an OS where everything is able to be studied, changed, and redistributed. "gNewSense is a great alternative to Gobuntu, the Canonical-sponsored free derivative of Ubuntu. According to its wiki page, the 8.04 version of Gobuntu hasn't been released due to a less-than-optimal reaction from the community. Gobuntu used the same repositories as Ubuntu, and the Ubuntu live CD can achieve the same installation as Gobuntu by merely selecting the free-software-only option in the installer (press F6 twice at the boot menu). Also, Mark Shuttleworth, the founder of Ubuntu, has indicated that he would rather focus on gNewSense because the work on that distribution can help the Ubuntu community as a whole. "
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gNewSense Distro Frees Ubuntu

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  • by washort ( 6555 ) on Friday May 30, 2008 @05:13PM (#23604581) Homepage
    rhymes with "nuisance"
  • Re:the name? (Score:5, Informative)

    by bsDaemon ( 87307 ) on Friday May 30, 2008 @05:22PM (#23604683)
    They are trying to imply the GNUism. This is an officially FSF-sanctioned distro.
  • by clang_jangle ( 975789 ) on Friday May 30, 2008 @05:33PM (#23604817) Journal
    Dolphin? Sounds like you may be using Kubuntu 8.04, which I also had a lot of trouble with. In fact, now that I've tried all three I have to say xubuntu is the way to go. Ubuntu claims that switching from kubuntu to xubuntu is a simple matter of "sudo apt-get install xubuntu-desktop", but that didn't fix the kubuntu bugginess. Downloading and using the xubuntu installer did the trick, and now everything works as it should. HTH.
  • RMS hair splitting (Score:3, Informative)

    by manwal ( 648106 ) on Friday May 30, 2008 @05:43PM (#23604915)
    It's true.

    Stallman: "Since I consider non-free software to be unethical and antisocial, I think it would be wrong for me to recommend it to others. Therefore, if a collection of software contains (or suggests installation of) some non-free program, I do not recommend it. The systems I recommend are therefore those that do not contain (or suggest installation of) non-free software." (from here [])
  • Re:seems a bit silly (Score:3, Informative)

    by howlingmadhowie ( 943150 ) on Friday May 30, 2008 @05:50PM (#23604983)
    the fsf guys split with debian because debian includes huge binary blobs in the kernel.
  • Re:As I recall... (Score:5, Informative)

    by daigu ( 111684 ) on Friday May 30, 2008 @06:04PM (#23605103) Journal

    Free software is not the same as open source. Read Why "Open Source" misses the point of Free Software []. The first two paragraphs:

    When we call software "free," we mean that it respects the users' essential freedoms: the freedom to run it, to study and change it, and to redistribute copies with or without changes. This is a matter of freedom, not price, so think of "free speech," not "free beer."...These freedoms are vitally important. They are essential, not just for the individual users' sake, but because they promote social solidarity--that is, sharing and cooperation. They become even more important as more and more of our culture and life activities are digitized. In a world of digital sounds, images and words, free software comes increasingly to equate with freedom in general.

    Now, it may be more important to you that your wireless just works. But, for some people, it's more important to promote social solidarity and freedom, and they want a distribution that makes that easy - without then having to figure out all the dependencies and what is "free" and what isn't. This distribution serves that purpose.

    Of course, you could go with Debian, but again, Debian suggests non-free software that people like yourself might simply use because they don't understand the differences between open source and free software or that they have free alternatives - like compiling the software themselves as the other reply to your post suggests. Distributions like Debian enable the creep of carelessness, which is why people like RMS (Richard Stallman) want to encourage totally free distributions.

    If it's not your thing or if you are in a situation that requires using something non-free, then do what you have to do. But, I would encourage you to at least be aware of the choices you are making and at least try to be free where you can or to present the alternatives to others as I am doing here.

    For disclosure, I used Linux (or GNU/Linux, if you'd rather) as my sole system a decade ago, and even then used Applix for office applications. Now, I use Windows exclusively. I need to run software that requires Windows and don't have as much time to spend troubleshooting computer problems. So, you are running more "free" than me. Still, I thought it worth trying my hand at explaining why these efforts are important, and perhaps it is better than someone that isn't a "true believer" present the case.

  • Re:the name? (Score:3, Informative)

    by el americano ( 799629 ) on Friday May 30, 2008 @07:05PM (#23605621) Homepage
    Except that the lone G usually signifies Gnome. They've admitted that it's not a great name, but they say that they haven't come up with anything they like better. If it depends on their ability to come up with a good name, I think this one is here to stay.

  • by gambolt ( 1146363 ) on Friday May 30, 2008 @07:55PM (#23606041)
    They take out the binary blobs that debian leaves in. Everything is free in debian but the kernel.
  • Re:the name? (Score:3, Informative)

    by Peaker ( 72084 ) <.moc.oohay. .ta. .rekaepung.> on Friday May 30, 2008 @08:30PM (#23606325) Homepage
    Actually, Flash doesn't work very well. It still crashes, and running it in a 64-bit Firefox is a pain.

    And this is a direct result of it being closed-source software.

    Putting pressure on the OSS community to solve these needs with opensource code could help us get rid of these closed-source trouble makers.
  • Re:the name? (Score:2, Informative)

    by ibbie ( 647332 ) on Friday May 30, 2008 @10:37PM (#23606961) Journal

    That money isn't going on to the actual programmers, though.
    It does, however, provide an open platform for programmers to develop for. Something that is way the hell easier (and cheaper) to do than a closed system, where you have to pay out the wazoo to have access to the system's API and/or documentation.

    Some of us program for money as well as contribute to FOSS. Making our day jobs easier is most definitely not a Bad Thing.

Suburbia is where the developer bulldozes out the trees, then names the streets after them. -- Bill Vaughn