Un-edited Live session – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8PVTKIQId7Y
Kernel News: Mat
Distro Talk: Tony
Mary Distro Review
Is it Alive? – Mary
Tony Bemus, Mat Enders, and Mary Tomich
Sound bites by Mike Tanner
Kernel News: Mat
mainline: 3.15-rc7 2014-05-25
stable: 3.14.4 2014-05-13
longterm: 3.12.20 2014-05-15
longterm: 3.10.40 2014-05-13
longterm: 3.4.91 2014-05-18
longterm: 3.2.5 2014-05-18
longterm: 22.214.171.124 2014-05-19
linux-next: next-20140530 2014-05-30
Distro Talk: Tony
- 5-18 – SalentOS 14.04
- 5-20 – Clonezilla Live 2.2.3-10
- 5-21 – Tiny Core Linux 5.3 “piCore”
- 5-21 – openSUSE 13.1.1 “Edu Li-f-e MATE”
- 5-21 – Robolinux 7.5.2
- 5-21 – Chakra GNU/Linux 2014.05
- 5-26 – MakuluLinux 6.0 “Xfce”
- 5-27 – Antergos 2014.05.26
- 5-27 – Kali Linux 1.0.7
Distro of the Week: Tony
- Antergos – 1497
- 4MLinux – 1510
- Debian – 1576
- Ubuntu – 1598
- Mint – 3204
Mary Distro Review – Fatdog Linux 64
This Linux distro characterizes itself as a “small yet versatile 64-bit multi-user Linux distribution.” Yeah, don’t they all say that…? Weighing in at a mere 248MB, I guess you say it has a lot of bark for its bite… The distro I am looking at this week is Fatdog Linux.
So would Fatdog Linux really prove to be a peppy puppy or would it seem like a dose of doggie downers…obese
Name: Fatdog Linux
Distro Latest Birthday: May 1, 2014
Derivative: Puppy Linux
Booting to the live environment took slightly under 4.5 minutes, longer than I expected..
Fatdog quickly boots to pleasant OpenBox desktop. The gun metal grey wallpaper is attractively offset with the very chubby golden-colored dog. That’s sure a fat dog—Oh I get it! Fatdog Linux. 🙂
In typical Puppy fashion, a collection of frequently used icons are clustered in the upper left portion of the screen. At the bottom is a panel that holds the quick launch with the typical icons,
Graphics: ( i915)
Wireless: ✘ (b43) Later got it working in the installed environment
Browser: Firefox Nightly, Seamonkey
Office Suite: AbiGnu (Abiword, Gnumeric)
Mail Client: Seamonkey Mail
File Manager: Rox-Filer
The Install Process:
Finding the installer was a laborious process. It’s hidden in the Fatdog64 Control Panel which is an icon in the quick launch tray. There’s no icon on the desktop and nothing in the menu. After a bit of googling I was able to find it and was ready to begin. I did not . On the Utilities tab I clicked the Fatdog64 installer. Gparted is available for those who need to repartition prior to install.
1. partition selection and file system format: Ext1 for the only partition on the drive (aside from the swap area.) The only other choices are ext2, ext3, fat16 and fat32. There was a checkbox to user small initrd. I left it unchecked.
2. Where to install- boot loader had four options install or not and MBR or not. When chosen, each selection displays a helpful message regarding the consequences of that choice.
3. Final piece is the location of the source media. Mine is on a CD-ROM.
The actual install took less than a minute.
It took 19 seconds to go from the bios to desktop. Extremely fast; shutdown was equally impressive.
After install I wanted to take a look at the partition on which Fatdog Linux was installed, so I rebooted from the disk and opened a terminal. I discovered that I was a root user automatically. According to the Fatdog Linux web site, it’s done as a convenience to users, and they go into detail to explain their rationale. However, programs such as Firefox, Seamonkey, and Thunderbird all run as user, spot. This user can only write in a few places, one of these is the Downloads folder on the desktop. And that is how you save something from the Internets—you send it to the Downloads folder. Each time the browser is opened, the files in Downloads folder are changed to owner spot. So if you need to import bookmarks to the browser, place the bookmarks file in the Downloads folder before you open the browser. Then open the browser and import the file. The Fatdog site provides instructions for setting up Firefox to have elevated permissions.
I also had a chance to check the partition to which Fatdog had been installed. There were the five Fatdog files. Fatdog64 utilizes AUFS to form what they call a stackable filesystem, Fatdog64 main file system is compressed into a single read-only file using Squashfs, which I observed when I rebooted to the live environment after install and mounted the hard drive. The Fatdog web site contains an in-depth discussion of the file system arrangement. Very similar to Puppy Linux.
I also want to talk a little bit about the Fatdog64 control panel. There are six tabs, each focusing on a specific topic: Localization (time zone, keyboard, etc.), Desktop (themes, display properties, cursors, etc.); Sound (Alsa tools and set default sound card), Network( bluetooth, dialers, wizard, firewall); Hardware( cups, manage services, HW information, etc); Utilities (partition, remaster, backup, process manager, grub tools). Although it’s not extremely easy to find at first, once you do locate it, you have many tools at your disposal.
My first order of business was to get wireless going. My test laptop uses a broadcom chip and out of the box Fatdog Linux64 did not initially work. However, I was impressed with the documentation – on page 8 were the instructions for activating the proprietary bl driver that Fatdog includes I followed the instructions and had wireless up and running within a few minutes. This dog can hunt!
Fatdog64 also has a sandbox environment– you initiate it by running a script: sandbox.sh. There are a couple of other scripts you can run if you want to save files created in the sandbox, etc.
The way the sandbox is implemented is via aufs, a stackable union file system. you can see all of the files modified in the sandbox by going to /mnt/sb/sandbox. It is only visible when the sandbox is running.
One thing the Fatdog Linux web site reminds you of is that the sandbox should not be considered a security tool because some files changed in the sandbox will propagate to the outside. One example they provided was the /tmp directory as well as directories like /sys and /proc.
Aside from that little caveat, the fatdog sandbox affords you the opportunity to do just about anything you would normally do. The sandbox also includes a full desktop emulation layer which is easily started by typing xwin. I tested it and had a complete desktop within a desktop.
Installing applications in Fatdog Linux is a relatively easy affair. Fatdog handles the standard .pet extension, just like a .deb or .rpm. The archive is decompressed and copied to the installed system. I also tested the Fatdog package manager by installing Tuxcart (and sribus) and it worked just fine. The package manager also handled the dependencies. The package manager is accessed via the Fatdog64 control panel.
The second way to install an application is by an SFS package. The .sfs file contains the app as a compressed filesystem (squashfs). When it is installed, the content of this filesystem is merged with the rest of your filesystem but, unlike .pet files, the .sfs file is never copied. I downloaded Chrome to test it. When clicked the sfs file is mounted but I was not sure how to start Chrome. In other words, clicking the mounted.sfs file simply opened it to show two folders.
Other interesting Programs:
Fatdog comes with quite a few programs already installed and I was surprised at the number available on what amounted to a 248MB iso
Htop is available from the menu. It opens in a terminal window
Bcrypt – file encryption utility
QuickApps – opens a window that lists all available applications
Screencaster – records desktop and audio. I tested it and it worked out of the box.
Xdelta – a utility to compute the changes between two files. Differs from diff in that the delta is not expressed in human readable form (and it’s in dog years)
Osmo – a handy personal organizer (tasks, contacts, calendar)
Image tools (peasyglue, peasyscale, etc.)
Puppy Podcast Grabber
Composer – web development platform
Shotcut – a video editor
ffconvert– multimedia converter
Rating: I was impressed with Fatdog for the most part. Aside from a couple of small glitches related to installing I will throw this dog some bones…
WebRTC video conference website
TrueCrypt Not Dead, Forked and Relocated to Switzerland
Is it Alive?
(or is that a Puppy Linux spin-off…)?
During this segment of the show, I challenge Mat and Tony to identify whether a Linux Distro is alive or dead? Every other time we do Is It Alive, I twist the concept for our game show and challenge Mat and Tony to decide if the named entity was a Linux distribution or something else.
This episode is twist week and I challenge I challenge Mat and Tony to decide whether the name Linux command is a Puppy Linux derivative. The items for this week’s show are:
L. azY Puppy Modular Concept
A. ntiquity Icon Set – including the Wallpapers
S. FS P.L.U.S.
I. ncredible VarioMenu
E. xtension SFS Module
Carolina – is a fork of the Saluki project. Saluki is a woof-build based on Racy 5.2 with Xfce.
Akita Linux is a free, tiny (90mb), lightweight, user friendly and feature-packed Linux operating system which can be installed to and booted from CD/DVD, USB or hard drive
Mat won by one point!! (can you believe it?)
The Security Bit
Frontline – United States of Secrets
Martin Obando had a similar problem so we got together to make a youtube video using Google Hangouts Onair to talk about how we fixed it. Here is the video:
show (at) smlr.us or 313-626-9140
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