Monday, June 30, 2008

My three wishes from Elive

Elive is good enough out of all those who offer this windows manager ( like opengeu and pce17os ) , it is stable and it works. Elive is cleanly dissected like you see clean dissected muscles,nerves,vessels,facia etc in Gray`s anatomy diagrams.

I have 3 points to raise for elive

1: The packages, panels ,menus, etc should have at least names/tags....permanent or visible when you point at them.

2: remasterme or mklivecd option: I would be more than happy if somehow i could make my custom made remaster copies of elive.That's the ultimate power an end user have over a distro. You do fine resection, tweaking, selective packages installation , updates and then spin your own iso and just use that at any time.

3: Elive team should not charge whatsoever amount is when end user is downloading it, this hush away so many users who fall for other useless distros.
I might be wrong, but that's what i feel will benefit elive end users.I just want everyone to benefit from elive , it`s worth usage as are Suse and Mandriva and others.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Kurumin NG 8.06 Final | Simply amazing.

Yesterday on 17/06/2008 Leandro.Santos Launched the Kurumin NG 8.06 Final . The first stable version of Kurumin NG is available for download from the Kurumin main download server.
The Link for download by Bittorrent is LinuxTracker

Here is my Kurumin Desktop Screenshot.

Kurumin NG 8.06, is a Brazilian desktop distribution based on Kubuntu 8.04 which can be run Live and installed both in in Portuguese and English. During boot from Live CD the option to choose either of these is given at boot splash or can be activated by pressing F2 button.

Live CD

The Live CD of Kurumin NG 8.06 runs entirely from the CD without the need for installation, although it may well be installed in HD, like any traditional distribution.When it boots with CD, it automatically recognizes all hardware and automatically configures the computer, no matter which configuration, if the components are compatible with Linux will be in charge of the system leaves it running without any intervention from the user.


There is an icon on the Kurumin NG desktop which gives the option to install the Live CD onto the hard disk. The
Kurumin NG 8.06 installer is a typical Ubuntu installer with the option to install Kurumin in English too,and in about 15 minutes Kurumin NG 8.06 is fairly and squarely installed to the hard drive without any issues.

More news regarding this latest release of Kurumin will be coming from me once I test install it.

Pioneer Linux Basic 3.2.0 | A shiny new Release

Technology Alignment has announced the release of Pioneer Linux 3.2, a KDE-based desktop Linux distribution based on the recently released Ubuntu 8.04: today on 17/06/2008 . The detailed press release for this latest version can be read at the The Technalign and Pioneer Linux Press Home Page.

The Technalign and Pioneer Linux has established a forum for posting any queries and getting help for everyone.

The ISO files can be downloaded from The Technalign and Pioneer Linux download page . The torrent of this ISO is expected to be uploaded at THE PIRATE BAY soon.

Dianne Ursini is the CEO of Technalign, Inc. Dianne has been in the IT field since 1971 and she is well seasoned in development, sales, marketing & consulting. Her Blog can be accessed at Technalign's Blog by Dianne Ursini where she writes about Pioneer Linux and everything that goes on at Technalign.

I had a brief email conversation with her about Pioneer Linux and she defines the goal of Pioneer Linux in these simple words very clearly.

" We're not a flashy distribution. We're more of the rock solid, easy to use system people outside of the Linux community want. Our programs folders replace Automatix also, and it's just a solid and unbloated system ".

I ,as a home user clearly understand the importance of this concept because a home user would look more for ease of use, stability and unbloated system than an eye candy and flashy distribution.

I test installed the previous versions of Pioneer Linux and it was a good experience if not an excellent one . I am looking forwards to try this latest release and report back about it sooner.

Monday, June 2, 2008

An Interview with Anurag Bhandari, the Founder of Granular Linux

I am presenting an interview with Anurag Bhandari , the Founder & Project Leader, Granular Linux Project.

Granular Linux Project released Granular 1.0 (Preview) on 15-03-2008. And now as they are heading towards the release candidate of Granular Linux 1.0, I feel it appropriate to present this interview to all of my readers and GNU/Linux community.

Hello Anurag Bhandari , thanks for sparing your time for this interview for my blog page . I will ask you few questions so that we can better understand the Granular Linux and the whole idea of Granular Linux Project.

What exactly is Granular Linux? What does the name Granular signify?
Granular is an easy-to-use Linux distribution aimed at desktop users and newbies in the world of Linux. It can also be a good choice for regular Linux users.
The name "Granular" signifies one of the reasons behind the creation of this distro, that is, "customizability". Granular was intended to be able to get easily customized by the end user. An all over customization can only be achieved by customizing the individual components (granules). And for that, KDE is an excellent option, combined together with the various options provided with Granular. Hence the word "Granular".

Anurag Bhandari, tell us little about yourself please.

I am a Computer Engineering student heading towards my fourth and last year at my college, National Institute of Technology, Jalandhar, India. I am pursuing my B.Tech degree there. I am a resident of Jalandhar, Punjab itself.

Who are the current developers and team members working at Granular Linux?

Please refer to this page: http//

Why did you start the Granular Project? What was the basic Aim of this project when it was incepted?

There were several reasons behind starting the Granular Project:
1) To have a user-friendly distro combined with pleasing (read it "good") looks. Although there were several distros out there at the time the project started, as far as I know, none had both these qualities, some were good looking but lacked stability and some were extremely stable and functional but not user-friendly. Of course, we have some good distros today with both these qualities, like Mint, Sabayon, etc.
2) The first day I used Linux, it was SuSE, I was taken away with the idea of using a free OS that was more cool than Windows with features like good looks, no crashes, supported older hardware, had pre-installed software, multimedia support, etc. At that time, Linux was a word known to a handful of people in India. Most people here didn't even know that Windows was a paid OS. Another perception of Linux they (the guys who at least had heard the word "Linux") had in their mind was that Linux was a very difficult to use and is operatable only through command-line.
So, I wanted to start a new Linux project with roots in India so that more people could get aware of Linux and start using it. I am still powered by the dream of having "a Linux per home". At present, we are not exactly that much ready to achieve that goal, but I believe we'll gradually and eventually get close to that aim.

3) Having an own project would probably benefit me in the future, both in terms of the learning I get from the project and in terms of opportunities.

Why was Granular Linux based upon PCLinuxOS?

Although Granular started off as a distro based on LFS (Linux From Scratch), due to internal and technical reasons the base was shifted on to PCLinuxOS. PCLinuxOS was the most obvious choice at that time as it was modeled according to our needs and boasted off the popular mklivecd tool which could be used to easily create LiveCDs.

Many Linux distributions Projects are supported by Govt and private organizations, does Granular Linux get any such support?

Granular does not get any support from government or private organizations. The only support it gets is in the form of donations and inspiration via happy users' lovely emails and posts on the forum. :)

How does Granular Linux differ from PCLinuxOS and what are the distinguishing features of Granular Linux which you think are beneficial to the end users including home users as compared to PCLinuxOS and other Linux distributions?

This is very much like asking how PCLinuxOS differs from Mandriva. [chuckle]. Anyway, Granular differs from PCLinuxOS and other distros in several ways:
1) We have our own Granular Repository now which is expanding day-by-day. So, some of the major packages are different from those in the PCLinuxOS repository. Our repository also has some packages that are not present in the PCLinuxOS repo.
2) The looks of Granular are very much different from PCLinuxOS. Granular was designed to attract newbies and regular users, and artwork plays a very essential role here. I think our artwork team has done well in that area.
3) Granular comes out with 2 desktop environments. KDE - for full functionality and Enlightenment - for a fast Linux experience coupled with some heavy eye-candy.
4) The application set of Granular differs from that of PCLinuxOS.
5) Granular maintains an independent identity, unlike other PCLinuxOS-derived distros.
As time progresses, the distinguishing features will become larger.

How do you look at the future of Granular Linux when there are so many more Linux distributions sprouting out daily?

I see a bright future for Granular Linux if we keep on going ahead with good spirits. I have some good plans for the future, but we would be needing more developers and contributors for that. Hopefully, we'll get the sufficient amount of members soon.
Granular is currently ranked around 70 in the list of over 300 distros at DistroWatch. I think that shows people do have interest in this distro.

Do you think Granular Linux is only meant for Indian community or do you see any chances that it will be as popular as the other distributions are amongst the masses around the world?

By no means Granular is limited to just the Indian population. In fact, Granular does not have an as wide user base in India as it has in the rest parts of the world. We'll work on spreading the word of "Granular" and "Linux" in India too.

The Granular Project forum seems to be very functional but there is no IRC help room available. Do you have any plans for establishing an IRC room for Granular Linux?

There is no IRC channel for Granular as of yet due to the lack of sufficient members for that area. I certainly would not like to have a "most-of-the-time deserted" IRC channel. I'll rather wait for the sufficient amount of interested contributors here. As soon as we get them, I'll start the channel. So, IRC is also on my list of to-do.

Thank you very much Anurag Bhandari. This small but informative talk with you will bring forth Granular Linux both in the whole Open Source and GNU/Linux community and the end users who think Granular Linux is just another PCLinuxOS remastered clone.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Litrix 8.5 | Brazilian Desktop GNU/Linux Distribution for Home Users

Brazil is rich in GNU/Linux production and I have noticed innovativeness in the Linux Distributions developed in Brazil. Kurumin, Epidemic GNU/Linux and Litrix Linux are good examples. Litrix Linux is based on Gentoo Linux . I never had a chance to try the previous versions partly because the English language support was not available by default and partly because it is based on the "scary" Gentoo Linux which looks threatening to home users because of its manual configuration.

Litrix 8.5 - International edition was released on Tuesday, 20 May 2008 and is available for download as a single Live DVD of 1.2 GB from the Litrix Linux Home Page . The salient features of this release are KDE 3.5.9, Firefox, GNOME 2.22.0 as an alternative desktop, win32codecs & WINE 0.9.61. The NVIDIA driver is removed, but the users can download both the NVIDIA and ATI driver from their official web sites.

The Litrix Linux home page does not provide much of information or documentation so it was my blind ride to boot my system from the DVD and see how it goes.

After approximately 2-3 minutes of booting and reading the hard ware I was on Litrix Live session. During the boot process Litrix did report some kind of hardware failure errors but ultimately it was a clean boot into the Live desktop.

You will hold your breaths for a while when you look at the nicely created desktop and beautiful Oxygen Icon theme along with the soothing blue wall paper with water drops on it. The black Kicker KDE panel is also nice looking on this latest release of Litrix Linux.

Litrix Central

The most interesting and well designed feature of Litrix Linux is its control central. It works flwalessly and the first two things that I set using Litrix Central were Network Configuration and Locale Configuration.

Network setting was easy and my DSL router was all set go in less than 2 minutes and I was online.

There are many interesting features available in Litrix Central and it makes it easy for a home user to easily configure Litrix Linux according to their needs .

Litrix Linux Installer

It is a simple and flawless installer that guides a home user along with every step. OK, the installer takes ages to install but it is acceptable. My installation went smooth till final stage when I removed the DVD and rebooted.

There is a small trick here that will help those who face problem with Litrix Linux 8.5 after installation . Susan Linton reported that her /etc directory was empty and I faced it too but the little trick worked and I could easily overcome it.
During installation choose qtparted and format the partition where you want to install the Litrix Linux either with Ext3 or ReiserFS and then go ahead for installation as some how if the installer is asked to format the partition itself you will end up with this error.

There is another small issue with installer. Once your installation is complete you get message of its completion but the installer doesn`t close and you have to close it yourself.

Litrix Desktop

As I mentioned above the Litrix 8.5 desktop is highly polished and gives a professional looks. The K menu is neatly displaying different programs and Litrix comes with a huge list of pre installed softwares.


Litrix 8.5 comes bundled with all audio and video packages and I could play both audio and video files smoothly.


Litrix Linux 8.5 comes with pre installed Kopete, XChat,Skyphe ,AMSN and they work out of the box for me.

Litrix Linux Package Manager

Kuroo is the GUI of Litrix package manager . You can also use emerge in command line to synchronize and update with Gentoo portage by running emerge --sync & emerge -up.
I ran Kuroo to sync it with repositories for ports .It takes quite sometime to synchronize but once you are done with that it works flawlessly to get you updates and install/remove packages.

Since I am always more interested in having a custom made system with one package per task so I trimmed down the packages installed by default on Litrix 8.5 to make it adjust for my requirements. I am interested in making my custom made Litrix Linux Live DVD and Catalyst from Gentoo looks to be the package for this purpose but I need to probe more into before I actually try it.

I installed Litrix 8.5 as dual boot with my Granular Linux and LILO loaded both my installed distributions smoothly.

In my first ever experience with my most dreaded Gentoo based Linux distribution I am much more at ease and confident using Litrix 8.5 and I have no doubts to recommend it to everybody and especially to home users who would like to have a beautiful eye candy desktop Linux distribution along with the power of Gentoo.

I will look more in depth into Litrix Linux 8.5 and would love to have Compiz working on it. I have not tried installing NVIDIA driver as yet and once I am done with that I will definitely try installing Compiz on my Litrix Linux.

Happy Litrix Linux experience to all of you.

Don`t feel scared by Gentoo, try Litrix Linux :)

Granular 1.0 RC coming soon

Anurag Bhindari from Granular Linux reports that the release of Granular Linux 1.0 RC is almost ready and is expected in first week of June 2008.

Read more about it at the Granular Team blog page here.

Waiting for the exciting new release myself, thanks to the Granular Linux Project.

SaxenOS 2008 beta 2 Final Report

Working for few more hours on newly concepted SaxenOS 2008 after being based on PCLinuxOS I have a clear feeling in my mind that only basing it on PCLinuxOS will not raise its standards but lots of efforts are still needed to bring SaxenOS up to daily usable levels for end users.

stibs is current single developer of SaxenOS and in response to one question on SaxenOS forum he says

"Aim: A Linux desktop for our education institute and general office work."

This sounds fair enough in the light that XFCE is a good alternate to KDE for home users but I am sure stibs and his team members at BdH Dresden have to put lots of efforts to bring SaxenOS to a working level.

I reported few issues that I faced with SaxenOS 2008 at their forum but till this time I see no reply .

1: PC will refuse to auto shut down and needs manual interference for that.
2: Mklivecd doesn`t work.
3: SMPlayer , it works fine but wont show in menu in multimedia section.
4: Xfmedia refuse to play anything at all.

so the status of affairs looks like locked down at the moment.

STIBS is planning to release SaxenOS RC1 in a 2 weeks time , lets hope he finds some time to do some more testing before he goes for RC1.

I am not disappointed with SaxenOS , It will get better provided there is a dedication behind it as I see in Texstar and his team members at PCLinuxOS.