Linked by Eugenia Loli on Mon 9th May 2005 18:38 UTC, submitted by Robert Burns
Slackware, Slax "I have very mixed feelings about this release of Slackware. I do not think that the underlying philosophy of Slackware is obsolete. The concept of a system that can be configured and molded to the n'th degree is still in my opinion very much a good idea. However, this release of Slackware is not without its problems in execution." Read the review here.
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Some comments on the review
by Zyx on Mon 9th May 2005 21:55 UTC

No proprietary software is included in the installation media.

This is simply not true. For instance, J2RE, J2SDK and XV are propietary software. Some other distributions also regard Pine as non-free.

The only thing I will mention at this point is this: why, oh why, is LILO still the sole option for a bootloader Slackware? There should at least be an option to use GRUB.

GRUB is available from the extra/ directory.

Unfortunately, this did not go too well. The kernel panicked on the first attempt at booting. It was related to APIC (Advanced Programmable Interrupt Controller). It's probably not Linux's fault - it's more likely related to a flakey BIOS.

In most cases it is, I suspect that the author booted with the bareacpi.i kernel.

Still, most distros don't have a problem with it, so I suspect it's related to some particular patch.

Slackware uses a vanilla kernel.

So, I added "noapic" to the boot prompt, and tried again. While the system was booting the second time, I received another kernel panic apparently related to the hotplug system. This ticked me off, because no other distribution has this particular problem with my system, and as my wireless USB adapter requires the hotplug system, the only workable solution was to recompile the kernel. This was the case with Slackware 9.1 as well.

Send a bug report to the maintainer of the subsystem that crashes. This is no Slackware issue, Slackware uses the vanilla kernel.

Slackware 10.1 includes fairly generic installations of KDE, GNOME, Xfce, and WindowMaker. However, they have placed an emphasis on KDE, and it shows. The included KDE 3.3.2 is very nicely done.

It is just plain off-the-shell KDE.

GNOME is just GNOME - don't expect any surprises here.

No difference here, it is just plain off-the-shelf GNOME.

While boot time is not the greatest on the planet, it is perfectly acceptable.

Hotplug causes most the most delay.

My only complaint is that valgrind is missing. This is probably my favorite developer utility of all time. Words cannot describe how much this accelerates bug-hunting. It's only a small piece of software - it really ought to be included.

I agree, Valgrind is a gem ;) . Maybe you should send a suggestion to volkerdi@.

However, the working version of Apache is still 1.33. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I see no reason why the transition to Apache 2.x cannot proceed at full throttle.

Possibly the same reason for kernel 2.6 not being the default. Patrick Volkerding has always been conservative in switching to new software, in my humble opinion this is an asset to Slackware.

It has made the management of my system much easier and less painful. Udev is in my opinion one of the most important developments in the Linux community in the past few years.

It is nice, but the added layer of complexity seems a bit unnecessary to me.

Specifically, permissions simply do not work as they are supposed to, and I need this functionality for properly handling permissions for the DRI interfaces.

It should be no problem setting them in /etc/udev/rules.d/udev.rules

Udev is a very important component that should be important and functioning in every modern Linux distribution.

Is it? It is still under quite heavy development, e.g. the configuration of permissions even changed very recently. Besides that it adds an extra layer of complexity. It can be nice on desktop systems, but what is wrong with device nodes?

Its borkage counts against Slackware. These are the types of headaches that make Linux in general a pain to use.

I think Slackware doesn't address a general Linux public. Most Slackware users are able to create device nodes, edit fstab and mount devices themselves.

but I should not have to fix bugs like this. That is the job of the QA guys prior to release. To my knowledge, this issue has still not been corrected.

How is your misunderstanding of setting up udev permissions a bug in Slackware? ;)

I don't mean to be rude, but with a bit more digging this could have been a more useful review.