Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sun 30th Sep 2012 19:13 UTC, submitted by Beket_
Slackware, Slax "Slackware 14.0 brings many updates and enhancements, among which you'll find two of the most advanced desktop environments available today: Xfce 4.10.0, a fast and lightweight but visually appealing and easy to use desktop environment, and KDE 4.8.5, a recent stable release of the 4.8.x series of the award-winning KDE desktop environment. [...] Slackware uses the 3.2.29 kernel bringing you advanced performance features such as journaling filesystems, SCSI and ATA RAID volume support, SATA support, Software RAID, LVM (the Logical Volume Manager), and encrypted filesystems. Kernel support for X DRI (the Direct Rendering Interface) brings high-speed hardware accelerated 3D graphics to Linux."
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Comment by Sodki
by Sodki on Sun 30th Sep 2012 19:48 UTC
Sodki
Member since:
2005-11-10

Please don't get me wrong, I'm not against the existence of Slackware and I truly appreciate all the work that has been put in it. I was a Slackware user for a number of years and I've just installed Slackware 14 on a test machine. I'm also knowledgeable in many other GNU/Linux distros, which is why I make the following question:

Why use Slackware at all? I can accept the answer "because I can", but I would prefer something a bit longer than that. To be fair, I can't think of any answer which couldn't be refuted with "distro X does it better", where X could be replaced by more than one name.

Help me understant Slackware in this day and age. Thank you.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Comment by Sodki
by bradley on Sun 30th Sep 2012 19:51 in reply to "Comment by Sodki"
bradley Member since:
2007-03-02

So after being a former user... what made you install it today?

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: Comment by Sodki
by Sodki on Sun 30th Sep 2012 20:07 in reply to "RE: Comment by Sodki"
Sodki Member since:
2005-11-10

So after being a former user... what made you install it today?


I like tinkering. It's the same reason I like to test new versions of KDE, even though I completely dislike KDE; or installing every new version of Fedora, even though I completely dislike it's package management.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE: Comment by Sodki
by WorknMan on Sun 30th Sep 2012 22:29 in reply to "Comment by Sodki"
WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

Why use Slackware at all? I can accept the answer "because I can", but I would prefer something a bit longer than that. To be fair, I can't think of any answer which couldn't be refuted with "distro X does it better", where X could be replaced by more than one name.


I haven't tried Slackware in several years, but as I recall, it never really changed much. So if I put it down for a couple of years and then picked it back up again, getting it up and running was pretty much exactly as I remembered it from last time ;) That, IMHO, was its greatest strength. Plus, there is a certain elegance to it that I liked.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: Comment by Sodki
by earksiinni on Sun 30th Sep 2012 22:36 in reply to "Comment by Sodki"
earksiinni Member since:
2009-03-27

Well that's an easy one to answer.

Its appeal lies in its simplicity and predictability, especially in its init scripts and conf files. I can always assume that Slack won't run over my settings.

Also, I know people think the packaging system is a throwback, but I personally prefer Slackware's over any other. Its genius lies not in its packaging format but in the de facto way that packaging works.

First, almost all dev libraries you need are installed by default. If you can't find a certain library or program, you can use slackpkg to autodownload and resolve dependencies. If slackpkg doesn't have it (which is more often than not the case), you can almost always find it in Slackbuilds. Is Slackbuilds too annoying to use? Then use sbopkg, which automates Slackbuilds. Don't want to tarnish the simplicity of your system? Don't use sbopkg. Still can't find things? Compile and install from source without fear of conflicting with your package manager in the future even if you overwrite a file, because Slack's package management is dumb.

Of course, another way to read all these "advantages" is to say that in a world where the Linux desktop still stinks, Slackware gets out of your way the most so that you can mop up the mess more easily once it happens (and it eventually will)...

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by Sodki
by Morgan on Mon 1st Oct 2012 00:45 in reply to "RE: Comment by Sodki"
Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

Its appeal lies in its simplicity and predictability, especially in its init scripts and conf files. I can always assume that Slack won't run over my settings.


That's the main reason (among many) that I'm switching away from Arch Linux. Arch has always been bleeding edge, but these days they are making changes for the sake of it with no real benefit, and most recently doing a piss-poor job of documenting it where in the past they were one of the most well-documented distros around.

I'm currently installing the new Slack in a virtual machine, and if it does what I need it to I'm going to switch back to it full time for GNU/Linux work. I'll gladly give up Arch's pacman and go back to compiling my own slackbuilds if it means some daily sanity is restored.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE: Comment by Sodki
by lost on Mon 1st Oct 2012 08:25 in reply to "Comment by Sodki"
lost Member since:
2006-03-17

It was 1999, if i remember correct, when i decided to learn to use a linux system so i got a lot of iso of various distros to test. I spent a lot of time trying to install and properly configure my system. Then i met Slackware, maybe it was 7 or 8. I felt at home, it was a good feeling.
After 13 years i've used several different distros for variuos reasons: suse at university, centos, debian and ubuntu server for work, but each time i could choose by myself i always run Slackware.
I love the idea behind it, it's philosophy. simplicity, stability, performance.
There is no fancy gui that does the work for you, all software is vanilla, no patches.
Upgrades, configuration and everything is made "by hands". If you need a package not present in the distro you can grab a slackbuild a build it, if you don't find it you can write it.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: Comment by Sodki
by ggeldenhuys on Mon 1st Oct 2012 10:26 in reply to "Comment by Sodki"
ggeldenhuys Member since:
2006-11-13

Simple. It is always well tested and stable. They release a new version when it is ready. Upgrading from older versions is dead simple. No GUI's to change config files in ways no human can read. I just love SlackBuild. It is also a very developer friendly distro, because all development tools and libraries are normally installed as standard, so it is very easy to do a off-line install, and get a fully working development system without the need of internet access (very handy in some situations).

In many ways, Slackware makes me think of FreeBSD. A very stable system, and easy to manage and maintain. And building apps from source is awesome, because it can be tuned to your specific hardware or needs.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: Comment by Sodki
by darknexus on Mon 1st Oct 2012 12:23 in reply to "Comment by Sodki"
darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

Help me understant Slackware in this day and age. Thank you.

I can't speak for others but, speaking for myself, I like Slackware because it stays out of my way. I tell it to do something, it does it. There's none of these "well, package x depends on package y which also depends on package x" circular dependency problems because Slackware assumes that you know what you are doing and does what you want it to. If I know I don't need or want a certain function, it won't refuse to remove it just because it's marked as a dependency. Also, Slackware has a long-standing tradition of not adopting bleeding edge tech. Don't get me wrong, I like to experiment with the bleeding edge, but it's nice to have a system I can just fall back on when I want something that works without a hick-up. Slackware is simple, solid and stable, and doesn't give me any backtalk. That's what I like about it. I used to really like Arch for this reason as well, until recently when they decided to do some seriously idiotic things with their filesystem and systemd that broke most of my setups.
The other reason is that Slackware doesn't really attract the trolls. Those who use Slackware know why they use it and love it for what it is. No one is trying to make Slackware into something that it just couldn't be. Slackware is for those who understand Linux and *nix, and will always be this way. It's a breath of fresh air in this day and age when most of the other distros are trying to soften everything and, in the process, making things so complex that it can make one long for the "simplicity" of Windows' registry again.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by Sodki
by jessesmith on Mon 1st Oct 2012 12:58 in reply to "RE: Comment by Sodki"
jessesmith Member since:
2010-03-11

I have to agree with this, Slackware stays out of the way. It does very little hand holding. There is an assumption that the user knows what they are doing, for better or worse.

Personally, my main distribution is something else, but I've spent time with Slackware and I respect what the developers have done. They've basically made an (almost) completely vanilla Linux distribution which is really stable, with no frills or surprises. It's not exactly my cup of tea, but the simplicity of design does hold a certain appeal, especially as an educational tool.

Reply Parent Score: 2