The site is laid out in a manner which suggests it’s aimed at intermediate users who won’t be put off by technical information… Or jokes. The site, for example, occasionally carries tag-lines poking at other distributions, such as Ubuntu (“Our window buttons are right” and “The democratic Linux distribution”). Clicking on the FAQ link displays a list of ten commandments for Linux users (“Thou shalt use the command line”), along with another link to the real FAQs.
Prior to trying out the new version of PCLinuxOS, I had the opportunity to ask Texstar a few questions.
What is your focus in PCLinuxOS 2010? Were there any special features
you rolled into this release?
Texstar: The primary goal of this release was to make the transition to KDE 4.
PCLinuxOS 2010 aims at providing an optimum out-of-the-box desktop
experience with the latest hardware drivers and popular applications.
New special features include intuitive support for multi-language
setup, OpenOffice installation, and several desktop environments.
Moreover we added security enhancements such as encryption and
parental controls, and the completely reworked script “mylivecd” which
can be used to easily backup, or build a customized re-master of, an
Your head quarters are in Texas. Some distributions based out of the USA
are concerned with patents and their effects on codecs (mp3 for
example). PCLinuxOS ships with a full range of codecs and Flash. Do you
have any concerns about the legality?
Texstar: We do not ship Win32codecs or libdvdcss2. Almost everything else is either
redistributable in a non-commercial environment, licensed or provided by
open source libraries.
Your distribution started as a fork of Mandriva. How does PCLinuxOS
differ from Mandriva?
Texstar: PCLinuxOS 2010 was built from the ground up using the packages in our
repository. It is not based on a Mandriva install nor is it based on our
2009 release updated. The packages in our repo may be original creations but may
also contain repackaged and modified srpms from Fedora, OpenSuse and
Mandriva. PCLinuxOS may also contain patches from Ubuntu, Debian, PLD and Charka. So
in summary it is similar to Mandriva due to some ported packages and
different in that we create our own packages, import packages from other
patches as needed.
PCLinuxOS releases don’t appear to stick to any set schedule. How do you
decide when your distro is ready to release into the wild?
Texstar: As a community driven distribution we do not have a need to stick
to a fixed schedule just to keep the bean counters happy but instead
release when everything has been sufficiently tested to comply with our main
principle: provide a reliable and stable system.
How many people are currently working on PCLinuxOS? And what can
volunteers do to help?
Texstar: We are a small group of 30 plus volunteers working in our free time.
Volunteers can test packages, write documentation and translations, create
graphics, help others users on the forums and let the rest of the world
know about PCLinuxOS.
Your website tag-line keeps changing, generally it seems to be poking
fun at other distros. Are you trying to start a flame war or just making
Texstar: It is about having a sense of humor – some things get taken too serious.
We are just a group of guys and gals enjoying Linux and sharing it with
others who might like it too.