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Knoppix for Rapid Desktop Deployment

michael posted more than 11 years ago | from the ooooh-ahhhhhh dept.

Debian 343

heretic108 writes "From first boot to full desktop in 20 minutes! Knoppix has shot into the spotlight as a GNU/Linux distro suitable for demonstrating quality Open Source Software, standing out for its ability to self-configure itself into a vast range of hardware, and to run entirely off a CD boot without interfering with any existing system setup. That, plus its fat catalogue of pre-installed desktop software. But OSS enthusiast David McNab has poked a bit deeper, and found that Knoppix can install itself to disk, resulting in a completely configured GNU/Linux desktop system, ready to use, in 20 minutes, hassle free. CD no longer needed! Best of both worlds - use as a GNU/Linux demo disk, and if the user likes it, it's a snap to install permanently. I can't think of any distro that comes close to this, for ease and speed of setup. I found McNab's short Knoppix Installation Howto which gives a very brief and easy guide. With this rapid setup ability, Debian-based Knoppix makes a great contribution to the catalogue."

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fp (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584285)

Mary had a little lamb

Re:fp (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584287)

whose fleece was white as snow?

Re:fp (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584343)

No. Who you ass raped every night.

Re:fp (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584453)

Why do the second and third posts show the reasons for being moderated down but not the first post?

Oxymoron (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584289)

quality Open Source Software

At first I thought I was misreading it, or it was a typo. But it seems in fact the author meant to say it. Well! There goes your credibility. Sorry.

It will never catch on (5, Funny)

CatWrangler (622292) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584293)

No Blue Screen of Death? No individual user licenses? No aborted installs? No minesweeper? Who actually would use this newfangled thing?

Re:It will never catch on (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584313)

It's open source; noything is stopping u from adding x-minseweep (or k-mine, or whatever clone u like) and doing a mkisofs/cdrecord/upload.
u could evn include tetris if u like.

Re:It will never catch on (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584530)

What someone really needs to develop is a BSOD simulator that would kick in at arbitrary times and force a loss of data and a re-boot. This would be extremely useful in making any MS users more at home with Linux.

Re:It will never catch on (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584574)

What someone really needs to develop is a BSOD simulator that would kick in at arbitrary times and force a loss of data and a re-boot.

And include it with the Kazaa spyware :)

Re:It will never catch on (0)

Cybersonic (7113) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584314)

actually it has KMines... who needs minesweeper? :)

Re:It will never catch on (1)

cscx (541332) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584375)

How correct--they need to get used to "Kernel painc: Aiee, killing interrupt handler!" and a page of gobbledegook preceding it.

Re:It will never catch on (1)

Narchie Troll (581273) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584550)

I've never had a kernel panic in 5 years of using recent Linux kernel versions. And the WinNT kernel crash blue screen is just as cryptic as any kernel dump.

Re:It will never catch on (2)

rmohr02 (208447) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584516)

Now that I'm booting Linux I'm beginning to miss the good old Windows BSOD.

Re:It will never catch on (1)

rusty0101 (565565) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584526)

running out of excuses for not getting your work done eigh?

Re:It will never catch on (2)

rmohr02 (208447) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584548)

Yep. Maybe I should switch to Windows ME.

Deja-BSD (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584298)

So, is this kind-of the same idea as the net-bsd bootable cd-rom that boots into KDE,which demonstrates teh power and flexibility of BSD-licensed software?

Re:Deja-BSD - and more (5, Interesting)

vik (17857) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584506)

Yeah, but it comes with 2GB of apps, boots into KDE, GNOME or WindowMaker, and even sets itself up as a PXE boot network server for diskless machines.

To be honest, it also impresses the pants off Windows users and is very likely to convert them to Open Source software. There they are used to Windows products and have been told Linux is too hard. Then along comes this CD, they insert it, boot, and a fully-fledged Linux app with OpenOffice, Mozilla, network, sound and lots of toys rises before them without them having to type or do *anything*.

That's why I put it on the NZ PC World cover disk.

Vik :v)

wonderful, but (5, Interesting)

dollargonzo (519030) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584299)

if it is so wonderful, how come other distributions not use similar hardware detection? we have seen linux distros go in and out, people complain and complain about hardware detection, but we have yet to see one of the bigger distributions adopt a system similar to what knoppix is doing. i mean the worst thing that could happen is could detect the wrong hardware (tough, but possible) and you will have to remove the modules. but otherwise, seems like a win win situation.

oops (2)

dollargonzo (519030) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584310)

one exception ofcourse is mandrake, but i have tried it, and well, it doesn't seem to work that well. perhaps the newer versions are better.

Re:wonderful, but (5, Informative)

damiam (409504) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584322)

Other distros do. Mandrake, Red Hat, SeSU all have superb hardware detection. Knoppix is different only in that it detects hardware on startup, which is the only way to make a CD-only, no-install distro.

Re:wonderful, but (3, Interesting)

kh0ng (594312) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584324)

Good question. I saw knoppix three weeks ago, when another student gave a Linux/UNIX-Intro. I liked it and thought that, since it was based on it, Debian would be similiar. You can expect how surpried I was when I tried to install Debian. Knoppix might be based on it, but in terms of userfriendlyness its far ahead.

Re:wonderful, but (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584340)

I fart in your general direction.

This has been out for a whil (1)

dk5sm5luigi (622307) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584303)

I have been using knoppix for months. I know this has been out for atleast a year and it is the greatest thing I have ever used.

Mini CD Version (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584494)

Could someone please tell me if there is a MiniCD (185Mb) version of knoppix 'round ?


Re:Mini CD Version (2, Informative)

marathonmannen (530607) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584561)

There is KiX. You will find it in the contrib directory on the knoppix mirrors or somemore info [] in German (you might want to babelfish it ;-)

Including non-free? (3, Interesting)

Vagary (21383) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584317)

This might be a bit off-topic, but hey, at least I'm not wasting your time with an Ask Slashdot:

Can someone point me towards a live-CD that includes Flash, RealPlayer, and the ability to play as many multimedia files as possible? OpenOffice and some kind of Gecko browser are also required.

The reason is that Windows is just not cutting it on my girlfriend's computer. She's having all sorts of weird technical problems so I've decided something needs to be done. Unfortunately, my Debian is so wacked out and constantly tweaked into a semi-usable state that she doesn't trust Linux. So what I need is something she can use for a few weeks -- still accessing her docs on her Windows partition -- until she's sold.

Re:Including non-free? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584332)

Before asking questions about the linux flavour you decide on, you might want to have a look here, first [] .

Uhh... (2)

FreeLinux (555387) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584365)

Have you tried Knoppix? Did you read the article? I would think that Knoppix would fit your bill perfectly.

Did I just get trolled?

Re:Uhh... (2)

Vagary (21383) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584413)

It's missing Flash, RealPlayer, and Gecko. Why didn't you just recommend I install VMS? Or perhaps you didn't bother to read my post...

Re:Uhh... (1)

AvitarX (172628) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584466)

well, it isn't missing Gecko. It has the lizard on it I'm pretty sure.

Re:Uhh... (2)

Vagary (21383) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584522)

Yeah, you're right, sorry. Galeon'd be nice, though.

Re:Including non-free? (2)

Lostman (172654) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584376)

Perhaps you should try Knoppix eh?

Knoppix is a livecd that autodetects and sets up most devices automatically upon boot, it includes open office, mozilla (konquorer [sp?] as well), OODLES of games, graphics programs, utilities, fun programs, and just plain "cool" things. It doesnt contain Flash nor Realplayer (at least I never got them to work), but it does play most of my multimedia content I had on my hard drive (divx, mpegs, avi, etc).

It autoconnects to internet if you have the ability to use DHCP so thats a big plus. You can access the hard drive from the desktop, open papers/etc from there...

Best thing -- it doesnt change ANY files on the harddrive! No worries about a "livecd" turning into a "pseudo installation" to run. There IS a way to put a swap file on your hard drive but its buried in menus and I wouldnt even bother with it... Knoppix runs fast, reliable, and just looks nice.

(And the desktop? You can change it of course.. but I am sure you knew that =)

Re:Including non-free? (5, Funny)

Graspee_Leemoor (302316) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584445)

" So what I need is something she can use for a few weeks -- still accessing her docs on her Windows partition -- until she's sold."

Dude, there's no need to sell your girlfriend just because she uses Word.


Re:Including non-free? (2)

Vagary (21383) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584559)

Believe it or not, she's trying to write a *thesis* in *Word*! Crazy, I know. I'm banned from mentioning BibTeX whenever she starts complaining about citation management. And she's already wasted days thanks to proprietary formats. It's a wonder people manage to get any work done in Windows...

Re:Including non-free? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584471)

Buy a Mac? :)

Seriously, just backup her data and reinstall her Windows OS. Then don't allow her to install any weird crap on it.

Between all my win boxes and my relative's/friend's win boxes I keep an eye on, there are very rarely any problems unless some 3rd party spyware trash sneaks its way on.
As a person who spends most of his waking hours in front of windows boxes, I've only seen 1 BSOD in the past year, and it was caused by faulty hardware.

FUD The Power!!

Re:Including non-free? (2)

Vagary (21383) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584534)

Wait a sec, I need a reason to convert someone to Linux?! You must be lost: this is *Slashdot*.

But seriously, her problems are more niggling than just BSODs and I've observed them with fresh installs of 98, 98SE, and ME in the last 4 months.

Re:Including non-free? (2)

MyHair (589485) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584576)

...with fresh installs of 98, 98SE, and ME...

There's your problem right there. Windows 2000 (and I presume XP) is much more stable than the Win9x's. (Yes WinME is a Win9x.)

irresponsible (5, Insightful)

Gizzmonic (412910) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584544)

Do not, I repeat do not force a nontechnical person to use Linux. Your job as a "computer person" that your friends and family trusts is to make the computer experience easier, not harder.

Yes, Windows sucks. If it's having that many problems, see if you can roust up a copy of Win2000 or WinXP. But if you force your girlfriend to use Linux, she will probably end up frustrated and hating it (and maybe even hating you).

Then, in a few years, when Linux is ready for the desktop (if that happens) then she won't want to try it.

If you really think Windows sucks too much for her to use, maybe you should look into getting her a Mac. Forcing nontechnical people to use Linux is not the way to win friends, or spread good feelings for the operating system.

Re:irresponsible (3, Insightful)

Vagary (21383) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584586)

Do you have a good metric for testing whether Linux is ready for the desktop? I'm not sure that it is, but it's got to be better than the shit she's struggling with now.

We're starving university students, therefore Macs are entirely out of the question (she's wanted a Mac ever since reading Microserfs). I doubt her aging hardware's ability to run Win2k (or else I would have already tried it) and so it's even less likely to handle XP. But really, should a new computer be required just to word process, web browse (including multimedia content), and listen to music? (Seriously, that's all she does. But for some reason WindowsME can't even do that.)

How much? (5, Funny)

DAldredge (2353) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584320)

How much is one of these frontpage /. ads? Please contact me, I may be interested in buying one.

$9.95, includes popiel "hair in a can" (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584345)

Re:How much? (1)

CatWrangler (622292) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584355)

If you have to ask how much it costs, ya can't afford it. ;)

(OT) OSDN advertising (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584435)

How much is one of these frontpage /. ads?

175,000 banner impressions for $1,000 [] .

Given the title, Offtopic moderation is Redundant and will be M2ed as such.

I had the same thought... (1)

Lispy (136512) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584472)

but got confused by the debian logo. So is knoppix a commercial distri?? In that case this is def the ad of the day...

Re:How much? (5, Funny)

Link310 (453668) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584502)

It typically costs at least a few hours of downtime on your server, and possibly a surge in bandwidth usage.

/. is not responsible for increased bandwidth usage due to a slashdotting or any costs incured.

Please submit ads using the "submit story" link on the side of the page. Things to include:
* A simple way for people to bash microsoft.
* Something that can be turned into a beowulf cluster.

Re:How much? (3, Funny)

MadFarmAnimalz (460972) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584519)

frontpage /. ads? FRONTPAGE?!?
Taco you TURNCOAT.
So THAT'S what that server migration a few days ago was all about... /me whips out nmap

Re:How much? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584536)

You'll have to talk to Taco about that; but I do know that they come with 5 free Karma points! :)

Re:How much? (2)

tswinzig (210999) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584557)

How much is one of these frontpage /. ads?

How much does one anonymous /. account cost?

Knoppix is just that good... (5, Interesting)

Lostman (172654) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584334)

Just my own little story how Knoppix helped me.. =)

My fiancee was volunteered to teach a class in algorithm design and c++ programming at the highschool she teaches at (for honors credit) -- the problems, though, were numerous.

She had to deal with:
1) NO funds available for purchasing of any programming utilities
2) Computer ADMIN not allowing her to install ANY programming software (borland freeware, DJGPP, etc) to disk
3) NOT allowing students to write (even temporary files) to the hard drive...

We looked at a LOT of different ways to handle these problems. Finally we decided that maybe using a linux livecd and having a disk with gcc/g++ for each student. Looked at a few different types that were mentioned on slashdot but NONE seemed to work well... until we saw a VERY old article that some user mentioned Knoppix.. went to it, d/l'ed it, burned to disk, popped it in and rebooted...


Knoppix comes fully loaded with office utilities, games (PLENTY of games), graphics software, but most importantly DEVELOPMENT software already on it. We were in love with it (in truth, my other box is still running it from cd just bc we liked it =) -- even more important was that it ran without the need for ANY files or ANY changes to the hard drive.

It discovered all devices hooked to my computer and actually had them working (AS WELL as the internet connection from "straight to cable modem" or "over network using ICS" setups we have at my house).

She took it to her school, popped it in, rebooted the computers (after fidgeting with bios to allow boot from cd, laugh) and QUICKLY came up with the Knoppix desktop. It certainly didnt take more than a min or so to bootup...

Most surprising thing was that for a "ran from cd" linux it was REMARKEBLY fast. Lets just say I was VERY impressed with Knoppix and recommend it for ANY new person. Without the threat of "ruining their computer," they can just pop in knoppix to try out linux... if they hate it, pop it out and its finished.

So in the end, fiancee's school didnt have to shell out money, didnt "screw up the computers" (sigh), have a setup for students to write and compile programs, and exposed students (and teachers) to Linux. I would say the entire situation was a big WIN =)

No writable hard drive? (1)

yerricde (125198) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584443)

3) NOT allowing students to write (even temporary files) to the hard drive...

You probably just broke that rule by booting Knoppix, which uses a swap file on any machine with less than 128 MB of RAM.

Re:No writable hard drive? (5, Informative)

Lostman (172654) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584484)

Wrongo buckaroo!

Read the knoppix documentation... it does not, by default, install ANYTHING to ANY hard drive.. you have the option to put a swap file ont he hard drive but you have to select it =)

Look down the page and you will see about what it does and does not do. NO installation or modifying of the hard drives are necessary -- with computers without necessary ram it will run SLOWER but it will still run.

Besides, its a worthless argument =) Their computers most definately have 128 mb ram...

Re:Knoppix is just that good... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584448)

Thank YOU for your MOST interesting POST.

wow (2)

AvitarX (172628) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584335)

If this was posted 2 months ago it would be my distro of choice. I was a knoppix user for a while, but I got tired of not having my CD rom available and I wanted a few games. It was the ease and power of knoppix that made me a full time Linux user. I immediatly got rid of debian and installed Mandrake 9.0. I then baught WineX, SimCity 3000, Quake 3, and Kohan:AG. Knoppix was awsome, everything configured automatically at boot, and ran flawlessly. Mandrake is giving me more hassle then Knoppix was. so I say knoppix is cool.

Re:wow (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584377)

Your post was a poorly crafted troll. You start with "If this was posted 2 months ago it would be my distro of choice" then you end with "I say knoppix is cool". Please hit yourself 3 times in the head with a shovel.

Re:wow (1)

AvitarX (172628) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584385)

ouch ouch ouch, Only because of the sloppy wording.

It really was not a troll. I just wanted to say that knoppix was everything I wanted in an OS, But I did not know it could be easily installed.

I am more a lame knoppix fanboy then troll.

Re:wow (2)

blibbleblobble (526872) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584468)

Any reccommendations for good places to buy Knoppix CDs? (The english version, preferably not from anyone in the US)

(I would download it, but my employers' net connection this weekend is downloading the Age of Mythology demo...)

Re:wow (3)

AvitarX (172628) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584503)

I D/L'd it.

But someone smart would go to

type knoppix, and click i feel lucky.

then click the english link on the page.

there is a list of stores selling it.

You could have also succeeded by trying first, as they sell burned copies of most linux distros, and happen to be on the page.

The question is... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584336)

Are Knoppix handing out free sandwiches?

Re:The question is... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584427)

You should eat some SUBWAY! []

Stop the GNU/Linux (-1, Flamebait)

jpt.d (444929) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584346)

Am I the only one who is sick of this GNU/Linux garbage?

Linux = Kernel
GNU = A unix-like toolset

GNU/Linux = Pretty Bare OS

Lets research here, an example of a real Linux-based os:
X Windows = windowing system
WindowMaker = Window Manager
GNUStep = NeXT-generation desktop environment

So shall we call it this:

If we MUST put GNU on it, then we surely must put the rest on there (which would make it longer than hades). So can we get rid of this GNU/Linux bull?

Re:Stop the GNU/Linux (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584374)

GNUStep would be "gnu" (hence the 'GNU', don't ya think?).
Windowmaker, likewise, is ...gnu.
So, using your example, it would (at best) be GNU/XWindow/Linux, as Xwindow is the only component that does not fall under the GNU license or the auspice thereof.
(hint, this would be true even if you replaced windowmaker with either GNOME or KDE, too.)

Re:Stop the GNU/Linux (0, Offtopic)

CableModemSniper (556285) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584446)

Licensed under the GPL != GNU software.

Big Deal (0, Flamebait)

Krueger Industrial S (606936) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584348)

Windows XP ... "first boot to full desktop" in 18 minutes.

Re:Big Deal (2, Interesting)

rusty0101 (565565) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584402)

Never having run Windows XP, could you tell me if it will run from the CD without touching my hard disk? I might be interested in trying it out, but I don't want to loose any data in the process.


Re:Big Deal (1)

R3 (15929) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584464)

WinInternals guys have something like that, it's called ERDCommander, but it costs money.
Check it out at:

Re:Big Deal (1)

CatWrangler (622292) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584414)

That is if you don't bother to read through your license agreement first though before the install. Did you know that Bill Gates owns your left kidney now?

Re:Big Deal (2, Insightful)

uchian (454825) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584422)

Yeah, but installing Windows XP is the equvalent of only installing the Linux kernel, XFree86 and the KDE packages. Once you add the time on to install all of the games, Office software, development tools, etc that Knoppix already comes with, that installation time doesn't look nearly as impressive.

Re:Big Deal (1, Interesting)

kbielefe (606566) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584440)

Sure, if you consider notepad and Internet Explorer to be a "full" desktop.

Re:Big Deal (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584547)

My email address is copyrighted. Expect a lawsuit if you redistribute it in spam.

Fuck you, biaaaaatch. [mailto] Lameness filter encountered. Your comment violated the "postercomment" compression filter. Try less whitespace and/or less repetition. Comment aborted.

Knoppix==Awesome (3, Interesting)

FreeLinux (555387) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584350)

Knoppix is a GREAT distro. I regularly give it to people to try out Linux. It also makes a great recovery disk. I can go anywhere and pop it into a PC with a CD-ROM drive and it boots giving me all the tools I need.

What? Your Windows 2000 server's dynamic disk has crashed, again? No problem. Insert Knoppix. Copy /mnt/WINNT to /mnt/GoodDisk. Have a nice day.

Must Knoppix use the hard drive? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584542)

I only have a 100% NTFS formatted drive. Linux cannot reliably write to NTFS. I don't wish to reformat or resize partitions. Can I run Knoppix directly from the CD and use a big RAM disk or something?

No. (2)

FreeLinux (555387) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584577)

No Knoppix does not require a hard drive at all. Inserting the CD and booting Knoppix creates a RAM disk for swap space and symlinks to the rest of the OS on CD. Knoppix runs entirely from RAM and the CD. Knoppix does not touch your hard disk!!!!

However, Knoppix does a great job of detecting all present disks and sets up the FSTAB to allow you to access any of the disk partitions. This is read-only acess by default. Knoppix creates desktop icons for each of the disk partitions. Should you need to access data on the hard disk(read-only by default) simply click the icon and Knoppix auto-mounts the partition, ext2/3, fat, fat32, NTFS, what have you.

Knoppix is awesome and WELL worth the download! Although I suspect that the mirrors are being Slashdotted right now. :(

one of the pleasant things about knoppix (4, Informative)

timothy (36799) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584354)

... is the sheer number of packages included on a *single* CD ROM. It's incredible. (Plus, they tend to be quite recent versions, and with some programs, like the excellent and promising Scribus, that's important because progress is rapid.)

Also, if you want to show someone the sheer variety of free and Free browsers available with Linux, Scribus has konqueror, mozilla, dillo, not to mention text-based ones as well.

It's an amazing distro -- demoware that really works. Anecdote: I have used Knoppix, from the CD, as my only OS for several days when using a borrowed laptop on which I could not politely do an OS swap. Except a slight slowness with the CD up-and-down-spinning, it was hard to tell I wasn't just using a recent Debian system installed normally.


self-reply with a correction (1)

timothy (36799) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584357)

2nd instance of "Scribus" in above post should of course be "Knoppix." Scribus is not emacs.

I'm grabbing it now. (1)

boy_of_the_hash (622182) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584368)

Sounds quite cool actually, this is just the sort of thing that some people (my boss) need to be shown. Differs a little from SUSE live-eval if it can be installed. And the great thing is I can just hand my boss a cd and tell him to try it.

Hopefully windows problems will be a thing of the past for me soon.

heratic108 sucks stallmans cock! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584379)

Any one how calls linux gnu/linux is a fucking faggot who sucks stallmans cock! Stop calling it that, it sounds gay, and it IS GAY!

and so are all the other fucked up versions such as lunix, li18nux and lignux. ITS LINUX! FAGGOTS! and not mandrake XFREE86/GNOME/ALSA/GCC-.32/glibc2.4/kernel.2.4.9/l inux/9.0

knopix worked great on my laptop...... (2, Interesting)

the_2nd_coming (444906) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584390)

except it used the OSS sound system and the OSS module for my soundcard does not work...if it used ALSA I would be very happy.

Re:knopix worked great on my laptop...... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584408)

Read this and weep! []

Re:knopix worked great on my laptop...... (1)

AvitarX (172628) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584439)

How the hell is that off topic?

Knoppix is debian based, it should hold up. If you install knoppix to HD, then follow the instructions you get also on knoppix. It is not offtopic, so I hope the meta moderators read the context.

VMWare (3, Interesting)

HeelToe (615905) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584412)

One really neat use of this would be to bundle VMWare into the CD dist so that you could actually drop the CD into a machine you don't trust (maybe your employer's?) to be free of keystroke loggers, etc.

Use Linux for any "private" work you want to do, use encryption tools (ssh, tunneling, etc.) to get out your corporate firewall to a trusted machine, and then simply run your other operating system inside VMWare for doing your work.

Does Knoppix make it easy to add new things into the cd image?

Re:VMWare (1)

jacoplane (78110) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584517)

VMware is commercial software, so that won't happen. Is there an open-source alternative???

Re:VMWare (1)

HeelToe (615905) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584538)

I realize VMWare is commercial.

As an end user wanting what I described above, can I add VMWare to my *own* Knoppix CD ISO?

This would rock to be able to go to work and have a trusted environment for web browsing, personal email, etc., and drop into the corporate (untrusted) OS to do my work.

OT: VMware alternative (3, Informative)

ism (180693) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584588)

There is BOCHS [] , but it emulates every x86 instruction, rather than being optimized for specifically running an OS. The developers (in the FAQ) do not recommended for the purpose you intend. I have not tried it.

Plex86 [] touts itself as *the* free (as in speech and beer) alternative. I have not tried this either.

Connectix makes Virtual PC [] , which is not free. I have not tried it.

Re:VMWare (3, Informative)

bstadil (7110) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584568)

Does Knoppix make it easy to add new things into the cd image?

Yes, As long as you keep inside the size limit. I removed some of the Demos on the ISO and included a brainwave relaxing program AutoZen to run on my my Girlfriend's Windows machine. Worked fine.

WmWare workstation is only 11Meg so you should be OK.

I've got to respect this.. (3, Insightful)

Raleel (30913) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584441)

I'm not normally a debian zealot, and by me using the term zealot, you can figure out what I think of people who constantly tell me that I'm wrong for using redhat and mandrake. That having been said, I've really got to respect this. Well done.

Personally, I don't care about having 10 different editors, but I'm sure some people do. I can almost live entirely off of the redhat 8.0 personal desktop (I have other machines to compile on), save for the lack of mp3-ability out of the box (freshrpms, I love you) and dvd-ability (again, go freshrpms). But the ability to do something like this, be able to just install it on to a hard drive, type a single command for updates, no registering or anything, and continue on, is very nice.

I think this years install fest will see a lot more debian installs than it will redhat or mandrake because of this.

There's another one (4, Informative)

OrangeHairMan (560161) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584465)

There's another Debian-based bootable distro, called LNX-BBC. It is only 50 megs, but you can still install Debian from it and apt-get all the packages you want. []

bah! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584477)

All these new-fangled newbie candy distros aren't worth the effort, even for newbies. You want a real OS? Install a real os. You want the real deal? Get Debian. I can't deny the niche market that distros like knoppix fill (mostly for reviewers), but they all suck, when it comes down to actually using what you installed. You only get what you put in. The slackware folks have known this all along.

BeOS (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584479)

The Be operating System can be installed and booted to the desktop in 10 minutes =)

Now I'm sure this comment is going to be moderated down, because "BeOS is dead" and a lot of Linux folk don't like to admit that Be was superior in a number of areas (and still is). Oh well.

Look at this smug bastard (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584481)

smug bastard []

Wow, for once I'm ahead ... (1)

thempstead (30898) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584482)

Wow, for once I'm ahead of the crowd. I finished downloading the latest iso about 2hrs before this was posted here ... how long before the Knoppix site is Slashdotted ?


For rapid desktop development? (2)

WetCat (558132) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584487)

Is it only me who misread the article header?
A rapid desktop deployment for Debian system is not "news that matter", a working rapid desktop development system - a competitor to Kylix can be that news...

I can beat that. (4, Interesting)

sakusha (441986) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584489)

20 minutes? Bah. My old vintage 1975 Sol-20 boots SOLOS from ROM in under a second. I can install a new OS ROM in seconds, it is conveniently provided on a ROM cart that pops in and out of a slot in the back. I can load BASIC or ASM-80 from Cassette Tape in under 2 minutes.
Yeah, yeah, before you mod this down, just think a sec, I'm only trying to show how ludicrous this "time to first boot" is, as a measure of an OS.

Knoppix is kool... (2, Interesting)

dcuny (613699) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584497)

I got a copy from CheapBytes [] . Very cool. I've handed out more than a dozen copies since then. People are a lot more willing to try it out once they find out it won't touch your hard drive (unless you want it to).

It's come in handy a couple of times, like when my hard drive flaked out. I talked my non-techie wife through setting up KPPP and KMail over the phone so she had internet access. (Fortunately, it was just a loose cable)

I've used DemoLinux [] before that, as well as the SUSE demo CD, but Knoppix is much nicer. The only feature I miss is DemoLinux's ability to anchor part of the file system to the hard drive...

All in all, a very nice distribution.

This is just what I have been looking for. (5, Interesting)

man_ls (248470) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584500)

I've just gotta say, thanks Slashdot. This is what I've been looking for.

One of the major reasons I was very reluctant to try Linux out (I'm a dedicated Win2K admin) was that it would require me to re-partition a disk for an ext3 filesystem.

Well, seeing as how each and every one of my drives are NTFS Dynamic Volumes, there's no chance in hell that Linux is going to be able to read (or even repartition) them, and neither will most other software. So, it's a total wipeout if I wanted to try it.

I'm downloading the ISO of this right now; I can get a chance to use Linux without *installing* Linux this way. In essence, what I've wanted for a long time.

Re:This is just what I have been looking for. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584551)

Dude - once you install it can you tell us how it went? I also have only NTFS and don't want to reformat to try Linux.

Rescue (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584513)

I think a very important and under-valued use of this is as a rescue disk.

Sure other distros have bootable CD's, but they are only partly usable. This thing seems to have a bunch of stuff that will make recovery much easier.

Who knows... I'll try it out and see. Too bad some of the older systems can't boot off CD (often those are the ones you need to recover!)

Knoppix name (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4584531)

Is pretty bad - why not "Suck My Knoppix"?

It was on NZ PC World (5, Interesting)

vik (17857) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584549)

I got Knoppix onto the cover CD of PC World in New Zealand and I hear there is a possibility it may go on the Australian version - write encouragement to the Ed and ask if it can be had from the Kiwis (the answer will be yes, I guarantee it :).

We had to cut it down to 350MB to fit the sponsor's Windows games and so forth on the CD too (thanks Eaden at Opentech) so no OpenOffice, but the reader response we got was incredible. See this [] and search for "Knoppix" for the feedback.

Vik :v)

Knoppix as a Christmas gift (3, Interesting)

oob (131174) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584575)

After reading the comments here Knoppix has just become my default Christmas gift to friends and family. The opportunity to quickly and easily expose new users to Linux without altering their current environment is a magnificent opportunity to "spread the gospel."

I'm planning to bundle the CD with two sheets of paper, one showing how to start and use it and explaing that it won't interfere with the ordinary function of the computer concerned and the other David McNabb's HDD install HOWTO.

Then in January I'm going to apply for a position in the marketing department of AOL, I'll have all the required skills :)

Easiest Debian install??? (1)

Sri Lumpa (147664) | more than 11 years ago | (#4584584)

Has anybody tried this install yet?

How easy to install is it compared to the progeny installer, the new Debian graphical installer and the old, infamous, text installer?

Could this be the easiest Debian install ever (one can dream)?
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