Get to know BionicPup, the latest version of Puppy Linux

Puppy Love

Article from Issue 226/2019
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Like its predecessors, this ultralight OS is fast and versatile with an easy-to-use interface.

It's small, zippy and eminently lovable: For 16 years the bounder that is Puppy Linux has stolen Linux users' hearts with its cutesy graphics, inhumanly fast load times and simple interface. The operating system (OS) was originally whelped by Barry Kauler in 2003 and has since been nurtured by a number of developers. Each new version of Puppy is based on the most recent Ubuntu Long Term Support (LTS) release. At the time of writing, this is Ubuntu 18.04 Bionic Beaver, hence the code name of version 8.0: BionicPup. This review focuses on BionicPup, which like all versions of Puppy Linux is designed to load directly into your machine's RAM from a Live CD or USB. This makes the OS perfect for quick and dirty data retrieval from a corrupted system, as well as offering an easy way to use friends' computers without interfering with their lives.

Puppy can also be installed onto a wide variety of systems. Its requirements are so light that it supports hardware considered obsolete by modern standards. For this review, we installed BionicPup in a virtual machine with 1GB RAM and an 8GB virtual hard disk.

Getting Started

If you've been bitten by the pup bug, visit the download page [1]. From here, you can download an ISO file of the most recent 32- or 64-bit version of Puppy Linux. True to its ultra-lightweight reputation, the current ISO weighs in at just 354MB. If you're using a more modern device with no DVD drive, we recommend using a third-party tool such as Etcher to create a bootable USB from the ISO file [2].

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