Ultimate Distro Sampler

Ultimate Distro Sampler

Article from Issue 109/2009


This month's DVD includes a delectable collection of small Linux options. Choose a Linux distro from a convenient boot menu. The distros labeled "live start" will boot to a Live session that will not disturb the contents of your hard drive. Your choices include:

  • PCLinuxOS LXDE 2009.4 – A desktop distro built for simplicity and designed to provide easy migration for former Windows users.
  • Linux Mint 7 Xfce – An easy-to-use system with an inspired collection of standard Linux apps and an innovative set of management tools.
  • Slax 6.1.2 – A fast and portable alternative with a good collection of desktop apps and some useful recovery tools for system admins.
  • Puppy Linux 4.30 – One of the most popular small Linux options. Puppy comes with a long list of handy desktop applications, and it is designed to run in RAM for great performance even on old hardware.
  • Parted Magic 4.5 – This specialty distro is designed for creating, managing, and troubleshooting disk partitions.
  • Tiny Core 2.4.1 – A tiny (10MB) distro that also boots in RAM. The default configuration starts a minimal X desktop – you can add additional apps through the online repository.
  • IPFire 2.5 – Put an old PC to work on your security perimeter with this easy firewall distro. (Install version only.)
  • SystemRescueCd 1.3.1 – Restore your troubled Linux and Windows systems with this complete rescue toolkit on a disc.

Slip the disc in the drive and start this stupendous sampler today to explore some excellent and often overlooked Linux alternatives.

Special Bonus ISOs

In addition to the bootable distros, this DVD also includes two bonus distributions in ISO format:

  • Absolute Linux 13.0 – Lightweight, Slackware-based Linux tailored for home environments.
  • CRUX 2.6 – An i686-optimized, "Keep-It-Simple" distro for experienced users.

You'll find these ISO files in the /iso-images/ directory. Burn the ISO image to a CD or DVD and reboot to start the system. When you burn the disc, remember to specify that you are burning a disc image. (Don't just copy the file.) See the documentation for your burning application for more on handling ISO images.

Additional Resources

[1] PCLinuxOS:http://www.pclinuxos.com

[2] Linux Mint:http://www.linuxmint.com

[3] Slax http://www.slax.org

[4] Puppy Linux: http://puppylinux.org

[5] Parted Magic: http://partedmagic.com

[6] Tiny Core: http://www.tinycorelinux.com/

[7] IPFire: http://www.ipfire.org

[8] SystemRescueCd http://www.sysresccd.org

[9] Absolute Linux: http://www.absolutelinux.org

[10] CRUX: http://crux.nu

DVD Boot

Place this DVD in the drive and restart your system. If your computer doesn't start, make sure your BIOS is configured to boot from a DVD. Enter the BIOS setup menu (see your vendor documentation), make sure DVD boot is enabled, and make sure the DVD drive appears before the hard drive in the boot order.

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