Exe GNU/Linux - Devuan based distro with Trinity Desktop

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andyprough
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Iscritto: 02/12/2015

Exe GNU/Linux is a distro which is based on Devuan (systemd free) and does not use non-free repos.

I'm trying out the "testing" version which is based on Devuan Beowulf, which tracks packages from Debian Buster.

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commodore256
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Iscritto: 01/10/2013

Sounds good, I'm using Devuan right now, but I'm going through the Gentoo Handbook. Yeah, I know Exe GNU/Linux sounds like a sensible option if you want all libre and no Systemd. But there are other benefits like it being rolling and since I'm compiling, it, the binary was made by me so I can have a little more trust and I could probably squeeze an extra 10% out of it. Since the hardware that's free software friendly is ancient, every bit helps. I've also though of using Musl Lib-C, but I think that's playing with fire with stability. I also have part of the handbook transcribed in a journal, so there's a bit of a "sunk cost" there and I just want to know I can finish something.

I also know Gentoo isn't FSF endorsed, but neither is Coreboot, but I know the reasoning. They endorse based on inconvenience to get non-free software. So if I compile Coreboot (of which is more up to date than Libreboot) with the flags not to add blobs, it's still free software and the reasoning for not endorsing gentoo is to avoid non-free software, you have set your make.conf to be ACCEPT_LICENSE="-* @FREE". But I guess there are Trisquel newbies that want to talk to friends and download the deb for skype. I was getting chills just by typing that last sentence, but anyway the point is even if the default setting is freedom, people can still be non-free. At least with Gentoo, user skill is implied and it's very convenient to change the default settings relative to the user's literacy.

Anyway, it looks like Exe GNU/Linux has my personal endorsement. I loved KDE3 and I think users that liked Windows 7 would feel a bit at home. I also don't like systemd. and I like free software. What's there not to like?

andyprough
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Iscritto: 02/12/2015

> I'm going through the Gentoo Handbook

I've thought about setting up a Gentoo system, but it looks like a daunting process. You should create a thread and tell us about your experience, and the problems you've had to overcome and solutions you've found.

chaosmonk

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I am a translator!

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Iscritto: 07/07/2017

> They endorse based on inconvenience to get non-free software.

Not exactly. They endorse based on (among some other factors) whether a distro "[steers] users towards obtaining any nonfree information for practical use, or [encourages] them to do so."[1]

It would be just as convenient to edit sources.list to add Ubuntu's restricted and multiverse repos to Trisquel as it would be to edit sources.list to add Debian's non-free and contrib repositories to Debian. The difference is that by hosting the non-free repos themselves, and directing users toward them via their documentation, Debian "steers" users toward the non-free repos.

Gentoo is not endorsed because it "includes installation recipes for a number of nonfree programs".[2] It is probably easy to ignore these recipes and have a free system, but I guess having them in the first place is considered to be "encouraging" the user to use them.

[1] https://www.gnu.org/distros/free-system-distribution-guidelines.html
[2] https://www.gnu.org/distros/common-distros.html

commodore256
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Iscritto: 01/10/2013

Ah, ok, but I'd say since the barrier to entry is higher with Gentoo than Ubuntu. I think it's easier to assume the average Gentoo user would know how to avoid those non-free programs. When I used Ubuntu, I never thought to edit my sources.list that way.

But do you really see an issue as long as I know how to be free?

I see a line edit as a minor inconvenience to be free compared to what I've done so far like buying an ancient motherboard and spending $83 to get 8GB of compatible DDR2 (of which is very rare) and getting the fastest officially supported CPU for it and buying a Bios Flasher. Compared to that, a line edit that removes temptations and accidental installation of non-free software look like child's play.

Freedom can be inconvenient and has a price, but I'd say it's worth it. :)

Magic Banana

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Iscritto: 07/24/2010

At least with Gentoo, user skill is implied and it's very convenient to change the default settings relative to the user's literacy.

It is not that easy to figure out what to change.

First of all, I believe you want ACCEPT_LICENSE="-* @FSF-APPROVED @FSF-APPROVED-OTHER" (with @FREE you get licenses that are not FSF-approved): https://wiki.gentoo.org/wiki/Handbook:AMD64/Full/Installation#Optional:_Configuring_the_ACCEPT_LICENSE_variable

Have you "deblob" in you USE variable? Without that keyword, you get a stock kernel, with proprietary firmware: https://packages.gentoo.org/useflags/deblob

There is no such keyword to, e.g., have Firefox stop recommending Adobe's and Google's DRM modules or stop downloading Cisco's binary H.264 codecs. Many software raise subtle issues like that. That is why Trisquel has more than 200 package helpers, absent from Gentoo: https://devel.trisquel.info/trisquel/package-helpers/tree/flidas/helpers

commodore256
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Iscritto: 01/10/2013

Ah, so it's more inconvenient to be free than I thought.

Not only that, when you install a browser, there's no Javascript blocker on by default. Alright, you got me convinced. But I suppose you see no problem with compiling Coreboot with the flag that removes blobs?

Magic Banana

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Iscritto: 07/24/2010

I never looked into Coreboot. And just to be clear: everybody is entitled to install whatever she wants on her computer.

I am just pointing out that to only run free (FSF-free) software, projects like Trisquel are valuable. They seriously take care of every freedom issue: sticking to the official repository, there is nothing to worry about (although errors may happen: proprietary software in the official repository is considered a critical bug). Doing the same job alone is not easy (although it depends on the distribution: besides FSF-endorsed distributions, Debian is certainly the easiest to run in total freedom).

commodore256
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Iscritto: 01/10/2013

I just want to make sure I know what I'm doing, that's all. I don't mind jumping through hoops to acquire freedom, but it looks like Gentoo has too many hoops. I think I'll actually install Exe Gnu/Linux very soon :)

andyprough
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Iscritto: 02/12/2015

Trinity comes with Horse Head Nebula wallpaper, transparency schema for terminal.

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