Lightweight Linux distribution

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Lightweight Linux distribution
Lubuntu 11.04 Natty Narwhal.png
Lubuntu is described by its developers as lightweight in comparison to Ubuntu

A lightweight Linux distribution is a Linux distribution that uses relatively few resources, which may result in performance improvements especially on old computers with slower CPUs and less RAM.

One big factor that determines the resource usage and speed of a desktop distribution is the window manager it uses.[1][2] For example, version 10.10 of Lubuntu uses the LXDE window manager and requires a minimum of 128 MB of RAM and a Pentium II processor; it is a lightweight variant of Ubuntu that, in comparison, uses Unity as a window manager and requires a 1 GHz processor and 1 GB of RAM.[3][4][5] The window manager can be changed in most Linux distributions, and the same Linux distribution may also have various versions with different window managers; examples are Porteus, which comes in LXDE, Xfce and Mate versions, and Zenwalk, which comes in Xfce and Openbox versions.

Distributions[edit]

  • Alpine Linux – a security-oriented, lightweight Linux distribution (307 MB) based on musl and BusyBox.[6] Mini download is 66 MB; base system (excluding kernel) is under 5 MB. Media download is 308 MB for version 3.1.3.
  • Absolute Linux – a lightweight desktop-oriented distribution based on Slackware
  • antiX – lightweight version (690 MB) of its parent distribution MEPIS Linux, based on Debian testing. Core install: 128 MB, Base approx. 300 MB. Package manager: Synaptic[7]
  • ArchBang – inspired by CrunchBang Linux but based on the Arch Linux distribution instead of Debian. It uses the lightweight Openbox Window Manager to achieve the same look and feel.[8][9]
  • BasicLinux – a very lightweight distribution (2.8 MB apparently) capable of running on an Intel 386 and 3 MB of RAM[10][11]
  • Bodhi Linux – a lightweight and minimalistic distribution[12]
  • CoreOS – a lightweight system (2×1 GB) than runs containers and provides cluster management capabilities
  • Chrome OS
  • CrunchBang Linux – No longer in development; succeeded by BunsenLabs.[13] A relatively large (771 MB) Debian based distribution designed primarily for speed and ease of use.[14][15]
  • Damn Small Linux – download: 50 MB. Additional software available as "DSL Extensions" and using the Debian APT tool, which has to be installed. "Light enough to power a 486DX with 16 MB of RAM"[16][17]
  • Elive – a lightweight and complete distribution that can run in 64 MB of RAM and 100 MHz of CPU, based on Debian and using a customized Enlightenment as only Desktop environment
  • Feather Linux – a lightweight Linux distribution (under 128 MB) derived from Knoppix. Now dormant.[18][19]
  • LinuxBBQ – a very lightweight (291.5 MB) and resource-friendly distribution based on Debian Sid with TUI productivity applications.[20]
  • Lightweight Portable Security – a lightweight live desktop-oriented distribution based on Arch Linux
  • Linux Lite – A lightweight distribution with the XFCE desktop environment designed with new Linux users in mind.[21]
  • Lubuntu – lightweight (705 MB) in comparison to Ubuntu, it uses the LXDE desktop.[3]
  • LXLE – a full featured OS (apps preinstalled) for older hardware, using minimal resources, respun from Lubuntu. Media download, approx 1.3G.
  • Nanolinux – a 14 MB distribution based on Tiny Core Linux.[22]
  • Peppermint Linux OS – download: 587 MB, based on Lubuntu[23]
  • Porteus – it weighs in at under 300 MB, making it a lightweight contender[24] Comes with the LXDE and KDE desktops
  • Puppy Linux – lightweight relative to most other Linux distributions[25] Download: 133−162 MB. Package Manager: Puppy Package Manager (PPM)
  • SliTaz – 35−42 MB distribution; Package Manager is Tazpkg with its repository of packages[16]
  • Tiny Core Linux – (9, 15 or 72 MB) distribution; Software repository: TCZ packages[26]
  • Trisquel Mini – lightweight version (603 MB) of Trisquel with LXDE[27]
  • TurnKey Linux Virtual Appliance Library - lightweight[28] headless server software appliance library. Based on a minified Debian base. v14.1 Core ISO is 212MB[29] and uses ~173MB RAM (idle in Live mode).
  • Xubuntu – lightweight (980 MB) in comparison to Ubuntu. It uses the XFCE desktop.
  • Zenwalk – a lightweight linux distribution (845 MB) based on Slackware[citation needed]

Comparison[edit]

Distribution Founder Maintainer Initial release year Latest release year Approximate file size X window manager Fork Target audience
Absolute Linux Absolute Linux Team Absolute Linux Team 2007 2015 698 MB[30] iceWM - desktop
antiX Anticapitalista Anticapitalista 2007 2016 555 MB (Base), 654 MB (Full) Fluxbox MEPIS < Debian old computers, portability (with persistence[31])
ArchBang Willensky Aristide Stan McLaren 2010 2016 564 MB OpenBox Arch Linux desktop, advanced
Arch Linux - - 2002 2016 709 MB - Linux Desktop, Advanced
Bodhi Linux Bodhi Linux Team Bodhi Linux Team 2011 2016 575 MB (Standard), 1024 MB (AppPack) Enlightenment Ubuntu < Debian Desktop
BunsenLabs Linux Core Maintainers Core Maintainers 2015 2016 825 MB OpenBox CrunchBang < Debian Desktop
CrunchBangPlusPlus[32] Ben Young Ben Young 2015 2015 686 MB OpenBox CrunchBang < Debian Desktop
CRUX Per Lidén Core maintainers 2002 2015 1773 MB OpenBox - BSD/experienced users, Lightweight
Damn Small Linux John Andrews, et al. 2005 2008 50 MB Fluxbox, JWM - old PC hardware, Lightweight
Elive Thanatermesis Thanatermesis 2005 2010 700 MB Enlightenment Debian Desktop
Knoppix 2012 (CD) 701 MB Live
Lightweight Portable Security United States Department of Defense United States Department of Defense 2011 2016 390 MB iceWM ArchLinux secure live operating system
LinuxBBQ Julius Hader BBQ team 2013 2016 285 MB several (>75) Debian, Slackware bloat-free, advanced
Linux Lite Jerry Bezencon Jerry Bezencon 2013 2016 955 MB XFCE Ubuntu Windows users
Lubuntu Lubuntu team Lubuntu team 2009 2016 744 MB LXDE, Openbox Ubuntu lightweight desktop
LXLE Ronnie LXLE team 2012 2015 1300 MB LXDE Ubuntu LTS older computers, intermediate users
MX Linux[33] anticapitalista MEPIS Community - 2016 1024 MB Xfce 4 antiX < MEPIS < Debian Midweight Desktop
Nanolinux Georg Potthast Georg Potthast - 2015 19 MB SLWM on Nano-X MicroCore Linux with BusyBox Lightweight, Runs on RAM, advanced
Parabola - - 2010 2015 531 MB needs to be installed Arch Linux Build Live or Desktop, advanced
PCLinuxOS Bill Reynolds Bill Reynolds 2003 2015 833 MB (LXDE)[34] KDE, LXDE, MATE Mandrake -
Porteus Fanthom Porteus 2010 2014 260 MB (LxQt) (multiple) Slackware lightweight, portable (with persistence[31])
Puppy Linux Barry Kauler Puppy Foundation 2003 2015 234 MB (Slacko)[35] JWM-2.3.2 - portable, lightweight
Salix OS Tomas Matejicek Tomas Matejicek 2002 2013 613 MB (Fluxbox) / 852 MB (MATE live)[36] MATE, KDE, Xfce, Fluxbox, Openbox Slackware desktop
Slax Tomas Matejicek Tomas Matejicek 2002 2013 226 MB[37] KDE Slackware portable
SliTaz GNU/Linux Christophe Lincoln dev team 2008 2012 35 MB Openbox - portable, no persistence by default[38]
Tiny Core Linux Robert Shingledecker Team Tiny Core 2009 2016 16 MB FLTK/FLWM Tiny Core Linux portable, advanced
Trisquel Mini Rubén Rodríguez Pérez (quidam) Rubén Rodríguez Pérez (quidam) 2005 2014 609 MB LXDE Ubuntu LTS Free software: desktop
TurnKey Linux Virtual Appliance Library Alon Swartz, Liraz Siri TurnKey Linux Team 2008 2016 212 MB (Core) None (headless server) - Includes Webmin admin UI Debian Server - novice to expert users
VectorLinux Light - - - 2016 618 MB IceWM - Desktop
Xubuntu Xubuntu team Xubuntu team 2008 2016 960 MB Xfce Ubuntu lightweight desktop
Zenwalk Jean-Philippe Guillemin dev team 2004 2015 974 MB Xfce Slackware desktop
ZorinOS[39] - - 2004 2015 1024 MB (lite)[40] - Ubuntu full-featured desktop
Distribution Founder Maintainer Initial release year Latest release year Approx file size X window manager Fork Target audience

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Larabel, Michael. "Phoronix: Power & Memory Usage Of GNOME, KDE, LXDE & Xfce". Phoronix. Retrieved 30 July 2011. 
  2. ^ "Features - Porteus - Portable Linux". 
  3. ^ a b Lubuntu Developers (December 2010). "Lubuntu". Retrieved 14 December 2010. 
  4. ^ Behling, Mario (October 2010). "lubuntu 10.10 released". Archived from the original on November 24, 2010. Retrieved 14 December 2010. 
  5. ^ Canonical Ltd (October 2010). "Recommended Minimum System Requirements". Retrieved 14 December 2010. 
  6. ^ "Alpine Linux Wiki". Retrieved 2012-11-07. 
  7. ^ "Main Page – antiX". Antix.mepis.org. Retrieved 2012-05-28. 
  8. ^ Rob Zwetsloot. "ArchBang Linux 2012.12 Review – Lightweight Arch". LinuxUser. Retrieved 2012-12-21. 
  9. ^ Justin Pot. "ArchBang Is Lightweight & Always Up To Date". MakeUseOf. Retrieved 2011-10-06. 
  10. ^ Keesan, Sindhi (October 2009). "BL on CF IDE drive". Retrieved 16 January 2011. 
  11. ^ BasicLinux (n.d.). "BasicLinux". Retrieved 16 January 2011. 
  12. ^ Nitesh. "Bodhi Linux is a Lightweight Linux Distribution". Ubuntu Vibes. Retrieved 2011-05-05. 
  13. ^ "FOSS Hits & Misses on a Monday Morning". Linux Today. Retrieved 2015-10-25. 
  14. ^ Justin Pot. "CrunchBang: A Lightweight OS Perfect For Old And New Computers Alike". MakeUseOf. Retrieved 2013-04-18. 
  15. ^ Jim Lynch. "CrunchBang 11 Waldorf". Desktop Linux Reviews. Retrieved 2013-05-21. 
  16. ^ a b Moparx (April 2008). "SliTaz: A light-weight GNU/Linux distribution". Linux Infusion. Retrieved 11 December 2010. 
  17. ^ Damn Small Linux (n.d.). "What is DSL?". Retrieved 11 December 2010. 
  18. ^ "Feather Linux - Docs". Featherlinux.berlios.de. Retrieved 2013-05-21. 
  19. ^ "Linux.com :: Feather Linux: Light is right". Archive09.linux.com. Retrieved 2013-05-21. 
  20. ^ Julius Hader. "BBQ Philosophy". Retrieved 2015-01-12. 
  21. ^ Cite error: The named reference Linux_Lite was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  22. ^ "Softpedia". Retrieved 25 January 2014. 
  23. ^ "Peppermint". peppermintos.com. Retrieved 13 July 2013. 
  24. ^ Porteus (14 November 2010). "Why choose Porteus ? - IT IS PORTABLE". Retrieved 30 April 2011. 
  25. ^ Hell-Noire, Paul (July 2010). "Puppy Linux 5.0 Review - Lightweight, Fun, Fast!". Raymond. Archived from the original on July 11, 2010. Retrieved 11 December 2010. 
  26. ^ Lynch, Jim (July 2009). "Tiny Core Linux 2.1". Desktop Linux Reviews. Retrieved 11 January 2011. 
  27. ^ "Trisquel 5.0 Release announcement". The Trisquel Project. September 17, 2011. Retrieved September 14, 2012. 
  28. ^ "TurnKey Linux 13 Has Been Released!". Unixmen. Retrieved 2016-06-08. 
  29. ^ "TurnKey Core - Debian GNU/Linux with Batteries Included". TurnKey Linux. Retrieved 2016-06-08. 
  30. ^ "absolute linux home page". 
  31. ^ a b "What is Persistent Linux". 
  32. ^ "#!++ - Crunchbangplusplus". 
  33. ^ "MX Linux". 
  34. ^ "Index of /communityiso/LXDE". 
  35. ^ "Index of /puppylinux/puppy-slacko-6.3.0/64/". 
  36. ^ "Salix Downloads". 
  37. ^ Tomas M. "Download - Slax Linux". 
  38. ^ persistence can be added rather easily though
  39. ^ "Zorin OS - Home". 
  40. ^ "Zorin OS - Download".