SliTaz

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SliTaz GNU/Linux
Slitaz-logo.svg
Slitaz-4.0.png
Developer The SliTaz GNU/Linux Association
Christophe Lincoln
OS family Unix-like
Working state Current
Source model Open source
Initial release 22 March 2008[1]
Latest release 5.0 (Rolling Release) / 9 June 2018; 28 days ago (2018-06-09)[2]
Package manager Tazpkg
Platforms x86 x64
Kernel type Monolithic (Linux kernel)
Default user interface Openbox[3]
License GNU GPL and various others
Official website slitaz.org/en

SliTaz GNU/Linux is a lightweight GNU/Linux distribution, community-based, suitable for use on older hardware and as a Live CD or Live USB.[4][5][6][7] SliTaz stands for "Simple, Light, Incredible, Temporary Autonomous Zone" according to the boot screen.[8]

Features[edit]

SliTaz uses the Openbox window manager.

Additional packages are added using a program called "TazPanel". This is due to the specific package format that SliTaz uses (tazpkg). It can still use packages from the more popular distribution though, as Debian, by means of first carrying out a conversion of these different packages.[9]

By default, SliTaz offers no persistence, however it can still be added if the user wish. The choice of the filesystem/bootloader used with slitaz is then of importance however; persistence being only available with ext2 and ext3 filesystems and the syslinux or extlinux boot loader.[10][11]

Another useful tool is TazLiTo, with which users can create their own LiveCD based on selected packages or even based upon the current system state.

System requirements[edit]

SliTaz GNU/Linux is supported on all machines based on the i486 or x86 Intel compatible processors.[12] The Live CD has four variants of SliTaz, requiring from 192 MB of RAM for the Core system to 48 MB for a text mode and X Window System.[12]

SliTaz can even run in 16 MB of RAM and a little swap memory.[13] SliTaz can be booted from a Live CD, Live USB, floppy disk, or a local area network (PXE[14]),[15] or can be installed, requiring approximately 80 MB of hard disk space.[16]

TazLiTo[edit]

TazLito is the LiveCD creation utility in SliTaz GNU/Linux.

Usage[edit]

Syntax:

  • tazlito [command] [list|iso|flavor] [dir]

Possible keywords for command:

  • Usage
    • Displays a summary of available commands
    • e.g., # tazlito usage
  • Stats
    • Displays the configuration variables, the paths to the various files and directories, and information on the ISO image
    • e.g., # tazlito stats
  • Gen-config
    • Allows you to generate a configuration file ready to be edited
    • e.g., # tazlito gen-config
  • Configure
    • Configures the system configuration file or one found in the current directory
    • e.g., # tazlito configure
  • Gen-iso
    • Can generate a new LiveCD image
    • e.g., # tazlito gen-iso
  • Gen-initiso
    • Does the same work as 'gen-iso', but it rebuilds the initramfs compressed system
    • e.g., # tazlito gen-initiso
  • List-flavors
    • Downloads and displays a list of the different flavors available
    • e.g., # tazlito list-flavors
  • Get-flavor
    • Downloads (if necessary) and prepares the files for 'gen-distro' to generate a flavor
    • e.g., # tazlito get-flavor particular-flavor
  • Show-flavor
    • Displays the description of the flavor and its size after regeneration
    • e.g., # tazlito show-flavor particular-flavor
  • Gen-flavor
    • Creates a description file of a new flavor from the results of generating a distro (gen-distro)
    • e.g. # tazlito gen-flavor new-flavor
  • Gen-liveflavor
    • Creates a description file of a new flavor from the results of generating a distro based on the current system
    • e.g., # tazlito gen-liveflavor
  • extract-distro
    • Extract an ISO image from the LiveCD to rebuild the structure of the root cdrom and system
    • e.g., # tazlito extract-distro slitaz-cooking.iso
  • Gen-distro
    • Generate the distro-tree and an ISO image via a list of packages
    • e.g., # tazlito gen-distro
  • Clean-distro
    • Removes all files generated or extracts of the structure of the LiveCD
    • e.g., # tazlito clean-distro
  • Addhacker
    • Allows the addition of the user hacker to the distribution
    • e.g., # tazlito addhacker
  • Check-distro
    • Verifies if files installed by the packages are present on the system
    • e.g., # tazlito check-distro
  • emu-iso
    • Uses the QEMU emulator to start and run SliTaz
    • e.g., # tazlito emu-iso
  • Burn-iso
    • Guesses the cdrom device and its speed, and wodim (part of cdrkit) will begin to burn an ISO image
    • e.g., # tazlito burn-iso

Commands[edit]

Gen-iso[edit]

Performs the following operations:

  • Check Root
  • Verify Root CD
  • Generate LiveCD ISOLinux
  • Distro Stats

Gen-initiso[edit]

Performs the following operations:

  • Check Root
  • Verify Root CD
  • Generate initramfs
  • Generate LiveCD ISOLinux
  • Distro Stats

Common Operations[edit]

Check Root[edit]

Check to ensure UID is zero (i.e., TazLito was run by root or root sudoer).

Check Root File System[edit]

Looks for the existence of an etc. directory in the root file system directory. N.B., this does not do any further checking to ensure anything is actually in the directory. However, if TazLito is used for all LiveCD creation operations (that is, one does not create/modify the directories used by TazLito) the directories existence implies it is populated properly.

Verify Root CD[edit]

Looks for the existence of a boot directory in the root CD directory. N.B., this does not do any further checking to ensure anything is actually in the directory. However, if TazLito is used for all LiveCD creation operations (that is, one does not create/modify the directories used by TazLito) the directories existence implies it is populated properly.

Generate initramfs[edit]

  1. Executes scripts for packages altering the root file system
  2. Hard links redundant files in the root filesystem to save space
  3. Runs cpio to create the initramfs, compressing with lzma or gzip (or no compression)

Release history[edit]

Version Release date Stability
1.0 23 March 2008 Stable version
2.0 16 April 2009 Stable version
3.0 28 March 2010 Stable version
4.0 10 April 2012 Current stable version
5.0 RC1 2 May 2014 Preview version
5.0 RC2 19 May 2014 Preview version
5.0 RC3 20 May 2015 Preview version
5.0 5 November 2017 Rolling release

As with any Linux distribution, the route of development of SliTaz is mainly determined by the coders themselves. For SliTaz 5, some major changes seem to be the swapping of systemd by BusyBox's init and udev, hence avoiding safety risks, and more implementation of Qt.[17] An implementation of x64 and ARM architectures are currently under development.

Reception[edit]

Dedoimedo reviewed SliTaz GNU/Linux 1.0. Here was wrote:[18]

Badgers are known for being rather spirited and fierce for their relatively small size. Slitaz follows suit. The first thing you'll notice is a simple boot menu, written in French. Even though I don't speak French, it was rather easily to understand what the author intended. That said, I do think "neutral" distributions should go for English, as it is the most popular computer language around.

Dedoimedo also reviewed version 2.0.[19]

DistroWatch wrote to DistroWatch Weekly a review of SliTaz GNU/Linux 1.0:[20]

Now there is a new kid on the block. SliTaz GNU/Linux 1.0 is not just another small desktop distro; it is, in fact, the smallest by some margin and just half the size of Damn Small Linux. When it runs, the 25 MB compressed CD image expands to about 80 MB, so any computer with 128 MB of RAM will be able to load it fully into memory, ensuring blazing fast program execution. Computers with less memory can boot it too; with the boot prompt cheat code of "slitaz-loram", computers with 64 MB of RAM are also supported, while those with as little as 16 MB of RAM will be able to run SliTaz as well - the cheat code is "slitaz-loram-cdrom". It goes without saying that the performance of the machine with 16 MB of RAM won't be nearly as good as that of the 128 MB one, but it's still hard to believe that there is an operating system that can run in graphical mode on machines with so little memory.

Gallery[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "SliTaz 1.0 Release Notes". SliTaz. Retrieved 5 August 2012. 
  2. ^ http://mirror1.slitaz.org/iso/rolling/
  3. ^ DistroWatch.com: SliTaz GNU/Linux
  4. ^ "SliTaz". Linux Magazine. Retrieved 5 August 2012. 
  5. ^ "Linux.com :: SliTaz, a mighty micro Linux distro". Archive09.linux.com. Retrieved 2013-07-06. 
  6. ^ Nick Veitch . "8 of the best tiny Linux distros: Slitaz and Tiny Core Linux | News". TechRadar. Retrieved 2013-07-06. 
  7. ^ "Spotlight on Linux: SliTaz GNU/Linux 3.0". Linux Journal. Retrieved 2013-07-06. 
  8. ^ "A second look at Slitaz 1.0: turns out it has a lot of potential". Click. 2008-06-26. Retrieved 2017-10-15. 
  9. ^ Converting debian packages to tazpkg using convert command
  10. ^ Filesystem warning
  11. ^ [1]
  12. ^ a b "SliTaz 4.0 Release Notes". SliTaz. Retrieved 5 August 2012. 
  13. ^ "Loram-CDrom". Slitaz. 
  14. ^ PXE with SliTaz
  15. ^ "From BIOS to /etc/init.d/rcS". SliTaz Doc. Retrieved 5 August 2012. 
  16. ^ "Introduction to the project". SliTaz. Retrieved 5 August 2012. 
  17. ^ Buildroot Slitaz post by coder
  18. ^ Slitaz Linux - Tiny but fierce, Dedoimedo
  19. ^ Slitaz 2 - 30MB of joy, Dedoimedo
  20. ^ First look at SliTaz GNU/Linux 1.0, the smallest desktop distro on earth, DistroWatch Weekly

External links[edit]