October 27, 2016

Linux Top 3: Quirky 7.2, NetBSD 7.0 and Android x86 5.1

  • October 11, 2015
  • By Sean Michael Kerner

1) Quirky 7.2

Quirky is part of the Puppy Linux family of distributions that are put together by developer Barry Kauler. The new Quirky 7.2 update is all about the incremental milestone updates that every open-source project has,  rather than any dramatic overhaul of Quirky itself.

Since the previous release of Quirky, there have been steady improvements, nothing really dramatic, but lots of things here and there. As well, various packages have been updated or improved. Significant updates include SeaMonkey and Samba, and a new application, Dia. One new minor application is PupWhoIs, a frontend for the 'whois' utility.
A major structural change is the doing-away with /usr/X11R7, the path where T2 compiled Xorg into -- now, Xorg is in /usr, in line with all other distros. The kernel has been upgraded to version 4.1.7.

2) NetBSD 7.0

 A new version of popular BSD flavor NetBSD officially debuted on October 8 brining lots of new features and broader support for ARM, including the Raspberry Pi 2.

Other noteworthy new features include:

  • Multiprocessor support in the USB subsystem.
  • blacklistd(8), a new daemon that integrates with packet filters to dynamically protect other network daemons such as ssh, named, and ftpd from network break-in attempts.
  • Numerous improvements in the handling of disk wedges (see dkctl(8) for information about wedges).
  • GPT support in sysinst via the extended partitioning menu.
  • Lua kernel scripting.
  • epoc32, a new port which supports Psion EPOC PDAs.
  • GCC 4.8.4, which brings support for C++11.
  • Optional fully BSD-licensed C/C++ runtime env: compiler_rt, libc++, libcxxrt.

3) Android x86 5.1

While the Android Marshmallow release is now set to debut for handset owners, the x86 Android effort is just about done with its Lollipop Android 5.1 update.

The 5.1-rc1 release is based on the Android 5.1.1_r24. We added many x86 specified code and fixed issues to let the system runs smoothly on x86 platforms, especially for netbooks or tablets. The key features contain

    Supports 64-bit kernel and userspace, as well as 32-bit system.
    Update kernel to 4.0.9.
    Enable OpenGL ES hardware acceleration for Intel/AMD(radeon/radeonsi)/Nvidia(nouveau) chipsets.
    Support booting from UEFI and installing to UEFI disk.
    Be able to install to ext4/ext3/ext2/ntfs/fat32 filesystems via a text based GUI installer.
    Support Multi-touch, Audio, Wifi, Bluetooth, Sensors, Camera and Ethernet (DHCP only).
    Auto-mount external usb drive and sdcard with filesystem vfat/ntfs/exfat/ext4.
    Support VM including Qemu, VirtualBox and VMware.
    Support foreign archs (arm / arm64) via the native bridge mechanism. (Settings -> Apps Compatibility)

Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at LinuxPlanet and InternetNews.com. Follow him on Twitter @TechJournalist

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