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Linux Top 3: Rockstor, Koozali SME and Chapeau

  • December 13, 2015
  • By Sean Michael Kerner

In the world of Linux distributions, there are many that are based on Debian and Ubuntu, but those are the only two distro that have fueled a following of derivative distros, Fedora and CentOS have too.

1) Chapeau 23

Chapeau is based on Fedora 23, which was first released on November 3. The goal of Chapeau (french for hat…) is to make a more streamlined version of Fedora, much the way that Linux Mint's original goal was to be a streamlined version of Ubuntu.


"Chapeau is Fedora without the work, to seamlessly add functionality and usefulness to Fedora Workstation. The Chapeau project does not attempt to redesign the Fedora experience, only to enhance it," the Chapeau FAQ explains.

For the Chapeau 23 release there are few interesting additions beyond what Fedora ships with including:

  • Steam
  • VLC
  • Mozilla Firefox with Adobe Flash.
  • A Hardware Helper Tool exclusive to Chapeau
  • RPMFusion software sources preconfigured
  • Media codecs & DVD playback support
  • Dropbox integration



2) Koozali SME Server 9.1

While Chapeau is focussed on desktop users, SME Server is focussed on the needs of small and medium sized enterprises. Rather than using Fedora Server, SME Server is based on CentOS 6.7 (itself based on Red Hat Enterprise Linux).


SME Server is intended for use on servers in small and medium businesses and is based on CentOS. The latest release, SME Server 9.1,
provides users with an update to the distribution's 9.x series and is based on CentOS 6.x. SME Server 9.1 introduces support for Windows 10 domains and includes OpenSSL packages from the project's upstream distribution.


3) Rockstor 3.8-10

Like SME Server, Rockstor is based on CentOS, however instead of being a general purpose server it's focussed on Network Attached Storage (NAS) use-cases. The primary big new feature in this updates is Asynchronous Replication.


Asynchronous Replication. This feature efficiently replicates Shares on one Rockstor appliance to another by using BTRFS send/receive functionality. While this feature was added a while ago, it was a bit over engineered, buggy and had to be improved. I started refactoring the existing pub-sub design and ended up completely redesigning it. The result is a much simpler and more robust implementation.


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

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