Exotic Linux distros can come in handy

Exotic Linux distros can come in handy

Summary: Among these more obscure flavors of Linux are a few that you may not have encountered, but could be just what you need.

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  • Linux seems to offer a distribution for every occasion. Among these obscurer flavors are a few that you may not have encountered, but could be just what you need, says Jack Wallen.

    Caine Linux might be one of the niftiest of the niche Linux distributions. Caine stands for Computer Aided Investigative Environment. It's CIS Linux designed for digital forensics. Caine includes TheSleuthKit, Autopsy Forensic Browser, steganography tools, and plenty of utilities for wiping hard drives. This distribution also includes a semi-automated tool for the compilation of the final report on a digital forensics investigation.

    Photo credit: Gianchi83/Wikimedia Commons


    Read more about Linux distros on ZDNet UK.

  • Damn Vulnerable Linux does exactly what it says on the tin. According to this distribution's website, "Damn Vulnerable Linux (DVL) is everything a good Linux distribution isn't. Its developers have spent hours stuffing it with broken, ill-configured, outdated and exploitable software that makes it vulnerable to attacks".

    Strange? No. The idea behind this distribution is to train Linux admins — and what better way to train someone than to hand them a broken distribution to fix? Older or broken versions of Apache, MySQL, PHP, FTP, and SSH might present your admins in training with too many problems.

    Photo credit: Damn Vulnerable Linux

    Captions: Jack Wallen, TechRepublic, ZDNet UK


    Read more about Linux distros on ZDNet UK.

Topics: Operating Systems, Linux, Open Source, Software

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23 comments
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  • RE: Exotic Linux distros can come in handy

    The USE made me laugh so hard, I just could not help it.
    aben2amu
    • Password Recovery is even handi-errrr!

      @aben2amu <br>Ever loan out your computer and some dummy resets the admin or user password? Recover without trashing your Windows install!
      kd5auq
      • RE: Exotic Linux distros can come in handy

        @kd5auq I get passwords reset a lot, but there're many utilities out their that can reset your passwords without trashing your windows install. May I suggest PCLoginNow, it's free and Open Source. Boot the CD, it's super easy to reset any windows passwords. Their is only 1 caveat, windows wants to check the hard drive for errors on the next boot, but it's not bad.
        http://sourceforge.net/projects/pcloginnow/
        aminy23
    • RE: Exotic Linux distros can come in handy

      @aben2amu
      I know... I hate it when coffee comes out of my nose!!!
      gadfly1955
  • Since you mention the Christian and Satanic Editions,

    You left out the Muslim Edition that is self-explanatory.
    It recently changed its name to Sabily. It, like the others, is an Ubuntu derivation. Instead of Bible studies, it has the Koran. As is so often stated in the many Linux forums, there is a distro for everyone.

    Paul
    pfyearwood
  • What this teaches us about Linux:

    that installing software is a PITA beyond the abilities of most users. These distributions are nothing more than Linux with a bundle of pre-installed apps.
    fr_gough
    • RE: Exotic Linux distros can come in handy

      @frgough@...
      I see your point. In fact, it has opened my eyes. For instance, a nice bistro shows that cooking is a PITA and beyond the abilities of most people. And really, they are just a place where the plates are filled with pre-cooked food.

      Unlike those bistros, the price is right for these distros.

      Moving on. One of these inspired a joke.

      Does the Caine Distro also help you determine who took the strawberries?

      Hey ho, I'll be here all... actually, I'm heading out now.
      DannyO_0x98
    • RE: Exotic Linux distros can come in handy

      @frgough@... Installing Ubuntu is stupefyingly simple. And no, Ubuntu (as an example) is more than that, it is also an ecosystem for obtaining applications too (think of an "app store" where everything is free - you know, you pick it and hit "install").

      Before claiming to be too stupid to do it, give it a try - you might surprise yourself.
      jeremychappell
    • RE: Exotic Linux distros can come in handy

      @frgough@...
      What you fail to realize, is if users could legally package up Mac or Windows (and related software), you would have the same situation. If you google out windows + torrents you will find a wide variety of specialized installs with pre-installed software.

      It is not that there is any deficiency in Linux. If you would typically download Fedora, Slackware, Debian or Ubuntu, and then spend a day or two tweaking it and installing additional software. One of these distros might save you 10 or 12 hours of work.

      That is the nature of being a power user. When I run windows, it takes me 10 hours to set up. Between service packs, updates, additional software, antivirus, utiltiies, and overall changes to the look and feel.

      The only difference here is I can package all of these changes up as a Linux distro or even just image the partition and copy it to new computers. As a windows user, you just can't do that anywhere near as well as with Linux.
      fwarren
    • RE: Exotic Linux distros can come in handy

      @frgough@...

      Go to package manager, type in search term, install. How is that hard? It even keeps most of your programs up-to-date for you. Where is my EASY button?
      SCavndrF
    • RE: Exotic Linux distros can come in handy

      @frgough@... So? You get everything you need to study the bible, or worship the devil, or make music all in one nice, free package. Who needs to install software (like that's hard)? Set up a machine for grandma, she'll never bother you again. Windows is the real PITA.
      vandamme1
    • RE: Exotic Linux distros can come in handy

      @frgough@...

      Yeah, I agree, assuming you're not blindly trashing Linux. But I'd still rather send a newb to Synaptics than talk them through double-clicking an executable that may or may not do what it says it will.
      bbbaldie_z
      • RE: Exotic Linux distros can come in handy

        The only difference here is I can package all of these changes up as a Linux distro or even just image the partition and copy it to new computers. As a windows user, you just can't do that anywhere near as well as with Linux. <a href="http://www.affordabledegrees.com ">life experience degree</a> | <a href="http://www.affordabledegrees.com/ADA/bp.asp">bachelor degree program</a> | <a href="http://www.affordabledegrees.com/ADA/accreditation.asp">online accredited degree </a> | <a href="http://www.affordabledegrees.com/ADA/associate-program.asp">associates degree</a> | <a href="http://www.affordabledegrees.com/ADA/degreeprograms.asp">degree programs</a>
        jasonhawk
    • RE: Exotic Linux distros can come in handy

      @frgough@...

      What this teaches me is that you are a moron if you think it is hard to type in the name of a program you want to install into a cute GUI, and have it install and configure it for you. Ask your gandma to install Python in Windows so you can fulfill the dependency for a Python app. 'Nuff said.
      apostate
  • Message has been deleted.

    zclayton2
  • RE: Exotic Linux distros can come in handy

    @fwarren

    I use a bash script I wrote to configure desktop systems. I've also rolled my own DVD ISO via Remastersys, so even a Linux install + configurations only takes me an hour at best.
    dontspamme
  • RE: Exotic Linux distros can come in handy

    I personally use Ubuntu SE... and it is by far the most fun I've ever had with a distro. I love metal, and once I explain to people that it's not an "evil, satanic" item, people are much more open to it. If you don't like the pentagrams and such, just change your wallpaper.
    sammi_curr72
  • RE: Exotic Linux distros can come in handy

    I say let all the sheep follow their Microsoft shepherds, let the free thinking and ambitious folks have our Linux. To each his own.
    dalerh451960
  • RE: Exotic Linux distros can come in handy

    I had a Mac, sometimes I have to run M$, but I run Linux 90% of the time. I'm 83 and a retired accountant, so how hard is Linux? I use Puppy Linux to recover data off crashed hard disks of friends - great OS!
    gil_seiler
  • Any Linux distros with a pretty interface?

    Seriously, in these times, appearance can be a lot. And with new distros, I hardly see any with a good interface that gets my attention. So far it's Sabayon, but there should be others, yet so many to be lurking. Yes, I have seen a lot, and Mint gets my attention, but any others?

    USE looks great, so that's another one down.
    megamanx