New Slackware Linux Release Available

The Slackware Linux Project has released their version 12.2 distribution.
Written by J.A. Watson, Contributor

The Slackware Linux Project has released their version 12.2 distribution. Every time I do something with Slackware it brings back a lot of memories... going to Usenix conferences 10+ years ago, and bringing Slackware CDs back with me... my goodness! This is one of the "grand-daddies" of packaged Linux distributions.

This version updates the Linux kernel to, and includes lots of new and updated drivers, support for PCMCIA/CardBus, USB, FireWire and ACPI, so it should work very well on laptops as well as servers. It also has a variety of the most popular packages to choose from, lots of programming and scripting languages and development tools, and the KDE desktop version 3.5.10. Those who are still struggling to deal with KDE 4 (me, for example) will be pleased to hear that last bit.

On the down side, for me, it only knows how to install the LILO boot-loader, and as I just mentioned about Vector Linux, I'm not willing to deal with that right now. In addition, the install process itself looks rather "old-fashioned" compared to most of the other Linux distributions these days but that is really more a question of cosmetics, and if you are "tough enough" to be installing Slackware, I suppose that cosmetics shouldn't matter to you, at least at that level.

Fair warning, however. In my personal opinion, Slackware is not a distribution for beginners, it is aimed squarely at experienced Linux users! Even at the beginning, during the installation process, it assumes that the user has considerably more knowledge than the installation for Ubuntu, Mandriva and the like do. If you are an experienced Slackware user, you probably want to update to this release, as it sounds like they have made a lot of good improvements.

jw 16/12/2008

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