Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Beta Review: Kanotix 2007 "Thorhammer" RC5B

Filed under
Reviews

The last Kanotix release (based on Debian Sid), KANOTIX-2006-01-RC4, came out in October, 2006. Shortly thereafter, a Kanotix co-developer (and many of Kanotix's other developers) left the project and founded their own, mainly due to a disagreement over whether Kanotix should be based on Sid (Debian's unstable branch) or something less volatile, like Etch (Debian's current stable branch) or Ubuntu.

Kanotix's founder, Jörg Schirottke (aka Kano), now has a new, Etch-based version of Kanotix in development, code-named "Thorhammer." It's not yet publicly available, but if you catch Kano in the #kanotix IRC channel on freenode.net and ask, he'll give you a download link. (Note: Only Kano himeslf can give you the download link. Also, there's a link to a Web-based IRC interface to #kanotix on Kanotix's main page for your convenience.)

Most of the forum discussion about Thorhammer's in German (not surprising), so it's a bit difficult for us English-only speakers to keep up with what's going on. When the final version's released, discussion in the English forums will undoubtedly pick up.

Thorhammer's based on Debian Etch, with around 40 backports and a patched Ubuntu kernel (v2.6.22-10-kanotix). Packages include:

  • Xorg v7.1.1 and Beryl v0.2.0
  • Video Disk Recorder v1.5.2
  • KDE v3.5.5a; OpenOffice.org v2.0.4; Iceweasel (aka Firefox) v2.0.0.6; Icedove (aka Thunderbird) v1.5.0.12
  • GParted v0.3.3 (with the ability to resize NTFS partitions); ntfs-3g (for mounting NTFS partitions in read/write mode)

...and many more. Of course, you can install your own from the regular Debian repositories.

Thorhammer runs (and installs) from a live CD, which has the same excellent hardware detection that Kanotix has been known for. (If, when the live CD starts X, the screen blanks — which is probably due to the time being set and power management thinking it needs to kick in — just wiggle the mouse to get it back.) It uses Cathbard's nice artwork.

   

It includes a slew of custom scripts (I call them "convenience scripts") that make, for example, installing the current NVIDIA driver as simple as running "install-nvidia-debian.sh" as root. (Afterwards, xorg.conf is properly configured for Beryl, and Beryl's ready to run.) It adds some custom applets to the KDE Control Center, in order to allow you to more easily administer your computer. It also comes with a comprehensive user manual (which, as of this writing, only seems to be missing a few screenshots of the installer).

(One difference between Kanotix and "stock" Debian is that Debian runs X in runlevel 2. Kanotix uses runlevel 3 for console mode (with networking but without X), and runlevel 5 for X. With Kanotix, you're encouraged to use runlevel 3 when installing packages (and, of course, video drivers).)

Kanotix comes with ndiswrapper, and a custom script to configure it, but you will need to find the Windows drivers (*.sys and *.inf) for your particular wireless chipset yourself. They're not included with Kanotix.

Installation on an external (USB) HDD went smoothly. The installer's named "AcritoxInstaller" (after its author), and is available in the "Kanotix" menu (in the K menu). The one glitch I found with it was that it stalled out when installing GRUB to the external drive's MBR when run straight from the Kanotix menu. It worked fine when I ran it from a console as root with X privileges: starting up Konsole; typing "sux" to log in as root with X privileges; and issuing the "acritoxinstaller" command.

Post-installation, the only glitch I encountered was that the installer set the keyboard in Xorg's configuration file to German, which made it a bit hard to log in. Changing the line

Option          "XkbLayout"             "de"

to

Option          "XkbLayout"             "us"

in the keyboard's "InputDevice" section fixed the problem.

Otherwise, Thorhammer works well, and seems quite stable.

Although I'll probably stick with my existing Debian testing installation for now, I'm thrilled to see Kano and crew back in operation. From the looks of things, it shouldn't be too long before the final version's out.

Edit: Iceweasel version corrected to 2.0.0.6

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

Kanotix 2007 "Thorhammer" RC6 now publicly available

As of today, Kanotix 2007 Thorhammer RC6 is publicly available for download. So if you're a fan of Debian stable, or a previous Kanotix fan, check it out.

(The way Kano works, "RC6" actually means it's about the 10th version he's come out with, just the first one he's offering for public consumption. Smile )

More in Tux Machines

OPNsense 16.7

  • OPNsense 16.7 released
  • pfSense/m0n0wall-Forked OPNsense 16.7 Released
    The latest major release is out of OPNsense, a BSD open-source firewall OS project derived from pfSense and m0n0wall. OPNsense 16.7 brings NetFlow-based reporting and export, trafic shaping support, two-factor authentication, HTTPS and ICAP support in the proxy server, and UEFI boot and installation modes.

New Blackmagic and Wine

Linux Foundation and Linux

  • Google, Samsung, Radisys join CORD project
    The Open Networking Lab (ON.Lab) and The Linux Foundation have spun off the Central Office Re-architected as a Data Center (CORD) initiative into its own, new open source project, and Google, Samsung Electronics and Radisys are joining the CORD and ONOS Projects as new partners. Google plans to host the first CORD Summit on July 29 at Google Sunnyvale Tech Corner Campus in California, where industry leaders, network architects and administrators, developers and engineers will convene.
  • CORD Project Aims to Bring Cloud Agility to Service Providers
    The CORD Project recently became an independent project hosted by The Linux Foundation. CORD (TM) (Central Office Re-architected as a Datacenter), which began as a use case of ONOS®, brings NFV, SDN, and commodity clouds to the telco central office and aims to give telco service providers the same level of agility that cloud providers have to rapidly create new services. Major service providers like AT&T, SK Telecom, Verizon, China Unicom, and NTT Communications, as well as companies like Google and Samsung, are already supporting CORD.
  • Linux Kernel 4.4.16 LTS Released with Over 150 Changes, It's Already in Solus
  • Linux Kernel 4.6.5 Has Numerous Nouveau Improvements, ARM and ARM64 Fixes
  • Linux Kernel 4.6.5 and Kernel 4.4.16 released
    Just after a couple of weeks,Linux Kernel 4.6.4 and 4.6.15 release was announced,here comes the next release in both series of Linux kernel 4.6 and 4.4. Both the releases are to bring fixes and improvements in performance.There are some workarounds made in GPU drivers,Wireless,USB,Sound and others can be checked in the change log,Of Course. In the Kernel 4.6.5 there are 220 files changed,1754 files inserted newly and 998 deletations are made.On the other hand,Linux kernel 4.4.16 has 156 files are changed,1475 insetations and 845 deletations are notified as per the announcement.
  • Linux 4.7 now out with enhanced security and advanced graphics support

BSD Leftovers

  • FreeBSD Q2'2016: EFI Improvements, Prepping For FreeBSD 11.0, Package Updates
    For FreeBSD fans not closely following its development on a daily basis, the FreeBSD project has released their Q2'2016 quarterly status report that covers various activities going on around this BSD operating system project.
  • EuroBSDCon 2016 schedule has been released
    The EuroBSDCon 2016 talks and schedule have been released, and oh are we in for a treat! All three major BSD's have a "how we made the network go fast" talk, nearly every single timeslot has a networking related talk, and most of the non-networking talks look fantastic as well.