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Puppy Linux grows bigger teeth

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For several years Puppy Linux has been breathing life into old and dated hardware, but instead of being just another minimalistic distribution, Puppy boasts smart features that save resources without cutting down the number of applications. The latest major Puppy release, Puppy 3.00, continues this trend by making the less than 100MB distro binary-compatible with Slackware 12 and providing other enhancements.

According to Puppy's main developer, Barry Kauler, one of the main goals for Puppy 3.00 was to be able to install Slackware packages by having all the necessary libraries from Slackare 12, such as Glibc 2.5, GCC 4.1.2, and GTK 2.10.13, in Puppy. But Kauler clarifies that borrowing libraries from Slackware doesn't make Puppy a Slackware clone. Puppy remains a unique distro with its own custom boot, configuration, and shutdown scripts, which have been totally rewritten for 3.00.

Good hardware detection

One drawback of Puppy's from-scratch approach has been lack of hardware support, compared to other minimal distros such as Damn Small Linux (DSL), which is based on Knoppix. In an interview more than a year ago, Kauler mentioned how, starting with Puppy 2.0, the distro was bridging this gap.

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