Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Because Beauty is Basic

Filed under
Linux
Reviews
-s

GoblinX Mini 1.2.0 was released yesterday and it sounded very interesting to me. It's described as "a son of GoblinX and contains only XFCE as windows manager and GTK/GTK2 based applications," while "GoblinX is a Live-CD that is based on the excellent Slackware distribution." The most intriguing thing to tuxmachines however, is the small size. Many of you might know of my soft spot for mini distributions, GoblinX Mini Edition weighs in at 150 mb. This is my first look at GoblinX. Let's see whad'up.

I downloaded and burnt GoblinX, then booted the livecd to find a distinctive splash screen. Featuring a silouette of a goblin, it gives a haloweenish macabre feel. The booting progress splash is predominately yellowish-orangy in color, it sets the tone for the whole theme, as we will soon discover. However, the verbose background, while quite attractive and obviously original, doesn't seem to fit in with the theme of the system.

        

After accurate hardware detection and setup one is presented with a login screen and given the instructions to start X. Login as root with the given password and start X in one of several ways. This is a wonderful feature as some folks' video cards may not yet be supported by xorg/XFree86, and some livecds can't work for them. Fortunately for nvidia graphics users, GoblinX comes with nvidia drivers and after it detects an nvidia chip, sets up nvidia as the driver. The window manager chooser must be a left over from the full sized livecd as it contains several choices including KDE and fluxbox, however xfce is the only one available on the mini.

    

The desktop is a unique experience due to the original theme and color scheme chosen by the developers. The color scheme could almost be described as pumpkin and the default theme is dominated by a yellow-orange hue. The default wallpaper contains enough yellow to compliment the theme and colors accomplishing continuity probably intended. There's a convenient launcher located at the bottom of the screen, containing shortcuts to popular apps and useful utilities, while a taskbar resides at the top autohide. The overall look is effective yet refreshingly different.

The menus contain many carefully chosen, useful, and popular applications for accomplishing any number of day to day requirements. I found most if not all of the applications quite stable. Some of the highlights include Firefox, gimp, gaim, xmms, and abiword.

    

The internet connection isn't enabled by default although a firewall is. There is an adsl and dial-up configurations in the menu. I didn't see an entry for dhcp, although the binaries dhcpcd and dhclient were available. In executing dhcpcd on the cli, I obtained a lease and was surfing as desired.

    

One drawback I encountered was the mounting of all partitions on my computer. I've mentioned several times in past reviews that I think this is not the best practise of livecds. Although GoblinX is stable and I encountered no problems, it still could result in data loss due to any number of reasons.

GoblinX ships with a hard drive installer and the interface is simple and user-friendly. I tried the installer a few times over the course of the past two days and never did get a hard drive install. It seemed a little buggy, as sometimes I would be given a xdialogue debug looking screen instead of the second step of choosing a partition. Sometimes it just skipped right to the unpacking and coping the image to some alleged partition. I did complete a full install routine (while getting screenshots), however, the net result of several attempts was no hard drive install. I was able to ascertain that the installer was installing the system to the booted ramfs. I gather this is perhaps a bug of unionfs or could even be perhaps in the installer code itself. I didn't investigate any further.

One seems to be able to save any user settings to a file on a partition or floppy and although the booting livecd declares its search and application of user configurations, it does not ask where the file is nor does it seem to actually access the default locations. In any case user settings are not restored.

Also in the menu are applications for installing and uninstalling packages as well as the conversion of one package format to another, presumably for installation. However, seems moot for the livecd mode.

Overall, this livecd is rich with inimitable characteristics making for a refreshing user experience. The solid foundation found in Slackware makes this experience pleasant and fun. The included application choices are adequate to perform everyday computing needs of the general user. It's a treat having nvidia graphic drivers included. I dare recommend to the developers not mounting all partitions at boot, removing menu items for inoperative functions, and perhaps adding dhcp internet connection during boot.

        

For these and other full screenshots, please visit the gallery.

More in Tux Machines

Windows Desktop 'Fun'

Phoronix on Graphics

Leftovers: OSS

Security Leftovers

  • Security updates for Thursday
  • OpenSSL patches two high-severity flaws
    OpenSSL has released versions 1.0.2h and 1.0.1t of its open source cryptographic library, fixing multiple security vulnerabilities that can lead to traffic being decrypted, denial-of-service attacks, and arbitrary code execution. One of the high-severity vulnerabilities is actually a hybrid of two low-risk bugs and can cause OpenSSL to crash.
  • Linux Foundation Advances Security Efforts via Badging Program
    The Linux Foundation Core Infrastructure Initiative's badging program matures, as the first projects to achieve security badges are announced.
  • Linux Foundation tackles open source security with new badge program
  • WordPress Plugin ‘Ninja Forms’ Security Vulnerability
    FOSS Force has just learned from Wordfence, a security company that focuses on the open source WordPress content management platform, that a popular plugin used by over 500,000 sites, Ninja Forms, contains serious security vulnerabilities.
  • Preparing Your Network for the IoT Revolution
    While there is no denying that IP-based connectivity continues to become more and more pervasive, this is not a fundamentally new thing. What is new is the target audience is changing and connectivity is becoming much more personal. It’s no longer limited to high end technology consumers (watches and drones) but rather, it is showing up in nearly everything from children’s toys to kitchen appliances (yes again) and media devices. The purchasers of these new technology-enabled products are far from security experts, or even security aware. Their primary purchasing requirements are ease of use.
  • regarding embargoes
    Yesterday I jumped the gun committing some patches to LibreSSL. We receive advance copies of the advisory and patches so that when the new OpenSSL ships, we’re ready to ship as well. Between the time we receive advance notice and the public release, we’re supposed to keep this information confidential. This is the embargo. During the embargo time we get patches lined up and a source tree for each cvs branch in a precommit state. Then we wait with our fingers on the trigger. What happened yesterday was I woke up to a couple OpenBSD developers talking about the EBCDIC CVE. Oh, it’s public already? Check the OpenSSL git repo and sure enough, there are a bunch of commits for embargoed issues. Pull the trigger! Pull the trigger! Launch the missiles! Alas, we didn’t look closely enough at the exact issues fixed and had missed the fact that only low severity issues had been made public. The high severity issues were still secret. We were too hasty.
  • Medical Equipment Crashes During Heart Procedure Because of Antivirus Scan [Ed: Windows]
    A critical medical equipment crashed during a heart procedure due to a timely scan triggered by the antivirus software installed on the PC to which the said device was sending data for logging and monitoring.
  • Hotel sector faces cybercrime surge as data breaches start to bite
    Since 2014, things have become a lot more serious with a cross section of mostly US hotels suffering major breaches during Point-of-Sale (POS) terminals. Panda Security lists a string of attacks on big brands including on Trump Hotels, Hilton Worldwide, Hyatt, Starwood, Rosen Hotels & Resorts as well two separate attacks on hotel management outfit White Lodging and another on non-US hotel Mandarin Oriental.