Friday, 5 February 2021

A Long Wait Will Soon be Over: Slackware 15.0 Coming Up

As Slackware fans will have duly noted the team around the BDFL are finally one step, actually untold steps, closer to nearing the long awaited 15.0 release. And high time it is as outdated as 14.2 now is something like 4.5 years into its life. Is anyone actually still running this, except on servers? On 7 December 2020 it was announced that alienBOB's latest Plasma 5 packages made it into the Slackware-current branch for testing and with that they finally fully replaced KDE 4. Shortly after XFCE 4.16 followed and now even includes the Whisker menu.

That was soon followed by a mass rebuild against glibc-2.32 which is a pain of you're running current or just installed somenthing like Slackel which is tracking Slackware-current. Never mind, that's why it's called a testing ground. Currently the kernel is Linux 5.10.12. With such a modern base that seems like a good position for an upcoming release.

I have to admit that with stable getting so old I have switched to other distributions years ago and which are also running nicely. Mostly based on another old favorite, Debian/Devuan, but also Mageia and openMandriva for testing. They didn't make the cut though. Until recently I got my Slackware fix only via alien's LiveSlak project, the Plasma edition, which is in all honesty a good way to run Slack and almost a distribution in itself. You get a ready made vanilla Slackware enhanced by a few choice packages from alienBOB. In between some quick testing of where development was at with a quick install from a Slackware FTP server and since recently the release of the aforementioned Slackel 7.4 with Openbox, a perfect base to add Plasma packages.

It looks like the wait could be over this year. I have no idea how Pat is paying his bills but he obviously isn't relying on sales of DVD's if he can wait this long. In the meantime you might want to prepare for compiling Cinnamon Slackbuilds. As times move on I think this is now a better desktop than XFCE is and the best and most full-featured in the GTK universe. If KDE Plasma isn't quite your thing. So although most of the GNOME build projects that used to be there to provide GNOME 2 have gone away we still have choices. There is the Cinnamon on Slackware project, the MATE for Slackware project, i.e. MATE Slackbuilds, and Dlackware - GNOME 3 for Slackware. The Dropline GNOME project has survived the transition and is also offering GNOME 3 for Slackware (without reliance on systemd).

In anticipation I once started reposting the changelogs here in 2018 but then stopped as it became apparent no new release was fortcoming any time soon. I won't be doing that again. Everyone can follow the changelog here. So is 15.0 finally coming up still this year? Only time will tell. I guess Pat is following the same mantra as Debian folks do - it's ready when it's ready.

Do they still place bets on the release date in alt.os.linux.slackware?

6 comments:

  1. Heh... I'm still running 14.2. It does everything I need it to do. Of course, I'm an old Luddite at heart and don't really do much that requires NASA-Standard computing power. ;)

    Hell, it took me a year or so after 14.2 came out to upgrade. If 15 comes out tomorrow, I'm pretty confident I'll upgrade sometime before 2022 or so.

    Rock on!

    ~Eric

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks Eric! Glad to hear you're still around. Stay in touch and stay healthy.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I would like to understand how to burn a DVD with k3b and a non-root user account.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I still have 14.2 running on my PC and don't see why this is an issue. It's misleading to imply this is some kind of out-of-date, archaic operating system as in reality it's still actively supported with frequent updates and patches. For those who are averse to updating, than yeah, it's a problem. But this applies to any platform and any OS that's not kept current. When you do fixate on just the latest eye candy and bling, than go ahead and just keep bouncing from one distro to another. I just want a stable, secure desktop OS that does what I need it to do.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, you're right. Of course 14.2 is not archaic and much older Slack releases are still supported. I was more thinking of desktop software, the Chromium browser with its changing dependency needs with very up to date libraries and its descendents and the Plasma desktop because I never liked KDE 4 much but but think Plasma is really nice. Takes me back to later 3.5.x days somehow. Plasma is probably what 4 wanted to be. Anyway, am starting to babble. If you don't want that, good for you. Take care, B.

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