What distros inspired your distro?

Jason Hsu jhsu802701 at jasonhsu.com
Sat Feb 11 16:43:26 PST 2012

I'd like to hear about the distros that most inspire yours.

My inspirations for Swift Linux have been Linux Mint, Puppy Linux, and antiX Linux.  

Puppy Linux is user-friendly and very lightweight.  In fact, I consider the Puppy Linux user interface (menus and desktop icons) to be the most user-friendly of all distros.  Puppy Linux works well on computers from Windows 98 era and proves that user-friendliness doesn't require bloat.  It's no accident that the Swift Linux desktop looks very much like the Puppy Linux desktop.

Linux Mint is very user-friendly and extremely well-polished.  It has superior codec and driver support.  The Linux Mint team is leading the effort to make the controversial GNOME 3 as user-friendly as GNOME 2.  I consider this to be the overall best distro for first-time Linux users.  Linux Mint Debian Edition was officially released this past September.  LMDE won me over because it offers the smoothness and refinement of Linux Mint while bypassing the heavy Ubuntu overhead.  That's why I'm switching to LMDE as the base distro for Swift Linux.

antiX Linux is not only user-friendly and lightweight but also has the large software repository that Puppy Linux lacks.  (That's the advantage of being Debian-based instead of independent.)  antiX Linux has served well as the base distro of Swift Linux.  Even though I'm switching to LMDE as the base distro, I'm using the antiX Linux playbook.  antiX Linux proved that it is possible to transform a heavyweight distro into a lightweight one.  The new Swift Linux will be giving LMDE the antiX Linux treatment.  Because antiX Linux is the best analog for my mission at Swift Linux, this is the distro I'm emulating the most.

Jason Hsu <jhsu802701 at jasonhsu.com>

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