Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

My desktop OS: Damn Small Linux plus pendrive equals portable paradise

Filed under
Linux

I'm a student who does freelance PHP coding and pixel art. I've always wanted a dedicated computer for my work, but that would take a considerable investment on a student's income. I found the perfect solution in the pairing of an older Compaq Deskpro and Damn Small Linux (DSL).

Damn Small Linux is a great match for older hardware because it's loaded with lightweight software. My machine has a 166MHz Pentium CPU with 32MB of RAM and a 1.2GB hard drive, and it runs extremely well with DSL. I've always favored simple applications that do one job and do it well, so the stripped down nature of the programs included with DSL doesn't bother me. However, if I need the extra power of more complex programs, they're a breeze to install.

The best thing about Damn Small Linux is that it flat out flies. I use Joe's Window Manager instead of the default Fluxbox, but they both give a great amount of functionality in a small footprint. The only application I use that lags at all is the memory-hungry Firefox. The rest are more responsive than most of the programs I use on Windows on my much more modern other computer.

My desktop OS: Damn Small Linux

And:

I recently acquired a 256MB USB pendrive that I use for storing personal documents and work-related stuff. As a Linux fan who wanted to make the most of his new toy, I went looking for the simplest, smallest distro I could find that could boot from a pendrive. I found Debian-based Damn Small Linux, whose long list of bundled applications fits into a meager 50MB. The more I use it, the more I like it.

You can test DSL in a variety of ways: you can boot it from a business card CD, install it on the hard drive, run it from a USB pendrive, or even run it from within Windows (using Qemu). After a quick search on the project's wiki, I found the section related to booting from USB. The simplest way to create a bootable pendrive is to burn DSL to a CD, run a live CD session with it, and choose the desired install option from the desktop menu. I decided to download the .iso and instead try to install it directly on the pendrive. For guidance, I used the excellent guide on the Debian wiki.

The installation finished without problems. I had to play around with the various USB boot devices in the BIOS until I found one that worked.

DSL offers a variety of boot parameters, and some of them are quite handy.

Damn Small Linux plus pendrive equals portable paradise.


More in Tux Machines

LibreELEC (Krypton) v8.2.1 MR

LibreELEC 8.2.1 is a maintenance release that includes Kodi 17.6. It also resolves a minor time-zone issue after recent daylight saving changes, a resume from suspend issue with the Apple IR driver, and it provides two new SMB client configuration options in Kodi settings. You can now set a minimum SMB protocol version to prevent prevent SMB1 from ever being used, and a ‘legacy security’ option forces weak authentication to resolve issues seen with the USB sharing functions on some older router/NAS devices. If updating to LibreELEC 8.2 for the first time PLEASE READ THE RELEASE NOTES below here before posting issues in the forums as there are disruptive changes to Lirc, Samba, and Tvheadend. Read more

Microsoft Worker Leaves for Google, Criticizes Post-Windows Vista Dev Strategy

Microsoft employee Tim Sneath, who spent no less than 17 years with the company, announced in a blog post that he’s leaving the software giant to work for Google on the new Flutter mobile framework. Sneath started his post by emphasizing how great Microsoft is, explaining that he company has “incredibly diverse interests” and is “filled with talented people.” Despite the good parts, however, the former Microsoft Program Manager who worked on a series of projects for developers, discussed what he described as the “missteps” that the Redmond-based software giant embraced beginning with the Windows Vista era. Read more Also: ‘Goodbye Microsoft, hello Linux’

LiFT Scholarship Recipients Advance Open Source Around the World

Fifteen people from 13 different countries have received Linux Foundation Training Scholarships (LiFT) in the category of Linux Newbies. This year, 27 people received scholarships across all categories — the most ever awarded by the Foundation. Now in its seventh year, the program awards training scholarships to current and aspiring IT professionals worldwide who may not otherwise have the means for specialized training. The Foundation has awarded 75 scholarships worth more than $168,000 since the program began. Read more

Linux Containers vs Virtual Machines

Ever since containers on Linux became popular, determining the difference between Linux containers and virtual machines has become trickier. This article will provide you with the details to understand the differences between Linux containers and virtual machines. Read more