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Riffer
July 8th, 2008, 10:59 PM
So I'm trying my hand at building a distro or at least a variant of Ubuntu. One that is locked down tight so that it can be used either in a classroom or library setting. The idea is that a "guest" can log on and do basic things like surf the web or word processing, print or save to a floppy or flash card, without being able to change any of the desktop settings.

Well so far the learning curve has been really high. I wanted to be able to access the 'net for help etc., so that meant virtualization. So a crash course of trying out VMWare, failing, trying again til now I'm got the basics figured out.

Next, because I wanted a light weight OS (usable for under 256 RAM machines) I had to try different distros and installs. Dream, Tinyme and DSL are incredible distros, all having their good and bad points. Dream is great as a full featured OS, while tinyme and DSL can turn an old box into a quite usable basic machine.

Either by my lack of knowledge or lack of tools, these distros didn't have the capability for what I wanted. Tried Xubuntu, again a great distro, but for I wanted a bit on the bloated side. So I decided to try and do a minimal install of XFCE. Worked pretty good to except I couldn't get the gnome system tools to work, primarily "User Administration Tool".

So in the course of me trying to figure it out I came across a bloat free method of installing Gnome. Tried and with a bit of tweaking got it up and running, but again the same problem I had with XFCE. It seems to be a problem with dbus, what I don't know, yet. But I will.

Figured out how to pull my variant out of VMWare, use Remaster and save to a usb stick. And it seems that with using Remaster I will be able to make a LiveCD, perhaps be able to install it onto a HD, we'll see.

Sorry for the long post, but I think its great that we have the tools and knowledge out there that a newbie such as myself can at least attempt this. I know I will get there and come up with something quite usable, but right now I having a great time. I've learned more about stuff in the last month then in 10 years with Windows.

Mazza558
July 8th, 2008, 11:04 PM
Great! That's certainly an interesting way to improve your skills. I myself started trying new programs and betas, which then moved quickly to customization, writing guides and making themes, which is my favourite thing to do (I have an inclination towards graphics).

eragon100
July 8th, 2008, 11:26 PM
I am thinking about making a customized ubuntu version too, and distribute it as (yet another) general desktop distro.

But I figure this fragmentation is one of the things that's preventing linux from reaching mainstream :(

This is what I mean, I just read this on softpedia: http://news.softpedia.com/news/Introducing-wattOS-A-Lightweight-Ubuntu-89456.shtml

Riffer
July 9th, 2008, 05:59 AM
Well I got that tool working, so now see if I can lock down Gnome.