Gentoo Linux 20140826 Iron Penguin Edition -- open source fans, download now!
There are so many Linux distributions to choose from. Depending on your perspective, this can be a good or bad thing. You see, for many, using Linux is about choice -- you get to choose the distro, packages and environment. There is truth to this; however, many others, including myself, often wonder if the community's efforts are too fragmented. In other words, when talent is spread thin, progress may be slowed.
One distro which should not be discussed in this debate is Gentoo; it has been around for 12 years and is not some recently launched project. Hell, Google chose this distro as the base for Chrome OS, so it must be good; seriously, the search-giant's operating system is pretty darn stable. Gentoo Linux has reached version 20140826 and it looks like a winner.
"Gentoo Linux is proud to announce the availability of a new LiveDVD to celebrate the continued collaboration between Gentoo users and developers. The LiveDVD is available in two flavors: a hybrid x86/x86_64 version, and an x86_64 multi lib version. The livedvd-x86-amd64-32ul-20140826 version will work on 32-bit x86 or 64-bit x86_64. If your CPU architecture is x86, then boot with the default gentoo kernel. If your arch is amd64, boot with the gentoo64 kernel. This means you can boot a 64-bit kernel and install a customized 64-bit user land while using the provided 32-bit user land. The livedvd-amd64-multilib-20140826 version is for x86_64 only", says Fernando Orocu, Build Lead.
Orocu highlights the following packages:
- Linux Kernel 3.15.6
- Xorg 1.16.0
- KDE 4.13.3
- Gnome 3.12.2
- XFCE 4.10
- Fluxbox 1.3.5
- LXQT Desktop 0.7.0
- i3 Desktop 2.8
- Firefox 31.0
- LibreOffice 126.96.36.199
- Gimp 2.8.10-r1
- Blender 2.71-r1
- Amarok 2.8.0-r2
As you can see, this is using a very recent kernel and modern versions of the popular KDE and Gnome environments. Plus, software like LibreOffice, Gimp and Chromium make this a smart choice for anyone wanting a fully-functional computing experience. While not as popular as Ubuntu or Mint, Gentoo definitely has a higher cool-factor and using it gives you instant Linux-credibility.
If you want to try it, you can download the x64 version here and the x86 version here. If you are not using an x64 processor, maybe it is time for an upgrade -- I highly recommend the AMD AM1 platform, as featured here.