Crushing several rumours and predictions, Slackware 15.0 is now officially released for you to download and experience. We wrap up the iconic release in this post.
Slackware Linux is the oldest and actively maintained Linux distro today. Slackware started as a personal project and became a full-fledged working base for many Linux distributions back in the day, such as the initial SUSE Linux.
This Linux Distribution is perfect for technically sound users who can navigate packages, dependencies, errors – mainly via the Terminal. Kind of, like Arch Linux.
Slackware is ideal for several use cases because it is systemd free (uses init for init-system) and brings its package management tool slackpkg to the table. It supports 32-bit, 64-bit and ARM Architectures.
“Well folks, in spite of the dire predictions of YouTube pundits, this morning the Slackhog emerged from its development den, did not see its shadow, and Slackware 15.0 has been officially released – another six weeks (or years) of the development treadmill averted” – Quoting Patrick in the official announcement.
He also mentioned that – “This has been an interesting development cycle (in the “may you live in
interesting times” sense). Anyone who has followed Linux development over the years has seen the new technology and a slow but steady drift away from the more UNIX-like structure. The challenge this time around was to adopt as much of the good stuff out there as we could without changing the character of the operating system.”
Slackware 15.0 – What’s New
It has been more than five years since the last official Slackware 14.2. And almost a year since the beta of this major version.
Before we list down the features and updates, note that Slackware follows “stable-package” based release cadence rather than a “time-based” release cadence – which most of the Linux distro follows today.
Slackware 15.0 features the Linux Kernel 5.15 stable, an LTS Kernel released a while back. In case you want the latest bleeding-edge Linux Kernel 5.16 (which was just released a week back as of writing this), you can get help from the testing script available in the below link. You need to build it on your own.
But, I was curious about GNOME. And I could not find any mention of GNOME in the release notes. The last time I checked during beta coverage, the GNOME packages version was a mix of 3.36 and 3.38.
Applications and Package Tree
- After a long work, the PAM is now supported to move away from shadow password. Slackware also moved away from ConsoleKit2 to elogind that helps software targets to other init systems.
- Not only that, perhaps the important change is support of PipeWire and Wayland sessions. This is going to help a lot of users who are still using Slackware and continue to do so.
- Moreover, the support for Qt4 is completely dropped and Qt5 support is introduced. Also, Rust programming language support is added.
- The in house package manager utilities – pkgtools brings file locking mechanism to prevent locking situations, well controlled data I/O to SSD drives to minimize storage I/O and more.
- On the development side, this release introduces a script make_world.sh that helps you to rebuild entire Slackware OS from source. If you wish, you can use this script and try to get your custom build.
- In summary, here’s a quick list of packages.
- Python 3.9
- Mozilla Firefox 91.5
- Thunderbird 91.5
- KDE Framework 5.87
- KDE Plasma 5.23.5
- Xfce 4.16
Read the package list here if you wish to read the entire changelog.
Download and Install
You can download the .ISO files (around ~3 GB+) from the below link. If you want to get it via mirrors, visit this page.
Once downloaded, you can start installing Slackware via its interactive terminal-based LIVE medium.
Well, there you have it—an official Slackware 15.0 release with major package upgrades. I am sure you prefer Slackware over other Linux because of its unique way of handling packages, release-cadence and nature of systemd-free. We thank the developer for keeping the lights on the Slackware on behalf of the entire community. Here’s to the next release.