Release notes for Puppy Linux version 2.16Another wonderful new Puppy! The 'standard' release is puppy-2.16-seamonkey-fulldrivers.iso live-CD and is 89.9MB. There is a massive list of new features, which is incredible considering that we have only incremented the version number from 2.14 to 2.16 (with the 2.15 Community Edition in between).
Release notes, in no particular order:
- Puppy now has a GUI SFS Boot Manager
to manage loading of "SFS" modules (these are "combo packs" of
applications that you can load at bootup, or not, without actually
installing them). An example is our "devx" module that adds everything
needed for C/C++/FreeBasic programming and compiling. Another example
is our OpenOffice SFS module -- when loaded, icons will automatically
appear on the desktop and entries in the menu -- or not if not loaded.
This is truly a lovely feature. Read more Read more Read more
- Dual support for both Unionfs and Aufs. Aufs has a number of technical advantages. Read more Read more
- We now have true flushing of RAM to the "pup_save" file when booted from Flash memory. It is Aufs that has allowed this. In a nutshell, this feature means that you are less likely to run out of RAM space. Read more
- Jcoder24 has done something wonderful! He has created pdfprinter_pdq, which enhances the PDQ printing
system with print-to-PDF-file. This has many uses, one of which is any
application can now output a PDF file, another is that if you can't
print from Puppy then you can create a PDF file and print elsewhere. Read more
- Dougal has greatly enhanced our "swiss army knife" Puppy Universal Installer. Read more
- Rarsa has upgraded his Mini-volume applet (the thing you see in the taskbar for controlling volume) to version 0.7. Read more
- Nathan has updated his Grafburn CD/DVD burner application to 0.10.1. Read more
- Dougal and Jesse have greatly enhanced our puppyserialdetect utility. Before it only detected serial modems and mice, now it detects USB and PS/2 mice and keyboards. Read more
- Puppy had PBrename batch file renamer written by plinej. He has rewritten it and it is now PRename (v0.4). Read more
- Dougal has greatly updated the Xorg Video Wizard, including support for a Synaptics touchpad. Read more Read more
- Nathan has redesigned the user interface of JwmConfig ("JWM configuration" in the "Desktop" menu). Read more
- A new game for Puppy! Lvds discovered SheepPool, now in the 'standard' live-CD. Read more
- NTFS support and general partition management improved. A swag of packages have been upgraded, namely FUSE, ntfs-3g, ntfsprogs, parted and Gparted. Read more
- A small but important point for those using a serial mouse. Although we have an improved puppyserialdetect (see above), serial mouse detection is still iffy. Manual selection inside the Xorg Wizard or the Mouse Wizard will now override auto-detection.
- Zigbert has done a lot of work optimising the GTK2 Stardust theme and creating icons for it. This is the basis of the new "stark minimalistic look" of the desktop in Puppy 2.16. Read more
- The taskbar in the JWM window manager now has Glipper to manage the clipboard and selections. Read more
- As requested, booting from Flash drive, there is now a "Save" icon on the desktop. Note also the above announcement of true flushing of RAM when saving.
- I have totally rewritten some scripts that handle saving to Flash (savepuppyd, snapmergepuppy), to take advantage of the new features of Aufs, plus introduce some enhancements. Read more
- Puppy has gone a bit more mainstream, with support for the /etc/init.d and /etc/profile.d directories. The former is for services that can be started at bootup, stopped at shutdown. The latter is for configuration scripts for particular packages and these will run at bootup -- for example to set environment variables. Read more
- Laurent has made some small incremental improvements to the Firewall Wizard and the Internet Connection Wizard. Read more
- Dougal and I have improved Pmount, the Puppy Drive Mounter GUI application. Read more
- Lots of other packages updated (authors names in brackets): Geany v0.10.2, Firelog v1.2.1 (read more), transmission_gtk v0.6.1-r518 (plinej), pupctorrent v0.7 (plinej), soxgui v0.9 (plinej), remotedesktopclient v2.15-2 (rarsa), pvolume_mixer v0.3 (rarsa), pbcdripper v2.5 (plinej), pawdioconverter v0.6 (plinej) and Network Wizard v2.15-1 (rarsa). Read more
- Yet more: Pbackup v2.0.1 (zigbert), Pfind v1.2 (zigbert) and Pupdvdtool v0.8 (plinej). Read more
- The utilities losetup, readlink and ls have been upgraded from Busybox to full versions. New utilities rev and lsof added.
- More programming choices: Puppy now has the murgaLua (John Murga) runtime in the live-CD, and FreeBasic, murgaLua and the GTK2 GUI-builder Glade tools in the "devx" SFS module (read more). GTkdialog is now at version 0.7.18 (read more). GINS has been greatly improved by Brad and Mark (read more).
needs a special mention. This is a super-simple way to provide GTK2 GUIs of
any degree of sophistication using Glade, for any language (script or
compiled). The executable is a tiny 12KB. Mark has even integrated GINS into PuppyBasic and renamed it
as GinsBasic (still under development, not yet in Puppy). Read more
- Puppy now supports an encrypted "pup_save" file, developed by Kirk. At first shutdown
you are asked if you want to encrypt your "pup_save" personal data
file, and are offered "heavy" or "light" encryption. This is still
experimental. Read more
- There has been major rewriting of the 'init' script in the
"initial ramdisk". Dougal has contributed some enhancements and I have
worked on drive scanning. Read more
- Tempestuous has got together extra wireless driver firmware. Read more
- The Puppy Unleashed system can now optionally build a cpio archive for the
"initial ramdisk" rather than an actual ramdisk with ext2 filesystem.
This has some technical advantages, including works better in low-RAM
systems. Read more Note, the 'standard' 2.16 is still using a ramdisk. Read more
- Last but not least, Puppy now supports a "humongous initrd.gz"
file. The 'pup_216.sfs' and 'zdrv_216.sfs' files may be built inside
the 'initrd.gz' file, so the entire Puppy is just two files, 'vmlinuz'
and 'initrd.gz' -- which is convenient for network booting. The whole
thing loads into RAM though, so the thin station (or whatever) needs at
least 256M. A humongous initrd.gz file can be found on the ibiblio
download site. Read more Read more
Upgrading from earlier version of Puppy. No problem. If you run Puppy from live-CD, just boot the new CD and Puppy will automatically perform any required upgrading of your personal storage file/partition (usually pup_save.2fs file).
For USB or frugal-hd installations, just copy the latest files (vmlinuz, initrd.gz, pup_216.sfs and zdrv_216.sfs) to the USB or hd boot media.
If you have already tested an earlier experimental, alpha or beta of v2.16, it is extremely important that you get rid of any old pup_216.sfs and zdrv_216.sfs files that may be found alongside the "pup_save" file on the hard drive (in /mnt/home). I strongly recommend that you boot an old version of Puppy or a different operating system to do this -- or, you can boot the new CD with the boot parameter "puppy pfix=ram". After you have removed these old files, boot Puppy 2.16 live-CD and type the boot parameter "puppy pfix=clean" , so that a proper upgrade of the latest version will occur. If you want to be extra cautious, make a backup of the pup_save.2fs file before upgrading!
My Developer News Blog. If
you want more details about all of the above, and learn day by day how
it all unfolded, at a very personal level, then please go here:
History. To get a better sense of how Puppy has evolved, it is helpful to read the release notes for earlier versions.
Puppy v2.14: http://www.puppylinux.com/download/release-2.14.htm
Puppy v2.13: http://www.puppylinux.com/download/release-2.13.htm
Puppy v2.12: http://www.puppylinux.com/download/release-2.12.htm
Puppy v2.11: http://www.puppylinux.com/download/release-2.11.htm
Barry Kauler and the Puppy Team