Kongoni GNU/Linux 1.12.2 alpha released
South Africa’s newest GNU/Linux distribution, Kongoni, yesterday released its first alpha release for the upcoming 1.12.2 release. Kongoni – the Shona word for Gnu – is a desktop-focused distribution with significant inspiration from BSD-Unix systems. Codenamed Sophocles, Kongoni 1.12.2 is based on Slackware 12.2 with the latest upstream patches and also features KDE 4.2.2 as well as the latest stable releases of most common desktop applications such as OpenOffice.org.
The BSD inspiration means that Kongoni does not provide add-on software as binary packages but rather as ports. The system includes an automated tool that fetches the source code for requested programs and their dependencies then compiles it locally and builds a package which gets installed.
This release includes the first versions of several kongoni specific tools including P.I.G (Ports Installation GUI) which provides a graphical tool for installing, managing and even creating software ports and K.I.S.S (Kongoni Instant Setup System) which provides a simple and highly extensible interface for common configuration tasks. Lead developer AJ Venter says that the installer includes several notable improvements, making it “not only easier to use but also more stable and flexible with support added for installing on ReiserFS file-systems.” He says that ext4 support is planned for a future release).
Kongoni 1.12.2 alpha also includes extensive interface and theme improvements. “Our arts-team has been hard at work and Sophocles is now completely themed with our African sunsets colour-schemes and associated wallpapers and other artwork,” says Venter.
“This release is still at alpha status and not ready for production use, but it should be adequate for anybody to test and play with, we do expect there to be bugs and would like to put out a request to those who try it to keep an eye out and report bugs they find on our forums at http://www.kongoni.co.za so that we can fix them in the next release.”
Users already using the Aristole baseline release made available in February can upgrade to Sophocles using the upgrade how to.
Other users can download an ISO image from the Kongoni website.