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OE recompile, SM 2.49.1, kernel 4.14.1

November 23, 2017 — BarryK

I mentioned recently that some library packages compiled in OpenEmbedded were too old. I ended up only bumping 'icu', 'nss' and 'nspr', to versions 58.2, 3.31.1 and 4.16. Then did a complete rebuild in OE.

Built Pyro64 0.5.2, and compiled SeaMonkey 2.49.1, this time using the system icu, nss and nspr, making the package considerably smaller. The PET is here:

I also compiled the 4.14.1 kernel, and was most surprised when "make modules_install" did not create /lib/firmware. A quick google, and it seems the firmware is no longer in the kernel source tree.

I didn't know how to respond to this situation, but decided to take the /lib/firmware from the compile of kernel 4.13.11, for inclusion in the kernel PET. The PET is here:

The source, patches, and build scripts are here:

Tags: oe, quirky

Plans for next Quirky Pyro64

November 18, 2017 — BarryK

I have been away. Here is a photo:


While on holiday I couldn't get into the mood of doing any Linux development, but intend now to start putting together the next Pyro64. The current release is 0.5.

0.5 has the latest LibreOffice, that I compiled in Pyro64, and I had to use some inbuilt libs as some packages compiled in OpenEmbedded were too old. Had the same problem with latest SeaMonkey. For example, had to use SM's inbuilt icu, as the system package was too old.

The problem with this is that it makes the distribution bigger. So, I plan to do a recompile in OE, and bump the versions of some packages.

Another thing, plan to compile some extra perl modules in OE, as previously only had the base perl package. It seems that pplog, and probably some other apps, need extra perl modules. I think that I have figured out the extra modules needed.

Then, will build a new Quirky Pyro64, and compile the latest LibreOffice and SeaMonkey.

Also plan to upgrade the Linux kernel to 4.14.x, as this is LTS, supported for six years. Which is great.

So hopefully then I will build a Pyro64 which will also be a LTS. Might release it as version 0.6.

I previously mentioned creating a GUI wrapper for shellCMS and put into Pyro64 as a replacement for pplog personal blog. Haven't got very far with that.

Then there's Easy OS. Not forgotten, an idea is percolating.

Another photo:


Tags: oe, quirky

SeaMonkey 2.49.1 compiled in Pyro64

November 10, 2017 — BarryK

I have compiled SeaMonkey 2.49.1 for the next release of Pyro64.

It is a bit bigger, the PET package is up from 44MB to 51MB. Mostly this is because I was unable to link against the system 'nss' and 'icu' packages, and had to use SM's inbuilt packages.

nss and icu compiled in OE are too old. SM requires nss >= 3.28.6 and icu >= 58.1

Sometime in the future, I intend to do a recompile in OE with these later packages.

Tags: quirky

Xcalc crash fixed

November 06, 2017 — BarryK

In both Pyro32 and Pyro64 (versions 0.5), the xlib-based calculator xcalc crashes on startup, and also brings down Xorg.

When this was reported on the forum, I tested xcalc ...and it worked!

Later, in a pristine first-bootup of Pyro32 0.5, tried xcalc again, this time it did crash, as did Xorg. So, I tried in a terminal and got this message:

# xcalc -h
Warning: Cannot convert string "calculator" to type Pixmap

A bit of research, found that xcalc looks for file /usr/include/X11/bitmaps/calculator, which doesn't exist. In fact, /usr/include doesn't exist, and it may be the missing folders that brings down Xorg.

The missing file is in package "xbitmaps", which is in the "devx" PET. So, of course, it clicked in my mind. When xcalc did work for me, devx PET was installed.

Solution, click the "install" icon on the desktop to run the Package Manager, do a search for "xbitmaps" -- it is in the "oe-pyro" package. Install it, xcalc will then work.

Changing the subject. yesterday's upload of Pyro32 0.5 was about 2GB, the day before I uploaded all of the "oe-pyro" binary packages which was about 1GB -- that is 3GB, half of my $40 6GB monthly prepaid allowance!
I'm with Optus, might change over to Vodafone as they are offering 14GB for the same price. This is for my mobile phone, that is how I access the internet, phone as a wi-fi hot-spot. The downside with Vodafone is they don't have quite the same 3G/4G coverage as Optus.

Anyway, thanks again for the donations, it is covering this expenditure!

Tags: quirky

Quirky Pyro32 version 0.5 released

November 06, 2017 — BarryK

It has been a long time since I have built a 32-bit distro!

Release notes:



Minimum CPU requirement is Pentium-Pro (i686). Minimum RAM -- don't know, probably 1GB. For PCs with BIOS-firmware, not for post-2012 UEFI-firmware PCs. Will only recognise a maximum of 4GB RAM. The Linux kernel will recognise multi-core CPUs.

Tags: quirky

woofQ 20171029 tarball uploaded

October 29, 2017 — BarryK

The latest woofQ, as used to build Quirky Pyro64 0.5, is uploaded here:

Download, expand, and use like any other Woof*. You will need to have the "devx" pet/sfs installed in your pup/quirky/easy/fatdog.

Tags: quirky

Quirky Pyro64 0.5 released

October 29, 2017 — BarryK

This is the second alpha release of Quirky built from binary packages compiled in OpenEmbedded. Codenamed "Pyro", as that is the version of OpenEmbedded used for the build.


Primary download host is

There are three choices to download, a live-CD ISO file, an 8GB image for a USB-stick, or a raw image that can be written to a drive or partition by means of the provided scripts.

I recommend the 8GB USB-stick image if you have a PC with UEFI-firmware, as I have manually installed rEFInd in it, which gives a nice menu, and implements dual-booting.

This link explains how to write a USB-drive-image-file to a USB-drive. It is written for Easy OS, but applies equally to Quirky:

Then, there is a tutorial that explains how to get your PC to boot from an external USB-drive:

There is a tutorial that explains about rEFInd and how it can implement dual-booting with Windows (etc.). Though it was written as a guide to installing Easy OS to the internal drive, the part about eEFInd applies equally well to booting off a USB-stick:

Then there is the live-CD ISO file, for which you will need a cd-burner-app.

The third option is more for the Linux expert, who understands the commandline -- download pyro64-0.5.usfs.xz. Notice that it is the smallest download, at only 275MB. This is because it is xz-compressed.

In the case of downloading pyro64-0.5.usfs.xz, also download the three scripts. Have a look at them, so you can see what they do, and also check that the Linux distro you are running has everything that the script will require. The script 4install-quirky-to-drive-mbr-esp will write the .usfs.xz file to any USB-stick, any size (though it must be at least 4GB, 8GB or more preferred).

The USB-stick written-to by 4install-quirky-to-drive-mbr-esp will be bootable on old BIOS-firmware as well as new UEFI-firmware PCs. It uses syslinux, but note that I intend to modify the script in the future, to use rEFInd for the UEFI booting (and keep syslinux for BIOS booting).


If you want the "devx" PET, it is available via the PKGget Package Manager, or directly here (690MB):

...yes, rather large. That is due to included static libs. I may filter those out next time.


Testing 0.5, I have only encountered one small bug so far. The initial "jumping off page" that comes up in the browser, has incorrect URLs.


The video is usually an area where problems arise. In the case of Intel video, the default is sna video acceleration. However, the Intel xorg driver was compiled with support for uxa acceleration, which is the older method. If you have problems, such as tearing on the screen, try uxa,

Here are instructions how to switch to uxa:

32-bit UEFI

The 8GB stick image has boot capability for both 32-bit and 64-bit UEFI PCs, however the 32-bit is untested, an "I wonder if this will work" experiment.


There is a thread on the Puppy Forum for Pyro64 feedback:

Have fun!

Tags: quirky

Quirky Pyro64 0.5 coming soon

October 27, 2017 — BarryK

Advance notice, I plan to upload Quirky Pyro64 0.5 in a couple of days. This is Quirky Linux built from packages compiled from source in OpenEmbedded.

Right now, have started a recompile from scratch in OE, then tomorrow should be able to import the binary packages to woofQ, then build Pyro64 0.5.

I intend to upload all of the binary packages, and the source packages, to ibiblio. The binary packages are about 1.2GB, and uploading this lot is not something that I want to do that often, as my only Internet access is via my mobile phone.

I don't have a landline phone, just a mobile. I am on prepaid, not a plan, and pay AU$40 for 6GB, so that's my allocation per month, which is pitiful. I can top it up within a month, AU$10 for 1GB.

These Internet expenses add up, and I am thinking of bringing back a PayPal donate button. I had one years ago, and enough donations trickled in to pay the Internet costs. But that was when I was leading the Puppy Linux project.

Well, I will think about whether to put up a donate button or not. Actually, what prompted me to think about this, was recently there have been a couple of enquiries from people who wanted to donate to my work.


Note, 0.5 will have Samba, that I have compiled in a running Pyro64, not in OE, so it is a PET package. The Samba in OE wants kerberus dependency, which I did not want, so experimented with configuration options, for the smallest build, and using the inbuilt heimdal instead of kerberus.

Even so, my PET is 11MB, whereas 01micko got his samba PET down to about 8MB -- though he has an older version.

I hope that I haven't configured-out too much functionality, and that it works OK. Well, testers will be welcome when 0.5 comes out.

For the record, here are my configure options:

# ./configure --prefix=/usr --localstatedir=/var --sysconfdir=/etc --libdir=/usr/lib --enable-fhs --includedir=/usr/include --bindir=/usr/bin --sbindir=/usr/sbin --with-configdir=/etc/samba --with-piddir=/var/run --with-privatedir=/etc/samba/private --with-privatelibdir=/usr/lib --with-modulesdir=/usr/lib --with-lockdir=/var/cache/samba --with-logfilebase=/var/log/samba --enable-cups --with-acl-support --with-automount --with-quotas --with-syslog --without-winbind --with-ldap --without-pam --without-ads --libexecdir=/usr/libexec --datadir=/usr/share --without-dmapi --without-fam --without-lttng --without-systemd --disable-avahi --enable-gnutls --without-sendfile-support --nopyc --nopyo --extra-python=/usr/bin/python3 --without-ad-dc --without-ntvfs-fileserver

...if you know something about configuring Samba, what do you think? Note that Pyro64 has all 64-bit libs in /lib and /usr/lib, with /lib64 and /usr/lib64 being symlinks.

Feedback can go here. This is where 0.5 will be announced:

Tags: oe, quirky