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EasyOS Dunfell-series 0.91 alpha release

October 14, 2020 — BarryK

Failure to boot, see appendage at end of this post.

The cause of the failure is known, see appendage at end of this post.

EasyOS Buster series, latest is 2.4.1, is built with DEB packages from the Debian Buster 10.x repository, so has the enormous advantage of binary-compatibility with Debian Buster DEBs and packages can be installed from that very large repository. In Easy, that is done via the "petget" icon on the desktop.

Sometime ago, I compiled everything from source, using a port of OpenEmbedded (OE), and used those packages to build EasyOS. That was the Pyro-series, and the 1.0 release was in March 2019.

The last release of the Pyro-series was in December 2019, see blog post:

I considered that to be the End Of Line for the Pyro-series, mostly because the building-block packages such as glibc and gcc were getting rather dated.

Well, recently I got enticed back, have compiled everything using the latest release of OE, named "dunfell". First post, when I decided to go "down the rabbit hole":

Then imported the packages into woofQ and built the first of the new Dunfell-series. This blog post is about the OE "dunfell" tarball:

OE-specific posts:

Yesterday I completely recompiled in OE, without 'pulseaudio', and also removed 'modemmanager'. The "dunfell" tarball, my port of OE with 'meta-quirky' layer, has just been uploaded, the one dated 20201014 (note also the readme file):

WoofQ, the build system for EasyOS, is able to import the compiled packages from OE and build the distro. The latest is dated 20201014, available here (it has readme's inside it):

Now getting onto the main purpose for this post...

EasyOS 0.91 alpha released

This is an alpha-quality release, basically to find out if everything is sane. It is built entirely from packages that I have just yesterday compiled from source. Testers are most welcome to "kick the tyres", "take it for spin", that is, find faults and report them.

If you have an installation of EasyOS, the Buster series, don't attempt to update it to Dunfell 0.91. Instead, treat 0.91 as new installation -- write the image file to a USB stick and boot it. If you don't know how to write an image file to a USB stick, some notes are here:

Download the image file from here: is English only.

If it works 100% for you, then you will be wondering why I have announced it as alpha-quality. I have tried a few things, and everything seems to be working, but as the whole thing is new, one never knows what gremlins are lurking in there.

I haven't even tried Bluetooth yet. Previous build, was using 'pulseaudio', but have recompiled in OE without 'pulseaudio', a pure alsa system, with 'apulse' for any apps that want pulseaudio, and 'bluez-alsa' to support BT audio. But as-yet untested.

You can provide feedback via the "Contact me" link at top of this page, but it is probably preferable to post to the forum, so that others can contribute and share ideas:

Release 0.91 has a small online repository of packages, that you can access via the "petget" icon on the desktop -- all of those compiled in OE -- explore it, and you will find some gems in there, such as VLC media player and Epiphany browser.

However, if you want access to more packages, remember that EasyOS is designed to run applications, even complete distros, in containers. If you click the "sfsget" icon, you can download the EasyOS Buster easy-*.sfs file and run it in a container -- then you will get an icon on the desktop labelled "buster" -- click on it and you will have the Buster desktop, and the Debian repository available via the "petget" icon.

...this in theory though, I haven't actually tested that it works. A brand new system, there could be a gremlin lurking in the container mechanism!

If you are new to EasyOS, you will find it to be the most fun, so different from all those look-alike distros. Really, unique.

One final note: as I am typing this, have just started to upload the binary packages that were compiled in OE, in total, 1GB. Uploading to tonight is extremely slow, so perhaps hold off clicking on the "petget" icon until several hours after this post -- current time in Perth, Western Australia is 10.00pm 14 October (GMT +8.00), which is   7.00am 14 October in Los Angeles, 3.00pm 14 October in London UK.

EDIT 2020-10-15:
Not good! Feedback from five people so far, the USB stick won't boot. One person has reported that it does run as a container.

I have so far been testing on my desktop PC, with Intel i3 CPU, 8th Gen., and it has consistently always booted. After this feedback, I tried the USB-stick on my old Compaq Presario PC and Mele mini-PC, it wouldn't boot on them.

At first I thought that the testers were using a very old 64-bit CPU. OE's "genericx86_64" is set to a Intel Core2 instruction set. However, the very first 64-bit CPUs had what is known as the Nocona instruction set, which has, I think, one-less instruction.

That would have accounted for the failure, but my Compaq has an Intel Core2 and the Mele has a much more recent Intel CPU.

So, you are welcome to try it, and it would be interesting to know if it will boot for you. Anyway, I will track this down and fix it. Expect 0.92 soon!

I have found out why booting is failing. Give me a few days to fix it. That will be version 0.92. Forum discussion here:    

Tags: easy