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Linux, Create your own OS??

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posted on Sep, 25 2014 @ 02:05 AM
Okay, so I have always been intrigued by the concept of linux. It is one of those things that I have admired from distance. I checked a couple of videos out and I keep hearing everyone throw around the concept "create your own OS", but I the vids really don't go into to too much detail.

Can anyone explain how creating your own OS would be cool. What options and access do you have that you are limited to having in the standards.

Sorry if this is in the wrong place.
edit on 25-9-2014 by AKINOFTHEFIRSSTARS because: addition

posted on Sep, 25 2014 @ 02:43 AM

Hey there

Linux has been an exceptional tool for me to vastly expand from, and that began in the mid 90's when I really got into it enough to make it useful and not just for fun.

I was given the opportunity then to use it for web services for a family business so that those services did not include the cost with farming out those things to expensive hosting companies. I had already been installing and configuring different Linux versions before that, and running mock, but functioning services like Sendmail server and BIND for DNS, (which requires some static IP's), but I worked for a local ISP later on so I had 64 static IP's to use and learn with.

But before I get off track, since there are so many useful and interesting things you can do with Linux, the customization of each free distribution is something that has been very outspoken on, so right away I was installing customized kernels which is mostly just tailoring the software to utilize the hardware on the system to make it run faster and with less bulk or unneeded junk taking up CPU usage. All Linux's have configuration files and you can download easily the programs to compile programs from source code, or more immediately the Kernel, and the configuration files for compiling server daemons can also be easily found and used to make everything customized.

You just have to get your feet wet with it and then the more you do, the more you learn to do much more and take it further, but to put out your own Distro would take a little more time, maybe a lot more. Most Distros that people do put out are done to make them more useful to certain groups, or genres in the industries, and to introduce better ways of managing services by improving interfaces and organizing popular tools and applications to better suit or serve different niches, and they do so to make money, (in most cases), which is what drives the entire industry to begin with.

Gentoo Linux was one I remember liking because it was set up to purposefully force users to customize it and make it special for each user, and it is a great learning tool for that reason.

I have been out and away from all that for awhile and doing other work, but maybe it is time to check it out again.

Making your own Distro would be a busy undertaking, but all it really is rewriting a lot things or "reorganizing" the tools within it to conform a way that you might envision being an improvement for niche users, (CNC workstations for example) or something, whatever it is that makes something out there love you enough to send you their money, because you helped them run their business better by how your Linux Distro gives them an edge up because of the advantages in data management you gave them in your improved or custom tailored Linux distribution...

This is some of what I have observed happening with Linux, and I'm sure there is many other reasons to think about it...


posted on Sep, 25 2014 @ 02:50 AM
You customise linux really, not build your own, unless you are a dedicated programmer with a lot of experience with linux..

Why would you want to go through the tedious and problematic process of writing your own version?

there are bundles out there, only a handful are actually any good. And if they can distribute them, as awkward and quirky as they are, with no experience you wont have something you can run much on.

posted on Sep, 25 2014 @ 02:51 AM

All the common OS's are filled with maggots, also known as spyware.

And even linux, is way too bloated. The Linux scheduler is a monster, that is far bigger and takes more time, than it needs to be. And the abilty to have Linux, or similar OS's, as a desktop ... is very limited. Today, it's possible because the CPU's are fast, and memory is in the gigabytes.

But, since you actually had to ask the question. The odds are, creating your own OS is far beyond you. Unless you think that installing Linux, is equivalent to creating your own OS. It isn't. You have the ability, to adjust it to your own needs ... but it still ain't your OS. And even if you have the source, it's way to big and way to obscure for you to identify any true anomalies.

posted on Sep, 25 2014 @ 02:53 AM

Linux is the OS and is built onto the Linux kernel; you can build a custom distro. The distro is the kernel and any packages you wish to add to it to make the OS / distro that fits your needs. From tiny distros 50mb to ones that do everything, like many of the major distros. I suggest you check out distrowatch if you haven't already. They list 100+ distros for many purposes from clustering computers, stand alone firewall wall distros, forensics and security testing distros, myth tv and the list goes on.

I hope that helps.

edit on 25-9-2014 by AlaskanDad because: linked DW

edit on 25-9-2014 by AlaskanDad because: sp

posted on Sep, 25 2014 @ 02:57 AM
Nothing wrong with Linux, if you've got a solid distro, and what you need to run is supported on Linux.

I've written a handful of Linux drivers for WindRiver. When we first started out pretty much all the sw I ran was Unix based, generally Solaris, and I didn't really want to switch to Windows. Eventually all the sw migrated to Wintel and now I don't have any huge urge to go back to *-ix.

An OS is an OS. I sort of view it as, if I have to have a particular piece of sw, what does it run on natively? If it's Unix of some sort, then I'll dust off my Unix brain cells. If not, not.

Most users shouldn't be diddling around in the kernel, though, unless you're moderately apt, or you just like starting over.

posted on Sep, 25 2014 @ 03:54 AM

FYI...If you're really into experimenting look here

Reactos is a free open source operating system based on the best design principles found in the Windows NT Written completely from scratch.

posted on Sep, 25 2014 @ 05:17 AM

originally posted by: sn0rch
You customise linux really, not build your own, unless you are a dedicated programmer with a lot of experience with linux..
Yes they call it Linux From Scratch, but I think your description is more accurate since even if you compile the source code yourself, you haven't written the source code, it was written by someone else.

Welcome to Linux From Scratch!

Linux From Scratch (LFS) is a project that provides you with step-by-step instructions for building your own custom Linux system, entirely from source code.

Currently, the Linux From Scratch organization consists of the following subprojects:

LFS :: Linux From Scratch is the main book, the base from which all other projects are derived.
BLFS :: Beyond Linux From Scratch helps you extend your finished LFS installation into a more customized and usable system.
ALFS :: Automated Linux From Scratch provides tools for automating and managing LFS and BLFS builds.
The idea is appealing to some, who don't want a bloated OS with lots of features they will never use.

So you start with LFS, then only add the things you want/need.

One advantage of this approach is that you also avoid the security risks that come with extra features you don't need. This was a big problem with Windows, where most of the unnecessary features could be disabled by advanced users if they know how, but novice users didn't know how and end up with security risks resulting from features they never use. I don't know enough about the various Linux distros to say if the extra features generally come enabled or disabled by default, but the latter would be more secure.

This is true for not just operating systems but also applications. Simpler applications with less features pose fewer security risks in many cases.

There is also the potential advantage of less memory and CPU usage from only adding the features you really need, though as already mentioned, CPU power and memory are so abundant lately that they can cope with bloat pretty well. I still don't like bloat though.

posted on Sep, 25 2014 @ 05:23 AM

originally posted by: Arbitrageur

One advantage of this approach is that you also avoid the security risks that come with extra features you don't need.

As long as you don't think having the source code also makes you safer. It doesn't. Verbum sapienti.

posted on Sep, 25 2014 @ 06:09 AM
I have created a couple of "custom" distros based on SuSE, you can do that from here:

posted on Sep, 25 2014 @ 06:39 AM
Puppy linux is small, good and is aimed at windows people who want to run linux without too much to do. Things pretty much configure themselves in all distros now. As always there are lots of versions and lots of flavours of Puppy, but it started off being a very small distro to run on old hardware with little memory and that it does well. The old hardware has got newer so there are more drivers for newer peripherals and it is pretty fast and lean too.

posted on Sep, 25 2014 @ 10:16 AM

originally posted by: Bedlam
As long as you don't think having the source code also makes you safer. It doesn't. Verbum sapienti.
My post didn't address that concept, but since you brought it up, compiling yourself from source code doesn't make it safe, but it does make one less avenue for insertion of malware unless you do a careful check of the compiled source. So if for example, the software source code didn't have a back door, and you compiled it, then your compiled version would also not have a back door.

In an alternate scenario, where the source code doesn't have a back door, some adversary could compile a version with a back door added and distribute it. If you downloaded this version, then yes it would be less safe than had you compiled it from source code yourself.

However this comparison doesn't address at all if the source has undesirable functions to begin with, which is probably what you're referring to. In that case compiling it yourself does nothing to help you against this. Even if you know how to read source code, it can be very lengthy and time consuming, and you might overlook some subtle lines of code that could be undesirable.

The type of security I was talking about might be for example the functions that allow running a web server. If the majority of people don't run a web server then they are at risk by installing operating systems that have these web server related functions enabled by default. Better to install a simpler distro that doesn't even have the ability to run a web server and the associated risks that accompany it, if you never plan to run a web server. This would be one advantage of the "build your own OS" idea.

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