Donate to the Black Lab Linux Project

When you donate to the Black Lab Linux Project it helps us with many things:

Domain renewals
Aging equipment replacement

How much should you donate? Any amount you wish. No matter how large or small it goes to the project. We also take hardware donations as well. Contact for details. We thank you for your support.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Black Lab Linux 7.6.1 Released

PC / Opensystems LLC is pleased to announce the release of Black Lab Linux 7.6.1, an interim security, core kernel and application update release, featuring the following changes :

  • Kernel 4.2.0-36 
  • Google Chrome 50 
  • Ice site-specific-browser 
  • Web App creator 
  • LibreOffice 5.3 
  • Aptik 
  •  Timeshift 
  • Skippy XD 
  • Thunderbird Mail Suite 
Security Features
  • Automount disabled by default
  • Industrial strength firewall
  • Gnome Disk Utiliy - offering the highest possible level of security on re-purposed / decommissioned drives. 
You can download Black Lab Linux 7.6.1, both 64 bit and 32 bit from Ibiblio

The development team shipped this release with a Deskbar style panel, as shown, but a bottom-centered horizontal panel is always an option

As always Black Lab Linux 7.6.1 has tons of customization options that you the user can choose from.

Black Lab Linux 7.6.1 utilizes the lightning fast XFCE desktop and being coupled with the best of breed Linux applications as well as utilizing web applications it really is the best distribution for the new user.  Give it a try.

Black Lab Summer Fundraiser

Right now we are having the Black Lab summer fundraiser.  With your support it allows us to continue development of the free and open source release as well as:

Pay for domain registration
Replace aging equipment
Pay for advertising
Pay developers

Our goal for the year is $5,000.00 USD.  Any amount that you can donate is appreciated.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Black Lab NetOS and Black Lab Cloudbook Released

Today PC / Opensystems LLC is pleased to announce the release of Black Lab NetOS. This new and web-centric version differs from our main distribution in that its primary applications all point to the cloud, and this focus makes NetOS the perfect Chromebook replacement. Unlike ChromeOS, any and all applications from the Ubuntu repositories are readily available and installable locally on your system : LibreOffice, The GIMP, Steam, Banshee, developer tools (Geany), IDE’s (Eclipse, Android SDK) for use on the system. Develop and compile Android apps; participate in application development using familiar tools instead of being hamstrung by limited web-based editors.
NetOS can be installed on a wide range of representative 64 bit consumer PCs (Dell, HP, Lenovo) as well as a Chromebook if you’re inclined to free yourself from its limitations. And as of today, PC/ Opensystems is announcing the Cloudbook, a dedicated PC hardware to run Black Lab NetOS exclusively.

Black Lab NetOS includes :

Local apps:

XFCE 4.12
Google Chrome

Web apps :

Google Docs / Drive / Photos / Hangouts / Play Music
Microsoft Office Online
Facebook Messenger

Black Lab NetOS can be managed through the Chrome Management Console.

For those of you that want to download and use Black Lab NetOS on generic PC hardware you can download it here:

Interested in the Black Lab Cloudbook? It’s an optimized ACER laptop, designed with the cloud in mind with the following system configuration:

Color: Electric Blue / Black
Processor : Intel Celeron N3050 1.6 GHz
Memory : 2GB of DDR3L Onboard Memory
Internal Storage : 32 GB SSD
Screen : 11.6-Inch HD Screen,
Graphics : Intel HD Graphics,
8-hour battery

The Black Lab Cloudbook is available for purchase for $250.00 USD. For education and business facilities we can also arrange multiple shipments with at least 15 days advance notice.

Black Lab Cloudbook
OS Options
Order Notes

We have sat down with Roberto Dohnert to find out the differences between NetOS and ChromeOS.

Q) Why is NetOS important? What segment of the market does it serve?

A) NetOS is important because it serves the business, law enforcement and educational facilities that have come to rely on web-based applications and private/public clouds. It also offers the security and redundancy of a desktop PC, so you can also run local applications and store data locally.

Q) Chromebooks offer hard drives and storage devices. How does Black Lab NetOS enhance security and protect data?

A) Very simple. ChromeOS primarily stores data on the cloud through Google Drive. In essence the cloud is just someone else’s computer. The primary storage of Chromebooks uses that drive as a giant cache and as you add data, music, pictures etc, old data that hasn’t been accessed for awhile is deleted. First-come, first-serve The drive assumes that older data is no longer relevant. Now as a business owner, I want some data retained locally and securely, for as long as I choose : financial spreadsheets, internal memos and business plans. Storing this type of data on Google’s cloud runs the risk of the next big data breach exposing sensitive company data, available on the cloud for the world to see. Now you have heard people say “Well it’s Google’s cloud, a data breach of that type just isn’t possible.” Tell that to Target, tell that to Home Depot, tell that to any company that has suffered this kind of exposure. No one thinks it will ever happen to their provider. Do you think your clients or customers want their data out there for public consumption? I don’t think so. Do education facilities want their students’ personal information leaked to the public? Likewise. Oops is unacceptable in these circumstances. When you save data to Google’s cloud or Microsoft’s cloud it is no longer strictly your data. There are (usually) unread disclaimers involved in using these public clouds, and once uploaded, that data belongs to Google, Microsoft or whomever and it essentially becomes public. NetOS gives you localized storage that will not be overwritten and allows robust and secure data transmission - only YOU see your data.

Q) How does this effect law enforcement?

A) Well LEO’s rely on notes and reports to do their jobs and to make sure that the criminals and guilty parties wind up where they need to be. Save that kind of data on a Chromebook you take that chance of it being overwritten;save it to the cloud rather than your own departments, and you lose chain of custody. It then becomes a question of reliability and credibility. When saved to the cloud, can you say without a reasonable doubt that nobody has tampered with that data? No. You can’t.

Q) Some people will claim that all these statements are bitterness, from a relic of the age of client/server computing, which is coming to an end. How do you respond to the people saying that “This guy is crazy, he’s just trying to preserve old-school ways of thinking, a legacy method and mindset”?

A) Chromebooks are client/server based, in exactly the same way as that old technology. Back in the day, you accessed apps and data through a mainframe, and the resulting data was manipulated through an attached terminal Same difference here. Only difference being that web apps are more robust, point-and-click optimized and prettier than terminal output. And because of faster broadband, you aren’t confined to the vicinity of mainframe’s location. Client/server isn’t dead at all; it’s just taken on a different form and has become more convenient. I said in 2006 that as webapps became more prevalent and as connection speeds improved, we would see distinctions blur and what was local become web-oriented. But in the end, you can’t make a webapp as robust as you can a localized one – only so much data can be pushed through that pipe before it starts springing leaks.

Q) Hows does NetOS differ from ChromeOS?

A) You get actual localized storage and you get a robustness of the appliance and the versatility of a desktop computer, running apps that you created in your organization, or any other Linux desktop software. NetOS can also serve as a development platform;this can’t be done on a Chromebook. Unless you install Ubuntu or connect to a container. Or install NetOS.

Q) How does NetOS save businesses, education facilities and other customers money?

A) You can install it on a variety of repurposed hardware (even Chromebooks). ChromeOS only comes preinstalled on its own specific platform. You get the same management facilities on NetOS that you have on ChromeOS, without the expense of the proprietary Google platform and hardware.

Q) What are the system requirements for NetOS?

A) 1 GB or more of RAM, 1 GhZ 64-bit capable processor, 10 GB of storage space. Obviously, for web apps, an active internet connection. And the usual mouse and keyboard

Q) Hows does NetOS differ from Black Lab Linux and Black Lab Enterprise Linux?

A) NetOS is built primarily for those who want to use web-based applications. That is its primary purpose. Black Lab Enterprise Linux allows you that same great web application usability as well as specific roles builtin : development, accounting, desktop processing, clustering facilities and more advanced features. You can also manage the web side of things through the Chrome Management Console and Webmin for the local system administration.

Q) When will NetOS and the Cloudbook be available?

A) Today. Immediately, if not sooner.

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Summer Fundraiser

Today we launch our Summer fundraiser for the Black Lab Linux Project. Our goal to keep the distribution afloat and continue to provide a free version. Our goal is $5,000 USD. What we do with raised funds is pay for advertising, purchase new hardware to replace aging and broken machines, pay for domain registrations and to pay contributors. If you would like to donate hardware as long as its not over 5 years old you can contact me at You can donate using PayPal.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Black Lab Linux 7.6 Released

Today we are releasing Black Lab Linux 7.6.  Black Lab Linux 7.6 is the latest release of our stable 7.x series of OS's.  Black Lab Linux 7.6 is supported long term until April 2019.

Whats New

There are a lot of changes to Black Lab Linux 7.6 some of which include:

Linux Kernel 3.19.0-58
LibreOffice 5.1.2
Firefox 45.0.2
Thunderbird 38.6.0
GNOME Documents
Tracker fast search
HexChat IRC client
XFCE 4.12 Enhancements
Skippy XD Expose style task switcher
Steam Game Client

All security updates until April 18, 2016

System Requirements
  •     512MB RAM (1GB recommended).
  •     8GB of disk space required (15GB recommended).
  •     Graphics card capable of 800×600 resolution.
  •     DVD drive or USB port.
  •    Keyboard and mouse
  •    Touch screen input

Important Notes

Black Lab Linux 64 bit can boot on either UEFI or BIOS devices (we recommend turning off secure-boot if not necessary)

Black Lab Linux 32 bit can boot only on BIOS devices

Some NVIDIA GeForce cards don't work well with the open-source driver provided by the Black Lab Linux kernel. If Black Lab Linux freezes during boot, use the "nomodeset" boot option in grub.

Some Virtual Machine setups will not allow boot into Live mode, if this occurs boot into the direct installer from the boot menu.

Upgrade from 7.0.x

Open a terminal and type the following commands:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get dist-upgrade


You can download Black Lab Linux 7.6 from

Black Lab Linux 7.6 64 bit      md5
Black Lab Linux 7.6 32 bit      md5

Donate and Purchase

 When you donate or purchase installable media from the Black Lab Linux Project it helps us with many things:

Domain renewals
Aging equipment replacement

How much should you donate? Any amount you wish. No matter how large or small it goes to the project. We also take hardware donations as well. Contact for details. You can purchase Black Lab Linux from our webstore.  We thank you for your support.


Saturday, April 23, 2016

Black Lab NET - the ChromeOS killer!

Black Lab Linux has always featured web-centric applications, but BLL-NET is taking this to new extremes of speed and useability...

The ICEssb addon delivers best-of-breed webapp content to the Black Lab desktop with the speed and reliability that its users have come to expect : GMail, Google Drive, Microsoft Office Online and Outlook :

And the ICE addon lets the user add popular sites, like, say....Instagram?

Fill in the fields, let ICE pick the site's favicon, and you're ready to go with a home-cooked webapp. If like me you're lucky enough to live near C.M.B.C., have one with me, or if not, just use Black Lab Net and an Instagram web app to follow Cape May Brewing - enjoy!

The usual set of local applications hasn't been neglected, with a small-but-well-chosen set : VLC (media), Gedit (text editor), Chromium (default browser and the hook for the ICEssb addon). Built on the modular, configurable and ultra-stable Xfce desktop, BLL-NET is ready for action - download it, burn it, take it for a spin! It'll run as well as ChromeOS, minus the Chromebook.

Download it here :


Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Black Lab 8 "Onyx" Alpha 2 is released!

Today, PC / Opensystems LLC is pleased to announce the second alpha release in the upcoming Black Lab 8 "Onyx" series. The team continues to focus on the desktop experience, bringing the same high-performance and rock-solid stability that its users have come to expect from Black Lab Linux.

So what's new with Black Lab Linux 8 “Onyx” Alpha 2? Here are some highlights:

LibreOffice 5.1.
Docker integration.
gpg 2.0.22.
Xfdashboard (GNOME-shell-style interface for the Xfce desktop) included.
Full support for the Xbox One and Xbox One Kinect controllers.
OpenJRE 8.
USB-C is now supported.
Improved Windows Phone, Android based phone and iPhone 6/6S integration.

These are some Issues that have been fixed by the development team :

Macbook hibernation issue - some of our users reported that the laptop required a reboot to wake up from sleep
Screen fragmentation with the Intel HD driver resolved.
Surface Pro 3 touchscreen responsiveness improved.

New supported hardware to run your favorite distro on :

Mac Pro 2015 now supported.
Pixel C supported.

Some things change, the rest stays the same : Onyx Alpha 2 includes the same great application mix that its users depend on :

Download Onyx here!

If you would like to contribute documentation, artwork or code please contact PC / OS at support_at_pc-opensystems_dot_com and we will let you know what areas require contributors;if you prefer to contribute funds to sustain your favorite distro, donate through our homepage

Thank you!

Friday, March 4, 2016

Black Lab Linux 7.0.5 released

Black Lab Linux 7.0.5 has been released. New in this release is:

LibreOffice 5.1
kernel 3.19.51

This being an incremental release all security and application updates up to March 1, 2016 have been applied.  For a full package listing download the Package List .

Issues resolved include the Firefox segmentation faults that many users experienced with 7.0.4, installer crashes and VirtualBox performance issues.

You can download the release from Ibiblio…/7/…/bll-705-x86_64.iso.md5

The Black Lab Linux Project continues to deliver great software due to your support.  Consider donating monetarily or contributing code and packages to the project.

Thank you