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Thursday, March 13, 2014

The new layout and other changes to the Black Lab Linux Project

Hey guys,

I figured I would answer these questions in bulk vs independent responses as to answer any overlapping questions.  If you need clarification on some issues just shoot me a new mail.

First and foremost why the new change?  Isnt it boring?  Will the one panel look differentiate from the uniqueness?

No, it wont.  At least I dont feel it will but there was a logical reason for it.  As many of you know we started the whole migrate from Windows XP to Black Lab Linux.  Well thats been partially successful but one thing that we hear constantly is that the setup is "quirky" "weird" "Strange" which I can understand but this being someones introduction to Linux its easy to get scared away due to Quirky, Strange and Weird.  So the concensus was made, lets make it look more traditional and the power users know how to tweak and theme the desktop.  The thought behind this was not boring vs exciting but the fact I want people to be able to sit down and say, "Ok I know how this works, this works and that works" without introducing any kind of fear or anxiety over having to learn something new.  With Black Lab Linux we let our feature set, application lineup and stability speak for itself.  We will be doing a tutorial on theming the XFCE desktop, so users who want to delve into that type of functionality can.  Plus, we left it up to a community vote and a whopping 84 percent said one panel.

As we market more to the mainstream, do we plan to exit the Linux community like Linspire did?

No, we dont.  I have always wanted a free version of Black Lab Linux to exist, thats for the Linux community.  Now, we hear constantly from people in the Linux community that they will NEVER buy Linux and thats fine with us.  No matter what we always intend for a free release as long as donations keep coming in and as long as the project can sustain itself.  So that depends on the users.

Are we exiting the server market?

No, while we have renewed our push on the desktop, which is what we excel at, we will still do what the customer wants so if they want a Server system they can get that.  With the new Black Lab BriQ and the introduction of Pro systems coming out with Black Lab Linux, and as we make our systems cheaper then I expect more adoption.

32 bit support will continue to be XFCE.

While we wanted to make a 32 bit release of the KDE desktop, too many users have come to us and said that they rely on 32 bit non-PAE kernel, so we will continue down the route until Black Lab Linux 5, which is scheduled for release January 2015 and then we will re-evaluate the need for 32 bit.

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