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Official On-Demand Parabola GNU/Linux Mirror

I am proud to announce that TechnoGeeks is now an official on-demand package mirror for Parabola GNU/Linux! You can use our mirror by adding the following lines to your /etc/pacman.d/mirrorlist:

# Atlanta, GA, USA
# Responsible: belos
Server = http://parabola.techno-geeks.org/$repo/os/$arch

There was an official announcement made on the Parabola website earlier today. It should also be available in your next pacman-mirrorlist-libre update. I hope that us providing this mirror helps the project and the community in the long term. If you are interested in setting up a mirror for Parabola packages as well, please see the following resources.

Spread the word about free software. We have the right to our freedom!

Entering the World of Freedom

Richard Stallman

This weekend I stumbled across a video posted on http://rt.com/ that made me question everything I believed about modern day computing. Richard Stallman expresses some eye opening views on computing, free software, and the dangers of social networking websites.

Source: Stallman: Facebook IS Mass Surveillance

Free Software

After reading further, I found myself becoming very excited about the ideas of free software (free as in freedom, not as in free beer). I spent quite a bit of time reading up on The GNU Operating System and I am very impressed. I tried out several GNU/Linux distros including Dragora, gNewSense, and the eventual winner Parabola, which is a variant of Arch Linux striving to be purely GNU/Linux-libre. “Linux-libre is a project that aims to publish and maintain modified versions of the Linux kernel that include only free software.” Parabola GNU/Linux-libre is a very clean and pure distro to aide you in your quest to promote and use free software.

The Free Software Foundation
The Free Software Foundation, or FSF, is the not for profit organization that is pushing towards the GNU ideals of free software. According to their website, “The FSF advocates for free software ideals as outlined in the Free Software Definition, works for adoption of free software and free media formats, and organizes activist campaigns against threats to user freedom like Windows 7, Apple’s iPhone and OS X, DRM on ebooks and movies, and software patents.” This is simply amazing!

Recommended Free Software Alternatives

  • Chrome, Chromium, Firefox -> iceweasel, midori, Luakit
  • MS Office, OpenOffice -> Libreoffice
  • Outlook, Thunderbird -> mutt, Evolution, Thunderbird-libre
  • Sun JDK, Sun JRE -> OpenJDK

Necessary Sacrifice

Please understand that in order to take the dive into the world of free software and computing freedom that there are sacrifices involved. There are several software packages that you may rely on every day that you don’t realize are non-free. Making the leap to one of the GNU/Linux pure free distros could come as quite a shock to some. Some of the major software I will miss includes flashplayer, Chromium, and I am sure more to come as I use Parabola this week at work. You have been warned! But keep in mind, the sacrifice is for the greater good. Using and promoting purely free software is the only way to go. The user deserves the freedom. You deserve the freedom. If you want to modify a program to do something random that you want it to do, then you should be able to.

Further Resources

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