back to article Devuan Beowulf 3.0 release continues to resist the Debian fork's Grendel – systemd

The Devuan team has released Beowulf 3.0.0, based on Debian Buster, but with the systemd init system - now standard in Debian - removed. The project began in November 2014 as a fork of Debian with an announcement citing "diverging perceptions of the Debian project" after a battle over the adoption of systemd, and promising to …


  1. Peter Galbavy

    The old labrador's getting a bit old and his fur is falling out... so let's buy an elephant!

    systemd - why would I want it to manage DNS, NTP and more? There are perfectly good, previously "out of the box", solutions for them that can be managed by experts in their field without wondering what cute security hole some weenie has dropped into the systemd elephant.

    1. Will Godfrey Silver badge

      This was absolutely the final straw for me. I'd already been trying devuan ASCII out on one machine. Once I heard of this all my other machines got blitted to ASCII, and a couple of them are now confirming Beowulf.

  2. Gene Cash Silver badge

    My problem with systemd

    I just wanted to write a udev script that ran when my camera was plugged into USB, copy the images off it with progress in a window, and exit when the camera was unplugged.

    That didn't seem possible with systemd. Trying to correlate the unplug event to the script running the progress window was something it actively fought.

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: My problem with systemd

      Tell Pottering. He'll probably come up with GeneCashCamerad. Either that or WONT_FIX.

  3. cantankerous swineherd

    managed to install ascii the other day, nice and quick when booting.

  4. Throatwarbler Mangrove Silver badge

    All I want . . .

    . . . is a Linux distro which combines the efficiency of systemd with the beautiful user interface of Windows 10, possibly including the new Snap package manager from Canonical.

    1. Jim-234

      Re: All I want . . .

      If Linux Mint could be based on Devuan especially with the Cinnamon interface and their pretty decent set of fairly up to date apps installed & a decent application store and ease of installation, you would pretty much have it.

      However Mint took a stand against Snap which I think is a good thing:

      You can enable it if you want.

  5. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    Dddly enough I'd just started burning an MX disk, had a look here and found this. You wait ages for a systemd-free Debian 10 and.... Unfortunately Debian, and hence Devuan, never seem to settle on an LTS version of KDE.

    Actually I've been using the testing Beowulf on a Pi for my Nextcloud server for months so that's updated.

    1. jake Silver badge

      "Unfortunately Debian, and hence Devuan, never seem to settle on an LTS version of KDE."

      Have you tried a recent Slackware yet, DrS?

    2. Citizen99

      "Unfortunately Debian, and hence Devuan, never seem to settle on an LTS version of KDE."

      I run Trinity (the fork of KDE3, which does all I need without unnecessary eye-candy fashion changes from year to year) on Devuan, currently Beowolf.

      I also keep Debian available on the workstation just to keep track of it, also running Trinity.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        I stuck with Trinity for a while but started to run into issues with building applications in later releases of Lazarus and wondered if the two weren't getting on. I might give it another try. KDE has followed the usual UI progression from KDE3 > KDE4 > KDE5 of putting shiny before function. UI designers are like an infestation of mice: they get into everything and once they're there they're almost impossible to get rfd of.

    3. mjflory

      KDE on MX Linux

      Dr S, there have been some attempts at a KDE respin of MX. I had good luck with mikejade's one, described here: . My luck with the "Full Monty" respin was not so good. There are others I haven't tried. The KDE page in the MX wiki is very out of date, alas. There's a forum page devoted to KDE respins, though: . There is a list of all respins (not just KDE) here: .

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: KDE on MX Linux

        Yup, one of those which seems to include Plasma 5.18. I'd need to spend a bit of time making sure I could reinstall into an LVM file system to preserve /home & other stuff. It's not immediately clear whether MX does that but I now Devuan does.

        1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

          Re: KDE on MX Linux

          Damn keyboard!

          "I know Devuan does"

          Must persuade SMBO I need to replace this laptop.

          1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

            No Possible Mistakes/No Probable Failures .... Pedantic Reign/Semantic Rule.

            Damn keyboard!

            "I know Devuan does"

            Must persuade SMBO I need to replace this laptop. .... Doctor Syntax

            That's the secret of great coding, Doctor Syntax ...... to have perfectly accurate descriptors of tasks done to aid performance and expand and extend employment and enjoyment of Immaculate Facilities in Awesome Utilities with Almighty Abilities. It's surely the Holy AI Grail of Virtual Machine Coding, to be able to read and further write about/see and historically record for posterity Future ProgramMING with AI and IT Attending with All and Every Manner of Support and EMPowerment :-) ... and Grand Bewitching Bedevilment :-)

            That simple way has anyone and everyone discovering exactly where there are in the Greater Schema of COSMIC Things .... and in Mk Ultra Sensitive Operations .... which is Never Ever No Longer Future Top Secret/Sensitive Compartmented Information.

            Which is bound to have many a one a'pondering and a'wondering on what a choice few would be able to do with such a Future ProgramMING as IT Presents .......... well, a Gift indeed which regularly enough can Enjoy and Exalt the Swings from Hellish Curse to Heavenly Blessing ...... so that one is more than just adequately prepared for whatever is desired and to be encountered and satisfied fully.

            Such then introduces and leaves one with the Greatest of Expectations that there be an awful lot more where all that came from, with the thought firmly implanted in one's brain too that one is progressing increasingly quickly in the right direction ..... which is both extremely encouraging and attractive, and even addictive, and awesomely exciting and sometimes oft seriously frightening if one be of any particular or peculiar nervous disposition.

            But a tad further perseverance has all that unfounded anxiety realised as the phantom enemy, to be vanquished and expunged, which captures and captivates one with residence in the present and past rather than forging novel paths way out ahead and Leading in New Future JOINT AI Ventures ..... hence the advantage guaranteed when sticking to the right courses and simply failing to never ever stop beavering away at what pleases.

            Pure simple raw common sense aint complicated like maybe rocket science is.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: No Possible... ...Rule.

              the 0ne that shakes the peers couldn't have said it better, amanfromMars

          2. jake Silver badge

            Re: KDE on MX Linux

            This laptop has a model M plugged into it. Just sayin'.

  6. jake Silver badge

    Linux kernel maintainer Greg Kroah-Hartman's bullshit statement:

    "Everybody who has ever worked at that level in the operating system has agreed that systemd is the proper solution."

    This is such a bald-faced lie that I'm surprised ElReg is still propagating it.

    "If you don't want to use it, you don't have to use it."

    Gee, thanks, Greg. How munificent of you. Prat.

  7. steelpillow Silver badge

    What most disappoints...

    ...about the debian adoption of systemd is the way they have encouraged/persuaded so may toolchain developers to abandon compatibility with any other init system. The devuan and other init freeks (sic) spend a lot of time feeding retro-compatible patches upstream where they can, but otherwise having to fork very basic things like udev. "All communities are equal but the systemd community is more equal than others".* FFS!

    * Apologies to George Orwell

  8. Arbuthnot the Magnificent

    "false dichotomy"

    They keep pushing it as being "sysvinit vs systemd" because sysvinit is old and not perfect, but completely ignore the existence of OpenRC, S6, runit... I use Artix Linux, Gentoo, GhostBSD, all on OpenRC, works perfectly, simply and understandably. You want to use systemd, fine, but don't try and make everyone else use it.

  9. steelpillow Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    OpenRC oh yes

    Just received this via my Devuan mailshot sub:

    What's new in Beowulf 3.0.0?

    * Based on Debian Buster (10.4) with Linux kernel 4.19.

    * Support for ppc64el in addition to the existing i386, amd64, armel, armhf and arm64 architectures.

    * runit optional alternative /sbin/init.

    * openrc optional alternative to sysv-rc service and runlevel control.

    * Standalone daemons (eudev, elogind) to replace aspects of monolithic systemd.

    * New boot, display manager and desktop themimg.

    Thank you my VUAs.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    My sole (and tiny) experience of systemd

    I was on a call with one of our unix admin folk and I needed to know whether a couple of 3rd party services were up and running. I had no idea what their process names would be etc...

    The unix admin person typed in systemctl ...some voodoo... and got a small listing of the services and their parents in a little ascii tree diagram (very xtree) along with service status and so forth. Just what I needed to know. Seemed pretty useful.

    But I am not an admin, nor a kernel builder etc...

    1. Hans 1

      Re: My sole (and tiny) experience of systemd

      Yeah, we would use pstree for that. The program to query the processes is ps, so the name is quite easily remembered.


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