What is it?
The nice & “official” explanation: A script that needs to be run on top of a fresh Ubuntu Minimal installation, thus producing a lightweight, fast and cozy work & play environment. Maybe I will manage to produce an ISO at some point in the future, but I do not consider this a must since it’s aimed at personal use.
Actual explanation A very egotistical “project” that allows me to quickly setup an Ubuntu-based system for times when I’m forced to use a more popular distribution (i.e. at the workplace) instead something I favor (like musl-based distros and/or FreeBSD). Since I’m quite a fan of deep work & frugality, it was something I had to try. In the end, I did have some fun with this small project.
Who is it for?
Anyone, really. If you’re looking for an operating system that won’t stand in your way, this might be for you. Aimed at minimalism & deep work enthusiasts, it provides a clean set of tools to get your work done.
Why use Ubuntu as a foundation?
Yes, one could say that Ubuntu “sucksmore”. Confronted with the suckless.org philosophy, it has become one bloated distro. Starting with the Minimal install is way better. Hopefully the guys at suckless.org would forgive the association between their tools and Ubuntu, but the truth is Ubuntu has some of the best hardware support at the moment of writing (yes, that includes some proprietary drivers, but that’s the way things are with hardware vendors).
Since the audience is not made up only by hackers and very tech-minded people, having an easier & familiar way of installing software is prefferable. Maybe potential users will move to other distros (like Void Linux, for example) once they get more experienced, thus discovering and learning more on the way.
Fast & functional desktop with dwm, dmenu & slstatus
Instead of focusing on pointing device interaction, the dwm tiling window manager goes for a keyboard-centric approach. As scary as this may sound for beginners or people unfamiliar with tiling window managers, this is actually quite easy, fast & productive once you get the hang of it.
- Low memory footprint – takes up ~90 MB of RAM once the system boots up and the user logs on to the UI
- No eye candy = no distractions – Producing high-quality work is a must if one desires to use available time as efficient as possible. Being able to really concentrate is a valuable skill in today’s economic context. And it will be even more valuable in the future. Therefore, by eliminating distractions like annoying & trivial notifications, useless frontend animations and eye-candy helps one immerse into what really matters at a given point in time.
- Stability – by being “stuck” with Ubuntu-base 18.04 LTS (Long Term Support), you have a fully functional, versatile and customizable operating system at your fingertips.
Simple, but efficient & stable tools
sc-im (view on GitHub)
A console vim-like spreadsheet calculator. Very powerful, providing a fast workflow due to its focus o keyboard interaction. Also compatible with Microsoft’s XLSX format.
One little cool tool. If you find yourself in need to create a presentation, do it in a quick & simple manner that would really stand out. sent uses Markdown for creating the presentation content. It adheres to the Takahashi method of simple, text-based presentations that must not distract the audience from the speaker.
A very straightforward web server designed for static pages. Works great with Jekyll.
Or “list files”. A terminal file manager with quite a different approach. Fast, easy to use once you get the hang of it, written in Go.
How can it be used?
Simply install a minimal Ubuntu system using the MinimalCD (I’ve been running this on 18.04.3 LTS), then do the following:
$ cd ~ $ wget https://github.com/diorgulescu/suckless-ubuntu/archive/master.tar.gz $ tar xzvf master.tar.gz $ cd suckless-ubuntu-master $ sudo ./install.sh
After that, follow the wizard.