My thoughts on Slackware, life and everything

Slackware 15.0 alpha1

Hold the press! There’s good news on Slackware development front.
Slackware 14.2, the last stable release, saw the light on 30 June 2016. Since then, it has received many security patches but nothing has changed functionally and although 14.2 is super stable, it is also getting stale, in particular its default KDE desktop.
In all that time since the release of Slackware 14.2, the distro has been heavily worked on, and the slackware-current development release is a joy to work with, containing the latest tools and desktop environments.

The frequent and sometimes intrusive updates to -current are keeping the less knowledgeable Slackware users at bay, they prefer 14.2 since that requires minimal maintenance and won’t break after a careless upgrade.
But after almost 5 years of rising anxiety, there is now real movement toward a new stable release.

From the ChangeLog.txt today:

Mon Feb 15 19:23:44 UTC 2021
Here we go again... upgraded to glibc-2.33 and one last mass rebuild for
Slackware 15.0. The only packages upgraded in this batch are glibc and the
kernels - everything else is just a rebuild against the new glibc. Not
rebuilt in this batch: devs (best to just leave this alone), glibc-zoneinfo,
kernel-firmware, rust, linux-faqs, linux-howtos, aspell-en, mozilla-firefox,
mozilla-thunderbird, and seamonkey. There's a new Rust compiler but Firefox
and Thunderbird will need to be patched to use it, so we'll hold off on
those until they're ready for the new Rust either with patches or new
upstream releases. Until we have that and a few more scheduled upgrades I'm
not quite ready to call this beta yet, but you can call it 15.0-alpha1. :-)

I will do my best to update the multilib repository ASAP, I have multilib versions of the rebuilt gcc and upgraded glibc packages ready but occupied with other stuff at the moment.

Have fun upgrading 1550+ packages… again.


  1. Jen

    Thanks for the multilib support! I’ve got my switch charged and a dead tree book on the ready.

  2. Bev Lekx

    Awesome news. Thanks Eric!

  3. Lcklinux

    What wonderful news, Eric! And, what a fantastic job, thank you !!

  4. Matthew Miller

    PV’s alpha and beta releases, I daresay are more trustworthy than many other distro’s *stable* releases. Just a thought.

  5. Andrey

    Too late.

  6. Herag Anarchivist

    Thank you for your updates. I get them via email and your email list is one of the few I am never tempted to unsubscribe from. I swish more people’s email lists were like yours.

    As for upgrading, I will allow you and the other adventurous Slackers hit those landmines. I can wait for the release of Slackware 15, but until it happens, I will stay in the safety of my 14.2 release.

    Thank you for your work!

    Praise “Bob”!

  7. Francisco

    Excellent news Eric. Thanks for sharing this and for keeping Slackware in shape.

    Your contribution to have latest KDE PLASMA available was a key success factor for Slackware 15.

    Debian bulleyes is entering now that world…

    All the best and long live to Slackware!!!!!

  8. ?htiyar Adam

    Thanks Eric!

  9. Didier Spaier

    No issue upgrading here. Started the upgrade using a synced local repo as mirror for slackpkg, restarted slackpg upgrade-all after upgrade of slackpk itself. A download speed of 60 megabytes/second helps… Built an initrd with Slint’s modified mkinitrd to output /boot/initrd-generic-5.10.16, ran update-grub from Slint, no fuss, no muss. Honest: I mostly use Slackware64-current these days to build the Slint installer, so could be more difficult for “real” users and testers.

  10. Snale

    Great news for slackware! But I’d like to take this op to thank you for all your work over the years, especially the last few where I think you were instrumental in keeping slackware moving!

  11. Regnad Kcin

    No sweat this upgrade. Thank you again for your several years work with Ktown to get us to this place.

  12. Francisco

    Hi Eric.

    There are lots of movement now due to this migration… in slackpkg update process..

    I used to install liveslak to HD from scratch (via setup2hd) in some of my home boxes. Particularly your liveslak (cinnamon) is working fine on this 2gB RAM Dell inspiron box.

    After a very long update process, slackpkg was upgraded to slackpkg-15.0-noarch-3. I checked changes in config files and reverted a mirror to a slackware “current” mirror.
    All went fine and finally I got an alert message from slackpkg+ notifying of presence slackware 15 and a necessity to upgrade to slackpkg+-1.7.1-noarch changing a mirror in slackpkgplus.conf. I installed the new version successfully.


    Original changes in PKGS_PRIORITY=( restricted alienbob ktown mate ) and this mirrors to maintain slackware updated against alienbob repositories are not present.

    Similar situation with:


    I assume ktown is not necessary as kde is now in slackware mainstream, but not clear about the other mirrors,

    What mirros or config should I keep in that configuration file to maintain my system updated against slackware 15 alpha and alienbob mirrors?

    Please advice. I appreciate yur comments and hints. As We have now Slackware Production, Slackware “current” and Slackware 15 alpha (different/same from/as “current”?), plus your mirrors with packages a clarification in this case I think is important.

    As a newcomer to Slackware I decided to work and update my installs from liveslak releases rich in packages and functionalities I appreciate. Time to time I reinstall from one of yuour new releases while I learn more complex slackware internals.

    Thanks and advance for your support and help.

    • alienbob

      Simple: if your slackpkg+ configuration worked for you before, you just keep the /etc/slackpkg/slackpkgplus.conf file un-changed and rename the newly installed version with its “.new” suffix to something like /etc/slackpkg/slackpkgplus.conf.20210217 to get rid of that “.new” suffix. That way it won’t keep popping up during every “slackpkg new-config”.

      If you already mistakenly replaced your original /etc/slackpkg/slackpkgplus.conf with the newly installed file, the older version (i.e. the version which worked for you) has been renamed to /etc/slackpkg/slackpkgplus.conf.orig – it was not deleted. Rename that new file by giving it a “.20210217” suffix for instance, and then remove the “.orig” suffix from the older file. Then re-run “slackpkg update” and you can again follow your own familiar upgrade procedure.

      A word of explanation regarding version tagging in Slackware:
      In that moment when Alpha1 was announced, there was no difference between slackware-current and Slackware 15.0_alpha1. Now -current has moved on and a “15.0_alpha1” is a thing of the past. The “Alpha1” tag was just a snapshot in development which has not been retained like it would be the case for a stable release.
      We will probably soon see a “Beta1” or something like it, but all the while you are still running slackware-current. All this transient tagging is mostly meant to enthuse the crowd that is eagerly waiting for 15.0 stable.

  13. TheTKS

    The most recent update to kernel 5.10.17 here went quite well after last updating on release of 5.10.15 and with the glibc 2.33 testing packages installed.

    As @Francisco did, I had a pitstop to upgrade to slackpkg+-1.7.1-noarch-1mt. Following instructions got me through that without much trouble.

    A bit of time was needed to merge my changes into the new slackpkg, slackpkg+ and inittab conf files: mostly mirrors, blacklist and greylist; for slackpkg and slackpkg+ conf files, deselecting the default 14.2 mirror and small things like changing my local mirror to https from http, and pointing directly to instead of to

    A few minor glitches along the way, all resolved fairly quickly.

    So it was a bit time consuming but resulted in a Slackware -current that is actually current and working well as it should for me, all while looking really good, too!

    Thanks again, Eric, for all your hard work and long hours along with Pat and the rest of the Slackware team to bring this to us! Much appreciated.


  14. Heinrich

    better late than never! I was hoping for multilib to be the default honestly. Mainly for wine / proton steam gaming.

    • alienbob

      I don’t think that will ever happen. Multilib will continue to be an external add-on.

  15. Drusian

    Esperei Ohhh but what good news: D
    I look forward to it, how cool. I am very happy. Thank you very much: D

  16. peter Müller

    Hi guys,

    I was very close to leaving Slackware. Anyway, I will stay and wait the least a year longer for Slack15.00 (its only Alpha, I remember the last beta). If untill its not on, I might go to a very simple Linux that runs from USB.

    However, I thank you for keeping this project alive. I love Slackware, it just became very slow over the years.

    If Slack remains as stable as it was and is, I am happy to use it anoteher 20 years. Let me know when/if I can help

    Cheers guys

  17. Max

    XFCE 4.16 is buggy like hell.
    I can’t imagine slk15 based on 4.16

  18. Lorenzo Trevisan

    I am anxiously awaiting! Go Pat! Go! Thanks Eric, ciao

  19. Greg

    For the love of god, please, please, please, please add an IPALIASES configuration example to the /etc/rc.d/rc.inet1.conf file.
    It took me 2 hours of sorting through kernel modules/configs, proc/sys issues, and finally the /etc/rc.d/rc.inet1 script to find that the variable is there, but completely undocumented.

    I have an example config if you need one now that I have it all figured out. 🙂

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