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Per Lidén wrote this handbook. RobertMcMeekin converted it to DocBook, the CRUX team made a Wiki version. Numerous others have given feedback and improvement suggestions.


What is CRUX?

CRUX is a lightweight, i686-optimized Linux distribution targeted at experienced Linux users. The primary focus of this distribution is "keep it simple", which it reflects in a simple tar.gz-based package system, BSD-style initscripts, and a relatively small collection of trimmed packages. The secondary focus is utilization of new Linux features and recent tools and libraries. CRUX also has a ports system which makes it easy to install and upgrade applications.

Why use CRUX?

There are many Linux distributions out there these days, so what makes this distribution any better than the others? Well, it's all about taste really. I can give you a hint about my taste, and perhaps we share the same taste, or we don't. First of all, I want a distribution made with simplicity in mind from beginning to end. Further, I want my packages up-to-date, not the latest bleeding-edge-alpha version, but the latest stable version. I want to easily create new and update old packages (updating a package in CRUX is often just a matter of typing pkgmk -d -u). I want packages optimized for my processor (think -march=i686). I don't want my filesystem cluttered with files I never use (think /usr/doc/*, etc). If I need more information about a specific program, other than information found on the man-page, I'll find it on the net. And finally, I want to use new features offered by recent Linux kernels (think udev, inotify, reiserfs, ext3fs, xfs, etc).

If you are a somewhat experienced Linux user that wants a clean and solid Linux distribution as the foundation of your installation, prefers editing configuration files with an editor to using a GUI, and doesn't hesitate to download and compile programs yourself, then this distribution might suit you well.



Since CRUX is a Linux distribution, it contains software written by a lot of different people. Each software package comes with its own license, chosen by its author(s). To find out how a particular package is licensed, have a look at its source code.

Build Scripts

All package build scripts in CRUX (in package categories core and opt) are Copyright © 2000-2007 by Per Lidén and the CRUX development team, and licensed through the GNU General Public License.


CRUX is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. Use it at YOUR OWN RISK.