Group: Parabola

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Parabola GNU/Linux is a distribution which is a derivative of Arch Linux for the i686, x86 64 and armv7h architectures, using completely free software. The development focuses on simplicity, community involvement and use of the latest free software packages. Parabola GNU/Linux is listed by the Free Software Foundation as a completely free operating system.

Fully Free Distros[1] Distrowatch[2]

developer :: Parabola Hackers development team
family :: Unix-like
model :: Free software
released :: Start date|2009|10
latest release version :: Rolling release
marketing target :: Freedom purpose
kernel type :: Monolithic (Linux-libre version of the Linux kernel)
ui :: Bash
license :: Free software licenses
working state :: Current
supported platforms :: i686, x86-64, armv7h
update model :: Pacman
package manager :: Pacman

Parabola employs a social contract that commitments the project to the libre software community, democracy, to view itself as only competing against nonfree software and to respect Arch Linux's philosophy of simplicity.

Social Contract[3]


Parabola was originally proposed by members of the gNewSense IRC channel in 2009. Members of different Arch Linux communities, especially Spanish-speaking members, started the development and maintenance of the project software and documentation. Today, Parabola's community is made up of people from around the world.

On May 20, 2011, the Parabola distribution was accepted as a completely free project by GNU, making it part of the the FSF list of free distributions.[4]

In February 2012 Dmitrij D. Czarkoff reviewed Parabola for OSNews. Czarkoff reported that on his test computer a number of hardware problems surfaced, due to lack of free firmware. He said "That effectively means that many devices are not supported in Parabola. Eg., after installing it on my Acer Aspire One 531h netbook I couldn't use my Broadcom bluetooth module and Intel's WiFi/WiMax Link 5150 adapter. (I still could use my HTC Magic with a custom Gingerbread ROM as a USB 3G/WiFi modem, though having something always connected to USB port is pretty annoying on laptop and specifically on netbook.)" Czarkoff also criticized the lack of documentation available for Parabola. He concluded "The overall impression of the Parabola GNU/Linux user experience exactly matches the one of Arch: a system with easy and flexible installation and configuration process and good choice of free software packages. Though the lack of documentation spoils the user experience, the Arch Linux resources can be used to further configure and extend the distribution. If my hardware would allow, I would probably stick with Parabola."


Differences from Arch Linux

The project uses only 100% free software from the official Arch Linux repositories for the i686, x86_64, and armv7h architectures. It uses free replacements when possible, such as the Linux-Libre kernel instead of the generic Linux kernel.

The filtering process used removes about 800 software packages from the repositories that do not meet the requirements of the Free Software Definition for each architecture.

Blacklist[6] Status[7] MIPS Architecture[8]


As in the parent Arch Linux distribution, Parabola uses the same Pacman package manager and also a rolling release schedule, that means that the distribution is constantly updated and users therefore always have access to the latest version of the system.

There are two ways to install Parabola, either from installable ISO images or migrating from an Arch Linux system previously installed, changing to the Parabola repositories list.


Get it![9] Migration[10]

  1. From the Free Software Foundation List of Free GNU/Linux Distributions Free Distros 21 December 2011
  2. From Distrowatch Parabola GNU/Linux 1 November 2011
  3. From Parabola GNU/LinuxParabola/GNU Linux Social Contract 30 August 2011
  4. From the FSF Parabola GNU/Linux joins the FSF list of free distributions 20 May 2011 Brett Smith
  5. OSNews Parabola GNU/Linux: Freedom Packaged 14 February 2012 Czarkoff & Dmitrij D. 2 February 2012
  6. From Parabola GNU/Linux :: blacklist.git - Unfree packages found in ArchLinux repos blacklist
  7. From Nicolás Reynolds :: Since the beginning of 2011 Parabola MIPS Port - Update and current status Status
  8. From Wikipedia :: The project has been developing a version for computers that use the Chinese-developed Loongson processor, a 64 bit architecture derived from MIPS.
  9. From Parabola Team :: Download Parabola GNU/Linux Get it!
  10. From Parabola Team :: Liberate Arch Linux with Parabola GNU/Linux Migration from Arch to Parabola 16 September 2011

Most of the Parabola packages are compressed using ZSTD compression algorithm.

External links

You can add a user box supporting Parabola by putting
{{user Parabola}}
on your user page.
Parabola GNU/Linux-libre
Website Parabola GNU/Linux-libre
Contact #parabola
Members 11
Description The free version of ArchLinux which use only free software
Current status Active
Parabola-logo.png Member of the Parabola Hacker's Group