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README.md

ANNOUNCING BYZANTIUM LINUX V0.5b (Sleep Deprivation)

Approved for: GENERAL RELEASE, DISTRIBUTION UNLIMITED

Project Byzantium, a working group of HacDC (http://hacdc.org/) is proud to announce the release of v0.5 beta of Byzantium Linux, a live distribution of Linux which makes it fast and easy to construct an ad-hoc wireless mesh network which can augment or replace the existing telecommunications infrastructure in the event that it is knocked offline (for example, due to a natural disaster) or rendered untrustworthy (through widespread surveillance or disconnection by hostile entities). This release was developed in the days following Hurricane Sandy, and was perfected while the core development team was assisting with disaster relief efforts in the Red Hook neighborhood of New York City in November of 2012.

Byzantium Linux is designed to run on any x86 computer with at least one 802.11 a/b/g/n wireless interface. Byzantium can be burned to a CD- or DVD-ROM (the .iso image is a bit over 370 megabytes in size), booted from an external hard drive, or can even be installed in parallel with an existing operating system without risk to the user's data and software. Byzantium Linux will act as a node of the mesh and will automatically connect to other mesh nodes and act as an access point for wifi-enabled mobile devices. This release of Byzantium Linux also incorporates seamless interoperability with mesh networks constructed using the Commotion Wireless (https://commotionwireless.net/) firmware.

FEATURES:

  • Binary compatible with Slackware-CURRENT. Existing Slackware packages can be converted with a single command.
  • Can act as a gateway to the Internet if a link is available (via Ethernet or tethered smartphone).
  • Automatic network configuration during boot.
  • Linux kernel v3.7.8
  • Drivers for dozens of wireless chipsets
  • Razor-qt v0.5.0
  • Mplayer
  • GCC v4.7.1
  • Perl v5.16
  • Python v2.7.3
  • Firefox v18.0.2
  • X.org

SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS:

To Use
  • Minimum of 1GB of RAM (512MB without copy2ram boot option)
  • i586 CPU or better
  • CD- or DVD-ROM drive
  • BIOS must boot removable media
  • At least one (1) 802.11 a/b/g/n interface

SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS:

For Persistent Changes
  • The above requirements to use Byzantium
  • 2+GB of free space on thumbdrive or harddrive

WHAT WE NEED:

  • Developers.
  • Developers!
  • DEVELOPERS!
  • No more Bill Ballmer impersonations.
  • People testing Byzantium to find bugs.
  • People reporting bugs on our Github page (https://github.com/Byzantium/Byzantium/issues). We can't fix what we don't know about!
  • Patches.
  • People booting Byzantium and setting up small meshes (2-5 clients) to tell us how well it works for you with your hardware. We have a hardware compatibility list on our wiki that needs to be expanded.
  • Help translating the user interface. We especially need people fluent in dialects of Chinese, Arabic, Farsi, and Urdu.
  • Help us write and translate documentation.

LINKS:

This announcement is published under a Creative Commons By Attribution / Noncommercial / Share Alike v3.0 License. (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/)

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