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Linux reinstalled: samples from 1993 – 2003

How Linux got to be Linux: Test driving 1993-2003 distros — “Enjoy a trip down Linux memory lane as we take early distros for a spin.”
Posted 20 Dec 2016 Seth Kenlon.

By the early 2000s, it’s clear that Linux has well and truly hit its stride. The desktop is more polished than ever, the applications available want for nothing, the installation is easier and more efficient than other operating systems. In fact, from the early 2000s onward, the relationship between the user and the system is firmly established and remains basically unchanged even today. There are some changes, and of course several updates and improvements and a staggering amount of innovation.

He’s using QEMU as a virtual machine. Seth starts with Slackware 1.01 (1993) using an image he found rather than installing from floppies. He did end up with a floppy install for Debian 0.91 (1994). Remember those days? The graphics configuration headaches are noted as well. This goes from monitor timings to X configuration settings and GUI presentations.

Read the essay and get a feel for what it was like for the pioneers.