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Debian is the New Choice For Google’s In-house Linux

Yesterday, 06:28 PM

Posted by securitybreach in Bruno's All Things Linux


Brief: For years Google used Goobuntu, an in-house, Ubuntu-based operating system. Goobuntu is now being replaced by gLinux, which is based on Debian Testing.

If you have read Ubuntu facts, you probably already know that Google uses a Linux distribution called Goobuntu as the development platform. It is a custom Linux distribution based on…(easy to guess)… Ubuntu.

Goobuntu is basically a “light skin over standard Ubuntu“. It is based on the LTS releases of Ubuntu. If you think that Google contributes to the testing or development of Ubuntu, you are wrong. Google is simply a paying customer for Canonical’s Ubuntu Advantage Program. Canonical is the parent company behind Ubuntu.

After more than five years with Ubuntu, Google is replacing Goobuntu with gLinux, a Linux distribution based on Debian Testing release.

As MuyLinux reports, gLinux is being built from the source code of the packages and Google introduces its own changes to it. The changes will also be contributed to the upstream.

This ‘news’ is not really new. It was announced in Debconf’17 in August last year. Somehow the story did not get the attention it deserves.

Once Google opted Ubuntu LTS for stability. Now it is moving to Debian testing branch for timely testing the packages. But it is not clear why Google decided to switch to Debian from Ubuntu.

How does Google plan to move to Debian Testing? The current Debian Testing release is upcoming Debian 10 Buster. Google has developed an internal tool to migrate the existing systems from Ubuntu 14.04 LTS to Debian 10 Buster. Project leader Margarita claimed in the Debconf talk that tool was tested to be working fine.

Google also plans to send the changes to Debian Upstream and hence contributing to its development.

Back in 2012, Canonical had clarified that Google is not their largest business desktop customer. However, it is safe to say that Google was a big customer for them. As Google prepares to switch to Debian, this will surely result in revenue loss for Canonical.

What do you think?

Do keep in mind that Google doesn’t restrict its developers from using any operating system. However, use of Linux is encouraged.

If you are thinking that you can get your hands on either of Goobuntu or gLinux, you’ll have to get a job at Google. It is an internal project of Google and is not accessible to the general public.

Overall, it is a good news for Debian, especially if they get changes to upstream. Cannot say the same for Ubuntu though. I have contacted Canonical for a comment but have got no response so far.

What are your views on Google ditching Ubuntu for Debian?

31 Views · 6 Replies ( Last reply by securitybreach )


I Have Reupped with ESET

16 Jan 2018

Posted by raymac46 in Security & Networking
Went with a 2 year deal and saved about 15%. I figured it's worth it, since ESET gives fine protection and does so without messing up Malware Bytes or video driver updates. It stays out of the way very well unless needed. Also licence extension was fast and accurate. After my headaches with Bitdefender, ESET is really great.

75 Views · 3 Replies ( Last reply by raymac46 )


Oracle Java™ Critical Security Updates Released

17 Jan 2018

Posted by Corrine in Security & Networking
Oracle released the scheduled critical security updates for its Java SE Runtime Environment software.  The update contains 21 new security fixes for multiple versions of Java SE, 18 of which are remotely exploitable without authentication.  The update also includes numerous bug fixes.


If Java is still installed on your computer, it is recommended that this update be applied as soon as possible due to the threat posed by a successful attack.

Download Information

Java SE 8u161/8u162

Java™ SE Development Kit 8, Update 161 Release Notes
Java™ SE Development Kit 8, Update 162 Release Notes
Java SE Runtime Environment 8 - Downloads

Java SE 9.0.1 (x64-bit only)

Java™ SE Development Kit 9.0.4 Release Notes
Java SE Runtime Environment 9 - Downloads

  • UNcheck any pre-checked toolbar and/or software  options presented with the update. They are not part of the software update and are completely  optional.  Preferably, see the instructions below on how to handle "Unwanted Extras".
  • Oracle does not plan to migrate desktops from Java 8 to Java 9 through the auto update feature.  Therefore, it is strongly recommended that you uninstall JRE 8 prior to updating.
  • Verify your version:  http://www.java.com/...ad/testjava.jsp.   Note:  The Java version verification page will only work if your browser has NPAPI support.  In that case, to check the version, open a cmd window and enter the following (note the space following Java):  java -version

Critical Patch Updates and Security Alerts

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