The Linux Router Project

A look at one of the fastest growing Linux distributions, that you may never actually see.
Difficulty and Support

For a person with some UNIX networking experience, LRP is truly as easy as it sounds. However, it may be difficult for people who lack these basic skills. Still, it is not too intimidating and the average Linux, MS-DOS or MS Windows user has been known to tackle the entire task with no help.

The mailing list is capable of getting most people over any walls they encounter. If all else fails, both Paul Wouters (paul@xtdnet.nl) and I currently provide commercial support for those requiring extended help with their setup.

Commercial Products

Linux Router is known to be in use around the world. I know of several consultants who use it exclusively for networking their customers. It is also becoming popular with vertical applications and has been spotted in control systems and power switching stations.

Onyx Systems (http://www.onyxsys.com/) is developing a mid-range modular router and terminal server product based entirely on LRP. Look for it to appear about the time this article is published. This is the most adventurous application using Linux Router I have found (sort of a cross between a Cisco 2524 and Portmaster 3). It is also the first open-source product of its kind—how exciting! Keep it in mind when you need trusted hardware with commercial support.

Rumors are circulating that Corel has been thinking about a port of Linux Router to ARM for a FlashRAM-only NetWinder. This project sounds like it has many possibilities as well.

Development

At the time of this writing, 2.9.4 just went out as an unstable release, getting us a bit closer to a stable 3.0 release. I still handle all of the core LRP development myself and could use more people to help speed development of the base. Making LRP packages is quite easy, and I would like to see more people contributing them. If you have the skills and are interested in helping out, join the mailing list (linux-router@linuxrouter.org).

Resources

Dave Cinege (dcinege@psychosis.com) is an Electronics and Computers Engineer. He lacks anything even remotely resembling a social life. When not hacking (which is rare), he is generally reading technical books, spook lore or arguing the virtues of anarcho-capitalism. Aside from qualifying as a truly pathetic individual to the uninitiated, he is one of the most rounded jack of all trades you may ever find.

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