Rebooting the Monoppix project


Roiy and I have decided it's high time for another Monoppix release. Monoppix is a Linux Live CD pre-configured with Mono, MySQL, and a bunch of sample applications and training material. It's all designed to make it ridiculously simple to work (and play) with a configured Linux / Mono setup without having to spend hours or days getting it all set up.

After a short break (well, two short years), we're rebooting the project. There are some easy ways you can help us out, even if you have absolutely no experience with Mono or Linux.


Our first release was in 2004, and we've had tens of thousands (hard to track when the main distribution method is BitTorrent) of downloads. Our last release was in 2005, on Mono 1.1.8. Part of the reason we discontinued development, honestly, was the release of Mono Live, the official Mono Live CD. Their last release was in early 2006, though, and a lot's changed since then...

Mono's come a long way

Mono (the current release) supports most of .NET 2.0 (including almost all of WinForms 2.0), plus IronPython, the DLR, and a bunch of .NET 3.0 goodies. Mono 1.2.6 is due out on November 6th, adding:

    • Completed most of the 2.0 support, including:

      • Completed C# 2.0.
      • Completed ASP.NET 2.x (modulo WebParts).
      • Completed ADO.NET 2.x.
      • Most of Windows.Forms 2.0 (about 80% of it at this point).
    • Implemented most of C# 3.0 (few tidbits missing).
    • Implemented LINQ, and LINQ to XML (.NET 3.5).
    • Implemented some other bits from .NET 3.5
    • A Visual Basic.NET compiler, and its runtime.
    • Added a Silverlight toolchain (.NET 2.1).
    • Added COM/XPCOM support to Mono.

[via Miguel de Icaza - Mono Versioning]

Also, MonoDevelop has targeted a 1.0 release by the end of the year, and includes a lot of great IDE features (including database support, courtesy of the Google Summer of Code 2007).

Plus, there's the very exciting Mono / Moonlight plugin, which is the official support path for Silverlight on Linux. While I've read that the Mono dependency is being removed from the Moonlight plugin, I think it would be great to be able to easily test a Silverlight site on Linux. Lunar Eclipse (a XAML design tool, created for Moonlight content development) would be cool to add, if it's ready.

Add some cool new open source .NET applications to the mix

SubSonic has passed the Mono Migration Analyzer (MOMA) tests and just needs to be tested on Mono. That would be great, because SubSonic includes support for MySQL and SQLite, so it would really simplify writing cross database and platform applications if we could get that on there. There are some great applications which have been built on Mono (Banshee, Muine, F-Spot, Tomboy, Beagle, etc.), but there are also a lot of great .NET applications which, while written on Windows in Visual Studio, might make it over to Mono reasonably easily.

How you can help

  1. Feedback and input. What would you like to see included in a new release of Monoppix? If you've used Monoppix, what would you like to see changed?
  2. Sample applications, walk-through's, and training materials.
  3. Installing and testing .NET applications like SubSonic
  4. Website support for
  5. Remastering. This is the hard work, and we're not sure that we can have more than one person work on this at a time. Roiy's always handled that part. We may be able to take turns, though. If you've got experience setting up a Linux Live CD, we'd definitely like to hear from you. Our previous releases have run on Knoppix, but we're also looking at Ubuntu and OpenSUSE for this next release.


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