Repgrogram Debian Desktop Environment


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Jun 28, 2017
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I want to create my own OS using Debian (kind of like SteamOS did). However, not in a rush to try and immediately imitate advanced pieces like scrolling the desktop to view applications in a similar fashion to smart devices. I want to start small (modifying small things to my liking, like the start menu), but I want to program it - so I can add my own functionalities to 'whatnot'.

I have prior experience in C++, C, C#, Java, Python, and general web development. Is there a book, or tutorial series that kind of provides a set of instructions to, in the end, end up with an imitation of another OS? Or do I just gotta go at it, once I find the file locations to modify?

Hi @grimofdoom, and welcome! You're way over my head, but of course I know that you can easily find the Debian sources online and fork your own version if you have the skills, just as Ubuntu and others have done. You might also get on the Debian dev mailing list(s) and help them with the core project, or volunteer to maintain some of their packages.

Some non-Debian options that you might consider for building a custom OS are SUSE Studio and Linux From Scratch.

Or, in the meantime, you might also consider using Arch or Gentoo Linux as a great hands-on way to learn more about the nuts and bolts of a Linux system, adding just the components you choose and exploring the source code of individual packages so that you might modify them to your needs.

You have a lot of learning ahead, and I wish you the best!

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