I have not yet been able to make much progress on the security article/blog I so boldly claimed I would make. I haven’t given up on it, but due to some complications, and me not having a free device, I might have to change up how I test each OS.
I intended to use my spare laptop for this, a ThinkPad X220, but it currently has an OpenBSD install which I do not wish to wipe, but I haven’t been able to backup yet. I could do this, but between work and another new project I’ve started (which I will announce later), I haven’t had the time to do yet.
My next option was to use an ASUS Vivobook, but this is one I have VM’s on that I use for work, which would be very inconvenient to destroy and rebuild, so I would rather not install a different OS on it.
Finally is my desktop, but with this one has the problem of using a 1 TB ssd, which would take a lot of space to back up, as well as running Artix Linux, which, being based on Arch, updates very frequently, and I don’t want to have to do all of the updates after however long this project takes. Not to mention, my desktop is the only computer I have for gaming. A potential solution could be to upgrade to a bigger drive, and then dual boot my current Artix with whatever OS(es) I am testing at the time. However, this costs money, and that’s something I don’t have very much of at this point.
I still intend to research each OS, so that leaves me with one option left for now: either put the project on hiatus, until I have a bigger SSD to dual boot each OS with my computer (which is my preferred option, but requires an explanation for you, the audience), or test everything on virtual machines, which has already had mixed results in my testing.
I prefer to use QEMU and libvirt for my virtual machines, because it’s a fully Free stack (as much as possible), and I love Free software. However, the very first OS I tested in it (GhostBSD) was not usable, as the mouse was not supported.
I have not tried VirtualBox, because (I’ve been told) it has proprietary elements, but if I go with the virtual machine route, it might be necessary.
Additionally, virtual machines also require a fair bit of disk space, especially for desktop OSes. And while I have only one at a time, if I was to go the virtual machine route, I would want to have all of them be easily accessible, which would most likely require upgrading my drive anyways.
However, two of the operating systems I want to try (Serenity OS and Whonix) are designed to be run in virtual machines, with Serenity not having very much hardware support and Whonix requiring two instances to be run on the same device. Additionally, I don’t have any hardware which runs Haiku OS, which I might add to the list.
I think I will start with GhostBSD in a VM, and then maybe the next OS, until I can afford to get a bigger SSD, which should take more time to get through than my next paycheck anyways.
Updates incoming. (Provided I don’t Zach it up again).