Astra Linux Review – Russian Government/Military Debian-based Linux Distro

Astra Linux — Russian Debian-based Operating System developed by “RusBitTech” for the Russian Army, other armed forces, intelligence agencies and Government Institutions. Astra Linux provides certificated data protection up to the level of “top secret” in Russian classified information grade. It has a lot of certificates by Russian Defense Ministry, Federal Service for Technical and Export Control and Federal Security Service and sponsored by Russian Government.

Astra Linux have many distribution variants: “Oryol” – free community version, enterprise “Smolensk” for x86-64 machines, “Tula” for networking hardware, “Novorossiysk” for ARM devices, “Murmansk” for IBM System z mainframes. MAKSIM-M1 (“М643М1”) – hardware PCI module manufactured by “RusBitTech” for trusted system boot control. Distribution mode – LiveCD iso image with English and Russian interface.

Lets talk about Desktop Environment. Astra Linux use Fly DE: Fly Windows Manager, Fly Terminal, fly-dm, fly file manager and more apps with “Fly” prefix. Style of Desktop remember me “good old” Windows Vista and Windows 7. “Start” button is very big and created also in Windows style. Task bar include the network tool fly-admin-wicd, update reminder fly-update-notifier, volume control QasMixer, keymap tool fly-xkbmap and fly-admin-date – time and date settings.

Terminal and File Manager is also cloned from Windows, but first is more functional. Fly DE contain some GNOME 3 applications. Icons is very funny, for example soldier icon of user configuration tool 🙂

You can download a Community Edition of Astra Linux, but source code is closed: “don’t contradict with the spirit and demands of GPL license”. RusBITech also is the member of the Linux Foundation.

Read more:
GNOME News — Unbelievable News Reader for GNOME
Top 25 Funny And Interesting Linux/*nix Terminal Commands
Icaros Desktop Review – Open Source Realization of AmigaOS
Ojuba – Arabian Linux Distro Review