Why Sparky?
SparkyLinux is a GNU/Linux distribution based on the Debian GNU/Linux operating system.

Sparky is a fast, lightweight and fully customizable operating system which offers several versions for different use cases, such as:

* a fully featured standard desktop version with a lightweight desktop environment. It works out of the box on almost any hardware and delivers a curated selection of software for home users.
* the frugal MinimalGUI version with the Openbox window manager. It contains only the bare necessities and is intended for users who want full flexibility when creating their own desktop, using only the packages they desire.
* the even more frugal MinimalCLI version without a graphical desktop. For advanced users who want to create their own desktop from the ground up or don’t need a GUI.
* Three special versions:
– GameOver for computer gaming
– Multimedia for audio and video enthusiasts and/or web-developers
– Rescue, a system rescue toolbox (uses Openbox as a window manager)

Sparky supports about 20 desktop environments and window managers giving you freedom of choice, having in mind that your computer is made for working, having fun, entertainment, keeping in touch with friends, and many, many other things.

Sparky “stable flavor” is the best choice to change your existing, other operating system and try a GNU/Linux distribution without need of installation and changing your computer partition table.

Sparky “rolling (testing) flavor” is targeted to more advanced users, whose don’t afraid of a little less stable version of applications, and want to work with/on latest version of offered the software.

If you like Sparky, simply install it side to side or over your present OS.

Main features of Sparky
– Debian based
– stable or (semi-)rolling release
– lightweight, fast & simple
– your favorite desktops to choose
– special editions: GameOver, Multimedia & Rescue
– CLI Edition (no X) for building customized desktop
– most wireless and mobile network cards supported
– set of selected applications, multimedia codecs and plugins
– own repository with a large set of additional applications
– easy hard drive / USB installation

In general, Sparky is not targeted to Linux beginners, rather to users with some amount of Linux knowledge.
Anyway, the Linux beginners are welcome too – our forums is open for any question.

Is Sparky free?
Yes, Sparky was, is and always will be free of charge for end users.
Simply grab Sparky iso image, burn it to a blank CD/DVD disk or copy to a flash USB disk and use it to launch your computer.

Does Sparky need your support?
Yes, we don’t sell Sparky, so we don’t earn money.
Your support, tip, donation can keep Sparky alive.


54 thoughts on “About”

  1. Finally I discovered in Sparky Linux my distro, one that not irritate with a various set of problems, errors and bad settings/programming. My search was too long!!! I tested all type of Linux Distro such as Gentoo, OpenSuse, Fedora, CentOS, Debian, ELive, Ubuntu, Xubuntu, Kubuntu, KDE neon and many, many more and all of these irritate me because is really a bad systems.
    Sparky Linux is really different!!! Don’t force to have a not liked desktop or not liked settings!
    I thank so much the Sparky Linux Development Team for this very great masterpiece, created
    thinking really to the user and his comfort in using a computer.
    In and only in Sparky Linux I discovered the pleasure to choose and install a Desktop Environment
    without any effort, and so with any software via APTus or synaptic.
    Again a very big THANK YOU for Sparky Linux!!!!!

  2. I use Sparky with Openbox on my daughter’s Acer Aspire One Netbooks and everything works perfectly.

    One word of advice, though: considering that Sparky is suggested for the use with old computers, re-enable the installation of the OS via the regular Installer on computers with less than 1 GB Ram.
    For me it is not a problem to use the Advanced Installer, however, not everyone is able to.

    Keep up the good work!!!

  3. Sparky Linux is great! We included it in our lightweight Linux distros list thishosting.rocks/best-lightweight-linux-distros/#sparky-linux

    Keep up the good work!

  4. Olá, estou fazendo um trabalho sobre esse Sistema Operacional, e gostaria de saber quando e onde ele surgiu!! Caso alguém possa me ajudar, ficarei agradecida.

  5. Hi,
    I have a friend that has a hp very old laptop with only 2GB RAM, a processor with only 1 core, and it had guindoze 7 starter or something (imagine that, not only bad but also trimmed down!). It was impossible to use, only booting it took about 30 mns.
    He came to me desperate, then I firstly tried another distro with XFCE (which I thought would be fine for this kind of laptop) but although it was much much faster than guindoze it was not still the very best user experience.
    Then I started investigating and found Sparky Linux. I am really amazed at how fast and how well does this piece of technology manage the hardware on this machine.

    Thank you and keep up the good work.

  6. About 2 years ago I put Sparky on an old P4 laptop which my son had been using. Until he fried the graphics card by not ventilating the machine (on the carpet). Sigh. So the display looks funky when you can guess at what is being displayed. But I fired it up today – and apart from the display, Sparky is 100%. I’m downloading new ISOs on torrent and will try to convince a PL friend to try Sparky 😉

  7. Olá. Sou do Brazil. Uso Linux a 4 anos. Passei pelo Ubuntu, Mint, Debian e agora o Sparky. Estou gostando muito sem problemas até agora.

  8. My Dell Latitude D600 is on fire again…
    When the others distro rejects non-pae CPU on baseline, sparky use it.

  9. Thank you Sparky, I was given a discarded Packard Bell Easynote with the dreaded 32bit efi motheboard. It seems that Sparky is the only distro I could find that supports the 32bit, it took a bit of searching to find you, but after some tweaks that little machine is up and running. I am a member of several linux facebook groups and nobody could solve this for me, I believe that only a few people know that your distro will support 32bit. Anyway, I have posted a review in all these groups, I am not used to Debian as my main laptop runs Manjaro, I am looking forward to a new experience and fun. Thank you again and keep up the good work.

  10. I have been a Linux user since 1999 and have just installed Sparky on my Acer Aspire 5745G laptop. After almost two weeks of using it, I am for the most part delighted with Sparky. One thing I tried fro the first time ever was to use the open source nouveau video driver instead of the proprietary nvidia one as in other distros I had issues with the nvidia driver, especially in regards to applications running in wine. Now these applications under wine, such as the astro application “Nasa’s Eyes” runn perfectly. In the case of Goolge Earth (as Goolge-Earth for Linux has been broken for years), I find I can install the latest Goolge Earth for Windows in wine, which under nvidia could fail. In the past I found nouveau had no 3D accleleration/direct rendering, and so google-earth would run but very slow. Now it runs perfectly under nouveau.

    The general running of the OS feels slick and fast. Chromium is my main browser and I am finding it running so much faster with no flash. If I come across the odd site where I have to use flash, I view it in iceweasel where I have the adobe flash plugin installed. However, I find with Youtube in chromium, I am not missing flash which in other distros, the pepper-flash plugin had caused my chromium browser to lock up when I had many tabs (like 30+) open. Sparky with chromium, handled over 45 tabs no problem.

    I have found some minor issues though. When installing Sparky from the live DVD, I had to connect my laptop directly to my modem. My wifi device is “Broadcom Corporation BCM43225 802.11b/g/n (rev 01)”, and the packages for it to run were installed such as b43-fwcutter, firmware-b43-installer and firmware-b43legacy-installer. The problem I discovered after installation was that the wrong module, namely “b43” was blacklisted. The module that needed to be blacklisted was the “wl” module. Then when I enabled/unblacklisted b43 along with all the other modules previously blacklisted in /etc/modprobe.d/broadcom-sta-common.conf such as brcmsmac, ssb, cordic, mac80211, cfg80211 it works.

    The other annoyance was with Desktop management in XFCE. I was not able to initially use one of my countless digital camera photos as my background. Only when I copied whatever photo I wanted to use as my desktop to a folder it recognizes such as say “desktop-base”, could I use that photo as my desktop. When I open up a folder from my ~/Pictures folder and sub-folders, it sees the photos but they are “greyed out” and unable to be added to my desktop. The fix I have used is OK for the time being as a stopgap, but is not desirable as a permanent fix.

    The only other one is with an ancient astro application called “starplot”. Its development has ceased since 2007 but it is still in the Debian repo. When I install it with apt-get and run it from the command line I get the error message
    “*** Error in `starplot’: free(): invalid pointer: 0x00007fa0711c6f50 *** Aborted.

    I then tried compiling it, but after running it from the command line I get a similar message:

    *** Error in `/usr/local/test/bin/starplot’: free(): invalid pointer: 0x00007f1fa7207f50 *** Aborted.

    I am using in Sparky gcc compiler version 5.2.1 20151003 (Debian 5.2.1-21). The solution I found was to compile starplot on my Neptune Linux partition, and copy over the Neptune install to my Sparky partition. In Neptune, my gcc version is 4:4.7.2-1 which is essentially Debian Stable. Sparky I realise is based on Debain Testing.

    I must emphasize however that these are minor issues. Overall, I very happy with Sparky and its slick performance. The ability to use the open source driver to avoid issues with the nvidia driver, such as with wine apps, but still have proper direct rendering is a major attraction for me along with the much better performance with my chromium browser. All in all a great distro!

    • One more thing. When I installed Steam (I am using Sparky 4.1), I found it would not run. However, after visiting an Ubuntu forum, I found that executing the following command from the command line:

      LD_PRELOAD=’/usr/$LIB/libstdc++.so.6′ DIAPLAY=:0 steam

      that steam would work. I have written this command into a script which is executed by clicking onto my edited steam shortcut.

    • I have a Dell Inspiron 15R 5520 i3 core which I replaced the Broadcom BCM43142 wireless with Intel Centrino Advanced-N 6235. Every distro of Linux I install, presently Linux Mint 18.1 beta, I can always connect with a live dvd/usb. Going to download and try Sparky if it is UEFI compatible and dual boot with Windows 10.

  11. Hi, was having so much trouble with Debian identifying the wireless card firmware and didn’t like the mint/Debian/Cinnamon setup I was using previously. I’ve been using Linux since 2004 and it bugs me why developers can’t quite see past their server systems to the gui land that most computer users live in. The year of the Linux desktop will come when we make a great one.

    On the subject, because they try to educate us to adapt to their style, rather than adapting to ours, It will be a long time before I try Gnome, & derivatives, or Unity again. Fix the bugs, then trowel on the sparkle.

    Rant over, thanks for your efforts, I am going to enjoy your distro. If you need any help with english grammar I have time.

    • the linux desktop will be successful when the community overcomes the video game hurdle.
      . when noob users can download a game and click go, so to speak, and it goes, then linux will have made it; meaning, windows games
      . so, needs Equal graphics drivers to windows drivers, ease of installation of windows programs, including windows to linux implementation of graphics without loss, and no bugs, no crashes, glitches, etc.
      . when that happens, linux will succeed on the desktop computer
      . what would be great is linux Exceeding game performance of windows games on linux vs. windows

      • When desktop computers ware developed, the purpose was for home accounting and stuff like that, not games. That’s what the arcade was made for. So yes, linux succeded in desktop computers. For games to run on linux, it’s not up to the linux developers but to the game developers. And there are plenty of cross-platform games running natively on linux. Have a look on Steam 😉

  12. Thank you for a wonderful operating system. I now use Sparky Linux as my everyday operating system. I had problems with windows-7. My laptop was so slow, that I just turned it off. I can turn it back and actually use it to the max with Sparky Linux. I will make a contribution to the Sparky Linux project very soon. Keep up the good work!

  13. I would like to thank the development team of “Sparky Linux” for putting together a fantastic, lightweight, and speedy operating system. I use Sparky Linux as my everyday operating system. I to, like others, had a lot of issues and problems with windows-7 OS.
    I will make a contribution to the Sparky Linux project very soon. Keep up the good work! Thanks again!


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