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...is becoming an easy-to-use free software operating system for the home and small office user. It is powerful, lightweight and extraordinarily fast and responsive. More info.

Try Syllable!
 
Software

There are four ways to try Syllable:

[Live CD]
[Basic CD]
[Emulate]
[Upgrade]
Live CD Basic CD Emulate Upgrade

Syllable Desktop is a graphical system that runs on standard Personal Computers and is easy to operate. If you just want to try it out, the best way to do that is to use the Live CD. This is a good way to experience how Syllable runs on your computer and to check if your hardware is supported. It is also a good way to use Syllable once in a while and to take it with you to other computers. It requires that you restart your computer and make it start from the CD instead of the operating system that you have installed on your computer.

If you have trouble doing that, or if your hardware is not supported well enough by Syllable, you can try running the emulator image in an emulator. There are several emulators available that will work. You can also use this method if you want to use Syllable more often and want to keep your data on it, but you are not ready yet to install it on a partition of your hard disk. Be aware that emulators are much slower than the real thing, and they can have odd behaviours, so this is not a good way to judge Syllable's real performance. On the other hand, you can often expect Syllable to run better than many mainstream systems, because they are often too big and slow to run well on emulators. In general, Syllable works best with the VMware and QEmu emulators. VirtualBox is often reported as being problematic.

If you want to go all the way and experience Syllable fully, you can download the Basic CD to install it on a disk partition of its own. Although installing is not very difficult, it is more complicated than running the Live CD or the emulator image. You need to have a basic understanding of the organisation of your disk in partitions. You will be rewarded with the fastest Syllable system possible. An installation on disk is much faster than running the Live CD and requires less memory.

Installing Syllable is easier than installing most other systems, and upgrading Syllable to a newer version without loosing your data and settings is definitely much easier.

If you have installed Syllable or are running the emulator image, you can download and install extra software.

Syllable is distributed under the terms of the GNU General Public License and other free software licenses, which means you can download the source code, too (regular download, torrent download).


Syllable Server is a Linux system that runs on standard Personal Computers but currently doesn't have much of a graphical environment yet. It needs to be operated from the command line, but is otherwise as easy as Syllable Desktop. With some basic Linux command line knowledge you can install it on a disk partition or run the emulator image in an emulator.

[Live CD]

The Live CD is a CD image that you can burn yourself and that lets you try Syllable without installing it on your hard drive.

The Live CD contains only a working copy of Syllable itself, which cannot be installed. It also requires more main memory than a Syllable installation: you need to have a minimum of 64 MB.

To set up the Live CD:
  1. Download the Live CD image. Choose the archive for the unpacking program that is easiest for you to use.

    Torrent downloads (preferred):

    Syllable Desktop 0.6.6 Live CD image (56 MB 7-Zip archive)
    Syllable Desktop 0.6.6 Live CD image (56 MB XZ-Utils archive)

    Please use a torrent download with a BitTorrent program if you can. This saves us traffic costs. We also appreciate it a lot if you leave your BitTorrent client running when you are done with the download, so others can keep downloading it from you.

    Regular downloads:

    Syllable Desktop 0.6.6 Live CD image (56 MB 7-Zip archive)
    Syllable Desktop 0.6.6 Live CD image (56 MB XZ-Utils archive)

  2. Unpack the image file. If you downloaded the 7-Zip archive, you need to have the 7-Zip program installed (7-Zip for Windows. 7-Zip for other systems). On Linux, Syllable, MacOS or other Unix-like systems, open the terminal program in the directory of the downloaded archive and type this at the command prompt:
        7za x SyllableDesktop-0.6.6-LiveCD.i586.iso.7z
    
    On Windows you must use the Windows version of the 7-Zip program.

    If you downloaded the XZ archive, you need to have the XZ-Utils program package installed, which is available on modern versions of Unix-like systems, such as Linux, Syllable or MacOS. Open the terminal program in the directory of the downloaded archive and type this at the command prompt:
        unxz SyllableDesktop-0.6.6-LiveCD.i586.iso.xz
    
    (Note that the original archive will be deleted, so make a copy beforehand if you want to keep it.)
  3. Burn the decompressed ISO disk image to a CD using your preferred burning software (such as cdrecord on Linux, Nero on Windows, or Disk Utility on OS X). Make sure you burn the decompressed file as an ISO image, not as a data file.

  4. Keep the burned CD in your CD-ROM drive.

  5. Restart your computer. If the CD does not start into Syllable automatically, you may need to change your BIOS settings to attempt booting from your CD-ROM before booting from your hard drive. If Syllable gets stuck during start-up, you may need to use one of the alternative entries from the boot menu to adapt to your hardware.

  6. Log in by selecting the user “root” (the privileged user account) and entering the password, which by default is also root.

  7. Please read the documentation for Syllable. There are several important texts that can answer many questions for you:

    Welcome to Syllable!
    Release notes and changes for Syllable Desktop
    Frequently Asked Questions

    PCLinuxOS Magazine has a walk-through of the installation and start-up process with screenshots.

[Basic CD]

The Syllable Basic CD image allows you to burn a CD from which you can install Syllable.

To install Syllable from the Basic CD:
  1. Download the Basic CD image. To unpack it, you need to have the 7-Zip program installed (7-Zip for Windows. 7-Zip for other systems).

    Syllable Desktop 0.6.7 Basic CD image (93 MB 7-Zip archive)

    These files are hosted on SourceForge. If you have trouble downloading from their mirror system, you can alternatively download the same files with a BitTorrent program:

    Syllable Desktop 0.6.7 torrent download (93 MB 7-Zip archive)

  2. Unpack the image file. On Linux, Syllable, MacOS or other Unix-like systems, open the terminal program in the directory of the downloaded archive and type this at the command prompt:
        7za x SyllableDesktop-0.6.7-1.i586.iso.7z
    
    On Windows you must use the Windows version of the 7-Zip program.
  3. Burn the decompressed ISO disk image to a CD using your preferred burning software (such as cdrecord on Linux, Nero on Windows, or Disk Utility on OS X). Make sure you burn the decompressed file as an ISO image, not as a data file.

  4. Keep the burned CD in your CD-ROM drive.

  5. Restart your computer. If the CD does not start into Syllable automatically, you may need to change your BIOS settings to attempt booting from your CD-ROM before booting from your hard drive. If Syllable gets stuck during start-up, you may need to use one of the alternative entries from the boot menu to adapt to your hardware.

  6. Follow the installation instructions carefully.

  7. Log in by selecting the user “root” (the privileged user account) and entering the password, which by default is also root.

  8. Please read the documentation for Syllable. There are several important texts that can answer many questions for you:

    Welcome to Syllable!
    Release notes and changes for Syllable Desktop
    Frequently Asked Questions

    PCLinuxOS Magazine has a walk-through of the installation and start-up process with screenshots.

  9. If you want to compile software on Syllable, you need to install an extra package with additional development files (static libraries and accompanying headers that are part of system components):

    Syllable Desktop 0.6.7 development files

    First unzip the package:
        unzip SyllableDesktop-0.6.7-development-1.i586.zip
    
    The development files need to be installed and registered into the /system/ directory with the included installation script:
        cd SyllableDesktop-0.6.7-development
        ./install.sh
    
    (Please note that you cannot use these development files with any other version of Syllable. Contrary to other software for Syllable, the development files must match the Syllable system version exactly. If you upgrade your system, you must also install the new development files to keep using them.)
[Emulate]

You can run Syllable through VMware, QEmu, Virtual PC or VirtualBox (although VirtualBox is often reported to be problematic). This allows you to install Syllable on a virtual disk while you run another operating system such as Windows.
  1. For VMware and other emulators that can use VMware disk images, such as QEmu, download the pre-installed and configured VMware disk image. You have the choice between two files. The regular file is compressed with the 7-Zip program. To unpack it, you need to have the 7-Zip program installed (7-Zip for Windows. 7-Zip for other systems). The alternative file is a self-extracting archive, but only for Windows or WINE. You can run it as a program and it will unpack itself, so you don't need 7-Zip.

    Syllable Desktop 0.6.6 VMware image (55 MB 7-Zip archive)
    Syllable Desktop 0.6.6 VMware image (55 MB self-extracting archive for Windows or WINE)

    These files are hosted on SourceForge. If you have trouble downloading from their mirror system, you can alternatively download the same files with a BitTorrent program:

    Syllable Desktop 0.6.6 torrent download (55 MB 7-Zip archive)
    Syllable Desktop 0.6.6 torrent download (55 MB self-extracting archive for Windows or WINE)

  2. Please make sure that your download was correct by computing and comparing the MD5 checksum for the file you downloaded.

  3. Unpack the image file. If you downloaded the 7-Zip archive, then on Linux, Syllable, MacOS or other Unix-like systems, open the terminal program in the directory of the downloaded archive and type this at the command prompt:
        7za x SyllableDesktop-0.6.6.i586.VM.7z
    
    On Windows you must use the Windows version of the 7-Zip program.

    If you downloaded the self-extracting archive, just click on it in Windows or WINE to start it and make it unpack itself.
  4. Start the image file with the emulator program of your choice.

  5. Log in by selecting the user “root” (the privileged user account) and entering the password, which by default is also root.

  6. Please read the documentation for Syllable. There are several important texts that can answer many questions for you:

    Welcome to Syllable!
    Release notes and changes for Syllable Desktop
    Frequently Asked Questions

    PCLinuxOS Magazine has a walk-through of the installation and start-up process with screenshots.

[Upgrade]

If you already have a Syllable installation and want to upgrade to the latest version, use an upgrade package. Please note that the Internet applications Webster and Whisper are not upgraded through this, so you may have to reinstall those manually.
  1. Download the upgrade package that follows on your version of Syllable. If you want to upgrade from several versions ago, you need to upgrade in several steps:

    0.6.5 to 0.6.6 [regular download, torrent download (47 MB)]
    0.6.4 to 0.6.5
    0.6.3 to 0.6.4
    0.6.2 to 0.6.3
    0.6.1 to 0.6.2
    0.6.0a to 0.6.1
    0.6.0 to 0.6.0a

  2. Please make sure that your download was correct by computing and comparing the MD5 checksum for the file you downloaded.

  3. These packages are compressed with the 7-Zip program, which is included in Syllable. To unpack an upgrade package, open the ATerm application and type the following at the command prompt. If you didn't put the upgrade package in your home directory, but for example on the desktop, you need to go there:
        cd Desktop
    
  4. Then unpack the upgrade:
        7za x SyllableDesktop-0.6.6-upgrade.i586.7z
    
  5. The upgrade files are contained in a subdirectory. Go in there:
        cd upgrade
    
  6. Now run the upgrade program and follow the instructions carefully. It is best to close all other open applications before doing this, because they may stop working when parts of them are upgraded.
        ./upgrade.sh
    
  7. Please read the documentation for Syllable. There are several important texts that can answer many questions for you:

    Welcome to Syllable!
    Release notes and changes for Syllable Desktop
    Frequently Asked Questions

    PCLinuxOS Magazine has a walk-through of the installation and start-up process with screenshots.



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