Unpopular Opinion Penguin #7: PNX

Hello, and welcome!

Today’s new entry in this section of Unpopular Opinion Penguin will be about PNX; What was it? What happened to it? And why was it never released?

So, let’s go!

What was PNX?

Customary to what we do—besides pissing off over-zealous Linux religious fanatics—we thought: wouldn’t it be fun and cool to use Pacman in Nitrux? And so we did.

On January 2nd, 2020, after working on it for a few weeks, I demoed PNX or Pacman for Nitrux or at least the idea behind it. The goal was to use the Pacman package manager in Nitrux to shut down the people that constantly and consistently complained that (at the time) NItrux was just Ubuntu with Plasma and a different theme. I figured that by including PNX, these people would shut the fuck up, but, unfortunately, I was dead wrong.

On February 4th, 2020, we added an entry to the Nitrux blog (at the time hosted at Medium).

Later, having improved on PNX, I tweeted about it again on June 1st, 2020. Only this time, I used PNX to install the Nvidia X Server application and Inkscape and demoed the programs running from the PNX root. PNX could install, update, remove, and launch the software from the PNX root as if it were a “native” application installed to the system’s root with its package manager. The software could load environmental variables like colors, application styling (like Kvantum), and icons. And since PNX was using the Arch Linux repositories, it was very up-to-date.



For a brief time, we included PNX and VMetal in the ISO files compatible with znx.

However, that was the last time I talked about PNX. Why? Well, here’s why.

Wrong Side of Heaven and the Righteous Side of Hell

After the debacle with znx and VMetal, I didn’t feel like putting the time and effort into providing software to people who would attack us. I figured, what was the point in trying to win these assholes? Why them?—Fuck them. Ultimately, I didn’t think these people deserved this software, nor znx and VMetal. So just like that, another idea thrashed because of Linux’s over-zealous assholes.

And sure, you may think, “Ah, but that’s a minority; not every user is like that,” and maybe you’re right in that not every user is like that, but so far, in my experience, is that the kind of users that the first thing they tell you is “I’ve been using Linux for over 25 years!”, are the first to shun these ideas. As if they feel threatened, like their whole life will crumble because of a piece of software that they won’t even be using.

But also, neither should I have to endure these assholes, nor should we have to provide free software to them. And since I couldn’t control one, I had to do the other. The source code of PNX was archived and removed later on.

Unpopular Opinion

And so that leads me to realize the following, Do you know why there never is a “Year of the Linux Desktop”? One could’ve thought it was because of technological limitations, but I don’t think so. I think technology stopped being a limiting factor approximately ten or eight years ago; no, the reason is people, or rather, the kind of assholes that get triggered by other people attempting to innovate.

Inspired by the famous quote from the Fallout video game series:

Technology evolves, it improves, but people… people never change.

Unlike VMetal, which I still use, PNX remains unused. Nowadays, software like Distrobox can provide a similar experience; however, unlike PNX, it uses containers. Whereas with PNX, the software was installed within the root of the existing host, as it was neither a chroot.

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