Porteus Kiosk 5.1.0 Released: A Gentoo-based Linux Operating System

Yesterday, Tomasz Jokiel announced the release of a new Porteus Kiosk 5.1.0 with Linux kernel 5.4.70, and other system components update to the latest version from Gentoo stable branch.

For those who don’t know, Porteus Kiosk is a free, lightweight, and single-purpose Linux-based operating system. You can use it for several purposes such as displaying information, advertisements, as an Internet kiosk, or at other publicly available web terminals in schools, libraries, cafes, or hotels.

Unlike traditional Linux distros, Porteus Kiosk only allows using a web browser and prevents users from tampering with settings or downloading and installing software. As soon as you boot Kiosk, it automatically opens a Firefox or Google Chrome browser to your chosen home page.

What’s New In Porteus Kiosk 5.1.0?

Among the major software upgrades, the latest Kiosk includes Google Chrome 85.0.4183.121 and Mozilla Firefox 78.3.1 ESR. A full list of other updated packages for Porteus Kiosk 5.1.0 is available here.

With the new version of Firefox, you can now again use the Silent Printing Features, which had a bug earlier. Additionally, kiosk 5.1.0 has also disabled irc:// and ircs:// handlers for the Firefox browser to prevent unlocking of default browser profiles and running other apps in kiosk by attackers.

For the Citrix Workspace software platform, Porteus has also brought some changes such as enabling microphone and webcam redirection by default and disabling of ctxusb daemon.

Furthermore, kiosk 5.1.0 has included VAAPI (Video Acceleration API) info in the debug log so that you can find which video codecs could be hardware decoded by the GPU. It has also enabled EFI stub support in the kernel config to allow booting kiosk on some HP PCs equipped with EFI firmware.

Here are the other key updates that Porteus Kiosk 5.1.0 has added:

  • Disabled Ctrl+Shift+d keyboard shortcut by default
  • Disabled completion panel on the virtual keyboard
  • Enable the feature to wipe the guest’s home folder from the persistent partition using the ‘persistence=wipe’ parameter in remote kiosk config
  • Broadcom and Realtek PHY drivers are compiled directly into the kernel to resolve PXE booting issues on some PCs
  • Create PTY nodes during system boot in ThinClient edition
  • Prevent double mounting the kiosk’s client file system in Porteus Kiosk Server “Premium”

Now, if you want to try the new Kiosk 5.1.0, get its ISO image from the official download page, which sizes around 100MB.