The Tiny X Server Fork Is Still Being Maintained
Written by Michael Larabel in X.Org on 10 January 2014 at 11:36 AM EST. 11 Comments
The tinyx fork of the X.Org Server back from version 1.2.0 with Xvesa support and replaces XFree86 era code in some lightweight Linux distributions like Tiny Core Linux and Puppy. One of the developers has commented on the recent X Server security vulnerability that remained unresolved for more than two decades.

The tinyx fork isn't to be confused with the TinyX/KDrive fork of the server from the past but is unrelated. The X.Org Server 1.2.0 fork is updated to work in a modern Linux environment and strips away all unnecessary code for its users. There's also tweaks for a faster X Server start-up time and other tweaks. The tinyx 32-bit binaries can be about 500kb in size.

The reason for mentioning tinyx today is that one of the involved developers has chimed in on the latest 23-year old X Server security vulnerability that was disclosed a few days ago.

The Phoronix reader and tinyx maintainer that back-ports these security fixes into their forked code-based "Ibidem", made several observations in the forums that might be of interest to those who have never dived into the X Server code themselves.

This independent developer noted that the upstream X.Org Server has a lot more of the code is unchanged in years than he would have expected, backporting of fixes to older X Servers is frequently trivial, and it's fairly quick in backporting fixes despite X's old reputation.

Ibidem also noted, "when I read [the X Server code] I'm not surprised by the number of bugs or the static nature of the code. It seems to be most fun when you have a little bit of a masochistic streak..."
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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