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  • Belenix – an old time distro, on which development has resumed again. Uses RPM.
  • illumian - general purpose server OS using Debian packaging rather than IPS (similar to OpenIndiana but without GUI components or other desktop packages), the open-source underpinnings of the commercial NexentaStor product. Currently no KVM virtualization support (feature to be possibly added later).
  • napp-it is a project of a ready to use ZFS storage server based on illumian, NexentaCore, OpenIndiana and Solaris with a single-command online installer and a WEB-UI. 
  • NexentaStor
  • OmniOS - from OmniTI takes a minimalist approach to create a full Illumos-derived operating system. It includes all of the benefits of Illumos, such as zone and KVM virtualization, and is suitable for server use.
  • OpenIndiana is a successor to and derived from the original Sun OpenSolaris reference distribution, and is suitable for use on Servers and Desktops.
  • SmartOS from Joyent is an open-source illumos distro designed for cloud computing. It includes a port of KVM, allowing other OSes such as Linux and Windows to run natively in SmartOS/illumos virtualized environments.
  • StormOS - originally intended to be based on the illumos kernel with Debian userland, now repurposed as an extension of illumian that adds a GUI and other desktop packages to create a dpkg based desktop OS.
  • DilOS from igork is an open-source illumos distro with dpkg/apt. Can be using on VM and bare metal with text console and SSH logins as development environment with DPKG & IPKG zones.
  • Tribblix from Peter Tribble uses SVR4 packaging and the Xfce desktop, providing a retro feel with modern components
  • XStreamOS is a distribution of the illumos kernel developed and maintained by Sonicle, featuring a customized text install, the ZFS fileystem, Crossbow network architecture, virtualization, zones, and a starting point to contribute and develop the illumos kernel.
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Distro Comparison Table

NameCreated/maintained byPackaging SystemDefault UserlandRecommended UseNotes
Belenix rpm   
illumianNexentadeb/aptGNUGeneral purpose - servers 
NexentaStorNexentadeb/aptGNUStorage appliances 
OmniOSOmniTIIPS General purpose - servers 
OpenIndianaEveryCity/communityIPSGNU (Native optional)General purpose - servers and desktop 
SmartOSJoyentpkgsrcGNUCloud computing hypervisor, appliances 
StormOS   General purpose - desktop


TribblixPeter TribbleSVR4 Desktop, but will expand to server 
XStreamOSSonicleIPS General purpose