| DistroWatch Weekly
|DistroWatch Weekly, Issue 154, 5 June 2006
Welcome to this year's 23rd issue of DistroWatch Weekly! The long-awaited version 6.06 of the Ubuntu family of Linux distributions dominated the headlines of many open source news sites last week; we'll comment on the release and share our first impressions of the new product. In other news, the second Red Hat Summit, concluded last week, was characterised by the launch of several new initiatives, while the Debian release team has been busy finalising the feature set for the December release of Debian "etch". Also, don't miss our opinion piece about the changing landscape of Linux users prompted by the recent release of the binary-only Picasa photo management software for Linux. Finally, we are pleased to announce that the May 2006 DistroWatch donation has been awarded to LilyPond and Lua. Happy reading!
- News: Ubuntu 6.06, Red Hat Summit, Fedora Unity respins, Debian "etch" update
- First looks: Ubuntu 6.06
- Opinion: The changing landscape of Linux users
- Released last week: Ubuntu 6.06 LTS, Turbolinux 11 International Edition
- Upcoming releases: Frenzy 1.0, Parsix GNU/Linux 0.80
- Donations: LilyPond €190, Lua US$250
- New additions: BinToo GNU/Linux, Dzongkha Linux
- New distributions: BINKI GNU/Linux, Bluewhite 64 Linux, HOST, maliGNUz, PapugLinux
- Reader comments
Listen to the Podcast edition of this week's DistroWatch Weekly in ogg (11.4MB) or mp3 (13.6MB) format (courtesy of Shawn Milo).
Join us at irc.freenode.net #distrowatch
Ubuntu 6.06, Red Hat Summit, Fedora Unity respins, Debian "etch" update|
If you happen to enjoy Linux, but dislike Ubuntu, you probably regretted connecting to the Internet in the second half of the past week. As expected, there just wasn't a single open source web site which didn't carry the big announcements by the various Ubuntu sub-projects, further linking to a large number of reviews, tutorials, screenshot tours, feature lists, third-party enhancements, and many other resources that the distribution's user community has created since the big release. If there were any doubts whether Ubuntu is truly one of the most popular Linux distributions today, they were dispelled once and for all. With its fourth official release and the first one with long term support benefits, it is now clear that the Ubuntu family of distributions has become one of the most influential and enthusiastically embraced open source operating systems ever created - and deservedly so.
The Ubuntu family of distributions now comes with graphical language and software management tools.
(full image size: 288kB, resolution: 1280x800 pixels)
* * * * *
In contrast, the second annual Red Hat Summit, which took place last week in Nashville, Tennessee, has attracted little community media coverage. This was perhaps best demonstrated by the comments section on Slashdot which linked to an article covering the event, but which generated barely over 30 reader comments. That's not to say there wasn't anything interesting happening at the Red Hat conference. Quite the opposite - the North Carolina company has unveiled Mugshot, an online social network for sharing music and other entertainment-related content, reiterated its support for the US$100 One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) project, and opened Red Hat 108, a development portal dedicated to enterprise developers and system integrators. The company has also announced the release dates for the upcoming Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 5, the first beta of which is scheduled for release in July, the second beta in September, and the final version in December 2006. The new version of the enterprise distribution will be based on the upcoming Fedora Core 6, the first beta of which should be out in about two weeks from now.
* * * * *
Also largely unnoticed was the announcement by the Fedora Unity project that it has released a respin of Fedora Core 5, complete with all official security updates and bug fixes since the distribution's release in March 2006. Fedora Unity is a community project which distributes its files through the BitTorrent network. The idea is to help those who wish to perform a new Fedora 5 installation; instead of getting the original release and applying hundreds of megabytes of updates after the installation, user can simply download the updated DVD image from Fedora Unity and have an up-to-date system straight away. Compared to Fedora Core 5, the new respin contains over 550 updates; most of these are minor security and bug fixes, however, quite a few major applications were upgraded to newer upstream versions. These include the Linux kernel (upgraded to version 2.6.16), Beagle (0.2.6), Epiphany (2.14.1), Ethereal (0.99.0), Firefox (18.104.22.168), GIMP (2.2.11), GNOME (2.14.1), K3B (0.12.14), KDE (3.5.2), MySQL (5.0.21) and PHP (5.1.4), just to mention a few popular ones. The Fedora Unity respins are currently available for the i386 architecture, with the x86_64 edition in a testing stage and the PowerPC edition in a planning phase. New respins are expected to be released monthly.
* * * * *
Some six months before the planned final release of Debian "etch", the feature set of the new major version of the world's largest Linux distribution is about to be finalised. According to a mailing list post by Andreas Barth, some of the main "etch" release goals include: "GCC 4.1 transition, LSB 3.1 compatibility, SELinux support, pervasive IPV6 support, pervasive LFS (large files) support, new Python framework." The Python updates should make it significantly easier to migrate Python-based applications to newer versions, with "etch" expected to default to the Python 2.4 series. See the bits from the release team for more details and time line. On a related note, Debian has also announced that security support for Debian GNU/Linux 3.0 "woody", a product originally released in July 2002, will be terminated on 30 June 2006. All "woody" installations should now be migrated to Debian GNU/Linux 3.1 "sarge", the current stable release.
First Look at Ubuntu 6.06 (Dapper Drake) by Robert Storey
We've got them now.
- General George Armstrong Custer, 1876
In the great battle for supremacy on the Linux desktop, Ubuntu is a force to be reckoned with. Long occupying the number one spot on the DistroWatch hit list (which is not the same as saying this is the most popular distro), Ubuntu has a large and growing following.
Needless to say, the long-anticipated release of Ubuntu "Dapper Drake" on June 1 was a major event that dominated the news on DistroWatch and other Linux web sites around the world. The release was originally scheduled for April 10, but was delayed six weeks in order to give the developers time to exterminate bugs. Ubuntu fans grumbled about the delay, but nearly everybody agreed that a delayed but excellent release was better than an on-time bug-ridden mess.
As an Ubuntu beta-tester, I was particularly keen to see this awesome distro make its debut. And now that it's arrived, I'm sad to say that I'm just a little bit deflated. Maybe more than a little. I realize that many people are delighted with their Ubuntu installation, and I hate to be the guy who dropped a turd in the punch bowl. The reason for my melancholy is that at least two major flaws survived the bug-squashing party, and they are showstoppers for me. There are also a number of other minor annoyances.
I want to end this mini-review on a happy-happy note, so let's get the negative stuff out of the way first. The most noticeable problem was with the video driver. I currently have two (only two?) computers, a laptop and a desktop. Coincidentally, both machines use the "ati" driver, and with Dapper both machines display what looks like "snow" in the "radio buttons" (those "OK" and "Cancel" buttons) in certain applications. This is a minor annoyance, but not fatal. Unfortunately, (on the laptop only) I also experience fatal screen crashes at the login screen whenever I move the mouse cursor. Interestingly, this only occurs if I login and logout at least one time after bootup - it will not occur at the first login. I can only recover from the crash with a hard reset, which means pulling the plug and removing the laptop's battery, since this machine has no reset button. This bug did not occur in Ubuntu Breezy, or any other distro I've used to date.
I reported this bug and received a polite response from the developers. While waiting for a fix, I've found a reasonable workaround. I edited file /etc/X11/xorg.conf and replaced the "ati" driver with "vesa". The vesa driver works with just about any hardware, but it's a noticeably slow driver. I no longer experience crashes, but I can forget about playing PlanetPenguin-Racer (ppracer, formerly known as TuxRacer).
The other big bug involves printing. Whether or not this affects you may depend on the printer you have, but many others besides myself reported the same problem so I know I'm not alone. What I found (during beta-testing) is that my printer would only print in draft mode, even though I'd set it up to print high-quality. However, the problem only seemed to affect Gnome apps - the KDE apps all printed beautifully. You notice I'm talking in the past tense. That's because since the final release of Dapper, things have changed - the above-mention bug is no longer an issue because I can no longer print anything at all! This is a near disaster. Although I don't use it often, a printer is rather like an ATM card - when you need it, you really need it, or you're in big trouble.
Although not officially a bug (it's a feature!), I found that I could not start the X server by disabling gdm, booting into text mode, and then running startx. This is one of those "minor annoyances" I was referring to earlier.
So much for the bad news. On the positive side, Dapper's applications are (not surprisingly) very up-to-date. Performance has also improved since Breezy. The "live" CD has been renamed "desktop" and now boasts a graphical installer. The former "install" CD (which sports a text-mode installer) has been redubbed "alternate". Personally, I prefer the "alternate" to the "desktop" - the live CD would simply not boot on my laptop, though it did work OK on my desktop computer. Furthermore, the text-mode installer offers options not available on the graphical one.
A new member to the CD collection is the "server" CD. Intriguingly, if you install from the server CD and later decide that you really wanted a desktop after all, you can run one of the following commands to install the Ubuntu desktop of your choice:
• sudo apt-get install ubuntu-desktop
• sudo apt-get install kubuntu-desktop
• sudo apt-get install xubuntu-desktop
• sudo apt-get install edubuntu-desktop
There are also Dapper DVD editions in the pipeline, but these have not been released yet. Hopefully, these won't be released until the bugs have been eradicated.
For some users, an important new feature is that Dapper comes with built-in Asian-language support. Since I live in a bilingual household, this happens to be very useful to me. Even for those who don't speak Chinese, Japanese or Korean, this is an important innovation since it finally makes Ubuntu a truly international distro on a par with Fedora or Mandriva. This can only help increase its mind share.
Ubuntu uses SCIM for inputting the complex East Asian languages
Thanks to two evil legislative concepts, the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) and software patents, almost every Linux distro on the planet is crippled at birth. For example, you can't legally watch DVDs without a license or rip your own MP3s. In theory, this is only a problem if you live in a country that has enacted this odious legislation, but as a practical matter, Linux developers can't create a separate CD for every country. Therefore, they aim for the lowest common denominator, which means that almost every distro is multi-media brain-dead on arrival.
Ubuntu is no exception, but geeks have found a clever way around the issue. Currently, there are two excellent scripts that you can download and run that will solve this problem handily. One is called Automatix and the other is EasyUbuntu. Of the two, I prefer Automatix because it seems to do more and offers more precise control over what you install. However, EasyUbuntu is slightly easier, as the name implies.
One problem I encountered with EasyUbuntu is when I gave it permission to install ATI binary drivers - this rendered my X server useless, leaving me with an unbootable system. Fortunately, I had the presence of mind to make a backup copy of my /etc/X11/xorg.conf file, and I was able to recover by booting into "recovery mode" (single-user mode) and renaming the backup. I guess this is as good a time as any for me to say that I think ATI's drivers suck. Perhaps this will change if AMD takes over ATI Technologies, as rumoured, but don't hold your breath waiting.
I was surprised to find that neither Automatix nor EasyUbuntu installed Grip, the premier MP3 ripper-encoder. Of course, it's easy enough to install by itself after you've enabled MP3 support. (Note: in Grip, select "lame" as your encoder if you want the MP3 file format).
Getting support is an important factor in choosing a distro. Happily, the Ubuntu community is a strong selling point. Check out the forum and/or #ubuntu on freenode. Don't forget to take a peek at the wiki.
Ubuntu is a slick desktop (and now server) distro with many commendable features. Speed, ease of use and brilliant Debian-style package management have rightfully put this distro at (or near) the top of the charts.
Unfortunately, despite a six-week delay from the original release date, I can't help but get the feeling that Dapper shipped too early. There are several serious bugs which will likely leave many newbies and hardcore veterans alike banging their collective heads against the wall. A live CD that can't boot, a video driver that hard crashes and the inability to print, are not minor quibbles. And I really wish it was possible to boot into text-mode and run startx rather than being chained to gdm. Admittedly, your mileage may vary - many of the problems I've described are hardware dependent. However, I successfully ran Ubuntu Breezy on this same equipment for six months and didn't have such problems - it's disconcerting to see backsliding. I was hoping that I could tell my friends that Dapper is now the end-all be-all of Linux distros, but sadly, I cannot.
My main hope is that, in the next few weeks, Ubuntu developers will issue updates that eliminate all these bugs. It's worth noting that Dapper is supposed to be Ubuntu's first "enterprise class" release. This means that the server repositories will be supported for five years, and the desktop repos for three. Of course, long before then I hope to be running Ubuntu's next release, code-named Edgy Eft.
One issue that you, our readership, may wish to discuss is whether or not Ubuntu's decision to stick to a six-month release schedule is so wise. After this latest experience, I'm personally of the opinion that Debian's "release when it's ready" philosophy has much to recommend it.
The changing landscape of Linux users
Life of a Linux user was a lot less stressful back in the nineties. The difficulty of installing and maintaining a Linux distribution ensured that only those who had made an effort to learn the UNIX command line were able to use it effectively. The rest of the population was simply out of the game, leaving the mailing lists and online forums to experienced hackers engaging in highly technical discussions. Today, things are different. Those who still claim that Linux is not ready for the desktop should just visit one of the general Linux discussion forums to notice questions that clearly indicate that even moderately experienced computer users now install and use Linux as a matter of routine - perhaps not full time just yet, but certainly with an expectation to be able to dump their proprietary operating system completely in the future.
While it is always nice to see that today's Linux distributions are able to attract computer users who would have not considered installing the open source operating system just a few years ago, the increasing number of Linux users have contributed to the polarisation of the Linux user base. On one hand, we have the old style hacker, fluent in command line tasks, Vim or Autoconf. On the other, there are a large number of new Linux fans who use their computer to get things done. By extension, there are Linux users who value the power and freedom open source software provides, but there are also increasing numbers of those who see Linux as just a freely available operating system they can use for their work or entertainment.
Nowhere was this polarisation more obvious than in the discussion about the merits of Picasa in last week's edition of DistroWatch Weekly. Although some people agreed with the negative sentiment towards Picasa as expressed in the main article, there were many who argued the opposite. "Who cares if Picasa is closed-source software or that it isn't a native Linux application? The most important thing is that it works and enables more people migrate to Linux," they argued. "After all, isn't Linux about world domination?"
No, not at all.
As defined by the Free Software Foundation (FSF), Linux, GNU and Free Software provide four essential freedoms. Of these, the freedom to modify the program to suit your needs and the freedom to build a community by improving the program are particularly important for this discussion. Those of you who have ever recompiled an open source application to change a certain behaviour or add a feature will understand the joy of being able to do so. Likewise, those of you who have ever helped a project by submitting a bug report, suggestion, code snippet or translation must have felt the satisfaction of helping in the development of your favourite program. Clearly, this is software freedom at its best!
Let me give you an example. Recently I was fascinated to read a web log post by Christian Perrier, a Debian developer, about his trip to Bhutan, a mountainous Asian country sandwiched between India and China. As it turns out, a group of Linux enthusiasts in Bhutan have been working on localising Debian into Dzongkha, the kingdom's principal language. After several years of work creating fonts, developing input methods, writing documentation and providing translation, the project was able to produce a full-featured desktop distribution with support for the country's language and writing system. Finally, last week, the Department of Information Technology at Bhutan's Ministry of Information and Communications launched Dzongkha Linux, a Debian-based distribution with support for the Dzongkha language and writing system. Even the Prime Minister of Bhutan is said to have attended the launch party!
If you don't think this is absolutely fantastic, then let me put it in a different way. You and I know about several huge software monopolies which make more money in one day that the entire population of Bhutan makes in a year. Despite that, they will never ever be able to create software localised into Dzongkha! That's just not possible - simply because it doesn't make financial sense to the shareholders of those companies. The above miracle was possible only because Debian is an open source operating system which encourages collaboration and welcomes contributions!
But maybe you don't care if citizens of some faraway, impoverished country can use their computers without having to learn a foreign language first. If that's the case, then let me give you another example. Just visit the Picasa web site and compare it to the web sites of some of the open source photo management applications, such as digiKam or F-Spot. On the latter two, you can quickly find links to reporting bugs, requesting features, and getting involved in the development. Most open source projects also provide an easy way to translate menus and documentation into different languages. With Picasa (and most other proprietary software), there is no easy way to submit requests for new features, exchange email with the developers, or localise menus and help files.
Don't get me wrong - I am not saying that you shouldn't use Picasa. Maybe it has a feature that you absolutely cannot live without or you just consider it the best photo management applications there is. But before you download Picasa, or before you recommend it to your relatives and friends, ask yourself a simple question: in the long run, wouldn't we all be better off if we used and promoted Free Software equivalents instead? If you like a feature in Picasa and would want to see it included in digiKam, why not write to the developers of digiKam and request that feature? While you might not receive a positive answer straight away, I can virtually guarantee you that if enough people ask for the feature, the developers will eventually implement it. Contributing code, documentation, translation or a few dollars are other options that can help a Free Software project move ahead faster.
Free Software has come a long way since its early, visionary days. Please don't fall into the trap of believing that freely available proprietary software can enrich the lives of millions of people the same way as Free Software does. It cannot. Not in the long run.
F-Spot, a promising new digital photo management program, is Free Software
(full image size: 268kB, resolution: 810x629 pixels)
|Released Last Week
CentOS 4.3 Server CD
Karanbir Singh has announced the release of CentOS 4.3 Server CD, the project's single-CD variant designed for server use: "The single CD server install for CentOS 4.3 / i386 has now been released and is available from all active mirrors. Notes: this installer will only work with i686 based CPUs; the included packages are a subset of all packages available in the CentOS distribution, however yum has been pre-configured to use the entire repository; in order to ensure that drivers and other third party apps maintain compatibility, the package set used on the Server CD is from CentOS 4.3, you are strongly encouraged to run a 'yum update' immediately after installation." Read the rest of the release announcement for further information.
Scientific Linux 4.3 Live CD/DVD
Troy Dawson has released a set of updated builds of Scientific Linux live CDs and DVDs: "Scientific Linux Live CD 4.3 has been released for both i386 and x86_64. The Scientific Linux Live CD/DVD is a bootable CD/DVD that runs Linux directly from CD/DVD without installing. It is based on Scientific Linux 4. It uses Unionfs, allowing read-only filesystem to behave as a writable one and SquashFS providing on-the-fly decompression that allows storing 2GB software on a normal CD-ROM. The Live CD/DVD was built using modified scripts from www.linux-live.org." New in this release is an option to save files to a hard disk or USB storage device. See the release announcement for further details.
Turbolinux 11 (International Edition)
Turbolinux has announced the immediate availability of an international edition of its successful desktop-oriented operating system, also known as "Turbolinux 11 Fuji". Originally launched in Japan in November 2005, some of the key features of the new release include: "Expanded Control Center features; wireless LAN capacity; automatic updates for security patches; enhanced broadband features, including Windows Media Playback and Flash Player; and development tools such as JAVA and several other state-of-the-art functions for personal and business users." For more information please read the full press release and visit the product's features page. The international edition of Turbolinux 11 "Fuji" is available for purchase from Source One Network for US$39.00.
StressLinux 0.3.1 final is out: "After a long time of development the final StressLinux 0.3.1 is released. The changes between rc4 and this final are very small. The kernel was bumped to version 22.214.171.124 and the Realtek R1000 driver was added. Everton Marques suggested adding the following network testing tools, which are now included: nepim, iperf, netperf. Busybox reached version 1.1.3. With this final release the PXE packages are available, too. There seem to be still some problems with AMD64 hardware; this is the main reason why I included an extra boot menu entry (noinitrd) to boot without loading extra drivers." Visit the distribution's home page to read the release announcement.
Musix GNU/Linux 0.40
A new version of Musix GNU/Linux, a Debian-based live CD with a large collection of audio software, has been released: "Thanks to the support of the Ututo Project, FSF, Ourproject, and to the usual collaborators, the Musix project has just released Musix 0.40. Musix 0.40 can be considered the most stable and functional Musix version until now, and its use is recommended in the long term." Musix 0.40 includes a number of new audio programs, such as Rosegarden 1.2.3, Mixxx 1.4.2 (Digital Disc Jockey Interface), Cecilia 2.0.5, Csound and others, as well as many updated packages. For more details and known issues please consult the release announcement.
Marcel J. Zwiebel has announced a new major release of Nonux, a Slackware-based distribution with Dropline GNOME designed for business use in Dutch-speaking office environments. Version 3.0 comes with the following improvements and updates: upgrade to kernel 126.96.36.199; upgrade to GNOME 2.14.1; upgrade to Evolution 2.6.1; upgrade to Firefox 188.8.131.52; new menu entries for common system administration tasks; new, more serene, desktop theme; by default the live CD now boots into a non-root account; improved power management for notebook computers; many application updates, including Mail Notification, WiFi-radar and GParted. For more details please read the full release announcement on the project's news page (in Dutch).
Kubuntu 6.06 LTS
Kubuntu, one of the distributions belonging to the Ubuntu family of Linux operating systems, is the first to publish a formal announcement about the product's new release: "Kubuntu 6.06 LTS has been released. It is available for download now or for the first time you can order free Kubuntu CDs through Shipit. This release comes with KDE 3.5.2 and includes a new installer which you can use direct from the live desktop CD. We have focused on stability and bug fixes, as our first Long Term Support release 6.06 will be supported for 3 years on the desktop and 5 years on the server."
Ubuntu 6.06 LTS
Right on schedule, Ubuntu 6.06, a distribution with long term support features, has been released: "Ubuntu, which has become one of the world's most popular Linux distributions in recent years, launched its latest version on June 1 following months of intense testing. The new release is titled Ubuntu 6.06 LTS (Long Term Support), and has a specific emphasis on the needs of large organisations with both desktop and server versions." For full details please read the formal press release and the more useful release notes.
Edubuntu 6.06 LTS
Edubuntu 6.06, an Ubuntu-based distribution designed for classroom use and inclusive of long term support options, has been released: "The Edubuntu team is proud to present Edubuntu 6.06 LTS. Included in this release are installation CDs, live CDs, and combination DVDs for i386, PPC, and AMD64 architectures. Edubuntu is the education-focused counterpart of Ubuntu, offering fast, easy installation of stand-alone systems, thin clients and servers. Like Ubuntu, Edubuntu 6.06 LTS offers long term security updates after release (3 years for desktops and 5 years for servers." Read the rest of the release announcement for more information.
Xubuntu 6.06 LTS
Not to be left behind, Xubuntu 6.06 has also been released: "Today sees the first launch of Xubuntu 6.06 LTS. This version of Xubuntu will be supported for 3 years on the desktop, and brings you all of the latest XFce goodness." Xubuntu's new desktop features: "XFce 4.4beta1 including a more flexible panel, many panel plugins and icons on the desktop; Thunar file manager; GDM desktop manager; Gnome Office (latest AbiWord and Gnumeric); Evince document viewer; Xarchiver archive manager; Xfburn simple CD burner; Xubuntu System Tools for GUI system administration...." Read the release announcement and release notes for further details.
Puppy Linux 2.00
Puppy Linux 2.00 is out! From the release notes: "This is a major upgrade from the 1.xx series. How to summarise five months work? The graphical user interface is much the same, as most work has been on the underlying architecture. In a nutshell, the fundamental architecture and boot-up / shutdown scripts are a total rewrite, from scratch, no relationship to any other distro." Among other major changes, the 'standard' edition of Puppy Linux now supplies SeaMonkey 1.0 web suite for web browsing and email, Inkscape for vector drawing, and GParted for disk partitioning tasks, while the kernel has been upgraded to version 184.108.40.206.
Trixbox is a new name of what used to be called Asterisk@Home, a CentOS-based Linux distribution that enables the home user to quickly set up a VOIP Asterisk PBX. Version 1.0 is the project's first stable release under the new name: "Trixbox 1.0 released. Like Asterisk@Home, Trixbox is a complete Asterisk PBX including a Linux OS, Asterisk PBX software, a web GUI, and many other useful add-ons. Trixbox will focus on both the business and home user and will have more features including automatic upgrade capability. As with Asterisk@Home, Trixbox can be quickly and easily installed in under one hour." Here is the brief release announcement.
Klaus Knopper has announced the availability of the first public release of KNOPPIX 5 live CD and DVD: "At CeBIT 2006, a preview of Knoppix 5 was introduced, which has now been updated with the new kernel and udev hotplug management. What's new: Linux kernel 2.6.17 (rc); X.Org Version 7.0; detection of onboard IDE raid controllers and raid disk components; udev + hwsetup for automatic hardware detection; KDE 3.5.2, GNOME 2.12 from Debian unstable; OpenOffice.org 2.0.2; transparent write access for NTFS partitions; new Knoppix installer, now also with the possibility to update existing installations of Knoppix...." Read the full release announcement on the project's home page.
* * * * *
Development and unannounced releases
|Upcoming Releases and Announcements
Summary of expected upcoming releases
May 2006 donations: LilyPond €190, Lua US$250|
Ladies and Gentleman, we are pleased to announce that, based on readers' requests, the DistroWatch May 2006 donation has been awarded to LilyPond (€190.00) and Lua (US$250.00). This is only the second time we had a chance to set aside US$500 for our monthly donation - many thanks to our sponsors and advertisers. As mentioned previously, the monthly donations programme is a joint initiative between DistroWatch, which allocates 10% of its advertising revenue, and two online shops selling low-cost CDs and DVDs with Linux, BSD and other open source software - LinuxISO.co.uk and LinuxCD.org, each of which contributed US$50 towards this month's donation.
According to the description on its web site, LilyPond, developed by Han-Wen Nienhuys in the Netherlands, is a music typesetter or an automated "engraving" system. It formats music beautifully and automatically, and has a friendly syntax for its input files. LilyPond is Free Software and is part of the GNU Project. See the FAQ section and take the features tour for more information about this project.
Lua, on the other hand, is a programming language: "Lua is a programming language originally designed for extending applications, but also frequently used as a general-purpose, stand-alone language. It combines simple procedural syntax (similar to Pascal) with powerful data description constructs based on associative arrays and extensible semantics. The implementation goals are simplicity, efficiency, portability, and low embedding cost. It has been used on games such as Vendetta, FarCry, Homeworld2, Painkiller, and World of Warcraft." Lua, released under a GPL-compatible licence, is developed by a group of coders at the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil.
These are the PayPal receipts for the donations to LilyPond and Lua:
This email confirms that you have paid hanwen at xs4all.nl €190.00 EUR using PayPal.
Transaction ID: 45S56615WB368821F
Total: €190.00 EUR
Item/Product Name: LilyPond donation
This email confirms that you have paid Lua.org $250.00 USD using PayPal.
Transaction ID: 69E25132GV1846438
Total: €$250.00 USD
Item/Product Name: Lua
Item/Product Number: 502
Here is the list of projects that received a DistroWatch donation since the launch of the programme:
Since the launch of the DistroWatch Donations Programme in March 2004, we have donated a total of US$8,300 to various open source software projects.
* * * * *
New distributions added to the database
- BinToo Linux. BinToo Linux is a full-featured binary distribution based on Gentoo Linux.
- Dzongkha Linux. Dzongkha Linux is a Debian-based distribution developed in Bhutan by the Department of Information Technology at the Ministry of Information and Communications. Dzongkha Linux is created with the sole aim of providing complete Dzongkha computing capability, free of cost.
Dzongkha Linux, a Debian-based distribution with support for the language of Bhutan, was launched last week.
(full image size: 930kB, resolution: 1280x1024 pixels)
* * * * *
New distributions added to the waiting list
- BINKI GNU/Linux. BINKI GNU/Linux is a distribution inspired by the Linux From Scratch project and designed for intermediate to advanced users.
- Bluewhite64 Linux. Bluewhite64 Linux is an unofficial port of Slackware Linux to the AMD64 architecture.
- HOST. HOST is a Fedora-based commercial distribution launched recently in Saudi Arabia. It is developed by India-based Host Technologies Ltd.
- maliGNUz. maliGNUz is a tiny live CD based on Slackware Linux.
- PapugLinux. PapugLinux is a minimal Linux live CD based on Gentoo Linux for the x86 computer architecture.
* * * * *
DistroWatch database summary
That's all for today. The next issue of DistroWatch Weekly will be published on Monday, 12 June 2006. See you then :-)
|• Issue 603 (2015-03-30): Tails 1.3, LibreOffice Online, Linux Firewalls book review, Kubuntu with Plasma 5|
|• Issue 602 (2015-03-23): Bodhi Linux 3.0.0, distro popularity, OpenBSD's new web server, GNU Manifesto turns 30|
|• Issue 601 (2015-03-16): Ubuntu MATE 14.10, modern distros for old hardware, AppArmor in Debian, Fedora 22 Alpha|
|• Issue 600 (2015-03-09): Korora 21, distro diversity, Ubuntu gets systemd, PC-BSD security features|
|• Issue 599 (2015-03-02): Sabayon 15.02, creating good passwords, new YaST modules, LMDE preview
|• Issue 598 (2015-02-23): Netrunner 14.1, Vivaldi web browser, Debian election, Cinnamon improvements|
|• Issue 597 (2015-02-16): MakuluLinux MCDE 2.0, Ubuntu phones launch, m0n0wall ceases development, live Linux updates|
|• Issue 596 (2015-02-09): ArchBSD 2014.09.04, encrypted e-mail, Fedora upgrade stats, FreeBSD's support policy|
|• Issue 595 (2015-02-02): ExTiX 15.1, Destroying encrypted data, openSUSE election, OSDisc statistics|
|• Issue 594 (2015-01-26): KaOS 2014.12, Commercial distros, Snappy Ubuntu, PackageKit fixes|
|• Issue 593 (2015-01-19): ReactOS 0.3.17, Unity on Mir, Bluetooth support, openSUSE election|
|• Issue 592 (2015-01-12): Mint 17.1, load averages, binary logs, GNOME Software|
|• Issue 591 (2015-01-05): Manjaro 0.8.11, systemd, Devuan, Torrent Corner|
|• Issue 590 (2014-12-22): Fedora 21, Ubuntu phone, expanding ZFS storage, Able2Extract|
|• Issue 589 (2014-12-15): Parsix 7.0, Ubuntu "Snappy", PC-BSD upgrades, How Linux Works|
|• Issue 588 (2014-12-08): PC-BSD 10.2, rolling-release Ubuntu GNOME, Bitrig, systemd|
|• Issue 587 (2014-12-01): Trisquel 7.0, Kubuntu 14.10 "Plasma5", FreeBSD on 64-bit ARM, Jolla and UbuTab|
|• Issue 586 (2014-11-24): Scientific Linux 7.0, Debian and systemd, Ubuntu MATE, application-level firewalls|
|• Issue 585 (2014-11-17): openSUSE 13.2, PC-BSD's "roles", MATE + Compiz on Mint, cleaning package cache|
|• Issue 584 (2014-11-10): OpenMandriva 2014.1, Debian freeze, trickle, systemd and boot times|
|• Issue 583 (2014-11-03): Ubuntu 14.10, ownCloud, Kylin interview, The Book of PF, Elive's commercial ways|
|• Issue 582 (2014-10-27): GhostBSD 4.0, Tumbleweed and Factory merge, systemd and fork of Debian|
|• Issue 581 (2014-10-20): SparkyLinux 3.5, Fedora's graphics stack, Debian and systemd, OpenBSD 5.6|
|• Issue 580 (2014-10-13): Rolling releases, Arch as best distro, GNOME on Wayland, MINIX 3.3.0|
|• Issue 579 (2014-10-06): PC-BSD 10.0.3, Debian's Jessie freeze, setting up home server|
|• Issue 578 (2014-09-29): Calculate 14, Debian's default desktop, Shellshock vulnerability, practical Tiny Core|
|• Issue 577 (2014-09-22): SymphonyOS 14.1, FreeBSD drops pkg_add, MINIX on ARM, GNU screen|
|• Issue 576 (2014-09-15): PCLinuxOS 2014.08, Mint's documentation, Debian's hardware database, CDE|
|• Issue 575 (2014-09-08): Porteus 3.0.1, Fedora's blivet-gui, Red Hat's Docker, systemd|
|• Issue 574 (2014-09-01): Ubuntu Kylin 14.04, Haiku and Linux kernel, Wayland support, Lumina, Bash completion|
|• Issue 573 (2014-08-25): SolydXK 201407, VPN gateway with FreeBSD, Ubuntu MATE, Raspbian, trusting binary packages|
|• Issue 572 (2014-08-18): ZFSguru 10.1, Fedora's Flock, beta installer for "Jessie", Ubuntu Core, rolling releases|
|• Issue 571 (2014-08-11): HandyLinux 1.6, LMDE update, default desktop in "Jessie", running out of disk space|
|• Issue 570 (2014-08-04): Neptune 4, Kubuntu's KDE Plasma 5, FreeBSD and UEFI, Linux servers|
|• Issue 569 (2014-07-28): Deepin 2014, Ask Fedora, Gentoo and LibreSSL, encrypted package downloads|
|• Issue 568 (2014-07-21): Antergos 2014.06.24, Mint based on Debian stable, upgrading CentOS, BinaryTides|
|• Issue 567 (2014-07-14): Manjaro 0.8.10, PC-BSD jails, Debian and glibc, Fedora's DNF, Xiki and Opera 24|
|• Issue 566 (2014-07-07): LXLE 14.04, OpenBSD's SimpleDE, openSUSE artwork, home security basics|
|• Issue 565 (2014-06-30): Chakra 2014.05, Fedora on BeagleBone, Matthew Miller interview, e-book readers|
|• Issue 564 (2014-06-23): Antergos 2014.05.26 and Q4OS 0.5.11, Debian LTS and glibc, Fedora DNF|
|• Issue 563 (2014-06-16): Mint 17, CentOS 7 pre-release, Debian MATE, accessing encrypted content|
|• Issue 562 (2014-06-09): GoboLinux 015, Gentoo interview, Fedora leader change, climagic tricks|
|• Issue 561 (2014-06-02): OpenMandriva 2014.0, Debian GNU/Hurd, Lubuntu and LXQt, Final Term, TrueCrypt|
|• Issue 560 (2014-05-26): KaOS 2014.04, Wayland and KDE 5 on Fedora, distros with commercial support, DenyHosts|
|• Issue 559 (2014-05-19): VortexBox 2.3, LTS-only Linux Mint, FreeBSD 11 ambitions, KDE 5 beta|
|• Issue 558 (2014-05-12): RHEL 7 Workstation impressions, LXQt and Lumina, Haiku interview|
|• Issue 557 (2014-05-05): Xubuntu 14.04, Ubuntu 14.10 roadmap, Fedora Workstation, ownCloud|
|• Issue 556 (2014-04-28): Ubuntu 14.04, LibreSSL, Lumina desktop, Deepin interview|
|• Issue 555 (2014-04-21): Robolinux 7.4.2, Ubuntu release day stats, Debian security, Porteus update|
|• Issue 554 (2014-04-14): Review of FreeNAS, OpenSSL bug, Fedora.next, Robolinux Stealth VM, measuring memory|
|• Issue 553 (2014-04-07): Puppy 5.7 "Slacko", end of Ubuntu One, file encryption with GPG|
|• Issue 552 (2014-03-31): Tanglu 1.0, Ubuntu GNOME LTS, SliTaz for ARM|
|• Issue 551 (2014-03-24): Linux Mint "Debian" 201403, call for end to proprietary firmware, LVM|
|• Issue 550 (2014-03-17): Review of NixOS 13.10, Lubuntu seeking feedback, Android-x86 4.4-rc1 impressions|
|• Issue 549 (2014-03-10): ClearOS 6.5 and UCS 3.2, Gentoo interview, Ubuntu app contest, Into the Core|
|• Full list of all issues|