| DistroWatch Weekly
|DistroWatch Weekly, Issue 536, 2 December 2013
Welcome to this year's 48th issue of DistroWatch Weekly! Last week we briefly discussed the release of openSUSE, a popular distribution well renowned for its system administration tools and cutting-edge software. This week Jesse Smith takes openSUSE's latest release for a spin and reports on his experience. One of the more interesting arrivals this week was the new release of DragonFly BSD. DragonFly is perhaps best known for its advanced file system, called HAMMER, which supports massive amounts of storage and snapshots. DragonFly has received several improvements recently and we cover those in the News section. We will also talk about a new way to experience Ubuntu's mobile edition, called Ubuntu Touch. The mobile operating system features Unity 8 and the Mir display server and can now be run in an emulator. If you are considering the purchase of an Ubuntu-powered phone be sure to give it a test run in the emulator first. This week we also link to a new resource for Kubuntu and KDE fans, discuss ways of troubleshooting operating system crashes, note the delay in the release of the much anticipated FreeBSD 10, and reveal an unusual Linux-powered pen that checks your spelling while you write. Finally, we are pleased to announce that the recipient of the November 2013 DistroWatch.com donation is the GNU Octave project. Happy reading!
|Feature Story (by Jesse Smith)
First impressions of openSUSE 13.1
The openSUSE distribution is a cutting-edge, general purpose operating system. The openSUSE project is community focused and experimental, acting as a testing ground for new technologies. The latest release of openSUSE, version 13.1, comes with a few interesting characteristics. One feature which stood out with regards to this release is openSUSE 13.1 will receive long term support lasting approximately three years. This release ships with the latest in desktop environments, including KDE 4.11 and GNOME 3.10. The 3.11 release of the Linux kernel is included and the distribution supports the advanced Btr file system. This release also supports booting on computers with Secure Boot technology. The distribution is available in a number of flavours, including a full-sized DVD that ships with multiple environments and lots of software. There are also smaller editions, including GNOME and KDE live disc editions. Each edition is available in 32-bit and 64-bit x86 builds. The project's release announcement mentions support for ARM devices, including the Raspberry Pi, though these builds were not listed on the project's main Download page. I opted to try the KDE edition, the download for which is approximately 900 MB.
Booting from the openSUSE disc we are quickly brought to a menu which allows us to boot into a live desktop environment or immediately launch the system installer. I decided to try the live environment. We are quickly presented with the KDE desktop. The background is dark and, on the desktop, we find icons for launching the system installer, accessing on-line documentation, getting information on our computer's hardware and launching a web browser. At the bottom of the display we find the application menu and a task switcher. Immediately a welcome window pops up and tells us a bit about the operating system. We are told a little about the underlying technology behind openSUSE and given links to where we can find documentation and on-line assistance. Exploring the live desktop everything appeared to be working well for me. I could get on-line, the links to documentation worked and the interface was responsive. I decided to launch the system installer.
The project's system installer is a graphical application and openSUSE features one of the most powerful (read flexible) installers in the Linux community. We start by choosing our preferred language and confirming our keyboard's layout. The first page of the installer also shows us openSUSE's license agreement. Next we are asked to select our time zone using a map of the world and we have the option of setting the system clock. The following screen handles partitioning and openSUSE gives us several options. We can ask the partition manager to set up LVM volumes for us or Btrfs volumes. We also have the ability to use more traditional file systems. Once the installer has suggested a partition layout we can edit the suggested layout. The partition manager is surprisingly flexible and makes good choices, I feel, when the guided option is taken. Should we wish to, we can manually divide up the disk to suit our needs. The next page gets us to create a user account and set a password on the account. Finally we are brought to a confirmation screen where the installer tells us what actions it will take and asks us to accept the tasks it will perform. This page includes links to earlier sections of the installer for easy navigation back to previous steps. I noticed openSUSE, by default, does not install a boot loader on the local disk's MBR, which is fairly normal for most distributions. We can change this, along with almost any other aspect of the installation, via the confirmation screen. After we confirm the actions to be taken the installer copies files to our local drive and then prompts us to reboot the computer.
The first time we boot into our locally installed copy of openSUSE a first-run wizard appears and automatically goes through some initialization steps. We are not required to do anything here and, after a few minutes, we are brought to a graphical login screen. Logging in we are shown the same dark KDE desktop, the same welcome screen and desktop icons. One of the first things to catch my attention was that KDE ships with file indexing and visual effects enabled. This does not appear to impact performance at all as KDE was surprisingly responsive on my system. I did eventually turn off these features out of habit and did not perceive any change in KDE's responsiveness. Soon I noticed an icon in the system tray which would check for available software updates. Clicking this icon brought up a widget which indicated the system was up to date and presented a button I could click to check again. Clicking this button produced an error message saying the system could not find the server hosting openSUSE's software repository. A quick check revealed that I was not, in fact, connected to the Internet, a surprise as I had been connected while using the live disc. A quick trip to the system configuration centre (which I will talk about later) revealed that openSUSE was using a classic method of getting on-line and this method appeared to expect an IPv6 connection which I did not have. The option was available to use Network Manager as opposed to using openSUSE's default networking utility. Switching to Network Manager immediately connected my computer to the Internet. Once a connection was established the update widget found available software updates waiting on the project's servers.
openSUSE 13.1 - managing software packages
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At first the update widget informed me there were 25 updates available and I chose to download them all. This action brought up a new window which informed me there were, in fact, 104 packages waiting to be downloaded. Again, I opted to download and install them all. The updates were all applied cleanly. On the subject of software management, openSUSE technically has two graphical package managers. One of the package managers is built into openSUSE's system administration tool (called YaST) and features many options, filters and the ability to configure software repositories. The YaST package manager module is feature rich, but adds layers of complexity which most users will not need (and may not want). Most users will probably prefer the Apper package manager. This application allows us to browse available software using colourful icons. Software can be searched for by name and Apper will let us browse installed software (for removal) or download available updates. I spent most of my time with openSUSE using Apper and the command line package manager, zypper. Each utility worked well and performed its actions quickly.
I tried running openSUSE in two environments, in a VirtualBox virtual machine and on my desktop computer (dual-core 2.8 GHz CPU, 6GB of RAM, Radeon video card, Realtek network card). The distribution performed very well in both environments. The KDE desktop was always fast to respond, the system was stable and my display was set to its maximum resolution. The distribution, when logged into the KDE desktop, used approximately 190MB of memory. This is fairly light for a Linux distribution running KDE in my experience.
Looking through the application menu we find an array of useful desktop software. The distribution comes with the Firefox and Konqueror web browsers. We are provided with the KMail e-mail client, the Kopete instant messaging client, the Konversation messaging client, the Choqok micro-blogging client and the KTorrent bittorrent application. LibreOffice is included in the menu as are the Amarok music player and the k3b disc burning software. There are a few photo editors, a handful of small games and some remote desktop applications. There is an archive manager, a file synchronization utility, a text editor and virtual calculator. The distribution comes with the KGpg security key and encryption tool. The KDE System Settings panel is included to help us change the look and feel of the desktop interface. I found openSUSE comes with accessibility tools, including a screen magnifier and virtual, on-screen keyboard. The distribution does not ship with multimedia codecs nor Flash, but I did find Java was installed. In the background we find openSUSE runs a mail service and the OpenSSH secure shell service. The latest openSUSE release comes with version 3.11 of the Linux kernel.
openSUSE 13.1 - utilities and documentation
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As I mentioned above, openSUSE does not come with multimedia codecs by default. Attempting to open a media file, such as a mp3 audio file, gives us the option of searching openSUSE's software repositories to find the appropriate codecs. However, the required software isn't in the repositories and this search eventually fails. I found some documentation on adding the missing codecs, but the documentation was out of date for this release. Further searching turned up a helpful forum post explaining how to add the desired add-on repository. Enabling this repository resulted in the package manager downloading 228 new packages (a lengthy process, even on a fast network connection). Once the software finished installing I had access to Flash content and could play mp3 files, but I still wasn't able to watch video files. This required more searches through the repositories and more downloading. All in all enabling multimedia support on openSUSE was a surprisingly long and awkward experience when compared to most other Linux distributions.
One of the key features of openSUSE is the YaST system administration panel. This panel gives users access to configuration modules which can be used to control virtually all aspects of the operating system. Using YaST we can manage installed software and package repositories. We can work with the AppArmor security controls, file backups, user accounts, printers and virtually every other aspect of the system. YaST is surprisingly powerful and flexible, making administrating openSUSE easier and making the distribution more appealing to power users. This version of YaST was re-written for openSUSE 13.1 and I found it worked exactly like previous versions. If there is any difference I believe YaST may have performed faster in this release when compared against earlier versions. I didn't run any benchmarks, but I found YaST to be responsive and I encountered no problems in the wake of the re-write.
openSUSE 13.1 - operating system and desktop environment settings
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One aspect of openSUSE I was looking forward to playing with was the distribution's Btrfs implementation. Few distributions have meaningful support for this advanced file system yet and openSUSE appears to be leading the pack by integrating Btrfs snapshots with YaST. This means that when we perform administrative tasks YaST can snapshot our file system and, if something goes wrong, we should be able to roll back our files (and configuration) to a point before the error occurred. I played around with this a little and made a few observations. The first is that if we set up openSUSE using Btrfs as our file system there does not appear to be any performance penalty. At least not for common desktop usage, for example listening to music, editing documents and browsing the web. In fact, to the average desktop user there does not appear to be any difference at all, which I think is a good sign. Second, I experimented with making snapshots manually and the operating system created snapshots for me automatically at certain points. I was able to browse these snapshots and revert back to previous points in time without any problem. This is handy if we accidentally remove a software package or mess up a configuration option. One quick command will take the file system back in time, erasing our mistake.
The final characteristic I think is worth mentioning is, by default, openSUSE treats user data as separate from the operating system. What this means is when Btrfs snapshots are created they include system files and configuration, but files in the users' home directories are not snapshotted. There are good and bad points to this approach. On the plus side it means if the system administrator makes a mistake and rolls back the system to last week's snapshot it does not affect the users, their week of work is not lost. On the negative side, should the user accidentally delete a file they can't simply dig a copy out of the latest snapshot. Now, of course there are other ways to backup user files and, for that matter, the system installer would probably have allowed me to include user files in snapshots if I had asked it to. What I describe is merely the default behaviour I encountered, it is not set in stone. So far I have been happy with openSUSE's implementation of Btrfs and I think it will quickly catch on as Btrfs offers several nice features above what is offered by traditional Linux file systems.
For reasons I've never quite understood the openSUSE distribution has always held an unusual place in my mind. Were someone to ask me about the most popular and user-friendly distributions I'd readily talk about Fedora, Ubuntu, Mint, Mageia and Debian. Chances are the openSUSE distribution would completely slip my mind. However, if someone were to specifically ask me for my opinion of openSUSE I would happily and heartily recommend the distribution. I don't know why openSUSE, as much as I respect it, doesn't stand out more in my thoughts. Perhaps the openSUSE project just doesn't attract as much news coverage as other open source projects. The distribution has been around a long time, earned a well deserved reputation as being both very powerful and user-friendly and (in my opinion) the developers consistently balance features, stability and performance. With only a little hesitation I have to say openSUSE 13.1 maintains this trend, offering a fast, flexible and useful desktop solution. The installer worked well for me, the system administration tools are top quality and the usually fast distribution feels even more responsive than ever.
My one complaint with this release was with regards to multimedia support (or the lack of). It will probably get better once the community documentation catches up with the release (it may already have by the time this review appears). For now, getting Flash and multimedia support set up takes a lot more effort under openSUSE than it does with Ubuntu, Debian or even Fedora. I really think third-party codec support should really be as simple as it is with Ubuntu, checking a box at install time requesting the necessary packages and accepting legal responsibility for the choice. This minor blemish aside, openSUSE performed beautifully for me. It comes with lots of useful software, ran surprisingly fast and remained stable throughout my trial. I happily recommend it.
|Miscellaneous News (by Jesse Smith and Ladislav Bodnar)
DragonFly BSD gets faster, running Ubuntu Touch in emulator, new resource for Kubuntu users, new FreeBSD publication, Lernstift Linux pen
DragonFly BSD is a server-oriented operating system which originally forked from the FreeBSD project. DragonFly carries some interesting features such as the advanced HAMMER file system, a new task scheduler and process check-pointing. This past week saw the release of DragonFlyBSD 3.6 which features a number of key improvements. These include packaging all of the software in FreeBSD's ports tree in the new Dports format, making available over 20,000 third-party packages. Kernel Mode Setting has been added to this release, improving video support. In addition, this release brings several performance improvements which should make DragonFly run much faster, especially on multi-core processors. The new release is good news for people who want to run fast, stable servers with massive amounts of storage space.
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The developers at Canonical have been working on a mobile version of the Ubuntu operating system called Ubuntu Touch. This Touch edition is compatible with some Android devices and is expected to show up on mobile phones sometime in 2014. For people who would like to experience Ubuntu Touch today, without the associated risk of trying to install the operating system on a phone, Canonical has an emulator that runs Ubuntu Touch with Mir and Unity 8. The packages for the Touch emulator are available in the Ubuntu repositories and curious users can follow these instructions for setting up the emulator. The ability to run Ubuntu's mobile edition on a desktop machine is a good way to find out what Canonical has planned for next year's release and it gives developers a chance to test their apps without the requirement of a spare device.
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The Blue Mint blog is a website which presents short articles on Linux, desktop computing and how to get the most out of open source software. Despite the word "Mint" in the title, The Blue Mint is not a blog dedicated to Linux Mint, but rather to the Kubuntu distribution and the KDE desktop. The blog, which was announced on the Kubuntu news page, offers readers the chance to "experience the computing nirvana that is KDE and Kubuntu". So far the blog features posts on finding alternative open source applications to those which come bundled with one's distribution, using small business applications and running personal financial desktop programs.
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The FreeBSD News website reported last week that fans of the FreeBSD operating system will soon have a new information resource available to them. According to the site, the FreeBSD Foundation will be launching a publication called the FreeBSD Journal. The journal is expected to be released bi-monthly and feature articles on the popular BSD project. What can we expect to see in the first edition of the publication? "Topics we can expect to see covered in the first edition, available in January 2014, will include ZFS, running FreeBSD on ARM devices and the upcoming release of FreeBSD 10."
On a related note, the development of the upcoming stable release of FreeBSD, version 10, has hit a few obstacles recently. It was originally scheduled for final release on 24 November 2013, but various complications have resulted in an additional beta (the fourth) and an update on the project's release engineering page. The final release has now slipped to 2 January 2014. Last week Glen Barber posted an brief update on the FreeBSD 10 release status: "Quick 10.0-RELEASE status update: iconv(3) changes have been made in head/, and merged to stable/10 today; two MFCs are undergoing review, one of which I will commit righ before updating the stable/10 branch name to reflect '-BETA4'; builds for 10.0-BETA4 will begin tomorrow. Important note to those tracking stable/10: an update will be committed tomorrow that will disable automatic creation of pkg.conf(5). Those installing new systems from 10.0-BETA4 should experience no trouble, as the update pkg(8) version (pkg-1.2.1) should be available around the same time 10.0-BETA4 is announced. This affects the pkg(8) bootstrap functionality only. Those with bootstrapped pkg(8) will not be affected."
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Those of us following the Linux development scene have witnessed, over the years, the enormous versatility of the GNU/Linux operating system and its incredible diversity in terms of devices it is able to power. From enormous computer clusters right down to cheap single-board embedded devices - Linux is truly everywhere. But have you ever imagined a Linux-powered pen? That is about to become reality too. A German company called Lernstift is developing a pen that will complain loudly if you misspell a word while writing with it. And yes, the pen is proudly powered by the popular open-source operating system: "The computer inside Lernstift is an embedded Linux system; pretty much like a smartphone 'stripped to the bone - without everything that isn't necessary for our purposes (no screen, no GSM module). We are using an individualized board, based on the Gumstix Overo. To build this specific board, we are working together with a German hardware manufacturer. Our board will contain the motion sensor, processor, memory, Wi-Fi and a vibration module. Reliable handwriting recognition is key to making Lernstift the high-quality product we want it to be. That's why we'll work with the market leader in this field and use their advanced software environment for Lernstift." The intelligent Linux-powered pen is expected to be available in the middle of 2014.
|Questions and Answers (by Jesse Smith)
Troubleshooting operating system lock-ups
Dealing-with-a-frozen-system asks: I'm currently experiencing crashes on one of my computers and am trying to troubleshoot the cause of the crashes. Where and what should I look for as far as system log files? Are there any good utilities for troubleshooting crash causes in Linux? The freezing is fairly random, I'm generally not doing anything specific when it happens. This computer sometimes goes a few days before locking up, other times it can happen twice in an hour. I've experienced these crashes both while booted on the main OS, 32-bit Linux Mint 15, and also most recently while running 32-bit Elementary OS.
DistroWatch answers: Off the top of my head I would suggest what you are experiencing may be either a hardware/driver problem or an issue with the operating system running out of memory. If you've got a piece of hardware that is misbehaving or if you have a driver which isn't stable then that would certainly cause problems across multiple installations. If it is a memory issue it could be that your distribution is using up all the available memory and then the Linux kernel is killing off a key process in an attempt to free up more RAM. As to troubleshooting the problem I suggest investigating the following options, in no particular order:
Look in the log files /var/log/syslog and /var/log/dmesg. In the case the issue may be related to X rather than the underlying system, try looking in the /var/log/Xorg.0.log log file.
Monitor your system's memory and processes and log this data. Knowing which processes were running, how much memory was being used and such can be useful for figuring out what your computer was doing when it stopped responding. One method for capturing process information is logging the output from the top command. For instance, running the following command will give you a log file containing a second-by-second playback of roughly what your computer was doing up until the crash:
top -b > ~/my-top-data.txt
Report the issue on your distribution's forum and bug tracker. Chances are someone else has experienced (and hopefully solved) the same problem using similar hardware and software combinations to what you have. If not, opening a bug report with your distribution may yield a fix or at least further suggestions on where to look.
Something else to check is the computer's temperature. Sometimes a high temperature will cause the system to power down or otherwise behave poorly. You can get an idea of your CPU's temperature by installing the lm-sensors package (available in most distribution repositories) and by running the sensors command.
Something that may help narrow down the problem is to find out if the entire system is locked up or just the user interface. One fairly easy way to do this is to enable the OpenSSH server (on Mint simply installing the openssh-server package will do this.) When your computer locks up, try logging into the machine from another computer via secure shell. If you can connect then that means the underlying operating system is still functioning. It will also give you the chance to troubleshoot and investigate further from the command line. On the other hand, if the system does not allow new connections over secure shell, then the problem is affecting the operating system itself, not just the graphical interface.
Consider updating your Linux kernel. If the problem you are experiencing is related to a hardware driver then a newer kernel may offer a fix. Check your distribution's repositories for newer kernel versions or, if you are feeling brave, considering building your own kernel from source code.
|Released Last Week
DragonFly BSD 3.6.0
DragonFly BSD 3.6.0, a UNIX-like operating system created in 2003 as a fork of FreeBSD 4.8, is out: "Version 3.6.0 released." Big ticket items of the release include: "Dports, which uses the FreeBSD ports system as a base, and the 'pkg' tools for installation, is now default on DragonFly; using the parallel building of the 20,000 packages in dports as a test case, contention in the kernel has been nearly eliminated; support for newer Intel and ATI chipsets is present in the system - this may not work for every hardware combination, but a number of users have reported success with hardware-accelerated video using this update; locales and libiconv work have brought DragonFly up to date on language support, utilities should be usable in your native language." Here are the detailed release notes with upgrade instructions.
NetSecL OS 5.0
Yuriy Stanchev has announced the release of NetSecL 5.0, an openSUSE-based, security-oriented distribution with Xfce as the default desktop environment: "It has been a while, but we like to present NetSecL 5.0 which comes with Xfce and is based on openSUSE 12.3. We bring a new installation media - installation from a USB media; we saw that the distribution grew on size which definitely made us change the medium. All packages are compatible and updated to openSUSE 12.3 and the grsecurity 3.9.4 kernel is finally integrated into the operating system properly. Metasploit is updated to 4.7, Firefox is removed and Chromium is added, exploit-db repository is updated. The performance is slightly improved by the Xfce environment. Besides the USB installation image you can try NetSecL OS out on a virtual machine (OVA appliance). The password for both the 'root' and 'tux' user is 'linux'." Here is the brief release announcement with links to documentation.
Arjen Balfoort has announced the release of SolydXK 201311, a desktop Linux distribution with Xfce (SolydX) or KDE (SolydK) based on Debian's "testing" branch - now also with a separate "Business" edition: "The SolydXK team is proud to announce the Business edition of SolydK: SolydK BE. SolydK Business edition has been created for businesses and organizations with stability and security in mind. While the home editions of SolydXK were developed to be stable and still having the latest software available, the SolydK Business edition has been developed to provide long-term support based on Debian 'stable'. The Home editions consist of the 32-bit, and 64-bit variants of SolydX, and SolydK, including the SolydXK multi DVD. They are still based on Debian 'testing' with our update packs." Here is the brief release announcement.
IPFire 2.13 Core 73
IPFire 2.13 Core 73 is the latest stable release from the project that provides a hardened firewall distribution with corporate-level network protection: "IPFire 2.13 Core Update 73 comes with a bunch of smaller bug fixes and updates. The most important ones of these are updates of the Squid web proxy server, OpenSSH and the PHP Hypertext Processor. It is recommended to update as soon as possible. The Squid web proxy server has been updated to version 3.3.10. The most notable changes since the current version of Squid running in IPFire are better SMP scalability, an updated logging infrastructure and fixes. The transparent mode has been dropped in favour of the more general intercept mode which requires a different port than for the transparent mode. There is no intervention by the user required, when updating your IPFire system." Continue to the release announcement to learn about the changes and updates.
Manjaro Linux 0.8.8
Phil Müller has announced the release of Manjaro Linux 0.8.8, a lightweight distribution a choice of Xfce or Openbox desktop user interfaces, based on Arch Linux. The release was already announced on Sunday, but the installable live CD/DVD images were only made available yesterday. From the announcement: "Manjaro Linux 0.8.8 is ready. We worked hard and managed to get Pamac 0.9.3 done. Here are some features of our redesigned package manager: stable backend for updates or transactions with a custom pyalpm; the transaction progress window was redesigned, it includes a details expander; post-install script output is visible in the expander; you can install local packages from pamac-manager; an about window; D-Bus daemon is back to perform transactions; high CPU usage bug should be completely fixed; checking updates rewritten...."
Linux Deepin 2013
Linux Deepin 2013, a new version of the Ubuntu-based community distribution developed in China, has been released: "Linux Deepin 2013 is released. Focusing on improving user experience, Linux Deepin has made several attempts and various innovations on the Linux desktop in the last two years. During the process, Linux Deepin has become more mature and stable. The new 2013 release has retained the highlights of its predecessors. It has also made many improvements based on our users' feedback and suggestions. Users of Linux Deepin are all recommended to upgrade to the 2013 version." Read the rest of the release announcement to find out more about the improvements and bug fixes in this release.
Linux Deepin 2013 - an Ubuntu-based distribution with a customised user interface
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Jacque Raymer has announced the release of MakuluLinux 4.3, an updated release of the project's Debian-based desktop distribution with Xfce as the default desktop environment: "MakuluLinux Xfce 4.3 released. MakuluLinux 4.3 is the final build in the Xfce 4 series. In simple terms, apart from a lot of bug fixes and optimizations, you get more of everything, more apps, more games, more themes, more icon sets, more wallpapers... Based on PAE kernel 3.11.2, now sporting a more refined and polished look and using a new installer, MakuluLinux 4.3 really is just bigger and better in all departments. Complete new installer used for 4.3, now with novice and advanced modes for users to go wild with; new installer supports encryption; added option to make live image on USB drive directly from live desktop; replaced LibreOffice with Kingsoft Office; fixed user reported issues with theme, menu, icons and dependencies." Here is the full release announcement with a complete list of changes.
Peppermint OS Four-20131113
Kendall Weaver has announced the release of an updated respin of Peppermint OS Four, a lightweight, Ubuntu-based Linux distribution with Openbox: "We're proud and happy to announce the first re-spin of Peppermint Four in both 32-bit and 64-bit editions. The downloads are live now via our standard download links and are also available for purchase in both CD and USB format. The re-spins offer a fully updated install as of November 5th, 2013, so you aren't left needing to download hundreds of megabytes of updates immediately after the install. In addition, we changed the desktop notifications back to the way they were in Peppermint Two after several users noted that the way they were implemented in Four seemed to be a bit of a step backward compared to the previous iterations. For users already running Four that also want this, it's actually quite simple: simply install the packages 'notify-osd' and 'notify-osd-icons'." Continue reading the release announcement for further details.
Jack Radigan has announced the availability of an updated build of Centrych, an Ubuntu-based distribution featuring a customised Xfce desktop environment: "12.04.3 released. This release upgrades the desktop to Xfce 4.10.2+ and includes the 4.11 versions of xfwm4 and xfce4-session. The Centrych desktop profile gets a customized notification theme, and both desktop profiles now use whiskermenu. The GNOME and KDE services are no longer started by default, which provides additional RAM savings and shortens login time. Also present is the most recent version of LibreOffice, 4.1.3. The current stable release of open-vm-tools is included and has been modified to build properly under all LTS supported kernels - 3.2, 3.5, 3.8, and the soon to be released 3.11. Finally, GRUB 2 has been updated to 2.00-19 and modified to select the most appropriate kernel when multiple kernels are installed for a given version." Here is the brief release announcement.
Tiny Core Linux 5.1
Tiny Core Linux 5.1, a new stable version of the project's minimalist but extensible Linux distribution, has been released: "Team Tiny Core is pleased to announce the release of Core 5.1: Change log: kernel: updated from 3.8.10 to 3.8.13 to correct long sync issues (this is a minor update to fix a specific bug. no configuration changes); tce-fetch - updated to support $KERNEL parameter; version: added multi-architecture support; tc-functions: getbootparam updated to properly match a parameter that is a substring; tc-functions: getpasswd updated to preserve last character entered in a password. Note that this version is available in three formats: core - fully 32-bit; core64 - 32-bit with 64-bit kernel modules; corepure64 - fully 64-bit." Here is the brief release announcement with update instructions.
Linux Mint 16
Clement Lefebvre has announced the release of Linux Mint 16: "The team is proud to announce the release of Linux Mint 16 'Petra'. Linux Mint 16 is the result of 6 months of incremental development on top of stable and reliable technologies. This new release comes with updated software and brings refinements and new features to make your desktop even more comfortable to use. Cinnamon 2.0 represents five months of development and 856 commits from 28 developers. It features a lot of bug fixes but also brand new features and many improvements. Cinnamon is now able to play sounds when you perform common events such as closing windows, switching workspaces etc." There are separate release announcement for the Cinnamon and MATE editions, with further links to the release notes and the "what's new" pages.
Oracle Linux 6.5
Oracle has announced the release of Oracle Linux 6.5, an enterprise-class distribution based on the recently-released Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.5. "Oracle is pleased to announce the general availability of Oracle Linux 6.5 for x86 (32 bit) and x86_64 (64 bit) architectures. Oracle Linux 6 Update 5 ships with three sets of kernel packages: Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel Release 2 (2.6.39 for x86); Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel Release 3 (3.8.13 for x86_64); Red Hat Compatible Kernel (2.6.32 for x86 and x86_64). UEK R3 includes the following major improvements over UEK R2: integrated DTrace support in the UEK R3 kernel and user-space tracing of DTrace-enabled applications; Device mapper support for an external, read-only device...." The release announcement was published on 27 November, but the installable DVD images were only made available for download November 30.
Karanbir Singh has announced the release of CentOS 6.5, the latest stable build of the enterprise-class Linux distribution compiled from the Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.5 source code: "We are pleased to announce the immediate availability of CentOS 6.5. CentOS 6.5 is based on the upstream release EL 6.5 and includes packages from all variants. There are many fundamental changes in this release, compared with the past CentOS 6 releases and we highly recommend everyone study the release notes as well as the upstream technical notes about the changes and how they might impact your installation. All updates released since upstream 6.5 release are also released to the CentOS 6.5 mirrors." See the release notes for detailed information about CentOS 6.5.
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Development, unannounced and minor bug-fix releases
|Upcoming Releases and Announcements
Summary of expected upcoming releases
November 2013 DistroWatch.com donation: GNU Octave|
We are pleased to announce that the recipient of the November 2013 DistroWatch.com donation is the GNU Octave project, a high-level interpreted language primarily intended for numerical computations. It receives US$300.00 in cash.
A more detailed description and feature list is provided on the project's about page "GNU Octave provides a convenient command-line interface for solving linear and nonlinear problems numerically, and for performing other numerical experiments using a language that is mostly compatible with Matlab. It may also be used as a batch-oriented language. Octave has extensive tools for solving common numerical linear algebra problems, finding the roots of nonlinear equations, integrating ordinary functions, manipulating polynomials, and integrating ordinary differential and differential-algebraic equations. It is easily extensible and customizable via user-defined functions written in Octave's own language, or using dynamically loaded modules written in C++, C, Fortran, or other languages. GNU Octave is also freely redistributable software." It's interesting to note that the idea was first conceived back in 1988 and that GNU Octave is in active, full-time development since 1992. The latest version is 3.6.4.
Launched in 2004, this monthly donations programme is a DistroWatch initiative to support free and open-source software projects and operating systems with cash contributions. Readers are welcome to nominate their favourite project for future donations. Those readers who wish to contribute towards these donations, please use our advertising page to make a payment (PayPal, credit cards, Yandex Money and Bitcoins are accepted). Here is the list of the projects that have received a DistroWatch donation since the launch of the programme (figures in US dollars):
Since the launch of the Donations Program in March 2004, DistroWatch has donated a total of US$37,405 to various open-source software projects.
- 2004: GnuCash ($250), Quanta Plus ($200), PCLinuxOS ($300), The GIMP ($300), Vidalinux ($200), Fluxbox ($200), K3b ($350), Arch Linux ($300), Kile KDE LaTeX Editor ($100) and UNICEF - Tsunami Relief Operation ($340)
- 2005: Vim ($250), AbiWord ($220), BitTorrent ($300), NDISwrapper ($250), Audacity ($250), Debian GNU/Linux ($420), GNOME ($425), Enlightenment ($250), MPlayer ($400), Amarok ($300), KANOTIX ($250) and Cacti ($375)
- 2006: Gambas ($250), Krusader ($250), FreeBSD Foundation ($450), GParted ($360), Doxygen ($260), LilyPond ($250), Lua ($250), Gentoo Linux ($500), Blender ($500), Puppy Linux ($350), Inkscape ($350), Cape Linux Users Group ($130), Mandriva Linux ($405, a Powerpack competition), Digikam ($408) and Sabayon Linux ($450)
- 2007: GQview ($250), Kaffeine ($250), sidux ($350), CentOS ($400), LyX ($350), VectorLinux ($350), KTorrent ($400), FreeNAS ($350), lighttpd ($400), Damn Small Linux ($350), NimbleX ($450), MEPIS Linux ($300), Zenwalk Linux ($300)
- 2008: VLC ($350), Frugalware Linux ($340), cURL ($300), GSPCA ($400), FileZilla ($400), MythDora ($500), Linux Mint ($400), Parsix GNU/Linux ($300), Miro ($300), GoblinX ($250), Dillo ($150), LXDE ($250)
- 2009: Openbox ($250), Wolvix GNU/Linux ($200), smxi ($200), Python ($300), SliTaz GNU/Linux ($200), LiVES ($300), Osmo ($300), LMMS ($250), KompoZer ($360), OpenSSH ($350), Parted Magic ($350) and Krita ($285)
- 2010: Qimo 4 Kids ($250), Squid ($250), Libre Graphics Meeting ($300), Bacula ($250), FileZilla ($300), GCompris ($352), Xiph.org ($250), Clonezilla ($250), Debian Multimedia ($280), Geany ($300), Mageia ($470), gtkpod ($300)
- 2011: CGSecurity ($300), OpenShot ($300), Imagination ($250), Calibre ($300), RIPLinuX ($300), Midori ($310), vsftpd ($300), OpenShot ($350), Trinity Desktop Environment ($300), LibreCAD ($300), LiVES ($300), Transmission ($250)
- 2012: GnuPG ($350), ImageMagick ($350), GNU ddrescue ($350), Slackware Linux ($500), MATE ($250), LibreCAD ($250), BleachBit ($350), cherrytree ($260), Zim ($335), nginx ($250), LFTP ($250), Remastersys ($300)
- 2013: MariaDB ($300), Linux From Scratch ($350), GhostBSD ($340), DHCP ($300), DOSBox ($250), awesome ($300), DVDStyler ($280), Tor ($350), Tiny Tiny RSS ($350), FreeType ($300), GNU Octave ($300)
* * * * *
New distributions added to waiting list
- Microlinux Enterprise Desktop. Microlinux Enterprise Desktop is a Slackware-based distribution available in KDE, MATE and Xfce editions.
- Nanolinux. Nanolinux is a very tiny Linux distribution based on MicroCore Linux with BusyBox.
* * * * *
DistroWatch database summary
* * * * *
This concludes this week's issue of DistroWatch Weekly. The next instalment will be published on Monday, 9 December 2013. To contact the authors please send email to:
- Jesse Smith (feedback, questions and suggestions: distribution reviews, questions and answers, tips and tricks)
- Ladislav Bodnar (feedback, questions, suggestions and corrections: news, donations, distribution submissions, comments)
- Bruce Patterson (feedback and suggestions: podcast edition)
If you've enjoyed this week's issue of DistroWatch Weekly, please consider sending us a tip.
(Tips this week: 0, value: US$0.00)
|Linux Foundation Training
|Reader Comments • Jump to last comment
1 • First impressions of openSUSE 13.1 (by Roland on 2013-12-02 11:00:02 GMT from Netherlands) |
Dear Jesse Smith,
the difficulty of getting the right multimedia support in openSUSE, was also always one of the downside I saw in this distribution. However, luckily I recently made the discovery of the 'Unofficial Guide to OpenSUSE 13.1' that purpose is: "...to provide new users with everything they need to know to get started using openSUSE as a home user/small office desktop operating system - quickly and easily".
Find here more about the Multimedia Codecs:
2 • multimedia codecs (by gino on 2013-12-02 11:15:07 GMT from Italy)
the "one click install" button, on community pages, is about two years on (version 11.4, 12.1, 12.2, 12.3)... So if it's so difficult to press a button to install codecs what is friendly?
3 • Open Suse 13.1 (by kc1di on 2013-12-02 11:15:09 GMT from United States)
I would say from my perspective that this release is a good one but along with the Multimedia stuff being so difficult to install comes the Problems with machines using Nvidia Graphics cards. It simply does not work with the present setup or at least it did not work and there was no drivers for my card that worked easily. At the time I tried it. Hope this is fixed soon, maybe it is now but it makes what should be an easy setup a nightmare :(
4 • opensuse-13.1 (by Rajesh Ganesan on 2013-12-02 11:17:42 GMT from India)
Thanks Jessee, for an excellent review of opensuse-13.1. I installed it on the date of release itself and have been using it since. I agree with your views on its stability, speed and ease of use.
Regarding multimedia, my experience is that once you open yast2 package manager, it automatically selects java, flash and few codecs. For the rest, we can add packman using add community repository.
Well, as you said, better documentation may be suggested. :)
5 • @2 (by kc1di on 2013-12-02 11:22:37 GMT from United States)
The problem is not with the concept of the one click install it simply is never ready when the new release comes. unlike other Distros that have it available right out of the box or with the simple check of a box. or available and easy to find in their repositories. As much as Open Suse offers it still not an easy setup for most who try it when it's offered-- takes months sometimes for the One Click options to catch up with the Distro. There should be much better coordination of these things by now. Just MHO.
6 • @5 (by gino on 2013-12-02 11:38:55 GMT from Italy)
but codecs install for 13.1 IS ready, no months to wait
7 • @6 (by kc1di on 2013-12-02 11:53:58 GMT from United States)
I'll try it again today. Still don't know if I can if I can't get nvidia drivers to work.
8 • openSUSE 13.1 and multimedia support (by Pierre on 2013-12-02 11:56:49 GMT from Germany)
I see the point that enabling the multimedia support for openSUSE always has been a little more tricky than on Ubuntu.
But I don't agree on the claim it were more difficult than on Debian or Fedora.
On Debian you have to add the non-free repository by adding non-free to your repository URLs in APT's repository config file.
On Fedora you will have to enable an additional RPM repository.
And for openSUSE it's exactly the same.
Simply add the Packman repository to your repositories. This can be done very easily on two ways.
1. Add it via YaST -> Package Management -> Repositories (Community/ Custom Package Repositories -> Packman)
2. zypper ar -f -n packman http://packman.inode.at/suse/openSUSE_13.1/ packman (on command line with administrator rights / sudo)
After that trying to play mp3 files will prompt you for searching after according codecs and now will find them.
Or you go on by your on, adding the needed gstreamer plugins bad, ugly and ffmpeg.
If you are not using gstreamer as back-end but xine there is libxine2-codecs available as well.
So it's not more awkward than on other distribution although I would like to see a simple check-box on install time, where Packman would be added to the repositories and codecs grabbed from the internet.
Nevertheless, I have never seen the current approach as really complicated.
http://en.opensuse.org/Additional_package_repositories gives a fair and understandable guide to additional package repositories and there is even more useful documentation available - on both, the official wiki, forum and third party sources.
Have a lot of fun with this beautiful and powerful distro.
9 • Slackware 14.1 (by coolpup on 2013-12-02 12:06:41 GMT from Canada)
A few months ago (less than 6), I decided to revisit Slackware, the distro I cut my Linux teeth on many years ago. It started nicely from the USB stick, but when it came to actually installing it, it demanded a CD/DVD disc. End of discussion. I decided to grab the ISO again yesterday and have it sit until I got around to getting some blank DVDs. For the heck of it, I wrote it to a USB stick and booted from it. Much to my surprise, there was an option to install from the stick. I'm not sure if it was because I wrote the ISO to the stick using 'dd' rather than Unetbootin, or because Patrick, et al, realized a lot of people are using USB sticks these days and decided to add that option.
As a result, Slack lives on the same drive as Windows (pardon the profanity :P), and I'll be making my brain even mushier relearning what to do with Slack.
10 • Re: OpenSuSe 13.1 (by silent on 2013-12-02 12:08:40 GMT from France)
Strictly speaking I have OpenSuSe Tumbleweed (rolling) on my PC. Current repositories should be also enabled with the rolling version, and practically it was still a full upgrade to 13.1, as apparently Tumbleweed takes a conservative approach. Apper has tried to complete the upgrade, but failed silently due to a handful of dependency problems. They were easily sorted out manually in Yast2 by deleting some obsolete packages.Perhaps apper could have sent an error message and offer to launch yast2. Otherwise, no problems and not much has changed either. As concerning third party repositories with multimedia codecs, neither Fedora nor OpenSuse want to take any responsibility for them. Let me call attention to the one-click-install multimedia and driver collection at http://opensuse-community.org/1-click-collection .
11 • thanks.. (by musty on 2013-12-02 12:20:31 GMT from France)
Hi Jesse, thanks for supporting Octave and for reviewing openSuse.
Also good news that CentOS 6.5 is there. It's my favorite distro for all my servers.
12 • DistroWatch donation pot (by sam on 2013-12-02 12:38:23 GMT from United Kingdom)
I was wondering about
"Those readers who wish to contribute towards these donations, please use our advertising page to make a payment"
Is this for readers to add to the donation pot even if they don't want to buy advertising? The advertising page does not make it very clear.
I would be great if you could encourage readers to add more money to the pot. It would not take many $10/months to double the impact of your donations.
13 • @ #9 (by AleCon on 2013-12-02 12:49:29 GMT from Italy)
USB booting can be tricky sometimes! based on my personal experience I'm quite reluctant about Unetbootin but never had problems with dd. I guess the hardware may play a role as well
14 • @#13 (by coolpup on 2013-12-02 13:25:15 GMT from Canada)
I've noticed that Unetbootin has been iffy lately (the past few months). Yes, hardware may have something to do with it, although the distribution factors in to the mix too. Some go without a hitch, while others are plain cranky when processed with Unetbootin. I've found myself using dd more and more because of that, and am contemplating getting rid of Unetbootin altogether.
15 • @9 Slackware USB install (by Microlinux on 2013-12-02 13:25:30 GMT from France)
Here's a little documentation on how to install Slackware on a machine without an optical drive:
It's in french, but the UNIX bits are universal :o)
PS: thanks to DW for adding my MLED project to the list!
16 • @#15 (by coolpup on 2013-12-02 14:14:26 GMT from Canada)
I have the drive, not the media. I normally don't have any since I quite often just look to see what it's about. USB sticks are better suited for that. I don't need that many coasters. :)
As for the site being in French, Google Translate does a fine job on sites as well as words and sentences.
17 • @17 (by Microlinux on 2013-12-02 14:28:54 GMT from France)
If you only wish to test-drive a distribution, just install VirtualBox on your computer. Download the distribution's ISO and configure it as an installation media in VirtualBox. You don't even need a USB stick for that.
18 • @#16 (by coolpup on 2013-12-02 14:35:21 GMT from Canada)
Only test-driving a distro is basically pointless, IMO. I'll usually look first, and if I like it, I'll keep it on the stick until something "better" comes along.
19 • Octave (by dbrion on 2013-12-02 14:42:54 GMT from France)
That is a bright idea to support and explain Octave is meant to be matlab-compatible : colleagues of mine are happy with it when they are advised (if they have been trained with Matlab; if they have been trained with R, they keep R) and use it mostly for graphics (gnuplot would be enough, but PCs have a lot of RAM and CPU).
OTOH, I noticed that, in DW data base, Rapsbian http://distrowatch.com/table.php?distribution=raspbian had no octave packaged; this is unconsistent with the fact that one can find two octaves (3.6.2 and 3.6.4) in http://archive.raspbian.org/raspbian/pool/main/o/octave/)
Same thing seems to happen with pidora http://pidora.ca/pidora/releases/18/packages/armv6hl/os/Packages/o/ : octave-3.6.2 seems to exist (but is alone), and is not listed in http://distrowatch.com/table.php?distribution=pidora
Maybe an automatic software cannot manage with two versions, maybe it is felt wise not to put octave on a less powerful platform...maybe there are other puzzling explanations .
20 • openSUSE "papercuts" (by AnklefaceWroughtlandmire on 2013-12-02 15:11:25 GMT from Ecuador)
@4: "Regarding multimedia, my experience is that once you open yast2 package manager, it automatically selects java, flash and few codecs."
Yes, this has always been my experience too. However, I personally think this is terrible default behavior. If the first thing that the user tries to install is NOT Java or Flash, it is very confusing to see all those additional packages being installed. For example, if the first thing I do after installing openSUSE is to go and install, say, Thunderbird, it makes no sense to see 200MB worth of Java and Flash and related dependencies being installed. Worse yet, it is very difficult for new users (and indeed experienced users) to figure out how to un-select all of those additional packages so they don't keep popping up again. Looks like I'm not the only one irritated by this, in the recent Dedoimedo review of openSUSE 13.1 he mentioned being annoyed by this same issue.
So according to Jesse's review of openSUSE 13.1, it looks like they messed up NetworkManager after the initial install, just like in the last release? (http://lizards.opensuse.org/2013/03/13/one-that-got-away-12-3-networking/) This is also a pretty major issue, which I was hoping would not persist for two entire releases.
Another issue is that openSUSE has disgustingly ugly font rendering out of the box. This is an issue that has persisted release after release after release. While Ubuntu and even Arch have beautiful subpixel rendering out of the box, openSUSE continues to ignore this issue. Yes, it is possible to add an OBS repo and switch versions of packages to get superb Infinality font rendering. But although this is possible, the majority of users will probably never bother to go through these steps, and will probably prefer another distro that doesn't torture their eyes with awful fonts. I personally find openSUSE such a nice distro that it's worth the time and effort to configure the fonts, but I sure wish it wasn't necessary to do so.
The openSUSE team seems to view some of these issues as minor papercuts. However, in reality they are complete turn-offs for new users when I try to demonstrate the OS to them and their first impression is a system that has no networking support or arbitrarily installs hundreds of megabytes of packages out of nowhere for no apparent reason. openSUSE is so close to being fantastic, but the devil is in the details. I hope openSUSE will listen to these complaints that get repeated release after release in order to produce a truly refined open source OS we can be proud to show off.
21 • computer crashes (by dive.ed on 2013-12-02 15:22:09 GMT from United States)
It has been my experience that when a computer starts to crash randomly it is usually a hardware issue either caused by overheating or the power supply going bad. First open the case and check that all the fans are working and clean. If all of that looks OK, try replacing the power supply. I was just able to repair a friends computer, that was randomly crashing, by replacing the power supply. I have also repaired three other computers for other people in the same manner. The mother board might also be failing, but they are not as easy to replace.
22 • OpenSuse 13.1 and @9 slackware 14.1 (by Tuxtest on 2013-12-02 16:06:40 GMT from Canada)
@9 For people who want a 14.1 slackware experience without having to configure anything, I invite you to visit Slackel here http://www.slackel.gr/. Use the LiveDVD for easy installation or the installation DVD to the installation as slackware. With Slackel you have a fast Slackware full experience.
23 • OpenSUSE (by David McCann on 2013-12-02 17:19:51 GMT from United Kingdom)
When I tried it recently, I found my video driver was broken. A visit to the forum showed a lot of people with video problems, particularly those with Intel chips. When I got it running (with the vesa driver), I found that Lightdm (supplied if you choose any desktop other than KDE or Gnome) was also broken. I got it running eventually, but it took a couple of days: SUSE hasn't run out of the box for me since version 11.
24 • @23 (by jaws222 on 2013-12-02 17:33:21 GMT from United States)
"When I tried it recently, I found my video driver was broken. A visit to the forum showed a lot of people with video problems, particularly those with Intel chips. When I got it running (with the vesa driver), I found that Lightdm (supplied if you choose any desktop other than KDE or Gnome) was also broken. I got it running eventually, but it took a couple of days: SUSE hasn't run out of the box for me since version 11."
That's weird cause I had nothing but problems with 11. 12.2 worked like a dream for me and so far 13.1 is holding up well in virtualbox. Did you install KDE or Gnome? I've noticed the Gnome runs smoother for some reason. The only issue I had was network manager not running out of the box for 13.1. A somple visit to Yast I configured my ethernet and it's worked ever since.
25 • @ 3 kc1di NVIDIA (by RayRay on 2013-12-02 18:23:40 GMT from United States)
Try changing compositing to opengl 1.2.
You can also try turning off desktop effects, it may be tricky due to the poor rendering of the desktop with the Desktop effects on by default.
I'm using opensuse just fine with an Nvidia GeForce 6200 on opengl 1.2, I don't do gaming so I don't know well it will do for gamers.
26 • @25 (by kc1di on 2013-12-02 19:01:56 GMT from United States)
Thanks RayRay I'll give it a try but I should not have to disable everything just to make my card work.. don't have to do that in any other distros i've used.
@ 20 Nicely written hope they listen
27 • Uses of DragonFly BSD (by Xfce_fan on 2013-12-02 20:50:26 GMT from United States)
Glad to see DFly 3.6 get mentioned this week. I've been intrigued by it for a while but never had much luck getting it to run smoothly on my desktop. (Obviously not as polished of a user experience as *buntu & Debian.)
Then again, DFly seems to be targeted at servers. Is anybody aware of any major websites that are running on aDragonFly BSD servers? It also seems like a good OS to run on a supercomputer with some inherent advantages over Linux (even though Red Hat & SuSE rule the supercomputer market at this time.)
28 • Mint # 1 (by Joe on 2013-12-03 01:05:12 GMT from Mexico)
Another and another way! More than two years ago Mint is maintining its top popularity in DW, Something good is doing the team lidered by Clem Lefebre.
Super complet in drivers and codecs. Now with Cinamon 2.0 totally indepent of gnome, faster and secure than in its previous 1.x version. Thanks a lot for this wonderful distro.
29 • SOLYDXK (by vt on 2013-12-03 01:16:57 GMT from United States)
Just wanted to put in a good word for Solydxk. Installed it about a week ago and am sticking with it. The Distro picks up where Linux MINT Debian Edition left off, offering an XFCE and KDE version (both of which were discontinued by Clem). Hopefully, the distro will have some staying power.
30 • re 21 - Computer Crashes (by Been there... on 2013-12-03 02:02:57 GMT from Canada)
You're correct about opening the computer and making certain everything is clean and not covered in dust. The major culprit here is people insisting on placing there desktop PC on the floor, to make more room on their (physical) "desktop". In terms of your computer's health, that would be the worst place to position it. You ever wonder why dogs and cats don't live as long as we do? It's because they are closer to the ground and inhale all the crud you find at lower altitudes!
Okay; I wasn't serious about that last bit - but certainly the visualization about what detris lurks in the lower regions should serve to get across the message that in a sense, computers "breath". They need to circulate air to cool various parts (CPU, video card, not-so-hard drive, etc.) which would otherwise self-fricasee.
You would not believe the crud one finds on opening some PC's. I've learned when repairing PC's from industrial areas and showrooms, to place the unit over a newspaper or other disposable item, wear a mask and gloves, and maybe keep some disinfectant handy... It helps to make sure the case is grounded, and if working on synthetic rug, to maybe use a "ground strap" as well.
Wearing a white lab coat helps contrast the amount of dirt, as well as making you look like an expert who can justify whatever it is you are charging to expose yourself to these spores, viruses, bacteria, pet hair, rat droppings, etc. I only wish this part actually was a joke. Never occurred to me to take photo examples, but was too busy gagging and gasping for fresh air in some cases.
Another tip: Experts sometimes advise using a compressor to blow out the gunk and avoid creating static. In drastic cases, ignore them! Use a grounded shop-vac and suck the stuff out rather than spreading it around. A soft photostyle brush helps as well. It used to be possible to buy "antistatic" brushes, but they disappeared off the market after a few well publicized spy death caused by polonium (the alpha particle emissions from thesmall amount in the handle were what neutralized the static charges). Now you can get inexpensive electrostatic dischargers with no such danger.
Once everything is cleaned off and you can actually discern individual parts on the motherboard, check the electrolytic capacitors for signs of bulging or other obvious deterioration. This is probably the single chief cause of random computer crashes not related to software.
Legal notice: This advice is free, but I take NO responsibility if you kill yourself laughing over this advice, or perhaps choke to death cleaning some of the PCs out there.
31 • Linux Mint 16 - no review (by Linadian on 2013-12-03 02:04:00 GMT from Canada)
I'm not a shill or fanboi or troll, etc, but Mint's release of 16 with standalone DE Cinnamon 2.x with new features is huge. AFAIAC, openSUSE is the same old, release to release with bug fixes and GUI tweaks. I just find it odd there's no Mint 16 Cinnamon review. I've been using Kubuntu but I'm fed up with KDE's bloated and overbearing nature (nepomuk, PIM, etc), that being said, Cinnamon is nice balance between functionality and simplicity, like somebody put old Gnome and KDE in a blender and out popped Cinnamon. :-D
32 • One Issue with openSUSE (by Tom Trotter on 2013-12-03 02:13:27 GMT from United States)
For many years, I have installed every new version of
Ubuntu, Fedora and openSUSE. I also maintain (at least)
one machine with an enhanced version of RHEL 6. For
a complex set of reasons, most of the installs are done
on machines which must also run Windows 8.1. I have
found that all except openSUSE have boot protocols that
enable a recovery of the windows boot loader, via
a "bootrec.exe /fixmbr" command. But if you install openSUSE
using a dual boot on a machine with Windows 8.1, you had
best be prepared for a full installation from scratch of the
Windows OS if you ever decide to go back to the starting
33 • Mint 16 (by fernbap on 2013-12-03 02:41:15 GMT from Portugal)
I had not much time with Mint 16 yet, but i had enough to say that Mint 16 is:
Very polished, as usual, even by Mint standards
Significantly faster than previous releases
It contains 2 small gems, a USB stick formatter and a Bootable USB creator.
I still don't understand why smplayer didn't reach mainstream within the distro universe, since it is, according to my own experience, the best video player available. Perhaps because most of the distro creators are english spoken and are used to english spoken videos, and can't appreciate the importance of a player capable of dealing with subtitles without any issue. VLC (included in Mint) comes close, but not enough.
34 • openSUSE - Multimedia, Nvidia, and observations from a long-term user (by Andy Prough on 2013-12-03 03:35:53 GMT from )
Some of the concerns that have been raised so far about openSUSE are typical - frustration with the lack of restricted multimedia codecs, trouble with graphic drivers, trouble with network setup. I've been using openSUSE and overcoming these "speed bumps" with each release for many years now - here's my thoughts on a few of these issues:
1. Multimedia codecs
openSUSE very specifically distances itself from restricted multimedia codecs, so I don't think you will ever see an "easy Ubuntu-style checkbox" at installation to add these.
However, the Packman repository is the largest and most popular 3rd-party repository for openSUSE, and offers nearly all the multimedia functionality you would need. Instructions for adding the Packman repository are here:
2. Nvidia drivers
openSUSE has not made the Nvidia driver repository available for 13.1 yet, but should do so within the next week. In the meantime, you can still install the drivers by following the instructions on the following page:
My advice is to get used to installing Nvidia drivers "the hard way" in openSUSE. It's the best way to ensure you get a problem-free installation, and really doesn't take long once you've done it a time or two.
3. More advice
a. DVD Installation is Better - Download the DVD if possible, not the live CD versions for installation. Unlike Ubuntu, openSUSE puts a lot more packages on the DVD, and you will get a better installation overall with it. Sometimes, network problems are completely avoided by installing initially from the DVD rather than from one of the live CD's.
b. Be Patient - don't install it on the first day of release unless you are adventurous. I've been using SUSE and openSUSE for over 13 years, and I ALWAYS wait until several weeks to a month after the new distribution version has been released to install it on any critical "production" machine. There are always tons of bugs that are found and fixed in the first few weeks after release. Keep in mind, a full release of openSUSE gets hundreds of thousands more users than an RC or beta release, so a lot more bugs are found.
c. Ask For HELP - The openSUSE forums are an incredibly knowledgeable and friendly place to ask questions and get help and advice:
Don't hesitate to ask. Usually, you'll get a quick response from a volunteer engineer who has a wealth of experience in the specific area you are having trouble. Often, your specific problem has occurred repeatedly, and someone will helpfully guide you to a step-by-step how-to on resolving the issue.
If you've ever been put off by the sometimes chaotic and/or hostile nature of other distro help forums, I think you'll find that the openSUSE forums are much more friendly, organized and effective.
d. File those Bug Reports - Unlike some other Distros, Novell set up the SUSE and openSUSE bug tracking system as an excellent 2-way communication forum. Sometimes you'll find yourself discussing the bug with the maintainer of the specific package itself. File the bug reports - you'll help make it a better distribution:
35 • Mint review (by M.Z. on 2013-12-03 06:02:10 GMT from United States)
You want a full review after only 2 days? I think there might be something to be said for using it for a week to see if any bugs pop up and giving the thing a little time to show the good points & bad points. Try to have a little patience. That being said, Mint 16 will definitely be on my laptop by the end of the week.
36 • Solydx (by retriever on 2013-12-03 06:18:45 GMT from United States)
@29 - I agree! Solydx is very stable and fast. It is my main distro at the momment. If you haven't tried it you should.
37 • @34 (by kc1di on 2013-12-03 10:48:40 GMT from United States)
Thank you for the timely comments, But I think much of the frustration comes in, in that you have to make the same corrections and additions with each release , should there not be at least some progress on the complaint over time and I've been using / Trying OpenSuse since the early days. and do find it frustrating to have to install nvidia drivers the hard way every time, etc. have filed bug reports and have been told on the forums to just wait many times but then the issue is not solved.
That being said once everything is ironed out it is a very good distro. I guess my frustration with it is that I have to spend hours sometimes tracking down the things to make it work for me.
Anyway this is I hope constructive not just complaining. I do like OpenSuse and it's one of the great distros.
38 • OpenSuse Gnome (by Chanath on 2013-12-03 10:53:30 GMT from Sri Lanka)
Jesse, would you try to install OpenSuse Gnome version from the live DVD/usb stick? KDE install is okay, but Gnome won't allow installation, as the OK button goes below the screen in one of the partition pages. Would you try?
39 • @38 (by Gustavo on 2013-12-03 11:24:22 GMT from Brazil)
Chanath, please try this tip:
keep pressing left ALT and drag mouse to move the window.
40 • @39 (by Chanath on 2013-12-03 15:05:30 GMT from Sri Lanka)
Thanks! Will do.
Someone above wrote, its always better to wait few days, before downloading OpenSuse. Maybe, if I download it now, maybe it won't have this bug.
41 • @37, @38 - openSUSE (by Andy Prough on 2013-12-03 16:57:28 GMT from United States)
@37 kc1di - "But I think much of the frustration comes in, in that you have to make the same corrections and additions with each release , should there not be at least some progress on the complaint over time and I've been using / Trying OpenSuse since the early days. and do find it frustrating to have to install nvidia drivers the hard way every time, etc."
- It's important to keep in mind that SUSE has thousands of corporate installations that they are primarily concerned with. Making it easy to play games or watch movies is never going to be their top priority. If I want an easy install for a game setup or a home entertainment system, I'm going with Mint or Ubuntu.
But, feel lucky you've got an Nvidia card. Radeon support used to be complete and utter garbage on openSUSE (might still be - I gave up years ago). At least you can get Nvidia drivers working. Intel graphics support usually works right out of the box. If you don't need games, I recommend an Intel graphics card for openSUSE.
@38 Chanath - "Jesse, would you try to install OpenSuse Gnome version from the live DVD/usb stick? KDE install is okay, but Gnome won't allow installation, as the OK button goes below the screen in one of the partition pages. Would you try?"
If at all possible, don't do an installation from the "Live CD" or "Live DVD" versions of openSUSE. If you have the bandwidth, download the "4.7 GB DVD" version for a full installation - even if you just want Gnome or KDE. The live CDs/DVDs are good for a preview version, but in my opinion they are missing so many packages that they are basically broken as an installer (others may disagree here - but that's my experience).
My advice - don't install from the openSUSE "Live" versions - you'll end up with a borked system that you'll never get completely right. If you really want to install it and run it for a significant period of time or for any type of production, install it off the "4.7GB DVD".
openSUSE should really just stop releasing the "Live" CDs/DVDs as installation disks. They haven't done themselves any favors at all over the years, and the majority of the unfavorable reviews they get are from reviewers who install off the Live versions. To give you an idea how bad this is - if you ask for installation help in the openSUSE forums, one of the first questions you'll often get is "Did you install from the full DVD? If not, please try that first". It's THAT bad.
42 • @35 Re: Mint 16 Cinnamon review (by Linadian on 2013-12-03 17:40:44 GMT from Canada)
You make a good point, still have my Kubuntu 12.04.x LTS installed, still testing Mint 16 Cinnamon LIVE to make sure it will completely suit MY needs, having trouble with Kubuntu only printing once, then having to reboot to print again, very annoying, it has to pass the test, might even wait for the next release, LTS in the spring, why install again 4 months from now unless there's be an upgrade option?
43 • @42 (by jaws222 on 2013-12-03 17:54:21 GMT from United States)
"having trouble with Kubuntu only printing once, then having to reboot to print again, very annoying, it has to pass the test, might even wait for the next release, LTS in the spring, why install again 4 months from now unless there's be an upgrade option?"
Yes, if it's the network printer issue I had that same issue which was kinda weird. There is a fix for this if you do some googling, but the way I got around it was to install the LXDE desktop, install the printer then print a test page. Reboot computer into kde desktop and it worked like a charm.
44 • @43 Re: (K)ubuntu printer issue (by Linadian on 2013-12-04 02:12:02 GMT from Canada)
Mint 16 Cinnamon did the same thing, this is an under the hood issue with the Ubuntu base of the system. That being said, tried Knoppix (Debian based) 7.0, no problem, tons of multiple prints in multiple apps. Going to try Knoppix 7.2 now, if it works and it will install on my dual SSD raid 0, sticking with it, been a little miffed at the path Ubuntu is taking lately anyway, snoopware and wanting to go out on a limb with their new graphics server, Wayland I believe, or is it the other one?
45 • libdvdcss , Blu-ray on OpenSuse, Mint KDE (by Elcaset on 2013-12-04 02:27:15 GMT from United States)
I've been using Mint KDE LTS as my primary distro for about six years now. It just works with DVDs & usually, with Blu-ray, too. I haven't gotten either of these to work in OpenSuse, or the buntus. Is it worth me trying the new version of OpenSuse with DVD & Blu-ray support? Cheers.
46 • @44 Ubuntu is using Mir. Kubuntu & most distros are using Wayland. (by Elcaset on 2013-12-04 02:41:03 GMT from United States)
I'm looking forward to trying Wayland, once it matures. I won't be trying spybuntu with Mir. XFCE tried using XMir, but then gave up, & decided not to use it.
47 • Opensuse 13.1 Gnome (by Praveen on 2013-12-04 03:54:17 GMT from Europe)
why no one opt opensuse gnome for review at 1st? Gnome support is also great in opensuse. other and community guide is so perfect for multimedia support didnt face any issues at all.Yast is superb. please review Gnome edition as well
48 • @41 OpenSuse, @42 and others Mint (by Chanath on 2013-12-04 05:19:08 GMT from Sri Lanka)
Thanks, Andy. Will do. A long time ago, the OpenSuse live cds were pretty good, everything got installed nicely. Whatever happened to them?
I always have a look at Mint. And, I usually drop it after a while. Two reasons; their inflated ego and lack of upstream security updates. Mint is Ubuntu + Cinnamon + few Mint apps - security updates. Just take vanilla Ubuntu, add Petra repos, delete Unity, add few apps, and you have a better Mint than the official Mint, and safer too. And, you can keep Unity, if you want to experiment with.
It'd be quite interesting to see, what would be the next Mint edition, when Unity 8 would be the main Ubuntu DE. Also, when Ubuntu drops Gnome flashback from their repos.
49 • @44 Knoppix (by jaws222 on 2013-12-04 11:55:43 GMT from United States)
I played around with Knoppix about a year and a half ago and really liked it. The issue I had was installing it to a hard drive. Apparently it is mostly used as a fix-it type disk and they recommend to run it from the cd. When I finally found some good instructions I did get it to a hard drive but then broke it after trying to update. Is there a way around that?
50 • @45 - Blu-Ray on openSUSE (by Andy Prough on 2013-12-04 12:53:27 GMT from )
Looks like Blu-Ray is definitely a problem under openSUSE, and you need more than just libdvdcss. You might want to read the discussion from this past summer on the openSUSE forums regarding playing Blu-Ray disks - they offer up some possible solutions:
You will need to have libbluray1 and libaacs0 in addition to libdvdcss. Forum users are recommending that you read the Arch wiki for additional helpful alternative solutions:
Also, it sounds like if you can get a Windows program called "DVDfab" running under Wine, that is a very workable solution.
Good luck. Keep in mind, as I said earlier I don't look at openSUSE as a good home entertainment center OS. I would personally use Mint or Ubuntu for that. openSUSE is fantastic as an all-around workhorse that can handle a variety of file systems and can harness a lot of power out of a multi-core CPU, but it's far from perfect as a gaming or movie watching platform.
51 • Sabayon installer (by Chanath on 2013-12-04 12:57:16 GMT from Sri Lanka)
For a while, I let go of installing OpenSuse, and installed Sabayon Gnome in that partition. Its Gentoo and rolling. While installing I noticed an interesting line in the Sabayon Installer's slideshow. It said; "Debian Stable? Pfft... OLD!"
52 • Linux on a pen is more interesting than downloading and whining (by dbrion on 2013-12-04 14:41:55 GMT from France)
"It'd be quite interesting to see, what would be the next Mint edition,"
"I always have a look at Mint. And, I usually drop it after a while. "
Well, it would be an -self-claimed- interesting way of loosing one's time.
the self correcting pen is **really** interesting.
Not the hardware (
* ARM CPU :gumstix had tiny linux cards since 2004; they have been used in teaching http://perso-etis.ensea.fr/andry/cours/M1_SIC/Gumstix.pdf. Such CPUs can be made 5x5mm and eat very few mAms, if needed (teherfore, it is battery-powered).
* low-cost, low specs, tiny accelerometer (2x2 mm) : its price has been dropping since 2009; it is widely used for 8 bits -Arduini, say-).
a) the software, they are very concise about it: how do they recognize orientations (pens are cylinders) ? characters? words? Which languages do they support, and how do they do?.
b) the mere existence (there are press releases: is there a need , as people are more and moretyping; is funding existing -a PCB can be very expensive to develop, and one may wait for months- , or will it be vaporware?)
53 • @51 sabayon installers (by tuxtest on 2013-12-04 15:06:38 GMT from Canada)
DEV Sabayon should be humble! No comparison between Sabayon and Debian. In terms of problem, you will be served with Sabayon my friends.
Debian is best at all level! And this is normal because the community is much larger and the development team as well.
I tested in long term all versions of Sabayon and I never surpassed the 6 months without major problems. Sabayon slogans on the from page website * most fast or the best etc... *
Sorry but there is no truth !
The best rooling release for me is Archlinux... I use Manjaro it more simple of arch
I think Slogans Sabayon installers is only humor
54 • @53 tuxtest @ dbrion (by Chanath on 2013-12-04 16:46:17 GMT from Sri Lanka)
Well, yes, I thought the same way. He makes a nice distro out of tough Gentoo, but he should be humble too. I'd download OpenSuse again in a week like Andy advised.
You say; "Well, it would be an -self-claimed- interesting way of loosing one's time." Did it cross your mind that you were wasting time by writing that line? Just a wee bit, but still a wasted time.
55 • @49 Re:Knoppix & @43 Re: (K)ubuntu printer problems (by Linadian on 2013-12-04 16:52:02 GMT from Canada)
@49: Knoppix appears to have a lot of 'locked' files so it's not 'broken' on the fly (live), which does actually make it rock solid live, I did manage to get around that in a live session and installed DVDStyler, lol, it wasn't easy, although, when I went to start DVDStyler, all I got was the language selection, nothing after that, lol. ;-D
@43 I solved the Kubuntu Brother printer issue, Brother is Linux friendly so they supply a lightweight driver, go to the Kubuntu Forum for the solution or search "Kubuntu brother printer blank pages".
56 • Distroshopping is for clueless people (by dbrion on 2013-12-04 16:58:28 GMT from France)
I highlighted the cluelessness of distro(s)opping and whining (ah : being unable to do some trivial manual "work" in 38 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gznDOMKeWkA) and the huge contrast between
a) untested distros (there are hundreds, "releasing" every 6 months) and
some people might obtain with (or without : I doubt pen stifter is dependent on a given linux kernel) GNU linux.
57 • @56 dbrion (by Chanath on 2013-12-04 17:04:53 GMT from Sri Lanka)
"Distroshopping is for clueless people"
Are you here to negate the very existence of Distrowatch?
58 • @49 knoppix installation (by linuxuser on 2013-12-04 19:32:33 GMT from Greece)
I think it is not a very good option to install Knoppix to a hard disk because the packages that are used to build the distribution come from different Debian repositories. They are a mixture of Debian stable and Debian Testing if I recall well from Knoppix Wiki pages. So an upgrade will propably brake the system. I think that this is pointed out in Knoppix Wiki pages.
59 • Not quite finished. (by LinuxMan on 2013-12-04 20:03:22 GMT from United States)
Why was you trying to use MIR? It's not quite finished yet and won't make the scene until the last of next year. It won't be in the LTS version. Anyway what is with this spybuntu crap? Does everyone know that it's there? Yes they do. Can it be disabled? Yes, very easily. Should it be opt in instead of opt out? Of course not. What would be the point unless someone is too lazy of disable it. Should ad blockers be installed and enabled in all web browsers? Some believe so but that would be foolish also. Most people who use the online search functions for a while start liking it, and so far nobody has shown anyone getting damaged by doing so. If I were you I'd worry more about the NSA. :)
60 • @48 security updates (by :wq on 2013-12-04 20:26:51 GMT from United States)
I am not endorsing any viewpoint, I am just providing a link to Clem's reasoning and an explanation of how you can change what updates you receive.
61 • @59 & 46 Re: spying (by Linadian on 2013-12-04 21:38:06 GMT from Canada)
I am running Kubuntu 12.04.x, temporarily enabled Debian's testing repository (IGNORE UPGRADEABLE if you do this), installed Iceweasel 17.0.9, then reverted repositories back, then installed extensions NoScript and Adblock Plus, worked like a charm. Word on the street is, if you do this, you can't use Iceweasel and Firefox at the same time, Iceweasel utilizes Firefox's files directory in your home partition. Another tip, after you do this, the install messes with your fonts a bit, the easy fix is re-enable anti-aliasing and chose 'Hinting style'=slight. :-D Now I have full control of my web surfing experience and I'm willing to deal with a few stubborn sites, they can go to h*ll (or just use a diff browser if I HAVE to go there), I'm really sick of spying/tracking.
62 • Ubuntu Gnome Remix Trusty Tahr (by Chanath on 2013-12-05 08:03:45 GMT from Sri Lanka)
After not installing OpenSuse Gnome, I installed Sabayon Gnome, but after 24 hours of use and 2 booting problems, I decided to install a distro that had not yet had been released, but has a daily image, the Ubuntu Gnome Trusty Tahr. No hiccups at all, booted in Live mode pretty quickly, and the installation from the live mode was smooth. Working very nicely, allowing me to install whatever I want, and nicely dist-upgrading. Its a test version, as not even an Alpha is released.
63 • very existence of Distrowatch: Packages databasee + unknown Unixes (by dbrion on 2013-12-05 09:38:21 GMT from France)
Nobody is interested in 24 hours of failure (w/r to a total life of stupid distro bashing: it can be mildly neglected).
a carefully (at least for x86s: for other, emerging CPUs I am puzzled) managed packages database and applications of GNUlinux (which can make a nice change from THE battle of THE desktop, which will be won ... when there are no desktops), as well as some Unices one would not dare to test make the difference between:
* downloading, whining and spreading FUD (see last week Slitaz stupid "death"anouncement , RH and Debian bashing showing a realistic light on teh intellectual state of its author) and cluelessly -who would trust an UBU/mint fanboy)
non redundant skills, which may exist and be useful for a long time.
64 • @ 63 dbrion (by Chanath on 2013-12-05 11:10:20 GMT from Sri Lanka)
Are you here to negate the very existence of Distrowatch?
65 • I don't like it either. (by LinuxMan on 2013-12-05 13:18:29 GMT from United States)
Yelp, I'm kinda turned off by all the tracking too. I opted out. I'm really not one into the social network thing either. The rest of my family is tho. If you use Facebook or any other of the social network sites then all bets for privacy are off. You will have none but then again, you're not asking for any. ;)
66 • Random gems from Chanathwatch (differs from DW) (by dbrion on 2013-12-05 13:28:39 GMT from France)
"Debian's spinster-like attitude to modernity. " http://distrowatch.com/weekly.php?issue=20131125&mode=67 post 60
Ah, a distroshopper feeels greater to bash debian...
"I am not at all interested in REHL as it is not free. " (ibid, post 78)
Spreading FUD about REHL can give some UBU bribes to a distroshopper ..
No matter if easy to verify facts contradict Chanathwatch..
"Jesse, would you try to install OpenSuse Gnome version from the live DVD/usb stick? KDE install is okay, but Gnome won't allow installation, as the OK button goes below the screen in one of the partition pages. Would you try?" (this week DWW , post 38
Begging a very smart distrotester to do some trivial manual work is sooo consistent with:
"For a while, I let go of installing OpenSuse" (one whines and begs for work, like a 5 yrs old child: then, one throws the toy)
OTOH, I have to disagree with Jesse Smith comment in last week distrowatch:
"Meanwhile, over in the Linux camp, I feel as though things have reached a plateau. "
A plateau, in French, is not a synonym for cerebral death.
67 • @58 Knoppix (by jaws222 on 2013-12-05 15:04:00 GMT from United States)
Yes, Knoppix does steer you away from HD installations. I thought I read once about someone who had installed it successfully, but not sure how he got the updates.
@ 66 dbrion Please stop, you are killing me. :)
68 • Knoppix (by Kazlu on 2013-12-05 17:08:24 GMT from France)
jaws22 : why do you need so bad to install Knoppix on a hard drive ? I suppose you can still make a frugal install like Puppy, but if it's not what you are looking for what's the point of using Knoppix, which is made to be live ?
Please take no offense, I'm just curious to understand your motivations :)
69 • @68 (by jaws222 on 2013-12-05 17:22:06 GMT from United States)
I really don't. I tried a while back and broke it by updating. It was just one of those things that I couldn't get to work and I got a bit obsessed. I'm over it, but was curious to see if anyone had figured it out. I have plenty of other distros to play with . :)
70 • Knoppix (by Rev_Don on 2013-12-05 22:01:06 GMT from United States)
I've never had any problems installing Knoppix 6.x or 7.x on a hard drive. I regularly update it, but I do it selectively not globally. I only update those programs that I actually use and security updates, and I do them one at a time. So far I have never borked an install with an update in the nearly 4 years of hard drive installs.
71 • Knoppix (by jaws222 on 2013-12-05 22:27:45 GMT from United States)
I just discovered this. Interesting:
72 • Re: Knoppix discussion (by Linadian on 2013-12-06 00:44:45 GMT from Canada)
I'm guilty of starting it because I was having problems with the 'found' printer drivers in Kubuntu (the actual Brother driver solved that), I merely mentioned that printing from Knoppix WITHOUT the proprietary driver was excellent live and was contemplating raid 0 SSD install, low and behold, like other Debian based distros, it's next to impossible to install on a 'hardware raid', unlike seamless installs from Ubuntu based distros. Was kind of glad anyway, really didn't want to lose my very functional and stable Kubuntu 12.04.x.
73 • Linux desktop evolution slowdown (by ange on 2013-12-06 13:40:09 GMT from Hungary)
Deepin is larger than it looks, it has potential, however elementary OS is better for everyday use.
But in reality there are no competitor in Linux world for Windows 8.1 for now.
74 • @73 Re: Monopoly OS (by Linadian on 2013-12-06 15:50:14 GMT from Canada)
DW frowns on bashing but I have to chime in, if you don't mind a GUI designed for a child (they even have a kid using it in their commercials) or one of the most government friendly software corps, be our guest, use it, enjoy, just don't do anything shady on the internet with it (like download a movie, etc) and don't forget to spend those extra $ on third party 'protection', you'll need it.
75 • Updating Knoppix (by Andy Prough on 2013-12-06 16:54:09 GMT from )
Here is a method for updating a Knoppix hard disk installation. It involves downloading each Knoppix DVD update, and updating your Hard Drive installation from that new DVD as the source:
76 • 74 Our favorite bash-able-distro (by Fossilizing Dinosaur on 2013-12-06 18:03:03 GMT from United States)
Don't be so stingy with your spite - hardware and software producers alike deserve a fair share of blame for antisocial monopolistic behavior, as well as the government that legalizes abuses of licensing, copyright and patent, and encourages antisocial behavior by providing legal protection for soulless fictional entities - corporations - in the name of stimulating the economy.
Of course, other corporations - large customers - have softened much misbehavior, and Microsoft isn't entirely suicidally foolish. They will be constructive whenever they perceive a potential market advantage, and have even contributed to Freed Software. Not necessarily evil, just amoral.
Number of Comments: 76
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Hikarunix ["hee-kah-roo-nix"] was a Linux live CD based on Damn Small Linux and dedicated to Go - a popular Asian strategy game. It was known as Baduk in Korea and Wei Qi in China where the game started somewhere between 3,000 and 4,000 years ago. Today it was played in nearly every country in the world and has even been played in space. This CD was designed especially for Go players of all levels. Whether you've been playing for decades or have never heard of the game until now, this CD was for you. Any machine that can boot to CD can boot to Hikarunix instead of the computer's regular operating system. Since it boots entirely in RAM and only borrows the peripherals, Hikarunix doesn't touch the host machine at all.