| DistroWatch Weekly
|DistroWatch Weekly, Issue 784, 8 October 2018
Welcome to this year's 41st issue of DistroWatch Weekly!
Technology is always moving forward, trying new solutions to problems and attempting to improve upon past ideas. However, new changes can introduce new problems. This week we discuss an experimental power saving feature which has stirred up a debate among Fedora testers. Plus we cover UBports gaining a VoIP application and the Debian team's roadmap for Debian 10 "Buster". In our Questions and Answers column we talk about how to contribute new documentation to open source projects and the advantages gained from using portable package formats. First though we review an Indian distribution called Hamara. The Hamara project is free to use with optional commercial support and we share more details in our Feature Story. Our Opinion Poll this week asks whether our readers use region-tailored distributions such as Hamara. Plus we are pleased to share the releases of the past week and provide a list of the torrents we are seeding. We wish you all a wonderful week and happy reading!
- Review: Hamara 2.1
- News: Fedora testers talk about proposed suspend behaviour, UBports gains VoIP app, Debian's roadmap to Buster
- Questions and answers: Improving manual pages, advantages of Flatpak/Snap
- Released last week: Linux Kodachi 4.0, antiX 17.2, Mageia 6.1, NixOS 18.09
- Torrent corner: 4MLinux, Antergos, antiX, Archman, Artix, AUSTRUMI, Calculate, Emmabuntus, ExTiX, Kodachi, Mageia, NixOS, SwagArch, Tails
- Upcoming releases: Ubuntu 18.10 Release Candidate, FreeBSD 12.0-BETA1
- Opinion poll: Region-specific distributions
- New distributions: Minitena
- Reader comments
Listen to the Podcast edition of this week's DistroWatch Weekly in OGG (19MB) and MP3 (14MB) formats.
|Feature Story (by Jesse Smith)
One of the more recent additions to the DistroWatch database is Hamara, a Debian-based desktop distribution developed by an Indian company. The project's website reports that Hamara is developed with the idea of making an operating system more familiar to Indian users, with particular attention paid to supporting the country's more popular spoken languages. The Hamara website also claims the company behind the distribution will provide commercial support though I could not find details on what services were offered or how much they cost. The support page has a contact form for people who wish to make inquiries into support options.
The latest version of Hamara is available in 32-bit and 64-bit builds. There is an ARM build too, but it is listed as a beta release and carries an older version number, suggesting the ARM branch may have been abandoned. When I was looking at the available download options, I noticed the project's FAQ page seems to suggest Hamara ships with the GNOME 3 and MATE desktops (or a combination of these technologies, another page claims the distro uses LXDE and GNOME 3) but I only found download options featuring the MATE desktop. The 64-bit edition I downloaded was 1.5GB in size.
Booting from the live media brought up a blank screen. There was no prompt, no welcome window and no visible desktop controls. The blank screen appeared both in VirtualBox and on my physical desktop computer. The display would remain blank until I switched to a text terminal (by pressing CTRL+ALT+F2) and then switched back to the desktop display (CTRL+ALT+F7). Once I had switched back to the desktop display, the MATE desktop would begin to load and the live session would present me with a working environment.
The MATE desktop uses a two panel layout. There is a task switcher in the bottom panel. The top panel displays the application menu, system tray and a second task switcher. The top panel's task switcher displays small application icons without text while the bottom panel displays a list of open windows with their title text.
Something I noticed early on is that the Hamara website and the ISO's filename indicate the latest version of the distribution is 2.1. However, when running the live media the system installer and the lsb_release program both label the latest version as being 2.0.
Hamara 2.1 -- Conflicting version information
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Hamara uses the Calamares system installer, a graphical application which offers a streamlined approach to setting up the operating system. I find using Calamares pleasantly easy and I think most users will find the screens straight forward to navigate. Calamares offers both guided and manual partitioning options. The guided option sets up an ext4 root partition and a swap partition. Once we have selected our keyboard layout, confirmed our time zone and provided a new username and password for our account the installer copies its files to the hard drive and offers to restart the computer.
Hamara boots to a graphical login screen which is almost entirely white, apart from an icon with our username under it. Clicking our account's icon gives us the opportunity to select a desktop session. The options are MATE and LightDM. There are two problems with this: 1. LightDM is not a desktop environment, and 2. both options sign us into the MATE desktop. From the login page there does not appear to be any way to shut down or restart the computer, we need to login to perform those actions.
Hamara 2.1 -- The welcome screen and application menu
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When we sign into the MATE desktop a welcome window appears. This window simply provides us with links to on-line resources such as the Hamara forum, the mailing lists, the wiki and the distribution's FAQ document. Clicking these links opens them in a web browser. At the bottom of the welcome window is a checkbox that, when clicked, should prevent the window from appearing in future sessions. This does not work; whether the box is checked or not, the welcome window always appears each time we sign into our account.
When I tried running Hamara in VirtualBox, the distribution did not automatically integrate with the virtual environment and could not use my host computer's full display resolution. I found VirtualBox guest modules in the default repositories and, with these modules installed, Hamara was able to better work with my host computer. The MATE desktop performed unusually slowly in VirtualBox with the default settings. I played around with the MATE window manager and MATE Tweak configuration tools and found there we three main options for compositing: no compositing, adaptive and GPU-enabled. Switching to adaptive and disabling all the compositing options in the window manager gave me the best performance. Hamara's MATE desktop never became as responsive as I would have liked, but its performance was improved noticeably when moving windows and drawing menus.
Hamara 2.1 -- Adjusting window manager settings
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When running on my desktop computer, Hamara performed well. The MATE desktop was responsive with the default settings and the system ran smoothly. My hardware was all properly detected and ran without issues. In either test environment, Hamara used 525MB of memory when logged into MATE and consumed 4.7GB of disk space with a fresh install. The 525MB of RAM seems heavy when we compare Hamara against its parent. Debian Stable running the MATE desktop uses less than half as much RAM and offered better performance on the same hardware.
Hamara ships with a fairly standard collection of useful, open source applications. The Firefox web browser is included along with the Thunderbird e-mail client and LibreOffice. The Transmission bittorrent software is included along with the Pidgin instant messaging software and the HexChat IRC client. We are also given a simple image viewer, the GNU Image Manipulation Program, the Cheese webcam utility and Caja file manager. Rhythmbox and the VLC multimedia player are included along with codecs for playing most media files. In the background we find Java has been installed for us and the GNU Compiler Collection is included. Hamara uses the systemd init software and version 4.17 of the Linux kernel.
The featured applications all worked well for me and I found the provided functionality useful. The only quirk I noticed was that LibreOffice's theme stands out. Its menus and widgets use a style which reminds me of Windows 95 while the rest of the desktop software uses a visual style more in line with modern GNOME applications.
Hamara 2.1 -- Running LibreOffice and Caja
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We can change the look of the desktop and its applications using the MATE settings panel. The panel includes several modules for tweaking the way the desktop looks and the way windows behave. There are also modules for setting up printers, configuring the firewall and managing user accounts. There is a module for working with the screensaver and I want to give Hamara credit for putting a 30 minute delay on the screensaver, when too many distributions prematurely assume I have wandered away from my desk after just five minutes of inactivity.
The settings modules generally worked well and I was happy with them. The only exception was the Additional Drivers module which, when clicked, opened the Software & Updates tool and presented a tab with some repository information and no options.
Hamara 2.1 -- Trying to find additional drivers
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Something which stood out by its absence was the lack of language tools. There is a system tray icon we can click to switch the input (keyboard) language, but I could not find any tools for downloading new language packs or dictionaries. I also did not find any tool for switching the displayed language, which was curious since one of the main talking points of this distribution is it multi-language support.
Hamara ships with two graphical software managers. The first is GNOME Software which is located under the System Tools category in the application menu. GNOME Software presents us with a handful of categories of software and we can click on a category to see the desktop applications provided. Each category typically only features about ten popular applications. For instance, the Productivity category has just ten items available for download and six of them are components of LibreOffice. This is unusual behaviour for GNOME Software, as usually there are many more download options in each section. I also noticed that there were zero items available for download under the Games section. As a result, I turned to the other package manager, Synaptic.
Hamara 2.1 -- Limited download options in GNOME Software
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Synaptic can be found under the Administration section of the application menu. Synaptic offers access to all available packages, including lower level programs and libraries. The package manager also gives us the ability to select which software repositories we connect to.
Hamara pulls packages mostly from its own custom repository, with security updates being drawn in from Debian's repositories. This can lead to some interesting quirks. For example, sometimes Synaptic reported it could not verify the custom Hamara repository, other times it seemed to accept the project's verification key. I also noticed that in the Software & Updates tool, all default repositories appear to be disabled. This is probably because the main Debian repositories (apart from the Security section) are disabled, but a custom Hamara entry has been added. This may confuse users as it makes it seem as though all the normal repositories are disabled, but it is just due to Hamara providing its own copies of Debian packages.
I did not need to install many updates during my trial, just 18 packages totalling 42MB in size. These packages were downloaded and installed without incident.
While Hamara generally provided me with a functional desktop environment, despite some minor performance problems in VirtualBox, and a good selection of useful desktop applications, I have some reservations about using (or recommending) this distribution. This is mostly due to the many little rough edges I found while using Hamara.
The multiple login session options which all access the MATE desktop provide a prime example. This is not a terrible bug, but having LightDM (which is not a desktop environment) listed as a session option makes me wonder if anyone logged into this release before it was published. The GNOME Software application showing almost no applications in each category and the Additional Drivers module opening a useless tab further brought into question whether anyone had tested the available features.
There were other little concerns, such as a lack of language tools when one of the main talking points for Hamara is its multi-language support. Or how the distribution's tools report we are using a different version number than the website and ISO's filename. Each of these issues is quite minor, almost not worth mentioning on their own. But when put together they paint a picture which makes me question how much quality assurance the Hamara team is doing.
For many small projects, QA testing and creating custom fixes for bugs probably wouldn't be a major concern. However, the Hamara website claims the developers are selling commercial support. And I would have reservations about purchasing support from a project that has left many small, yet obvious, issues in a final release. My misgivings grew when I noticed there has been virtually no activity in the distribution's user forum for the past year, even though new versions of Hamara have been published in 2018. This suggests that no one, not even the developers, is publicly discussing new releases and I find that unusual.
In the end, there were very few serious issues in Hamara. The distribution and its included software mostly worked well, but I regularly ran into little glitches or mistakes. My experience this week eventually fell victim to a thousand paper cuts.
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Hardware used in this review
My physical test equipment for this review was a desktop HP Pavilon p6 Series with the following specifications:
- Processor: Dual-core 2.8GHz AMD A4-3420 APU
- Storage: 500GB Hitachi hard drive
- Memory: 6GB of RAM
- Networking: Realtek RTL8111 wired network card
- Display: AMD Radeon HD 6410D video card
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Visitor supplied rating
Hamara has a visitor supplied average rating of: 7.8/10 from 5 review(s).
Have you used Hamara? You can leave your own review of the project on our ratings page.
|Miscellaneous News (by Jesse Smith)
Fedora testers talk about proposed suspend behaviour, UBports gains VoIP app, Debian's roadmap to Buster
The Fedora distribution is often on the cutting-edge of technology and a test bed for new features. One change in the distribution's development branch which has stirred up debate among testers is an experimental feature which causes a suspended computer to automatically switch into hibernation mode after three hours. The feature is designed to save battery power, but introduces increased risk of data loss and will make computers wake up more slowly. LWN reports: "The addition of this feature to Fedora came about in two steps. The first was addition of a suspend-to-hibernate command (later renamed suspend-then-hibernate) to systemd. The GNOME developers noticed this feature, and added a patch to automatically use it, instead of ordinary suspend, when it is available. Since GNOME chose to start using this feature, and since GNOME provides the control interface that users see, it seems natural to think that GNOME's interface should provide control over whether suspend-then-hibernate is used. But, it appears, the GNOME developers disagree with that idea. In particular, two GNOME developers, Bastien Nocera and Clasen, argued that if this particular systemd feature does not work reliably, it should be disabled in systemd rather than in GNOME. Neither seems to see any other reason why users might want to disable its use or have any control over it in general." Kamil Paral and Adam Williamson have posted comments describing situations where using a suspend-then-hibernate feature could cause problems for users. At the time of writing, it is unclear whether Fedora will adopt the feature in a future stable release.
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UBports is a community developed operating system for mobile devices. The project, which grew out of Canonical's abandoned Ubuntu Touch distribution, has announced that UBports users now have access to a voice-over-IP (VoIP) client in the operating system's app store. "Linphone has just landed in the Open Store. It's Ubuntu Touch's first VOIP (SIP) app. You can even use it to make regular telephone calls, too!" Further information on the Linphone app, such as features and known issues, can be found on the app's store page.
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Plans are being made in the Debian project for the release of Debian 10 "Buster". The Debian project plans to begin the "freeze" process, where new features and package versions stop being accepted into what will become Debian 10, in early 2019. While Debian does not have a fixed release schedule, this suggests Debian 10 will likely become available in the first half of 2019. Niels Thykier wrote regarding the release preparations: "We are about three and a half months way from the initial phase of the Buster freeze. Please follow up on your plans for Buster and evaluate whether it is realistic to accomplish them for Buster. Changes can be staged in experimental, to avoid disruption. Keep in mind that other volunteers may not have the same capacity to work on your goals. If there is an unfixed bug that is nagging you, remember to fix it (e.g. via an NMU) now rather than later."
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These and other news stories can be found on our Headlines page.
|Questions and Answers (by Jesse Smith)
Improving manual pages, advantages of Flatpak/Snap
An-aspiring-writer asks: Many of the man pages in my distro have typos and others lack examples. How can I contribute changes to these pages, is there a central repository of documentation where I can upload my edits?
DistroWatch answers: Typically distributions ship with manual pages provided by the upstream software projects. In other words, your distribution's developers probably did not write the manual pages you are planning to improve and won't have a git repository or wiki-style page for you to edit.
This is both good and bad news. On the negative side it means to share your edits you will probably need to track down the upstream developer(s) of the software whose manual page you are improving. Then you can either e-mail them with your updated copy of the page or submit a bug report with your edits attached. The good news is that if your edits are accepted by the upstream project, then virtually every Linux distribution will get an updated copy of the manual page, not just the distro you use.
To get you started in tracking down where to submit your changes, I recommend looking at the bottom of the manual page you plan to improve. Typically there is a copyright notice or link to the original project at the end of the manual page. Many, though certainly not all, manual pages for command line utilities on your distribution will likely originate from the GNU project. There is a list of GNU projects with links to their documentation and contact information on the GNU Manuals page.
I also recommend visiting the TLDR project which creates very brief manual pages, with examples, for common commands. A searchable version of the TLDR pages is available through our Simplified Manual Pages resource.
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Debating-package-formats asks: Is there a benefit to using a portable package like Flatpak over a package installed through APT?
DistroWatch answers: When we use a traditional package manager, such as the APT utilities, DNF or pacman, we are almost always using them to pull in packages which were provided by our distribution's developers. These packages were built specifically for our distribution and are built to work with the libraries and components of our operating system. This allows the individual packages to be small as they do not need extra support or compatibility tricks to make them work.
Flatpak packages, and other portable formats such as Snap and AppImage, bundle their dependencies together in one spot. This allows the Flatpak/Snap/AppImage package to run on virtually any version of any distribution which has the required framework (such as Flatpak) installed. This means the Flatpak package will likely be a lot larger as it needs to carry around its dependencies, but it means we should be able to transfer the package to another distribution and still have it work.
In short, portability is one of the main benefits, but there are some others. Distributions typically only ship one version of an application or library in their repositories. Sometimes trying to install an alternative version will break things on the system. Since portable packages bundle their dependencies and are kept separate from the rest of the operating system we can install any version of a Flatpak we like without breaking anything. This is especially useful if we are running a conservative distribution (such as CentOS or Debian) while wanting to run the latest version of an application that is not in the official repositories.
In other words, portable packages allow us to uncouple the end user application from the rest of the operating system and use a newer (or older) version of an application without upgrading or downgrading the entire distribution.
There are some potential downsides to portable packages. Apart from the size issue mentioned above, there are concerns about whether a package maintainer is keeping up with the security fixes in all the bundled dependencies. Official distribution repositories usually keep up with the latest bug fixes in shared libraries, but Flatpak bundles will also need to be updated with bug fixes separately. Users are at the mercy of portable package publishers to keep up to date with security fixes in all of a Flatpak's dependencies.
Finally, there is a question of vetting new software. Distribution packagers usually perform some basic tests on software to confirm it does what it says it will and does not introduce security holes. Portable packages often come pre-built from upstream publishers and the end-user must trust that the package behaves as expected without the benefit of any auditing.
Personally, I prefer to use the package provided by my distribution and only use a portable package if there is no suitable version available through the default software manager.
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Additional answers can be found in our Questions and Answers archive.
|Released Last Week
Linux Kodachi 4.0
Warith Al Maawali has announced the release of Linux Kodachi 4.0, a new version of the Debian-based distribution and live DVD with focus on security, privacy and anonymity on the internet. This is the project's first release based on Debian 9 "Stretch"; besides the updated base system, the new version comes with several privacy-enhancing features: "Version 4.0, based on Debian 9.5 Xfce, Linux kernel 4.9. Added MenuLibre, GNOME Commander, Coyim Ring, OpenShot, Icedove Atom; added rkhunter, Steghide, GNOME Nettool, GResolver, SiriKali, Deny hosts signal; added NVIDIA Detect, Florence, i2p, zuluCrypt, zuluMount, Onion Circuits, Onion Share, GNUnet; added Cloudflare DNS over TLS via DNScrypt; public IP resolver; Firefox plugins; support for persistence encrypted volumes; UEFI boot support; replaced Komodo-Edit with Atom; replaced Electrum LTC/BTC wallet with Exodus; removed TrueCrypt, Veracrypt still there; improved almost all Kodachi scripts, they are much faster and optimized; theme icons, wallpaper all new look; feature to disable Tor permanently; fixed Tor and DNScrypt bugs; Conky and GUI enhanced." Here is the full changelog as published on the project's website.
Linux Kodachi 4.0 -- Running the Xfce desktop
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antiX is a lightweight Linux distribution based on Debian. The antiX project has released a minor update, antiX 17.2, which includes various updates and bug fixes for the 17.x series. "antiX-17.2 (Helen Keller) released. This is primarily a point-release upgrade of antiX-17.1 (Heather Heyer) with a new L1TF/Foreshadow and Meltdown/Spectre patched kernel, various bug fixes, updated translations and some upgraded packages. As usual we offer the following completely systemd-free flavours for both 32-and 64-bit architectures." The distribution is available in four editions: Full, Base, Core and Net. The first two include graphical environments while Core and Net provide minimal, command-line only interfaces. Further details can be found in the project's release announcement.
Donald Stewart has announced the release of Mageia 6.1, an updated build of the desktop-oriented Linux distribution which was launched in 2010 as a fork of the defunct Mandriva Linux. The new version represents the accumulation of all software updates since the release of Mageia 6 some 15 months ago: "It is with great pleasure that we announce the release of Mageia 6.1. This release brings all of the updates and development that has gone into Mageia 6 into fresh installation media, giving users a kernel that supports hardware released after Mageia 6. The new installations will benefit from the countless updates that current fully updated Mageia systems will have, allowing new installations to avoid the need for a large update post-install. So if you are currently running an up to date Mageia 6 system, there is no need to reinstall Mageia 6.1 as you will already be running the same packages. This release is available with only Live media, i.e. Live Plasma, Live GNOME and Live Xfce in 64-bit editions, and Live Xfce in 32-bit edition. A network installation is also available, for users wanting more granular control over the installation. Some of the release highlights include: Firefox 60.2, Chromium 68, LibreOffice 5.3.7, KDE Plasma 5.12.2, GNOME 3.24.3, Xfce 4.12, VLC 3.0.2, Linux kernel 4.14.70." Read the rest of the release announcement for more details.
NixOS is an independently developed GNU/Linux distribution that aims to improve the state of system configuration management through the Nix package manager. The project has released a new version, NixOS 18.09, which carries the code name "Jellyfish" and will be supported through to April of 2019. "In addition to numerous new and upgraded packages, this release has the following notable updates: end of support is planned for end of April 2019, handing over to 19.03. Platform support: x86_64-linux and x86_64-darwin. Support for aarch64-linux is as with the previous releases, not equivalent to the x86-64-linux release, but with efforts to reach parity. Nix has been updated to 2.1; see its release notes. Core versions: Linux kernel 4.14 LTS (unchanged), glibc 2.27, GCC 7 (unchanged), systemd 239. Desktop version changes: GNOME: 3.28, KDE Plasma 5.13. Notable changes and additions for 18.09 include support for wrapping binaries using Firejail has been added; user channels are now in the default NIX_PATH, allowing users to use their personal nix-channel defined channels in nix-build and nix-shell commands, as well as in imports like import...." Further details can be found in the project's release notes.
ExTiX is an Ubuntu-based distribution which replaces the default GNOME desktop with LXQt and makes further interface and kernel customizations. The project's latest release, ExTiX 18.10, is based on the development release of Ubuntu 18.10. "ExTiX 18.10 LXQt DVD 64-bit is based on Debian and the upcoming Ubuntu 18.10 Cosmic Cuttlefish (to be released 18-10-18). The original system includes the desktop environment GNOME. After removing GNOME I have installed LXQt 0.13.0. LXQt is the Qt port and the upcoming version of LXDE, the Lightweight Desktop Environment. It is the product of the merge between the LXDE-Qt and the Razor-qt projects: A lightweight, modular, blazing-fast and user-friendly desktop environment. Note: This ExTiX LXQt build is for installation to non UEFI-enabled computers and VirtualBox/VMware." Further details can be found in the distribution's release announcement.
Calculate Linux 18
Alexander Tratsevskiy has announced the release of Calculate Linux 18, a major update of the project's Gentoo-based, rolling-release distribution set available for both x86_64 and i686 systems, in several desktop variants. This release features the very latest 4.18 Linux kernel and the much improved Calculate utilities and installation tool which have all been ported to Qt 5. From the release announcement: "We are happy to announce the release of Calculate Linux 18. In this latest version, Calculate Utilities have been ported to Qt 5, your network is managed in a different way, and binary packages get checked using their index signature. Changes: the graphical installation interface has been ported to Qt 5; the command line installation interface now features auto partition detection based on passed options; it is possible to select a keyboard layout; it is possible to use only one (root) position; easier installation on VPS/VDS; live USB image boots up faster; NVIDIA driver installation log is sent to tty12 at live USB boot-up time; Calculate provides 12,363 binary packages; our approach to network configuration changed - network parameters are not updated while installing network management tools...."
Emmabuntüs is a desktop Linux distribution designed to be user friendly and to work well on older computers. The distribution's latest release, Emmabuntus 9-1.03, is based on Debian 9. The new version includes Flatpak support, a Steam installation script (for the 64-bit build) and several fixes. The release announcement lists the following changes: "Added welcome and tools windows. Added new and more compact post-installation dialog windows. Added software installation management in Flatpak format. Added control script optimizing the swap usage. Added the steam installation script, only available on the 64-bit version.Added PDF-Shuffler, Gscan2pdf. Added screen lock app for LXDE. Added shortcuts to user folders. Added Bluetooth activation management, if the adapter is present. Added automatic swap activation in live mode. Added of the mounting of the hard disks or internal partitions without password request..."
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Development, unannounced and minor bug-fix releases
The table below provides a list of torrents DistroWatch is currently seeding. If you do not have a bittorrent client capable of handling the linked files, we suggest installing either the Transmission or KTorrent bittorrent clients.
Archives of our previously seeded torrents may be found in our Torrent Archive. We also maintain a Torrents RSS feed for people who wish to have open source torrents delivered to them. To share your own open source torrents of Linux and BSD projects, please visit our Upload Torrents page.
Torrent Corner statistics:
- Total torrents seeded: 1,051
- Total data uploaded: 21.3TB
|Upcoming Releases and Announcements
Summary of expected upcoming releases
Some distributions attempt to fill a specific technical role such as being ideally suited to running on a desktop, a server, supporting older hardware, or aiding in multimedia creation. Other distributions are aimed at audiences in a specific region, usually with specific language packages or ties to local resources. It is not uncommon to find Linux distributions which are specifically geared towards Brazilian, Turkish or Indian users, for example.
This week we would like to find out how many of our readers run a region-specific distribution. Please let us know why you picked your region-specific distro (was it for language support or another reason) in the comments.
You can see the results of our previous poll on booting multiple operating systems in last week's edition. All previous poll results can be found in our poll archives.
|I do run a region-specific distro: ||123 (7%)|
| I do not run a region-specific distro: ||1578 (93%)|
Distributions added to waiting list
- Minitena. Minitena is an independently developed, minimal Linux distribution. It runs on AMD64 and AARCH64 processors and uses the Pacman package manager. Minitena uses a rolling release update process.
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DistroWatch database summary
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This concludes this week's issue of DistroWatch Weekly. The next instalment will be published on Monday, 15 October 2018. Past articles and reviews can be found through our Article Search page. To contact the authors please send e-mail to:
- Jesse Smith (feedback, questions and suggestions: distribution reviews/submissions, questions and answers, tips and tricks)
- Ladislav Bodnar (feedback, questions, donations, comments)
- Bruce Patterson (podcast)
|Linux Foundation Training
|Reader Comments • Jump to last comment
1 • Region Specific Distro (by Rev_Don on 2018-10-08 00:55:09 GMT from United States) |
The closest I come to running a Region Specific Distro is does it support American English and USA measurements, etc. since I live in the USA. Otherwise it doesn't matter to me.
2 • Region specific, whether you need it or not. (by Greg Zeng on 2018-10-08 02:12:37 GMT from Australia)
Most third-party coders have their applications in a variety of regions. So most operating systems will have very many unwanted regions in their applications.
Removing so many files: "language.ini", "language.cfg", "xxx.lng", ... is tedious. Especially when you have updated an application.
The biggest offenders are "upstream". Debian-core is used as the foundation of more operating systems than any other. But it has so many other languages include "free": Thai, India, etc. Only some of the coders of operating systems notice this.
Outside the Linux world, the foreign-language pollution is much greater. So we Linux users are generally able to avoid "foreign" languages, by comparison.
3 • region specific (by Tim on 2018-10-08 02:58:57 GMT from United States)
I think one has to be careful with calling a distro “region specific.” That should mean that it is marketed to one area, and should not mean simply that the primary developers don’t work in English. Sometimes a distro is very interesting and is worth seeking out even if one is not from its home country.
There are two I’ve previously used
1. Vine Linux, from Japan. They supported my iMac G4 for longer than most other distros.
2. Lliurex, from the Valencian government in Spain. I needed to figure out the best software for a classroom computer and their spin of Ubuntu is pretty awesome.
Any smaller distro hopefully knows its audience and what its niche is. Unless they specifically say “we’re the distro from Country X” then I’d hesitate to call them region specific. Maybe they just have a good idea that hasn’t spread yet
4 • Regions.. (by Odd Thomas on 2018-10-08 03:37:03 GMT from Australia)
Speaking of regions, I wonder how much pain future developers will have when we start colonizing other planets. "Those pesky Marsbuntu users and their 37minutes of extra day time."
5 • Region-Specific Distributions (by Wedge009 on 2018-10-08 03:46:59 GMT from Australia)
I find it interesting that Don was looking specifically for US English language and measurements as - at least in the Anglosphere - I find that US English is the dominant localisation.
As for 'foreign-language' terminology, that's a bit presumptuous as what is considered 'foreign' differs for each individual. I can only guess that Greg meant 'non-English'.
At any rate, I appreciate the multi-language and localisation that the Linux ecosystem brings. Until very recent Windows, it was 'English' (ie US English) or non-English languages that were the only options (and is still the case for a lot of applications). I suppose the down-side is all the extra fonts and other resources that may be bundled by default to accommodate non-Latin characters.
6 • You'll live with our defaults & like it (by edked on 2018-10-08 04:08:53 GMT from Canada)
"Neither seems to see any other reason why users might want to disable its use or have any control over it in general."
Gee, what a surprising attitude for Gnome developers to have.
7 • Region-specific (by mcellius on 2018-10-08 04:14:25 GMT from United States)
I live in the U.S. and use Ubuntu (with U.S. English), but I've also lived in Argentina and am bilingual, so for awhile I used Tuquito and felt very at home with it, as it was highly region-specific. (Alas, it's no longer being developed.)
I suppose there are many like me who use two or more versions of Linux so that they can work easily in whichever language they prefer (or need to use).
As for using a U.S. English version of Ubuntu, I'd feel comfortable with English English, too, but some other Englishes are difficult to understand - for me - so I stick with the U.S. version. Nevertheless, I'm glad the others are there, too.
8 • localisation (by irat-a-TUI on 2018-10-08 04:57:35 GMT from Australia)
Localised distros tend to be of good quality compared to average distros. They seem to put more effort in - like Ubunti Kylin, Greenie, Pardus.
Localisation may get even more complicated in future. When technology allows us to talk to our devices, OSes will need to cater for regional dialects as well for the devices to respond properly.
9 • Region-specific distros + Flatpak (by Brenton Horne on 2018-10-08 05:11:59 GMT from Australia)
I must admit I think most native English-speakers probably aren't interested in region-specific distros, as >95% of Linux distros have support for at least one variant of English, usually US English. For example, I'm presently using openSUSE Tumbleweed and I use it even though it doesn't support my specific variant of English (Australian), rather it just supports UK and US English, with the former being close enough for me. The only distro I've tried that had sub-par (but not zero) English support was probably Ubuntu Kylin, which I tried mostly because I liked its unique UI, but I know it's designed specifically for use by users that are fluent in Simplified Chinese, so this is hardly surprising.
Flatpak and Nix are the main cross-distro package managers I use. I use Flatpak to provide apps that are a pain to get through my package manager, like RuneScape's NXT Client and Spotify. Nix I use when apps provided by my distro have major bugs in them and I haven't got the time to fix 'em myself or file a bug report. For example, Firefox installed from Tumbleweed's repos had a bug (past-tense, this was around Firefox 61) that prevented new bookmarks from being saved when one pressed the star in the address bar. Nix's Firefox package had no such issue and was in fact updated to release Firefox 62 before Tumbleweed's was. I also use Nix as a backup for when an app's Flatpak is experiencing bugs/other issues.
10 • Region Specific Distro (by DraganF on 2018-10-08 06:53:21 GMT from Serbia)
I live in the Serbia and use Serbian GNU/Linux with Openbox.
11 • Region specific distro (by Alexandru on 2018-10-08 08:26:48 GMT from Romania)
If region specific would mean only UI localization / translation, it would be no sense in region specific distributions. Just install appropriate language pack with the OS / software you use.
However, different regions also mean different preferences, including what is considered a good default expectations, different cultural priorities, different local laws, not to speaking about availability of local support and local repositories. For example, not all existing applications are designed with right-to-left or top-to-bottom writing in mind.
On the side note, there are a few distribution, which are specific to some community, and which are just customization of some mainstream distribution. Still they make sense, because for these communities it is important that some features (i.e. filters of internet contents) to be available and turned on by default from the very install and without tedious configuration.
So, although I don't use such distributions, I see the whole point of their existence and maintenance.
12 • The opinion's poll result is wrong (by meanpt on 2018-10-08 08:32:56 GMT from Portugal)
All the native English speaking folks out there are using specific distributions geared for them. The poll should only cover non native English people users.
13 • suspend-then-hibernate (by silent on 2018-10-08 11:03:55 GMT from Hungary)
Suspend-then-hibernate is generally not only a useful but a life saving feature for absent minded notebook users. However, if the notebook is plugged into the wall outlet or for desktop users it is a bad option because it increases the probability of data corruption and it means also slower wake up. So, with all my respect to the almighty GNOME developers, sometimes users should have a choice, even if it means that the user interface is not as clean and simple as in the credo.
14 • Flatpak (by Christian on 2018-10-08 14:43:32 GMT from Brazil)
"Finally, there is a question of vetting new software. Distribution packagers usually perform some basic tests on software to confirm it does what it says it will and does not introduce security holes. Portable packages often come pre-built from upstream publishers and the end-user must trust that the package behaves as expected without the benefit of any auditing. "
Isn't Fedora Silverblue the next Fedora (30)? I might be wrong, but as far as I've understood, it only uses Flatpaks for programs. I don't think neither Fedora and Flathub will be auditing anything...
I wonder if other distros will follow the same trend.
15 • GNOME Arrogance (by Robert Thompson on 2018-10-08 18:33:55 GMT from United States)
Is there any limit to the hubris and arrogance of GNOME developers? Having a vision and executing it is admirable, but the GNOME dev's became detached from their users when G3 was being developed. Now, it's gotten so bad that they just don't even care if a "feature" causes users to suffer data loss! Will the GNOME development team ever come down out of their tower and actually listen to the needs of users again?
16 • Kodachi (by technsandiego on 2018-10-08 19:33:24 GMT from United States)
I tried installing Kodachi 3 times as a VM, which the developer recommends, but it failed every time, just leaving a blank cursor to stare at with no way to get to a command line.
I found an old 4GB USB dive in my toolkit and it installed flawlessly. It is a security users dream. It even comes with it's own VPN, but beware it is not for watching our downloading large files. They explicitly tell you upfront that if you use to much bandwidth you will be "banned indefinitely". They don't tell you how much is too much, but I like the distro and would like DistroWatch to do a through review.
It claims to be a better alternative to Tails so I'll look forward to a review in the near future.
BTW, what ever happened to Qubes O/S? It had a promising beginning but has gone dormant.
17 • QubeOS (by Sebastien on 2018-10-08 20:42:15 GMT from France)
QubeOS seems to be fairly active
18 • Agree with #8 (by BeGo on 2018-10-09 01:45:19 GMT from Indonesia)
Still, rather than region specifics,
I like target market specific (Uberstudent for the student for example) more. :)
19 • Region specific (by erik1977 on 2018-10-09 02:57:27 GMT from Canada)
I tried MiniNo PicarOS Diego recently just for fun. I used the English option to install, but still ended up with Spanish versions of Chrome and Firefox. A minor annoyance, but I wish they would fix bugs like this because new users will have issues like this turn them away.
20 • GNOME, GNOMING, GONE (by edcoolio on 2018-10-09 06:09:57 GMT from United States)
@6 @13 @15
I couldn't agree more about GNOME.
Their repeated decisions to alienate their (decreasing) user base because of some misguided attempt to "simplify" has led me to believe that they have officially jumped the shark into Bizarro World.
Fonzie and Superman would be proud.
21 • Gnoming and Ubuntu... (by ikkamG on 2018-10-09 11:22:30 GMT from United Kingdom)
@6, 13, 15 & 20
This must be why no one is really interested in the coming up default Ubuntu Cosmic any more. Gnome appears to have killed or killing Ubuntu...
22 • gnome discussion (by Tim on 2018-10-09 12:54:00 GMT from United States)
I don't use GNOME and I enjoy other desktops more, but I think the news brief on the suspend and hibernate issue is extremely inaccurate and almost calculated to bring out the usual anti-GNOME anti systemd comments which are getting tiresome.
Click on the link and read it yourselves. The OP raised a serious concern about the behavior of the Fedora 29 beta. He liked the new feature but was worried it wasn't well enough tested to be the default behavior. The GNOME developers simply said "this seems like a systemd problem, not our problem." Both the Fedora and systemd main developers then jumped in and said that the issue was a serious concern and that this probably wasn't appropriate behavior for Fedora and systemd given the current state of development.
There was nothing arrogant or mean-spirited anywhere on the discussion. The OP had a good point and a bunch of people tried to figure out the best way to handle it.
23 • What is inaccurate about non user-adjustable settings? (by curious on 2018-10-09 13:15:57 GMT from Germany)
Apparently, the GNOME developers "added a patch to automatically use it", i.e. the suspend-to-hibernate feature.
This alone is worth criticising - regardless of whether the feature actually works well or not. Most users wouldn't want unexpected behaviour - they would want to be able to switch this feature on or off according to their use case. Automatic just doesn't cut it here.
And the final sentence quoted from the two GNOME developers in question certainly is worth debating, even if you think that debate is tiresome: "Neither seems to see any other reason why users might want to disable its use or have any control over it in general." That is the main problem with GNOME, right there: taking away user choice, because they cannot imagine that users might want such a choice. That may not be intended as "mean-spirited", but to users it certainly might appear arrogant - we know what you want better than you do yourself ...
24 • It's more like I expect from Plasma5, if not NT6x (by Hamara RAM usage on 2018-10-09 14:04:26 GMT from United States)
OTOH, Debian, is an XP-like 200 MB of RAM. Debian reminds me of good ol' XPx64 Edition.
25 • @16 and "bandwidth" for the VPN (by RJA on 2018-10-09 14:14:08 GMT from United States)
Their use of the word "bandwidth" is just another word for data quota, why don't they just straight up call it a data quota?
And the data quota appears to be secret. I would stay away...
26 • default (by Tim on 2018-10-09 16:06:23 GMT from United States)
This is something I'd like control over myself- I don't necessarily agree with the GNOME developers here (and again, I don't use GNOME.)
That said, taking this discussion and making it into something sinister seems totally unfair. They're talking about a development version, the change was made transparently and the person who made the change responded immediately to the person who questioned it. From their initial response, it seems like their reaction was "this seems like a feature, why is it a problem?"
Others (including the project leaders of both Fedora and systemd) chimed in and explained why it was a problem, and then they spent the rest of the time figuring out where to fix it. The attitude of that developer didn't seem dismissive to me at all- he seemed to be saying that either systemd implements a feature correctly or it doesn't, and that if it does then this is a non-issue and if it doesn't that's a problem with systemd. Others felt that this wouldn't be obvious to a user.
This is how anything built by a group of people, in any field, from manufacturing, to tech, to marketing, to education, looks. You have disagreements and come to consensus. Judge Fedora by the product it ships anyway you want, but to see something sinister in different people trying to agree on where to fix a problem is not a helpful attitude.
27 • GNOME Arrogance (by Robert Thompson on 2018-10-09 17:43:25 GMT from United States)
Seeing "sinister" where it doesn't exist is not a helpful attitude. I cited the current issue as just the latest example of a years-long history of GNOME dev's being out of touch and unresponsive to users. Two synonyms of "arrogance" are "self-assumption" and "presumption." Take your pick.
28 • The poll question... (by tom joad on 2018-10-09 19:13:17 GMT from Romania)
I voted that I run a region specific OS. That is Cinnamon Mint in the US of A. But as I read the question I was at sea about was actually being asked.
Did it want to know if I was English or American speaking? Or was asking for a specific physical region? Or was it asking if I am running a specific specialty version of Linux?
Seems to me the results of the poll are as accurate as the question or questions are clear in asking for specific information.
This brings me to my last observation; nearly poll every poll here produces at least one response saying the question(s) is not constructed to get desired results.
Lastly, I would like to see a poll asking how many folks have set up and maintain a tor relay or bridge. And if not why not? Setting up a relay is pretty easy, for us at least. Running relay or bridge is well suited to putting some of our old equipment to good use in a valuable and a much need effort.
Just a thought.
29 • @28 (by babuschkiLinux on 2018-10-09 20:49:32 GMT from United Kingdom)
Some poll agendas, do get the result, right on-If I may say it this way. Yet I agree, that some do not.
Like this for example, this weeks about: Region-specific distributions.
(I did not vote)
Also I wonder how Microhard is watching our opinion poll..
We are answering questions like brave little naive Childreen..
This is my Input, and alright,I choose mostly English Us or Uk on my
Distros, but I speak native some other language. I speak babuschki.
30 • @26 (by Angel on 2018-10-10 01:13:28 GMT from Philippines)
Relax, TIm. There will always be people here who have a need to get their panties up in a bunch over any little thing. Today it may be gnomish arrogance, or the inability of DW to ask survey questions that talk to them specifically. Tomorrow it may be that Lennard devil's encroachment on sacred Linux, or Big Brother Microsoft looking over their shoulders and trying to take away their toys.
31 • @12 or English users denied a voice (by Landor on 2018-10-10 06:23:04 GMT from Canada)
I'm surprised meant, well, partly.
I for one would applaud a "fully" Canadian centric approach to a distribution. I would rejoice in finding a "Canadian" developer that took the time to make a distribution that fully adhered to the needs and wants specific to Canadians.
Country or Region specific should not exclude anyone. To think otherwise is folly. As one commenter here stated that not having the Australian English language available was a definite issue, I can say the same for the Canadian version. Also, it would be a boon that searches and such returned Canadian sites or information as default. Those are just two reasons, many others come to mind.
No, English speaking users should not be excluded because they have it easy.
Keep your stick in the ice...
32 • @ 31 Canadian English user... (by P on 2018-10-10 08:43:15 GMT from United Kingdom)
Well, there should be Quebec-Canadian, BC-Canadian or Saskatchewan-Canadian English etc. Also Sikh or Chinese Canadian-English too.
33 • @32 @31 How regional? (by TheTKS on 2018-10-10 14:56:27 GMT from United States)
@32 @31 I also wish there were Canadian English localization. I would use it if it were good enough.
Canadian English is different enough from UK and US (and Oz, and Kiwi, and...) that it bugs me that I'm stuck with only US or UK (the only choice of "Canadian" English that I've ever seen was just UK relabelled.)
But it doesn't bug me enough to go do it myself, or to pay or fundraise for someone to go do it.
@31 Your " fully adhered to the needs and wants specific to Canadians" is tricky, and could probably apply to all localizations.
It's not hard to find the elements common to standard Canadian English (Englishes?) usage, and leave the offering at that. Anyone who wants regional variations can add them. I've seen Canadian French as an option, but don't know if it's acceptable to those users. Do you have to add Ojibwe, Cree and other Indigenous languages to "fully adhere"? Mind you, what labels you would give to the North American Indigenous languages is a whole other topic.
So how regional do you go? While @32's comment was flippant and missed the mark a bit, it raises a good point.
The answer to "how regional" is that offerings will be as regional as people are willing to develop and support.
Unfortunately for you and me, @31, it doesn't look like Canadian English is one of those yet.
34 • GNOME Arrogance (by Robert Thompson on 2018-10-10 18:09:13 GMT from United States)
Angel, data loss isn't a "little thing."
35 • @ 33 • @32 @31 How regional? (by pengxuin on 2018-10-10 18:50:59 GMT from New Zealand)
"Canadian English is different enough from UK and US (and Oz, and Kiwi, and...) that it bugs me that I'm stuck with only US or UK (the only choice of "Canadian" English that I've ever seen was just UK relabelled.)"
I would suggest that you try out some other distros.
My preferred distro offers (and I use) my local NZ English language (not rebranded).
It also offers the other NZ Official Language, as apparently NZ, like Canada, has 2 Official Languages.
36 • @34 (by Angel on 2018-10-11 01:56:01 GMT from Philippines)
Huh? I read the conversation, and didn't notice anyone advocating for data loss. The only quote I read here is from news quote the authors opinion. But before lighting the torches and building a stake and pyre or Gnome developers, I think one might do them the courtesy of finding out what it's all about. It seems that a command was added in systemd via Ubuntu developers. It's still experimental in Fedora. Apparently, there are serious bugs, so there is a discussion about what needs to be done in order to implement it safely, not just by Gnome. In any case, here's part of the thread:
37 • Canadian English localization ?... (by RV on 2018-10-11 06:55:29 GMT from Romania)
As a non-native English speaker who's been accustomed to using En_US since early childhood (think early 90s MS-DOS, Win 3.11) and still only uses said localization to this day, I'm kind of intrigued by the obvious dislike that several Canadian commenters above have displayed as a result of having to cope with US English localization.
Could someone give me a few examples of day-to-day usage where US English gets in their way so much so that they feel the need for a Canadian localization of their distro of choice to come about? Thanks.
38 • Canadian English localization (by frisbee on 2018-10-11 07:40:41 GMT from Switzerland)
39 • @37 (by Angel on 2018-10-11 07:48:25 GMT from Philippines)
"Canadian English includes many terms such as "sorry", "I understand your point of view" and "we aren't planing to invade your country," which don't exist in American English." Sorry! Couldn't resist.:) Full disclosure: I'm American.
I'm also not native to English, but I've been using US English for most of my life. Ran into a little problem here in the Philippines, where dictionaries and spellcheckers were not working in office programs like Open Office. Hadn't paid attention to locale settings when installing. Changing to en_US took care of it. What's odd is that I've never seen any real difference other than some pronunciations and phrases between Filipino English (en_PH) and US English. Now if someone wanted to address all the regional languages in these islands, they would face a tough job. There are about 170 languages spoken here. Just at the local market one deals with numbers in four languages: Bisaya, Tagalog, English and Spanish.
40 • locale (by Tim on 2018-10-11 08:33:54 GMT from United States)
I like how the conversation has shifted from “region specific distro” to locale. I’m uncomfortable with the former term because I think it mixes culture and technology in a biased way. Is a distro from country x region specific because the author intended it just for people from there? Or is it region specific because the author is from country x and we’re not considering it a “full” distro because of our biases?
As far as locales go, one place where the open source community might be able to gain more of a user base whilst helping preserve minority languages would be to get in touch with the various language preservation programs different tribal governments have. It could be a real shot in the arm for some struggling languages to have people interacting with their computers in those languages.
41 • @40 (by Angel on 2018-10-11 09:28:56 GMT from Philippines)
I will disagree with you on this. Language is a tool, and it's only as useful as the scope of concepts it contains and on it's ability to adapt and to quickly add new concepts. This is where English excels, and it's why it has become lingua franca. The word for "computer" in local languages here is: computer. Just try teaching about computers in a local tribal language without using a language like English where the concepts and their words (symbols) are available, and you will be reduced to pointing and gesticulating. Localized tribal languages are of limited use, and as such limited in their ability to communicate past simple everyday acts. They grow or they die. The real world is not a museum. Well-meaning laws requiring schools to teach in local languages here in the Philippines have resulted in school graduates who speak no language well, adding greater hardships in a country where the biggest export is it's people.
42 • @25 @37 @38 Distros for localization (by TheTKS on 2018-10-11 16:38:25 GMT from United States)
@38 So it looks like Mint has localizations, at least for English. If that English really is my variety and not just UK relabelled, and "Apply system-wide" really works, I'll have to give Mint a spin. I've looked at Mint and moved on to others (I've got nothing against it, just others appealed more), but this could be the one thing that gets me to install it.
@37 I can't speak for others, and I'll stick to language localization only. You asked about differences between Canadian and US English . Just two examples: we use "z" where the US does, and "our" where the UK does. So we write localization, not localisation, and colour, not color.
That might sound trivial, but try writing or editing a document that highlights your "incorrect" spelling, or where autocorrect and manual language inspection tools constantly pester you with the wrong corrections. If I turn the automatic tools off and don't use the manual tool, then I'm stuck with the analogue (or is that analog?) option, pencil and paper. It's not a huge problem for me, but it's a big irritant if you do a lot of writing or editing.
I would guess English isn't the only language with more than one standard variant, where language localization would make people's lives easier.
@35 Which is the distro that includez NZ locazlization? LinuxLite, maybe?
43 • GNOME Arrogance (by Robert Thompson on 2018-10-11 18:46:47 GMT from United States)
Angel, you apparently didn't even read the concerns of Kamil Paral and Adam Williamson. The Red Herring was uncalled for.
44 • Non Gnome Arragance (by mandog on 2018-10-11 21:28:26 GMT from Peru)
15 • GNOME Arrogance (by Robert Thompson on 2018-10-08 18:33:55 GMT from United States)
Is there any limit to the hubris and arrogance of GNOME developers? Having a vision and executing it is admirable, but the GNOME dev's became detached from their users when G3 was being developed. Now, it's gotten so bad that they just don't even care if a "feature" causes users to suffer data loss! Will the GNOME development team ever come down out of their tower and actually listen to the needs of users again?
You have the choice in power setting "Automatic suspent default is OFF" if you turn it on use the get the choice of how long "default is 1hr"
You also have a choice "when the power button is pressed" Nothing, Shutdown, Suspend.
I'm a Gnome 3 user I can comment
A non Gnome user can at the most speculate, at the least talk out of their Ass.
45 • Non Gnome Arragance (by mandog on 2018-10-11 21:46:14 GMT from Peru)
Just to carry on about suspend if I use suspend from the power button it suspends as asked when the button is pressed again everything has been saved as i expected it to do. the desktop also wakes up as fast as the monitor wakes up.
I don't have a swap partition so it suspends to ram.
So suspend means the old word hibanate but in a modern way.
46 • @ 43, 44 (by Angel on 2018-10-12 00:54:41 GMT from Philippines)
Good grief! Gnome did not add any "features." The feature was added in systemd, and has been put to use in Fedora Rawhide, for developers and advanced users only. Gnome developers made it possible to use this "feature" from the desktop, but only when and if it is made available by a particular distro. No one is forcing the distro maintainers to use this. Kamil Paral writes that he loves the feature, but asks if it will be made configurable on the desktop by Gnome, mentioning that there are cases where "hibernate" should not be used. (Yes, possible loss of data.) Adamson writes that considering his use of PCs, he's rather not hibernate. The two Gnome devs reply that it is up to systemd to make it configurable, and that if this "feature" is buggy, as it appears to be, it should not be made available, choice up to the distro. Lennart Poettering (Mr. systemd himself) acknowledges that the "feature is buggy as hell and not really usable as it stands, and offers some possible ways forward. That is why I included his post. The whole thread is available on that same page, just takes an extra click to go to the top. No herrings of any color. But rather than keep explaining what people wrote or forcing them into an extra click so they can see the thread from the beginning, here's a link to that so any interested parties can get it from the source:
In fact, I have used Gnome desktop for several years. I recently switched to KDE. I find it suits me better. If I can switch, so can others. If some have such animus toward the Gnome developers, why not switch? It's like staying married to a person you hate. I suppose there will be howling when they see some things being done to Gnome 3.32.
47 • Region-specific distributions (by arelatensis on 2018-10-12 01:57:32 GMT from Russia)
Many years ago I used Russian Fedora Remix because I had very bad internet connection, and RFR included out of the box some packeges i. e. codecs that were lack in original Fedora. Now I have a speed internet and it does not matter. I don't run region-specific distro because
1 There isn't any distro that support my language so it does no matter if I would run region-spesific or not specific one.
2 It is bad idea to run russian-specific distro in my area for russian language is marginalized as colonial.
48 • Region Specific? (by penguinx64 on 2018-10-12 04:05:28 GMT from Bahrain)
I've lived outside the US for 15 years. I've lived in Europe, Asia and the Middle East. The option for local language support has always been there when I install Ubuntu and Debian based distros. But I can't read languages like Arabic or Chinese. When I go to www.google.com, I want it to say 'Google' instead of جوجل or 谷歌, damn it!
49 • Turkey and not use Region Specific Distro (by Pantera Pardus Tulliana on 2018-10-12 04:32:23 GMT from Turkey)
I am from Turkey and I don`t use a region specific distro because if I see an error message in Turkish, I can't find on the internet. And Pardus in Turkey, based on debian, so there is no advantages on Debian. There were some projects usefull for System Admins but I am an individual user. Only the Zemberek the Turkish spell checker missing.
50 • @48 Region specific of Google (by Ikkam on 2018-10-12 06:47:05 GMT from United Kingdom)
"But I can't read languages like Arabic or Chinese. When I go to www.google.com, I want it to say 'Google' instead of جوجل or 谷歌, damn it!"
That's pretty good of Google to be region specific!
If you want to search in another language or region, you can always go to right hand bottom corner and open settings > region settings and change the region.
51 • @42 (by frisbee on 2018-10-12 14:54:49 GMT from Switzerland)
No sympathy for your problem. Je me souviens...
52 • @ 50 & region specific (by jaky on 2018-10-12 16:49:15 GMT from France)
Even if what your suggestion will work (it doesn't) it refers to the browser, not the distribution!
Me, I hate region specific (aka automatic location) in both distribution & browser. I feel like I'm in the crossfire of a remote-controlled missile and fail to understand what is the useful purpose (other then targeting me).
53 • @52 Region specific (by Pierre on 2018-10-12 17:29:38 GMT from France)
The guy @48 was talking about the browser, Google. And, you can change the region to anywhere you want in Google. Your "hate" is of no matter!
54 • @51 Who's asking for sympathy? I'm looking for tools (by TheTKS on 2018-10-12 21:29:26 GMT from United States)
@51 I wasn't asking for sympathy. Somebody asked about differences, I gave examples and explained. If what you pointed to in @38 is a solution, I'll thank you for it.
As for your "Je me souviens", you've taken the discussion way off track, but since you have.. my origins aren't in either side, nor in the people who were here before either of them (who I would say have a right to feel even more aggrieved,) nor were my ancestors here when it happened (they were busy being colonized by someone else at the time.) Nor can I change those events. If that's where you come from, then remember and memorialize if you like, either wallow in it or move on as suits you best. No sympathy from me for those who can say "Je me souviens", just a willingness to live and work with whoever among them is willing to do the same.
Back to localization and how regional, I noticed yesterday that KDE4 language tools have not only Catalan, but also Catalan (Valencian.) That's getting really local.
55 • @54 and others, locales (by Angel on 2018-10-13 02:21:30 GMT from Philippines)
If you are running any of the major distros or derivatives, all locales are available on their servers. This is really not the proper forum for asking that kind of advice. You should go to the support sites (forums, wikis, etc.) for your distro, or just google what you want. (Ex: google "generate, adjust change locales Ubuntu" This should cover Linux Mint and others Ubuntu based.)
To generate all locales in Ubuntu: (For other distros, go to their support pages.)
sudo locale-gen -a
If you just want New Zealand Maori:
sudo locale-gen mi_NZ.UTF-8
Or, to keep messages and such in US English:
sudo locale-gen mi_NZ.UTF-8 LC_MESSAGES=POSIX
To change to your chosen locale:
update-locale LANG=mi_NZ.UTF-8 LC_MESSAGES=POSIX
Don't worry. Be happy.:)
56 • @54 and other, locales, forgot (by Angel on 2018-10-13 02:24:50 GMT from Philippines)
You will need to log out and back in before the change takes effect.
57 • GNOME Arrogance (by Robert Thompson on 2018-10-13 03:38:21 GMT from United States)
From Phoronix, relating to the GNOME 3.31.1 release: "One other notable change is GNOME Settings Daemon has dropped the 'suspend and hibernate' option. They did this because of hibernation often being problematic for Linux systems and other complications."
Maybe Linus' "empathy retreat" has served as an example to GNOME developers, after all.
58 • Suspend then hibernate (by Angel on 2018-10-13 05:01:08 GMT from Philippines)
One step forward for ignorance. One step backward for Linux. No good deed goes unpunished. Gnome devs are beaten and retreat to their cave. So if you put your laptop to sleep and don't wake it up or plug in before the battery drains, you will have: (What is that unwanted result again?) Oh yes, data loss. Just like old times. Gimme that old time religion.
Still, for those who don't mind tinkering and have hardware that will support it, the feature is still there, hiding in systemd. Here is how to enable it in Ubuntu. For Arch and others, it can be looked up.
59 • Gnome arrogance (by jaws222 on 2018-10-13 14:30:03 GMT from United States)
WOW! Kinda been out of the loop regarding Gnome, haven't used it in ages. Is it getting worse?
60 • @59 (by babischkiLinux on 2018-10-13 15:22:54 GMT from United Kingdom)
Depending on the perception. We will see.
I do not like it as of now I am responding, but, who knows..Am I using GNOME_-?
61 • Flatpak and Snap (by Friar Tux on 2018-10-13 17:45:41 GMT from Canada)
I read the article on the benefits (or lack of) using Flatpak/Snap or using the actual programme. Whenever I can, I use the actual programme as opposed to the as I have repeatedly found that the Flatpak/Snap versions have too many issues and are not as good. Some are not as feature-rich as the actual programme. The most recent example, for me, was the 'Characters' Character Map app. The Flatpak version was quite limited and only showed a few font characters. When I installed the programme version, I was amazed at how much more it provided even though it was a bit older.
Number of Comments: 61
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GeeXboX is a free and open-source media centre oriented Linux distribution for embedded devices and desktop computers. It is a full-featured operating system that can be booted from a live CD, a USB key, an SD/MMC card or it can be installed on a regular hard disk drive. The GeeXboX distribution is lightweight and designed for one single goal - to embed all major multimedia applications in order to turn any computer into a home theatre personal computer. The GeeXboX project is a non-commercial organization founded in 2002.