Linux in the news
All in one big page
See also: last week's Distributions page.
Please note that security updates from the various distributions are covered in the security section.
News and Editorials
Only Two Linux Companies Really Matter (ZDNet). Joseph C. Panettieri has declared that the shake-out in Linux distributions is already over with and Red Hat and Caldera are the only two left to worry about, according to his ZDNet column. "The Linux market is starting to resemble the cola wars, where Coke and Pepsi dominate and everyone else battles for shelf space. In the case of Linux, Red Hat and Caldera have the fizz, while other players like Corel, SuSE and TurboLinux leave me feeling flat." His logic is pretty thin, but if you'd like to make a business decision based on his gut instinct...
Roll Your Own Distro - If You Dare! (GNULinux). Finding some flaw in more popular distributions that he's tried (Slackware, Red Hat, Linux-Mandrake), GNULinux's Brian Bisaillon chose to roll his own using downloads and documentation from LinuxFromScratch.org. It seems he learned a lot, but not necessarily painlessly.
New Caldera FAQs. Caldera has released a list of its latest FAQs. This is a good place to check for the answer to that question you never got around to asking...like, "How do I find out what version of the kernel and/or OpenLinux I have?"
Caldera Power Solutions Tour 2000. The folks from Caldera will be on the road July 11-27 for a twelve city tour. This type of event tends to be very marketing-oriented, but if you're interested in Caldera OpenLinux or you want a chance to meet some of the Caldera team members, stopping by should be worthwhile.
Conectiva and XFree86. Conectiva has put up an overview of the work they are involved in supporting as part of the XFree86 project. Enhancing support for multiple monitors appears to be the primary focus.
Debian Weekly News (June 27th). This week's edition of the Debian Weekly News indicates that confidence in the upcoming Debian release is growing, with the completion of test cycle 2, the decrease in release-critical bugs down to around 40 and a hope that that current test cycle, number 3, may indeed be the last one.
Debian GNU/HurdThis week's Kernel Cousin Debian Hurd discusses runsystem and runsystem.gnu. Debian Hurd will apparently use a Makefile system for initialization; no arbitrary number of runlevels is planned.
Red Hat launches University program. Red Hat launched their University program today with the goal of encouraging/accelerating the use of Open Source software in the education environment. The initial action involved the donation of bundled software, such as the GNU Pro Dev Kits and Code Fusion packages, to several Universities. Of course, Code Fusion isn't, itself, Open Source software...
ROCK Linux 1.3.10 has been released.
From the Rock Linux home page,
we learned that a new version of Rock Linux has been announced.
Here are the details:
Slackware 7.1 announced. A new version of Slackware has been released. Slackware 7.1 contains a very up-to-date package list, including the Linux 2.2.16 kernel. The hardware support for the distribution has been beefed up. They also promise "updated versions of the Slackware package management tools make it easy to add, remove, upgrade, and make your own Slackware packages".
ISO images are already available for download and their mini-distribution, ZipSlack (which is small enough to fit on a Zip disk), is promised to be "the fastest, _easiest_ Linux installation ever".
A Tale of Two Views: Slackware 7.0 Review (GnuLinux.com). Meanwhile, just a day before the announcement of Slackware 7.1, GnuLinux.com reviewed Slackware 7.0. "The problem with Slackware right out of the gate is that the emphasis is not on installation, but on speed and configuration. If we were to review the installation process by itself, Slackware would fall short in the ease of use area compared to other distributions. The installation routine is unpolished and utilitarian to the point that it will leave new users wondering why they even tried Linux."
Hopefully they'll get a chance soon to take a look at the updated version.
ZipSpeak added to Slackware tree. Matt Campbell's ZipSpeak mini-distribution has been integrated into the Slackware 7.1 ftp tree. "ZipSpeak is based on our own ZipSlack, but adds speech synthesis support for blind and visually impaired users."
Interview: Volker Wiegand of SuSE, Inc. (BeOpen). BeOpen's Sam Williams sat down recently for a chat with Volker Wiegand, the current President of SuSE, Inc., the US branch of SuSE GmbH. "Although he and his company seemed to be sleeping during last year's IPO rush, they also missed out on the resulting letdown as investors grew quickly frustrated with Linux-related companies. Now, with a solid customer base and a development team that truly merits the description "international," his company is poised to graduate as one of the Linux community's first truly profitable companies."
Review: SuSE 6.4 (Duke Of URL). We've published several distribution reviews from the Duke of URL (Patrick Mullen) over the past month, but managed to miss this review of SuSE Linux 6.4. Thanks to the reader who pointed out the omission. Documentation and hardware support appear to be the key areas where SuSE did best. "As far as I'm concerned, SuSE has the best hardware compatibility out of any distribution. Everything worked flawlessly and the inclusion of XFree86 4.0 only raises the bar further".
SuSE opens Venezuela office. SuSE has announced the opening of their Venezuela office. They have chosen Xavier Marmol, founding President of VELUG (Venezuela Linux User Group), to lead this new office. "Xavier Marmol is highly regarded in the Latin American Linux community. He was previously the Network Administrator at the University of Zulia Academic Network. As an active Linux advocate since 1995, he successfully implemented Linux OS for the Universities network of several hundred computers."
Blue Cat Linux garners award. Blue Cat Linux, from LynuxWorks, picked up the Electron d'Or award from the French magazine Electronique International Hebdo for "most significant development in embedded tools and software" over the last year, based on a tool user poll. "In their citation, Electronique International Hebdo said, 'Combining the reliability of Unix and the open source low distribution cost, the BlueCat Linux operating system is a version of Linux specially tailored for use in embedded systems. It is based on the Red Hat 6.1 distribution, containing the Linux 2.2 12-20 kernel. This environment allows the cross-development of embedded applications with a simple PC running Red Hat.'"
Emdebian: Embedded Debian Cross Development Environments. Test releases of new embedded Debian cross development environments have been announced. PowerPC and ARM cross-compilers are supported. "You should only install these packages if you know what you're doing. These packages will eventually be part of a development environment complete with user's documentation, but we're not there yet".
Hard Hat Linux included with EDN magazine. The June issue of EDN Magazine, a magazine for electronic design engineers, will carry with it a companion Linux CD containing a special edition of Montavista's Hard Hat Linux. "The cover story, entitled "Linux strafes the embedded landscape", details how mainstream Linux functionality and ubiquitous 32-bit CPU technology are challenging the status quo in embedded systems design."
Lineo's Embedix . Lineo announced new Embedix support for the ARM processor, including the ARM cores and the release of Embedix uClinux for ARM. "Lineo's ARM expertise comes primarily from the recent merger with Rt-Control, the founders and maintainers of the popular uClinux operating system, a version of Linux for microcontrollers."
Lineo releases compatibility libraries. Lineo has announced the release of compati\ility libraries to assist people moving applications over from the VxWorks or pSOS real-time operating systems. These libraries, dubbed "Golden Gate", appear to be proprietary. "Portions of these libraries are currently available from Lineo. For information on Lineo Golden Gate pricing, please contact Lineo at email@example.com."
Section Editor: Liz Coolbaugh
June 29, 2000