News and Editorials
Mandriva developer Olivier Blin "blino" has posted some specs and proposals for Mandriva 2008. Changes proposed for the base system include will affect udev, mkinitrd, hardware detection, kernel drivers, graphical splash and power management. He's looking at iwlwifi for Intel Wireless 3945ABG network drivers and rt2x00 for more open source drivers.
Live CDs will use squashfs + lzma, with a special squashfs kernel module and readahead + loopback ordering to speed up the boot process. Live installs may become more flexible and allow the user select packages and languages during the live install.
Gamers may see a drakjoy tool for joystick calibration, OpenAL support for SecondLife and Wiimote using new cwiid features.
Kevin Carmony looks at some big changes in Linspire, Freespire and CNR.com. CNR is Linspire's Click aNd Run software repository. It's being revamped as a website with Web 2.0 technology and it will be supporting several other popular Linux distributions. The new CNR will be available for Linspire and Freespire users by early June. A CNR plug-in will be available for Ubuntu Feisty users by mid-June. Eventually plug-ins will be available for Debian, OpenSUSE and Fedora users as well.
The new Freespire 2.0 operating system will use Ubuntu 7.04 (Feisty Fawn) for its baseline, and will then integrate the latest KDE, the new CNR, and the latest 3rd-party proprietary software, drivers and codecs for better hardware and multimedia support. Freespire 2.0 is currently in alpha testing. A beta should be out sometime soon, with a final version expected in early June, timed to coincide with the CNR.com launch.
Linspire 6.0 will be Based on Freespire 2.0, and will be modified for OEM and Retail Channel partners. Linspire 6.0 Final is expected in late June.
New ReleasesTest 4 is for beta users. This is the time when we MUST have full community participation. Without this participation both hardware and software functionality suffers. We need your help. Join us!" list of changes made between OpenBSD 4.0 and OpenBSD 4.1.
Distribution NewsIt's already been 10 days since I started my DPL term and I haven't made any formal annoucement yet, so here it is. It's a bit late to comment on the elections, but let me thank all other candidates anyway, with extra sympathy for Steve McIntyre who for the second time came second by less than 10 votes and Gustavo Franco who had a platform very similar to mine yet wasn't rewarded with as many favourable votes. Also many thanks to Anthony Towns, my predecessor, and Steve McIntyre again for making the switch as comfortable as possible." Mandriva Linux Discovery is a Live DVD: first, you can try Mandriva Linux without installing it on your hard drive. Then, once you love it, a simple icon on the desktop allows you to install the system with a few clicks - thanks to a smooth setup wizard - without even rebooting to run the installer! It has never been easier to discover Linux." a trademark policy describing how others can use the Ubuntu names. "The Ubuntu trademarks are designed to cover use of a mark to imply origin or endorsement by the project. When a user downloads something called Ubuntu, they should know it comes from the Ubuntu project. This helps Ubuntu build a reputation that will not be damaged by confusion around what is, and isn't, Ubuntu." For Gutsy, the general theme is Quality and Improvement. This means, we are not so much looking for new and experimental features, but rather in stabilising and polishing off our current set of features." Well, it's all up. linux-source-2.6.22, which is 2.6.21 at the moment, as we continue to follow linux-2.6.git through the 2.6.22 development cycle. Followed by linux-restricted-modules, which is an exact dupe of the package in feisty for 2.6.20, obviously compiled against the new kernel."
New DistributionsAlinex is the product of a partnership between Junta de Extremadura in Spain and the University of Évora in Portugal. It's a general purpose distribution targeted to the educational system and public administration. The website and documentation are in Portuguese. (Thanks to Luís Rodrigues)
Distribution NewslettersMay 2007 is out. This issue covers KDE User Guide Part 2, Scroogle and Konqueror Integration, Top Ten Reasons for Using Linux, Linux in Education, Updating PCLinuxOS to 2007, Using Settings from a Previous Linux Install, and much more. DistroWatch Weekly for April 30, 2007 is out. "This week belongs to Mandriva Linux and its recently released version 2007.1 - we'll bring you a full review, comment on the release process, share our upgrade experiences, and link to a technical specification proposal for Mandriva Linux 2008. In other news: PCLinuxOS opens for business after a disastrous bandwidth outage, Linspire announces release dates of Freespire 2.0 and Linspire 6.0, Terra Soft release Yellow Dog Linux 5.0.1 for free download, and the developers of VMKnoppix announce a 64-bit edition of KNOPPIX 5.1.1. Finally, a comment on translating the new Top Ten Distributions page and an update on tracking distribution usage through browser strings."
Distribution meetingsThe conference will showcase a wide-ranging program of expert-led sessions and tutorials to inform and inspire the growing Ubuntu community, from power users to the Ubuntu-curious. The three-day conference launches July 22-24, 2007 at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland, Oregon, in conjunction with the O'Reilly 2007 Open Source Convention (OSCON)."
Newsletters and articles of interesttraces the history of the Slackware distribution in a Tux Deluxe article. "At the time that Slackware first emerged as the logical replacement for the Software Landing Systems (SLS) Linux distribution, the satirical Church of the Subgenius, with its slogan get slack, was still a popular source of humour on the college campuses of the US. Slackware can be taken as a a tongue-in-cheek reference to the Church of the Subgenius, and its charismatic leader, JR Bob Dobbs, The Master of Slack, and as an assertion that Slackware was part of the zeitgeist of the youth of America."
Distribution reviewsreviews SimplyMEPIS Linux 6.5. "A few weeks ago, MEPIS released SimplyMEPIS 6.5. The latest version of the Ubuntu-based desktop distribution offers a number of interesting new features, including a 64-bit release and Beryl for 3-D desktop effects. After spending a fair amount of time with the release, I found it to be a worthy update to earlier versions of MEPIS." reviews Ubuntu 7.04. "Another six months, another release from the Ubuntu folks. The Ubuntu 7.04 release, better known as Ubuntu Feisty Fawn, is another cutting-edge, but not bleeding-edge, release that shows what Linux is capable of on the desktop. I've been running it since the early betas, and have found that it's the best Ubuntu release yet."
Page editor: Rebecca Sobol
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