openSUSE 10.3 alpha 4 report
openSUSE 10.3 alpha 4 was released a couple of days ago and I've been in testing mode. This release doesn't bring any new eye candy, but there are a few changes under the hood. As with the last, a lot of sites picked up on this release indicating that interest is ever increasing.
The installer remains unchanged although after reboot, I had to finish the configuration phase in "text" mode. The desktops see few changes as well, other than a few updated application splash images. Another change noted was the logout countdown timer from alpha 2 has returned.
The big news this release was the removal of Novell's ZENworks in favor of openSUSE native software management with Yast and libzypp. There weren't any updates available at this time in which to test the functionality, the appearance of the new updater is much improved.
A new component this release was InstLux. This allows one to install openSUSE Linux from within a Windows install. However tests here proved it still needs a bit of work. The error received here was that the initrd could not be retrieved.
In other developments, the init system start script were revamped to reduce boot times. Unfortunately, I haven't really been able to tell much difference here. But just for grins, alpha 3 boots in about 59 seconds while alpha 4 boots in 44 seconds here.
Some other listed changes this release include:
- TeX Live replaces teTex
- First changes to support Sony PS3
- First parts of KDE4svn entered Factory
- Reduced size and cleaned up dependencies of some packages
Some RPM version highlights this release are:
- Full RPM List
Some changelog highlights include:
- kdebase4 - initial package in abuild
- hwinfo - added ps3 support
- don't use MouseManPlusPS/2 protocol
- update Identity maps for all architectures
- startpar: Try to start more processes even on high loaded systems
- startpar: Detect endless loops on broken systems (no SIGCHILD)
- wine - Upgraded to upstream 0.9.37
- xorg-x11-driver-video - updated ATI RANDR1.2 driver
- updated to version 2.2
- enabled import filter for MS Works Wordprocessing Document
- Upgrade to cups-1.2.11
- lots of updates and fixes
- updated to release 2.1.0-beta4
- lots and lots of fixes and tweaks
- udev - new upstream release 111
- parted - Update to new version 1.8.7
- kpowersave - updated to current SVN HEAD v0.7.2_SVN20070509
- Full Changelog
The only Most Annoying Bugs listed this release at this time are No online update offered during installation and No NIS offered during installation.
The Roadmap was firmed up a bit since last release. At this time the most important dates are:
- Thu, Jun 14 openSUSE 10.3 Alpha5 release
- Thu, Jul 19 openSUSE 10.3 Alpha6 release
- Thu, Aug 9 openSUSE 10.3 Beta1 release
- Thu, Aug 23 openSUSE 10.3 Beta2 release
- Thu, Sep 6 openSUSE 10.3 Beta3 release
- Thu, Sep 20 openSUSE 10.3 Release Candidate 1 release
- Thu, Sep 27 openSUSE 10.3 Goldmaster release (internal)
- Thu, Oct 4 openSUSE 10.3 public release
Some exciting major improvements planned for 10.3 include:
- 1 CD install (network at install)
- Installation of a Linux system on HD directly from a Live-CD image
- UMTS support
- Enhance zypper
- Migration assistant instlux
- Integration of external repositories
- Dynamic update mirrors
- Edu Add-on CD (done largely by the community)
- GNOME 2.20
- KDE4 preview
- Reduction of boot time
- Reduced package dependencies, smaller minimal system
So all in all things are progressing fairly well. We may not have had a lot of new eye candy to slurp and drool over, but glancing through the changelog reveals how hard developers are working. A lot of information has been coming out of the openSUSE camp this past month and things are really getting exciting. Again, as with past alpha releases, I remain impressed at the stability and usablity of these developmental systems.