Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Mandriva Linux 2011TP (Tech Preview) - Quick Look

Filed under
Reviews

After laying-off a significant portion of its employees, is Mandriva going to remain a viable distribution? While many distros, including Mandriva, are furiously working on their Spring 2011 releases, Mandriva announced a two-week slip from their previously announced release dates. As a compensation, Mandriva gathered up its packages from its 2011 development repositories (called "Cooker"), and released a pre-alpha 2011 TP (Technology Preview) iso. The coming Alpha version is due to be released February 14 with Alpha2 slated to be released February 28. So, here's a quick report on the Technology Preview release, and how things are shaping up.

Many of Mandriva's recently laid off employees went on to form a fork of Mandriva called "Mageia". According to Susan Linton (Owner, operator and exalted grand pubah of Tuxmachines.org), Mageia Alpha1 is also due to be released mid February. It will be interesting to compare the two Alpha1 releases.

But, back to the Mandriva TP release. I downloaded the x86-64 bit TP ISO version yesterday (Feb 7), burned it, and proceeded to install it on "newton", my Acer Aspire 6930 Laptop (3 GB Ram, Nvidia 9600M GS video card, 7200 RPM hard disk (an upgrade after initial purchase), Intel wireless, and 1366x768 display).

The install went smoothly, except when rebooting--Mandriva TP did not pick-up my Windows 7 Partition in the boot window. The Win7 partition is still there--in fact, I can access the Win 7 files from Linux, so no worries (I rarely need to use Win 7).

Mandriva has updated its RPM system from RPM 4.6 to RPM 5. Because of the differing RPM versions, those wanting to update their older 2010 Mandriva installs to Cooker should be forwarned, there are extra steps to be taken. If you're one of these people, check-out the procedure here.

My first step, after installation was to update the TP release to the current state of Cooker (as of Feb 7). Then I installed the newest and latest KDE 6.0 stuff.

Like many distros lately, the open source Nouveau driver for nvidia video is installed by default. In fact, there is no proprietary Nvidia driver in Mandriva's cooker repositories. So, I went to Nvidia's web site, downloaded their proprietary driver, and compiled it for the TP kernel (Linux 2.6.37). Much to my surprise, this worked well. When the Nouveau driver performance becomes congruent to Nvidia's proprietary driver, I will switch to the Nouveau driver. Actually, the Nouveau driver performed fairly well, and is getting closer in quality to Nvidia's driver. I was surprised at how well the KDE desktop effects worked under the Nouveau driver.

Again, to my surprise, as Mandriva's 2011 Alpha 1 release approaches, I find it to be remarkably stable, fluid, and capable from the KDE side. The only issues I've encountered are from the flaky Firefox beta (4.0 beta10) browser, which is why I'm blogging this to Tuxmachines from the Rekonq browser.

In fact, I'm going to keep this (very) early version of Mandriva 2011 installed on my laptop, and update the packages daily.

UPDATE: An update of D-Bus BORKED this system yesterday. Lost my sound. Other issues. Looks like I'll wait for the 2011 Alpha1 release.

More in Tux Machines

today's leftovers

  • Comic-Con and FOSS Comic Book Solutions
    After whetting his appetite at this year’s Comic-Con, our resident Linux newbie discovers free and open source apps for reading digital comics, as well as a treasure trove of available sources for free comics online.
  • Linux Kernel 3.12.62 LTS Improves SPARC Support, Updates the Networking Stack
    Linux kernel developer Jiri Slaby announced the release of the sixty-second maintenance update for the long-term supported Linux 3.12 kernel series, which will receive support until 2017 because of SUSE Enterprise Linux. Linux kernel 3.12.62 LTS is a modest update, and looking at the diff from the previous maintenance release, version 3.12.61, we can notice that it changes a total of 96 files, with 1213 insertions and 1053 deletions. Among the changes, we can notice lots of fixes for the SPARC hardware architecture, but there are various other improvements for the ARM, MIPS, PA-RISC, and x86 instruction set architectures.
  • ‘Anatine’ Is a Simple Desktop Twitter App for Linux
    Anatine describes itself as a 'pristine Twitter app for Linux', but is it anything more than a wrapper around the mobile website?
  • Skype for Linux Alpha 1.3 Released With Small Bug Fixes
    A small bug fix update to Skype for Linux alpha is now available, and fixes, among many changes, errant close to tray behaviour on the Cinnamon desktop.
  • On the killing of intltool
    Say thanks to Daiki Ueno for his work maintaining gettext and enhancing it to make change practical, and to Javier Jardon for pushing this within GNOME and working to remove intltool from important GNOME modules.
  • On discoverability
    I've discussed elsewhere that usability is about real people doing real tasks in a reasonable amount of time. Some researchers also refer to "learnability" and "memorability" to define usability—this is very similar to discoverability. Can you discover the features of the system just by poking at it? Is the user interface obvious enough that you can figure it out on your own?
  • This is Lubuntu 16.10’s New Default Wallpaper
    The default wallpaper of Lubuntu 16.10 — yes, that's Lubuntu, with an 'l' — has been unveiled — but will fans of the lightweight Ubuntu spin like it?

today's howtos

Red Hat and Fedora

Android Leftovers