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OpenMandriva Lx 4.1 Alpha available for testing

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The first OpenMandriva Lx 4.1 release cycle milestone is available for download and testing.

Testing is a critical step during development as all bug fixing will take place during this lapse of time. Therefore we exhort all OpenMandriva users to test our system and report any issue you may find at our forum or at our bug tracking system.

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Also: OpenMandriva Lx 4.1 Alpha Released With Toolchain Upgrade, Clang-ed Kernel Option

OpenMandriva Can Now Clang Its Linux Kernel Build For This LLVM Focused Distribution

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OpenMandriva is one of the few Linux distributions (and arguably the only prominent one) that uses LLVM Clang as its default compiler toolchain over GCC for building its packages and the preferred C/C++ compiler exposed to its users. One of the last hold outs for this Clang'ed Linux distribution has been the kernel build but that is now no longer a blocker.

With the new LLVM Clang 9.0 release, it's now possible to use LLVM Clang to compile the mainline Linux kernel for x86_64 and Arm without needing any out-of-tree patches. In my testing of Clang 9 + Linux 5.3 it's worked out well with a few exceptions like the AMDGPU driver having issues, but those few remaining headaches are being worked out so Clang'ing the Linux kernel works well for users and helps ensure code/compiler portability of the kernel.

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An Easy Fix for a Stupid Mistake

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I waited a long time for Mageia 7 and for OpenMandriva Lx 4. When both distros arrived, I was very happy.

But new distros bring changes, and sometimes it is not easy to adapt. Mageia 7 has been rock-solid: it is doing a great job in my laptop and both in my daughter's desktop and in mine. There is one thing, though. I have been avoiding a strange mesa update that wants to remove Steam.

OpenMandriva is also fantastic, but this new release provided options like rock, release, and rolling. When I first installed the distro, I chose rock because I was shying away from the rolling flavor. Eventually, I had to move to rolling because that was the only way in which I could manage to install Steam in both my laptop and desktop machines.

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Mageia 7.1, Mageia 7 with Ryzen 3000 hardware support

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The timing for Mageia 7, just prior to the recent release of the new AMD Ryzen 3000 series of CPU’s, didn’t play nicely. Namely, there was an issue with the system starting up on these new CPU’s that prevented any type of installation, except for a net install. So, the only solution was to release a new set of installation media, which are available to download here.

It’s very important to note that if you have a working system, there is nothing that you need to address. This release is primarily to fix installation on systems with the above CPU’s.

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Also: Mageia 7.1 Released With Systemd Fix For AMD Ryzen 3000 Systems

Mageia 7 Pushes Linux Desktop Boundaries

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Reviews

Linux dispels the notion that one universal computing platform must define the features and functionality for all users. That is why so many distributions exist.

The Mageia distro is a prime example of how freedom and choice are the hallmarks of open source operating systems. Mageia 7 pushes the limits of personal choice and usability definitions.

What gives Mageia Linux its edge is its independence. Mageia 7 is not based on a predefined Linux family of distributions.

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Review: Mageia 7

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Mageia is a user friendly, desktop-oriented Linux distribution. The project originally grew out of the Mandriva family of distributions and is independently developed. The project's latest release is Mageia 7 which, according to the project's release notes, offers 18 months of support. Mageia 7 drops support for the ARMv5 architecture while adding support for 64-bit ARM (Aarch64) and improving support for ARMv7. While ARM packages are being built, ARM installation media is not yet featured on the project's download page. The new release includes the DNF command line package manager and features the ability to play MP3 files - MP3 support was not included by default in previous releases due to patent restrictions.

The release notes mention that GNOME users can enjoy their desktop running on a Wayland session by default with X.Org available as an alternative. KDE Plasma users will have the opposite experience with their desktop running on X.Org and a Wayland session available through a package in the distribution's repositories. The documentation also mentions that when running a GNOME on Wayland session some graphical administrator tools will not work when run through su or sudo. The user can run these tools with their regular user privileges and the system will prompt for an admin password when necessary.

Mageia is available for the 32-bit (x86) and 64-bit (x86_64) architectures. We can either download an install DVD with multiple desktop packages bundled or we can download live media with the Plasma, GNOME, or Xfce desktops. There are smaller net-install disc images available too. I decided to try the KDE Plasma live disc which is a 2.8GB download.

Booting from the live media brings up a menu which gives us the option of immediately loading the project's system installer or launching a live desktop environment. Choosing the live desktop brings up a series of graphical screens asking us to select our language from a list, confirm the distribution's license agreement, and we are offered a chance to read the release notes. We are then asked to select our time zone from a list and confirm our keyboard's layout.

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Mageia Magical (lucky?) release number 7 has arrived

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Everyone at Mageia is very happy to announce the release of Mageia 7. We all hope that the release works as well for you as it has during our testing and development.

There are lots of new features, exciting updates, and new versions of your favorite programs, as well as support for very recent hardware. The release is available to download directly, or as a torrent from here.

There are classical installer images for both 32-bit and 64-bit architectures, as well as live DVD’s for 64-bit Plasma, GNOME, Xfce, and 32-bit Xfce.

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Also: Mageia 7 Sets Sail With Linux 5.1, KDE Plasma 5.15.4 Desktop

Review: OpenMandriva Lx 4.0

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Reviews

OpenMandriva is a desktop-oriented distribution that originally grew from the Mandriva family of Linux distributions. Like other community projects which rose from the ashes of Mandriva, OpenMandriva places a focus on providing a polished desktop experience that is easy to install. Unlike most other community distributions in the Mandriva family, OpenMandriva uses the Calamares installer, its own custom settings panel for managing the operating system, and builds packages using the Clang compiler instead of the GNU Compiler Collection.

OpenMandriva 4.0 introduces some other changes too, including using Fedora's DNF command line package manager and switching from using Python 2 to Python 3 by default. Python 2 is still available in the distribution's repositories for people who need to use the older version of the language.

The project's latest release is available in two builds and both of them feature the KDE Plasma desktop and run on 64-bit (x86_64) machines. One build (called "znver1") is for modern CPUs while the other is a generic 64-bit build. I was unable to find any precise information on what the minimal requirements were for running "znver1" and so used the generic build for my trial. There are mentions of ARM support in the project's release notes, but at the time of writing there is just one tarball for an ARM build on the distribution's mirrors.

Curiously, on release day, the release notes also mentioned a LXQt build of OpenMandriva and a minimal desktop build. Neither of these were available on release day and it seems the release notes are out of date (or premature). The release announcement also offers a link to torrent downloads, but there were no torrents available on the server, even a week after OpenMandriva 4.0 was launched. (The following week torrent files were made available.) All of this is to say the documentation did not match what was actually available when version 4.0 became available.

The generic 64-bit build of OpenMandriva was a 2.4GB download. Booting from the project's ISO seemed to get stuck for a minute after passing the boot menu, but eventually a splash screen appeared, followed by a welcome window. The welcome screen offers us information on package versions and displays links to on-line resources. The welcome window also offers to help us change settings, which we can probably skip until after the distribution has been installed.

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OpenMandriva Is Also Making Plans To Move Away From 32-Bit Support

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In addition to Ubuntu planning to drop 32-bit packages with their 19.10 release, the OpenMandriva development team is another high profile Linux distribution drafting plans to eliminate their 32-bit support.

OpenMandriva's plans to drop 32-bit are much more conservative than Canonical with planning for these changes by the October release of Ubuntu 19.10. In the case of OpenMandriva, they will gradually reduce their exposure to 32-bit in hopes of weening users to 64-bit where possible.

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Also: OpenMandriva Lx 4.0 released, here are the new features

The best, until OpenMandriva does better: released OMLx 4.0

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Exciting news!
Shortly after the release candidate we are very proud to introduce you the fruit of so much work, some visible and much more behind the scenes and under the hood.

OpenMandriva Lx is a cutting edge distribution compiled with LLVM/clang, combined with the high level of optimisation used for both code and linking (by enabling LTO, and profile guided optimizations for some key packages where reliable profile data is easy to generate) used in its building.

OMLx 4.0 brings a number of major changes since 3.x release...

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Also: OpenMandriva Lx 4.0 Released With AMD Zen Optimized Option, Toolchain Updates

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Games: We Happy Few, Helvetii, Starcom: Nexus and More

  • We Happy Few for Linux and Mac being refunded, to get an "unofficial" beta

    After a long road, the waiting on We Happy Few for both Linux and Mac is about to come to an end. Not the happiest of endings either. Originally funded on Kickstarter back in 2015 for $334,754 CA, Linux and Mac support was then announced for We Happy Few after the campaign had started. In 2017, it was announced that Compulsion Games teamed up with Gearbox Publishing to complete it.

  • Tremendous looking 2D action game Helvetii confirmed to be coming to Linux

    After a successful Kickstarter campaign, the supremely stylish 2D action game Helvetii has now been confirmed to be launching with Linux support next year. While their crowdfunding campaign didn't initially confirm Linux support, after it finished they announced that after evaluating it they've decided to do it and they "had actually quite a lot of demand" for it too. They said supporting Linux is "actually little work on our end (and we do have the ability to test it), we thought that we might as well do it".

  • Wx3 Labs looking into Linux support for Starcom: Nexus

    Starcom: Nexus from Wx3 Labs is a striking looking open-world space action adventure and they've been looking into getting it running on Linux. In a post on Steam, one of the team noted they're using Unity making it possible but "some testing and fixes are expected". They went over attempting to test with a live Linux USB stick which has enabled them to see it running, and they mentioned to reply to post if you have the game and want to test the Linux version.

  • Linux Gaming News Punch - Episode 21

    Prepare for a fistful of news, as the Linux Gaming News Punch - Episode 21 has arrived to go over some recent interesting topics to allow you to keep up with all the news. For those just joining, this is a quick take roundup on recent Linux gaming news. Meant for those who struggle to keep up or just want a little Linux gaming news on the go. Audio-only files and feed links below the video.

  • Interrogation: You will be deceived to arrive on Linux on December 5

    Critique Gaming and Mixtvision have announced that their immersive noir-styled psychological detective-thiller with conversational puzzles, Interrogation: You will be deceived, is going to release on December 5. Previously covered here on GamingOnLinux back in August, after it caught my eye with the incredible rotoscoped almost-monochrome art. You are tasked with saving the city from a terrorist plot by interrogating suspects as the clock ticks down. To do so, you have to mix between interrogations and managing your team's reputation with time running out.

Growing the Linux app Ecosystem at LAS 2019

The third Linux Application Summit (LAS) kicks off this week in Barcelona, Spain. Formerly organised under the GNOME project, known as Libre Application Summit, the new LAS is a joint effort between the KDE and GNOME projects. The aim of the conference is to encourage the growth of a vibrant Linux application ecosystem. Canonical are proud sponsors of LAS 2019, and are sending along a team to represent Ubuntu and Snapcraft. The volunteers on the organising committee each have a long history in the Linux application community. They’ve all worked on platforms and infrastructure to enable new software development for Linux. I took some time to chat with some of the team, and what LAS means for them. Aleix Pol, representing KDE, has worked on Linux applications for a while, and is hopeful for increased collaboration between application developers and platform maintainers. Aleix told me; “While we [GNOME and KDE] are sizeable organisations, we have massive tasks at hand. We need to create an environment where people can come and create their solutions for all of us.” This applies both for application developers and those who work primarily on the platforms themselves. He continued; “With GNOME, we share pieces of software, we share users and we even share some of our dreams. Meeting, talking and collaborating can only be beneficial”. Aleix also highlighted the benefits of meeting in person at events like LAS, “There’s a very different kinds of visitor. The ones who have been around will be putting faces to nicknames and having these discussions that IRC and mailing lists can’t sustain”. Read more

Kdenlive 19.08.3 is out

The last minor release of the 19.08 series is out with a fair amount of usability fixes while preparations are underway for the next major version. The highlights include an audio mixer, improved effects UI and some performance optimizations. Grab the nightly AppImage builds, give it a spin and report any issues. Read more

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