Last week we published an article looking at the ASUS Eee PC 901 Linux boot performance. In that article we had compared how long it took to boot Linux (using the excellent Bootchart program) for Fedora 9, Fedora 10 Alpha, Ubuntu 8.10 Alpha 6, and Mandriva 2009 Beta 2. Ubuntu 8.10 Alpha 6 ended up being the hands-down winner, but the team at Mandriva have been working on optimizing their boot process and some of these improvements can now be found in their most recent Mandriva 2009 test release.
Our friends at Good OS have today released version 3.0 of gOS. gOS 3.0 integrates Google Gadgets onto this Ubuntu-based distribution with a focus on providing an easy to use Web 2.0 experience atop Linux. Google Gadgets for Linux was released earlier this year. gOS 3.0 can be downloaded from their project web-site.
There was no Gentoo 2007.1 release that made it out last year, and we now know for sure that there will be no Gentoo 2008.1 release this year. The Gentoo Release Engineering Team has canceled the Gentoo 2008.1 release that would have otherwise been expected in the next three months. Due to spending increased time on Gentoo 2008.0 and having limited manpower, they've decided to call off Gentoo 2008.1 and future .1 releases.
Mandriva 2009 Beta 2 has been released today. This testing update adds the Firefox 3 web-browser, OpenOffice.org 3.0 beta, switching to Fedora's system-config-printer, and many other changes too. The release announcement can be read on Club Mandriva's Wiki.
Knoppix used to be regarded as one of the best and most popular Linux LiveCD distributions, but as of late it's been virtually under the radar. However, Klaus Knopper has pushed out the 5.3.1 release of Knoppix. This release is upgraded against Debian Lenny, ships with the Linux 18.104.22.168 kernel and various custom modules (including KVM virtualization, NDISwrapper, experimental Compiz Fusion modules, KDE 4.0 support, and much more. The change-log for Knoppix can be viewed here. Knoppix can be downloaded from the Knoppix website.
2007 isn't even over yet, but the Mandriva team already has out the first public beta for Mandriva 2008. Mandriva Linux 2007 (codename: Cassini) is available as a 3 CD free edition without any non-free software included while future releases will be in a hybrid edition. New in Mandriva 2008 will be NTFS write support, AppArmor, modular IDE drivers, new devicescape wireless stack, Compiz Fusion, and the Linux 2.6.22 kernel. More information on Beta 1 is available here.
At Phoronix, SLAX is one of our favorite mini LiveCD Linux distributions. SLAX has always been a wonderful KDE distribution with a very small footprint and is based upon Slackware. Today marks the continued growth of SLAX and the fifth release candidate for SLAX 6.0.0. SLAX 6.0.0 RC5 ships with the Linux 22.214.171.124 kernel, KDE 3.5.7, and other packages have been updated against Slackware 12.0. A variety of fixes are also present in this release. Additional details can be found on the SLAX FTP server.
As a bug-fix release to BeleniX 0.6, BeleniX 0.6.1 has been released. This latest OpenSolaris LiveCD is upgraded against OpenSolaris Build 67, features GIMP 2.2.16, offers a new revamped ddcxinfo utility, marks the inclusion of the FreeBSD math library, fixes an enhanced HSFS module with a modified I/O scheduling implementation, script cleanups, and keyboard mapping problems have been fixed. BeleniX 0.6.1 can be downloaded from Genuinx.
The second release candidate for Slackware 12.0 was released just days ago but today marks the final release of Slackware 12.0. There was a number of changes in the past few days for Slackware 12.0 i386 which can be read about in the Slackware Change Logs.
The second release candidate for Slackware 12.0 is now available. New in Slackware 12.0-rc2 is a kernel rebuild with an updated configuration file, K3b and Amarok were upgraded to 1.0.2 and 1.4.6 respectively. There were also a number of changes made to udev, pkgtools, and the kernel drivers. All of the changes made for Slackware 12.0-rc2 are available from the Slackware Project change-log.
CentOS 5.0 was released last month but for those not immediately upgrading, CentOS 4.5 is now available as an update in the CentOS 4.x branch. This release corresponds with the fifth update for Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5. Some of the CentOS 4.5 features include a Xen virtualized kernel and a technology preview of OpenOffice.org 2.0. The CentOS 4.5 release announcement is available from the centos-announce mailing list.
While delayed, Gentoo 2007.0 has finally made it out the door this afternoon. The codename for Gentoo 2007.0 is "secret sauce" and some of its features include a completely rewritten installer, GNOME 2.16.2, and many more package updates. More information is available in the release announcement.
KateOS, a Polish Linux distribution that uses Xfce and is quite a nice desktop distribution, has rolled out its version 3.6 Beta. Not only are there Linux package updates, but the KateOS team has also improved the boot scripts, packaging scripts, and new graphical configuration tools. The KateOS LiveCD installer will also appear in the 3.6 final release. Package updates include Linux kernel 126.96.36.199, Xfce 4.4.1, X.Org 7.1.1, and GNOME 2.18.1. More information on the KateOS project along with download links is available here.
For those Mandrake faithfuls, Mandriva 2007 Spring is now available. New in Mandriva 2007 Spring is the inclusion of WengoPhone, Google Picasa, and Darkvirt. Darkvirt is a new Mandriva configuration utility designed to help out in virtualization configuration. Out of the box virtualization support in Mandriva includes VirtualBox, VMWare, Xen, and QEMU with KVM. One of the interesting features in this Mandriva release is Nintendo Wii remote compatibility -- so you can now use your Wii remote as a regular joystick under Linux. Also shipping in this release is the Metisse desktop. Package versions include X.Org 7.2, KDE 3.5.6, GNOME 2.18, Firefox 2.0, and OpenOffice.org 2.1. The release announcement can be found here.
If Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5 is too expensive for your blood, CentOS 5 is now available. CentOS 5 is immediately available for i386 and x86_64 though PowerPC, IA64, and SPARC support is planned for the future. The release announcement is available here. One of the changes for CentOS 5.0 is being completely rebuilt using a newer build system. The release notes are available from the CentOS Wiki.
Hitting the Internet this week have been several Linux distribution releases that aren't as attention-drawing as Ubuntu but they are still worth mentioning. Some of the new releases this week include SimplyMEPIS 6.5, Linux Mint 2.2 (Light and KDE), Damn Small Linux 3.3, Mandriva Linux 2007.1 RC3, and Arch Linux 0.8. Over the Easter weekend if you have some extra time it could be worth it to experiment with one or more of them if you are still trying to find the perfect Linux distribution. This week at Phoronix we also checked out the MyahOS 3.0 Tech Demo 1. While we will be publishing less articles over the holiday weekend, there will continue to be action on the Phoronix Forums.
Linspire/Freespire and Canonical (Ubuntu) today have announced a technology partnership. Linspire and Freespire will be moving from a Debian based over to Ubuntu. However, Linspire will continue to be loaded with proprietary codecs and other software packages. More information is available in the press release.
Linspire's Click-N-Run (CNR) software is now being made available for distributions other than Linspire itself -- among the distributions are Debian, Fedora, Freespire, OpenSuSE, and Ubuntu. For those that have never used Linspire CNR, it makes the process of finding and installing software under Linux incredibly easy. More information on this multi-distribution support for Click 'n Run can be found in a letter from Linspire's CEO, Kevin Carmony.
It's been a year since Slackware 10.0 was released, and today finally marks the release of Slackware 11.0. Slackware 11.0 features the Linux 188.8.131.52 kernel (Linux 184.108.40.206 and 2.6.18 are alternate kernels available), X11R6.9.0, GCC 3.4.6, and several other system updates. The release announcement can be found at the project website for the Slackware Linux Project.
A new Gentoo project has been announced that has been called 'Seeds'. Gentoo Seeds will provide Stage 4 tarballs of common setups to 'seed' new systems with pre-built Gentoo packages. Their first seed is for creating a LAMP server. Here is the mailing list announcement, and the project page. Will Gentoo Seeds create more acceptance with beginning Linux users?
The fourth release candidate is now out for the upcoming Slackware 11.0. Changes in Slackware 11.0 RC4 include the integration of the Linux 220.127.116.11 kernel and many more changes. The list of all of the changes in this latest development release can be found here. A discussion of Slackware 11.0 has been going on at the Phoronix Forums.
The Gentoo release engineering team has today launched Gentoo 2006.1. Featured in Gentoo 2006.1 is GCC 4.1, a network-less install mode, SPARC improvements, improved system startup scripts, and more. The Gentoo 2006.1 press release can be read here.
Coming out yesterday was the long awaited release of ReactOS v0.3.0. This release comes after three release candidates and a great deal of testing. ReactOS v0.3 ships with a wealth of networking improvements and many other changes. More can be found at ReactOS.
The first release candidate for Slackware 11.0 is now out, though a few more changes will still make their way into RC1. Of the changes is the 2.4.33 kernel, X.Org 6.9.0, KDE 3.5.4, and more. Feel free to discuss Slackware 11.0 in this thread.
NewsForge has up an article on a GPL requirement that could hinder some derivative Linux distributions. The one most recent distribution under attack was SimplyMEPIS, which is Ubuntu-based. It is in violation of the GNU GPL for not providing the source-code for packages which the distribution is based upon. The MEPIS founder, Warren Woodford, intends to comply with the Free Software Foundation request. It is an interesting read, and is certainly worth the time.
Portage 2.1 for Gentoo has been released. Version 2.1 of Portage, which is currently in the tree for testing, adds a good amount of new features, as well as addressing quite a few bugs. More on this package release can be found at Gentoo.
Chris Smart of the Kororaa Project has once again updated the Kororaa web-site after receiving an email from the Free Software Foundation. This battle started out by a kernel maintainer who had stated that Kororaa broke the GPL by distributing it with binary-only modules, specifically those for ATI and NVIDIA display drivers (original information here). The Free Software Foundation has yet to provide direct evidence as to whether the distribution of binary-only Linux kernel modules violate the GPL. The latest Kororaa email with Chris' reply can be found here.
After sharing news, that Kororaa might be in violation of the Free Software Foundation GPL, and ultimately may have to shut down, the Kororaa Project leader has posted some additional comments about this matter. Kororaa had got in hot water for distributing their ISOs with the closed-source NVIDIA and ATI Linux display drivers.
The Kororaa Project is now under fire for breaching the GPL of the Linux kernel, by including the proprietary closed-source NVIDIA and ATI display drivers. The originator of the email has urged Kororaa to discontinue work on the distribution due to these violations, and the project is now investigating the involved legal matters. More of these thoughts, and the email can be read here.
At the 2006 Desktop Linux Summit, Linspire has announced the creation of Freespire. Freespire serves as a community powered FREE Linux distribution that is funded and supported by Linspire. The Freespire distribution is Debian-based, 100% free yet allows the user option of installing some proprietary packages. The distribution itself is free but like Linspire, Freespire has the abilities to use the CNR (Click 'n Run) Warehouse for easily attaining software packages. While no Beta release of the Freespire distribution is available at the time of writing, its website is available. More information on this community project will likely come shortly.
333 Operating Systems news articles published on Phoronix.