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Archive for July, 2010

New wiki, what now?

July 12th, 2010 by

We just switched to the new wiki. So here it is. And now? Let me explain what you can do to help!

Create your user page

Every user of the wiki has a personal page and we did not transfer any of them. We wanted to use this opportunity to brush them up and standardize them. Your userpage should be your first task in the new wiki. If your username is Geeko, just go to http://en.opensuse.org/User:Geeko and press “create”.  After that load the userpage teamplate by pressing on the “Load” button. Then fill out the form and you will get a nice standardized userpage!

You can also of course transfer your old userpage. Just go to http://old-en.opensuse.org/User:Geeko to find the content.

Report Missing Pages

Can’t find your page? Think we missed something? Just report the page to the opensuse wiki team! We will try our best to help you getting it back!

Transfer Missing Pages

Want to get your hands dirty? Dive right into the new wiki and learn how it works on the Wiki Portal or the previous posts on this blog. After you did that and know all the new wiki Kung-fu you go and find the pages you think are missing on http://old-en.opensuse.org. Now you have two options, either use the Special:Export page on the old wiki and the Special:Import on the new wiki if you want to transfer the article with all of its history or you just copy and paste the article if the history is not that important.

Otherwise just

Keep Calm And Carry On

Change in openSUSE Membership handling

July 12th, 2010 by

Anyone can become openSUSE member after showing continued and substantial contribution to the project of any kind (bugs, support in forums, wiki edits, code contribution etc.). For those who don’t know what openSUSE Membership is or how to become a member I suggest to read this wiki article or older blogpost by Andreas.

Some time ago openSUSE Board decided to delegate the membership handling process to so-called Membership officials. They review applications and give -1, 0, +1 points depending on user’s contributions to the project. Once user receives +4 resp. -4 points, the application is accepted resp. rejected. The length of this process depends on how much you write about yourself in the application. If you make your contributions vivid in this description, it’s very easy to verify them and you can become openSUSE member in a few days.

In both cases, an email is sent automatically to the user informing about the result. If the membership is approved, additionaly admins are informed, so email/cloak/lizards account can be set up and Weekly News team can present the new members in the separate section in OWN. The officials team currently consists of 16 very active community members, who can be reached on email address membership-officials@opensuse.org and their list is in the mentioned wiki page.

openSUSE Weekly News #131 is out!

July 10th, 2010 by

We are pleased to announce our openSUSE Weekly News #131.

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openSUSE.org Scheduled Outage

July 9th, 2010 by

On Saturday, July 10th from 09:00 AM CET to 03:00 PM CET, our infrastructure vendor will be shutting down services in the Nuremberg (Germany) data center to allow for a scheduled maintenance of the main power supply. As result, general network connectivity from and to the location will not be available.

Due to a separate maintenance activity the openSUSE Build Service will only be available again by 07:00 PM CET.

As result, the following services will not be available:

* http://build.opensuse.org
* http://software.opensuse.org

* http://svn.opensuse.org
* http://community.opensuse.org
* http://education.opensuse.org
* http://powerpc.opensuse.org
* http://boosters.opensuse.org
* http://board.opensuse.org
* http://users.opensuse.org
* http://hermes.opensuse.org
* http://notify.opensuse.org
* http://retro.opensuse.org
* http://connect.opensuse.org
* http://crashdb.opensuse.org
* http://gallery.opensuse.org
* http://shop.opensuse.org
* http://help.opensuse.org
* http://i18n.opensuse.org
* http://apparmor.opensuse.org
* http://count(er|down).opensuse.org
* http://gcc.opensuse.org
* http://license.opensuse.org
* http://xgl.opensuse.org
* http://pluginfinder.opensuse.org

The staging version of these sites will be similarly affected.

Please spread the news about this, so that we can keep user disruption to a minimum.

openSUSE Wiki Change Scheduled

July 9th, 2010 by

As mentioned in earlier posts, the new English wiki is scheduled to go live on Monday.  Here are a few technical details about the change itself:

  • Schedule
    • The transition will begin on Monday, July 12 at 17:00 GMT (1:oo PM EDT)
    • The move should be completed in 10 – 15 minutes
  • During the move
    • The wikis will stay live
    • The old and new English wikis will behave unexpectedly at some points
    • www.opensuse.org and the other language wikis should not be affected at all
  • After the move
    • The old wiki (currently en.opensuse.org) will be located at old-en.opensuse.org
    • The new wiki (currently wiki.opensuse.org) will be located at en.opensuse.org
    • wiki.opensuse.org will be an alias for en.opensuse.org

The wiki team has worked hard to get the new wiki tested and perfected for Monday.  However, if any issues are discovered after the switch, please send a message to webmaster@opensuse.org or file a bug at http://bugzilla.novell.com under the openSUSE.org product.

The devil is in the details – What changes on monday for the wiki oldtimers?

July 8th, 2010 by

A couple of days ago I gave you the big picture on what will happen to en.opensuse.org on Monday when we switch to the new wiki. Now let me go into the nitty gritty details of the change to the new wiki. I especially want to focus on the changes important for the people who are familiar with the old wiki. Here we go.

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Call for Volunteers: Moderators for the German Forums needed

July 8th, 2010 by

Note: A German version is below – Deutsche Version unten.

We plan to create a German Forum at forums.opensuse.org in the near future. So we’re searching for Moderators.

If you would like to join the team, you should have:

  • good knowledge in Linux, specially in openSUSE, and you should have motivation to share it.
  • good knowledge in writing German.  So you should be able to explain complicated things in an easy way.
  • be patient, sympathetic, and  gently. RTFM is not a solution.
  • have enough time to search posts in the forums that need a review.

It would be great if you can understand and write English because the team’s Language is English.

If you’re interested in helping us, please send an email to u.buckesfeld (AT) web.de.

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openSUSE Wiki – Episode II: A new hope

July 5th, 2010 by

You hear it in the bushes since quite some time, rumors spread and people whisper about it: A new wiki for the openSUSE project is coming very soon! The openSUSE Wiki team is in the last preparations to launch the new wiki on

Monday the 12th of July

As with all shiny new things the new wiki is different than the old one. But different how? You can sum that up in one word: Structure

The current wiki, online since the start of the openSUSE project in 2005,  grew wild into something that is not maintainable anymore. This is because content in it is in no way structured and we use it as a simple information dump. We don’t have any rules on how to present information or how to connect it to related bits and everybody is just adding pages. It makes adding content very easy but it neglects completely the biggest group of users of this wiki: the readers. On a normal day we have 10 people adding and 78.000 reading content. Yet we do very little to ensure that those 78.000 people find what they are looking for.

This is about to change. We, the openSUSE Wiki Team,  sat down and thought about the wiki. What is it and for whom is it for? Why can’t we maintain it? What are the most common complaints? And how can we solve this with the resources we have? We had a very lively discussion about this in the winter and afterward started to explore the options we have. We tried and discussed a lot methods, rules and mediawiki extensions. We came to the conclusion that we need to structure the content for the user-groups we have, provide better means of navigation than simple links, work on standardized templates and make sure that the most prominent content is of a acceptable quality.

Structure

The content in the new wiki is separated by topic in a couple of namespaces. Most prominently the main namespace (with no prefix) for the presentation of the latest openSUSE Distribution, think of it as the product brochure, for people who are new to openSUSE and maybe to Linux in general. The support database’s SDB: namespace for people who have a problem with the openSUSE distribution and seek written instruction on how to solve it. And the openSUSE community’s openSUSE: namespace to collaboratively write on documentation for their projects and teams. With namespaces we ensure that the right content in the right form reaches the right users.

Navigation

Navigation happens now through portals. Portals are entry points for a specific topic, similar to the main page. They provide an overview over a topic and guide readers to the content they seek which is either another portal or an individual article. Also categorization is very important so we can automatically generate overview pages and navigational structures. With these rules for navigation we ensure that our readers find the content we produce.

Styling

Styling of content happens through templates. There are 2 kinds, templates for a specific kind of article like the general article template, like the one for Portals or for support database articles and templates for styling of recurring content in articles like introduction and info boxes, hints and instructions or external sources and items. With these rules about styling we ensure that people understand the content we produce.

Quality assurance

Prominent namespaces (currently: Main & Portals) in the new wiki are subject to a quality assurance (QA) process to ensure articles meet the required quality. This QA process happens via a system which provides the opportunity to have several revisions of articles in parallel and one approved by the openSUSE Wiki Team. It does not limit creation of new content, but allows only quality content to be shown by default. With this process we ensure that first time visitors get drawn into page and stay.

Preview

You can see the current state of our preparations at our temporary location http://wiki.opensuse.org. Have fun exploring it and please don’t hesitate to contact us with ideas or problems on our mailinglist opensuse-wiki@opensuse.org.

Maintenance for openSUSE 11.0 extended

July 5th, 2010 by
openSUSE 11.0 was released on 19th of June 2008 and was planned to be under security maintenance for two years. Upon multiple requests from the community, the SUSE Security and Maintenance Team has decided to extend the maintenance period of openSUSE 11.0 until openSUSE 11.3 release, which is scheduled for July 15th 2010.
We will stop handling new requests at that day and plan to finish with the last update on July 21st 2010 to assure that openSUSE 11.0 users have a smooth upgrade path to openSUSE 11.3. Special thanks to Dirk Mueller who innitiated this.

openSUSE Weekly News, Issue 130 is out!

July 3rd, 2010 by
We are pleased to Announce our new openSUSE Weekly News, Issue 130!