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openSUSE Weekly News, Issue 154 is out!

December 18th, 2010 by

We are pleased to announce our new openSUSE Weekly News Issue 154.



openSUSE Weekly News

openSUSE Weekly News Team

Producer 

Published:

2010-12-18


Abstract

We are pleased to announce our 154 issue of the openSUSE Weekly News.
This week was very interesting. The Novell “The Disters” Contest was finished, and the Winners are announced. Then we have a new Board Member (driven by Novell) as Replacement for Michael Loeffler. Then new candidates comes up for the Board Election. So you see, we had a lot to read. Enjoy the reading :-)

Header PictureAnnouncements

Figure 1. Holiday Geeko

Holiday Geeko


Seasons Greetings to everyone in the openSUSE Community and beyond from the openSUSE
Board!

As we come to the end of 2010, we’d like to take a moment to reflect on a banner year in
the Project. We’ve had some very good progress this year and 2011 promises to be an even
greater year. This year, we hosted our second annual openSUSE Conference in Nuremberg, Germany
with over 70 presentations and many BoF discussions. Attendance grew from the first year.

Also, this year, the Board rolled up its sleeves and opened up a discussion with the
Community about the strategic direction of openSUSE. A finalized strategic statement is
imminent. The creation of an openSUSE Foundation is well underway. We’re currently reviewing
legal documents related to the creation and are very excited about this. The Foundation will
be a step forward in further empowering our Community. More and more people are stepping up to
champion openSUSE’s role in the open source world. We saw ambassador growth in countries like
Brasil and Greece, and stengthened in other places like India, Europe and the United States.
We’re seeing more people available to show up at conferences and events to present and
demonstrate openSUSE.

In addition to releasing openSUSE 11.3, the openSUSE Build Service also reached a critical
milestone earlier this year with the release of 2.0. A gem of our Project, the Build Service
aims to not only make package management easier for our own distro but to also make it easier
with other distros. Truly an open project. Community days abounded all over the place
throughout the year from Collaboration days to bug/hacking days as teams set aside time to
complete tasks and move forward with their plans. The openSUSE Board will be holding its final
meeting of 2010 this Wednesday at 19:00 UTC in the #opensuse-project IRC channel on Freenode.
We invite you all to attend, as all of our meetings our public and we do appreciate the many
contributions our Community offers during our meetings, particularly during the “Where can we
improve?” session we implemented earlier this year. Incidentally, it is election season again
for the openSUSE Board and we’re excited to see so many candidates. If you’ve been thinking
about running for one of the two seats, we encourage you to apply for candidacy ASAP!

To be sure, serving on the Board is a rewarding experience, and also requires commitment
and dedication. 2011 is going to be a turning point year for the Project. With the creation of
the Foundation and implementation of the openSUSE Strategy, there is no doubt that many new
initiatives from the Community will come forth and the Board will play an important role in
guiding and shaping the future of openSUSE as a Project.

So, as we close here, we’d like to wish each and every one of you a safe and joyous
holiday season with friends and loved ones. You can be sure that as we Board members toast in
the New Year from various corners of the world, we’ll be thinking of you all and rejoicing
being part of a strong, dedicated and passionate community.

See you all at Wednesday’s meeting, and in 2011!

The openSUSE Board Pascal Bleser, Rupert Horstkötter, Pavol Rusnak, Henne Vogelsang, Bryen YunashkoFigure 1, “Holiday Geeko”

Figure 2. Alan Clark. Chairman of the openSUSE Board

Alan Clark. Chairman of the openSUSE Board


As you know, Michael Loeffler has left the openSUSE Board to pursue new opportunities, we
are sad to see him go and wish him well. With his departure and with the upcoming Board
elections, we have a desire to see a new Chairperson selected. The election rules state that
the Chairperson be appointed by Novell and yesterday Markus Rex, General Manager of Novells
Open Platform Solutions, presented Alan Clark to us as the new Chairperson.

As you may be aware, we have focused a significant amount of our time on the creation of
an openSUSE Foundation to be independent and to be able to collect and spread funds. And
Novell has been very supportive with our desire to see this come to fruition. Markus told us
that one of the reasons he selected Alan is that he has a lot of expertise in setting up
foundations. Alan helped to form the Open Source Development Labs (OSDL) and the Linux
Foundation, as well as several other open source projects and organisations. We, along with
Markus, believe that Alan’s experience and expertise will be an asset of immense value to the
Board, and we welcome that as we, and Novell, partner together in forging ahead on an exciting
and promising future for the openSUSE Project.

Alan has already been working with us on the foundation work, but most of you probably
don’t know him, so we asked Alan to introduce himself:

Having the opportunity to work closely with the openSUSE community is an exciting
endeavour. My work assignments over the past few years have enabled me to work directly with
members of the community. By attending the recent openSUSE conference I was able to make many
more friends and acquaintances. As always it was a great experience. One of my personal goals
from this role will be to get to know and to work with as many members of the community as
possible.

A bit about me: Though my engineering roles have varied throughout the years, I am a
software developer at heart. I began my career writing Unix based network protocols. Anybody
remember LAT? My past projects have helped me develop a broad technical base across the
spectrum of software development, from device drivers, to file systems, to network protocols,
to identity and security, to developer SDKs and across multiple operating systems. I remember
that the first day I was able to do my work on Linux was a great day.

I am extremely optimistic for the future of openSUSE, the potential growth of the
community, delivery of the openSUSE strategy and the advancement of Linux in general. Our
community has a great future! My goal is to help facilitate the many ambitions of the openSUSE
community members and advance the openSUSE Guiding Principles.

Please join us in welcoming Alan to his new role! Alan will begin his position at the next
openSUSE Board meeting tomorrow at 19:00 UTC in the #opensuse-project channel on the Freenode
network. All of our meetings are open to the public and we welcome you to our meeting to meet
Alan.

Novell has released at Wed, 15 Dec 2010 the winners of the “The Disters” award. We
congratulate all Winners.

Other Souces: Linux.com h-online

Hi, we will do an openFATE screening day next monday.

What does this mean?

With the renewed openFATE feature trackingsystem we have the possibility
to involve the community in all steps of feature evaluation and implementation.
Everyone can take responsibility for features now and track their state in
openFATE.
We already have some subprojects using openfate such as the openSUSE
distribution,
OBS, SUSE Studio, Infrastructure …

On monday we will focus on screening the 11.4 features, getting used to
the process and report problems with the feature tracking tool.

We will be in #opensuse-project the whole day, just drop in if you want to help
or have questions. Greetings!

Last Monday the second Marketing Collaboration Day happened – with a focus on Marketing Materials. The moderators, Chuck Payne and Bryen Yunashko, would like
to thank everyone who got involved for their hard work! It was a successful day with many items covered, added and expanded for openSUSE Marketing.

Among other things, some how-to’s were updated like how to organize a Launch Party (yes, openSUSE 11.4 is coming!) Moreover two short presentations on SUSE Studio
and OBS were created which can be used in presentations from the Ambassadors. Already some Greek ambassadors are using them and they promised to contribute back translated
versions. Besides the wiki and the presentations, volunteers took on the task of developing success case stories involving openSUSE, creating models for Letters
of Sponsorship requests, and how to collaborate and work with educational institutions. Obviously a broad range of topics and opportunities to promote openSUSE.

But the team isn’t done yet. Like in the previous Collaboration Day, which focused on our Ambassador Program, several items have been picked up to be finished
later. Thanks for that!

There is a renewed energy in our team as we collectively begin to have a broader bird’s-eye view of the state of our marketing resources and build up enthusiasm
and motivation amongst our team members.

Meanwhile, next week a new Collaboration Day will happen, this time on Tuesday December 21. This, because one of it’s principle organizers, Manu Gupta, will
return from his hard work at FOSS.in on Monday. The other organizer is Jos Poortvliet and the topic of this Collaboration day will be Social Media.

The goal is to work on our press and media channels and our communication on the web. Writing short project descriptions, gathering features for our 11.4
announcement, creating a Prezi presentation about openSUSE, gathering screenshots and creating themes for Identica/twitter/blogger and other outlets are
all on the agenda.

And of course the plumbing: making sure all accounts are connected properly so an announcement or news.o.o article goes to all the proper channels automatically,
making sure the account details are in the hands of several different people and much more. All in all it promises to be a great Collaboration day, so if you’re interested
in Social Media and doing some work, join us and help out!

The meeting will be held in the #openSUSE-Marketing IRC channel on Freenode. Collaboration Days
begin at 9:00 UTC and end at 24:00 UTC

See you there!!!

Board Election 2010

I’ve decided to remain a spectator during this Board elections to understand the process
and I like the applies for the board. I can say I’m happy to see ‘mrdocs’ applying for the
board, as he was one of the persons which helped me a lot with openSUSE Build Service in my
early days. He always had a cool advice or a couple of minutes to make my life easier.

Except for ‘mrdocs’ I really don’t know much about the other candidates, so I’ve decided
to take a small note and expose my frustration for not seeing Sirko Kemter running for the
Board. I would support Sirko on running to the board for several reasons:

  1. He’s the face of openSUSE Artwork team. He’s been doing awesome screencasts and
    tutorials… I guess in a way, related to Artwork, which I find to be an area which is
    underdeveloped in openSUSE, he can bring lots of new synergies… and a new visual
    identity to openSUSE.

  2. His degree of commitment to the local German Community. I’ve seen some posts of him
    and some of the initiatives he does. I loved the openMovie night at KommKino in Nürnberg
    during openSUSE Conference for which he was the mastermind behind it. So he’s really a
    community guy.

  3. His a vertical and direct person, which speaks his mind. This is something I love
    on people. I don’t know Sirko from talking on the back of people, I know him from being
    straight to point and direct. This is a very positive thing…

  4. Gnokii plays well the role of ‘bad cop’. That’s always good to have around.
    Sometimes people need to ear more harsh things to get back into reality. Gnokii does
    this role good.

  5. He’s one of the most objective people I’ve seen around… many times bringing people
    to reality, thus speeding up people on taking actions and drop the philosophical
    issues

I really see him as a community guy, always around, helping whenever he cans… He’s doing a
great job and he should be empowered to run to the Board.

For all the other candidates, which many I don’t know… good luck… with so much cool people
running for the Board, I can only see a smiling future ahead. I won’t vote for the Board
elections for some reasons, being the major… I won’t to split votes amongst so many cool
people, therefore, I’m remaining on neutral grounds wishing all the best of luck. Whatever is
the outcome, I’m sure openSUSE will win!

Have a lot of fun!

PS: I hope to see a public debate with all candidates on IRC opened to questions and
doubts from the openSUSE community members and users! Please make it happen!

Header PictureStatus Updates

Team Report

Header PictureBuild Service Team

I had a side project the last two weeks: Make the build service more fun to use.

No matter how much fun you have creating packages, if they don’t build, there is
little point in using a Service that has Build in its name, no? So one of the major goals
of the service is actually to help those that want to build packages as good as possible.
But there is a problem:

Let me quote from the landing page of build.opensuse.org: “The openSUSE Build Service hosts 16,414 projects, with
107,691 packages, in 26,259 repositories and is used by 25,967 confirmed users.”. That are
quite some high numbers – especially in the relation to the ~25 servers we have for
actually building.

If you look at the build statistics of the last month (and this is just i586, x86_64
has around the same), you notice that there is not much purple in the “Busy workers / Idle
workers” graphic:

Figure 3. Buildservice

Buildservice


(..)

I just released a new osc version: 0.130.1 (bugfix release). The following issues were fixed:

  • don’t crash if a file marked as ‘A’ does not exist (bnc#658664)

  • fixed proxy handling (bnc#657958)

  • fixed repairwc (bnc#657838)

  • fixed build for python2.4

The new version is available in the openSUSE:Tools
repo.

Build Service Statistics. Statistics can found at Buildservice

Header PictureGNOME Team

As the indicator saga continues… some new indicators were built… Indicator-messages is
a small indicator that pics up messages and stuff from applications to display them on a
nice all-around indicator. It works fine with evolution (plugin also built and doesn’t
require patching for what I’ve seen).

This indicator support more applications, though they require some patching. As being
discussed on the opensuse-GNOME mailing list as as proposed by Vincent Untz, this
indicators are moving to GNOME:Apps and there _might_ an effort to support some features
in applications like empathy. Keep in mind this is not a priority, but if it’s possible to
support some more feature, it might happen.

Figure 4. Screenshot

Screenshot


AdditionallyFigure 4, “Screenshot”, I’ve also tried some other indicators… indicator-application for what I
can tell is an indicator that removes the menu’s from the GTK applications and places them
on the panel (MAC style). I’ve built this indicator, but I have no means to test yet
because further patching is required at least in GTK and eventually on glib. I don’t think
there’s actually any need to have this indicator, specially when it will bring additional
efforts on GTK maintenance, and this feature is somehow supported by software like
gnome-globalmenu (which I’ve also packaged for myself and works dearly with supported
apps).

I’ve done some hammering on indicator-sound as well… Ubuntu’s sound widget… I’m stuck
with some error and I have 2 possibilities… downgrade to the last version of the previous
branch which should built, or work the current branch (more dependency demanding). I’m
working on it… it will happen one way or another during the next days. I guess this one is
actually one of the most wanted :)

There are few other indicators… for time and date, calendar and so on… Those will be
last ones. After indicator-sound is done, I’m starting to clean up the packaging and make
sure it’s compliant to the GNOME team methodology and submit them to GNOME:Apps and the
support libraries that are required as dependencies forwarded to projects where they might
be useful (need to check out with the people which ones those will be).

A special thanks to Ken Vandine from Canonical for some guidance with libindicate.

I’ve seen around some ‘hate’ waves towards Canonical, and I would like to say that so
far in the few times I’ve interacted with them, either on bug submission or asking help,
they have been awesome and caring. It’s really something I would like to point… they are
pretty cool, and their devs are very helpful (but hey… so are our devs ;) ). Also a very
special thanks to Vincent Untz, Dimstar and mrdocs which have been a great help and from
whom I’ve learned already a lot.

So picking up the useful stuff… and placing it up together in a single Indicator:

Figure 5. Screenshot 2

Screenshot 2


Figure 5, “Screenshot 2”

Finally… the last of the indicators builds and works properly… fun thing… works out of the
box with Banshee! Two pics… one from the indicator-sound and another from the messaging
indicator with empathy and evolution support.

Figure 6. Picture 1

Picture 1


Figure 7. Picture 2

Picture 2


Header PictureKDE Team

Are you using the openSUSE KDE 4.6 Beta 2 packages and you would like to try a newer
version ? Then for the time being you could switch over to the KDE:Unstable:SC repository.

About 2 weeks ago, I copied the official KDE 4.6 Beta 2 packages over from the
KDE:Distro:Factory repository to the KDE:Unstable:SC repository. This has two effects,
namely:

1) People using 4.6 Beta 2, can easily update to a slightly newer version to see if
bugs have been resolved, without loosing important patches that are openSUSE specific.

2) It gives us, the openSUSE KDE team the change to easier and faster adopt to a newer
release (e.g. RC1, RC2, etc), as that all patches are matches on a weekly basis to the
newer source code.

If you decide to switch repository, then make sure that you keep an eye on this blog,
as that on a certain moment the KDE:Unstable:SC will switch to very unstable snapshots of
the future KDE 4.7. I will however blog here to let you know that you should switch back
again repostories, before I will publish the first KDE 4.7 snapshot.

Feel free to contact me over email or on IRC (tittiatcoke) if you have any questions
about this. So far KDE 4.6 has been a very stable release and also KDEPIM 4.6 is looking
better. Let’s hope that the last glitches are also resolved, before KDE 4.6 is released.

Header PictureopenFATE Team

Top voted Features

Features with highest vote, but no one has been assigned to yet.
We are looking for volunteers to implement.

“Network installation could be improved by running package download and package installation in parallel.”

“I wanted to open a fate feature about this when I first heard of plymouth, but reading http://fedoramagazine.wordpress.com/2008/10/21/interview-fedora-10s-better-startup/ really makes me think we should go this way. (…)”

“An easy way to remove Software!

For example: you installed an application with “1-click install” (which will install all the packages that you need), there should be an easy way (also with 1 click) to remove what you have installed with that 1-click operation… in another words: an “1-click Uninstall” to remove installed software (dependencies and packages included).”

“We need a replacement for sax2 in 11.3, as a safety measure for when auto configuration fails to detect certain monitors/keyboards/mice. (…)”

“We need a feedback about packages that are preferred by users and actively used. Debian already has a tool named Popularity contest (popcon) (…)”

“The YaST Qt package manager should provide as much information in the “Installation Summary” view as zypper, esp the overall download size to expect and how much disk space will be freed/used after performing the operation.”

“Idea from community member Raúl García.
Same concept as MSI packages for Windows but exploiting the One Click Install concept of openSUSE (and therefore inheriting the simplicity, code and security. (…)”

Recently requested features

Features newly requested last week. Please vote and/or comment
if you get interested.

“Some users use computers only to play media, like music.

I have a lot of friends, witch only run computer to login and put CDs inside.
We need a system wide deamon, which control how many normal users are logged in, check /usr/media directory and all removable media to start playing music/etc.

When user get logged, music will stop playing.”

“Set the default mouse behaviour of KDE 4.x to double click to open files / folders.

Current default is single-click to open files / folders.”

“KDE has monthly updates and mainly depends on Qt.
Qt only has updates from time to time.
If you have crashes with KDE apps which are caused by (resolved) Qt bugs (e.g. ¹²) we push them (days/weeks/months/years/decades?) in front of us until a new Qt release. (…)”

“I think Lightspark

is an avant-garde/forefront browser flash player with modern hardware support design and written from scratch.

We could find it only on Packman repository, but both gnash and swfdec are in standard OpenSuSE repository (swfdec in Packman one too and in a more recent version).

Are there too some language (flash, swf files) legal troubles?”

“Atom processors, currently very popular in lightweight devices, behave very differently from common Intel/AMD processors; although they can execute code optimized for common x86 or x86-64, they don’t run it much efficiently. Because they are not that fast, every cycle counts.

I believe it would be useful to consider them a separate sub-architecture that deserves its own set of compilation options.”

“A feature that I really miss in openSUSE is something like WUBI. Maybe you know this tool, what let you install Ubuntu on a Windows-partition. I think for beginners, who don’t want to create a Linux-partition is this a easy and great way to have a nice welcome-unit in Linux. openSUSE will be a distro for beginners and advanced users, right? So this feature is a real nice present for beginners and people who just want test openSUSE. (…)”

“Need “restore” button near “empty Trash” button in Nautilus when a file is selected in Trash Folder.”

Feature Statistics

Statistics for openSUSE 11.4 in openFATE

Header PictureTesting Team

The next Testing Core Team IRC meeting to discuss 11.4 Milestone 5 will be held
December 27 at 1800 UTC.

The Team had a meeting on Monday, December 6, when we talked about our
experiences with openSUSE 11.4 M4. The automated installation testing seems to
be working as no one reported installation failures. Our major complaints were
Bug #657605 (corrupted downloads), Bug #656060 (poor performance for i945
graphics hardware), and k3b crashing. The corrupted download bug is fixed in M5,
and k3b now works. I am aware of other problems with the i915 driver in the
2.6.37 kernel, but those are being addresses in the upstream kernel.

My early experience with M5 has led be to switch to it from 11.3 on both 32- and
64-bit systems. From what I see, 11.4 should be a really good distribution.

I repeat my plea for readers of these news to test, test, test, and and report
all bugs to the Novell bugzilla.

Header PictureTranslation Team

Header PictureIn the Community

Postings from the Community

Figure 8. Picture from cebit

Picture from cebit


2010 is nearly over now, time to look backwards what I did this year.The year begun for me with one of the greatest events arround IT the Cebit. I wasnt the whole week in Hanover, I missed the first day because I had an appointment on this day. The next day, I missed my train then but I arrived right at the point. I had a invitation to a press conference so had only enough time for changing the shirt. Btw there was deliciuos apples served at the conference ;) The rest of the week we had a lot of interviews and press conferences, most of them not so interesting for the people. But with the openPandora project our stage was really filled up.Figure 8, “Picture from cebit” (…)

My first ever open source conference was just awesome. First of all, thanks a lot to
the openSUSE community
which arranged my stay. Thanks a lot guys, you rock. As it was my first open source
conference so there was a lot to learn.

As soon as I entered the NIMHANS Convention Centre, the venue I saw some of the stalls.
I met some of the guys at FOSS.in
from NIT Trichy. These guys along with their seniors had worked upon a CMS known as Pragyan.
They have been working on it for over 3 years and looking at the CMS was just awesome. It
was a php based CMS and was made without using any of the existing frameworks. You can find
the source code at http://www.pragyan.sourceforge.net

The next thing I did was to attend a keynote by Danese Cooper from the wikipedia
foundation, I heard a lot about server based softwares like varnish, powerdns etc and also a
lot of info on semantic mediawiki. One of the keyfeatures which mediawiki foundation would
like to have is realtime editing just like etherpad. The talk was awesome and I hope to
attend tomorow’s mediawiki workshop. It was lunch time and I met some guys from openSUSE like Akhil Ladha and Bharath
Acharya. Bharath Acharya kept on saying “Oh! You are the SUSE blog guy rite”. Both of them
are very nice fellows but could not be with them for a lot, I hope to meet them tomorrow.
(…)

Figure 9. Heinz with Skolelinux

Heinz with Skolelinux


At the openSUSE conference almost two months ago a special Educational track on Saturday
featured talks about the progress on openSUSE Edu-L.i.f.e, the applications it ships and
many other educational topics. The goal of the openSUSE Edu team is to cater for students,
educators as well as parents and the software they develop, package and ship has everything
required to make computers productive for either home or school usage.

At the conference over 30 people discussed topics including X2go and thin client
computing in general, several openSUSE based educational distributions, opsi, a Client
Management System for Windows clients based on Linux servers, groupware (including
openXchange), PyKota printing accounting software, the KIOSK tool and more.

X2go is based on FreeNX, a remote display server
technology providing very good application responsiveness over high latency, low bandwidth
links like the Internet. X2go upstream developer Heinz M. Graesing gave a talk about
Skolelinux and also gave some insights of his work on X2go. He attended also other sessions,
including one by openSUSE’s Michael Kromer about X2go installation, configuration and best
practices on openSUSE and SLES. openSUSE is very close to upstream X2go and Heinz came away
impressed, asking for the code behind one of the demoed features!

Several demonstrations and talks about linux in schools
were given. Besides Skolelinux and Arktur, the Extis GmbH (who also sponsored the Education
Flyers sent to the schools in the town and some speakers) showed a business school server
(based on SLES11-SP1). And the Desktop4Education project from Austria showed a desktop and
server solution based on openSUSE. The talk from Helmut Hullen, working on Arktur, the
oldest Linux school server project (since 1992!) in Germany, shows the enthusiasm of users
and developers behind such projects. Arktur is a Slackware based system with a huge
community of users. Unfortunately the team developing it has been shrinking and is now down
to mostly one person, but they work together with Heise, a German magazine, to distribute
copies and information about Arktur. (..)

Welcome new openSUSE Members

He is involved in some Ambassadoring Projects in Project.

He works in the Wiki, Bugzilla and OBS.

openSUSE for your Ears

The openSUSE Weekly News are available as livestream or podcast in German. You can hear it
or download it on Radiotux.

From Ambassadors

Nelson Marques gives us a good summary about the Christmas Dinner in Portugal.

Figure 10. Me and Stathis(diamond_gr)

Me and Stathis(diamond_gr)


Yesterday once again I felt very proud about the work I have done so far with Stathis
(diamond_gr) in the formation of the Greek community from Scratch. We were having that event
at a school for xariseto.gr where people were giving away stuff they no longer used for free
to other people and we were there to inform people about FOSS. The last time I went to such
an event I was alone and I had difficulties on talking to everybody since there were a lot
of people that were really got interesting in openSUSE. This time Stathis would come with me
and we asked other people to come to help if they could. The response was immediate from 2
members that came and helped us for more than 7 hours.Figure 10, “Me and Stathis(diamond_gr)”

Figure 11. Our member Ipparion giving instructions about openSUSE

Our member Ipparion giving instructions about openSUSE


When we people started coming asking questions I felt very proud about those people. The
reason was the passion that people show about serving the Greek openSUSE community, three
months ago we were 2 people trying to make a stand and now we have a bunch of very skilled
people making all short of things for openSUSE community. The Greek openSUSE community seem
to bloom and it is great to know that you have a great part. Yesterday we showed our
superiority since we went to the event like a team,we worked as a team and we managed to do
all the right things a community should do. Older communities from openSUSE community were
present but not even close to our level of organization. And although the great amount of
work we made, still we had a lot of fun. Figure 11, “Our member Ipparion giving instructions about openSUSE”

Contributors

Header PictureNew/Updated Applications @ openSUSE

Clementine is a modern music player and library organiser. Clementine is a port of Amarok
1.4, with some features rewritten to take advantage of Qt4.

As most of you already found out, Chromium is not that easy when it comes with MultiMedia.
Due to the heavy patches from Google to ffmpeg, it does not work just to build chromium
against the standard ffmpeg libraries. For distributions like openSUSE, Fedora, etc this
brings issues as that ffmpeg code is still legally a no-no.

There were some attempts in the past to solve this issue, but they failed. At the moment I
have created a new package chromium-ffmpeg which delivers the missing libffmpegsumo.so
library. The package is available from packman and it builds the patched ffmpeg code.

It still doesn’t really work 100%, but it should resolve some multimedia issues that
people have been experiencing with the openSUSE Chromium package. In the meantime Chromium has
already reached version 10.x.x.x, so check out the changes.

Tools to create and manipulate Matroska files (extensions .mkv and .mka), a new container
format for audio and video files. Includes command line tools mkvextract, mkvinfo, mkvmerge,
and a graphical front-end for them, mkvmerge-gui.

Firefox 4 is knocking at the door and the latest beta release looks just
awesome. The seventh beta release introduces several important changes, including a revamped
user interface (with the tab location above the address bar and navigation buttons), tab
grouping, improved bookmarking system, re-open recently closed windows, built-in synchronizing
system, rendering engine improvements, and more. This article contains a screenshot gallery
with all the main features and changes brought until now by Firefox 4. (…)

Figure 12. Firefox Screenshot

Firefox Screenshot


The Firefox beta is available in the mozilla:beta Repository.

I’ve updated bleachbit for openSUSE to Version 0.8.4. What are the changes?

  • When deep scan was enabled, BleachBit 0.8.3 would freeze with the progress bar displaying the name of the last cleaner (so it could be any one of 90 different names). Sorry!

  • In addition to fixing this bug (of course), new automatic tests will prevent this from happening in the future. From the beginning, BleachBit has extensively used automatic tests to ensure quality.

You can find other interesting Packages at:

Header PictureSecurity Updates

To view the security announcements in full, or to receive them
as soon as they’re released, refer to the openSUSE Security Announce mailing list.

Table 1. Security Announce
Package: exim
Announcement ID: SUSE-SA:2010:059
Date: Mon, 13 Dec 2010 10:39:26 +0100
Affected Products: openSUSE 11.1
openSUSE 11.2
openSUSE 11.3

Header PictureKernel Review

Numerous changes to the network and storage code are to increase processing speed and improve the system’s hardware support. Among the new additions are a PPTP stack, various drivers for Wi-Fi hardware by Atheros, Broadcom and Realtek, and code for hard disks with a logical sector size of 4 Kbytes.

Responding to the Linux 2.6.37-rc5 release email, Tony Luck last week
projected
that the final version 2.6.37 could well be released before Christmas, as
things have apparently been running very smoothly. Linus Torvalds has a similar, although not
quite as optimistic a view: he said that even if things run smoothly, he doesn’t think anybody
wants the merge window open over the holidays. Torvalds therefore
anticipates
that unless new problems appear and cause delay, he will release kernel
version 2.6.37 in early January, .

The Kernel Log will continue its “Coming in 2.6.37” mini series with a discussion of the
advances in terms of storage and network hardware drivers and infrastructure. Part 1 of the series described the changes in the graphics hardware area, while
part 2 discussed the file system changes. In the coming weeks, further articles
will discuss the changes to the kernel’s architecture code, drivers and surrounding
infrastructure. (…)

Header PictureTips and Tricks

For Desktop Users

I’ve written before about ripping audio CD’s from the
command line (part
1
, part
2
, part 3, part
4
). Certainly, if you’re just ripping a new CD, then just convert the audio to
your chosen format at that time. But maybe you’ve been archiving your music in FLAC format or you purchased some high bit-rate MP3‘s for download and now you want them in a different format or
bit-rate for your music player.

GStreamer is an open source multimedia framework that’s
used by many GNOME applications and a few KDE apps as well. It’s really meant to be used by programmers to
create rich applications by accessing GStreamer’s API. Thankfully there’s also a command
line interface available for us non-programmers. It’s really meant for only testing, but
that’s OK. If it works, it works.

Now you may be asking yourself why you’d want to use GStreamer to convert audio when there are so many other choices available.
Well, one really cool thing about GStreamer is that the metadata is preserved through the
conversion process. That means you won’t have to go through and re-tag
your files after converting. (…)

My last post was about converting audio files in Linux with GStreamer. In that post I showed how to convert FLAC files to Ogg Vorbis files and retain the audio tags. You may however, have an audio player that does not support playing Ogg Vorbis audio files and you want to convert your files to MP3 instead.

The following commands will work as long as you have the appropriate GStreamer plugins installed along with the LAME package.

This command will encode to MP3 using LAME’s defaults.

gst-launch filesrc location=file.flac ! flacdec ! audioconvert ! lamemp3enc ! id3v2mux ! filesink location=file.mp3

If you want to encode your files with VBR at a higher quality level, you can do something like this.

gst-launch filesrc location=file.flac ! flacdec ! audioconvert ! lamemp3enc target=quality quality=2 ! id3v2mux ! filesink location=file.mp3

Many of us are hoping for an eBook reader under the tree. A Kindle, a Nook, or perhaps
just an Android device that runs eBook software. But if you don’t get the gadget of your
choice, or if you want to create content to fill one, you’ll find plenty of eBook software
for Linux as well as open source software to publish your own. The best of the lot? Calibre,
a one stop solution for all your e-book needs. I didn’t coin that term for Calibre — that’s
their motto. How accurate is it? Very. Calibre handles library management, format
conversion, syncing to your device, and more. Oh, and it also lets you read your books too.
Nice, eh?

Figure 13. Viewing the Linux.com RSS Feed as eBook

Viewing the Linux.com RSS Feed as eBook


Formats and DRM If you’re new to eBooks, you might be
wondering what I’m babbling about with regards to format conversions. Just as video and
digital audio have a lot of formats to choose from, so do eBooks. Annoyingly, they not only
offer many formats, but also several DRM schemes too.

One of the problems with eBooks, or some eBooks, is Digital Restriction Management
(DRM). Yes, the industry likes to call it Digital Right’s Management, but that’s really not
what’s going on. When you buy books from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Apple, etc.the books are
encrypted with DRM so that you can’t open them on multiple devices or competing devices —
even if they support the same format. For example, ePub is a widely supported format that
can be read by a number of eBook devices like Barnes and Noble’s Nook and iBooks on iOS. If
you have an ePub book without DRM, you can read it anywhere.

But ePub supports an optional DRM scheme, so publishers can add DRM to it and restrict
it to one player or one type of DRM format. I don’t find it upsetting that publishers are
trying to find a way to limit sharing of eBooks, but the side effect is that users really
lack options when it comes to acquiring books. If you want access to new books, you’re stuck
choosing one of the major vendors (Amazon, Apple, Barnes and Noble, etc.) and then as you
acquire more material, you get locked into those vendors and their readers.

Unfortunately, I don’t have a good answer to that if you want access to the latest books
via electronic formats. But if you want to read classics or publish your own books, you have
lots of great options with open source.

You’ll find quite a few eBook formats, but the ones that matter the most for the most
popular devices (Kindle, Nook, and iBooks on iOS) are ePub and Mobipocket. You’ll also find
a lot of support for PDF and plain text, too, but those are well-understood and handled
formats within open source already. The ePub format is supported via Nook and iBooks,
Mobipocket on Kindle. You can produce both ePub and Mobipocket with Calibre. (…)

Non Free

Dear readers, we sometimes have to use non-free software. This post will learn you how
to get the latest flash player supporting natively your favorite openSUSE Linux 64 bits
distribution. Keep in mind that it is preview software, actually pre-release code quality,
and with it you will not receive any security updates. Keep an eyes on it, and refresh it
manually if newer version are published So why to try that software ? My answer is simple :
it’s a native 64bits plug-in. So it’s interaction with your native 64bits browser, should
give you a better stability. My experience using it in the last 4 months is pretty good, no
Firefox crash due to flash. (Several pro week or day with the 32bits 10.0 version)

Get ready

Remove any installed 32bits packages First things to
do, remove all actual 32bits flash installed.

zypper rm flash-player pullin-flash-player

Get the
lastest Flash square preview

Go the main project page Square

Read the informations, and the Adobe License you implicitly accept by using this
software.

Then Download the tar.gz

cd /tmp wget http://download.macromedia.com/pub/labs/flashplayer10/flashplayer10_2_p3_64bit_linux_111710.tar.gz

Uncompress & Install

tar -xvzf flashplayer10_2_p3_64bit_linux_111710.tar.gz
sudo chown root:root libflashplayer.so
sudo cp libflashplayer.so /usr/lib64/browser-plugins/libflashplayer.so

Test

Close any firefox or konqueror running, and restart them under firefox, launch the
about:plugins uri and you should see Shockwave Flash File:
libflashplayer.so Version: Shockwave Flash 10.3 d162
Have a nice surfing
session, if you like flash website .

Header PicturePlanet SUSE

I’m using smugmug to share my photos and have used the smugbatch command line tool to upload photos
directly to albums at smugmug. Recently smugmug made some changes to the API so that the
command line tool did not work anymore. Now it needs the _su cookie to be send back with each
request. I enhanced the tool, submitted the fixes back and now they are awaiting for the
review by Greg KH at github.

I also packaged smugbatch with the changes in the
openSUSE Build Service
and submitted the fix to the Contrib repository so that
others can use the package as well.

P.S. The primary reason for writing this is to evaluate the Blogilo blog editor. I wanted
to know how it works – and will now test it some more and then write about that as
well.

As you all know, distributing and building packages with the openSUSE Build Service is easy and fun. The only
party pooper is that you have to write a spec file to get your RPMs out there. Thanks to
darix, we have a decent solution at least for Ruby
packages: gem2rpm, a script which auto-generates RPM spec files for Ruby gems. Ever wondered
why we don’t have something similar for Python? Well, I did so too. Thus, after a half a week
of hackery, I’d like to introduce py2pack, my take on braindead Python packaging. Here’s how it goes:

Lets suppose you want to package zope.interface and you don’t know how it is named exactly or where to download
from. First of all, you can search for it and download the source tarball automatically if you
found the correct module:

$ py2pack search zope.interface
 searching for module zope.interface...
 found zope.interface-3.6.1
 $ py2pack fetch zope.interface
 downloading package zope.interface-3.6.1...
 from http://pypi.python.org/packages/source/z/zope.interface/zope.interface-3.6.1.tar.gz

(…)

This past Friday, on our walk back from lunch, Miguel told me about the latest assignment given to him by his teacher and mentor,
Benjamin Zander, the conductor of the
Boston Philharmonic. The assignment was to
pick someone you have wronged and apologize to them.

For those who don’t know, Benjamin Zander is the author of the book, The Art of
Possibility, a book which I have been reading the past week or so. The idea of this book is to
change your perspective on life by teaching you to see things in a positive light and thus
present you with a world of possibility where you can accomplish anything you set your mind to
because you are no longer held back by negative thinking (fear of failure, criticism from
others, and most importantly, criticism from yourself).

To continue on with my story, as I was laying in bed last night after having read a few
more chapters in The Art of Possibility, I was
reminded of Miguel’s assignment and I began to wonder: if I was given this assignment, who
would I apologize to?

I thought of 1 person in particular and a community of users and decided to apologize to
them all. (…)

Some of you might remember the Naming Controversy behind Meego. There is a new blog post by Andrew on this matter and since he is not on Planet GNOME, I am
just linking here, for the interested people. In case you want to know what the issue is all
about, read further.

There were Maemo and Moblin platforms from Nokia and Intel respectively. They both merged
to form the Meego project under the governance of the Linux
Foundation
. Distributions such as openSUSE, Fedora, Debian tried to spin off
Meego based derivatives and faced a lot of troubles.

Well known openSUSE rockstar Andrew Wafaa, overcame some
of these troubles and did a distro release using these Meego packages on top of an openSUSE
image. He named this distro “Smeegol” => SuSE + Meego. This
effort by Andrew (and other distros) is a step in bringing the cool, shiny features of MeeGo
to the masses, by riding on the large user-base of the existing distros. However, this has not
went well with the linux foundation and they have asked to change the name of the project.
They were afraid that Andrew using “Smeegol” will dilute the brand image of Meego.

Let us take a different case. “Linux ” is a registered
trademark of Linus Torvalds. If he has decided that nobody
should be using the name “Linux” in their projects, We may not be able to use names such as
RedHat Enterprise Linux (RHEL)“, “SUSE Linux Enterprise (SLED/S)” etc. Allowing other people to use the name
“Linux” (with due credits of course) has given it a widespread popularity. The Linux
Foundation seems to be missing this point altogether and insists to
move away from using {M,m}-e-e-{G,g}-o or any subset of those letters or sounds in that
order, alone or in combination with other letters, words or marks that would tend to cause
someone to make a reasonable connection of the reference with the MeeGo mark.

(…)

Hello world, Some good news.

First of all, the dutch Linux Starter I blogged about a few days ago is now available online. So if
you’re dutch and want to try out openSUSE – go and get it!

And second of all, the board has just announced that Alan Clark has been appointed by
Novell as new chair of the board. Most of you probably don’t know him, I do as I have been
working with him for the last few months on the openSUSE Foundation and some other things.
He’s in my humble opinion one of those people who gets Free Software and a pleasure to work
with. Only after this announcement I discovered he was pretty “high in the tree” as we in NL
say – being on the Senior Leadership team of Markus, his experience in the Linux Foundation
and other organizations… But while working with me he had a simple “let’s get this done and
do it well” attitude. Still an engineer on the inside – something you actually see a lot in
Novell and something I appreciate greatly.

tl;dr – To all you doomsday FUD mongers about Novell/SUSE/openSUSE STFU & let us show
you what we can and will do!!

For those living under a rock, yes Novell has agreed to be acquired. Welcome to the world
of business, and especially in software this sort of thing is very common.

Now for some reason a whole heap of people seem to think that this spells doom for Novell,
SUSE and openSUSE. Why? I really can’t answer that. What I do know is that all their negative
speculation is at best counter productive, at worst foolish and damaging.

As with any form of speculation there are no facts to back up what they reckon is going to
happen – hence the speculation. If there is enough negative talk, negative things will happen.
Current customers will look at switching from Novell products whether they be SUSE based or
not, purely based on all the negativity that is being generated.

No-one is giving Attachemate a chance to prove what they have openly said – Novell, SUSE
and openSUSE’s contribution to the wider community will continue and that it is business as
usual. If you look at when Oracle bought Sun they said sod all about OpenSolaris and the rest
of Sun. This is different. The new overlords are actually communicating – maybe not as much as
we would like, but hey it’s a bloody good step in the right direction.

The latest negative piece comes from the 451 Group. Why the frig would Novell’s purchase change their kernel contributions?
Why the frig would Novell’s purchase change any of their current contributions to the vast
array of projects including GNOME/KDE/Banshee/LibreOffice/Systemd and a whole heap of others?
Simple, it doesn’t.

Don’t get me wrong Novell has screwed up big time in the past, but we are working together
as a community to learn from these mistakes. All this negative noise is counter productive and
just gets in the way. If you want to see Novell, SUSE and openSUSE flourish hows about you
roll your sleeves up and get stuck in? If you don’t want to chip in STFU and wait and see if
something does happen. Then you can berate us and tell us how and where we went wrong.

This article of the German news magazine Der
Spiegel
made me aware of the Verein Computerspende Hamburg. A German verein is a non profit association, there
are lots in Germany for sports, culture and these kind of stuff.

The Verein Computerspende Hamburg does something very useful: It takes used computer parts
that other people do not longer need and refurbish them to working computers again. These
computers are handed to people who happen to be in a difficult situation in life. They have to
live from Hartz IV which is a kind German social security, following the unemployment benefit
which ends after a short period. Hartz IV means very, very little money the people have to
make their lives from, too little to buy a new computer.

On the other hand, an increasing amount of the job offerings are posted on the web, so
people currently unemployed basically have to search the web, not speaking about preparing the
resumes to apply for a job. So how would one do that without a computer?

Computing is not only hardware and well known operating systems and applications are far
away from free, so it’s obvious that our great project is a perfect partner here: Not that we
only offer a user friendly, easy to install, secure, feature rich and last but not least
completely free Linux
Distribution
, we as a community are also able to help if problems come up,
regardless if somebody has money or not and what kind of problem it might be. This is another
very concrete example where free software and the FOSS communities help your neighbor, or you
– as it is very easy to get into a difficult situation in life.

We sent 500 openSUSE 11.3 DVDs to Hamburg with our warm invitation and welcome to all new
users to show up and join our community. So be aware of new kids on the block :-)

And if you are in Hamburg or around and want to help, I am sure Verein Computerspende can make use of the
help of more Geekos, such as installation, first hand user support and probably much more. And
if you know of a similar interested initiative, let me know, I am sure I will find more DVDs
;-)

Figure 14. Be a pirate

Be a pirate


Fellow openSUSE Contributor, I am not as gifted as Mizmo, so I can’t really present some
cool metaphore in the form of a cartoon… Nevertheless I will try my best.Figure 14, “Be a pirate”

During the OSC2010 in Nürnberg I tried without much success to pass on the word that
Marketing isn’t about a Team, but comes also down to us. This in an awesome time to
demonstrate that on practice… Right now with an important release on the horizon, your
Marketing team is starting a process to gather information to promote the features of the next
release. Speaking for myself, I don’t feel confortable in taking an assingment of gathering
features for example about the Kernel. As I won’t feel confortable producing contents about
KDE which I barelly know… Nevertheless if those contents aren’t provided to us…. we have to
dig for them… sometimes not even having a clue of the extention of their importance.

Many times I’ve heard the ultimate excuse ‘Marketing is for Ubuntu, because they are just
Marketing and nothing else’… and things on that line… Well… think again… who’s fault is this
that only them care about Marketing ? I see a good opportunity for you all to achieve some
things in the next days… with only 10 minutes of your time… and why could be nice it happened
this way:

  • You run a project that is on Factory… cool… Please take 10 minutes, make a small
    list of 10 features that are really cool on the next release… make a 7/15 lines text on
    how your project changed and the benefit of the improvements for our users (if you don’t
    know your users, then write it as if you were talking about yourself)… This way you save
    your Marketing Team ‘wild goose chase’ on a stack of Changelogs we might not understand…
    even worst, we might even pass on the wrong stuff….

  • By doing this… you are doing Marketing… you are promoting your own project within
    openSUSE, giving it more visibility and with 10 mins of your time… you will pass on the
    right word to the Marketing Team and help them. Instead of spending 50 hours searching
    for stuff and taking some hard decisions that might not work out in the best way for
    YOUR project, we have 50 mins more to work your information and make sure it is better
    used for the interests of YOUR project.

  • If Marketing takes 3 features to write an article or make Marketing materials… and
    just lists the other 7… If like at least we get contributions in this form from: Kernel,
    GNOME, KDE and Ambassadors (yes, people should also be on the release)… thats 3×4 = 12
    featured articles for the release and a feature list of 40 new exciting
    features….

Now… does this seem so surreal to ask 10 minutes of your time to help out your
Marketing Team and make the best release ever! Oh! And have a lot of fun!

Someone said that I was crazy… and that projects and developers would never comply and
would most likely laugh on my face after proposing such thing… I might be crazy… or I might
very well on the wrong track. I’ve decided not to back down from facing the ‘mob’, and still
risking to be laughed upon, I brought this to your attention.

Become a openSUSE Pirate ? You-are-a-pirate Youtube Video.

Header PictureopenSUSE Forums

The openSUSE Forums have a growing number of language specific subforums. Until the 7th of december we only had German, Hungarian, French, Japanese, Dutch and Russian subforums, and provided external links to forums in Spanish and Hebrew. Now we’re proud to let you know, that a Greek Language subforum has been added. So if you’re Greek, become part of the openSUSE Community, using your native language in the Greek subforums.

This is a thread about problems with the install media, or with the CD/DVD devices used to run the install media. Like many times, it seems that “a problem” is not just “a problem”; there’s more going on. Sometimes it’s the install medium itself, sometimes it’s the drive it’s in, sometimes the machine to install to has it’s part in the trouble. All these aspects are addressed.

Here’s a user posted poll, to see where the forums members come from. View the results, read the comments.

Another thing to let you know: the staff of the openSUSE Forums is glad to announce the appointment of member Jonathan_R as a Global Moderator, who already was a Moderator for the english forums. Welcome Jonathan_R !!

This forum of the openSUSE Forumsis a subforum of Get Help Here. It’s one of the most active subforums, where people post for/to help during the install of openSUSE, where useful info is provided for starters in the linux field. The subjects vary from partitioning to graphic card issues, from the penguins we see in the GRUB menu around Christmas to login methods.

Header PictureOn the Web

Announcements

Since the announcement of our intent to acquire Novell, we have received a number of
questions regarding our plans for supporting Novell products. I know that during this period
between the announcement and closing, there are more questions than answers, and I am
sensitive to the challenges that this uncertainty may create for Novell customers and
partners. I want to take this opportunity to be clear about the commitments we make to all
of our customers.

Attachmate is committed to delivering quality products, providing exceptional customer
service, and being easy to do business with. We are excited about the opportunity to make
these same commitments to Novell customers after closing. To ensure that we do so,
Attachmate will support the existing roadmaps and release schedules for products across the
Novell and SUSE portfolios.

It is also important for our existing and future customers to know that we have a proven
history of supporting our solutions throughout their product lifecycles. Our philosophy is
to create options for customers to move forward, not force them to abandon products that
have become critical to their operation and success. We will continue to invest in both the
innovation of next-generation products and the nurturing of more mature and widely adopted
solutions. We understand that our customers’ success depends on having the flexibility to
evolve and adopt new technologies at their own pace and cadence. We intend to support that
need.

As we look forward to 2011 and beyond, our excitement continues to grow about the
potential addition of Novell and SUSE to our portfolio and the opportunity that they create
to deliver increasing value to our combined customer base. I look forward to sharing more
details and specifics about those plans once the transaction has closed.

Sinerely Jeff Hawn Chairman and CEO Attachmate Corporation

Reports

Nvidia and Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), the two major companies specialized in
programmable graphics processor technologies, released a couple of days ago new and improved
versions of their video drivers for Linux systems, available for both x86 and x86_64
architectures.

AMD’s ATI Catalyst 10.12 was released on December 13th and introduces support for the
Ubuntu 10.10 (Maverick Meerkat) operating system, support for the upcoming GNOME 3 desktop
environment, and various fixes and improvements, especially to the
GLX_EXT_texture_from_pixmap OpenGL extension. The software version was updated to 8.801.

On the other hand, the new Nvidia Display Driver 260.19.29, also released on December
13th, introduces support for new GPUs, such as GeForce GTX 460 SE, GeForce GTX 570, Quadro
5000M, NVS 300. Among the release highlights we can mention:

  • Fixed an OpenGL issues that made applications stop responding for up to one
    minute, on various GPUs, when the refresh rate or resolution was changed;

  • Support for NVIDIA 3D Vision Pro was added;

  • A new X11 configuration option was added. It is called “3DVisionProConfigFile” and
    allows users to provide a filename that the Nvidia display driver uses to store
    configuration settings of 3D Vision Pro.

Nvidia 260.19.29 is available for Linux, BSD and Solaris operating systems, for both x86
and x86_64 architectures. (…)

Project management applications are a popular inroad for winning business
converts to the Linux desktop. The software category provides some well-endowed tools to
maximize business knowledge and techniques for project planning and progress monitoring.

More than just a planning scheduler, project management apps help business leaders –
whether corporate or small business — control their resources and costs. These specialized
apps include integrated functions such as scheduling calendars, performance charts, budget
management and quality control.

This week Linux Picks takes a close look at three project management apps that go beyond
the features found in the lighter-weight offerings available for Linux distros. Project Management Planner, TaskJuggler and KPlato
cater to collaborative features to enhance project planning. These three apps are packed
with comprehensive tool sets, so plan on setting aside considerable time in familiarizing
yourself with each one before committing their use to an important project. (…)

The VAR Guy did some digging and found an SEC filing that more fully describes Novell’s
pending sale to Attachmate. The filing describes how J.P. Morgan, working on Novell’s
behalf, shopped Novell around to multiple bidders, and Novell mulled potential deals
involving Microsoft and other unnamed companies. Novell even considered running SUSE Linux
as a standalone business. Here’s the story only The VAR Guy took the time to pursue.

Overall, Novell representatives contacted 52 potential buyers. Roughly nine official
bidders emerged. So how did Attachmate wind up buying the bulk of Novell’s assets? And what
happened to rumored SUSE Linux bids from VMware? In a preliminary proxy statement dated December 14, Novell offers an extensive time line
describing how the company’s board of directors, executive team, and external financial
advisors pursued potential buyers for the company. The filing is more than 100 pages. Here
are some of the highlights, paraphrased by The VAR Guy. Please note:

  • The vast majority of the info below is based on information within Novell’s SEC
    filing.

  • Novell protects the names of several bidders, referring to them as Party A through
    Party E. In some cases, The VAR Guy makes some educated guesses about the actual
    identity of each company. But The VAR Guy’s educated guesses could be wrong.
    (…)

Reviews and Essays

One of the advantages of Linux is that you’ve always been able to build your own Linux
distribution… if you were an expert programmer. But, today thanks to programs like Novell’s SUSE
Studio
it’s easier than ever to create Linux appliances or your house-brand Linux.

For proof that you can use SUSE Studio to create useful applications look no further
than the winners of Novell’s Dister Awards. The two $10,000 grand prizes went to software companies,
Radical Breeze and Anderware.

Radical Breeze, won in the “Commercial” category for its Illumination
Software Creation Station
. This program lets non-developers design their own
software applications with no programming experience required. Anderware, a software company
from Sweden, won in the “Community” category for its Hypergrid to Go appliance,
which allows users to easily set up an extension to the OpenSim platform to create a
multi-user 3D world similar to Second Life.

Warning!

While analysing the user data stolen from US blog operator Gawker, security experts from Duo Security have also
cracked 400,000 of the approximately 1.3 million DES-encrypted passwords. The experts’
analysis showed that 123456 was the most frequent password, being used more than 2,500
times. It was closely followed by password, which was chosen by almost 2,200 users. 12345678
was chosen by more than 1,200 users. Next in popularity were qwerty, abc123, 12345, monkey,
111111, consumer, letmein and 1234.

Simple passwords are popular in Germany. When the database of German dating portal
flirtlife.de was hacked in 2006, 123456 was found to be the most popular password.
(…)

Header PictureCredits

We thank for this Issue:

  • Sascha Manns, Editor in Chief

  • Satoru Matsumoto, Editorial Office

  • Gertjan Lettink, Forums Section

  • Thomas Hofstätter, Eventeditor

  • Thomas Schraitle, DocBook-Consultant

Header PictureFeedback

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Header PictureTranslations

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