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openSUSE Weekly News, Issue 182 is out!

July 2nd, 2011 by

We are pleased to announce our new openSUSE Weekly News Issue 182.

openSUSE Weekly News

182 Edition

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We are pleased to announce our 182th issue of the openSUSE Weekly News.

You can also read this issue in other formats here.

Enjoy reading :-)

Header PictureAnnouncements


The Articles inside this Section are in full. If you are already knowing the stuff in
news.opensuse.org, then you can skip this section through using the TOC.


As we wrote three weeks
, June 30th is the deadline for voting for the
openSUSE Strategy


2 years ago the subject came up at the openSUSE conference: what
do we want
? That is not a simple question. We are a large community with
wide-ranging diverse backgrounds, goals and interests.

Having a coherent answer matters: it shows potential new
contributors what they can (although not limited) contribute to; it helps us make decisions.
Do we focus on fancy web stuff? Do we go for a stable or more experimental product? Do we
simplify at all costs or cater to more advanced users? These and more are questions brought up
in our strategy discussion.


It took a long time – we are an open community and as such, strategic discussions take
time. However, we went through the effort. Lots of input came from a variety of people – each
iteration had sometimes over a hundred comments. You can view some of the although you should notice that
co-ment is just one of the ways we collected feedback (others being the mailing lists, IRC,
forums and more)


While the current proposal
is not meant to be limiting new directions or will be forever set in stone, it is meant to
provide clarity to our community for the time being. So we do want it to be taken seriously.
We develop major software products promoting open source and the use of Linux world wide.
We’re a major Linux distribution, the second largest by most metrics. We provide a packaging
build service that is used by distributions more than just openSUSE. We have an obligation to
deliver a consistent, quality product to our users. And to provide an open and fun place to be
around for contributors. We can’t satisfy every need to the fullest, but what we can do is
make clear what we are trying to do here.

Providing that clarity to our users and contributors through this strategy is a major step
towards our future. So, we need our membership to vote. To make your voice heard and to know
if it truly has the support it needs.

So, if you’re an openSUSE Member, go,read the document one more time and cast your

Editor’s note: Althogh the deadline for voting has passed
already, and even if you are not a Member, we strongly recommend you to read the proposal once



Continuing the great work of our Ambassadors of the Southern Hemisphere, our Brazilian
openSUSE team once again gets ready for a strong openSUSE presence in Brazil beginning today
at FISL 12-Software Livre in beautiful Porto
. A major FOSS event in South America, FISL 12 is expecting 8,000 attendees
this year.

The openSUSE Brazilian Ambassador team has been making strong inroads introducing not just
our distro but also our many Project offerings, such as the Open Build Service, SUSE Studio, and Edu-L-Ife. openSUSE has played such an important role from the classroom to the
corporate offices across the country and most importantly, building community within

So, if you just happen to be in the Porto Alegre area (or heck, if you feel the urge to
jump on a plane from anywhere in the world right now) hop on down to FISL 12 and stop by the
openSUSE Booth. The team will be in force and will be ready to answer all your questions about
openSUSE and give you free LiveDVDs. You can also catch them throughout the event giving talks
on OBS, Edu-L-Ife, giving general updates about the latest in the openSUSE Project. And you
won’t want to miss the openSUSE Community Meeting where you get to express your views and
support for openSUSE.

It’s definitely an event you won’t want to miss, and it’s all happening right there in
Porto Alegre. So stop by as soon as you can.


Header PictureGoogle Summer of Code


Yes. Sorry. It is another report. But i ll try my best to keep this one short though.

Last week was all about the GTK plugin. This plugin was different from the other plugins
and was dependent on libzypp. And libzypp was dependent on libsatsolver and that was dependent
on…. well, you get the point. The libzypp dependecy had to be removed and that was my

Most of the time was spent in analysing how (and why) libzypp was used by the plugin. Once
i figured that out and got the plugin to compile without libzypp, I was faced with more
problems. Initial builds were fine on my Fedora box (F15). But when I built it on OBS, the F14
build failed. After reading the logs, i found out that gdk-pixbuf package by default installs
itself in a different location in F14. This broke the build on F14.

The Deb builds were more problematic. They failed on my build system (ubuntu 11.04). CMake
seemed to have difficulties in finding GTK includes and libs. After trying to tweak the code
and check for alternatives using pkg-config, i finally stumbled on to a link where i found out
that this was a known issue with CMake on Ubuntu 11.04.

Well, after this it seemed to be a waste to carry on with CMake when 50% of the builds
failed. So i started off on a quest to convert the packages to autotools. Now, the GTK plugin
completely uses autotools and works fine on Ubuntu 11.04 and F15. I am in the process of
converting the other packages to use autotools as well for the sake of uniformity and
maintainability. But that would ofc, depend on the approval of the respective package

Another change this week is the removal of the git repo at gitorious.org/libyui/libyui.
This space will be filled by the official libyui repository once the svn-git conversion is
complete. The old repo can be found at gitorious.org/libyui/gsoc2011. I ll be maintaining all
project related files there including the source packages that have been converted to
autotools and examples. I am no expert at autotools. Infact, i had to do quite a bit of
studying to replace cmake. So if anyone with a good autotools background finds any flaws with
the packages, please leave a comment below.

The documentation would be the next task. At present, the documentation is generated by a
makefile using doxygen. This is not linked to the documentation servers at openSUSE and hence,
there are no weekly updates yet. This would be implemented once the YUI repo is shifted to

The GTK package will be added to OBS soon.



It’s been two weeks since my last update about progress on gpodder integration with
Amarok, so here we go.Amarok is now fully capable to receive podcasts from gpodder.net and to
synchronize them with your own local podcasts, and the other way around. Every podcast, from
gpodder.net, will be synchronized with it respective, from local podcasts, using the playlist
synchronisation implemented in the first part of this project.Now, take a look at some
screenshots and free your imagination:

Figure 1. Immediately after Amarok initialization.
Immediately after Amarok initialization.

Notice that when Amarok started there is only one podcast on local podcasts.

Figure 2. Right after the subscription synchronisation process ends.
Right after the subscription synchronisation process ends.

After some necessary delay, gpodder service promptly synchronized all podcasts, from gpodder.net, with your local podcasts, thereby adding the missing ones.

Figure 3. Removal of a subscription from local podcasts.
Removal of a subscription from local podcasts.

If you try to remove a local podcast, that is synced with a gpodder podcast, then Amarok will ask you if you want to remove it from your gpodder.net subscriptions too. In a similar manner, once you add a new podcast, to your local podcasts, you will be asked if you want to add it to your gpodder.net subscriptions too.

So, remember to keep in touch with this blog. Next week, I will be back to update you with fresh news.

All hail the KDE!!! \o/



Since third week’s report was no report – basically because I was delayed by missing parts
in the architecture (the saga hasn’t finished yet), I’m posting this late 4th week

Yep, the PK InstallBackend is shaping up !

Unfortunately, the only machine running this code is mine, the reason being this chain of

- static Python bindings for PK are dead

- PK gi depends on pygobject invoke-rewrite branch of J5 (which isn’t

yet merged into master, but will make it to 3.2 release);

- PK gi breaks statically loaded glib in software-center master; therefore, the -gtk3 port
of software-center should be used;

- software-center-gtk3 isn’t ready for merging into trunk – experimental design changes
towards a friendlier 5.0 are being done.

Therefore I’m testing the install/remove routines on the small modules, such as the
PendingView in the above screenshot, waiting for components stabilization.

Next week – and probably until week 6 report, I will continue work on the install parts
and start developing the PK PackageInfo class.

PS: I’m undecided if I should make my reports biweekly or milestone based :-/



I would like to summarize my progress so far. I am working on the libYUI project as
mentioned above.(…)



This is my 6th report concerning the progress of my gsoc project. First of all, I want to
apologize because of the 5th report that is missing from last week. Due to some events, for me
it was almost impossible to concentrate on work. Even though i did some things, it was not
enough to create a report on. The previous week made me get out of schedule at least for a
week, i will try to catch up this time by working more on weekends starting from this one.
Even though in my initial plan there were about two weeks free time in the schedule that i
could use in occasions like this.

Anyway, what’s up with the progress. As I have described in previous post, I am currently
working on the matching code / algorithm. Some major improvements took place on the
aug_process_tree method, which will be responsible for matching the initial tree with those
coming as parameters. The tree traversal algorithm is now working completely, some issues
however still exist in the matching of the tree nodes. Hopefully, i will be able to resolve
this issues very soon, maybe even in the next couple of days.

Also, some basic drafts of the merging functions were added. Each function will complete
the appropriate actions that must be carried , and will also represent each of the merging
parameters /merging flags that will be used.

Finally, small changes and improvements took place in few other functions as well in the
code. The plan for the next days is to complete the matching of the tree nodes and the
merging. At least to a point where more more debugging tests would be able to be carried



This week has been a bad one for getting work done as I managed to lose a lot of my work
mid week. I’ve spent the rest of the week trying to get back to where I was and finishing up
the New Comments Dialog. I also repeated the mantra “commit often” to remind myself to do it
so much more often than I do to ensure I can’t lose work when QT Creator decides to delete

The New Comments Dialog is at its first iteration and I am going to spend the next 2 – 3
days fixing any bugs and resolving some issues with the tabbed interface. Then on Monday I
will start the TODO lists in earnest and get back to being on track with my timeline.

Luckily time is something I do have and I think I gave myself plenty of breathing space in
the timeline I submitted with my GSoC application. I’d rather take my time and get things done
properly with breathing room than cram in as much functionality as possible into the 12 weeks
and then end it with a massive chunk of badly written and probably broken code. This breathing
room helped me this week.



This week has been a bit productive but there still isn’t that much to show for the work I
have done as it’s primarily related to drag and drop in the TODO list. The start of the week
was spent bolstering the code I had worked on for the tabbed interface and ensuring that I
caught as many bugs as I could find. The later part of the week has been focused on the TODO

The idea behind the TODO list is a way to categorize bugs with your own scheme and then
assign them to certain completion dates. This could then be used to track roadmaps etc and
over time I plan to add cloud integration so that they can be synced with Google Calendar etc.
The main focus right now is getting it to work within the context of entomologist and once
that is done focus on the cloud integration aspect.

So far the drag and drop doesn’t work but it’s getting there and once it is complete I
will tidy the code and the TODO list as a first iteration should be finished (since drag and
drop being completed is the same as finishing most of the functionality).

What am I going to do next week?:

– Finish the first iteration.

– Move forwards with the second iteration and implement prefpanes for each list (with
options like name,date etc.)

– Start Cloud integration (If there’s time left at the end of the week!).

I need to take some time to try and document what I’ve done too which would involve making
comments I’ve written better and maybe putting together a small “Hackers Guide to
Entomologist”. If I have time left over I will definitely do this work before the end of the


Header PictureStatus Updates

Header PictureDistribution


Here’s with some delay the next incarnation of Factory Progress. I’ve noticed the
following changes that might interest people using and developing openSUSE Factory:

Package changes

Linux 3.0

Linux kernel 3.0 rc5 is currently on its way to factory and the header files (in package
linux-glibc-devel) have already been updated for it. If your software reads the Linux kernel
version, please check that it can cope with the two digits instead of the three of the new
version. Best would be to not read the version at all.


Frederic has proposed a “Road to systemd for
openSUSE 12.1″
. Systemd is a replacement of the SysVinit scripts that we have been
using and improving in the past with many new – including some controversial – ideas. Check
his blog post for additional references about systemd. The majority of the distributions are
moving to systemd as well and standarizing on it, will allow to share some more code and
development in this area.

We’re now in phase 1 – which means: Get systemd running as an option. Once this is
working satisfactory, we can switch the default (phase 2) and decide what to do with
SysVinit support.

No static glibc libraries

The C library glibc now does not come anymore with static libraries, those are in the
new glibc-devel-static subpackage.

Python 3.2

The python3 package is now at version 3.2, the most important change in Python 3.2 is
the implementation of “PEP 384, a stable ABI for extension modules” which means that with
3.2 and upwards there won’t be any API breakages for modules which is really important
developer wise.

Another big improvement is the new GIL (Global Interpreter Lock) implementation which
will speed up threaded Python code. Python 3.2 also introduces “futures” library which is
used for concurrent programming, this will be useful more multi-core Python


Tomoyo is a MAC (Mandatory Access Control) implementation for Linux – so an alternative
to AppArmor and SELinux. openSUSE’s Linux kernel does now come with the module and also the
tools were updated to support this.

Policy and tool changes

New Source Service mode activated and recompression of tar

The new
source service mode has been activated
, it is recommended to update to osc 0.132
version as available in the openSUSE:Tools project to work with source services. Now the
download URL given in source link is checked, so it has to be accurate. If you downloaded
and recompressed a tarball, read Coolo’s policy
: “please don’t recompress tarballs unless it saves >1MB for

He also mentions:


What will become policy sooner or later is that you should not have incorrect source
URLs behind Source*, so _if_ you have to recompress, don’t lie in the

Source line, but put the original tar as comment and use local file names in


Dropping a package from Factory

Vincent explained How/why/when to
drop a package from Factory

Release notes in FATE

To make it easier to write release notes, it helps a lot, if you (= the so-called
stakeholders) would provide a release notes snippet in the future using openFATE. We can
then collect all those release notes and edit them.

Other interesting bits

openSUSE Conference

The call for papers is continuing to run, please submit session proposals at the conference site. If you like to learn
what a BoF is, read this article.



here is a update on the work done on systemd for Factory :

  • basic support for systemctl in chkconfig and insserv is done : it is pending
    review by maintainer before integration

  • support for –root in systemctl was merged upstream and will be used by
    chkconfig/insserv patches above.

  • a patch has been submitted to upstream systemd to parse insserv.conf : this patch
    only handles the “system facility” part of insserv.conf and automatically adds
    depencies specified in the file

  • quick investigation on Yast2 to adapt runlevel editor for systemctl support : we
    really need help from other people, as I don’t have any knowledge of Yast internal and
    it seems the yast dbus client part might be missing some parts, needed for runlevel
    editor to talk with systemd.

  • no work done on /usr as separate partition : it is not a systemd issue in itself
    but from other programs which might be using data from /usr before /usr is available.
    The best solution would be to mount /usr from initrd => help needed !!

  • (open)SUSE is using unofficial LSB target named $ALL which is supposed to put
    services requiring it at the end of the boot sequence (or at the beginning of shutdown
    sequence); After discussing with upstream : on a static boot system (sysvinit), it is
    easy to resolve such dependencies, but it isn’t on a dynamic system (systemd). There
    is a ugly hack to handle that (creating a ALL.target file which is starting after
    default.target is done) but it would be probably better to just fix the 4 initscripts
    which are still using $ALL ( amazon-late, stoppreload, Susefirewall2_setup and
    vboxes). I’ll open bug for them.

  • X-Interactive support in systemd is not working properly : it will only work
    before getty is started and is broken if you try to start a service after boot. We
    need to transition packages which are still using X-Interactive to
    systemd-ask-password (which takes care of the async conversation). Only two packages
    need to be ported :

    • apache2, when querying password for SSL certificate : apache allows to start
      a script to handle the password request. We only need to plug the script and
      configuration part in our package

      and get it used when booting with systemd.

    • openvpn : this one is a bit complex because we can either write a daemon
      which would do the interface between systemd and openvpn management interface or
      we can try to patch openvpn to have a similar feature as apache and get this
      patch upstreamed. The latter has the preference of systemd upstream.

    • For both packages, help is welcome.

    • For compability with sysvinit, support for from /etc/insserv.conf in systemd
      was not added, so we could remove X-Interactive from openvpn/httpd sysvinit
      scripts but still have the function when booting from /sbin/init, thanks to
      /etc/insserv.conf list.

  • /etc/init.d/kbd was not handled properly : this should be fixed inFactory today or
    tomorrow, with systemd taking care of setting up keyboard properly. However, we might
    need to improve /etc/sysconfig/keyboard parsing in systemd. More tests are needed (and
    of course, help is welcome).

  • discussion in progress on opensuse-packaging mailing list and upstream on a set of
    cross distribution RPM macros to handle systemd unit files.

As you can see, we still have some work to do, but we need everybody help :
either on the issues I mentioned (feel free to say “I want to help on this” here) or to do
more tests or even to start creating .service files (but we still need to fix the issues
listed above).

Thanks everybody for your attention.

I would be great if we could get the ball moving and maybe get one of the next Factory
milestone be a “systemd” test release but to reach this point, we need YOU !


Header PictureSUSE Studio


Figure 4. A browser showing webSMBTA, connected to a SMBTA Stresstest 0.0.4 virtual machine.
A browser showing webSMBTA, connected to a SMBTA Stresstest 0.0.4 virtual machine.

Ever wanted to just try SMB Traffic Analyzer
to see what it can do for you, but have been hindered
the hassle of setup and configuration?
Today the SMBTA team released SMBTA Stresstest 0.0.4, a complete self containing appliance to be run by your virtualization
software, such as vmware or VirtualBox.

It has never been easier to give SMBTA a try.

Figure 5. An instance of the smbtamonitor real time program running against SMBTA Stresstest 0.0.4 in VirtualBox.
An instance of the smbtamonitor real time program running against SMBTA Stresstest 0.0.4 in VirtualBox.

Just download the OVF image we provide via SUSE Gallery, setup your virtual machine to have network access, and point your web
browser to the hostname or IP adress of your virtual machine. Also, you can run all real
time clients such as the Figure 5, “An instance of the smbtamonitor real time program running against SMBTA Stresstest 0.0.4 in VirtualBox.”smbtamonitor program, or our
interface to rrdtool, rrddriver, against SMBTA Stresstest 0.0.4. It has an open port for
real time clients on port number 3491.

At the very first connect to webSMBTA, a configuration dialog will appear, asking the
user to which database the connection has to be made. To run with SMBTA Stresstest 0.0.4,
just fill out the form exactly like given in the screenshot.

Figure 6. At the very first connection to webSMBTA, use these parameters to connect to the database in SMBTA Stresstest.
At the very first connection to webSMBTA, use these parameters to connect to the database in SMBTA Stresstest.

SMBTA Stresstest 0.0.4 comes with a preinstalled Samba server, is configured to host three shares on that server, and generates
constant data traffic by six users that are running smbtatorture
instances, a program we developed to test SMBTA. Thanks to the hard work of Benjamin Brunner on this release, the webSMBTA componentFigure 6, “At the very first connection to webSMBTA, use these parameters to connect to the database in SMBTA Stresstest.” is running out of the box in this release, hosted by an Apache

This release is based on our latest and greatest stable release of SMB Traffic Analyzer, version 1.2.5, and the rest of the
software stack based on openSUSE 11.4. Needless
to say: This release of SMBTA Stresstest was created with the fabulous SUSE Studio!

You can download the SMBTA Stresstest appliance from SUSE Studio, more information on the SMB Traffic Analyzer project is available here.



When building appliances with SUSE Studio, I was often challenged with finding a way to
configuring an appliance on first boot. The most common use cases like locale, time zone and
network configuration are being offered by Studio already.

Selecting these options will make Studio include the required packages and configuration
to guide the user through a YaST workflow on first boot.

But is there an easy way for further customizing your application on first boot? Yes,
there is! Enter AutoYaST and it’s powerful “Ask the user
for values during installation” feature.

Switch to the Configuration tab, select Scripts and check the “Run AutoYaST profile on
appliance’s first boot” option.

Next we need to create the AutoYaST profile, which will be run on first boot. The
profile format is an ASCII XML file.

Here is a simple example, that will create a simple ask dialoge “Enter the user for this
machine” and promt for input. The result will be writen to /tmp/answer_user. (…)


Team Reports

Header PictureBuild Service Team

Build Service Statistics. Statistics can found at Buildservice

Header PictureGNOME Team


I’ve finally updated Banshee to 2.1.0 on Banshee:Unstable. Unfortunatly this took longer
than I expected because of the changes involved on this package. From this version on the
package was renamed to ‘banshee‘ (previously banshee-1), and
there’s also a few changes in the sub-packages which should be transparent to most

My advice for the users who are subscribed to this repository is to remove current
installed packages, which can be done through:

rpm -e `rpm -qa | grep banshee-1`

and then install again the repository through the 1-Click installer (make sure the mirror
you’re downloading from is already updated).

For users who want to subscribe for the repository to check out this nice version of
Banshee, you can do it through the following steps (using openSUSE 11.4 example):

  1. Install the repository:

    zypper ar http://download.opensuse.org/repositories/Banshee:/Unstable/Banshee_openSUSE_11.4/Banshee:Unstable.repo
  2. Install Banshee 2.1.0:

    zypper install banshee banshee-core

Banshee 2.1.0 won’t be available for SLE11 and SLE11SP1 due to dependencies (ex:
gstreamer). This version is also being submitted to Factory on the next days. This version

  • eMusic Store;

  • ArtworkManager enhancements;

  • 51 notable bug fixes.



I’ve written about synapse in
the past and it was one of the applications I wanted to add to GNOME:Ayatana. With the awesome
work from several people from the openSUSE GNOME Team, most of the dependencies are now
provided in Factory, so it’s really a nice time to submit this application to GNOME:Apps and
hope it ends up in openSUSE Factory/openSUSE 11.2.

Synapse is a semantic launcher that allows to search for applications, locations, files,
etc. It is written in Vala and uses the Zeitgeist engine. It’s really a cool application and
it’s battle tested with GNOME 3. The only less positive part is the fact it’s not yet ported
to GTK3. It can provide an awesome alternative to the “ALT+F2″ macro.

Hope everyone enjoys… and I know that a few people were already waiting for an opportunity
to give it a test ride… Let’s see how the review goes (unless something strange happens, it
should get green light).

Anyone who gives it a test ride and wants to deploy some feedback, it will be gladly
accepted! My test package is available on my home project in OBS (and hopefully available soon in GNOME:Apps).



Over a year ago when I initially joined the openSUSE Marketing Team I wanted to write
an article about OBS (back then openSUSE Build Service, now Open Build Service) and my biggest problem was to realize what OBS was and what it
really did… My first package was a ZX Spectrum emulator (fuse) and libspectrum, which I
still have on my repo due to emotional reasons. But that wasn’t actually good enough to
get my stuff done and the article was postponed many times until I had no interest in
performing such article.

The whole thing about GNOME:Ayatana came during my pursue to knowledge around OBS and
get some experience, and to be honest it became very addictive as things were going on.
During this entire time, I’ve learned a lot about GNOME, the technology behind GNOME and how a Linux Desktop works at low level.
It was one of the most enriching experience I’ve had as a hobby. Above all, as it’s openSUSE tradition, it was fun, though it had also
some moments of frustration, many of them softened out members of the openSUSE GNOME Team
help and availability to help. My gratitude lies with them all, some months after, I
reached a point I never believed I would in knowledge about the stuff I like,

If I was to label this experience, I would claim it has been a ‘one man inglorious
rush’ from my side and a challenge to Dimstar’s patience, my reviewer and at some point my
mentor (that’s how I see him), I am sure it wouldn’t happen without his encouragement,
patience and availability to help (which is why I admire him, because I know he’s a really
busy person).(…)


Header PictureKDE Team


Last week, Marco and I have integrated a new window switcher into Plasma Active. We
had designed and started to implement this rather central component of the shell during
the Tokamak sprint a couple of weeks ago, now it finally made its way into Active, so you
can update your system to the latest packages and enjoy it. (In order for it to work
correctly, you’ll have to delete your plasma-tablet-appletsrc file, as we do not update
these automatically at this stage of development). The new window switcher works very
well, and is quite snazzy on top of that. It also contains an application launcher! I’ve
recorded a small demo video showing these new features. Look at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IgdnuxcUcWg

Window Strip

The idea is to have a non-modal interface, which means that the window switcher does
not block, but allows to interact with other applications that are currently in focus. For
this, we use a panel which can be dragged down partly or completely from the top,
revealing a strip of windows that is horizontally flickable with the finger. This way, it
works for only a few windows, but also scales quite well for those that want to have more
apps open at the same time.

The implementation is a bit hacky, but only in the background. It is in fact a
combination of QML and KWin’s compositing effects. We are basically catching move events,
“polishing” these into a more straight stream of events which we then pass to KWin, asking
the window manager to paint thumbnails of the windows at a given position. While we didn’t
know if it would work at all when we came up with this design, luckily it turned out to be
nice and very usable.

App Launcher

The new panel also has an app launcher, which allows you to launch an app. As the user
might potentially have lots of apps installed, there’s a “tag cloud” which lists
categories of apps (you tap on one and it shows only apps in the category), and a search
field you can use to find apps. (There’s a theming problem which affects readability in
the tag cloud, we’ll fix that shortly.) As the number of apps available might not fit into
the available screen space, you can flick the apps grid horizontally to reveal more

These features have already been merged into the KDE:Active packages on the Open Build
Service, and you’ll be able to try them on your device with the next Balsam Professional Live image.

What do you think about these new pieces in the UI?


Header PictureopenFATE Team

Top voted Features

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


really makes me think we should go this way.

Ray’s comment starting with “Every flicker and mode change in the boot
process takes away from the whole experience.” is especially interesting. Is it
okay to track the “don’t show grub by default” here?



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).



Every single bug or feature that anyone has developed for GRUB 0.97 has been
rejected by the upstream project in favor of using GRUB 2. There has been resisitence in
the distribution community to switching boot loaders, but this stalemate isn’t
going to go away. The code itself isn’t well written or well maintained. Adding a
new feature involves jumping through a lot of hoops that may or may not work even if you
manage to work around all the runtime limitations. For example, a fs implementation has
a static buffer it can use for memory management. It’s only 32k. For complex file
systems, or even a simple journaled file system, we run into problems (like the reiserfs
taking forever to load bug) because we don’t have enough memory to do block mapping
for the journal so it needs to scan it for every metadata read. (Yeah, really.)



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

* reusing popcon will give us results that are directly comparable with Debian and Ubuntu

* packagers team can take care of the package

* we need a configuration dialog in YaST that is visible enough

* we need a server infrastructure on opensuse.org. (There are certain privacy issues, see Debian FAQ for details)


Recently requested features

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


With the new scheme of version numbers at Mozilla (called by myself “the idiot scheme”) and the result, that the add-on-developers need to do a major-port every 3-6 months, I think it’s necessary to drop Firefox and set Iceweasel instead as default.



Groff’s papersize definition in font description don’t allow usage of locale variables, even if it will benefit from that. So let’s extend the definition for a new keyword ‘locale’, which will query the setting from existing locale variables (LC_PAPER, LANG or LC_ALL).



The buttons of the KPackageKit and the buttons of Yast are in the standard installation not in the Oxygen look like the rest of KDE.

This can bee solved: type in a console kdesu qtconfig under Select GUI Style: choose the option Oxygen to change the look of Yast The same for KPackageKit: type qtconfig and select the Oxygen style.

But it would be very easy to have this setting in the standad installation? The Oxygen look is set by default at the hole KDE, why not in the KPackageKit and Yast? Make the look auf Suse homogen and deliver in the standard installation the Oxygen look.


Feature Statistics

Statistics for openSUSE distribution in openFATE

Header PictureTesting Team


The Testing Core Team held an IRC meeting at 17:00 UTC, June 27 on our usual

We discussed our experiences with openSUSE 12.1 MS2. The main problems that were
encountered was the failure of the KDE NetworkManager applet to detect any network devices
(Bug # 702461), and the inability to shut down the system from the GUI (Bug #702220). The
workaround for the network applet problem is to install nmk-applet, the Gnome version,
which works perfectly. The workaround for the shutdown problem is to bring up an alternate
terminal using CTRL-ALT-F1 and shutdown or reboot from there. 

We also discussed the draft text of our request to rename MS6 to Beta in hopes of
increasing the number of testers in the critical late stages of testing.


Header PictureTranslation Team

Header PictureIn the Community

Postings from the Community


A few weeks ago the registration for
BoF’s and workshops opened
. Now, it is almost July 3rd – the deadline!!! So if you
have something to discuss at the Desktop Summit, be smart. Not registering doesn’t mean you
can’t have your BoF but it DOES mean it might have to be 9 in the morning, the day after a
party. And we all know how well attended such BoFs are ;-)

Go to this page
and register your workshop or BoF!

While on the subject of reminders:



Sunday, Juli 10th I’ll organize a KDE BBQ at my place, Cooklaan 7 in Utrecht. Anyone,
including openSUSE or GNOME people more than welcome :D

You’re welcome from about 14:00 and I’d appreciate it if you can give me a heads-up on
Saturday so I can make sure I have enough food :D

The bbq will be done Dutch style – bring something yourself. But please, not too much, I
don’t want to have to eat meat for the next 2 weeks. I’ll make sure there is some beer,
veggies, bread etc of course. If the Weather gods don’t like us we can eat inside and I
might turn it into a curry cooking party or so but we’ll decide that later on. In any case
I’ll take both herbivores and carnivores into account!

Getting there:

Public Transport: Go to Utrecht Central station, take the tram. Get out by Vasco Da
Gamalaan. When you get out the tram, go right, then left to cross the street and go further
in that direction. You’ll pass a LIDL at which point you have to go left and you will find
the Cooklaan as the first street on the left. Ring the bell at nr 7 and look sweet so I’ll
let you in. Car: use open streetmap, Google Maps or TomTom… Don’t forget to look sweet at
the door ;-)


openSUSE for your Ears

The openSUSE Weekly News are available as podcast in German. You can hear it or download
it on http://saigkill.homelinux.net/podcast.


Header PictureNew/Updated Applications @ openSUSE


I just upgraded my Firefox addon
, so that it can be installed on Firefox 4 and 5. I committed the
changes to Mozilla so that the Addon should upgrade itself within the next view days. I
promise to be quicker on the next Firefox major releases!

Impatient users may download the addon in advance over here.

The addon itself is inteded for Linux and integrates the Firefox download notifications
into the KDE Plasma notifications.


Header PictureGames Corner

The Section provides the Game of the Week, and Updates in the Game Repository


It was released a few hours ago Unknown
, the popular Real Time Strategy game which uses the FIFE Engine and is written in Python. This game is available on the openSUSE games
which provides builds for:

  • openSUSE 11.3

  • openSUSE 11.4

  • openSUSE Factory

  • openSUSE Tumbleweed

  • Fedora 14

  • Fedora 15

Users subscribed to the games repository and with Unknown Horizons installed will have
automatic updates, while everyone else using openSUSE who wants to check out this wonderful
game in openGL can pretty much use one of the 1-Click installers on openSUSE Software page..

This new version introduces new media content, bugfixes and improvements on gameplay, game
balance, etc. Here’s a few of those changes taken from the changelog:

Gameplay and Balancing
* New features
+ option to disable edge scrolling with mouse
+ basic customizable trade routes for ships
+ pirates with home position sail around and chase player ship
+ improvements to random map generation time
+ improvements to savegame loading time
+ scenario chooser interface after winning a scenario
+ improvements to pathfinding speed on sea tiles
+ randomized playlist of background music
+ first version of production overview widget
+ display hint to tell players that roads can be dragged when detecting that
they build them one-by-one

User Interface
* Additions and new features
+ ship name label and dynamic spacing in trade / exchange widget
+ settings for multiplayer connection (network)
+ display settlement name as heading in some buildings
+ added tooltips to several buttons and labels
+ display tax rate as label
+ highlight background of currently selected tab
+ first version of tab ‘build related fields’ for e.g. farm and lumberjack

Media Content
* New files and features
+ building: sugarcane field
+ building: tavern
+ building: half-timbered house
+ icon: up and down arrows, small rect-shaped delete button
+ icon: svg application icon without text for use in small icons
+ icon: grayscale version of speed_* minimap panel buttons
+ icon: small 16px versions of more resources
+ unit: lumberjack
+ simple script that helps adding names to the database

Enjoy Unknown Horizons on openSUSE!


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: java-1_6_0-openjdk
Announcement ID: openSUSE-SU-2011:0706-1
Date: Tue, 28 Jun 2011 13:08:22 +0200 (CEST)
Affected Products: openSUSE 11.4, openSUSE 11.3
Vulnerability Type: * S6213702, CVE-2011-0872: (so) non-blocking sockets withTCP urgent disabled get still
selected for read ops (win)* S6618658, CVE-2011-0865: Vulnerability in deserialization*
S7012520, CVE-2011-0815: Heap overflow vulnerability inFileDialog.show()* S7013519,
CVE-2011-0822, CVE-2011-0862: Integer overflowsin 2D code* S7013969, CVE-2011-0867:
NetworkInterface.toString canreveal bindings* S7013971, CVE-2011-0869: Vulnerability in
SAAJ* S7016340, CVE-2011-0870: Vulnerability in SAAJ* S7016495, CVE-2011-0868: Crash in
Java 2D transforming animage with scale close to zero* S7020198, CVE-2011-0871:
ImageIcon creates Component withnull acc* S7020373, CVE-2011-0864: JSR rewriting can
overflowmemory address size


Table 2. Security Announce
Package: Update to Thunderbird 3.1.11
Announcement ID: openSUSE-SU-2011:0724-1
Date: Thu, 30 Jun 2011 21:08:16 +0200 (CEST)
Affected Products: openSUSE 11.3 openSUSE 11.4
Vulnerability Type: * MFSA 2011-19/CVE-2011-2374 CVE-2011-2376 CVE-2011-2364CVE-2011-2365 Miscellaneous
memory safety hazards* MFSA 2011-20/CVE-2011-2373 (bmo#617247)
Use-after-freevulnerability when viewing XUL document with scriptdisabled* MFSA
2011-21/CVE-2011-2377 (bmo#638018, bmo#639303)Memory corruption due to
multipart/x-mixed-replaceimages* MFSA 2011-22/CVE-2011-2371 (bmo#664009) Integeroverflow
and arbitrary code execution inArray.reduceRight()* MFSA 2011-23/CVE-2011-0083
CVE-2011-0085 CVE-2011-2363Multiple dangling pointer vulnerabilities* MFSA
2011-24/CVE-2011-2362 (bmo#616264) Cookieisolation error


Header PictureKernel Review


Nothing terribly exciting here.

The most noteworthy thing may be that only about a quarter of the
changes are in drivers, filesystem changes actually account for more
(40%): btrfs, cifs, ext4, jbd2, nfs are all present and accounted for.

On the driver side, there’s some gpu updates, infiniband, mmc, sound
and some SCSI target fixes.

And the normal random smattering of changes all around. Like some
long-standing compile failure (admittedly you need to enable some
esoteric resource counting options and disable NUMA to trigger it, but
still). I think there’s a few more lurking in staging, with fixes yet
to be merged.

The appended shortlog is fairly readable. (…)



Rares gives his weekly Kernel News from this week.


Header PictureTips and Tricks

For Desktop Users


This isn’t something you’ll often do for work or a real project, but it’s fun and it can look cool. Tilt shifting a photo is something that can be done by expensive fancy camera equipment or, fortunately for us, free software. The idea is that when you take a photo of small scale objects like model towns, part of what reveals them as miniature is the difference in focus. When a camera is up close to small objects, it can’t focus on other nearby objects, making them blurry. Tilt shifting is applying this blur effect deliberately, to make large-scale objects appear small. Getting it just right can take a lot of time and effort, but the basic method is quite simple, and that’s what we’re covering today. (…)


For Commandline/Script Newbies


less it’s a fundamental command if you work on the Linux terminal.

Doing a “man less” you can see:


less – opposite of more

I love Gnu/Linux man pages, in this case it refer to more another command that do similar things (but less).

The Linux command less is similar to cat, but with less you can scroll the file instead of showing the file at once. With less command you can scroll up in the file as well as down, where with the Linux command more you can only scroll down the file. (…)


For Developers and Programmers


You energy-conserving* system administrators will enjoy learning to use loops in your scripts. Looping is a technique that allows you to repeat a process or set of commands indefintely or until the loop exhausts a particular list of items. For example, you want to copy a particular file to everyone’s home directory. How do you do it? Don’t say that you have a junior-level administrator do it. The correct answer is that you’d create a looping script to handle the job.

Don’t worry if you aren’t a scripting master, I’m going to take it slow through this series so that you can absorb what’s going on. Looping is not a particularly advanced concept. Its purpose is to do some task quickly that would take hours or days to do it by hand. Looping leverages the computer’s power to do what it’s best at: repetitive processing. (…)


For System Administrators


The secure shell, ssh, and its companion, scp, are tools that I use more or less on a
daily basis. Being able to move files between machines without having to setup SAMBA or NFS
is very handy when working with multiple systems. All that you need is to enable the secure
shell daemon – sshd.

Before we go into the details of the sshfs, let’s run through a quick re-cap of ssh. The
secure shell daemon runs on port 22 by default. It makes it possible to run an encrypted
shell session. With the -Y flag, you can even run X11-forwarding, allowing you to run X11,
i.e. graphical, programs on the remote machine and displaying the windows on the terminal
that you are sitting at.

You can configure sshd through the /etc/ssh/sshd_config file (that is the location on my
Kubuntu machine). Here, you can disable root access, older protocols, X11 forwarding, etc.
The notion is that the more limits you put on the remote access, the more secure your system
is from potential attacks. You might also want to tune your hosts.allow and hosts.deny files
if you plan to expose sshd to the Internet. There are many guides on hardening servers and
ssh, so I will not go into details.



This tutorial explains the installation of a Samba fileserver on OpenSUSE 11.4 and how to configure it to share files over the SMB protocol as well as how to add users. Samba is configured as a standalone server, not as a domain controller. In the resulting setup, every user has his own home directory accessible via the SMB protocol and all users have a shared directory with read-/write access. (…)



You may be using Linux at home or in an office environment, but often we still need to provide access to Windows desktops. Begin Linux has taken you though setting up a SAMBA Domain Controller and File Server on openSUSE 11.4. In this tutorial, again using openSUSE 11.4 we will take the time to look at adding in Print Server capabilities. Providing Windows Users have transparent access to printing. The assumption is made that SAMBA is already installed and running on your Linux Server.

We will setup a CUPS (Linux printing) but no great detail of Linux printing is entered into as we are concentrating on SAMBA printing. (…)



There are tons of tutorials about how to setup streaming replication on postgresql 9.0, and detailed documentation on repmgr, the SR manager program from 2ndQuadrant. Like they said on repmgr homepage:

“PostgreSQL 9.0 allow you to have replicated hot standby servers which you can query and/or use for high availability. While the main components of the feature are included with PostgreSQL, the user is expected to manage the high availability parts. repmgr allows you to monitor and manage your replicated PostgreSQL databases as a single cluster.”

This is a tutorial how to set up a postgresql replicated hot standby server with streaming replication, and we also set up the repmgr to monitor and manage the replication cluster. Unlike most tutorials that copy the database file from master to slave (or standby) in the middle of running pg_start_backup() and pg_end_backup(), repmgr is used to simplify the whole procedure. (But I still think that procedure helps you a lot to understand how postgresql warm standby, pitr, and hot standby replication work.) (…)


Header PicturePlanet SUSE


So in my head there’s a little Walter Sobchak beating on my conscience and shouting “This
is what you get when you trust Facebook with your data, Will”.

The reason is that I upload photos to Facebook using KDE’s shared uploader and this has
fallen victim to the whims of FB’s purge of its app biosphere. Unless the original developer
can convince them that the app is not spammy, offering a bad experience or having the wrong
attitude, the app, my photos (all archived elsewhere of course), but most importantly, all the
kind comments from my friends and contacts that represent FB’s only value, get sent to the

This is what you get when you trust one company with stuff you care about. Will.


Header PictureopenSUSE Forums


Follow up on last week’s item on openSUSE 12.1 Milestone 1, on the 22nd of June, Milestone 2 was released. Again: Please be warned: Milestone releases are for testing purposes, not for production use. On the other hand: if you want to test, go ahead, and help the community by doing so. This is a thread where users share their experiences in testing the Milestone 2 release. Here’s the openSUSE Roadmap



Here’s a bit of a strange repository problem. A user cannot get rid of one of his repositories. Nice read, some zypper basics.



Lots of times, when posting on the forums, users are asked to copy output of commands invoked in a terminal window in their forums posts. This to provide others with information about settings, drivers, versions etc etc. To improve readability of this output it’s almost a requirement to post this in CODE TAGS. Here’s the guide to do this by our admin caf4926.


openSUSE Language specific subforums:

We now host the following language specific subforums under the umbrella of the openSUSE Forums:
Main forums, english
Nederlands (Dutch)
Français (French)
Deutsch (German)
Ελληνικό (Greek)
Magyar (Hungarian)
日本語 (Japanese)
Pусский (Russian)


Header PictureOn the Web



June 25th, 2011. Today, KDE has released a release candidate of the upcoming 4.7 release
of the Plasma Desktop and Netbook workspaces, the KDE Applications and the KDE Frameworks,
which is planned for July 27, 2011. With API, dependency and feature freezes in place, the
KDE team’s focus is now on fixing last-minute showstopper bugs and finishing translation and
documentation that comes along with the releases. (…)


Call for participation


Grab Tux Paint, make a cool drawing, win one of 3 OLPC laptops, one of 10 Sugar-on-a-stick and other awesome prizes!

The 2011 Tux Paint Summer Drawing Contest is sponsored by Worldlabel.com and is open to all children aged 3 to 12 who live anywhere in the World!

Here’s a chance to show off your talent using a great drawing program made especially for kids. Tux Paint is an award-winning drawing program you can download to your computer. Tux Paint was recently awarded SourceForge.net Project of the Month. It will run on all versions of Windows (including Tablet PC), Mac OS X 10.4 and up, Linux, FreeBSD and NetBSD. And it’s FREE! (…)




InstantBird is a cross platform, open
source, instant messaging client which has just reached version 1.0. The GPLv2 licensed
InstantBird runs on Windows, Linux and Mac OS X and is based upon libpurple and code from
various Mozilla projects. It has been in development since 2007, when it began life as an
“XUL UI for Pidgin”.

Since then the developers have
been releasing working versions with “small” 0.x.x version numbers but recently reconsidered
their position. Given they were due to release InstantBird 0.3 “with more changes than any
previous release” and were unlikely to release a future version with as many changes,
they decided to make 0.3 their version 1.0.


Reviews and Essays


Do you ever wish your kids would do something besides play video games on the computer? What if you could get a head start teaching them to be the next generation of open source developers?

Computers are increasingly easy to use, but programming is far more complex–and less accessible. For many of us who now have small children, programming began with BASIC programs on computers that forced you to make them do something by offering nothing but a command line.

At school, kids often learn how to use tools but not how to create. Tools become obsolete quickly, so knowing how to create is much more important, and the tools will be successively intuitive. (…)



This week yet another major global IT vendor will launch a product based on Linux – the HP Touchpad, which looks quite promising from early reviews. Even so, it is ironic that I still hear the following comment from a number of investors and business people:

“Open source is great, but you can’t make any money with it.”

While for some reason this sentiment has existed as long as open source software has been in existence, the facts don’t support it; in fact, the facts expose it to be a statement hovering between unbelievable and ridiculous. Red Hat will exceed $1 Billion dollars in revenue this year. Its investors have been richly rewarded over the past decade with more than an 8X return over the S&P 500. (…)


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Header PictureAcknowledgements

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Header PictureCopyrights

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Header PictureTranslations

openSUSE Weekly News is translated into many languages. Issue 182 is available in:

Coming soon:

First published on: http://saigkill.homelinux.net

Both comments and pings are currently closed.

2 Responses to “openSUSE Weekly News, Issue 182 is out!”

  1. Great work i really like this…………………

  2. Continuing the great work of our Ambassadors of the Southern Hemisphere, our Brazilian open SUSE team once again gets ready for a strong open SUSE presence in Brazil beginning today at Free CRM
    Thanks for post.