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openSUSE Weekly News, Issue 177 is out!

May 28th, 2011 by

We are pleased to announce our new openSUSE Weekly News 177!

openSUSE Weekly News

openSUSE Weekly News

177 Edition

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We are pleased to announce our 177th issue of the openSUSE Weekly News.

You can also read this issue in other formats here.

Enjoy reading :-)

Header PictureAnnouncements


The openSUSE Build Service Team has decided to rename its cutting-edge packaging- and
distribution build technology to Open Build Service. The new name, while maintaining the
well-known OBS acronym, signals its open and cross-distribution nature.

The history

The openSUSE Buildservice started out as an internal SUSE technology. In 2006 it was
decided to open its source code and development process. From that point on, the scope of the
openSUSE Build Service started to widen. First, it was just there to build add-on packages for
SUSE Linux. Later on it became able to build openSUSE itself and to support also non-SUSE
distributions (Fedora, Ubuntu, MeeGo and others) and packaging systems (rpm, debian, kiwi),
now expanded to 21 build targets on 6 architectures. We will support even more systems in
future, non-Linux targets and also more specialized Linux targets like maintenance channels.
But while ‘OBS’ is meant for a much wider audience than openSUSE, being used by projects and
companies like VLC, MeeGo, Dell and many others, its name misleadingly signaled a
distribution-specific purpose.

OBS is a unique piece of technology and certainly deserves to be known and used by a wide
audience. With features like integration with Source Code Management systems including GIT and
Subversion and powerful collaborative features has made the public instance on build.opensuse.org the preferred build technology
for well over 27,000 users.


In highlighting the benefits of OBS to the masses, the over-reaching assumption that the
service is openSUSE-specfic proved to be a deterrent. It clearly takes additional effort to
convince a potential user that despite the name, openSUSE Build Service was not just for openSUSE. And the distribution-independent technological
benefits became lost in the confusion. This effect is very apparent in face to face
communication as you’ll almost immediately hear others saying “No, I’m a Fedora
packager, this has nothing to do with me. Sorry
. when they hear about OBS. This same
effect lead to less people reading articles or attending talks on the subject.

And while this was an undesirable effect for us promoting one of the key features of the
openSUSE Project, we also recognized this was preventing developers and packagers wanting to
promote and distribute their software projects from benefiting from a service that would truly
enable them to achieve that goal.

As our openSUSE ambassadors around the world have been stepping up our communication and
promotion around OBS, they have noticed this effect. After some discussion on the
international marketing mailing list it was agreed to recommend the OBS team to rename their
technology to Open Build Service. This would retain the OBS acronym and excellent search
engine position at the slight expense of a weakened link between the openSUSE community, where
OBS originated, and the Build Service currently lives.

But it would clearly signal the open and collaborative nature of OBS and allow OBS to
spread its wings and reach an even wider audience, benefiting all of Free Software. And that
has always and continues to be the higher goal of the openSUSE Project.


So after ample deliberation and discussion with all the major stakeholders, the OBS team
agreed that it would be beneficial to rename the openSUSE Build Service to Open Build Service. It is and will remain an
openSUSE project, with significant contributions from SUSE and openSUSE community members as
well as many others from communities like MeeGo and VLC but also be more clear about its
cross-distribution, cross-project goals and ambitions.

The branding part of OBS will be adapted to make it easy for projects deploying their own
OBS to name their OBS while staying connected with the OBS project. We suggest to name a
project-specific OBS instance “XXX Open Build Service”, like “VLC Open
Build Service
. The new domain name for the project will be openbuildservice.org.


Of course, we at openSUSE are very happy with this change. And so are our friends and
users of OBS!

Ralph Dehner, CEO at B1 systems notes:

“In the past B1 Systems has written build environments for the customers by itself. With
the open Build Service now exists a “standard” which makes it easy to build packages for
different distributions and architectures.

This will be also interesting for many other open source projects.”

“The Linux Foundation views OBS as an important and useful tool for building software for
Linux,” said Amanda McPherson, vice president of marketing and developer program for the Linux
Foundation. “As adoption of OBS has increased, it’s a natural step to rename it to reflect its
open nature and cross-distribution support.”

Enterprise Support

As OBS has matured and becomes more widespread, SUSE has decided to help organizations who want
to use and deploy it. SUSE OBS Developer Support brings commercial support options for
customers and partners that want to run their own instance of the Open Build Service.

The support offering will be handled via a new OBS Developer Services (DS) program. Under
this program, customers will receive support for configuration and setup issues as well as the
ability to get code fixes for bugs that affect them. As part of this program, SUSE is also
collecting requirements to the OBS software and will input this into the planning process for
OBS. SUSE will be working with partners to enable and back them to offer implementation and
consulting services.

License: GFDL 1.2


Header PictureGoogle Summer of Code


Yesterday marked the official start of Google Summer of Code’s Coding Period. And openSUSE
mentors are right in the thick of it working with 16 students seeking to make a better world
in FOSS.

openSUSE can take particular pride in GSoC further supporting the openSUSE goal of
creating an environment thatý supports not only openSUSE but FOSS in general. Indeed we are
mentoring several projects that directly benefit openSUSE, but there’s also several projects
that support other projects, like the Arch Linux backend for our Open Build Service, a test
suite for btrfs, ext4 snapshots in snapper, PackageKit backend in Software Center, and ICC
device profile repository.


I do believe that our main contribution is that we will be sharing our enthusiasm
about Free Software with our students and students from other organizations. And this is
what will, hopefully, keep the students involved in the Free Software world after GSoC.
– Vincent Untz, openSUSE GSoC Organizer


And it is true that students are already experiencing the spirit of the openSUSE
Project. As student Alex Eftimie says:


What can I say? I’m excited about everything. openSUSE is the perfect umbrella for
such a project. What I like most about it is that the result will be usable in a
cross-distro fashion. Until GSoC, I wasn’t familiar with openSUSE efforts on
collaboration. Package management is a domain where distros can do better, and I’m glad to
be a part of this effort.


You can see the complete list of student projects we’re working with here.

Pavol Rusnak, our other openSUSE GSoC organizer, reminds us that there are also some
long-standing tasks directly beneitting the openSUSE Project which will now be tackled by some
of our student projects.


With projects like Open Build Service for Android, a new python OBS library, and
solutions to enhance SUSE Studio and YaST, we’ll be further strengthening some of the unique
selling points of openSUSE.


The Timeline

  • May 23 – Coding begins

  • July 11 – Midterm Evaluation

  • August 15 – Suggested Pencil Down

  • August 26 – Final Evaluation Deadline

Stay informed

Students are asked to post weekly reports. You can follow it on their blogs, which are
aggregated on Planet openSUSE or
through our openSUSE Project
mailing list

License: GFDL 1.2



as a part of our Google Summer of Code Project to cleanup osc our first task was to define
a new commandline user interface for osc. The current user interface is quite “inconsistent”
(with regard to the expected arguments for different commands) and has some other “flaws”.
Here are some examples to show some flaws of the current user interface: (…)



My proposal for a command-line client for Suse Studio has been accepted for this year’s
Google Summer of Code. You can see the full proposal here. In short, the project is pretty self-evident from the title. In case you
don’t know what Suse Studio is, its a web service that allows you to design custom ISOs of
linux distributions. As you can imagine, designing a custom variant of a linux distro will
involve a lot of configuration. This tool aims to ease the hassles involved with using the web
interface to make these customisations. The most common use case for this tool as I see it
will be modifying default configuration files. The tool will allow you to make all the
modifications you want locally in an appliance directory and push the changes when you’re
ready. If you want a more thorough view of how it will work please do read the complete



It’s less than a week, that GSoC 2011 coding period have begun. This is my first report
for the project.Every Friday I will make a report in this blog to share with you the progress
I am making on the project.So what did I do during these first days?

First of all I created an online repo on GitHub and I forked the Augeas project. That will
permit me to use version control of my project “GIT” during the implementation and retain an
online repo where I can commit my changes to, while experimenting with the source code. This
gave me the opportunity to practice more with git, create branches merge commit changes etc. I
have to admit that until now, I didn’t used a version control system much, but i really don’t
know why?!?! Really git is awesome and can save the developer valuable and useful time.

Next, I continued with trying out OBS for the first time, the openSUSE Build Service, that
just renamed to Open Build Service. Even thought i faced some troubles in the start finding my
way around (packaging was a new thing for me, and after using obs I have to say that it is not
as hard as I initially believed), with the help of my mentor I think I can understand now
better the service and use it. But why use OBS to package so early in the project? Well we
thought that by using obs we will be able to create packages (please care they are
experimental ) with the changes i make, so other people can try them out if they are
interested and maybe help with future debugging.

Finally among my initial experiments with Augeas source code, I have created a branch
“helloworld” on my git repo, whether i added a simple hw – Hello world command in the augtool
that is contained within Augeas. That command prints as you may have guessed , a hello world message on screen. Then i compiled the project by using
the sources of the specific branch, and at the end i used obs to create some packages that can
be found on my obs repo .

As I had not any important experience with building software and packages, I occupied
myself this week mainly with administration actions. Which however, will help the community
and of course everyone interested in my gsoc project, to follow the changes, make suggestions,
and contribute with new ideas, but will also help in the latter phase of integrating


The progress of the week 1 in bullets:

  • created git repo online through GitHub

  • practice with git

  • compiling packages from git sources

  • Learn the basics about using OBS

  • experimenting with augeas code, and creating a small command as a test

  • creating openSUSE packages through OBS

The GSoC have just begun, and I have already learned many new and very exciting things.
This summer will be very interesting for sure!!! Now i will focus on the actual coding and
specifically in the merging procedure that will used in Augeas. Till the next report,

Best Regards, Christos Bountalis

[1] http://download.opensuse.org/repositories/home:/mpounta/openSUSE_11.4/

Notice: This is the first time I compile and package a project
with obs, therefore the packages inside the repo are highly experimental and only for
testing purposes.


Header PictureStatus Updates

Header PictureDistribution


A lot of things are happening in our Factory distribution that will be released in
November 2011 as openSUSE 12.1 and I’d like to point out a few things from the last few weeks
that users and developers of factory shouldn’t miss.

Roadmap openSUSE

Stephan “Coolo” Kulow has updated the openSUSE 12.1 Roadmap, the next milestone is Milestone 1
which is delayed and targeted now for release on Tuesday, 30th May. The next paragraphs
highlight some of the updates for this versions.

GCC 4.6

The GNU Compiler Collection has been updated to version 4.6, the list of changes includes the following new
warning that will be visible while compiling packages for openSUSE Factory:

  • “New -Wunused-but-set-variable and -Wunused-but-set-parameter warnings were added for
    C, C++, Objective-C and Objective-C++. These warnings diagnose variables respective
    parameters which are only set in the code and never otherwise used. Usually such variables
    are useless and often even the value assigned to them is computed needlessly, sometimes
    expensively. The -Wunused-but-set-variable warning is enabled by default by -Wall flag and
    -Wunused-but-set-parameter by -Wall -Wextra flags.”

Some packages have been failing by the new GCC due to new warnings and new optimizations
and most have been fixed already but please double check that your packages are building and
running fine.

RPM 4.9

Michael Schröder announcedRPM 4.9 for
Factory. He explains the main packager visible changes as:


Besides some bug fixes and an update to a newer BerkeleyDB library rpm-4.9.0 contains
plugin architecture for dependency generation. In older rpms, the internal dependency
generator was pretty much hardcoded in C, so we always used the old external one to
generate dependencies. With rpm-4.9.0, the internal generator has become flexible enough
so that we can use it.

This means for you, that rpm will no longer use the %__find_provides and
%__find_requires macros. Some packages redefined those macros to be able to filter the
generated dependencies.

This will no longer work in rpm-4.9.0. Instead, support for dependency filtering was
added to rpm…



GNOME 3 has now hit Factory as well and Vincent
Untz explained how to fix failures due to the large push.

Linux Kernel 2.6.39

This update was a “boring” update – nothing broke AFAIK , so I hope it’s a solid version.
Users will benefit from the new
in it. 2.6.39 is the first kernel without the Big Kernel Lock at

Packaging Changes

Besides new software, also new ways of handling it get introduced. The following catched
my eyes:

Rpmlint update

Ludwig Nussel updated rpmlint to version 1.2 and explained
the new warnings about packaging of rpm packages – and what to do about them.

Changing the process of Factory submissions with the Open Build

Now with every submission to Factory scripts are run automatically that do two different
reviews before the package goes to human check-in review:

  • The “legal-auto” review checks the updated package for changes in licenses.

  • The “factory-auto” review checks that the updated package builds actually in the devel
    project – and if not, rejects it.

The “legal-auto” review has quite a long backlog at the moment and Jýrgen is working on
moving some of the checks to rpmlint or osc checks – so that the packager notices and fixes
them before submission to Factory.

Also, you can now submit packages to Factory even if you are not the maintainer of the
package but in this case the maintainer (packager) gets a review request to review that the
package really can go to factory and thus a plea to packagers to handle their review

openSUSE Conference

The openSUSE Conference is this year co-located with the SUSE Labs conference. Join us
to present and discuss also Factory related topics. The Call for papers is open now!

I’m interested on feedback on this article – should I start a


Header PictureSUSE Studio


When I started working on extending the SUSE Studio API to support SUSE
, I developed a desktop client at the same time as a testbed. It’s been a
bit neglected over the last 6 months, as my primary after-work project takes up a
lot of my time, but it’s usable nonetheless. In an effort to motivate me to work on it
again, and to find other contributors, I’m happy to announce the SUSE Gallery client:

With the Gallery client, you can browse, search, view details, download, write to a CD
or USB key, or execute the image directly in a virtual machine. There’s rudimentary support
for connecting to Testdrive, but the built-in VNC client isn’t very reliable , so don’t be
surprised if it doesn’t work. Packages have been built for openSUSE and Fedora, but it
should compile on any platform that Qt and LibVNCViewer support (including Windows and Mac).
And of course, contributions and bug reports are most welcome!


Team Reports

Header PictureBuild Service Team


Published minutes from the Buildservice Team Meeting from 25. May 2011.


Build Service Statistics. Statistics can found at Buildservice

Header PictureGNOME Team


good news for Virtual Machine addicts : VirtualBox team has fixed issues which were
preventing VirtualBox to work properly with GNOME Shell. You need VirtualBox release 4.0.8
(minimum) and GNOME 3 live image release 1.3.0 (it contains updated VirtualBox guest
additions, required for openGL). To download the image : http://www.gnome.org/getting-gnome/


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?



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.


Currently only “dhcp6c” (https://fedorahosted.org/dhcpv6/ ) can be selected as a DHCPv6 client in /etc/sysconfig/network/dhcp:

# Which DHCPv6 client should be used?

# Currently only the dhcp6c client is supported.


Since this client has been obsoleted by ISC dhcp, the DHCPv6 client of ISC should be used as default and as an alternative.



Nowadays the kernel sets the system time from rtc and a potential local/utc offset is applied in the initrd already. The only task left for boot.clock is to adjust the clock drift. That’s a rather advanced feature not known nor appreciated by the standard auto logging in user. Network installs have ntp enabled anyways. Therefore boot.clock should be switched off by default to have one less script to execute. Anyone who needs the clock drift feature can insserv boot.clock manually.



The $HWCLOCK variable in /etc/sysconfig/clock stores information that is redundant with /etc/adjtime’s third line. There should be only one place to store that information.

Programs reading /etc/sysconfig/clock:

  • warpclock from mkinitrd

  • /etc/init.d/boot.clock from aaa_base

  • yast2-country



There’s already a package in X11:Utilities, it just needs to be pushed to Factory (might need a cleanup, I didn’t check).



gvfs can use libbluray to access Blu-Ray metadata.


It should apparently be safe to integrate in openSUSE, according to the webpage.



Frogr is a small application for the GNOME desktop that allows users to manage their accounts in the Flickr image hosting website. It supports all the basic Flickr features, including uploading pictures, adding descriptions, setting tags and managing sets and groups pools.




It’s very frustating when I’m downloading packages in yast and something fails and lose all I was downloading. It’s also complicated that I have to calculate how long the download of packages will last ’cause I can’t pause and resume it later. It would be very nice if the gui yast package manager worked like a download manager allowing pause, resume, restart of failed downloads, preview of size, progress and time and had gui customization for what to do when something fails.



Opensuse is very good, it has everything all other big distros have and much more but there’s one thing I miss in it: “Remastersys”. Kiwi and suse studio don’t do the same. Remastersys works offline and turns your installed system into a live cd/dvd that can be ran or installed anywhere. It also has the possibility of building the live cd/dvd including personal data and configuration.I would like to carry my opensuse installation with all its configs to another places with me and to share it with others. Can anyone create something like remastersys or adapt it to opensuse?



The ChromeOS core fonts are basically extended versions of the Liberation fonts under the “SIL Open Font License, Version 1.1”:

http://gsdview.appspot.com/chromeos-localmirror/distfiles/ (most current version is croscorefonts-1.20.1.tar.gz at the time of this writing)

The fontconfig configuration files must be updated to include these fonts. Here’s an initial patch: http://pastebin.com/TkQb9bvM


Feature Statistics

Statistics for openSUSE distribution in openFATE

Header PictureTranslation Team

Header PictureIn the Community

Postings from the Community


FOSSCOMM 2011 was held in Patras on the 7
to 8 May from Patras Linux User Group (PLUG) and the Department of Computer Engineering &
Information Technology (Computer Laboratory / Computer Center), University of Patras. The
conference was very interesting with several additional speeches, several parallel events
(booths from communities and projects, parallel talks, workshops) and live streaming.

The Greek openSUSE community has united to present this two-day conference in Patras.
There, we met people from other communities, discussed and promoted openSUSE and FOSS.

The community participated at the conference with the following presentations and parallel

Saturday, May 7

  • Presentation by Bruno Friedmann, for the openSUSE project and its future.

  • Presentation by George Bratsos for the release of openSUSE 11.4 and the new
    technologies and innovations brought by the distribution.

  • Presentation by Kostas Koudaras who presented the Greek openSUSE

  • community and their actions, the project dealt with and the events it has

  • Presentation by George Koutsikos, for the Enlightenment Project.

  • Presentation by Athanasios Elias Rousinopoulos about a subproject of

  • openSUSE, the openSUSE Medical, which contains tools used by the

  • branch of medicine.

  • Presentation by Efstathios Iossifidis about the Greek Gnome community and the release
    of Gnome 3 and the new technologies and innovations.

  • Lighting Talks by members of the Greek openSUSE community about sub-projects with
    which we participate, but also things that we do all together.

  • Introducing YaST (Efstathios Agrapidis),

  • Add / Remove software in openSUSE (Athanasios – Elias Rousinopoulos),

  • Weekly News – The Greek way (Efstathios Agrapidis),

  • Evergreen Project (George Tsiapaliokas),

  • Tumbleweed Project (George Bratsos),

  • KDE Akokandi (Antonis Tsiapaliokas),

  • Guidelines for mariners, using openSUSE Community tools (Efstathios Iosifidis).

Sunday, May 8

  • Presentation by Efstathios Agrapidis for the revolutionary OBS platform that solves
    packaging problems.

  • Presentation by Efstathios Iossifidis on how we can create an openSUSE distribution
    with SUSE Studio.

  • Workshop by Efstathios Agrapidis to create .deb and .rpm packages with OBS.

The openSUSE community booth was one of the largest in the organization and
except the dvds, posters,, flyers, cheat-sheets etc. we co-hosted the booth of the Greek
community of Gnome, the Enlightenment Project and the amazing people of other communities who
were there to assist and promote their favorite project and FOSS in general.

On Saturday evening the openSUSE community had a Release party for the distribution of
openSUSE 11.4 at the hotel where we resided. The party achieved its purpose because, apart
from the cake we ate and the beer we drunk, we came closer to people from other communities
such as the Ubuntu, Slackware, Gentoo, FreeBSD and OS-arena. At the end of the night Red Hat
people visited our party, with whom we shared the same roof (hotel). :P

The workshop ended with a farewell message from the organizers of Fosscomm whom we thank
for the wonderful organization even though the misfortunes of the second day which left us
without power and wifi internet access for the most part.

More photos can be found in our group on facebook.

Article by Kostas Koudaras

License: GFDL 1.2


People of openSUSE


I’m 32 and live in the Boston area. I’ve been working on Linux since 1999 and with SUSE
since 2000. I started working with Linux by just hacking on small things and then moving on
to specialize in file systems. These days I lead one of the SUSE Labs kernel teams, still
focus on file systems, but also am involved in the technical leadership for the kernel in
all SUSE and openSUSE products.

Editors Note: People of openSUSE Announcement: Because
of GSoC, we will focus a bit more on our students in the next time. Its time for a PooS
special, and with some different questions as usual, we will handle it in the next time.So,
if you are one of our GSoC-students, please mail to kimleyendecker@hotmail.de if you want to be
interviewed by us and tell the readers of news.o.o about your project and yourself!


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/podcasts.


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.

Header PictureKernel Review


So I’ve been busily merging stuff, and just wanted to send out a quick
reminder that I warned people in the 39 announcement that this might
be a slightly shorter merge window than usual, so that I can avoid
having to make the -rc1 release from Japan using my slow laptop (doing
“allyesconfig” builds on that thing really isn’t in the cards, and I
like to do those to verify things – even if we’ve already had a few
cases where arch include differences made it less than effective in
finding problems).


PS. The voices in my head also tell me that the numbers are getting
too big. I may just call the thing 2.8.0. And I almost guarantee that
this PS is going to result in more discussion than the rest, but when
the voices tell me to do things, I listen.



The opensuse kernel git trees have a new home at http://kernel.opensuse.org/?a=git . It
should be more reliable than gitorious, which sometimes has problems cloning the nearly 1GB
repository. We continue to sync to gitorious as well, so nothing should break for anyone. If
you want to switch an existing clone to kernel.opensuse.org, however, it’s as simple as

git config remote.origin.url \ git://kernel.opensuse.org/kernel-source.git

and analogously for the kernel.git repository. We will add more stuff to
kernel.opensuse.org website in near future, next in the todo list is LXR and either gitweb or
cgit. Have fun! Michal


Header PictureTips and Tricks

For Desktop Users


A few months ago my father-in-law said that his company was renewing their computers.
When I heard that some second-hand PCs were about to be available, I decided to take some of
them, thinking that a few old PCs would not hurt when it comes to enlarging my home network
and doing experiments with GNU/Linux. When my father-in-law asked if it would be possible to
reformat one of those computers so that he could use it at his home, I jumped at the
opportunity to bring another user to the world of GNU/Linux. A few days passed and he was a
happy user of his new computer running Ubuntu, and he was enjoying his Firefox while he
explored the web. I don’t know what other people think or usability studies say, but he said
that he had no problem using the system and he was surprised that I did not have to install
an anti-virus. (…)


For Commandline/Script Newbies


On UNIX, GNU Screen is a utility that i cannot live without. I know many console users share the same point of view with me.

What is GNU Screen? it is a terminal multiplexer and you can run multiple console-based applications simultaneously. The best part of it is that you can leave it running on remote machines and come back to pick up your console sessions. It’s like VNC or Remote Desktop but for UNIX console. As you know that on UNIX if you run something on a shell and you got disconnected from it then your sessions will also stop. All work will be gone. (…)


For Developers and Programmers


In brmlab, we want to track who is unlocking the space, whether
someone is inside, have some good visual indicator that live stream is on air, and so
on. In other words, we have an Arduino with some further hardware, and we want to show
whatever is reported by the Arduino on IRC and web, and provide some web-based control (open/closed status override) in the
opposite direction too.

What to use for a service (we call it brmd) that will bind all these interfaces
together? It just needs a lot of boring frontends and simple state maintenance.

It turns out that Perl’s POE framework is
ideal for this – most of the code for IRC, HTTP and device read/write is already there, so
you just grab the modules, slam them together and you have exactly what you need with
minimal effort. Right?It turns out that there are caveats – basically, the idea is correct,
aside of getting stuck on a single stupidity of mine, I’d have the whole thing put together
in something like half an hour. Unfortunately, the moment you want robustness too, things
are getting a lot more complex; to handle the device disappearing, IRC disconnections, not
having HTTP socket fds leak away, etc., you suddenly need to either magically know what
further modules to hook up or start exeting some manual effort. Still, I like how POE is
making it so easy to give a simple state machine many input/output interfaces and when you
get used to the idiosyncracies, you can even make it somewhat reliable. (…)



I spent just my last night going through few months worth of patches and cherry-picking
the bugfixy ones to glibc’s
. But I was tired and didn’t pay attention to git’s messages,
so at the end of the evening, I noticed that for all conflicting patches, I have done git
commit -a instead of git commit -a -c commitid. This had a definite advantage since the
“(cherry picked from commit …)” notices inserted by git cherry-pick -x got preserved, but
also a very definitive problem – the author name and date info for each commit was

(Note that AIUI, 1.7.5 cherry-pick might not have this problem anymore. I’m still using
1.7.4, content with Debian’s packaged version nowadays.)

Due to the -x lines, we still have mapping to original history. Therefore, some
scripting should fix this quickly. And sure enough…! Maybe this recipe will come useful to

git filter-branch –commit-filter’
if [ “$GIT_AUTHOR_NAME” = “Petr Baudis” ]; then
# Author of this commit is wrong! We could also simply correct
# all commits containing the “cherry picked” notice.
cat >/tmp/logm$$ # save log message
ocommit=”$(sed -n ‘\”s/^(cherry picked from commit \(.*\))$/\1/p’\” </tmp/logm$$)”
# Load original authorship information:
<<<“$(git log -1 –pretty=format:”%an:%ae:%at” $ocommit)”
# Redo the commit:
git commit-tree “$@” </tmp/logm$$
rm /tmp/logm$$
git commit-tree “$@” # preserve commit intact
fi’ c55cc45ed76603b380489ee8c91ab5dce92e92f1..HEAD

Note that this requires that /bin/sh is bash (which may NOT be the case on debian!).
Otherwise, you need to rewrite the <<< bit.

The c55cc45ed… commit is the first wrong cherry-pick. You may omit that altogether if
you wish but the complete branch history is going to be rewritten. Also note that you should
never rewrite commits that are already pushed out to a public place.


For System Administrators


One of the features that makes SUSE relatively simple to manage is that all of the graphical configuration tools are gathered together in the YaST Control Center, (Yet another Setup Tool). You can start YaST from the Computer Menu on your task bar, if you are not authenticated as root you will be prompted for the root password. By selecting Network Services > Samba Server you will start SAMBA configuration tool. The default install will add SAMBA but if it had not been installed it will automatically install it for you with this selection. (…)


Header PicturePlanet SUSE


In May of 2010, fellow openSUSEan Andreas Jaeger (AJ) and I sat down to review how we can
help promote the openSUSE Build Service, also known as OBS. It became quickly apparent to me
that while theý service was called “openSUSE Build Service” the name didn’t give enough due
credit. The build service’s capabilities meant so much more than simply creating a tool for
the openSUSE distribution. Sporting an impressive list of supported distros and architectures
that OBS could package for, this was clearly a tool that needed to be marketed beyond just the
immediate openSUSE Project community. This was truly a tool for the masses.


Header PictureopenSUSE Forums


The openSUSE Forums are moving on. After the new theme, the new layout, now the forums software has new functions. This Article is one of the first in our new section “Articles”, there’s also a new blog section: “Blogs”. The openSUSE Forums already were a place of activity and enthousiasm, these tools will give members even more room for contributing. It’s all pretty new, so not much to tell about it yet, I will get back about the new functionality after taking a good look around and seeing what the tools can be used for.



For those who wonder what a “distro hopper” is: a linux user constantly moving from one linux distribution to another, for whatever reason. This thread is a survey/poll by a member interested in whether openSUSE Forums members are distro hoppers. There’s not only their votes, the thread also contains comments by users, telling us why they’re distro hopping, or not.



A question where every answer -no doubt- is debatable. Yet there’s quite some good advice to give. If you don’t know: /home/USERNAME is the place where the user’s foldere reside; not only “Documents”, but also lots of -mostly hidden- folders that contain the user’s preferences, settings, program configurations etc. When upgrading to a new version, or moving to another distribution, one would preferably keep these settings, most certainly the documents. Most linux distributions default to putting /home on a separate partition on harddisk, so that it can be left unformatted, untouched during install or upgrade. Read ahead to see some nice suggestions. Personal remark: this does not make backups redundant.



Tumbleweed, the inbetween stable and factory openSUSE, is alive and kicking. I’d like to draw your attention to a not so recent thread where one of the intiators of Tumbleweed asks you as an openSUSE user, which packages you would like to see in a Tumbleweed version. Tumbleweed already serves GNOME3 -from a separate repo-, KDE and LXDE as desktop environments, but there might be applications you would like to see in Tumbleweed. This thread gives them an opportunity to let the Tumbleweed maintainers know.


Header PictureOn the Web



In the past year, my wife and I have visited
20 different countries, we sat on the front
lines of a conflict with members of the two opposing armies
, survived dengue
fever, learned to sail, and I got a pilot’s license. We’re lucky people, and it’s been
pretty great. What could ever pull me away from this grand adventure?

A brand new adventure.

I’m excited to report that I’m joining Xamarin
as co-founder and CEO this week. I’m honored to be joining Miguel, Joseph and an all-star
engineering team. And I am very passionate about our mission: to make mobile software
development incredibly fast and easy.

In the last year, one thing that I’ve learned is that mobile phones are, for many
people, their first direct contact with software. We met people in the most remote areas of
the world, living in straw huts without electricity or running water, who have mobile
phones. And so anything we do that improves mobile software improves the lives of billions
of people. I’m passionate about this, and I’m very excited about the chance we have at

We believe that mobile development is in its first stages and that we can deliver an
incredible mobile development experience — far better than what exists today. Our objective
is to build great products that people love. We want to pamper our customers.

I’m about to board a plane to Boston this morning where we’ll get things kicked off,
before moving to San Francisco later in the year. There’s a lot to be done. I’ll try to keep
you posted!

Other Sources: h-online




purchase of Novell is done
, and now we’re beginning to see it plans develop for
the open-source power. First, and foremost, Attachmate is dividing up Novell’s programs into three nominally independent divisions. These are NetIQ, which gets Novell identity and security programs
and some of Novell data center solutions; Novell, which will manage the company’s older
technologies such as NetWare; and SUSE, which will
produce SUSE Linux and oversee the openSUSE
community Linux distribution. (…)



I am in San Francisco (again! =), now for the MeeGo Conference 2011. The event is about
to begin with the keynote “The Future of MeeGo Starts Now” presented by the president of
Linux Foundation, Jim Zemlin. This time, I’m going to present a talk in the event too! The
talk is today and the topic is “Writing applications for multiple MeeGo devices”. There are
other talks by openBossa/INdT guys, check the schedule! (…)



Just giving updates of my GSoC project (Plasma Media Center) that I have done yet.
Initially, I read the QML docmentation which is required to write GUI of MediaCenter. In
between I tried to understand the existing architecture of MediaCenter and I had the IRC
meeting with with my mentor (Marco Martin together with others). After discussion we came to
conclusion that what initially we should do to start with.

According to suggetsion, first I have written a simple QML plasmoid which improved my
understanding in QML. First Plasmoid I have written is mediacontroller which will control
(play/pause,etc) the playing music and videos. Currently, my created plasmoid has different
control buttons with no any interaction. Snapshot of plasmoid

Second, I have written a DataEngine name org.kde.mediacentercontrol using C++
(consisting of fake data as of now) with keys: state (playing), position, MediaType, Url.
Snapshot of DataEngin

Next step will be to write associated services so that read and write operation can be
done on data. After completion, will move to write other plasmoids which is required for
MediaCenter. Will keep updating after completion of certain part of my work. Keep reading my
blog and finally will get a working MediaCenter for KDE

Any suggestion regarding Plasma Media center will be most welcome



The KDE Community has announced the arrival
of a first beta of version 4.7 of the KDE Software Compilation (KDE SC), a development
preview of the next major release of this popular Linux and Unix desktop manager. According
to the developers, the final release of KDE SC 4.7.0 is expected to arrive on 27 July

KDE SC 4.7 Beta1 features improvements to KWin, the window manager for the KDE Plasma
Desktop, adding support for OpenGL-ES 2.0 and improving its overall performance on mobile
devices. User interface changes have been made to the Dolphin file manager which have
improved file metadata searching. The Marble virtual globe
application, which is similar to Google Earth, now supports offline address search. KDE’s login
manager, KDM (KDE Display Manager), now works with the Grub2 boot loader. The developers note that API, dependency and
feature freezes are in effect and that the team is now focused on “fixing bugs and
further polishing new and old functionality


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