openSUSE Weekly News 186 is out!

30. Jul 2011 | Sascha Manns | No License

We are pleased to announce our new openSUSE Weekly News 186.


openSUSE Weekly News

### openSUSE Weekly News Team

186 Edition

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Published: 2011-07-30

Table of Contents

Announcements Google Summer of Code Status Updates

Distribution Team Reports In the Community

Postings from the Community Events & Meetings openSUSE for your Ears Communication Contributors New/Updated Applications @ openSUSE Games Corner Security Updates Kernel Review Tips and Tricks

For Commandline/Script Newbies For System Administrators Planet SUSE openSUSE Forums On the Web

Announcements Call for participation Reports Reviews and Essays Feedback Credits Acknowledgements Copyrights

List of our Licenses Trademarks Translations

We are pleased to announce our 186th 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, then you can skip this section through using the TOC.

  [Volunteers needed!](//

As you know, the third international openSUSE Conference is happening in a couple of weeks. You already should be registered. For the organization teams that means they are really coming onto speed now and it starts to feel dizzy.

We had a couple of public meetings which resulted in a nice list of stuff to do, like organizing hardware for the venue, set up internet, foods and drinks and so on. This is all done by community members and open for your help. If you want to help, you’re more than welcome to contribute to the conferences success. A good start is to subscribe to the mailinglist .

If you prefer to give a hand during the conference days, also great, we are looking forvolunteers. Many hands are needed to get the event going and it would be good if we could share the work so that it’s more fun for everybody.

Please go through the list on the volunteers page and find where you could jump in and help. Simply add your name or nick into the list where you feel comfortable to help.

Thanks a lot!

Header PictureGoogle Summer of Code▲▼


  [Ratan Sebastian: GSOC 2011:
    ssc Week 9](//

Tasks completed this week:

  1. Replacing of ArgumentParser with Thor. I’d given a mid-week update about this on the mailing list. Please check there for complete details.

  2. Implementing the general commands (checkout, commit and status). As a direct consequence of using thor for the command line parsing, we get to use the invoke method to call other actions. This made writing these commands quite easy.

  3. Started on refactoring the DirectoryManager module. The NewDirectoryManager is currently in use in the general commands and will gradually replace the older version which is a mess of helper functions right now. There will be separate classes for handling each of the local storage files (for software, repositories and files) deriving from a parent LocalStorageFile class which implements the generic #read and#save methods.

  4. The gem is now hosted on . So, you can install it with gem install ssc. Use the fantastic thor generated usage instructions to help you use the app.

The tasks for next week are:

  • Write integration tests

  • Implement a command to get information about installed packages from the currently run system.

  • Commands for Appliance building and build status reporting.

If you have any suggestions for features. Please do write in on the studio-users mailing list.

  [N.B.Prashanth: GSoC
    Progress (libYI)](//

Last week has been quite dull after the mid term evaluations. The week started off with me trying to improve the documentation and a home page for it. While the latter went pretty smooth, the documentation is quite baffling. Most of the source code was quite well documented and small hacks with the Doxyfile seemed to produce the proper results. Nevertheless, there were cases (quite a few) where the results seemed out of place. While struggling with the docs, I also started working on the libyui-gtk-pkg package. This package provides the libzypp plugin for the libyui-gtk module. This has been separated from libyui-gtk package so as to make it platform independent. I am nearly there on getting this package to compile. A day or two should be sufficient, I guess.

By the end of last week, I switched over to writing examples for YUI in the hope that it would give me further insight into what a developer might expect from the docs. After a few not-so-great ideas, I settled on an IRC client written with YUI. The library to manage the IRC protocol is self-implemented and is complete. At this point in time, it handles only conversations and a single channel. This is very small compared to the span of the IRC protocol. But since the main aspect of the example is to showcase YUI as a UI library, I guess the features are sufficient.

  [Christos Bountalis: A utility for merging configuration / sysconfig files – Week 10

Hello again, this is my report for the 10th week of GSoC. Unfortunately i wasn’t able to create the beta packages i was hoping. There are still some issues to be resolved within the aug_process_tree that hopefully will be solved this weekend. (…)

  [Alex Eftimie: PackageKit backend for Software Center: short week 9 report](//

It’s nice to write to you again. I’ve been having a 10 days vacation (that’s why there was no week 8 report), enjoyed it and now I’m back with fresh forces.

This short (started slowly on Tuesday) week’s activity regards:

  • almost fixing a bug that prevents my PackageKit software-center from prime time: package information isn’t correctly refreshed after an installation/removal

  • starting work on the openSUSE integration (the corresponding Distro class, removal of forgotten apt related imports, dependency identification and testing).

I will continue work on this side and hope that by the end of the next week, will have everything working and up for testing in openSUSE.

NB: I will have to provide for testing a trunk version of pygobject since a release is delayed by another awaited merge;

Header PictureStatus Updates▲▼

Header PictureDistribution

Important Links

Team Reports

Header PictureBuild Service Team

Build Service Statistics. Statistics can found at Buildservice

Header PictureopenFATE Team

Top voted Features

        [decouple download and installation (Score: 361)](

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

        [Look at plymouth for splash during boot (Score: 187)](

I wanted to open a fate feature about this when I first heard of plymouth, but reading // 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?

        [1-click uninstall (Score: 160)](

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).

        [Update to GRUB v2 (Score: 141)](

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.) (…)

        [Popularity contest (Score: 108)](

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 (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.

        [Enable Sub-Pixel-Hinting](

To improve the look of fonts, enable the Sub-Pixel-Hinting. The patents that lead to subpixel font hinting being turned of by default in the freetype2 library have now expired!

So please enable this feature in version 12.1. Ubuntu (since 10.4?) has already enabled it.

        [openSUSE Linux 12.1/LXDE: Create a screenshot program with the features...](

openSUSE Linux 12.1/LXDE: Create a screenshot program with the features of xfce4-screenshooter for LXDE.

        [Free professional CAD CAM solution - DraftSight for Linux](

I tested all available in SUSE repositories CAD CAM solutions but no one of them is enough good. Searching for sulution elsewhere I found the ‘DraftSight: The Free CAD software for your DWG files’. This is a product of Dasault Systems and is free for single user use. The Linux version of the software looks very professional and I found it working perfectly.

So please if possible contact them and agree to make possible to provide from Yast their free Linux version. This software will be the really useful fully functional free native Linux CAD CAM solution for SUSE.

        [XML tags for external script parameters needed in Autoyast](

AutoYaST allows to specify pre, chroot, post, init scripts via location tags as URI. At the moment it is not possible to handover parameters to scripts specified by a location tag.

At various customer scenarios it turned out to be needful to have this feature cause scripts could be written for a broader usage.

A new tag is needed which fulfills this task.

Feature Statistics

Statistics for openSUSE distribution in openFATE

Header PictureTesting Team

        Finger: Weekly News for July 30](//

The Testing Core Team held an IRC meeting at 17:00 UTC, July 25 on Channel #opensuse-testing on the Freenode IRC Network. irc:// 

Our first agenda item was for discussion of our experiences with 12.1 MS3. The test of a patched plasmoid applet that fixes at least part of Bug #702461 was reported. The new version recognized the network devices; however, it was unable to make a wireless connection. Networking with a wire-connected device was OK. Wireless worked fine on a Gnome desktop. Another member of the TCT reported putting MS3 on a laptop and not having any problems. It seems that putting the 3.0-series of kernels on 12.1 has not caused any new problems other than the difficulty with 3.0-rc6 that delayed MS3. This matches my testing of the mainline kernels. 

Our second agenda item concerned our upcoming Open Bugs Day to be held on August 21, 2011 from 0:00 to 23:59 UTC. This date is 10 days after the scheduled release of 12.1 MS4. The emphasis will be on testing whether bugs reported for 11.4 are still in 12.1. They will be fixed if possible, or updated to reflect the fact that they still exist. All individuals interested in making 12.1 be an exceptionally good release are welcome. As we get closer to the date, more specific instructions will be posted. As usual, we will have special on-line tools to help you select a bug for investigation. In preparation for OBD, we discussed our plans for publicizing the event, and updated the web page for the event, which is at 

Our next IRC meeting will be at 17:00 UTC, August 15 on Channel #opensuse-testing on the Freenode IRC Network. irc:// We will discuss our experiences with MS4 and finish the planning for Open Bugs Day.

Header PictureTranslation Team

Header PictureIn the Community▲▼

Postings from the Community

    [Bryen M. Yunashko Special Announcement - Ambassador Travel Funding](//

Dear awesome Ambassadors and Marketeers,We are very excited to announce a new program for our Ambassadors to beable to travel to important events in their regions and promoteopenSUSE. Over the past few months, Jos and I lobbied and recentlyreceived approval from Attachmate to create this program. Each quarter,the Ambassador Team will be allowed to reimburse up to $5,000 (USD) fortransportation/hotel expenses.

Events & Meetings



You can find more information on other events at: openSUSE News/Events. - Local Events

openSUSE for your Ears

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



Header PictureNew/Updated Applications @ openSUSE▲▼

        [Martin Vidner: ruby-dbus 0.7.0 works with 1.9.2 again](//

I have made a new release of ruby-dbus, a Ruby language binding for the D-Bus IPC system.

  • Added ASystemBus and ASessionBus, non-singletons useful in tests and threads.

  • Fixed handling of multibyte strings (Issue#8, by Takayuki YAMAGUCHI).

  • Allow reopening of a dbus_interface declaration (Issue#9, by T. YAMAGUCHI).

  • Fixed ruby-1.9.2 compatibility again (Issue#12).

  • Fixed authentication on BSD (Issue#11, by Jonathan Walker).

  • Fixed exiting a nested event loop for synchronous calls (reported by Timo Warns).

  • Fixed introspection calls leaking reply handlers.

  • “rake test” now works, doing what was called “rake env:test”

Get a gem from or an rpm from the openSUSE Build Service.

Header PictureGames Corner▲▼

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

  [ 100 Best Free and High Quality Linux Games](//

There are literally thousands of games that can be played on Linux, if you’re a casual gamer or hardcore Linux fan who is looking to have a bit of fun on your favourite distro, there’s plenty of games to choose from.

If you are unsure what to get, this list will help you out. This list includes all the popular and free high quality games that runs on Linux natively, from action/first-person shooters to real-time and turn-based strategy games to rpg/mmorpg etc.

If you have more games that you would like to recommend, feel free to share it.

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.

openSUSE-SU-2011:0845-1: important: compat-openssl097g

Table 1. SUSE Security Announcement
Package: **compat-openssl097g**
Announcement ID: openSUSE-SU-2011:0845-1
Date: Wed, 27 Jul 2011 16:08:25 +0200 (CEST)
Affected Products: openSUSE 11.4 openSUSE 11.3
Vulnerability Type: CVE-2008-5077 CVE-2009-0590 CVE-2009-0789CVE-2009-3555 CVE-2010-4180

  [openSUSE-SU-2011:0852-1: important: freetype: Fixed several off-by-one / length checks
Table 2. SUSE Security Announcement
Package: **freetype**
Announcement ID: openSUSE-SU-2011:0852-1
Date: Thu, 28 Jul 2011 00:08:34 +0200 (CEST)
Affected Products: openSUSE 11.4 openSUSE 11.3
Vulnerability Type: Fixed several off-by-one / length checks missing

Header PictureKernel Review▲▼

  [TechRepublic/Jack Wallen: Linux 3.0: More important than you think](//

Takeaway: Linux turns 3.0 and does so with little to no fanfare. Read why Jack Wallen believes this might be one of the more significant (and fanfare-worth) releases of the Linux kernel to date.

Ah vacation. It was a week of blissful lounging around a breezy beach side and playing in a water-filled world where I was no longer at the top of the food chain. There were no computers, no talk of networking this, security that, or anything in between. But then the hard reality of the world wormed its way back into my mind and I now find myself trying hard to get back into some sort of groove…an open source kind of groove (of course).

And although it’s officially next month (the month of my forty-fourth birthday, thank you very much) Linux is about to turn 3.0. And although Linus Torvalds himself has said this is not a big deal, it is. Why? Because of the very fact it is not a big deal. (…)

  [Phoronix/Michael Larabel: Linux 3.0 Real-Time Kernel Released](//

After not being updated for a few mainline kernel release cycles, the real-time (RT) Linux kernel has been updated against the Linux 3.0 kernel release.

Thomas Gleixner announced the Linux 3.0-rt1 kernel on the kernel mailing list yesterday, which integrates the RT patch-set atop the vanilla kernel. (…)

  [Rares Aioanei: kernel weekly news – 30.07.2011](//

Rares gives his weekly Kernel Review with openSUSE Flavor.

Header PictureTips and Tricks▲▼

For Commandline/Script Newbies

    [Scribbles and Snaps: Quick Tip: A Simple Python Script to Launch digiKam](

I store all my photos on a Linux server and mount the remote directory containing all the photos on my local machine using sshfs (see Manage Photos from Multiple digiKam Installations). This way, I can access my photos from multiple digiKam installations. This setup works like a charm, except for one thing: when I inadvertently launch digiKam before I mount the remote directory, the application doesn’t show photos from remote albums. What’s worse, after I mount the remote directory and restart digiKam, it takes the application a long time to rescan all remote albums. To fix this annoyance, I wrote a simple Python script: (…)

    [RollingProgrammer();: Finch: instant message from the shell / command line](//

Here’s a little trivia for everyone out there: Did you know that Pidgin also makes a text-based version of their popular instant messaging client?

The application is called Finch, and it feels exactly the same as its GUI based brother Pidgin but… you know… in a shell. (…)

    [Linuxaria: chage : control your users “age” on Linux](//

If you think that the operations about users are only: creation, deletion and change of the passwords you are in error, in the standard GNU/Linux system about authentication and authorization of users there are some interesting flags regarding the age of an account.

These parameters are usually ignored, but can be very useful in particular situations, or to help enforce internal policies on the use of personal accounts.

All these parameters are stored in /etc/shadow can be viewed and modified with the command chage (…)

For System Administrators

    [ServerWatch/Joe Brockmeier: Monitor Progress With Pipe Viewer](//

One of the most frustrating things when doing system administration is having no idea how long a process will take to finish or how much progress it’s made. To get a better look at what’s going on, try the Pipe Viewer utility.

Pipe Viewer, or just pv when you’re invoking it at the command line or in scripts, is a utility for monitoring data flowing through a pipeline. It gives you an idea of how fast the data is moving through the pipeline, how long it’s taken so far, and when it will be finished. It’s the digital answer to the administrative question, “are we there yet?” (…)

Editors Note: Pipe Viewer (pv) packages for openSUSE are available from Contrib repo.

    [BeginLinux: Configuring iSCSI and adding iSNS Servers](//

In previous tutorials we’ve learned SUSE has made life very easy for System Administrators having developed graphical tools to manage many system components including the iSCSI target. As with most things in life there is a price to pay for this ease: YaST only writes to the configuration files and the changes do not come into force until the service is restarted. Command Line knowledge lifts us out of troublesome pit and gives us full control of our systems. Additionally we will add in ISNS (Internet Storage Name Service) to locate ISCSI Targets on our network. (…)

Header PicturePlanet SUSE▲▼

Michael Meeks: Some brief thoughts on Project Harmony

Seeing Mark’s blog over the weekend promoting corporate ownership aggregation reminded me of an overdue response to Project Harmony. Mark writes compellingly, as normal, I’m just not so convinced about the moral excellence of generosity, without sensible safeguards, towards profit chasing corporations. But anyhow, Project Harmony:

Having initially been involved with the project, I’m rather disappointed by its output. There are many applications of Harmony that are problematic legally, pragmatically, ethically and from a software freedom perspective. I’ve written about the practise of to-corporate Copyright Assignment though that title would better be expanded to certain licenses, such as Harmony’s, which are tantamount to (C) assignment enabling an unhelpful corporate ownership aggregation. Others writing in detail on this are Bradley KuhnRichard FontanaDave Neary and Simon Phipps. (…)

Stuart Tanner: openSUSE The Best Desktop Environment

Are you looking to start your own business? You can purchase a computer that most likely has Windows on it, but did you know that most of the software pre installed has a time limit on it?

If you see “Starter Edition” it means that most likely after 60 days you have to pay to upgrade to the full version of the software by purchasing a key card from either the supermarket or pc store.

Lets add onto this all the new hardware your going to purchase, Printer, Broadband Router, Scanner etc, each of these programs installs their own software as well as the required drivers which you really don’t need!!

Header PictureopenSUSE Forums▲▼

  [Secondary grub boot](//

  The reason I'm mentioning this thread is because it contains a lot of information on GRUB, the default bootloader, the piece of software allowing you to boot multiple operating systems, most used: a dual-boot with some Windows flavor. Our member @nrickert uses a special configuration, with some unexpected, or unwanted results. In the meantime Milestone 3 gets involved as well.

[Why openSUSE](//

  A returning conversation in our Chit-Chat subforum: "Why do other members use openSUSE". No matter how often this question has already been asked, always interesting to read people's motivation to use openSUSE. Take your time to read and let others know what brings or brought you to openSUSE. 

[Kernel 3.0](//

  An answer first: Yes, kernel 3.0 is available for openSUSE, for those who want to try it it's in the Kernel: repos, and as per today it's the kernel for openSUSE Tumbleweed, This thread started before Linus Torvalds officially released the new kernel, but there are those who test/try the release candidates. 

  openSUSE Language specific subforums:

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

Header PictureOn the Web▲▼


    [Release 4.7 - New Features, Improved Stability and Performance](//

KDE is delighted to announce its latest set of releases, providing major updates to the KDE Plasma Workspaces, KDE Applications, and the KDE Platform that provides the foundation for KDE software. Version 4.7 of these releases provide many new features and improved stability and performance.

    [GNOME Shell 3.1.4 released](//

GNOME Shell provides core user interface functions for the GNOME 3 desktop, like switching to windows and launching applications. GNOME Shell takes advantage of the capabilities of modern graphics hardware and introduces innovative user interface concepts to provide a visually attractive and easy to use experience. (…)

Call for participation

    [Social Events at the Desktop Summit](//

We are pleased to announce the Desktop Summit social events, bringing even more excitement and fun to the Conference program. The social events vary from sports to parties, and will take place throughout the week in different locations in Berlin. They will provide opportunities for attendees to get together informally while enjoying foods and drinks provided by our sponsors—Intel, Collabora, SUSE, Igalia and corporate partner, c-base. (…)


    [h-online/Dj Walker-Morgan: SUSE and Microsoft renew the Novell deal](//

Microsoft and SUSE have renewed the interoperability deal which has existed between Microsoft and Novell for the last five years. That agreement saw collaboration between the two companies over Windows and Linux interoperation and support. The new accord sees the relationship extended four years through to 1 Jan 2016. The renewal of the deal confirms that the newly independent SUSE business unit of Attachmate will not be moving away from its controversial tie-up with Microsoft. The controversy around this centred around the intellectual property protection offered by Microsoft to SUSE’s customers which some believe is GPL incompatible. (…)

Reviews and Essays

    [ Neil Bothwick: 19 ways to do your bit for open source](//

It’s undoubtedly good to give back to a community you take so much from.

And in doing so, you can also help improve the software that you use every day, both for your benefit and for everyone else.

Here are 19 ways you can help open source projects. (…)

    [ Exploring Software—the OpenSUSE Tumbleweed Rolling Distribution Goes

Here is a record of my initial explorations and findings about the recently released OpenSUSE rolling distribution repository, Tumbleweed, as experienced on a netbook.

I almost bought an Android phone. I hesitated, wondering whether it would be upgradeable to 2.2 or 2.3? I am not in the habit of changing phones even once a year. So, I got myself a phone that is, well, ‘just a phone’. Upon reflection, all I needed was the ability to receive calls and SMS messages and, rarely, make some calls. If I couldn’t upgrade the software versions, its value as a playground for experimenting with mobile applications was very limited. (…)

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Header PictureCredits▲▼

We thank for this Issue:

Header PictureAcknowledgements▲▼

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Header PictureCopyrights▲▼

List of our Licenses


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Header PictureTranslations▲

openSUSE Weekly News is translated into many languages. Issue 186 is available in:

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