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Next Leap 42.3 Snapshot Equates to Release Candidate

June 6th, 2017 by

Rolling Development Still needs Testing, Promoters

Since changing to a rolling development version model for the eventual release of openSUSE Leap 42.3, challenges have arisen to get more people testing it.

There is no milestone releases (Alpha or Beta) for openSUSE Leap 42.3, but snapshots of the development version are constantly being released.

“So far I have not seen too many 42.3 bugs,” said Leap Release Manager Luwdig Nussel in his talk at the openSUSE Conference. “I don’t think we are bug free, so I think it just is not tested enough.”

Some Linux users might find a rolling development process for a Linux release to be less appealing for testing, but testing is certainly necessary before the actual release Leap 42.3 at the end of July.

The next minor version of Leap 42.3 is mostly a refresh and hardware enablement release that will have more than 10,000 packages. While the development version of Leap 42.3 it is still considerably stable because it is extremely hardened and shares sources from SUSE Linux Enterprise (SLE) 12, the release could still use more testing and people willing to promote openSUSE’s next minor 42 series version.

Nussel said SLE 12 Service Pack 3 (SP3) and Leap 42.3 are developed in parallel to one another and both benefit from mutual bug reports.

The SLE 12 SP3 Release Candidate is projected to be released soon, so the next snapshot released after Build0267 for Leap 42.3’s development version can be considered a Release Candidate. Build0267 has many of the SLE Sources, but more will arrive post Build0267.

Leap 42.3 builds have been coming out on a regular basis with new community packages being updated in the newest builds, which are automatically released once they pass openQA testing. Testers are encouraged to test the development version and can download the iso image on software.opensuse.org. After installing Leap, testers can enter the terminal and enter zypper update for the newest Leap 42.3 snapshot and packages.

Don’t forget to report bugs if you find one.

To view Nussels talk about Leap 42.3, visit the openSUSETV Channel on YouTube.

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19 Responses to “Next Leap 42.3 Snapshot Equates to Release Candidate”

  1. john

    Easier Migration?

    YES, PLEASE!!!

  2. matthias

    i also kept on using 13.2 and didn’t feel compelled to upgrade to 42.1 because 13.2 felt so stable/complete and 42.1 being a whole new version number felt dangerous ;)
    When 13.2 went end of life, I upgraded to 42.2 through 42.1 using a DVD (which seemed quite slow).

    I believe a zypper dup online update should be supported by yast so that a user can upgrade his system using a GUI. For an inexperienced user, currently the manual procedure seems so dangerous. In the past, I always did a fresh install on a separate partition and mounted my home, but because release lifetime is limited from now on to 18 months, I learned to zypper dup and once you know the steps, there’s not much too it. I upgraded several other systems without problem (even from 13.2->42.1->42.2).

    I agree that offering a noob upgrade tool is a risk because of all problems/support requests it can cause. But if you look at Ubuntu, they offer such tool, and it doesn’t do any better than a zypper dup, it just gives the user more trust to perform the upgrade.

    Because release cycle is quite short, opensuse should offer better upgrade tools in order to retain its userbase. I’m a die hard user, so I will never quite, but for others, it could be a reason to switch distro.

    • matthias

      i just hear you DO have a yast upgrade module in SLE, bring it on! :)

      • okurz

        You are right with all your points including the comparison to Ubuntu. There *is* a yast upgrade module in SLE. However you can consider support on upgrades one of the key areas where something can go wrong. In SLE first customers pay for that being supported and also the scope of potential changes is way lower as SLE as a much more stable distribution tends to have less packages and therefore less potential conflicts on upgrades. Also basically any upgrade of a system with any external repository can be considered unsupported as wild combinations of packages can occur and then again maybe only server system do not have any external repositories enabled. On server systems you probably won’t need a GUI though.

        • A

          I successfully upgraded from 42.1 to 42.2 through YAST, but as what said in a talk during oSC changing the repo URL’s is not really an option for regular end users. Perhaps a better approach would be to have static URL’s for Leap and everything new/updated to go there, thus removing the need for switching addresses.

  3. Bengt Frost

    Agree, easier migration for new users is a good thing. Also enable antialiasing, rgb and hint(slight) by default for font rendering. And perhaps default enabled multimedia codecs (in 2019).

  4. Adar

    It still uses Kernel 4.4 :(

    • J.O.

      That is expected, and is OK IMHO. Having a defined stable os release/environment is the main reason of Leap existence and it makes LTS an LTS.

      But perhaps, Leap distro could also offer some newer =LTS= kernel releases in its repositories – for those people who would choose to sacrifice stability/enterprise over earlier HW compatibility / features.
      At the same time a newer “LTS” kernel would still be an LTS, so it wouldn’t break the stability/long supportability idea which is the main point of Leap.

      For example I run Leap on my laptop, and would like to be able to move to LTS 4.9 sooner, but for other installations I prefer staying on whatever Leap thinks is good (kernel 4.4).

      Like there is Kernel:/stable, could there be another branch Kernel:/LTS or sth? – what do you think opensuse guys?

  5. saulo

    No GNOME or KDE update! Why?
    Is an outdated UI more stable than a new UI? oO

  6. Roman

    Plasma 5.8.7 LTS is supported and the “Application Menu Bar” widget has been backported from Plasma 5.9.4.
    It now supports Kaby-Lake processors.

  7. Romero Jorge

    Kernel 4.4? Why not 4.9?

  8. Stan Miller

    I tried but the Mesa Noveau pop up screen states it doesn’t work with KDE and to decline the licence to continue. Did that and the install aborts with nothing done.

    Hard to get enthused about giving 42.3 a shot when you can’t even get a zypper update of an earlier version to run.

    Maybe next weekend…

  9. Simon

    Can’t help but feel disappointed that it doesn’t ship with 4.9 LTS.

  10. Tomas

    Kernel 4.4 is because of SLE – Still this is disappointing from HW compatibility, filesystem, virtualization, graphics and other new kernel feature perspective. Ubuntu 16.04 was build on 4.4 kernel over year ago, that is how late it is.

    While I understand the SLE linkage motivation, this is turning openSuSE into RH-Centos equivalent while there is no Fedora version ….. Thumbleweed is no Fedora as it is rolling distro.

    The argument is to use Thumbleweed for new and shiny, but rolling distribution is not viable alternative with commercial software, plus the constant hassle of configuration changes and drift associated with rolling distribution.

    This kernel decision means that it will be troublesome with new/recent Intel and AMD hardware. I had a choice to download/compile new kernel module with every update – which would not load under UEFI because it was not signed by SuSE or switching to Ubuntu for year+. Now I either buy year old laptop or face another year of hassle if I get new and shine for my daughter ……

    I apologize for the rant while not being skilled enough to help change the current openSuSE course.

    The sharp Leap series adoption decline graph clearly shows that something needs to change fast to preserve openSuSE. Two years of dramatic userbase decline and still no change to 42.3 course …

  11. Mark Thomas

    Optional kernel updates is a good idea. I understand the link to SLE but 4.4 is outdated. I’m disappointed 42.3 is not shipping with 4.9

  12. Roman

    A lot of patches and features have been backported by the kernel devs from 4.9, 4.10 and 4.11 to kernel 4.4x LTS in Leap 42.3

    • Tom

      When it comes to backports, they typically only including mainstream HW after someone complains. I’d imagine that backporting features and their bug/security features does take a lot of man power. UEFI makes it impossible to load unsigned kernel modules, and that makes compiling kernel modules out of reach to a casual user.

      Given already small user base (less than 50k users adopted 42.2) the HW and feature inclusion will be hit and miss for some. I really wonder how will that 4.4 kernel work for someone who will buy new PC next spring 2018 and will try to install 42.3. Other distros will be probably using 4.14 LTS kernel next spring.

      There are already reports related to missing 42.3 kernel modules for relatively mainstream Intel Wi-Fi Wireless 8260 and 8265 as well as low cost rtl8192.

      It makes me really sad to see the shrinking user base. I remember pages and pages of comments and feedback to every beta and RC up to 13.2 even 42.1

      Anyway, time to stop complaining and accept the situation.
      Thankfully, Linux is still unbeatable in terms of user choice and ability to workaround.

      • Simon Morgan

        Tested RC with my Skylake machine. It’s ok but there is a night and day difference with 4.4 and 4.9 LTS. Irrespective of the LTS vision 4.4 was a sad decision.

  13. Roman

    Why not help out with testing 42.3? It amazes me how people post comments about shrinking userbase (which is untrue) and spending so much time posting comments yet they do not participate in the testing of 42.3. If you have some space to install Leap 42.3 we look forward to your bug reports.

    We are looking for more people to help out with the testing of Leap 42.3 and other releases in the future.

    The same kernel as the one that is provided with the Enterprise edition of SUSE is the one that installs with 42.3.

    If users do not want to use kernel 4.4 LTS, there is nothing stopping you from using the latest kernels. They are available.