I'd like to give you an update on our beta process with the following
list of topics:
* Deliverable of Beta4 and further schedule
* non-GPL kernel modules
* Kernel Changes km_ packages
* Major bug in Beta3: Fontconfig
* Package manager major changes
Deliverable of Beta4 and Further Schedule
Beta4 did not pass our internal tests, we have to delay it by one
The FACTORY distribution has been updated with our current packages
that everybody can use, but doing a complete installation from the
current FACTORY tree is NOT recommended. You should just update
single packages as needed.
We have decided to release Beta 4 on 2006-02-16 and Beta 5 on
2006-02-23. We'll finalize the schedule after testing and evaluating
these two betas.
non-GPL kernel modules:
Most developers of the kernel community consider non-GPL kernel
modules to be infringing on their copyright. Novell does respect this
position, and will no longer distribute non-GPL kernel modules as part of
future products. Novell is working with vendors to find alternative
ways to provide the functionality that was previously only available
with non-GPL kernel modules.
Kernel Changes / km_, kmp, and kernel-flavor-nongpl packages:
We added support to cleanly handle packages that contain kernel
modules by representing the dependencies of mouldes on the kernel ABI
as rpm dependencies. This allows third party modules to be provided
and integrated cleanly.
Modules that were previously included in our kernel packages using the
km_ package mechanism  have been converted to the new package
format ; the km_ mechanism is no longer supported. Packages that
contain additional kernel modules are now named name-kmp-kernelflavor
(e.g., wlan-kmp-default. lirc-kmp-smp).
The kmp mechanism  supports creating and using additional Kernel Module
Packages easily and reliably.
The kernel-kernelflavor-nongpl packages which contained modules that
had non-GPL licenses have been removed.
 The km_ package mechanism is described at
 Kernel Module Packages Manual for CODE10,
Major Bug in Beta3: Fontconfig
It might be that X11 apps just crash or are really slow (installation
of some packages took rather long), which was due to a bug in
fontconfig. A first fix is in fontconfig packages in the Beta3
fixed-rpm directory on ftp.opensuse.org
Beta4 will fix most known bugs. Current packages are available at:
If you use them, update to both fontconfig and fonts-config. The
packages in there are newer than what is currently in the FACTORY
tree. If you find bugs in the m17n packages, please report them in
bugzilla stating the exact version you're using.
Package Manager Major Changes
We're replacing our package manager resolver library with a new version
libzypp is the integration of SUSE's yast2 Package manager and
Ximian's libredcarpet. At Novell we used two solutions so far - Red
Carpet and YaST package manager - and decided to merge both in a best
of breed approach.
The advantages for SUSE Linux are:
* A better resolver than before
* More information about why a package is installed or no solution is
* A better integration of all those feature that were added over the
years to our package manager.
* A command line interface ("rug")
* A common handling of packages *and* patches
* Dependency handling for update packages
* A better way to handle selections (we call them now "patterns")
* Remote management (not yet in SUSE Linux 10.1)
* Additional repositories during installation (no GUI in SUSE Linux 10.1)
* More flexibility in handling of different repositories, e.g. it is
possible to have additional patterns for each repository.
The new library handles yum metadata, YaST sources (both also remote
via ftp, http, nfs and smb) and additionally Zenworks, Opencarpet and
RCE (Red Carpet Enterprise) servers as installation sources. The
alternatives smart and apt-get will also work as they did on SUSE
Together with libzypp, we get the zmd daemon, the rug command line
interface, the zen-updater, zen-remover, zen-installer packages.
In addition to the existing packages, we're adding these new packages:
* zmd: system daemon used by rug, zen-*
* rug: Command line client
* web-updater: Updater with more features than zen-updater
* zen-updater: Simple updater
* zen-remover: Tool to remove packages
* zen-installer: Tool to add packages
We're still working on the integration of "libzypp" into our tree, the
package manager in our FACTORY tree is not yet fully functional.
Xgl is an Xserver that uses OpenGL for its drawing operations. Xgl
engineer David Reveman has posted enhancements to Xgl and a new
compositor, 'Compiz' with a request that it be added to the
CVS repository. Some operations like antialiased font
rendering is noticeably faster with this technology, and future
graphics hardware might only have support for 3D operations and no 2D
core any more.
These additional packages have now been added to the SUSE Linux
FACTORY tree. Note that compiz has a couple of build problems that
need to be fixed before it will go out.
For details on XGL, please check http://www.opensuse.org/Xgl
Andreas Jaeger, aj(a)suse.de, http://www.suse.de/~aj/
SUSE LINUX Products GmbH, Maxfeldstr. 5, 90409 Nürnberg, Germany
GPG fingerprint = 93A3 365E CE47 B889 DF7F FED1 389A 563C C272 A126