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Mandriva Linux 2009 Alpha 2 Released 156

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the still-needs-some-ironing dept.
AdamWill writes "The Mandriva Linux 2009 Spring Alpha 2, marking the first public pre-release of the upcoming Mandriva Linux 2009. This alpha introduces several significant changes, most obviously the inclusion of KDE 4 — 4.1 beta 2, specifically — as the default version of KDE, and the latest development version of GNOME, 2.23.4. The kernel has also been updated to release 2.6.26rc7. Another feature of interest to many users will be the addition of orphan package tracking (and optional automatic removal) to the urpmi package manager. Of course, many applications have been updated (although the default version of Mozilla Firefox is still currently 2.0.x), and most of the distribution has been rebuilt with a new GCC version, 4.3. Mandriva warns that this is a true alpha, likely to contain many bugs related to the new version of KDE. Please install it only in a test environment, and especially do not use it as an upgrade from any earlier Mandriva Linux release."
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Mandriva Linux 2009 Alpha 2 Released

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  • by BadAnalogyGuy (945258) <BadAnalogyGuy@gmail.com> on Friday July 11, 2008 @03:46PM (#24156959)

    Having taken a look at this latest release, I'm convinced that THIS IS THE YEAR that Linux will be the dominant desktop OS. Easy installation, advanced package manager, FREE!, and tons of community support; there's really no reason that it won't win the hearts and minds of users everywhere.

    And with the cost of oil skyrocketing, people have less money to shell out to Microsoft, so a free OS is just what this ailing economy needs. It's surprising. Just a few months ago I was mentioning to someone just how good Linux was, but at that time he scoffed and said his grandmother still wouldn't be able to use it. However with this latest Mandriva Alpha (cool name) release, I think we're looking at a watershed moment here.

    I'm looking forward to upgrading my systems post haste.

    • by otacon (445694)

      I read this post 3 times and there wasn't one bad analogy, let alone an analogy in the thing. Lots of sarcasm yes, and very much appreciated.

    • by clampolo (1159617)

      Well, looking at market share, [hitslink.com] even though Linux is still under 1%, it's almost doubled it's share in a year.

      So even though the year of the Linux Desktop is a bit away, the time is coming closer.

  • by paroneayea (642895) on Friday July 11, 2008 @03:48PM (#24156995) Homepage
    Back in the day, when I started using Linux, Mandrake (now Mandriva) was a great distribution that helped newbies like me hit the ground running. But now it seems like Ubuntu has gobbled up that market. Afaict, they don't have much of an "enterprise" market, and they don't have much of a "hacker" market... or am I wrong? What market is Mandriva serving these days?
    • Back in the day, when I started using Linux, Mandrake (now Mandriva) was a great distribution that helped newbies like me hit the ground running. But now it seems like Ubuntu has gobbled up that market. Afaict, they don't have much of an "enterprise" market, and they don't have much of a "hacker" market... or am I wrong? What market is Mandriva serving these days?

      What's mandriva? :P

    • by f2x (1168695) * <flush2x.gmail@com> on Friday July 11, 2008 @04:18PM (#24157377) Homepage
      How about the market for people who just want their systems to work out of the box?

      Now I did just have a couple of unexpected meltdowns recently after some 2008.1 updates, but overall, my Mandr(ake|iva) installs have been exceptionally stable compared with my (*)buntu experiences.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by davmoo (63521)

      I swear I don't mean to be difficult here, I'm just stating my own experiences.

      >What market is Mandriva serving these days?

      The market that wants the stuff to work. Out of the box. With no bit twiddling.

      My PCs are not bleeding edge, and they don't use anything non-standard. Same for my laptops. And I have not even once been able to get any version of Ubuntu, or any of its derivatives, to install correctly on anything I own without having to majorly fight with it. And that includes Hardy Heron.

      Mandriv

      • by drinkypoo (153816)
        I am getting ready to drop Ubuntu from my laptop. That's an annoyance because I would like to have just one distribution in my house, but... "oh well." (I like Ubuntu LTSP, so I guess I will stick with it for my server. LTSP5 isn't one of those "add-on" kind of things.) But I have had a different problem with graphics not caused by the nvidia driver in each of the last two versions of Ubuntu. With the same driver on all distributions, on Feisty everything pretty much worked, on Gutsy Xgl would white screen,
      • by sconeu (64226)

        I've used Mandrake/Mandriva since about 2001. And I hope to hell that 2009.0 is a lot better than 2008.1. 2008.0 was good, but when I upgraded to 2008.1 they changed the way a lot of stuff worked (I still haven't figured out how to get the full hdlist.cz instead of the synthesis) or just plain wouldn't install right (the urpmi version of nvidia drivers).

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by AdamWill (604569)
          We don't use full hdlists any more; it was replaced with a system where the information is split across several .xml files. This allows the necessary file to be downloaded on-the-fly (for instance, if you try to look at a package's file list in rpmdrake - or run urpmq -l - then the .xml file that contains file lists for all the packages in that repository will be downloaded at that time).

          If you'd rather have one big wait when you update your repositories rather than a smaller wait the first time you try an

          • by sconeu (64226)

            Essentially running urpmi on dkms, the nvidia kernel dkms package, etc.. downloaded everything, but it didn't put things like the driver or the configuration tools in the right place. Even if I downloaded them manually and rpm'ed them by hand.

            I'm wondering if it was because I was using nvidia-current, and I have an older machine (Athlon Thunderbird CPU) that doesn't support SSE, which the nvidia-current driver wants. I downloaded the drivers from nvidia, and it installed, but informed me that acceleration

            • by AdamWill (604569)
              That would likely be it. You're not actually supposed to set the drivers up by manually installing the packages. You're meant to use the graphics card configuration tool. It will automatically detect your card, and if the non-free repository is available, it will ask if you want to use the proprietary driver. If you say yes, it installs and configures it for you.

              It also handles the SSE wrinkle. Note this little bit in Cards+ (part of ldetect-lst, which handles mapping cards to driver definitions):

              NAME
              • by sconeu (64226)

                Sorry, I should have been more clear.

                I was using Mandriva Free 2008.1. My rationale was that my computer is dual boot, shared with the wife, and I really didn't want to eat up time downloading packages, whereas I could download the Free DVD over the weekend at work. So when it booted up, it only had the nv drivers. I added the non-free repositories to get the closed source drivers.

                As an experiment, I tried Mandriva One and it found my stuff just fine.

    • by AdamWill (604569) on Friday July 11, 2008 @04:52PM (#24157897) Homepage
      The same market as always, better than Ubuntu does. ;) No, seriously, give it a try, you might be surprised.

      We do actually have a reasonably large enterprise business, mainly in Europe (and particularly France, obviously). We also have several significant OEM deals, including a pre-load deal with one of the largest Brazilian PC manufacturers (several thousand PCs are shipped pre-loaded with Mandriva in Brazil every month). We also have an involvement with Intel's Classmate PC program, we're involved in a large project in Angola to basically revamp its entire national IT structure, and there's a netbook / mini-laptop / whatever you call them coming out with Mandriva pre-loaded later this year - the Gdium (http://www.gdium.com). But yeah, we still have a significant (and growing) user base among normal every day Linux users. Sales of the Powerpack and Flash are pretty strong, and there's many times more people using the free editions.

      • by drinkypoo (153816)

        the Gdium (http://www.gdium.com)

        Do I want to know what a Gayaplex is?

        • by AdamWill (604569)
          Hey, that was the laptop manufacturers' bright idea, not ours. Although the uncharitable might wonder if they were drinking the same Kool-Aid we had when we came up with Mandriva...=)

          I think it's some kind of suite of education-related webapps, or something. I'm honestly not entirely sure.
      • by CastrTroy (595695)
        The Gdium looks really nice. I really like the idea of the GKey. I always thought that eventually people wouldn't carry laptops and computers around, and instead would just carry a USB key with all their apps and data on it, and just plug it into any computer they came across. And they get the computer experience they are used to on every computer. This looks like a small step in that direction.
        • by AdamWill (604569)
          Sounds like you may be interested in the Mandriva Flash, then: http://www.mandriva.com/en/product/mandriva-flash-2008-spring [mandriva.com]

          The honest person in me would also point out that there are various free takes on the same idea, in exchange for you doing a bit of elbow work to install it. There was a community-developed Mandriva branch called MCNL that did this for a long time, though it's currently stagnant. I believe there's also community-developed USB images for Ubuntu and Fedora.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Fri13 (963421)

      Ubuntu has got the spotlight because it does few things better than others.

      1) Nice slogan "Ubuntu means humanity to others"
      2) Few applications on menus (was then, now everyone has only best ones on menus!)
      3) Came right time out when Linux got good HW support and GNOME got good versions out so it was looking good for Windows XP user!

      And that's it. Now it has great package support (thanks to Debian!) and big support from magazines etc, who dont know anything else than Ubuntu and thinks that Ubuntu is someway

    • by CastrTroy (595695)
      I've used Mandriva ever since the year 2000, and when Ubuntu came around, I never really caught on to what all the hype was about. It was touted as being more desktop friendly, but in the first few iterations, it was anything but. And I still don't think it really has anything that makes it that much more attractive than Mandriva. I still use and prefer Mandriva. After you hook up a few extra repositories, like PLF, you can basically install any piece of software available for Linux, and it takes care
    • by Ash-Fox (726320)

      Afaict, they don't have much of an "enterprise" market, and they don't have much of a "hacker" market... or am I wrong? What market is Mandriva serving these days?

      Users who are still with us market.

  • Have the definitions of alpha and beta changed? An alpha used to be an in-house test, while a beta was released to outsiders.

    I'm scratching my head trying to figure out how an open source project can have an alpha phase?

    • by mhall119 (1035984) on Friday July 11, 2008 @04:16PM (#24157357) Homepage Journal

      Alphas are released for developers (which don't have to be "in-house"), while betas are released to testers.

    • by AdamWill (604569)
      There is no One True Definition of what's an alpha, what's a beta, what's a release candidate, and what gets released to who. Everyone does it differently.
      • Yes, for instance, if it's a Microsoft product, the pre-release is really the Alpha and the final release is actually the beta. They figure, "Hey the more beta testers, the better, let's roll out that SP3!"

    • by Fri13 (963421)

      One reason why I like Mandriva is it's openess on development!

      Anytime when I want, I can add cooker repositories for urpmi and I get development version of distribution. I dont need to wait alpha or beta versions. And it is easy to stay on cooker until new stable version has released and then just disable cooker repositories and continue using new stable one.

      On OpenSuse or Ubuntu, it is not so easy, I need to add testing or other sources but in some way, in Mandriva, it is just much easier.

      I'm going to give

    • by HiThere (15173)

      Well, an alpha open source can't be behind closed doors. That would be a kind of oxymoron.

      So what alpha means in this context is "all the features aren't locked down, and we don't guarantee that the api or included applications will be compatible with the next release, much less the official release version".

      Personally, I'm quite glad that Mandrake is doing serious testing. They used to be my favorite distribution, then they got into financial trouble, and for a few years their Q/A was piss-poor. If they

  • Instead of just releasing another hosed major version?

    Anyone remember back when it was Mandrake and it actually worked?

    • Anyone remember back when it was Mandrake and it actually worked?

      You mean back when they were just a rip off of RedHat?

      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by kwabbles (259554)

        You mean back when they were just a rip off of RedHat?

        Yup. Which was back when RedHat actually worked.

        (I'm jabbing at Fedora, not the pay-for-functionality ES series.)

        • by Fri13 (963421)

          Mandrake worked on 8.x > 10.0 then 10.x versions it got somekind problems but on 2005 LE it started work again well. Now it is smoot, polished and works out of the box right away, what exm, Ubuntu cant do!

          Fedora is nice too and I like to test it but I have not learned to work with it's package management. It's other nice bleeding edge Linux distro!

    • by ydrol (626558)
      All working fine here. And better than Mandrake days. Any specifics?
  • Congrats /. has really outdone itself now. Hmmm... Maybe I could submit a post about my pocket lint.
  • Games (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Zombie Ryushu (803103)

    I've been able to put together a better gaming Linux setup on Mandriva than Ubuntu. Mandriva has alot of things Ubuntu doesn't.

  • by MMC Monster (602931) on Friday July 11, 2008 @04:29PM (#24157531)

    A beta version of KDE4? A development version of Gnome, and a RC of the kernel?

    At least this is only an alpha.

    Which makes me wonder how this got to the front page of /..

    • by AdamWill (604569)
      As I said, I really don't know what post selection criteria gets the post on 2008 Spring's *final* release rejected but this one accepted. Which is why I just submit everything and take whatever we can get published, these days. KDE 3.5 is available in contrib - aside from that there's no stable release of a major desktop included, though GNOME 2.23 is actually working quite well for me, and there's Xfce or IceWM or whatever to fall back on. But yes, this really is an alpha.
  • by gukin (14148) on Friday July 11, 2008 @06:29PM (#24159125)

    I've been running Mandriva since MDK 7.2, I had a few issues with 8.2 but everything "just works".

    Yes I've tried Ubuntu, it's very shiny but I can't get into the guts of the beast; besides I'm better at using Mandriva.

    What I really like best is I can use my Power pack (yes I'm a silver member) or I can use Mandriva-mini and, once I"ve set up the repositories, I can type "sudo urpmi mythtv-backend" and it all goes and works.

    To me, that's a pretty damn neat trick. That's a lot neater than going down to Best Buy and buying whatever TV tuner they've got and trying to make it work on Vista.

    • sounds like you were lucky, i bought a tv card cause some guy said it worked with linux, and apparently he had the earlier (like 6 months, damn it!) version than me and the current one has no linux driver yet... all i can say is the neighbors are now well aware of my swearing like a trooper capabilities.
    • by Ash-Fox (726320)

      What I really like best is I can use my Power pack (yes I'm a silver member) or I can use Mandriva-mini and, once I"ve set up the repositories, I can type "sudo urpmi mythtv-backend" and it all goes and works.

      "sudo apt-get install mythtv" or if you want to dedicate the machine for mythtv stuff only.. you can use the packages mythbuntu-desktop / mythbuntu-diskless-client / mythbuntu-diskless-server / mythbuntu-diskless-server-standalone / mythbuntu-live depending on what you need.

      Or if you prefer, download t

      • by AdamWill (604569)
        Just for the record - non-free packages that can legally be redistributed to the general public (including NVIDIA and ATI proprietary graphics drivers) are now in a public repository, /non-free . They're also included in the One edition of Mandriva. Not trying to argue you out of Ubuntu or anything - just posting for the record in case anyone thinks things are still as they were when you left. :)
      • by ReinoutS (1919) <<reinout> <at> <gmail.com>> on Saturday July 12, 2008 @01:05PM (#24165001) Homepage

        I used to be a silver member in Mandrivaclub (two years back I think) - but I got a bit fedup having to pay for access to repositories that provide DKMS versions of proprietary nvidia drivers and such and I didn't like the 3rd party repositories for that stuff because they were messy.

        This policy has been abandoned. All repositories except the commercial software ones are available to all at no charge. That includes the repository with the proprietary drivers.

  • I'm glad Mandriva is around. Ubuntu seems to have more momentum (and I use it a lot too), but what if Shuttleworth stops his efforts and some follower tries to cash in or make deals with companies which are less philanthropic, but help to control a competitor. We have seen other distributions like RedHat, Suse make rather drastic changes in the past and not all to the benefit of the distribution community. Its good to have choice and I found Mandriva an excellent distribution too which minimizes the amount
  • I've used it on my laptops (Dells and Thinkpads) for about 3 or 4 years after getting impatient with Red Hat's slowness in releasing packages and lagging hardware support. MDV tends to be months ahead in this regard. Always seems to have some kind of installer bug or other but so far nothing that can't be overcome with my quite shamefully minimal Linux juju. Ubuntu's really nice but I find Mandriva more convenient. Perhaps that's just a case of the devil you know. They're a good bunch and I pay for Silver j
  • Mandrake was the first distro that really worked for me. I started with Debian but it's not good for beginners. It's too easy to mess things up. apt-get hose-my-computer happened a bit too frequently so I switched. It worked great until a new KDE came out and then OMFG it was a nightmare trying to get it upgraded. I've used several different distros since then and they all have their good and bad. My favorite by far is Ubuntu and that's what I run on my server. I don't have the time to fuck with it. I want
    • by AdamWill (604569)
      If you're running a server why would you *want* to upgrade to the latest shiny version of XYZ all the time? That's just a recipe for pain.

      My servers are still on Mandriva 2008. They'll run that till 2009 comes out. Or possibly 2009 Spring. Why waste time updating them to the Latest Spanking Shiny Version of Everything if they don't actually need it? In case you didn't know, Mandriva (like every other sensible distro) does not necessarily do full version upgrades to fix security issues. What that means is
      • by Ash-Fox (726320)

        Ubuntu pretty much functions the same way with updates (bug fixes and security fixes) and upgrades (new versions of software).

        For those who always like to be on the bleeding edge of everything, we have the backports repositories, which are probably the most extensive such of any distro.

        Ubuntu has those too. The sad thing about Mandriva is that I had to use 3rd party repositories like Seer of souls [seerofsouls.com] because Mandriva doesn't supply the software I like to use - which I might add, Ubuntu has in their repositorie

        • by AdamWill (604569)
          Ubuntu's backports repositories are far smaller and less active than Mandriva's (just do a file listing on both and have a look). In practice, most 'backports' for Ubuntu are done via PPAs or just via projects posting packages on their websites, which I find a much more messy and potentially problematic system than a centralized backports repository (although it seems to work out okay for most people most of the time).

          It is true that Ubuntu has slightly more packages than Mandriva (last I checked it was
      • by Blimey85 (609949)
        I don't want to be on the bleeding edge but I don't want to be miles behind either. I also don't have the time nor the energy to subscribe to yet another mailing list. And what good would it do for me to subscribe to it anyway? Am I going to know what to do when I see an email that says XYZ has a huge security hole? I assume if there is a serious security problem an update will be pushed through the normal channels. When I do my update and then upgrade, I'll get said update and the problem will be solved.

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