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New packages in Cooker

A lot of new packages have arrived into cooker since the release of Mandriva 2006. The latest version of the popular database server Posgresql 8.1 is replacing the version 8.0.4, with a new set of upgrade scripts to have a cleaner update. MySQL? 5.0.16 is now available too, as well as the final version of KDE 3.5 on all the cooker FTP mirrors. The last version of PHP, 5.1, replaces the 5.0, but the 4.4 version, still required by a lot of third party software, is included into the contribs. You will also be able to test the new trac 0.9, the xmms substitutes beep-media-player 0.9.7.1 and his competitor bmpx 0.12.9. You will find as well the new IRC client xchat 2.6.1, the image-editing gimp 2.3.5, the new firewall front-end shorewall 3.0.1, and hundreds of other new programs.

Amongst the new packages, we can notice the new motocross simulation platform game Xmoto, and the tennis simulation Freetennis.

Lately in Cooker have been uploaded the version 6.9 of Xorg, Apache 2.2 (be careful the update may need you to check your configuration files because some module names have changed, for example mod_access or mod_auth), of course the latest version of Gnome 2.12, Evolution 2.4.2.1, and also Postgresql 8.1.1, xemacs 21.4.18, and a new comer, the kernel-linux 2.6.15, which is the latest stable version of the kernel released by Linus, without any additional patches.

A new version of Captive is also available in cooker. Captive allows you to mount NTFS partition in read/write mode under linux. Captive is included into the contrib section of the Mandriva mirrors.

Cooker has nearly 70 uploaded packages per day, 25 of then being new versions.

Mandriva in 2006: towards 2007!

Mandriva developers are still quite busy! In December, the club members were lucky to access a new updated version of the 2006, including all the 2006 security and bugs updates, as well as the new version of Gnome 2.12 and OpenOffice.org 2.0. The first post 2006 cooker snapshot has also been released in December.

As far as new products are concerned, Mandriva is working on a new version of the mobile product Globetrotter, updated to version 2006. Some rumors exist too regarding the development of a new version of the Mandriva Move, now completely based on a USB key. This product might be available on 1 GB or 2 GB USB, part of which will contain the system, and the remaining available space the user data. However, given the technical limit of USB keys regarding the number of writes allowed, a special layout will have to be found to prevent the system on the key to kill it too fast, most probably only relying on the memory for most of the operations, and only saving important changes on the key.

Hard to forecast all the news for the year 2006, of course the new Mandriva Linux 2007, but if the development has already started, the first beta version will not be available before June 2006. Club members will likely be luckier with a new updated version in February or March with KDE 3.5, and maybe a new one in June with the new packages available, such as Gnome 2.14.

In the year 2005 were released the Limited Edition 2005, the Globetrotter 2005 and of course the Mandriva Linux 2006. For the first time Mandriva invested some money to launch this new 2006, professional breakfasts, global install party, meeting with the press. This new policy of investment is clearly noticeable in the results for the fiscal year 2004-2005, with a growing turnover, but less benefits compared to last year results, when the financial policy was stricter after the chapter 11 period.

The year 2006 will be full of changes for Mandriva, changes in the the way the distribution is created with a new build system inspired from the Conectiva one, changes with the increasing number of contributors and employees, such as the ones from Conectiva and Edge IT in 2005. This increase should not stop, and as the linux market is growing, Mandriva will have to demonstrate its ability to fulfill more and more demandfull corporate requirements, and to keep its commitment and good image in the desktop market and its present users and customers.

Intel partnership

Since the Mandriva Linux 2006, Mandriva is conducting a new privileged partnership with Intel. Intel has taken an active participation in the launch of the 2006, and moreover the 2006 support is now clearly included into the Intel policy, and all the new motherboards have been certified on the Mandriva Linux 2006. Last but not least, now on the Intel website the Mandriva support is included into the Intel QuickStart?.

Desktop Domination

To improve the Mandriva use on the desktop, a new brainstorming has been launched to gather all the ideas to help Mandriva to become even more ergonomic and efficient. The wiki page (at: http://qa.mandriva.com/twiki/bin/view/Main/DesktopDomination) lists all the suggestions. We can find, amongst others, to have a better hardware support, to be able to read DVD without extra software, to have a working suspend mode whatever your configuration, a faster boot process...

Testzilla

Testzilla, the sub part of bugzilla dedicated to tests, is still underused. The goal of this tool is to give stricter test procedures to users so that they can report problem or feedback to Mandriva in a more precise and known context. Testzilla is available from the main Bugzilla page on http://qa.mandriva.com/. Testzilla is directly linked with bugzilla and the hardware database, as a consequence you can perform a test with your own configuration as parameter. Of course you must have first to update your profile with your hardware configuration inside testzilla. To add comments about Testzilla, if you do not find it useful enough, you can create a bug report on the component 'testzilla' for the product Bugzilla.

Cooker mailing-list

Regarding the cooker mailing list, several important threads raised various problems, the first one concerning the Mandriva kernel update policy into cooker, as the 2.6.15 is nearly available, and cooker still sticks to the 2.6.12. One guy switching from Mandriva to Ubuntu created too a lot of traffic. Anyway those issues are a good thing after a release, allowing to rethink a bit the whole thing and try to fix what does not work correctly to start a gain on saner basis for a new year.
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