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Archive:Weekly news 3

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Welcome to the third issue of openSUSE Weekly News! For the week starting the 3-12-2007. Read this article in: English, German.

In this week:

  • openSUSE 11.0 Alpha 0
  • KDE Four Live 0.8, KDE 4.0 RC2 Packages, and Koffice Alpha6 Packages
  • Indonesian openSUSE Community Annual Meeting a Huge Success
  • Results from the openSUSE Contributor Survey
  • In Tips and Tricks: How to Change to the GNOME or KDE-style YaST; Calculations in Kickoff (KDE Menu); Fonts: Subpixel Hinting


Announcing openSUSE 11.0 Alpha 0

  • "We'd like to kick start the development of openSUSE 11.0 with releasing the current state of Factory as Alpha0 release. Since the release of 10.3, we checked in 2,187 packages including such fundamental package updates as GCC 4.3.0, Linux kernel 2.6.24-rc4, X.Org 7.3, KDE 3.5.8 and 4.0 RC1, CUPS 1.3.4, ALSA 1.0.15, GIMP 2.4 and YaST 2.16. The change between 10.3 and Alpha0 is big, but it still works pretty nicely. So please join the openSUSE 11.0 development in downloading, testing and using Alpha0 or daily updated Factory distribution. So far there are some glitches in the installation process that are mostly harmless. But the new kernel in particular can cause some regressions we would love to hear about those through Bugzilla."

KDE Four Live 0.8, KDE 4.0 RC2 Packages, and Koffice 2.0 Alpha6 Packages

RC2 is set to be the final milestone before the official KDE 4.0 release. It is feature-complete, and wide testing of it is greatly encouraged. The KDE Four Live CD has been updated to contain the RC2 packages with the hundreds of fixes that have gone in since RC1. While you can easily install the RC2 packages from the openSUSE repository, using the live CD is a great way to test it quickly without installing anything extra onto your hard-drive.

Koffice Alpha6 packages have also been made available in the KDE4 build service repository.


In the Community

Indonesian openSUSE Community Annual Meeting

Masim Vavai Sugianto writes in to tell us about the very successful Indonesian openSUSE Community Annual Meeting:

The event itself took place in a meeting room of Indonesian Ministry Youth and Sports, provided by an openSUSE-ID member.

Here is some info regarding 2008 planning, and about items discussed at the meeting:

  • Distributing about 1,000 CDs or DVDs each month or 12,000 in 2008. The CD and DVD will be provided by openSUSE-ID and openSUSE-ID branch in every province. Each member will be donate to support this project
  • Building openSUSE-ID branch and sub branch in the 33 provinces of Indonesia and in some district or main city. The openSUSE-ID branch will act as a gateway between openSUSE-ID in Jakarta (as head office) and to the openSUSE fans around of Indonesia. openSUSE-ID in Jakarta will be distribute the master DVD and CD (Installer DVD, Installer CD, LIveCD, LiveDVD and Repositories DVD) into each openSUSE-ID branch and the openSUSE-ID branch distributing the CD and DVD into end users.
  • Building an openSUSE-based distro with the most common applications used in Indonesia. Another option is providing an openSUSE add-on CD with multimedia codecs, Java, Flash and another common application. One of the main problem while promoting openSUSE in Indonesia is about multimedia codecs and non OSS application that are frequently used. With poor internet connection, the best way to solve this problem is to provide a Repository DVD or openSUSE addon CD.
  • Hope for 2,500 registered members in 2008 and about 50,000 PCs with openSUSE installed around Indonesia. Initiated in July 23, 2007, openSUSE-ID had about 600 registered users by the end of November 2007.
  • Publish a survey about openSUSE and SUSE variants users in Indonesia
  • The last session of the night was about "Building a Powerful Mail Server with openSUSE and Zimbra Collaboration Suite". Zimbra Collaboration Suite is the well-known mail server in the Linux world with Mozilla Public License for Open Source Edition. Vavai demonstrates how easy to setup the openSUSE 10.2 or openSUSE 10.3 as powerful mail server with ZCS.

Novell Open Audio: Fixing Security Problems in Linux

  • "For the last issue of their openSUSE release series, Novell Open Audio has talked to Marcus Mei√üner, team lead of the SUSE security team, to learn about the processes triggered by a security incidence, proactive source code audits, teaching developers how to write more secure software and AppArmor."

People of openSUSE: JP Rosevear

  • "Here goes another ‚ÄėPeople of openSUSE‚Äô interview, this time with a Canadian Novell employee and GNOME hacker - JP Rosevear. Besides his GNOME code contribution, he is the desktop development manager at Novell."

Results from openSUSE Contributor Survey

  • "281 contributors from the openSUSE community participated in a survey last month. The survey was part of a research project on the topic of firm-sponsored open source communities, hosted by the University of Oslo. Topics in the survey include:
  • level of contribution
  • reasons for participating
  • attitude towards Novell

Status Updates


  • Release fixed live CD
  • Release repair mini ISO
  • Alpha0 was released with quite some changes against 10.3
  • Installation has seen some rework (and alpha0 some bugs due to it)
  • zypper got sat-solver integration that is still work in progress (subscribe to zypp-devel if you're interested in helping there)
  • Roadmap being worked on
  • As some may have noticed - or not, Alpha0 did not come with addon media and I'm not aware of anyone complaining. I'm wondering if they are worth our time and mirror space, but I guess we'll experiment with the next alphas to come :)

Build Service

  • Working on installation repositories support inside of kiwi images
  • openSUSE fate might get installed on build service systems
  • code cleanup in scheduler, needs less memory including bug fixes
  • improved bootstrap algorithm to speed up base system boot strap
  • work on new web client -> will create a "most annoying things in web client" wiki page
  • new hardware for api and backend get installed this week, still needs deployment


Tips and Tricks

How to Switch to a Qt (KDE-style) or GTK (GNOME-style) YaST

  • "This HOWTO will guide you through changing the default YaST interface: either to the GTK (GNOME-style) or Qt (KDE-style) one, regardless of which desktop environment you want to use."

File:Yast control center-software.png Gtk-yast.jpg

Calculations in Kickoff, KDE's Main Menu

A tip straight from the SUSE forums: "You can use the search field in Kickoff in order to do calculations...

E.g. (4^2*12)-(27/18) "

Fonts: Subpixel Hinting

A great and easy-to-follow guide on rebuilding the freetype2 RPM with subpixel hinting enabled.

Planet SUSE

Covering just a few posts from Planet SUSE, an aggregation of all SUSE contributors' blogs:

Radek Doulík: 3D transitions

  • "Last week I have finally used 5 days of my ITO time (innovation time off) to enhance the TransoGL project. It started this summer as part of GSoC, where together with Thorsten I was acting as mentor for Shane Mathews. The goal was to implement framework for 3D transitions in Impress as well as implementing 5 transitions, powered by OpenGL. Shane did a great work and the outcome was big success. You can see Shane's and Radek's transitions in these videos avi1 avi2ogg1ogg2."

Will Stephenson: KDE 4: like a dream on 256Mb/1Ghz/Intel!

  • "So someone just asked in #kde4-devel whether it was worth trying KDE 4 on a 2500Mhz/256Mb computer and I was characteristically careful and guessed "It will work, but won't be good.". Then I decided to put my money where my mouth is and booted my Thinkpad X60 with "mem=256M maxcpus=1", logged into KDE 4 and set the power saving policy to "Powersave", which throttles the CPU to 1Ghz and locks it there...And I was pleasantly surprised with how well it all works."

openSUSE News Milestone

  • "I just noticed the internal statistics of openSUSE News saying "There are currently 200 posts and 1,800 comments, contained within 17 categories" (posts include calendar entries). Thanks to everyone contributing to make its start such a success. Smiling And I can still not understand why some other distro portals don't dare to allow user comments."

Miguel de Icaza: Track Moonlight Status

  • "Rusty has setup a nice page that tracks the Moonlight 1.0 status with various applications out there. We are using this as part of our QA and development process."

Past Meetings

GNOME Meeting 2007/12/06 (transcript)

"This meeting is discussed the latest developments in and around GNOME in openSUSE."

  • Bug Hunting (Specific Topics)
  • Factory testing
  • Task Review
  • Meeting Theme
  • Q&A - Non Developer
  • 11.0 Development Update
  • Q&A - Developer
  • New Tasks

Project Meeting - Wednesday 05/12/2007 transcript

  • Old Action Items
  • Status Questions
  • Q & A

Upcoming Events/Meetings

openSUSE KDE community meeting Wednesday, December 12th

  • "It is time for bi-weekly openSUSE KDE community meeting! "

In The Press A grand overview of popular desktop distributions (by Baris Paraskeva)

  • " On my desktop I have kept openSUSE, mainly because of the good hardware support interface; something I use a lot with the different peripherals that I swap in and out. The package availability is another bonus." openSUSE 11 Alpha 0 review contains a screenshot-rich tour of openSUSE 11.0 Alpha 0:

  • "This is a development version, so we should suppose that all the bugs I encountered here are going to be removed in the final version. The system itself, and most of the applications that are working are already quite stable. Considering this, openSUSE 11 is going to be a pretty good distribution. It has a big user base, recent versions for packages, some support from Novell, all the components are good integrated, there are nice GUIs for the most common settings, it is supposed to have good interoperability with Microsoft software."

Security Updates

To receive security update information as-it-happens, subscribe to the opensuse-security-announce mailing list.

SUSE Security Summary Report SUSE-SR:2007:025

Solved Security Vulnerabilities:

  • net-snmp denial of service problems
  • htdig XSS attacks
  • e2fsprogs overflows in libext2fs
  • nagios-plugins security problems
  • libpng denial of service problem
  • emacs overflow in command line
  • rubygem-actionpack session access
  • gnump3d restriction bypass
  • glib2 affected by PCRE problems

samba (SUSE-SA:2007:065)


  • "Secunia Research has reported a bug in function reply_netbios_packet() that allowed remote attackers to execute arbitrary code by sending specially crafted WINS "Name Registration" requests followed by a WINS "Name Query" request packet. The exploitable code in samba can only be reached if the option "wins support" was enabled."


  • "Another bug reported by Secunia Research affected the processing of GETDC mailslot request in nmbd. This error can also be exploited remotely to execute arbitrary code, but only if samba was configured as Primary or Backup Domain Controller."

Mozilla Firefox (SUSE-SA:2007:066)


  • "The Mozilla Firefox packages were brought to security update version for SUSE Linux Enterprise 10, SUSE Linux 10.0, 10.1 and openSUSE 10.2 and 10.3. These packages include the Canvas regression fix also fixed in, so we are effectively at with our packages."

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