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Portal:15.4/Retrospective

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Welcome to the openSUSE Leap 15.4 retrospective.

Survey at https://survey.opensuse.org was opened since 1st June and closed on 16.06.2021 06:30am.

We've received 760 responses compared to 605 in 15.3 and 409 in Leap 15.2.

Raw data can be already found here File:Results-leap154retro.ods . Raw data can be useful in case that user makes cross reference in between what went well and what didn't go well. This information would be otherwise lost once we start categorizing feedback items.

This wiki page will then be an archive of the retro result just like in 15.3 and 15.2.

Public Review of results

As for the past two releases, I want to yet again process the release retrospective results in a few public rounds, categorize responses, and share feedback with respective teams once done.

We had at least three rounds of review last time. Numbers tell me we'll need more this time, or we need to find a more effective way of categorizing. We'll announce more rounds if necessary.

https://meet.opensuse.org/meeting

Monday 18th July 9:00 am - 10:00am CEST

Tuesday 19th July 3:30 pm - 4:40 pm CEST (Before regular meeting)

Thursday 21th July 8:00 pm - 9:00 pm CEST (Before regular meeting) Next to process is (The update process is generally easy to use. I am comfortable with it as it is.)

TODO for lkocman announce more public rounds (at least two).

Additional info needed from community

Ctrl+f for (NEEDINFO). We could use some more context for feedback marked with "(NEEDINFO)" string. Thank you!

What went well

User Experience

  • Nothing reported; all went well as usual; less than two hours between the beginning of the download of the iso and the reboot; it's beautiful, it's clean, it's efficient: it's (open)SUSE (Deutsh Qualität).
  • Overall smooth install, thanks to everyone who makes that possible.
  • Got a smoother operation than 15.3.
  • smooth
  • Works stable since first day the beta came out
  • Very fast , that is amazing
  • The veta was rock solid.
  • Everything went smoothly.
  • Leap 15.4 es el sistema que mejor se adapta a mi computadora. Superó a 15.3. Felicitaciones. / Leap 15.4 is the system that best suits my computer. He beat 15.3. Congratulations.
  • Opensuse leap 15.4 got new features while keeping its stabillity.
  • Clear design is good and quick release. I want to try openSUSE in the default iso image (3.8 GB), I did not see it.
  • Everything is working completely as expected. Very pleased
  • Everything went good for me, I had no troubles setting up my specialized usecase.

I'm using a VFIO GPU Passthrough setup.

  • Leap 15.4 works wonderfully well just like the previous release and even Tumbleweed which uses a rolling release concept.
  • Anyway, I just want to say thanks for such a reliable OS, and only OS for this particular computer over the last 10 years. Still a nice system to use :)
  • The release is very stable with no issues at all
  • Everything is stable. :) Reported bug were all corrected. :)

Upgrade experience

  • The upgrades were as painless as I've come to expect.
  • I've upgraded 15.4 pre-release versions on 15.3 on several systems, no problems. There was one thing needed when using recent stable kernel required newer tools, but they were provided in another repository.
  • I updated 3 machines. Things went very good. 2 machines were updated from 15.3. 1 machine was updated from 15.2.
  • Apart from some self-inflicting issues (1. forgot to disable personal repo with 15.3 binaries, but the installer figured it out 2. didn't clean up old kernels so nvidia kernel module build failed, but forcing it after first boot into 15.4 fixed that), the upgrade, using full DVD, was, as always, reassuringly boring :)
  • Finally updated to $releasver for all libraries, update was a breeze, had a program running so delayed reboot.
  • There were no problems with migration from 15.3.
  • No problems at all doing a dist-upgrade from 15.3 to 15.4
  • Everything went great with the Leap 15.3 to 15.4 upgrade on my main machine, only some gstreamer related files that would not install but got that cleaned up and could not be more pleased. Many thanks to the openSUSE team for their excellent work! I have another machine running Leap as a Gnome desktop with transactional updates and got it to update from 15.3 to 15.4 as well (used the transactional-update shell), great stuff, looking forward to the future of SUSE/openSUSE!
  • SDB:System Upgrade is well written and easy to follow. I had no hiccups at all
  • It was getting easier during last upgrades, with --releasever=15.4 key, and no need of manually change the release version in .repo files.
  • As usual I always stress more over the process than necessary,
  • The update was very smooth, performed remotely.
  • Upgrade with zypper worked with third-party repositories on multiple machines, so far everything went smoothly.
  • Upgrade is certainly easy from 15.3 with zypper command, just like usual update but with large amount of packages. Settings are all well preserved and no other special issues discovered.
  • Updating from 15.3 worked nice.
  • All basic-functions worked well after a restart. (lkocman: rest of sentence was split into upgrade / what didn't go too well)
  • Very smooth upgrade from 15.3. Leap
  • openSUSE is packed very well, download, fresh installation and first use experience on a netbook was really nice. In the next days I will perform upgrade from 15.3 on my main PC, to further test long term upgrades (15.1 -> 15.2 -> 15.3 -> 15.4).

Offline upgrade

  • With one exception (sound on one machine), the dvd upgrade from 15.3 went really well.

Installation on older hardware

  • A proposal from a user: There are still many low-end notebooks, PCs and netbooks. It would be interesting to provide a small reference to reduce the footprint of an openSUSE desktop with, for example, Xfce.

Communication

  • Lubos Kocman always attentive to answer questions and being very kind :)
  • I appreciate the wiki articles, blog posts, etc regarding project schedule/timeline, build status, etc.
  • Communication between Release Team and Community
  • I'm not following the development this time but I follow several openSUSE mailing list and telegram group as well, I should say that the communication is improving. (lkocman: feedback continuation was split into mirrors section)

Mirrors

  • I manage one of the mirror and I don't see any GM that's what surprised me :-) (lkocman: paragraph split. Beginning in communication)
 lkocman: yes we no longer hide GM, we've done that in 15.3 as well, it was based on feedback from 15.2, where we've had issues with GM images/hiding. Beginning with Leap 15.4 OBS autosigns all images, which made it one less step. It should look more like "business as usual" than something unexpected. I hope you like it.

Community involvement

  • Much more Community Involvement compared to before


Timing

  • It released on time


Installation process

  • Installation, upgrading and general system maintenance has been very easy.
  • Yes, installation was smoothes than older version and better kernel.
  • Installation is a breeze.
  • I have installed OpenSuse many times, so there wasn't really anything different about this release. I think the installer is probably one of the more difficult ones out of all the distros for new users, and it makes some weird choices - like encrypting /boot when most installers do not, and then, again unlike most installers, does not handle the encryption keys well and leaves you in a situation where you have to enter your luks key twice. No other distro's installer leads to this situation, and it is a bit silly at this point, and gives the appearance to a new user of being half baked. All that said, I appreciate the customization the installer allows, and while I would like to see a smoother default, I wouldn't want to lose the power user features. I think the Fedora installer strikes a better balance, though it isn't perfect either.

Stability

  • I've been using Leap 15.4 (beta) since around March 15th on my main workstation. So far I'm really impressed by the stability, the support and generally how well everything works, even though I might be a bit biased since I've been using some Linux as a daily driver for about 15 years or so.
  • Rock solid. Never seen it glitch. Even in beta.

Software availability

  • Most of the software stack is pretty recent and nothing major is missing.
  • Awesome software repo.
  • great that we had a DE bump this time 😄
  • Up to date packages (GNOME, KDE, etc.)

Migration from other systems

  • Switching from another distribution was very easy, I had to learn only a few things and those were mostly trivial like command line options to zypper instead of apt and so on.
  • I previously used Tumbleweed, with a great experience. Switching to Leap 15.4 was great because I have a recent version of KDE Plasma, few system updates, and it is easy to install and use Flatpaks for my applications.

Zypper

  • Zypper turns out to be awesome! This comes from Debian & Gentoo person.

Quality Engineering

  • QA testing and good updates for the progress

KDE

  • New Plasma version with decent Wayland support

XFce

  • Great to see Xfce back in the primary desktop environment selection.

GNOME

  • Leap 15.4 with GNOME 41 surprising me




What didn't go well

Schedule

  • Release immediately after oSC22

User experience

  • (NEEDINFO) Had first spontaneous reboot in ages. Running Minecraft and still had python program running. (is the reboot and minecraft related?, could we get a bug for the reboot, unless it was a one-off)


Performance / Slowness

  • (NEEDINFO) (lkocman: Could you please share what Desktop Manager are you using, and basic machine specs? Thank you) It seems that the start until full login and after login until beginning with work need some seconds more now. (may be a larger kernel and loading larger modules?)

SUSE

  • It is not really community distro any more, just SUSE driven SLE copy.

No point of survey - community wants are always second to SUSE wants in Leap/ALP


Translations

  • Some translations of the EULA were missing on installation.

Networking

Artwork

  • No new wallpaper, I waited for this ;(

Audio

  • Pipewire setup is more bugged then in Tumbleweed (wireplumber not enabled by default in systemd preset)
  • The change to pipewire had my audio through displayport stopped. I'm a quite experienced user/admin and run my machines with opensuse since 1995. Yet, I couldn't either fix the problem or revert to pulseaudio. The situation is the same even after a new installation on a clean disc. Thinkpad T440s + Asus monitor.
  • I only did clean install in my laptop for the time being. Almost everything running so well. I though pipewire is default sound server but it is PA in my installation so I should do it manually. It is important because many bluetooth headsets and microphones might not working well unless there is pipewire installation.


Communication

  • New builds not communicated well, it was very hard to know what changed (a bot in the opensuse-factory would be nice next time, similar to tumbleweed's)
  • I am somewhat uncertain about the ambiguous communication culminating in "THE END OF LEAP 15.5!!!" All I see is doom and gloom speculation, random communications between insiders, and nothing about what comes next, I suppose/hope it will be some kind of smooth transition that is transparent to the end user, as I do not wish to seek a replacement.

mirror

  • No, in fact one of of the biggest shortcomings of OpenSuse is the mirror situation. I live in the US, and for whatever reason, the system always wants to choose the absolute slowest server possible. By manually changing in the past we are talking the difference between downloads of 10mb/s vs 5kb/s. It is extreme. But I haven't noticed that on this install yet. So hopefully the situation has improved.
  • (continuation of the nvdiaia hwenc/hwdec) I get the feeling that they just don't care about Leap.

And that's a feeling I get from wider community too, even from some former board members, which is a bit weird, to say the least. How hard is it to understand that Tumbleweed just isn't fit for some use-cases, and that Leap is? Add the uncertainty around ALP and Leap's future, and there are already "avoid Leap, it's dead" posts on social media.

  • Total lack of communication! I only knew 15.4 was ready because I read about it on a news site. No email, no notification on the desktop, nothing. That's mad!

GA image availablity

  • (NEEDINFO) (Could you please specify which mirror was used or at least a country?) It took me over 2 hours (until after 14:00 utc) to find the download dvd image, everything was still pointing to Leap 15.3.

get-o-o

  • on https://www.opensuse.org, the section right after Tumbleweed and Leap was still showing "Leap RC" until I hard refresh the page. I would suggest to disable caching for this section as could cause issue every time you are releasing a beta or an official release
  • Some links being broken on the website at the start of the release
  • The ISO download is redirected from "openSUSE-Leap-15.4-NET-x86_64-Media.iso" to "openSUSE-Leap-15.4-NET-x86_64-Build243.2-Media.iso". As a result, the SHA256 file does not work anymore without manual adjustments.
  • The download page only offers the SHA256 checksum, but not the ASC signature file. I had to go into the help section to find it. Those files should be offered in the same place.

lkocman: Similar to https://github.com/openSUSE/get-o-o/issues/78, we know about the issue you really need to clean the cache


Upgrade

  • I have hit all the walls when upgrading 15.3 to 15.4...

The online upgrade trashed my laptop and the offline upgrade (download ISO from https://opensusemirror.lihaso.com//distribution/leap/15.4/iso/openSUSE-Leap-15.4-DVD-x86_64-Build243.2-Media.iso, burn it onto a USB stick. etc) doesn't work either...

  • No problems at all on my end as I have been working with Linux 20+ years. Only suggestion would be to find a way to make it less complicated between minor version updates so it would be more friendly to less experienced users similar to the way Debian and some of the others just pull in the minor version updates during regular updates. NixOS also makes it simple to jump versions, just update the channel and go but that is another animal all together though a very interesting at that. I know rolling solves this issue but creates others from being on the bleeding edge and too many updates but how about a “stable rolling model” that is equal to the stability of today’s Leap and pair it with an option to make it Atomic? Thanks again, keep up the great work!
  • Update need a lot of time - longer than others before. I only lost some special repos. Most of old installed programs run well. Half an our I need to fix the little problems. (lkocman: beginning of setence is in what went well)
  • I plan to zypper dup several servers and my desktop PC. I want to see how pgadmin4 behave after dup because it is critical to my daily job. My servers mainly development servers with python3 and nodeJS web applications and Postgresql.
 lkocman: if you're worried about pgadmin4, then you can help our QA to put together a test that would cover your upgrade scenario. In that case you will not have to worry about it any more at all as it will be tested with every build since early Alpha. Start with sharing your scenario here: https://progress.opensuse.org/projects/openqatests/issues)

Kubernetes

  • Kubernetes is packaged, but the packages do not work, since the images referenced by the configs delivered in the packages have been removed from the registry

Installer

(RFE) Improved at the beginning of the installation, give the option to see the user password when creating user or root password. (lkocman: perhaps this one could be reported against actual installer as well as d-installer for post 15.5. To user who reported this, feel free to report features in https://code.opensuse.org/leap/features next time. Otherwise, I'll make sure to talk to installer team about this one.)

Yast / Software installation

I also find the new interface of Yast2-software very basic ; I understand that the new libzypp required this change, but it is still confusing! I was accustomed to the verbosity of the old version ... lkocman: similar feedback for yast is in PackageKit section

Packagekit

  • Installing/Updating Software using packagekit (and therefore using KDE Discover or GNOME Software) is really slow and isn't able to solve dependency issues.

Installing Software using YaST works fine, but isn't visually appealing and not suitable for inexperienced users. I already opened a bug report for this issue years ago, but it still hasn't been fixed. I think I'll try another distro that I can recommend to inexperienced users.

zypper

  • Zypper has the tendency to ask useless questions during the upgrade (do you want to break dependencies, do you want to not upgrade some packages or do you want to do the only sensible thing and uninstall some old packages and install the new versions of the packages), that is not really necessary. (However, this is a zypper problem not specific to this upgrade.) Quite some packages that were originally pulled in as dependencies do not get uninstalled although no other package depends on them any more (by this I mean also not recommended). Some of those left-over packages were even orphaned. (All of this concerns SLE or openSUSE packages, not third-party packages.)

Software availability

  • Distro ready, but not all packages. So when upgrade or install leap 15.4, there will be a wall about the availability of packages until they be package for the distro.
  • Showstopper problem with the python-cryptography version, killing gajim and certbot. Also, certbot removed from repos, meaning a push to having to install snapd just to run certbot, a crazy overkill.

Have had to put horrible workarounds in place for gajim, having to use pip, which is far harder to maintain than "zypper up"

  • Many Packages I needed weren't officially available for 15.4 but for 15.3. I used community installers then.
  • (NEEDINFO) (lkocman: could you please give us examples of software which is not available. Also please consider particular requests for updates in https://code.opensuse.org/leap/features) Some programs are not available or heavily outdated
  • I don't use the $releasever macro, as I don't find it very obvious; I prefer to specify the absolute path of the repositories I use. I did a little sudo sed -i 's/15.3/15.4/g' /etc/zypp/repos.d/*.repo to prepare for the migration and sudo zypper ref; then I was surprised to discover that some repositories had an address in /.../openSUSE_Leap_15.4 and others in 15.4. It's not annoying but it's a bit messy, so it would be nice if all repositories declared opensuse the same way for the next upgrade. For me, I think it would be clearer this way:
 /foo/foo/opensuse/Leap/15/4
 /foo/foo/opensuse/Leap/15/5
 ...
 /foo/foo/opensuse/Leap/16/1
 /foo/foo/opensuse/Leap/16/2
 ...
 /foo/foo/opensuse/tumbleweed
  • The provided software is already partly out of date

Python and Ruby

  • Python and Ruby are outdated to the point of almost being unusable in a development setting, because most projects use much more recent and incompatible versions in their development branches (e.g. vagrant-libvirt will be troublesome because of ruby)
  • The default version of python3 is Python 3.6.15, which is inconvenient. While it is easy to install a newer version, I would much rather Python 3.8 or newer as the default.
  • Leap 15.4 still ships with Python 3.6 as default, which reached its end-of-life in 2021. I appreciate that Leap favors stability over bleeding-edge, but this takes it a bit far.

Build flags

  • vim is compiled with weird options/bad optimization impacting performance for large files

Lookup of software outside of the distribution repository

  • Almost all software is available in almost any desirable version from some repo on OBS, but discoverability is terrible (this isn't Leap 15.4 specific though).

Missing software

  • Some software is missing from openSUSE repos completely. If Debian can redistribute common AV codecs in their non-oss repos, I don't see why openSUSE can't and has to rely on third party repositories for that

Packaging

  • Some software is packaged strangely (urxvt comes with 88 color support by default, you have to use urxvt-256color to get full color support, but this is not mentioned anywhere except OBS change logs)

Documentation

  • Documentation is a hotchpotch of old wikis, forums, new wikis and clearly not well maintained. Common tasks like installing proprietary drivers for popular video cards and AV codecs should be documented such that I don't second guess whether the instructions are still valid.
  • The wiki is a mess....
  • (MISSING DOCS) I had previously left my difficulty regarding broken remote sessions for interacting with x11 and even alsamixer, but I could access via vnc over ssh using sudo and -auth that I got from systemctl status display-manager.service. I did not find much useful information, and also wanted to share that I resolved, and how I resolved.
 % sudo journalctl -b | grep xauth
 Jun 14 08:53:40 linux-urvq sddm-helper[1461]: Adding cookie to "/run/user/1000/xauth_ZHWbss" and then,
 % xauth merge /run/user/1000/xauth_ZHWbss
 A reboot to verify repeatability and to guarantee that no lingering configs were hanging around and it was now fixed, Maybe alsamixer, was related to kde and pulseaudio. 

Printing

  • My printer (Brother MFC J4420DW) used to work out of the box in Debian with zero configuration, but after sinking about a full workday into trying to get it to work, I just gave up. It's a network printer that supports all of the standard network printing protocols and discovery methods, none of which work. Auto discovery doesn't work, manually setting it up shows its status ok, but then it just does not print, no matter which settings/protocol/program combination I use. I believe there are drivers or configurations missing.

3rd party repos

  • issues during beta phase with 3rd party repos, still some are not available yet. not really oS fault though..
  • The upgrade itself was fine, but we really need to figure out this whole cooperation/co-development with the community around Packman repositories, and

their package rebuilds and versioning for Leap. For example, after vendor switch to packman, zypper shows "these packages won't be upgraded" for packages that are from packman, and have counterparts in official repos, despite the fact they are basically the same, former just having extra stuff that can't be shipped in main repositories. But versioning between them is different/not consistent, so zypper's version compare magic leads it to wrong conclusion. It's not that big of a deal, rather more cosmetic thing, but it can be a bit confusing, especially for new users.

Multimedia and Codecs

  • Media codecs could've been more straightforward to install--need to play media for work.
  • The team needs to make it clear how people can obtain multimedia drivers and graphics drivers for nVidia graphics cards. It is easy to those who are familiar with Linux to check a project wiki on details but that doesn't work with newcomers and for a distro that aims to be as simple and straight forward as it can get, SuSE clearly lacks behind others such as Ubuntu or pop!_OS in that department.

Desktop security

  • A proposal from the user: Improving the security posture of default installation of operating systems is a key feature today. Improving openSUSE Leap security posture for desktops and servers could be done with small low efforts steps, since it already ships AppArmor, profiles could be enforced on internet facing applications like browsers or vulnerable applications like LibreOffice and PDF readers.


GNOME

  • (NEEDINFO) (lkocman: please report a bug https://en.opensuse.org/openSUSE:Submitting_bug_reports against component GNOME) Type 'clear' to clear terminal screen using GNOME Terminal only half screen is clear (can see previous command by scrolling, just like older release 15.2 15.3). Only happen with GNOME Terminal.

KDE

  • Wayland should be default for Plasma desktop.
  • The package for calibre has been broken for weeks, no one gas fixed the hardcoded versions of some dependencies that are set with Tumbleweed in mind. Sloppy
  • Dolphin forgot to open at my /home folder as it used to before. It opened at the last used folder instead.
  • Borders are a big problem - if I have two (or more) applications partially overlapping on my kde desktop, it is impossible to see where one window finishes and another starts.

sddm


NVIDIA

  • Nvidia driver has HDMI working with no audio, fixable only thru udev rules.
  • The other thing is, since the switch to ffmpeg-4, AFAICT, packman Leap builds(both 15.3 and 15.4 atm) don't have support for nvidia hwenc/hwdec, and Tubleweed builds do. The issue started around October 2021, IIRC, and it's still not fixed.

Despite reaching out to some of the people there, and explaining the problem, finding the issue and offering solution, I get the feeling that they just don't care about Leap.

  • Installing Nvidia drivers is still ambiguous, even with the driver wiki page. It would very be useful to be able to view or select my enabled graphics drivers directly from YaST.

Container experience

  • Setting up LXC is a pain in the butt, couldn't get networking to work--never been a problem in Debian.
  • libvirt-daemon-lxc is currently broken; see https://gitlab.com/libvirt/libvirt/-/issues/182. This is frustrating because I had the *exact* same problem (literally the same bug) when updating from 15.2 to 15.3. This was working ok in 15.3 before I upgraded to 15.4, but it looks like a fix was reverted because it introduced a security issue.

LiveCD

LiveCD has not languagues to choose when we are trying, please add these options, thanks.


Complains for TW

  • Leap es impecable. Tengo quejas sobre Tumbleweed. Es demasiado inestable y tiene muchas fallas, especialmente desde que se adoptó GNOME 42. Considero que Tumbleweed debe tomar dos caminos: a) Quedar como una "beta" para uso interno de OpenSUSE o b) Probar mucho más el software ofrecido y no hacer tantas actualizaciones semanales. Es preferible una actualización mensual y que todo funcione como corresponde antes de ser liberada al usuario. La prueba está en Manjaro, ya que pese a ser una rolling release se toman su tiempo antes de adoptar GNOME 42 o los drivers de video específicos. / Leap is flawless. I have complaints about Tumbleweed. It's too unstable and buggy, especially since GNOME 42 was adopted. I think Tumbleweed should go two ways: a) Stay as a "beta" for OpenSUSE internal use or b) Test the offered software a lot more and not do as many updates weekly. A monthly update is preferable and everything works as it should before being released to the user. The proof is in Manjaro, since despite being a rolling release they take their time before adopting GNOME 42 or the specific video drivers.

Filesystems

  • zfs packages are currently broken (i.e. builds are failing); see https://bugzilla.suse.com/show_bug.cgi?id=1199748. I can't just install an older kernel from 15.3 to work around this problem because the version of util-linux included with 15.4 requires a newer kernel version. So, I effectively need to reinstall 15.3 in order to access data on zfs filesystems. I understand that zfs is experimental, but this is a major inconvenience to say the least.

ssh / remote access

 (NEEDINFO) (PLESE OPEN A BUG) I have yet to track down the fix related to the errors like this that have crept in 
 after updating. Mind you that this is in relation to a machine over ssh, that has 
 worked fine since 12.something:
 "% alsamixer
 ALSA lib pulse.c:243:(pulse_connect) PulseAudio: Unable to connect: Connection refused
 
 cannot open mixer: Connection refused"
 and 
 "% export DISPLAY=:0                                                                                                                                                 
 :(
 % xset q
 No protocol specified
 No protocol specified
 xset:  unable to open display ":0""
 Also I can no longer use x11vnc over ssh without root and this line auth added: "- 
auth /run/sddm/{fa4c30ec-70a8-477f-a8a8-6a3b2453bd03}"
 Sadly this changes every time the display-manager is started.
 Commands do appear to run when using konsole directly into vnc on the desktop. 
 I am not sure whether or not audio is working on the other side since the volume icon 
 is stuck on mute, but alsamixer indicates that the volume is on due to not having 
 direct physical access to the machine.
 Before this particular update, updates have been smooth.