KDE 4.0 Beta 4 was released earlier today and it features a number of bug fixes along with cleaning up the KDE code-base and at the same time adding a few new enhancements to the KDE 4.0 feature set. The OpenSuSE-based KDE Four LiveCD was also upgraded this afternoon to version 0.6. With the changes in KDE 4.0 Beta 4 and the shear number of improvements in KDE 4.0, we have taken some screenshots from this latest testing release and have them here for your viewing pleasure.
Taking a break from our graphics excitement last week with the release of AMD's 8.42.3 Display Driver, we have finished our largest (and most time consuming) Linux performance comparison to date. We have taken the last 12 major kernel releases, from Linux 2.6.12 to Linux 2.6.23, built them from source and set out on a benchmarking escapade. This testing also includes the Linux 2.6.24-rc1 kernel. From these benchmarks you can see how the Linux kernel performance has matured over the past two and a half years.
The third beta of KDE 4.0 was released this past week and today the KDE folks are out with KDE Four Live v0.5, which is based upon OpenSuSE. The KDE Four Live image contains all modules for KDE 4.0, KOffice 2.0 SVN, and other cutting-edge developments with v0.5 being the KDE 3.94.1 snapshot. At Phoronix we have taken a few screenshots to share from this very attractive desktop environment.
The Linux 2.6.23 kernel has been released today and we have some preliminary benchmarks of the 2.6.23 kernel as we compare it to the past Linux 2.6.22 kernel. We will have more on the Linux 2.6.23 kernel once we have tested it more extensively, but the benchmarks we have ran so far include Quake 4, LAME encoding, Gzip compression, and RAMspeed. If you missed it, among the features for the Linux 2.6.23 kernel include the CFS process scheduler (Completely Fair Scheduler), a variety of virtualization improvements, on-demand read-ahead, and XFS and EXT4 file-system improvements are among the interesting changes.
The X-Fi family of sound cards from Creative Labs has been around for over two years but through this time there has been no Linux support officially from Creative or from the Advanced Linux Sound Architecture (ALSA). Among the Creative X-Fi solutions are the X-Fi XtremeGamer, X-Fi XtremeGamer Fatal1ty Pro, X-Fi Platinum Fatal1ty Champion Series, and the X-Fi Elite Pro. However, Creative Labs is on the heals of finally releasing a new audio Linux driver that supports the X-Fi family. The driver that will be released any day now is considered beta software, but worst of all is that this sound driver will be closed-source.
This afternoon Intel's Chief Linux and Open-Source Technologist, Dirk Hohndel, talked about why Intel's commitment to open-source drivers creates a difference and advantage for Intel's architecture platforms. Nothing groud-breaking or too special was presented, but we have included some of Dirk's slides from this open-source driver presentation. Intel had also mentioned that AMD's (well, referenced as a "major graphics card vendor") open-source driver efforts as "good news." He also mentioned that a major OEM is requiring that by next year their hardware suppliers must either have an open-source driver available or be able to provide an open-source driver within the next twelve months. The likely company that comes to mind is Dell but Dirk refused to comment any further.
A few days ago one of the Vino developers, Jonh Wendell, released a new public build of Vinagre. Vinagre is designed to be a VNC client for the GNOME desktop and while it is still under development, in our testing thus far we found it to be an excellent VNC client. In this article, we'll be offering a brief preview of Vinagre 0.3.
Adobe has released an update for their Acrobat Reader product on Linux and SPARC Solaris. Adobe Reader 8.1.1 for Solaris and Linux features a new user-interface, improved performance, single document interface mode, and an always-available search toolbar. Adobe Reader 8.1.1 for Linux also features better desktop integration through complying with XDG-UTILS as well as support for Debian (deb) package installation. Some of the other new features include supporting multimedia-enabled PDF documents, new tools, updated review tracker, Orca accessibility support, and new additions to the digital ID feature are among the noteworthy improvements.
Last November at Phoronix we had featured a preview of the Razer Barracuda AC-1 sound card and after taking off its EMI shield we had found that this card depended upon the C-Media Oxygen HD CMI8788 audio processor, which at the time was not supported under Linux. Though support had come in the Open Sound System (OSS) version 4.0 for this CMI8788 APU. Well, now finally in ALSA 1.0.15 the Advanced Linux Sound Architecture will support this C-Media audio chip. ALSA 1.0.15-rc1 was released recently and contains the initial CMI8788 audio driver. In this article we will be taking a quick look at where this driver stands today for the Razer Barracuda AC-1 under Linux.
The first beta of KDE 4.0 was released earlier this month and Warren Woodford of the MEPIS project has now built a version of SimplyMEPIS 7 that is based upon Debian Etch with the 32-bit and 64-bit KDE 4.0 Beta 1 packages. With some great work going into version 4 of the K Desktop Environment, we've enclosed some screenshots from this MEPIS testing build.
During the Ubuntu Live 2007 conference, Matt Asay of Alfresco Software had presented the ten commandments of open-source software. Below are the notable slides from his presentation.
Thanks to the power of GARNOME, this afternoon we decided to take a look at GNOME 2.19.5, which was released this past Wednesday. GNOME 2.19.5 is the fifth development release in the road to GNOME 2.20, which will arrive this September. Among the bits of the GNOME desktop with new features in this release include Eye of GNOME, Evince, Evolution, GDM, gedit, and many other packages.
In addition to Chris DiBona's words about NVIDIA and ATI binary display drivers, Google had also made an interesting splash at the first-ever Linux Foundation Collaboration Summit (which they had kindly hosted at their Mountain View campus) during a presentation by the Google Linux Client Team. What was it? Well, there are some "significant accomplishments" and other new Google desktop applications coming out this year for the Linux platform.
With Phoronix turning three years old tomorrow I thought this would be a good time to share with all of you what had led Phoronix to where it is today and the direction that it is headed into for the future. There's still much work left to be accomplished, but we long to see the day when the Linux and Solaris hardware experience to upgrade a PC, build a new PC, or to buy a PC will be carefree and you largely won't need to worry about any kernel panics, disk controller issues, or other problems due to your choice of hardware. In the past few years we have seen terrific strides made specifically by Linux developers in new hardware support, but it still largely remains a puzzle for alternative OS users to find hardware that is fully compatible with their operating system of choice.
Mark Shuttleworth has flown into space on a Soyuz TM-34 and founded Thawte Consulting that later sold to Verisign for over $500 million, but he is now known most for being the founder and leader of the Ubuntu Linux distribution. In addition to Ubuntu he also established HBD Venture Capital and is involved with several other free software projects. Earlier today we had spoke with Mark Shuttleworth to discuss the latest happenings in the Ubuntu world including Dell shipping Ubuntu PCs, getting open-source drivers from hardware vendors, and what is coming down the road for Ubuntu 7.10 Gutsy Gibbon.
From a KDE SVN trunk snapshot on 04-18-07, we have a few KDE 4.0 screenshots to pass along today. Mind you that KDE 4.0 will not be released until later this year, but if you are interested in seeing how this desktop environment is shaping up, you can see for yourself today.
On top of our hardware reviews and comparisons at Phoronix we also cover and compare the latest ATI and NVIDIA drivers along with some of the other popular software packages; however, we have decided to feature Linux kernel performance comparisons with each major release. We will be covering some of the major highlights with each release as well as comparing its performance in a variety of tests against recent kernels. The intent of these articles will be to provide users with a better understanding for some of the prominent changes as well as to see how the performance is affected in some of our commonly used benchmarks. Without further ado, we present our kernel comparison for the Linux 2.6.20-rc6 kernel!
ClarkConnect, IPCop, m0n0wall, and Smoothwall are among the Linux distributions currently available that are targeted for use as a firewall or network server. However, shortly another contender will be launching into this arena and that is the Open Linux Router.
In 2005 we had featured several articles on the state of NVIDIA graphics card overclocking under Linux. In early 2005 the only option for Linux users was NVClock. The open-source NVClock was started by Roderick Colenbrander in 2001 and since then has been evolving. However, coming out in June of 2005 from the NVIDIA camp was CoolBits support for their alternative operating system drivers. This feature was certainly revolutionary for Linux gamers and enthusiasts. However, after a recent inquiry on the Phoronix Forums, this article has been constructed to spell out a few things about overclocking software available for GNU/Linux.
After last month's release of GNOME 2.16.0, the 2.17.1 release of GNOME has been announced this morning -- in the development cycle for the road to 2.18.0. The changes are fairly extensive already for being the first test release in the GNOME 2.18 cycle. Of the updated packages in this first development release is new encoding profile support in Banshee, network game support in many of GNOME Games, Gossip fixes, GNOME Power Manager advancements, and much more. We have already fired up GARNOME and have plenty of screenshots of the freshly-compiled GNOME 2.17.1.
Songbird, the Mozilla Firefox blended audio player, has flew out of the nest today with version 0.2 release candidate 1. Songbird v0.2 RC1 supports Linux, Macintosh, and Windows platforms. We at Phoronix have a visual preview of this latest release.
The second Beta for GNOME 2.16.0 is now out. GNOME 2.15.91 marks the API/ABI, feature, string, and UI freeze in the GNOME 2.16.0 candidate. We had used GARNOME with GNOME 2.16.0 Beta 2 and now have some visuals today showing a portion of the improvements in GNOME 2.16.
The fourth development release for GNOME 2.16.0 has been released. In GNOME 2.15.4 are several enhancements (mainly under the hood for this release) but it is certainly attention for GNU/Linux desktop enthusiasts. For those not wishing to take this unstable exploration of GNOME 2.15.4, we have provided screenshots of this release today at Phoronix.
The ever-popular Mozilla Firefox web browser is coming out today with the first Beta release for Firefox 2.0, which has been dubbed Bon Echo. We had covered the previous Alpha releases at Phoronix, and today we have up a few shots from Mozilla Firefox 2.0 Beta 1. Of the new features is the integrated spell checker and anti-phising tool. The final release for Firefox 2.0 is due out later this year.
Coming out of Norway this morning is the long awaited Opera 9, after previous Beta/preview releases. Opera 9 is focused on being efficient, productive, secure, stylish, and innovative. Some of the new items in Opera 9.0 include Bit Torrent, content blocker, Widgets, site preferences, and more. Here at Phoronix we have a few shots up of Opera v9.0 under Linux.
The GIMP, the popular open-source multi-platform image program, has come out this afternoon with what will hopefully be one of the final development snapshots in the road to GIMP version 2.4. There are 28 notable changes in GIMP v2.3.9, which brings the total count for the GIMP v2.3 series up to approximately 260, of course, that's not counting all of the bug fixes and code cleanup. We at Phoronix have taken the GIMP v2.3.9 code and compiled it to visually demonstrate some of the changes in the GNU Image Manipulation Program.
Released Friday afternoon was Mozilla Firefox Bon Echo Alpha 2 -- the second development milestone in the road to Mozilla Firefox 2.0, which is expected for a release later this year. In this latest Firefox 2.0a2 release, which is targeted solely at developers and testers, are quite a few prominent changes. Rather than simply providing screenshots or the release notes for this feature-filled release, we have independently examined most of the changes, and today at Phoronix we have some details to share in regards to these newly implement features. Whatever browser you may be currently using, Mozilla Firefox v2.0 is suiting up to knock out Internet Explorer 7 and Opera.
With GNOME 2.14 having come out in March of this year, the development for the GNOME 2.16 cycle is now in full swing. The first GNOME 2.15 release to have come out thus far has been GNOME v2.15.1; as with past releases the odd numbers signify the development builds. With all of the packages that are now integrated with GNOME, we will refrain from sharing the individual changes, but there are plenty of excellent features planned for the upcoming release. We had built GNOME 2.15.1 from source using GARNOME on May 03, 2006. GNOME 2.16.0 is presently slated for a September 2006 release.
With a few months since Firefox v1.5 had been released, the Mozilla developers have been quick to progress in the Mozilla v2.0 development tree. Being released today is the first Alpha release for Mozilla Firefox v2.0, which is tentatively penciled in for a release towards the end of this year. As the Firefox 2 development progresses, among the many goals Mozilla wishes to address include Really Simply Syndication improvements, redoing their tabbing support, and many other nifty features to come. Today at Phoronix we took a look at the Mozilla Firefox v2.0 Alpha 1 build.
On the heels of the much-anticipated Fedora Core 5 launch, we have managed to conduct an interview with Greg DeKoenigsberg. Greg DeKoenigsberg presently serves as Red Hat's Community Relations Manager and is on the Fedora Extras Steering Committee. Today in this interview, we posed him questions regarding this release that is to be released on Monday, March 20, 2006. There are also other pertinent questions to the future of the Fedora Project as well as other general Linux outlooks.
529 software articles published on Phoronix.