Mandriva Linux 2008 Beta 1 released
Posted on: 08/08/2007 11:28 AM

Mandriva Linux 2008 Beta 1 has been released:

The first beta of Mandriva Linux 2008, codenamed Cassini, is now available. This beta is available only as a three CD Free edition (containing no non-free software or drivers) for the x86-32 architecture, with a traditional installer. Future betas will be available in One live / install CD hybrid editions with proprietary drivers, and in x86-64 versions.

Mandriva Linux 2008 includes the following versions of the major distribution components: kernel 2.6.22, 7.2, KDE 3.5.7, GNOME 2.19.6, Mozilla Firefox, 2.2. Other major new features are the merging of the Beryl and Compiz 3D desktop technologies into Compiz Fusion, a new network management tool, a Windows documents and settings migration tool, and support for WPA-EAP.

Mandriva Linux 2008 will be available in several different editions:
the "One" edition will be an installable live CD integrating the latest proprietary drivers, available free of charge
the commercial editions will include support, services, a wider range of packages, and many third-party proprietary applications like Flash, Scilab and 03 Spaces
the "Free" edition will be pure free / open source software edition, without any of the non-free packages bundled with other editions; it is also available as a free download

Updated software

GNOME 2.20

Once again, Mandriva Linux 2008 will come with the latest release of GNOME, which will be hot off the press at release time. The development releases will feature the latest available releases of GNOME 2.19, the development series for 2.20. New features planned for GNOME 2.20 include:
A new Appearance configuration applet merging the old Themes, Font and Background applets
Ekiga 3.0, featuring a plugin framework for audio and video codecs, a revised interface, and SIP presence support
Support for fillable forms in Evince, the GNOME PDF reader
Evolution 2.12, with better spam filtering and Microsoft Exchange support

KDE 3.5.7

The latest stable KDE 3 release will be included, with all the bug fixes since the previous 3.5.6 release.

KDE 4 preview

KDE 4 will be available as an experimental preview, with the latest available pre-release included. The development releases will be tracking KDE 4 development very closely. The changes in KDE 4 are countless and, of course, include the revolutionary Nepomuk semantic desktop system, whose development is being led by Mandriva. There is no single resource for a full list of new features in KDE 4, but Wikipedia gives a good overview.

XFCE 4.4.1

The new Mandriva XFCE development community will present improved packages for XFCE 4.4.1 in Mandriva Linux 2008. They are working on various areas including integration of the Mandriva themes and menu structure into the XFCE desktop. XFCE will be moved into the supported /main repository, and we hope to build an XFCE-based Mandriva Linux One image for 2008 in addition to the regular GNOME- and KDE-based One images.

Kernel 2.6.22

As Mandriva Linux 2008 marks a new basesystem (after the previous basesystem was used for Mandriva Linux 2007 and 2007 Spring), it will of course include a new kernel. 2.6.22 will add support for new hardware and also has many interesting new features.
Perhaps the biggest new feature visible to end users will be the new Devicescape (mac80211) wireless networking stack, which provides a superior base with much more common code than the previous kernel wireless stack, allowing drivers to be more reliable and functional.
2.6.22 also includes the new 'tickless' technology which will save battery power on laptops, with the effect increasing over time as applications are improved to avoid needlessly waking up the kernel. There's a good write-up of this system here.
It also includes ALSA 1.0.14, adding support for some newer sound cards and chipsets and improving support for others.
Other improvements include the usual gradual improvements to suspend support, a new scheduler (which will result in improved responsiveness in typical desktop use), and the integration of the ivtv TV card driver (as used, notably, for the Hauppauge PVR series cards). An exhaustive overview of changes between 2.6.21 and 2.6.22 is available here: the same site has similar pages covering the changes back to 2.6.17, the kernel that was included in Mandriva Linux 2007 Spring.

Compiz Fusion

Compiz Fusion, the result of the re-merge between the Compiz and Beryl 3D desktop technologies, will replace Compiz and Beryl in Mandriva Linux 2008. The development branch is currently tracking the pre-release Fusion code, prior to the first official release. New features in Fusion are many, and a video demonstrating some of them is available at YouTube.

Other significant updates

Other significant updates will include 7.3, featuring the new XrandR 1.2 framework which vastly improves support for multiple displays and display hotplugging on supported drivers, 2.2, featuring improved text rendering, improved PDF exporting and enhanced compatibility with Excel spreadsheets, GCC 4.2 (with a complementary build of 4.3 available as an option in the /main repository) and IcedTea, a GNU project which makes it possible to provide an open source Java implementation based on the code open sourced by Sun as the OpenJDK project. IcedTea will likely not be ready for use as a browser plugin by the time of 2008's release.

Mandriva Linux 2008 Beta 1 released

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