Tumbleweed install for November

For this month, I installed Tumbleweed on my laptop.  I had installed Leap 42.1 to overwrite my previous Tumbleweed install on that laptop.

This computer uses legacy booting.  I gave Tumbleweed a 40G partition, which I formatted as “ext4”.  I also allowed it to use the swap and home file systems from my encrypted LVM on that computer.

I mounted the home file system to “/xhome”.  That left “/home” as part of the root file system.  So I created symbolic links into “/xhome” for most of my saved files.  Doing it this way allows me to avoid conflicting desktop configurations.  So the new install has its own “.config” and “.kde4”, but uses the same “$HOME/bin” and document directories as my other installs on that box. Read More…

Plasma 5 — a review

[Update: I have added a comment which updates some of what I wrote in this post.  Check the comments below.]

I have been using opensuse Leap 42.1 on my main desktop for a little over a week.  So I now have a better feel for Plasma 5, than I had from periodic testing.  So it’s time for me to give my opinion on Plasma 5.


My overall summary, is that Plasma 5 is recognizable as a successor to KDE4.  It does not make the radical changes that we saw going from Gnome 2 to Gnome 3.  The changes are more evolutionary than revolutionary.

I won’t go through every change that I see.  That would be tedious to write and boring to read.  So I’ll mainly discuss the changes that are particularly noticeable.  And since we are more likely to notice changes that we don’t like, this may look like a gripe list.

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Preparing for a Leap 42.1 install

Opensuse Leap 42.1 should be available on Wednesday Nov. 4th.  So here are a few notes that some readers might find useful.

Verifying the download

In the past, the download page has had MD5 checksums, SHA1 checksums, and a PGP signature.

With Leap, as with recent Tumbleweed isos, it will  be a little different.  There will be a file with name ending in “.sha256”.  I’m not sure of the actual name, until the download page shows up.  It will be the name of the “iso” file, with “.sha256” appended.

This file will contain the sha256 checksum.  The file itself will be signed with a gpg (or PGP) key.

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Opensuse 42.1 is ready

Stephan Kulow, the release manager, announced on Friday that the Gold Master was ready.  The GA (general availability) release is supposed to happen on Nov. 4th.

First looks

I installed from a recent build (more recent than RC1), and then updated from the already available online repos.  So I now have two computers running the final release version of 42.1.

From what I have seen, thus far, it is looking pretty good.  The artwork is excellent.  The bugs that I have mentioned in earlier posts are mostly fixed.  So expect this to turn out to be a pretty good release.

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My Tumbleweed install for October

I said there would not be a Tumbleweed install this month.  But I changed my mind on that.  Snapshot 20151017 came out after I had finished my Leap 42.1-RC1 installs, and I had a little free time.

For this install, I used a 1T disk.  It had previously been used for Windows.  I plugged the disk into a SATA disk docking station, and planned to use the entire disk for the Tumbleweed install.  I connected the docking station to a UEFI computer (via a USB cable).

First attempt

My plan was to try installing to an encrypted LVM.  There are some open bug reports indicating problems, so I wanted to see what would happen.

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OpenSUSE Leap 42.1-RC1

The release candidate for Leap 42.1 was published on Thursday.  So I downloaded and installed.

Quick summary

It is mostly looking pretty good.  There is a glaring bug when you login to Plasma 5 (or KDE) — namely “kdeinit5” and “Kmix” crash.  However, there’s an easy workaround.  This should be fixed by the time of the final 42.1 release.

Apart from that one problem, it looks pretty good.  I’m sure there are other bugs, but mostly it all works.

Up through Beta1, “ecryptfs” was missing.  But it is now there.  Most of the software that I normally use is there.  One exception is “sendmail”, but I don’t really need that. Read More…

No Tumbleweed install this month

I’ve been making a practice of doing a test install of Tumbleweed every month.  But it looks as if I will have to skip the install this month.

Up to now, the 20151002 snapshot is the only one released this month.  And that was released at an inconvenient time for me following surgery.  Tomorrow, we should see the RC (release candidate) for Leap 42.1, and I will be installing and testing that.

From what I see looking at bugzilla reports and at the OpenQA site, work on Tumbleweed continues.  But the final tweaking to pass all of the OpenQA tests takes time, and at present the opensuse team is busy preparing the Leap release.  I expect snapshot releases for Tumbleweed to speed up, once Leap has been released.

Microsoft is being sneaky

I purchased my main desktop for use with linux.  But it came with Windows 8 as a discount deal from Dell.  So I kept the Windows 8, and added a second hard drive for linux.  I did update to Windows 8.1.  I kept Windows for experimenting with dual boot on a UEFI system.

My normal usage on this computer is to boot opensuse.  But twice a week I boot to windows and update the anti-virus (Windows Defender).  Once a month, I also do Windows updates.  Then I boot straight back to linux.

What happened today

This evening, I did one of my reboots to Windows.  I did a quick virus scan, then went to Windows update.  It showed one important update, namely the Windows Defender update.

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The Tumbleweed 20151002 update

I still have a lot to test following that Tumbleweed update.  I did encounter some issues.  I’ll comment on those here.

Crash during update

On one system, the update completed.  But I could not logout from the desktop.  So I used CTRL-ALT-BACKSPACE to crash the desktop, then rebooted on the sddm login screen.

On another system, where I was using “gdm” as login manager, the desktop seemed to crash in the middle of the update, leaving a blank screen.  I logged in remotely (using “ssh”) to see what was happening.  The desktop session appeared to have disappeared (I checked processes that I owned, and none were running except those from the ssh login).

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Sorry for the break in activity

I haven’t posted for a while, for various reasons.  A major reason was health issues.  I had an unanticipated hospitalization.  This was due to complications following an appendectomy.

Everything seems to be turning out okay.  I’m well on the path to recovery.


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