Release candidate 2 was made available yesterday. As you might expect, I have already downloaded it and attempted a couple of installs.
This seems to correct most of the problems with earlier pre-release versions. The installed system is running kernel 3.11.3. KDE is at version 4.11.2 and Gnome is at version 3.10.1. The release will have code name “Bottle”, and is expected to be an LTS release. That is to say, after the normal end of support, it will go to evergreen extended support.
There are a few cautions. If you are a KDE user, and if you depend on bluetooth, then I recommend that you postpone any upgrade to 13.1. Apparently, KDE has not quite caught up with the most recent changes in bluetooth support. There’s an estimated release date of Nov. 17th for the full KDE support, but that’s an estimate. It could be delayed if there are problems. I have not tested bluetooth on my laptop, and I’ll probably delay that testing until the KDE support comes out. There are reports that bluetooth is working well in Gnome.
The other big change that people are noticing, is in the device name. For the almost 20 years that I have used linux, the ethernet device was “eth0”. Now that is changing, with the name depending on the specific hardware. On an older desktop where I have installed RC2, the device is still “eth0”. But, on my laptop, it is “p1p1”.
My two installs
My first install, last evening, was on that older desktop. There was one major “oops”. My system was unbootable (grub2 install had failed). I managed to fix it. It seems to have been a problem is setting up mounts/file systems during the install. It looks to me as if this is a rare condition that might no affect anyone else. If you want more details check the bug report for bug 848655. I was able to work around the bug.
This install was into an encrypted LVM. Bug 839071 is solved (the problem with giving the encryption key with a USB keyboard).
My second install was to my laptop. There was a minor “oops” during install. This is bug 834646. The install continues, despite the error message. This bug only seems to affect systems with Intel graphics. I first saw the problem in milestone testing. The install was successful, and the installed system booted without a problem.
I have also tested booting from a live KDE USB. All tests were successful.
I tested the 32bit live KDE USB on both an older 32bit system and on my newer laptop (a 64bit system). It booted into KDE in both cases. For earlier releases, including RC1, the 32bit live USB would crash and burn. So that problem is solved.
I tested the 64bit live KDE USB on both my older desktop, and on a newer UEFI box. It worked with both. On the UEFI box, secure-boot was successful. It is my understanding that they have reverted the secure boot support to that from 12.3, until the problems in the intended 13.1 implementation are resolved.
Over the next week, I will probably try some more installs. I expect them to go reasonably well.