Factory snapshots 20140928 and 20141001
There was a holdup in updates to opensuse factory, due to testing failures. Soon after that problem was solved, snapshot 20140928 was released. And no sooner had I updated to that version, there was a release of 20141001. This post will review both.
I downloaded the DVD installer for for 20140928 (64-bit, and I then did a clean installs from that. This was intended as a test of the installer.
And a download note. On two already-installed factory systems, I added that DVD (actually written to a USB) as a repo. To do that, I opened Yast Software Repositories, clicked the “Add” button, then checked the box for “USB”. I had to select which partition (the second, since the first was just for EFI).
The result of adding the DVD image as a repo, was that an upgrade using “zypper dup” was far faster. When a particular rpm was on both the DVD image and the online repo, it was installed from the DVD image. That is a lot faster than network speeds with my current ISP connection.
These updates fixed a few small bugs. The “csh” bug and the “activities” bug mentioned in a recent post were both fixed. The UEFI “comma” bug (system name has an extraneous comma at the end) is also fixed.
The update to 20141001 brought Gnome up to the 3.14 version.
There is a new Desktop Theme for KDE. It is named “openSUSE light”, and replaces the old “openSUSE” as default them. The “openSUSE” theme is still available as an optional choice. I presume that “openSUSE light” will become the default theme for the 13.2 release.
I am currently using the new KDE theme. I have mixed feelings about it. The previous dark theme seemed to not match the new wallpaper. The new theme does a lot better. But the weather forecast tray applet is almost invisible when it is showing a cloud cover icon (too little contrast).
I’ll give some details on the install, because it is a change from previous (13.1 and earlier) installs.
You will initially notice that the Yast theme is changed. I do like the new theme. It used to be that there was a second stage of install after the reboot. That second stage is gone. The install is completed before the reboot.
The install begins with a license agreement. This is followed by a screen to select either clean install or an upgrade. If you are installing to existing encrypted partitions, there may be a request for encryption key just after the license screen.
Early in the install, you may see a network configuration screen. If you are connected with ethernet, and if your connection can be setup with DHCP, then you might not see this step. It might be done silently without interaction. If you usually connect with WiFi, you probably will see the network setup step.
In previous factory installs, that network setup step for WiFi had failed for me, and I had to bypass it to continue to install. However, that problem seems to be fixed. I was able to configure the Wireless interface, including the WPA key. Surprisingly, the install did not actually connect. I checked this by using CTRL-ALT-F2 during install, to get a command line session. And “ifconfig -a” showed no connection. Then CTRL-ALT-F7 took me back to the graphic install. After the reboot, the system was able to use this defined connection if running with “wicked”. If you instead use “NetworkManager” you will have to reconfigure the network for that.
You can skip the network setup step by just clicking the “Next” button on the first network setup screen. If you plan to use NetworkManager, it might be a good idea to skip.
After the network setup, comes the partitioning step. The partitioning is a bit different from before. The initial partitioner screen does not offer to import partitioning from a prior install. However, if you select the “create partitioning” option, then select “expert partitioner” on the next screen, you will have an option to “import mount points”.
After you have finished with the partitioner, you are presented with the screen to select a timezone. And after selecting a timezone, you presented with a screen to choose your preferred desktop (Gnome, KDE or other). After that screen, you are asked to give a user and password for the system.
Finally, you get to the overall summary screen, where you can click on headers to edit a component. That’s where you can change the boot defaults, or select the software to be installed.
The option to enable “ssh” is also a bit different. Previously (13.1 and earlier) you would click at one place to enable the “sshd” service and open the firewall. That now takes two clicks, one of them to enable the service and the other to open the ssh port through the firewall.
The final stage, where the actual install is done, looks similar to previous versions.
For me, the install of 20140928 went quite smoothly. It looks as if we are well on the way to a pretty good release of 13.2.