A Glimpse of SUSE Linux
10.0 and Other Things Brewing at Novell
SUSE Linux is a better OS than the MS Windows OS. And when you throw the 1,500 open source Linux applications and packages into the deal, SUSE Linux is a very much better bang- for-the-buck than is MS Windows! . . . sounds like Novell is making lots of right moves with its SUSE Linux product . . .
Mike Angelo -- 19 September 2005 (C)
Novell plans to release SUSE Linux 10.0 in October 2005. SUSE Linux 10.0 is designed to pull computer users from the Microsoft Windows operating system to the Linux-based, GNU OS popularly called Linux. If SUSE Linux 10.0 does what the Novell people say it does, the SUSE Linux OS should be very competitive with the MS Windows OS -- and a better OS to boot.
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Switch from the MS Windows operating system to the GNU-Linux operating system
To learn why Linux is so much a better choice than is Microsoft Windows, please see our article Gaël Duval Tells Why Mandrake Linux Is Better Than MS Windows
Also, please see our article Solutions for Identity, Credit Card, Bank Account, and Personal Information Theft - Part I: Overview.
To learn how to run MS Windows-based software and accessories in GNU-Linux, please see our article Crossover Office 2.1 Runs MS Windows Software on GNU-Linux Systems
Figure 1. A somewhat simplified, logical cross-section of a Linux-based computer system.
Please see Anatomy of a Linux Distribution in our article SCO Clears Linux Kernel but Implicates Red Hat and SuSE. for the details, an explanation, and a bigger figure.
Office on the Linux Desktop
The way most open source software development works is the projects have bug-tracking databases. Although the term bug is used, in the bug-tracking systems such as Bugzilla, it includes much broader meaning than bug in the sense of something that does not work correctly. For example, often bugs filed in a bug-tracking database are requests for enhancements or new features and other such things -- not errors.
About the Author
Mike Angelo has written hundreds of published newspaper and magazine computer and technology articles. He has more than 40 years experience using solid-state, digital computers.
Mike has written lots of computer programs in assembly, BASIC, FORTRAN, machine, and several other languages -- on a variety of mainframe and desktop machines. He has designed and built some special purpose computers, and does PC upgrading and building. Mike also creates, designs, and maintains Web sites.
In 1993, Mike Angelo started writing a print newspaper computer column, About Computers. He has written articles for top-tier magazines including Byte, Computer Buyer's Guide & Handbook, DOS World, I-Way, Laptop Buyer's Guide & Handbook, Linux Journal, Maximize, MozillaQuest Magazine, PC Novice, and PC Today.
Despite Mike Angelo's extensive computer experience he has a real life and uses computers as tools. Therefore, he approaches his computer writing from the user's interest and point of view.
According to a 7 September 2005 Novell press release: SUSE Linux 10.0 is uniquely designed among Linux* distributions to create an easy, user-friendly experience, delivering everything that enthusiasts and home users need to get started with Linux. In addition to a full featured [sic] desktop, SUSE Linux 10.0 includes more than 1,500 open source Linux applications and packages that can be optionally installed for advanced Web hosting, application development and home networking.
SUSE Linux is a better OS than the MS Windows OS. And when you throw the 1,500 open source Linux applications and packages into the deal, SUSE Linux is a very much better bang- for-the-buck than is MS Windows! For more about how a GNU-based Linux distribution is put together please see Anatomy of a Linux Distribution in our article SCO Clears Linux Kernel but Implicates Red Hat and SuSE.
There will be both retail and free download editions of SUSE Linux 10.0. But you do not have to wait until October to check out SUSE Linux 10.0. You now can download SUSE Linux 10.0 OSS RC1 -- an open source, preliminary edition of SUSE Linux 10.0. (Links in the Resources section at the end of this article.)
This release cycle is the first time that beta and release candidate versions of an upcoming SUSE Linux edition have been open to public downloading, input, and development participation. And the Novell people are very happy with the results of opening the SUSE Linux beta and release candidate process to the public.
Incidentally, Novell CEO Jack Messman told MozillaQuest Magazine two years ago that Novell would be a full participant in the open source movement. Looks as if Jack Messman is keeping his word. (Please see our articles Novell Linux Dominates LinuxWorld 2004: Overview and Novell Linux Dominates LinuxWorld 2004 -- Part 2: Deja Novell All Over Again)
Greg Mancusi-Ungaro is Novell's director of marketing for Linux and open source software. Here is an e-mail discussion about the upcoming SUSE Linux10.0 with Greg Mancusi-Ungaro.
MozillaQuest Magazine: Is this the first time that SUSE Linux has had a public beta program?
Greg Mancusi-Ungaro: Yes. In the past, the SUSE Linux development has been conducted internally with small privately managed betas. Now, as part of the openSUSE project, we have opened our beta review to the public. The initial response to our public beta has exceeded our expectations. Since the start of the openSUSE project we have released five beta builds and one release candidate. Collectively these builds have been installed more than 12,000 times by the community and we have received more than 500 high-quality bugs from community participants. This amount of input has far exceeded our expectations, both in terms of quality and quantity. [Please see About Bugs in the right sidebar.]
MozillaQuest Magazine: What are the reasons SUSE shifted from a closed beta program to an open beta program?
Greg Mancusi-Ungaro: We've done more than just shift the beta program; we are opening the entire development process to public participation. Through the openSUSE project, we are inviting the community to really shape the future SUSE Linux. The bugs reported by the community during the SUSE Linux beta cycles are important, but by no means do those bugs represent the total activity of the community. SUSE Linux benefits from publicly submitted package requests, usability/design proposals, feature requests, etc.
MozillaQuest Magazine: How do people go about participating in your open beta program?
Greg Mancusi-Ungaro: Linux developers and Linux users everywhere are welcome to participate in the project. They can start by going to www.opensuse.org. No registration is required for software, source code downloads or participation in mailing lists. However, registration is required to submit bug reports, enhancement requests, or patches.
MozillaQuest Magazine: Have you realized the benefits you hoped to realize by moving to an open beta program for SUSE Linux?
Greg Mancusi-Ungaro: Absolutely.
MozillaQuest Magazine: What problems did you encounter with the open beta program?
Greg Mancusi-Ungaro: None. The community has been fantastic. We have seen great bug flow, and the bugs have been of high quality. People have looked into the code deeply, and there have been a tremendous number of downloads.
MozillaQuest Magazine: Is there or will there be free download versions too?
Greg Mancusi-Ungaro: Yes there will. At openSUSE.org, users will always be able to download the latest released version of SUSE Linux as well as the current developer build.
MozillaQuest Magazine: What are the URLs for the latest release and developer build downloads?
Greg Mancusi-Ungaro: Users simply go to the following URL and select their downloads: http://www.opensuse.org/Download
MozillaQuest Magazine: Does it have the Konqueror browser? Does it have the Mozilla browser suite?
Greg Mancusi-Ungaro: We ship Konqueror, Mozilla, Firefox, and other open source browsers.
MozillaQuest Magazine: How are openSUSE and SUSE Linux 10.0 related?
Greg Mancusi-Ungaro: openSUSE.org is the community project that helped create SUSE Linux 10.0. SUSE Linux is the distribution and openSUSE.org is the project.
MozillaQuest Magazine: Will there be a separate openSUSE distribution too?
Greg Mancusi-Ungaro: No, openSUSE.org is the community that builds the distribution. For those that prefer a completely open source distribution, users will be able to download a version of SUSE Linux without the proprietary plug-ins. However, we believe that most new Linux users would prefer to download the completely integrated version that includes popular plug-ins such as Adobe reader, Java and RealPlayer.
MozillaQuest Magazine: Is the openSUSE and SUSE Linux structure/relationship patterned after or similar to the Fedora Core and Red Hat Linux structure/relationship?
Greg Mancusi-Ungaro: No. They are different projects with different goals and different organizational structures. openSUSE's main goal is to drive Linux usage everywhere.
MozillaQuest Magazine: Is there no longer a SUSE Linux Professional? Why not?
Greg Mancusi-Ungaro: This is a name change. We have reverted back to the original name of the distribution, SUSE Linux, with the 10.0 release.
MozillaQuest Magazine: Does this mean that what you now are calling SUSE Linux 10.0 is the same product as what would have been called SUSE Linux Professional 10.0?
Greg Mancusi-Ungaro: Essentially yes.
MozillaQuest Magazine: Will SUSE Linux 10.0 show the windows partitions in the file manger and will they be accessible from the file manager and applications on booting on a multi-boot box?
Greg Mancusi-Ungaro: Yes and yes.
MozillaQuest Magazine: Will SUSE Linux 10.0 show the LAN shares in the file manger and will they be accessible from the file manager and applications on booting?
Greg Mancusi-Ungaro: Yes, in the "network browser94 (the icon on the desktop). And, yes, they'll be accessible from the file manager and they should also be accessible on booting.
MozillaQuest Magazine: Is KDE still the default desktop environment and suite in SUSE Linux 10.0?
Greg Mancusi-Ungaro: SUSE Linux 10.0 supports both the KDE and gnome desktops. Both offer customers innovative solutions for desktop computing. Customers can choose the desktop they prefer during installation.
MozillaQuest Magazine: Regarding the packages list . . .
Greg Mancusi-Ungaro: The following URL contains the most complete packages list. The versions may change with final release -- which is schedule for October. http://www.opensuse.org/Product_Highlights
Unfortunately, that packages list either is not very complete at all or SUSE Linux 10.0 does not have anywhere near the 1,500 applications and packages claimed in Novell's 7 September 2005 press release.
Other than that, from what Greg Mancusi-Ungaro says, it sure sounds like Novell is making lots of right moves with its SUSE Linux product. We have not tried SUSE Linux 10.0 yet. But if it does what the 7 September press release and Greg Mancusi-Ungaro say it does, SUSE Linux 10.0 could end up being the best of the Fall 2005 Linux distribution releases.
The Linux books listed below will help to show you why Linux-based, GNU operating system is a better operating system than MS Windows. And they describe and help you to use much of the free software that comes with most Linux-based distributions.
Most of the book links listed below lead you to Web pages about the books that also, there, have links to things such as Tables of Contents and sample chapters. The sample chapters are free and well worth reading.
Acing the LINUX+ Certification Exam, Patrick Regan, Pearson Prentice Hall, ISBN: 0131121553. $88
Beginning Linux Programming, 3rd Edition, Matthew and Stones, (Foreword by Alan Cox), Wiley. ISBN: 0-7645-4497-7. $40
Building Applications with the Linux Standard Base, Linux Standard Base Team, Pearson Prentice Hall, ISBN: 0-13-145695-4
Building Clustered Linux Systems, By Robert Lucke, Pearson Prentice Hall, ISBN: 0-13-144853-6. $50
Novell Certified Linux Engineer (Novell CLE) Study Guide, Robb Tracy, Novell Press, ISBN: 0789732033. $60
Expanding Choice: Moving to Linux and Open Source with Novell Open Enterprise Server, Jason Williams/Peter Clegg/Emmett Dulaney, Novell Press, ISBN: 0-672-32722-8. $30
Fedora 4 Linux All in One, By Aron Hsiao, Sams, ISBN: 0672327074. $40.
Fedora 4 Unleashed, By Paul Hudson, Andrew Hudson, Bill Ball, Hoyt Duff, Sams, ISBN: 0672327929. $50.
Knoppix Hacks - 100 Industrial-Strength Tips & Tools, By Kyle Rankin, O'Reilly, ISBN: 0-596-00787-6. $30
Linux Bible, 2005 Edition, Christopher Negus, Wiley, ISBN: 0-7645-7949-5. $40
Linux Desktop Garage, By Susan Matteson, Pearson Prentice Hall, ISBN: 0-13-149419-8. $30
Linux Desktop Hacks - Tips & Tools for Customizing and Optimizing your OS, By Nicholas Petreley, Jono Bacon, O'Reilly, ISBN: 0-596-00911-9. $50
Linux in a Nuthsell, 5th Ed., Siever, Figgins, Weber, Love and Robbisn, O'Reilly, ISBN: 0-596-00930-5. $45
Linux Kernel Development, 2nd Ed., Robert Love, Novell Press., ISBN: 0672327201. $45
Linux Network Architecture, By Wehrle, Pahlke, Ritter, Muller, and Bechler, Pearson Prentice Hall, ISBN: 0131777203. $50
Linux Programming by Example: The Fundamentals, Arnold Robbins, , Prentice Hall PTR, ISBN: 0131429647. $40
The Linux Process Manager: The internals of scheduling, interrupts and signals, By John O'Gorman, Wiley, ISBN: 0-470-84771-9. $35
Linux Quick Fix Notebook, By Peter Harrison, Pearson Prentice Hall, ISBN: 0131861506. $40
Linux Troubleshooting Bible, Christopher Negus, Thomas Weeks, Wiley, ISBN: 0-7645-6997-X. $30
Mandrakelinux Discovery 10.1 - Your First Linux Desktop, By Mandrakesoft, Mandrakesoft, ISBN: 2-84798-085-7. $64
Mandrakelinux PowerPack 10.1 - The Full Power of Linux Desktop, By Mandrakesoft, Mandrakesoft, ISBN: 2-84798-086-5. $87
Official Fedora Companion, Nick Petreley, Wiley, ISBN: 0-7645-5836-6. $20
Operating Systems, 3rd Edition, Deitel, Deitel, and David, Pearson Prentice Hall, ISBN: 0131828274. $103
Optimizing Linux Performance: A Hands-on Guide to Linux Performance Tools, By Phillip Ezolt, Pearson Prentice Hall, ISBN: 0131486829. $50
Point & Click Linux!, By Robin Miller, Pearson Prentice Hall, ISBN: 0131488724. $30
Principles of Network and System Administration, 2nd Edition, Mark Burgess, Wiley, ISBN: 0-470-86807-4. $50
Running Linux, 4th Ed., Welsh, Dalheimer, Dawson, and Kaufman, O'Reilly, ISBN, 0-596-00272-6. $45
SUSE Linux 9 Bible, Justin Davies, Roger Whittaker, William von Hagen, Wiley, ISBN: 0-7645-7739-5. $40
Test Driving Linux: From Windows to Linux in 60 Seconds, David Brickner, O'Reilly, ISBN: 0-596-00754-X. $25
Understanding the Linux Kernel, 2nd Edition, Daniel P. Bovet and Marco Cesati, O'Reilly, ISBN: 0-596-00213-0. $50
Understanding the Linux Virtual Memory Manager, Mel Gorman, Prentice Hall PTR, ISBN: 0131453483. $60
UNIX Shells by Example, 4th Edition, By Ellie Quigley, Pearson Prentice Hall, ISBN: 013147572X. $50
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