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new Mandrakelinux release cycle


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Mandrakesoft press release on release cycle


The transitional version will be called "Limited Edition 2005". Later, by fall of this year, the new boxed "2006" release will fully integrate Conectiva technology and Mandrakesoft online services into a new product. It will be released through traditional retail channels as well as by direct sale from Mandrakestore and Mandrakeclub, and will offer all support options and related services.


I think many current users may not like this, but to me, it means Mandrakelinux is growing up.

Partners want this.

Vendors want this.


Linux development is over it's peek of development in terms of what is missing to have a great desktop experience. It's not necessary for most to have the latest versions (except security and other bugfixes).


One problem: those 'most' are not necessarily mdk users.

Maybe they'll become mdk users? At least, that's what MdkSoft is hoping for sure.



Hmm, maybe they can release once a year, boxed sets and all, and do more clubmember releases with fully up-to-date packages (heck, 3 or 4 times per year even) iso downloads...?


I still need some time to think this over, but my gut feeling is that some will be upset, all those who wanted Mdk for the cutting edge-ness, and some will like this for the promise of solidness. I'm in the latter group.


What are your thoughts?

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I think that GNU/Linux-software like KDE gets better all the time, and I therefore like my system to be as up to date as possible. I know it is possible to install different components individually as they get released, but I prefer downloading ISOs and install the system from scratch every time. I will probably switch to a different distribution if I feel that my software is out of date and Mandrakesoft don't have anything new I can download.


Mandrakesoft haven't made a single buck on me, and probably never will. There are lots of people like me, and I therefore partially understand their decision of more focus on the corporate world. They have on the other hand gotten a lot of positive publicity for free from satisfied users like myself on discussion boards all over the world, and the value of this should definitely not be underestimated.

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So you're in the group of the cutting edge people.

I wonder if Mdk will bring out clubmember isos 3 or 4 times per year - that could satisfy the needs of people like you, who feel their software is out of date if it's older than 6 to 8 months.


I agree that KDE is still moving rapidly, and some other parts are too (gnome, xorg, etc), but for instance today, I don't mind if in april this Limited Edition comes out with KDE 3.3.something.


BTW there is not going to be any CE or OE anymore.


From Warly:

The 10.2 will be renamed (marketingly) Limited Edition 2005, however

most of the internal stuff will still refer to a 10.2


We will do the real change to 2006 after the 10.2 is out.


There will not be Community and Official, so the 'real' final version is

April, 5th.




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This has very little to do with companies or corporations, that market is what Corporate Desktop and Corporate Server are for. This really is a change intended to make the distro better for normal users.


Doing an update release (possibly Club-only) after six months has been discussed, I don't know if there's an official outcome yet. I certainly don't think there's the resources to do more than one update release, it'd get horribly confusing and difficult to support.

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If MDK could get the upgrade sorted out it would really help...

personally i thnk they should make the OE club only at first for revenue and allow CE for free dloads since its cutting edge .... over the year the updates should allow the OE to be stable and the CE development should never stop...


This way those who wanna run bleeding edge can do so and test for mdk whereas those who want a 'stick the Cd in and let it work' distro can get the OE... and update what they need.


If you can't update Debian from apt then you shouldn't be using a computer really... if Mandrake could get CE like that then everyone should be happy...

I know some people want both but you can't have stable and bleeding edge and the mandrake installer sucks... at least at upgrades and anything more advanced..better concentrate on making it better once per year IMHO ...

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this is good and bad.....

As a small business owner (in progress) who wants to sell computers with Mandrake preinstalled, not have a new version every 4 months is good.


I am worried about this though:

There is little mention of the download editons and what is going to become of them. I find this concern everywhere i look on this topic.

Especially on the mandrake mailing lists........


Anyone got a good answer to that?

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well, AFAIK there's no change to the download versions, which is why they're not mentioned. Up until now every MDK release has been available to download and I don't believe that's changing. All the versions will be available for free download as before, sometimes reserved to the Club for a while, always available immediately on release from the mirrors for urpmi or FTP install.


Oh, and BTW, I posted my opinions on the new cycle here: http://www.happyassassin.net/2005/03/21/ne...lease-schedule/

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As long as they keep a free downloadable version of Mandrakelinux and offer free updates (not only security related) it's ok. Although Gentoo is my main OS now, I was planning to download Mandrakelinux 10.2 and see what's new. I guess I'll download 2005 Limited Edition instead :lol: .

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I think it's good that they are trying hard to find a rlease schedule that works. It's difficult to strike the balance between innovation and stability. release too often and your product is uynstable, not often enough, and it's always outdated. I hope that they find the happy medium.

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You know what.. I think this is a good thing.

The main problem I have with the 6 month release cycle in the bandwidth starved nation like where I am now is that after you have downloaded all isos and try it in your computer, the newer release is already banging at the door. Also, slower release is also better to support. I still install Mandrake 10 OE for people who are interested in Linux because I can buy the CD set and the guidebook for about 5 dollars and then give it to the people (after I did the installation of course).

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I think it's a good idea. I have been getting frustrated with installing a new system every 6 months, making sure I have everything the way I want it and then finding myself in the midst of a new cycle. However, I wouldn't want to wait too long for KDE 3.4, which seems to be (with my Ubuntu Hoary) much better than 3.2 or 3.3. Also I am very much looking forward to Open Office 2. Also the kernel seems to be much better at 2.6.11. At this point I can get along without KDE 3.4, but as much without OO2.


Linux seems much more stable and usable than when I started (with Mandrake 8.1). I just don't need to upgrade all the time, I usually just want to for a change.

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One thing I thought I'd mention - most of the speculation has been elsewhere, but in case anyone was wondering, 2005 and future versions *will* still be freely downloadable. The order of access: first Club, second people who buy a download version, third public ISO release (time period between the three to be measured in weeks, not months).


Remember, 2006 will still be released on the _old_ schedule; it's coming around six months after 2005. So you'll definitely have at least KDE 3.4 by then, no waiting till next year :). It's after _that_ the cycle really shifts to annual.

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One thing I thought I'd mention - most of the speculation has been elsewhere, but in case anyone was wondering, 2005 and future versions *will* still be freely downloadable. The order of access: first Club, second people who buy a download version, third public ISO release (time period between the three to be measured in weeks, not months).


Remember, 2006 will still be released on the _old_ schedule; it's coming around six months after 2005. So you'll definitely have at least KDE 3.4 by then, no waiting till next year :). It's after _that_ the cycle really shifts to annual.

Let me just make sure I said what I meant....


I don't mind them charging for ISO's especially the OE and delaying its download, even for 6 months of the one year cycle.

However withholding security updates is absolutely not acceptable even for 10 seconds ... this needs sorting out and updates pushed onto public mirrors.


Second: The whole witholding non-free lie should end. The idea that they cannot issue RPM's for NVIDIA etc. is just a lie and does more harm than good. If they can distribute it to club members they can do it for everyone.

Crippleware like Mandrake Move (dload edition) etc. should be stopped its counter productive.


Third the installer should be fixed. Having a year per release maybe just maybe they will get an installer that actually works just once. In the past the default option (upgrade) has caused more problems (and loss them more customers) than any other Mandrakism except the Network wizards.

Message: The installer is the first thing someone see's... making it pretty is one thing, making it work is obviously another. Making it pretty at the expense of stability is a false hope... and the one thing they need to be taken seriously is make the upgrade option work faultlessly


This is why Mandrake is useless as a professional distro... its a great fun distro, if you have time but the whole release thing gets time consuming...

I'm still using the same debian install I did a year ago. It was installed as stable and now I have two tree's with a stable+updates and a testing... neither needs reinstalling to upgrade faultlessly.

My Sun Solaris WS has Solaris (2.)9, the last time it was installed was 2.6 ... (first 32 bit only)

I have never sucessfully UPGRADED insitu a live mandrake install... it always ends up a reinstall.

People stat with mandrake, stick a couple of releases and then get bored having to do all the work again for the new release. So they move on... I got tired of the kernel recompiles and mandrakes secret kernel patches. Whatever I tried my kernel-enterprise was NOT able to be generated from the .config they supplied ...


not a single case... every single release. Its a pain compiling drivers against the headers only to find they are not the REAL ones and mandrake has patched (but forgotten to document) the patches. Every upgrade for me started out the same way... either live with 800MB RAM or loose sound/network on the nforce chipset... or download non-mandrake virgin source, patch myself and recompile...

(If Im doing this its easier with gentoo.. if I just want a properly documented binary kernel and patches I use Debian. )


mandrake have since supported 4GB on the normal kernel AND added forcedeth support... (or nforce if you are in the club!) but they already lost this customer

Message... slow the releases and get them right and upgradable


So you'll definitely have at least KDE 3.4 by then, no waiting till next year :). It's after _that_ the cycle really shifts to annual.

See.. they are missing the point...

Who gives a flying.... if KDE 3.4 is included. I have been using it for weeks and its really nice.. lovely transparency and revamped panel..


apt-get upgrade kdebase


This is the point, I am still using woody... with KDE3.4 (and the ubuntu x.org) I don't need to wait for a release.



Releases are for new installs, not upgrading your WM!


Some stuff like 2.4->2.6 is a point release.... and maybee XFree -> X.org...

because of the library dependancies. Glibc2 ->6 was a huge library leap... etc. these are true releases.. (this corresponded with Mandrake 7 - Redhat messed this one up big time.. and mandrake got new customersd like me)


Somewhere it went horribly wrong... now 9.x->10.x heralds more cosmetic changes than rela changes and 10.0->10.1 has more real changes!

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I don't think it matters how big the change was from 9.2 to 10.0 compared to 10.0 to 10.1. Mandrake 10.0 broke compatibily with the 9.x series in several areas. When you break compatibility, a new major release is justified. Also, I'd hardly call switching to entirely different kernel generation a minor change. Kernel 2.6 added a lot of new features. A lot of the new stuff goes unnoticed because of the nature of a kernel. Users aren't going to fire up KDE and say, "Wow, Morton did a great job with the new scheduler!" Also, a lot of people don't use many of the new features because they're aimed at scalability on big iron, but that doesn't mean they're not there. And don't tell me it doesn't matter since Mandrake doesn't get deployed on big iron. It's not like Mandrakesoft can say, "We're going to include new stuff, but downplay it because no one will use it."


As for the new release schedule, having the latest KDE/Gnome/whatever isn't what I'm worried about. Let's say I buy a laptop in June 2006. Am I really going to install a distribution from 8 or 9 months ago? How many ACPI releases ago was that? Will my Intel 802.11n be supported? The same applies to desktops with newer hardware. Intel's dual core chips are coming soon. As it turns out, it will likely be before Mandrake 2006, but if Intel magically pushes the release back and the appropriate kernel misses the freeze for Mandrake 2006, dual core owners have to wait a year before they can use Mandrake. Yes, I'm aware kernel devs have had specs for a while already. I'm not saying dual core specifically will be an issue, I'm just using it as an example.


It seems like Mandrake is trying to be like RHEL, but with a totally different user base. I guess the logic is that if they have a longer release cycle, they'll attract more enterprise clients, but where does that leave soho users? How will Mandrake fare while other desktop distros try to be cutting edge in time for the Longhorn release?

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Well, hopefully with Conectiva merged in, the updating will be more apt like, so it will be easier to update a bit outdated MDK. (I haven't used Conectiva though)


p.s. The dependency hell with KDE 3.4 is simply awesome on my configuration... I've given up with KDE3.4 on my MDK and am waiting for 10.2 in hope, that it'll have fewer dependency issues.


edit: updating kernel.. well 'urpmi --update kernel' really isn't that hard. that is of course if no major changes are in place.

Edited by solarian
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