F11 Talking Points

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There a number of new features, enhancements and improvement coming up in Fedora 11Here are just a few of those:
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This page contains the highest-level talking points for the Fedora 11 release.  When adding to this page, consider points that have a wide appeal, and consider whether or not there is a "bigger picture" that needs to be describedIn some cases, a feature is part of a multi-release arc of work, and that context can be useful to provide.
  
==Technical Enhancements==
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== For desktop users and everyone ==
* '''[[Features/Ext4DefaultFs|Filesystem]]''' - Ext4 is the now the default FS in Fedora.  The ext4 filesystem has more features and generally better performance than ext3, which is showing its age in the Linux filesystem world.
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* '''[[Features/Fingerprint|Fingerprint]]''' - Extensive work has been done to make Fingerprint readers easy to use as an authenticaton mechanism. Currently, using Fingerprint readers is a bit of a pain, and installing/using fprint and its pam module take more time than should ever be necessary. The goal of this feature is to make it painless by providing all the required pieces in Fedora, together with nicely integrated configuration.
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* '''[[Features/AutoFontsAndMimeInstaller | Automatic font and mime-type installation]]''' - PackageKit was introduced in Fedora 9 as a cross-distro software management application for users. The capabilities it offers thanks to integration with the desktop became more visible in Fedora 10, where it provided automatic codec installation.  Now in Fedora 11, PackageKit extends this functionality with the ability to automatically install fonts where needed for viewing and editing documents.  It also includes the capability to install handlers for specific content types as needed.  Some work is still being completed to provide automatic installation of applications.
  
* '''[[Features/Presto|Presto (Delta RPMs)]]''' - Support for the yum Presto plugin which will give users the option of not downloading whole package updates and instead using Delta RPMs to build packages locally.  This will enable users of dial up connections and others in network-scarce environments to keep up-to-date.
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* '''[[Features/VolumeControl|Volume Control]]''' - Currently, people using Fedora have to go through many levels of mixers to properly set up sound sources.  These are all exposed in the volume control on the desktop, making for a very confusing user experience.  PulseAudio allows us to unify the volume controls in one interface that makes setting up sound easier and more pain-free.
  
* '''[[Features/VolumeControl|VolumeControl]]''' - The multimedia experience of Fedora users is improved by an easily understandable and much more flexible volume control model. With the use of PulseAudio by default, it makes sense to no longer expose the unintuitive plethora of volume controls and channels that alsa exports, and which is currently reflected 1-1 in the gnome volume control tools (gnome-volume-control and mixer applet). PulseAudio already ships with a volume control app, pavucontrol, that is packaged for Fedora (but not installed by default).  
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* '''[[Features/IntelKMS | Intel]], [[Features/Radeon3DUpdate | ATI]] and [[Features/NouveauModesetting | Nvidia]] kernel modesetting''' - Fedora 10 provided the first steps by a major distribution into using the kernel modesetting (KMS) feature to speed up graphical boot.  We indicated at the time that we would be adding greater support for additional video cards as time went on.  KMS originally was featured only on some ATI cards.  In Fedora 11, this work is extended to include many more video cards, including Intel and Nvidia, and additional ATI as well. Although not fully complete, we have increased enormously the video card coverage of the KMS feature, with more to come.
  
* '''[[Features/TightVNC|TightVNC]]''' - TightVNC has successfully implemented "Tight" protocol enhancements which save bandwidth and are generally better than the original RealVNC's RFB 3.8 protocol. On the other hand Fedora vnc has by far a much better server (Xvnc) which is based on X 1.5 and supports more extensions. Fedora changes have to be carefully merged to TightVNC upstream and then we will use it as default Fedora vnc system.
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* '''[[Features/Fingerprint|Fingerprint]]''' - Extensive work has been done to make fingerprint readers easy to use as an authentication mechanism. Currently, using fingerprint readers is a bit of a pain, and installing/using fprint and its pam module take more time than should ever be necessary. The goal of this feature is to make it painless by providing all the required pieces in Fedora, together with nicely integrated configuration.  To enable this functionality the user will register their fingerprints on the system as part of user account creation. After doing so, they will easily be able to log in and authenticate seamlessly using a simple finger swipe.  This greatly simplifies one element of identity management and is a great step in the evolution of the linux desktop.
  
* '''[[Features/CupsPolicyKitIntegration|Cups Policy Kit Integration]]''' - Cups has its own authentication and policy configuration mechanism, which basically consists in specifying users/groups that are allowed administrative access to the cups server. In an ideal world, cups would expose its administrative functions as a PolicyKit mechanism via d-bus. Since that is unlikely to happen in the short term (if ever), Vincent Untz of OpenSUSE has written a small wrapper called cups-pk-helper to do this, together with the necessary changes to pycups and system-config-printer to talk to cups-pk-helper instead of directly to cups.
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* '''[[Features/IBus|IBus input method system]]''' - ibus has been rewritten in C and provides a simple clean input method framework with support for input of Asian and other languages. It is able to load and unload input methods from its configuration setup during a desktop session to avoid the need together with imsettings for having to restart the desktop to activate or deactivate input method support.  Work on ibus will continue in F12 with more new features and improvements.
  
* '''[[Features/SSSD|Simple Security Services Daemon]]''' - The SSSD is intended to provide several key feature enhancements to Fedora. The first and most visible will be the addition of offline caching for network credentials. Authentication through the SSSD will potentially allow LDAP, NIS, and FreeIPA services to provide an offline mode, to ease the use of centrally managing laptop users. Laptop users will have offline access to their network logons, eliminating the need for local laptop accounts when traveling. Desktop developers will have access to the new InfoPipe, allowing them to migrate towards using a more consistent approach for storing and retrieving extended user information.
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== For system administrators ==
  
* '''[[Features/DeviceKit|DeviceKit]]''' - DeviceKit is a simple system service that a) can enumerate devices; b) emits signals when devices are added removed; c) provides a way to merge device information / quirks onto devices. It is designed to partially replace hal and overcome some of the design limitiations of hal. DeviceKit functionality is provided in the form of dbus services on the system bus.
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* '''[[Features/Ext4DefaultFs|Filesystem]]''' - Ext4 is the now the default FS in Fedora.  The ext4 filesystem has more features and generally better performance than ext3.  Ext4 enables support for volumes as large as 1 exabyte (over 1,000,000 terabytes).  Extents, which are ranges of contiguous physical blocks are introduced to improve large file performance and reducing fragmentation. Ext4 also allows for pre-allocation of disk space for a file.  Amongst other general improvements ext4 now also adds journal checksumming to improve realiability and faster file system checking.  
  
* '''[[Features/IBus|IBus]]''' - iBus is a new input method framework under active development which is designed to overcome the limitations of SCIM. It will be the default in Fedora 11. iBus uses dbus protocol for communication between the ibus-daemon and clients (engines, panel, config tools). Since the components run in separate processes there is enhanced modularity and stability. Client processes can be loaded, started and stopped independently. iBus supports Gtk2, Qt4, and XIM, and has input method engines for anthy, chewing, hangul, m17n, pinyin, and large tables. Engines and clients can be written in any language with a dbus binding.
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* '''[[Features/VirtImprovedConsole|Virt Improved Console]]''' - In Fedora 10 and earlier the virtual guest console is limited to a screen resolution of 800x600. In Fedora 11 the goal is to have the screen default to at least 1024x768 resolution out of the box. New installations of F11 provide the ability to use other interface devices in the virtual guest, such as a USB tablet, which the guest will automatically detect and configure. Among the results is a mouse pointer that tracks the local client pointer one-for-one, and providing expanded capabilities.
  
==Development Oriented Features==
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== For developers ==
  
* '''[[Features/Python_2.6|Python 2.6]]''' - Fedora is about pushing the boundaries, and having Python 2.6 as a transitional release on the path to Python 3000 is no exception.
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* '''[[Features/Windows_cross_compiler | MinGW (Windows cross compiler)]]''' - Fedora 11 will provide MinGW, a development environment for Fedora users who wish to cross-compile their programs to run on Windows without having to use Windows. In the past developers have had to port and compile all of the libraries and tools they have needed, and this huge effort has happened independently many times over. MinGW eliminates duplication of work for application developers by providing a range of libraries and development tools already ported to the cross-compiler environment. Developers don't have to recompile the application stack themselves, but can concentrate just on the changes needed to their own application.
  
* '''[[Features/Archer|Archer]]''' - Archer is a gdb development branch focusing on better C++ support. It also includes Python scripting capabililites. More information at [http://sourceware.org/gdb/wiki/ProjectArcher http://sourceware.org/gdb/wiki/ProjectArcher]
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== For architects and futurists ==
  
* '''[[Features/DNSSEC|DNS Security]]''' - DNSSEC (DNS SECurity) is mechanism which can provide integrity and authenticity of DNS data. It became more important after new Kaminsky DNS poisoning attacks were found in early 2008. The most widely used name servers support DNSSEC, though it is only (bind, unbound). Our servers and clients will be "invulnerable" against cache poisoning, Kaminsky attacks, spoofing and other known DNS attacks.
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* '''[http://moksha.fedorahosted.org Moksha]''' - Moksha is a revolutionary new framework for building live information delivery on the Web. Built with best-of-breed underlying technologies such as TurboGears 2, AQMP, and jQuery, Moksha will allow real-time collaboration and information flow across the entire Fedora Project, bringing the community dashboard to life and people closer together than ever before.  Moksha is yet another innovative [http://fedorahosted.org Fedora Hosted] project to which anyone can contribute.
  
* '''[[Features/KVM_PCI_Device_Assignment|KVM PCI Device Assignment]]''' - KVM guests usually have access to either virtio devices or emulated devices. If the guest has access to suitable drivers, then virtio is preferred because it allows high performance to be achieved.  On host machines which have Intel VT-d or AMD IOMMU hardware support, another option is possible. PCI devices may be assigned directly to the guest, allowing the device to be used with minimal performance overhead. In summary, PCI device assignment is possible given the appropriate hardware, but it is only suitable in certain situations where the flexibility of memory over-commit and migration is not required. Fedora users will be able to assign PCI network cards, hard disk controllers, phone line termination cards etc. to their virtual machines.
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[[Category:Marketing]][[Category:F11]][[Category:Talking points]]
 
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* '''[[Features/Windows_cross_compiler|Windows Cross Compiler]]''' - The Fedora MinGW project's mission is to provide an excellent development environment for Fedora users who wish to cross-compile their programs to run on Windows, minimizing the need to use Windows at all. In the past developers have had to port and compile all of the libraries and tools they have needed, and this huge effort has happened independently many times over. We aim to eliminate duplication of work for application developers by providing a range of libraries and development tools which have already been ported to the cross-compiler environment. This means that developers will not need to recompile the application stack themselves, but can concentrate just on the changes needed to their own application.
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==Desktop Hotness==
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* '''[[Features/Gnome2_26|Gnome 2.26]]
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* '''[[Features/KDE42|KDE 4.2]]
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* '''[[Features/Xfce46|XFCE 4.6]]
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[[Category:Marketing]][[Category:F11]]
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Latest revision as of 19:35, 17 February 2010

This page contains the highest-level talking points for the Fedora 11 release. When adding to this page, consider points that have a wide appeal, and consider whether or not there is a "bigger picture" that needs to be described. In some cases, a feature is part of a multi-release arc of work, and that context can be useful to provide.

Contents

[edit] For desktop users and everyone

  • Automatic font and mime-type installation - PackageKit was introduced in Fedora 9 as a cross-distro software management application for users. The capabilities it offers thanks to integration with the desktop became more visible in Fedora 10, where it provided automatic codec installation. Now in Fedora 11, PackageKit extends this functionality with the ability to automatically install fonts where needed for viewing and editing documents. It also includes the capability to install handlers for specific content types as needed. Some work is still being completed to provide automatic installation of applications.
  • Volume Control - Currently, people using Fedora have to go through many levels of mixers to properly set up sound sources. These are all exposed in the volume control on the desktop, making for a very confusing user experience. PulseAudio allows us to unify the volume controls in one interface that makes setting up sound easier and more pain-free.
  • Intel, ATI and Nvidia kernel modesetting - Fedora 10 provided the first steps by a major distribution into using the kernel modesetting (KMS) feature to speed up graphical boot. We indicated at the time that we would be adding greater support for additional video cards as time went on. KMS originally was featured only on some ATI cards. In Fedora 11, this work is extended to include many more video cards, including Intel and Nvidia, and additional ATI as well. Although not fully complete, we have increased enormously the video card coverage of the KMS feature, with more to come.
  • Fingerprint - Extensive work has been done to make fingerprint readers easy to use as an authentication mechanism. Currently, using fingerprint readers is a bit of a pain, and installing/using fprint and its pam module take more time than should ever be necessary. The goal of this feature is to make it painless by providing all the required pieces in Fedora, together with nicely integrated configuration. To enable this functionality the user will register their fingerprints on the system as part of user account creation. After doing so, they will easily be able to log in and authenticate seamlessly using a simple finger swipe. This greatly simplifies one element of identity management and is a great step in the evolution of the linux desktop.
  • IBus input method system - ibus has been rewritten in C and provides a simple clean input method framework with support for input of Asian and other languages. It is able to load and unload input methods from its configuration setup during a desktop session to avoid the need together with imsettings for having to restart the desktop to activate or deactivate input method support. Work on ibus will continue in F12 with more new features and improvements.

[edit] For system administrators

  • Filesystem - Ext4 is the now the default FS in Fedora. The ext4 filesystem has more features and generally better performance than ext3. Ext4 enables support for volumes as large as 1 exabyte (over 1,000,000 terabytes). Extents, which are ranges of contiguous physical blocks are introduced to improve large file performance and reducing fragmentation. Ext4 also allows for pre-allocation of disk space for a file. Amongst other general improvements ext4 now also adds journal checksumming to improve realiability and faster file system checking.
  • Virt Improved Console - In Fedora 10 and earlier the virtual guest console is limited to a screen resolution of 800x600. In Fedora 11 the goal is to have the screen default to at least 1024x768 resolution out of the box. New installations of F11 provide the ability to use other interface devices in the virtual guest, such as a USB tablet, which the guest will automatically detect and configure. Among the results is a mouse pointer that tracks the local client pointer one-for-one, and providing expanded capabilities.

[edit] For developers

  • MinGW (Windows cross compiler) - Fedora 11 will provide MinGW, a development environment for Fedora users who wish to cross-compile their programs to run on Windows without having to use Windows. In the past developers have had to port and compile all of the libraries and tools they have needed, and this huge effort has happened independently many times over. MinGW eliminates duplication of work for application developers by providing a range of libraries and development tools already ported to the cross-compiler environment. Developers don't have to recompile the application stack themselves, but can concentrate just on the changes needed to their own application.

[edit] For architects and futurists

  • Moksha - Moksha is a revolutionary new framework for building live information delivery on the Web. Built with best-of-breed underlying technologies such as TurboGears 2, AQMP, and jQuery, Moksha will allow real-time collaboration and information flow across the entire Fedora Project, bringing the community dashboard to life and people closer together than ever before. Moksha is yet another innovative Fedora Hosted project to which anyone can contribute.