F19 Alpha release announcement

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The Fedora 19 "Schrödinger's Cat" alpha release has arrived with a preview of the latest fantastic, free, and open source technology currently under development. Take a peek inside:

http://fedoraproject.org/get-prerelease

Contents

What is the Alpha Release?

The Alpha release contains all the exciting features of Fedora 19 in a form that anyone can help test. This testing, guided by the Fedora QA team, helps us target and identify bugs. When these bugs are fixed, we make a Beta release available. A Beta release is code-complete and bears a very strong resemblance to the third and final release. The final release of Fedora 19 is due expected in early July.

We need your help to make Fedora 19 the best release yet, so please take a moment of your time to download and try out the Alpha and make sure the things that are important to you are working. If you find a bug, please report it--every bug you uncover is a chance to improve the experience for millions of Fedora users worldwide. Together, we can make Fedora a rock-solid distribution. We have a culture of coordinating new features and pushing fixes upstream as much as feasible and your feedback will help better not only Fedora but Linux and free software on the whole. (See the end of this announcement for more information on how to help.)

Features

Fedora prides itself on bringing cutting-edge technologies to users of open source software around the world, and this release continues that tradition. No matter what you do, Fedora 19 has the tools you need to help you get things done.

A complete list with details of each new feature is available here:

http://fedoraproject.org/wiki/Releases/19/FeatureList

Create and Develop

Would you like to play? Whether you're a developer, maker, or just starting to learn about open source development, we have what you need to bring your ideas to reality. Here's a peek at some of our new tools:

  • Developer's Assistant is great for those new to development or even new to Linux, this tool helps you to get started on a code project with templates, samples, and toolchains for the languages of your choice. Bonus: It lets you publish directly to GitHub.
  • OpenShift Origin makes it easy for you to build your own Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) infrastructure, allowing you to enable others to easily develop and deploy software.
  • 3D modelling and printing are enabled through a variety of tools, including OpenSCAD, Skeinforge, SFACT, Printrun, and RepetierHost.
  • node.js is a popular Javascript-based platform for those building scalable network applications or real-time apps across distributed devices. Also included is the npm package manager, providing access to over 20,000 programs and libraries available under free and open source licenses.
  • Ruby 2.0.0, just released in February, comes to Fedora while maintaining source-level backwards compatibility with your Ruby 1.9.3 software. Also included: a custom Ruby loader for easy switching of interpreters.
  • Scratch, a graphical, educational programming environment lets you (and even better, the kids you introduce it to) create interactive stories, games, animation, music, and art.

Deploy, Monitor, and Manage

Make your machines work for you--not the other way around. Whether you have one or "one too many" machines, Fedora 19 helps you boot manage your systems and enables you to be proactive with tools for diagnosis, monitoring, and logging.

  • Syslinux optional boot tool integration brings you optional, simplified booting of Fedora. We have added support for using syslinux instead of GRUB via kickstart and plan to add a hidden option in Anaconda installer as well. syslinux is especially ideal for images used in cloud environments and virt appliances where the advanced features of GRUB is not needed.
  • systemd Resource Control lets you modify your service settings without a reboot by dynamically querying and modifying resource control parameters at runtime. This is one of many systemd enhancements in Fedora 19.
  • Checkpoint & Restore provides the ability to checkpoint and restore a process and is useful for cases such as process failure, or moving a process to another machine for maintenance or load balancing.
  • Virt storage migration lets you move a virtual machine *and* in-use storage without requiring shared storage between the hosts--a significant improvement upon previous capabilities.
  • OpenLMI is a common infrastructure for the management of Linux systems that makes remote management of machines much simpler.
  • High Availability Container Resources extend the corosync/pacemaker HA stack beyond management of virtual guests to containers inside the guests themselves. Define and add containers in your virtual guests through discovery.

Desktop Environments and Spins

GNOME 3.8

GNOME 3.8 brings new applications such as clock and improvements to the desktop including privacy and sharing settings, ordered search, frequent applications overview, and additionally provides the ability to enable a "classic mode" for a user experience similar to GNOME 2 built out of a collection of GNOME Shell extensions. Refer to https://help.gnome.org/misc/release-notes/3.8/ for more details.

KDE Plasma Workspaces 4.10

A modern, stable desktop environment, KDE Plasma Workspaces 4.10 includes new features for printing and screenlocking, better indexing of files, and improved accessibility features. Refer to http://www.kde.org/announcements/4.10/ for more details.

MATE Desktop 1.6

The MATE 1.6 Desktop introduces a large number of improvements to this traditional, GNOME 2-like desktop interface. Refer to http://mate-desktop.org/2013/04/02/mate-1-6-released/ for more details.

Spins

Spins are alternate versions of Fedora. In addition to various desktop environments for Fedora, spins are also available as tailored environments for various types of users via hand-picked application sets or customizations.

Interest-specific Spins include the Design Suite Spin, the Robotics Spin, and the Security Spin, among others. Other available desktop environments, in addition to the GNOME 3.8 desktop which is shipped in the default version of Fedora 19, as well as those highlighted above, include Xfce, Sugar on a Stick, and LXDE.

To see all of the Official Fedora 19 Release Spins, see the Fedora 19 Release Spins link.

Nightly composes of alternate Spins are available here: http://dl.fedoraproject.org/pub/alt/nightly-composes

Note on performance

Fedora development releases use a kernel with extra debug information to help us understand and resolve issues faster; however, this can have a significant impact on performance. Refer to kernel debug strategy for more details. You can boot with slub_debug=- or use the kernel from nodebug repository to disable the extra debug info.

Issues and Details

Schrödinger's Cat Alpha is a testing release. To report issues encountered during testing, contact the Fedora QA team via the test mailing list or in #fedora-qa on freenode.

As testing progresses, common issues are tracked at https://fedoraproject.org/wiki/Common_F19_bugs

For tips on reporting a bug effectively, read http://fedoraproject.org/wiki/How_to_file_a_bug_report .

Contributing

There are many ways to contribute beyond bug reporting. You can help translate software and content, test and give feedback on software updates, write and edit documentation, design and do artwork, help with all sorts of promotional activities, and package free software for use by millions of Fedora users worldwide. To get started, visit http://join.fedoraproject.org today!