Fedora 11 Alpha release notes
What is the Alpha Release?
The Alpha release provides the first opportunity for the wider community to become involved with the testing of Rawhide. The Alpha release represents a sanitized snapshot of Fedora's development branch, which sees rapid changes and will become the next major release. It should boot on the majority of systems, shows some of the new features that will be included in the next release, and gives testers an opportunity to provide feedback and bug reports to help ensure that the next release is as good as possible.
As mentioned above, the Alpha release provides an opportunity for the wider community to begin testing the next release of Fedora. You help the Fedora Project continue to improve Fedora when you file bug reports and enhancement requests. These links explain what needs testing for the Alpha release and allow you to submit your feedback:
As always, Fedora continues to develop and integrate the latest free and open source software. The following sections provide a brief overview of major changes from the last release of Fedora. For more details about other features that are making their way into Rawhide and set for inclusion in Fedora 11, refer to their individual wiki pages that detail feature goals and progress. Also, throughout the release cycle, there are interviews with the developers behind key features giving out the inside story. Features for this release are tracked on the feature list page.
No GPG signatures
The Fedora 11 Alpha release is not GPG-signed. The release engineering team is working on upgrades to the build system to add support for SHA-256 signatures. Once those upgrades are done, the test releases that follow will be GPG-signed.
The Purpose of this Alpha Release
A Fedora Alpha release is an installable, testable version of the code and features being developed for Fedora 11 (Leonidas.)
The software is going to have bugs, problems, and incomplete features. It is not likely to eat your data or parts of your computer, but you should be aware that it could.
You have an important part to play in this Alpha release. Either install or run a Fedora Live instance of the Fedora 11 Alpha release, then try using a few applications or activities that are important to you. If it doesn't work, file a bug.
This Alpha release gives the wider community a set of code to test against as a very important step in the process of making a solid Fedora 11 release. You can make the Fedora 11 release better by testing the Alpha release and reporting your findings.
What's New in Fedora 11 (Leonidas) Alpha
The following sections document major new features and changes in the Fedora 11 (Leonidas) Alpha release
Windows Cross Compiler (mingw32-*)
Fedora 11 alpha provides a preview of MinGW, a development environment for Fedora users who wish to cross-compile their programs to run on Windows without having to use Windows during development. 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 in Fedora 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.
To try the cross-compiler and environment, install the
mingw32-gcc-c++ packages. After installation, use the
mingw32-configure command to replace ordinary
./configure. The following commands then build a Windows executable (*.EXE) or Windows DLL (*.DLL) from your code:
mingw32-library packages provide requisite libraries for use with MinGW. If you install requisite libraries with these packages,
mingw32-configure will automatically find them.
The following libraries are available in the alpha release:
zlibfor data compression
dlopenworkalike for Windows)
pthreads(based on Sourceware pthreads-win32)
Many more libraries will be available by the time of the Fedora 11 general release.
Ext4 File System
The ext3 file system has remained the mature standard in Linux for a long time. The ext4 file system is a major update which has an improved design, even better performance and reliability, support for much larger storage, and very fast file system checks and file deletions.
The ext4 file system has been an experimentally supported option since Fedora 9, and is now the default file system for Fedora 11 Alpha. More details and a comprehensive list of new features for ext4 is available at:
A file system shrink capability is not supported yet, but planned for Fedora 11 release. Please backup your data for safety if you test this feature in Fedora 11 Alpha. Though unlikely, Fedora 11 general release might still revert back to ext3 if any new major issues are discovered and cannot be fixed on time.
Btrfs File System
The Btrfs next-generation file system is an experimentally supported option in this release. To enable it within the installer, pass
icantbelieveitsnotbtr at the installation boot prompt. The Btrfs file system might become the default for Fedora in a later release. Please backup your data for safety if you test this feature in Fedora 11 Alpha.
A screenshot and reference is available at:
More information about Btrfs is available here:
More explicit testing and feedback for btrfs is requested. Please note that this is a file system under heavy development, without a fully functional fsck program or even proper out of space handling. The on-disk format might still change if there any serious issues found. The GRUB boot loader does not yet support Btrfs. Use ext2/3 for your /boot partition instead.
New Volume Control
Currently, people using Fedora have to go through many levels of mixers in different applications 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. More details including screenshots here:
PackageKit Firmware Support
PackageKit in Fedora 10 already has support for installing additional media codecs on demand. PackageKit in the Fedora 11 Alpha release has extended this capability to install firmware on demand as well based on system requirements.
The GNOME 2.26 development snapshot is part of this release, and is the default environment used in the Fedora Desktop Live image. The Desktop Live image is a downloadable CD you can use to test the new GNOME environment with or without installing it. The image can be written to CD, or to a USB flash disk using these instructions.
ADD MORE INFO.
KDE 4.2 Release Candidate 2
The KDE 4.2 Release Candidate 2 snapshot is part of this release and is the default environment in the Fedora KDE Desktop Live image. The KDE Desktop Live image is a downloadable CD you can use to test the new KDE environment with or without installing it. The image can be written to a CD, or to a USB flash disk using these instructions. KDE 4.2 will be available as an update shortly.
Xfce 4.6 Beta
A major new release of Xfce, Xfce 4.6 Beta, is available in the repository and is the default environment in the Fedora Xfce Live Spin. The Xfce Live Spin is a downloadable CD you can use to test the new Xfce environment with or without isntalling it. The image can be written to a CD, or to a USB flash disk using these instructions. Xfce 4.6 changes here:
The NetBeans has been updated to version 6.5. NetBeans 6.5 is a significant update of the NetBeans 6.1 and includes the following changes:
- PHP support with code completion, Xdebug and web service features.
- JavaFX 1.0 supports animation, graphics and media codecs for rich content application development.
- New Support for Groovy and Grails.
- Automatic Compile and Deploy on Save for Java and Java EE applications.
- Improved database support: SQL history, SQL completion, and results viewing and editing improvements.
- Improved Java ME support for Data Binding, SVG and Custom Component creation.
- GUI Builder: Support for Nimbus and simple class names.
- JUnit: single test method support.
- Debugger: Redesign of Step into feature.
For information about the main development features in NetBeans IDE, see:
Python 2.6 has been integrated into the release and all the software in the distribution has been made compatible with it. This effort leads the way to Python 3.0, a major release that is not backward compatible with the Python 2.x series.
The key combination Ctrl-Alt-Backspace to kill the X server has been disabled by default. To get this behaviour back, add the the line
Option "DontZap" "false"
to the ServerFlags section in xorg.conf.
Git has been updated to 188.8.131.52. In addition to other changes, the Fedora packages now follow upstream defaults and install the majority of
git-* commands outside the default
PATH. If you have scripts that call
git-* binaries, you are encouraged to change them to use the
git foo style. If this is not feasible, you can adjust your
PATH. Git provides a convenient method to do this:
It is worth noting that
git hooks are run with
$(git --exec-path) in their
How to Try Alpha
Alpha is accompanied by installable live CDs of both the GNOME and KDE desktops. With a Live CD users can perform testing and demonstration without installing any software to the hard disk. As the Alpha release is largely targeted at developers and contains many bleeding edge packages, this is the best method for less experienced users who want to get involved with testing. The Live CDs also have an option to install Fedora to the hard disk for the more intrepid users.
The best way to download Fedora 10 Alpha is through BitTorrent -- visit the Fedora torrent server for a listing of available images. Alpha images can also be downloaded from any of our mirrors. Remember that live images can be used on USB media via the livecd-iso-to-disk utility available in the livecd-tools package on existing Fedora systems. Refer to the USB How-to for more instructions. You can also use Jigdo to download the i386, x86_64, or ppc versions.
Fedora 21 Release Schedule And Feature Details
Development continues on Rawhide during and after the Alpha release, leading up to the Beta and Release Candidate before the final release. The links below provide the release schedule for both the pre-releases and the final release, as well as the wiki pages for tracking the various features planned for inclusion in Fedora 10.