Fedora 16 Alpha release notes
Filing Bug Reports
Please file bug reports on this Alpha release if you find any problems.
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 16, refer to their individual wiki pages that detail feature goals and progress. Features for this release are tracked on the feature list page.
The Purpose of the Alpha Release
This release is an installable, testable version of the code and features being developed for Fedora 16 (Verne).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 release. Either install or run a Fedora Live instance of the Fedora 16 Alpha release, then try using a few applications or activities that are important to you. If it doesn't work, file a bug. This 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 16 release. You can make the Fedora 16 release better by testing this release and reporting your findings.
What's New in Fedora 16 Alpha
- Btrfs filesystem as default
- No more HAL HAL (Hardware Abstraction Layer) was originally created by David Zeuthen from Red Hat and included in Fedora Core 3. This has been superseded by udisks, upower and udev as detailed here. Fedora has been working on removing HAL for the last several releases and in this release, HAL has been completely obsoleted and none of the over 25000 packages in Fedora depend on it anymore. Fore more details refer to this feature list page. Thanks to Red Hat Desktop team and several volunteer members in the Fedora community and upstream developers for coordinating this change.
- UID_MIN & GID_MIN changed Up until Fedora 15, the first user in Fedora would get a user and group id of 500. 0-200 are for reserved ids. This left only 299 ids for system accounts which isn't enough anymore. Also other distributions and upstream projects were already standardizing on 1000 as the minimum id for user accounts. Starting from this release, Fedora will also do the same. This has been changed in /etc/login.defs (part of shadow-utils package). Thanks to Peter Vrabec from Red Hat for doing this change.
- No desktop folder by default Major desktop environments including GNOME 3 and KDE 4 do not desktop folder contents by default anymore and hence xdg-user-dirs has been configured to not create a desktop folder anymore by default. This is still user configurable however. Thanks to Matthias Clasen for doing this change.
yum consumes lot less memory
gnome shell has world clock re-added
Network Manger UI for GNOME Shell supports using a laptop as a hotspot
How to Try Alpha
This release is accompanied by installable live media of both the GNOME and KDE desktops. With Live media users can perform testing and demonstration without installing any software to the hard disk. As this 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 media also has an option to install Fedora to the hard disk for the more intrepid users.
The best way to download this release is through BitTorrent -- visit the Fedora torrent server for a listing of available images. Release 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 or x86_64
Fedora does not publish MD5 or SHA1 hashes to verify images since they are not secure enough. Instead we have been using SHA256 since Fedora 11. In Linux, you can use sha256sum command (part of coreutils and installed by default) to verify the Fedora image
sha256sum -c *-CHECKSUM
Windows can use the free to download utility HashCalc.
Mac OS X can use the free to download utility hashtab.
Fedora GPG signatures can be verified following the instructions here
Debugging Information And Performance
Fedora kernels have many extensive debugging options during the development cycle that have a negative impact on performance but provide developers with more information automatically or in the case of bug reports. If you are running performance analysis on Rawhide or test releases such as Alpha or Beta, make sure you take this into account.
Fedora 16 Release Schedule And Feature Details
Development continues on Rawhide during and after this release, leading up to the beta and then 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 16.