Fedora 16 Alpha PPC release notes

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This is a draft
Fedora 16 Alpha PPC has not been released yet. This is a draft announcement for community feedback.

Contents

General Information

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Download Fedora 16 Alpha PPC now
To download Fedora 16 Alpha PPC, visit http://download.fedoraproject.org/pub/fedora-secondary/releases/test/16-Alpha/ or one of the mirrors https://mirrors.fedoraproject.org/publiclist/Fedora/16-Alpha/ppc64/. Download is available via direct download. This release is available for 64-bit Power PC platforms. Note that Fedora uses SHA256 instead of MD5 or SHA-1 to verify images in a more secure way. For more information, refer to #How_to_Try_Alpha on this page.

Filing Bug Reports

Please file bug reports on this Alpha release if you find any problems.

Known Issues

Refer to the Common F16 bugs page for a listing of issues, and any known resolutions, commonly found with this release. This page is maintained throughout the Fedora 16 developmental cycle.

Known PPC Issues

We currently have several issues in the Alpha that don't block installation. Please read and review the following known issues before reporting bugs.

Installation

  • Encrypted partition password input doesn't work on hvc virtual consoles at the moment. Harald Hoyer is investigating the cause. Bug -> 744415
  • On systems with graphics cards, text is cut in half after anaconda loads. Bug -> 742613
  • On IBM PPC64 hardware with graphics cards, graphical anaconda fails to load. Bug -> 746410
  • On Apple G5 systems, you must pass "nomodeset" as a kernel parameter for the DVD to boot into graphical mode.
  • On IBM PPC64 systems, yaboot will discard install parameters (i.e. vnc=1) under certain conditions. Bug -> 746408
  • On IBM PPC64 systems, the parameter 'serial' must be added to the kernel command line. Bug -> https://bugzilla.redhat.com/show_bug.cgi?id=732302 732302]. If the installation stops at 'Starting Anaconda version 16.xx.', the 'serial' parameter might help.

Runtime

  • Firefox on 32bit briefly shows a window but then dumps core. Bug -> [1]
  • Firefox on 64bit hangs in an infinite loop somewhere in the Javascript engine of xulrunner. Bug -> [2]
  • Workaround:As an alternative use seamonkey for now, that works pretty well.

Release Overview

As always, Fedora continues to develop and integrate the latest free and open sourced 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 has 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. Install Fedora 16 Alpha PPC release, then try using a few applications or activities that are important to you. If it doesn't work, file a bug, but make sure to set the 'Hardware' field to 'powerpc'. 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 PPC

In addition to the features mentioned in the release announcement,

  • No desktop folder by default Major desktop environments including GNOME 3 and KDE 4 do not show the desktop folder's 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.

Additional Information

The Fedora 16 Alpha PPC release is a Secondary Arch release, in fact the first since Fedora 12. More information about this specific architecture can be found here:

http://fedoraproject.org/wiki/Architectures/PowerPC

The developers working on it typically hang out on the FreeNode IRC channel #fedora-ppc and we do have a architecture specific mailinglist for Power PC on Fedora here:

https://admin.fedoraproject.org/mailman/listinfo/ppc

How to Try Alpha

  • Simply install it via the DVD or the netboot images
  • Boot it!
  • Run it!
  • Test it!
  • Write bugs!

IBM PPC64 Notes

  • You must pass 'serial' if you are using any of the following console types: Hardware Management Console (HMC), Integrated Virtualization Manager (IVM), or serial based console.
  • You should use the graphical installer to install Fedora whenever possible. This is enabled by passing the 'vnc=1' parameter.

Verify Fedora

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 developmental cycle that have a negative impact on performance but provide developers with more information automatically, 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 to the beta, 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's pages for tracking the various features planned for inclusion in Fedora 16.