It’s the season of Linux distribution releases! Ubuntu was released about 3 weeks ago, and now it’s time for Fedora 9, aka “Sulphur”. So What’s new?
Much Like Ubuntu’s Add/Remove Programs, Fedora gets a similar one, known as “PacakgeKit”.PackageKit is a cross-distribution package management solution that has a complete yum backend. It has been designed to make installing and updating software on your computer easier, and aims to unify all the graphical package management tools used in different distributions.
GNOME Desktop 2.22 Release
As with Ubuntu 8.04, GNOME 2.22 will power Fedora 9. GNOME 2.22 features lots of new features and improvements, such as a new Nautilus that uses GVFS as its backend. GVFS makes it possible to fix shortcomings of Nautilus such as the inability to restore files from trash, pause and undo file operations, and will make it possible to escalate user privileges for certain operations using PolicyKit for authentication. It also brings a significant performance boost to many operations.
KDE Desktop 4.0.3
Fedora packages KDE 4.0.3 in this release. KDE Desktop 4.0.3 features upgrades to core components such as the port to Qt 4. It also introduces a number of brand new frameworks such as the Phonon, a multimedia API; Solid, a hardware integration framework; Plasma, a re-written desktop and panel with many new concepts; integrated desktop search; compositing as a feature of KWin; and a brand new visual style called Oxygen.
NetworkManager has made managing your network devices easy in Fedora. With this release, Fedora developer Dan Williams has aimed to expand the situations in which NetworkManager is useful. New features available in this release include:
- Multiple active network devices
- Ad-hoc support, so that you can easily form a network with any near-by wireless devices
- Support for mobile broadband cards (GSM/CDMA) through PPP
- System-wide network configuration through NetworkManager with PolicyKit
Firefox 3 Beta 5 Browser
Firefox 3 Beta 5 brings a number of major improvements including a native look by using the same icons and widget style of the rest of the desktop.
Startup and shut-down of X is just about a second and there are a number of other improvements including better display configuration and hot-plugging support thanks to the inclusion of Xorg 1.4 with a pre-release of X Server 1.5
There are a number of Bluetooth related enhancements that build upon the work already completed during Fedora 8 release. Sending, receiving and browsing files via Bluetooth is now much easier
Anaconda Installer Improvements
The Fedora system installer, Anaconda, has received a lot of new features this release. Amongst them are:
- Support for resizing ext2, ext3 and NTFS partitions during the installation
- Support for creating and installing to encrypted filesystems
- Experimental support for installing to ext4 filesystems – you will need to use the ext4 boot parameter to enable this
- Support for native installation to x86_64 machines EFI with booting via GRUB
- Support for network installations and system rescue operations has been improved with the introduction of netinst.iso.
Persistent Live USB Support
livecd-creator now also provides an API which can be used for building alternative front-ends as well as for building tools for other types of images. Live USB disks can be created even on Microsoft Windows using Fedora’s liveusb-creator
Upstart Init Daemon
Fedora 9 uses the Upstart init daemon as a replacement for System V init. The benefit of this is that Upstart has a more sophisticated idea of how to to trigger and manage services.
Ext4 Filesystem Support
Fedora 9 features experimental support for the new Ext4 filesystem.
So what’re you waiting for! Head over here and grab the latest release.
Read the complete Release Summary