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Archive for November, 2009

OpenOffice_org 3.2 beta3 available for openSUSE

November 30th, 2009 by

I’m happy to announce OpenOffice.org 3.2 beta3 packages for openSUSE. They are available in the Build Service OpenOffice:org:UNSTABLE project and include many upstream and Go-oo fixes. See also overview of integrated features and enhancements. Please, look for more details about the openSUSE OOo build on the wiki page.

The package is a beta version and might include even serious bugs. Therefore they are not intended for data-critical usage. A good practice is to archive any important data before an use, …

As usual, we kindly ask any interested beta testers to try the package and report bugs. See also the list of known bugs.

Other information and plans:

The next beta4 build should be available one week from now. Hopefully, it will be the last beta before the release candidate. There is still a theoretical chance that the final release might be available before Christmas but you we will most likely need to wait until the first half of January.

Usability Symposium

November 27th, 2009 by

On wednesday Will and me visited the Usability Symposium 2009 of the Network for User Oriented Software Design, a group which consists mainly of people from the Georg Simon Ohm University of Applied Sciences here in Nuernberg and people from local companies such as Astrum. It was the first symposium of this group and they gave three presentations about software usability.

One of the presentations were given by Evamaria Fuchs and Dr. Sigi Olschner, both former SUSE employees who worked in the usability lab. They presented about the development of the KDE KickOff menu that we shipped in version 10-something for KDE 3. Its successor became the KDE 4 default menu. Eva and Sigi presented how consequent usability work which goes along with the development effort can improve the quality measurable. They also gave a very good insight on free software and open source development in general, taking into account that most people from the audience did not have any experience with it. It was a very nice talk.

While Will was presenting KDE 4 to some interested people Sigi gave me some lessons on how to set up and use the eye tracking device that we have in the Boosters team now. We certainly need another lesson and much more knowledge about usability in general but that was a good start – thank you Sigi :-)

Usability experts out there – our Eye Tracker is ready to be used by you for the good of free software! I am wondering when we will have the first session where we try to examine user experience of our software with that device.

New pm-utils for openSUSE

November 25th, 2009 by

The current SUSE version of pm-utils is pretty old. Rpm -q said somethink like And it also contains a hacked support for s2ram, which is nowadays in upstream version. There has been also a bnc#378883 – Need an updated pm-utils I started a work on this week.

A new pm-utils package for openSUSE is available in home:mvyskocil:branches:Base:System. The HIBERNATE_METHOD is no longer supported, because upstream version contains something better – modules. There are three methods how to run software suspend on Linux

  1. kernel – plain echo something > /proc/something
  2. suspend – tool contains a lot of quirks needed on some HW
  3. tuxonice – kernel and userspace support for hibernate, not in upstream kernel, nor in openSUSE

Because there are too many ways in current Linux world, pm-utils simply support all by specific modules stored in /usr/lib/pm-utils/modules.d, which implements appropriate functions for suspend/hibernate and hybrid. The SUSE default is uswsusp module calls s2ram/s2disk/s2both from software suspend project, because it should be considered as a safe default.

If you want to use different module, you can add a config file somewhere to
and set the value of SLEEP_MODULE.

# The default sleep/wake system to use. Valid values are:
# kernel The built-in kernel suspend/resume support.
# Use this if nothing else is supported on your system.
# uswsusp If your system has support for the userspace
# suspend programs (s2ram/s2disk/s2both), then use this.
# tuxonice If your system has support for tuxonice, use this.
# The system defaults to "kernel" if this is commented out.

You can type more methods, which will be called, so SLEEP_MODULE=”kernel uswsusp” will use kernel and if it fail, or not available, it call uswsusp. Please note that config files are read in C sort order, so names matters.

So please install new pm-utils and test it and tell me if you found any regression (please inform me about a regressions only, I cannot fix generic suspend problems).

Report from openSUSE 11.2 Release Party in Prague

November 24th, 2009 by

On November 20th, the Czech members of the openSUSE Boosters Team organized openSUSE 11.2 Release Party. The party took place in the nice building of Faculty of Mathematics and Physics.


We have prepared installation DVDs, which we’ve burnt with Pavol the day before the party – about 20 32bit and the same amount of 64bit DVDs together with some promo DVDs. It was interesting that the 32bit DVDs were taken before the 64bit ones – we expected it to be the other way round. We had also some promotional stuff like T-shirts, caps, stickers etc. Everything disappeared in several minutes, so it seems that people enjoy wearing T-shirts with that little green creatures. ;)


It was hard to estimate how many people will come – we have expected something around 20 participants. However, to our pleasant surprise, about 40 people showed up. Moreover, not only students and young people were present, but also two or three colleagues born a bit earlier.


After Pavol’s quick introduction of members of Czech openSUSE Boosters Team, Michal Hrusecky started his talk about new features in openSUSE 11.2 and new look and feel. Finally, Michal noted opening of Factory, new development model with devel projects, the Contrib repository and Junior Jobs.


After a short snack break, Lubos talked about new KDE in openSUSE 11.2. It seems that the rotating cube effect never bores, so Lubos was asked to rotate his desktop. After having some troubles with figuring out how to switch the cube on, he of course succeeded and the cube worked – WOW! Next, Lubos exhumed his about two years old presentation named ‘What will be new in KDE 4.0′ (or something like that) and retroactively evaluated what the KDE developers achieved or not.


The rest of the party was rather interactive. Boosters and other participants helped with installation of 11.2, solving problems, answered questions and helped with creating bugzilla accounts and reporting bugs in case we had no clue. ;)



Our thanks belong to Faculty of Mathematics and Physics for allowing us to use classroom, SUSE CZ for sponsoring the promotional stuff and snacks and last but not least, to everybody who showed up at the party. Thanks!

For more photos from the party, please visit picasaweb.

Playing With XPath Expressions in The xmllint Shell

November 23rd, 2009 by

When XML is transformed into something else, in most cases XSLT comes to play. One of the challenges of XSLT is to select just the nodes you are interested in. This task is done by XPath, “a query language for selecting nodes from a XML document.”

However, it can be tedious to create a XPath expression, run the transformation, and check if you got the expected result. After hours of debugging you find out: It’s the wrong XPath expression!

To make it easier: Test your XPath expressions in the internal xmllint shell!


DNI electrónico en openSUSE

November 21st, 2009 by

El otro día recibí un mensaje de correo electrónico sobre cómo usar el DNI electrónico en openSUSE (¡muchas gracias Miguel!). Si alguien pudiera revisarlo (no tengo DNIe) para añadirlo al wiki, pues… sería estupendo :)

He hecho un pequeño “howto” en blogdrake para hacer funcionar el DNIe en Mandriva Linux. Como openSUSE también es una distro basada en rpm, y tampoco tiene paquetes “oficiales” para el DNIe, probé en una máquina virtual con la 11.2, y funciona.

Quería pedirte que revisaras un poco los comandos, los completaras, y los pusieras en algún sitio para que la gente que quiera usar el DNIe en openSUSE no tenga problemas. Te resumo un poco aquí los comandos:

openSUSE Edu Li-f-e : creating open minds

November 17th, 2009 by

openSUSE Education community is proud to announce openSUSE-Edu Li-f-e: Linux for Education based on openSUSE 11.2 . Li-f-e flavor bundles the best of softwares openSUSE has to offer, such as most popular Desktop Environments, educational application, development suites, multimedia, great user experience out of the box, and a lot more that is expected in a modern Operating System.

Some highlights of what makes this a very special distribution:


OpenOffice_org 3.2 beta2 available for openSUSE

November 16th, 2009 by

I’m happy to announce OpenOffice.org 3.2 beta2 packages for openSUSE. They are available in the Build Service OpenOffice:org:UNSTABLE project and include many upstream and Go-oo fixes. See also overview of integrated features and enhancements. Please, look for more details about the openSUSE OOo build on the wiki page.

The package is a beta version and might include even serious bugs. Therefore they are not intended for data-critical usage. A good practice is to archive any important data before an use, …

As usual, we kindly ask any interested beta testers to try the package and report bugs. Especially, please test the three new extensions: NLPSolver, oooblogger, and Google Docs and Zoho.

Most annoying bugs

  • the new GDOCS extension adds icons that look ugly in the big size
  • Go-oo-specific strings are not translated
  • See bugzilla for more

Other information and plans:

The next beta3 build should be available two weeks from now. The current plans are to provide the final build in the middle of December. Though, the release will most likely slip to January.

reiser4 for openSuSE-11.2

November 15th, 2009 by

grab the “reiser4-kmp-$flavor” modules and required “reiser4progs” from:

openSuSE-11.2 Update repo

openSuSE-11.2 Standard repo

have fun

openSUSE 11.2 + Ubuntu Karmic Launch party report

November 14th, 2009 by

Just back from the combined openSUSE 11.2 and Ubuntu Launch party. We had over 120 people attending the event, much more than we had expected. Luckily we had enough of pizza slices and DVDs for all :)

The event started with the welcome by Prof. Vupul Kalamkar, PhD of Bachelors of Computer Application Department, Faculty of Science, the Maharaja Sayajirao University of Vadodara. The first presentation was by Kartik Mistry,  Debian Developer on how to get started with contributing to Free Software world.

Next up was my talk featuring all the goodies we have packed in openSUSE Edu Li-f-e based on the latest openSUSE 11.2. A very passionate discussion on “user friendliness” of GNU/Linux distributions vs M$ Windows erupted when asked from the audience what was preventing them from using Linux, hopefully we were able to convey the ease of use by demonstrating many softwares that are present on Li-f-e and live demonstration of coding java, and C# by Nitin. How much easy can it get then getting IDEs such as MonoDevelop, Netbeans, Eclipse and compilers of all major programming languages out of the box.Some videos were also shown, among them Shayon’s(he is the the dude behind the camera in all pictures) promo and the stylish arrival of the geeko ending the presentation with this great video.

The hybrid iso technology was really a WOW! factor, many participants didn’t know something like this was possible and were thrilled with seeing it in action.

There were few laptops getting Linux installed, some running Ubuntu and some openSUSE, tons of live USB sticks were created and every participant went home with Ubuntu and the Li-f-e DVD.

We ended the event with a lucky draw, 3 Ubuntu t-shirts, 2 openSUSE Li-f-e t-shirts, and 2 USB sticks with Li-f-e installed on them were the prizes. Kartik Mistry had a random number generator script picking numbers, unfortunately it kept calling people who had already left or repeating numbers, so we went old fashioned with everyone present writing their names on a piece of paper and esteemed faculties of MSU BCA doing the honors of drawing the name of the winners.

Some of the pictures from the event.

We surely had a lot of fun…