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Archive for January, 2010

Eclipse on Stellarium

January 17th, 2010 by

Stellarium is a free software available for Windows, Linux/Unix and MacOSX. It renders 3D photo-realistic skies in real time.. With stellarium, you really see what you can see with your eyes, binoculars or a small telescope. Packages for openSUSE are available from Education repository on openSUSE Build Service via 1-click install.

India and many parts of Asia witnessed the longest annular solar eclipse of the millennium, next such event will take place after 1000 years. Stellarium helps to re-live the moments of this eclipse and explain what exactly was going on during the eclipse.


Select Southern most tip of India from the location menu (hit right side of the screen with mouse), set date and time : 11:30 am 15 January 2010. Search for “Sun”, sparebar to center it, zoom in with mousewheel. Give few clicks on the “Fast Forward” button.

The dialog boxes has strange rendering bug, for a workaround create /home/yourusername/.drirc with the following content:

<application name=”stellarium” executable=”stellarium”>
<option name=”texture_tiling” value=”false” />


LXDE: Mission (almost) Accomplished

January 15th, 2010 by

Sorry if i missed to inform you since September but i passed a very bad period, (including a breakage of my hand and with my ex-girlfriend), but now i’m definetly better, so here i am to inform you about some wonderful progress.

first of all:

LXDM has been released

exactly, LXDE Desktop Manager has been released and looks to be fully working 🙂

2nd) Upgrades, upgrades and more upgrades

several new package version has been released, including lxappereance, lxmusic, lxpanel and so on.

3rd)  We are going to fix a small not-portable issue due to X-KDE-SubstituteUID

check bugzilla #540627 for more informations, what you want to know any way, is that we fixed .desktop files to allow to run applications as root even outside GNOME or KDE

4th) Factory, factory, factory

LXDE is into openSUSE_Factory now! yes, that means lxde will be installable on 11.3 from OSS repo, and probably from DVD.  I actually submitted lxde pattern request and yast2 pattern icons are already into yast svn. So people.. PLEASE TEST AND REPORT!!


yes people, we have a new opensuse-lxde mailing list now! Please subscribe to opensuse-lxde@opensuse.org for help, support and development… i’m waiting for you!!

6th) Not official support on openSUSE <= 11.1

That’s not my choice but it’s due to gtk changes, because of that X11:lxde will no more take care of failures on suse <= 11.1. new lxde packages requires gtk2 >= 2.16.0 and backport is impossible (see lxappereance for example).

I think that’s all, if not i’ll write a new blog post, but now i must go to my work or i’ll be fired!!


Andrea (your favourite openSUSE-LXDE admin!)

Tip: Using KWallet or GNOME Keyring with Subversion

January 15th, 2010 by

Subversion stores all its configuration and passwords under the ~/.subversion/ directory. Wouldn’t it be cool to have your passwords in KWallet or GNOME Keyring? Recently I found out, it is pretty simple.


What a Cool App: screenie

January 14th, 2010 by

Sometimes you stumble over an application that is really cool and makes your day. Of course when you tell your colleagues everyone knows it – except you, well…

Today I had this nice experience with a little tool called screenie. It helps to arrange screenshots or images in general nicely such as this example where I made boring Hermes screenshots look nice: Hermes Screenshot Composition

It does it with a perfect simple interface on which you drop three images out of a file manager. A handful of options allow you to adjust the image to your needs and there you are – your little screenshot composition simply looks amazing, after a few moments of work. Great software.

Btw, iit’s only around 500 lines of code and a couple of resource files. Amazing, must be based on a quite powerful toolkit utilized by a real smart guy…

If you also want to look nice, no idea how, but for screenshots and stuff quickly install screenie from the KDE::Community repository.

Ah yes, I know, you know it already, of course 😉

Kraft Project Status

January 12th, 2010 by

I thought it might be nice after the holidays to tell about the status of the Kraft project, the KDE software for people operating a small business. Some nice things happened around it.
Kraft Logo

The best thing is that an additional developer works on Kraft: After my last status post Thomas Richard (account trichard) contacted me that he is interested, next days I had the first patch in my mailbox and from that point of time on he constantly contributed high quality changes into the Kraft repository.

His high energy, dedication and fresh ideas gave me a new motivation push after having worked on Kraft basically alone for more than four years. That’s great!

The last months we worked on porting Kraft to the KDE4 platform which is in a quite good shape in SVN already: Kraft compiles without warnings and without Q3 and K3 support classes and works stable again.

We couldn’t resist to make use of the new capabilities of KDE4 here and there and as a result we have a few small feature updates as well. The most interesting might be that the first KDE4 Kraft version will additionally support a sqlite database backend which eases setup and configuration for users tremendously.

Following our friends from the KMyMoney project we will come up with a first Kraft-on-KDE4 beta soon. Please stay tuned.

OBS reports scheduling state now

January 11th, 2010 by

After getting asked daily why package X or project Y is in a certain state, why it is not yet published or if a “trigger rebuild” button click is needed, I finally got around and implemented the last planned feature for OBS 1.7.

Each repository has a scheduler state now for each architecture. This state tells you in which state the scheduler saw it the last time he looked at it. In addition to that, there is also a “dirty” flag. This gets set, when something happened what requires a re-calculation by the scheduler, but he has not done this yet. So no need to hit the “trigger rebuild” button in this case, it won’t help 😉

A typical state round trip is the following, it can stop at any point and restart from a higher listed state again if this is needed:

unknown: a repo has just been created for this architecture. The scheduler has not seen this yet. This is currently the case also in most repos, just because the scheduler with this new code has not looked at all existing repos yet. But you will see this only in very rare cases in future.
scheduling: the scheduler is looking at this repo right now. The package states will get updated soon (from 1 second up to 2 minutes, depending on the project complexity)

blocked: packages from other repos need to build first until any of the packages from this repo can get build.
building: packages are scheduled for building, this means they are in “build”, “scheduled” or “finished” state.

unpublished: all packages got built, publishing is disabled, so nothing is to do here anymore.
finished: all packages which require a build have been built. This repo is enabled for publishing, but this has not yet happened.
publishing: The publisher is currently processing this repository.
published: the latest built packages have been uploaded to the stage server and are available via download.opensuse.org

Future plans for this are to add this state list in the web interface somehow, so everybody gets an explanation in the context.

Another thing what I want to add is a button beside the “unpublished” state, to force a publishing. So by default nothing gets published, but the project owner can force it when he things it makes sense. However, this is now also possible to achieve by swithing the publish flag and revert it after some time. The OBS is now even publishing when the build has already finished (unlike before).

My Inadvertent Experiment & Return

January 11th, 2010 by

Hello openSUSE Project! If you follow me on Twitter, you’ll know that since October, I’ve been a Windows 7 user instead of an openSUSE user. Well, late last night, I got a visit at home from this character:


So, I am now an openSUSE user again…

OK. Just kidding. Actually I left the project because I needed to concentrate my time on my work in the liberty movement and school, and when push comes to shove, the little green lizard got shoved. In the process, I had purchased a copy of Windows 7 when Microsoft was selling it for $50, and so I essentially switched over to using Windows 7 for a few months. In the end, I moved back to openSUSE because it’s, quite frankly, a better experience in many ways. I’ll probably write up an article or two in my comparisons between the two OSs… but I’m back now, using openSUSE 11.2.

In the course of these three months, I have to say I missed working with the openSUSE Project, especially the people. So… I’m back! I re-uped my mailinglist subscriptions and have been reading back articles of openSUSE News to try and catch up with what’s been going on in the project. I’m excited to be back and I look forward to working with you all again!

– Kevin

Russian openSUSE forum

January 8th, 2010 by

Hello community!

As agreed at the meeting – Russian commutiny needs a forum.

Also… Fixed… I would like to introduce a new Russian openSUSE forum %)

Right now we have a small problem with encoding and want to add Russian buttons, but it’s trifle and we will fix it in next days.

In the past Russian community meet on another linux_universal forums like linuxforum.ru or linux.org.ru, but these forums are not related to openSUSE project. And now I hope our community gradually will start to join the global.

In this forum we are closer to the draft openSUSE: in the same domain is located and Wiki, and the openSUSE Build Service, and much more.

So… you are welcome %)

Feed Problems on lizards/spotlight Solved

January 4th, 2010 by

During the last couple of days the feeds used by news readers for both lizards.opensuse.org and spotlight.opensuse.org were broken.  This has been fixed now and I apologize that it took so long due to the christmas break.

If you still encounter problems with invalid feeds, please tell us – best way with a bug report using bugzilla.novell.com against the openSUSE.org project.

openSUSE 11.2 on Dell Mini 10v

January 4th, 2010 by

The Dell Mini 10v is nothing special from a hardware perspective for a Netbook, and follows along the specs of most other Netbook models on the market today. The integrated buttons in the track-pad take some time getting used to, and IMHO separate buttons are more user friendly. For my recently acquired new toy I increased the RAM to 2 GB and added the larger battery. On the software side the Dell Mini 10v is something special as it is one of few Netbooks available with Linux pre-installed. Other Netbook brands either have no Linux option or charge extra when straying of the beaten hardware and OS combination path, at what I consider to be outrages rates. While as a devoted SUSE user I’d rather see openSUSE than Ubuntu pre-installed getting Linux on the machine and not having any of my hard earned money diverted to the monopolist from Redmond was a key purchasing decision.

Once unpacked and the battery charged I played with the Ubuntu distribution pre-installed by Dell for a while. Network configuration was easy enough and I could probably get used to the Desktop interface if I used it for a while. Next up was Moblin, more out of curiosity than for “serious” evaluation purposes. Having read some concerns about openSUSE 11.2 on Netbooks in some mailing list thread or review I decided to give it a try, knowing that I might be in for an unpleasant surprise. At the same time I was setting up the machine a thread about the Broadcom wireless card used in the Dell Mini appeared on the openSUSE mailing list,very timely indeed. As it turns out my concerns were unfounded.

I downloaded the GNOME Live CD from http://www.opensuse.org/en/, then used the information provided on the openSUSE wiki (http://en.opensuse.org/Live_USB_stick) to create a USB live image. After fiddling with the BIOS setting to boot from USB media first I was able to run the openSUSE 11.2 live image and the installer from the stick. Once openSUSE 11.2 was installed I configured the Ethernet card to get network access. Empowered with access to the Internet I added the packman repository

# zypper ar http://ftp.skynet.be/pub/packman/suse/11.2/ Packman

This can also be done through YaST for those more comfortable with GUI tools.

Next step was to refresh the repository data

# zypper refresh

and then to install the Broadcom firmware package and kernel driver

# zypper in broadcom-wl broadcom-wl-kmp-default

last but not least I loaded the module into the kernel

# modprobe wl

and now the Broadcom wireless card showed up when using the ifconfig command as eth1. I used the NetworkManager applet to configure the network connecting to my wireless AP and everything works just fine.

In summary, all is well with openSUSE 11.2 on the Dell Mini 10v including the 3D desktop with compiz.