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Archive for August, 2011

openSUSE Conference 2011: Straight from the Lab

August 22nd, 2011 by

The annual get-together of openSUSE community, openSUSE Conference kicks at 11-14 September 2011 in lovely Nürnberg, Germany. This year we have more than 100 events scheduled. What makes this year extra special is that SUSE Labs Conference will be hosted along with the openSUSE Conference bringing many technical talks and workshops.

You might not know SUSE Labs beforehand, its the group of people who hacks on low level toolchain stuff like gcc (GNU Compiler Collection) , gdb (GNU Debugger) , binutils and others. So you can expect deep technical talks at the conference, starting with the Link Time Optimization (LTO) in GCC talk on Sunday by Jan Hubicka who works at suse.cz (SUSE Czech Republic) and is a prominent gcc hacker for quite a long time. LTO is a hot topic for any software project given the fact that it improves the overall application performance in most cases. So if you want to squueze more performance out of your own project(s), you shouldn’t miss Jan’s talk.

On Monday another member of suse.cz Jiri Slaby will give a talk titled Static Code Checking — the State of the Art . Recently static code checking got more exposure with the bugs found in projects like Apple’s clang C/C++ compiler, Google’s Chrome web browser and also id Software’s John Carmack praising the process for finding the bugs in their upcoming game title Rage. So if you are found of coding in a static language like C/C++ you should be attending this talk. Also during the day, visitors will also have a chance to attend the gdb workshop to teach some tricks to our beloved debugger gdb. Given that gdb is a powerful tool with an awkward interface I hope to learn more about using it like a pro.

If you are interested in the kernel development, you will be happy to know that two kernel debugging sessions Setting up and Analyzing Kernel Crash Dumps and Kernel Debugging / Instrumentation with Systemtap will be presented by Stefan Seyfried and Michel Rode from B1 Systems GmbH. Also yours truly, together with Vincent Untz will do a workshop titled How to contribute to Factory to get our hands dirty on the basic openSUSE Factory packaging and submission workflow. We hope to give a basic to intermediate introduction to openSUSE Factory packaging with solutions to common encountered problems.

Tuesday starts with another kernel debugging talk Linux IO Tracing by Jan Kara which will be followed by another talk from Jiri Slaby titled Automatic Regression Testing which hopefully will be interesting for all developers. In the evening there will an Advanced Packaging talk by Lars Vogdtand and Pascal Bleser which might teach you a packaging trick or two.

If performance is your thing, you shouldn’t miss Monitoring with Performance Co-Pilot talk by David Disseldorp on Friday. And just before we wrap up the conference Conny Seidel from AMD (Advanced Micro Devices) will give a talk titled Linux Testing – Complexity in a nutshell which will give an overview of Linux testing architecture used over in AMD. It will be interesting to learn about a real-world Linux testing setup.

So that was a small glimpse of what is coming. Remember that registration for openSUSE Conference is free, so hop over here for registration. We hope to see you there!

ATI/AMD fglrx 8.881 Catalyst 11.8 available for openSUSE 11.3, 11.4, 12.1 (Factory)

August 20th, 2011 by

A new version of amd/ati Catalyst 11.8 / fglrx 8.881 is available

I’ve rebuild and published the new rpms today

Catalyst 11.8 - fglrx-8.881 in action

  • 11.8 Quick review :
  • There’s no full changelog for Linux, but Catalyst 11.8 installer (pdf). You can always look for supported chipset at 11.8 Release Notes
  • Get the cheat-sheet 11.8 version
  • Kernel supported up to 3.0x version
  • Removed support of openSUSE 11.2, if you are still using it with Evergreen project, the repository still exist with older version
  • Tested and working on stock 11.4 kde 4.6.0
  • Tested and working on live usb stick 11.4 Gnome3 (GNOME_3.i686-1.3.0-Build1.3.iso + updates)

Contributing back

I’m refering about my previous post, and invite you to help back contributing to
Click here to lend your support to: Funding ATI-AMD fglrx packager Sebastian Siebert and make a donation at www.pledgie.com !

Sebastian Siebert (freespacer) : 11.8 article (German)


openSUSE-LXDE logo contest starting now!

August 19th, 2011 by

As recently announced here, the LXDE team is looking for graphics contributors. Trying to involve as much people as possible i created a graphic contest! Is time for you, cool graphics, to create a logo for the openSUSE-LXDE team!

The contest will start tomorrow, everyone is welcome to join!

All the rules are in our wiki!

So? what are you waiting for???

Is just the right time to

Have a lot of fun…

ATI/AMD fglrx : giving back this time

August 19th, 2011 by

Dear flgrx’s users of rpm or ati-installer.run, this time I’m asking your help.
geeko love
Sebastian Siebert (freespacer) give his time to maintain the SuSE part inside the installer. Unfortunately he didn’t have high-end graphics card, nor double screen, and thus is not able to test nor report results to AMD.
He’s also spending time on irc and forum to help users when things goes wrong.

So how can we help him? Simply giving back a little amount of money, if you can afford it.
I’ve opened a pledgie for that : see the full explanation at

I really count on you. Spread the word.

ps : Catalyst 11.8 is out, stay tuned, I’ll be back this week-end.

openSUSE Conference 2011 Schedule Available

August 17th, 2011 by

Its quite some work to get to a reasonable schedule for a FOSS conference done. You want a balanced program with topics where all visitors can find their interests in. Moreover the level of the talks must be taken care of as well as there should be gravitation centers for key topics within the community. As you usually also seek out for new community members with a conference, some topics which attract new people are also a very good idea. And all that needs to be sorted between rooms with different sizes, the times people can be around, the tracks you think are useful on the event and such. Quite some parameters to take into account.

That said, I am very happy that we could issue the schedule for the openSUSE Conference 2011 today.

For conference organization there is tooling. Or should I say: Should be? Given the huge amount of FOSS conferences around, the number of free alternatives of conference organization systems is fairly small. We decided to go again with Indico, a python based system developed by CERN. It provides support for the whole conference life cycle such as the call for abstracts, the internal judging process, the scheduling and such. With nice help from the developers we got it running smoothly and integrated. Sometimes the interface is not really straightforward, but finally its a very feature rich yet flexible tool that feels like it has managed some large (CERN) conferences already.

For the openSUSE conference 102 contributions were scheduled into four rooms in four days, so it will be quite a exhausting event :-). Unfortunately we still had to reject quite some submissions as the program is stuffed already. Please bear with us.

This year we are really happy to have a joint event with the former SUSE Labs Conference for the first time. That not only brings a lot of high potential speaker to the event, but also much more low level topics around kernel, gcc and such. I think we lacked that a bit at the last conference. Also cool that Greg KH, well known kernel hacker, will enlighten us with a keynote.

Beside the low level topics, we will hear a lot about community affairs, such as social skills for geeks or impressions from our ambassadors work. Another big block is around packaging and the organization and management of openSUSE Factory, our next stable distribution. Some knowledge sharing is always appreciated, I personally look forward to “Working Effectively with GIT” as I am still dreaming of svn in the nights 😉 And what we need to continue to grow our identity as openSUSE project are contributions around our setup and the relationship to SUSE, the commercial offering of SUSE and the importance of openSUSE in that. Michael Miller, SUSE Vice President of Global Alliances & Marketing, will give a keynote here, and there are other talks in that space.

The motto of osc2011 is rwx³ which is a synonym of the idea of interactivity and creativity on the conference. That is a success already as more than the half of the contributions to the conference are BoFs, Workshops or hacking sessions. You do not have to fear to fall asleep in lengthy talks instead you will do stuff 😉

And finally there is the venue. If you have been to the conference last year I need to say its different this year. Nobody will serve you Coke, instead with Zentrifuge you are at a place where usually artists work and do exhibitions. This spirit of hands-on work quickly jumped over on us as the orga team and we are sure that spirit is good for openSUSE 🙂

I hope you have registered for oSC 2011 already….
openSUSE Conference 2011: All openSUSE- and Free Software enthusiasts are invited to come together at this conference to learn, hack and have a lot of fun.

Desktop Summit Berlin 2011 – Report

August 15th, 2011 by

Desktop Summit

Last minute team

Monday before Desktop Summit, I’ve just learned that we (as openSUSE/SUSE) will not have the SuseStudio kiosk.
Too bad, but Wednesday, I finally get confirmation from my customer, that the new hardware will not be delivered before Friday 12th. Ah ah good news. I will be able to go to Berlin. So I bought the last airplane ticket for Friday afternoon, and also the last bed at good price.

I will be a Berliner for a few days! And fill the blanks to maintain our booth up and welcoming

Somethings has to be done? sometimes has been done!


looking for Artists, artworks and graphics for LXDE

August 12th, 2011 by

openSUSE 12.1 is on its way, and recently LXDE got some major updates.

I’m personally always been really satisfied of how LXDE works and is integrated into the openSUSE user experience, one defect though , that I’m really sorry about, is that i was never able to provide a very nice look&feel.

Since I’m not a graphic, and i realized I’m failing, i decide to ask your help now.

Here is what we need:

1) A gtk2 + openbox theme (including lxpanel background and icon theme)

2) A theme for lxdm (you can use /usr/share/lxdm/themes/Industrial as template), and eventually a background too

Also, i would like to open a contest. Your goal is create a logo for openSUSE-LXDE project.

You’ll have more information as soon as possible about this contest on the opensuse-lxde@o.o mailing list and here on lizards, please keep in mind that we want to print the winning logo on t-shirts too.

Up to date info about the contest will be available in the wiki here

I hope lot’s of you will help.


[gsoc] osc code cleanup – summary of week 11

August 8th, 2011 by


here’s a small summary of the 11th (coding) week. This week I spent
most of my time with working on the wc code.


  • project wc: added commit and update methods
  • lots of wc code refactoring


  • project wc: commit only specific files for a package instead of the
    complete package (the package wc class already supports this)
    (use case: osc ci pkg1/file pkg1/foo pkg2/bar pkg3)
  • convert old working copies to the new format
  • package wc: update: add support to specify stuff like “expand”, “linkrev”
  • project wc: add a revert method (to restore a package wc with state ‘!’)
  • project/package wc: support diff
  • package wc: implement a pull method (does the same as “osc pull”)


Factory Progress 2011-08-05

August 5th, 2011 by

The last few weeks have seen some a lot of package updates thus keeping our review and checkin team busy. I’d like to mention Sascha Peilicke who reviewed alone this week lots of packages. Have a look at just two numbers: In all of July we had 1001 check-ins and just from August 1st to 4th we had already 276 checkins.

The legal team has also gone through the long list of new packages and package updates during the legal reviews and reduced this week the list from over 100 packages to 12 packages now. Thanks Ciaran and Christoper for your legal review!


Mounting /usr in the initrd

August 3rd, 2011 by


I changed the openSUSE mkinitrd to mount the /usr filesystem in the initrd, if /usr is a separate partition. I hope this will calm down some heated discussions about systemd, udev, etc. It’s not 100% ready yet, some setups like root or /usr on nfs or md might not work as expected (*), but the common usecases should be covered. Try updating mkinitrd from the Base:System project and let me know if it works for you. Before testing it, you should do a backup of your initrd:

# cp /boot/initrd-`uname -r`{,.orig}

and create a section in /boot/grub/menu.lst pointing to the /boot/initrd-*.orig file.