Person of Year, Podcasts, and Polls

by Ostatic Staff - Dec. 15, 2015

Today in Linux news, several reviews lead the pack today. Jesse Smith and Das U-Blogger Prashanth reviewed Chakra 2015.11, Swapnil Bhartiya tested newly released Mint 17.3, and a couple of quick openSUSE reports were posted. Elsewhere, Donald Stewart posted an update on Mageia Cauldron and Antonio Rojas said Arch is dropping KDE 4. A couple of interesting polls warrant a mention as well and more in tonight's Linux news recap.

Chakra GNU/Linux 2015.11, a semi-rolling KDE distribution, was recently released and two regular testers put it to the test. Jesse Smith at said this release came with a new installer but lost its fresh boot greeter. The Plasma 5.4 desktop was responsive, the package manager simple but easy, default software unusual, and multimedia codecs included Smith wrote. However, Chakra didn't work with UEFI, was slow to boot, didn't work well in VirtualBox, printing and backup was a bust, and the system was a resource hog. Smith concluded, "Chakra is leaving behind the things that made it unique in favour of appealing to a wider audience. This might make Chakra more approachable and easier to adopt, but it also raises the question in my mind why choose Chakra."

Interestingly, it wasn't all smooth sailing for the blogger known as Prashanth either. While he didn't mention UEFI, the live system booted fine, but he found issues with the desktop configuration calling it "finicky," adding "The desktop looks a little too slick for its own good, to the point where certain key aspects of usability have been sacrificed for the sake of appearance." The package manager stopped working for Prashanth during his tests and noticed the resource issue mentioned by Smith as well. He concluded, "It certainly isn't good for newbies, I wouldn't recommend it unless you thoroughly know what you're doing."

In other reviews, Swapnil Bhartiya said Mint 17.3 "is an impressive release." Dedoimedo today said don't try upgrading openSUSE 13.2 to Plasma 5 while Derrik Diener said Leap 42.1 "works exactly as you’d expect it to and is a highly recommended choice for enthusiasts, developers and Linux professionals of all types." is running a "The best distro of 2015" poll on his site as of this weekend and is only letting it run for two weeks, so scoot on over there and vote. Mint is leading as of now with more than double the votes of Ubuntu. Arch is second.

Pavlo Rudyi is running a Person of the Year poll on his site. Among the contenders are Linus Torvalds, Sarah Sharpe, and Clement Lefebvre. Lennart Poettering is leading that particular poll as of now.

The Linux Mint project suffered more bad luck as 2015 draws to a close. After the recent site and forum issues, Clement Lefebvre wrote in the monthly news today that two more servers succumbed to hard drive failures. This time software repositories were down. He said they had full backups and weren't off-line long. Cinnamon and MATE got their upgrade paths last week and OEM images were released Sunday, but KDE and Xfce users will probably have to wait until January for their 17.3 upgrades due to all the hardware issues of late.

In other news:

* Some news of what's boiling in the Cauldron

* Arch Dropping Plasma 4

* Christine Hall: Linux Foundation's Deal With the Devil

* So you want a lean mean Linux machine?

* 7 Linux Podcasts You Need to Listen To