April 20, 2011

Mandriva 2011 Beta 2 - The Return of XKill

Mandriva 2011 Beta 2 was made available earlier today and my interest has been piqued since I saw Eugeni Dodonov's screenshot a couple of days ago. It's gone now, but the whole desktop appeared to be this launcher with a gray background. I was almost panicked. Visions of GNOME 3 and Unity danced through my head. So it's been an excruciating three-day wait for the beta to finally hit mirrors.

Mandriva 2011 Beta 2 ships with Linux 2.6.38, Xorg X Server 1.9.4, GCC 4.6.0, and KDE 4.6.2. That launcher dominating Eugeni's screenshot turned out to be a ROSA menu and it is just that - a great big ole launcher. It lists all the applications and tools available just like a menu, but it's a bit inconvenient in my opinion. Although I have no doubt that some, or perhaps many, will like it. It reminds me of "More applications" from a GNOME 2 Kick-off menu. The good news is that a regular menu is available in the "Add Widgets" chooser, so the user still has a choice. Also, it's a long time before final (in distro time) and this may or may not be their ultimate choice for Mandriva 2011. Perhaps they're just trying it out to see if folks like it. If so, count me as "no."

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