Weekly news wrapup: Mandrake, Red Hat release new versions


Author: JT Smith

By Grant Gross

It was a week of new beginnings in the Open Source community. Red Hat and Mandrake, two of the top Linux distributions, released new versions, both with the 2.4 Linux kernel.

Red Hat’s announcement of its 7.1 version came Monday and included promises of “improved SMP support for superior performance” on Intel multi-processor platforms, and new configuration tools that “enable users to effortlessly set up and administer DNS, Web and print servers.”

MozillaQuest.com also noted that the new Red Hat comes with KDE 2.1, but shipped with Netscape 4.76, not the 6.0 version of the browser. Red Hat spokespeople responded by saying that Netscape 6.0 was too cumbersome, and that they’d stick to 4.7X for now, thank you. Elsewhere, a ZDNet UK headline writer was apparently a bit confused when penning a headline saying “Red Hat to ship Linux 7.1.” There are some in the Open Source community who believe Red Hat wants people to think the company is Linux, but that’s not the situation just yet.

Mandrake, for one, might raise an objection. Copies of the French Linux distro began hitting the download sites mid-week. ZDNet UK recovered from its Red Hat headline enough to say that the new Mandrake was packed with goodies. PCTalk.org said Mandrake has outdone itself with an easy-to-use and -install distribution.

The Phoenix metaphor, recurring

Two NewsForge stories this week made reference to the old Phoenix legend, perhaps appropriately. After the Indrema gaming console project folded up shop last week, a group of developers vowed to continue the work. The TuxBox project founders are confident a community model of development can succeed where Indrema failed, though some doubters surfaced when the story was posted at other sites.

Also, the founder of the Independence Linux distribution has recently resurrected the project. Independence Linux vows to make Linux easier to use than the “out of touch” developers from other distros.

No need for the Phoenix metaphor

Loki Entertainment Software went on the offensive this week after recent rumors that it is headed toward demise. Company President Scott Draeker gave interviews to LWN.net and ITWorld, essentially saying the same thing both times: We’re not making money yet, but we’re not going away. In fact, Loki just began a marketing campaign that offers volume discounts to Linux user groups.

Linuxgruven update: Founder arrested

Y’all remember the , the St. Louis training company that laid off a bunch of staff and left students wondering if they would be refunded? Well, founder James Hibbits was arrested on a two-year-old fraud charge this week.

New in NewsForge

Stories you could find only in NewsForge this week:

  • An IBM official is telling readers of a linux-thinkpad mailing list that it will offer DVD playback on a new laptop, news editor Dan Berkes reported.

  • Freelance writer Eric Ries offered a legal way to beat AOL’s third-party instant message blocking. Ries says it’s important to protest against companies fighting open standards.

  • News editor Tina Gasperson reviewed the StarOffice portal and found it a bit clunky, just like the product it’s promoting.

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