openSUSE 2014

Moving from openSUSE 13.1 to 13.2

Post date: Nov 16, 2014 8:12:44 PM

OpenSUSE 13.2 have already had some excellent reviews, so two days ago we decided to upgrade some of our key systems. Here is our experiences.

OpenSUSE 13.2 comes with a new and in my view improved installer. It is a once through installer - if it works as designed. So If you start from a USB-stick or a DVD, and choose installation, then the first thing, which happens is configuration of your network card. On our HP desktop system the installer immediately recognized the USB wireless network card, and after a few click it was configured and worked during the installation. This meant, that updated packages are downloaded from the repositories during the installation. So when you installation is finish you have an up-to-date system after a reboot. That is in theory!

Because while the installation when fine, after a reboot the wireless connection had disappeared, and there was no network manager on our KDE panel. It some messing around with network configuration before we again had a network connection to the HP. The only drawback of the inline download of updated packages is that the install naturally takes longer. A side effect is that the time estimates for how much time is left of the install fluctuates with the speed of the internet connection.

We used the same DVD to update the openSUSE on our Lenovo Edge. However, the attempt to used update feature of the DVD resulted in a partly broken system. Maybe because some of our software, liken the openShot video editor not yet is available in the 13.2 repositories, and we were unable to get a network connection working during the update process. Hence we had to revert to installing and updating after the install. This time there was a network manager on the KDE panel after the initial install, and network connection was established with a few clicks.

On the HP we have installed all the desktops available on the DVD, like KDE, GNome, Enlightenment, MATE and others. Only MATE appear to be broken. Also on the HP on which we installed all the server and development software from the DVD we installed Tesseract OCR with several front ends, like VietOCR. We tested this with both Danish and English language document successfully. Tesseract just give the text of the document, but not the format is loast.

After installation we had to add other software we use,such as Chrome, Chromium, Texmaker, Texstudio, Avast, the codecs etc. Unfortunately we have to do without openShot, since it is not yet in the 13.2 repositories. It is in Packman, but one of the dependencies are missing.

Update!

After a couple of weeks using btrfs we have switched all our systems to the previous default file system. The reason was, that btrfs had problems with shutdown of both our desktop (HP) and our laptop (Lenovo). At several occasions the only way to shutdown with btrfs was a hard power off. The "leave" option stopped working both from the start menu and from the desktop.

openSUSE upgrade from 12.3 to 13.1

Post date: Jan 21, 2014 1:44:28 PM

Currently we are upgrading all our linux based hardware from openSuSE 12.3 to openSuSE 13.1. This is being done because openSuSE 13.1 has been selected for long term support by the openSuSE organisation. That means 3 years of patching in stead of just 18 months.

Our hardware are a Lenovo S-10-2, a Lenovo Edge 520, a Toshiba Satellite A200, a Lenovo R40 and an HP desktop. Currently the first three have been upgraded. For this upgrade we elected to perform it online without downloading a DVD. This was done because of the very different amount of software installed on the Edge and e.g. the R40.

We started with the Lenovo S-10-2, which also has a Windows 8 dual boot partition. At the start of the upgrade we forgot to download the latest firmware for the Broadcom wireless card. This resulted in some frustration later on having to download this piece of software from Packman and getting it transfered to the S-10-2. Even though the online upgrade takes significant amounts of time - I guess about 5 hours for the S-10-2 - you avoid the usual patching that follows installation from a DVD. For the upgrade we followed the guide from unixmen, see http://www.unixmen.com/upgrade-opensuse-12-3-opensuse-13-1/.

For the first three upgrades we used just the openSuSE repositories, but for the latter we leave both Packman and Google repositories active, but of course remove the OBS ones.