We planned initially to release Mageia 5 beta 2 around the 16th of December. We still have some work left to complete to release a proper beta 2 that would drive us through to the final release.
Releasing development ISOs is a good way to test all the functions of the installer with the largest possible scope of use cases and variety of hardware. We still have some issues left with EFI integration and some tricky bugs in the installer. So in order to allow some time to fix them and also to still enjoy the Christmas period with friends and family, it has been decided to delay beta 2 until the 6th of January 2015, the initial date of the RC, and then postpone the final release.
See, Mageia is a community-driven Linux distribution. Everybody here volunteers and does the work because he or she can and because they want to contribute. The money that we collect in donations goes to paying for server costs, hardware repairs and upgrades, supporting booths and handing out merchandise at conventions (and in one case, flying in a repair person when everything broke).
I am generally a man of few words, but I probably need a few more to introduce myself. I have been using Linux for 15.5 years, and Mandrake/Mandriva/Mageia for 15 years. I have been contributing since the summer of 2001 to some degree. I did a fair amount the first few years, not much for the next seven, and have done quite a bit since I joined Mageia at the end of 2011.
I am 33 years old, am a former high school math and computer science teacher, still am involved with high school track & field, and now teach Linux/Unix fundamentals to adults. I am a distance runner and I enjoy watching American football and listening to music.
While OS X has switched to LLVM's Clang as the default C/C++ compiler and FreeBSD and other BSD distributions have followed in switching to Clang instead of GCC due to its more permissive license, OpenMandriva Lx is one of the first notable Linux distributions set to switch to Clang by default with its next release.
This version of OpenMandriva was presented mostly as a bug-fix and polish release and that shows. The operating system is stable and the interface looks friendly. For the most part, the distribution worked very well for me. OpenMandriva has a sense of polish and friendliness about it which is hard to qualify, but is certainly there. The system installer, the Control Centre and the pretty (yet traditional) desktop environment all appear to be designed to be as newcomer friendly as possible. I was especially impressed by the systemd front end. Recent experiments with Arch, openSUSE and Debian have left a bad taste in my mouth has far as systemd is concerned and OpenMandriva did a beautiful job of smoothing over the details of systemd while presenting a functional front end. During my trial I ran into two minor glitches, both with package management, but nothing that really caused me any concern.
In recent years I think it has been too easy to think of the Mandriva-based projects as "also ran" distributions. The financial troubles Mandriva faced and the user friendly efforts of projects like Ubuntu and Mint have conspired to push Mandriva out of the spotlight. OpenMandriva 2014.1 is one of the best efforts I have seen to date to take back the "beginner friendly" crown. This distribution was easy to set up, easy to use, has a great control centre and should appeal to both novice users and power users alike. I was happy and a bit impressed with OpenMandriva 2014.1 and I recommend giving it a try.
ROSA is a Russian company developing a variety of Linux-based solutions. Its flagship product, ROSA Desktop, is a Linux distribution featuring a highly customized KDE desktop and a number of modifications designed to enhance the user-friendliness of the working environment. The company also develops an "Enterprise Server" edition of ROSA which is based on Red Hat Enterprise Linux. On 9th October 2014, Ekaterina Lopukhova has announced the release of ROSA R4 "Desktop Fresh" edition, a desktop Linux distribution featuring a customized and user-friendly KDE 4.13.3 desktop: "The ROSA company is happy to present the long-awaited ROSA Desktop Fresh R4, the number 4 in the "R" lineup of the free ROSA distros with the KDE desktop as the main graphical environment. The distro presents a vast collection of games and emulators, as well as the Steam platform package along with standard suite of audio and video communications software, including the newest version of Skype. All modern video formats are supported. The distribution includes the fresh LibreOffice 4.3.1, the full TeX suite for true nerds, along with the best Linux desktop publishing, text editing and polygraphy WYSISYG software. The LAMP/C++/ development environments are waiting to be installed by true hackers." The present version is supported for 2 years. ROSA was previously based on Mandriva but now independent like many of the formerly Mandriva based distros, e.g. PCLinuxOS, Mageia, OpenMandriva Lx (based on ROSA), to name a few. Mandriva in turn was based on Red Hat Linux and a lot of programs which work for Fedora or OpenSUSE, worked on ROSA as well.
OpenMandriva Lx 2014.1 is the latest edition of OpenMandriva, a desktop distribution derived from the old Mandriva Linux.
Though OpenMandriva Lx 2014.1 is a minor update to OpenMandriva Lx 2014.0, which was released back in June (2014), it comes with some significant changes, including, according to the Release Notes, support for booting on computers with UEFI firmware. To quote from the Release Notes: “This is the first release of OpenMandriva Lx that incorporates support for UEFI booting.” Interestingly, the same thing was said of OpenMandriva 2014.0.