openSUSE 11.2 – a sweet end to 2009 (ver1)

Last time I upgraded my installation to 11.1, I was truly disappointed with the release and resolved to create an extra partition on my laptop to make sure I test future releases for days before I really plan to move. I cannot afford any downtime or maintenance activity on my system since it literally takes my whole self offline.

This is where 11.2 comes in. I was ready with extra space and all the parameters to test out the release – and was in for this surprise! I didn’t need it (life’s like that). There are tons of feature improvements with 11.2 and some really nasty bug fixes (which I had trained myself to live with after the disastrous move to 11.1 from 10.2 – which was quite stable for me). The official list of bug fixes might not be very relevant to me (or some other users), so I am listing out my own experiences here:

  • scrolling in Firefox/Thunderbird etc. was extremely slow – fixed
  • compiz wasn’t working out of the box – it didn’t for a while this time around either
    • but after a logout and login (and enabling the Window manager together with making sure it had –replace in it), it works!
  • NetworkManager works much better now – no buggy behavior anymore when I switch from Wired to Wireless etc.
  • ext4 – yay! – I am so thrilled that I have an ext4 ready system now
  • an annoying coredump by konsole (every time I shut it down) – fixed
    • I use konsole+klipper in my Gnome environment, since these two apps are irreplaceable by anything in Gnome world

Update on 2009-11-20

  • dual monitor management was a PITA and I had personal scripts to automate switching+desktop extension using xrandr – fixed
    • no need for the script – if some *Ubuntu guy needs it, be my guest – [evil-laughter] (sheepy smile now)
    • this is not yet fixed – as soon as I took the lappy out of the docking station, it went back to single screen
    • and never came back to dual screen; the only way out is to logout/login (nothing else makes it work) [ashamed]
  • fingerprint scanner on my lappy works like a charm – there’s an error about “Cannot write PAM settings.” – but that can be easily fixed by:
    • editing the /etc/pam.d/common-auth to include the line:
      • auth    sufficient
    • or whatever has been written on in the /etc/pam.d/common-auth-pc file (you can check the log: /var/log/YaST2/y2log to see what exactly is going on


  • as soon as you start up yast for software management, it assumes you want to install a bunch of packages
    • may be it was my system, but it still should give me an option to not do it!
    • I finally had to select every package to manually install and then remove it from the list by clicking on “remove’
    • best thing was, zypper doesn’t do anything when you do a sudo zypper up (while yast goes over the board)

All in all, I am very pleased with this release and applaud the openSUSE community for this release.

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