The next version of the Lumina desktop environment (0.8.1) has just been tagged in the source tree, the FreeBSD port has been updated, and pre-built packages will be available in the upcoming PC-BSD 10.1.1 release (or earlier if you are using the “Edge” package repository).
This version includes quite a number of quality-of-life improvements, new plugins, and the usual assortment of bugfixes. There is a full breakdown of the changes below, but for most of you a screenshot (or two) is worth a thousand words.
1) New Desktop Plugin: “Audio Player”
This plugin allows the user to play audio files directly from the desktop (with playlist randomization if desired).
2) New Panel Plugin: “Home Button”
This plugin will minimize all open windows so the desktop will be completely visible.
3) New Panel Plugin: “Start Menu”
This plugin is the classical alternative to the “User Button”, and provides a simple menu for quickly launching applications.
4) New Slideshow file interactions in the Insight File Manager
When viewing an image slideshow, the user now has the options to delete the current image file, or rotate that image file clockwise or counter-clockwise (automatically updating the image file as necessary).
5) New Backend distribution customization framework.
There is a new system file (<PREFIX>/etc/luminaDesktop.conf), that can be set by the distributor of the Lumina desktop or a system administrator to provide system-wide defaults. This allows full customization of the initial desktop experience for a new user (will not change existing settings), allowing the distributor of the desktop to easily create a customized experience for their users. Along with this comes the ability for a user to reset their desktop settings back to defaults should the need arise (either system defaults or the defaults set by the Lumina project itself). This can be performed through the desktop configuration utility (in the session settings).
1) Allow a customized user icon for the user button (this same icon will also be utilized for the user in PCDM). This option is available through the desktop configuration utility (in the session settings).
2) Have panels follow the current desktop theme by default. A customized color may still be specified through through the desktop configuration utility (in the panel settings), and any previous color setting for the panel is still saved as the customized color for that panel.
3) Have desktop plugins now follow the current theme. This allows for a much more unified look and feel, with simple user modification through locally saved modifications to any theme templates.
4) Convert the “Note Pad” desktop plugin to a file-based utility. Now all notes are automatically created in the ~/Notes directory (with the .note extension), and a generic non-note text file may also be loaded into the plugin for editing/watching. All notes in the previous format will be auto-converted to the new format the first time the new version is used. Warning: if you currently have multiple notepad plugins on your desktop, only one of them will have all the notes successfully converted to the new format. Before updating to the new version, it is a good idea to move all your notes into a single plugin instance (and remove the others) to ensure a proper conversion to the new format.
– Fix when auto-hidden panels are re-hidden. This fixes a Qt5 bug where moving the mouse over the system tray was re-hiding the panel, preventing access to the system tray applications.
– Make the userbutton open even faster than before (auto-updates the menu in the background if applications are added/removed from the system).
– Various stability fixes involving the removal of desktop plugins.
– Filenames with multiple “.”s in them will now be properly handled through lumina-open.
– Have the log-out window appear on the current screen (instead of always the left-most screen).
– Make sure the log-out window is closed at the start of the log out procedure.
– Various other small bugfixes
The PC-BSD team is pleased to announce the availability of RC1 images for the upcoming quarterly 10.1.1 release.
Please test these images out and report any issues found on our bug tracker.
PC-BSD 10.1.1 notable Changes
* Brand new system updater which supports automatic background updating of the system
* Many improvements to boot-environments and GRUB support for a wider variety of setups
* Support for installation to a specific GPT partition and GPT dual-booting improvements
* Conversion to Qt5 for all desktop utilities
* Fixes to using dtrace when booted from GRUB
* Re-write of Mount Tray utility, improves mounting of external media
* Support for full-disk encryption (without an unencrypted /boot) using GELI v7
* More packages available for installation from DVD/USB/CD images via “PC-BSD roles”
* New OVA files for virtual machines
* Different ISO files for UEFI / BIOS installations
* Misc bugfixes and improvements to utilities
* GNOME 3.14.1
* Cinnamon 2.4.2
* Lumina desktop 0.8.0
* Chromium 39.0.2171.95
* Firefox 35.0
* NVIDIA Driver 340.65
* Pkg 1.4.4
Users currently running the EDGE package repo can now update their packages via the updater GUI or “pc-updatemanager” utility to be brought up to date with RC1.
Updates for users on the 10.1-RELEASE / PRODUCTION repo will be available once 10.1.1-RELEASE is announced.
10.1.1-RC1 DVD/USB media can be downloaded from this URL via HTTP or Torrent.
Found a bug in 10.1.1? Please report it (with as much detail as possible) to our bugs database.
Setting up a FreeBSD / TrueOS home router with IPFW
(Updated 1/13/2015 with in-kernel NAT example!)
Over the Christmas holidays I had some spare time and was ready to take the plunge and retire an old Asus router. It had begun getting rather slow, due to the increasing number of devices connected to our network, and of course I wanted peace of mind using a FreeBSD system I could be sure was up to date with security fixes. I used PC-BSD’s server release, TrueOS 10.1, because I wanted to use ZFS with boot-environments to ensure upgrading and replacing disks would be risk-free down the road. The following details how I setup TrueOS on the new box.
The PC-BSD team is happy to announce we’ve put the finishing touches on the new Update GUI. Users on edge will be able to download and test out the new update GUI with their next update. The new Update GUI will also enable automatic updates which will happen at boot up or every 24 hours. You will also be able to choose what parts of your system you want to update (i.e. Packages, Security, etc.). If you have any questions, concerns, or to report a bug, please feel free to create a bug report on bugs.pcbsd.org so we can quickly get back to you and help troubleshoot the issue.
The first Qt5-based version of the Lumina desktop environment has just been released!
The source code for this release is available in the Lumina repository on GitHub, the FreeBSD port has been updated, and the new package is getting pushed out to the PC-BSD “Edge” repository here in the next couple days. Version 0.8.0 is mainly just an update to all the backend systems, but there are a few notable changes:
Updates for version 0.8.0:
– Uses Qt5 (tested with 5.2) instead of Qt4. This also brings in a new dependency on the XCB libraries.
– Uses the new QMultimedia framework instead of Phonon for playing multimedia files. This has much better results when playing audio/video files through the Insight file manager.
– New built-in single application framework for the Lumina project (no more external dependency for this, and it works on all OS’s).
– New task manager mode (no groups). This reproduces the traditional task manager functionality of one button per window, and it lists the window title for each button. For ease-of-use, this mode is treated as a distinct/new panel plugin through the Lumina configuration utility.
– The task manager “action” menu (right-click) now has many more options that are auto-generated based on the current window state.
– The lumina-open crash reporter for applications now provides details about the crash from the application (if any are available).
– New windows will no longer appear with the titlebar underneath a Lumina panel.
– Command-line inputs with special localized characters are now properly used.
– Large clean-up of recursive file operations in the file manager. (Better reporting and error detection, add ability to copy a directory into itself, make sure no files are missed during recursive operations).
– Detect when running in a VirtualBox VM (if OS is FreeBSD) and hide the screen brightness controls since these do not work in a VM.
– Clean up how the special “Exec=” field codes are handled for XDG desktop shortcuts (fixes the issues with starting various KDE applications like Okular).
– Various other small bugs fixed.
As always, please test it out and submit any bugs or feature requests through the PC-BSD bug tracker.