I saw a spare MicroSD card lying around when I had a brain wave. I loaded the MicroSD onto a USB Card reader and proceeded to download KDE Live ISO (openSUSE 12.3 RC1) from openSUSE development site using Transmission. After downloading it I burnt the image onto the Micro SD card using SUSE Studio ImageWriter. This article is being written from the Live KDE ISO to test the stability of the system.
Few thoughts about KDE RC1 Live ISO
- Good looking default theme and wallpaper. The desktop seems to be kind of "Tronish". The new wallpaper can be downloaded from this link and is titled "grow". The wallpaper is an winning entry from a contest organised through Flickr. You can view all the submissions for the contest here.
- Great progress has been made in the "looks" department from the last time i too a look at it. openSUSE 12.3 Milestone 1 KDE 4.9.2
- The desktop effects are smooth and fluid and it is a lot less glassy compared to earlier openSUSE/KDE avatars.
- Even though it is a RC1 release, ISO image is of top grade quality. There were no hiccups when booting using the ISO.
- Browsing does work on the Live ISO which is a big plus. I could play only WebM encoded files like this one "Adobe Flash Versus GNOME Totem Vegas webm" in Firefox as native "h.264" support doesn't seem to be available. Many videos in youtube complain that flash is not installed, but they start playing once I closed the error window which seemed kind of funny.
- In Dolphin (File manger) everything is invoked through "single click" which can be a pain sometimes.
Default desktop has a openSUSE greeter and provides links to key webpages associated with the project .
On clicking the "KInfocenter" icon in the desktop we get to see that openSUSE 12.3 will most probably be shipping kernel 3.7.x and KDE version 4.10. KInfocenter is a nice tool to have and does provide a lot of nice info about Hardware configuration of the underlying system.
Firefox playing a WebM encoded video in youtube.
A lot of plasma widgets come pre-installed. You can see Weather, Calendar, RSS feed ticker, Hardware information and Disk Space widget in the below screenshot.
To open the widget browser we need to Right click on panel ==> Navigate to Panel options ==> Add Widgets ==> Get New Widgets ==> Download New Plasma Widgets. This tool will allow us to add more widgets to the desktop. At long last I am in widget heaven :-)
For those who prefer a more contemporary desktop there is "Desktop Icons Activity". The Activity manager can be accessed by clicking the icon next to the kickoff menu (Alt+F1).
The following screenshot shows two main configuration tools available on openSUSE namely "YaST" and "KDE Settings"
Konqueror passes youtube's html5 test but Firfox doesn't.
When I wanted to read a pdf i found that there is no pdf reader on Live ISO? In these days when even cheap mobiles have all kinds of document readers, I feel that Live ISOs ought to have some kind of readers on them.
Apper notification indicate that I need to update some packages indicating that openSUSE 12.3 is still under heavy development :-) When I click on the notification, it shows the packages that I need to update.
Found KWrite to be a exceptionally easy to use. I liked as to how "Find & Replace" function has been implemented. It highlights all replacements and the number of replacements made. Kwrite has a vi editor mode (Win key+Ctrl+v) which allows "vi" enthusiasts to edit text using commands (dd does delete entire line in this mode).
- Lot of widgets, desktop effects, great theme and other eye-candy are available.
- The new KDE does makes all the right noises and sounds.
- But the Live ISO cannot be used on a day to day basis as it doesn't pack any document reader, dictionary and other niche tools.
- SUSE Studio ImageWriter cannot create persistent USBs which is a real bummer.