Linux Top 3: Linux Mint Rafaela, OpenMandriva Lx 2014.2 and VectorLinux 7.1
1) Linux Mint 17.2 Rafaela
The new version of Linux Mint is now out and one of the big highlights can be found in the Cinnamon Edition with the new Cinnamon 2.6 update.
A huge amount of work was done to review the CPU usage in various parts of Cinnamon and many improvements were made. Performance was gained by optimizing how Cinnamon reacts to particular events and reducing the number of tasks or repeated tasks it performs. The menu, for instance, is refreshed about 6 times as less as before… signals resulting from connecting a USB device are grouped together and lead to 1 action, reducing 4 concurrent reactions into a single one. The docinfo part of Cinnamon, which handles “recent files”, was optimized a lot. We found out tiny features such as generating thumbnails for “recent” files in the application menu were very expensive in resources and dropping them led to significant reductions in CPU usage. Un-necessary calculations in the window management part of Cinnamon could also be dropped, leading to reduced idle CPU usage (about 40% reduction in the number of CPU wakes per second).
2) OpenMandriva Lx 2014.2
With the recent demise of Mandriva it's important to remember that there are not one, but two forks that are still alive and well. Mageia recently announced version 5 of its Mandriva fork, while the OpenMandriva project announced the Lx 2014.2 update.
According to OpenMandriva:
With this release you can boot the installer or live system from memory stick or DVD on any EFI or BIOS based machine. If you have one where it doesn’t work tell us we really want to know. The installer now offers full EFI support you can even choose which ESP partition you install to. What’s more it offers the option to create a BIOS boot partition which means you can install OpenMandriva in BIOS mode on a GPT partitioned disk and you can do this independently of any EFI installs
Just as any offering in the Mandrake spirit should be – it’s even more stable and it has loads of new fun stuff!
3) VectorLinux 7.1
The Slackware based VectorLinux distribution also updated this past week - to version 7.1
This release is the culmination of years of work to make our distro the standard which all others hope to achieve. We have successfully developed an easy to use installer that can be used in both gui and text mode depending on the hardware involved that requires very little user intervention to achieve a successful installation of the system. We have completely automated our internal package system so that all packages are constantly up to date and patched as necessary.
Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at Linux Planet and InternetNews.com. Follow him on Twitter @TechJournalist