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Linux Top 3: Xen Lives, Fuduntu Dies and KDE Slims

  • April 22, 2013
  • By Sean Michael Kerner

1) Xen Lives

The open source Xen hypervisor was all the rage in 2005 across many Linux vendors. At the time, Red Hat specifically called out Xen as being a key part of its technology roadmap for 2006 and beyond. Red Hat started to move away from Xen in 2008 with its acquisition of KVM founder Qumranet. Other Linux vendors have also progressively moved to embrace KVM as the Linux virtualization technology of choice as well.

Xen also underwent transition after 2005. XenSource was acquired by Citrix in 2007 for $500 million. Until this past week, Citrix was the primary steward of Xen development, though it wasn't Xen's only backer.

Citrix has now pushed the development of Xen over to the Linux Foundation to be run as a collaborative project.

"The Xen Project is an important open source community project that provides valuable technology to the entire Linux and open source ecosystem," Jim Zemlin, executive director at The Linux Foundation said in a statement. "It’s a natural move for us to help nurture collaboration to advance this technology."

Founding members of the new collaborative project include: Amazon Web Services, AMD, Bromium, Calxeda, CA Technologies, Cisco, Citrix, Google, Intel, Oracle, Samsung and Verizon.

2)Fuduntu Dead

While Xen is getting new life breathed into it, not all open source projects this past week have been as fortunate.

Fuduntu is a community Linux distribution that aimed to meld the best of Fedora and Ubuntu Linux together. It's a goal that has now come to an end.

"The move of the Linux world to systemd has caused a problem for Fuduntu as it has become a required thing for many programs, but we do not use it," Fuduntu developer Lee Ward wrote. "Together with the GTK issue, Fuduntu has reached an impasse. To move forward would take quite a bit of time and manpower, neither of which can be supported. The team discussed several options and, ultimately, voted to end-of-life Fuduntu Linux."

While the disto known as Fuduntu is reaching its end, developers have pledged to try again a build a new distro in the week and months ahead.

3)KDE Goes Slim

There is a perception among some Linux desktop users that the mainstream user interfaces like GNOME and KDE are 'bloated'. It's a perception that has led to the emergence of lightweight distros over the years like LXDE and xFCE (though xFCE today is arguably bloated itself).

KDE developers are now developing a 'lightweight' version of their desktop, one that provides a minimal footprint, while still providing the robust features that KDE is known for.

"The KlyDE project applies KDE's modularity and configurability to the challenge of making a lightweight desktop," KDE developer Will Stephenson wrote. "However, what I don't want to do is a hatchet job where functionality is crudely chopped out of the desktop to fit some conception of light weight."

Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at Linux Planet and InternetNews.com, the news service of the IT Business Edge Network, the network for technology professionals. Follow him on Twitter @TechJournalist.

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