IPFire "thirteen"

Michael Tremer michael.tremer at ipfire.org
Thu Aug 30 16:59:31 CEST 2012


this is to announce the first test release for IPFire 2.13 with codename

So what has been going on? The IPFire project is going to release
another release of IPFire 2. This is kind of inevitable because we feel
that the current base is getting a bit old and that we should refresh
some of the components to make life easier in the future.
IPFire 2 will have to live for a long time until there is a working
release of IPFire 3.

Updates components:

The Linux kernel
Arne has been working on updating to the latest LTS kernel, which is
Linux 3.2. It is maintained by Ben Hutchings for a couple of years, so
this is a good base to build our little system on.
The mission critical drivers (networking, media and some more) have been
picked from the Linux 3.5 release (compat-wireless 3.5.x) for better
hardware support.

I will leave out what the benefits are. You all know.

Glibc update
Glibc has been updated to the 2.12 branch. This is a huge step (from
2.3.6) which brings us a lot of advantages. New software compiles much
better without annoying patches, software runs much master and a lot of
security holes have been closed.
Glibc is compiled with the most optimization as possible.
We don't expect this to break anything, but you never know. It is the
biggest change that has ever been done in user space since the release
of IPFire 2.1.

GCC + binutils (aka toolchain)
The basic toolchain components have been updated. Mainly: GCC 4.4.7,
binutils 2.22.
Advantages: More speed (in compiling and code execution), compiler bugs
fixes. Enables us to use some hardening features in the kernel.

The toolchain may now be cross-compiled on x86_64 which get us rid of
the requirement of a 32bit host system for building IPFire. Although
IPFire remains i586.
The same cross-compiling thing works for ARM, which is even more
important because there are not many distributions supporting armv5tel.
Stripping binaries has been improved.

More basic system libraries and tools have been updated:
zlib 1.2.7, ncurses 5.9, bash 3.2 (with a bunch of patches), readline
6.2, iproute 3.5.1, gettext, ccache 3.1.8, less 443, file 5.11,
texinfo 4.13a and some more which I have completely forgotten.

The PCRE library now comes in two flavours. The first version is a
compat version for tools which have been compiled against the previous
package. The new one comes with a JIT compiler, which makes processing
regular expressions much faster. The URL filter feature may benefit from
that the most.

Has been updated and draws its graphs with help of cairo/pango/pixman.
This is much faster and looks a bit prettier. :D

grub has got a new patchset.

Some packages which have been unused/unusable for some time have been
removed: resier4progs, libaal, hddtemp, applejuice, iptstate, splix.

glib(2), fontconfig and freetype are not a package anymore. These are
essential for a huge number of addons.


Well, these are some things and now we need you all for testing. As you
may have guessed, some of the changes are scary and so we need the
evidence that everything works pretty well.

You will only find an ISO image and no update, because a) the update has
not been built, yet and b) we don't want you to crash your production

Please use your testing hardware of virtual machines. The first is the
better option.

Don't forget to report any bugs and also give feedback if you are not
experiencing any serious problems.



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