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Window Maker Live 2013-03-06 released

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rumbero
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Window Maker Live 2013-03-06 released

#1 Post by rumbero » Fri Mar 08, 2013 2:09 am

As we are fellow Thinkpad users, i wanted to notify you that i have finally come around to release and upload Window Maker Live 2013-03-06 to sourceforge. Window Maker Live (wmlive) is an installable Linux live CD/ISO, based mostly on the "wheezy" branch of Debian Linux. Its main purpose is to serve as a show case for the Window Maker window manager, which serves as the default graphical user interface, and therefore has received special preconfiguration care.

Further details about this Debian derivative can be found at wmlive.sourceforge.net and especially in the README file. The ISO images are already available for download and further testing from here: sourceforge.net/projects/wmlive/files/wmlive_2013-03-06. In fact, it was developed mainly on a Thinkpad T61 and, obviously out of my own selfish interest, with Thinkpads in mind. So you can for example expect to have tp-smapi and trackpoint scrolling running out of the box.

The 32bit ISO version by default uses a i486 based kernel flavour for installation, but a PAE enabled i586 kernel is included in parallel. This enables booting and installation on hopefully most Intel based machines, while at the same time offering optional support for modern multicore processors once the system is installed to disk. The 64bit ISO version uses an amd64 kernel version 3.2 for the principal installation. Once the installation to disk has completed, optionally the 3.8 kernel from the experimental Debian branch is also available and already included as a choice in the grub boot menu.

It took me quite a while to get this out and, in hindsight, the amount of changes appear to have have accumulated to quite a few. If i am not mistaken, i must have build the ISO images a few hundred times. An almost equal amount of test installations was performed both in KVM and VirtualBox, as well as on a Thinkpad T60 and T61. There have been lots of changes, and while Window Maker Live looks more or less the same at first sight, the biggest amount of modifications and enhancements have been done under the hood. Of major importance was a hassle free installation process with the least user interaction requirement possible, and i think this has been accomplished.

Also, it was very important to create a well working build process for the ISO images, as i would like to enable others to produce their own ISO compilations of Window Maker Live. While this works fine for me, it still needs to be tested and verified from others. The build tree sources are included with each ISO image, but are also available as a separate archive at sourceforge.

I have more or less reached my limits for the testing and need more people to have a closer look and provide some useful feedback. Please download and try it out. Any feedback is very welcome!

Best regards,

Paul Seelig <wmlive@users.sf.net>
http://wmlive.sourceforge.net
Broken T23 2647-9RG | A few 14.1" T61 Frankenpads | Two 15" Frankenpad T61+ with UXGA IPS Display

Neil
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Re: Window Maker Live 2013-03-06 released

#2 Post by Neil » Fri Mar 08, 2013 1:47 pm

I'll give it a look later this weekend. Usually I prefer a full desktop environment, but have been using OpenBox for a while now, and with the addition of a dynamic menu, it serves me well. So I'm interested in seeing what Window Maker brings to the table.
rumbero wrote:developed mainly on a Thinkpad T61 and, obviously out of my own selfish interest, with Thinkpads in mind. So you can for example expect to have tp-smapi and trackpoint scrolling running out of the box.
Although I've already added these special ThinkPad specific tools to my systems, I really like the idea of a ThinkPad-centric out-of-the-box experience. I don't know of anyone else that is doing this right now, and really comes in handy for us ThinkPad fans/users.

Q - Wheezy is soon to go stable, are you sticking with stable, or will you continue to track testing? Since this is a hobby to me, I usually set my Debian installs up to track unstable (sid), but just curious what you have in mind.
Collection = T430 - T500 - R400 - X300 - T61 (14" WXGA+) - R61 (15" SXGA+) - X40 - T43p - T43 - T42p - A30P

rumbero
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Re: Window Maker Live 2013-03-06 released

#3 Post by rumbero » Fri Mar 08, 2013 3:42 pm

Neil wrote:Q - Wheezy is soon to go stable, are you sticking with stable, or will you continue to track testing? Since this is a hobby to me, I usually set my Debian installs up to track unstable (sid), but just curious what you have in mind.
In fact, wmlive is designed to perform an initial bootstrap of Debian/wheezy, and from then on the user is free to follow whatever Debian branch appears to be suitable. No need to reinvent the wheel when everything is already in place.

Personally, since i know how to help myself in case of issues, i usually follow unstable with a few drop ins from the experimental branch.
Broken T23 2647-9RG | A few 14.1" T61 Frankenpads | Two 15" Frankenpad T61+ with UXGA IPS Display

Neil
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Re: Window Maker Live 2013-03-06 released

#4 Post by Neil » Mon Mar 11, 2013 5:32 pm

rumbero wrote:...need more people to have a closer look and provide some useful feedback. Please download and try it out. Any feedback is very welcome!
Are you primarily looking for feedback on the window manager itself, or the entire experience using the Window Maker Live OS?

And, is this thread where you want to receive feedback, or elsewhere?
Collection = T430 - T500 - R400 - X300 - T61 (14" WXGA+) - R61 (15" SXGA+) - X40 - T43p - T43 - T42p - A30P

rumbero
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Re: Window Maker Live 2013-03-06 released

#5 Post by rumbero » Thu Jun 13, 2013 11:47 am

Neil wrote:Are you primarily looking for feedback on the window manager itself, or the entire experience using the Window Maker Live OS?
For both.
Actually, i am looking for the feedback which is of real concern to the user himself. It's a matter of perspective, as my own is limited by my own views.
Neil wrote:And, is this thread where you want to receive feedback, or elsewhere?
Here or via private mail, it doesn't matter how.
Last edited by rumbero on Thu Jun 13, 2013 3:09 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Broken T23 2647-9RG | A few 14.1" T61 Frankenpads | Two 15" Frankenpad T61+ with UXGA IPS Display

rumbero
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Window Maker Live release 2013-06-05 (June 2013) available!

#6 Post by rumbero » Thu Jun 13, 2013 11:51 am

Available now at sourceforge.net/projects/wmlive/files/wmlive_2013-06-05. This time it should be worth doing a fresh download and installation.

Lots of bug fixes went into this new release, far too numerous too mention. Please see http://wmlive.sourceforge.net/ChangeLog.txt for detailed information about all fixes and changes.

Window Maker wise there have been no perceivable changes, as the most work has been happening under the hood. Window Maker Live has now also become a nice alternative Debian/Wheezy installation CD, apart from its actual function as a Window Maker showcase.

So here is a short overview about the most worthwhile changes:

### Window Maker Live 2013-06-05

What is new since the last release?

* Both firefox and thunderbird are not preinstalled anymore into the
static squashfs of the live system. Instead, the upstream archives
are now shipped separetely on the ISO image within the top level
"custom" folder. These archives are then automaticaly unpacked at
run time of the live session or during installation to disk.

This not only enables users to easily replace the contained english
language Mozilla applications with different language versions, but
also allows for updating these release versions with newer ones
featuring both bug and security fixes, and no need to download
more recent wmlive ISO images. To comfortably edit and modify the
ISO image, the wmlive built in isomaster application can be used.

* If an archive named "custom.tar.xz" and/or "custom.tar.bz2" is found
in the top level ./custom folder on the ISO, it is automatically
unpacked to the / directory during runtime of the live session or
installation. This can be used for subsequent modifications of
configuration settings which were formerly hardcoded into the
squashfs during the creation of the wmlive ISO, but also for the
installation of additional third party applications which are not
usually included in the Debian archives.

* UltraBay hot plugging for ThinkPads was reimplemented from scratch
and included as a proper debian package. It was verified to work for
at least ThinkPad models T60 and T61. Further feedback is welcome!

Additionally, when an UltraBay battery is inserted, standard battery
discharge order will automatically switch to first drain the main
battery instead of the UltraBay battery, in order to override the
unfortunate manufacturer default.

* Hibernation support has been overhauled and optimized. It should now
work out of the box, both in virtualized and real computers. During
our tests we never had any issues with failing hibernation.

* The ISO image contains an archive with the complete tree of the
build scripts used to create this very image in the top level
'extras' directory. It contains everything you need to recreate a
customized version of the wmlive ISO. The build scripts are copied
to /usr/local/src/wmlive during the final stages of the installation
to disk. As verified, the wmlive ISO is properly rebuilt as long as
download access for the debian archives is provided.


Some known issues:

* Besides the rather well supported 3.2 kernel, also a more recent
3.8 kernel from the unstable branch is optionally available at boot
time once the system was finally installed to disk. While both
kernels are installed complete with all necessary kernel headers to
enable compilation of external modules, this might not always work
for the unstable 3.8 kernel.

* For 32bit systems, to enable bootstrapping and installing Window
Maker Live also on a wide range of vintage computers, a i486 Linux
kernel version 3.2 was used as least common denominator. While the
i486 kernel is able to run on practically all Intel based computers,
it lacks support for more advanced performance features of Core2Duo
and later processors. For this reason, the installed system contains
a second i686-pae kernel version 3.8 to choose from the boot menu.

* To largely maintain a uniform look and feel based on the gtk2step
based Gnome theme which mimicks the Window Maker WINGs widget set,
some limitations for package installations apply. Extensive use
of apt-pinning was made, in order to shape package selections and to
keep out GTK3 based applications. Please revise /etc/apt/preferences
and modify it accordingly to get rid of these limitations if you
plan to upgrade/install more recent packages.

* The supported languages are currently limited to English, French,
German, Portuguese, and Spanish only, with the dialogs of the main
scripts being English only. While these 5 languages cover at least
indirectly larger regions of the world, further internationalization
requires the practical contributions of dedicated helpers.

Enjoy!

Best regards,
Paul
Broken T23 2647-9RG | A few 14.1" T61 Frankenpads | Two 15" Frankenpad T61+ with UXGA IPS Display

rumbero
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Re: Window Maker Live 2013-03-06 released

#7 Post by rumbero » Sat Sep 20, 2014 11:16 am

Surprisingly, Window Maker Live is currently featured as a Project of the Week (among others) on the sourceforge.net main page.

Isn't that nice? ;)
Broken T23 2647-9RG | A few 14.1" T61 Frankenpads | Two 15" Frankenpad T61+ with UXGA IPS Display

rumbero
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Re: Window Maker Live 2013-03-06 released

#8 Post by rumbero » Sat Sep 20, 2014 11:17 am

Bumping topic in order to make aware about Window Maker Live wmlive_0.95.6-1 released.
Broken T23 2647-9RG | A few 14.1" T61 Frankenpads | Two 15" Frankenpad T61+ with UXGA IPS Display

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