openSUSE 10.3 Has Been Released

openSUSE 10.3 has been released with a new single KDE installation CD option. It has an excellent delivery of KDE with the latest stable KDE 3.5.7 and the first parts of KDE 4: games, KRDC and KRFB. KDEPIM has also been upgraded to the enterprise branch, providing a few new features and countless fixes.

A full KDE 4 preview is available on the DVD or from the online repositories. Other notable changes include Amarok with MP3 support out-of-the-box, a new 1-click-install technology, 2.3, and beautiful green artwork. Furthermore, a typical default boot time to a KDM screen has been decreased from a painful 50+ seconds in openSUSE 10.2, to a super-fast 24 seconds in openSUSE 10.3.


I might have to try this out, I'm inbetween computers at the moment and this looks like a great release to try out.

by fish (not verified)

Great release guys! Beautiful KDE, a lot better than Kubuntu's. Very cool integration of the community-repositories as well and tons of packages.

I installed 10.3 with RC1 and I'm impressed...congratulations on this superb release!

by yxxcvsdfbnfgnds (not verified)

I agree. I'm not a fan of Novell and I dislike their "MS's puppy"-like behaviour, but openSUSE 10.3's KDE is awsome.

by A KDE Advocate (not verified)

I second this. I switched to Kubuntu over from SUSE after their Microsofish deal. And even before that, I also was simply pissed off when they switched focus to GNOME. But it's nice to see they are doing some great work and producing one of the most polished KDE distros around.

by Grósz Dániel (not verified)

Read please.

openSUSE did not switch to GNOME, it does not have a default desktop, the user have to choose it during the installation. SLED has GNOME by default but KDE is also supported. AFAIK Novell hires more KDE developers than anyone else and openSUSE project manager Stephan Kulow is a core developer of KDE so they still pay a lot attention to KDE.

by Simon (not verified)

From the first link you posted:

"Not using openSUSE, a project/distribution which is merely sponsored by Novell because of this deal (whatever your feelings) is absurd. Novell has also created or is among the top sponsors of projects such as the Linux Kernel, GCC,, KDE, GNOME, Tomboy, F-Spot, Banshee, Beagle, (K)NetworkManager, Kickoff, Evolution, XEN, Xgl, and Compiz etc. Are you refusing to use any of those as well? Since they all have substantial amounts of Novell code."

Rather disingenuous, in my view. It is not absurd to choose not to use a distribution _controlled_ by Novell and a direct base for their enterprise projects if you dislike the Novell-MS deal. The relationship of the kernel, gcc, OOo etc to Novell is quite different to the relationship of openSUSE to Novell.

"Rather disingenuous, in my view."

I totally agree.
But this is the price we all pay when companies start to play a major role in developing.

by Simon (not verified)

I don't think it follows that involvement of companies is a bad thing. Of course companies do what is in their best financial interests while (hopefully) remaining legal. Whether the Novell-MS deal will be good for Novell in the long term remains to be seen (and is arguable - what is the benchmark against which any growth should be measured? Red Hat?). On the legal side, hopefully GPLv3 limits this to a mere blip.

by apokryphos (not verified)

> The relationship of the kernel, gcc, OOo etc to Novell is quite different to the relationship of openSUSE to Novell.

This still doesn't hit the head of the point for why people make up this sort of nonsense excuse to not use it. It's not about "fighting for a cause" or for general self-righteousness in most cases, it's just about going off negative baseless headlines and fighting for an imaginary cause which isn't under threat. And this to just try to give out the perception that they care about software freedom (when 98% of people, I can say from experience, just don't have a clue about the deal).

You're suggesting that some people draw the line when the project is "controlled" by Novell. Oh, really? Well, openSUSE is a _community_ project _sponsored_ by Novell (read

If openSUSE is "controlled" because it's the primary sponsor then let's not rule out other projects here. KDE's biggest contributors are Trolltech and SUSE/Novell. Last time I saw ALSA was almost completely being maintained by Novell/SUSE, and yet that's another community project I don't see people stop using. KDE has other sponsors? It sure does and that's wonderful. So does openSUSE (AMD; again, see

openSUSE is the base for SUSE Linux Enterprise. Guess what? So is _all_ standard Linux software.

Don't use openSUSE because you don't like the way it handles things, or for some technical reason: that's absolutely fine. But saying that you don't use it because you dislike some deal Novell made is pure nonsense.

by Simon (not verified)

From the openSUSE guiding principles (read ;-) :

"The board of maintainers consists of five community members including two people who are not employed by Novell. The board is headed by a chairperson with veto power over any decision. The chairperson is appointed by Novell and will typically be a Novell employee."

The situation is quite different between the projects I highlighted and openSUSE. Novell does not have a power of veto over the kernel, OOo or KDE. You could argue the point with respect to Mono and perhaps some of the others that originate with Novell.

Sure people should make their own decisions and I'm not calling for a boycott of openSUSE or Novell, merely saying that it is contradictory to choose to avoid openSUSE while using KDE/Linux kernel etc. Note I hadn't expressed an opinion on whether people should boycott Novell and openSUSE. (In fact I was an openSUSE user for almost a year after the deal. My main motivation for switching from openSUSE 10.2 was bad package management; my motivation for moving away from openSUSE rather than seeing if things were better in 10.3 was partly driven by the Novell-MS deal and the fact that I no longer saw myself as part of the openSUSE community, no longer wanted to file bugs etc).

by Simon (not verified)

Of course, I meant " it is _not_ contradictory to choose to avoid openSUSE while using KDE/Linux kernel etc"

Honest ;-)

by apokryphos (not verified)

"The situation is quite different between the projects I highlighted and openSUSE. Novell does not have a power of veto over the kernel, OOo or KDE. You could argue the point with respect to Mono and perhaps some of the others that originate with Novell."

It's not the exact same setup -- I'm not sure anyone is trying to say that. They are similar in that they're projects where Novell/SUSE has a substantial contribution.

If we're talking merely of control, however, then: the point of the response to that question is that there's probably _no-one_ 'boycotting' openSUSE while still boycotting Compiz, Xgl, ALSA, Mono, KNetworkManager etc. which all have similar setups of 'structure' (if you like). So, presuming that people _aren't_ boycotting those, their position is quite evidently _not_ consistent, so it's just as meaningless to not use openSUSE on the same grounds.

by A KDE Advocate (not verified)

"Read please."

Yeah right, like no one can ever see how "healthy" to Free Software is exploiting Microsoft patent FUD as a "selling point" for a distribution.

"openSUSE did not switch to GNOME"

I didn't say it "switched to GNOME". I said switched FOCUS to GNOME, which is different, considering SUSE's history.

"Novell hires more KDE developers than anyone else"

True and that's something to be very grateful for, but it shouldn't be a basis for changing positions on Novell/MS patent deal. (And I know about the interoperability part, but that's not what I'm talking about)

by apokryphos (not verified)

> I didn't say it "switched to GNOME". I said switched FOCUS to GNOME, which is different, considering SUSE's history.

Which is still false. openSUSE doesn't have a default, but even so there's definitely a bigger focus on KDE in openSUSE than GNOME. The GNOME developers spend more time on the enterprise products.

> but it shouldn't be a basis for changing positions on Novell/MS patent deal

It's mentioned to highlight (among other things) that Novell is the greatest contributor (as a company) to the Linux desktop in the world. You would be incredibly surprised about the amount of people who don't know this.

by A KDE Advocate (not verified)

"Novell is the greatest contributor (as a company) to the Linux desktop in the world"

No single company or individual is the so-called "greatest contributor" to the collective Free Software efforts on desktop. It's rather disappointing that anyone would buy into such marketing crap from any GNU/Linux vendor (unless you _are_in their marketing dept., that would be a different story) And it's very disrespectful to the whole Free Software community from those who wrote the simplest command-line utilities, windowing toolkits to the thousands of developers who invest their time and effort writing applications atop them.

by cies breijs (not verified)

i'm also not a fan of the deal: the deal attacks the freedom ideals behind the GPL -- which is good as it can only make the free software movement stronger.

currently i have mixed feeling over the deal as it helps novell making money which it then can invest in openSUSE.

i switched to kubuntu not because of the deal, but because of the 10 series where too buggy and slow (installing a 100k package took me 15 minutes at some point), and needed a lot of additional configuration to make them usable.

from the announcement (manly this i got curious enough to give openSUSE an other try.

thanks for the release!

I dont think that SuSE ever was a great distribution for advanced users.

There just were too many headaches you get...

for the click-guys though, SuSE is very fine.

by apokryphos (not verified)

> I dont think that SuSE ever was a great distribution for advanced users.

Unfortunately thousands of "advanced users" disagree with you.

Anyway, he bifurcation you suggest is just simply not existent; not all "power-users" want to configure _everything_. I might know how to configure a few million things on my system but I certainly don't _want_ to. I want an operating system that will run quickly and in general stay out of my way. And when I do have to fix things, I want there to be easy ways to do so (YaST).

So while you spend your few hours editing your xorg.conf I think I'll just go to YaST -> monitor and have everything done perfectly for me in a matter of seconds.

by Melchior FRANZ (not verified)

> I dont think that SuSE ever was a great distribution for advanced users.
> for the click-guys though, SuSE is very fine.

For "click-guys" like Linus TORVALDS, maybe? He used to have SuSE on his private computer (and RH on his computer at work when he was at Transmeta). That was way before The Deal, though, and I don't know what happened then. I for one still use openSUSE, not *because* of Novell, but *despite*.

by Kevin Kofler (not verified)

I believe he's running Fedora mostly these days, judging from the bug reports he's filing in RH Bugzilla. ;-)

openSUSE is nice and all, but it takes KDE and turns it into a glorified Windows clone. Besides, Kubuntu 7.10 is even better although it hasn't been released yet. At this time, however, I could probably say that openSUSE has a better KDE desktop by default at the moment. Just wait a couple weeks, though... ;)

Kubuntu has been about the worst KDE offering since its inception - "Ubuntu is GNOME at its best; Kubuntu is KDE at its worst" as one wag so succinctly put it.

Why would the next two weeks bring such a dramatic reversal?

by The Vicar (not verified)

I am curious to know why people like it too. I tried a couple of KUbuntu releases early on and a number of aspects about it really annoyed me. Lately, though, I have noticed it has been receiving much more praise on various forums and has come out of Ubuntu's shadow. Even some apparently die-hard KDE people are saying it is great. What has changed?

Personally, my major frustrations with Ubuntu/Kubuntu are that it seems to have worse hardware support than my distro of choice. (On paper it should be better as it has more drivers but my specific set-up has never liked it.) Also, the fact it is limited to a single CD really limits the number of packages. For people like me, with extremely slow internet access, downloading anything but the smallest additional software from the repositories isn't a realistic option. I wish they could supply a second "applications" disk based upon, say, the most popular downloads from the repositories and supply that via ShipIt. Obviously, that would raise costs significantly. Otherwise, I am content to stick to the distro I am currently using (which I can grab off magazine covers when it is released.)

by Sputnik50 (not verified)

I totally agree. I am at a loss to explain why it is so popular. KDE is virtually crippled and although it is easy for an expert to undo the changes to Konqueror, it is not a good advert to newcomers. I don't believe in simplifing software by taking functionality away. That is the GNOME approach. Make it more usable, yes, but not by limiting features.

A small whinge is the dreadful default theme. I hear numerous compaints about Ubuntu's brown human theme but the "blue on blue" KDE theme is not just ugly but really painful to my eyes. Of course it can be changed easily but it really shows a lack of thought going into the product if it is literally painful for someone to use.

Hardware support is definitely lacking, even with non-free drivers. I have had more luck with Fedora. More things "just work" in that distro.

Yes, a second disk of the best applications would be great That way we could receive a full KDE and best-of-breed applications. Linux has a good chance of penetrating the third world but we must recongise not everyone in those places can simply download more programs from the repositories. If Canonical can give away three copies of a disk to a single person if requested, surely one installation disk and one disk of bonus applications is not too much to ask for? As Linux application software and libraries grow in size, they will find the one CD approach a more and more rigid limit.

by apokryphos (not verified)

Nonsense. It's like Windows because it has a larger menu than the default? That's silly. I'd like to hear your reasons for thinking that it is any sort of 'Windows clone', these type of statements are always so peculiar.

I dont think it looks beautiful at all.

In fact, I think it looks ugly.

by jospoortvliet (not verified)

Aaah, well, taste is hard to discuss...

by david (not verified)

I am curently running 10.3 and am looking very forward to 11. i don't care hwo novel sleeps with, as long as they keep making suse better. i tryed ubuntu and kubuntu and the bugs far out numbered those in suse, i like that it has great config tools and feels more complete than most linuxes, and maybe this novel cuddleing with ms can be a good thing, like getting things in linux that would not be there otherwise, do to some wierd pattent thing, im not saying its good but, i have watched linux do more dammage to itsself, with infighting and indignant atitudes toward new users asking qwestions, than novel could ever do to linux by sleeping with ms,

sorry for bad typing not a stong point for me

by Sutoka (not verified)

Sounds like a nice release. The improved boot times will be quite nice for my laptop, since 10.2 had (or seemed to ;) quite a long boot time (fortunately suspend-to-ram works flawlessly with the OSS r300 drivers :).

Hopefully the good people at SUSE/Novell will keep up the great work!

by Laerte (not verified)

No Thx.

by Dave Taylor (not verified)

I couldn't agree more, GStreamer is really bad and not just for Amarok but for video as well. Xine really does just work and work well so what was ever wrong with it (in Amarok's case). I understand that GStreamer is much more functional in that you can encode as well as decode and pipe effects but until it can play back video with out some green down one side or without making all videos look like they were encoded really badly (when they look like the original in Xine) or keep video and audio in sync (yes I am on version 10) you can keep it. If they needed a new framework that had more unnecessary features (from Amarok's perspective) then they could use NMM, it can at least play an MP3 stream flawlessly.

Anyway some one is going to tell me to report said bugs but since I don't use it and don't intend to I have too little interest in it to bother.

by A KDE Advocate (not verified)

It just proves how wise was the KDE team and community to go build the multi-backend phonon instead of locking themselves to one party or another that not all users will be happy with :)

Indeed! Imagine that some folks were flaming the KDE devs for not chaining themselves to the GStreamer thing! The argument was that GStreamer was *the* future (because we say so) and that anyone not jumping on board was a splitter. Of course GStreamer may yet turn out great, but at least the aRts story will not be repeated for KDE.

I installed OpenSUSE 10.3 couple of days ago, and the music sounds a little different... at first I thought "oh no, it sounds bad-der" , but after a while I could get used to it. But what does happen more is audio 'skipping' once in a while when the system is under load (for example when I was browsing the net, burning a CD-RW disc and playing music at the same time).

I do not know if with Xine it would be better, but it's a pity that if I decide to use Xine I cannot use mp3 playback. I understand the reason why they did this, I just hate being 'locked into' a technology like that.

Packman repository has xine with mp3 support.

OK, thanks! :)

I was afraid that package would have disappeared.

Actually, it is now even easier to install because you can easily add repos with the "Community Repositories" module, or just use the "1 Click Install" from the following website:

by apokryphos (not verified)

XINE engine comes too; the reason the yauap/gstreamer engine is default is because it can provide MP3 Support. I prefer XINE too, but a GStreamer engine with MP3 support is obviously better than a XINE one without it.

Installing Amarok with full xine support has also never been easier, you can now use 1-click-install for ALL codecs in openSUSE. See

by Richard Van Den Boom (not verified)

Mmmm, why wouldn't xine provide MP3 support? I use xine here on my Slack and it plays MP3 alright.
I suppose that's a licence issue but even there, why would they allowed Gstreamer to play them and not xine?
Probably something I'm not aware of, I guess...

by Boudewijn Rempt (not verified)

Fluendo provides a licensed mp3 codec with gstreamer.

by yxxcvsdfbnfgnds (not verified)

Trolltech is backing GStreamer for Phonon (KDE 4). Xine will just ship with KDE 4.0, but will most likely be replaced by GStreamer. Read for further details.

I guess you should take the chance with openSUSE 10.3 and make yourself comfortable with GStreamer, because it's here to stay.

>> Read for further details.

Says nothing about Trolls backing GStreamer... Its all about Phonon.

I have nothing against GS, Xine engine for Amarok is just better.


by Tim Beaulen (not verified)

There's more information here:

But both Xine and GStreamer have their strengths and weaknesses.

by Dave Taylor (not verified)

It's definitely here to stay - that's for sure, at almost 9 years old it's probably the oldest of the major multimedia projects but it isn't making much headway on the other projects (Mplayer = 7, Xine = 7, VLC = 6). I would like it to be good because it could be a definitive solution for all platforms but at this rate the smart money is on Phonon, so in another 4-5 years when GStreamer is out of beta then I can just switch over the backend through the venerable d-package, but by then may be some RPM based package manager could be comparable to d-package (in other news hell froze over and pigs grow wings). Apologies about the rant I'm cynical after Manchester united beat my home team 4-0 and I had to sit through that in the west stand!

by jospoortvliet (not verified)

> so in another 4-5 years when GStreamer is out of beta


by Dave Taylor (not verified)

Unstable API
Pre 1.0 release
Dubious playback quality (concensus around here)
No scheduled 1.0 release
Holds promise

Name the release version that took it out of beta.

I think jos is agreeing with you...

by Pietro (not verified)

What exactly is enterprise version of KDEPIM? Where can I find more information about the differences between enterprise and normal versions? Thanks.

by Richard (not verified)

From what I can gather it is simply a lot of tweaks that the Opensuse KDE team have done to KDEPIM, so it is as far as I know only avaible on opensuse. If you go to the official release notice of 10.3 at, you should be able to learn a little more about it