Press Release: Sabayon 11

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Sabayon 11

We're here once again to announce the immediate availability of Sabayon 11 in all of its tier-1 flavours. If you really enjoyed Sabayon 10, this is a release you cannot miss!
There you have it, a shiny distro for your home computer, your laptop and your servers, virtualized or not.
Linux Kernel 3.7 with BFQ iosched, GNOME 3.6.2, KDE 4.9.5 (upgraded to 4.10.1 as soon as it is available), Xfce 4.10, LibreOffice 3.6.3 are just some of the things you will find inside the box.
Complete EFI/UEFI and UEFI SecureBoot support, greatly improved NVIDIA Optimus support through Bumblebee, MATE 1.4 for those missing GNOME 2.x, a selection of MySQL flavors, including Google MySQL and MariaDB, up to 14000 packages now available in the repositories per architecture, and much, much more.

Reliably Rolling

As many of you know, Sabayon is a rolling distribution with some tweaks to the model to make the experience less painful and more predictable. This also mean that our official releases (or snapshots) are becoming stale very quickly, which is a reason why we have "daily" live media images available as well. Now, we want to take it further and, in the near future, offer semi-automatic monthly (or bi-monthly) releases. During this release cycle and the upcoming one, the focus has been and will be on distribution-wide continuous integration and testing. This also means that your contribution in terms of feedback, bug reporting and donations is going to be even more important for us!

EFI, UEFI and UEFI SecureBoot

Starting from Sabayon 11, all the x86_64 live images can boot and install on {U,}EFI only systems through GRUB bootloader. While we debate the way SecureBoot is implemented and its key management governed, we decided to make Sabayon bootable on systems where SecureBoot is enabled, through shim-signed, by Matthew Garrett. The process is simple: at the first live boot, you will be asked to enroll the Sabayon SecureBoot key, which is available in the "/SecureBoot" directory on the live media. However, in order to give you full control of your system, during the installation a new and personal SecureBoot keypair will be generated (and put into /BOOT/EFI/sabayon/enroll-this.cer). This means two things: you must also enroll this new key at the first boot after install and you will be able to sign your own binaries without depending on any third-parties (including us).
To learn more about SecureBoot in Sabayon, also read this blog post.

NVIDIA Optimus and Bumblebee support

Sabayon 11 gained out of the box support for NVIDIA Optimus through Bumblebee (and bbswitch). Optimus systems are automatically detected and configured on your behalf if a NVIDIA GPU, an Intel GPU and NVIDIA proprietary drivers are installed.

Tons of updates and new packages

As always, the amount of software updates is huge, and you can search for your favorite software through our web interface. Here are some worth a mention: all our Linux kernels (server, desktop, hardened, ec2, arm) at the time of this writing, have been updated to 3.7.4, GNOME has been updated to 3.6.2, KDE to 4.9.5 (and 4.10.1 is in the works), LibreOffice to 3.6.3.2 (and 4.0 will arrive soon), MATE saw its 1.4 release and XBMC 12 is finally here. Last but not least is Steam! Yes, we now have it in our repositories as well.
The Sabayon repositories have now reached almost 14000 packages available for each of the main architectures currently supported (i686, x86_64). This has been made possible by our new internal continuous building tools (Matter and Cosmos), and your donations of course.

Rigo improvements, Equo rewrite

Rigo, the Google-style graphical application browser, received a tremendous set of small but important speed and usability improvements thanks to your feedback. For example, a whole new set of keyboard accelerators has been implemented: CTRL+F for switching to the search bar, CTRL+M to load the preferences menu and CTRL+P to move the focus to the results list area.
For those of you who love Equo more, it may be interesting to know that the whole Equo codebase has been rewritten from scratch and the old stinky code that was around since 2007 has been eventually thrown away. While the command interface is still the same, you will be able to realize that some new features have appeared here and there, and most importantly, that now every equo sub-command has built-in support for bash completion and man pages. Fore more details about the new Equo, have a look at this blog post.

Free all the MySQLs!

Three MySQL flavors are now available in our repositories, and I personally feel quite proud of this: Google MySQL 5.1, Oracle MySQL 5.5 and MariaDB 5.5. We expect to migrate to MariaDB as the default MySQL implementation once version 10.0 is released as stable.

What is the right Sabayon for you?

As Sabayon 11 comes in many different flavors, which one are you supposed to pick? Good question! First of all, it depends on your computer architecture, whether it’s 64bit or 32bit. Usually, any modern computer has 64bit support and we encourage you to only consider the live images containing the "amd64" identifier. As you may have now realized, "amd64" stands for 64bit while "x86" stands for 32bit. Now, if you don’t know anything else about a Linux distribution and its different Desktop Environments and you have a decent computer, just pick the one ending with _G.iso. "G" stands for GNOME. However, if you think that GNOME 3.x sucks, don’t worry, you are not alone! In this case, we suggest you to consider the KDE version of Sabayon, marked with a "_K.iso" suffix. If you then realize that your system is really slow with either one of them, well, you have no choice other than picking the MATE and/or Xfce ones, respectively marked with a "_MATE.iso" and "_Xfce.iso" suffix. If you don’t know how to install Sabayon or you are afraid to make a mistake, just click on the "Get Live Help" icon you can find on the Desktop or simply go to our WebChat or our forums.

How about CoreCDX, HardenedServer, ServerBase and SpinBase?

CoreCDX is a minimal install for those wishing to configure the system more to their liking, and uses the Fluxbox Window Manager. HardenedServer is an Xfce powered image that comes with a Gentoo Hardened kernel (the base system is compiled with hardened flags on all the Sabayon releases). ServerBase and SpinBase instead, are respectively base images for creating server oriented and desktop oriented Sabayon distributions.

What you can do for Sabayon

There are several things you can do, depending on your free time or your financial resources.
Donations are for sure the easiest way to help Sabayon growth. You can make them by going to http://www.sabayon.org/donate. If money is a problem for you, but you still have some free time, you may want to join us, as external contributor or core team member, by subscribing to the devel mailing list and joining us on freenode in #sabayon-dev.
If time and money are a no-go for you, just use Sabayon and spread the word! If you will ever meet one of the developers, just offer them a beer.
During 2012, we have been able to improve the speed and reliability of our infrastructure thanks to your support and we hope to be able to raise the same funds in 2013 as well! In particular, four SSD drives (2x256Gb Samsung 830 and 2x480Gb OCZ Vertex 3), a bunch of new hard drives and a completely new tinderbox server have been purchased.

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