Well, it’s been yet another… two months (?!) since the last community report.
Let’s not make this a trend - but the writer of this series of news posts was drowned in packaging tasks to finish off the last wave of updates. Plus we are now just four days away from AOSCC 2019, so at any rate, we should have posted something anyways - right?
The last update cycle has been nothing short of disastrous, with way too many features planned and crammed into the 3-month timeframe (which should have ended before 2019). Well at least it didn’t turn into another Windows “Longhorn”, phew!
But as a user, while you may be angry at the delay - and rightfully so - we have worked (literally) beyond our capacity to bring you a ship load of system-wide upgrades…
You should be able to obtain the (large set of) updates now. However, we are aware of an issue that might prevent a smooth update. We have documented the cause and workaround in this Errata entry.
Again, we are sorry about the delay and will work on cycle management improvements in the coming AOSCC sessions.
On July 12 - 14th, AOSCC 2019 will take place in the University of Science and Technology of China - in Hefei, China. This three-day community gathering will provide loads of fun and giggles… and of course, ample opportunities for face-to-face discussions on community projects, talks from the friends of our community, and lucky draws.
Since we didn’t get to meet last year due to venue troubles, we have greatly expanded our souvenir collection to try and make up for it. In keeping with our community traditions, we have made not one, but two pages of stickers for you meme aficionadoes!
Additionally, we have made badges from the community, AOSC OS, and AOSC OS/Retro’s logos. These badges and the sticker sets are all free to take at the AOSCC venue - and available at the cost of postage after the conference.
Information about attendance and schedules are availabe from the “AOSCC 2019” Wiki page. We look forward to seeing you there!
— Mingcong Bai
Just a quick notice that we have fixed the issue earlier today and a full package scan has been completed. This issue was fixed with this commit. We will post a news update about the new wave of updates shortly.
— Mingcong Bai
If you are attempting to update your AOSC OS, or have already experienced trouble downloading packages (wrong sizes and checksums, etc.) - we are aware of this issue, and are working double time to resolve this issue. We have just finished up our (long overdue) Winter update wave, and moving ~10,000 packages triggered some obscure bugs in our package scanning toolkit, p-vector.
rsyncservice 15 minutes before this news, and this should explain why the syncing jobs are failing.
— Mingcong Bai
We are happy to announce that, after much searching, we have ourselves a host university for the AOSCC 2019 events!
The AOSCC 2019 will take place in University of Science and Technology of China - in Hefei, China, on July 12 - 14th. The events details and venues are kindly negotiated and made available by LUG@USTC.
On April 23rd, we have officially entered a month of freezing period for AOSC OS’s Testing branch. For the meanwhile, we are working to sync all package updates on the Testing branch, across all currently active ports.
If you are using the Stable branch, you will continue to receive security and exceptional updates.
To continue the tradition of mis-using NVIDIA’s development boards, we have obtained an NVIDIA Jetson AGX Xavier Developer Kit several days back. “JellyXavier,” as it is named as a BuildBot, is now available for all dev-pubkeys-registered AOSC developers at Relay port 24444.
This build host will be dedicated to the building of AArch64 (
arm64) packages. Formerly, both AArch64 (
arm64) and ARMv7 (
armel) packages are built on a shared BuildBot - an NVIDIA Jetson TX1 Developer Kit, with a measly 4GiB of RAM. In the recent cycles, we have been constantly plagued by this insufficient amount of RAM - and this in turn has resulted in the two ARM ports lagging behind the other architectures.
The AGX Xavier, however, comes with 8 very fast NVIDIA “Carmel” cores, and 16GiB of RAM. Registering as the second fastest out of all Relay BuildBots. This hardware addition will undoubtedly help us catch up (and eventually enrich) both ARM ports.
As for the Jetson TX1, it will now be dedicated to build ARMv7 packages (which of course, is much more available for this task).
Xavier in the Madison, WI. “Engine Room”.
Confused? This is quite similar to the concept of an OS-tan - have a good read!
At the time of writing, more details about the character’s name and other features are being finalised - and hopefully we will see her here on the Portal soon.
At the time of writing, we have a bootable copy of AOSC OS i586 port! The port now contains packages needed for a “Base” variant tarball, and is now working towards a full-fledged desktop experience.
The port is currently tested to run on a Sony PCG-C1VN sub-notebook. The sub-notebook is powered by a 600MHz Transmeta Crusoe processor, with 192MiB of RAM and 7GiB of HDD space made available for AOSC OS. The sub-notebook dual boots Windows Me - for my personal entertainment needs and a rudimentary test for GRUB functionalities.
I am currently working to create a refined Kernel config for the port. At present, the port will boot and login with a memory footprint of approximately 20MiB. Not bad, if I may say so myself - but there are space for improvement, as we move more features out of the Kernel image, and built as modules. Having based our Kernel config on the AMD64 port’s, we have much to cut down.
And finally, a video recording of the computer running a WindowMaker session.
With the i586 port going along, we have also started work on creating a set of visual designs for our OS/Retro family of ports. This family of ports will contain support deprecated and outdated architectures, such as i586 and the big endian PowerPC 32/64-bit devices. To better adapt to these older devices, system features and dependencies will be cut down, resulting in smaller install sizes and more reasonable performance (compared to the current PowerPC ports, which shares the same build configuration as all other “mainline” ports).
The logo design was initially made by community member Neruthes, and further modifications made by me.
Poster, “20th Century, Millennium, Present.”
Logo, full colour, tilted.
— Mingcong Bai, with regards.
After some four months drowning in updates and rebuilds, the current cycle is now looking to start its one-month freezing period on Tuesday! In the coming month, we will work to smooth out the rough edges (.so dependencies, etc.) and make sure that Stable users will receive a smooth updating experience.
After nearly a year in delay, Core 6 “Fsck” will ship as a part of this coming cycle update. Coming in this major Core update…
i586(yes, Pentium-class devices), and Loongson 2F, 3A/B support.
ppc64port will be specifically optimised for the PowerPC G5 processor - as our PowerPC 32/64-bit Big Endian ports are now built for the PowerPC-based Macintosh computers.
The i586, now that we have mentioned it… Will serve as an experimental port, where we try and refactor parts of the AOSC OS dependency tree to make the system lighter to install and run. This will undoubtedly help us as a distribution which ports to newest, as well as vintage and long abadoned devices (from your newest Intel Coffee Lake laptops, to the “Clamshell” iBook G3’s).
The reference device for this port will be the 2001 Sony Vaio PCG-C1VP running Windows 2000 (its owner - me - is considering swapping out he motherboard with one from the PCG-C1VN for Windows 9x support). This machine comes with the following (rough) list of hardware:
We’ll see how it goes over the summer - maybe we’ll see it as a demonstration machine at AOSCC 2019!
Our venerable infrastructure contributor and resident Python guru @gumblex is currently undertaking a massive refactor for our ACBS (Autobuild CI Build System), which our packagers use to build packages daily.
With this factor, we are hoping to see more reliable sequential/batch build support and dependency resolving.
Further more, we have now made it imperative to include checksum when packages from a source package/tarball.
Effective next week, we will start posting AOSA (AOSC OS Security Advisory) whenever the updates are ready for all branches. Formerly, AOSAs for the Testing branch will be delayed until it merges with Stable at the end of each cycle. Additionally, security issues that affects both Stable and Testing branches will be announced under a shared AOSA ID, as long as they describe an identical issue.
Furthermore, our contributor @KexyBiscuit has offered to work on announcing future advisories in the future - after I have become too busy to write up security reports.
— Mingcong Bai
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