Mandriva 2011 Beta 2 - The Return of XKill

by Susan Linton - Apr. 19, 2011Comments (8)

mandrivaMandriva 2011 Beta 2 was made available earlier today and my interest has been piqued since I saw Eugeni Dodonov's screenshot a couple of days ago. It's gone now, but the whole desktop appeared to be this launcher with a gray background. I was almost panicked. Visions of GNOME 3 and Unity danced through my head. So it's been an excruciating three-day wait for the beta to finally hit mirrors.

Mandriva 2011 Beta 2 ships with Linux 2.6.38, Xorg X Server 1.9.4, GCC 4.6.0, and KDE 4.6.2. That launcher dominating Eugeni's screenshot turned out to be a ROSA menu and it is just that - a great big ole launcher. It lists all the applications and tools available just like a menu, but it's a bit inconvenient in my opinion. Although I have no doubt that some, or perhaps many, will like it. It reminds me of "More applications" from a GNOME 2 Kick-off menu. The good news is that a regular menu is available in the "Add Widgets" chooser, so the user still has a choice. Also, it's a long time before final (in distro time) and this may or may not be their ultimate choice for Mandriva 2011. Perhaps they're just trying it out to see if folks like it. If so, count me as "no."



It was in this ROSA launcher that I saw something that was a true blast from the past. Back in the olden days of Linux, most desktops had this XKill bullseye icon that did just that - killed X. I never really understood its true value even back then. I mean, the only reason one might need to "kill" X would be if the GUI locked up. And if the GUI locked up, then you wouldn't be able to click on the XKill icon to kill X. I assume that's why it disappeared from use years ago. Ah, but it has risen from the ashes and found a home right there in the ROSA menu/launcher thing. I hope that stays just for the nostalgia.

The live installer seems broken. Its icon was conspicuously missing from the desktop in Beta 1 and it was even missing from the menu (thingy) as well this time. It was still hiding there in /usr/sbin/ though. However, it appears that it's being obscured because it's broken. It just hangs after selecting the partition while computing install size. This also might explain why the two boot options are 'start the live system' or 'launch installer'.

A stack folder, that I apparently messed up last time, was already present in the panel this time. I described it as a launcher last time and that what it did. It opened the Dolphin file manager in the directory I dragged to the panel. This time it opens a little "mini-rosa." It's actually a menu containing the folders and, I presume, files in the stack folder directory. So, okay, it might be a little fun.



This beta does have a new desktop background as well. It's a simple aqua background with white puffs. I doubt this will be their final choice.

But that's all that jumps out at me this time. Tune in next time for As the Penguin Turns.

John Mark Walker uses OStatic to support Open Source, ask and answer questions and stay informed. What about you?


That's not what xkill does. After you run it, it kills the parent process of the next window you click on. It doesn't kill X.

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Yes. If an application locks up and the window is unreponsive, xkill is the way to get that window to disappear, no X itself. It has always been available from the command line.

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blogger fail. Makes sense though, coming from a Mandriva user ( I know that's not fair but I couldn't help it :)

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Just KDE... there will be no more Gnome or anything else unless community does it. If this is the new madriva... i think now it's fully dead forever. I hope the mageia guys don't do the same. As far as i know there will be a gnome mageia but not for now.... yeah... everyone is going to wait for it... sure... pclinux? suse? what will be my next...

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Obvious the writer does not know what he is talking about. The Return of Xkill? It never left? Every version of Debian, Ubuntu, Red Hat I've ever used have had it by default. Also he doesn't even know what it does. It's does not kill X, it kills what ever process you click on. So if you click on Firefox it will kill Firefox. If you click on the Openoffice it will kill Openoffice. Just don't be stupid and click on your taskbar , desktop, or other parts of your Window Manager or it will kill it.

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what doesnt xkill you, makes you stronger.

Once we hit KDE4.4, I have to admit Ive been less and less inclined to try out new distros because Im happy with my desktop and lets be honest, they all look pretty much the same.

Mandriva has Drake but so does PCLinuxOS. Sure, Kubuntu has sudo apt-get which Im really starting to like but my wife keeps asking me why all our computers have different names (the login logo) but theyre `all the same`.

PCLInuxOS is the default go to distro for friends and family since 2007 but I always try to visit Mandriva.

You never forget your first Linux distro.

Its nice to see its doing well after all that has happened.

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That's two stories two days running where you've got things entirely backwards Susan ( Either you're trying journalistic sensationalism and failing badly, or you're not checking your facts in your hurry to get stories out the door.

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XKill was always there - CTRL+ALT+ESC launches xkill in any Mandriva at least few years back.

And no, it doesn't kill X :( It kills the process behind the window you click on.

Please, get your facts straight ...


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