openSUSE’s Jos Poortvliet | LAS 29e06

openSUSE’s Jos Poortvliet | LAS 29e06

openSUSE’s community manager Jos Poortvliet joins us to discuss openSUSE 13.1, integrating new technologies such as systemd and wayland, his thoughts on staying competitive, and your questions!

Plus the solid details we now know about SteamOS and Steam Machines, the big upset of the week….


All this week on, The Linux Action Show!

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Jos Poortvliet from SUSE


Brought to you by: System76

Check out System76 on G+

Jos is the openSUSE community manager since 2010, and a Free Software evangelist for over 10 years. He’s also an active volunteer in the KDE community.

  • What are some of the main responsibilities of a community manager?

  • Could you describe the role of the openSUSE board?
    • We’ve noticed one of their roles is enforcing “Trademark issues”. To your knowledge has openSUSE ever had a confrontation around branding on third party sites?
  • Why do you suppose we don’t see distros built from openSUSE, like we see with Debian, Ubuntu, Arch, and Fedora?

  • How has working with systemd been? Don’t you have a developer in-house?

  • What are openSUSE’s plans for Wayland?

Viewer Stephan Asks

  • How is life in Berlin?

  • Do you see a point in the future when openSuSE becomes irrelevant to SuSE GmbH, and they will reduce or stop their sponsorship (much like they have already done with Libre Office)?

Viewer pierre4l Asks

  • Regarding the possibility of a Software Center-like experience in openSUSE:

  • Do you think this is a fundamental feature lacking in openSUSE compared to other distros, or do you think there are other priorities?

  • Two or maybe three years ago plans were unhatched at an openSUSE conference in co-operation with developers from other distros. The back end got worked on but it seems there was never a useful front end created. Are there any developments in this respect?

  • Are there any plans to implement such a software center in openSUSE? Would the Bodega idea proposed by Aaron Seigo fit the bill, or would it be more likely that the new Ruby version of YaST sees the existing tools undergo a revamp?

Viewer Martin Asks

  • How would you position openSUSE within the Linux ecosystem? (what kind of users does it attract, how does it differentiate itself)
  • How do you see openSUSE develop in mindshare and marketshare in the future?

openSUSE 13.1

  • YaST has been converted to Ruby for this release? WHU?

  • What is the big thing you’re looking forward to in 13.1?

  • Has “making a Linux” becoming boring? We’ve noticing you’re promoting a lot of upstream features.

– Picks –

Runs Linux:

Desktop App Pick

FUSE-based file system backed by Amazon S3

Weekly Spotlight:

Git yours hands all over our STUFF:


— NEWS —

Steam Update

– What we know –

The first Steam Machine is a computer that can fit bog standard parts just like a full-size gaming rig, and yet fit into your entertainment center. Valve’s steel and aluminum chassis measures just over 12 inches on a side and is 2.9 inches tall, making it a little bigger than an Xbox 360 and smaller than any gaming PC of its ilk.

Valve designed the case so the parts can breathe individually. The CPU blows air out the top, the power supply out the side, and the graphics card exhaust out back, and none share any airspace within the case.

a system built into Steam that shows you which games your hardware configuration can actually run, and conversely, what hardware you’d need to buy to play a given game well — based on the real-world data about computer configurations that Valve already collects with its Steam Hardware Survey.

First, circle January on your calendar. That’s when the other shoe will drop; Valve’s hardware and software partners will reveal the actual Steam Machines that will ship to consumers, and the games that will come to the Linux platform, at the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show.

There will be a number of different Steam Machine boxes on sale in 2014, and Valve expects them to arrive mid-year. Some of those boxes will be far smaller and / or cheaper than Valve’s own prototype unit.

Don’t expect Valve to make Half-Life 3 exclusive to SteamOS to help lift the Linux-based operating system off the ground. “It’s against our philosophy to put a game in jail and say it only works on Steam Machines,” says Valve’s Doug Lombardi. Even though the company locked Half-Life 2 to Steam years ago, the team appears to have thought better of that decision. “That may or may not have been a good idea given the condition Steam was in at the moment.”

Valve’s Anna Sweet says she started talking to partners about Linux three years ago, and games will be surprisingly easy to build. “If you’re using the Unity engine, you’re already done… if you’ve done a Mac game, you’re most of the way there.”

SteamOS won’t just be about games: the company plans to add other services for video and music playback. “However, we are not planning support for spreadsheets,” quips Lombardi.

As promised, the OS is built on Linux (not based on Ubuntu, we’re told, but entirely custom), though you’d never know it as the only interactive layer is all Steam.

Here’s a quick look at some games being played with the prototype version of the Steam Controller – the same version that we’ll be shipping to 300 Steam users later this year.

Speaking to IGN, Valve’s Greg Coomer explained that no one Steam Machine will be considered the “main” device, and instead a variety of different boxes will be available, each with their own set of unique features.

Several press web sites are reporting today about SteamOS, Steam Machines, and the Steam Controller. They came to Steam hardware HQ recently and spent some hands-on time with all three. Here is a roundup of their coverage

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13 Responses to “openSUSE’s Jos Poortvliet | LAS 29e06”

  1. acridAxid Says:

    Please *do not* donate to Replay Cafe.

    The operator is a
    terrible businessman, a liar and a scammer. He has finally burned all
    his bridges, which is why he is resorting to Kickstarter for funding to
    re-open his arcade after he failed to pay the rent, again. (He was
    previously forced out of the location across the street for the same

    85% of the machines at Replay do not belong to the owner,
    they are provided by local collectors who operate them there for a
    share of the profit.

    The owner intentionally lied to the
    collectors, telling them he had paid the rent and he was not being
    evicted. Had they not been tipped off, the property owner would have
    changed the locks, and thousands of dollars of vintage game machines
    would have been forfeit to the property owner (potentially destroyed).
    Luckily, they did find out, and were able to retrieve their games,
    forcing an early closure of the arcade.

    I know this because I was there Tuesday night helping these folks move their machines onto trucks in the rain.

  2. Jonas Says:

    The HD Video are only 35 MB.

  3. ChrisLAS Says:

    You live in the Everett area?

  4. Miquel Mayol i Tur Says:

    About Steam Chrome/ium OS was made at Ubuntu Studio at first editions now are Gentoo.

    i would like a Gentoo optimized for gaming kernel – perhaps RT – or an arch or Manjaro

  5. Raphael Sanches Says:

    The way people in the Linux community started to bully Canonical is terrible, ugly, non-sense and immature!

    ….. Like spoiled teens who disagree with their parents but have to live by their rules anyway….

    It seems the community forgets that Ubuntu is OPEN SOURCE!… whatever decision/direction Canonical makes is only important to you if you want it to be!… in open source YOUR DECISION will be the final one!

    And this love/hate relationship between Community-Canonical only exists because Ubuntu is the best Distro so far!… no matter how much you play with Arch, Suse or Fedora, when you need your PC to simply work Ubuntu will be the ultimate choice!

    Anybody who tried to wet their feet in the Rpm world knows that! Face it!

    So… to conclude this… we sould be proud and happy that Canonical is trying new projects, new components, or whatever they want to try, because at the end NO MATTER WHAT the final decision is ours… always! … Remember?

  6. matthartley Says:

    I don’t care for unproven (citation/proof) claims made about those who can’t defend themselves (as they’re not aware of this comment).

    This isn’t to say you’re wrong, but a random comment from some random user is meaningless in the grand scheme of things. If he has issues paying his bills, fine, that is between him, his creditors and the FDCPA and/or the courts — not the Internet.

    At the end of the day, the experience my family has had there has been fun, positive and totally worth our time. Upon my last visit, the place was open, thriving and devoid of negativity. Your comment however, has done nothing but leave a bad taste in my mouth. For shame.

    I mean seriously, if there are concerns, then by all means offer evidence to this? I’m just a fan of the place, I don’t have any idea how these folks run their business.

  7. NoMan Says:

    I disagree with the statement that Ubuntu is the “best” distro, and I’d rather not feed the fires of the continued Ubuntu Hatefest by trolling other distros. I have my preferences, other people have theirs. I’m big on tolerance and I’m not a fan of hypocrisy, so I’m not going soil myself by using the same strident and meaningless blanket statements used by the Ubuntu haters about how My distro is awesome and Your distro sucks. Ubuntu is a great distro. So is Mint, Fedora, Bodhi, PCLinixOS, and others.

    That being said, I’m just about done with the “Linux Community”. I’m sick of reading and listening to the same stupid FUD over and over. I’m sick of the pointless and hypocritical hatred directed towards Canonical. I care about GNU/Linux and Open Source. I love the fact that this exists in our world. I donate my money to whatever distro or project I happen to using. I want to see GNU/Linux succeed. But that’s not going to happen while the intolerance, immaturity, and spite continue to flow like radioactive water out of Fukushima. For GNU/Linux to grow, we need new users, and it would really help if the new guy or gal joining our community found us polite, welcoming, and kind rather than what we have now become.

    “Mark Shuttleworth is an egomanic.”
    “Canonical is being stupid.”
    “Ubuntu is the Windows 8 of LInux.”
    “Ubuntu users are less technically proficient.”

    Chris, Matt, in the off chance you’re reading this, I challenge you to review your past episodes of LAS and LU where you discuss Ubuntu. Put yourself in the shoes of a new Linux user or a current Ubuntu user. Look at what you’ve said, and ask yourselves if you are contributing to the problem or contributing to the solution.

  8. matthartley Says:

    Couple of items to note. One, I am on good terms with various members of the Canonical team. Second thing that comes to mind is yes, as mistakes are made, it reflects on my own view of how Ubuntu is being managed. I use Ubuntu as a media box and for Skype, while I also use other distros on my mail desktop as well. Just because we harsh on it, doesn’t mean it should burn in a fiery hell or anything that extreme.Rather, Chris and I would simply like to see Canonical and Ubuntu developers look at all the angles before they continue to make what I consider to be huge mistakes (PR or otherwise. :)

  9. NoMan Says:

    Those are fair points Matt. Thank you. I don’t have a problem with you or anyone else holding Canonical accountable. You are perfectly reasonable in wanting Canonical and Ubuntu developers to look at the all the angles before making mistakes. But am I reasonable in wanting critics of Canonical and Ubuntu to do the same?

    To be fair, you and Chris are the most reasonable voices I’ve heard when discussing Canonica/Ubuntu; your criticisms are mostly pretty mild when compared to other media outlets. But whether its LAS or some place else, Ubuntu is the only distro that does get harshed on. Everybody else gets a pass when they screw up.

    But here’s the thing (I’ll make this last point and then shut up and drop it). None of this matters. Your points are valid and I couldn’t dispute them if I wanted to. However, my point about the Community stands, and whereas my posts here carry no weight and what I type doesn’t matter, what you and Chris say does. What you say matters in the Linux community, especially to the new folks just getting their feet wet with Open Source. That’s all.

  10. abhay Sharma Says:

    found an interensting article on a deadly windows virus infected space station.

  11. Miquel Mayol i Tur Says:

    About testing Multisystem or live-usb-installer even the MULTIBOOT script at pendrivelinux or yumi.exe at MS WOS allow to have several ISO lives at the same pendrive.

    Manjaro and archs too. And you also can make a permanent installation

    But also use normally the pendrive with the free space.

    I suggest you to speak someday about them because people – like you suggesting unetbootin – do not know them and are very good for installing testing and even repair any OS

  12. Exeter_MadMan Says:

    I wonder if the Steam box could be like the old TiVo in that everyone knows it’s based on Linux, but you never had to deal with individual package downloads, etc. They would just make a full image and download it to the box during updates. Then it would switch to the secondary kernel and reboot. Do you think something like that could be the way the new steam box will operate?

    Nobody will be able to tell if it’s based on Ubuntu or any other distro. It will just be a full image update.

  13. Exeter_MadMan Says:

    If you want to see someone lose his cool over that damned SourceForge installer, look up Dr. Bill the Computer Curmudgeon from a few weeks back. He tried to review some open-source Windows security software and the installer forced an evil toolbar on him. He is usually such a jolly fellow, but this pushed his buttons. He looked like the evil twin of Santa Claus going on a rant.

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