aims-desktop-2017.1-release-announcement.txt 3.81 KB
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Welcome to AIMS Desktop 2017.1
==============================

The AIMS Desktop team is proud to announce the release of AIMS Desktop 2017.1.

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What's new?
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* This is the first public AIMS Desktop release, now based on Debian 9. AIMS Desktop is now released world-wide under free licenses and can be used for personal, educational or commercial purposes.

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* We have a new website where we'll have a growing collection of documentation. AIMS Desktop packages are also now in a public git repository. Links are listed below.
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* AIMS Now ships with Gnome as the default desktop environment, and uses Calamares as the installer. We ship some Gnome Shell extensions to cushion the change to Debian and make the environment more familiar for existing AIMS Desktop users.

* Sagemath is now installed from a real debian package, and is no longer shipped via a massive binary distribution. This makes updates much faster and uses significantly less bandwidth for updates.

* TeXstudio replaces Texmaker, which our users have reported to be more user-friendly.

* Jupyter Notebook is now installed by default.

* Live session now includes more partitioning tools to help deal with complex partitioning and recovery tasks.

* GRUB is now used to boot both UEFI and BIOS modes, replacing the old isolinux that we used to boot with in BIOS mode.

* Better dual-boot support for Apple computers.

* AIMS Desktop is now 64 bit only. Users who have 32 bit hardware can download a Debian 9 netinstall iso and install additional packages manually (instructions for this will be available on our website soon).
* We now ship Tilix, a powerful terminal multiplexer that allows you to use your screen space more effectively by tiling and tabbing your terminal sessions.

Known Issues
------------

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* The 'ping' tool needs some post-installation configuration to be usable by normal users. You can fix this by running 'sudo dpkg-reconfigure iputils-ping' from the command line.
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* When booting from the USB disk, GRUB will briefly show a black window before booting the system. This is harmless and should be fixed by the next point release.

* Occasionally the installer will immediately close after the first time it is opened. After opening it again it works as expected.

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* RStudio binary downloads aren't yet directly supported for Debian 9. RStudio can be installed with 'sudo aims-install-rstudio' which will enable jessie sources and install 3 dependencies from jessie (libgstreamer0.10-0 libgstreamer-plugins-base0.10-0 libssl1.0.0) along with the rstudio binary.
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* We now ship GeoGebra 4 from Debian instead of Geogebra 5 from GeoGebra.org due to unclear licensing. Users can still install GeoGebra 5 manually.

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What's Next
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We plan to do two further release based on Debian 9. 2017.2, which will be released later this year which will fix issues we come across during the next few months. Then, 2018.1 released next year that will contain backports and newer versions of popular software used in AIMS Desktop.

AIMS Desktop 2019.1 will be based on Debian 10 (codename: buster). We’ll start releasing test images as soon as the stack is ready.

During the next few months we also plan to expand our documentation and add instructions on how to contribute to AIMS Desktop. If you’d like to get involved, stay tuned!

Useful links
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AIMS Desktop website:
https://desktop.aims.ac.za/

AIMS Desktop 2017.1 download:
https://desktop.aims.ac.za/download

Installation instructions:
https://desktop.aims.ac.za/getting-started/

Need help? Subscribe to the aims tech mailing list:
https://groups.google.com/a/aims.ac.za/forum/#%21forum/tech/join

AIMS GitLab instance:
https://git.aims.ac.za

Debian 9 release notes:
Since AIMS Desktop 2017 is based on Debian 9, most of its release notes will also apply.
https://www.debian.org/releases/stretch/amd64/release-notes/index.en.html