Semplice Linux Changelog

New in version 7.0.1

April 15th, 2015
  • It has been discovered that some machines won't boot with the kernel version shipped in Semplice 7.
  • The issue has now been addressed and corrected in the kernel version 3.19-3.semplice.1, which is shipping in this bugfix release.
  • This means that if you had some issues booting Semplice 7 in you machine, these new ISO images should work properly.

New in version 7.0.0 (April 9th, 2015)

  • vera:
  • This is probably the biggest feature of this cycle. vera is a new, plugin-oriented GTK+3 Desktop Environment. The current implementation is of course a bit rough and does not embrace our vision fully.
  • We are committed to make vera the central part of the upcoming Semplice releases.
  • Pulseaudio now enabled by default:
  • Pulseaudio is now enabled by default. This also means that users with multiple audio cards will not have to manually set the right audio card as the default.
  • Note that Pulseaudio can be disabled during installation by flipping the relevant switch and at any time by going to Settings -> Features.
  • PCManFM compiled against GTK+3:
  • Semplice 7 ships a custom PCManFM version in the package pcmanfm-semplice.
  • This version is compiled against GTK+3 and also re-introduces the "Open as administrator" menu option.
  • New power management indicator:
  • xfce4-power-manager has been replaced with vera-plugin-power, an upower-based vera plugin that keeps track of the current battery level of connected devices.
  • New screenshooter:
  • xfce4-screenshooter has been removed as the Screenshot capability is built-in in vera.
  • Chromium replaced by Iceweasel:
  • Chromium has been replaced by Iceweasel.
  • It's our plan to ship "vanilla" Mozilla-branded Firefox releases in the future.
  • Desktop launcher:
  • The Desktop Environment, via the vera-plugin-desktop plugin, provides a keyboard-driven launcher, that permits to easily launch applications.
  • Interactive tutorial:
  • New users can enjoy a new, interactive, tutorial about the basics of Semplice.
  • "Web application support" removed:
  • The "Web application support" feature, introduced in Semplice 5, has been removed from the standard system.
  • It's still available for existing users and after the installation of the meta-openbox-feature-oneslip package.
  • Exaile replaced by Pragha:
  • Exaile has been replaced by Pragha Music Player.
  • Menu module for MPRIS2 media players:
  • The Exaile menu module has been replaced by a generic extension that supports every media player compilant with the MPRIS2 specification. This include Pragha and Spotify.
  • Under-the-hood changes:
  • Our menu generator and framework, alan2 has been ported to GTK+3 and GMenu3.
  • The quickstart library has been ported to Python 3.
  • In addition, more features have been implemented, most notably support for Scenes.
  • Keeptalking has been ported to Python 3 and systemd, and the new version is named keeptalking2.
  • Keeptalking2 can still work without systemd by using the fallback mode.
  • Control center:
  • Thanks to the vera effort, we are happy to roll-out a new control center.
  • Old configuration tools have been removed as most of the things are integrated in the control center.
  • New artwork:
  • Semplice 7 has an entire new artwork, sporting a modified Zukitre theme and the Moka icon theme.
  • Additionally, the theme adapts to the current wallpaper.

New in version 7.0.0 Preview (November 28th, 2014)

  • Pulseaudio now enabled by default:
  • Pulseaudio is now enabled by default. This also means that users with multiple audio cards will not have to manually set the right audio card as the default.
  • Note that Pulseaudio can be disabled during installation by flipping the relevant switch and at any time by going to Settings -> Features.
  • PCManFM compiled against GTK+3:
  • Semplice 7 ships a custom PCManFM version in the package pcmanfm-semplice.
  • This version is compiled against GTK+3 and also re-introduces the "Open as administrator" menu option.
  • New power management indicator:
  • xfce4-power-manager has been replaced with vera-plugin-power, an upower-based vera plugin that keeps track of the current battery level of connected devices.
  • New screenshooter:
  • xfce4-screenshooter has been removed as the Screenshot capability is built-in in vera.
  • Chromium replaced by Iceweasel:
  • Chromium has been replaced by Iceweasel.
  • It's our plan to ship "vanilla" Mozilla-branded Firefox releases in the future.
  • Desktop launcher:
  • The Desktop Environment, via the vera-plugin-desktop plugin, provides a keyboard-driven launcher, that permits to easily launch applications.
  • Interactive tutorial:
  • New users can enjoy a new, interactive, tutorial about the basics of Semplice.
  • "Web application support" removed:
  • The "Web application support" feature, introduced in Semplice 5, has been removed from the standard system.
  • It's still available for existing users and after the installation of the meta-openbox-feature-oneslip package.
  • Exaile replaced by Pragha:
  • Exaile has been replaced by Pragha Music Player.
  • Menu module for MPRIS2 media players
  • The Exaile menu module has been replaced by a generic extension that supports every media player compilant with the MPRIS2 specification. This include Pragha and Spotify.
  • Under-the-hood changes:
  • Our menu generator and framework, alan2 has been ported to GTK+3 and GMenu3.
  • The quickstart library has been ported to Python 3.
  • In addition, more features have been implemented, most notably support for Scenes.
  • Keeptalking has been ported to Python 3 and systemd, and the new version is named keeptalking2.
  • Keeptalking2 can still work without systemd by using the fallback mode.
  • Control center:
  • Thanks to the vera effort, we are happy to roll-out a new control center. Old configuration tools have been removed as most of the things are integrated in the control center.
  • New artwork:
  • Semplice 7 has an entire new artwork, sporting a modified Zukitre theme and the Moka icon theme.
  • Additionally, the theme adapts to the current wallpaper.
  • vera:
  • This is probably the biggest feature of this cycle. vera is a new, plugin-oriented GTK+3 Desktop Environment. The current implementation is of course a bit rough and does not embrace our vision fully. We are commited to make vera the central part of the upcoming Semplice releases.

New in version 6.0.0 (January 25th, 2014)

  • New init system:
  • systemd is now the default init system for the standard Semplice installations. This release still ships with sysvinit, and the user can stay with the old but glorious init system by using the :bootloader:custom_init:None seed.
  • Note: the Live system still boots with sysvinit. Users who are upgrading from Semplice 5.1 or earlier can decide to leave systemd disabled by issuing the following commands before the upgrade of the semplice-utilities package (to version 6.0.0 or later):
  • sudo mkdir -p /etc/semplice-upgrade
  • sudo touch /etc/semplice-upgrade/nosystemd
  • Compressed memory (zram):
  • In machines with less (or with) 2 GB of RAM, the 25% of physical memory is now reserved as swap space.
  • This method permits to increase the available memory space without the bottlenecks of the Hard-Disk writing.
  • Of course, a swap partition is still recommended.
  • End-users can change the amount of space to reserve by editing /etc/default/zramcfg and by executing 'sudo zramcfg' from a terminal.
  • Note: the Live system still Users who are upgrading from Semplice 5.1 or earlier can decide to leave zram disabled by issuing the following commands before the upgrade of the semplice-utilities package (to version 6.0.0 or later):
  • sudo mkdir -p /etc/semplice-upgrade
  • sudo touch /etc/semplice-upgrade/nozram
  • Faster system menu:
  • The menu engine has been rewritten from scratch and now the system menu is now faster than ever, while maintaining all the features of the old alan we all loved.
  • Installer changes:
  • The installer has got some improvements on the usability front. Also, if the window is unfocused, notifications keep the user updated during the installation process.
  • Panel launchers:
  • It is now possible to easily add launchers in the panel by using the built-in configuration tool located at Applications → Preferences → Panel.
  • Window snapping:
  • Window snapping is now supported. It is now possible drag a window in the top, left, right and bottom borders of the screen to, respectively, full maximize, vertically maximize at the left half of the screen, vertically maximize at the right half of the screen and close.
  • Bug fixes and minor improvements:
  • Other minor improvements were made in various areas of the system. Also, as always, many bugs were squashed.

New in version 5.0.0 (September 9th, 2013)

  • We changed a lot of things and fixed many nasty bugs. For example, we added UEFI, LVM and encrypted LVM support in our even more awesome installer. So, even if NSA goes to your home, they can't retrieve your important personal data. And you can get easily to your favourite web applications via our new WebKit2-based web application viewer, oneslip. By default we include links to Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and a beautiful Tetris game. Also, you can now further customize the features of your Semplice box.

New in version 4.0.0 (April 28th, 2013)

  • New artwork:
  • We added new artwork consisting of a new wallpaper, a new default theme, a Dark variant of it and the Faenza icon set.
  • New volume control and mixer:
  • volumeicon has now replaced volti as the default volume control tray application. Along with this change, a new GTK+3 mixer, cymbaline, replaced volti-mixer as the default mixer for Semplice.
  • Visual effects:
  • compton is now shipping by default with a nice GTK+3 configuration application, paranoid.
  • Features selection:
  • bricks is a new tool that permits to easily remove some resource-intensive applications (such as Bluetooth and Printing support) that in some systems are useless.
  • Writing on unclean partitions support in linstaller:
  • Our installation program, linstaller now supports writing on unclean partitions. Please see the “Mount during the installation phase” checkbox on the Edit Partition window.
  • Other changes:
  • With this release, Semplice switches to a full rolling-release model. Every “release” shares the same archives, “unstable” and “changes-unstable” (used to store changes from the stock Debian sid).
  • Semplice 4 ships the GTK+ libraries version 3.6 (Debian Sid is still at 3.4).
  • Semplice 4 ships pcmanfm version 1.1.0 (Debian Sid is still at 0.9.10).
  • ClipIt replaces Parcellite as the default clipboard manager.
  • The meta packages are now prefixed with meta- instead of the scary system-.
  • All of our work is now easily available at GitHub.
  • BUG FIXES!

New in version 3.0.0 (January 3rd, 2013)

  • lxshortcut has been added.
  • Pcmanfm can now create shortcuts.

New in version 3.0 RC (December 10th, 2012)

  • Automatic partitioning in graphical frontend:
  • linstaller's graphical frontend now supports automatic partitioning.
  • "Enable Root" switch:
  • The installer now asks if enable the root account or not.
  • Language/Keyboard/Timezone list in linstaller's graphical frontend
  • linstaller's graphical frontend now shows the entire list of language/keyboard layouts/timezones.
  • Save space keeptalking feature:
  • keeptalking, our international friend, can now remove unused locales, as documented here.
  • Removed semplice-backup:
  • semplice-backup (sb) has been removed from the standard distribution as it is still not ready for a stable Semplice release.
  • Notification daemon change:
  • notify-osd, previously used as the default notification daemon, has been replaced with xfce4-notifyd.
  • Bug fixes:
  • Many bugs have been fixed.

New in version 2.0.2 (April 9th, 2012)

  • Fixed automount of VFAT partitions
  • Fixed non-empty automount partitions handling
  • Fixed partition sorting during fstab creation
  • Fixed nitrogen-add-wallpaper bug when adding wallpapers with spaces in path
  • Fixed volti multimedia keys
  • When enabled in volti, the multimedia keys should now work.
  • New firmwares
  • atmel-firmware, bluez-firmware, firmware-crystalhd, firmware-libertas, firmware-myricom, linux-wlan-ng-firmware, midisport-firmware and zd1211-firmware.
  • Mobile broadband support

New in version 3.0 Alpha 1 (February 8th, 2012)

  • Dropped 486 support:
  • The Semplice 32 bit release does not support 486 and 586 machines. An upgrade from 2.0 does NOT force the installation of the new kernel. The old kernel is still supported by Debian, and can be included in custom remasters using pylaivng.
  • The switch to the 686 kernel brings PAE and SMP support.
  • Mirrorselect:
  • It is now possible to select the fastest mirror for debian and semplice archives using the program mirrorselect.
  • The installer can now perform the check during install, too.
  • Installer changes:
  • The installer got an overhaul on it's modules system, and handles frontends better.
  • The installer can now reinstall the bootloader without the need to reinstall the system.
  • semplice-backup:
  • The latest release of the experimental semplice-backup is now installed by default.
  • Revamped autostart:
  • The autostart scripts have been heavily modified and they're faster and cleaner.
  • In addition, the user can specify the panel to use and it's configuration. Pcmanfm desktop mode is now supported (use icons=“y” to enable it).
  • Alan caches:
  • Alan now caches the menus to bring them faster at the user request.
  • New help menu:
  • A new help menu has been implemented, with links to useful semplice-related resources. The “Semplice on IRC” does not work currently.
  • XChat:
  • XChat (IRC Client) ships now by default.
  • Extendable alan configuration:
  • The configuration is now extendable. This means that an user can put only the changes on the user configuration file and not copy the entire system-wide configuration file anymore.
  • APT tweaks:
  • autoremove is now disabled and triggers are executed only once.
  • You can install the semplice-apt-conf-nopdiffs package to disable PDiffs (useful if you have a low-end hardware).

New in version 2.0.0 (December 26th, 2011)

  • linstaller inline preseeds:
  • It's now possible to pass seeds to linstaller via command-line arguments.
  • Bug fixes:
  • Many bug fixes have been issued.

New in version 2.0 RC1 (December 12th, 2011)

  • GTK3+ Theme:
  • In order to have a consistent theme accross all GTK* applications, we included a GTK3+ theme based on AdwaitaDark.
  • Calendar on clock:
  • A new simple calendar has been introduced. A left-click on the clock will show it. Another click to hide.
  • Ability to hide the Preferences and Administration menus:
  • A new xdgmenu (alan's dynamic applications menu) setting has been implemented: hide_settings_menus. If True, the Preferences and Administration menus will not be shown (but will show into the System menu instead).
  • Installer updates before installing:
  • linstaller can now check for installer updates before continuing the installation. This is handled by the new “update” module.
  • Bug fixes:
  • Many bug fixes have been issued.

New in version 2.0 Beta 1.1 (October 24th, 2011)

  • Alan update:
  • We updated our menu framework, Alan. Notable changes are:
  • Icon menu support:
  • Alan now supports icons on the menu (requires Openbox 3.5.0 or higher). More details here: http://semplicedev.posterous.com/icons-in-menu-finally
  • Exaile extension:
  • The old MPD extension is replaced with a new dbus-based extension which controls Exaile.
  • Extensions configuration:
  • It is now possible to tweak extension settings via the tree.conf.
  • The same extension, multiple times:
  • You can add an extension as many times you want. The section syntax is changed to reflect this change. Refer to http://semplicedev.posterous.com/alan-update-030 for more details.
  • Configuration syntax changes:
  • Some configuration syntaxes are changed. Refer to http://semplicedev.posterous.com/alan-update-030 for more details.
  • Extension structure changed:
  • The extension should now stay into an 'Extension' class (derivative of 'alan.core.extension.Extension'). Refer to http://semplicedev.posterous.com/icons-in-menu-finally for more details.
  • On-demand xdgmenu:
  • A new setting is recognized by the 'xdgmenu' extension, 'split_menu'. If True, it loads the menu entries when hovering in the appropriate category.
  • Should be a choice of older machines, as in modern ones will not make difference.
  • Configurable places menu:
  • A new setting is recognized by the 'places' extension, 'filemanager'. If not False, will use the specified filemanager to open directories.
  • Configurable logout dialog:
  • It is now possible to configure the logout dialog by clicking on the Settings icon into the logout menu. You can select which action should do the shortcut CTRL+ALT+SPACE and if show the confirmation dialog before do the selected action.
  • GMPC replaced by Exaile:
  • Exaile is now the default music player. The Music extension has been rewritten to support this application.
  • New installer:
  • The old laiv-installer is now replaced by the newly written linstaller. linstaller is a python-written modular and preseedable GNU/Linux distribution installer. Some changes are listed in this blog post.
  • WARNING: As this is pretty new you should pay attention on what you do, expecially during the partition process. A new automatic partitioner function is added, use with caution.
  • Default mirror changed:
  • We changed the default mirror to a new one, hosted in switzerland (thank you sourceforge!). The new semplice.list is:
  • # Repository file for semplice generated by pylaivng.
  • deb http://switch.dl.sourceforge.net/project/semplice-linux/archive emily main non-free
  • deb-src http://switch.dl.sourceforge.net/project/semplice-linux/archive emily main non-free
  • # End of file.

New in version 2.0 Alpha 2 (July 19th, 2011)

  • 64bit release:
  • Other than i486, now Semplice has a 64bit build, too.
  • non-free bits
  • Better hardware detection:
  • Semplice now includes non-free firmwares that increases hardware detection. The most affected hardware is network cards; if you experienced issues with the last alpha, most probably this release will detect your card successfully.
  • Adobe Flashplayer 11:
  • Adobe Flashplayer 11 (Beta) is now shipping into Semplice's standard distribution.
  • See this Blog post for more details.
  • Possibility to remove non-free bits with a command:
  • system-nonfree now ships with a script that makes easier the removal of the non-free bits written above. Just launch /usr/bin/remove_nonfree.sh as root.
  • You can too remove these bits while booting the live environment, just append nonfree=false at the Semplice Live boot string.
  • pylaivng:
  • Our build tool, pylaivng, is into Semplice's main archive. This make easier build a personal re-spin of Semplice
  • New packages:
  • Alsa is now installed correctly, and we added some other packages that will improve desktop experience (pciutils, usbutils, wodim, etc).
  • semplice-utilities translatable:
  • semplice-utilities is now translatable.
  • More details to follow.
  • Possibility to disable conky:
  • You can now disable conky by editing a configuration file. See Here for more informations.
  • Lxappearance updated:
  • We updated lxappearance, the program that permits to change GTK+ theme and icons, to a new release.

New in version 2.0 Alpha 1 (June 24th, 2011)

  • New artwork:
  • Semplice 2.0 sports a new, darker, artwork. The old gtk/openbox theme is still available by default. The wallpapers are available in a separate package, semplice-artwork-wallpapers-rocks.
  • Defaults to geeky mode:
  • The default installation is now using the “geeky” (advanced) mode. Respect to the mode used by default into 1.0, this is more clean and uses less space. We removed icons on the desktop, they are still accessible by navigating via the file manager to ~/Desktop.
  • Hybrid mode:
  • A new mode, “hybrid”, is available. It permits to switch from a mode to another without the need of a logout. Currently does not work well, so it was disabled by default. You can enable by putting
  • export desktop="hybrid"
  • into the autostart.sh file.
  • Alan - The dynamic menu for openbox:
  • emily alpha1 ships with our new project, Alan. Alan, namely, is a framework that permits to generate dynamic menus just with some python code.
  • It supports i18n (via gettext) and can generate a dynamic menu tree with only a configuration file (ConfigParser style)