On April 29 2013 ALT Linux announced the release of the Seventh Platform.
The Seventh Platform (p7 Trientalis) is a new stable branch of ALT Linux repositories designed for development, testing, distribution, updating and support of all kinds of complex IT systems, ranging from embedded and mobile devices to enterprise servers and data-centers. The Seventh Platform is created by the ALT Linux Team as part of the Sisyphus project and is maintained by the ALT Linux company.
Full support for ARMv7 architecture
ARMv7 repository (armh) is now integrated into the Seventh Platform, and, thanks to the newest server equipment from Marvell (Marvell Technology Group Ltd), the package versions are now synchronized with the p7 i586/x86_64 repository.
The armh repository within the Seventh Platform contains approximately 10000 source packages that allow to create integrated server, desktop, mobile and embedded systems within the unified framework of the Seventh Platform based on the ARMv7 architecture.
New features in the installation utility
The installation utility is now upgraded to support UEFI. Additionally, it now allows to create and install onto the LUKS encrypted partitions.
Support for systemd with continuing support of sysvinit
The Seventh Platform supports the new initialization system systemd. This system is recommended for advanced desktop environments deployed within the p7 framework. sysvinit, a legacy initialization system that has been used in Linux/Unix system over several decades, is still supported for simpler server and GUI installations.
Support for IPv6
Support for IPv6 protocol is implemented in the core server and client network services.
Extra features of ALT Linux network domains
The Seventh Platform introduces streamlined authentification of Microsoft(R)Windows(tm) systems. It is now possible to work on a computer using a domain account even when the domain is not available. Domain management within the unified configuration management utility alterator has been substantially improved. Full migration to Samba 4 has been completed.
Provisional implementation of Deepsolver package management system
The first beta releases of the Deepsolver project are being tested in the package building infrastructure and are accessible in the experimental system images.
Redesigned biarch subsystem
Arepo 2.0, a new subsystem for execution of 32-bit applications on 64-bit platforms, now eliminates the risk of desynchronization of repositories. Arepo 2.0 has been integrated into the Sixth Platform alongside Arepo 1.0, and, after a period of comprehensive testing, it now becomes the only available subsystem.
Versions of subsystems and packages
The Seventh Platform repositories will be continually updated over the course of the support period. As of the initial p7 release date, they include:
- Linux 3.8.9 kernel (std-def as the default option, un-def), 2.6.32 with OpenVZ and up-to-date patches (ovz-el), 3.4.42 (led-ws, alternate)
- systemd 201
- GNU Libc 2.17, GCC 4.7.2, python 2.7.4 and 3.3.1, perl 5.16.3
- xorg-server 1.14.1, Mesa 9.1.1
- GNOME 3.8.1, KDE 4.10.2, MATE 1.6, Xfce 4.10, Enlightenment 0.17.2.1
- Firefox 20, LibreOffice 220.127.116.11
Components and versions of other packages can be checked on the Prometheus project website.
Faster time to production with pre-configured system images for the Seventh Platform repositories
Users who prefer to customize the components and graphical layout of their systems will appreciate the possibility to use the compact installation images with different desktop environments that are sufficient to quickly start working with the Seventh Platform and implement further customisations. Several starter kits have been created and published to facilitate this style of work. They support i586 and x86_64 architectures (Enlightenment, GNOME, Icewm, KDE, LXDE, MATE, Razor-qt, Trinity, and Xfce desktop environments), and ARMv7/Nexus7 architecture (Englightenment, KDE). The Nexus7 platform for ARMv7 has been chosen as the most widespread and sufficiently open.
The choice of starter kits for p7 will continue to expand in future, and the images will be updated after any significant changes in the repository.
Installation of images on Nexus 7 still requires carefulness and qualification.
It is notable that p7 starter kits are not OS distributions as they do not contain neither full-fledged software solutions, nor consistent look-and-feel.
ALT Linux distributions based on the Seventh Platform
ALT Linux 7.0 Centaurus is a free multi-functional distribution for servers and workstations with easy-to-use configuration and management tools. MATE 1.6 is optionally provided as a graphic environment for workstations, and FVWM is optionally provided as a minimalist graphic environment for server administration purposes.
In addition to the new p7 features described above, the new version of Centaurus provides out-of-the-box integration of moodle, mediawiki, and owncloud with ALT domains.
Release date: May-June 2013.
A current beta version built with p7 is available.
KDesktop 7.0 is a universal multi-purpose end-user system that includes everything necessary for office productivity, authoring of various graphics and animations, processing of sound and video, as well as software development and educational needs. Users can customise their systems and select the desired functionality during installation. This new version of KDesktop is based on KDE 4.10.
Release date: June 2013
A beta version built with p7 will be available before May 20, 2013.
Simply Linux 7.0
Simply Linux 7.0 is a simple distribution for enterprise and home users. This new version is based on XFCE 4.10.
Release date: May 2013
A current beta version built with p7 is available.
Development of new security-enhanced solutions based on the Seventh Platform is currently underway.
New integrated solutions for educational institutions are currently being co-developed with the State Institute of Information Technologies and Telecommunications "Informika".
Upgrading to the Seventh Platform
- Old version of TeXlive (2008.0).
- As of the initial release date, the Seventh Platform includes the supported production-quality version of PHP: 5.3.24. Upgrade towards PHP 5.4 has been delayed due to a large number of actively used applications that do not support the new version.
- Migration of Java subsystems to the new build system has not been fully completed. Therefore, eclipse-cdt and eclipse-changelog packages remain the only packages that cannot be rebuilt within the p7 environment.