The next version of the Fedora Linux distribution, Fedora 9 “Sulphur”, has been leaked into the public domain due to a misconfiguration in one of the European download mirrors.
“mcduck”, a member of the Linux-Noob forums
, has posted a series of screenshots detailing the installation of the latest iteration of the popular distribution ahead of the official release tomorrow.
One of the first things that stands out from the screenshots is the choice of the new KDE 4 desktop environment. While the new environment offers plenty of enhancements
over older versions some distros have shied away from making it the default option due to compatibility worries, with the latest version of Kubuntu
shipping with KDE 3.5.9 in the standard release. Despite the reticence of some other distributions, it's clear that the Fedora team believe KDE 4 is ready for release.
Fedora 9 also introduces support in the installation process for the creation of an encrypted system partition, to keep your private data private. The encryption is functionally similar to the BitLocker system provided with Windows Vista Ultimate, although having the source code available should prevent Fedora 9's encryption attracting the rumours of 'back doors' that the Microsoft equivalent enjoys from the paranoiacs.
The new release also ships with Firefox 3 Beta 5 as the default web browser. While shipping a beta package with a 'final release' OS may seem a trifle strange, it's common for each release of a distribution to 'lock-in' major revisions of included packages; thus if Firefox 2 were shipped instead, Firefox 3 wouldn't get a look-in until Fedora 10.
Fedora 9 will introduce improved support for Bluetooth modules, support for the new ext4 file system, enhanced networking support for mobile broadband adaptors, and better support for running virtual operating systems as guests on top of Fedora.
With the official release due tomorrow, it's clear that there's plenty for fans of the Fedora distribution to look forward to. To grab the official download, keep checking the website
over the next few days.
Any Linux users here looking forward to Fedora 9 being released, or do you have your own favourite distribution? Share your thoughts over in the forums