Well, it’s nearly the big day: Fedora 20 will be released tomorrow. It was another somewhat chaotic release here in Fedora QA, and I’m currently firing off proposals to try and improve things for us in future at a high rate of knots, but if you don’t peer into the factory I think you’ll probably find the sausage delicious 🙂 Yes, the week of all-nighters and last-minute fixes mostly paid off, and Fedora 20’s looking like a pretty solid release.
There are one or two ‘morning after’ bugs, but then there usually are, with something as big as a distribution release. If you want to try the new LVM Thin Provisioning support, be prepared for your system failing to boot after installation – it’s not too difficult to work around, but I wish we’d caught it. On the positive side, network installs shouldn’t be affected, as we sent the update to fix the bug out already.
There’s also a somewhat complex bug for people who want to use an ISO-based remote installation repository (Fedora’s very flexible with installation repositories, you can install from a ‘repository’ which is just an NFS, FTP or HTTP server with a copy of the DVD ISO file sitting on it). That one is easy to work around, too, and not that many people really use that installation method anyhow.
There’s a bunch of yum bugs causing it to print various spurious error messages about non-existent groups; you don’t really need to worry about these, they’re not terribly harmful, but they do look a tad embarrassing. All the gory details are in the common bugs note, so read that if you’re interested in the issue and the workarounds. Oh, and don’t run ‘yum groups mark convert’, whatever yum suggests to you. These bugs also exist in Fedora 19, so at least 20’s no worse 🙂
And finally, you probably don’t want to deploy a production 389 Directory Server / FreeIPA on Fedora 20 until a few different bugs are fixed, again all described on the common bugs page. The devs are working to fix those as fast as possible, updates will be available soon, and after that FreeIPA on F20 will be just fine. The client-side stuff in F20 seems fine, I have two F20 systems running as FreeIPA domain members.
That might sound like a bit of a laundry list, but yep, a Linux distribution’s a big thing, and this is nothing out of the ordinary! For most people in most use cases, F20 will be a great release, I think. So far the reports from early adopters have been very positive, and I think there are some worthwhile improvements in various bits of F20. GNOME 3.10 is a nice improvement over 3.8 (unless you really loved having a wired network status icon…), particularly in the Online Accounts support – if you haven’t checked out that feature, please do! We’ve made anaconda much better at handling keyboard configuration for non-U.S. English users with this release – it’s probably the first newUI that’s better than Fedora 17 overall for this. Systemd and anaconda and a lot of the other “new bits” from recent Fedora releases have got bug fixes and useful feature improvements, and there aren’t any huge messy changes to introduce big problems.
Of course, now it’s done, it’s old and boring – I already upgraded my desktop to Fedora 21! But if you’re not crazy, do grab Fedora 20 tomorrow and give it a shot, we think you’ll like it.
Fedora 21 promises to be an interesting cycle, with the Fedora Next changes… Whatever they turn out to be. We’re waiting on January, when the working groups report back to fesco, to see what will happen.