Fedora 19 Linux, “Schrödinger's Cat," goes beta

Fedora 18 was slow to arrive, but Fedora 19, “Schrödinger's Cat," Red Hat's latest community Linux, is on schedule.
Written by Steven Vaughan-Nichols, Senior Contributing Editor

It's official. Red Hat community Linux, Fedora 19, code-named “Schrödinger's Cat," is now available in beta.

Say hello to Fedora 19, Schrödinger's Cat.

Fedora's last release is infamous in Linux circles for its multiple delays. According to Robyn Bergeron, Red Hat's Fedora Project Leader, Fedora 18's delays were due to the major rewrite of Fedora's Anaconda, its software installation and update program. Bergeron promised that that delay "was a one-time aberration" and that moving forward, Fedora would stick closer to its six-month release schedule. She was right. The Fedora 19 beta arrived six-months after Fedora 18 finally made it to beta.

The new Fedora Linux includes the following features for developers and creators:

-- Developer's Assistant: Perfect for kicking off a new project, or learning the ropes of software development, this tool helps you to get started on a code project with templates, samples, and tool-chains for the language of your choice – and helps you push code out to GitHub when you're ready.

-- 3D printing: A variety of tools for 3D printing – ranging from software for creation of 3D models, to tools for generating and sending code to send to 3D printers – are available in Fedora 19, including OpenSCAD, Skeinforge, SFACT, Printrun, and RepetierHost.

-- OpenShift Origin: Build your own Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) on Fedora! Easily develop and deploy software with a variety of cartridges, and get your apps in the hands of users more easily than ever.

-- Node.js: For building scalable network applications or real-time apps across distributed devices. The node.js runtime and npm package manager addition enables both development of new applications, as well as the ability to run node.js applications on top of Fedora.

Additionally, Fedora strives for inclusion of the latest language stacks in each release, and Fedora 19 continues in this tradition, with updates to PHP (5.5), the recently released Ruby 2.0.0, and a tech preview of the upcoming OpenJDK8.

For system administrators, Red Hat claims that with the new Fedora you can "make your machines work for you – not the other way around. Whether you have one, or 'one too many' machines, Fedora 19 provides a variety of improvements to the management of the operating system, including the boot process, recovery from failures, migration of systems, and more. Tools for diagnosis, monitoring, and logging enable you to be proactive, not reactive, leaving you with more time to spend doing the things you love to do."

These features include:

-- Virt Storage Migration: Move your virtual machine – and its associated, in-use storage – without requiring shared storage between the hosts. 

-- OpenStack Grizzly: Just released in April, the newest release of OpenStack – Grizzly – enables the buildout of an IaaS (Infrastructure-as-a-Service) cloud platform.  Maintained with the OpenStack team at Red Hat, currently the top corporate contributor to the OpenStack project [confirm that this is accurate on the release date], Fedora 19's Grizzly “stack” also includes the incubated Heat and Ceilometer projects.

-- systemd Resource Control: Modify your service settings on the fly, without a reboot – all through systemd's ability to dynamically modify resource control parameters at runtime.

-- Checkpoint & Restore: For situations such as recovering from process failures, or moving a process to another machine for maintenance or load balancing, the ability to checkpoint and restore processes may be your solution.

For desktop users, Fedora 19 will come with a choice of Gnome 3.8, KDE 4.10, and MATE 1.6, the GNOME 2.x fork, for your desktop interface. Of this trio, I prefer MATE, but it's nice to have choices.

You can download Fedora 19 Beta now. Before doing this you should keep in mind that this beta software, so  it will have bugs. It's also Fedora, which is the most cutting edge of all mainstream Linux distributions. In other words, this is a Linux for experienced Linux users who don't mind living dangerously. It's not appropriate for someone just getting their feet wet with Linux. After all, its nickname is “Schrödinger's Cat,"  so you won't know if it's alive or dead until you open up. Good luck! 

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