The major version number grow reflects that X11 is updated to version 7.1, which is a very structural modification, system wide. All X-software have been recompiled, including a large amount of software in the ZenCommunity repository. This is the biggest change since the beginning of the Zenwalk project, however, old Zenwalk 3.x and Slackware 11 X-software packages should be compatible with Zenwalk 4.0. Upgrade has proved to be possible as many testers succeeded in the migration : average users are still recommended to do clean/fresh installs.
This version of Zenwalk uses the new stable 18.104.22.168 kernel.
Netpkg has been updated with a new GTK-based user interface - basically a total rewrite of the software to become one of the most advanced and intuitive Network Package Manager - the "One Click Package Manager". The repository structure has changed for easier maintenance and compatibility with Gslapt, which is available as an alternative to Netpkg in the "extra" add-on set of packages. Locally stored packages can now be installed from Thunar.
UDEV scripts have been enhanced significantly to support firewire, smartcards, pcmcia : all automounted.
On user request a lot of packages have been added, among these the Streamtuner Internet radio browser and a fun yet useful tool named EtherApe for graphical realtime view of your cloud of IP connections. VNC is provided with both a server and a client (TightVNC). FuseSMBTool has been improved to mount SMB network drives very easily. The Urlgfe download manager has been added.
On top of upgrading Abiword and Gnumeric to the latest version, Dia, the diagram drawing program for GNOME Office, is now included. The latest versions of the Mozilla Firefox (2.0) and Thunderbird (22.214.171.124) are available out of the box as well. The latest version 2.0.4 of OpenOffice is available in extra, one click from being installed on your system.
In spite of this, Zenwalk takes up less space than the previous release. This is accomplished by optimizing the size of the new Xorg packages, primarily by using dejavu fonts exclusively and by moving the JRE (Java) into the add-on extra repository. The installed version of Zenwalk only requires 1.2 Gb of harddisk space.
Both GNOME (2.16-1) and KDE (3.5.5) are available as add-ons and they have been updated to the latest versions.
Maintenance of the core version, Zenwalk Core, is now being maintained by Emmanuel Bailleul, who is also taking care of servers packages. Core is a base system without X and related software. Suitable for a personalized desktop (e.g. with the Zenwalk GNOME or KDE desktops) or for server usage.
The Zenwalk team wish you a great time with the new Zenwalk 4.0.