As usual, our fast-paced development makes for a distro that is on the edge of things. Our latest release sports a brand new 22.214.171.124 kernel, and the latest udev, which provides improved support for hotplugging devices – cleaning up the remains of the old hotplug system. Now that the transition to a full udev is complete, we were also able to remove the discover service.
The changes were not limited to the base system though; with the 2.4, a series of updated packages will be released (nearly 130 packages). Amongst them the latest OpenOffice (2.0.2), Abiword (126.96.36.199), Gnumeric (1.6.2), the latest GTK2 (2.8.16), ...
In our continuous search for the best applications for our GTK2-based platform, we have replaced two of our standard packages. Zenwalk 2.4 introduces Gnomebaker and Xarchiver (respectively CD/DVD burner and archive manager) to replace Graveman and File-Roller.
To improve the user experience, we provide Zenwalk 2.4 with a brand new USB automount system. This process takes place at the lowest possible level: When udev detects a new USB storage medium, a mount point will be created, and the device will be mounted there. This does not require any user intervention. Upon removal, the device will be unmounted, and the mount point will be removed. Since this solution relies on the base system of the OS, it does not matter whether one is running X or not, it will work just the same.
Zenwalk Core is evolving toward a server system, although it still can be used to build a custom Desktop system. A complete LAMP (Apache, Mysql, PHP) distribution was added, together with Samba server and Webmin. System admins can setup a powerful web server or a SOHO file server within the 15 minutes install time of Zenwalk Core. The resulting server is simple by design, and can be hardened at setup stage by enabling the netfilter firewall. Other server packages are available via netpkg, these include postfix (2.2.7), Proftpd (1.3.0), Kerberos (1.4.3), Openldap (2.2.30).