Impressions: Fedora Core 5 Test 3

February 27th, 2006

I’ve been testing out FC5-test3 for a few days now. Seems to be nice and stable as FC4 was, though with a few annoyances that will hopefully be worked out when FC5 is finally released in mid-March. Here are a few things that caught my attention.

The good

  • Hardware support has improved. I tried to install FC4 and Suse 10.0 on a Dell machine with an ATI X600 video card, and both of them would hang while starting X. FC5-test3 installer has no problems with that.
  • Automounting GUI is much better. In KDE, a desktop icon is created whenever an external drive is attached to the computer (haven’t tried it with my PTP camera yet). There is a little green triangle at the bottom right of each icon, which indicates that the device is mounted. You can choose to “Safely Remove” from the right-click menu (wonder where they picked that from), which unmounts the device and makes the green icon disappear.
  • One of the real big pluses for me - Firefox now has full kerning support for Hindi fonts. Actually, this is a bit of a surprise. I have two OS paritions, one with FC4 updated to KDE 3.5.1 and one with FC5-test3 (which has KDE 3.5.1 by default). I have a single home partition, off which I run a downloaded copy of Firefox in both OSes. In FC4, Firefox has problems displaying Hindi fonts correctly, while in FC5, Firefox displays them just fine. I guess they managed to find a way to enable pango in KDE, and make FF use it by default. I tried to do that in FC4 using some environment variable but it didn’t help. In any case, this is a big plus and it means I no longer have to load up Konqueror to display Hindi pages.
  • Although the GCC version with this release is 4.1, I think they’ve installed the 3.3 compatibility libraries by default, so Firefox, for one, just runs right after downloading (in FC4, yum install compat-libstdc++ was necessary).
The bad
  • The KDE screensaver doesn’t work. I don’t care much for screensavers, but it does matter to me that consequently, “Lock Screen” doesn’t work. I’m not sure if this is a problem with my particular install, since its tough to believe that such a basic thing wouldn’t be working. I do remember that Red Hat 8 final actually shipped with this issue unresolved. [Bug report]
  • nVidia drivers don’t install. nVidia cards and drivers usually work very well for Linux, and installation of binary drivers downloaded from nVidia’s site has always been painless. In FC5t3 however, the installation fails at the kernel module build phase. [Bug report]
  • gmailnotify doesn’t work under FC5t3 and crashes with an XML parsing error. The only thing I can think of is that an upgrade of Python (2.4.1 to 2.4.2?) causes the problem.

(This was the first post by our new contributor, Anshul Nigham. - antrix)

2 Comments to “Impressions: Fedora Core 5 Test 3”

  1. kangmasadi said:


    I also had the same problem with Gnome Lock Screen function not working in FC5, until I found out that we need to add “/usr/bin/gnome-screensaver” program in System –> Preferences –> More Preference –> Sessions menu, under Startup Programs tab, and to mark “Activate Screen saver when session is idle” and “Lock Screen when screen saver is active” options under System –> Preferences –> ScreenSaver menu. And don’t forget to restart the system afterward.

    I don’t know the workaround for KDE, but it should not be much different.

  2. Jon said:

    Sorry, thanks but even that didn’t work for me.

    I’ve gone to KDE and the Lock Session works in that just fine.
    GNOME really grinds me sometimes, but KDE doesn’t work with a lot of Fedora ‘isms.