Alpha 7a out now for download!

Another week, another release. It’s like waiting for buses. You wait for what seems like ages and then two come along at once!

In any case, I have quickly made another, and I think final, Alpha release – Chromixium Alpha 7a which can be downloaded here: https://sourceforge.net/projects/chromixium

Why another new release after only 1 week?

I put myself under pressure to release to a specified date, and whilst I was very pleased with 6b, there were a few bugs, which were, well bugging me! So I set to work squashing them straight away. I also wanted to provide a better all-round user experience and after some feedback I decided to make 2 important additions to the ISO, language packs and Gnome Network Manager.

Don’t worry, if you have just installed Alpha 6b and are happy with it, you can skip this release.

Language Packs

I have been aware of the tremendous support for this project from non-English speaking countries. There are a lot of followers on Google+ from Brazil, there have been reviews and YouTube clips from users in France, Germany, Spain and Italy. I really wanted to try and make the experience a bit better for these people.

To that end, Alpha 7a includes language packs for French, German, Italian, Portuguese and Spanish languages along with the regional locales eg French/Canada, Portuguese/Brazil, German/Austria, Italian/Switzerland, Spanish/Mexico… This doesn’t mean that Chromixium is magically translated, but parts of it are, and most importantly, the Chromium Web Browser will be. It will also set the correct date and currency format for your country. Bespoke scripts are, for the time-being, English only, but hopefully this is a step in the right direction.

For users who don’t speak the languages listed above, you can now easily add your language using the Language Support tool in the Control Panel. The Control Panel is accessed from the right-click (Openbox) menu (or by pressing the Windows key).

Gnome Network Manager

After some feedback, I decided to retire the noble Wicd network applet in favour of the more versatile Gnome Network Manager. Alongside, I have also included mobile broadband support and the Gnome PPP modem tool for configuring USB modems and dial-up connections. Network Manager does come with a bit more overhead, but we can’t very well have users struggling to get online when the whole point of Chromixium is to offer up a web-centric experience!

Other changes

  • Chromium browser now autostarts when you log in. It quietly waits in the background until you click on the launcher or an app shortcut. This means that there is hardly any delay in accessing the Internet. It does mean initial RAM usage is higher, but I am assuming most people want to get online using Chromixium. If you don’t like this behaviour, it can be turned off using the Startup Applications tool in the Control Panel.
  • Gnome terminal now has white on black theme with menu disabled by default.
  • Ability to set launch and urgent bounce heights in the Control Panel, Dock (Plank) Settings tool.
  • Shortcut to Synaptic added to control panel and renamed Add/Remove Software.
  • Updated applications from Xubuntu Staging PPA:
    Parole, XFCE-Power-Manager, Light-Locker-Settings.
  • Added: gnome-accessibility-themes, dialog, man-pages, man-pages-dev, bluez-gstreamer, unzip, pulseaudio-module-bluetooth.

Busted!

The following bugs have been busted in this release:

  • The installer has been patched so that the locale is now set correctly. Timezone and keyboard layout is now set through a GTK user interface rather than via a terminal.
  • A bug was reported by Patrick in which a package conflict with Parole and libclutter prevented other applications from installing correctly, notably Cheese. This is hopefully fixed in this release.
  • Installer icon is now removed from the applications menu after installation.

Please test and feedback your findings at our new forums: http://chromixium.freeforums.org.

Happy testing!

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