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Kororaa Releases XGL LiveCD 65

Posted by CowboyNeal
from the try-before-you-buy dept.
Tony Tony Chopper writes "The team from Kororaa who brought us a GUI based Gentoo installer have just released the first live CD to use xgl technology. From Kororaa.org, the lead developer Chris writes 'Today I am happy to release a Kororaa Live CD showcasing Xgl technology.' The response so far have been incredibly positive, an article at tuxmachines.org is glowing with much praise and few complaints. For those who love eye-candy but don't want to mess with their existing installs, this is the perfect opportunity to see what Xgl is about. The torrent can be downloaded from LinuxTracker."
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Kororaa Releases XGL LiveCD

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  • Yes, it's pretty. But more importantly I feel like the functionality is there as well. I guess I'm going to force myself to make this work on my current Gentoo box.
    • XGL (developed behind closed doors by Novell replacement for X) is built arround the two main proprietry Linux GL drivers (nVidia and ATI). AIGLX (the Xorg extension started by redhat) is built to work on the open source hardware GL drivers (like Intel 855gm). When the projects exchange code (which is happening) then this will be great. Fancy X effects for those with good and better graphics. I'm looking forward to trying AIGLX when Fedora Core 5 comes out next week.
      • by Oscaro (153645)
        XGL [was] developed behind closed doors by Novell

        It doesn't really matters how it was developed; the source code is freely available under GPL. If someone feels they can do better, there is nothing stopping them.
      • by Anonymous Coward
        MountainMan, do yourself a favour and look into the background to this Xgl vs Aiglx thing yourself, because things are not as they have been presented by Fedora. Not by a mile.

        Xgl development is being done highly cooperatively and has been so for many months --- it's all there in the mailing list, for anyone who wants to check the evidence. The business hand of Novell is nowhere to be seen, so all this talk of "proprietary" is the sheerest nonsense, especially since Novell owns SuSE. And on top of that,
  • zomg, sweet (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Scott Swezey (678347)
    Well the graphics are cool, but does it actually increase how useable my computer is? Not to mention the obivous questions like "will my crappy integrated graphics card even come close to running this?"

    Either way, I think I'll give it a try ^^
    • Re:zomg, sweet (Score:5, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 10, 2006 @03:47AM (#14889124)
      "Well the graphics are cool, but does it actually increase how useable my computer is?"
      Yes. Of course not automatically, but it does provide a technical means that makes things possible that will increase usability. Take the expose like feature, or live previews when alt-tabbing, for example. And will of course make implementing accessibility (sp?) like zooming much easier to implement.

      "Not to mention the obivous questions like "will my crappy integrated graphics card even come close to running this?""
      I think one of the best things about XGL (and AIGLX for that matter) is that the hardware requirements for this are actually pretty low. So if you integrated graphic chip does do opengl, it should work.
      Of course keep in mind that this thing is still in beta and that many drivers still lack the opengl extensions needed, so that many things that later will be done in hardware are now actually done with mesa in software.
      That said, despite these problems, XGL runs very smooth on my quite old and not very powerful Geforce.
    • I've got it running (under Dapper Flight4) with my crappy first-generation nvidia.. still a few bugs though, it won't run any of the glx stuff or play videos, although the desktop itself is pretty smooth.
  • Mirrors. (Score:5, Informative)

    by xbmodder (805757) on Friday March 10, 2006 @03:30AM (#14889086) Homepage
    The main site is down for some reason (slashdot does that). The torrent is mirrored at: http://mirrors.atarack.com/Kororaa-Xgl-Live-CD-0.1 .torrent [atarack.com] We have ISO mirrors here for the impatient: [softpedia.com] (thanks to softpedia [softpedia.com])
    here [rdt1.org] (thanks to rdt1.org [rdt1.org])
    here [mudrii.ath.cx] (thanks to Mudrii)
    here [hotel-peter.net] (thanks to Hotel Peter [hotel-peter.net])
    here [overconfident.org] (thanks to Over Confident) [overconfident.org]
    here [bytemark.co.uk] (thanks to sefcom [sefcom.nl])
    here [digitalextortion.com] (thanks to Digital Extortion) [digitalextortion.com], and
    here [snipanet.com] (thanks to Chris Peters from Canada)
    here [atarack.com] (Atarack VDS/VPSes who are our proud sponsors) [atarack.com]
    (To buy an atarack VPS e-mail us at sdhillon@atarack.com or at ndevito@atarack.com)
  • I've been dazzled by the demo videos, and didn't feel like screwing up my machine just to try it out myself, can't wait.

    Keep seeding that torrent!
  • Some thoughts. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 10, 2006 @04:01AM (#14889159)
    First off, I tried it yesterday and it's really really neat.. I mean giggle like a schoolgirl neat when you first move that jiggly window around. I'm so glad someone finally did this cuz I was about to risk my xorg install to see it :)

    For some reason I can't get the zoom stuff or anything involving the "Windows" key working though. Also, I wasn't able to get any video going in real time-- obviously I can't watch a DVD with the CD already in the drive... and streaming wasn't working. Also, I have two monitors but they weren't both detected.

    But it's so cool. I have no right to complain.

    A question-- Is it just me or is there a kind of aliasing that happens when a window stops moving? It's like it goes "soft" antialiasing as it bounces around, but then just before it snaps back into place it seems to get crisper...

    All in all, this is a great CD to show around. Now when's the AIGLX demo LiveCD coming out? ;)
    • Re:Some thoughts. (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Bilinear filtering. When the window is being displayed at it's original size and shape, the filtering artifacts disappear.
    • For some reason I can't get the zoom stuff or anything involving the "Windows" key working though. Also, I wasn't able to get any video going in real time-- obviously I can't watch a DVD with the CD already in the drive... and streaming wasn't working. Also, I have two monitors but they weren't both detected.

      Same here - you can edit this in gconf-editor, though - I think (purely from memory) that it's in Apps->Compiz->Zoom, then you can edit the key to something like Alt plus scrollwheel, like I di

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 10, 2006 @04:11AM (#14889172)
    I liked how in one of the videos [freedesktop.org] apps that freeze or are unresponsive turn black and white to indicate they're "dead". It seems that with depth of field and lighting you could do quite a bit with the UI to hint at an application or window's state.

    For example, as a dialog boxes pops up, at the same time the underlying windows might drop back and fall into a zone that is out of focus, or perhaps individual windows might literally "pop" up (growing larger with larger shadows). The shadows themselves could be "real" I would imagine, and the shadow could be generated via a virtual light source which could be moved manually or automatically throughout the day.

    In short, some of the stuff I've seen seems to have been brought over from OS X, but the power of GLX and AIGLX seem seem to open up a whole new world of GUI possibilities. The zoom effect, combined with vector graphics seems to offer quite a bit to those with visual impairments, for example. Is there a place where UI gurus are talking about new effects that may not only provide eye candy, but increase the usability and even suggest new analogies or interactive effects to make computing easier/better?
  • Why a LiveCD? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Knetzar (698216) on Friday March 10, 2006 @04:16AM (#14889186)
    I've always wondered, with usb many drives having greater capacity then CDs, why not setup LiveCDs to be run easily from a USB drive and also allow for some configuration data to be saved there?

    I'd love to be able to test out distros on a thumbdrive...maybe it's just me though.
    • I was looking for something like this the other day. Mandriva have a product called GlobeTrotter which is exactly this, there is also Puppy Linux which is very small and will easily fit on a usb flash drive.

      I'm too lazy to find links, so you'll have to use google.
    • Re:Why a LiveCD? (Score:1, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Not everyone has a PC that will boot from USB drives.
    • Re:Why a LiveCD? (Score:4, Informative)

      by Chris Pimlott (16212) on Friday March 10, 2006 @06:29AM (#14889528)
      * Because some people still have USB 1.0
      * Because not everyone can boot from USB
      * Because practically everyone has a CD drive
      * Because it's easier to boot from a CD
      * Because it's a lot cheaper to give your friend a CD than a thumb drive
    • Most people can't boot off of thumbdrives. But way more importantly the vast majority of people don't even own 1GB thumbdrives.
    • Re:Why a LiveCD? (Score:3, Informative)

      by Eil (82413)
      Because a flash drive distro, if not engineered properly, can ruin the device. These things have a limited number of write cycles. For example, if some idiot puts /tmp on the drive rather than in memory, the drive will give up the ghost or would be a lot closer to doing so than it was before after only a few boots.
    • Why not a living cd? (Score:4, Interesting)

      by 0xABADC0DA (867955) on Friday March 10, 2006 @11:51AM (#14890894)
      Can you imagine what this would do for Linux desktop uptake if it were a living cd instead? After booting up, you have an icon on the desktop that says "Install UbuntuGL". It copies the CD image onto the existing filesystem so the next boot from the CD mounts that as / instead of the cramfs file on the cd. Then bootup is maybe 10 seconds slower than a real install.

      Maybe have the installer also create another file on the disk for the User's home dir. Have it automatically mount the existing filesystems like knoppix does. It would take some hacking, but have an overlay filesystem so they could install any programs they wanted permanently to their 'installed' os. Then people that know nothing about computers can use linux regularly without any hassle.

      Of course not having a working NTFS driver makes this much more difficult technically. But just imagine saying you can replace your crufty Windows interface with Linux's opengl 3d one, for free, and still boot windows just by taking the cd out.
  • XGL rocks :-D (Score:3, Interesting)

    by marcushnk (90744) <senectus@gma[ ]com ['il.' in gap]> on Friday March 10, 2006 @04:20AM (#14889195) Journal
    I've got it installed on all three of my Ubuntu PC's, and I may be throwing it on my Girlfriend this weekend.
    I use it at work and LOVE it.
    I've also got copies of this live CD to give out to anyone that likes what I can do.

    I really expected it to get annoying but it doesn't, I find it kind of refreshing and it helps deal with all those layers of BROWN. :-P

    One thing I have found strange is that it seems to work smoother and better on my laptop with a geforce go 5200 than it does on my 6600 FX card?!?!
    Weird but cool.
  • "For those who love eye-candy but don't want to mess with their existing installs" Isn't that everyone :P
  • Slow? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Lussarn (105276) on Friday March 10, 2006 @04:49AM (#14889250)
    The effects are cool and all GL stuff flies with speed, but basic xlib stuff in XGL is slow. Very slow. Resizing windows seems like 10 times slower than xorg, for a good test try opening a complex webpage and resize the windows. Is this something being worked on?

    Always when I bring this up it gets dismissed as a configuration error. No, I don't think so. It's the same with this LiveCD as my own compiles before. I have tried on 3Ghz+ computers with Nvidia 6600gt and 6800 cards. In all these demo vides we have seen I have never seen a window resize. If it's just my computers than please upload somewhere a video where resize flies and let me see.

    Before this is fixed all this is just a showcase toy. I understand it's new and not optimized but can we at least agree on that some REAL optimization is necessary? Because before it is as fast as xorg it's just useless for real work, and I would really like to have this.
    • It's not just you. Window resizing is slow on my laptop too. It's a 3.2GHz Dell XPS with 1GB of RAM and an ATI Mobility 9800 w/ 256MB.
    • Re:Slow? (Score:3, Informative)

      by BusterB (10791)
      I agree with you; I have the same slow resizing, scrolling, text rendering, etc. with a Radeon 9250. It's amazing that the eye-canding is so smooth and fast yet the actual apps are many times slower. All I can fathom is that since every window now has a backing store and gets represented as a texture, this update overhead is to blame, but I really have no idea how it really works.
    • *Rolls eyes*

      Your graphics driver doesn't yet support the GLX_EXT_texture_from_pixmap extension so every time that call is made (near enough any time the window changes) it is going to be emulated in software. As you do that opaque resize just think how many times it might be being called... Don't worry though - your 3D chipset vendor says they will implement it in their next driver release [nvidia.com].

      However at the end of the day what is acceptable to me could well not be acceptable to you - just two months ago everyo
  • Anyone know if there's any plans for a standalone window decorator for Compiz? I've tried to get this working on my Gentoo box, and although XGL and Compiz both run, I don't have any window decorations since gnome-window-decorator requires the whole of GNOME to be installed. Now a couple of libraries I could handle, but the whole thing? Bollocks to that.
  • It works like a charm! I wish they'd invent similar aero thing like Vista has.
  • Does anyone have any minimum hardware guidelines? I've downloaded the ISO, but as I moved to PowerPC systems roughly two years ago my best Intel box here is an old P3-450 with 384MB of RAM and an old 16MB ATI AGP video card -- probably significantly below the minimum specs (although I am going to try it and will report on it here).

    I imagine I can find a system in the lab tomorrow to try it out on, but knowing what the hardware requirements are in advance will help me narrow down which system I should borr

  • The live CD did something to my onboard network card while it was being shut down... I've just spent the past hour trying to get networking working on this machine and in the end, the only solution was to boot up Kororaa and when it was running (and the network card LEDS were happily blinking) kill the power. Subsequent booting into Ubuntu now works (it was hanging after failing to synch the clock to the ntp server)
  • I had been eager to try this (Xgl + Compiz) out after seeing the Novell demonstration video [google.com], and finally tried it (using this Kororaa LiveCD) this morning.

    It seems Linux desktop operating systems have finally caught up to (and overtaken, until Vista) Windows, for the most part. Most of the functionality has been there for a few years (especially since Ubuntu), and this makes it all extremely pretty, too.

    Most of this is just graphical sugar, but some of it is also useful. There is a zoom feature which
    • by Anonymous Coward
      When this makes it into a stable release of Ubuntu, Linux will be ready for the masses.

      This reminds me of a funny AC post a while back:

      Don't tell everyone how AMAZING Debian is, please! I get this strange (probably very sick) psychological aversion to seeing things I feel are part of my ingroup assets become popular. As a Debian user of 7 or 8 years I get a little nervous at this. My choice of (vastly superior) operating system is what makes me feel different. Have a little mercy on a nerds elitist insecuri
  • I've been following this thread very loosely and had a quick question that maybe I didn't see elsewhere. Will any of the 3dfx series of Voodoo cards be supported. I noticed that the Mesa libraries were used for parts of this, and since (as I recall) the Voodoo2 and later cards were supported through Mesa, it would seem it would work...

    However, the site lists only nVidia and ATI cards as being supported.

    Anyone else have any input?
    • Tough call. I'm going to say no for Voodoo's older than V3 due to the lack of DRI. For Voodoos V3-5 I'm going to say maybe not due to unimplemented features in the 3dfx driver. I'm basing this on information from the AIGLX [fedoraproject.org] project which is similar but different to Xgl so this could be wide of the mark.

      However last I heard Xgl was trying to target OpenGL 1.3 (or 1.2 with a particular extension). If your driver doesn't implement those features you could be out of luck...
      • I apprecite the input. Fortunately I was only hoping to resurrent some old hardware literally collecting dust. Perhaps some day I'll throw it back in some P2 and find something useful for it to do...

        thanks,
        harryk
  • Gnome (Score:3, Funny)

    by tscheez (71929) on Friday March 10, 2006 @11:43AM (#14890851)
    ok, you cant call something Kororaa and use gnome as a window manager. granted gororaa isnt really a good name, but still, that's just wrong.
    • They have changed the name to Gororaa for the later versions using Gnome.

      Sounds like a social disease though.

      "I got Gororaa over the weekend!"
  • Does it run on ATI, specifically the Radeon 9800 Pro? (Any that own this card and have tried getting it to work w/ compositing and OpenGL at the same time in Linux will know what I mean)
  • I just tried the LiveCD on my laptop. It works very smoothly for a random interval, then it totally locks up the machine. The Ati Mobile Radeon x700 works perfectly with the fglrx driver under "proper" Gentoo. I tried passing to the kernel ACPI=OFF NOACPI NODETECT NODHCP, but the result is always a lockup, sometimes even before the GUI startup ends. Maybe the chipset (Ati, again) is at fault, or maybe the specific version of the fglrx driver, or some obscure kernel option. Rather than seeing a brief (usuall
    • It's probably your drivers to blame because I've heard similar reports from other ATI laptop users. Alas the closed ATI drivers seem to have a reputation for instablility and it can't be the cards fault because I'm told they are extremly stable under Windows/OS X. 'Tis a shame, but I guess there's not much of a business case to pour a ton of money into fixing 99% of the problems because the Linux 3D market is tiny.
      • I am aware of Ati Linux drivers' poor quality. That's why on my Gentoo box I sticked with the kernel/drivers combination that works. I hoped for this Gentoo-based liveCD to work as smoothly on the same machine, since you can't change drivers in it (short of rebuilding the LiveCD). It must be said that on my home Athlon XP with an AGP Ati Radeon card, Kororaa puts up quite a show! Maybe the problem on the laptop is due to the PCI-E bus.
        • Yeah... Got the same problem on my laptop, with the same graphics chipset. It just locks up after the login screen appears, or occasionally just after the desktop loads. Guess the drivers don't like the mobile x700 card.
  • I tried this out last night, and it's amazing. Some of the effects I've kinda hacked with fvwm, but this is a whole new playing field. Unlike other software I've tried that does some of what XGL does, this actually does it fast and well. I'm really tempted to try this on my gentoo box, but i'm unsure about the stability, anyone use XGL day to day? I know it's not ready for public release but I want it NOW :-)
    • I've been using it for weeks. It has noticible bugs. Compiz (the compositing manager that lets you actually do a lot of the cool stuff) has bugs / lacks some of the good behavior of other window managers. Without the right extensions in your drivers it can be much slower in mundane operations than Xorg (e.g. video on cards/drivers without shader support). It's missing features (resizing the screen for games). It's exposed (new) nvidia driver bugs that take down X. Pressing shift-backspace kills the server (

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