May 15 2017 Emmabuntus 3 with Lilo and UEFI also
On May 15 2017,
with Lilo and UEFI also !
On May 15, 2017, the Emmabuntüs Collective is happy to announce the release of the Emmabuntüs 3 1.04 (32 and 64 bits), based on Xubuntu 14.04.1 distribution and featuring the XFCE desktop environment.
This distribution was originally designed to facilitate the reconditioning of computers donated to humanitarian organizations, starting with the Emmaüs communities (which is where the distribution's name obviously comes from), to promote the discovery of GNU/Linux by beginners, as well as to extend the lifespan of computer hardware in order to reduce the waste induced by the overconsumption of raw materials (1).
This update should further ease the refurbishing work accomplished by the associations using Emmabuntüs, first and foremost our YovoTogo friends, who are going to utilize it heavily in order to equip the 125 computers to be sent in Togo by the end of June 2017, and then used by our friends of JUMP Lab'Orione in the frame of the training sessions occurring within the North Togo colleges. Likewise, this new version will definitely help our JerryClan friends in France and in Africa (Ivory Coast, Togo, Cameroon), Ayiyikoh, JMSI, DouaLab, who apply intensively the hardware components reuse when building their famous Jerry Do It Together. These Jerrys, running under Emmabuntüs, are utilized to develop innovative projects in their respective territories.
If you want more details concerning our various cooperations with these associations, please read this interview which summarizes the 5 years of our collective existence.
This new version supports our efforts even more efficiently, thanks to this four improvement axis :
- the solidarity, with the Lilo search engine,
- the reuse, by supporting the new UEFI standard (2) during the installation,
- the integration of all the improvements made on Emmabuntüs Debian Edition, since more than one year,
- Usage of the 3.13 kernel, which is embeded in the Xubuntu 14.04.1, in order avoid kernel changes not induced by Xubuntu versions newer than the 14.04.1.
Starting immediately and by default, Emmabuntüs uses Lilo, the alternative search engine on the web. This decision was taken for two good reasons : the actions taken by the engine to respect the privacy of the web users, and the possibility to redistribute to different associations the incomes generated by the advertising (3).
As of today this list is small, but we hope to be soon in position to extend it to other partners, thanks to your growing support on the Lilo platform.
Another new feature is the capability to install Emmabuntüs on recent 64bits computer using the UEFI mode. Thus we increase the hardware compatibility with modern computers, which will enable their easy refurbishing and expand their lifespan.
This version 1.04 includes the following fixes and enhancements :
- Based Xubuntu 14.04.1, because it is essential to embed the most possible stable kernel
- supports the 64bits version of UEFI
- includes the Lilo search engine by default, replacing Qwant
- adds an utilty to reinstall the default Emmabuntüs Cairo-Dock (Thanks to Robert)
- adds an utility to enable/disable by default the Emmabuntüs Cairo-Dock
- adds the full screen support within VirtualBox
- adds the XFCE4-screenshooter configuration file, to avoid the ":" characters in the default file names.
- adds scratch
- adds KeepassX
- adds Systemback
- adds Baobab and Mint Stick utilities
- adds the Arduino IDE, however only in the 32 bits version
- disables the LXDE task bar when the Dock if active
- updates the Dock launchers to open the default web browser
- fixes the Audacious open bug when clicking on the Cairo-Dock wastebasket
- fixes KeePassX sending qwerty characters instead of azerty
- swaps Warmux by Hedgewars
- swaps RecordmyDesktop by Kazam
- swaps Catfish by Gnome-search-tool
- swaps Pipelight and Pepper by Adobe Flash player 25
- updates of Firefox, Chromium, Thunderbird plugins
- updates of TurboPrint, Ancestris, HPLip
- updates the Emmabuntüs Wiki
- updates the Emmabuntüs Cairo-Dock launcher utility, to enable the lock of modifications in the dock (Thanks to Robert)
- updates the utility in order to disable the dock activation after installation, and activation of the task manager (Thanks to Fiche)
- updates the installation and presentation tutorials to make them more compact (Thanks to arpinux)
- updates scripts tio bring them at the same level as Emmabuntüs DE
- updates the Cairo-Dock and the XFCE menu to add the Caffeine-indicator icon
- improves the usage of the XFCE top panel (Thanks to Dmitry)
- configures The GIMP with a single window (Thanks to the DFLinux project) and adds the GIMP skin
- enables the one click activation for the dock icons
- sets the Thunar path selector in path bar mode
- removes Evolution
- removes SMB4k, which is non-longer functional
To ensure a correct installation of Emmabuntüs, we strongly suggest to run it without Internet connection, and to connect back the computer to the network during the first system restart, when it is time to install (or not) the optional non-free software. Please have a look at How To Install Emmabuntüs 3 on the Developpez.com site.
Note 1 : According to the ADEME from manufacturing to disposal, through its use, each stage of the life of the computer equipment can be quantified by its environmental impact: making a computer and a screen requires 1.8 tons of resources (240 kg of fossil fuels, 22 kg of chemicals, 1500 liters of water).
For the Ecoinfo's group the priority is to take action. Each member of the group does it by himself (purchasing, maintenance, development of networks), but everyone of us can also contribute by his own personal behavior. Their conclusion : « If it is already possible to intervene at all stages of the hardware cycle, the most effective action you can take is to limit the environmental impact of these materials by reducing your purchases and by increasing their lifetime !».
Note 2 : UEFI (Unified Extensible Firmware Interface) is a specification defining a new interface between the operating system and the hardware. UEFI replaces and enhance the BIOS (Basic Input/Output System) firmware interface, which was historically present on all personal computers.
More and more donated computers feature this new interface on their motherboard, and it became very important for us to support this new functionality in the frame of our easy computer refurbishing scenario.
Note 3 : And yes, Lilo uses advertising to generate revenue. Like does Google indeed. However, you should notice that these are non-intrusives ads and contribute to the good cause : thanks to them, our humanitarian and ethical projects can be financed.
Here after an example in this screen capture :