back to article Oh, Snap. openSUSE downloads increasing, and Leap 15.5 is coming soon

openSUSE is doing well: downloads are increasing, and a new version of the stable-release-cycle openSUSE, Leap 15.5, is coming soon. According to a tweet from the openSUSE project, it has seen sharp increases in its downloads recently. If you want to drill down a little, download statistics are available. We can only …

  1. Joe W Silver badge

    The heck it does!

    "YaST makes it easier to administer openSUSE and SLE "

    No. It does not. It fscks around with all config files, and since you cannot do everything from within it, you have to manually edit stuff in the config files, and then you run YAST and it will happily and without warning / information overwrite all of your hard work. It should be *bleep* *bleeeeeep* and especially *bleep* and,,,,

    Ok, sorry, that sort of triggered me. Our main sysadmin agrees. Unfortunately we are stuck with SLES. (and rpm is... just... no.)

    1. gerryg

      Re: The heck it does!

      Out of curiousity can you provide examples of things it doesn't do and config files it overwrites?

      I haven't not used YaST for years but I do recall warnings in some config files not to update manually as YaST will overwrite them.

      1. Joe W Silver badge

        Re: The heck it does!

        To be honest: I cannot remember exactly. This was (as for you) a while ago, and I refuse to open it, lest it destroys stuff. On desktops it used to eat graphics settings (and network settings, though those do have the warnings in some of the config files in more than one distro - as you mentioned). It also messed with power management, and I also had problems with grub. The problem was (for me) that many settings are set in a meta config file, much like with exim on Debian (was it exim4.conf.conf or somesuch?), and the biggest problem was that some settings did not seem available in said meta config file, which YaST based its auto generated actual config files on, and YaST did not have those exact settings available.

        I'm no longer really doing the sysadmining stuff, part of me misses it, part of me is happy that it's (mainly) other people's responsibility. So, The Sysadmin tells me: never, ever, open YaST on His machines, and I know better than to disobey Him...

    2. Mockup1974 Bronze badge

      Re: The heck it does!

      I really enjoy Yast. No looking up random CLI commands or editing random config files.

      For example, setting up Qemu + KVM + Virt-Manager is a few clicks in Yast. (Yast -> Virtualization -> choose between KVM or Xen -> click OK) and no need to read some Wiki.

    3. dhawkshaw

      Re: The heck it does!

      Funny thing about it being rpm based .. I can't remember the last time openSUSE needed me to go anywhere near an rpm file. Zypper repo/software management just works.

      1. coredump

        Re: The heck it does!

        I suspect the point is that SUSE is an rpm-based distribution, that is, its packages come in the "rpm" format, rather than "deb" like Debian & Ubuntu.

        Not that you need to run 'rpm' command itself -- though you can. zypper is a fine tool, I think of it as the SUSE counterpart to yum/dnf.

    4. Liam Proven (Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

      Re: The heck it does!

      [Author here]

      > It fscks around with all config files

      Yes it does. That's its job. It does it so you don't have to.

      I ran it openSUSE all day every day for 4 years as a technical writer at SUSE and I never had a single problem anything like this. I used YaST for most things, and occasionally delved into config files when I had to, and never had a single clash.

      I remember people saying something like this about Webmin, another tool I rather liked in the 1990s. You're not thinking of Webmin, are you?

      1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

        Re: The heck it does!

        Perhaps that SUSE bias (real or not) should have been front and centre in the article?

        RedHat radically changed the direction of CentOS. Out of that TWO stable alternatives have emerged. i.e. RockyLinux and AlmaLinux.

        I moved seamlessly from CentOS to AlmaLinux.

        As for packaging... DNF/YUM do the job perfectly well. The last time I used rpm directly was to find out what package provided a certain library because I needed to backport one of my apps and the contents of the PHP packages changed from PHP 7.4 to PHP 8.1. That is hardly the fault of the Distro developers now is it?

        There are IMHO serious issues with the current firewalld subsystem when it comes to logging but unless you are deep in system security you would never encounter those things.

        Is it too hard to ask to make it easy to find out what IP's have been blocked by a firewall rule?

        Does that go whoooosh over most people's head? Then you clearly don't host your own website or if you do then you don't care about the site being scraped by some sweatshop in Mumbai or repeated attempts to find phpmyadmin on your server or even wget commands that are trying to do an 'cd /;rm -fr' on your system?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: The heck it does!

          No dog in the SUSE/RedHat fight, but the TWO stable successors to CentOS was hardly ideal.

          "We are standardised on CentOS" -> "ok, what do we do now" -> "ok, we standardise on Rocky" (*) -> "ok, we standardise on Alma" (*) -> fight -> "we will communicate the way forward in the near future" -> "ok, we standardise on AlmaLinux" took about a year and wasted too much resources.

          * = of course parallel developments in different parts of the organization

          Sure, they are the "same thing". But if they *are* the same, why are they not the same then?

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The heck it does!

      No thanks. I like YaST. It one of best things about OpenSUSE.

      No need to open a terminal so I can sudo nano a config file like its the 1980s.

  2. MattPDev

    Looks a bit Windows 98.

    1. gerryg


      I might be coming across as a fanboi, but what looks a bit Windows 98?

      I've always supposed SLE only has GNOME as it offers the user fewest options on the desktop, but that looks nothing like 98.

      I have been using what is now Tumbleweed for 25 years now, and KDE can look fairly much however you want, including a right to left desktop for lefties (unfortunately not every application is lefthand aware, so it's not as useful as it could be).

      I use YaST about once every six months and don't care what it looks like.

      1. JohnVeness

        Re: Unfortunately

        I expect they are referring to the Xfce screenshot.

  3. Mockup1974 Bronze badge

    I think (open)SUSE is definitely underrated. Tumbleweed is the best mix of being up to date and not breaking. MicroOS seems very promising. I just wish that KDE would become an official option again on SLE and not just on openSUSE.

    1. Liam Proven (Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

      [Author here]

      > I just wish that KDE would become an official option again on SLE and not just on openSUSE.

      I entirely agree with you.

      SUSE and Red Hat are rivals, and RH is one of the main sponsors of GNOME and always has been.

      Personally I would like to see more diversity in the desktop world, and if the 3 biggest distros all used different desktops, I think that'd be a good start.

      I would suggest RH and Fedora focus on GNOME, SUSE on KDE, and Ubuntu on UKUI.

      SUSE and KDE are the two biggest German FOSS projects, and I believe that for a long time, SUSE was a major sponsor of KDE development. OpenSUSE is still one of the best distros for KDE support.

      Novell forcibly merged Ximian and SUSE in one of its biggest single mistakes. It should never have bought Ximian in the first place.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I just wish that KDE would become an official option again on SLE and not just on openSUSE.

      Not going to happen. SLE's market (like Red Hat's) is >90% server based, while desktop use is marginal (and most of that are workstations running some commercial special purpose application, so the desktop matters only in as much as presenting the user with an icon to launch that application).

      It's not worth investing into another desktop environment for SUSE.

  4. Uncle Slacky

    Ex-Solus users going to Tumbleweed?

    There seems to have been an increased interest in Tumbleweed (as it's also a "curated rolling" distro) from Solus users dissatisfied with the lack of progress on making updates available over the last few months, which might account for some of the downloads.

  5. Long John Silver


    I dabbled with Linux for standalone personal desktop use from the early days of distributions appearing on cover disks for PC Magazine. The openSUSE distribution rapidly became my favourite and I stuck with it until several years ago, when for reasons I now forget I adopted Linux Mint on my desktop and laptop PCs. I have nothing damning to say about openSUSE; YAST is a fine tool. Also in early days there was a simple utility containing options for customising and compiling a kernel specific to one's processor, etc.

    From my point of view, Linux became mature when major distributions routinely encompassed differing hardware configurations as with graphics cards; for personal use, choice of open source distribution appears based upon aesthetics and convenience rather than necessity. Ease of fresh installation and of update installation for the single user is straightforward nowadays; that contrasts with the tedious rigmarole entailed in setting up a modern desktop MS Windows edition. Obviously, other factors too require consideration by people installing and maintaining servers and networked workplaces.

    'Wine' has blossomed recently into a powerful compatibility with Windows tool. No longer is dual boot essential when there is Windows software upon which one is dependent; anyway, residual necessity can be met using Windows (official or bootleg) in a virtual machine.

    In the article referred to here, it is stated openSUSE does not bundle 'Snap'. For a while, I had wondered why Linux Mint had eschewed Snap; was it just concern over installing a proprietary tool? Now, from experience, I am aware that Snap and 'Flatpak' (very useful) may be incompatible when installed side by side; this first came to attention when my 'VLC' sotware started misbehaving.

    Nowadays, most Linux distributions offer a choice from a selection of GUIs. No longer need this be a determining factor. I was happy with KDE on openSUSE, but equally pleased with Gnome variant 'Cinnamon' on Linux Mint.

  6. Groo The Wanderer

    I ran SuSE years ago and quite liked it, but drifted away from RPM-based distros.

    Maybe when the new stable release comes out in May I'll spin up a VM and check out their latest.

    1. wolfetone Silver badge

      Same. I started with Red Hat but then went to openSuSE for years. Drifted away to .deb and never really been back.

      I'm glad it's still going and I'm even happier that it's kicking bottom.

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