5. What is the Latest on the Desktop

5.1. Fedora desktop

This section details changes that affect Fedora graphical desktop users.

5.1.1. Better webcam support

Fedora 10 comes with improved support for webcams.

This support follows on the improvements to the UVC driver first introduced in Fedora 9 that added support for any webcam with a Windows Vista compliant logo. Fedora 10 features a new v4l2 version of gspca, a USB webcam driver framework with support for many different USB webcam bridges and sensors.

Userspace support for webcams has also been improved by adding libv4l and updating all webcam using applications to use libv4l. This support makes these applications understand the manufacturer specific and custom video formats emitted by many webcams, especially by many of the webcams supported by gspca.

For a list of all webcams and applications where Fedora 10's new webcam support has been tested refer to the https://fedoraproject.org/wiki/Features/BetterWebcamSupport. For a list of all cams supported by the original version of gspca refer to the original gspca website.


The v4l2 version of gspca in Fedora 10 supports all these webcams and more.

5.1.2. Plymouth graphical boot

For information about the new graphical boot mode read Section 3.6, “Fedora 10 boot-time”.

5.1.3. Echo icon theme

Echo is an icon theme developed for Fedora by the volunteer Fedora Art community. Echo inherits the isometric perspective from the classic Bluecurve theme while introducing a refreshing new look. It follows the freedesktop.org theme specification. The current version covers essential icons from the desktop menus and applications. Future revisions will bring broader coverage.

Currently, both GNOME and Xfce use the Echo icon theme by default. KDE continues to use the Oxygen icon theme. The next release of Fedora may introduce Echo by default for KDE for a consistent look and feel across different desktop environments.

5.1.4. Infrared remote support

New to Fedora 10 is the gnome-lirc-properties package with a new graphical front-end for configuring LIRC to use with applications supporting the protocol. For more information refer to Section 5.1.4, “Infrared remote support”.

LIRC is routinely used in multimedia applications to implement support for infrared remote controls, and using it in Rhythmbox and Totem should be as easy as plugging the remote receiver into your computer, then selecting Auto-detect in the Infrared Remote Control preferences. Refer to the feature page for more information:


5.1.5. Bluetooth BlueZ 4.0

The Bluetooth support stack, called BlueZ (http://www.bluez.org,) has been updated to version 4.x in Fedora 10. Most changes in this version are useful for application developers, but users can notice the new, easier to use wizard for setting up keyboards, mice, and other supported Bluetooth devices. There is also the ability to turn-off the Bluetooth adapter on most brands of laptops through the preferences. This new version will also allow better support for audio devices in the future, through PulseAudio.

Note that the default Bluetooth kernel driver was also switched to btusb, which cuts down power consumption compared to its predecessor hci_usb.

5.1.6. GNOME

This release features GNOME 2.24. For more details refer to:

http://www.gnome.org/start/2.24/ Empathy instant messenger

Empathy instant messenger is the new default replacing Pidgin in this release. It has support for multiple protocols including IRC, XMPP(Jabber), Yahoo, MSN, and others via plugins. It also supports video and voice in the XMPP protocol, with support for other protocols under active development. Empathy uses the telepathy framework that has a number of additional plugins:

  • telepathy-gabble - Jabber/XMPP plugin

  • telepathy-idle - IRC plugin

  • telepathy-butterfly - MSN plugin

  • telepathy-sofiasip - SIP plugin

  • telepathy-haze - Libpurple (Pidgin) library connection manager provides support for other protocols such as Yahoo

Pidgin continues to be available in the Fedora software repository and is retained as the default for users upgrading from previous releases of Fedora. GNOME Display Manager

The GNOME Display Manager (gdm) has been updated to the latest upstream code, which is a complete rewrite driven by Fedora developers. PolicyKit can be used to control shutdown and reboot. The configuration tool gdmsetup is missing currently, and is set to be replaced. For configuration changes, refer to:

http://live.gnome.org/GDM/2.22/Configuration Codec installation helper

The GStreamer codec installation helper codeina was replaced by a PackageKit-based solution for Fedora 10. When Totem, Rhythmbox, or another GStreamer application require a plugin to read a film or song, a PackageKit dialogue appears, allowing the user to search for the necessary package in the configured repositories.

More details are available on the feature page:


5.1.7. KDE

This release features KDE 4.1.2. As the kdevelop packages is not part of KDE 4.1 and kdewebdev is only partially available (no Quanta) in KDE 4.1, the KDE 3.5.10 versions of those packages are shipped. A kdegames3 package containing the games not yet ported to KDE 4 is also available.


KDE 4.1 is the latest release of KDE 4 and provides several new features, many usability improvements, and bugfixes over KDE 4.0, the first KDE 4 release series. This new release includes a folder view desktop applet (Plasmoid), improvements to Dolphin and Konqueror and many new and improved applications. KDE 4.1.2 is a bugfix release from the KDE 4.1 release series.

Fedora 10 does not include the legacy KDE 3 Desktop. It does include a compatibility KDE 3 Development Platform, which can be used to build and run KDE 3 applications within KDE 4 or any other desktop environment. Refer to the Section 8.5, “KDE 3 Development Platform and Libraries” section for more details about what is included.

Fedora 10 includes a snapshot of knetworkmanager, which works with the prerelease of NetworkManager 0.7 in Fedora 10. As it was not considered ready for production use, the KDE Live images use nm-applet from NetworkManager-gnome instead (as in Fedora 8 and 9). The gnome-keyring-daemon facility saves passwords for these encryption technologies. If you wish to try knetworkmanager can be installed from the repository.

As the native KWin window manager now optionally supports compositing and desktop effects, the KDE Live images no longer include Compiz/Beryl (since Fedora 9). The KWin compositing/effects mode is disabled by default, but can be enabled in systemsettings. Compiz (with KDE 4 integration) is available from the repository by installing the compiz-kde package. Enhancements
  • Plasma is more mature and panel configuration has been extended. The new panel controller makes it easy to customize your panel providing direct visual feedback. The Plasma folderview applet provides a view of a directory and thus allows you to store files on the desktop. It is replaces other well known icons on the desktop. Package and application changes
  • Fedora 10 ships kdepim 4.1.2 instead of 3.5.x.

  • libkipi, libkexiv2, and libkdcraw have been obsoleted by the KDE 4 versions in the kdegraphics package. Accordingly, kipi-plugins, digikam, and kphotoalbum have been updated to KDE 4 versions.

  • kpackagekit, a KDE frontend to PackageKit, is now available. (It may be made available as an update for Fedora 9 at a later time.)

In addition, the following changes made since the Fedora 9 release, which have been backported to Fedora 9 updates, are also part of Fedora 10:

  • KDE has been upgraded from version 4.0.3 to 4.1.2.

  • qt and PyQt4 have been upgraded from 4.3 to 4.4.

  • kdewebdev, kdevelop, kdegames3, and the KDE 3 backwards-compatibility libraries have been upgraded from KDE 3.5.9 to 3.5.10.

  • QtWebKit is now part of the qt package. The stand alone WebKit-qt package has been obsoleted.

  • The new package qgtkstyle contains a Qt 4 style using GTK+ for drawing, providing better integration of Qt 4 and KDE 4 applications into GNOME.

  • The phonon library, which was part of kdelibs in Fedora 9, is now a separate package. An optional GStreamer backend (phonon-backend-gstreamer) is now available, but the xine-lib backend, which is now packaged as phonon-backend-xine, is still the recommended default backend and is now required by the phonon package.

  • The kdegames3 package no longer provides development support for the KDE 3 version of libkdegames because nothing in Fedora outside of kdegames3 itself requires that library any longer.

  • The package okteta is now part of kdeutils.

  • The package dragonplayer is now part of kdemultimedia.

  • The program kaider has been renamed to Lokalize and is now part of kdesdk.

  • The package ksirk has been ported to KDE 4 and is now part of kdegames.

  • The package extragear-plasma has been renamed to kdeplasma-addons.

5.1.8. Sugar Desktop

The Sugar Desktop originated with the OLPC initiative. It allows for Fedora users and developers to do the following.

  • Build upon the collaborative environment.

  • Test out Sugar on an existing Fedora system by selecting the Sugar environment from their display manager.

  • Developers interested in working on the Sugar interface or writing activities can have a development platform without needing an XO laptop.

5.1.9. Web browsers Enabling Flash plugin

Fedora includes swfdec and gnash, which are free and open source implementations of Flash. We encourage you to try either of them before seeking out Adobe's proprietary Flash Player plugin software. The Adobe Flash Player plugin uses a legacy sound framework that does not work correctly without additional support. Run the following command to enable this support:

      su -c 'yum install libflashsupport'

If you are using Flash 10, you do not need libflashsupport anymore as the usage of ALSA has been fixed in this version.

Users of Fedora x86_64 must install the nspluginwrapper.i386 package to enable the 32-bit Adobe Flash Player plug-in in Firefox, and the libflashsupport.i386 package to enable sound from the plugin.

Install the nspluginwrapper.i386, nspluginwrapper.x86_64, and libflashsupport.i386 packages:

su -c 'yum install nspluginwrapper.{i386,x86_64} libflashsupport.i386'

Install flash-plugin after nspluginwrapper.i386 is installed:

	su -c 'yum install libflashsupport'

Run mozilla-plugin-config to register the flash plugin:

	su -c 'mozilla-plugin-config -i -g -v'

Close all Firefox windows, and then relaunch Firefox. Type about:plugins in the URL bar to ensure the plugin is loaded. Disabling PC speaker

PC speaker is enabled by default in Fedora. If you do not prefer this, there are two ways to circumvent the sounds:

  • Reduce its volume to a acceptable level or completely mute the PC speaker in alsamixer with the setting for PC Speak.

  • Disable the PC speaker system wide by running the following commands in a console:

    	    su -c 'modprobe -r pcspkr' su -c 'echo "install pcspkr :" >> /etc/modprobe.conf'

5.2. Networking

This section contains information about networking changes in Fedora 10.

5.2.1. Wireless Connection Sharing

Connection sharing makes it possible to easily set up an ad-hoc WiFi network on a machine with a network connection and a spare wireless card. If the machine has primary network connection (wired, 3G, second wireless card), routing is set up so that devices connected to the ad-hoc WiFi network can share the connection to the outside network.

This ability is provided by the NetworkManager applet nm-applet. Although nm-applet has had a Create New Wireless Network menu item for a long time, this feature makes it work better.

When you create a new WiFi network, you have to specify the name of the network and what kind of wireless security to use. NetworkManager then sets up the wireless card to work as an ad-hoc WiFi node that others can join. The routing will be set up between the new network and the primary network connection, and DHCP is used for assigning IP addresses on the new shared WiFi network. DNS queries are also forwarded to upstream nameservers transparently.

5.3. Printing

The print manager (system-config-printer or SystemAdministrationPrinting) user interface has been overhauled to look friendlier and be more in line with modern desktop applications. The system-config-printer application no longer needs to be run as the root user.

Other changes include:

  • The configuration tool window has been made easier to use. Double-clicking on a printer icon opens a properties dialog window. This replaces the old behavior of a list of printer names on the left and properties for the selected printer on the right.

  • The CUPS authentication dialog selects the appropriate user-name and allows it to be altered mid-operation.

  • When the configuration tool is running, the list of printers is updated dynamically.

  • All jobs queued for a specific printer can be seen by right-clicking on a printer icon and selecting View Print Queue. To see jobs queued on several printers, select the desired printers first before right-clicking. To see all jobs, right-click with no printers selected.

  • The job monitoring tool displays a message when a job has failed. If the printer has been stopped as a result, this is shown in the message. A Diagnose button starts the trouble-shooter.

  • The job monitoring tool now performs proxy authentication. A submitted job that requires authentication on the CUPS back-end now displays an authentication dialog so the job can proceed.

  • The print status dialog (for GTK+) gives more feedback about the status of printers, for example printers that are out of paper show a small warning emblem on their icon. Paused printers also show an emblem, and printers that are rejecting jobs are shown as grayed-out to signify they are not available.

5.4. Package notes

The following sections contain information regarding software packages that have undergone significant changes for Fedora 10. For easier access, they are generally organized using the same groups that are shown in the installation system.

5.4.1. GIMP

Fedora 10 includes version 2.6 of the GNU Image Manipulation Program.

This new version is designed to be backwards compatible, so existing third party plug-ins and scripts should continue to work -- with a minor caveat: The included Script-Fu Scheme interpreter doesn't accept variable definitions without an initial value anymore (which isn't compliant to the language standard). Scripts included in Fedora packages should not have this problem, but if you use scripts from other sources, please refer to the GIMP release notes for more details and how you can fix scripts that have this problem:


Additionally, the gimptool script that is used to build and install third party plug-ins and scripts has been moved from the gimp to the gimp-devel package. Install this package if you want to use gimptool.

The following legal information concerns some software in Fedora.

Portions Copyright (c) 2002-2007 Charlie Poole or Copyright (c) 2002-2004 James W. Newkirk, Michael C. Two, Alexei A. Vorontsov or Copyright (c) 2000-2002 Philip A. Craig

5.5. International language support

This section includes information on language support under Fedora.

5.5.1. Language coverage

Fedora features a variety of software that is translated in many languages. For a list of languages refer to the translation statistics for the Anaconda module, which is one of the core software applications in Fedora. Language support installation

To install langpacks and additional language support from the Languages group, run this command:

	su -c 'yum groupinstall

In the command above, <language> is one of assamese, bengali, chinese, gujarati, hindi, japanese, kannada, korean, malayalam, marathi, oriya, punjabi, sinhala, tamil, telegu, thai, and so on.

SCIM users upgrading from earlier releases of Fedora are strongly urged to install scim-bridge-gtk, which works well with third-party C++ applications linked against older versions of libstdc++. Transifex

Transifex is Fedora's online tool to facilitate contributing translations to projects hosted on remote and disparate version control systems. Many of the core packages use Transifex to receive translations from numerous contributors.


Through a combination of new web tools (http://translate.fedoraproject.org/), community growth, and better processes, translators can contribute directly to any upstream project through one translator-oriented web interface. Developers of projects with no existing translation community can easily reach out to Fedora's established community for translations. In turn, translators can reach out to numerous projects related to Fedora to easily contribute translations.


5.5.2. Fonts

Fonts for most languages are installed by default on the desktop to give good default language coverage. Default language for Han Unification

When not using an Asian locale in GTK-based applications, Chinese characters (that is, Chinese Hanzi, Japanese Kanji, or Korean Hanja) may render with a mixture of Chinese, Japanese, and Korean fonts depending on the text. This happens when Pango does not have sufficient context to know which language is being used. The current default font configuration seems to prefer Chinese fonts. If you normally want to use Japanese or Korean say, you can tell Pango to use it by default by setting the PANGO_LANGUAGE environment variable. For example ...


... tells Pango rendering to assume Japanese text when it has no other indications. Japanese

The fonts-japanese package has been renamed to japanese-bitmap-fonts. Khmer

Khmer OS Fonts khmeros-fonts have been added to Fedora for Khmer coverage in this release. Korean

The un-core-fonts packages replaces baekmuk-ttf-fonts as the new Hangul default fonts. Complete list of changes

All fonts changes are listed on their dedicated page:


[Tip] Fonts in Fedora Linux

The Fonts SIG (http://fedoraproject.org/wiki/Fonts_SIG) takes loving care of Fedora Linux fonts (http://fedoraproject.org/wiki/Fonts). Please join this special interest group if you are interested in creating, improving, packaging, or just suggesting a font. Any help is appreciated.






5.5.3. Input Methods

There is a new yum group called input-methods and Input Methods for many languages are now installed by default. This allows turning on the default input method system and immediately having the standard input methods for most languages available. It also brings normal installs in line with Fedora Live. im-chooser and imsettings

It is now possible to start and stop the use of Input Methods during runtime thanks to the imsettings framework. The GTK_IM_MODULE environment variable is no longer needed by default but can still be used to override the imsettings.

Input Methods only start by default on desktops running in an Asian locale. The current locale list is: as, bn, gu, hi, ja, kn, ko, ml, mr, ne, or, pa, si, ta, te, th, ur, vi, zh. Use im-chooser via System+Preferences+Personal+Input Method to enable or disable Input Method usage on your desktop. New ibus input method system

Fedora 10 includes ibus, a new input method system that has been developed to overcome some of the limitations of scim. It may become the default input method system in Fedora 11.


It already provides a number of input method engines and immodules:

  • ibus-anthy (Japanese)

  • ibus-chewing (Traditional Chinese)

  • ibus-gtk (GTK immodule)

  • ibus-hangul (Korean)

  • ibus-m17n (Indic and many other languages)

  • ibus-pinyin (Simplified Chinese)

  • ibus-qt (Qt immodule)

  • ibus-table (Chinese, etc)

We encourage people to install ibus, test it for their language, and report any problems.

5.5.4. Indic onscreen keyboard

Fedora 10 includes iok, an onscreen virtual keyboard for Indian languages, which allows input using Inscript keymap layouts and other 1:1 key mappings. For more information refer to the homepage:


5.5.5. Indic collation support

Fedora 10 includes sorting support for Indic languages. This support fixes listing and order of menus in these languages, representing them in sorted order and making it easy to find desired elements.

These languages are covered by this support:

  • Marathi

  • Hindi

  • Gujarati

  • Kashmiri

  • indhi

  • Maithili

  • Nepali

  • Konkani

  • Telugu

  • Kannada

  • Punjabi