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Red Hat: Announcing a Beta Release of Red Hat Linux: Severn

Jul 21, 2003, 15:30 (1 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Bill Nottingham)

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Thank you gentlemen. This is rumor control. Here are the facts. As some of you know, new Red Hat Linux Beta bits crash landed here at 1000 on the morning watch. There was one survivor. Two dead processes, and a daemon that was hopelessly smashed beyond repair. The survivor is called SEVERN.

It's that time again.
(Time to floss?)
(Time to make a gooky?)

No, it's time for a Red Hat Linux Beta, named SEVERN.

"I just want to say that I took a vow of stability. That also includes betas. We all took the vow. Now let me say, that I for one, do not appreciate Company policy allowing beta bits to freely intermingle..."

"Cheeky bastard, right sir?"

"What brother means to say is ... We view the presence of any outside OS, beta, as a violation of the stability, a potential break in the spiritual unity."

We are well aware of your feelings in this matter. You will be pleased to know that I have requested a testing team - Hopefully, they will be here inside of a few hours and evaluate it A.S.A.P.

As always, betas such as SEVERN are not intended for use on production environments. Use as such could lead to your machines being slaughtered like pigs by the dragon. Or just public laughter.

Problems with SEVERN should be reported via bugzilla, at:

What's its development status?

"It doesn't seem too horrendously in flux. Difficult at this moment to make a specific diagnosis."

Among other things, SEVERN has:

  • a new graphical boot
  • GCC 3.3
  • an updated 2.4.21 kernel
  • updated Evolution and Mozilla
  • and more!

Will it live?

"Yes, I should think so."

Look, none of us here is naive. It's in everybody's best interests if this beta doesn't come out into production until the testing team is through with it. And certainly not without the proper qualification and bug reports. Right? So we should all stick to our set routines and not get unduly agitated. Correct? All right. Thank you gentlemen.

Speaking of unduly agitated... there's lots of rumors going on about Red Hat Linux. We've been doing it for nearly ten years now, and in that time, there's been various changes. From rpp to RPM, from Red Hat Commercial Linux to Official Red Hat Linux, from 'install' to anaconda. And now, we're making another change.

We changed the rules. We said our Linux should be your Linux. Just as most of the software in Red Hat Linux is developed in an open fashion, so should Red Hat Linux itself; driven by those who develop, test, document, and translate. To accomplish this, we're opening up our process.

Now this is an evolution, not a revolution. The first steps will be moving much of our development discussions and schedules external, via mailing lists and other means, and including external developers in the process of making technical decisions. More will be done from there. Red Hat Linux will remain as it has been; a freely available general purpose operating system, released on the average every six months. For more information, see:

For discussion of SEVERN, send mail to:



in the subject line. You can leave the body empty. Or see:

As always, you can get SEVERN at, specifically:

Or the following mirrors:

North America:
United States:


South America:

Czech Republic:
United Kingdom:


One additional feature provided by the Linux community is the availability of SEVERN via BitTorrent.

RPMS for Red Hat Linux 7.3 through 9 of BitTorrent are available from:

Usage is simple: --url http://URL.torrent

Allow incoming TCP 6881 - 6889 to join the torrent swarm.

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