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Introduction

Mageia is a Free Software operating system of the GNU/Linux family, which can be installed on computers either as the main operating system, or as an alternative system to one or several pre-installed systems (dual boot). It is a community project supported by the non-profit Mageia.Org organization of elected contributors. Mageia is developed by and for its community of users, and is suitable for all kinds of users, from first-time GNU/Linux users to advanced developers or system administrators.

The latest stable release of the Mageia project, Mageia 7 was developed for over one year before. It will be supported with security and bug fix updates for 18 months, up to XX XXXXXry 2020.

Available installation media

Mageia has two distinct installation media types:

  • Classical ISOs (DVD 32-bit, DVD 64-bit), which use the DrakX traditional installer. The 32-bit and 64-bit DVD ISOs contain all supported locales, a great variety of packages to choose from (including most supported desktop environments) and all non-free drivers. The use of non-free packages can be disabled during the installation.
  • Live ISOs, which can be used to preview the distribution, are an installation alternative to place Mageia on your hard drive. Live media come with either the Plasma (64-bit), GNOME (64-bit) or Xfce (32 or 64-bit) desktop environments. The Live DVDs contain all supported locales and a preselection of software, making one of them a faster way to get started working with Mageia.

All ISO images can be burned to a DVD or dumped on a USB flash drive. Please note the file and device size limits as, for example, a 4 GB ISO image can be too big for some "nominally" 4 GB USB drives, due to their actual capacity being slightly lower than the marketed one.

For more information, please have a look at our installation media manual page.

You will find the different download options on the Mageia 7 download page: direct (FTP and HTTP) and BitTorrent downloads are available.

The Mageia online repositories

The software packages that are included in Mageia sit in three different repositories/media, depending on the type of license applied to each package. Here's an overview of those repositories:

  • Core: The Core repository includes packages with free-and-open-source software, i.e., packages licensed under a free-and-open-source license. The set of the "Core" media along with "Core Release" and "Core Updates" are enabled by default.
  • Nonfree: The Nonfree repository includes packages that are free-of-charge and free to redistribute, but that contain closed-source software (hence the name - Nonfree). For example, this repository includes NVIDIA and AMD/ATI proprietary graphics card drivers, firmware for various WiFi cards, etc.

The Nonfree media set is enabled by default but can be disabled, if necessary, during the installation.

  • Tainted: The Tainted repository includes packages released under a free license. The main criterion for placing packages in this repository is that they may infringe on patents and copyright laws in some countries, e.g., multimedia codecs needed to play various audio/video files; packages needed to play a commercial video DVD, etc.

The Tainted media set is added by default but not enabled by default, i.e., it's completely opt-in; so, check your local laws before using packages from this repository.

Please also note that on a 64-bit system, the 32-bit repositories are also added. If the Nonfree or Tainted 64-bit repositories are enabled, the corresponding 32-bit repositories should also be enabled (both in Release and Updates flavors), as they are needed by some packages, such as PlayOnLinux or Steam.

Release highlights

ARM support

The ARM (Advanced RISC (Reduced Instruction Set Computing) Machine) port rebooted during Mageia 6 days has been enhanced. The core is available for ARMv7 and aarch64. Support for ARMv5 has been dropped.

There is no traditional installer for now, and it is still considered experimental, but most of the distribution was built successfully on both architectures (see our ARM status overview for details). The plan is to provide installation images for popular ARM devices in the coming months. There is no ETA for those as of Mageia 7's release.

Major developments

Installation

Stage 1

  • Hardware support was extended to be able to start the installer on very recent computers
  • NFS support is done using system tools rather than our 15 years old forked NFS code, thus gaining support for NFSv4 & co...
  • Can install from a hard disk formatted in any supported fs rather than just btrfs, ext[2-4], ISO9660, JFS, ntfs, reiserfs, vfat & XFS
  • Added support for automatic installation off hard disk, either from ISO or from a distrib tree. Eg:
automatic=method:disk,disk:vdb,partition:vdb1,dir:/Mageia/Mga6.iso

Stage 2

  • Lots of bug fixes and improvements in the partitioner

Hardware support

  • New architectures:
    • ARM v5 support has been dropped
    • ARM v7 support has been enhanced.
    • Aarch64 support is added.

Localisation (l10n) / Internationalisation (i18n)

Manuals

  • The manuals for the traditional installer and for the Mageia Control Center have been (partially) translated into many more languages. See our official documentation
  • An English screenshot is used when a localized screenshot is unavailable for an HTML manual.
  • PDF and EPUB manuals are created only when more than half of the needed localized screenshots for those manuals are available.

Software translations

New translations have been added, while others were improved. Thank you to our dedicated community of translators for your reliable work.

Package management

New RPM

RPM has been upgraded to version 4.14.2.1.

RPM 4.14 offers key improvements to RPM as a whole, including:

  • Major revamp of debuginfo packages
  • Major rewrite of package/header reading and signature checking to utilize a single codepath
  • New SHA256 digests in packages: one for compressed payload alone and one for the header
  • Weak dependencies are taken into account when ordering
  • Support for a configurable mode to conserve SSD disks
  • Support for zstd compression

More information on changes from RPM 4.12 (which shipped with Mageia 5) to RPM 4.13.0.1 is available from the RPM website:

DNF: the alternative package manager

DNF (Dandified Yum) was introduced as an alternative to urpmi since Mageia 6.

DNF is a next-generation dependency resolver and high-level package management tool that traces its ancestry to two projects: Fedora's Yum (Yellowdog Updater, Modified) and openSUSE's SAT Solver (libsolv). DNF was forked from Yum several years ago in order to rewrite it to use the SAT Solver library from openSUSE and to massively restructure the codebase so that a sane API would be available for both extending DNF (via plugins and hooks) and building applications on top of it (such as graphical frontends and system lifecycle automation frameworks).

DNF comes with enhanced problem reporting, advanced tracking of weak dependencies, support for rich dependencies (see the RPM release notes for more on this), and more detailed transaction information while performing actions.

Mageia 7 ships with DNF v4.0.4.

With fresh installations via the classical and live media, DNF will be installed in parallel with urpmi. Depending on the method used to upgrade to Mageia 7, it may be necessary to install the dnf package to have it available.

For information on how to use DNF, please refer to the wiki page: Using DNF.

AppStream

Our RPM-MD (RPM MetaData) repositories (used by DNF and PackageKit) provide AppStream metadata. Tools like GNOME Software (GNOME Desktop, packaged as gnome-software) and Plasma Discover (KDE Plasma Desktop, packaged as discover) leverage AppStream metadata to provide a rich experience when searching, identifying, and managing applications.

AppStream is a cross-distribution effort for enhancing software repositories by standardizing software component metadata. It enables an application-centric view on package repositories and provides specifications for things needed to create user-friendly application centers.

See the AppStream website for more information: https://www.freedesktop.org/wiki/Distributions/AppStream/

perl-URPM and urpmi

  • Doc has been enhanced
  • urpmi/perl-URPM support a wider range of rpm versions, from rpm-4.11 to latest 4.14
  • Various bug fixes have been made.

Tools

Mageia Control Center

Other

MageiaWelcome

Isodumper

Isodumper, a tool to write ISO images on memory devices, comes with a new graphical interface, using libyui. Thus, Isodumper can use either GTK+ or Qt as a graphical library. You have to choose which one you want to use, either isodumper-gtk or isodumper-qt. Isodumper also comes with an ncurses interface, which can be used even if no X session is available. For an upgrade, only the ncurses version will be available. You have to complete the installation of the graphical flavor manually.

Docker

The Docker ecosystem has been augmented (based on the 18.06 version of the engine) with many additional tools such as docker-compose (orchestration with v3 support), containerd (daemon controlling runC), docker-registry (share of images), docker-machine (install docker on a remote system), and python-docker (python 2 and 3 libraries for engine API management).

LiveCD Tools

With Mageia 7, the LiveCD Tools have been rebased to the latest version (v26.0).

For information on how to use the LiveCD Tools, please refer to the wiki page: Using the LiveCD Tools

draklive2

The tool used to build the distribution Live ISOs has been revised to make it easier to use. Several examples are provided to help users build their own customised variants of the Live ISOs. There is now a GUI mode, based on the Mageia classical installer, to support package and locale selection.

For more information, please refer to the wiki page: draklive2

Base system

Kernel and hardware support

  • Mageia 7 ships with kernel 4.19.4.

All hardware managed by this kernel version is enabled. The kernel provides better graphics with Mesa 18.3.

  • Other kernel flavors are included, particularly, kernel-tmb and kernel-linus (a vanilla stock kernel without any extra patchset). See the wiki page Kernel_flavours for more information.

X Window System (X11)

Mageia 7 ships with X.Org 1.20.3.

AMD video drivers

  • Mageia 7 uses the free video drivers for AMD/ATI graphics cards, AMDGPU for newer cards and Radeon for older graphics cards. The free drivers also use the current Mesa 18.3, provided with Mageia 7. Compared with Mageia 6, hardware support has been increased and performance has been improved.
  • The proprietary AMDGPU-PRO driver currently only works with X.org 1.1xx, so it cannot be used in Mageia 7.
  • In case of a hybrid card, the solution exposed with the nouveau driver and the precommand DRI_PRIME=n is also working, at least with the radeon driver.

NVIDIA drivers

  • The current libre Nouveau drivers are provided. Their performance was greatly improved during Mageia's release cycle, and they might satisfy most owners of Nvidia hardware for casual usage.
  • The packages for the latest NVIDIA (long-lived branch, release 410.73 at the time of writing) proprietary drivers are provided in the nonfree media repositories. CUDA 9.1.85 is also included in the same nonfree repositories and can be used out of the box after proprietary drivers are correctly configured.
  • For older graphics cards, the proprietary NVIDIA drivers of the 340 and 390 branches are also still provided (390 being supported on x86_64 only).

Optimus laptops

Owners of NVIDIA Optimus laptops (integrated Intel graphics processor and discrete NVIDIA GPU) now have three ways to benefit from the power of their discrete GPU:

  • The free Nouveau drivers support Prime GPU offloading out of the box, which can be used via the DRI_PRIME=1 environment variable (unless the proprietary NVIDIA driver is in use by, e.g., mageia-prime). Refer to the Nouveau documentation to see how to configure Xorg to use NVIDIA Prime with DRI3.
  • As in Mageia 6, the Bumblebee package can be used to bridge the monitor to the NVIDIA GPU, allowing to access its processing power albeit with some overhead.
  • A new experimental tool named mageia-prime can be used to configure the NVIDIA Prime supported by recent Linux kernels and Xorg servers. It allows to fully switch to using the NVIDIA GPU without the overhead of Bumblebee, and is particularly suited for use with CUDA.

In all three cases, when configuring the graphics drivers, one must only configure the Intel card (at least in most Optimus configurations), as it is typically the only one physically connected to a monitor.

Bootloaders

Desktop environments

All the desktop environments mentioned below are included in Mageia's online repositories, and can be installed in parallel on any Mageia 7 system. Some of them are also included on the physical media, LiveDVDs and Classical DVDs, as specified in each section.

Plasma

Plasma, the new desktop environment of the KDE community, is provided in version 5.14 LTS.

If you want to try Plasma under Wayland, just install plasma-workspace-wayland, and it should appear in your favorite display manager's list of desktop environments.

The default display manager (DM) for the Plasma environment is SDDM, and replaces the now obsolete KDM.

Plasma has a specific 64-bit LiveDVD and it can also be installed from the Classical DVD ISO (traditional installer).

GNOME

GNOME 3.30 is provided. It now defaults to running on Wayland, but also provides an alternative "GNOME on Xorg" session.

For those preferring the GNOME 2 look and feel, GNOME 3 also provides a "Gnome Classic" session.

GNOME has a specific 64-bit LiveDVD and it can also be installed from the Classical DVD ISO (traditional installer).

LXDE

The very lightweight GTK+2-based desktop environment is still available and continues to receive improvements from upstream and our Mageia maintainer, even though its community has partly refocused on LXQt.

LXDE can be installed from the Classical DVD ISO (traditional installer).

Xfce

Xfce 4.13 is provided. It uses GTK+3 instead of GTK+2 as with Xfce 4.12.

Xfce has dedicated 32-bit and 64-bit LiveDVDs and it can also be installed from the Classical DVD ISO (traditional installer).

LXQt

LXQt 0.13.0 is provided.

LXQt cannot be installed out of the box from the Classical DVD ISO (traditional installer) due to space constraints on the ISOs. Online media need to be added to enable more options during the initial installation - this is explained in the installer documentation.

MATE

MATE 1.20.0 is provided.

MATE can be installed from the Classical DVD ISO (traditional installer). Due to DVD space considerations, some applications such as mate-screenshot (screenshot application) are not included in Classical DVD ISO. For a full MATE Desktop experience, users are suggested to install task-mate package after initial installation.

Cinnamon

Cinnamon 4.0 is provided.

Cinnamon can be installed from the Classical DVD ISO (traditional installer).

Enlightenment

The Enlightenment task package comes with E21.8 and Enlightenment Foundation Libraries (EFL). EFL now includes the previously separate Elementary, Evas-generic-loaders and Evas-generic-players packages. Also included are the connman connection manager for use with the E's Econnman UI, the Enlightenment authentication agent, and the EFL-based Terminology advanced terminal emulator and Ephoto 1.0, E's greatly improved image viewer. Mageia 7 also returns to having a Mageia-branded theme as the default.

As always, E does not automatically include the applications from /etc/xdg/autostart. After installation, go to Main menu > Settings > Startup Applications and add needed system processes (e.g., a policy kit authentication agent) and desired applications to be started on boot up. If your installation includes the ICE windows manager, you may choose between Polkit EFL and the MATE authentication polkit agents.

At the time of the release, there are a few known issues. First, the conflict between connman and Mageia's network center has not yet been resolved. Note that the network center is fully functional and netapplet does not need to be added to the startup applications. Second, the E17 themes still in the repository do not work with E21. Updated themes are in the pipeline. Third, E21's system tray, based on SNI notification, seems not to be fully functional and, since E20, has not supported Xembed notifications. If you need Xembed notifications, you can try installing the wmsystemtray.

Light window managers

You can also keep your Mageia 7 installation very light and we provide for this a plethora of small and efficient window managers. You can find afterstep, awesome, dwm, fluxbox, fvwm2, fvwm-crystal, i3, icewm, jwm, matchbox, openbox, pekwm, sugar, swm, and windowmaker. After installation, they appear in the login menu of your display manager.

IceWM

You will find now both "icewm" and "icewm-session" in the login menu of your display manager.

Beginning with IceWM 1.2.13, there is a new binary named "icewm-session". This binary helps you to handle all IceWM subparts (icewmbg, icewm, icewmtray, startup, and shutdown, started in this order). Therefore, you should use icewm-session to start a complete IceWM session. Choosing "Icewm" will only start the window manager itself.

Office apps

LibreOffice has been updated to 6.1. See official release notes for details.

Multimedia apps

Since the last patent expired in April, 2017, mp3 encoding is now available in the core media. Tainted medias are still needed for H.264, H.265/HEVC and AAC encoding.

Editors

  • Vim has been updated to 8.1
  • NeoVim 0.3.1 is also included

Games

In the Mageia community, our love for free software extends to open source games. A huge effort has been made during the Mageia 7 release cycle to package many new games, making Mageia 7 a very good platform for intensive and casual gamers alike. You can check Mageia App DB to see a list of all the new and updated games in Mageia 7. The following section will only give some cherry-picked examples for each game category.

Education

Mageia 7 comes with both old and new versions of gcompris. The old is based on the GTK+ toolkit and has more activities. The new uses Qt and brings some new activities. We were [1] among the donors in February, 2015, to improve the graphical interface of this very important project.

Software Development

Compilers and tools

GCC has been updated to 8.2.1, GDB to 8.2 and Valgrind to 3.14.0. LLVM has been updated to 7.0.0.

libvirt 4.8 and virt-manager 2.0

Firebird has been updated to 3.0.3

IPython has been updated to 6.3.

Most libraries were updated to recent stable versions (long-term support when available), such as Qt 5.11.2 and GTK+ 3.22.30. Tcl/Tk is at version 8.6.8.

Language stacks

Python 3 has been updated to 3.6.6, Python 2 to 2.7.15, and when possible, all Python modules are provided for Python 2 and Python 3.

Perl has been updated to 5.28.0. Perl modules are now installed either in /usr/share/per5 (pure perl modules) or /usr/lib(64)/perl5 (binary modules), like Fedora does. Perl version is no more included in the standard path.

Some important effort has been made to simplify the Java stack which was hard to maintain in Mageia 6.

Ruby has been updated to 2.5.3.

Rust is at version 1.30.0. It will be updated during Mageia 7's support life to follow new developments.

PHP has been updated from 5.6 to 7.3, which gives a performance improvement of about 50%.

Miscellaneous

Upgrading from Mageia 6

Notepad.png
Please note!
Please also read the known issues page, chapter "Upgrade Issues" and the page "From Mageia 6 to 7" to avoid Upgrade issues.


Upgrading from Mageia 6 is supported, and has been fine-tuned over the past few months, so it should work. But, as always, it is very advisable to back up any important data before upgrading and make sure you have made all updates of Mageia 6 (such as rpm and urpmi). Upgrading directly from Mageia 5 or another distribution is not supported.

If you want to upgrade a 64-bit system, it may contain 32-bit software. This is not a problem provided it does not include development libraries. You can identify these by the word "devel" in the name. To know if your system houses such libraries you can use the command:

rpm -qa --queryformat "%{NAME}-%{version}-%{RELEASE}-%{ARCH}\n" |grep i586 |grep devel

You must un-install these libraries before upgrading.

If 3rd party repositories, such as Google, have been added during the use of Mageia 6, be sure to make a backup/copy of /etc/urpmi/urpmi.cfg.

There are several ways to upgrade from Mageia 6:

Warning: Upgrading an existing install using any of the Live images is NOT supported due to the Live image being copied "as is" to the target system.

If you want to upgrade a previous Mageia installation which was NOT in UEFI, towards an UEFI-mode Mageia 7, you have to do a complete installation. Direct upgrade is not supported.

Upgrading via the Internet

The Mageia Update notification applet, Mageia Online, will notify you that a new Mageia release is available, and ask if you wish to upgrade. If you agree, the upgrade will be carried out from within your Mageia installation without any further steps being necessary.

If you have disabled the applet or it is not automatically running for some reason, you can upgrade manually either using the GUI (mgaonline) or the CLI (urpmi). Both methods are outlined below.

Fully update your system and check you have enough free space (at least 2 GB, depending on your configuration) before starting the upgrade.

Notepad.png
Please note!
Use a wired internet connection if possible, especially when you're using nonfree wlan drivers

Upgrading online, using mgaonline (GUI)

If Mageia Online does not display a blue icon in the system tray offering you the option to upgrade to the new Mageia release:

1. Make sure that your system is fully up-to-date by applying all available updates. https://doc.mageia.org/mcc/7/en/content/MageiaUpdate.html

2. In Mageia Control Center - Software Management - Configure Updates Frequency, make sure that the option "Check for newer default releases" is selected. https://doc.mageia.org/mcc/7/en/content/mgaapplet-config.html

3. Look in your home folder for a hidden directory, /.MgaOnline. If there is a file mgaonline in that directory, then delete that file.

After a reboot, the blue upgrade icon should appear when Mageia Online next checks for updates.

If Mageia 6 has reached EOL, you will see an orange icon and a pop-up warning that Mageia 6 is no longer supported.

Alternatively, you can launch the upgrade process by entering in a terminal:

su
mgaapplet-upgrade-helper --new_distro_version=7

It will notify you of the availability of the new Mageia 7 distribution, configure Mageia media sources and start the migration.

Upgrading online, using urpmi (CLI)

This method is useful when the root partition is encrypted as the booted system is already decrypting the partition.

There are multiple ways of getting a Command Line Interface (CLI).

The best method for performing an upgrade is to use run-level 3 so that the X server and graphical environment is not running.

Therefore, the upgrade should be cleaner using run-level 3 than using a terminal application as fewer programs are running which could potentially mess-up the upgrade.

Run-level 3 can be enabled by appending "3" to the kernel command line in grub's menu.lst file and then rebooting the system to get a login prompt.

It is recommended to run "script upgrade_log.txt" to capture the upgrade messages just in case a failure occurs. Use "exit" to quit out of "script".

Here are the general upgrade steps:

  • Remove all of the existing media sources on your system by executing this command as root in terminal:
su
urpmi.removemedia -a
  • Add the Mageia 7 online sources, either:
    • Using the MIRRORLIST method (which will select a mirror automatically based on your geographical location):
    su
    urpmi.addmedia --distrib --mirrorlist 'http://mirrors.mageia.org/api/mageia.7.$ARCH.list'
    (urpmi knows what to substitute for $ARCH)
    • Using a specific media mirror:
    su
    urpmi.addmedia --distrib <mirror_url>
    You can get the mirror_url using the Mageia mirrors web application.
  • Finally start upgrading:
su
urpmi --replacefiles --auto-update --auto
  • It's best to run the above command twice because in the first run some packages may be downloaded but not installed.
Notepad.png
Please note!

It is sometimes a good idea to test the upgrade before carrying it on.
With this command: urpmi --replacefiles --auto-update --auto --download-all --test all the packages are downloaded and the upgrade simulated only.

If the result is good, then upgrade for real with the command urpmi --replacefiles --auto-update --auto --download-all

Using the traditional Mageia 7 DVD to Upgrade

You can use the traditional (so, non-Live) Mageia 7 DVD to do clean installs, but also to upgrade from Mageia 6.

To upgrade:

  • Download the ISO from the Mageia download page and burn it on a DVD, or dump it on a USB stick. For more details, have a look at this Available installation media article.
  • Boot the DVD and make sure it booted in the same mode (legacy/BIOS or UEFI) as Mageia 6 was installed in.
  • Select "Install Mageia 7" from the GRUB (the bootloader) menu.
  • Select the upgrade option.

It is recommended that the online repositories be set up during the upgrade as the DVD only includes a subset of the complete set of Mageia online repositories. This is especially important if you use important 32-bit packages in an otherwise 64-bit install, because the 64-bit ISO will only contain the 64-bit packages, so the upgrade is likely to fail if you do not add online repositories.

Moreover, it is possible that a particular Mageia 5 installation may have received an update to a later version of software than that available on the ISO. When this happens, an upgrade may fail to complete. At the time the ISOs are tested, it is impossible to anticipate which Mageia 5 packages may be updated in the future, so offline upgrades (i.e., upgrades attempted without setting up the online repositories) are not supported.

On the first reboot, use the command 'urpmi --auto-update' to make sure all packages were updated.

Known issues

See the Errata page.

Obsoleted packages

get-skype is now obsolete, as the classic Skype versions for Linux ceased to be supported by Skype on 1 July 2017. There is a new web-based Skype version which may be installed directly from the Skype web site by selecting the rpm version here. Note that only 64-bit systems are supported.

Bug reporting

We have a bug tracker, but please read the Errata before reporting any bugs. If you don't already have a Mageia account, you can create one on https://identity.mageia.org/. If you don't know, see how to report a bug.

Device names changed for MMC devices

By default Mageia uses UUIDs for block-devices. It is possible that you deviated from the default and manually changed /etc/fstab to use device names for MMC block-devices. If so, you will have to change this from /dev/mmcblk0 to /dev/mmcblk1. This has changed in Linux kernel 4.14.