Muon Suite 1.3 alpha released

November 15, 2011

I am proud to announce the first alpha release for Muon Suite 1.3. The Muon Suite is a set of package management utilities for Debian-based Linux distributions built on KDE technologies. Packages for Kubuntu 11.10 “Oneiric Ocelot” are available in the QApt Experimental PPA.Here’s what’s new:

Muon Package Manager

  • Added a confirmation dialog when changes to a package require changes to other packages. This can be disabled from the Muon Package Manager’s settings dialog, if so desired.
  • Marking multiple packages at once has been made 3x faster than before.
  • Issues where a package couldn’t be unmarked for installation/upgrade since they were dependencies of another package marked for installation have been resolved.

Muon Software Center

  • The package name has been added to the version string on the application details page.
  • The Muon Software Center now warns you when removing an application will remove other packages.
  • The screenshot viewer popup dialog has been replaced with an in-window overlay on the application details page. It has a blurred, transparent background and animates in and out nicely.

We have to go deeper!

Muon Update Manager

The Muon Update Manager has seen a rewrite for Muon 1.3. Before, the Muon Update Manager was really just a stripped down version of the Muon Package Manager, without filters or package search. The new design for 1.3 was built with an update management workflow in mind, and is much more user-friendly and update-oriented.

Updates are split up into three sections: Application Updates for applications, System Updates for packages that aren’t applications (libraries and other boring stuff.), and security updates for updates that fix vulnerabilities in the software on your computer. This segregation allows users to easily check out what’s new with what they really care about (Changes in their applications), without having to wade through a bunch of library packages that they have no idea about in regards to what they are. Clicking on an item will cause a changelog viewer to expand with a smooth animation to display all Debian changelog entries since the version currently installed. Updates that require the installation of new packages/removal of other packages are not selected by default, but can be selected separately (along with a dialog showing the required changes.)

During update installation, a progress bar animates in showing download and installation progress. (Download speed is shown once APT has had enough time to make a sensible reading, it had not had time to make a sane estimate by the time I took the screenshot.)

The updater also provides a warning about starting an update while not connected to power. If the power becomes disconnected at any point before during the update, the warning will show up.The warning animates in nicely and will go away on its own when the power is plugged back in.

All in all, I feel that the Muon Update Manager provides a very smooth, slick, and easy-to-use interface for managing updates. Additionally, the Muon Update Manager can now be launched manually from the “System” section of Kickoff/Simple KMenu.

Changelogs

Detailed changelogs for LibQApt and Muon can be found here and here, respectively.


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