Foresight Linux Desktop

What's new ?
Foresight Linux 1.4.2 is out !
Go download it !
What does it look like ?
Go to the screenshots

Foresight 1.4 Release Notes

[ german version ]

Foresight Linux 1.4 Release Notes

Foresight Linux is a Linux distribution for your desktop that features a rolling release schedule that always keeps your desktop up to date; a revolutionary package manager, Conary; the latest GNOME desktop environment and an innovative set of excellent, up to date packages. Foresight is proud to be the first distribution to ship with GNOME 2.20 and be the basis for the GNOME Live Media available at

These release notes highlight new features in Foresight Linux and GNOME 2.20. Also included is upgrading instructions, downloading instructions and getting help with Foresight Linux.

We hope you enjoy using Foresight Linux as much as we do. Because your desktop should be cool.

  1. Foresight Linux 1.4 Release notes
    1. What’s new
      1. GNOME 2.20 Features
      2. Conary
      3. Foresight GTK Theme
    2. Upgrading, Downloading and Installing
    3. Getting Help
    4. Reporting Bugs
    5. Contribute to Foresight Linux
    6. The future
    7. More information
    8. Credits

What’s new

Foresight Linux features a rolling release schedule, with major releases coinciding with GNOME‘s 6 month release schedule. Rolling releases offer Foresight’s users access to the latest software including new features and bug fixes.

GNOME 2.20 Features

Email and Calendar – Evolution

GNOME‘s email and groupware client, Evolution, has several new features.

Evolution now shows an icon in your panel’s notification area when you have new email. Note that, because this is currently only a plugin which is not yet fully integrated into the main preferences, you need to disable the plugin itself if you would like to disable this feature.

Moving your configuration and Email archive to a new computer is now much easier thanks to the new Backup/Restore feature.

Evolution’s calendar feature also has some useful improvements. The search interface allows advanced searches such as those already available for email and address book searches, and you can save your searches to run them again later. The Show drop-down now provides quick access to the next 7 day’s appointments and to active appointments.

Web Browser – Epiphany

GNOME‘s integrated web browser, Epiphany, has been subtly but significantly improved.

For instance, inline completion in the address bar is now more intuitive. When you use the cursor keys to select from the drop-down list, the current selection is shown immediately in the entry box, so it’s easier to see what address will be used when you press enter. This drop-down menu lists addresses from both your history and bookmarks, and it now shows the web site icons (favicons) for history items, as it already did for bookmark items.

By popular request, there’s a new “smooth scrolling” preference that makes it easier to see where to continue reading when scrolling large web pages. It is not enabled by default because several users have reported that it can cause eye strain.

Image Viewing – Eye of GNOME

GNOME‘s image viewer, eog, is now faster and more stable. The new image properties dialog provides easy access to basic information and metadata for your images, and now includes XMP (Extensible Metadata Platform) data that your camera or software might store in your image files, along with the existing EXIF data. This might include location, copyright information, license, and tags.

And you can now easily open an image in another application, such as the GIMP, by using the new “Open with…” menu item. When you’ve made your changes and saved the file then your picture will be updated in the image viewer automatically. This is also available in the new right-click menu in the image collection pane, at the bottom of the window, along with other useful actions. That image collection now has large vertical buttons at the left and right, making it easier to browse through your pictures.

Note taking – Tomboy

Tomboy, the GNOME note taking application, has also added some significant new features, the first of which is note synchronization. Tomboy can now use WebDAV or ssh to connect to a remote server and synchronize all the notes that a user has made. This allows for users who use multiple computers to keep one set of synchronized notes between all the machines. Simple conflict resolution between the server and the Tomboy clients ensures that there is no data loss in case of a note conflict.

Password Management

The GNOME Keyring system remembers your passwords for networked servers and web sites. In GNOME 2.20, the keyring is unlocked automatically when you login and when you unlock your screen, avoiding the need for an extra password prompt. You can now also change your keyring’s master password via the Encryption Preferences control panel, in the GNOME Keyring tab.

Power Management

GNOME‘s Power Manager now saves profile information about your batteries over time, to provide a far more accurate estimation of the time remaining, even with old worn-out batteries. It even knows about many battery models that have been recalled by their manufacturers.

Several parts of GNOME, such as the volume mixer have also been corrected to remove unnecessary polling, resulting in power savings.


Thanks to members of the worldwide GNOME Translation Project, GNOME 2.20 offers support for 50 languages (at least 80 percent of strings translated), including the user and administration manuals for many languages.


Conary has been update to version 1.1.95.

Foresight GTK Theme

The default GTK theme for Foresight has been refreshed with a brighter shade of green.

Upgrading , Download and install, and Download Live Media


Foresight users can upgrade to Foresight Linux 1.4 by using Conary. From a terminal, type the following command:

sudo conary updateall

Downloading and install on your computer

Foresight offers a number of different ways to test or try Foresight in the environment of your choice.

To download and install on your computer:

  • CD (2 CDs)

CD 1
CD 2

  • DVD


Downloading Live Media

These are all “Live” systems, meaning a full Foresight installation using various virtualization technologies, meaning you can load Foresight within your current operating system.

  • VMware

Run Foresight in a VMWare Player in a Linux virtual machine. Download the VMWare Player (, and the Foresight VWware Live Demo:

  • Foresight LiveCD

Run Foresight on a computer without installing on your hard drive. Download, burn to CD, and boot your computer.

  • Download:
  • QEMU and Parallels

Run Foresight on a virtual machine using QEMU on Linux or Parallels for Mac or Linux. Download the Foresight Live Demo raw hard disk image:


Getting Help

Help is available in many forms, and you can choose what you’re most comfortable with.

  • IRC: Visit the Foresight IRC channel, #foresight on Freenode, and ask questions. We have one of the most friendly IRC channels you’ll come across with everyone from users to developers reaching out to help answer questions.
  • Forums: Our forums continue to grow, and are a good source of information to check if a specific problem or question has come up before.
  • Wiki: Documentation on the wiki is growing on a daily basis, with updates often to the Frequently Asked Questions and other how-to’s to get you going with Foresight Linux.
  • Mailing Lists: General List (General discussion around Foresight Linux)

Contribute to Foresight Linux

Foresight Linux has a vibrant and firendly community, ready to assist any level of user. Participation is also welcome and encouraged! There are several different ways to engage with the Foresight community:

  • You can find us in #foresight on Foresight users can click the X-Chat GNOME icon in Applications -> Internet menu to access IRC.
  • Contribute to the Foresight Wiki.
  • With the upcoming launch of Foresight Linux 2.0, the Foresight Linux team is looking to develop a new website as well. We are looking for volunteers to help with both web design and web development. If interested, please stop by #foresight on Freenode or IRC or email [email protected].

The future

Foresight Linux 1.4 will be the last major release in the 1.0 branch. Developers are hard at work on Foresight 2.0, which hopes to release an alpha testing candidate in October.

Foresight Linux 2.0 will feature:

  • Built on an all new toolchain (GCC, etc)
  • PackageKit, a GUI for searching, installing and removing packages
  • Rootless user (Users will use “sudo”)
  • Compiz Fusion
  • A new group structure, with a formalized QA process
  • And much more…

We are actively seeking help with testing. Please watch the Foresight Newsletter for more information.

More Information

You can find more information about Foresight on our website at

If you’re new to using Foresight, a Getting Started with Foresight Linux Userguide is available on the Foresight Wiki at

Ask live questions in IRC on the Freenode network in the #foresight channel.

Subscribe to the Foresight Linux Newsletter in your feed reader, such as Liferea, at


Thanks to the GNOME marketing team for the GNOME release notes, the basis of the GNOME 2.20 Features above. Thanks to Ken VanDine, António Meireles and all the developers and users who contributed to this release.