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Moblin
Moblin Linux 2.1.png
Screenshot of Moblin 2.1
Company / developer The Linux Foundation/Intel
OS family Linux
Source model Free Software/Open source
Latest stable release 2.1 / November 4, 2009
Package manager RPM Package Manager
Kernel type Monolithic kernel
License Various
Official Website moblin.org

Moblin, short for 'mobile Linux', is an open source operating system and application stack for Mobile Internet Devices (MIDs), netbooks, nettops and embedded devices.[1] Built around the Intel Atom processor, current builds are designed to minimize boot times and power consumption to create a netbook and MID-centric operating system. The netbook/desktop version of Moblin currently supports other chipsets based on the SSSE3 instruction set, such as the Core2 and some Celeron processors.

Commercial products built around Moblin 2 include a Foxconn netbook[2] and an InvenTech smartphone[3], both announced at Computex 2009. Acer has also announced the replacement of Linpus Linux with Moblin on their Acer Aspire netbooks.[4][5] For its mobile Internet device class smartphone LG GW990, LG Electronics chose Moblin OS 2.1[6][7]. More recently, Dell began accepting orders for its Ubuntu Moblin Remix, a Canonical Ltd. project that builds Moblin using a more full-featured Ubuntu distribution as base [8]. Mandriva has started to offer Moblin's v2 version to all Mandriva distribution and netbook owners. [9]

At the Consumer Electronics Show in January 2010, MSI and Novell announced the upcoming availability of SUSE Moblin preloaded on the MSI U135 netbook. Following the recent release of Moblin version 2.1, this marks the first original equipment manufacturer (OEM) to sell a fully-supported Intel Atom processor-based netbook running Moblin-based technology to consumers. It was demonstrated at both the MSI and Intel booths at the show.[10] In addition, Samsung showed four netbooks preloaded with SUSE Moblin.

At the Mobile World Congress in February 2010, it was announced that the Moblin project would be merging with Maemo to create the MeeGo mobile software platform.

Contents

History

Intel launched the Moblin.org site in July 2007 and significantly updated the site in April 2008 with the launch of the Intel Atom processor family at the Intel Developer Forum in Shanghai. A custom software development kit (SDK) is available on the site. The Moblin 2 OS was specifically designed to run on an Intel Atom processor in a netbook.[11]

In April 2009 Intel turned Moblin over to the Linux Foundation.[12][13] Development is now overseen by the Moblin Steering Committee, currently consisting of Imad Sousou, Arjan van de Ven, Matthew Allum, and Rusty Lynch. Except for Matthew Allum, founder of Intel's recently acquired OpenedHand,[14] all committee members are Intel employees.[15][16][17]

Moblin 2

At the Linux Collaboration Summit in April 2009, Intel demonstrated that the Moblin 2 alpha release can load major components of the stack, including the graphics system, and start up in mere seconds.[18] On May 19 2009, Imad Sousou announced the release of Moblin v2.0 beta for Netbooks and Nettops for developer testing.[19] Moblin 2's Core distribution is based on recent builds of Fedora, but other distributions to announce future support for the core Moblin stack include Linpus[4] and Ubuntu.[20][21]

This second major release marked a shift from the Xfce desktop environment to a custom-built GNOME Mobile UI based on OpenedHand's Clutter, a key piece of the Maemo graphical environment, built around the X Window System. The new UI also includes an integrated Gecko web browser.[22] The Register was impressed by the interface but noted the presence of "quite a few apparent bugs" and described the beta release of Moblin 2 as "closer to an alpha than a beta." [23].

Major components

  • Moblin Image Creator (MIC): allows developers to create a custom Linux file system for a device. Using MIC, a platform developer can choose which components from Moblin they want on their device, build the target file system, copy all the necessary files to a USB mass storage device and load the resulting files onto the target.
  • Kernel: platform-specific patches to the Linux kernel and various other device drivers.
  • UI Framework: screen interface and its underlying Clutter- and GTK-based framework.
  • Power Management Policy: extending and enhancing existing Linux power management capabilities
  • Browser: the Moblin browser is full-featured web browser based on Mozilla technologies with a finger-driven UI and MID UI integration.[citation needed] The Moblin browser supports key plug-ins like Adobe Flash.
  • Multimedia: audio and video playback and photo viewing including Helix or GStreamer multimedia frameworks with Universal Plug and Play support through the GUPnP library.
  • Linux Connection Manager: Internet connections that can be extended through plug-ins to support various wired or wireless technologies.

The Intel team was kind enough to acknowledge that Moblin v2.0 is built using the openSUSE Build Service.

Applications

Moblin 2's interface is designed for netbook and nettops and built on open source graphics technology, such as Clutter, DRI2, and KMS, which are designed around toolbars and panels available at the top of the screen.

  • Myzone is a variation on the desktop or home screen. It provides an overview of the user’s latest activities on the system. The screen is divided into three areas: recent activities, that is calendar and to-do items (left); recent files and websites, such as pictures viewed and websites visited (center); and recent social network updates, currently tracking Twitter and Last.fm (right).
  • A custom toolbar provides more personalized content on the screens it navigates to, than most toolbars do. Most menu items open screens that display the most recently accessed topical content. For example, the work zones panel manages, organizes, and switches to currently running applications and the media panel displays recently played and viewed media files.
  • The optimized browser is based on Mozilla browser technology revised into a Clutter shell.
  • A 'zoomable' media player allows going from viewing all media at once down to focusing on an individual picture, movie, or audio track. The media player detects and indexes media on external USB devices, as well as UPnP devices on a network.

See also

References

  1. ^ Moblin.org - Mobile Linux Internet Project
  2. ^ http://www.slashgear.com/foxconn-sz901-netbook-with-linpus-lite-moblin-v2-video-2945348/
  3. ^ http://www.midmoves.com/2009/06/mr-blurrycam-spots-a-mediaphone/
  4. ^ a b Engadget "Acer to join the Moblin Linux"
  5. ^ IDG News Service "Acer Will Use Moblin Linux Across Its Products"
  6. ^ "Atom-powered LG GW990 rocks the smartphone world". GSM Arena. GSMArena. 08 January, 2010. http://www.gsmarena.com/atompowered_lg_gw990_rocks_the_smartphone_world_-news-1369.php. Retrieved 10 January, 2010. 
  7. ^ "LG NEXT-GENERATION SMARTPHONE STARS IN INTEL CES KEYNOTE". LGE Press Release. LG Electronics. 07 January, 2010. http://www.lge.com/global/press-release/article/lg-next-generation-smartphone-stars-in-intel-ces-keynote.jsp. Retrieved 10 January, 2010. 
  8. ^ http://arstechnica.com/open-source/news/2009/09/moblin-2-arriving-via-dell-with-moblin-ubuntu-remix-netbook.ars
  9. ^ http://www.mandriva.com/enterprise/en/company/press/mandriva-mini-based-on-moblin-version-2-technology-is-now-available
  10. ^ http://www.novell.com/news/press/msi-ships-first-netbook-powered-by-suse-moblin-from-novell/
  11. ^ Ganapati, Priya. "Intel Pushes New Operating System For Netbooks", 2009.
  12. ^ http://www.linuxworld.com/news/2009/040109-intel-to-turn-moblin-over.html
  13. ^ http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/04/01/intel-hands-over-the-keys-to-its-linux-operating-system/
  14. ^ http://www.freesoftwaremagazine.com/columns/interview_matthew_allum_openedhand
  15. ^ http://en.oreilly.com/oscon2009/public/schedule/speaker/26479
  16. ^ http://www.linuxjournal.com/content/interview-arjan-van-de-ven-intel-and-lesswattsorg
  17. ^ http://conferences.oreillynet.com/cs/os2007/view/e_spkr/3904
  18. ^ Intel aims for 2-second boot time with Moblin Linux platform
  19. ^ Moblin v2.0 beta for Netbooks and Nettops - It's here...
  20. ^ Spec of Ubuntu Moblin Remix
  21. ^ Canonical announces support for Moblin v2
  22. ^ Hands-on: Intel brings rich UI to Moblin Linux platform Ars Technica
  23. ^ The best netbook-friendly Linux distros by Andrew Miller of The Register. June 9, 2009

External links

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