OpenSUSE Says Farewell to SaX2

Dec 03, 2009

When the graphical interface setup under openSUSE didn't work just right, one could always run SaX2 to correct it. Now Novell wants to retire the tool.

Linux users of only a few years may not be familiar with the SUSE Advanced X setup tool, known as SaX2. However, even for inexperienced users, it was handy in configuring the desktop, touchscreen, mouse and keyboard. At least that was its main function. Now Novell developers have removed the module as a static configuration option from openSUSE 11.2, as they decided that the X server from X.org has evolved enough to do this job automatically. So SaX2 is to be phased out completely.

In a thread in the openSUSE mailing list with the title "The Future of SaX2," developer Egbert Eich lays out the reasons behind the move. In most cases the desktop setup occurred automatically without a problem, therefore maintaining SaX2 to keep up with X Window System development had been a struggle. Bugs that were fixed for SaX2 could just as easily have been fixed in the X server. Novell therefore decided to stop investing in SaX2 development and invest it in X server improvements instead.

The case is settled for Novell, but Eich warrants that there's still a ray of hope for SaX2. The answer is the community. Because complete software freedom exists for the tool, as it does for all openSUSE components, the community can continue to build openSUSE packages with enhancements to SaX2. As Eich says, "the sky's the limit!"

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Comments

  • SAx2 - SuSE - Novell

    Well,

    SuSE under Novell is no SuSE anymore. Novell is striping part by part ergonomic and inferiority of SuSE.
    build by Germans. This is a next factor which proved it.
  • I miss Sax-too

    hi. after the first install of opensuse 11.2 (x64 flavor), immediately ran into a black screen with a non-blinking cursor. for a while, i thought i must be a faulty installation, so i tried repairing it (3x) with repair options from the dvd boot menu - with no luck - as well as automatic and manual repairs from the regular installation option.

    Then i resorted to another clean install with the same problem - black screen with a non-blinking cursor at top. Worth mentioning here is that the computer would completely stop functioning at this point no matter what i tried (ctrl+alt+1~7, ctrl+alt+del). Though i noticed pressing the power button produced a small noticeable hard-disk activity which is of no use.

    After all this frustration with a brand-new dvd-download, i finally tried an init-3 through the boot menu, got into test-only and tried playing with Sax2 (--reinit, etcetra) with the same issue. Googled it and found no workaround.

    Two things worth noticing here: 1) guys at openSuse want you to use the search engines every now and then. and 2) removing support for Sax2 is not a good idea at all if the X server is not intelligent enough to 'automagically' support a not-so-obsolete graphics hardware - I have an ATI Radeon x1950pro (pcie) installed and I have been an openSuse fan since release 10.2 when i first gave it a shot - both 32-bit and 64-bit flavors with least frustrations each time trying to get the GUI to work.

    Hope they offer an easy workaround this time.

    (AliF)
  • If no SaX2

    If there is no SaX2, what are they proposing will be the tool of last resort for those who find that the X server will not configure itself. Is it a return to hand-written xorg.conf files? How very user-friendly.
  • Thank goodness I HAD SAX2

    The weekend that OpenSuSE 11.2 came out, I installed it on my primary computer, which has a new 785G board in it. Although it had a few glitches in the distro (which I assume will be worked outI recently tried installing the AMD/ATI driver for my 785G board to improve the graphics. The end result was a black screen. Thank goodness SAX was still in the distro. I did the Ctrl-Alt-F1 to get to the CLI, logged in as root, ran "init 3", then "sax2 -r". I was able to "fix" the problem easily enough, and once I finised, "init 5" allowed me to re-login as myself and continue. It was fast and simple to fix that way, and I was back with a screen within 5 minutes. (Oh, and I got rid of the darn proprietary driver!)
    I guess it's okay to de-emphasize it, but PLEASE don't drop it out completely! If I didn't have SAX2, I'd have been going through a lot more effort, and stepping on more new mines than I really have the time or inclination to do.
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