OpenSUSE 11.0 reviewed

Download squad has posted a thorough review of OpenSUSE 11.0. Previous versions of the Linux distro were plagued by thorny and confusing installations, but OpenSUSE 11.0 installs much more easily and cleanly. After a few standard configuration screens, the user has several options for admin accounts, disk partitions, dual-boot setups, and more. The installation of the OS files takes about 20 minutes from there, followed by a quick reboot and first boot, making for a highly customizable yet speedy install from start to finish.

The other major problem with previous versions was the inconsistent speed of their package handling system. In 11.0, though, a new command line app called Zypper makes installing updates, patches, and other packages much faster.

The final verdict is that OpenSUSE 11.0 has become a viable alternative to Ubuntu; the overall quality of the open source distro was never in question, but now that speed has gone from being its biggest deficiency to being one of its biggest strengths, we expect to see a lot more chameleons in the wild.

xB Browser for anonymous browsing

Download Squad highlighted the xB Browser today. It’s a product offered by XeroBank and is the successor to the TorPark project. The browser anonymizes your browsing using the Tor network and doesn’t remember passwords, sites visited, or any other personal information. Scripts and plugins are disallowed by default, since they could be used to identify you. Remember that Tor just anonymizes; you’re still at the mercy of the exit nodes when it comes to security.

That’s just the free version though. Subscribers to XeroBank have access to an anonymous mail server and VPN service. If you’re a subscriber your bowser session is tunneled through XeroBank’s pool of servers and not the Tor network. We think they should have maintained a separate product name since this distinction isn’t clear outside of the FAQ.