Some of the major changes for RC1 that I can think of directly:
- The update to GNOME 2.12 (of those packages that were released in time, the rest goes into RC2). Fortunately the GNOME team had a hard code freeze already last week, so that beta4 contained all the code changes, now only documentation and localization updates together with critical bugs should come in for the RC. The two packages that did not seem follow this rule - and did not pass our internal testing - were libxml2 and libxslt.
- Xen was updated and works under RC1.
- We went back to installing GRUB in the MBR by default, there were too many broken BIOSes for now. We think we fixed all the reported problems but nevertheless for some systems installing in the MBR might be the only solution. For example, on Adrian's laptop the BIOS made the first partition always active and two active partitions did not work with the installed MBR - and neither would booting from the swap partition which is the first partition.
- All translations went in - these were done by a number of volunteers and contractors (only exception: We missed to put in the non-English slideshow). I'd like to say a special thanks to the volunteers for their excellent work!
- Hardware handling and hotplug was improved.
- My SATA DVD-burner should work now (at least reading of CDs does work indeed).
- libvorbis was fixed. The libvorbis team suspected a GCC4 bug but it was a bug in their code where they violated the strict ISO C aliasing rules. GCC did some agressive optimizations that were what the authors intented. I'm glad that our GCC team could figure this out and that it wasn't a GCC bug (ok, for now we still use -fno-strict-aliasing for the package but we know why it works).
- A number of packages were updated like Amarok and FreeCiv.
- The laptop support was improved in the areas powersaving and wireless support.