The latest m23 release focuses on two main new features: For one, on support for Apache CloudStack® and on the other hand on the extended options to clone machines.
From this version on, m23 supports Apache CloudStack® as a platform for the m23 server and the m23 clients. This way, an m23 server, which can add further instances for the m23 clients, can now be installed on an Apache CloudStack® instance. The virtual clients can be created via the m23 interface and afterwards they can be installed and administered with m23, just like this was already possible with the integrated solution for VirtualBox. The Apache CloudStack® credentials can be entered directly into the m23 web interface. An extended version of the CloudStack® PHP Client is the basis of this new functionality.
As access to cloud systems typically™ is a remote access ;-), m23 now contains the option to install the X2Go server automatically on clients with Debian, Ubuntu and Linux Mint. Using an X2Go client for the local operating system, the virtual client can be accessed graphically. The desktop image of the m23 client is transferred to the X2Go client. Mouseclicks and keyboard strokes are transmitted in the other direction. In contrast to the X11 network protocol, X2Go offers an elaborate compression to be able to transmit the image information fast enough even using small bandwidth network connections.
A lot of time was invested into upgrading the cloning functionality. Now, you can also use Partclone instead of dd as file format for partition images. Contrary to dd, Partclone only saves the used sectors if the filesystem of the partition is supported. This way, the size of the image file is diminished, especially for big partitions and the process is far faster than saving every single sector. Similarly, the recovery of a client is sped up. We also added the automatical adaptation of the file system size to partitions bigger than the original one when using dd. Another development ensures that now also systems which have been integrated into m23 after their installation can be saved into image files.
Aside from these two big 'construction sites' there were, of course, many smaller ones. Many of our users will be delighted that the package search for Debian and its derivatives via the m23 interface has severely been sped up (feels like the factor of 100). During the update of the m23 server via the m23 interface, a new live status now shows the output of the update program. When installing a new m23 server, from this version on half of the free disk space is used as the maximum size of the Squid package cache. The page containing the server settings was completely reworked and extended by a help page. We also corrected client installation status bar, which now should really stop at 100% after the installation is completed ;-). The update interval was prolonged to five seconds (instead of every second as before). The creation of new local users was now separated into a single job for every distribution, which will soon allow to create additional users easier. In the background, the m23 API 2.0 was extended by everything necessary to add and boot a client.
Concerning bugfixes: As most corrections already found their way into the stable branch of m23 via updates, this time there is little to write about. New is the automatical deactivation of Plymouth, as this program led to crashes of the X-server at multiple times. In addition, the m23 administrator accounts can now be deleted, until only a single one remains (before, there wrongly had to remain two).
The mirror for the m23 server installation packages has changed (switch.dl.sourceforge.net contains an old version). Please use the current mirror as described in the Installation guide.
The new version is available as update via the m23 interface, via APT, as ISO to burn the m23 server installation CD as preinstalled virtual machine and as Raspberry Pi image file (the last three can be found in the download section).