Mageia Linux, the community fork-edition of Mandriva Linux, has announced the second beta edition of its first ever Linux operating system release.
The release, available for download here is the last ‘test’ release before the split-away group releases its final Linux distribution.
The development has come six months after most of the senior developers of Mandriva Linux, arguably the most user-friendly flavor of the Linux distribution, left the company.
Mandriva, based in France, had been forced to shrink its operations in France and relocate its development activities to South America after running into financial problems.
Mandriva, which started out as Mandrake Linux several years ago, was known as the most user-friendly Linux distribution, but ran into business problems around 2-3 years ago.
“We do not trust the plans of Mandriva SA anymore and we don’t think the company (or any company) is a safe host for such a project,” the group of lead developers had announced in September last year, stating that they would come out with their community version of Linux.
Unlike Windows and OSX, Linux code is now owned by any particular person or company, even when it is sold as a branded product like Mandriva or Red Hat. As a result, departing employees often start a competing flavor which can also be downloaded and installed by users free of cost.