The Case of SchoolNet Namibia/Appendices/Appendix 2
Appendix 2: OpenLab/DireqLearn solutions in 2005
The following summarises the software and educational resources from DireqLearn included on the servers deployed to schools in 2005 with enhancements scheduled for later that year and in 2006. Some of the products listed here were subsequently replaced, most notably the operating system (with Edubuntu).
- OpenLab GNU/Linux 3.2.8: the previous stable version of OpenLab's GNU/Linux Distribution, complete with application and educational content and software. This version of OpenLab GNU/Linux was the most widely used GNU/Linux-based thin-client computing solution in use in Africa at the time, with over 300 sites in Namibia alone. Three adaptations of 3.2.8 were available for Community, Home and Education. As at September 2005, over 500 sites were recorded as running OpenLab 3.2.8 (and previous versions), and over 3000 downloads of the OpenLab Community Edition since April 2004. This product was later replaced.
- EDUpack 3.2.8: a multi-resource applications, software and content solution developed for the educational market, available for OpenLab GNU/Linux and other distributions. A lite- version is also available, without third-party vendor software. This product was later replaced by a number of other products.
- DireqConneq 3.2.8: a software applications, networking and management solution tailored to provide connectivity solutions for community access facilities (e.g. internet cafés) and back-office SMMEs. This product was also replaced.
- Customised Packs: these software solutions provided value-add and customised changes to the OpenLab suite of solutions for particular client requirements. Customised Packs have been developed for SchoolNet Namibia, SchoolNet Nigeria and others.
- OpenLab4 GNU/Linux: at the time this was the latest version of OpenLab GNU/Linux. Released in September 2005, it comprised LIVEcd (an entire Operating System with all the basic productivity applications, with the option to install), POWERcd (desktop add-ons and server services, including thin-client support) and KARMAcd (language packs and games, to 'bring balance to life'). LIVEcd was distributed free (via web downloads) or as a low-cost CD. Within three weeks of its official release, over 400 copies were downloaded, and 700 CDs distributed (at two conferences, to partners, and to selected organisations and individuals). The complete OpenLab CD set was available from partners or the online store. OpenLab was also available for re-branding and OEM provision with immediate availability (at the time).
- EDUcar DVD: a much improved and beefier EDUpack, with over 45 platform-neutral and GNU/Linux applications, a learning management solution (KEWL), WikiLite version (6Gb of data, without graphics), and the Gutenberg Library LITE version, containing over 600 books. This replaced the previous version of EDUpack. Availability was scheduled for 31 October 2005.
- eduCOMIX CD: a set of PDF comics from Strika Entertainment, covering Road Safety, teenage Issues (e.g. HIV/AIDS), and HaiTi!, the definitive OpenLab resource guide. Availability was scheduled for 31 October 2005.
- OpenWIKI DVDs or USB HDD: the complete current Wikipedia - 40Gb of data – the largest international and online encyclopedia. The must-have LAN resource. Availability was scheduled for 28 November 2005.
- OpenBOOK DVD: the complete Gutenberg Library, with over 10,000 books, indexed and searchable using an OpenLab developed search/index facility. Availability was scheduled for 28 November 2005.
- OpenConneq 4: a software applications, networking and management solution tailored to provide connectivity solutions for community access facilities (e.g. internet cafes) and back-office SMMEs. OpenConneq included proxy and firewall solutions. Availability was scheduled for 28 November 2005.
- OpenTRACKER: an on-line/ off-line server usage management tool. This software package fitted comfortably on OpenLab GNU/Linux to provide MRTG information and statistics regarding the content and application usage at individual sites (individual privacy ensured), to assist individual and corporate sites to assess facility usage, supporting Monitoring and Evaluation needs. Availability late 2005.
- eduWORLD USB HDD: A huge collection of educational materials, mostly browser-based, covering over 200GB of data & content from all over the world. Availability was scheduled for 30 January 2006.
- LearnThings CD: The 3rd party vendor software from LearnThings Africa - complete GCSE interactive materials. Availability was scheduled for 30 January 2006.
- Computers 4 Kids: 3rd Party vendor solution tying in to the Computers4Kids teaching/Learning solution, to run on OpenLab4. Availability was scheduled for 30 January 2006.
- eduKEWL 2006: A complete and integrated Learning Management System solution, populated with educational content, resources and links, and providing the functionality for on-line and real-time teaching and learning – the heart of a content server! Availability was scheduled for 13 March 2006.