The government of the autonomous region of Valencia (Spain) earlier this month made available the next version of Lliurex, a customisation of the Edubuntu Linux distribution. The distro is used on over 110,000 PCs in schools in the Valencia region, saving some 36 million euro over the past nine years, the government says.
The Lliurex distribution is managed through the Ministry of Finance and Public Administration. During installation, users can choose between several variants, tailored for example for use at home, in schools or by small and medium-sized enterprises.
In the announcement, Valencia quotes Sofia Bellés, Director General of the region's Information Technologies Department, as saying that the new version will ease maintenance and management of PC equipment in schools in the region. The software has also been optimised to save time in creating PC labs and is allowing better control over printing, reducing printing costs.
One of the new features is 'LliureX-Lab', an application that makes it possible to use several PCs in the classroom as an aid to language teaching. It allows teachers to use multimedia and interactive elements. Teachers can also share their desktops with students, and create group videoconferences, helping to review students' work.
Lliurex is one of several free software projects by the Spanish autonomous region of Valencia. LibreOffice, a free and open source suite of office productivity applications, is used on all the 120,000 desktop PCs of the administration, including schools and courts. Using LibreOffice will help save the administration 1.5 million euro per year, the government said last year.
Last week, the administration of Extremadura, another Spanish region, revamped the website of its Linex distribution, also used in schools. Linex is installed on about 70,000 PCs and laptops in schools in the region.