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Updated: 1 hour 15 min ago

Wednesday's security advisories

Wednesday 22nd of February 2017 05:10:06 PM

CentOS has updated firefox (C7; C6; C5: multiple vulnerabilities).

Debian has updated tomcat7 (regression in previous update) and tomcat8 (regression in previous update).

Gentoo has updated archive-tar-minitar (file overwrites) and ghostscript-gpl (multiple vulnerabilities).

openSUSE has updated profanity (42.2, 42.1: user impersonation).

SUSE has updated php7 (SLE12: multiple vulnerabilities).

Ubuntu has updated kernel (14.04: three vulnerabilities), linux, linux-raspi2 (16.10: three vulnerabilities), linux, linux-snapdragon (16.04: multiple vulnerabilities), linux, linux-ti-omap4 (12.04: three vulnerabilities), linux-lts-trusty (12.04: three vulnerabilities), linux-lts-xenial (14.04: multiple vulnerabilities), and tcpdump (multiple vulnerabilities).

[$] Principled free-software license enforcement

Wednesday 22nd of February 2017 04:47:48 PM
Issues of when and how to enforce free-software licenses, and who should do it, have been on some people's minds recently, and Richard Fontana from Red Hat decided to continue the discussion at FOSDEM. This was a fairly lawyerly talk; phrases like "alleged violation" and "I think that..." were scattered throughout it to a degree not normally found in talks by developers. This is because Fontana is a lawyer at Red Hat, and he was talking about ideas which, while they are not official Red Hat positions, were developed following discussions between him and other members of the legal team at Red Hat.

Subscribers can click below for the full report of the talk by guest author Tom Yates.

A draft glibc year-2038 design document

Wednesday 22nd of February 2017 03:56:06 PM
The year-2038 apocalypse is now just under 21 years away. For those who are curious about how the GNU C Library plans to deal with this problem, there is a draft design document out for review. "In order to avoid duplicating APIs for 32-bit and 64-bit time, glibc will provide either one but not both for a given application; the application code will have to choose between 32-bit or 64-bit time support, and the same set of symbols (e.g. time_t or clock_gettime) will be provided in both cases."

Linux Plumbers Conference call for microconferences

Wednesday 22nd of February 2017 02:32:19 PM
The 2017 Linux Plumbers Conference is set for September 13 to 15 in Los Angeles, California. The core of this event is the microconferences, focused gatherings that address a specific range of problems. The call for microconferences for the 2017 event is now out. "Good microconferences result in solutions to these problems and concerns, while the best microconferences result in patches that implement those solutions."

The "Upspin" global filesystem

Tuesday 21st of February 2017 10:32:57 PM
A group of Google developers has announced the release of (an early version of) a new global filesystem called "Upspin". "Upspin looks a bit like a global file system, but its real contribution is a set of interfaces, protocols, and components from which an information management system can be built, with properties such as security and access control suited to a modern, networked world. Upspin is not an 'app' or a web service, but rather a suite of software components, intended to run in the network and on devices connected to it, that together provide a secure, modern information storage and sharing network."

Internet-enable your microcontroller projects for under $6 with ESP8266 (

Tuesday 21st of February 2017 08:16:01 PM
David Egts takes a look at the ESP8266 WiFi chip, on "What is the ESP8266 exactly? The ESP8266 is a 32-bit RISC CPU made by Espressif Systems. Its clock runs at 80MHz, and it supports up to 16MB of flash RAM for program storage. These specifications are quite impressive when compared to an Arduino UNO, which runs at 16MHz, only has 32KB of RAM, and is several times more expensive. Another big difference is that the ESP8266 requires only 3.3 volts of power while most Arduinos require 5 volts. Keep this voltage difference in mind when extending your existing Arduino knowledge and projects to the ESP8266 to prevent magic smoke."

Security updates for Tuesday

Tuesday 21st of February 2017 06:02:19 PM

CentOS has updated openssl (C7; C6: two vulnerabilities).

Debian-LTS has updated gtk-vnc (two vulnerabilities).

Fedora has updated kernel (F25; F24: two vulnerabilities), mingw-gstreamer1 (F25: denial of service), mingw-gstreamer1-plugins-bad-free (F25: two vulnerabilities), mingw-gstreamer1-plugins-base (F25: multiple vulnerabilities), mingw-gstreamer1-plugins-good (F25: multiple vulnerabilities), mingw-wavpack (F25; F24: multiple vulnerabilities), and xen (F25: denial of service).

Gentoo has updated adobe-flash (multiple vulnerabilities), dropbear (multiple vulnerabilities), firefox (multiple vulnerabilities), libass (multiple vulnerabilities), libvncserver (two vulnerabilities), mariadb (multiple vulnerabilities), mysql (multiple vulnerabilities), nagios-core (multiple vulnerabilities, one from 2008), ocaml (information leak), opus (code execution), php (multiple vulnerabilities), pycrypto (denial of service), qemu (multiple vulnerabilities), redis (three vulnerabilities), tcpdump (multiple vulnerabilities), thunderbird (multiple vulnerabilities), tigervnc (code execution), and xen (code execution).

Mageia has updated ruby-archive-tar-minitar (file overwrites).

openSUSE has updated libplist (42.1: multiple vulnerabilities) and nodejs (42.1: three vulnerabilities).

Oracle has updated openssl (OL7; OL6: two vulnerabilities).

SUSE has updated flash-player (SLE12-SP1: multiple vulnerabilities).

Ubuntu has updated gtk-vnc (14.04, 12.04: two vulnerabilities), spice (16.10, 16.04, 14.04: two vulnerabilities), and tomcat6, tomcat7 (14.04, 12.04: denial of service).

The return of the Linux kernel podcast

Tuesday 21st of February 2017 03:18:22 AM
After taking a few years off, Jon Masters is restarting his kernel podcast. "In this week’s edition: Linus Torvalds announces Linux 4.10, Alan Tull updates his FPGA manager framework, and Intel’s latest 5-level paging patch series is posted for review. We will have this, and a summary of ongoing development in the first of the newly revived Linux Kernel Podcast."

Monday's security advisories

Monday 20th of February 2017 07:13:16 PM

Debian-LTS has updated gst-plugins-bad0.10 (two vulnerabilities), gst-plugins-base0.10 (two vulnerabilities), gst-plugins-good0.10 (two vulnerabilities), gst-plugins-ugly0.10 (two vulnerabilities), and wireshark (denial of service).

Fedora has updated bind (F24: denial of service), python-peewee (F25; F24: largely unspecified), sshrc (F25: unspecified), and zoneminder (F25; F24: information disclosure).

Gentoo has updated glibc (multiple vulnerabilities, most from 2014 and 2015), mupdf (three vulnerabilities), and ntfs3g (privilege escalation).

Mageia has updated gnutls (multiple vulnerabilities), gtk-vnc (two vulnerabilities), iceape (multiple vulnerabilities), jitsi (user spoofing), libarchive (denial of service), libgd (multiple vulnerabilities), lynx (URL spoofing), mariadb (multiple vulnerabilities, almost all unspecified), netpbm (multiple vulnerabilities), openjpeg2 (multiple vulnerabilities), tomcat (information disclosure), and viewvc (cross-site scripting).

openSUSE has updated chromium (42.2, 42.1: multiple vulnerabilities), firebird (42.2, 42.1: access restriction bypass), java-1_7_0-openjdk (42.2, 42.1: multiple vulnerabilities), mcabber (42.2: user spoofing), mupdf (42.2, 42.1: multiple vulnerabilities), open-vm-tools (42.1: CVE with no description from 2015), opus (42.2, 42.1: code execution), tiff (42.2, 42.1: code execution), and vim (42.1: code execution).

Red Hat has updated openssl (RHEL7&6: two vulnerabilities).

Scientific Linux has updated openssl (SL7&6: two vulnerabilities).

SUSE has updated kernel (SLE12: denial of service) and kernel (SLE11: multiple vulnerabilities, some from 2004, 2012, and 2015).

Ubuntu has updated python-crypto (16.10, 16.04, 14.04: regression in previous update).

The 4.10 kernel has been released

Sunday 19th of February 2017 11:23:05 PM
Linus has released the 4.10 kernel. "On the whole, 4.10 didn't end up as small as it initially looked. After the huge release that was 4.9, I expected things to be pretty quiet, but it ended up very much a fairly average release by modern kernel standards." Features of note in this release include some long-awaited writeback throttling work, the ability to attach a BPF network filter to a control group, encryption in UBIFS filesystems, Intel cache-allocation technology support, and more. See the KernelNewbies 4.10 page for lots of details.

Stable kernels 4.9.11 and 4.4.50

Sunday 19th of February 2017 04:56:55 PM
The 4.9.11 and 4.4.50 stable kernel updates are available; each contains the usual set of important fixes.

SystemTap 3.1 has been released

Friday 17th of February 2017 09:43:55 PM
The SystemTap team has announced the 3.1 release of the tool that allows extracting performance and debugging information at runtime from the kernel as well as various user-space programs. New features include support for adding probes to Python 2 and 3 functions, Java probes now convert all parameters to strings before passing them to probes, a new @variance() statistical operator has been added, new sample scripts have been added, and more.

Security updates for Friday

Friday 17th of February 2017 03:59:18 PM

Arch Linux has updated diffoscope (file overwrite), flashplugin (multiple vulnerabilities), and lib32-flashplugin (multiple vulnerabilities).

Debian has updated spice (two vulnerabilities).

Debian-LTS has updated spice (two vulnerabilities).

Gentoo has updated imagemagick (multiple vulnerabilities).

openSUSE has updated expat (42.2, 42.1: two vulnerabilities, one from 2012), guile (42.2, 42.1: information disclosure), libgit2 (42.2: multiple vulnerabilities), mariadb (42.2, 42.1: multiple vulnerabilities), mysql-community-server (42.1: multiple vulnerabilities), openssl (42.2; 42.1: multiple vulnerabilities), and postfixadmin (42.2, 42.1: security bypass).

SUSE has updated java-1_7_0-openjdk (SLE12: multiple vulnerabilities).

Ubuntu has updated bind9 (denial of service), python-crypto (16.10, 16.04, 14.04: code execution), and webkit2gtk (16.10, 16.04: multiple vulnerabilities).

Go 1.8 released

Thursday 16th of February 2017 11:08:19 PM
The Go team has announced the release of Go 1.8. "The compiler back end introduced in Go 1.7 for 64-bit x86 is now used on all architectures, and those architectures should see significant performance improvements. For instance, the CPU time required by our benchmark programs was reduced by 20-30% on 32-bit ARM systems. There are also some modest performance improvements in this release for 64-bit x86 systems. The compiler and linker have been made faster. Compile times should be improved by about 15% over Go 1.7. There is still more work to be done in this area: expect faster compilation speeds in future releases." See the release notes for more details.

Thursday's security updates

Thursday 16th of February 2017 03:18:35 PM

Arch Linux has updated gvim (code execution) and vim (code execution).

Red Hat has updated openstack-cinder, openstack-glance, and openstack-nova (OSP7.0: denial of service from 2015).

SUSE has updated kernel (SLE12: many vulnerabilities, some from 2015 and 2014).

Ubuntu has updated libgc (code execution) and openjdk-6 (12.04: multiple vulnerabilities).

Top 10 FOSS legal stories in 2016 (

Thursday 16th of February 2017 01:47:16 PM
Mark Radcliffe surveys the most important legal issues surrounding free and open-source software on "The challenge for the Linux community is to decide when to bring litigation to enforce the GPLv2. What it means in many situations is that to be compliant is currently left to individual contributors rather than being based on a set of community norms. As Theodore Ts'o noted, this issue really concerns project governance. Although permitting individual contributors to make these decisions may be the Platonic ideal, the tradeoff is ambiguity for users trying to be compliant as well as the potential for rogue members of the community (like McHardy) to create problems. The members of the Linux community and other FOSS communities need to consider how they can best assist the members of their community to understand what compliance means and to determine when litigation might be useful in furtherance of the community's goals."

[$] Weekly Edition for February 16, 2017

Thursday 16th of February 2017 12:38:06 AM
The Weekly Edition for February 16, 2017 is available.

TensorFlow 1.0 released

Wednesday 15th of February 2017 09:19:20 PM
The TensorFlow 1.0 release is available, bringing an API stability guarantee to this machine-learning library from Google. "TensorFlow 1.0 introduces a high-level API for TensorFlow, with tf.layers, tf.metrics, and tf.losses modules. We've also announced the inclusion of a new tf.keras module that provides full compatibility with Keras, another popular high-level neural networks library."

[$] This is why I drink: a discussion of Fedora's legal state

Wednesday 15th of February 2017 05:40:31 PM
Tom Callaway seems to be a very nice person who has been overclocked to about 140% normal human speed. In only 20 minutes he gave an interesting and highly-amusing talk that could have filled a 45-minute slot on the legal principles that underpin Fedora, how they got that way, and how they work out in practice.

Subscribers can click below for the full report from FOSDEM by guest author Tom Yates.

Stable kernel updates

Wednesday 15th of February 2017 05:31:13 PM
Greg KH has released stable kernels 4.9.10 and 4.4.49. Both contain the usual set of important fixes.

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