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LWN.net is a comprehensive source of news and opinions from and about the Linux community. This is the main LWN.net feed, listing all articles which are posted to the site front page.
Updated: 12 min 49 sec ago

Firefox 63 blocks tracking cookies, offers a VPN when you need one (Ars Technica)

4 hours 44 min ago
Ars technica takes a look at the Enhanced Tracking Protection (ETP) feature in Firefox 63. "Firefox has long had the ability to block all third-party cookies, but this is a crude solution, and many sites will break if all third-party cookies are prohibited. The new EPT option works as a more selective block on tracking cookies; third-party cookies still work in general, but those that are known to belong to tracking companies are blocked. For the most part, sites will retain their full functionality, just without undermining privacy at the same time. At least for now, however, Mozilla is defaulting this feature to off, so the company can get a better idea of the impact it has on the Web. In testing, the company has found the occasional site that breaks when tracking cookies are blocked. Over the next few months, Firefox developers will get a better picture of just how much breaks, and, if it's not too severe, the plan is to block trackers by default starting in early 2019." The article also mentions a second privacy-related feature; the offer of a subscription to the ProtonVPN service.

The Firefox 63 release notes contain other details.

Security updates for Tuesday

8 hours 57 sec ago
Security updates have been issued by CentOS (java-1.8.0-openjdk), Fedora (mosquitto), openSUSE (binutils, clamav, exiv2, fuse, haproxy, singularity, and zziplib), Slackware (firefox), SUSE (apache-pdfbox, net-snmp, pam_pkcs11, postgresql94, rpm, tiff, and wireshark), and Ubuntu (kernel, libssh, linux, linux-aws, linux-kvm, linux-raspi2, linux-snapdragon, linux-azure, linux-lts-trusty, linux-lts-xenial, linux-aws, net-snmp, paramiko, requests, and texlive-bin).

Linux Foundation Technical Advisory Board election call for nominations

12 hours 48 min ago
The Linux Foundation's Technical Advisory Board is chosen by a vote at the Kernel Summit each year; this year, that will happen during the Linux Plumbers Conference in November. The call for nominations to the board has gone out; it remains open until the voting happens. "The TAB advises the Foundation on kernel-related matters, helps member companies learn to work with the community, and works to resolve community-related problems before they get out of hand. We're also working with kernel maintainers to help refine the new code of conduct, and serving as the initial point of contact for code of conduct issues."

[$] The code of conduct at the Maintainers Summit

15 hours 13 min ago
The 2018 Kernel Maintainers Summit convened in Edinburgh, UK on October 22 with a number of things to discuss, but the top subject on most minds was the recently (and hastily) adopted code of conduct. Linus Torvalds made his reentry into the kernel community with a discussion of how we got to the current state of affairs, and the assembled maintainers had a relatively good-natured discussion on how this situation came about and where things can be expected to go from here.

How to do Samba: Nicely

Monday 22nd of October 2018 07:46:39 PM
The Samba team has announced a set of guidelines for the project. "Please note this is not a "Code of Conduct" as such, but a set of advisory guidelines we'd like people to follow, with a way for people (privately if they prefer) to raise issues if they see them. I hope everyone will find this document acceptable as a way for us to agree on how we want our community to be a welcoming one for all members."

Announcing the GNU Kind Communication Guidelines

Monday 22nd of October 2018 05:08:04 PM
Richard Stallman has released an initial version of the GNU Kind Communications Guidelines, and asks all GNU contributors to make their best efforts to follow these guidelines in GNU Project discussions. "The idea of the GNU Kind Communication Guidelines is to start guiding people towards kinder communication at a point well before one would even think of saying, "You are breaking the rules." The way we do this, rather than ordering people to be kind or else, is try to help people learn to make their communication more kind. I hope that kind communication guidelines will provide a kinder and less strict way of leading a project's discussions to be calmer, more welcoming to all participants of good will, and more effective."

Security updates for Monday

Monday 22nd of October 2018 03:27:07 PM
Security updates have been issued by Arch Linux (thunderbird), Debian (drupal7, exiv2, and ghostscript), Fedora (apache-commons-compress, git, libssh, and patch), Mageia (389-ds-base, calibre, clamav, docker, ghostscript, glib2.0, libtiff, mgetty, php-smarty, rust, tcpflow, and vlc), openSUSE (Chromium, icinga, and libssh), and SUSE (clamav, fuse, GraphicsMagick, haproxy, libssh, thunderbird, tomcat, udisks2, and Xerces-c).

The 4.19 kernel is out

Monday 22nd of October 2018 08:49:41 AM
Greg Kroah-Hartman has released the 4.19 kernel. Headline features in this release include the new AIO-based polling interface, L1TF vulnerability mitigations, the block I/O latency controller, time-based packet transmission, the CAKE queuing discipline, and much more. "And with that, Linus, I'm handing the kernel tree back to you. You can have the joy of dealing with the merge window".

Some kernel code-of-conduct refinements

Saturday 20th of October 2018 03:48:21 PM
Greg Kroah-Hartman has posted a series of patches making some changes around the newly adopted code of conduct. In particular, it adds a new document describing how the code is to be interpreted in the kernel community. "I originally sent the first two patches in this series to a lot of kernel developers privately, to get their review and comments and see if they wanted to ack them. This is the traditional way we have always done for policy documents or other 'contentious' issues like the GPLv3 statement or the 'closed kernel modules are bad' statement. Due to the very unexpected way that the original Code of Conduct file was added to the tree, a number of developers asked if this series could also be posted publicly before they were merged, and so, here they are."

Four new stable kernels

Saturday 20th of October 2018 03:03:59 PM
A new set of stable kernels is now available: 4.18.16, 4.14.78, 4.9.135, and 4.4.162. As usual, there are important fixes contained therein; users should upgrade.

cairo release 1.16.0 now available

Saturday 20th of October 2018 02:57:45 PM
After four years of development since 1.14.0, version 1.16.0 of the cairo 2D graphics library has been released. "Of particular note is a wealth of work by Adrian Johnson to enhance PDF functionality, including restoring support for MacOSX 10.4, metadata, hyperlinks, and more. Much attention also went into fonts, including new colored emoji glyph support, variable fonts, and fixes for various font idiosyncrasies. Other noteworthy changes include GLESv3 support for the cairo_gl backend, tracking of SVG units in generated SVG documents, and cleanups for numerous test failures and related issues in the PDF and Postscript backends." More information can be found in the change log.

OpenSSH 7.9 released

Friday 19th of October 2018 02:53:50 PM
The OpenSSH 7.9 release is out. It (finally) allows the use of symbolic service names rather than port numbers, adds support for sending signals over the SSH protocol, bans the use of DSA keys for certificate authorities, and more.

Security updates for Friday

Friday 19th of October 2018 02:13:12 PM
Security updates have been issued by Debian (drupal7 and libssh), openSUSE (binutils, ImageMagick, and java-11-openjdk), Oracle (java-1.8.0-openjdk), Scientific Linux (java-1.8.0-openjdk), and SUSE (apache2, bash, binutils, clamav, curl, dovecot22, firefox, ghostscript, git, glibc, gnutls, gpg2, icu, java-1_7_0-openjdk, java-1_7_1-ibm, java-1_8_0-ibm, java-1_8_0-openjdk, kernel, kernel-firmware, libvirt, libzypp, zypper, mariadb, nagios, ntp, openslp, openssh, openssl, perl, postgresql10, qemu, qpdf, samba, shadow, smt, yast2-smt, ucode-intel, wireshark, xen, yast2-smt, and zziplib).

OpenBSD 6.4

Thursday 18th of October 2018 10:31:05 PM
OpenBSD 6.4 has been released. This release features improved hardware support, adding a number of new drivers. Notable security improvements include the new unveil() system call to restrict file system access.

Ubuntu 18.10 (Cosmic Cuttlefish) released

Thursday 18th of October 2018 06:33:22 PM
Ubuntu has announced the release of its latest version, 18.10 (or "Cosmic Cuttlefish"). It has lots of updated packages and such, and is available in both a desktop and server version; there are also multiple flavors that were released as well. More information can be found in the release notes. "The Ubuntu kernel has been updated to the 4.18 based Linux kernel, our default toolchain has moved to gcc 8.2 with glibc 2.28, and we've also updated to openssl 1.1.1 and gnutls 3.6.4 with TLS1.3 support. Ubuntu Desktop 18.04 LTS brings a fresh look with the community-driven Yaru theme replacing our long-serving Ambiance and Radiance themes. We are shipping the latest GNOME 3.30, Firefox 63, LibreOffice 6.1.2, and many others. Ubuntu Server 18.10 includes the Rocky release of OpenStack including the clustering enabled LXD 3.0, new network configuration via netplan.io, and iteration on the next-generation fast server installer. Ubuntu Server brings major updates to industry standard packages available on private clouds, public clouds, containers or bare metal in your datacentre."

PostgreSQL 11 released

Thursday 18th of October 2018 05:05:33 PM
The PostgreSQL 11 release is out. "PostgreSQL 11 provides users with improvements to overall performance of the database system, with specific enhancements associated with very large databases and high computational workloads. Further, PostgreSQL 11 makes significant improvements to the table partitioning system, adds support for stored procedures capable of transaction management, improves query parallelism and adds parallelized data definition capabilities, and introduces just-in-time (JIT) compilation for accelerating the execution of expressions in queries." See this article for a detailed overview of what is in this release.

[$] Making the GPL more scary

Thursday 18th of October 2018 03:22:43 PM
For some years now, one has not had to look far to find articles proclaiming the demise of the GNU General Public License. That license, we are told, is too frightening for many businesses, which prefer to use software under the far weaker permissive class of license. But there is a business model that is based on the allegedly scary nature of the GPL, and there are those who would like to make it more lucrative; the only problem is that the GPL isn't quite scary enough yet.

Stable kernels 4.18.15, 4.14.77, and 4.9.134

Thursday 18th of October 2018 02:35:07 PM
Greg Kroah-Hartman has announced the release of the 4.18.15, 4.14.77, and 4.9.134 stable kernels. As usual, there are important fixes throughout the tree and users should upgrade.

Security updates for Thursday

Thursday 18th of October 2018 02:20:25 PM
Security updates have been issued by Arch Linux (chromium, libssh, and net-snmp), Debian (libssh and xen), Fedora (audiofile), openSUSE (axis, GraphicsMagick, ImageMagick, kernel, libssh, samba, and texlive), Oracle (java-1.8.0-openjdk), Red Hat (java-1.8.0-openjdk, rh-nodejs6-nodejs, and rh-nodejs8-nodejs), SUSE (binutils and fuse), and Ubuntu (paramiko).

[$] LWN.net Weekly Edition for October 18, 2018

Thursday 18th of October 2018 12:29:38 AM
The LWN.net Weekly Edition for October 18, 2018 is available.