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Linux Mint 19.3 Slated for Release on Christmas with HiDPI Improvements

Tuesday 3rd of September 2019 11:38:51 PM

With the Linux Mint 19.2 “Tina” operating system hitting the streets last month, the Linux Mint project has kicked off the development of the next release, Linux Mint 19.3 (codename is yet to be revealed), which is expected to arrive this Christmas with more improvements and updated components. (Softpedia)

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Bringing an end to hypervisor vs bare metal debate

Tuesday 3rd of September 2019 02:48:01 AM

The debate whether hypervisors are faster than bare metal resurfaced at the vmworld 2019 conference. VMware has long maintained that hypervisors have many advantages over Bare Metal, including efficiency and cost.

“Hypervisors hosting multiple virtual machines do offer some advantages over bare metal servers. Hypervisors allow virtual machines to be created instantly, providing more resources as needed for dynamic workloads. It is much harder to provide an additional physical server when it is needed. Hypervisors also allow for more utilization of a physical server, since it is able to run several virtual machines on one physical machine’s resources. Running several virtual machines on one physical machine is more cost and energy-efficient than running multiple underutilized physical machines for the same task.” 

Are these claims true?

Rob Hirschfeld, CEO and co-founder of RackN agrees with VMware’s claims and said that the matter of the fact is that the machines people buy today to run in datacenters are hypervisor optimized. As a result, these machines are more efficient with a hypervisor than running a single operating system.

“The CPUs are designed to run multiple VMs. Taking into account the resource constraints, the operating systems are not designed to run gigantic machines,” said Hirschfeld.

The way technologies have evolved over the years stopped assuming one giant server running just one operating system. “It’s antithetical to the way we’ve bought machines for the last 10 years because of virtualization.”

However, not everyone is buying giant servers and not everyone needs virtualization. There are many use-cases where users need smaller machines with fewer processors and moderate memory. These machines are more efficient with a single operating system than a hypervisor. Edge environment is a perfect example of such cost-effective commodity servers.

From that perspective, depending on how you set-up your infrastructure, bare metal is going to be a better performer. It might also be more cost-effective and simpler to manage. “There might be many other benefits too; it’s not an A or B question,” said Hirschfeld.

That’s not going to stop people from going the hypervisor route with traditional infrastructure optimized for VMs. Hirschfeld’s advice to such users is to not buy a terabyte of RAM and as many CPUs as they can get with fiber channel SANs and stuff like that. Instead, find small cheap machines and buy a lot of them. Datacenter design is always a balancing act of how you want to manage your infrastructure and what you want that infrastructure to do.

Hirschfeld believes that we are getting out of the era of general-purpose computing:  this is the hyper-converged concept where users buy one type of machine which will solve all of their problems. “That’s an expensive way to solve the problem as it also assumes that you’re going to virtualize everything,” he said.

What’s wrong with virtualizing everything? “It’s very hard to install VMware. It takes a lot of knowledge and fiddling to get it right,” he said.

In conclusion

The world is moving towards containers. A lot of containers. Users can run Linux containers on bare metal infrastructure with great ease and efficiency. Hirschfeld clearly sees bare metal as an ideal route for edge workloads. However, he also sees the need for virtualization. It’s a balancing act. The debate between virtualization vs bare metal sounds like a religious crusade, which it’s not. It’s all about using the right tool for the right job.

“People should not think that they should not use VMs or that they should not virtualize things,” Hirschfeld said, “In our experience, there are good reasons for a lot of pieces.  Sometimes even a suboptimal solution, if it feels right to you, is a good solution.”

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Kali Linux Ethical Hacking OS Switches to Linux 5.2

Tuesday 3rd of September 2019 02:37:38 AM

Offensive Security announced today the release and general availability of the Kali Linux 2019.03 operating system, a major update to the Kali Linux 2019 series that adds lots of new features, improvements, and updated hacking tools. It also brings better support for ARM architectures, a few helper scripts that makes finding information about packages more easily and automatically runs Windows binaries with Wine, or make it easier to discover what resources can be transferred over to a Windows system. (Softpedia)

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Rust is the future of systems programming, C is the new Assembly (Packt)

Tuesday 3rd of September 2019 02:35:14 AM

Josh Triplett (Principal Engineer at Intel) talked with Greg Kroah-Hartman (Linux kernel maintainer for the -stable branch) about Rust. According to posts on LWN.net, they are willing to investigate a framework for the Linux kernel to load drivers that are written in Rust. For now, Rust must not be required to build Linux, but they are willing to accept a (for now) optional component to handle Rust. While this does not fundamentally change how the Linux kernel is designed, it should allow more developers to write drivers that are more stable. (LWN, PCPER)

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Microsoft Releases Open Source AI Conversation Modeling Toolkit, Icecaps

Monday 2nd of September 2019 08:11:20 PM

Microsoft Research has unveiled Icecaps, a new open source solution for neural conversational networks. The toolkit leverages multitask learning to improve conversation AI systems, such as giving them multiple personas. “[It’s] a new open-source toolkit that not only allows researchers and developers to imbue their chatbots with different personas, but also to incorporate other natural language processing features that emphasize conversation modeling,” said a Microsoft blog. (Source: Winbuzzer, Microsoft)

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Stackrox Launches Kubernetes Security Platform Version 2.0

Friday 30th of August 2019 06:17:29 PM

StackRox, the security for holders and Kubernetes company, declared the general accessibility of form 2.5 of the StackRox Kubernetes Security Platform. The new form incorporates upgraded arrangement and runtime controls that empower organizations to flawlessly authorize security controls to improve use cases, including threat detection, network segmentation, configuration management, and vulnerability management. (Source: Toolbox)

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Ubuntu 18.04.3 LTS Makes It Easier to Patch the Linux Kernel without Rebooting

Friday 30th of August 2019 02:27:31 AM

Ubuntu 18.04.3 LTS arrived earlier this month with updated kernel and graphics stacks, as well as all the latest package updates and enhanced Livepatch integration. Powered by the Linux 5.0 kernel series from Ubuntu 19.04 (Disco Dingo), Ubuntu 18.04.3 LTS is the third maintenance updates to the long-term supported Ubuntu 18.04 LTS operating system series, which is supported by Canonical with security and software updates for at least five years, until 2023. (Source: Softpedia)

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Open-source serverless framework wants to pave the way towards serverless 2.0

Friday 30th of August 2019 01:56:29 AM

Lightbend has launched a new open-source serverless framework to take on the next generation of serverless. CloudState aims to go beyond the normal stateless functions most serverless initiatives take on today. According to Jonas Bonér, CTO at Lightbend, today’s current serverless movement focuses a lot on automation and infrastructure, but neglects requirements at the application layer. This is because data, streaming and event-driven stateful architectures can be challenging, he explained. (Source: SDTimes)

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Ethereum Client Becomes First Public Blockchain Project on Hyperledger

Friday 30th of August 2019 01:49:57 AM

Hyperledger has officially adopted its first public blockchain project in the form of ConsenSys’ Pantheon. The Hyperledger technical steering committee approved Pantheon’s addition Thursday morning, renaming the initiative to Hyperledger Besu (a Japanese term for base or foundation). Pantheon was first proposed as a potential new member of the consortium on Aug. 8, joining the likes of Hyperledger Fabric (which IBM has supported) and Hyperledger Sawtooth (backed by Intel). (Source: Yahoo!)

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Storj Opens Its Decentralized Storage Service Project to Beta

Friday 30th of August 2019 01:45:48 AM

Storj Labs has released the beta of its open source namesake decentralized cloud object storage software alongside opening up beta access to its own implementation of that software with its decentralized cloud storage service Tardigrade. Originally the brainchild of founder Shawn Wilkinson, Storj has gone through two other implementations before arriving at version 3 (V3).  (Source: The New Stack)

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City-Led Open Mobility Foundation Uses Open Source To Manage Transportation

Thursday 29th of August 2019 02:49:32 PM

Seleta Reynolds runs the Los Angeles Department of Transportation with 7,500 miles of streets, 5,000 traffic signals, 37,000 parking meters and if that’s not enough one year ago the latest innovation in transportation arrived – dockless bikes also known as e-scooters. On a recent Friday in early July, there were 52,000 trips taken in L.A. on those scooters. Reynolds and the LA DOT created the Mobility Data Specification (MDS) as a set of data specifications and data sharing requirements for dockless e-scooters and bicycles, which it shared on GitHub. Today, about 80 cities worldwide are using the MDS. (TFIR)

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GNOME Wants to Make Linux Firmware Updates Easier to Deploy with New Tool

Thursday 29th of August 2019 03:44:39 AM

Long-time GNOME developer Richard Hughes is looking at a new tool for the GNOME desktop environment to make deployments of firmware updates easier for all users. At the moment, the GNOME Software Center only displays devices when firmware updates are pending, but Hughes and Andrew Schwenn, an intern from Dell, have been working lately on a new tool that would be integrated as a panel into GNOME Control Center, which promises to make it easier for users to install new firmware versions for their hardware. (Source: Softpedia)

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Microsoft readies exFAT patents for Linux

Thursday 29th of August 2019 12:23:35 AM

Microsoft has announced that it would make the technical specification for exFAT publicly available to facilitate the development of conformant, interoperable implementations. Microsoft said it also supports the eventual inclusion of a Linux kernel with exFAT support in a future revision of the Open Invention Network’s Linux System Definition, where, once accepted, the code will benefit from the defensive patent commitments of OIN’s 3040+ members and licensees. When the next edition of the Linux System Definition is released in the first quarter of 2020, any member of the OIN will be able to use exFAT without paying a patent royalty. (Source: ZDNet)

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OrangeCrab, An Open Source Lattice ECP5 FPGA Board

Wednesday 28th of August 2019 01:37:43 PM

Lattice ECP5 FPGA powered OrangeCrab is the work of Greg Davill who designed the Adafruit Feather-compatible board in KiCAD, crowdsourced schematics/PCB checking and published his progress on Twitter, and published the files of the open source hardware board on Github. (Source: CNX-Software)

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Chrome OS Gets First Chromebook Enterprise Devices

Tuesday 27th of August 2019 03:11:14 AM

Google today announced a slew of Chrome Enterprise updates, including a faster Google Admin console and managed Linux environments. The company also unveiled the first Chromebook Enterprise laptops: Dell’s Latitude 5300 for $819 and Latitude 5400 for $699. (Source: Venture Beat)

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Deep Learning Reference Stack v4.0 Now Available

Tuesday 27th of August 2019 02:57:59 AM

Intel’s Clear Linux project has announced the Deep Learning Reference Stack that enables developers to quickly prototype and deploy DL workloads, reducing complexity while maintaining the flexibility for developers to customize solutions. Among the features added in this release: TensorFlow 1.14; Intel OpenVINO model server; Intel Deep Learning Boost (DL Boost) and Deep Learning Compilers (TVM* 0.6). (Source: Clear Linux)

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VMware CEO Sets Lofty Open Source Goals

Tuesday 27th of August 2019 02:51:04 AM

VMware hasn’t traditionally had the best reputation in the open source community, VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger admits. In fact, he sums it up in one word: “Bad.” But VMware’s on a mission to change that. “I would hope that over the next couple of years you will see VMware emerge as one of the most open source friendly companies in the enterprise space in the industry,” Gelsinger said during a press briefing at VMworld. (Source: SDX Central)

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Interview With The The FreeBSD Foundation Executive Director

Sunday 25th of August 2019 01:23:30 AM

The Linux Foundation hosted the executive director of the FreeBSD Foundation, Deb Goodkin, at the Open Source Summit in San Diego. In this episode of Let’s Talk, TFiR sat down with Goodkin to talk about the FreeBSD project and the foundation. (TFIR)

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VMware Enters Agreements To Acquire Pivotal Software And Carbon Black

Saturday 24th of August 2019 04:03:34 PM

VMware and Pivotal Software announced that the companies have entered into a definitive agreement under which VMware will acquire Pivotal for a blended price per share of $11.71, comprised of $15 per share in cash to Class A stockholders, and the exchange of shares of VMware’s Class B common stock for shares of Pivotal Class B common stock held by Dell Technologies, at an exchange ratio of 0.0550 shares of VMware Class B stock for each share of Pivotal Class B stock. In total, the merger consideration represents an enterprise value for Pivotal of $2.7 billion. Following the close of the transaction, VMware will be positioned to deliver a comprehensive enterprise-grade Kubernetes-based portfolio for modern applications. (Arcweb)

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Microsoft, Intel and Others are Doubling Down on Open Source Linux Security

Friday 23rd of August 2019 04:32:45 PM

Microsoft is continuing its broad ongoing push to contribute with open source projects, joining the newly created Confidential Computing Consortium, an initiative launched by The Linux Foundation which aims to provide better security for data which is actually in use by apps on a computer, or in the cloud (as opposed to at rest, or not being used).

Microsoft is far from alone in this endeavor, and is joined by Intel in the consortium, along with ARM, Baidu, Google Cloud, IBM, Red Hat and other tech giants. (Source: TechRadar)

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