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August 2019

Xfce 4.14 review - Holding out for a hero

Filed under
Reviews

People often ask me (joking, no one asks me anything, I ain't got no friends) what my favorite Linux desktop is. And my answer is, well, long and complicated. But I guess, in the past fifteen years, I've mostly used and loved Plasma and Unity, with some brief moments of joy with Gnome 2. Then, inevitably, the question of Xfce comes up, and my answer is even longer and more complicated.

The release of Xfce 4.14 might provide a part of the answer you're looking for. And you should definitely look at my reviews of various distros running Xfce, like say Xubuntu or MX Linux, to get a sense of what this desktop environment does, and how it does it. But then, it's never been really my default go-to setup, although I did use it quite successfully and effectively - and still do - on my feisty, 10-year-old Asus eeePC netbook. On the desktop proper, I like it, and I liked what it did approximately three years or so. Since, it's kind of kept a quiet profile, not quite here nor there. Well, I want to see if the new version has the kick to make my proverbial colt buck and gallop. Testing time it is then!

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The Librem 5 Application Compatibility Chart

Filed under
OS
GNU
Linux

All of the applications below are confirmed to run on the Librem 5 Smartphone running PureOS.

Each application is grouped into one of three categories based on how optimized it is for the mobile screen.

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Games: Hellblade Senua's Sacrifice, Dota Underlords, Wine/NetBSD

Filed under
Gaming
  • Hellblade Senuas Sacrifice | Linux Gaming | Ubuntu 18.04 | Steam Play

    Hellblade Senua's Sacrifice running through Steam play.

  • Valve just turned the gameplay of Dota Underlords on its head with Contraptions

    Valve seem to be using Early Access to really mix things up for Dota Underlords, with a new update out adding in Contraptions you can put on the board.

    While I like Underlords a lot, I was pretty keen to see them do a little more with it. So the idea of Contraptions is pretty fun and it does mix the gameplay up quite a bit. You can place them on the board, move them around and they will affect the combat making placement even more crucial than ever. They also don't count against the normal unit cap.

  • Wine Is Now In Better Shape On NetBSD Thanks To GSoC 2019

    In addition to NetBSD seeing better DRM ioctl support for its Linux compatibility layer (as part of an effort towards possible Steam support) thanks to Google Summer of Code 2019, there were also Wine improvements as a result of this Google programming initiative.

    Student developer Naveen Narayanan worked the summer on improving NetBSD's Wine support, particularly when it comes to AMD64 (x86_64) support.

Need A Good Linux Hex Editor? 20 Linux Hex Viewers & Editors Reviewed

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Software

A hex editor is a computer program used for editing a binary file that contains machine-readable data. It paves the way of manipulating raw binary data for a particular application. “Hex” is the short form of hexadecimal, a numerical standard format that represents the binary program. A regular hex editor has three specific areas such as ‘character area’ on the right, ‘hexadecimal area’ in the middle and the ‘address area’ on the left. Additionally, some hex editors are designed to edit and parse sector data from the hard disk and floppy disk which are frequently called disk editor or sector editor. There are far ranges of Linux hex editor available in the market; that to a greater extent make a user squarely beneficial, and allow them to edit binary program.

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Also: Announcing lymworkbook project

What To Expect From The Ubuntu 19.10 'Eoan Ermine' Beta On September 26

Filed under
Ubuntu

The release of Ubuntu Linux 19.10 edges ever closer, with an expected Beta release landing on September 26 ahead of the planned October 17 launch. Here's a brief rundown of what to expect, and a few features that might make it worth the upgrade from versions 18.10 or 19.04.

As always Ubuntu 19.10 will introduce the usual minor interface and software tweaks, but there are some highlights I'm seriously looking forward to, such as flicker-free boot for Intel users, similar to what you see today in Fedora 30.

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Linux Lite 4.6 Final Released

Filed under
GNU
Linux

Linux Lite 4.6 Final is now available for download and install.

This release has a number of changes.

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Linux driver patches hint at AMD Renoir to support LPDDR4X memory

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux

Great news this weekend for APU fans out there – while the AMD Navi GPUs and Ryzen 3rd generation chips are currently taking over the computing world, it doesn’t mean that the company has forgotten about its integrated graphics users.

In a recent report by Tom’s Hardware, it looks like AMD’s next generation APU (Accelerated Processing Unit) might come with LPDDR4X-4266 memory support. If true, this means that AMD Renoir will have a higher maximum data rate than AMD Picasso.

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Also: AMD Has A Number Of Graphics Driver Fixes To Add For Linux 5.4

More in Tux Machines

5 reasons to run Kubernetes on your Raspberry Pi homelab

There's a saying about the cloud, and it goes something like this: The cloud is just somebody else's computer. While the cloud is actually more complex than that (it's a lot of computers), there's a lot of truth to the sentiment. When you move to the cloud, you're moving data and services and computing power to an entity you don't own or fully control. On the one hand, this frees you from having to perform administrative tasks you don't want to do, but, on the other hand, it could mean you no longer control your own computer. This is why the open source world likes to talk about an open hybrid cloud, a model that allows you to choose your own infrastructure, select your own OS, and orchestrate your workloads as you see fit. However, if you don't happen to have an open hybrid cloud available to you, you can create your own—either to help you learn how the cloud works or to serve your local network. Read more

today's howtos and leftovers

  • Linux commands for user management
  • CONSOOM All Your PODCASTS From Your Terminal With Castero
  • Install Blender 3D on Debian 10 (Buster)
  • Things To Do After Installing openSUSE Leap 15.2
  • GSoC Reports: Fuzzing Rumpkernel Syscalls, Part 2

    I have been working on Fuzzing Rumpkernel Syscalls. This blogpost details the work I have done during my second coding period.

  • Holger Levsen: DebConf7

    DebConf7 was also special because it had a very special night venue, which was in an ex-church in a rather normal building, operated as sort of community center or some such, while the old church interior was still very much visible as in everything new was build around the old stuff. And while the night venue was cool, it also ment we (video team) had no access to our machines over night (or for much of the evening), because we had to leave the university over night and the networking situation didn't allow remote access with the bandwidth needed to do anything video. The night venue had some very simple house rules, like don't rearrange stuff, don't break stuff, don't fix stuff and just a few little more and of course we broke them in the best possible way: Toresbe with the help of people I don't remember fixed the organ, which was broken for decades. And so the house sounded in some very nice new old tune and I think everybody was happy we broke that rule.

Programming Leftovers

  • Podcast: COBOL development on the mainframe

    Nic reached out when COBOL hit the news this spring to get some background on what COBOL is good for historically, and where it lives in the modern infrastructure stack. I was able to talk about the basics of COBOL and the COBOL standard, strengths today in concert with the latest mainframes, and how COBOL back-end code is now being integrated into front ends via intermediary databases and data-interchange formats like JSON, which COBOL natively supports.

  • What I learned while teaching C programming on YouTube

    The act of breaking something down in order to teach it to others can be a great way to reacquaint yourself with some old concepts and, in many cases, gain new insights. I have a YouTube channel where I demonstrate FreeDOS programs and show off classic DOS applications and games. The channel has a small following, so I tend to explore the topics directly suggested by my audience. When several subscribers asked if I could do more videos about programming, I decided to launch a new video series to teach C programming. I learned a lot from teaching C, and in the process, I came across some meaningful takeaways I think others will appreciate. Make a plan For my day job, I lead training and workshops to help new and emerging IT leaders develop new skills. Outside of regular work, I also enjoy teaching as an adjunct professor. So I'm very comfortable constructing a course outline and designing a curriculum. That's where I started. If you want to teach a subject effectively, you can't just wing it. Start by writing an outline of what topics you want to cover and figure out how each new topic will build on the previous ones. The "building block" method of adding new knowledge is key to an effective training program.

  • Google's Flutter 1.20 framework is out: VS Code extension and mobile autofill support
  • Google Engineers Propose "Machine Function Splitter" For Faster Performance

    Google engineers have been working on the Machine Function Splitter as their means of making binaries up to a few percent faster thanks to this compiler-based approach. They are now seeking to upstream the Machine Function Splitter into LLVM. The Machine Function Splitter is a code generation optimization pass for splitting code functions into hot and cold parts. They are doing this stemming from research that in roughly half of code functions that more than 50% of the code bytes are never executed but generally loaded into the CPU's data cache.

  • Modernize network function development with this Rust-based framework

    The world of networking has undergone monumental shifts over the past decade, particularly in the ongoing move from specialized hardware into software defined network functions (NFV) for data plane1 and packet processing. While the transition to software has fashioned the rise of SDN (Software-defined networking) and programmable networks, new challenges have arisen in making these functions flexible, efficient, easier to use, and fast (i.e. little to no performance overhead). Our team at Comcast wanted to both leverage what the network does best, especially with regards to its transport capacity and routing mechanisms, while also being able to develop network programs through a modern software lens—stressing testing, swift iteration, and deployment. So, with these goals in mind, we developed Capsule, a new framework for network function development, written in Rust, inspired by Berkeley's NetBricks research, and built-on Intel's Data Plane Development Kit (DPDK).

  • This Week in Rust 350
  • Firefox extended tracking protection

    This Mozilla Security Blog entry describes the new redirect-tracking protections soon to be provided by the Firefox browser.

  • Karl Dubost: Browser developer tools timeline

    I was reading In a Land Before Dev Tools by Amber, and I thought, Oh here missing in the history the beautifully chiseled Opera Dragonfly and F12 for Internet Explorer. So let's see what are all the things I myself didn't know.

  • Daniel Stenberg: Upcoming Webinar: curl: How to Make Your First Code Contribution

    Abstract: curl is a wildly popular and well-used open source tool and library, and is the result of more than 2,200 named contributors helping out. Over 800 individuals wrote at least one commit so far. In this presentation, curl’s lead developer Daniel Stenberg talks about how any developer can proceed in order to get their first code contribution submitted and ultimately landed in the curl git repository. Approach to code and commits, style, editing, pull-requests, using github etc. After you’ve seen this, you’ll know how to easily submit your improvement to curl and potentially end up running in ten billion installations world-wide.

Security: Zoom Holes, New Patches and etcd Project Security Committee

  • Zoombomber crashes court hearing on Twitter hack with Pornhub video
  • Security updates for Wednesday

    Security updates have been issued by Debian (net-snmp), Fedora (mingw-curl), openSUSE (firefox, ghostscript, and opera), Oracle (libvncserver and postgresql-jdbc), Scientific Linux (postgresql-jdbc), SUSE (firefox, kernel, libX11, xen, and xorg-x11-libX11), and Ubuntu (apport, grub2, grub2-signed, libssh, libvirt, mysql-8.0, ppp, tomcat8, and whoopsie).

  • The CNCF etcd project reaches a significant milestone with completion of security audit

    This week, a third-party security audit was published on etcd, the open source distributed key-value store that plays a crucial role in scaling Kubernetes in the cloud. For etcd, this audit was important in multiple ways. The audit validates the project’s maturity and sheds light on some areas where the project can improve. This sort of audit is required criteria for any project in the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF) to qualify for graduation from the CNCF. Read the CNCF blog post that I co-authored to learn more about the audit and what it uncovered. As one of the project maintainers and one of two members of the etcd Project Security Committee, I’d love to share a few reasons I’m hopeful for etcd’s future and why now is a great time to contribute to etcd’s open source community.