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November 2019

Proprietary Software and Digital Jails

Filed under
Hardware
Software
  • checkra1n on Linux nearing release, Apple TV DFU helper coming too

    Despite being a closed ecosystem, iDevice users enjoy an advanced level of control over the OS through jailbreaking. But, not many opt for it because the Cupertino tech giant denies warranty claims for jailbroken gadgets.

    Moreover, one has to choose the jailbreaking tool so carefully that an incompatible selection will make your iPhone/iPad a fiasco. Owing to the frequent vulnerability fixes released by Apple, we can’t use a single tool for every iOS iteration.

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  • Jony Ive is no longer on Apple's leadership page

                         

                           

    His new firm is called LoveForm, which sounds an awful lot like LoveFilm - right down to the fact that both will score you 16 in a Scrabble match, assuming you're competing without someone that plays fast and loose with the ‘no brand names' rule. That's where the similarities end though: it's more focused on design than posting DVDs to people.

                           

    Unlike most people starting their own business, Ive won't have to hustle for new clients right away. Apple led the press release announcing Ive's exit by saying it would be one of LoveForm's clients, which is kind of like writing a blank cheque. But, hey, if anybody can write a blank cheque and not worry about the consequences then it's Cook & Co.

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  • Security firm Prosegur hit by Windows Ryuk ransomware

                         

                           

    Well-known British security researcher Kevin Beaumont was one of the first to point to a statement on on the Spain-based company's website in which it said that there had been "a security information incident on its telecommunications platforms".

                           

    Prosegur is the largest security firm in Spain and listed on Madrid Stock Exchange in 1987.

Entrapment in Microsoft GitHub

Filed under
Microsoft
  • Alibaba Cloud makes available its self-developed algorithm via open source on Github [Ed: Outsourcing one's code to a proprietary spying and censorship platform of a foreign firm and foreign regime]

    Launched in 2009 and headquartered in Singapore, the cloud subsidiary of Alibaba Group offers cloud computing services to enterprises.

  • Alibaba Publishes AI Algorithms on Github [Ed: Alibaba gives its code to Microsoft to further facilitate surveillance]
  • GitHub Seeks Security Dominance With Developers [Ed: GitHub is proprietary software in NSA PRISM, so assume back doors. Ignore these Forbes puff pieces of Microsoft (lots of them).]
  • Rav1e Picks Up More Speed Optimizations For Rust-Written AV1 Encoding [Ed: Still stuck inside GitHub]

    The Rust-based "rav1e" AV1 video encoder continues picking up performance optimizations. 

    During the month of November we've seen SSE4.1 and various x86 Assembly optimizations, other CPU performance optimizations, and also happening recently was the initial tagged release of rav1e (v0.1). 

  • Daniel Stenberg: curl: 25000 commits [Ed: Unhealthy dependence on GitHub]

    The first ever public release of curl was uploaded on March 20, 1998. 7924 days ago.

    3.15 commits per day on average since inception.

    These 25000 commits have been authored by 751 different persons.

    Through the years, 47 of these 751 authors have ever authored 10 commits or more within a single year. In fact, the largest number of people that did 10 commits or more within a single year is 13 that happened in both 2014 and 2017.

    19 of the 751 authors did ten or more changes in more than one calendar year. 5 of the authors have done ten or more changes during ten or more years.

Openwashing by Microsoft and the US Air Force

Filed under
Microsoft
  • Microsoft Teams spurs open source in Aussie channel [Ed: Gross case of openwashing. How on Earth did Microsoft manage to have proprietary software that's mass surveillance inside businesses framed as "open source"?

    Qbot is the brainchild of UNSW senior lecturer David Kellermann. Antares helped bring Qbot to life and, as it is the bot's primary developer, supports the code.

  • US Air Force says they are developing an Open Source Jet Engine

    The Responsive Open Source Engine (ROSE) is designed to be cheap enough that it can be disposable, which has obvious military applications for the Air Force such as small jet-powered drones or even missiles. But even for the pacifists in the audience, it’s hard not to get excited about the idea of a low-cost open source turbine. Obviously an engine this small would have limited use to commercial aviation, but hackers and makers have always been obsessed with small jet engines, and getting one fired up and self-sustaining has traditionally been something of a badge of honor.

    The economies of scale generally dictate that anything produced in large enough numbers will eventually become cheap. But despite the fact that a few thousand of them are tearing across the sky above our heads at any given moment, turbine jet engines are still expensive to produce compared to other forms of propulsion. The United States Air Force Research Laboratory is hoping to change that by developing their own in-house, open source turbine engine that they believe could reduce costs by as much as 75%.

Red Hat, IBM and SUSE

Filed under
Red Hat
SUSE
  • Raytheon Leans on Red Hat to Advance DevSecOps

    Jon Check, senior director for cyber protection solutions for Raytheon Intelligence, Information and Services, said Raytheon has developed a set of DevSecOps practices for organizations building applications deployed in highly secure environments, involving government contracts.

    Raytheon and these customers have been challenged by a chronic shortage of IT professionals with the appropriate level of clearance to work on these classified projects. To overcome that issue, Check said Raytheon developed what it describes as a “code low, deploy high” approach to DevSecOps. Developers who lack security clearances can still build applications; however, those applications can only be deployed by IT professionals having the appropriate security clearance.

    In addition, Check said Raytheon has developed integrations between its DevSecOps framework and various IT tools based on the ITIL framework, which so many IT operations teams depend on to foster collaboration across the application development and deployment process. For example, he said, whenever code gets checked into a repository, an alert can be sent to an IT service management application from ServiceNow.

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  • [Older] IBM: ‘Mac users are happier and more productive’ [iophk: duh]

                         

                           

    IBM CIO Fletcher Previn talked up fresh IBM findings that show those of its employees who use Macs are more likely to stay with IBM and exceed performance expectations compared to [Windows] users.

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  • [Older] IBM: Mac users perform better at work and close larger high-value sales compared to [Windows] users

                         

                           

    Today, IBM announced some major news showing the benefits of using a Mac over a [Windows machine] at work. According to IBM research, there are 22% more macOS users who exceed expectations in performance reviews compared to Windows users. High-value sales deals also tend to be 16% higher for Mac users compared to [Windows] users.

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  • [Older] IBM: Our Mac-Using Employees Outperform Windows Users in Every Way

                         

                           

    According to IBM, one staff member can support 5,400 Mac users, while the company needed one staff member per 242 [Windows] users. Only 5 percent of Mac users called the help desk for assistance, compared with 40 percent of [Windows] users. This Mac-IBM love affair has been ongoing for a few years, and the same IBM PR points out that in 2016, IBM CIO Fletcher Previn declared that IBM saves anywhere from $273 to $543 when its end users choose Mac over [Windows].

  • Centiq receives highest SUSE Solution Partner certification to bolster best-in-class enterprise cloud application migration and implementation expertise for SAP projects
  • Noop now named none

    Lately more and more people approached me with saptune warnings regarding ‘noop’ being an invalid scheduler.
    With new Servie Packs we see a transition from non-multiqueue schedulers (noop, cfq, deadline) to multiqueue schedulers (none, mq-deadline, bfq, kyber).
    This transition will be finished with kernel 5.x (SLES 15 SP2). Only multiqueue schedulers will remain.
    Even if you do not have upgraded lately, new hardware like NVMe’s can come with multiqueue support only.

Games and Programming: Epic Games, Godot, Haskell and Python

Filed under
Development
Gaming
  • Epic Games have awarded the FOSS game manager Lutris with an Epic MegaGrant

    The Lutris team announced yesterday that Epic Games have now awarded them a sum of money from the Epic MegaGrants pot.

    In the Patreon post, the Lutris team announced they've been awarded $25,000. While this might be quite a surprise to some, Tim Sweeney the CEO of Epic Games, did actually suggest they apply for it which we covered here back in April. To see it actually happen though, that's seriously awesome for the team building this free and open source game manager.

  • Play-ing with Godot

    I’ve finally come to a point where I have a project that is useful, and at a good enough quality (anyone with graphics skills who wants to help?) to be shared with the broader world: Mattemonster. What I’m trying to say is that I just went through the process of publishing a Godot app to the Google Play store.

    There is already good documentation for how you export a Godot app for Android, and detailed guides how to publish to Google Play. This blog is not a step by step tutorial, but instead mentioning some of the things I learned or noticed.

    First of all, when setting up the Android tooling, you usually have an android-tools package for your distro. This way, you don’t have to install Android Studio provided by Google.

    The configuration settings that you use to export your app goes into the export_presets.cfg file. Once you put the details for your release key in, you should avoid storing this file in a public git, as it contains sensitive data. But even before then, it contains paths that are local to your machine, so I would recommend not storing it in a public git anyway, as it makes merging with others painful.

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  • Haskell
  • Python 3.7.5 : Script install and import python packages.

    This script will try to import Python packages from a list.
    If these packages are not installed then will be installed on system.

Security: Updates, Ken Thompson's Chess Secret, Healthcare Breaches Spike in October, "Private Internet Access Sold Out!" and Undercover Mode for the Fedora Security Lab

Filed under
Security
  • Security updates for Friday

    Security updates have been issued by Debian (libvpx and vino), Fedora (grub2 and nss), and SUSE (cloud-init, libarchive, libtomcrypt, ncurses, and ucode-intel).

  • Friday Fluff: Chess password cracked after four decades

    A good password paired with strong encryption protects data against unexpected loss. No password is unbreakable, but some can last for quote a long time. After 39 years, recently a few old Unix passwords were cracked. Computer pioneer Ken Thompson had hidden his access behind a chess opening.

  • ThreatList: Healthcare Breaches Spike in October

    October experienced a 44.44 percent month-over-month increase in healthcare data breaches, resulting in 661,830 healthcare records exposed or stolen during the month.

    That’s according to the Health and Human Services (HHS) Office for Civil Rights’ monthly report reported via HIPAA Journal. The department said that hospitals and other healthcare organizations reported 52 breaches to HHS during the month. Year-to-date, the total number of breached healthcare records stands at 38 million, affecting 11.64 percent of the population of the United States.

  • Private Internet Access Sold Out! | Choosing A New VPN

    This video goes over the purchase of Private Internet Access and Choosing a new VPN. I also layout the 3 points you NEED when choosing a new VPN.

  • Undercover mode for the Fedora Security Lab

    Every time when there is a new release of Kali Linux it doesn’t take long till people start to ask when a feature or tool will be added to the Fedora Security Lab.

    This time the most asked feature is the “undercover mode”.

    To make it short: Never.

    The reason is that the Fedora Security Lab live media doesn’t need this. We are running Xfce (in the meantime for several years now) with the default Fedora wallpaper and a default theme. It pretty hard to tell (reading impossible if you don’t have the menu open) for a person who only get a quick look at your desktop that you have a lot of specialized tools at your disposal.

    You are even stealthier if you only add the Fedora Security Lab toolset to your default Fedora installation. This make the Fedora Security Lab the perfect tool to perform security-related tasks in an office environment at customer’s sites.

Debian and Canonical/Ubuntu: Debian's Outreachy Interns, Debian LTS and Mir/Ubuntu Core Promotion

Filed under
Debian
Ubuntu
  • Debian welcomes its new Outreachy interns

    Debian continues participating in Outreachy, and we'd like to welcome our new Outreachy interns for this round, lasting from December 2019 to March 2020.

    Anisa Kuci will work on Improving the DebConf fundraising processes, mentored by Karina Ture and Daniel Lange.

    Sakshi Sangwan will work on Packaging GitLab's JS Modules, mentored by Utkarsh Gupta, Sruthi Chandran and Pirate Praveen.

    Congratulations, Anisa and Sakshi! Welcome!

  • Mike Gabriel: My Work on Debian LTS/ELTS (November 2019)

    In November 2019, I have worked on the Debian LTS project for 15 hours (of 15 hours planned) and on the Debian ELTS project for 5 hours (of 5 hours planned) as a paid contributor.

    For LTS, I, in fact, pulled over 1.7 hours from October, so I realy only did 13.3 hours for LTS in November.

    (This is only half-true, I worked a considerable amount of hours on this libvncserver code bundle audit, but I am just not invoicing all of it).

  • Build smart display devices with Mir: fast to production, secure, open-source

    Mir is a library for writing graphical shells for Linux and similar operating systems. Compared to traditional display servers, it offers numerous benefits that are important for IoT devices: efficiency, speed of development, security, performance, and flexibility. All are required by the devices of today, and even more so for the devices of tomorrow. In this whitepaper we’ll explain how Mir, alongside Ubuntu Core and Snapcraft, lets developers build devices that are ready for the future of IoT, while offering stable, secure and performant solutions to the problems the industry faces today.

More in Tux Machines

Hardware: AMD "Rome", AMD Defects and Microsoft Defects

  • Google Cloud Rolls Out "N2D" VMs Built Atop AMD EPYC 7002 "Rome" CPUs

    We are seeing more cloud providers now offering AMD EPYC 7002 "Rome" series processors with the latest being Google now offering the new N2D VM family in beta for their public cloud.

  • AMD Announces EPYC 7532 + EPYC 7662 As Newest Rome Processors
  • Linux Will Finally Stop Flickering With AMD Stoney Ridge On 4K Displays

    For those still running the AMD "Stoney Ridge" mobile APUs from 2016 that were launched aside Bristol Ridge with Excavator-based CPU cores and GCN 1.2 graphics, the Linux kernel has a fix finally for flickering issues when driving a 4K display off the APU.

  • Microsoft crack habit reports: User claims Surface Laptop 3 screen fractured again after repair

    Screens on Microsoft's Surface Laptop 3 have appeared to develop a crack habit, with one of the latest complaints claiming this happened even after repair. Reports on Twitter noted whinges sprouting on Reddit and Microsoft's own support forums last week about the new hardware appearing to suffer from spontaneously cracked screens. Users have described hairline cracks on the touchscreens of the Surface Laptop 3, and have insisted that the things weren't dropped, bashed or otherwise interfered with, other than the usual stroking of the glass. A Microsoft agent in the company's forums told a customer, who had spanked the best part of a years' savings on a 13.5-inch matte black model only to find the fracture shortly after setting the thing up, that: "Physical damage do[es] not happen if there is no external force."

Software: Rav1e, Cockpit, SSH Tools and Curl

  • Rav1e 0.3.1 Is 25~40% Faster At Low Speed Levels For Rust-Based AV1 Encoding

    It was not even two full weeks ago that Rav1e 0.3 was released with speed optimizations and other AV1 encoding enhancements while released on Tuesday was Rav1e 0.3.1 with a change to boost encode speeds at lower levels. The principal change with Rav1e 0.3.1 for this Rust-written AV1 video encoder is 25~40% better performance at lower speed levels (two through five). This big speed-up is by disabling fine directional prediction and intra-block transform splitting within inter-frames. The consequence of disabling these features for the double digit percentage speed improvements is approximately 1~2% lower video quality at these levels, which the developers deemed to be an acceptable trade for the faster encode times.

  • Cockpit Project: Cockpit 213

    Cockpit is the modern Linux admin interface. We release regularly. Here are the release notes from version 213.

  • Tools for SSH key management

    I use SSH constantly. Every day I find myself logged in to multiple servers and Pis (both in the same room as me and over the internet). I have many devices I need access to, and different requirements for gaining access, so in addition to using various SSH/SCP command options, I have to maintain a config file with all the connection details.

  • Daniel Stenberg: The command line options we deserve

    A short while ago curl‘s 230th command line option was added (it was --mail-rcpt-allowfails). Two hundred and thirty command line options! A look at curl history shows that on average we’ve added more than ten new command line options per year for very long time. As we don’t see any particular slowdown, I think we can expect the number of options to eventually hit and surpass 300. Is this manageable? Can we do something about it? Let’s take a look.

today's howtos

IBM/Red Hat/Fedora Leftovers

  • Red Hat Fuels Omnitracs to Deliver Cloud-Native Fleet Management Innovation

    Red Hat, Inc., the world's leading provider of open source solutions, today announced that Omnitracs, LLC, the global pioneer of fleet management solutions to transportation and logistics companies, has delivered its Omnitracs One platform, the next-generation of fleet management innovation, on the foundation of Red Hat OpenShift. Using the industry’s leading enterprise Kubernetes platform along with Red Hat Ansible Automation Platform, Omnitracs One is a completely cloud-native offering and provides an enhanced user experience with a clear path towards future innovations.

  • Orange Egypt Builds Horizontal Cloud on Red Hat Technologies, Improving Time-to-Market by up to 10x

    Red Hat, Inc., the world's leading provider of open source solutions, today announced that Red Hat’s open hybrid cloud technologies are providing a horizontal cloud platform for Orange Egypt’s virtual network functions (VNFs), helping the service provider to more quickly deliver new services to customers, optimize its network investments and reduce operational expenditure. Building on the foundation of Red Hat OpenStack Platform and Red Hat Ceph Storage, Orange Egypt is the first Orange affiliate to manage 100% of its live customer traffic over a fully software-based platform spanning several sites across its region.

  • Share-ing the News: the Mainframe is Back!

    What seems like a hundred years ago, I started in the technology business. My first job was as a computer operator for an IBM S/390 mainframe computer for a large networking company. The years zipped by and I now find myself at SUSE as the Product Marketing Manager for system Z and LinuxOne. My how things have come full circle! While the mainframes of today have transformed and are not quite the behemoths of yesteryear, the purpose of the mainframe is still the same – providing customers with increased security, fast processing time for large amounts of data, high availability, and rock-solid stability. Mainframes today like IBM LinuxOne and system Z provide unprecedented privacy and security for your infrastructure with encryption everywhere and instant recovery. And the best part is you can run your favorite Linux distribution on these systems – SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for system Z and LinuxOne

  • Building a community of practice in 5 steps

    In the first part of this series, we defined community as a fundamental principle in open organizations, where people often define their roles, responsibilities, and affiliations through shared interests and passions, not title, role, or position on an organizational chart. Then, in the second part of the series, we explored the many benefits communities of practice bring to open organizations—including fostering learning, encouraging collaboration, and offering an opportunity for creative problem-solving and innovation. Now you know you'd like to start a community of practice, but you may still be unsure where to start. This article will help define your roadmap and build a plan for a successful community of practice—in five simple steps (summarized in Figure 1).

  • Red Hat Combines Continuous Community Innovation with Long-Life Enterprise Support in Red Hat OpenStack Platform 16

    Red Hat, Inc., the world's leading provider of open source solutions, today announced the general availability of Red Hat OpenStack Platform 16, the latest version of its highly scalable and agile Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) solution. More than 1,000 enhancements and new features will lay the foundation for enterprise and telco workloads from programmable IaaS for hybrid clouds, developer clouds and production clouds and cloud-native applications like network functions virtualization (NFV), edge computing, artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML).

  • Red Hat OpenStack lives on in a new release

    This new OpenStack is built on the foundation of Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 8. The version adds a refined long-life support lifecycle, comprehensive feature consolidation, and a new commitment to delivering continuous community innovation as enterprise-ready features via stream releases. It combines the best features of the last three OpenStack release Train along with Red Hat's own special sauce. Modular by design, the new Red Hat OpenStack is meant to optimize IT operations for existing traditional applications. But it's not just the same old IaaS file storage cloud it was 10 years ago. It can now be used as the foundation for cloud-native applications such as network functions virtualization (NFV), edge computing, artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML).

  • Fedora Council November 2019 meeting: more miscellaneous stuff

    In addition to the big topic of the Fedora Project Vision, we used the opportunity to cover some other Fedora Council business. Because it’s a lot, we’re breaking the reporting on this into two posts, kind of arbitrarily — here’s the second of those.

  • Return of the son of the panda badger

    Here’s an initial mockup of a new sticker sheet design for Fedora! It features artwork from Fedora Badges. (Actually, now that I think of it, it would be nice to have a licensing notice for the artwork along the bottom or side of the sheet.) The idea behind this is just to be a fun piece of swag to give away at events. Before my leave, we produced a Fedora Diversity sticker sheet that has proven to be very popular at events, so it’s time for our panda and badger friends to have their time to shine I think