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I been Buffalo'd

Filed under
Reviews

Buffalo Linux 1.7.3 was released on May 10 and it sounded quite interesting. I'd visted their website a couple times in the past but never installed this oddly named distro. Now with the site up and running I thought the time was right.

DOOM: The Movie update

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News

Arrrgs. I go to gamespy just about everyday but somehow I missed this cool Doom3 movie update. It sounds pretty cool. They even have some great stills! It looks like it's gonna be exciting - I am excited - I can hardly wait.

The Site: first quarter report

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Site News

Today marks the anniversary of my first quarter year actually getting hits. I started a little website last July actually, but I started getting some reads when I installed drupal then began posting a few links to stories on Feb. 04 and finally posted my first original article on Feb. 08.

We have since grown to over 100,000 hits last month. I hope to continue to grow as I learn what the audience wants to read. My hopes also include promoting Linux and helping the world see the advantages of oss while having lots of fun in the process. Because to me, that's the biggest advantage of running Linux - it's just plain fun.

Heyyyy, /My/ Screenshots on Ebay!?

Filed under
Humor

What's up with that!? Someone scarfed some of my screenshots to help sell cheap home-made Mandriva dvds. Think I should get some royalties? Big Grin Oh well, least he linked to my review. That Ebay link.

May Enlightenment

Filed under
Just talk

I installed kde cvs a week or so back after posting my Month with Fluxbox - Part 2, yet I always seemed to choose fluxbox when it came time to log into X. I very much enjoyed running fluxbox, but I'm gonna run enlightment during May and see how it goes.

Preview 9 Delayed

I have all the packages updated that I want to go into Preview 9 but the mklivecd scripts need a small update for the hardware detection for monitors and setting the screen resolution. Unfortunately no one is available from the mklivecd development team at this time to take a peek at the perl code which really puts a kink in getting Preview 9 out the door.

A teehee

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Humor

In reply during a conversation with a good friend, I received this funny with the line, "yeah, but did you have to post about it?" lol He's a nutcase!

A Month With Fluxbox - Part 2

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Reviews

My month with Fluxbox can almost be officially over and it's time to report on my experiences as promised. I wish I had a long list of complaints to file or problems for which I had to find answers or even less than compelling reasons to run back to KDE (i.e. something interesting or controversial to write about). But the truth is, it sat back there serving up my windows and never once gave me reason to even notice it was there. And that's a good thing.

General Hardware Tips

Filed under
Howtos

I saw this thread in the gentoo forums with some wonderful information for folks experiencing hardware failures or inconsistencies, boot failures, or data loss and the ilk. I think it might be helpful to some, so I thought I'd post a link to it.

Thread.

RoE Will Soon Come to Linux

I read from a link of a link today that Doom: Resurrection of Evil will be supported on Linux come Doom 3 patch 1.3. Big Grin yippee.

Almost time.

I've just about got everything ready to cut another iso. Ocilent is going to work up a new oci5 kernel using a different kernel scheduler so that usb hd drives can be booted. Ikrekes sent me a patch to the livecd-install to properly create the initrd for usb hd boot support. I plan on testing this today.


I ported drakxtools and a new drakconf from Mandriva and it seems to be working good. Scott Greeding will be back in 4-5 days and will help me get synaptic in, the menu structure better intergrated and a more sane layout.


Mozilla-Firefox was updated today to version 1.0.3. Im hoping it will fix dialup users problems with dns. I cant reproduce the problem so it is hard to fix something that isnt broken

Printer Updates

I updated some more of the printer rpms today. I found the gimp-print rpms have many of the missing printer drivers and also a minor bug fix to hplip rpms so hopefully these new printer rpms will finally fix everyones printer problems. I also updated kdelibs-3.4.0-7tex rpms to fix a security problem that was posted here on tuxmachines yesterday. Jrangles and Ocilent sent me some kdm login manager themes which I need to check into.

TheDarb got the premium server up and running and I just rsync'd everything up that was posted today. I will start emailing users who donated funds tomorrow after a few tests of the server.

Kernel updated 2.6.11-oci4

Yesterday I got to experience Ocilent's world. We had a problem with the oci3 kernel where if a user yanked out his usbkey without unmounting it the desktop would crash. I spent all of yesterday evening trying different config options and finally found a fix. I must have built 20 kernels until I hit the magic fix which turned out to be the preemption option that was affecting the usb port. Go figure. Anyway I have a new respect for kernel developers. I think I'm gonna stick with packaging from now on!

Neato Pic

Filed under
Just talk

My sister sent me this Kincaid gif this morning. I thought it was kinda neato so I figured I'd share. It don't have anything to do with anything, but...

Performance Tweaks & Tips

Filed under
Howtos

Has your system seemed to have slowed down lately or perhaps it never performed the way you thought it should. Do you ever exclaim, seems my friend's computer is much faster than mine... or the dreaded, my XP is faster than linux? Bite your tongue and check out a few things on your gentoo install.

I don my asbestos house robe and share a few things I've learned from my time with gentoo. Actually these principals can be applied to any linux installation, but I had gentoo in mind when writing them.

New Logo

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Site News

Just wanted to post a big THANK YOU to jrangels for donating his time and wonderful talent to make us a great new logo and header background image here at tuxmachines.org. You might know his work from being offered on kde-look.org or from being the primary graphic artist for pclinuxos. His newest work for that distro is on display in the tuxgallery. Mosey on by and take a look before you leave.

Thanks again Jose.

Mini Distro Round-Up

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Reviews

Distributions that can fit on a mini-cd are today's answer to the floppy distros of yesteryear. Those floppy distros were so handy for those quick repairs, setting up a filesystem on a new harddrive, or just killing a Saturday night. Nothing like the satisfaction of overcoming the difficulties getting MuLinux to dial up to the internet or even boot into a mini X. Hal was my favorite though. I still have my Hal floppy. They were just plain fun!

Today we have our mini-distros too, some as small as 50MB. There isn't much of a challenge these days though, just boot and go. With a weekend off from work, I thought I'd get reacquainted with an old friend and hopefully make some new ones. I test drove 5 of the smallest distros I could find and I'll tell you what I discovered.

gentoo's april fools

Filed under
Humor

Gentoo's April Fools Joke? Imagine my surprize when I logged into the gentoo forum and saw this! I actually kinda like it, if you forget how hard it is to read. I have to get like 6 inches from the monitor. Big Grin Well, there's a bit of a discussion whether this is actually a real theme or just a joke. hmmm. Big Grin

A Month With Fluxbox - Part 1

Filed under
Howtos

In anticipation of the April Gentoo Monthly Screenshots thread on my favorite forum, I've been working on beautifying my desktop for the last several days.

I've used KDE forever it seems, but this month I wanted to post something a little different. And in keeping with the spirit of the thread, I'm going to run fluxbox all April long and post my thoughts on using it here at tuxmachines at the end. Today I'd like to share of the things I've done so far to "purty it up".

Diversity in PC cases

Filed under
Humor

I saw this thread on gentoo forum about cardboard pc cases and thought I'd pass along some of the fun.

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More in Tux Machines

Benchmarking The Intel Performance Change With Linux FSGSBASE Support

As covered last week, the Linux kernel is finally about to see FSGSBASE support a feature supported by Intel CPUs going back to Ivybridge and can help performance. Since that earlier article the FS/GS BASE patches have been moved to the x86/cpu branch meaning unless any last-minute problems arise the functionality will be merged for the Linux 5.3 cycle. I've also begun running some benchmarks to see how this will change the Linux performance on Intel hardware. See the aforelinked article for more background information on this functionality that's been available in patch form for the Linux kernel going back years but hasn't been mainlined -- well, until hopefully next month. FSGSBASE should help in context switching performance which is particularly good news following the various CPU vulnerabilities like Meltdown and Zombieload that have really hurt the context switching performance. Read more

Programming/Development Leftovers

  • binb 0.0.4: Several nice improvements

    The fourth release of the binb package just arrived on CRAN. binb regroups four rather nice themes for writing LaTeX Beamer presentations much more easily in in (R)Markdown. As a teaser, a quick demo combining all four themes follows; documentation and examples are in the package.

  • Watermarking photos? "I can do that in Python!"

    The Python Image Library (PIL), although not in the standard library, has been Python’s best-known 2-D image processing library. It predated installers such as pip, so a “friendly fork” called Pillow was created. Although the package is called Pillow, you import it as PIL to make it compatible with the older PIL.

  • EuroPython 2019: Schedule is online

    Please make sure you book your ticket in the coming days. We will switch to late bird rates next week. If you want to attend the training sessions, please buy a training pass in addition to your conference ticket, or get a combined ticket. We only have very few training seats left.

  • Mike Driscoll: PyDev of the Week: Geir Arne Hjelle

    This week we welcome Geir Arne Hjelle (@gahjelle) as our PyDev of the Week! Geir is a regular contributor to Real Python. You can also find some of his work over on Github. Let’s take a few moments to get to know Geir now!

  • Python's Mypy--Advanced Usage

    In my last article, I introduced Mypy, a package that enforces type checking in Python programs. Python itself is, and always will remain, a dynamically typed language. However, Python 3 supports "annotations", a feature that allows you to attach an object to variables, function parameters and function return values. These annotations are ignored by Python itself, but they can be used by external tools. Mypy is one such tool, and it's an increasingly popular one. The idea is that you run Mypy on your code before running it. Mypy looks at your code and makes sure that your annotations correspond with actual usage. In that sense, it's far stricter than Python itself, but that's the whole point. In my last article, I covered some basic uses for Mypy. Here, I want to expand upon those basics and show how Mypy really digs deeply into type definitions, allowing you to describe your code in a way that lets you be more confident of its stability.

  • One Of AMD's Leading LLVM Compiler Experts Jumped Ship To Unity

    AMD has lost one of their leading LLVM compiler developers as well as serving as a Vulkan/SPIR-V expert with being involved in those Khronos specifications. Neil Henning has parted ways with AMD and is now joining Unity Technologies. Neil was brought to AMD to improve the performance of their LLVM compiler, in particular their LLVM Pipeline Compiler (LLPC) used by the likes of their official AMD Vulkan driver in order to make it competitive with their long-standing, proprietary shader compiler currently used by their binary graphics drivers. While at AMD, he was able to increase the performance of their LLVM shader compiler stack by about 2x over the past year. He also implemented various Vulkan driver extensions into their stack.

  • [LibreOffice GSoC] Week 4 Report

    As this week was my last week in my exams I worked in many minor points to finish it and finish all missing parts for phase1.

Official x86 Zhaoxin Processor Support Is Coming With Linux 5.3

Zhaoxin is the company producing Chinese x86 CPUs created by a joint venture between VIA and the Shanghai government. The current Zhaoxin ZX CPUs are based on VIA's Isaiah design and making use of VIA's x86 license. With the Linux 5.3 kernel will be better support for these Chinese desktop x86 CPUs. Future designs of the Zhaoxin processors call for 7nm manufacturing, PCI Express 4.0, DDR5, and other features to put it on parity with modern Intel and AMD CPUs. It remains to be seen how well that will work out, but certainly seems to be moving along in the desktop/consumer space for Chinese-built x86 CPUs while in the server space there's the Hygon Dhyana EPYC-based processors filling the space for Chinese servers. Read more

Security Leftovers

  • OpenSSH adds protection against Spectre, Meltdown, RAMBleed

    OpenSSH, a widely used suite of programs for secure (SSH protocol-based) remote login, has been equipped with protection against side-channel attacks that could allow attackers to extract private keys from memory.

  • How to take the pain out of patching Linux and Windows systems at scale

    Patching can be manually intensive and time-consuming, requiring large amounts of coordination and processes. Tony Green gives the best tips.

  • Removal of IBRS mitigation for Spectre Variant2

    As the Meltdown and Spectre attacks were published begin of January 2018, several mitigations were planned and implemented for Spectre Variant 2.

  • Go and FIPS 140-2 on Red Hat Enterprise Linux

    Red Hat provides the Go programming language to Red Hat Enterprise Linux customers via the go-toolset package. If this package is new to you, and you want to learn more, check out some of the previous articles that have been written for some background. The go-toolset package is currently shipping Go version 1.11.x, with Red Hat planning to ship 1.12.x in Fall 2019. Currently, the go-toolset package only provides the Go toolchain (e.g., the compiler and associated tools like gofmt); however, we are looking into adding other tools to provide a more complete and full-featured Go development environment. In this article, I will talk about some of the improvements, changes, and exciting new features for go-toolset that we have been working on. These changes bring many upstream improvements and CVE fixes, as well as new features that we have been developing internally alongside upstream.

  • Check your password security with Have I Been Pwned? and pass

    Password security involves a broad set of practices, and not all of them are appropriate or possible for everyone. Therefore, the best strategy is to develop a threat model by thinking through your most significant risks—who and what you are protecting against—then model your security approach on the activities that are most effective against those specific threats. The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) has a great series on threat modeling that I encourage everyone to read. In my threat model, I am very concerned about the security of my passwords against (among other things) dictionary attacks, in which an attacker uses a list of likely or known passwords to try to break into a system. One way to stop dictionary attacks is to have your service provider rate-limit or deny login attempts after a certain number of failures. Another way is not to use passwords in the "known passwords" dataset.