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Cool happenings in Fedora Workstation land

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Red Hat

Been some time since my last update, so I felt it was time to flex my blog writing muscles again and provide some updates of some of the things we are working on in Fedora in preparation for Fedora Workstation 35. This is not meant to be a comprehensive whats new article about Fedora Workstation 35, more of a listing of some of the things we are doing as part of the Red Hat desktop team.

One thing we spent a lot of effort on for a long time now is getting full support for the NVidia binary driver under Wayland. It has been a recurring topic in our bi-weekly calls with the NVidia engineering team ever since we started looking at moving to Wayland. There has been basic binary driver support for some time, meaning you could run a native Wayland session on top of the binary driver, but the critical missing piece was that you could not get support for accelerated graphics when running applications through XWayland, our X.org compatibility layer. Which basically meant that any application requiring 3D support and which wasn’t a native Wayland application yet wouldn’t work. So over the last Months we been having a great collaboration with NVidia around closing this gap, with them working closely with us in fixing issues in their driver while we have been fixing bugs and missing pieces in the rest of the stack. We been reporting and discussing issues back and forth allowing us a very quickly turnaround on issues as we find them which of course all resulted in the NVidia 470.42.01 driver with XWayland support. I am sure we will find new corner cases that needs to be resolved in the coming Months, but I am equally sure we will be able to quickly resolve them due to the close collaboration we have now established with NVidia. And I know some people will wonder why we spent so much time working with NVidia around their binary driver, but the reality is that NVidia is the market leader, especially in the professional Linux workstation space, and there are lot of people who either would end up not using Linux or using Linux with X without it, including a lot of Red Hat customers and Fedora users. And that is what I and my team are here for at the end of the day, to make sure Red Hat customers are able to get their job done using their Linux systems.

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More in Tux Machines

Announcing the election for the next TDF Board of Directors

On October 18, we officially announced the upcoming election for the next Board of Directors of The Document Foundation, the non-profit entity behind LibreOffice. As per § 7 II of our statutes (binding German version and non-binding English translartion) the Board’s term lasts two years. The current Board started its duty on February 18, 2020. Therefore, the old Board remains in charge until the end of February 17, 2022, so the new Board will be in charge the day after that, which is February 18, 2022. That upcoming term will then (regularly) end on February 17, 2024, so the next election of the Board of Directors will take place before. As per § 6 III, only members of the Board of Trustees of The Document Foundation, as well as current members of any of its bodies, are eligible to be elected into the Board of Directors, and the election is prepared and supervised by the Membership Committee (§ 7 II). Read more

VirtualBox 6.1.28 Released with Initial Support for Linux 5.14 and 5.15 Kernels

VirtualBox 6.1.28 is here about three months after VirtualBox 6.1.26 to introduce initial guest and host support for the Linux 5.14 and 5.15 kernel series. This means that you can now use VirtualBox on GNU/Linux systems powered by Linux kernels 5.14 or 5.15, as well as to run distributions powered by Linux 5.14 or 5.15 kernels inside virtual machines. In addition, this release introduces initial support for the upcoming Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8.5 operating system, improves the detection of kernel modules in Linux hosts to prevent unnecessary rebuilds, fixes a display corruption on Linux Mint systems, and adds bindings support for Python 3.9. Read more

More Mozilla Spying and Management Shuffle

  • William Lachance: Learning about Psychological Safety at the Recurse Center

    Some context: I’m currently working as a software engineer at Mozilla, building out our data pipeline and analysis tooling. I’ve been at my current position for more than 10 years (my “anniversary” actually passed while I was out). I started out as a senior engineer in 2011, and was promoted to staff engineer in 2016. In tech-land, this is a really long tenure at a company. I felt like it was time to take a break from my day-to-day, explore some new ideas and concepts, and hopefully expose myself to a broader group of people in my field. My original thinking was that I would mostly be spending this time building out an interactive computation environment I’ve been working on called Irydium. And I did quite a bit of that. However, I think the main thing I took away from this experience was some insight on what makes a remote environment for knowledge work really “click”. In particular, what makes somewhere feel psychologically safe, and how this feeling allows us to innovate and do our best work. While the Recurse Center obviously has different goals than an organization that builds and delivers consumer software, I do think there are some things that it does that could be applied to Mozilla (and, likely, many other tech workplaces).

  • [Older] Firefox Now Sends Your Address Bar Keystrokes to Mozilla

    Firefox now sends more data than you might think to Mozilla. To power Firefox Suggest, Firefox sends the keystrokes you type into your address bar, your location information, and more to Mozilla’s servers. Here’s exactly what Firefox is sharing and how to control it.

  • Support.Mozilla.Org: What’s up with SUMO – October 2021

    As we enter October, I hope you’re all pumped up to welcome the last quarter of the year and, basically, wrapping up projects that we have for the remainder of the year. With that spirit, let’s start by welcoming the following folks into our community. [...] Thanks for Jefferson Scher for straightening the Firefox Suggest confusion on Reddit. That definitely help people to understand the feature better.

  • Welcome Imo Udom, Mozilla’s new Senior Vice President, Innovation Ecosystems

    I am delighted to share that Imo Udom has joined Mozilla as Senior Vice President, Innovation Ecosystems. Imo brings a unique combination of strategy, technical and product expertise and an entrepreneurial spirit to Mozilla and our work to design, develop and deliver new products and services.

Security Leftovers

  • Security updates for Tuesday

    Security updates have been issued by Debian (redmine and strongswan), Fedora (containerd, fail2ban, grafana, moby-engine, and thunderbird), openSUSE (curl, firefox, glibc, kernel, libqt5-qtsvg, rpm, ssh-audit, systemd, and webkit2gtk3), Red Hat (389-ds:1.4, curl, kernel, kernel-rt, redis:5, and systemd), SUSE (util-linux), and Ubuntu (ardour, linux-azure, linux-azure-5.11, and strongswan).

  • Best Open Source Security Tools | eSecurityPlanet

    Over the past quarter of a century, the open source movement has gone from strength to strength. But that success and the openness inherent in the community have led to a major challenge – security. The more software that is developed, the greater the likelihood there is for vulnerabilities. To make matters worse, the open source world prides itself on openness and transparency. Therefore, any security vulnerabilities are disclosed publicly. In this age of organized gangs of cybercriminals, that is like placing an ad asking for an attack. This has given rise to a large number of open source security tools. They take care of all aspects of the management of security in open source components, examine dependencies, fix bugs in code, and lower risk.

  • Credit card PINs can be guessed even when covering the ATM pad

    Researchers have proven it’s possible to train a special-purpose deep-learning algorithm that can guess 4-digit card PINs 41% of the time, even if the victim is covering the pad with their hands. The attack requires the setting up of a replica of the target ATM because training the algorithm for the specific dimensions and key spacing of the different PIN pads is crucially important.

  • Using Machine Learning to Guess PINs from Video - Schneier on Security

    This works even if the person is covering the pad with their hands.

  • Google Developing "SiliFuzz" For Fuzzing CPUs To Uncover Electrical Defects - Phoronix

    With OSS-Fuzz for continuous fuzzing of open-source projects and along with working on the various sanitizers for compilers, Google has been doing a lot for proactively uncovering software defects in key open-source projects. Now though a group of their engineers have been working on SiliFuzz for software aiming to discover new CPU defects.