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Getting Stuff Done on Linux [Part 2]

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Last time, we covered Linux applications for creating content. Today we will be covering organizational and web-based programs for Linux.

The Series of Tubes*

We all use the internet. I’m sure anyone reading this has also heard of Firefox but do you know about all the others? Konqueror is a nice browser based on the KHTML rendering engine, the same great engine Safari and WebKit use, which means it supports a few things (like drop-shadows on text) which no other browsers do. Then there’s Epiphany, which will display pages the same way Firefox does, but which fits the look ‘n feel of GNOME environments a bit better than Firefox 2.0 does (Firefox 3, however, fits very well). There are also lightweight browsers like Kazehakase you might like. Firefox is by far the most extensible, though.

Instant Messaging

Pidgin Logo For text-based instant messaging, nothing beats Pidgin’s flexibility. It can handle AIM, ICQ, IRC, MSN, Yahoo, Gadu-Gadu, QQ, SIMPLE, Bonjour, Novell Groupwise, XMPP and Google Talk (aka Jabber), Zephyr, Sametime, and even MySpaceIM. If you haven’t heard of half of those anywhere else, I’m with you, but from what I’ve heard it seems they are each varyingly popular in different parts of the world. As with OpenOffice, it’s cross-platform (Win, Mac, Linux), so transitioning can be easy. The Mac OSX version is called Adium. If you want to add voice or video chat capability, Skype 2.0 for Linux does have video support (older versions did not).

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Linux 4.9-rc2

  • Linux 4.9-rc2
    I'm back on my usual Sunday afternoon release schedule, and 4.9-rc2 is out. My favorite new feature that I called out in the rc1 announcement (the virtually mapped stacks) is possibly implicated in some crashes that Dave Jones has been trying to figure out, so if you want to be helpful and try to see if you can give more data, please make sure to enable CONFIG_VMAP_STACK. .. and on the other hand, if you want to just not have to worry about _that_ particular issue, disable the virtually mapped stacks it for now, but please do help test. Because 4.9 is obviously shaping up to be a big release (I haven't done the actual stats yet, but I think it's the biggest in number of commits we've ever had), and I think Greg is also planning on making it an LTS release. The two may be related, with people pushing to get their stuff ready. Regardless, the more people who help test, and the earlier in the rc series those people start testing, the better off we'll be. Hint hint. Ok, enough about that. rc2 itself isn't huge, but that's a fairly common pattern: either people just take a breather after the merge window, or it simply takes a while for the fallout of new code to be found, so rc2 is usually a fairly small rc. But we have stuff pretty much all over the map: drivers dominate (gpu drivers stand out, but there's ipmi, clocksource, mmc, pinctrl, HID, scsi, nvme .. you name it). Add some architecture updates (x86 and arm64) and a few filesystems (ext4, nfs, ceph, f2fs), and some VM cleanups and one big fix, and you've covered most of it. The appended shortlog gives the details, and for even more detail you can always go to the git tree itself. Linus
  • Linus Torvalds Announces the Second Release Candidate of Linux Kernel 4.9 LTS
    It's still Sunday in the US, which means that it's time for you to take yet another RC (Release Candidate) milestone of the upcoming Linux 4.9 kernel release for a test drive. That's right, Linus Torvalds just announced the second Release Candidate for Linux kernel 4.9, which lands eight days after the first one and appears to be fairly normal development snapshot that includes lots of updated drivers, mostly for GPU, but also HID, SCSI, MMC, PINCTRL, IMPI, and clocksource, various x86 and ARM64 architecture updates, improvemnts to the EXT4, F2FS, Ceph, and NFS filesystems, and some VM cleanups.
  • Linux 4.9-rc2 Kernel Released
    Linux 4.9-rc2 is now available as the latest test release of this forthcoming kernel update. Over the past week there's been a fair number of merges of bug/regression fixes for this stage of Linux 4.9 development, one week since the closure of the merge window. We've already written a lot about Linux 4.9, including our detailed Linux 4.9 feature overview for those interested in the fun changes of this next kernel release.

GParted Live 0.27.0-1 Disk Partitioning Live CD Out Now, Based on GParted 0.27.0

Just one day after announcing the release of the GParted 0.27.0 open-source partition editor software, Curtis Gedak is informing us about the availability of the GParted Live 0.27.0-1 stable release. Read more