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The current state of UEFI and Linux

Filed under
Linux

Executive summary: Most things work fine.

Things we know are broken:

* Some Samsung laptops. The samsung-laptop driver is a slightly weird thing. By 2010 (when it first appeared) most vendors had moved over to using some level of firmware abstraction, either using ACPI or WMI. Samsung still seemed to be stuck around a decade earlier - they were providing a region of memory at a known address, and you'd read that address to find a bunch of offsets. Then you'd write magic values based on those offsets to magic system IO ports based on those offsets and something would happen. Those writes were triggering System Management Mode, a special x86 CPU mode where the processor executes code from memory that the OS can't see, without telling the OS that it's doing so. There's nothing especially new in this (SMM first appeared in the 386sl back in 1990), but it also means that you depend on the system vendor not changing the interface without telling you. Turns out that Samsung apparently changed their platform interface when they moved to UEFI, but didn't actually do anything to prevent old drivers from breaking things -

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today's howtos

Leftovers: Gaming

  • Avoid the pile-up in 'Clustertruck', a first-person platformer with day-1 Linux support, it's great
    We have been steadily getting more 3D "beat the timer" games where you're up against others times, which is great because they really can be fun. I do love getting competitive in certain games, especially with some of my Steam friends and friends in the wider community. Games like this recently have been something I've been repeatedly going back to for a break from life. Clustertruck is not only about beating the times of other people, but it's also a "the floor is lava" game, so if you touch the floor you have to start again. The really funny thing is that the safe pads are moving trucks you have to keep up with. You can at least grab onto the back of a truck if you just about touch it, so it's not always instant death.
  • Fusion 3, the next generation game engine and editor from Clickteam will support Linux
    The difference between their tools and others, is the event system. Instead of needing to program every single line, you can stack up events and link them together to create a game. It works quite well and I'm pretty excited to give Fusion 3 a go on Linux myself to see what random games I can create for fun.

Red Hat and Fedora

  • Red Hat Software Adding Fort Point Offices
    The new location will include an immersive briefing center for visiting executives, the first East Coast location for the company’s innovation labs and a new engineering lab, which will augment Red Hat’s 175,000-square-foot engineering and product headquarters in Westford. The engineering lab will provide collaborative space to take advantage of Boston’s tech ecosystem, Raleigh, North Carolina-based Red Hat said in a statement.
  • Red Hat Inc (NYSE:RHT) approaching 52-week high, short interest down
  • Raymond James Financial Inc. Reiterates Outperform Rating for Red Hat Inc. (RHT)
  • Fedora 25 Linux Beta Might Land on October 11, 2016, Beta Freeze Now in Effect
    Fedora Project's Mohan Boddu announced on September 26, 2016, that the upcoming Fedora 25 Beta milestone, which is scheduled for release next month on the 11th, is now officially in freeze stage. Fedora 25 is the next major release of the Red Hat-sponsored computer operating system for power users and anyone else who wants a well-designed Linux-based OS. It has been in development since July 2016, and the Alpha snapshot has hit the streets on August 30, after being delayed by a week due to some nasty regressions and bugs that have been patched quickly. The next stop in the Fedora 25 Linux development cycle is the Beta, which, according to the official release schedule, is now in freeze state. The Beta Freeze stage means that developers won't be allowed to add any other features to the upcoming Beta release, but only to fix blockers and other annoyances that might not offer users a quality product.

Android Leftovers