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Linux Video of the Week: 40-Node Raspberry Pi Supercomputer

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Linux
Server

Guill, a recent graduate of the masters in computer science and electrical engineering program at the University of Texas in Dallas, built the 40-node Raspberry Pi cluster for distributed software testing. In addition to a list of technical requirements, Guill wrote that he also wanted it to be “visually pleasing.”

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LibreOffice Writer Articles and Improvements

  • Two alternatives to Microsoft Word that are free and customizable

    If you're looking for an open-source office suite, LibreOffice is the software package for you. Its word processing program is LibreOffice Writer--which, incidentally, this story was written with, so I can attest to its excellence. You're able to choose from different fonts and text styles, embed images and figures, and use a variety of other functions you'd expect from its paid competition. It can save files in an Open Document Format (ODF), a number of Word formats, and export your work as a PDF for wide-ranging compatibility.

  • Improved rotated text handling in Writer's table rows with automatic height

    Writer now has better support for rotated text in tables containing rows with automatic height. This post also presents two related fixes. First, thanks Otevřená města who made this work by Collabora possible. [...] Before diving into improved rotated text handling, first a continuous section break import problem (tdf#128605) was fixed: this was a case when we created a new page style, but only a new section was intended.

Proprietary Software and DRM

  • AWS outage cripples ACT Emergency Services Agency website as Canberra bushfire rages

    The outage hit as Canberra Airport was shut to commercial traffic because of the fire, with residents around Oaks Estate warned to get out of the road of the oncoming blaze after two fires merged and engulfed a rubbish tip.

    It is still unclear why the ESA website was hit by a single point of failure, however the blaze, known as the Beard fire, is burning close to the industrial suburb of Fyshwick which houses several data centres.

    The blaze near the airport is also within stone's throw of the the Australian Signals Directorate's Australian Cyber Security Centre offices at the Brindabella Park office complex that houses a clutch of other technology, consulting and miltech tenants.

  • The Pentagon CIO office's plan for better software

    In his speech, Ranks detailed several efforts underway at the DoD to increase update speed. To start, Ranks said, the DoD CIO's office is changing policy to allow for more iterative processes in acquisition, a departure from the current process where requirements are laid out years before technology is delivered. To complete that goal, Ranks said the DoD needs the enterprise capability to provide the tools necessary to create a more iterative process.

  • Google and Microsoft have gone too far

    Google and Microsoft are using dark pattern design to trick or force users to do things they never intended. Is it time to switch to more ethical search engines? (We list 10 alternatives.)

  • Sonos CEO Issues Half-Baked Apology, Continues Bricking Old Speakers
    Sonos CEO Patrick Spence has publicly apologized for confusion around Sonos’ smart speaker plans.

OPNsense 20.1-RC1 Released For Popular BSD-Based Firewall / Routing OS

The release candidate of OPNsense 20.1 is available this weekend, the FreeBSD/HardenedBSD-based networking/firewall OS that forked from pfSense now a half-decade ago. The OPNsense 20.1 release has been working on a variety of security improvements, VXLAN device support, working on the transition to a fully plug-able device infrastructure, plug-in updates, and many other changes. Read more Original message:

  • OPNsense 20.1-RC1 released
    Hi there,
    
    For over 5 years now, OPNsense is driving innovation through modularising
    and hardening the open source firewall, with simple and reliable firmware
    upgrades, multi-language support, HardenedBSD security, fast adoption of
    upstream software updates as well as clear and stable 2-Clause BSD licensing.
    
    We thank all of you for helping test, shape and contribute to the project!
    We know it would not be the same without you.
    
    Download links, an installation guide[1] and the checksums for the images
    can be found below as well.
    
    o Europe: https://opnsense.c0urier.net/releases/20.1/
    o US East Coast: http://mirrors.nycbug.org/pub/opnsense/releases/20.1/
    o US West Coast: https://mirror.sfo12.us.leaseweb.net/opnsense/releases/20.1/
    o South America: http://mirror.upb.edu.co/opnsense/releases/20.1/
    o South-East Asia: https://ftp.yzu.edu.tw/opnsense/releases/20.1/
    o Full mirror list: https://opnsense.org/download/
    
    Here are the full patch notes against 19.7.9_1:
    
    o system: support for manually removing static route entries
    o system: migrated logging to MVC
    o system: regenerate default DH parameters
    o system: randomize session ID in test cookie
    o system: remove legacy XMLRPC push on changes
    o system: deprecate the use of services.inc
    o system: opt-out on "Allow DNS server list to be overridden by DHCP/PPP on WAN" for selected interfaces
    o system: increase PHP memory limit to 512 MB
    o system: opnsense-auth can now respond with extended properties in JSON on successful authentication
    o interfaces: loopback device support
    o interfaces: VXLAN device support
    o interfaces: first steps toward fully pluggable device infrastructure
    o interfaces: remove default load of netgraph framework on bootup
    o interfaces: interfaces: move description into top block and rename titles
    o interfaces: only trigger newwanip event for affected interfaces
    o firmware: revoke 19.1, trust 20.1 fingerprint
    o firmware: new mirror in Zurich, CH contributed by ServerBase AG
    o firmware: add live search to mirror selection
    o dhcp: add OMAPI configuration support (contributed by Yuri Moens)
    o ipsec: add configurable dpdaction (contributed by  Marcel Menzel)
    o ipsec: refactor tunnel settings page
    o unbound: add options for logging queries and extended statistics (contributed by Flightkick)
    o mvc: BaseListField ignoring empty selected field
    o ui: jQuery 3.4.1
    o plugins: os-dyndns 1.19 adds dynv6 and Azure DNS support (contributed by Ralf Zerres and martgras)
    o plugins: os-haproxy 2.20[2]
    o plugins: os-zabbix-agent 1.7[3][4]
    o ports: ca_root_nss 3.49.1
    o ports: curl 7.68.0[5]
    o ports: openssl 1.1.1d[6]
    
    Known issues and limitations:
    
    o HardenedBSD 12.1 has been postponed to the next major release
    o Nano growfs does not work on this release candidate, but a fix for 20.1 already exists
    o Installer still advertises 19.7, but a fix for 20.1 already exists
    o Legacy MPD5 plugins os-l2tp, os-pppoe and os-pptp have been deprecated and will no longer receive updates
    o i386 has not been deprecated for the time being 
    

Mesa 20.0 Work by Intel and AMD

  • Intel's Vulkan Driver Squeezes Another Optimization Into Mesa 20.0

    Patches written two months ago for Intel's ANV open-source Vulkan driver have now been merged ahead of the imminent Mesa 20.0 feature freeze and branching. The work worth mentioning is allowing HiZ in read-only depth layouts. "These layouts don't mean "sampled" they mean the same thing as DEPTH_STENCIL_OPTIMAL only the client promises to not write the depth or stencil buffer as indicated. Since HiZ depth testing is much faster than non-HiZ depth testing, we really don't want to disable HiZ for these."

  • RadeonSI Introduces A Live Shader Cache With Mesa 20.0

    In addition to the AMD RadeonSI Gallium3D driver's on-disk shader cache and in-memory shader cache there is now a "live shader cache" to help with deduplication of compiled shader objects. AMD's Marek Olšák landed this live shader cache on Friday. The introduction of this new caching level stems from the behavior of when games concert separate D3D shaders into linked GLSL shaders, the same vertex shader is often used with many different fragment shaders. In introducing this live shader cache of the compiled shader objects, for affected titles there should now be fewer resident shaders and fewer shader state changes.