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Spotted in the Wild, Perfect Linux, and Six Cool Distros

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Today in Linux news, Christine Halls strolls down memory lane to a time when real men still wrote their own drivers and backups were for sissies. has six cool distributions for your older PC and a couple of favorites were spotted out in the world doing real work. One blogger writes of his year without Windows and there are several interesting gaming notes. We have all this and lots more on this Monday, August 04, 2014.

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Leftovers: Software

  • Desktop Gmail App WMail Scores a Sizeable Update
    There's a new stable release of WMail, the app that describes itself as "the missing desktop client for Gmail".
  • 2 free desktop recording tools to try: SimpleScreenRecorder and Kazam
    A picture might be worth a thousand words, but a video demonstration can save a lot of talking. I'm a visual learner, so seeing how to do something has been very helpful in my education. I've found that students benefit from seeing exactly how an application is configured or how a code snippet is written. Desktop screen recorders are great tools for creating instructional videos. In this article, I'll look at two free, open source desktop screen recorders: SimpleScreenRecorder and Kazam.
  • Nightfall on Linux
    I've looked at general astronomy programs in the past that are helpful for many tasks you might need to do in your stargazing career. But, several specific jobs are more complicated and require specialized software to make relevant calculations, so here, let's take a look at Nightfall. Nightfall is a program that can handle calculations involving binary star systems. It can animate binary star systems, taking into account not only orbital speeds but also rotational motion and the changing shape of stars due to their close positions. You can model what it would look like and what kind of light curves you would register when observing a binary system. You even can take a set of actual observational data and find a best-fit model for the system you are studying.
  • Nmap 7.31 Security Scanner Updates Npcap with Raw 802.11 Wi-Fi Capture Support
    The first point release of the popular, open-source, and cross-platform Nmap 7.30 free security scanner and network mapper arrived, versioned 7.31, adding several important stability improvements, and bug fixes. New features in Nmap 7.31 include Npcap 0.10r9, which has been upgraded from version 0.10r2 bundled in Nmap 7.30 to add raw 802.11 Wi-Fi capture support, updated Zenmap graphical interface to indicate that better display of hostname is attached to Topology page's address, and IPv6 fingerprint submission improvements. "To increase the number of IPv6 fingerprint submissions, a prompt for submission will be shown with some random chance for successful matches of OS classes that are based on only a few submissions. Previously, only unsuccessful matches produced such a prompt," read the release notes for Nmap 7.31.
  • Shotwell 0.25.0 Image Viewer Supports ACDSee Tags, Improves Piwigo Support
    A new stable release of the popular Shotwell open-source image viewer and organizer arrived for users of Linux-based operating systems, version 0.25.0, bringing lots of important changes. As usual, we've managed to get our hands on the internal changelog, which we've also attached at the end of the story for your reading pleasure, and we'd like to tell you that Shotwell 0.25.0 now supports the tags written by the commercial ACDSee photo manipulation software. The application now makes use of Unicode characters, supports recent Vala compiler releases, improves the Piwigo upload support by implementing an option to override the SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificate handling, and another one to display the SSL certificate, along with better creation of new albums.
  • xfce4-panel 4.12.1 Released, Xfce 4.14 Still A Long Ways Out
    Xfce4-panel 4.12.1 has been released as a "long overdue maintenance release" while Xfce 4.14 is still in its infancy. Xfce4-panel 4.12.1 has translation updates, support for xfpanel-switch in the preferences, and just some basic fixes. This comes a few weeks after the quiet bug-fix releases of xfce4-settings 4.12.1 and also joined by the xfconf 4.12.1 release this week.
  • Video Call Improvements Land in Skype for Linux Alpha 1.11
  • Dual-GPU integration in GNOME
    Thanks to the work of Hans de Goede and many others, dual-GPU (aka NVidia Optimus or AMD Hybrid Graphics) support works better than ever in Fedora 25. On my side, I picked up some work I originally did for Fedora 24, but ended up being blocked by hardware support. This brings better integration into GNOME.
  • ‘GNOME To Do’ App Picks Up New Features
    GNOME To Do is one of those apps you’ve probably heard of, but do not use. And with a bunch of rivals task managers and to-do list apps available on Linux — from Simplenote to Remember the Milk — and online, the little app that might has its work cutout.

today's howtos

More Games for GNU/Linux

  • Humble Gems Bundle Goes Live, Offers Chroma Squad For Peanuts
    Wallets at the ready as Humble Gems Bundle is now live, a pay-what-you-can-be-bothered-to-palooza offering a selection of hitherto undiscovered indie gaming marvels. Alright, they’re all games that you’ve probably heard of before, certainly if you’re an active fan of the indie gaming scene.
  • Civilization 6 Linux Release Teased By Aspyr?
    Recently, Aspyr Media confirmed that they’ll be doing a Civilization 6 Linux release soon. Currently, Civilization 6 is live on both PC and Mac. Will Aspyr Media release concrete details about the Civilization 6 Linux release in the next few days?
  • Playstation 4 Linux Hack May Show 4.01 Vulnerability
    A new video about a Playstation 4 Linux hack may have shown a vulnerability in the 4.01 firmware update that came out for the Playstation 4 a few weeks ago. The hacking news came from a video at the GeekPwn 2016 convention in Shanghai, China, where the hacking was shown via a live demo. In this demo, a pair of Chinese computer users use a Linux computer and the Webkit browser, which is used to inject a certain exploit into the Playstation 4. One cut later, and a command line prompt appears that is then used to play Super Mario Bros. While the first use for it in the live demo is innocuous, the fact that this is even possible points once again to possible holes in the Playstation’s security.
  • PlayStation 4 hack enables Linux on recent Sony firmware
    A showcase event at this week’s GeekPwn conference in Shanghai suggests that Sony’s PlayStation 4 has been hacked, as a recently released video shows the console running an unsanctioned Linux build courtesy of a web browser exploit. While details regarding the hack are not yet known, a browser-based security issue in PS4 firmware version 4.01 could potentially allow users to root the upcoming PlayStation 4 Pro console in order to run unlicensed applications and games.

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