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Friday, 23 Jun 17 - Tux Machines is a community-driven public service/news site which has been around for over a decade and primarily focuses on GNU/LinuxSubscribe now Syndicate content

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Free computer advice comes with a price

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If you're like most people who are knowledgeable about free and open source software (FOSS), you're probably also interested in encouraging more people to use it. The good news is there are many ways you can help people who are not as technically minded as you learn about and use FOSS.

For example, you can recommend a piece of software that may be useful to them, help them install the software, and troubleshoot when they have an issue. By helping them, you're spreading the word about FOSS (which is usually not advertised as much as most proprietary software), probably improving their experience with the software, and doing something altruistic, which can make you feel good—if everything goes well, that is.

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Microsoft is really scared of Chromebooks in businesses and schools

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Microsoft first revealed its concerns over Chromebooks in an attack on Google’s laptops more than three years ago. While Chromebooks haven’t become best-sellers for consumers just yet, they have started to become popular with students in the US and slowly with some businesses. Microsoft is now revealing it's worried about this threat with two new videos on its Windows YouTube channel today.

The first promises that Windows 10 “outshines” Chrome OS for businesses, with features like Windows Ink, Cortana, Windows Hello, and Microsoft Edge. Bizarrely, Microsoft isn’t positioning its new Windows 10 S operating system as its alternative to Chrome OS, instead it’s using the Windows 10 Pro version for comparisons. In the second video Microsoft highlights Sway, Windows Ink, and security through Windows Hello. Some of these are reasonable comparisons between Windows 10 and Chrome OS, but overall these videos just prove Microsoft has a lot to fear from Chrome OS.

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Linux distro UBOS beta 11 released with support for Marvell EspressoBIN

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UBOS Beta 11 is here, and we are proud to add the Marvell EspressoBIN to the list of supported devices.

Linux-driven Zynq SBC launches at $89 with WiFi, BT, and Arduino

Avnet’s $89 MiniZed SBC is its lowest cost Zynq-based board yet. It offers 8GB eMMC, WiFi, BT, USB host, 2x micro-USB, and an Arduino interface.

The MiniZed SBC breaks new ground in pricing among Avnet’s Xilinx Zynq-7000 based computer-on-modules and SBCs, selling for $89 compared to $199 for the MicroZed SBC. The MiniZed supports “industrial IoT applications such as motor control and embedded vision,” says Avnet. Like Avnet’s other Zed boards, it’s not a fully open source hardware design, but it offers a Linux SDK, and is supported with extensive documentation and the long-running community site. (See farther below for more on other Zed boards, including a fairly recent, Zynq UltraScale+ MPSoC based UltraZed module and starter kit.)

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Vectr: a fresh take on vector graphics edition on Linux

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Following the Inkscape snap, there is a new vector graphics editor readily available to install. With project sharing built-in, a modern UI built with Electron and more on the roadmap (real-time collaboration, versioning…), you should keep an eye on Vectr!

Out of beta 9 months ago, it features a growing set of tools: shape tools, raster import, filters, and pretty much everything you need to get started on vector graphics with an easy to use interface.

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Leftovers: Solus. OBS, and Unixstickers

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Graphics in Linux

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Leftovers: Software and Games

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  • CopyQ -An Advanced Clipboard Manager for Linux

    CopyQ is an advanced clipboard manager with editing and scripting features, that lets you intelligently manipulate your system’s clipboard content and use it within a wide range of applications. It monitors your system’s clipboard and saves its content in a way you can later paste it directly into another application.

  • RcppMsgPack 0.1.1

    A new package! Or at least new on CRAN as the very initial version 0.1.0 had been available via the ghrr drat for over a year. But now we have version 0.1.1 to announce as a CRAN package.

    RcppMspPack provides R with MessagePack header files for use via C++ (or C, if you must) packages such as RcppRedis.

  • Smack v4.2 Introduces OMEMO Support!

    I have the honour to announce the latest release of Smack! Version 4.2 brings among bug fixes and additional features like Explicit Message Encryption (XEP-0380) and Message Processing Hints (XEP-0334) support for OMEMO Multi-End-Message-and-Object encryption (XEP-0384). OMEMO was developed by Andreas Straub for the Conversations messenger (also as a Google Summer of Code project) in 2015. Since then it got quite popular and drew a lot of attention for XMPP in the media. My hope is that my efforts to develop an easy to use Smack module will result in an even broader adoption.

  • Tropico 6 Will Debut With Linux Support Next Year
  • Feral Is Bringing XCOM 2: War of the Chosen To Linux
  • Steam Direct Now Available For More Easily Getting Games On Steam

    Following the retirement of Valve's Steam Greenlight program, Steam Direct is now available as the streamlined, transparent, and accessible method for game developers to bring their games to Steam.

Servers and Red Hat/Fedora

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Red Hat
  • Calçado's Microservices Prerequisites

    In May 2017, I gave a talk at Craft Conf in Budapest focusing on the economics of Microservices. You can watch the video recording here or read through the slides here. In this talk, I have briefly discussed a set of proposed prerequisites for microservices, which are the things I believe you should have in place before considering a widespread adoption of the architecture style. Since the presentation, the list has been referenced by other works in the distributed systems space, so I want to use this post to expand on these prerequisites.

  • Heptio Comes Out of Stealth Mode with a Kubernetes Configuration Tool, ksonnet
  • Enough with the microservices

    Much has been written on the pros and cons of microservices, but unfortunately I’m still seeing them as something being pursued in a cargo cult fashion in the growth-stage startup world. At the risk of rewriting Martin Fowler’s Microservice Premium article, I thought it would be good to write up some thoughts so that I can send them to clients when the topic arises, and hopefully help people avoid some of the mistakes I’ve seen. The mistake of choosing a path towards a given architecture or technology on the basis of so-called best practices articles found online is a costly one, and if I can help a single company avoid it then writing this will have been worth it.

  • Container Technologies Overview

    Containers are lightweight OS-level virtualizations that allow us to run an application and its dependencies in a resource-isolated process. All the necessary components that are required to run an application are packaged as a single image and can be re-used. While an image is executed, it runs in an isolated environment and does not share memory, CPU, or the disk of the host OS. This guarantees that processes inside the container cannot watch any processes outside the container.

  • Red Hat, Inc. (RHT) Stock Will Show Resistance At $89.59
  • recommendations for future Fedora / Perl improvements
  • DORS/CLUC 2017 event report

Debian News: Freexian/LTS and Debian Installer RC 5

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Ubuntu, GNOME, Linux Mint 18.2 “Sonya” KDE, and KDE News

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  • Patching u-boot for use in an Ubuntu Core gadget snap

    This is the second post in the series about building u-boot based gadget snaps, following Building u-boot gadget snap packages from source.

    If you have read the last post in this series, you have likely noticed that there is a uboot.patch file being applied to the board config before building the u-boot binaries. This post will take a closer look at this patch.

  • Smarter Window Snapping is Coming to GNOME Shell

    GNOME 3.26 is shaping up to be one heck of a release, as a recent update from GNOME developer Georges Stavracas shows.

  • GNOME 3.26 Getting Better Half-Tiling Support
  • Ubuntu Reveal Results of GNOME Desktop Survey

    The Ubuntu desktop team has finally revealed the results of the recent GNOME desktop user survey. But if you were hoping to find some definitive decisions taken as a result of the results you’re in for disappointment.

  • Ubuntu OpenStack Dev Summary – 12th June 2017

    This summary is intended to be a regular communication of activities and plans happening in and around Ubuntu OpenStack, covering but not limited to the distribution and deployment of OpenStack on Ubuntu.

  • Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter Issue 510
  • Linux Mint 18.2 “Sonya” KDE – BETA Release

    Linux Mint 18.2 is a long term support release which will be supported until 2021. It comes with updated software and brings refinements and many new features to make your desktop even more comfortable to use.

  • Qt 5.9.1 soft branching started

    We have today started soft branching from '5.9' to '5.9.1'. That way we should be able to release Qt 5.9.1 still during June. So please use '5.9.1' for new changes targeted to Qt 5.9.1 release. We will do final downmerge from '5.9' to '5.9.1' this Friday (16.6) and after that '5.9' will be for Qt 5.9.2.

  • Qt 5.9.1 Should Be Out This Month

    While there didn't end up being any point/patch releases to Qt 5.8, The Qt Company is making good on their word for improving the release flow with Qt 5.9 and maintaining it as an LTS release.

  • A KDE Connect Bluetooth Backend Is In Development

    Regular readers of this site will know that we lurrve KDE Connect (and for some very good reasons)! But one thing we’ve heard a number of you ask each time we write about is whether KDE Connect works over Bluetooth. Right now, it doesn’t — but that’s about to change.

Leftovers: OSS and Sharing

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  • How open is OpenForge

    The central theme of OpenForge is e-governance, so it requires that the hosted project be related to e-governance. This is not a place for private companies, communities, or individuals to host their private source code repository. Only government departments can have private repositories here. Private companies and individuals must have public repositories. These are the only two aspects that are verified while approving a project on OpenForge. On OpenForge, projects, their members, and activities are not regulated or controlled in any other way.

    The decision whether or not to use OpenForge (and to what degree) rests with the respective project owner or department. They can decide what project source code they want to share and how they want to leverage the community to improve the code base.


    The Singapore government is using GitHub to collaborate on its Government Digital Services. There’s a considerable difference between the way Singapore and India provide access to and visualisation of the data.The USA has also listed some of the projects on GitHub. Country’s(US) open data portal doesn’t rank high in terms of its user-friendliness but their data visualisation platform seems to be making up for it. In addition, many governments in Europe and America have come up with a policy to adopt open-source software and to open up the source code of government applications. These activities are mainly on platforms like GitHub and SourceForge (e.g. the US government has a code repository called which aggregates federal projects, but the code is hosted on GitHub).

  • LibreOffice 6.0 Is In Development

    LibreOffice 6.0 will be the version that succeeds this summer's release of LibreOffice 5.4.

  • Microfluidics for the masses

    A new MIT-designed open-source website might well be the Pinterest of microfluidics. The site,, is a free repository of designs for lab-on-a-chip devices, submitted by all sorts of inventors, including trained scientists and engineers, hobbyists, students, and amateur makers. Users can browse the site for devices ranging from simple cell sorters and fluid mixers, to more complex chips that analyze ocular fluid and synthesize gene sequences.

  • Open-source microfluidic design: MIT opens online repository

    Seen at, the site is built as a free repository of designs for lab-on-a-chip devices, submitted by all sorts of inventors, including trained scientists and engineers, hobbyists, students, and amateur makers. Users can browse the site for devices ranging from simple cell sorters and fluid mixers, to more complex chips with niche dedicated functionalities.

  • German breeders develop ‘open source’ plant seeds

    There's open-source software, open-source pharma research, and open-source beer. Now, there are open-source seeds, too. Breeders from Göttingen University in Germany and Dottenfelderhof agricultural school in Bad Vilbel, Germany, have released tomato and wheat varieties under an open-source license. Their move follows similar schemes for sharing plant material in India and the United States, but is the first that provides legal protection for the open-source status of future descendants of plant varieties.

  • Eve V Uses Open-Source Concepts to Take on Microsoft’s Surface Pro
  • Going Open Source to Make Your Own Loupedeck Alternative

    There is an extremely talented landscape photographer called Thomas Heaton whose YouTube videos I find very instructive and entertaining. Recently he featured a new product he was sent to try out: the Loupedeck, a physical console that lets you control Lightroom (the main software I use to sort, catalog and edit my photographs).


    So, I cancelled my Loupedeck order and found a very reasonable MIDI controller for $65 from Adorama and ordered it instead (my lovely daughter is going to pay for it for Father’s Day — it’s so nice she’s earning her own money), and downloaded the open source midi2lr software (midi to Lightroom, get it?).

  • Some Thoughts on Python-Like Languages

    I am not fond of change for change’s sake, but new opportunities often bring new priorities and challenges with them. What then if Python as people insist on it today, with all the extra features added over the years to satisfy various petitioners and trends, is actually the weakness itself? What if the Python-like languages can adapt to these changes, and by having to confront their incompatibilities with hastily-written code from the 1990s and code employing “because it’s there” programming techniques, they can adapt to the changing environment while delivering much of what people like about Python in the first place? What if Python itself cannot?

    “Why don’t you go and use something else if you don’t like what Python is?” some might ask. Certainly, Free Software itself is far more important to me than any adherence to Python. But I can also choose to make that other language something that carries forward the things I like about Python, not something that looks and behaves completely differently. And in doing so, at least I might gain a deeper understanding of what matters to me in Python, even if others refuse the lessons and the opportunities such Python-like languages can provide.

  • [Older] GCC Developers Potentially Deprecating Intel MPX

Chrome 60 Beta, New Firefox, Thunderbird Themes

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  • Chrome 60 Beta Rolls Out With VP9 Improvements, New Developer Features

    Chrome 60 Beta adds a Paint Timing API to provide more insight to developers about their "first paint" performance, CSS font-display support, improvements to the Credential Management API, the Payment Request API has been added to desktop Chrome, there's a new Web Budget API to allow sites using push notifications to send a limited number of push messages that will trigger background work, support for Web Push Encryption was added, and a range of other CSS/JavaScript features and APIs.

  • The Best Firefox Ever

    On the Firefox team, one thing we always hear from our users is that they rely on the web for complex tasks like trip planning and shopping comparisons. That often means having many tabs open. And the sites and web apps running in those tabs often have lots of things going on– animations, videos, big pictures and more. Complex sites are more and more common. The average website today is nearly 2.5 megabytes – the same size as the original version of the game Doom, according to Wired. Up until now, a complex site in one Firefox tab could slow down all the others. That often meant a less than perfect browsing experience.

  • Thunderbird Arc Theme Updated With Support for Arc Variants

    An update to the Arc Thunderbird theme add-on is now available for download, and brings support for the 3 Arc GTK theme variants.

Tails 3.0 Anonymous Operating System Officially Released, Based on Debian 9

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The developers of the Tails amnesic incognito live system, also known as the anonymous operating system, were proud to announce today the release and immediate availability of Tails 3.0.

Tails 3.0 is a major update that's based entirely on the repositories of the soon-to-be-released Debian GNU/Linux 9 "Stretch" operating system. It's also the first version of the operating system to be launched approximately at the same time as a new major release of Debian GNU/Linux.

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Alpha Offers Core i7 Centurion Laptop Running Linux for $429

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  • Alpha Offers Core i7 Centurion Laptop Running Linux for $429

    You'd be forgiven for not recognizing the name Alpha. The company first made a splash back in March when it launched the 14-inch Litebook laptop running Elementary OS on a quad-core Intel Celeron and 4GB of RAM for $249. Now Alpha is back with two more products, one of which is a Coe i7 laptop.

  • Alpha Centurion High Powered Laptop Unveiled From $429

    As well as announcing their new Litebox mini PC, Alpha have also unveiled a high powered laptop equipped with a 15.6-inch display, powered by an Intel Core i7 processor supported by 8GB of RAM.

  • Alpha Litebox Mini PC Unveiled From $249

    Hardware manufacturer Alpha has this week unveiled a new addition to their range of computer systems with the launch of a new mini PC in the form of the aptly named Litebox which is available to purchase price from $249.

Top 5 Ubuntu Themes Of The Month

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​Every month we select the top themes for Ubuntu. Many themes stay same and many change. Themes are one of the best ways to make our desktop beautiful and who doesn’t want to make his desktop beautiful? The themes mentioned below are paid and free too. Select as per your liking and install it right now.

Read<br />

Swapping Linux for Windows in Munich too risky after WannaCry attacks, warn Greens

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Open-source pioneer Munich has been warned the city could face increased risk from hackers if it goes ahead with a planned return to Windows.

Munich spent nine years and millions of euros shifting some 15,000 staff to a Linux-based OS and other open-source software, but is now expected to swap Linux for Windows 10 by 2021.

However, Munich's Green Party says the recent WannaCry ransomware attacks on Windows machines worldwide highlight how much more of a target Microsoft's OS is for hackers than Linux-based operating systems.

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More in Tux Machines

Desktop: Popcorn Linux, Purism, Distro Hopping, System76, and 2017 Linux Laptop Survey

  • Popcorn Linux OS gives processors a common language
    Thanks to a new operating system called Popcorn Linux, the Navy may be able to speed systems development and cut maintenance. Developed by engineering researchers at Virginia Tech with support from the Office of Naval Research,  Popcorn Linux can compile different programming languages into a common format. The operating system takes generic coding language and translates it into multiple specialized program languages. Then it determines what pieces of the code are needed to perform particular tasks and transfers these instruction “kernels” (the “popcorn” part) to the appropriate function, ONR officials said. Chips for video systems might be programmed in one language and those for networking functions in another. These multicore processors improve computing speed, but they also force programmers to design or upgrade applications based on what programs run on which processors. That means complex systems like battlespace awareness and artificial intelligence that require specialized processors must be manually adjusted so components can interact with each other.
  • Purism's Security Focused Librem Laptops Go Mainstream as GA Begins, with $2.5M in Total Project Funding and 35 Percent Average Monthly Growth
  • Now it’s easier to buy Purism’s Linux laptops
    After running a crowdfunding campaign in 2015 to raise money for a laptop that runs free and open source software, Purism has been able to ship a limited number of 13 and 15 inch laptops, and the corporation is taking pre-orders for a 2-in-1 tablet.
  • Are You a Distro Hopper?
    Is distro hopping a dying sport or have I just gotten too old? When I first started to use Linux I was the quintessential cliche distro hopper. I swapped and switched flavor of Linux seemingly every other day, certain that at some point I’d find the right fit and stop, content with at whatever combination of distro base and desktop environment I’d hit upon.
  • System76 Continues Working On GNOME Improvements For Future Ubuntu
    System76 continues working on improvements to the GNOME stack as part of their transition in-step to using it over Unity 7, in line with Canonical's decision to switch Ubuntu over to GNOME and abandon their grand Unity 8 ambitions.
  • 2017 Linux Laptop Survey
    It has been a few years since last running any Linux hardware surveys on Phoronix, as overall the ecosystem has rather matured nicely while of course there are still notable improvements to be had in the areas of GPUs and laptops. (Additionally, provides a plethora of analytic capabilities when not seeking to collect subjective data / opinions.) But now we are hosting the 2017 Linux Laptop Survey to hopefully further improvements in this area.

Software and GNOME: Pass, Popcorn Time, Nixnote2, Grive, Curlew, and GtkActionMuxer

  • Pass – A Simple command-line Password Manager for Linux
    Keep tracking the password is one of the big challenge to everyone now a days since we has multiple password like email, bank, social media, online portal, and ftp, etc.,. Password managers are become very famous due to the demand and usage. In Linux so many alternatives are available, GUI based and CLI based. Today we are going to discuss about CLI based password manager called pass.
  • Popcorn Time Watch Movies and TV Shows On Linux
    ​Watching your favorite TV shows and movies series is what you all guys do every day. Flash, Iron Fist or Moana and many more awesome movies and tv shows that we love to watch. The problems come when you are traveling. Many of your shows or movies are restricted to a particular region and cannot be accessed when you are traveling or want to just quickly watch that awesome flash punch from an episode of 1 month old.
  • Nixnote2 – A Clone of Evernote for Linux
    When I created a list of Alternative Evernote Clients for Linux, the formerly known NeverNote was on the list as NixNote since it hadn’t gained a “2” to its title yet. It has been 4 months since and I decided to give the app its own review for you guys. Without further ado, let’s get to it. NixNote2 (also called NixNote) is an unofficial client of Evernote for Linux. It possesses most of the features Evernote provides including the use of Notebooks, tags, themes, emails, and multiple accounts.
  • Grive – A Dockerized Google Drive Client for Linux
    Not too long ago I reviewed Grive2 as an alternative Google Drive client for Linux. Today, I’ll introduce you to Grive, a Docker implementation for the Google Drive client, Grive2. Docker (if you don’t already know what it is), is a tool designed to benefit both system admins and developers thanks to its use of containers. Docker’s containers provide a way for developers to create and distribute their apps using containers.
  • Curlew is a GTK Media Converter for the GNOME desktop
    There are plenty of free multimedia converters for Ubuntu available, with command-line champ FFmpeg arguably the most powerful of them all. But this power comes with a complexity. Using FFMpeg to convert media through the command line can be intimidating and arcane. Which is why FFMpeg frontends are popular.
  • Dazzle spotlight – Multi Paned and Action Muxing
    The way the GtkActionMuxer works is by following the widget hierarchy to resolve GActions. Since the HeaderBar is a sibling to the content area (and not a direct ancestor) you cannot activate those actions. It would be nice for the muxer to gain more complex support, but until then… Dazzle.

Games: Witcher 2 & Rocket League, Ashes of the Singularity and More

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