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Tuesday, 17 Jul 18 - 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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Programming: Perl, RcppClassic, Git-cinnabar, Effective Python

Filed under
Development
  • Confessions of a recovering Perl hacker

    My name's MikeCamel, and I'm a Perl hacker.

    There, I've said it. That's the first step.

    My handle on IRC, Twitter and pretty much everywhere else in the world is "MikeCamel." This is because, back in the day, when there were no chat apps—no apps at all, in fact—I was in a technical "chatroom" and the name "Mike" had been taken. I looked around, and the first thing I noticed on my desk was the Camel Book, the O'Reilly Perl Bible.

    I have the second edition now, but this was the first edition. Yesterday, I happened to pick up the second edition, the really thick one, to show someone on a video conference call, and it had a thin layer of dust on it. I was a little bit ashamed, but a little bit relieved as well.

  • RcppClassic 0.9.11

    A new maintenance release, now at version 0.9.11, of the RcppClassic package arrived earlier today on CRAN. This package provides a maintained version of the otherwise deprecated initial Rcpp API which no new projects should use as the normal Rcpp API is so much better.

  • Mike Hommey: Announcing git-cinnabar 0.5.0 beta 4

    Git-cinnabar is a git remote helper to interact with mercurial repositories. It allows to clone, pull and push from/to mercurial remote repositories, using git.

  • Russ Allbery: Review: Effective Python

Security: Containers, Tron, Back Doors, GandCrab, Bastille Day

Filed under
Security
  • A New Method of Containment: IBM Nabla Containers

    In the previous post about Containers and Cloud Security, I noted that most of the tenants of a Cloud Service Provider (CSP) could safely not worry about the Horizontal Attack Profile (HAP) and leave the CSP to manage the risk.  However, there is a small category of jobs (mostly in the financial and allied industries) where the damage done by a Horizontal Breach of the container cannot be adequately compensated by contractual remedies.  For these cases, a team at IBM research has been looking at ways of reducing the HAP with a view to making containers more secure than hypervisors.  For the impatient, the full open source release of the Nabla Containers technology is here and here, but for the more patient, let me explain what we did and why.  We’ll have a follow on post about the measurement methodology for the HAP and how we proved better containment than even hypervisor solutions.

    [...]

    Like most sandbox models, the Nabla containers approach is an alternative to namespacing for containment, but it still requires cgroups for resource management.  The figures show that the containment HAP is actually better than that achieved with a hypervisor and the performance, while being marginally less than a namespaced container, is greater than that obtained by running a container inside a hypervisor.  Thus we conclude that for tenants who have a real need for HAP reduction, this is a viable technology.

  • Measuring the Horizontal Attack Profile of Nabla Containers
  • Tron (TRX) Gives $25,000 to 5 Developers Who Spotted Bugs in Open-Source Code

    Just a couple of days ago, Binance – a very popular digital currency trading platform – credited the Binance account of thirty-one selected Tron (TRX) traders with five million TRX tokens. Recently, the Tron Foundation has also announced it gave away $25k to five developers that are actively working to redefine the community of Tron.

  • Open Source Security Podcast: Episode 105 - More backdoors in open source
  • GandCrab v4.1 Ransomware and the Speculated SMB Exploit Spreader [Ed: Microsoft's collaboration with the NSA on back doors is a gift to keeps giving.... to crackers.]
  • Rewritten GandCrab Ransomware Targets SMB Vulnerabilities To Attack Faster

    GandCrab ransomware, which has created a hullabaloo in the cybersecurity industry by constantly evolving, has yet again caused a commotion. The latest version of the ransomware attacks system using SMB exploit spreader via compromised websites. The ransomware is adding new features every day to target different countries.

    The attackers behind the ransomware are scanning the whole internet to find the vulnerable websites to unleash the attack. The latest version features a long hard-coded list of websites that were compromised and were used to connect with it.

  • France’s cyber command marched in Paris’s Bastille Day Parade for the first time

     

    For the first time, France’s military cyber command marched in this year’s Bastille Day parade on the Champs Elysees in Paris, alongside other units in the nation’s armed forces. The military noted that it’s a recognition of the advances that the unit has made since its formation last year, and reinforces that “cyber defense remains a national priority.”
     

    French defense minister Jean-Yves Le Drian announced the formation of COMCYBER in December 2016, noting that the emergence of state actors operating in cyberspace was a new way to approach warfare. The command brought all of the nation’s soldiers focused on cyber defense under one command, with three main tasks: cyber intelligence, protection, and offense.  

  • Should I let my staff choose their own kit and, if so, how?

Review: Hyperbola GNU/Linux-libre 0.2.4

Filed under
Reviews

Hyperbola GNU/Linux-libre is a curious project that takes a number of interesting approaches which set it apart from other distributions. The Hyperbola distribution is based on snapshots of Arch Linux. While Arch Linux is a rolling release distribution, Hyperbola maintains fixed releases taken from Arch snapshots and then, according to the project's website, the Hyperbola developers mix in security updates from Debian. The idea is to create an Arch-like operating system with a fixed base and minor patch updates.

The distribution is dedicated to free software ideals and ships only libre software as defined by the Free Software Foundation. Finally, Hyperbola makes a special edition called Hypertalking which is based on TalkingArch and provides accessibility software for visually impaired users.

I downloaded the distribution's main edition which is available as a 672MB ISO. The distribution media will boot on both 32-bit and 64-bit systems with the option to select which architecture we want from the ISO's boot menu. When the disc boots we are presented with a text console where we are advised we can see documentation for getting on-line using the Lynx web browser by typing "lynx network.html".

The default, text-based interface on the disc is quite minimal, but it's enough to partition our hard drive and set up a local copy of the operating system. I don't think it's intended to do much more than that.

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Ubuntu’s Snap Apps Website Gets Much Needed Improvements

Filed under
News

Ubuntu has updated its Snap Store website making it more useful for the users by adding developer verification, categories, improved search.
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Get our Linux networking cheat sheet

Filed under
Linux

If your daily tasks include managing servers and the data center's network. The following Linux utilities and commands—from basic to advanced—will help make network management easier.

In several of these commands, you'll see , which stands for "fully qualified domain name." When you see this, substitute your website URL or your server (e.g., server-name.company.com), as the case may be.

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3 cool productivity apps for Fedora 28

Filed under
Red Hat

Productivity apps are especially popular on mobile devices. But when you sit down to do work, you’re often at a laptop or desktop computer. Let’s say you use a Fedora system for your platform. Can you find apps that help you get your work done? Of course! Read on for tips on apps to help you focus on your goals.

All these apps are available for free on your Fedora system. And they also respect your freedom. (Many also let you use existing services where you may have an account.)

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Want to Make Linux Mint Look Like a Mac? This Theme Can Help

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Mac

We’ve established how easy it is to make Ubuntu look like a Mac but theming Linux Mint, the popular Ubuntu-based offshoot, is a little trickier.

But no more.

It’s now possible to make Linux Mint look like a Mac too, and it’s all thanks to a customised version of the uncannily accurate macOS Mojave GTK theme we highlighted here, just a few weeks ago.

If you’ve longed to add some Cupertino styling to the Cinnamon desktop, keep reading!

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OpenMandriva Lx 3 Updates

Filed under
MDV
  • Major updated packages for Lx 3

    Good news for OpenMandriva Lx 3 users. While OpenMandriva Lx 4.0 in on the way, we keep taking care of OMLx 3.03. Developers crisb, itchka, and TPG have made available a long list of updated packages just released to our updates repositories after the normal testing.

    Updated packages include Firefox 61.0.1, Thunderbird 52.9.0, Plasma 5.12.6, Quassel 0.12.5, Qt5 5.9.6, Libre Office 6.0.5, Mesa 18.1.3 and number of other updated KDE packages.

  • While Waiting for OpenMandriva Lx 4, OpenMandriva Lx 3 Users Get Lots of Updates

    While waiting for the forthcoming OpenMandriva Lx 4 operating system series, users of the current OpenMandriva Lx 3 release have received numerous updated packages.

    The OpenMandriva development team announced over the weekend that a long list of updated packages await users of the OpenMandriva Lx 3 operating system series, which include the recently released KDE Plasma 5.12.6 LTS desktop environment and Mozilla Firefox 61.0.1 web browser.

    "Good news for OpenMandriva Lx 3 users. While OpenMandriva Lx 4.0 in on the way, we keep taking care of OMLx 3.03. Developers crisb, itchka, and TPG have made available a long list of updated packages just released to our updates repositories after the normal testing," reads the announcement.

The car industry needs to embrace open source

Filed under
OSS

The race to develop software for the connected car market is heating up as consumers expect their vehicles to give them the same experience and ease of use that they have come to know with their smartphones.

The 2017 Autotrader Car Impact Study found that 53 percent of consumers expect their vehicles to offer the same level of technology as their phones, keeping them connected on the move.

Unfortunately, far too many of the automotive manufacturers and the other companies that are developing products for the connected car market are stuck in neutral, unable to produce software at a pace to stay competitive with smartphone level technology.

While the eventual goal for many of the companies in this space is aimed at coming out with the first road-ready autonomous vehicle, most of the current attention is geared towards writing code for infotainment systems, the combination of interfaces that provide services like navigation and streaming music or video to make those long commutes a little bit more bearable.

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GNOME and GUADEC Leftovers

Filed under
GNOME
  • Description view

    Now, coming to the description view itself, along with displaying metadata objects like Developer, Publisher, Co-op, Release Date, Genre as GtkLabels, Cover is being displayed in a thumbnail view with the game’s title placed just below the thumbnail as a GtkLabel, additionally a game’s Rating is rounded off and shown as a Star Rating. Description is shown in a GtkScrolledWindow placed just adjacent to the thumbnail.

  • GUADEC 2018 Almeria – reflections

    Almeria was a grand time, as usual being able to connect with friends and acquaintances is a large part of what makes GUADEC special. I found all the evening events to be spectacular and full of surprises. The beach party was awesome, and the flamenco night was just spectacular. I was really moved by the music and the dancing. There was clearly a lot of different influences there.

  • Ruxandra Simion: GUADEC 2018

    I would like to begin this special blog post by congratulating everybody for contributing to a memorable GUADEC. This was my first time officially attending the GUADEC conference, after attending as a visitor some of the events held in Manchester during the GUADEC 20th edition last year, and this time it was truly an amazing experience.

    [...]

    I would like to thank through this blogpost the organising team for the effort and dedication put into holding the GUADEC conference in the beautiful city of Almeria. Without all of your hard work I would not be writing this post now.

    To the women of GNOME, thank you for kindly receiving me at the women’s dinner and sharing your experiences with me. I truly appreciate it, and I will try my best to keep in touch with you all and continue to share ideas and experiences with you.

    Thank you to everyone who interacted with me after delivering the lightning speech on modernising Five or More. It really means the world to me you came by to say hi, are willing to offer feedback, or even help with some aspects.

  • Nautilus and GTK+ 4

KDE: KDE’s Usability and Productivity, Qt WebChannel, Latte Dock and GSoC

Filed under
KDE
  • This week in Usability & Productivity, part 27

    Get ready for a humongous week for KDE’s Usability and Productivity initiative! KDE developers and contributors squashed a truly impressive number of bugs this week, all the while adding features and polishing the user interface.

  • New client languages for Qt WebChannel

    At the company I’m working at, we’re employing Qt WebChannel for remote access to some of our software. Qt WebChannel was originally designed for interfacing with JavaScript clients, but it’s actually very well suited to interface with any kind of dynamic language.

    We’ve created client libraries for a few important languages with as few dependencies as possible: pywebchannel (Python, no dependencies), webchannel.net (.NET/C#, depends on JSON.NET) and webchannel++ (header-only C++14, depends on Niels Lohmann’s JSON library).

  • Latte Dock 0.8 Released For This KDE-Aligned Desktop Dock

    Latte Dock 0.8 is now available as the latest feature update for this open-source, KDE-aligned desktop dock.

    Latte Dock 0.8 adds multiple task separators, new layout settings, new appearance settings, panel/dock mode changing, various new community layouts, larger badges, new command-line options, a number of Wayland improvements, new global shortcuts, and various other enhancements.

  • Latte Dock v0.8, "...a friendly smile..."

    Latte Dock v.0.8 released!!! The third stable release has just landed!

  • Eighth & Ninth week of coding phase, GSoC'18

    The API to interact with browser user-scripts. This will enable the plugin to create, register, remove, and get all the user-scripts loaded in the browser. Also the scripts registered by it will automatically gets unregistered when the plugin unloads.

  • GSoC 2018 – Coding Period (June 26th to July 15th): RAID on Linux

    I’ve passed in the second evaluation of Google Summer of Code 2018. I am ready for the third phase, but before that I’ll give some updates about how my progress with RAID on kpmcore is going. This post will explain how RAID management works on Linux.

Ubuntu MATE - Pimp your desktop to perfection

Filed under
Ubuntu

Ubuntu MATE has made a quantum leap of innovation in the past several months, offering a wealth of visual and functional changes and a mindblowing level of flexibility when it comes to customization. You really have the ability to implement anything and everything, and all of it natively, from within the system's interface. The list of options is so long that it can be overwhelming.

Hopefully, this little pimping guide puts some order into this fine and rich chaos. Ubuntu Bionic isn't the most refined distro, but it sure has the almost infinite possibilities to make it appear and behave how you want it. You can have a classic desktop one day and then a MAC-like thing the next and then Ubuntu Unity the day after that. It's all there, very slick, very elegant. Well, it's time for you to do some exploring. See you.

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Games: Atari VCS, NEC, Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire – Beast of Winter, State of Mind

Filed under
Gaming
  • Atari VCS RAM upgraded to 8GB and Atari confirm you can put a normal Linux distribution on it

    While I remain quite sceptical of the Atari VCS, I'm still pretty interested in it as a Linux gaming device. Atari recently did a Q&A blog post detailing some interesting information about it. The post is written by Rob Wyatt, the System Architect for the Atari VCS device. If the name Rob Wyatt doesn't ring a bell—they were the original Xbox system architect.

  • Atari VCS Product Q&A #1

    At this time the developer program is not open yet and it will come online in the coming months. If you have an application in mind you can start today, make sure it runs on Linux at HD resolution using standard runtime libraries, the changes from this to the AtariOS will be minimal and mostly related to application startup and application packaging. In the very near future we will release documentation on the AtariOS which will detail all the runtime components we support as well as libraries for Linux that mimic the AtariOS.

  • Is it worth $129 to relive your NES Duck Hunt glory days?

    But the folks behind the Modern Mallard Kickstarter campaign figured out a way to overcome this problem -- by using a speedy processor to rewrite the game's code in real time, counteracting the lag. The project includes a hardware mod for both the original Duck Hunt game cartridge and Zapper that makes it compatible with LCD, LED and OLED TVs. Note that the campaign doesn't include the game cartridge or Zapper, so you'll have to use your own.

    You can read more about how the mods work at the bottom of the Kickstarter page.

  • Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire – Beast of Winter due out early next month

    The first piece of expansion content will be released 2 August. Expect to get caught up in a different realm, the Beyond, and face new enemies and puzzles.

  • Futuristic thriller 'State of Mind' has a new story trailer and releasing a day earlier than expected

    Daedalic Entertainment's futuristic thriller 'State of Mind' has a new story trailer out and a new release date.

    When we mentioned it last month, they gave us a release date of August 16th. However, they seem to have moved it forward as it's now going to release on August 15th. This will come with same-day Linux support!

Security Leftovers

Filed under
Security
  • Data breaches show we’re only three clicks away from anarchy

    An IT glitch afflicting BP petrol stations for three hours last Sunday evening might not sound like headline news. A ten-hour meltdown of Visa card payment systems in June was a bigger story — as was the notorious TSB computer upgrade cock-up that started on 20 April, which was still afflicting customers a month later and was reported this week to be causing ruptures between TSB and its Spanish parent Sabadell.

    Meanwhile, what do Fortnum & Mason, Dixons Carphone, Costa Coffee and its sister company Premier Inn have in common with various parts of the NHS? The answer is that they have all suffered recent large-scale ‘data breaches’ that may have put private individuals’ information at risk. IT Governance, a blog that monitors international news stories in this sphere, came up with a global figure of 145 million ‘records leaked’ last month alone. Such leaks are daily events everywhere — and a lesson of the TSB story was that cyber fraudsters are waiting to attack wherever private data becomes accessible, whether because of computer breakdown or lax data protection.

  • UK security researcher Hutchins makes renewed bid for freedom

    British security researcher Marcus Hutchins, who was arrested by the FBI last August over alleged charges of creating and distributing a banking trojan, has made a fresh bid to go free, claiming that the US has no territorial jurisdiction to file charges against him for alleged crimes committed elsewhere.

  • Common Ground: For Secure Elections and True National Security

    An open letter by Gloria Steinem, Noam Chomsky, John Dean, Governor Bill Richardson, Walter Mosley, Michael Moore, Valerie Plame, and others.

Containers or virtual machines: ​Which is more secure? The answer will surprise you

Filed under
Server
Security

Are virtual machines (VM) more secure than containers? You may think you know the answer, but IBM Research has found containers can be as secure, or more secure, than VMs.

James Bottomley, an IBM Research Distinguished Engineer and top Linux kernel developer, writes: "One of the biggest problems with the current debate about Container vs Hypervisor security is that no-one has actually developed a way of measuring security, so the debate is all in qualitative terms (hypervisors 'feel' more secure than containers because of the interface breadth) but no-one actually has done a quantitative comparison." To meet this need, Bottomley created Horizontal Attack Profile (HAP), designed to describe system security in a way that it can be objectively measured. Bottomley has discovered that "a Docker container with a well crafted seccomp profile (which blocks unexpected system calls) provides roughly equivalent security to a hypervisor."

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Linux 4.18-rc5

Filed under
Linux

For some reason this week actually felt very busy, but the rc5 numbers
show otherwise. It's all small and calm, and things are progressing
nicely.

I think the "it felt busy" was partly due to me stressing out over a
nasty VM bug that turned out to have a trivial two-liner fix. But
there were also a fair amount of email threads for future stuff, so
that probably also made me feel last week was busier than the actual
rc5 tree shows.

Anyway, of what little happened in rc5 (see appended shortlog for
details), it's just a fairly random collection of smallish fixes all
over. About a third drivers (nothing in particular stands out - rdma,
usb, ata, mmc, sound) with the rest being some tooling (mostly perf),
some arch updates, some filesystem stuff (mostly reiserfs), some arch
fixlets (mips, arm[64], x86) and some misc core kernel (tracing, VM
fixes, timers, yadda yadda).

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Also: Linux 4.18-rc5 Kernel Released: Regressions Continue To Be Tackled

TxFS Linux File-System Supports ACID Transactions, Simple API

Filed under
Linux

Presented at this past week's 2018 USENIX Annual Technical Conference (ATC18) was TxFS, the Texas Transactional File System for Linux.

Texas Transactional File System (TxFS) has been in the works for a number of years and is a transactional file-system that offers a simple API, wide range of hardware support, high performance while supporting ACID transactions, and relatively low complexity.

TxFS has been worked on by the University of Texas at Austin as well as VMware Research. Papers on TxFS have been published before but their ATC18 paper can be found here (PDF).

One of the professors involved in this work has also tweeted some different remarks including the file-system is down to just five thousand lines of code by utilizing the file-system journal, how they provided isolation for TxFS transactions, and its very simple API of just three system calls.

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Android Leftovers

today's leftovers

Games: Atari VCS Console, Humble Store and TUNG (The Ultimate Nerd Game)

  • Atari VCS Console Runs a Custom Linux Distro Called “AtariOS”
    Following criticism of its mediocre internal makeup the Ataris VCS console will now ship with 8GB RAM by default, up from the 4GB proposed during the funding push. It’s a decent increase in memory that should help the system cope better with more intensive indie games (don’t expect AAA titles to play nicely on the machine with the middling AMD Bristol Ridge APU).
  • Humble Store is doing a 'Pixel Perfect Platformers Sale' and it has some top Linux games for cheap
    For those of you who love your platformers, regardless of them being 2D, 3D, puzzle or action adventures there's bound to be something for the bored Linux gamer in the Humble Store Pixel Perfect Platformers Sale.
  • TUNG (The Ultimate Nerd Game) made me realise how stupid I really am
    The Ultimate Nerd Game or TUNG for short, is a first-person sandbox game about building intricate machines and it made me feel so very dumb. If you loved Minecraft's Redstone circuits or anything remotely similar, this is probably a free game you're going to love. For me, it was an exercise in frying my brain like it's in a microwave.

OSS Leftovers

  • Pharmaceutical industry gets first open source platform for Level 4 serialization
    Pharmaceutical companies today for the first time have an open source alternative for level 4 serialization with the launch of QU4RTET, a platform that provides them with new flexibility, transparency and affordability as they comply with global drug anti-counterfeiting laws.
  • Kontron Uses Open Source to Move Beyond Bare Metal
    Kontron, a company known for its embedded computing technology, is leveraging virtualization and open source to become a direct supplier to large service providers, promising to integrate hardware and operating system software with best-of-breed virtual network functions. That new sales strategy has evolved to support containers, particularly as they fit at the edge of the network, which for Kontron AG is the cell tower. In May, Kontron announced that its integrated SYMKLOUD open source platform now supports the latest versions of OpenStack for virtual machines and bare metal, as well as Kubernetes v1.10 for Docker and containers, via its distribution partnership with Canonical.
  • Open Source Expands In Finance With The FINOS Platform
  • Global Open Source Services Market Forecast to 2025 Published by Marketresearchnest
  • Synopsys ARC HS4x Processors Now Supported By GCC
    The GCC 8 compiler brought the Synopsys ARC CPU target while for the GCC 9 release is going to be support for the company's HS4x processors. Merged today to mainline GCC is support for the HS4x CPUs within the ARC target. Adding this newer generation of ARC processors to the GNU Compiler Collection code-base was just a few hundred lines of code with building off the existing target code.
  • GPL Cooperation Commitment gets more support for open source licensing
    Red Hat has announced its open source license enforcement initiative is making new strides. As part of the GPL Cooperation Commitment, 14 new companies have joined the effort to promote greater predictability for GPLv2 and LGPLv2.x licenses. “Through this initiative, we hope ultimately to increase participation in the use and development of open source software by helping to ensure that enforcement, when it takes place, is fair and predictable,” according to the commitment’s website.
  • The Global IP Exchange: Human ingenuity and open source technology
    He said: “Customers do increasingly care about open source, and if you don’t comply you are at risk of upsetting authors, as well as litigation and injunctions.” “If you’re just distributing internally, then you’re fine, but as soon as it leaves your company, then you’ve triggered an obligation.” For those who don’t comply, he warned that either the licensor, or the Free Software Foundation will find out.
  • How to Setup Python Virtual Environment on Ubuntu 18.04
    Python is a versatile programming language that can be used for many different programming projects(Web - Mobile - Desktop). Easy to set up, and written in a relatively straightforward style with immediate feedback on errors, Python is a great choice for beginners and experienced developers alike. Python 3 is the most current version of the language and is considered to be the future of Python. This article will guide you through installing Python 3 on your local Linux machine and setting up a programming virtual environment via the command line. This article will explicitly cover the installation procedures for Ubuntu 18.04, but the general principles apply to any other distribution of Debian Linux.
  • How expensive is globbing for sources in large projects
    Since we have the measurement script, let's use it for something more interesting. Modules are an upcoming C++ feature to increase build times and a ton of other coolness depending on who you ask. The current specification works by having a kind of "module export declaration" at the beginning of source files. The idea is that you first compile those to generate a sort of a module declaration file and then you can start the actual compilation that uses said files. If you thought "waitaminute, that sounds exactly like how FORTRAN is compiled", you are correct. Because of this it has the same problem that you can't compile source files in an arbitrary order, but instead you must first somehow scan them to find out the interdependencies between source (not header) files. In practice what this means is that instead of single-phase compilation all files must be processed twice. All scan operations must be done before any compilation jobs can start because otherwise you might start to compile a file before its dependencies are fully processed. The scanning can be done in one of two ways. Either the build system scans the sources meaning it needs to understand the syntax of source files or the compiler can be invoked in a special preprocessing mode. Note that build systems such as Ninja do not do any such operations by themselves but instead always invoke external processes to do their work.
  • Security updates for Monday