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Wednesday, 17 Jan 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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Quick Roundup

Type Title Author Replies Last Postsort icon
Story Red Hat News and Posts Roy Schestowitz 17/01/2018 - 3:17am
Story Yocto-on-i.MX6UL gateway serves up I2C and SPI on a DB9 port Roy Schestowitz 17/01/2018 - 3:15am
Story Fedora Elections Roy Schestowitz 17/01/2018 - 3:00am
Story Linux Foundation and Verizon Roy Schestowitz 17/01/2018 - 2:01am
Story Android Leftovers Rianne Schestowitz 16/01/2018 - 8:52pm
Story KDE Plasma's Discover Package Manager Gets Better Snap and Flatpak Support Rianne Schestowitz 16/01/2018 - 8:48pm
Story KWin/X11 is feature frozen Rianne Schestowitz 16/01/2018 - 8:42pm
Story Plasma 5.12 LTS beta available in PPA for testing on Artful & Bionic Rianne Schestowitz 16/01/2018 - 8:38pm
Story Leftovers: Proprietary Software, HowTos, and GXml Roy Schestowitz 16/01/2018 - 5:20pm
Story Debian Developers: Google Summer of Code, Quick Recap of 2017 Roy Schestowitz 16/01/2018 - 5:18pm

OSS Leftovers

Filed under
OSS
  • Open Source turns 20

    While open source software is ubiquitous, recognized across industries as a fundamental infrastructure component as well as a critical factor for driving innovation, the "open source" label was coined only 20 years ago.

    The concept of open source software - as opposed to free software or freeware - is credited to Netscape which, in January 1998, announced plans to release the source code of its proprietary browser, Navigator, under a license that would freely permit modification and redistribution. This code is today the basis for Mozilla Firefox and Thunderbird.

    The Open Source Initiative (OSI) regards that event as the point at which "software freedom extended its reach beyond the enthusiast community and began its ascent into the mainstream".

  • Coreboot 4.7 Released With 47 More Motherboards Supported, AMD Stoney Ridge

    Coreboot 4.7 is now available as the latest release of this free and open-source BIOS/UEFI replacement.

    Coreboot 4.7 is the latest tagged release for this project developed via Git. This release has initial support for AMD Stoney Ridge platforms, Intel ICH10 Southbridge support, Intel Denverton/Denverton-NS platform support, and initial work on supporting next-gen Intel Cannonlake platforms.

  • Thank you CUSEC!

    Last week, I spoke at CUSEC (Canadian Undergraduate Software Engineering Conference) in Montreal.   I really enjoy speaking with students and learning what they are working on.  They are the future of our industry!  I was so impressed by the level of organization and the kindness and thoughtfulness of the CUSEC organizing committee who were all students from various universities across Canada. I hope that you all are enjoying some much needed rest after your tremendous work in the months approaching the conference and last week.

  • Percona Announces Sneak Peek of Conference Breakout Sessions for Seventh Annual Percona Live Open Source Database Conference
  • The Universal Donor

    A few people reacted negatively to my article on why Public Domain software is broadly unsuitable for inclusion in a community open source project. Most argued that because public domain gave them the rights they need where they live (mostly the USA), I should not say it was wrong to use it.

    That demonstrates either parochialism or a misunderstanding of what public domain really means. It should not be used for the same reason code known to be subject to software patents should not be used — namely that only code that, to the best efforts possible, can be used by anyone, anywhere without the need to ask permission (e.g. by buying a patent license) or check it it’s needed (e.g. is that PD code PD here?) can be used in an open source project. Public domain fails the test for multiple reasons: global differences in copyright term, copyright as an unalienable moral rather than as a property right, and more.

    Yes, public domain may give you the rights you need. But in an open source project, it’s not enough for you to determine you personally have the rights you need. In order to function, every user and contributor of the project needs prior confidence they can use, improve and share the code, regardless of their location or the use to which they put it. That confidence also has to extend to their colleagues, customers and community as well.

Ubuntu: Ubuntu Core, Ubuntu Free Culture Showcase for 18.04, Lubuntu 17.04 EoL

Filed under
Ubuntu
  • Ubuntu Core: A secure open source OS for IoT

    Canonical's Ubuntu Core, a tiny, transactional version of the Ubuntu Linux OS for IoT devices, runs highly secure Linux application packages, known as "snaps," that can be upgraded remotely.

  • Introducing the Ubuntu Free Culture Showcase for 18.04

    Ubuntu’s changed a lot in the last year, and everything is leading up to a really exciting event: the release of 18.04 LTS! This next version of Ubuntu will once again offer a stable foundation for countless humans who use computers for work, play, art, relaxation, and creation. Among the various visual refreshes of Ubuntu, it’s also time to go to the community and ask for the best wallpapers. And it’s also time to look for a new video and music file that will be waiting for Ubuntu users on the install media’s Examples folder, to reassure them that their video and sound drivers are quite operational.

    Long-term support releases like Ubuntu 18.04 LTS are very important, because they are downloaded and installed ten times more often than every single interim release combined. That means that the wallpapers, video, and music that are shipped will be seen ten times more than in other releases. So artists, select your best works. Ubuntu enthusiasts, spread the word about the contest as far and wide as you can. Everyone can help make this next LTS version of Ubuntu an amazing success.

  • Lubuntu 17.04 has reached End of Life

    The Lubuntu Team announces that as a non-LTS release, 17.04 has a 9-month support cycle and, as such, reached end of life on Saturday, January 13, 2018. Lubuntu will no longer provide bug fixes or security updates for 17.04, and we strongly recommend that you update to 17.10, which continues to be actively supported with security updates and select high-impact bug fixes.

KDE: Compositor Switcher, digiKam, Season Of KDE

Filed under
KDE
  • This App Automatically Disables Compositing in KDE When Opening Steam

    Compositor Switcher for KDE is a small utility that can disable compositing on the KDE Plasma desktop when running a specific gaming client.

  • digiKam 5.8 Open-Source Image Manipulator Adds UPnP/DLNA Export, Improvements

    The digiKam 5.8.0 open-source cross-platform image editor, viewer, and organizer tool has been released over the weekend with numerous improvements and some new features.

    Coming four months after the previous release, digiKam 5.8.0 is here with another set of enhancements for fans of the applications. For starters, the new version introduces a new tool that allows users to export their image collections to UPnP/DLNA-compatible devices. It can be accessed in all of digiKam's views through the Tools menu.

    "In September 2017, the digiKam team has been invited to take part in the Randa Meetings," reads the release announcement. "We have focused the reunion on including the new media server dedicated to sharing collection contents on local networks with compatible DLNA devices or applications, such as tablets, cellulars, TV, etc."

  • Season Of KDE

    After contributing for several months at GCompris, I applied for SoK 2018 and finally my proposal got selected among top 10 participants. I am very happy with the results I have got.

  • SoK Project – Week 1 & 2

    With all the happiness after being selected for SoK 2018, I was looking forward to start working on my project with whole dedication. My project aims to complete port of a brain-boosting memory activity called “Railroad” (in which kids have to observe the given train and memorize it within given time and then try to rebuild it) from Gtk+ to Qt version. It is a part of project GCompris(a high-quality educational software suite, including a large number of activities for children aged 2 to 10). My mentors are Timothée Giet and Rudra Nil Basu, along with them I’d like to thank a lot to Johnny Jazeix and Divyam Madaan for helping me with my project. My SoK proposal can be found here –> SoK Proposal. And my progress can be tracked at –> Railroad branch.

Kernel: Retpoline, VirtualBox, Linux 4.15 Next Weekend, and Linux Storage, Filesystem, and Memory-Management Summit

Filed under
Linux
  • Retpoline Is Still Being Improved Upon For Intel Skylake/Kabylake

    While initial support for Retpoline was merged into the Linux 4.15 Git kernel last week and is now being backported to some supported Linux kernel series, there is still additional work ongoing for properly mitigating Spectre v2 on Intel Skylake CPUs and newer.

    It turns out Skylake CPUs and newer require additional patches to fully mitigate against the Spectre Variant Two vulnerability. These newer CPUs can fallback to a potentially poisoned indirect branch predictor when a return buffer underflows. Andi Kleen of Intel has sent out a new patch series dubbed "RETPOLINE_UNDERFLOW" that gets enabled by default for Skylake CPUs and newer.

  • VirtualBox Guest Driver Being Mainlined With Linux 4.16

    The upcoming Linux 4.16 kernel cycle will be mainlining the VirtualBox Guest "vboxguest" kernel driver.

    As part of an effort led by Red Hat, the VirtualBox guest drivers are finally working towards mainline in the Linux kernel and with 4.16 there is the vboxguest driver as a notable step following the VirtualBox DRM/KMS driver in Linux 4.13.

  • Linus Torvalds Is Hopeful for a January 21 Release of the Linux 4.15 Kernel

    The eighth and probably the last RC (Release Candidate) of the upcoming Linux 4.15 kernel series has been announced by Linus Torvalds over the weekend and it's now ready for public testing.

    Coming a week after the seventh RC, Linux kernel 4.15 Release Candidate 8 is here with more patches against the Meltdown and Spectre security vulnerabilities publicly disclosed earlier this month. Most specifically, it brings x86 "retpoline" support, a solution developed by Google and other security researchers to not allow speculation on the CPU.

  • LSFMM 2018 call for proposals

    The 2018 Linux Storage, Filesystem, and Memory-Management Summit will be held April 23-25 in Park City, Utah. The call for proposals has just gone out with a tight deadline: they need to be received by January 31.

Red Hat and Fedora

Filed under
Red Hat

Security: Updates, Secure Contexts, RubyMiner, ZAP, Transmission, AMD

Filed under
Security
  • Security updates for Monday
  • Secure Contexts Everywhere

    Since Let’s Encrypt launched, the Secure Contexts specification has become much more mature. We have witnessed the successful restriction of existing, as well as new features to secure contexts. The W3C TAG is about to drastically raise the bar to ship features on insecure contexts. All the building blocks are now in place to quicken the adoption of HTTPS and secure contexts, and follow through on our intent to deprecate non-secure HTTP.

  • Linux and Windows Servers Targeted with RubyMiner Malware

    Security researchers have spotted a new strain of malware being deployed online. Named RubyMiner, this malware is a cryptocurrency miner spotted going after outdated web servers.

    According to research published by Check Point and Certego, and information received by Bleeping Computer from Ixia, attacks started on January 9-10, last week.

  • Virtual currency miners target web servers with malware
  • ZAP provides automated security tests in continuous integration pipelines

    Commonly, a mixture of open source and expensive proprietary tools are shoehorned into a pipeline to perform tests on nightly as well as ad hoc builds. However, anyone who has used such tests soon realizes that the maturity of a smaller number of time-honored tests is sometimes much more valuable than the extra detail you get by shoehorning too many tests into the pipe then waiting three hours for a nightly build to complete. The maturity of your battle-hardened tests is key.

  • BitTorrent users beware: Flaw lets hackers control your computer

    There's a critical weakness in the widely used Transmission BitTorrent app that allows websites to execute malicious code on some users' computers. That's according to a researcher with Google's Project Zero vulnerability reporting team, who also warns that other BitTorrent clients are likely similarly susceptible.

    [...]

    Among the things an attacker can do is change the Torrent download directory to the user's home directory. The attacker could then command Transmission to download a Torrent called ".bashrc" which would automatically be executed the next time the user opened a bash shell. Attackers could also remotely reconfigure Transmission to run any command of their choosing after a download has completed. Ormandy said the exploit is of "relatively low complexity, which is why I'm eager to make sure everyone is patched."

  • AMD Releases Linux and Windows Patches for Two Variants of Spectre Vulnerability

    AMD has published a press announcement on Thursday to inform its customers that it released patches for two variants of the Spectre security vulnerability disclosed to the public earlier this month.

  • 'Shift Left': Codifying Intuition into Secure DevOps

    Continuous delivery (CD) is becoming the cornerstone of modern software development, enabling organizations to ship — in small increments — new features and functionality to customers faster to meet market demands. CD is achieved by applying DevOps practices and principles (continuous integration and continuous deployment) from development to operations. There is no continuous delivery without implementing DevOps practices and principles. By that, I mean strong communication and collaboration across teams, and automation across testing, build, and deployment pipelines. But often achieving continuous delivery to meet market demands presents numerous challenges for security.

Applications: GIMP, Partclone, Samba, Tidal

Filed under
Software
  • 6 Cheap Alternatives to Adobe Photoshop

    Adobe Photoshop is easily the industry standard when it comes to graphic and photo editing. We don’t just edit a photo these days, but we ‘photoshop’ it—but ‘shopping things with the real deal isn’t cheap.

    Working on a subscription plan basis, it’ll cost you from $9.99 a month, depending on the package you select. Crucially, you’re renting the product—you’ll never actually own a Photoshop license.

    [...]

    For many years, GIMP has been touted as the ideal free alternative to Photoshop. There’s a good reason for that—it offers very similar functionality to Adobe’s behemoth.

    Providing many professional level features, it includes layers, customizable brushes, filters, and automatic image enhancement tools for those short on time. It further expands its potential through a huge number of plugins, thanks to its very active community. Effectively, it’s in constant development. New features are commonplace, while bugs are few and far between.

    The downside? There’s no native support for RAW files—a key component in photo editing—you have to install an additional plugin straight away for such functionality. Also, GIMP’s highly customizable interface can be intimidating for novice users. While Photoshop is instantly accessible, GIMP requires a little tweaking and manipulation to get things how you like them to look, although recent updates have made it look more like its main competition.

    It’s worth sticking with, of course, given it’s entirely free to use, but for the novice user, it might take a little time to gel.

  • Partclone – A Versatile Free Software for Partition Imaging and Cloning

    Partclone is a free and open-source tool for creating and cloning partition images brought to you by the developers of Clonezilla. In fact, Partclone is one of the tools that Clonezilla is based on.

    It provides users with the tools required to backup and restores used partition blocks along with high compatibility with several file systems thanks to its ability to use existing libraries like e2fslibs to read and write partitions e.g. ext2.

  • Samba 4.8 RC1 Released, Samba 4.9 In Development On Git

    The first release candidate of Samba 4.8 is now available for this popular open-source project implementing the SMB/CIFS protocols.

  • Listen to Tidal Music from the Command Line

    Tidal subscribers have a new way to listen to the high-fidelity music streaming service while using the Linux desktop. The Spotify rival touts better sound quality and bigger royalty cheques for artists, but it doesn’t provide a desktop Tidal music app for Linux.

Security: Patching of GNU/Linux Distros

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Security

16-Way GPU Comparison With NVIDIA GPUs Going Back To Kepler

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks

Last week I provided a fresh look at the NVIDIA GeForce vs. AMD Radeon Linux gaming performance using the latest drivers at the start of 2018. That testing included the latest NVIDIA and AMD GPUs, but for those curious how these numbers compare for older NVIDIA GPUs, here's a look with the Kepler and Maxwell graphics cards added to the comparison.

Read more

Ubuntu 18.04 LTS Wallpaper Contest Welcomes Talented Photographers and Artists

Filed under
Ubuntu

Announced today by Ubuntu member Nathan Haines, Ubuntu Free Culture Showcase for Ubuntu 18.04 LTS is now officially open for submissions, and since Ubuntu 18.04 it's an LTS (Long-Term Support) version, which Canonical will support for the next five years with software and security updates, it's more than a wallpaper contest.

Well, of course, it's not a contest, because you won't win any prize besides the fact that your work will be showcased to millions of Ubuntu users worldwide. This time, besides wallpapers, Ubuntu Free Culture Showcase also looks for new video and music files that will be available in the Examples folder of Ubuntu 18.04 LTS' live installation medium.

Read more

KDE Plasma 5.12 LTS Enters Beta, Brings Unified Look and Phone Integration

Filed under
KDE

Designed as the next long-term support (LTS) version of the popular desktop environment, replacing the KDE Plasma 5.8 LTS on users' computers when it will be out early next month, KDE Plasma 5.12 is an important milestone that introduces numerous stability and reliability improvements, along with a bunch of new and long-anticipated features.

One of the most important changes in KDE Plasma 5.12 LTS is the greatly improved support for the next-generation Wayland display server, with a long-term support promise as the KDE Project will continue to patch bugs and other issues until the end of life of the desktop environment next year.

Read more

Also: KDE Plasma 5.12 Reaches Beta With Faster Start-Up Time, Better Wayland Support

How To Create Or Increase Swap Space In Linux

Filed under
Linux

The operating system makes use of swap space when its available physical memory (RAM) is running out due to ever demanding applications. In this situation, the operating system moves the inactive pages in physical memory to swap space.

Read<br />
more

Flatpak Support Getting More Mature in KDE Plasma's Discover Package Manager

Filed under
KDE

Those interesting in installing Flatpak universal Linux apps on their KDE Plasma-based GNU/Linux distros, should know that Flatpak support in the Plasma Discover package manager is now more mature and ready for production. It can handle multiple Flatpak repos, as well as installing of packages from the Flathub repository.

With the upcoming KDE Plasma 5.12 LTS desktop environment, Plasma Discover will support different backends, including Flatpak and Snappy, allowing users to search, download and install Flatpak and Snap apps. However, such a backend doesn't come installed by default, so you'll have to add it manually.

Read more

KDE Frameworks 5.42 Open-Source Software Suite Released for KDE Plasma 5.12 LTS

Filed under
KDE
OSS

KDE Frameworks 5.42.0 is out now just in time for the soon-to-be-released KDE Plasma 5.12 LTS Beta desktop environment, and includes numerous improvements and bug fixes for various components like Baloo, Breeze icons, KActivities, KCoreAddons, KDeclarative, KDED, KDBusAddons, KConfig, KDocTools, KHTML, KEmoticons, KFileMetaData, KI18n, KIO, KInit, Kirigami, and KJobWidgets.

It also improves things like KNewStuff, KNotification, KRunner, KWayland, KTextEditor, KWallet Framework, KWidgetsAddons, KXMLGUI, NetworkManagerQt, Plasma Framework, Prison, QQC2StyleBridge, Sonnet, syntax highlighting, KPackage Framework, as well as KDELibs 4 support and extra CMake modules. The complete changelog is available below for more details on the new fixes.

Read more

Retpoline Backported and a New Benchmark

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux
  • Retpoline Backported To Linux 4.9, Linux 4.14 Kernels

    Retpoline support for mitigating the Spectre vulnerabilities will soon be present in the Linux 4.9 and 4.14 stable kernels.

    Greg Kroah-Hartman has sent out the latest patches for the Linux 4.9 and 4.14 point releases, which now include the Retpoline support.

  • ADATA XPG SX6000: Benchmarking A ~$50 USD 128GB NVMe SSD On Linux

    While solid-state drives have generally been quite reliable in recent years and even with all the benchmarking I put them through have had less than a handful fail out of dozens, whenever there's a bargain on NVMe SSDs, it's hard to resist. The speed of NVMe SSDs has generally been great and while it's not a key focus on Phoronix (and thus generally not receiving review samples of them), I upgrade some of the server room test systems when finding a deal. The latest is trying an ADATA XPG SX6000 NVMe SSD I managed to get for $49.99 USD.

New Raspberry Pi: Zero

Filed under
Linux
Hardware

Debugging and Compiling

Filed under
Development
GNU
  • How debuggers really work

    A debugger is one of those pieces of software that most, if not every, developer uses at least once during their software engineering career, but how many of you know how they actually work? During my talk at linux.conf.au 2018 in Sydney, I will be talking about writing a debugger from scratch... in Rust!

    In this article, the terms debugger/tracer are interchangeably. "Tracee" refers to the process being traced by the tracer.

  • GCC 8.0 Moves On To Only Regression/Documentation Fixes

    The GCC 8 compiler is on to its last stage of development

Security: Meltdown and Spectre, GPG and SSH, Mageia Updates

Filed under
Security
  • Beware! Fake Spectre & Meltdown Patches Are Infecting PCs With “Smoke Loader” Malware [Ed: Welcome to Microsoft Windows]

    One of the most common tactics employed by notorious cybercriminals involves taking advantage of the popular trends and creating fraudulent websites/apps to trick users. It looks like some of the players have tried to exploit the confusion surrounding Meltdown and Sprectre CPU bugs.

    Forget buggy updates which are causing numerous problems to the users, Malwarebytes has spotted a fake update package that installs malware on your computer. The firm has identified a new domain that’s full of material on how Meltdown and Spectre affect CPUs.

    [...]

    The fake file in the archive is Intel-AMD-SecurityPatch-10-1-v1.exe.

  • An update on ongoing Meltdown and Spectre work

    Last week, a series of critical vulnerabilities called Spectre and Meltdown were announced. Because of the nature of these issues, the solutions are complex and requires fixing delicate code. The fixes for Meltdown are mostly underway. The Meltdown fix for x86 is KPTI. KPTI has been merged into the mainline Linux tree and many stable trees, including the ones Fedora uses. Fixes for other arches are close to being done and should be available soon. Fixing Spectre is more difficult and requires fixes across multiple areas.

    Similarly to Meltdown, Spectre takes advantage of speculation done by CPUs. Part of the fix for Spectre is disallowing the CPU to speculate in particular vulnerable sequences. One solution developed by Google and others is to introduce “retpolines” which do not allow speculation. A sequence of code that might allow dangerous speculation is replaced with a “retpoline” which will not speculate. The difficult part of this solution is that the compiler needs to be aware of where to place a retpoline. This means a complete solution involves the compiler as well.

  • CPU microcode update code for amd64
  • Using a Yubikey for GPG and SSH
  • Inspect curl’s TLS traffic

    Since a long time back, the venerable network analyzer tool Wireshark (screenshot above) has provided a way to decrypt and inspect TLS traffic when sent and received by Firefox and Chrome.

  • Mageia Weekly Roundup 2018 – Week 2

    The year is definitely under way, with an astonishing 412 packages coming through commits – mostly for cauldron, but a few are the last remaining updates for Mageia 5, as well as important security updates for Mageia 6.

    Among those updates are all the kernel and microcode updates – our thanks to tmb and our untiring devs for these – to begin hitting Meltdown and Spectre on the head.

    A big hand for the upstream kernel team, as well as our own packagers, QA testers and everyone else that was involved in getting this tested and released.

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More in Tux Machines

Type Title Author Replies Last Postsort icon
Story Red Hat News and Posts Roy Schestowitz 17/01/2018 - 3:17am
Story Yocto-on-i.MX6UL gateway serves up I2C and SPI on a DB9 port Roy Schestowitz 17/01/2018 - 3:15am
Story Fedora Elections Roy Schestowitz 17/01/2018 - 3:00am
Story Linux Foundation and Verizon Roy Schestowitz 17/01/2018 - 2:01am
Story Android Leftovers Rianne Schestowitz 16/01/2018 - 8:52pm
Story KDE Plasma's Discover Package Manager Gets Better Snap and Flatpak Support Rianne Schestowitz 16/01/2018 - 8:48pm
Story KWin/X11 is feature frozen Rianne Schestowitz 16/01/2018 - 8:42pm
Story Plasma 5.12 LTS beta available in PPA for testing on Artful & Bionic Rianne Schestowitz 16/01/2018 - 8:38pm
Story Leftovers: Proprietary Software, HowTos, and GXml Roy Schestowitz 16/01/2018 - 5:20pm
Story Debian Developers: Google Summer of Code, Quick Recap of 2017 Roy Schestowitz 16/01/2018 - 5:18pm