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Tuesday, 20 Mar 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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Linux Mint 19 Cinnamon will open apps a lot faster

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The Linux Mint development team plans to launch the next version of the popular Linux distribution Linux Mint in the coming months.

Linux Mint 19 will be offered in multiple flavors including MATE, Xfce and Cinnamon. If you have used Linux Mint Cinnamon in the past or plan to take it for a test drive in the future, you may benefit from application loading improvements in the upcoming version of Linux Mint.

A new blog post on the official Linux Mint blog offers some insight. It all began with a perceived feeling; team members noticed that app loading "felt" faster on MATE or Xfce versions of Linux Mint and slower on Cinnamon versions.

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Hands-on with the Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+

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The new Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ was announced and started shipping last week.

Of course, I went straight to the good folks at the Swiss and ordered one, which I received the next day.

So, the first thing on my to-do list is to congratulate and thank both the Pi Foundation and the for their efficiency in making this new model available immediately after announcement.

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Also: You Can Now Transform Your Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ into a Home Theatre System


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  • Linux Foundation announces open source ACRN hypervisor for the Internet of Things

    ACRN's small footprint is partly attributable to the fact that it takes a mere 25,000 lines of code for a hypervisor. There's already involvement from the likes of ADLINK, Aptiv, Intel Corporation, LG Electronics and Neusoft Corporation, and it's likely that many more names will join this list.

  • Linux Foundation Announces ACRN —Open Source Hypervisor for IoT Devices

    The Linux Foundation announced a new project called ACRN (pronounced "acorn") that will provide generic code for the creation of hypervisors for IoT devices.

    A hypervisor is computer code for creating and running virtual machines. Project ACRN aims to provide a generic structure for an IoT-specific hypervisor component.

    The Linux Foundation says it built ACRN to be fully-customizable, and as such, the project is comprised of two main components: the hypervisor itself and a device model for interacting with the underlying hardware.

  • Linux Foundation backs new ‘ACRN’ hypervisor for embedded and IoT

    The Linux Foundation has announced a new hypervizor for use in embedded and internet of things scenarios.

    Project ACRN (pronounced “acorn”) will offer a “hypervizor, and its device model complete with rich I/O mediators.”

    There’ll also be “a Linux-based Service OS” and the ability to “run guest operating systems (another Linux instance, an RTOS, Android, or other operating systems) simultaneously”.

Ubuntu MATE 18.04 LTS: What’s New?

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Ahead of the Ubuntu MATE 18.04 LTS release next month you may be wondering what new features and changes the update will bring.

Well, wonder no more.

In this post we round up all of the key information about the next release of one Ubuntu’s most popular community flavors.

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Wine 3.4 and Vulkan

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  • The WineHQ Wine development release 3.4 is now available for Linux and Mac

    The WineHQ Wine development release 3.4 is now available for Linux and Mac

  • Wine Developers Determining How To Handle Vulkan Loader Support

    While this week's Wine 3.4 release delivers on working Wine Vulkan ICD support for beginning to allow Windows Vulkan programs to work under Wine assuming the host has Vulkan API support, this current implementation still requires the user to install the Windows Vulkan SDK.

    At the moment those wanting to use Windows Vulkan games/applications under Wine still need to download the LunarG Vulkan SDK for Windows in order to obtain the Vulkan loader (DLL) for pairing with Wine's Vulkan ICD driver.

Here’s GNOME 3.28 – See What’s New

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The latest version of GNOME 3 has been released today. Version 3.28 contains six months of work and new features by the GNOME community and comes with many improvements and new features.

One major new feature for this release is automatic downloading of operating systems in Boxes, which takes the work out of creating and running virtual machines – just pick the operating system that you want to create a virtual machine of, and Boxes will now download and install it for you.

Other highlights include improvements to the Calendar and Contacts applications, the ability to star files and folders in the Files application, and improved support for Thunderbolt 3 and Bluetooth LE devices. GNOME’s default UI font has also been overhauled to be more attractive and easy to read, and the on-screen keyboard has been rewritten to be more reliable and has layouts for a number of different locales.

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Also: textures and paintables

LG releases webOS Open Source Edition, looks to expand webOS usage

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LG’s smart TVs ship with an operating system called webOS, which is the latest version of an operating system that was developed by Palm to run on phones, acquired by HP to use with tablets, and eventually sold to LG, which is still using it today.

But now LG wants to expand the adoption of webOS and the company is working with the South Korean government to solicit business proposals from other companies interested in using webOS.

LG has also released a webOS Open Source Edition version of the operating system.

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Test driving 4 open source music players and more

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In my last article, I described my latest music problem: I need an additional stage of amplification to make proper use of my new phono cartridge. While my pre-amplifier contains a phono stage, its gain is only suitable for cartridges that output about 5mV, whereas my new cartridge has a nominal output of 0.4mV.

Based on my investigation, I liked the looks of the Muffsy phono kits, so I ordered the head amplifier, the power supply, and the back panel. I also needed to obtain a case to hold the boards and the back panel, available online from many vendors. Muffsy does not sell the “wall wart” necessary to power the unit, so I ordered one of those from a supplier in California. Finally, inspecting my soldering iron, solder “sucker,” and solder, I’ve realized I need to do better—so a bit more shopping, online or local, is in order there. Finally, for those, like me, whose soldering skills may be rusty and perhaps were not all that great to begin with, Muffsy kindly offers links to two instructional videos.

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Review: ArchMerge 6.4.1

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The distribution I have been asked most frequently to cover so far in 2018 is ArchMerge, an Arch-based project which runs the Xfce desktop environment and can be installed using the Calamares system installer. If the description sounds familiar, it should, as this summary could equally well apply to Archman, SwagArch and one edition of the Revenge OS distribution.

There are two main features which set ArchMerge apart from its close relatives. First, ArchMerge is available in two flavours. The full featured desktop edition ships with three graphical user interfaces (Xfce, Openbox and i3). A second, minimal flavour is available for people who want to start with a text console and build from the ground up.

The other point which helps ArchMerge stand out from the crowd of Arch-based distributions is its documentation. Arch Linux is famous for its detailed wiki, and rightfully so. ArchMerge takes a slightly different approach and, instead of supplying detailed pages for virtually every aspect of the distribution, the project supplies quick overviews and tutorials for common tasks and issues. These overviews are each accompanied by a video which shows the user how to perform the task.

The ArchMerge website places a strong emphasis on learning and the tutorial pages guide visitors through how to install the distribution, how to configure the desktop, how to install additional software and how to set up file synchronizing through Dropbox. There is also a section dedicated to fixing common problems, a sort of FAQ for distribution issues. Since there are videos for the topics covered, we are shown where to go and what each step should look like, rather than just being given a written description.

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Tails 3.6.1 is out

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This release fixes several security issues and users should upgrade as soon as possible.

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Linux 4.9.88, 4.4.122, and 3.18.100, More Security Patches in Linux 4.16

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Ubuntu MATE 18.04 LTS Will Ship with a New Default Layout Called "Familiar"

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Ubuntu MATE's lead developer Martin Wimpress announced that the forthcoming Ubuntu MATE 18.04 LTS (Bionic Beaver) operating system would sport a brand-new default layout for new installations.

If you plan on installing or reinstalling Ubuntu MATE this spring, the upcoming 18.04 release sports a new default layout called "Familiar." According to Martin Wimpress, the new layout is based on the Traditional layout with the menu-bar replaced by Brisk Menu, which was used in previous Ubuntu MATE releases.

The decision to replace the Traditional layout with the Familiar one was taken due to some technical issues when the development team tried to update it for Ubuntu MATE 18.04 LTS (Bionic Beaver). Traditional will still be available, but not enabled by default, and bears no changes.

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Atom 1.25

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  • Atom 1.25

    Atom 1.25 has been released on our stable channel and includes GitHub package improvements, improved syntax highlighting and code folding, Python and HTML language improvements and more.

  • GitHub's Atom Hackable Text Editor Gets Performance, Responsiveness Improvements

    GitHub released a new stable version of their open-source and cross-platform Atom hackable text editor with a bunch of enhancements, bug fixes, a new Electron version, as well as performance and responsiveness improvements.

    Atom 1.25 is now available for GNU/Linux, macOS, and Windows platforms, and it is packed with improvements for the GitHub package to let you stage and view changes affecting file mode modifications, additions to symbolic links, as well as the ability for the Diff view to no longer reset its scrolling position.

Linux Mint 19 'Tara' Cinnamon will be faster

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Is Linux Mint slow? Hell, no! The operating system is plenty fast. Speed is in the eye of the beholder, however, and the Mint developers apparently thought app-launching seemed slow when using the Cinnamon desktop environment. They didn't have any proof, but they felt that both Mate and Xfce were faster in this regard.

Well, rather than allow their feelings to remain unproven, the Mint devs decided to come up with a speed test to see if they were correct. Guess what? They were! Windows build time was four times slower with Cinnamon compared to Metacity, while recovery time was nearly four times slower too. So yes, app-launching on Cinnamon -- as of today -- is slow comparatively. The big benefit to pinpointing a problem, however, is that it is the first step in solving it. And so, Linux Mint 19 Cinnamon will be faster as a result.

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antiX-17.1 released

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antiX-17.1 (Heather Heyer) released

This is primarily an upgrade of antiX-17 with a new Meltdown/Spectre patched kernel and a few new applications for users to enjoy.

As usual we offer the following completely systemd-free flavours for both 32 and 64 bit architecture.

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UBports Continues Work On Moving From Ubuntu 15.04 Base To 16.04

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For those still holding out the dream for Ubuntu on phones/tablets, the UBports community continues their work in updating their Ubuntu Touch fork to riding off a 16.04 Xenial base rather than the existing Ubuntu 15.04.

UBports is working on Ubuntu 16.04 support to eventually replace their 15.04 stable base. Ubuntu 18.04 isn't being pursued yet due to the Mir changes around Wayland support, and just being a much different target than going from 15.04 to 16.04.

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Android Leftovers

today's leftovers

  • Purchased a PlayStation 3 Between 2006 and 2010? You May Be Entitled to $65
    PS3 owners first qualified to receive compensation from Sony following the settlement of a lawsuit in 2016. That case dealt with the "OtherOS" feature that came with the console when it debuted. With OtherOS, Sony promised a new PlayStation that would operate like a computer, allowing users to partition their hard drive and install third-party operating systems like the open-source Linux software.
  • Moro – A Command Line Productivity Tool For Tracking Work Hours
    Keeping track of your work hours will give you an insight about the amount of work you get done in a specific time frame. There are plenty of GUI-based productivity tools available on the Internet for tracking work hours. However, I couldn’t find a good CLI-based tool. Today, I stumbled upon a a simple, yet useful tool named “Moro” for tracking work hours. Moro is a Finnish word which means “Hello”. Using Moro, you can find how much time you take to complete a specific task. It is free, open source and written using NodeJS.
  • Twenty years, 1998 – 2018
    curl 4.0 was just a little more than 2000 lines of C code. It featured 23 command line options. curl 4.0 introduced support for the FTP PORT command and now it could do ftp uploads that append to the remote file. The version number was bumped up from the 3.12 which was the last version number used by the tool under the old name, urlget.
  • What’s New in ArchLabs 2018.03
    ArchLabs 2018.03 is the latest release of Linux distribution based on Arch Linux featuring the Openbox window manager as the primary desktop interface. The project’s latest release ArchLabs 2018.03 brings a few fixes and improvements and improve the user. Powered by Linux kernel 4.15 series and based-on latest version of Arch Linux. LUKS and encryption is now working, for those security concious users out there you should be all go on the encryption side. There have been a few installer updates, base-devel is included at install time. Also the mirrorlist is optimised at the same time.
  • [Older] openSUSE.Asia Summit 2018: Call for Host
    The openSUSE.Asia organization committee is accepting proposals to host the openSUSE.Asia Summit during the second half of 2018. The openSUSE.Asia Summit is the largest annual openSUSE conference in Asia, attended by contributors and enthusiasts from all over Asia.
  • TidalScale Software-Defined Servers Now Support SUSE Linux Enterprise Server
    TidalScale, the leader in Software-Defined Servers, announced today that working in partnership with SUSE, the world’s first provider of Enterprise Linux, TidalScale has achieved SUSE Ready certification to ensure full compatibility with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server. TidalScale’s breakthrough scaling platform allows multiple industry standard servers to be combined into a single Software-Defined Server running a single instance of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server.
  • 8 Best Radio Apps For Android To Stream Online Music In 2018

Kernel and Graphics: Torvalds, Linux Foundation, Nouveau and libinput

  • Which Linux Distribution Does Linus Torvalds Use in 2018?
    We know a sizeable amount of his views on Linux distros, thanks to an interview he took long ago in 2007, but who knows – could he have changed his mind? In a 2007 interview, Linus professed that he didn’t use Debian because he found it hard to install, a statement I find interesting because he’s the guy who wrote GIT in C. Anyway, he buttressed his reason for not using Debian in a later interview from 2014, when he explained that because he is responsible for maintaining his computer and all the computers used by his household, he likes to use an OS with virtually no installation hassle. [...] As far as I know, he uses Fedora on most of his computers because of its fairly good support for PowerPC. He mentioned that he used OpenSuse at one point in time and complimented Ubuntu for making Debian accessible to the mass. So most of the flak on the internet about Linus disliking Ubuntu isn’t factual.
  • Linux Foundation, Intel launch open source IoT hypervisor
    The Linux Foundation has unveiled plans for a new open source project to provide streamlined embedded hypervisors for IoT devices. Called Acrn, the project has been assisted by Intel, which contributed code and engineering. The main thrust of the project is to create small, flexible virtual machines. ACRN comprises two main components: the hypervisor and its device model, complete with I/O mediators. The Linux-based hypervisor can run many ‘guest’ operating systems at the same time.
  • Nouveau NIR Support Appears Almost Baked, NV50 Support Added
    Karol Herbst at Red Hat started off this week by publishing his latest patches around Nouveau NIR support as part of the company's effort for getting SPIR-V/compute support up and running on this open-source NVIDIA driver. Red Hat's grand vision around open-source GPGPU compute still isn't entirely clear especially with Nouveau re-clocking not being suitable for delivering high performance at this point, but it must be grand given the number of developers they have working on improving the Linux GPU compute stack at the moment.
  • xf86-input-libinput 0.27.0 Released
    Aside from a few touchpad issues and other minor random issues with select hardware, libinput these days is mostly in great shape for being a generic input handling library that is working out well for both X.Org and Wayland users.

KDE: KDE Applications 18.04, KDE Connect, KMyMoney 5.0.1 and Qt Quick

  • KDE Applications 18.04 branches created
    Make sure you commit anything you want to end up in the KDE Applications 18.04 release to them :)
  • KDE Connect – State of the union
    We haven’t blogged about KDE Connect in a long time, but that doesn’t mean that we’ve been lazy. Some new people have joined the project and together we have implemented some exciting features. Our last post was about version 1.0, but recently we released version 1.8 of the Android app and 1.2.1 of the desktop component some time ago, which we did not blog about yet. Until now!
  • KMyMoney 5.0.1 released
    The KMyMoney development team is proud to present the first maintenance version 5.0.1 of its open source Personal Finance Manager. Although several members of the development team had been using the new version 5.0.0 in production for some time, a number of bugs and regressions slipped through testing, mainly in areas and features not used by them.
  • Qt Quick without a GPU: i.MX6 ULL
    With the introduction of the Qt Quick software renderer it became possible to use Qt Quick on devices without a GPU. We investigated how viable this option is on a lower end device, particularly the NXP i.MX6 ULL. It turns out that with some (partially not yet integrated) patches developed by KDAB and The Qt Company, the performance is very competitive. Even smooth video playback (with at least half-size VGA resolution) can be done by using the PXP engine on the i.MX6 ULL.