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Wednesday, 18 Sep 19 - Tux Machines is a community-driven public service/news site which has been around for over a decade and a half and primarily focuses on GNU/LinuxSubscribe now Syndicate content

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Quick Roundup

Why the founder of Apache is all-in on blockchain

Filed under
OSS

As Behlendorf tells the story, Apache came out of an environment when "we might have had a more beneficent view of technology companies. We still thought of them as leading the fight for individual empowerment."

At the same time, Behlendorf adds, "there was still a concern that, as the web grew, it would lose its character and its soul as this kind of funky domain, very flat space, supportive of freedoms of speech, freedoms of thought, freedoms of association that were completely novel to us at the time, but now we take for granted—or even we have found weaponized against us."

This led him to want Apache to address concerns that were both pragmatic in nature and more idealistic.

The pragmatic aspect stemmed from the fact that "iteratively improving upon the NCSA web server was just easier and certainly a lot cheaper than buying Netscape's commercial web server or thinking about IIS or any of the other commercial options at the time." Behlendorf also acknowledges, "it's nice to have other people out there who can review my code and [to] work together with."

There was also an "idealistic notion that tapped into that zeitgeist in the '90s," Behlendorf says. "This is a printing press. We can help people publish their own blogs, help people publish their own websites, and get as much content liberated as possible and digitized as possible. That was kind of the web movement. In particular, we felt it would be important to make sure that the printing presses remained in the hands of the people."

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Events and Shows: IBC 2019, User Error and Ubuntu Podcast

Filed under
OSS
  • Open Source at IBC 2019

    Showcasing two brand new Open Source software demonstrations featuring the Xilinx high-performance Zynq UltraScale+ MPSoC, and the Magic Leap One augmented reality headset.

  • Splitting Fun and Profit | User Error 74

    It's another #AskError episode. The finances of social situations and FOSS projects, automated vehicles, and ways to cheer up.

  • Ubuntu Podcast from the UK LoCo: S12E23 – Wing Commander

    This week we’ve been playing Pillars of Eternity. We discuss boot speed improvements for Ubuntu 19.10, using LXD to map ports, NVIDIA Prime Renderer switching, changes in the Yaru theme and the Librem 5 shipping (perhaps). We also round up some events and some news from the tech world.

    It’s Season 12 Episode 23 of the Ubuntu Podcast! Alan Pope and Mark Johnson are connected and speaking to your brain.

Programming: Bash/Command Line, Python and More

Filed under
Development
HowTos
  • Add leading zeroes that aren't really leading

    A leading zero can be a useful addition to a number string, and there are several ways to add one or more leading zeroes on the command line. The addition is a little less straightforward if the leading zero sits inside a non-numeric string. This post deals with a couple of such cases.

  • Always Launch Terminal as root User (sudo) in Ubuntu

    While working with the Ubuntu command line, the Terminal, we come across situations that require us to log in as root again and again. Ubuntu does that for protecting our system in order to avoid any user or script that opens the Terminal for any malicious activities that put your privacy and system at risk. Root allows far more access than a standard user needs on the command line. With root in action, features that make Ubuntu more secure are no longer working for you. Just consider running a web browser as root!

  • Fastest Python function to slugify a string

    The code is 7-8 years old and relates to a migration when MDN was created as a Python fork from an existing PHP solution.

    I couldn't help but to react to the fact that it's a list and it's looped over every single time. Twice, in a sense. Python has built-in tools for this kinda stuff. Let's see if I can make it faster.

  • Should you use "dot notation" or "bracket notation" with pandas?

    If you prefer bracket notation, then you can use it all of the time! However, you still have to be familiar with dot notation in order to read other people's code.

    If you prefer dot notation, then you can use it most of the time, as long as you are diligent about renaming columns when they contains spaces or collide with DataFrame methods. However, you still have to use bracket notation when creating new columns.

  • Solving Sequence Problems with LSTM in Python's Keras Library

    Time series forecasting refers to the type of problems where we have to predict an outcome based on time dependent inputs. A typical example of time series data is stock market data where stock prices change with time. Similarly, the hourly temperature of a particular place also changes and can also be considered as time series data. Time series data is basically a sequence of data, hence time series problems are often referred to as sequence problems.

  • How the Worlds of Linux and Windows Programming Converged

    Once upon a time, the world of developers was split into two halves: One half was composed of Windows developers, who created most of the productivity apps that powered PCs (and, occasionally, servers). The other half comprised Linux and Unix developers, whose work focused on server-side development. Today, however, as the worlds of Windows and Linux move ever closer together, the distinction between Windows and Linux developers is disappearing. Gone are the days when you had to specialize in one ecosystem or the other.

Red Hat: Edge Computing, Red Hat Success Stories, OpenShift 4.2 and More

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Red Hat
  • 10 edge computing myths, debunked

    Edge computing can mean different things to different technology leaders – from “anything that’s not in the cloud” to “the practice of capturing, storing, processing, and analyzing data nearest to where the data is generated.” As important as knowing what edge computing is, however, is understanding what it is not.

    [...]

    “Edge can vary based on computing, storage, and where you engage streaming data,” says Jason Mann, VP of IoT at SAS. It will also vary based on your point of view, adds Hopkins. The enterprise edge will look different than a cloud vendor’s or a telco’s edge.

  • Red Hat Success Stories: Reducing friction in Southeast Asia banking and more

    Wondering how Red Hat is helping its customers to succeed? Last month we published six customer success stories that highlight how we've helped customers gain efficiency, cut costs, and transform the way they deliver software. Read on to find out how Ascend Money, Heritage Bank, Generali Switzerland, and others have worked with Red Hat to improve their business.

    [...]

    To improve the efficiency of its application processes, Ascend Money decided to migrate its legacy applications to a standardized platform using Red Hat technology. With assistance from Red Hat Consulting, Ascend Money moved both its legacy applications and new cloud-native services to OpenShift Container Platform, providing a single platform for IT and developers to collaborate across cloud environments.

  • OpenShift 4.2 Disconnected Install

    In a previous blog, it was announced that Red Hat is making the OpenShift nightly builds available to everyone. This gives users a chance to test upcoming features before their general availability. One of the features planned for OpenShift 4.2 is the ability to perform a “disconnected” or “air gapped” install, allowing you to install in an environment without access to the Internet or outside world.

  • Develop with Node.js in a container on Red Hat Enterprise Linux

    In my previous article, Run Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 in a container on RHEL 7, I showed how to start developing with the latest versions of languages, databases, and web servers available with Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8, even if you are still running RHEL 7. In this article, I’ll build on that base to show how to get started with Node using the current RHEL 8 application stream versions of Node.js and Redis 5.

    From my perspective, using Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 application streams in containers is preferable to using software collections on RHEL 7. While you need to get comfortable with containers, all of the software installs in the locations you’d expect. There is no need to use scl commands to manage the selected software versions. Instead, each container gets an isolated user space. You don’t have to worry about conflicting versions.

    In this article, you’ll create a Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 Node.js container with Buildah, and run it with Podman. The code will be stored on your local machine and mapped into the RHEL 8 Node.js container when it runs. You’ll be able to edit the code on your local machine as you would any other application. Because it is mapped via a volume mount, the changes you make to the code will be immediately visible from the container, which is convenient for dynamic languages that don’t need to be compiled. This method isn’t the way you’d want to do things for production, but it gets you started developing quickly and should give you essentially the same development inner loop as you’d have when developing locally without containers. This article also shows how you can use Buildah to build an image with your completed application that you could use for production.

    Additionally, you’ll set up the Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 Redis application stream in a container that is managed by systemd. You’ll be able to use systemctl to start and stop the container just as you would for a non-container installation.

Security: FOSS Updates, Windows Spying as 'Security', Linux Package Management

Filed under
Security
  • Security updates for Friday

    Security updates have been issued by Debian (curl, dnsmasq, and golang-go.crypto), Mageia (docker, firefox, flash-player-plugin, ghostscript, links, squid, sympa, tcpflow, thunderbird, and znc), openSUSE (srt), Oracle (.NET Core, kernel, libwmf, and poppler), Scientific Linux (firefox), SUSE (cri-o, curl, java-1_8_0-ibm, python-SQLAlchemy, and python-urllib3), and Ubuntu (curl and expat).

  • Microsoft Issues New Windows 10 Update Warning

    Meanwhile, the Windows Latest reports the Start menu stops working for some users who have upgraded to KB4515384 with Windows 10 delivering the following errors: “We’ll try to fix it the next time you sign in” and “Critical Error - Your Start menu isn’t working”

  • Heads up: Microsoft is back to snooping with this month’s Win7 and 8.1 'security-only' patches

    Two months ago, the July Win7 security-only patch was found to install telemetry software, triggered by newly installed scheduled tasks called ProgramDataUpdater, Microsoft Compatibility Appraiser, and AitAgent. As best I can tell, Microsoft never admitted that its security-only patch dropped a telemetry component.

    The August security-only update didn’t include that bit of snooping, so it looked like the July snooping was a one-off aberration.

    Now we’re learning that the September security-only patches for both Win 7 and Win 8.1 have this, shall we say, feature.

    [...]

    What information is Microsoft collecting? I don’t know. Telemetry is frequently downplayed as being largely uninteresting blobs of unattributed data. If that’s the case, why is Microsoft collecting it now, after all these years? It hasn’t even acknowledged (as best I can tell) that it's collecting it via security-only patches.

  • Security Issues with PGP Signatures and Linux Package Management

    In discussions around the PGP ecosystem one thing I often hear is that while PGP has its problems, it's an important tool for package signatures in Linux distributions. I therefore want to highlight a few issues I came across in this context that are rooted in problems in the larger PGP ecosystem.

    Let's look at an example of the use of PGP signatures for deb packages, the Ubuntu Linux installation instructions for HHVM. HHVM is an implementation of the HACK programming language and developed by Facebook. I'm just using HHVM as an example here, as it nicely illustrates two attacks I want to talk about, but you'll find plenty of similar installation instructions for other software packages. I have reported these issues to Facebook, but they decided not to change anything.

today's howtos

Filed under
HowTos

Freedom-Respecting Librem 5 and DRM-Free Kindle Alternative

Filed under
Gadgets
  • Librem 5 Batch FAQ

    We have been getting a lot of questions related to our announcement of the Librem 5 shipping schedule. Here, we will post the answers to some frequently asked questions, and update this document as new questions come in.

  • Anyone Can Build This Open Source, DRM-Free Kindle Alternative

                           

                             

    It's harder to get an open source e-reader than you might think. Kindles are popular, but they lock you into Amazon's ecosystem. Amazon's books come with digital rights protection and the company can remove them from your device whenever it wants. Those problems exist on tablets from Barnes and Nobles, Google, and Apple, too. When it comes to open source reading, there's just no good options. The Open Book Project wants to change that.  

More Gnome News

Filed under
GNOME
  • GNOME and gestures, Part 1: WebKitGTK

    I’m a big fan of responsive touchpad gestures. For the last half a year (mostly January, February and during the summer) I’ve been working on improving gestures in many areas throughout GNOME. In this series I will do a (belated) overview.

    Late in the 3.32.x cycle, I saw a commit by Jan-Michael Brummer adding a back/forward swipe to Epiphany. It was really nice to finally have gestures, but it didn’t have any visual feedback. Less importantly, the direction was reversed, as if when scrolling with Natural Scrolling being off. I wanted to give a shot at improving it.

  • GNOME Firmware 3.34.0 Release

    This morning I tagged the newest fwupd release, 1.3.1. There are a lot of new things in this release and a whole lot of polishing, so I encourage you to read the release notes if this kind of thing interests you.

    Anyway, to the point of this post. With the new fwupd 1.3.1 you can now build just the libfwupd library, which makes it easy to build GNOME Firmware (old name: gnome-firmware-updater) in Flathub. I tagged the first official release 3.34.0 to celebrate the recent GNOME release, and to indicate that it’s ready for use by end users. I guess it’s important to note this is just a random app hacked together by 3 engineers and not something lovelingly designed by the official design team. All UX mistakes are my own Smile

The GNOME 3.36 Release Date is Set for Next March

Filed under
GNOME

This date, along with other key dates in the GNOME 3.36 development cycle — technically GNOME 3.35 as only stable releases use even numbers — is revealed in the official GNOME 3.36 release schedule up on the GNOME wiki.

The first GNOME 3.36 development snapshot, aka GNOME 3.35.1, is scheduled for release on October 12, 2019. A second development snapshot, GNOME 3.35.2, follows on November 23, 2019.

More notable, the first GNOME 3.36 beta is tabled in for release at the beginning of February, with a second beta release arriving two weeks later, on February 15, 2020.

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Security Leftovers

Filed under
Security
  • The New Target That Enables Ransomware Hackers to Paralyze Dozens of Towns and Businesses at Once

    On July 3, employees at Arbor Dental in Longview, Washington, noticed glitches in their computers and couldn’t view X-rays. Arbor was one of dozens of dental clinics in Oregon and Washington stymied by a ransomware attack that disrupted their business and blocked access to patients’ records.

    But the hackers didn’t target the clinics directly. Instead, they infiltrated them by exploiting vulnerable cybersecurity at Portland-based PM Consultants Inc., which handled the dentists’ software updates, firewalls and data backups. Arbor’s frantic calls to PM went to voicemail, said Whitney Joy, the clinic’s office coordinator.

  • If you're not using SSH certificates you're doing SSH wrong

    None of these issues are actually inherent to SSH. They're actually problems with SSH public key authentication. The solution is to switch to certificate authentication.

    SSH certificate authentication makes SSH easier to use, easier to operate, and more secure.

  • Your phone can be [cracked] - and there's nothing you can do about it

    Finally, another benefit of Simjacker from the attacker's perspective is that many of its attacks seems to work independent of handset types, as the vulnerability is dependent on the software on the UICC and not the device. We have observed devices from nearly every manufacturer being successfully targeted to retrieve location: Apple, ZTE, Motorola, Samsung, Google, Huawei, and even IoT devices with SIM cards. One important note is that for some specific attacks handset types do matter. Some, such as setting up a call, require user interaction to confirm, but this is not guaranteed and older phones or devices with no keypad or screens (such as IoT device) may not even ask for this.

Here’s Ubuntu 19.10’s New Default Wallpaper

Filed under
Ubuntu

The new desktop background for Ubuntu 19.10 was uploaded to a bug report on Launchpad where, as tradition dictates, it’s also available to download.

As we’ve come to expect from Ubuntu wallpapers of late, the new drape bears an artistic depiction of the latest Ubuntu codename mascot, which for this release is an “Ermine”, or white stoat...

Ubuntu 19.10 ‘Eoan Ermine’ will be released on October 18, 2019. And as well as this wonderful new wallpaper it offers Linux Kernel 5.3, a light Yaru GTK theme and the all-new GNOME 3.34 release.

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Squish - Test automation tool for our HMI build with Qt

Filed under
KDE

When test engineers hear about test automation the first word that comes to mind is of course Selenium which is the most popular testing library that helps us writing scripts for web applications. There are also ready solutions for mobile apps like Appium, Robotium, Espresso, UI Automator and others. The challenge is when we have some project-specific technologies that are not as easy to automate as web applications. But while using Qt we have some advantage over other non-web applications because there is some ready solution that we can use.

The goal of the project was to build a digital cockpit system for car sharing solutions with navigation as the main feature, where the user agrees on advertisements while choosing a cheaper subscription. Advertising can suggest purchasing coffee to the driver, which can be ordered through our application from the navigation screen, then we add a coffee stop to the destination point. We also included the HVAC module and menu where the driver can switch between different screens (music player, settings, 3D model of a car, phone, weather view). To build this we were using Qt Application Manager, QML, MapBox, Qt 3D Studio and server written in python that was using OSRM.

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Mozilla's Privacy Words/Promises

Filed under
Moz/FF
  • Creating privacy-centric virtual spaces

    We now live in a world with instantaneous communication unrestrained by geography. While a generation ago, we would be limited by the speed of the post, now we’re limited by the speed of information on the Internet. This has changed how we connect with other people.

    As immersive devices become more affordable, social spaces in virtual reality (VR) will become more integrated into our daily lives and interactions with friends, family, and strangers. Social media has enabled rapid pseudonymous communication, which can be directed at both a single person and large groups. If social VR is the next evolution of this, what approaches will result in spaces that respect user identities, autonomy, and safety?

    We need spaces that reflect how we interact with others on a daily basis.

  • Mozilla previews Firefox VPN, will charge for service at some point

    Mozilla has not hidden its desire to branch into new revenue territories to divest from the more-or-less-single-source of search engine royalties. In June, CEO Chris Beard and other Mozilla officials said that paid service subscriptions would roll out this fall, but assured users that the browser itself would remain free of charge. The VPN could be the first of several paid services pitched to Firefox users, or part of a larger all-in-one package; Mozilla hasn't been clear about the form(s) this new revenue stream may take.

    Nor did Wood say how long her team will test Firefox Private Network. However, she did position this iteration of Test Pilot differently than before. "The difference with the newly relaunched Test Pilot program is that these products and services may be outside the Firefox browser, and will be far more polished, and just one step shy of general public release," she said.

  • Encrypted DNS could help close the biggest privacy gap on the Internet. Why are some groups fighting against it?

    Thanks to the success of projects like Let’s Encrypt and recent UX changes in the browsers, most page-loads are now encrypted with TLS. But DNS, the system that looks up a site’s IP address when you type the site’s name into your browser, remains unprotected by encryption.

    Because of this, anyone along the path from your network to your DNS resolver (where domain names are converted to IP addresses) can collect information about which sites you visit. This means that certain eavesdroppers can still profile your online activity by making a list of sites you visited, or a list of who visits a particular site. Malicious DNS resolvers or on-path routers can also tamper with your DNS request, blocking you from accessing sites or even routing you to fake versions of the sites you requested.

Applications, PostgreSQL, Zypper Packages Update in Tumbleweed

Filed under
SUSE

The snapshots brought an update of KDE Plasma and Applications along with an update for the input framework ibus, two PostgreSQL versions and the command line package manager zypper.

KDE Applications 19.08.1 improvements to Kontact, Dolphin, Kdenlive, Konsole, Step, and more arrived in snapshot 20190909. Several regressions in Konsole’s tab handling were fixed and olphin again starts correctly when in split-view mode. The updated of the anti-virus package clamav 0.101.4 address two Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures. The GNOME web browser package epiphany 3.32.5 fixed a memory corruption and broken web process extension connection when using WebKit trunk. An update of links 2.20.1 brought stability improvements and also addressed a bug when connected with tor would send real dns requests outside the tor network when the displayed page contains link elements with rel=dns-prefetch. The Plasma desktop received a minor update to 5.16.5 and fixed KWayland-integration builds with recent frameworks and Qt 5.13. Some notifications were changed in the new minor version and the some functionality was improved for current weather conditions. The qrencode 4.0.2 package improved support for cmake. The snapshot was trending at a rating of 84, according to the Tumbleweed snapshot reviewer.

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Catfish 1.4.10 Released

Filed under
GNU
Linux

The best Linux graphical file search utility keeps getting better! The latest release features a new preferences dialog, a polished user interface, and significantly improved search results and performance.

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Games: Mayhem in Single Valley, Open Jam, 0 A.D., No Man's Sky, Don't Starve Together, Pine

Filed under
Gaming
  • Mayhem in Single Valley sounds like quite a unique adventure, coming to Linux this year

    Mayhem in Single Valley from developer Fluxscopic seems like an adventure not to be missed and it's releasing later this year, sometime in the "Fall", with Linux support.

    It's a stylish top-down action adventure, mixing in combat and puzzles with a focus on "family and everyday struggles". It's quite an exaggerated tale, one where the craziest things you might read about happen a lot more frequently. You play as Jack, a local "troublemaker" who makes a series of major discoveries before he's supposed to leave home.

  • Join Open Jam 2019 to build open source indie games

    On September 27th, dozens of indie developers will come together virtually to develop video games using open source software. This date marks the third annual Open Jam, a three-day, 80-hour online game jam dedicated to indie developers building playful games and advancing the world of open source game development.

  • The FOSS strategy game 0 A.D. seems to be coming along very nicely

    Things on the news front for the FOSS RTS game 0 A.D. have been quiet recently but they certainly haven't been sitting on their hands, a lot of work has been going on in the background.

    A game that's a real pleasure to watch grow, easily one of the most professional looking FOSS games around that may one day rival much bigger RTS games.

    Since releasing Alpha 23 last year, the team haven't really said much. That changed yesterday, with the release of a brand new progress report. The silence on a lot of FOSS project news at times is quite understandable though, pulling together information on everything going on can be quite time consuming when people just want to get things done.

  • Hello Games continue fixing up Linux issues for No Man's Sky in Steam Play

    While not available for Linux, No Man's Sky can be run through Steam Play and it appears Hello Games continue to keep an eye on it.

    In a recent article, I highlighted the fact that the developer put in a fix for SteamVR on Linux even though the game is not supported there. Not only that, NVIDIA (certain generations anyway) needed a fix applied to get it working properly.

    Here we are less than a month later and it appears that manual fix for NVIDIA is no longer needed. Not just that, their latest experimental update released yesterday notes that it fixed "a Linux driver issue.". If you wish to try it, use the password "3xperimental" on the Beta tab of the games properties on Steam.

  • Don't Starve Together updated, Woodie gets a refresh with a new animated short plus a new Beta

    Creepy and stylish co-op survival game Don't Starve Together from dev Klei has another update available and it sounds great.

    This time around the character Woodie went through a bit of a refresh including two brand new transformations, giving different specializations. You can also trigger random transformations by consuming Monster Meat (or prepared dishes like Monster Lasagna), with specific transformations done by consuming one of the three new craftable idols made with Monster Meat. There's some other strange changes too, like Woodie being forced into a random transformation on each full moon, Woodie no longer needs to eat wood and so on.

  • Beautiful open-world action adventure Pine is releasing next month

    3D open-world action adventure game Pine from Twirlbound and Kongregate is going to officially release on October 10th.

    Sounds like an incredible intriguing game, a world where Humans are seemingly not top of the chain and so you will encounter all sorts of creatures.

Sayonara Player – small, clear and fast audio player

Filed under
Software

One of the traits I love about Linux is the breadth of open source available. And music players are no exception. There’s many excellent open source music players available ranging from sublime GUI software like Tauon Music Player to terminal based software such as musikcube. They are two of my favorite audio apps. But there’s always room for more.

Sayonara Player is another quality music player. It’s under active development. It caught my eye for a number of reasons, not least its large range of features. Let’s see what it has to offer.

The program is written in C++, supported by the Qt framework. It uses GStreamer as its audio backend.

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