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Saturday, 16 Dec 17 - Tux Machines is a community-driven public service/news site which has been around for over a decade and primarily focuses on GNU/LinuxSubscribe now Syndicate content

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Review: heads 0.3.1

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Reviews

heads is a live Linux distribution which can be run from a DVD or USB thumb drive. The distribution connects to the Internet through the Tor network. This helps protect the identity and location of the person using heads. The heads distribution is very similar to its popular sibling, Tails, in its mission, but heads has some special characteristics which set it apart. The heads distribution is based on Devuan while Tails is based on Debian, which means heads uses the SysV init software rather than systemd. The heads project is also dedicated to shipping a distribution which features free software only, as the heads website explains:

Non-free software can not be audited and as such cannot guarantee you security or anonymity. On the other hand, with heads you only use free software, meaning you can gain access to any source code that is included in heads, at any time. Using free software it is far easier to avoid hidden backdoors and malware that might be in non-free software.

heads is available in a single edition which is 831MB in size. When booting from the project's ISO, we are given the option of booting heads normally from the disc or loading the distribution into RAM. The latter option frees up our removable drive and can make applications load faster after the initial boot process has completed.

The distribution boots to a command line interface and automatically logs us in as a user called luther. On the screen we are shown the root account's password along with commands we can run to launch a graphical interface. The default shell for the luther account is zsh, a less common shell than bash, but often loved for its additional features. heads ships with the Awesome and Openbox window managers and we can choose which one we wish to launch from the command line. I focused on using Openbox during my trial.

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Debian GNU/Linux 9.3 "Stretch" Live, Installable ISOs Now Available to Download

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Debian

The Debian CD team was pretty quick to bake all those ISO images in less than 24 hours, and users can now download Debian GNU/Linux 9.3 "Stretch" as live and installable ISOs for a wide range of architectures if they were planning on reinstalling their Debian PCs or deploy the OS on new computers.

Debian GNU/Linux 9.3 "Stretch" is currently supported on no less than 10 hardware architectures, including 32-bit (i386), 64-bit (amd64), ARM64 (AArch64), Armel, ARMhf, MIPS, Mipsel, MIPS64el (MIPS 64-bit Little Endian), PPC64el (PowerPC 64-bit Little Endian), and s390x (IBM System z).

New Linux Mint installation guide makes switching from Windows 10 even easier

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Linux

There is a notion that installing a Linux-based operating system can be hard. In 2017, this is absolutely false (with the exception of Arch, that is). Many years ago, installing a distribution could be difficult, but nowadays, it can be downright easy. Quite frankly, installing Linux can sometimes be easier than Windows these days, since you don't have to go hunting for drivers and software all over the web. If you have been fearful of replacing Windows 10 with an operating system like Linux Mint -- don't be.

But OK, understandably, some people have anxiety about changing their computer's operating system. If that is you, I am happy to say Linux Mint has a brand new installation guide that should quell any fears. Not only does it help with technical aspects, but it can guide you to the best edition for your needs. Mint in particular is a great alternative to Windows 10.

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Latest KDE and Kubuntu

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KDE
Ubuntu
  • KDE Frameworks 5.41.0 Released with More Than 120 Improvements and Bugfixes

    The KDE Project released today a new version of its open-source KDE Frameworks software stack, a collection of over 70 add-on libraries to the Qt application framework, for GNU/Linux distributions.

    Each month, KDE releases a new KDE Frameworks build, and version 5.41.0 is now available for December 2017, bringing a month's worth of improvements, bug and security fixes, as well as updated translations.

  • KDE Frameworks 5.41 Released Ahead Of KDE Applications 17.12

    KDE Frameworks 5.41 is now available as the latest monthly update to this collection of add-on libraries complementing Qt5.

    KDE Frameworks 5.41 has a number of fixes including some crash fixes, updated translations, improvements to Kirigami, support for the idle inhibit manager protocol in KWayland, many Plasma Framework changes, and other updates.

  • Release of KDE Frameworks 5.41.0

    December 10, 2017. KDE today announces the release of KDE Frameworks 5.41.0.

    KDE Frameworks are 70 addon libraries to Qt which provide a wide variety of commonly needed functionality in mature, peer reviewed and well tested libraries with friendly licensing terms. For an introduction see the Frameworks 5.0 release announcement.

  • [Kubuntu] Testing a switch to default Breeze-Dark Plasma theme in Bionic daily isos and default settings

    Today’s daily ISO for Bionic Beaver 18.04 sees an experimental switch to the Breeze-Dark Plasma theme by default.

    Users running 18.04 development version who have not deliberately opted to use Breeze/Breeze-Light in their systemsettings will also see the change after upgrading packages.

    Users can easily revert back to the Breeze/Breeze-Light Plasma themes by changing this in systemsettings.

Games: Kim, ASTROKILL, Hearthlands and More

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Gaming

The Best Linux Laptop: A Buyer’s Guide with Picks from an RHCE

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GNU
Linux

If you don’t posses the right knowledge & the experience, then finding the best Linux laptop can be a daunting task. And thus you can easily end-up with something that looks great, features great performance, but struggles to cope with ‘Linux’, shame! So, as a RedHat Certified Engineer, the author & the webmaster of this blog, and as a ‘Linux’ user with 14+ years of experience, I used all my knowledge to recommend to you a couple of laptops that I personally guarantee will let you run ‘Linux’ with ease. After 20+ hours of research (carefully looking through the hardware details & reading user feedback) I chose Dell XP S9360-3591-SLV, at the top of the line. If you want a laptop that’s equipped with modern features & excellent performance that ‘just works’ with Linux, then this is your best pick.

It’s well built (aluminium chassis), lightweight (2.7 lb), features powerful hardware, long battery life, includes an excellent 13.3 inch Gorilla Glass touchscreen with 3200×1800 QHD resolution which should give you excellently sharp images without making anything too small & difficult to read, a good & roomy track-pad (earlier versions had a few issues with it, but now they seem to be gone) with rubber-like palm rest area and a good keyboard (the key travel is not deep, but it’s a very think laptop so…) with Backlit, two USB 3.0 ports. Most importantly, two of the most common elements of a laptop that can give ‘Linux’ user a headache, the wireless adapter & the GPU (yes the Intel HD Graphics 620 can play 4K videos at 60fps), they are both super compatible with ‘Linux’ on this Dell.

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Ubuntu-Based ExTiX "The Ultimate Linux System" Now Includes Calamares Installer

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Ubuntu

ExTiX 18.0 Deepin 171208 is the latest build of the distro, and it includes the recently released Deepin 15.5 Desktop, the Calamares 3.1.9 universal installer framework, which replaces the old Refracta Installer, as well as Refracta Tools, which lets users create their own live ISO images based on ExTiX or Ubuntu.

"I’ve released a new version of ExTIX 18.0 Deepin today with Calamares 3.1.9 installed from source," said Arne Exton in the release announcement. "While running ExTiX Deepin 18.0 live or from hard drive you can use Refracta Tools (pre-installed) to create your own live installable Ubuntu system. A ten-year child can do it!"

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Manjaro Linux - One Of The Finest Linux Distros

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Linux
Reviews

I must say I am quite impressed with the latest iteration of Manjaro. The experience is fluid and smooth, fast and clean and it is very organized. I even found the experience on the Deepin edition better than on the Deepin distro. Manjaro clearly signifies why Arch-based distros that take them away out of the installation are becoming so popular.

A simple installation process, access to Arch based features such as AUR and added to the fact that it is a rolling-based distro makes it a winner for me. I also love that all the major desktop environments are available on Manjaro allowing users to choose what they want. If you were on the fence about Manjaro, I believe it's viable as your working desktop and it is definitely worth checking out. Thanks for reading and share your thoughts and comments with us.

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9 Best Free Video Editing Software for Linux In 2017

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Software

Here are best video editors for Linux, their feature, pros and cons and how to install them on your Linux distributions.
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Security: OpenSSL, Windows, Gun Safe and Debian

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Security

KDE: ROSA's Choice and Hanlding SMS Messages From The KDE Desktop

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KDE
MDV
  • ROSA Desktop Fresh R10 Still Lets You Pick Between KDE 4 & Plasma 5

    For our Russian readers who are fans of the KDE desktop, ROSA Desktop Fresh R10 was released this week as one of the notable Russian Linux distributions that is aligned with a KDE desktop. ROSA Desktop Fresh continues offering both KDE 4 and KDE Plasma 5 desktop options.

    While the distribution is called ROSA Desktop Fresh, not everything is fresh about its packages besides still having around KDE4. ROSA Desktop Fresh R10 is still sadly using the Mesa 17.1 release series. On the kernel front they are shipping Linux 4.9.60 which is an LTS release albeit still rather dated for desktop hardware support.

  • You Can Now Easily Send/Receive SMS Messages From The KDE Desktop

    A long-standing KDE initiative that hasn't received as much attention as it deserves is KDE Connect for allowing KDE to interface with other devices -- namely smartphones -- for being able to display phone notifications on your desktop and more. A new KDE Plasmoid makes it easy now to send/receive SMS text messages.

  • Send SMS messages from your Plasma Desktop

    Once you have it configured to use the correct device, you type in the phone number of the person you wish to send the message to in the first box (as below). Please note this needs to be the international dialling code (ie +44 for the UK, +353 for Ireland). Then type your message and click the Send button, it’s that simple!

NVIDIA 387.34 vs. Linux 4.15 + Mesa 17.4-dev Radeon OpenGL/Vulkan Performance

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Graphics/Benchmarks

Tested on the Radeon side was the very latest Linux 4.15 Git code as of 6 December, including recent AMDGPU fixes that landed mainline after the 4.15 merge window. The user-space graphics stack was Mesa 17.4-dev built against LLVM 6.0 SVN provided by the Padoka PPA. Fresh AMDGPU-PRO benchmarks will be coming upon the next driver update. The AMD graphics cards tested were the Radeon RX 580, R9 Fury, RX Vega 56, and RX Vega 64.

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Also:

Elisa 0.0.80 Released

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KDE

Elisa is a music player designed to be simple and nice to use.

Elisa allows to browse music by album, artist or all tracks. The music is indexed using either a private indexer or an indexer using Baloo. The private one can be configured to scan music on chosen paths. The Baloo one is much faster because Baloo is providing all needed data from its own database. You can build and play your own playlist.

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today's leftovers

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Misc
  • Publisher of Linux Journal says November was its last issue

    The magazine has also completed its 2017 archive which it would normally sell but will now be sent to subscribers for free.

    “It has been a great run, folks,” concluded Fairchild. “A big hats-off to everyone who contributed to our birth, our success and our persistence over these many years. We’d run the credits now, but the list would be too long, and the risk of leaving worthy people out would be too high. You know who you are. Our thanks again.”

  • ARB_get_program_binary Implementation Lands In Core Mesa, Intel Driver

    The past few weeks Intel developers working on their Mesa open-source graphics driver have been working on the ARB_get_program_binary OpenGL extension so it actually works for applications wanting to use this extension to retrieve a compiled shader/program by the driver.

    ARB_get_program_binary makes it possible to easily get a binary representation of an OpenGL program object. That binary can then be supplied later on back to the OpenGL driver for execution, if the application wants to function as an offline compiler or handle its own caching to avoid recompilation of GLSL source shaders on future runs, etc. ARB_get_program_binary is required by OpenGL 4.1 and Mesa's support for it up until now was just saying it didn't support any formats for the binary programs.

  • 24 Must Have Essential Linux Applications In 2017

    What are the must have applications for Linux? The answer is subjective and it depends on for what purpose do you use your desktop Linux. But there are still some essentials Linux apps that are more likely to be used by most Linux user. We have listed such best Linux applications that you should have installed in every Linux distribution you use.

  • Ubuntu-Based Peppermint OS 8 Respin Brings Back Advert Blocker, Adds New Theme

    The developers of the Ubuntu-based Peppermint OS distribution have released today the first respin of the Peppermint OS 8 series.

    Launched earlier this year on May 28, Peppermint OS 8 is based on the Ubuntu 16.04 LTS (Xenial Xerus) operating system and brought major new features. Now, the Peppermint 8 Respin is here with a bunch of improvements and the latest software releases, including the Nemo 3.4.7 file manager, OpenVPN 2.4.4 VPN implementation, and Linux kernel 4.10.0-40.

  • Rebuilt packages for Plasma5 (ktown)

    The updates in Slackware-current this week (icu4c, poppler, libical) broke many programs in my Plasma5 ‘ktown’ repository, to the extent that the complete Plasma 5 desktop would no longer start.

    That is the fun of using the bleeding edge – if something disruptive happens in slackware-current you’ll have to wait for the 3rd party repositories to catch up. And I am one of those 3rd party packagers.

  • LattePanda Delta and Alpha boards with Intel chips, Windows and Linux support hit Kickstarter

    The little boards look like a cross between a Raspberry Pi and an Arduino (which makes sense, since it’s an Arduino-compatible device with Leonardo coprocessor and 80 GPIO connectors). But the LattePanda Alpha are Windows and Linux compatible PCs with Intel processors and significantly more RAM than you get with most tiny computers in this category.

  • Gear Fit2 Pro exclusively available for pre-order on Flipkart India

today's howtos

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HowTos
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More in Tux Machines

Linux Foundation: OpenContrail, SDNs, ONAP

  • Juniper Flips OpenContrail To The Linux Foundation
    It’s a familiar story arc for open source efforts started by vendors or vendor-led industry consortiums. The initiatives are launched and expanded, but eventually they find their way into independent open source organizations such as the Linux Foundation, where vendor control is lessened, communities are able to grow, and similar projects can cross-pollinate in hopes of driving greater standardization in the industry and adoption within enterprises.
  • Juniper Hands OpenContrail SDN to Linux Found. Before It's Too Late
    After failing to develop a community around the project and receiving pushback from a major backer, Juniper may be saving Contrail from becoming irrelevant
  • CableLabs Announces Two Open Source Projects for NFV
    SNAPS is an overarching program at CableLabs to facilitate the adoption of software-defined networking (SDN) and network functions virtualization (NFV) within the CableLabs’ community. The organization says it spearheaded SNAPS to fill in gaps within open source to ease the adoption of SDN and NFV for its cable members.
  • Bell becomes first operator to launch ONAP in production
    Canadian telecommunications company Bell announced it has become the first company to launch an open source version of the Open Network Automation Platform (ONAP) in production. The announcement was noted by Arpit Joshipura, general manager of networking and orchestration at the Linux Foundation, in a company blog post. According to Joshipura, the news marks a first step toward using ONAP as a common platform across Bell’s network as the company re-aligns itself to follow a multi-partner DevOps model.

OSS/Sharing Leftovers

  • Chrome 64 Beta: stronger pop-up blocker, Resize Observer, and import.meta
  • Chrome 64 Beta Brings Stronger Pop-Up Blocker, JavaScript Improvements
    Ahead of the holidays Google has pushed out the Chrome 64 beta to all supported platforms.
  • The Apache Software Foundation Announces Apache® Hadoop® v3.0.0 General Availability
    The Apache Software Foundation (ASF), the all-volunteer developers, stewards, and incubators of more than 350 Open Source projects and initiatives, today announced Apache® Hadoop® v3.0.0, the latest version of the Open Source software framework for reliable, scalable, distributed computing.
  • Open source science: Scientists researching rice plant genetics agree to not file for patents
    The Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research (FFAR), a nonprofit established in the 2014 Farm Bill with bipartisan congressional support, awarded a $1 million Seeding Solutions grant to University of California, Davis (UC Davis) to study the genetics of rice plants. Together with researchers at the University of North Carolina and collaborators, the team will develop and implement a chemistry-driven gene discovery approach to identify genes that modulate root traits.
  • Lytro could open source their light-field photo sharing platform
  • Lytro considering open source light field photo sharing platform
    Lytro is reportedly considering an open source solution after announcing it would no longer support its sharing platform for Lytro cameras’ ‘living images.’
  • When Waze Won't Help, Palestinians Make Their Own Maps
    If you want to drive the 15 or so miles from Jerusalem to the city of Jericho, in the Palestinian Territories, Google Maps will tell you: “Can’t find a way there.” Waze will issue a warning: “Caution: This destination is in a high risk area or is prohibited to Israelis by law.” If you press “Confirm Drive” nonetheless, the app will direct you, just not all the way. When you pass from Israel into the West Bank, part of the occupied Palestinian Territories, Waze’s directions simply end. To keep going, you need to change your setting to allow access to “high risk” areas. Even then, GPS coverage tends to be limited.
  • Using Gmail with OAUTH2 in Linux and on an ESP8266
    One of the tasks I dread is configuring a web server to send email correctly via Gmail. The simplest way of sending emails is SMTP, and there are a number of scripts out there that provide a simple method to send mail that way with a minimum of configuration. There’s even PHP mail(), although it’s less than reliable.
  • Simplicity Before Generality, Use Before Reuse
    A common problem in component frameworks, class libraries, foundation services, and other infrastructure code is that many are designed to be general purpose without reference to concrete applications. This leads to a dizzying array of options and possibilities that are often unused or misused — or just not useful. Generally, developers work on specific systems; specifically, the quest for unbounded generality rarely serves them well (if at all). The best route to generality is through understanding known, specific examples, focusing on their essence to find an essential common solution. Simplicity through experience rather than generality through guesswork.
  • What Ruby Needs
    Of all of the questions we receive at RedMonk, one of the most common concerns programming languages. Whether from members of a given community or a commercial entity, the desire is to better understand a given language’s trajectory and the context around it. Is it going up or down, and what are the reasons for that direction? And, of course: can that direction be meaningfully changed? Recently, we’ve received several such inquiries around Ruby. For those with an interest in the language, then, the following is a quick public summary of the answers we’ve been providing privately.
  • HTML 5.2 is done, HTML 5.3 is coming
    Today W3C releases HTML 5.2. This is the second revision of HTML5, following last year’s HTML 5.1 Recommendation. In 2014 we expressed a goal to produce a revision roughly every year; HTML 5.2 is a continuation of that commitment. This Recommendation like its predecessor provides an updated stable guide to what is HTML. In the past year there has been a significant cleanup of the specification. We have introduced some new features, and removed things that are no longer part of the modern Web Platform, or that never achieved broad interoperability. As always we have also fixed bugs in the specification, making sure it adapts to the changing reality of the Web. Many of the features added integrate other work done in W3C. The Payment Request API promises to make commerce on the Web far easier, reducing the risks of making a mistake or being caught by an unscrupulous operator. New security features such as Content Security Policy protect users more effectively, while new work incorporated from ARIA helps developers offer people with disabilities a good user experience of their applications.

Games: SteamOS Birthday, Best Linux Games of 2017, Finding Paradise

  • It's Been Four Years Since SteamOS Began Shipping With Not Much To Show
    It was four years ago this week that Valve began shipping SteamOS, their Debian-based Linux distribution intended for Steam Machines and those wanting a gaming-oriented Linux distribution. While Valve still technically maintains the SteamOS Linux distribution, the outlook at this point is rather bleak. For our coverage from four years ago when Valve began shipping SteamOS 1.0 based on Debian Wheezy, see SteamOS Compositor Details, Kernel Patches, Screenshots, Former NVIDIA, Microsoft Developers Doing Lots Of The SteamOS Work, and The First NVIDIA GeForce Benchmarks On The SteamOS Beta.
  • 7 Best Linux Games of 2017
    We take a look at the best Linux games of 2017, ranging from AAA titles to introspective indie hits. So park your gamepad, pop your feet up, and raise a glass of something socially acceptable to what’s been another terrific year for Tux fans with twitchy thumbs!
  • Finding Paradise Available Now for PC, Mac, and Linux
    Canadian indie game studio Freebird Games has released Finding Paradise, a spiritual successor to the studio's hit game To the Moon. You can check out the game's release date trailers below, the first being slightly less of a "serious" trailer:

OSS: Blockchain, Avast, Predictions, GreenKey

  • Startup Aims to Build Open-Source Telecom Ecosystem on Blockchain
    There are 2,000+ mobile network operations in charge of providing communication services at global scale. However, the traditional infrastructure is centralized, inflexible and inaccurate. Common services like 3G/4G, Wi-Fi, BOSS mobile communications solutions and companies that use cloud-based communications solutions are often unable to render accurate content billing and distribution. Conventional mobile packages overcharge customers, not to mention that they pose concerns around data transmissions. An alternative solution to average mobile network providers could be Blockchain technology.
  • Merry Xmas, fellow code nerds: Avast open-sources decompiler
    Malware hunting biz and nautical jargon Avast has released its machine-code decompiler RetDec as open source, in the hope of arming like-minded haters of bad bytes and other technically inclined sorts with better analytical tools. As discussed as the recent Botconf 2017 in France earlier this month, RetDec provides a way to turn machine code – binary executables – back into an approximation of the original source code.
  • 10 open source predictions for 2018
    With 2017 just about done and dusted, dozens of open source experts have polished their crystal balls and made predictions about what can be expected in the open source space in 2018. Now it's our turn. (With fingers firmly crossed) here are 10 open source trends that you may – or may not – see coming to the fore next year. Some are obvious, some are frivolous, and some could just change your life.
  • Stop Calling Everything "Open Source": What "Open Source" Really Means
    "Open source" is an exciting concept in the world of software and beyond. But it shouldn't be applied to contexts where it makes no sense.
  • GreenKey to join Symphony; open source voice software
    GreenKey, creator of patented voice software with integrated speech recognition designed for the financial markets, today announced the firm has joined the Symphony Software Foundation, a nonprofit organization fostering innovation in financial services through open source software (OSS).
  • GreenKey Joins the Symphony Software Foundation; Will Open Source Voice Software
    GreenKey, creator of patented voice software with integrated speech recognition designed for the financial markets, today announced the firm has joined the Symphony Software Foundation, a nonprofit organization fostering innovation in financial services through open source software (OSS). GreenKey will release a Community Edition of its voice software development kit (SDK) that will enable banks and other financial market firms to "voice enable" any web application.