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Reviews

New Linux Lite Is a Powerhouse Distro in Disguise

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Linux
Reviews

Linux Lite 3.0 offers a great deal of flexibility and usability for both recent Microsoft Windows expatriots and seasoned Linux users. A new user application puts all of the needed information for using the distro in one spot. Just click on the topic and automatically view the information in a Web browser display.

All of the system controls and settings are located in the Settings option within the main menu display. Windows users will find a close similarity to the Control Panel in that OS. Even recent Linux newcomers will not need much exploring or head-scratching to navigate their way around Linux Lite.

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Ubuntu MATE 16.04: there is always room for improvement

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Reviews
Ubuntu

Who is the main audience of Ubuntu 16.04 MATE? From my point of view, these are people who started their Linux life a long time ago when GNOME 2 was one of few desktop environments available for Linux distributions. Since then, we have gotten a lot more players and forks on the "market".

Yes, MATE is better looking than GNOME 2 was a few years ago. But other desktop environments also did not stay the same during this time.

I used the Cinnamon desktop environment on Linux Mint for some time a year or so ago. For me, it was a much more convenient desktop environment than I found MATE to be in Ubuntu realization of it.

I also faced some crashes of different applications during my Live run of Ubuntu 16.04 MATE.

It all means that MATE team still has room for improvement.

Will I try Ubuntu MATE sometime in the future? Maybe. Let's see where history takes us.

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Android N 7.0 review - hands on, how to get it, best features, release date, name

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Android
Reviews

Bucking its usual trend, Google has been treating us to Developer Preview versions of its next mobile operating system, Android N. While its name is still yet to be officially decided, following Google I/O you're now able to try out Developer Preview 3, which Google is describing as the first beta-quality candidate.

As such, if you were sat on the fence as to whether or not to try it out on your main phone or tablet, now might be the time to jump in and get among the Beta fun. If you're already on the Beta, an OTA update should be rolling out to get you to the latest version. If you're looking to do a fresh install, instructions are below.

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BunsenLabs Linux

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Reviews

When I first started using BunsenLabs Linux I did not enjoy the experience. At first, it felt like installing Debian with a depressing theme and fewer features. The initial installation and configuration steps felt overly long and complicated. The Openbox environment lacked the features of fuller desktop environments while, at the same time, offering unwanted distractions such as Conky and extra virtual desktops. It would be fair to say the first two or three hours with Bunsen were unpleasant for me.

However, there was definitely a turning point during my trial. Around the start of the second day -- once I had a more colourful theme in place, the Conky packages had been banished and I had got into the habit of installing software I wanted from the application menu -- there was a point where I began to enjoy Bunsen. The distribution's hardware and multimedia support were top notch, performance and the interface's responsiveness were excellent and the applications available all worked properly. Openbox has enough configuration tools to make it flexible without being overwhelming. What really sold me on the distribution though was the way Openbox stayed out of my way, a feature I feel Debian's default desktop does not offer.

At the end of my trial, I still had some mixed feelings. As much as Bunsen grew on me, I couldn't help but feel the experience felt very much like installing Debian and adding the Openbox window manager as a session option. While Bunsen takes care of that step for us, it also adds several extra steps during the initial configuration that made me feel like going with plain Debian and installing Openbox might have been faster and easier.

In the end, I did grow to like Bunsen with its clean, fast user interface. I like the distribution's tweaks to Debian such as adding sudo and providing application menu installers. I think the initial welcome script should probably either be automated or ask all its questions up front and then go to work in the background. It took a while for me to get the interface looking the way I wanted it to and less like the inside of a mine shaft, but once I did the distribution provided a good set of default applications and desktop functionality.

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YubiKey NEO: Ubuntu 16.04 usefulness (+ review)

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Reviews
Security
Ubuntu

I got a hold of a YubiKey NEO, so I was wondering how useful it is and what can I do with it. Here’s my “tutorial” on setting it up using Ubuntu 16.04 and actually using it.

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Getting started with ReactOS

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OS
Reviews

ReactOS is a relatively new open source operating system that resembles the looks of Windows NT and aims to offer similar levels of functionality and application compatibility. Featuring a wine-based user mode, this system doesn't use any of the Unix architecture, but is a rewrite of the NT architecture from scratch, with its very own FAT32 implementation, and completely free of legal implications. That said, this is not yet another Linux distro, but a unique Windows-like system that is a part of the free software world. This quick guide aims at users who want an easy to use, open source replacement for their Windows system.

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Here's a sneak peek at what's coming in the next Linux Mint

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Reviews

The beta version of Linux Mint 18 'Sarah' made its debut this week, and a final release won't be far behind. Here's a look at what's coming to this popular free and open-source operating system.

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Linux Mint 18 Beta Released And Running Without Any Issues

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Linux
News
Reviews

Linux Mint is an open source, free and Ubuntu based Linux distribution. This is the distribution with which I started exploring Linux. It was the simplest one I could try out. Today it is simple plus more stable. Recently the Linux Mint team announced the next version beta release with some great changes and improvements. I have tried it out. In this article, Let's see in brief what's new in this beta release.

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ROSA Desktop Fresh R7 KDE: nothing to complain... almost

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Reviews

ROSA Desktop Fresh R7 KDE left a good impression on me.

Even though the initial boot took about 500 Mb of memory, my laptop with 4Gb of RAM was capable of dealing with all the tasks I ran on it in the Live mode of this distribution in a quick and responsive manner. I felt no lags or glitches.

The only minor things that were worth mentioning in this review were strange design of the panel and the ROSA Menu which isn't to my taste.

Well done, ROSA team, I hope to see your system even more improved in the future.

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Having offended everyone else in the world, Linus Torvalds calls own lawyers a 'nasty festering disease'

Coding curmudgeon Linus Torvalds has gone off on yet another rant: this time against his own lawyers and free software activist Bradley Kuhn. On a mailing list about an upcoming Linux conference, a discussion about whether to include a session on the GPL that protects the open source operating system quickly devolved in an angry rant as its founder piled in. Read more

The Battle of The Budgie Desktops – Budgie-Remix vs SolusOS!

Ladies and gentleman, it’s the moment you have all been waiting for… the main even of the evening! In this corner, wearing Budgie trunks, fighting out of Ireland, created by Ikey Doherty, the man behind Linux Mint Debian Edition — SolusOS! And in this corner, built on the defending champion, also wearing Budgie trunks, aiming to be the next flavor of Ubuntu, Budgie-Remix! Read more

Leftovers: Software

  • 5 Cool Unikernels Projects
    Unikernels are poised to become the next big thing in microservices after Docker containers. Here’s a look at some of the cool things you can do with unikernels. First, though, here’s a quick primer on what unikernels are, for the uninitiated. Unikernels are similar to containers in that they let you run an app inside a portable, software-defined environment. But they go a step further than containers by packaging all of the libraries required to run the app directly into the unikernel.
  • Cedrus Is Making Progress On Open-Source Allwinner Video Encode/Decode
    The developers within the Sunxi camp working on better Allwinner SoC support under Linux have been reverse-engineering Allwinner's "Cedar" video engine. Their project is being called Cedrus with a goal of "100% libre and open-source" video decode/encode for the relevant Cedar hardware. The developers have been making progress and yesterday they published their initial patches that add a V4L2 decoder driver for the VPU found on Allwinner's A13 SoC.
  • Phoronix Test Suite 6.6 Milestone 3 Released For Linux Benchmarking
  • Calibre 2.65.1 eBook Viewer Adds Driver for Kobo Aura One and Aura 2 Readers
    Kovid Goyal released today, August 26, 2016, a new maintenance update of his popular, cross-platform, and open-source Calibre e-book viewer, converter and library management tool. Calibre 2.65 was announced earlier, and it looks like it's both a feature and bugfix release that adds drivers for the Kobo Aura One and Kobo Aura Edition 2 ebook readers, along with a new option to the Kobo driver to allow users to ignore certain collections on their ebook reader. The list of new features continues with support for right-to-left text and tables to the DOCX Input feature, as well as the implementation of a new option to allow users to make searching case-sensitive. This option can be found and enabled in the "Searching" configuration section under Preferences.
  • Calamares 2.4 Universal Installer Framework Polishes Existing Functionality
    A new stable version of the Calamares universal installer framework used by various GNU/Linux distributions as default graphical installer has been released with various improvements and bug fixes. Calamares 2.4 is now the latest build, coming two months after the release of the previous version, Calamares 2.3, which introduced full-disk encryption support. However, Calamares 2.4 is not as big as the previous update as it only polished existing functionality and address various annoying issues reported by users.
  • RcppArmadillo 0.7.400.2.0
    Another Armadillo 7.* release -- now at 7.400. We skipped the 7.300.* serie release as it came too soon after our most recent CRAN release. Releasing RcppArmadillo 0.7.400.2.0 now keeps us at the (roughly monthly) cadence which works as a good compromise between getting updates out at Conrad's sometimes frantic pace, while keeping CRAN (and Debian) uploads to about once per month. So we may continue the pattern of helping Conrad with thorough regression tests by building against all (by now 253 (!!)) CRAN dependencies, but keeping release at the GitHub repo and only uploading to CRAN at most once a month.
  • Spotio Is A Light Skin for Spotify’s Desktop App — And Its Coming To Linux
    Spotify’s dark design is very much of its identity. No-matter the platform you use it on, the dark theme is there staring back at you. Until now. A bunch of ace websites, blogs and people I follow have spent the past 24 hours waxing lyrical over a new Spotify skin called Spotio.