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Reviews

Nokia 3 review: Nokia plus Android is a winning combination

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Android
Reviews

Comebacks are a very hard nut to crack. Expectations run high -- fans and loyalists who have waited years for their beloved brand or team or product to come back are mostly met with disappointment when the second coming cannot match up to past success. That is always the risk for the brand Nokia, which is making a comeback in the phone market using Android via the Finnish company HMD Global. The first Nokia smartphone that HMD Global has launched in India is Nokia 3. And expectations from it are running very high.

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Lenovo Flex 11 Chromebook review: Tough, durable and inexpensive

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Android
Reviews

The Lenovo Flex 11 Chromebook is a consumer version of Lenovo's very solid Chromebooks For Education products. It's built tough — rated to take a 2.4-foot drop and has a water resistant keyboard tray to keep spills out, but still comes in at a very reasonable $279.99. Finding a "rugged" Chromebook that's not EDU branded and uber-expensive isn't a common thing, so we were instantly interested.

After a bit of time with it, the strengths outweigh the drawbacks and we like the Flex 11. It's not the most powerful Chromebook we've tried but it wasn't made to be. It's a decent, solid performer designed to take more abuse than most other products in its class.

We think the durability factor and low price make the Flex 11 a great Chromebook for kids or someone who tends not to treat his or her stuff all that respectfully. And while the body is pretty darn durable, the keyboard leaves a lot to be desired. Read on for our full take.

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Moto C Plus review: Buy it only for Stock Android

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Android
Reviews

What is the Moto C Plus? Who is it aimed at? Lenovo claims that the C Plus is aimed at the youth who want an affordable smartphone with excellent battery life, the latest software, expandable storage and a premium design. So basically, the whole package. That is a pretty high standard to set.

So does the Moto C Plus succeed on these counts? It does achieve some of the goals Lenovo set out to achieve with it, but also stumbles quite a bit on others. The other challenge that the phone faces is the strong competition in this segment. There are phones like the Xiaomi Redmi 4, which seem to make all the right compromises in order to achieve their low price tag. So how does Motorola competes in the segment? The company is banking on the combination of stock Android and great battery life to help it fight. Does it succeed? Let's find out.

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Debian 9 Review: Stable Like Ever, Better Than Most

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Reviews
Debian

Debian is one of the oldest and most famous Linux distributions of all time. Its development started back in 1993 by its founder Ian Murdock who passed away in 2015. It’s also known to be the mother-distribution of tens of other Linux distributions such as Ubuntu.

Debian has a strict policy on software packages. It only ships free software by default. It doesn’t even ship non-free firmware and drivers. If you want, you can enable the non-free package repository later to install those packages. But you won’t find it there by default.

Debian is well-known for its stability. They don’t ship new updates to users unless it was tested. Which is why you may notice some very old package versions when using Debian. It’s correct that they are old, but they are also tested and secure. Most discovered vulnerabilities get patched in Debian in a matter of hours or few days.

Those users who would like to get latest and most updated software could switch to using the testing or unstable branch. Both contain more modern software according to a different policy.

The effort which is being done by the Debian project for each release is huge. Currently, they offer 25000 source packages and 51000 binary packages. Getting all of those software from upstream projects, packaging them, testing them, debugging issues and fixing them is definitely not something you hear about everyday.

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Also: Upgrade to Debian Stretch - GlusterFS fails to mount

New: VOYAGER 9 Debian Stretch

Liri – Loves me, loves me not … at all

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Reviews

What does the world of Linux need more? Desktop environments? Nope. Ah, well, you’d be surprised, because a fresh new challenger appears! Its name is Liri, and it is the presentation layer for the namesake operating system being baked in the forges of community creativity as we speak. Sounds potentially interesting, but then we must be wary.

I’ve trawled through the obscure, uncharted waters of Budgie, Razor-Qt and more recently, and with much greater attention to detail, LXQt, and in all of these cases, I was left rather dissatisfied with the end product. Not enough cohesion, quality, future roadmap, and most importantly, the finesse that you expect from polished, professional products. Then again, building a desktop environment is a huge undertaking, probably even more complex than spinning a new distro, and so, it’s not a coincidence that there are few serious contenders in this space. But Liri comes with enticing artwork, a promise of Material Design for the desktop, and so here we are, trying to get the first feel of what it does.

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Rockstor: A Solid Cloud Storage Solution for Small or Home Office

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Reviews

The Linux platform can do quite a lot of things; it can be just about anything need it to be and function in nearly any form. One of the many areas in which Linux excels is that of storage. With the help of a few constituent pieces, you can have a powerful NAS or cloud storage solution up and running.

But, what if you don’t want to take the time to piece these together for yourself? Or, what if you’d rather have a user-friendly, web-based GUI to make this process a bit easier. For that, there are a few distributions available to meet your needs. Once such platform is Rockstor. Rockstor is a Network Attached Storage (NAS) and cloud solution that can serve either your personal or small business needs with ease.

Rockstor got its start in 2014 and has quickly become a solid tool in the storage space. I was able to quickly get Rockstor up and running (after overcoming only one minor hurdle) and had SMB shares and users/groups created with just a few quick clicks. And, with the inclusion of add-ons (called Rockons), you can extend the feature set of your Rockstor to include new apps, servers, and services.

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Manjaro 17.0.1 Gellivara (Che Guevara) - Pretty decent

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Linux
Reviews

It is time to arch our backs and explore the distroverse some more. That's a horrible pun, I admit, so I'll chase to the cut. Manjaro. It's a nerdy operating system, powered by sacrificial goats, curdled blood, enthusiasm, and heaploads of nerdiness. But then, over the years, it has slowly grown on me, becoming almost usable on a daily basis.

A new version is out, carrying the numerical identifier 17.0.1, and there are several desktop flavors available. In order to test the progress and change in Manjaro, I decided to continue with the Xfce version, and so we can compare to previous editions. Now, the system has a rolling update nature, so I could have just upgraded the installed instance on my Lenovo G50 box, but I decided to go for a full, fresh experience. We commence.

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Moto E4 review: Keeping it simple

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Android
Reviews

The Moto E4 is fine. It's not particularly good looking or powerful, nor is it filled with features. When you think a generic smartphone, this is kind of what you think of.

And yet, for $129, I would probably recommend it, warts and all, over any other phone. At $70 on Verizon's prepaid service, it's an absolute steal. Here's why.

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Moto E4 Android smartphone review

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Android
Reviews

Motorola’s G series has been the benchmark for exceptional budget smartphones, and the lesser-known Moto E series strives to do the same to do the same at an even lower cost. With the latest entry — the Moto E4 — Motorola hits the ball out of the park with an impressive phone that offers plenty of value for $130. There will always be some compromises on budget devices, and the Moto E4 is no different. But price is very much the spotlight of this phone, and it’s quite competitive given the solid features you get. In our Moto E4 review, we’ll take a deeper look at what Motorola cut, what it kept, and how it all works in the end.

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You need to check out the new OnePlus 5 before buying any other Android smartphone

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Android
Reviews

I would strongly consider the OnePlus 5 if I were in the market for an Android phone, but it's not an outright, clear-cut decision. That's because I prefer phones that get timely updates directly from Google, and only the Google Pixel fits that bill.

However, if you don't mind getting Android updates a little later, the OnePlus 5 is a clear winner for its price tag. Sure, you wouldn't get as many features as you would with the Galaxy S8, but most of those features seem expendable after using the OnePlus 5.

The OnePlus 5 has the features and performance that make a smartphone great, and I'd strongly recommend it to anyone and everyone.

You can preorder the OnePlus 5 now from OnePlus' website or buy it when it goes on sale on June 27.

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More in Tux Machines

OpenSUSE fonts – The sleeping beauty guide

Pandora’s box of fonts is one of the many ailments of the distro world. As long as we do not have standards, and some rather strict ones at that, we will continue to suffer from bad fonts, bad contrast, bad ergonomics, and in general, settings that are not designed for sustained, prolonged use. It’s a shame, because humans actually use computers to interface with information, to READ text and interpret knowledge using the power of language. It’s the most critical element of the whole thing. OpenSUSE under-delivers on two fonts – anti-aliasing and hinting options that are less than ideal, and then it lacks the necessary font libraries to make a relevant, modern and pleasing desktop for general use. All of this can be easily solved if there’s more attention, love and passion for the end product. After all, don’t you want people to be spending a lot of time interacting, using and enjoying the distro? Hopefully, one day, all this will be ancient history. We will be able to choose any which system and never worry or wonder how our experience is going to be impacted by the choice of drivers, monitors, software frameworks, or even where we live. For the time being, if you intend on using openSUSE, this little guide should help you achieve a better, smoother, higher-quality rendering of fonts on the screen, allowing you to enjoy the truly neat Plasma desktop to the fullest. Oh, in the openSUSE review, I promised we would handle this, and handle it we did! Take care. Read more

Today in Techrights

Direct Rendering Manager and VR HMDs Under Linux

  • Intel Prepping Support For Huge GTT Pages
    Intel OTC developers are working on support for huge GTT pages for their Direct Rendering Manager driver.
  • Keith Packard's Work On Better Supporting VR HMDs Under Linux With X.Org/DRM
    Earlier this year Keith Packard started a contract gig for Valve working to improve Linux's support for virtual reality head-mounted displays (VR HMDs). In particular, working on Direct Rendering Manager (DRM) and X.Org changes needed so VR HMDs will work well under Linux with the non-NVIDIA drivers. A big part of this work is the concept of DRM leases, a new Vulkan extension, and other changes to the stack.

Software: Security Tools, cmus, Atom-IDE, Skimmer Scanner

  • Security Tools to Check for Viruses and Malware on Linux
    First and foremost, no operating system is 100 percent immune to attack. Whether a machine is online or offline, it can fall victim to malicious code. Although Linux is less prone to such attacks than, say, Windows, there is no absolute when it comes to security. I have witnessed, first hand, Linux servers hit by rootkits that were so nasty, the only solution was to reinstall and hope the data backup was current. I’ve been a victim of a (very brief) hacker getting onto my desktop, because I accidentally left desktop sharing running (that was certainly an eye opener). The lesson? Even Linux can be vulnerable. So why does Linux need tools to prevent viruses, malware, and rootkits? It should be obvious why every server needs protection from rootkits — because once you are hit with a rootkit, all bets are off as to whether you can recover without reinstalling the platform. It’s antivirus and anti-malware where admins start getting a bit confused. Let me put it simply — if your server (or desktop for that matter) makes use of Samba or sshfs (or any other sharing means), those files will be opened by users running operating systems that are vulnerable. Do you really want to take the chance that your Samba share directory could be dishing out files that contain malicious code? If that should happen, your job becomes exponentially more difficult. Similarly, if that Linux machine performs as a mail server, you would be remiss to not include AV scanning (lest your users be forwarding malicious mail).
  • cmus – A Small, Fast And Powerful Console Music Player For Linux
    You may ask a question yourself when you see this article. Is it possible to listen music in Linux terminal? Yes because nothing is impossible in Linux. We have covered many popular GUI-based media players in our previous articles but we didn’t cover any CLI based media players as of now, so today we are going to cover about cmus, is one of the famous console-based media players among others (For CLI, very few applications is available in Linux).
  • You Can Now Transform the Atom Hackable Text Editor into an IDE with Atom-IDE
    GitHub and Facebook recently launched a set of tools that promise to allow you to transform your Atom hackable text editor into a veritable IDE (Integrated Development Environment). They call the project Atom-IDE. With the release of Atom 1.21 Beta last week, GitHub introduced Language Server Protocol support to integrate its brand-new Atom-IDE project, which comes with built-in support for five popular language servers, including JavaScript, TypeScript, PHP, Java, C#, and Flow. But many others will come with future Atom updates.
  • This open-source Android app is designed to detect nearby credit card skimmers
    Protecting our data is a constant battle, especially as technology continues to advance. A recent trend that has popped up is the installation of credit card skimmers, especially at locations such as gas pumps. With a simple piece of hardware and 30 seconds to install it, a hacker can easily steal credit card numbers from a gas pump without anyone knowing. Now, an open-source app for Android is attempting to help users avoid these skimmers.