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Debian 9 Delay, Linux PTSD, and Shells

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The top story of this slightly slow new day was the announcement from Jonathan Wiltshire, Debian release assistant, stating Debian 9 would be delayed two months. Steven Ovadia dug up an interesting blog post from someone claiming to suffer from Linux Desktop PTSD and KDE announced a new community outreach program. Jason Baker posted a round-up and poll of the top five Linux shells and why do distros look so darn insecure?

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Also: Debian 9 "Stretch" Freeze Delayed to Integrate Linux Kernel 4.10

Mint Recovery, Tumbleweed Updates, Charlie Brown Ubuntu

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Today in Linux news Clement Lefebvre today said that things are back up and running over in Mintland with more security measures in place. Douglas DeMaio posted of the latest Tumbleweeds news including new KDE app store and Jack Wallen asked, "Why's everybody all pickin' on Ubuntu?" The Free Software Foundation said to 'read the fine manual' in answer to the ZFS GPL question and another security vulnerability involving SSLv2 was announced.

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Gentoo Choice, Awful Fedora 24, Debian Firefox

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Today in Linux news the Ubuntu ZFS controversy isn't quite settled after all. Fedora's Adam Williamson today blogged, " Lots of stuff is busted. We are aware of this, and fixing it. Hold onto your hats." Richard Freeman reminded folks the systemd disagreements aren't over either and Debian has finally stopped renaming Firefox to Iceweasel. Dedoimedo said today that Mepis derivative MX-15 is on the "highway to rad" and Christine Hall signed SCO's death warrant.

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ReactOS, openSUSE Reports, Miller on Fedora

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With Tumbleweed back up and running, Dominique Leuenberger is back with another weekly update while Neil Rickert test drove new Argon and Krypton. Tecmint.com said ReacOS is the "perfect Windows alternative" and LinuxInsider.com said RebeccaBlackOS is a "class act." Fedora's Matthew Miller spoke to PCWorld's Chris Hoffman about what's brewing at the blue hat and Riccardo Padovani video interviewed Mark Shuttleworth in tonight's Linux news.

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Tumbleweed Rolling, Tails Anonymity, Bodhi Forum Hiccup

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Today in Linux news openSUSE's Tumbleweed is back up and rolling thanks to two new Intels. The Bodhi project suffered a glitch in their forums today causing downtime but "little to no lost content." Bryan Lunduke interviewed nameless faceless members of the Tails team and SFC posted that including ZFS in Ubuntu does violate the GPL. John P. Mello Jr. has "the downside of Linux popularity" and Bruce Byfield looks back at the career of GNOME founder Miguel de Icaza.

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Mint Under Fire, Ubuntu Mixed Reviews

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Since Sunday's Mint reveal, a certain segment of users is upset over the lack of security measures that lead to the February 20 attack. Bryan Lunduke is impressed with a video of Ubuntu on a tablet, but actual users less so. A KDE NEON unstable repository is open and Jeff Law introduced folks to the new features in GCC 6. And finally,in light of the Mint mishap, Kevin Fenzi has offered up a "Fedora distribution download primer."

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Oh No, Linux Mint Hacked, ISO's Compromised

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The Linux Mint Website, forums, and images were hacked this weekend. Clement Lefebvre announced the breach to the public Sunday morning saying, "I’m sorry I have to come with bad news. We were exposed to an intrusion today." The hacker spoke with ZDNet today about his motivations and the extent of the damage, which includes uploading a version of Mint 17.3 Cinnamon with backdoors and selling forum user data on the black market.

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openSUSE and PCLOS Highlight Community Builds with KDE

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Douglas DeMaio today blogged of two community distributions based on openSUSE that offer the latest in KDE Plasma and Applications. openSUSE has commonly been a showcase for cutting-edge KDE builds, so this just seems fitting. In other news, the PCLOS project highlighted a community build featuring KDE 3 fork Trinity and a high-profile Ubuntu developer addressed concerns over ZFS licensing issues.

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Ubuntu LTS Updated While Tumbleweed Stalls

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The Ubuntu folks released an update to their 14.04 long term supported release bringing a new kernel and some updated packages. Speaking of Ubuntu, Matthew Garrett, software developer and social activist, today blogged about Canonical's IP policy and redistribution restrictions. Elsewhere, Bruce Byfield enumerated the advantages of Open Source Software and Douglas DeMaio announced a delay in Tumbleweed development.

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Neon's Muddy Clarity, New Ubuntu Phone, Linus at TED

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The top story today must be the new Meizu PRO 5 Ubuntu phone as the announcement was picked up by almost everyone. Running a close second is the news that Red Hat Enterprise Linux can now be run on Microsoft's Azure. In other news, Linus Torvalds gave a talk at TED and Bryan Lunduke suffered the backlash of an angry Neon crowd after last week's opinion of the project. Finally, Jamie Watson tested recently released Korora 23.

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LibreOffice Office Suite Celebrates 6 Years of Activity with LibreOffice 5.2.2

Today, September 29, 2016, Italo Vignoli from The Document Foundation informs Softpedia via an email announcement about the general availability of the first point release of the LibreOffice 5.2 open-source and cross-platform office suite. On September 28, the LibreOffice project celebrated its 6th anniversary, and what better way to celebrate than to push a new update of the popular open source and cross-platform office suite used by millions of computer users worldwide. Therefore, we would like to inform our readers about the general availability of LibreOffice 5.2.2, which comes just three weeks after the release of LibreOffice 5.2.1. "Just one day after the project 6th anniversary, The Document Foundation (TDF) announces the availability of LibreOffice 5.2.2, the second minor release of the LibreOffice 5.2 family," says Italo Vignoli. "LibreOffice 5.2.2, targeted at technology enthusiasts, early adopters and power users, provides a number of fixes over the major release announced in August." Read more

OSS Leftovers

  • But is it safe? Uncork a bottle of vintage open-source FUD
    Most of the open source questioners come from larger organisations. Banks very rarely pop up here, and governments have long been hip to using open source. Both have ancient, proprietary systems in place here and there that are finally crumbling to dust and need replacing fast. Their concerns are more oft around risk management and picking the right projects. It’s usually organisations whose business is dealing with actual three dimensional objects that ask about open source. Manufacturing, industrials, oil and gas, mining, and others who have typically looked at IT as, at best, a helper for their business rather than a core product enabler. These industries are witnessing the lighting fast injection of software into their products - that whole “Internet of Things” jag we keep hearing about. Companies here are being forced to look at both using open source in their products and shipping open source as part of their business. The technical and pricing requirements for IoT scale software is a perfect fit for open source, especially that pricing bit. On the other end - peddling open source themselves - companies that are looking to build and sell software-driven “platforms” are finding that partners and developers are not so keen to join closed source ecosystems. These two pulls create some weird clunking in the heads of management at these companies who aren’t used to working with a sandles and rainbow frame of mind. They have a scepticism born of their inexperience with open source. Let’s address some of their trepidation.
  • Real business innovation begins with open practices
    To business leaders, "open source" often sounds too altruistic—and altruism is in short supply on the average balance sheet. But using and contributing to open source makes hard-nosed business sense, particularly as a way of increasing innovation. Today's firms all face increased competition and dynamic markets. Yesterday's big bang can easily become today's cautionary tale. Strategically, the only viable response to this disruption is constantly striving to serve customers better through sustained and continuous innovation. But delivering innovation is hard; the key is to embrace open and collaborative innovation across organizational walls—open innovation. Open source communities' values and practices generate open innovation, and working in open source is a practical, pragmatic way of delivering innovation. To avoid the all-too-real risk of buzzword bingo we can consider two definitions of "innovation": creating value (that serves customer needs) to sell for a profit; or reducing what a firm pays for services.
  • This Week In Servo 79
    In the last week, we landed 96 PRs in the Servo organization’s repositories. Promise support has arrived in Servo, thanks to hard work by jdm, dati91, and mmatyas! This does not fully implement microtasks, but unblocks the uses of Promises in many places (e.g., the WebBluetooth test suite). Emilio rewrote the bindings generation code for rust-bindgen, dramatically improving the flow of the code and output generated when producing Rust bindings for C and C++ code. The TPAC WebBluetooth standards meeting talked a bit about the great progress by the team at the University of Szeged in the context of Servo.
  • Servo Web Engine Now Supports Promises, Continues Churning Along
    It's been nearly two months since last writing about Mozilla's Servo web layout engine (in early August, back when WebRender2 landed) but development has kept up and they continue enabling more features for this next-generation alternative to Gecko. The latest is that Servo now supports JavaScript promises. If you are unfamiliar with the promise support, see this guide. The latest Servo code has improvements around its Rust binding generator for C and C++ code plus other changes.
  • Riak TS for time series analysis at scale
    Until recently, doing time series analysis at scale was expensive and almost exclusively the domain of large enterprises. What made time series a hard and expensive problem to tackle? Until the advent of the NoSQL database, scaling up to meet increasing velocity and volumes of data generally meant scaling hardware vertically by adding CPUs, memory, or additional hard drives. When combined with database licensing models that charged per processor core, the cost of scaling was simply out of reach for most. Fortunately, the open source community is democratising large scale data analysis rapidly, and I am lucky enough to work at a company making contributions in this space. In my talk at All Things Open this year, I'll introduce Riak TS, a key-value database optimized to store and retrieve time series data for massive data sets, and demonstrate how to use it in conjunction with three other open source tools—Python, Pandas, and Jupyter—to build a completely open source time series analysis platform. And it doesn't take all that long.
  • Free Software Directory meeting recap for September 23rd, 2016

Security News

  • security things in Linux v4.5
  • Time to Kill Security Questions—or Answer Them With Lies
    The notion of using robust, random passwords has become all but mainstream—by now anyone with an inkling of security sense knows that “password1” and “1234567” aren’t doing them any favors. But even as password security improves, there’s something even more problematic that underlies them: security questions. Last week Yahoo revealed that it had been massively hacked, with at least 500 million of its users’ data compromised by state sponsored intruders. And included in the company’s list of breached data weren’t just the usual hashed passwords and email addresses, but the security questions and answers that victims had chosen as a backup means of resetting their passwords—supposedly secret information like your favorite place to vacation or the street you grew up on. Yahoo’s data debacle highlights how those innocuous-seeming questions remain a weak link in our online authentication systems. Ask the security community about security questions, and they’ll tell you that they should be abolished—and that until they are, you should never answer them honestly. From their dangerous guessability to the difficulty of changing them after a major breach like Yahoo’s, security questions have proven to be deeply inadequate as contingency mechanisms for passwords. They’re meant to be a reliable last-ditch recovery feature: Even if you forget a complicated password, the thinking goes, you won’t forget your mother’s maiden name or the city you were born in. But by relying on factual data that was never meant to be kept secret in the first place—web and social media searches can often reveal where someone grew up or what the make of their first car was—the approach puts accounts at risk. And since your first pet’s name never changes, your answers to security questions can be instantly compromised across many digital services if they are revealed through digital snooping or a data breach.
  • LibreSSL and the latest OpenSSL security advisory
    Just a quick note that LibreSSL is not impacted by either of the issues mentioned in the latest OpenSSL security advisory - both of the issues exist in code that was added to OpenSSL in the last release, which is not present in LibreSSL.
  • Record-breaking DDoS reportedly delivered by >145k hacked cameras
    Last week, security news site KrebsOnSecurity went dark for more than 24 hours following what was believed to be a record 620 gigabit-per-second denial of service attack brought on by an ensemble of routers, security cameras, or other so-called Internet of Things devices. Now, there's word of a similar attack on a French Web host that peaked at a staggering 1.1 terabits per second, more than 60 percent bigger. The attacks were first reported on September 19 by Octave Klaba, the founder and CTO of OVH. The first one reached 1.1 Tbps while a follow-on was 901 Gbps. Then, last Friday, he reported more attacks that were in the same almost incomprehensible range. He said the distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks were delivered through a collection of hacked Internet-connected cameras and digital video recorders. With each one having the ability to bombard targets with 1 Mbps to 30 Mbps, he estimated the botnet had a capacity of 1.5 Tbps. On Monday, Klaba reported that more than 6,800 new cameras had joined the botnet and said further that over the previous 48 hours the hosting service was subjected to dozens of attacks, some ranging from 100 Gbps to 800 Gbps. On Wednesday, he said more than 15,000 new devices had participated in attacks over the past 48 hours.

Android Leftovers