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Mint 18 Planning, Fedora 24 Delayed, YaST Rewrites

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Clement Lefebvre today blogged some early plans for upcoming Linux Mint 18. Codenamed "Sarah" looks to be released towards Summer and will be supported for a very long time. In other news, Phoronix.com spotted a Fedora FESCo ticket requesting a delay in the Fedora 24 development release schedule. Jamie Watson is back with another desktop tutorial, this time the i3 Window Manager. The creator of Mandrake/Mandriva Linux blogged of his experiences with the cloud version of LibreOffice and the openSUSE Yast Team posted of some of the working going into the next version of YaST.

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Arch Tops Poll, Rawhide Review, a Mint Fail

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Today in Linux news Arch is currently topping a favorite distro poll beating out former giants Ubuntu and Mint. Jamie Watson got a new Acer machine for Christmas that doesn't like Linux and Dedoimedo isn't enamored with new Mint 17.3. Jesse Smith reviewed paldo Linux today at Distrowatch.com and Jack Germain tipped his hat to new Chapeau Linux.

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Debian Founder in Trouble, Ubuntu's Wrong Turn

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A big story getting a little attention today was the shocking news of Debian founder Ian Murdock's desperation at the hands of law enforcement. Much of the story is unknown, but Murdock was on the verge of suicide Monday evening. In other news, Brian Fagioli reported that the System76 Oryx Pro is the gaming machine of your dreams and Matt Hartley thinks he knows where Ubuntu went wrong.

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Red Star Linux Caught Spying, Modifying, Deleting

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The big story today was the confirmation of hidden features in North Korea's Red Star OS, based on Red Hat/Fedora. It was a top headline on most websites many with plays on the words Open Source and oppressive. In more local circles the release of the first stable Solus OS excited the community and the first reviewer asked where's vi.

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Linux Flaws - or Perhaps Features

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Today in Linux news, Joel Lee identified 5 flaws in Linux that "need fixing." Some of them sound more like features to me. Elsewhere, the Fedora election results are in and Jamie Watson was pleasantly surprised by SparkyLinux Enlightenment. Michael Larabel laments the biggest disappointments of the year and Maximum PC has a review of Alienware's Steam Machine.

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Fedora, Wayland, and Arch Reviews

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Today in Linux news Dedoimedo found a distribution he described as "decent." Elsewhere, Pavlo Rudyi tested Plasma on Wayland and Neil Rickert discussed Kwallet. PCWorld's Jared Newman said Monday, "Ubuntu appears to have fallen far short of the 200 million user goal it set back in 2011" and Jesse Smith reviewed Arch Linux in today's Distrowatch Weekly noting a "fondness growing for Arch."

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Wayland: New Live KDE ISO and Server-side Decorations

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Jonathan Riddell today announced the first Plasma Wayland Live Image so everyone can test drive the new graphics server. Riddell added this is a milestone release because Wayland is able to run a full session including applications. Martin Graesslin joined the conversation by saying server-side window decorations are coming to Wayland early next year.

Riddell wrote that users of the live DVD will "notice some obvious glitches" but all the goodies should be "appreciated by everybody." I didn't have too much luck myself. I did get to the desktop I think, but nothing else materialized. I did see the wallpaper and a pointer. It may be been my dual monitors that threw it off. One screen had the full screen background, but the other monitor had a small section of background and a lot of black. It looked like it was trying to do a clone, but perhaps Wayland is cardist against NVIDIAs or something.

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Also:

  • Server-Side Decorations Implemented For KDE KWin On Wayland

    KDE's Martin Gräßlin has announced a Christmas present to everyone looking forward to KDE on Wayland: support for server-side decorations.

    KDE on Wayland has long been planning to use server-side decorations rather than the client-side decorations done by others on Wayland. Martin has now implemented the KWin/Wayland server-side decorations support to replace the "ugly" and feature-lacking Qt client-side decorations used by default.

  • KDE Releases First Plasma Wayland Live Image
  • First KDE Plasma 5 Wayland Live ISO Image Is Now Available for Download

    A few moments ago, December 18, KDE developer and ex-Kubuntu maintainer Jonathan Riddell had the great pleasure of announcing the immediate availability for download of the first ever Live ISO image with the KDE Plasma 5 desktop environment running on top of the next-generation Wayland display server.

Hit Backspace 28 Times or Upgrade Tonight

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Another Linux security vulnerability has been discovered and making the news for a couple of days. Researchers discovered that hitting backspace 28 times allows bypassing of security measures. In other news, Microsoft is increasing pressure on loyal users to upgrade to Windows 10 and Adriaan de Groot said Plasma 5 on FreeBSD when it's stable. Dedoimedo was disappointed in another distro and Bruce Byfield listed nine reasons to use Open Source.

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Manjaro, Makulu, and Microsoft

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Today in Linux news, Jack Wallen predicts 2016 will be the year of Linux desktop, sorta. Blogger Dark Duck reviewed Manjaro Linux 15.09 today and Gary Newell reviewed Makulu Aero Edition. OpenSource.com has 10 handy tools for sysadmins and 10 amazing Open Source projects from 2015. Elsewhere, Bryan Lunduke spoke with community leaders about compromise and LinuxBSDos.com posted a look at elementary OS 0.3.2.

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Person of Year, Podcasts, and Polls

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Today in Linux news, several reviews lead the pack today. Jesse Smith and Das U-Blogger Prashanth reviewed Chakra 2015.11, Swapnil Bhartiya tested newly released Mint 17.3, and a couple of quick openSUSE reports were posted. Elsewhere, Donald Stewart posted an update on Mageia Cauldron and Antonio Rojas said Arch is dropping KDE 4. A couple of interesting polls warrant a mention as well and more in tonight's Linux news recap.

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today's howtos

Leftovers: Software

  • SOGo v3.0.0 released
    After about 1.5 year of development, Inverse is extremely happy to announce the immediate availability of SOGo v3.0! This release is considered ready for production use.
  • Tupi 0.2 revision git06 (Kunumi)
    After a year without significant activity, this release has an special meaning not only because it represents the continuity of the project but our strong intention of making of Tupi a professional tool for educational and young artists communities around the world.
  • [RetroShare] Release notes for final 0.6.0
    v0.6.0 is now considered final. This post summarizes the main lines of work since the release of 0.6.0-RC2 (last june).
  • OpenShot 2.0.6 (Beta 3) Released!
  • OpenShot 2.0 Beta Is Now Available for Public Testing
    The update is the third full beta release of the revamped video editor but only the first to made available for public testing. Backers of the OpenShot crowdfunding campaign have been able to use beta builds of the hugely revamped non-linear video editor since January.
  • Atom 1.5.0 Has Been Released
    Atom is an open-source, multi-platform text editor developed by GitHub, having a simple and intuitive graphical user interface and a bunch of interesting features for writing: CSS, HTML, JavaScript and other web programming languages. Among others, it has support for macros, auto-completion a split screen feature and it integrates with the file manager.
  • HPLIP 3.16.2 Brings Support For Debian 8.3, Linux Mint 17.3 And New Printers
    As you may know, HP Linux Imaging and Printing (HPLIP) is a tool for printing, scanning and faxing for the HP printers.
  • Ixion 0.11.0
    Version 0.11.0 of the Ixion library has been just released. You can download it from the project’s home page.
  • Now You Can Use uTorrent Without Ads, Thanks To New Subscription Model
    In the past, the parent company Bittorrent Inc. has relied on an ad-based revenue model to keep uTorrent up and running, but now they have realized the need for a premium experience for the users by charging a nominal amount. Until now, bundled software that hides inside the uTorrent installation package has only consumed space on your computer. The development team is well aware of this issue and that’s why they have come up with the ad-free uTorrent.

Kernel Space: Linux, Graphics

  • Linux kernel bug delivers corrupt TCP/IP data to Mesos, Kubernetes, Docker containers
    The Linux Kernel has a bug that causes containers that use veth devices for network routing (such as Docker on IPv6, Kubernetes, Google Container Engine, and Mesos) to not check TCP checksums. This results in applications incorrectly receiving corrupt data in a number of situations, such as with bad networking hardware. The bug dates back at least three years and is present in kernels as far back as we’ve tested. Our patch has been reviewed and accepted into the kernel, and is currently being backported to -stable releases back to 3.14 in different distributions (such as Suse, and Canonical). If you use containers in your setup, I recommend you apply this patch or deploy a kernel with this patch when it becomes available. Note: Docker’s default NAT networking is not affected and, in practice, Google Container Engine is likely protected from hardware errors by its virtualized network.
  • Performance problems
    Just over a year ago I implemented an optimization to the SPI core code in Linux that avoids some needless context switches to a worker thread in the main data path that most clients use. This was really nice, it was simple to do but saved a bunch of work for most drivers using SPI and made things noticeably faster. The code got merged in v4.0 and that was that, I kept on kicking a few more ideas for optimizations in this area around but that was that until the past month.
  • Compute Shader Code Begins Landing For Gallium3D
    Samuel Pitoiset began pushing his Gallium3D Mesa state tracker changes this morning for supporting compute shaders via the GL_ARB_compute_shader extension. Before getting too excited, the hardware drivers haven't yet implemented the support. It was back in December that core Mesa received its treatment for compute shader support and came with Intel's i965 driver implementing CS.
  • Libav Finally Lands VDPAU Support For Accelerated HEVC Decoding
    While FFmpeg has offered hardware-accelerated HEVC decoding using NVIDIA's VDPAU API since last summer, this support for the FFmpeg-forked libav landed just today. In June was when FFmpeg added support to its libavcodec for handling HEVC/H.265 video decoding via NVIDIA's Video Decode and Presentation API for Unix interface. Around that same time, developer Philip Langdale who had done the FFmpeg patch, also submitted the patch for Libav for decoding HEVC content through VDPAU where supported.

Unixstickers, Linux goes to Washington, Why Linux?

  • Unixstickers sent me a package!
    There's an old, popular saying, beware geeks bearing gifts. But in this case, I was pleased to see an email in my inbox, from unixstickers.com, asking me if I was interested in reviewing their products. I said ye, and a quick few days later, there was a surprise courier-delivered envelope waiting for me in the post. Coincidentally - or not - the whole thing happened close enough to the 2015 end-of-the-year holidays to classify as poetic justice. On a slightly more serious note, Unixstickers is a company shipping T-shirts, hoodies, mugs, posters, pins, and stickers to UNIX and Linux aficionados worldwide. Having been identified one and acquired on the company's PR radar, I am now doing a first-of-a-kind Dedoimedo non-technical technical review of merchandise related to our favorite software. So not sure how it's gonna work out, but let's see.
  • Linux goes to Washington: How the White House/Linux Foundation collaboration will work
    No doubt by now you've heard about the Obama Administration's newly announced Cybersecurity National Action Plan (CNAP). You can read more about it on CIO.com here and here. But what you may not know is that the White House is actively working with the Linux and open source community for CNAP. In a blog post Jim Zemlin, the executive director of the Linux Foundation said, “In the proposal, the White House announced collaboration with The Linux Foundation’s Core Infrastructure Initiative (CII) to better secure Internet 'utilities' such as open-source software, protocols and standards.”
  • Why Linux?
    Linux may inspire you to think of coders hunched over their desks (that are littered with Mountain Dew cans) while looking at lines of codes, faintly lit by the yellow glow of old CRT monitors. Maybe Linux sounds like some kind of a wild cat and you have never heard the term before. Maybe you have use it every day. It is an operating system loved by a few and misrepresented to many.