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KDE 5.8 LTS, Fedora PSA, Magic Security Dust

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The top story today was the release of KDE Plasma 5.8 which was covered by all the top sites. This release brings some new features and long term support. It's already in KDE neon as well. Elsewhere, The Inquirer began a new series on the legends of Linux and Fedora's Adam Williamson posted a public service announcement for version 24. A bit of drama emerged from Andrew Ayer's systemd post and Martin Owens ruminated on Free Software Faith.

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HPE Donates Hardware to Debian Project, GNOME Sans systemd

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The Debian project today announced the "in-kind" donation of several servers to "boost reliability of Debian's core infrastructure." The new hardware will be deployed in Canada, US, and Australia to replace some aging machines as well as expand core services and storage. In other news, a new project aims to provide GNOME 3.22 to Slackware without systemd or Wayland, right as a new ugly systemd bug gives another reason to avoid it. Mageia bid farewell to a lost friend and contributor today and Matt Hartley shared his picks for best firewall distribution.

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LibreOffice at 6, New Souped up Mint Mini

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September 28 was the official birthday for LibreOffice and Italo Vignoli looked back at some of the milestones for the project. Elsewhere, the Ubuntu family got new betas and Clement Lefebvre announced a new Mintbox Mini. Jack M. Germain reviewed Panther OS and Ryan Lynch recommended four distributions for Windows users.

Happy Birthday LibreOffice! It was officially six years ago September 28 that The Document Foundation and LibreOffice were announced. The project consisted of former OpenOffice.org developers and volunteered who feared the worst after its sale to Oracle. Since that time, LibreOffice has grown and matured into an award winning Open Source office suite. Group photos taken at the LibreOffice conference at Brno were also shared including one of the attendees who were there on day one, as Bjoern Michaelsen explained. Although they were the seed, the project has grown to hundreds of contributors from all over the world. Italio Vignoli said the project attracted new developers every month for 72 straight months. He also said tomorrow begins the LibreOffice 5.3 developmental cycle, which is planned for release in January 2017.

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Inside: Merging Communities

Happy 6th Birthday, LibreOffice

Linux Users v Windows Users, Debian Mourns Another

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The Debian project today shared the news of the passing of a long time contributor on September 17. In other news, the Linux Journal offered a free digital copy of their September 2016 magazine. Bruce Byfield compared Linux users to Windows users and My Linux Rig spoke to elementary OS founder Daniel Foré about his "Linux Setup."

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Unimpressive Yakkety Yak, Plasma 5 Issues in Leap

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Today was a rough day in Linux distro news, Scott Gilbertson reviewed the Beta of upcoming Ubuntu 16.10 saying there's not a whole lot to recommend in this update. Neil Rickert test drove openSUSE's latest beta and had issues with his NVIDIA. Jesse Smith couldn't tell what was added to Uruk over base Trisquel and Gary Newell didn't see much point to portable Porteus since most stuff didn't work.

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Also: Indicator Sound Switcher Makes Switching Audio Devices on Ubuntu a Snap

openSUSE Leap 42.2 Beta 2, Kubuntu 16.10 Beta too

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openSUSE's Douglas DeMaio today announced the availability of Leap 42.2 Beta 2. This beta includes a beta of Plasma 5.8 LTS. Elsewhere, Valorie Zimmerman announced a beta for Kubuntu 16.10 for testers as well. Red Hat dominated the headlines today and not just for their continued success on Wall Street while the Microsoft/Lenovo story is running a close second. The Free Software Foundation needs input for their new swag line and LibreOffice won a Bossie Award.

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Rosy Red Hat, GNOME 3.22, MS/Lenovo Barricading

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Red Hat, Inc. released the financial results for the second quarter ending August 31, 2016 in a press release today. Red Hat stock seems to be going in the right direction for them as well even as insiders sell off their shares. The top story today must have been the skirmish resulting from reports of Linux being blocked from certain Lenovo laptops under orders from Microsoft. Elsewhere, GNOME 3.22 was released as a new age rating system is planned for 3.23. And finally, The Document Foundation reported the results of its 2016 Membership Committee elections.

It was widely reported today that Lenovo laptops featuring Windows 10 lock the hard drive with proprietary code that Linux can not read - so in essence, blocking users from installing Linux. A user asking in a Lenovo support forum was told by an employee that Linux was blocked due to an agreement with Microsoft. The news traveled around the Intertubes with lightening speed making headlines at every tech site in existence. So, Lenovo and Microsoft jumped into damage control saying it was due to proprietary RAID software. Former kernel contributor Matthew Garrett addressed the issue on his blog today saying the sensational headlines are distracting from a real issue here. He said this is probably because "recent Intel hardware needs special setup for good power management and Microsoft could be insisting that Signature Edition systems ship in "RAID" mode in order to ensure that. Or it could be a misunderstanding regarding UEFI Secure Boot." He said it all boils down to Intel doing "very little to ensure that free operating systems work well on their consumer hardware." In any case, two major contributors to the Linux kernel and open source really couldn't care less about either. Today's sensational headlines might not be accurate, but they do point to a real problem, among many others.

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Also: Lenovo responds to Linux blocking issue, issues non-denial denial

Debian 8 Updated, Kubuntu Help Wanted, Mageia 5.1

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The Debian project announced an update to their stable Debian 8 branch, the sixth such update since its release. This update is primarily to address security issues. Elsewhere, the Mageia folks announced an update to version 5, released last summer, to hold users over since 6.0 has been delayed. The Linux Grandma put out the call for help today as they're running a bit low on developers over there and the Free Software Foundation as well as Richard Stallman replied to the accusations of discrimination in the case of LibreBoot.

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Fedora 24 Funage, Smoooth Mageia 5, Tumblin' Tumbleweed

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Today in Linux news, Red Hat formally announced their 2017 expansion plans into Boston. Elsewhere, Dedoimedo posted another guide, this time how to make Fedora 24 useful and fun. After a rough start, Michael Huff found Mageia 5 to be "smart, eager and full of potential" and Dimstar has this week's Tumbleweed update.

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Also about Fedora:

  • Sneak into…

    the current stage of the Fedora 25 Supplemental Wallpaper.. Start of this month I openend the submission phase for the Fedora Supplemental Wallpaper. So far we have received 91 submissions and currently 72 of them are approved. So far 49 contributors earned a badge for their submission. But there is still time until 11. October left to contribute a wallpaper.

  • Event Report: Fedora Women Day 2016, Kolkata

    A two-day workshop on women in free software and Fedora Women Day were held on the 15th and 16th of July 2016 at the Netaji Subhash Engineering College in Kolkata, India. This event was jointly organized by Ubuntu Women Project, Fedora Project, and the university. It was substantially sponsored by Ubuntu Women Project. The goal of the workshop was also to get new participants interested, improve the level of participation by women, and explore new avenues of free software community development. Given the factors involved, the Workshop on Women in Free Software / Fedora Women Day 2016 (shortened to WWFS-FWD’2016) was a successful one.

  • Fedora 24 - From 0 to Fun in 10 minutes

    Ladies and gentlemen, it's pimping time. We shall now transform a tame Fedora installation that is not designed for mass consumption into a beautiful and majestic fun box. This means adding codecs and pretty stuff and extra software that people crave. We shall do this quickly and easily, and I will be your shepherd.

    Recently, I've discovered or rather rekindled my passion for all things Red Hat and Gnome, and Fedora has joined the list, after a long season of dreadful releases. It works well, it's fun and stable and fast, and all it's missing is some flavor and spice.

Memory Lane, Cooking w/ Linux, Red Hat's New Digs

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Earlier this year a Red Hat logo was spotted at 300 A Street in Boston sparking rumors of an expansion. Well, today it was confirmed. In other news, Gary "the Everyday Linux User" walked us down memory lane with a glance back at distributions that graced the top 10 at Distrowatch.com. Marcel Gagne has put "Cooking With Linux" on YouTube and another project has jumped the GNU ship.

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More in Tux Machines

Graphics: Mesa 17.2.6 RC, AMDGPU, and Vulkan

  • Mesa 17.2.6 release candidate
  • Mesa 17.2.6 RC Arrives With 50+ Fixes
    While Mesa 17.3 is imminent and should be released as stable within the next few days, Mesa 17.2.6 is being prepped for release as the current point release.
  • 43 More AMDGPU DC Patches Hit The Streets
    While the massive AMDGPU DC infrastructure has been merged for Linux 4.15, the flow of improvements to this display code continues and it looks like the next few kernel cycles at least could be quite busy on the AMD front.
  • A Prototype Of The Vulkan Portability Initiative: Low-Level 3D To Vulkan / D3D12 / Metal
    A Mozilla engineer has put out a prototype library in working on the Vulkan Portability Initiative for allowing low-level 3D graphics support that's backed by Vulkan / Direct3D 12 / Metal. With Apple sticking to their own Metal graphics API and Direct3D 12 still being the dominant graphics API on Windows 10, The Khronos Group has been working towards better 3D portability for where Vulkan may not be directly supported by the OS/drivers or otherwise available. They've been working to target a subset of the Vulkan API that can be efficiently mapped to these other native graphics APIs and to have the libraries and tooling for better compatibility and code re-use of these different graphics APIs.

Kernel: Linux 4.15, TLDR, and Linus Torvalds' Latest Rant

  • Linux 4.15 Adds AMD Raven Ridge Audio ID
    Not only is AMD Stoney Ridge audio (finally) being supported by the Linux 4.15 kernel, but it also looks like Raven Ridge audio should now be working too.
  • Linux 4.14.2 Fixes The BCache Corruption Bug
    Normally I don't bother mentioning new Linux kernel point releases on Phoronix unless there are some significant changes, as is the case today with Linux 4.14.2.
  • TLDR is what Linux man pages always should have been
    If you get stuck using a Linux tool, the first port of call shouldn’t be to Stack Overflow, but rather its “man pages.” Man — which is short for manual — retrieves documentation for a given program. Unfortunately, this can often be dense, hard to understand, and lacking in practical examples to help you solve your problem. TLDR is another way of looking at documentation. Rather than being a comprehensive guide to a given tool, it instead focuses on offering practical example-driven instructions of how something works.
  • Linux creator Linus Torvalds: This is what drives me nuts about IT security
    Developers are often accused of not thinking about security, but Linux kernel founder Linus Torvalds has had enough of security people who don't think about developers and end-users. After blasting some kernel developers last week for killing processes in the name of hardening the kernel, Torvalds has offered a more measured explanation for his frustration with security myopia. While he agrees that having multiple layers of security in the kernel is a good idea, certain ways of implementing it are not, in particular if it annoys users and developers by killing processes that break users' machines and wreck core kernel code. Because ultimately, if there are no users, there's not much point in having a supremely secure kernel, Torvalds contends.

Unity 7 Hoping To Become An Official Flavor For Ubuntu 18.04 LTS

While Canonical abandoned their work on the Unity desktop environment in favor of the Unity-inspired customized GNOME Shell that debuted in Ubuntu 17.10, some within the community have remained interested in maintaining Unity 7 and even getting it into an official spin/flavor of Ubuntu. Posted today to the community.ubuntu.com was a Unity maintenance roadmap, reiterating the hope by some in the Ubuntu community for Ubuntu Unity to become an official LTS distribution of Ubuntu. They are hoping to make it an official flavor alongside Kubuntu, Ubuntu Budgie, Xubuntu, and others. Read more Original/direct: Unity Maintenance Roadmap

Programming/Development: Django and Google India

  • An introduction to the Django ORM
    One of the most powerful features of Django is its Object-Relational Mapper (ORM), which enables you to interact with your database, like you would with SQL. In fact, Django's ORM is just a pythonical way to create SQL to query and manipulate your database and get results in a pythonic fashion. Well, I say just a way, but it's actually really clever engineering that takes advantage of some of the more complex parts of Python to make developers' lives easier.
  • Hey, Coders! Google India Is Offering 130,000 Free Developer Scholarships — Here’s How To Apply
  • Google to prepare 1.3 lakh Indians for emerging technologies

    "The new scholarship programme is in tandem with Google's aim to train two million developers in India. The country is the second largest developer ecosystem in the world and is bound to overtake the US by 2021," William Florance, Developer Products Group and Skilling Lead for India, Google, told reporters here.