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Akademy Report and Final GSoC Reports

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KDE
Google
  • Akademy 2018 Monday BoF Wrapup

    Monday was the first day of Akademy BoFs, group sessions and hacking. There is a wrapup session at the end of the day so that what happened in the different rooms can be shared with everyone including those not present.

  • GSoC’18 - Final Report

    Some of the tasks I had originally planned took a lot more time than expected. My last task was to add stats to games that track and store your overall game statistics. I’ve already began working on this and will get it merged after thoroughly getting it reviewed by my mentors.

    [...]

    I had a wonderful time contributing to GNOME since I started this February. The amazing community and even more amazing mentors helped me learn new things and guided me all along the way which I would like to thank them for. I will surely keep contributing to GNOME.

  • Google Summer of Code 2018 Final Report: Automatic Builds with Clang using Open Build Service

    Debian package builds with Clang were performed from time to time through massive rebuilds of the Debian archive on AWS. The results of these builds are published on clang.debian.net. This summer project aimed to automate Debian archive clang rebuilds by substituting the current clang builds in clang.debian.net with Open Build System (OBS) builds.

    Our final product consists of a repository with salt states to deploy an OBS instance which triggers Clang builds of Debian Unstable packages as soon as they get uploaded by their maintainers.

KDE and GNOME GSoC: Falkon, WikiToLearn, Nautilus and Pitivi

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KDE
Google
GNOME
  • The Joy of GSoC Smile

    Wooo... this is the last day of coding phase of GSoC. I am writing this blog to share my experience and work done in the coding phase. I want to specially thank my mentor David Rosca for his help, suggestions and reviews. This was my first exposure to the KDE community and I am proud that it was great. I really enjoyed the whole program from proposal submission - intermediate evals - then now this final evaluation. Also, I had learned a lot working on my project. Frankly speaking, I didn't knew about i18n and l10n much but with the help of my mentor now I have a quite good understanding of how these works and are implemented. I can truly say this was one of my best summer vacations.

  • What’s next for WikiToLearn?

    Google Summer of Code is finishing and many things have been done on WikiToLearn since previous post. A little recap is needed.

    Talking with mentors has been crucial because they told me to focus on finishing CRUD interaction with API backend instead of working on “history mode” viewer.

  • GSoC 2018 Final Evaluation

    As GSoC is coming to an end, I am required to put my work altogether in order for it to be easily available and hopefully help fellow/potential contributors work on their own projects. 

    [...]

    At its prestige, through this project we will have tests both for most critical and used operations of Nautilus, and for the search engines we use. Further on, I’ll provide links for all of my merge requests and dwell a bit on their ins and outs while posting links to my commits:

  • GTK+ 4 and Nautilus </GSoC>

    Another summer here at GNOME HQ comes to an end. While certainly eventful, it unfortunately did not result in a production-ready Nautilus port to GTK+ 4 (unless you don’t intend to use the location entry or any other entry, but more on that later).

  • Pitivi Video Editor Gains UI Polish, Video Preview Resizing

    The latest Google Summer of Code 2018 is allowing some excellent work to be done on some excellent open source projects.

    Among them Pitivi, the non-linear video editor built using GTK and Gstreamer and offering up a basic video editing feature set.

    Over the past few months, Harish Fulara, a Computer Science student, has worked on improving the application’s greeter dialog and on adding support dynamic resizing of the video preview box.

KDE and GNOME: CMake, CPU Usage and Student Work on Pitivi

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KDE
GNOME
  • Qt1 CMake port and more Akademy crazyness

    So, my plans was always finish the full KDE1 port, and now on Akademy i have some time to get back to this pet project. Starting on Qt1 porting entirely to CMake because the experience on Qt2 was so good that i decided going back to that and do some of the same love on Qt1.

    KDE 1 for that new port next. For now, i’m working on github, so https://github.com/heliocastro/qt1

  • KDE Plasma 5.14's Lock Screen Will No Longer Eat Your CPU Resources On Old Hardware

    With KDE Plasma 5 right now it turns out that if you have relied upon CPU-based software rendering, when hitting Plasma's lock-screen it would actually go CPU-wild -- as far as maxing out the CPU to 100% utilization, thereby consuming a lot of power and generating excess heat. That will be fixed for KDE Plasma 5.14.0.

    Since May has been a bug report about the KScreenLocker greeter process going to 100% CPU usage and needing to wait 5~10 seconds after entering the user password before the screen would actually unlock. Several others also reported similar issues of this lock-screen managing to consume a lot of the CPU resources, including on ARM boards and older hardware.

  • [GSoC’18] Pitivi’s UI Polishing – Final Report

    As part of Google Summer of Code 2018, I worked on the project Pitivi: UI Polishing. This is my final report to showcase the work that I have done during the program.

  • Pitivi's User Interface Is Getting Better Thanks To GSoC, Plus Other GNOME Improvements

    If you have been less than satisfied with the user-interface of the Pitivi non-linear open-source video editor for Linux, you may want to try out their next release.

    Student developer Harish Fulara spent his summer working on polishing the open-source video editor's interface as part of Google Summer of Code 2018.

Akademy 2018 Day 1

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KDE

Akademy 2018 got off to a wet start with rains accompanying all attendees pouring into Vienna for KDE's largest annual community conference. Although the Pre-Registration event was held on Day Zero (Friday the 10th) and it was a fun-filled affair, Akademy kicked off in earnest on Saturday, with talks, panels and demonstrations. Read on to find out about Day 1 of Akademy and all that transpired:

Read more

GSoC: KDE and GNOME Final Reports

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KDE
GNOME
  • GSoC 2018: Final week

    Coming to the last week, the activity Note_names is finally developed and being tested on different platforms.

    Principle: This activity aims to teach sight reading the musical notes and their position on the staff by presenting several notes one-by-one with animation from the right of the staff sliding to the right of the clef image. The user will get the combination of all the notes he has learned previously and the current targetted notes from the dataset. Only the reference notes are colored as red and the user is made to learn the notes around it using it as a leverage. One has to correct enough notes to get a 100% and advance to next stage.

  • Five-or-More Modernisation: It's a Wrap

    As probably most of you already know, or recently found out, at the beginning of this week the GSoC coding period officially ended, and it is time for us, GSoC students, to submit our final evaluations and the results we achieved thus far. This blog post, as you can probably tell from the title, will be a summary of all of the work I put into modernising Five or More throughout the summer months.

    My main task was rewriting Five or More in Vala since this simple and fun game did not find its way to the list of those included in the Games Modernisation Initiative. This fun, strategy game consists of aligning, as often as possible, five or more objects of the same shape and color, to make them disappear and score points.

  • The end of GSoC

    After three months of hard work and a lot of coding the Google Summer of Code is over. I learned a lot and had a lot fun. GSoC was an amazing experience and I encourage everybody to participate in future editions. At this point I’ve been a contributor to GNOME for nearly a year, and I plan on sticking around for a long time. I really hope that other GSoC students also found it so enjoyable, and keep contributing to GNOME or other Free Software Projects.

KDE Frameworks 5.49.0 Released for KDE Plasma 5.13 with over 200 Improvements

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KDE

KDE Frameworks consists of more than 70 add-on libraries for the open-source and cross-platform Qt application framework that offers a wide range of commonly needed functionality, as well as many core components and apps that are required for the KDE Plasma desktop environment to function correctly.

For the past several years, new KDE Frameworks versions are published every month in the second Saturday of the month, and KDE Frameworks 5.49.0 is the release the KDE Project prepared for the month of August 2018, bringing various improvements and addressing numerous bugs.

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Also: KDE Frameworks 5.49 Released With Many Changes

Budgie Desktop, KDE and GNOME

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GNU
KDE
Linux
GNOME
  • Summertime Solus | The Roundup #7

    For those that missed our announcements of last week’s Hackfest, you can watch it via the video embedded below. Most of this roundup will cover the work that has been done since the last roundup (in the specific sections in this blog) as well as the Hackfest, so if you don’t want to sit through the 10 hours of content, feel free to just keep reading.

  • Solus Linux & Its Budgie Desktop Seeing Summer 2018 Improvements

    The Solus Project has shared some of the work they've been engaged in this summer with their Linux distribution as well as their GTK3-based Budgie Desktop Environment.

  • Community Data Analytics Are Going to Akademy

    If you are interested in community data analytics, you will have several opportunities to discuss them during Akademy.

    Firstly, there will be my talk titled Bringing Community Data Analysis Back to KDE (why the hell did I use "Analysis" there... I only used "Analytics" everywhere so far, odd). It will happen on Saturday at 15:30 in room IE7. The slot is a bit small for the topic, but I'll try my best to create interest. Indeed you can catch me around talks to chat about it, and...

    Secondly, there will be a BoF "Discussing Community Data Analytics" on Monday at 10:30 in room 127. We hope to see people coming up with interesting questions to explore or willing to lend a hand in those explorations. See you there!

  • The birth of a new runtime

    Runtimes are a core part of the flatpak design. They are a way to make bundling feasible, while still fully isolating from the host system. Application authors can bundle the libraries specific to the application, but don’t have to care about the lowlevel dependencies that are uninteresting (yet important) for the application.

    Many people think of runtimes primarily as a way to avoid duplication (and thus bloat). However, they play two other important roles. First of all they allow an independent stream of updates for core libraries, so even dead apps get fixes. And secondly, they allow the work of the bundling to be shared between all application authors.

    [...]

    This runtime has the same name, and its content is very similar, but it is really a complete re-implementation. It is based on a new build system called BuildStream, which is much nicer and a great fit for flatpak. So, no more Yocto, no more buildbake, no multi-layer builds!

    Additionally, it has an entire group of people working on it, including support from Codethink. Its already using gitlab, with automatic builds, CI, etc, etc. There is also a new release model (year.month) with a well-defined support time. Also, all the packages are much newer!

    Gnome is also looking at using this as the basics for its releases, its CI system and eventually the Gnome runtime.

KDE: Astronomy on KDE, MQTT/GSoC, Konversation Tip

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KDE
  • Astronomy on KDE

    I recently switched to KDE and Plasma as my main desktop environment, so I thought I'd start digging into some of the scientific software available on KDE. First up is KStars, the desktop astronomy program.

  • LabPlot's MQTT in the finish line

    Hello everyone. GSoC is coming to its end, so I think that I should give a report about what's been done since the last post, and also make a brief evaluation, summary of the project itself.

    As I've written in my last post, the main focus was on improving the quality of the code, cleaning, optimizing and properly documenting it. And also making it more comestible for other developers.

    The next step was searching for bugs and then fixing them. In order to do this properly, I implemented a unit test for the main MQTT related features. This proved to be useful since it helped discover several hidden bugs and errors which were all corrected. The main features, that tests were developed for, are: checking if a topic contains another one, checking if two topics are "common topics" (meaning they only differ at only one level, and are the same size), managing messages, subscribing&unsubscribing.

  • PSA: Use SASL in konversation

    You probably have seen that Freenode has been getting lots of spam lately.

    To protect against that some channels have activated a flag that only allows authenticated users to enter the channel.

    If you're using the regular "nickserv" authentication way as I was doing, the authentication happens in parallel to entering the channels and you'll probably be rejected from joining some.

Ring-KDE 3.0.0 has been released

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KDE

It has been some time. I come back from the shadows to announce the release of Ring-KDE 3.0.0, A GNU Ring.cx client. GNU Ring is a secure and distributed communication platform based on open standards. It weaves industry standard technologies to work together and provides audio calls, video conferences, chat, screen sharing and peer to peer file transfer between you and your friends. Additionally, its use of open standards allows to bridge to various other systems like the main phone network or SIP compatible devices.

When joining the GNU Ring, no servers or centralized accounts are needed. Beside an optional blockchain-based way to reserve your username against takeover, nothing leaves your device. All your data is kept under your control. Ring-KDE provides a simple wizard to help you create credentials or import your personal information from other devices.

Read more

Also: Ring-KDE 3.0 Released To Use The GNU's Distributed Communication Platform

KDE GSoc and Akademy

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KDE
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More in Tux Machines

Red Hat's "DevOps" Hype Again and Analysis of last Night's Financial Results

OSS Leftovers

  • Deutsche Telekom and Aricent Create Open Source Edge Software Framework
    Deutsche Telekom and Aricent today announced the creation of an Open Source, Low Latency Edge Compute Platform available to operators, to enable them to develop and launch 5G mobile applications and services faster. The cost-effective Edge platform is built for software-defined data centers (SDDC) and is decentralized, to accelerate the deployment of ultra-low latency applications. The joint solution will include a software framework with key capabilities for developers, delivered as a platform-as-a-service (PaaS) and will incorporate cloud-native Multi-access edge computing (MEC) technologies.
  • A Deeper Look at Sigma Prime's Lighthouse: An Open-Source Ethereum 2.0 Client
  • Notable moments in Firefox for Android UA string history
  • Dweb: Creating Decentralized Organizations with Aragon
    With Aragon, developers can create new apps, such as voting mechanisms, that use smart contracts to leverage decentralized governance and allow peers to control resources like funds, membership, and code repos. Aragon is built on Ethereum, which is a blockchain for smart contracts. Smart contracts are software that is executed in a trust-less and transparent way, without having to rely on a third-party server or any single point of failure. Aragon is at the intersection of social, app platform, and blockchain.
  • LLVM 7.0.0 released
  • Parabola GNU/Linux-libre: Boot problems with Linux-libre 4.18 on older CPUs
    Due to a known bug in upstream Linux 4.18, users with older multi-core x86 CPUs (Core 2 Duo and earlier?) may not correctly boot up with linux-libre 4.18 when using the default clocksource.
  • Visual Schematic Diffs in KiCAD Help Find Changes
    In the high(er)-end world of EDA tools like OrCAD and Altium there is a tight integration between the version control system and the design tools, with the VCS is sold as a product to improve the design workflow. But KiCAD doesn’t try to force a version control system on the user so it doesn’t really make sense to bake VCS related tools in directly. You can manage changes in KiCAD projects with git but as [jean-noël] notes reading Git’s textual description of changed X/Y coordinates and paths to library files is much more useful for a computer than for a human. It basically sucks to use. What you really need is a diff tool that can show the user what changed between two versions instead of describe it. And that’s what plotgitsch provides.

LWN's Latest (Today Outside Paywall) Articles About the Kernel, Linux

  • Toward better handling of hardware vulnerabilities
    From the kernel development community's point of view, hardware vulnerabilities are not much different from the software variety: either way, there is a bug that must be fixed in software. But hardware vendors tend to take a different view of things. This divergence has been reflected in the response to vulnerabilities like Meltdown and Spectre which was seen by many as being severely mismanaged. A recent discussion on the Kernel Summit discussion list has shed some more light on how things went wrong, and what the development community would like to see happen when the next hardware vulnerability comes around. The definitive story of the response to Meltdown and Spectre has not yet been written, but a fair amount of information has shown up in bits and pieces. Intel was first notified of the problem in July 2017, but didn't get around to telling anybody in the the Linux community about it until the end of October. When that disclosure happened, Intel did not allow the community to work together to fix it; instead each distributor (or other vendor) was mostly left on its own and not allowed to talk to the others. Only at the end of December, right before the disclosure (and the year-end holidays), were members of the community allowed to talk to each other. The results of this approach were many, and few were good. The developers charged with responding to these problems were isolated and under heavy stress for two months; they still have not been adequately thanked for the effort they put in. Many important stakeholders, including distributions like Debian and the "tier-two" cloud providers, were not informed at all prior to the general disclosure and found themselves scrambling. Different distributors shipped different fixes, many of which had to be massively revised before entry into the mainline kernel. When the dust settled, there was a lot of anger left simmering in its wake.
  • Writing network flow dissectors in BPF
    Network packet headers contain a great deal of information, but the kernel often only needs a subset of that information to be able to perform filtering or associate any given packet with a flow. The piece of code that follows the different layers of packet encapsulation to find the important data is called a flow dissector. In current Linux kernels, the flow dissector is written in C. A patch set has been proposed recently to implement it in BPF with the clear goal of improving security, flexibility, and maybe even performance.
  • Coscheduling: simultaneous scheduling in control groups
    The kernel's CPU scheduler must, as its primary task, determine which process should be executing in each of a system's processors at any given time. Making an optimal decision involves juggling a number of factors, including the priority (and scheduling classes) of the runnable processes, NUMA locality, cache locality, latency minimization, control-group policies, power management, overall fairness, and more. One might think that throwing another variable into the mix — and a complex one at that — would not be something anybody would want to attempt. The recent coscheduling patch set from Jan Schönherr does exactly that, though, by introducing the concept of processes that should be run simultaneously. The core idea behind coscheduling is the marking of one or more control groups as containing processes that should be run together. If one process in a coscheduled group is running on a specific set of CPUs (more on that below), only processes from that group will be allowed to run on those CPUs. This rule holds even to the point of forcing some of the CPUs to go idle if the given control group lacks runnable processes, regardless of whether processes outside the group are runnable. Why might one want to do such a thing? Schönherr lists four motivations for this work, the first of which is virtualization. That may indeed be the primary motivation, given that Schönherr is posting from an Amazon address, and Amazon is rumored to be running a virtualized workload or two. A virtual machine usually contains multiple processes that interact with each other; these machines will run more efficiently (and with lower latencies) if those processes can run simultaneously. Coscheduling would ensure that all of a virtual machine's processes are run together, maximizing locality and minimizing the latencies of the interactions between them.
  • Machine learning and stable kernels
    There are ways to get fixes into the stable kernel trees, but they require humans to identify which patches should go there. Sasha Levin and Julia Lawall have taken a different approach: use machine learning to distinguish patches that fix bugs from others. That way, all bug-fix patches could potentially make their way into the stable kernels. Levin and Lawall gave a talk describing their work at the 2018 Open Source Summit North America in Vancouver, Canada. Levin began with a quick introduction to the stable tree and how patches get into it. When a developer fixes a bug in a patch they can add a "stable tag" to the commit or send a mail to the stable mailing list; Greg Kroah-Hartman will then pick up the fix, evaluate it, and add it to the stable tree. But that means that the stable tree is only getting the fixes that are pointed out to the stable maintainers. No one has time to check all of the commits to the kernel for bug fixes but, in an ideal world, all of the bug fixes would go into the stable kernels. Missing out on some fixes means that the stable trees will have more security vulnerabilities because the fixes often close those holes—even if the fixer doesn't realize it.
  • Trying to get STACKLEAK into the kernel
    The STACKLEAK kernel security feature has been in the works for quite some time now, but has not, as yet, made its way into the mainline. That is not for lack of trying, as Alexander Popov has posted 15 separate versions of the patch set since May 2017. He described STACKLEAK and its tortuous path toward the mainline in a talk [YouTube video] at the 2018 Linux Security Summit. STACKLEAK is "an awesome security feature" that was originally developed by The PaX Team as part of the PaX/grsecurity patches. The last public version of the patch set was released in April 2017 for the 4.9 kernel. Popov set himself on the goal of getting STACKLEAK into the kernel shortly after that; he thanked both his employer (Positive Technologies) and his family for giving him working and free time to push STACKLEAK. The first step was to extract STACKLEAK from the more than 200K lines of code in the grsecurity/PaX patch set. He then "carefully learned" about the patch and what it does "bit by bit". He followed the usual path: post the patch, get feedback, update the patch based on the feedback, and then post it again. He has posted 15 versions and "it is still in progress", he said.

PostgreSQL 11: something for everyone

PostgreSQL 11 had its third beta release on August 9; a fourth beta (or possibly a release candidate) is scheduled for mid-September. While the final release of the relational database-management system (currently slated for late September) will have something new for many users, its development cycle was notable for being a period when the community hit its stride in two strategic areas: partitioning and parallelism. Partitioning and parallelism are touchstones for major relational database systems. Proprietary database vendors manage to extract a premium from a minority of users by upselling features in these areas. While PostgreSQL has had some of these "high-tier" items for many years (e.g., CREATE INDEX CONCURRENTLY, advanced replication functionality), the upcoming release expands the number considerably. I may be biased as a PostgreSQL major contributor and committer, but it seems to me that the belief that community-run database system projects are not competitive with their proprietary cousins when it comes to scaling enterprise workloads has become just about untenable. Read more