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Gentoo

Gentoo vs. Ubuntu Linux Comparison

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Linux
Gentoo
Ubuntu

Habit is the enemy of change. If you have been using Linux for a while, you may have gotten used to the distribution it offers. If your situation and computing needs changing, then you should think it over. If not, you might want to consider learning a new system for the benefit of apprehension. Knowledge is a very light burden to bear.

For many users, choosing Gentoo is a giant leap. A leap that they never take but can be a serious mistake if you have important reasons to use your computer or system of computers.

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Latest on Gentoo, Ubuntu, OpenSUSE and SUSE

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Gentoo
SUSE
Ubuntu

  • lzip decompression support for xz-utils

    As of today, the most common implementation of the LZMA algorithm on open source operating systems is the xz format. However, there are a few others available. Notably, a few packages found in the Gentoo repository use the superior lzip format. Does this mean you may end up having to have separate decompressors for both formats installed? Not necessarily.

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  • Ubuntu Blog: Can AI help redefine the future of finserv?

    The last few years has been a time of major disruption in the Finserv sector. Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology has emerged as an important tool for providers of financial products and services to deliver more personalised and more sophisticated services to customers faster. The financial services sector is at the beginning of an exciting journey with AI – a journey that we believe will spark a revolution and redefine financial services. Kris Sharma, Financial Services Lead at Canonical has approached this subject from various perspectives.

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  • New openSUSE Step Project Looks to Build SUSE Linux Enterprise on More Architectures

    We’re delighted to announce a new project in the openSUSE Project family called openSUSE Step. openSUSE Step is a community effort to rebuild SUSE Linux Enterprise (SLE) from the released SLE sources packages. This is done openly in the openSUSE instance of the Open Build Service (OBS) with the intention to stay fully binary compatible and to be as closely source-compatible as possible with SLE.

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  • Accelerating Atmospheric Research at NCAR with HPE and SUSE | SUSE Communities

    Having lived through many harsh winters in the mountains of Pennsylvania and dangerous hurricanes that have hit the Carolinas, I admire the research involved in monitoring climate change, data simulations and predictive analysis. As one shining example at the center of that research, NCAR (National Center for Atmospheric Research) performs weather modeling to climatology, spanning seconds to centuries. Their research demands high performance, long-term application repeatability and high reliability.
    Community is key at all levels, from interoperable software with HPE and SUSE to collaboration with other centers (e.g., NOAA, NASA, DOE). In fact, NOAA’s EPIC (Earth Prediction Innovation Center) relies on Cray supercomputers which are at the heart of its global prediction system. NOAA and NCAR collaborate in producing global weather simulations to predict future climate shifts.
    The cohesive platform provided by HPE Cray and SUSE Linux Enterprise enables seamless U.S. and global weather simulations. Today, NCAR’s “Cheyenne” supercomputer enables scientists across the country to study phenomena ranging from weather and climate to wildfires, seismic activity, and airflows that generate power at wind farms. Their findings lay the groundwork for better protecting society from natural disasters, lead to more detailed projections of seasonal and longer-term weather and climate variability and improve weather and water forecasts that are needed by economic sectors from agriculture and energy to transportation and tourism. Later this year, NCAR will make another giant leap forward with a new HPE Cray EX supercomputer with a 19.87 peak petaflops system that will work alongside the “Cheyenne” system.

Best Gentoo Linux Derivatives

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Linux
Gentoo

Getting started with Gentoo requires some knowledge of Linux inner workings. This can be time-consuming and frustrating, especially if you have never done it or you have relied on automated install methods for a long time. With that said, it is worthwhile finding out more about your system. You could find many interesting points that can help your private computing or even your career. Many corporations use the Gentoo base and create an internal distribution. One example is Chromium OS; many others are specialized versions for their needs.

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Daniel Lange: Installing System Rescue (CD) to a flash drive

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GNU
Linux
Gentoo

System Rescue, the project formerly known as System Rescue CD, has moved from being based on Gentoo to being built on Arch Linux packages.

With this their ISO layout changed substantially so when updating my trusty recue USB flash drive, I could not just update the kernel, initrd and the root filesystem image as I had typically done every other year before.

The "Installing on a USB memory stick" documentation is good for Windows (use Rufus, it's nice) but rather useless for Linux. They recommend a dd or the fancy graphical version of that, called usbimager.

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exGENT Live Distro Makes Gentoo Linux Fun to Use in 2021 with the LXQt Desktop

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Gentoo

About eight months since the last update to the exGENT distribution, which aims to offer the Linux community a live and installable operating system based on Gentoo. I’ve highlighted live and installable because Gentoo no longer generates regular live ISO images you can try without installing the system.

The exGENT 2021 release makes things even more interesting since it uses the latest Linux 5.10 LTS kernel series, which automatically translates to better hardware support and support for newer hardware. However, the kernel included in the live system is Linux 5.6.7 and Linux kernel 5.10 LTS will be used in the installed system.

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Gentoo 2020 in retrospect & happy new year 2021!

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Gentoo

2020 has featured a major increase in commits to the ::gentoo repository, and especially commits from non-developers. The overall number of commits has grown from 73400 to 104500 (by 42%), while the number of commits made by non-developers has grown from 5700 (8% of total) to 11000 (10.5% of total). The latter group has featured 333 unique authors in 2019, and 391 in 2020.

The ::guru repository has thrived in 2020. While 2019 left it with merely 7 contributors and a total of 86 commits, 2020 has featured 55 different contributors and 2725 commits. GURU is a user-curated repository with a trusted user model. Come join us!

There was also a major increase in Bugzilla activity. 2020 featured almost 25500 bugs reported, compared to 15000 in 2019. This is probably largely thanks to Agostino Sarubbo’s new tinderboxing effort. The total number of bugs closed in 2020 was 23500, compared to 15000 in 2019.

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Also; Distribution Kernels: module rebuilds, better ZFS support and UEFI executables

In a Major Shift, Gentoo-based Sabayon Linux is Rebranding Itself to MocaccinoOS With a Focus on Containerization

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Gentoo

First of all, many of you might not be familiar with Sabayon Linux and most have probably never heard of it at all. Sabayon Linux is a Gentoo-based Linux distro from Italy. Gentoo is a very different distro because all of the software you install (and all of the updates) are compiled from source on your system. There are no precompiled packages.

Unlike its source, Sabayon is designed to be more user friendly and have a more of an “out of the box” philosophy. It has pre-compiled applications available for quick and easy installation. Sabayon also has its software repo and package manager (Entropy). (So, they are the Manjaro of the Gentoo world.)

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Console-bound systemd services, the right way

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Gentoo

Let’s say that you need to run on your system some sort server software which instead of daemonising, has a command console permanently attached to standard input. Let us also say that said console is the only way for the administrator to interact with the service, including requesting its orderly shutdown – whoever has written it has not implemented any sort of signal handling so sending SIGTERM to the service process causes it to simply drop dead, potentially losing data in the process. And finally, let us say that the server in question is proprietary software so it isn’t really possible for you to fix any of the above in the source code (yes, I am talking about a specific piece of software – which by the way is very much alive and kicking as of late 2020). What do you do?

According to the collective wisdom of World Wide Web, the answer to this question is “use a terminal multiplexer like tmux or screen“, or at the very least a stripped-down variant of same such as dtach. OK, that sort of works – what if you want to run it as a proper system-managed service under e.g. OpenRC? The answer of the Stack Exchange crowd: have your init script invoke the terminal multiplexer. Oooooookay, how about under systemd, which actually prefers services it manages not to daemonise by itself? Nope, still “use a terminal multiplexer”.

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Distribution kernel for Gentoo

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Linux
Gentoo

The Gentoo Distribution Kernel project is excited to announce that our new Linux Kernel packages are ready for a wide audience!

The project aims to create a better Linux Kernel maintenance experience by providing both ebuilds that can be used to configure, compile, and install kernel entirely through the package manager as well as prebuilt binary kernels.

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Portage 3.0 stabilized

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Gentoo

We have good news! Gentoo’s Portage project has recently stabilized version 3.0 of the package manager.

What’s new? Well, this third version of Portage removes support for Python 2.7, which has been an ongoing effort across the main Gentoo repository by Gentoo’s Python project during the 2020 year (see this blog post).

In addition, due to a user provided patch, updating to the latest version of Portage can vastly speed up dependency calculations by around 50-60%. We love to see our community engaging in our software! For more details, see this Reddit post from the community member who provided the patch. Stay healthy and keep cooking with Gentoo!

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Also: Gentoo's Portage 3.0 Stabilized With Much Faster Dependency Calculations

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More in Tux Machines

Kernel: Millennium Prize, Compute Express Link 2.0, HP Platform Profile Support

  • Millennium prize problems but for Linux

    There is a longstanding tradition in mathematics to create a list of hard unsolved problems to drive people to work on solving them. Examples include Hilbert's problems and the Millennium Prize problems. Wouldn't it be nice if we had the same for Linux? A bunch of hard problems with sexy names that would drive development forward? Sadly there is no easy source for tens of millions of euros in prize money, not to mention it would be very hard to distribute as this work would, by necessity, be spread over a large group of people. Thus it seems is unlikely for this to work in practice, but that does not prevent us from stealing a different trick from mathematicians' toolbox and ponder how it would work in theory. In this case the list of problems will probably never exist, but let's assume that it does. What would it contain if it did exist? Here's one example I came up with. it is left as an exercise to the reader to work out what prompted me to write this post. [...] A knee-jerk reaction many people have is something along the lines of "you can solve this by limiting the number of linker processes by doing X". That is not the answer. It solves the symptoms but not the underlying cause, which is that bad input causes the scheduler to do the wrong thing. There are many other ways of triggering the same issue, for example by copying large files around. A proper solution would fix all of those in one go.

  • Compute Express Link 2.0 Support Sent In For Linux 5.12, Enabling CXL 2.0 Memory Devices - Phoronix

    Immediately following the publishing of the Linux enablement patches for CXL 2.0 and that continued in the months since over several rounds of patches. That initial CXL 2.0 code is now slated for mainlining with the Linux 5.12 kernel. The initial Compute Express Link 2.0 focus for the Linux kernel has been on supporting Type-3 Memory Devices. The CXL 2.0 type-3 memory device support being fleshed out first is for serving as a memory expander for RAM or persistent memory and can optionally be interleaved with other CXL devices. For the lack of any CXL 2.0 hardware yet even within the confines of Intel, Widawsky worked out this initial enablement code thanks to writing up support around the specification within QEMU for emulation.

  • Linux 5.13 Should See HP Platform Profile Support - Phoronix

    Linux 5.12 is bringing the initial infrastructure around ACPI Platform Profile support and with this kernel it's implemented for newer Lenovo ThinkPad and IdeaPad laptops. The support allow for altering the system's power/performance characteristics depending upon your desire for a speedy, quiet, or cool experience. With Linux 5.13 it looks like HP laptops with this capability will begin to see working Platform Profile support too. Lenovo is the initial Linux user/supporter of this Platform Profile support while Dell has also expressed interest in supporting it on Linux for letting users manipulate their desire desired balance of performance vs. cool/quiet operation. There has been an HP patch implementing the support and it's looking like that is now ready to be queued into the x86 platform driver tree once the current Linux 5.12 merge window is over, which would mark it as material for 5.13.

Open Source Community Critical Of Chessbase, Fat Fritz 2

The development teams behind the two most successful and influential open-source chess programs, Stockfish and Leela Chess Zero, have issued statements denouncing the commercial program Fat Fritz 2 and the company Chessbase that is selling the program for 99,90 euros. The statements (Stockfish blog, lichess announcement) assert that the engine in Fat Fritz 2 is Stockfish with minimal changes, that Fat Fritz 2 has violated the GNU General Public License under which Stockfish is released, and that Chessbase's marketing has made false claims about Fat Fritz 2's playing strength. Read more

Videos/Audiocasts/Shows: Password Managers, Rust, and Laptops as Servers

  • Password Managers: A Tool Everybody Deserves - YouTube

    Lastpass was in the news recently and it made me realize how few people use a password manager, regardless of whether you prefer an offline or online solution not using a password manager leads to bad habits and much weaker passwords.

  • FLOSS Weekly 618: Rust - Steve Klabnik & Rust

    Steve Klabnik joins Doc Searls and Shawn Powers to talk about Rust. Rust, which was started at Mozilla, has grown to become one of the world's most relied-upon and fastest growing programming languages. Klabnik literally wrote the book on Rust. In the show, he visits how it differs from C++ and other alternatives, some of the many ways it is used, the large and familiar names (e.g. DropBox) that depend on it, the community culture around it, how open source and free software work are changing as we move toward a post-COVID world.

  • How to Homelab - Laptops as Servers?!

    In the latest episode of "How to Homelab", we take a look at the concept of using laptops as servers, and I give you my thoughts. It might just be a crazy enough idea to work!

Mozilla Leftovers

  • Firefox 86 brings multiple Picture-in-Picture, “Total Cookie Protection”

    In December 2019, Firefox introduced Picture-in-Picture mode—an additional overlay control on in-browser embedded videos that allows the user to detach the video from the browser. Once detached, the video has no window dressing whatsoever—no title bar, min/max/close, etc. PiP mode allows users who tile their windows—automatically or manually—to watch said video while consuming a bare minimum of screen real estate. Firefox 86 introduces the concept of multiple simultaneous Picture-in-Picture instances. Prior to build 86, hitting the PiP control on a second video would simply reattach the first video to its parent tab and detach the second. Now, you can have as many floating, detached video windows as you'd like—potentially turning any monitor into something reminiscent of a security DVR display. The key thing to realize about multi-PiP is that the parent tabs must remain open—if you navigate away from the parent tab of an existing PiP window, the PiP window itself closes as well. Once I realized this, I had no difficulty surrounding my Firefox 86 window with five detached, simultaneously playing video windows.

  • This Week in Glean: Boring Monitoring [Ed: Mozilla insists that it is not surveillance when they call it "data science" and "big data"]

    Every Monday the Glean has its weekly Glean SDK meeting. This meeting is used for 2 main parts: First discussing the features and bugs the team is currently investigating or that were requested by outside stakeholders. And second bug triage & monitoring of data that Glean reports in the wild. [...] It probably can! But it requires more work than throwing together a dashboard with graphs. It’s also not as easy to define thresholds on these changes and when to report them. There’s work underway that hopefully enables us to more quickly build up these dashboards for any product using the Glean SDK, which we can then also extend to do more reporting automated. The final goal should be that the product teams themselves are responsible for monitoring their data.

  • William Lachance: Community @ Mozilla: People First, Open Source Second [Ed: Is this why Mozilla pays its CEO over 3 million dollars per year (quadruple the older sum) while sacking even its own people and spying on Firefox users (people)?]

    It seems ridiculously naive in retrospect, but I can remember thinking at the time that the right amount of “open source” would solve all the problems. What can I say? It was the era of the Arab Spring, WikiLeaks had not yet become a scandal, Google still felt like something of a benevolent upstart, even Facebook’s mission of “making the world more connected” sounded great to me at the time. If we could just push more things out in the open, then the right solutions would become apparent and fixing the structural problems society was facing would become easy! What a difference a decade makes. The events of the last few years have demonstrated (conclusively, in my view) that open systems aren’t necessarily a protector against abuse by governments, technology monopolies and ill-intentioned groups of individuals alike. Amazon, Google and Facebook are (still) some of the top contributors to key pieces of open source infrastructure but it’s now beyond any doubt that they’re also responsible for amplifying a very large share of the problems global society is experiencing.