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Ubuntu Used by FIA Weatherman at Suzuka F1 Grand Prix

Filed under
Linux
Ubuntu

One of the favorite pastimes of the Ubuntu community is to find interesting or weird places where this operating system is being used. There have been some strange sightings before and it's usually the last place where you would expect to find a Linux system. The same is true for Suzuka.

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Still running 32 bit Ubuntu?

Filed under
Hardware
Ubuntu

I’m considering a proposal to have 16.04 LTS be the last release of Ubuntu with 32 bit images to run on 32 bit only machines (on x86 aka Intel/AMD only – this has no bearing on ARM). You would still be able to run 32 bit applications on 64 bit Ubuntu.

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OpenStack Juno is out, Debian (and Ubuntu Trusty ports) packages ready

Filed under
Debian
Ubuntu

This is just a quick announce: Debian packages for Juno are out. In fact, they were ready the day of the release, on the 16th of October. I uploaded it all (to Experimental) the same day, literally a few hours after the final released was git tagged. But I had no time to announce it.

This week-end, I took the time to do an Ubuntu Trusty port, which I also publish (it’s just a mater of rebuilding all, and it should work out of the box). Here are the backports repositories. For Wheezy:

deb http://archive.gplhost.com/debian juno-backports main

deb http://archive.gplhost.com/debian juno main

For trusty:

deb http://archive.gplhost.com/debian trusty-juno-backports main

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Ubuntu Touch RTM Update Is Out, Has Better Performance and Beautiful New Indicators

Filed under
Ubuntu

Ubuntu developers had some minor problems in the week before with all sorts of bugs that were popping out. They postponed the release of a new update for the Ubuntu Touch RTM and, at one point, they even got everyone to focus on fixing the problems and nothing else. Now they have a new version out and progress really shows.

Users who already have Ubuntu Touch on their phones might have noticed that the number of features added to the system have diminished drastically, but that's the way it should be. The system is getting closer to its final stages and there is little reason to add new options now. The current form of the OS is not very far from the official release, so only fixes remain to be made.

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Ubuntu turns 10: A look back at desktop Linux standard bearer

Filed under
Ubuntu

Tech pundits differ, to say the least, on a lot of topics in the world of free and open-source software, but it’s inarguable that Ubuntu has been the most influential Linux desktop distribution of the past decade. On the occasion of its 10th anniversary, here’s a brief look back.

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V is for Vivid

Filed under
Ubuntu

Release week! Already! I wouldn’t call Trusty ‘vintage’ just yet, but Utopic is poised to leap into the torrent stream. We’ve all managed to land our final touches to *buntu and are excited to bring the next wave of newness to users around the world. Glad to see the unicorn theme went down well, judging from the various desktops I see on G+.

And so it’s time to open the vatic floodgates and invite your thoughts and contributions to our soon-to-be-opened iteration next. Our ventrous quest to put GNU as you love it on phones is bearing fruit, with final touches to the first image in a new era of convergence in computing. From tiny devices to personal computers of all shapes and sizes to the ventose vistas of cloud computing, our goal is to make a platform that is useful, versal and widely used.

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UNITY PRIVACY INDICATOR 0.4 RELEASED WITH NEW PRIVACY SETTINGS

Filed under
Security
Ubuntu

For those not familiar with Privacy Indicator, this is an Ubuntu AppIndicator especially created for Unity, which allows you to control various privacy aspects.

Until this release, the indicator could be used to enable / disable Dash online search results and Zeitgeist logging (and also clear the Zeitgeist log), clear recently used files (which show up in the Nautilus or Nemo "Recent" sidebar item for instance) and to show or hide your real name on the Unity panel.

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Ubuntu Turns 10, Happy Birthday!

Filed under
Ubuntu

Mark Shuttleworth announced Ubuntu 4.10 "The Warty Warthog Release" on October 20, 2004. It's hard to believe that a decade has passed since then, but we are now getting ready for Ubuntu 14.10 "Utopic Unicorn."

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Ubuntu 14.10 "Utopic Unicorn" Arrives in a Few Days

Filed under
Ubuntu

When Ubuntu hits the Final Freeze point the developers stop pushing updates and changes, and everyone focuses on the major bugs and problems that haven't been fixed yet. An exception can be made if something really terrible happens, but that wasn't the case until now and it's unlikely to occur.

Now, Ubuntu 14.10 (Utopic Unicorn) is scheduled to arrive on October 23, this Thursday. Users will be offered the chance to upgrade their systems, but this is an intermediary release and it's not likely that many users will take this step. The Ubuntu LTS release was just six months ago and not too many users are going to exchange the five years of support for 14.04 with just nine months for 14.10.

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Meizu MX4 Pro Spotter Running Ubuntu Touch

Filed under
Ubuntu

For now, we don’t know which device will be running Ubuntu Touch, but due to the fact that Meizu MX4 Pro has been postponed to November, it may be it. The MX4 Pro uses a 5.4 inch display with 1536 x 2560 resilution, a 20 MPX rear camera + a 13 MPX front camera, a Samsung octa-core Exynos 5430 CPU and 3 GB of RAM.

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Leftovers: Gaming

A victory for free software over the "Microsoft tax"

This is a guest post by Marco Ciurcina, a lawyer who worked on this case.

The Italian Supreme Court (Corte di Cassazione) issued a judgment1 that bans the "Microsoft tax," a commercial practice that discourages users from converting their PCs to GNU/Linux or other free operating systems by forcing them to pay for a Windows license with their PCs. PC producers in Italy now cannot refuse to refund the price of the license to purchasers that will not run Windows.

The ruling definitively concludes the case filed in 2005 against a hardware producer by Marco Pieraccioli,2 with the support of the Consumer Association ADUC,3 and affirms Marco Pieraccioli's right to a refund for the price of the Microsoft Windows license for the computer he purchased.

The primary reason to insist on using free software4 is because nonfree software deprives the user of freedom, including the freedom to participate in its development. The "Microsoft tax" has no effect on that issue.

The "free" in "free software" refers to freedom. It does not mean "gratis," and copies of free software do not have to be distributed without charge. Selling a copy of one free program or many of them is legitimate.5

However, most GNU/Linux distributions are offered to the public gratis, while Windows is not. Therefore, switching to GNU/Linux offers an opportunity for the secondary benefit of saving money -- a benefit that many Italians would value. The "Microsoft tax" has the effect of abolishing that secondary benefit. Now the secondary benefit must be available.

The ruling applies to more than just Windows. The Court states a general principle that applies to any device with software preinstalled: "...who buys a computer on which a given operational software (operating system) was preinstalled by the manufacturer has the right, if he does not agree to the conditions of the license of the software made available to him at first start of the computer, to retain the computer returning only the software covered by the license he did not accept, with refund of the part of the price that specifically relates to it."6

According to the Supreme Court, any commercial practice that prevents the user from getting a refund "..would clash in different ways with the rules that protect the freedom of choice of the consumer, and the freedom of competition among firms..."7

On the one hand, therefore, the judgment follows the path of the French Courts' case law, that on several occasions stated that the joint sale of hardware and software, without providing for the buyer the possibility to obtain refund of preinstalled software, violates the right of the consumer.8

On the other hand, the Italian Supreme Court states that the act of hindering the refund violates the freedom of competition among firms. This statement of principle is interesting considering that, to date, the antitrust authorities have done little against business practices that "force" the joint sale of hardware and proprietary software. Now they may consider taking stronger action.

The focus of the Court's reasoning is that the sale of a PC with software preinstalled is not like the sale of a car with its components (the 4 wheels, the engine, etc.) that therefore are sold jointly. Buying a computer with preinstalled software, the user is required to conclude two different contracts: the first, when he buys the computer; the second, when he turns on the computer for the first time and he is required to accept or not the license terms of the preinstalled software.9 Therefore, if the user does not accept the software license, he has the right to keep the computer and install free software without having to pay the "Microsoft tax."

Notes:

1 Judgement n. 19161/2014 published 11/9/2014
http://www.italgiure.giustizia.it/xway/application/nif/clean/hc.dll?verbo=attach&db=snciv&id=./20140912/snciv@s30@a2014@n19161@tS.clean.pdf.
2 I had the honor to assist before the Supreme Court Marco Pieraccioli who already had favorable decisions both at first instance (judgment no. 5384/2007 of the Giudice di Pace di Firenze) and in second degree (judgment no. 2526/2010 of the Tribunale di Firenze).
3 See http://aduc.it/.
4 See https://www.gnu.org/philosophy/free-sw.
5 See https://gnu.org/philosophy/selling.
6 See p. 22 of the judgment.
7 See p. 21 of the judgment.
8 See http://non.aux.racketiciels.info/.
9 The judgment at p. 21 states: "Having been assessed that there are not technological obstacles, the 'packaging' at the source of hardware and operating system Microsoft Windows (as it would for any other operating system for a fee) would actually respond, in substance, to a trade policy aimed at the forceful spread of the latter in the hardware retail (at least in that, a large majority, headed by the most established OEM brands); among other things, with cascade effects in order to the imposition on the market of additional software applications whose dissemination among final customers finds strong stimulus and influence - if not genuine compulsion - in more or less intense constraints of compatibility and interoperability (that this time we could define 'technological with commercial effect') with that operating system, that has at least tendency to be monopolistic".

© Marco Ciurcina, 2014 – Some rights reserved This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License or any later version. Read more


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 license (or later version)

Cumulus Linux 2.5 adds mainstream L2 features to bare-metal switching

As Cumulus Networks attempts to expand beyond the early adopters of its Cumulus Linux bare-metal switch operating system, it is adding Layer 2 networking features aimed at making it easier for enterprises to make the transition from legacy environments to the IP fabrics that most cloud computing customers operate. Read more

SimplyTapp launches open source tokenization project

“We don’t want to put any hindrance in the way of a bank launching cloud-based payments because they have to buy or rely on another ecosystem player for new technology and so we thought it was a perfect use case for an open source project. Open source allows a perfect line of audit where you can actually see the source code, modify the source code and make updates to the source code for your environment before you’re running it. Read more