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Introducing the potential new Ubuntu Studio Council

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Back in 2016, Set Hallström was elected as the new Team Lead for Ubuntu Studio, just in time for the 16.04 Xenial Long Term Support (LTS) release. It was intended that Ubuntu Studio would be able to utilise Set’s leadership skills at least up until the next LTS release in April 2018. Unfortunately, as happens occasionally in the world of volunteer work, Set’s personal circumstances changed and he is no longer able to devote as much time to Ubuntu Studio as he would like. Therefore, an IRC meeting was held between interested Ubuntu Studio contributors on 21st May 2017 to agree on how to fill the void. We decided to follow the lead of Xubuntu and create a Council to take care of Ubuntu Studio, rather than continuing to place the burden of leadership on the shoulder of one particular person. Unfortunately, although the result was an agreement to form the first Ubuntu Studio Council from the meeting participants, we all got busy and the council was never set up.

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Ubuntu LTS Updates (16.04 and 18.04)

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  • Xenial 16.04.4 Call For Testing (All Flavours)

    Some time ago our first release candidate builds for all flavours that
    released with xenial have been posted to the ISO tracker [1] into the
    16.04.4 milestone.

    As with each point-release, we would need volunteers to grab the ISOs
    of their flavour/flavours of choice and perform general testing. We
    obviously are mostly looking for regressions from 16.04.3, but please
    fill in any bugs you encounter (against the respective source packages
    on Launchpad). There is still time until the target release date on
    1st of March, but for now we're not considering pulling in any more
    fixes besides ones for potential release-blockers that we encounter.

    With enough luck the images that have been made available just now
    might be the ones we release on Thursday.

  • Ubuntu 18.04 LTS Bionic Beaver — Release Date And 9 Biggest Features

    Following the release of Ubuntu 17.10 Artful Aardvark, Canonical CEO Mark Shuttleworth announced that Ubuntu 18.04, which would be an LTS release, is going to be called “Bionic Beaver.” While Beaver refers to a large, amphibious rodent with smooth fur and sharp teeth, Bionic is an ode to the robotics and artificial body parts.

    We also conducted a little poll on Fossbytes regarding the name. About 80% visitors loved the codename. Others suggested names like Ballsy Baboon, Busy Bee, Bumble Bee, etc. This also brings us to the next step, i.e., exploring what could be the expected features of Ubuntu 18.04 LTS. In case you’re running an LTS release and planning to make perform the upgrade to 18.04, things are surely going to be pretty exciting for you.

Aquaris E4.5 Ubuntu Phone - With Android

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I ever so slightly regret the "upgrade" to Android. With a version less than the tablet, the UI changes are extremely noticeable, and the transition isn't as smooth. The device lags, and it just doesn't have enough processing power to give the necessary feel of goodness and elegance. On the other hand, you get tons of native applications that you can actually use, as opposed to the Ubuntu Touch idea. Shame really. For 'tis a compromise.
If you ask me, I wholeheartedly embrace the M10 tablet upgrade, but on the phone, you might as well keep Ubuntu unless you need the device for serious use. If it's just an opportunistic call/SMS thing for when abroad and such, or to loan to friends, the original combo is adequate. If you need apps, then Android is the way to go, but do not except any miracles. It won't be speedy, and it won't be too pretty. All in all, an okay player.

It is silly attaching sentiments to software or hardware, but I do guess I will fondly remember the Ubuntu phone attempt as a noble idea to make something great and fun. I could have kept the device in its original state, perhaps, but in the end, it would have ended in a pile of ancient stuff you keep around for a decade until you decide you need to throw it away to leave room for fresh memories and less ancient stuff. Having a flawless Android experience would have helped soften the edge, but as it is, it remains the bittersweet attempt at what could have been a revolution. The end.

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Also: Ubuntu Desktop weekly update – February 23, 2018

Ubuntu 18.04 LTS (Bionic Beaver) Daily Builds Now Fuelled by Linux Kernel 4.15

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The Ubuntu Kernel team promised at the beginning of the development cycle for Ubuntu 18.04 LTS (Bionic Beaver), Canonical's seventh long-term supported Ubuntu release to receive security and software update for the next five years, that they target the Linux 4.15 kernel series for the operating system.

Linux 4.15 had one of the longest development cycles in the history of kernels for GNU/Linux distributions, due to the numerous patches to mitigate the nasty Meltdown and Spectre security vulnerabilities for 64-bit architectures. It finally arrived at the end of January, so it took a month for Ubuntu Kernel team to implement it.

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Also: Linux 4.15 Kernel Is Now The Default In Ubuntu 18.04 LTS

Canonical Ubuntu 2017 milestones, a year in the rulebook

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So has Canonical been breaking rules with Ubuntu is 2017, or has it in been writing its own rulebook?

Back in April we saw an AWS-tuned kernel of Ubuntu launched, the move to cloud is unstoppable, clearly. We also saw Ubuntu version 17.04 released, with Unity 7 as the default desktop environment. This release included optimisations for environments with low powered graphics hardware.

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Also: Ubuntu will let upgraders ‘opt-in’ to data collection in 18.04

The Community Has Brought The Unity 8 Desktop To Ubuntu 18.04

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Besides bringing Ubuntu Touch to new mobile devices, the UBports team has also managed to continue their community-driven work on advancing the Unity 8 convergence desktop after Canonical abandoned work on it last year. They now have Unity 8 working on top of Ubuntu 18.04 LTS.

The UBPorts' fork of Unity 8 is now working on Ubuntu 18.04 LTS where as previously they were focused on older versions of Ubuntu. Installation instructions can be found via this GitHub repository with this being work found outside of the official Ubuntu archives. Ubuntu 16.04 LTS and 18.04 LTS users can make use of the project's install scripts where they have assembled an APT archive with their own packages of Unity 8 complete with Mir.

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You Can Now Turn Your Old Moto G2 "Titan" Phone Into an Ubuntu Phone, Here's How

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Walid Hammami managed to port UBports' Ubuntu Touch mobile operating system on the Moto G2 2014 smartphone, which features a Qualcomm MSM8226 Snapdragon 400 chip, 1GB RAM, and 8GB internal storage.

As such, Moto G2 has been accepted by the UBports project as the first community supported device, and it's a well-done port with everything working just fine, including Wi-Fi, GSM, 3G, GPS, Bluetooth, SMS, Camera, Ubuntu Store, etc.

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Canonical Outs New Ubuntu Kernel Update with Compiler-Based Retpoline Mitigation

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New Linux kernel security updates have been released for Ubuntu 17.10 (Artful Aardvark), Ubuntu 16.04 LTS (Xenial Xerus), Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (Trusty Tahr), and Ubuntu 12.04 ESM (Extended Security Maintenance), adding the compiler-based retpoline kernel mitigation for the Spectre Variant 2 vulnerability on amd64 and i386 architectures.

Canonical fixed the Spectre Variant 2 security vulnerability last month on January 22, but only for 64-bit Ubuntu installations. This update apparently mitigates the issue for 32-bit installations too. Spectre is a nasty hardware bug in microprocessors that use branch prediction and speculative execution and it could allow unauthorized memory reads via side-channel attacks.

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Debian and Ubuntu Leftovers

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  • Listing and loading of Debian repositories: now live on Software Heritage

    Software Heritage is the project for which I’ve been working during the past two and a half years now. The grand vision of the project is to build the universal software archive, which will collect, preserve and share the Software Commons.

    Today, we’ve announced that Software Heritage is archiving the contents of Debian daily. I’m reposting this article on my blog as it will probably be of interest to readers of Planet Debian.

    TL;DR: Software Heritage now archives all source packages of Debian as well as its security archive daily. Everything is ready for archival of other Debian derivatives as well. Keep on reading to get details of the work that made this possible.

  • Canonical announces Ubuntu Core across Rigado’s IoT gateways
  • Collecting user data while protecting user privacy

    Lots of companies want to collect data about their users. This is a good thing, generally; being data-driven is important, and it’s jolly hard to know where best to focus your efforts if you don’t know what your people are like. However, this sort of data collection also gives people a sense of disquiet; what are you going to do with that data about me? How do I get you to stop using it? What conclusions are you drawing from it? I’ve spoken about this sense of disquiet in the past, and you can watch (or read) that talk for a lot more detail about how and why people don’t like it.

    So, what can we do about it? As I said, being data-driven is a good thing, and you can’t be data-driven if you haven’t got any data to be driven by. How do we enable people to collect data about you without compromising your privacy?

    Well, there are some ways. Before I dive into them, though, a couple of brief asides: there are some people who believe that you shouldn’t be allowed to collect any data on your users whatsoever; that the mere act of wanting to do so is in itself a compromise of privacy. This is not addressed to those people. What I want is a way that both sides can get what they want: companies and projects can be data-driven, and users don’t get their privacy compromised. If what you want is that companies are banned from collecting anything… this is not for you. Most people are basically OK with the idea of data collection, they just don’t want to be victimised by it, now or in the future, and it’s that property that we want to protect.

    Similarly, if you’re a company who wants to know everything about each individual one of your users so you can sell that data for money, or exploit it on a user-by-user basis, this isn’t for you either. Stop doing that.

Ubuntu vs Linux Mint: Which distro is best for your business?

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Linux is attracting a growing number of users to its enormous selection of distribution systems. These 'distros' are operating systems with the Linux kernel at their foundation and a variety of software built on top to create a desktop environment tailored to the needs of users.

Ubuntu and Linux Mint are among the most popular flavours of these.

Ubuntu's name derives from a Southern Africa philosophy that can loosely be defined as "humanity to others", a spirit its founders wanted to harness in a complete operating system that is both free and highly customisable.

Linux Mint is based on Ubuntu and built as a user-friendly alternative with full out-of-the-box multimedia support. By some measures, Linux Mint has surpassed the popularity of its progenitor, but Ubuntu retains a loyal following of its own.

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More in Tux Machines

today's leftovers

  • Zorin OS 12.3 Linux Distro Released: Download The Perfect Windows Replacement
    While listing out the best distros for a Linux beginner, the ease of use and installation are the most critical factors. Such qualities make distros like Linux Mint, Ubuntu, and Zorin OS the most recommended options. In case you’re also concerned about your privacy and security, a shift to the world of Linux becomes a more obvious option. Calling itself a replacement for Windows and macOS, Zorin OS has been established as a beginner-friendly option that offers a smooth ride while making the transition. The latest Zorin OS 12.3 release works to strengthen the basics of the operating system and polishes the whole experience.
  • Ramblings about long ago and far away
    I had originally run MCC (Manchester Computer Center Interim Linux) in college but when I moved it was easier to find a box of floppies with SLS so I had installed that on the 486. I would then download software source code from the internet and rebuild it for my own use using all the extra flags I could find in GCC to make my 20Mhz system seem faster. I instead learned that most of the options didn't do anything on i386 Linux at the time and most of my reports about it were probably met by eye-rolls with the people at Cygnus. My supposed goal was to try and set up a MUD so I could code up a text based virtual reality. Or to get a war game called Conquer working on Linux. Or maybe get xTrek working on my system. [I think I mostly was trying to become a game developer by just building stuff versus actually coding stuff. I cave-man debugged a lot of things using stuff I had learned in FORTRAN but it wasn't actually making new things.]
  • EzeeLinux Show 18.13 | Running Linux On Junk
    A talk about the advantages of running Linux on junk hardware.
  • Best 50 HD Wallpapers for Ubuntu
    Wallpapers are useful in many ways depending on the visual it contains for example if there is a motivational quote on it, it helps to motivate you. The images are the best type of wallpaper because they have an impact on the mind of a human being. So if you are a working professional and have to work continuously on a computer then your desktop cab be a source of inspiration and happiness. So today we are going to share 50 best HD Wallpapers for your Ubuntu which will keep your desktop fresh.
  • Ubuntu Tried Adding Synaptics Support Back To GNOME's Mutter
    GNOME developers previously dropped support for Synaptics and other input drivers from Mutter in favor of the universal libinput stack that is also Wayland-friendly. Canonical developers tried to get Synaptics support on X11 added back into Mutter but it looks clear now that was rejected. Canonical's Will Cooke reported in this week's Ubuntu happenings that they were trying to add upstream support for Synaptics to Mutter, complementing the libinput support. While it's great Canonical trying to contribute upstream to GNOME, Synaptics support was previously dropped as being a maintenance burden and with libinput support getting into rather good shape.
  • Long live Release Engineering
    y involvement in Fedora goes back to late 2003 early 2004 somewhere as a packager for I started by getting a few packages in to scratch some of my itches and I saw it as a way to give back to the greater open source community. Around FC3 somewhere I stepped up to help in infrastructure to rebuild the builders in plague, the build system we used before koji and that we used for EPEL(Something that I helped form) for awhile until we got external repo support in koji. I was involved in the implementation of koji in Fedora, I joined OLPC as a build and release engineer, where I oversaw a move of the OS they shipped from FC6 to F8, and laid a foundation for the move to F9. I left OLPC when Red Hat opensourced RHN Satellite as “spacewalk project” I joined Red Hat as the release engineer for both, after a brief period there was some reorganisation in engineering that resulted in me handing off the release engineering tasks to someone closer the the engineers working on the code. As a result I worked on Fedora full time helping Jesse Keating. When he decided to work on the internal migration from CVS to git I took over as the lead. [...] Recently I have accepted a Job offer to become the manager of a different team inside of Red Hat.

Linux 4.17 Spring Cleaning To Drop Some Old CPU Architectures and Recent Torvalds Interview

  • Linux 4.17 Spring Cleaning To Drop Some Old CPU Architectures
    Longtime Linux kernel developer Arnd Bergmann is working to drop a number of old and obsolete CPU architectures from the next kernel cycle, Linux 4.17. The obsolete CPU architectures set to be removed include Blackfin, CRIS, FR-V, M32R, MN10300, META (Metag), and TILE. Managing to escape its death sentence is the Unicore32 architecture with its port maintainer claiming it's still actively being used and maintained.
  • [Older] Linus Torvalds Interview by Kristaps

    Interviewer: we all know who Linus is, but not many people know he’s also a proficient diver. Why don’t we start at the beginning: where you first started diving, and when you started to take diving seriously.  

    Actually, it was related to open source, in some way. [...]

Software: KDE, DocKnot and More

  • This week in Usability & Productivity, part 10
    Today’s Usability & Productivity status is jam-packed with awesome stuff that I think you’re all really gonna love.
  • DocKnot 1.03
    This is the software that I use to generate documentation for my software. Currently, it just handles README,, and the top-level web page for the package.
  • Linux Release Roundup: Amarok Sees First Release in 3 Years
    The past 7 days have been pretty dang busy in Linux release land. We’ve taken a look at the best GNOME 3.28 features, recapped the latest Firefox 59 changes, and made ourselves comfortable with the latest changes to Linux audiobook player Cozy.

today's howtos/technical