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Good News! De-Googled /e/OS Smartphones is Now Shipping to the US and Canada

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OS
Gadgets

The de-googled Android fork /e/OS is a passionate step towards removing Google from your daily driver (i.e. your smartphone).

Considering they’re also working on a privacy-friendly Siri alternative, /e/OS is particularly an exciting pitch for the future smartphones without relying on Google.

While /e/ smartphones have been around for a while, it still is not tailored for everyone depending on various requirements for daily activities that you do on a smartphone. I’d suggest doing your research before making a purchase.

However, there’s good news that /e/ smartphones will now also be shipping to the USA and Canada.

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Quark 20.04 review

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OS
Reviews

Quark is a fairly new project and this is its first stable release. We don’t usually review such young projects, but we were lured in by its polished Windows 10 desktop replica.

In a nutshell, think of Quark as Q4OS working on top of Ubuntu LTS, or more accurately Kubuntu. The developers tell us that their objective with Quark is to bring Q4OS goodness to Ubuntu users. Because Q4OS is based on Debian, it didn’t take the developers much effort to compile the Q4OS tools for Ubuntu.

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Hands-on with KaOS Linux - An Independent KDE Plasma Desktop Distribution

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OS
KDE
Linux

I have spent some time looking at independent Linux distributions – that means those that are built from scratch and not derived from one of the larger, generally better-known distributions (Debian, Ubuntu, Arch, etc.), such as Solus, which I wrote about earlier. This time I am going to look at KaOS Linux.

The screen shot above shows the initial display of a freshly installed KaOS system. If you are not familiar with the side-panel orientation used here, it is basically the same as the traditional bottom or top panel desktop, but with everything "standing on end". The complete desktop menu is at the top of the panel, just click on the "K" symbol (the desktop menu is open in this screen shot); the common application launchers are just below that, and the controls for things like the network, volume, bluetooth, network and such are at the bottom.

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Fuzix Unix-like operating system ported to Raspberry Pi Pico and ESP8266

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OS
Hardware

The Raspberry Pi Pico is not compatible with Linux, but now supports another Unix-like operating system known as Fuzix. Alan Cox’s Fuzix is a Unix-like operating system for older devices with less performance capacity. David Given’s two recent posts have brought to the attention about the operating system’s compatibility with ESP8266 MCU and Raspberry Pi Pico.

Fuzix operating system has a kernel which is the central core of the system. Also, it has a C compiler and a set of core applications similar to the UNIX filesystem. The Raspberry Pi Pico port comes with many benefits like a well-structured Unix filesystem with its compatibility for SD cards through the SPI interface. Hence, supporting the Fuzix operating system. The full set of Fuzix binaries is available through a serial console to UART0.

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Announcing Oracle Solaris 11.4 SRU30

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OS

We've just released SRU30 for Oracle Solaris 11.4. It is available via 'pkg update' from the support repository or by downloading the SRU from My Oracle Support Doc ID 2433412.1.

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Also: Oracle Solaris 11.4 SRU30 Is The Biggest Update We've Seen In A While

Sailfish OS Koli

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OS
Gadgets

  • Fourth generation of Sailfish OS is here!

    We’ve come a long way, since Sailfish OS was first introduced in 2013. Now as we enter the 4th generation with Sailfish OS, the secure platform for trusted mobile solutions, we can proudly say that our product is in great shape and ready to expand to new frontiers! After Sailfish 3 was launched many big developments have happened that have have impacted Jolla, Sailfish OS, our partners with us, and all the daily Sailfish users.

    [...]

    The first Sailfish 4 software release, Koli, is today made available to all Sailfish users. You’re welcome to read more details from the Koli blog post, which our software engineer David Llewellyn-Jones has crafted.

    To celebrate this milestone Sailfish 4 release, we’ve also just published a major update to the Sailfish OS website to show better and more visually what this great alternative OS is all about – be sure to check out that as well!

  • Sailfish OS Koli is now available

    No doubt you’ll already have read about the transition of Sailfish OS into its fourth generation. And that, of course, also means a new Sailfish OS release. We’re very pleased to announce Sailfish OS 4.0.1 Koli, one of our biggest Sailfish releases for a long time. There are far too many improvements to cover all of them in detail here – you can check details from the release notes. In line with our version 4 naming, we’ve chosen to look at four significant improvements below.

    But before getting in to that, you’ll of course want to know about Koli. The Koli National Park is in the North Karelia region of Finland in the east, hugging the western shore of Lake Pielinen, which you can see in the update photo. It’s not hard to see why the beautiful vistas provided inspiration for Jean Sibelius, composer of the Finnish national anthem. The photograph also shows the characteristic white quartzite on the Koli “vaara” (amongst the many words for “hill” in Finnish, “vaara” is the second smallest).

Introducing the Linux Mint Devuan Edition

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OS

The Mint project has been a long-time favorite among Linux users who are mainly home users. Its friendly and common sense approach to a distribution appeals to many people who want to run something with the Linux kernel on their desktop. There's ample testimony of this, from the inception and creation of the Cinnamon desktop as common sense, traditional but still sleek and modern alternative to the evolving desaster and dumbing-down assault from other desktops at the time to coming up with great little tools like the Warpinator for file sharing on a LAN, the Hypnotix IPTV app and other little improvements to make things just a little easier, for the average Joe and the Techie who just wants to get things done alike.

For various reasons I am one of the very small percentile who happen to prefer the Debian Edition over the regular Ubuntu derived offering, which is almost identical in features though. For example, shortly after the release of Linux Mint 20.1 we saw all the small improvements and additions trickle down to LMDE4. Within days we received Cinnamon 4.8.6, including the new ability to add files and folders to Favorites in Nemo file manager which would be reflected in the menu and on the panel, Hypnotix, the Warpinator and new themes and backgrounds through the update channel. I think the newly refereshed icon theme was even trialled first in LMDE. It is definitely not a step child.

There's only one thing wrong with LMDE and that is that it's based on Debian rather than on Devuan with its more traditional and predictable init. So I set out on a little experiment to build a LMDE-like system on top of Devuan and what can I say, it works very well. Steps are outlined here on the LM forum.

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Devuan Beowulf 3.1.0 point release

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OS

Once again the Veteran Unix Admins salute you on this day commemorating six years since the first Devuan pre-alpha Valentine's Day release in 2015!

Devuan Beowulf 3.1.0 point release installer ISOs, desktop-live, and minimal-live isos are now available. Note that ARM and virtual images are not updated in this release.

[...]

We wish to thank all of you for the incredible support given to this development effort, which continues to make Devuan a useful and reliable base distribution.

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Also: Devuan 3.1 Released - Debian Fork Now Offers Runit Plus Sysvinit, OpenRC

Google proposes way for Fuchsia OS to run Android and Linux programs ‘natively’

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OS
Google

One of the bigger issues with making a new operating system, particularly one that’s being built from scratch like Fuchsia, is that people will rightfully want to be able to run their favorite apps on that OS. In the case of Fuchsia, which could theoretically serve as the successor to both Chrome OS and Android, people would likely expect to be able to run both Android apps and Linux apps, along with native Fuchsia apps.

Up to now, the expectation was that Fuchsia could accomplish this in the same way that Chrome OS is currently able to run Linux apps, by running a full instance of Linux in a virtual machine. Chrome OS is even set to use this same strategy for its ability to run Android apps, thanks to a project called arcvm.

However, there are some downsides to the virtual machine approach. For one, managing files between the “host” (Fuchsia, for example) and the “guest” (Android) can be tricky or cumbersome. Additionally, Fuchsia puts an emphasis on security, attempting to keep programs isolated from one another wherever possible. To maintain that level of isolation with Linux apps, Fuchsia would need to run more than one virtual machine, which could bog down performance.

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Sailfish OS 4.0.1 No Longer Support The Jolla Phone But Has Many Other Improvements

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OS

Jolla's Sailfish OS 4.0.1 was released this past week to early access subscribers as a major milestone for Sailfish OS 4.

Sailfish OS 4.0.1 "Koli" is available currently to early access users since Thursday. With Sailfish OS 4.0.1, Jolla Phone is no longer supported as their original smartphone ambition. Supported by Sailfish OS 4 remain the Jolla C, Jolla Tablet, and Sony Xperia 10 / XA2 models, Gemini PDA x25/x27, and other select devices.

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Original: [release notes] Koli 4.0.1 - Announcements - Sailfish OS Forum

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More in Tux Machines

today's leftovers

  • Snapcraft Clinic Successes

    On Thursday I mentioned we were restarting the Snapcraft Clinic. Basically we stand up a regular video call with engineers from the snap and snapcraft team & us from Snap Advocacy. Developers of applications and publishers of snaps are invited to join to troubleshoot. There was nothing especially secret or private discussed, but as we don’t record or stream the calls, and I don’t have direct permission to mention the applications or people involved, so I’ll keep this a little vague. In future I think we should ask permission and record the outcomes of the calls. We had a few productive discussions. One developer brought an application which they’d requested classic confinement for, and wished to discuss the options for confinement. We had a rather lengthy open discussion about the appropriateness of the available options. The developer was offered some choices, including making changes to their application to accomodate confinement, and another was (as always) not to snap the application. They appreciated our openness in terms of accepting that there are limitations with all software, and not everything always makes sense to be packaged as a snap, at the moment. We also had a productive discusison with a representative of a group responsible for publishing multiple snaps. They had difficulties with a graphical snapped application once it had been updated to use core20. The application would launch and almost immediately segfault. As the application was already published in the Snap Store, in a non-stable channel, we were all able to install it to test on our own systems.

  • Kraft Version 0.96

    Ich freue mich, heute das Release Version 0.96 von Kraft herauszugeben. Die neue Version kann über die Homepage heruntergeladen werden.

  • A new data format has landed in the upcoming GTG 0.5

    Diego’s changes are major, invasive technological changes, and they would benefit from extensive testing by everybody with “real data” before 0.5 happens (very soon). I’ve done some pretty extensive testing & bug reporting in the last few months; Diego fixed all the issues I’ve reported so far, so I’ve pretty much run out of serious bugs now, as only a few remain targetted to the 0.5 milestone… But I’m only human, and it is possible that issues might remain, even after my troll-testing. Grab GTG’s git version ASAP, with a copy of your real data (for extra caution, and also because we want you to test with real data); see the instructions in the README, including the “Where is my user data and config stored?” section. Please torture-test it to make sure everything is working properly, and report issues you may find (if any). Look for anything that might seem broken “compared to 0.4”, incorrect task parenting/associations, incorrect tagging, broken content, etc.

  • MAS ‘Ocean strainer’ technology to be open source

    Inspired by the success of its ‘Ocean Strainer’ floating trash trap, a pilot project launched in the Dehiwala Canal last year, MAS Holdings will make the ‘Ocean Strainer’ technology available to interested parties, to replicate and scale up the solution.

  • Notes on Addressing Supply Chain Vulnerabilities

    One of the unsung achievements of modern software development is the degree to which it has become componentized: not that long ago, when you wanted to write a piece of software you had to write pretty much the whole thing using whatever tools were provided by the language you were writing in, maybe with a few specialized libraries like OpenSSL. No longer. The combination of newer languages, Open Source development and easy-to-use package management systems like JavaScript’s npm or Rust’s Cargo/crates.io has revolutionized how people write software, making it standard practice to pull in third party libraries even for the simplest tasks; it’s not at all uncommon for programs to depend on hundreds or thousands of third party packages. [...] Even packages which are well maintained and have good development practices routinely have vulnerabilities. For example, Firefox recently released a new version that fixed a vulnerability in the popular ANGLE graphics engine, which is maintained by Google. Both Mozilla and Google follow the practices that this blog post recommends, but it’s just the case that people make mistakes. To (possibly mis)quote Steve Bellovin, “Software has bugs. Security-relevant software has security-relevant bugs”. So, while these practices are important to reduce the risk of vulnerabilities, we know they can’t eliminate them. Of course this applies to inadvertant vulnerabilities, but what about malicious actors (though note that Brewer et al. observe that “Taking a step back, although supply-chain attacks are a risk, the vast majority of vulnerabilities are mundane and unintentional—honest errors made by well-intentioned developers.”)? It’s possible that some of their proposed changes (in particular forbidding anonymous authors) might have an impact here, but it’s really hard to see how this is actionable. What’s the standard for not being anonymous? That you have an e-mail address? A Web page? A DUNS number?[3] None of these seem particularly difficult for a dedicated attacker to fake and of course the more strict you make the requirements the more it’s a burden for the (vast majority) of legitimate developers. I do want to acknowledge at this point that Brewer et al. clearly state that multiple layers of protection needed and that it’s necessary to have robust mechanisms for handling vulnerability defenses. I agree with all that, I’m just less certain about this particular piece.

  • 26 Firefox Quantum About:Config Tricks You Need to Learn - Make Tech Easier

    “Here be dragons,” reads the ominous disclaimer when you type about:config into Firefox’s URL bar, warning you that tweaking things in this area is largely experimental and can cause instability to your browser. Sounds exciting, right? And even though it sounds a little scary, the fact is you will almost certainly be okay when you start playing around in this area and can actually use the features here to improve and speed up your browser. These are Make Tech Easier’s favorite Firefox about:config tricks, freshly updated for Firefox Quantum.

  • Attackers collaborate to exploit CVE-2021-21972 and CVE-2021-21973 - Blueliv

Programming Leftovers

  • The HTTP Referer header is fading away (at least as a useful thing)

    The HTTP Referer header on requests is famously misspelled (it should be Referrer), and also famously not liked because of privacy and security concerns. The privacy and security concerns are especially strong with external ('cross-origin') Referers, which is also the ones that many people find most useful because they tell you where visitors to your pages are coming from and let you find places where people have linked to you or are mentioning you.

  • Top 10 Natural Language Processing (NLP) Trends To Look Forward

    AI and Machine Learning have gifted us marvelous things. NLP or Natural Language Processing is one of them. It is one of the most prominent applications of AI. We are using this technology in our day-to-day life without even knowing. Translators, speech recognition apps, chatbots are actually NLP-powered products. Tech giants like Google and Microsoft are making new developments in NLP every year. If you are an AI enthusiast, you should go deep inside NLP. Chill! We got you covered. Just go through the article, and know about the top NLP trends that most data scientists are talking about.

  • Russ Allbery: DocKnot 4.01

    DocKnot is my software documentation and release management tool. This release adds support for a global user configuration file separate from the metadata for any given project and adds support for signing generated distribution tarballs with GnuPG. Currently, the only configuration options for the global configuration file are to set the destination location of generated distributions and the PGP key to use when signing them.

  • horizonator: terrain renderer based on SRTM DEMs

    I just resurrected and cleaned up an old tool I had lying around. It's now nice and usable by others. This tool loads terrain data, and renders it from the ground, simulating what a human or a camera would see. This is useful for armchair exploring or for identifying peaks. This was relatively novel when I wrote it >10 years ago, but there are a number of similar tools in existence now. This implementation is still useful in that it's freely licensed and contains APIs, so fancier processing can be performed on its output.

  • Happy birthday, Python, you're 30 years old this week: Easy to learn, and the right tool at the right time

    The 30th anniversary of Python this week finds the programming language at the top of its game, but not without challenges. "I do believe that Python just doesn’t have the right priorities these days," said Armin Ronacher, director of engineering at software monitoring biz Sentry and creator of Flask, the popular Python web app framework, in an email interview with The Register. Ronacher, a prolific Python contributor, remains a fan of the language. He credits Python's success to being both easy to learn and having an implementation that was easy to hack. And in its early years, Python didn't have a lot of competitors with those same characteristics, he said.

  • Google fires 150 game developers hired for Stadia: Report

    In about two years, Google has announced to shut down the in-house Stadia game development division, as it sees a great adoption of its technology by third-party developers and publishers to create world-class games.

    Google has said that it will not be investing further in bringing exclusive content from its internal development team SG&E, beyond any near-term planned games.

Benchmarks at Phoronix and Phoronix Test Suite

  • Vulkan Ray-Tracing Along With Other New/Updated Benchmarks For February - Phoronix

    Below is a look at all of the updates now available via OpenBenchmarking.org for Phoronix Test Suite users or if simply wanting to go to the test profile pages to gauge the CPU/GPU performance in the different real-world workloads. All these updates are available to Phoronix Test Suite users automatically if on an Internet connection when the metadata automatically updates or by running phoronix-test-suite openbenchmarking-refresh to force refresh.

  • The Phoronix Test Suite Gains Vulkan Ray-Tracing Benchmarks

    The versatile Phoronix Test Suite, developed and used by the Linux news website Phoronix, has gained profiles for benchmarking Vulkan ray-tracing performance using two different benchmarks as well as the JPEG XL benchmarks. There's also updates to many of the existing tests as well as a new 10.2.2 release of the Phoronix Test Suite software. [...] Michael Larabel has also updated many existing benchmarks, including the ones for the commercial closed-source games Portal 2, Insurgency and Civilization VI, blender, the libavif AVIF image encoder, the dav1d AV1 video encoder, GROMACS (GROningen MAchine for Chemical Simulations), ParaView, V-RAY (commercial), Pennant (OpenMP benchmark), NWChem and the free software platform game DDraceNetwork.

today's howtos

  • How To Use chmod and chown Command in Linux

    How do I use chmod and chown command under Linux / Unix operating systems? Use the chown command to change file owner and group information. we run the chmod command command to change file access permissions such as read, write, and access. This page explains how to use chmod and chown command on Linux or Unix-like systems.

  • How To Add Route on Linux – devconnected

    As a network engineer, you probably spend a lot of time thinking and planning your network infrastructure. You plan how computers will be linked, physically using specific cables but also logically using routing tables. When your network plan is built, you will have to implement every single link that you theorized on paper. In some cases, if you are using Linux computers, you may have to add some routes in order to link it to other networks in your company. Adding routes on Linux is extremely simple and costless : you can use the Network Manager daemon (if you are running a recent distribution) or the ifconfig one. In this tutorial, you will learn how you can easily add new routes on a Linux machine in order to link it to your physical network.

  • syncing subtitles in freedom

    The topic of creating subtitles with Free Software has often come up in my circles of Emacs-oriented users, and I haven't had a good recommendation to share, until this idea hit me the other day. Subtitle files are largely blocks of start/end time associated with blocks of text. I figured, once you got a transcript, existing Emacs Org Mode features could be used, perhaps along with keyboard macros, to turn the transcript into a synced subtitle file.

  • How To Install Minecraft on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS [Ed: Proprietary and Microsoft; not an attractive option as Free/libre alternatives exist]

    In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Minecraft on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS. For those of you who didn’t know, Minecraft is the most popular sandbox video game developed by Mojang studios but later purchased by Microsoft. It can be used with all major platforms like Linux, macOS, and Windows. Most Minecraft players would agree that the secrete to the game’s success lies in its creativity-inspiring design. Players are free to explore a large, procedurally generated world made of blocks, each of which can be interacted with, moved, or transformed into resources for crafting. This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you through the step-by-step installation of Minecraft on Ubuntu 20.04 (Focal Fossa). You can follow the same instructions for Ubuntu 18.04, 16.04, and any other Debian-based distribution like Linux Mint.

  • Ubuntu: format SD card [Guide]

    Are you new to Ubuntu? Do you need to format your SD card but can’t figure out how to do it? If so, this guide is for you! Follow along as we go over a few ways you can format SD cards on Linux.

  • How to remove a remove apt repository from Debian

    Do you have an Apt repository on your Debian Linux PC that you want to delete? Can’t figure out how to do it? We can help! Follow along as we go over two ways you can remove Apt repositories from Debian!

  • The Raspberry PI Cheat Sheet – Raspberry PI User

    The Raspberry PI cheat sheet gives a quick overview of common commands, installation tips and links to guides to help you set up your Raspberry PI as a desktop computer.

  • Do a Kernel Upgrade the Easy Way in Linux Mint

    Upgrading the Linux kernel can be difficult, especially for new Linux users. In Linux Mint, however, it's possible to upgrade to a newer kernel with zero hassle. Today we'll find out how to do it, and what to do if you experience problems.