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Hardware

Introducing Web Pi The Raspberry Pi Web Interface

Filed under
Linux
Hardware

When working on my home network, users were reporting internet issues when I was not available to provide support, but a running theme was slow gaming. I suspected it was issues with the gaming networks such as PSN and over usage (streaming and gaming at the same time).

When users persisted that it was the internet, I set up a raspberry pi to frequently perform speed tests and log the results. As expected net speed on the connection was less than 50 mbits per second, the raspberry Pi would not be a bottleneck. After running for a few days, each time there was an issue, I was able to check the logs and diagnose any issues, which usually correlated with PSN being slow.

Although it did the job I needed, I wanted to open it up so other users could check the results without me giving them access to the server, hence I wrote the Web Pi to output the content to a browser, and gradually added more features.

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Devices With Linux

Filed under
Hardware
  • Apollo Lake Pico-ITX SBC has triple USB 3.0

    Axiomtek often uses a tick-tock cadence with its SBCs, starting out with a computer-on-module like board to showcase a new processor, and then following up with a more typical SBC with more real-world ports and fewer expansion connectors. In the case of Pico-ITX SBCs using Intel’s Apollo Lake processor, it was more like tock-tick-tock. Axiomtek started with a PICO312 with minimal coastline ports, and then followed with a COM-like PICO313. Today it launched a similarly 100 x 72mm PICO316 SBC with more coastline ports than the original PICO312.

  • Man Shows The Fastest Way To Change Google Home Songs: Open Source RPi DIY Kit

    He uses RFID tags to play his favorite songs in the quickest way possible. To do this, he connected his Google Home speaker to his open source DIY tech that he created by attaching an RFID reader to a Raspberry Pi Zero.

  • Rugged, AI focused embedded PC has Ryzen V1000 and optional GTX

    Sintrones’ Linux-friendly “ABOX-5100” embedded PC features an AMD Ryzen V1000, 4x DP, 3x mini-PCIe, and 8x GbE ports with optional PoE. A G1 model adds Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 graphics and 4x HDMI ports.

  • Porting L4Re and Fiasco.OC to the Ben NanoNote (Part 7)

Some of tech’s biggest firms hope to save money with open-source chip designs

Filed under
Hardware
OSS

GNU/Linux Preloaded on Mintbox Mini 2 and Atari

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Hardware
  • Linux Mint announces Mintbox Mini 2 tiny desktop PC with Intel inside

    As with the original Mini, the Mini 2 will come in standard and Mini Pro editions when they become available in June, with similar or lower price tags to their predecessors. The Mini 2 ships with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of solid-state storage, whereas the Mini Pro 2 doubles the RAM and boosts storage capacity to a 120GB SSD. While the Mini 2 is a mere $4 more than the first Mini ($299 versus $294), the $349 Mini Pro 2 is actually $45 cheaper than the previous version.

  • The Atari VCS Console will Run Linux OS to Keep that Atari Homebrew Feel

    It is 2018 and Atari is back in the console game. Didn’t think I’d be typing that one even after they announced the Ataribox last summer. Now, the re-branded Atari VCS was supposed to launch back in December 2017, but was delayed for a “number of factors” however, the company plans to be much more open about the console’s development process in the coming months. While the console probably won’t be releasing anytime soon, Atari Connect COO Michael Arzt was on-site at GDC this week to answer questions about the console. Granted, what he could say was relatively limited, but it did give us some idea of where things are in production. “Delaying the release gave us a chance to go back and look at everything again, and we found a few other things we wanted to change as well,” Arzt said. He didn’t go into detail about the delay or what else would be changing, after all, that’s old news.

Devices: Mintbox Mini, NanoNote (Part 3), MV3

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Hardware
  • Mintbox Mini 2: Compact Linux desktop with Apollo Lake quad-core CPU

    The Mintbox Mini 2 is a fanless computer that measures 4.4″ x 3.3″ x 1.3″ and weighs about 12 ounces. It’s powered by a 10W Intel Celeron J3455 quad-core processor.

  • Linux Mint ditches AMD for Intel with new Mintbox Mini 2

    While replacing Windows 10 with a Linux-based operating system is a fairly easy exercise, it shouldn’t be necessary. Look, if you want a computer running Linux, you should be able to buy that. Thankfully you can, as companies like System76 and Dell sell laptops and desktops with Ubuntu or Ubuntu-based operating systems.

    Another option? Buy a Mintbox! This is a diminutive desktop running Linux Mint — an Ubuntu-based OS. Today, the newest such variant — The Mintbox Mini 2 — makes an appearance. While the new model has several new aspects, the most significant is that the Linux Mint Team has switched from AMD to Intel (the original Mini used an A4-Micro 6400T).

  • Porting L4Re and Fiasco.OC to the Ben NanoNote (Part 3)

    So, we find ourselves in a situation where the compiler is doing the right thing for the code it is generating, but it also notices when the programmer has chosen to do what is now the wrong thing. We must therefore track down these instructions and offer a supported alternative. Previously, we introduced a special configuration setting that might be used to indicate to the compiler when to choose these alternative sequences of instructions: CPU_MIPS32_R1. This gets expanded to CONFIG_CPU_MIPS32_R1 by the build system and it is this identifier that gets used in the program code.

  • Linux Software Enables Advanced Functions on Controllers

    At NPE2018, SISE presents its new generation of multi-zone controllers (MV3). Soon, these controllers will be able to control as many as 336 zones. They are available in five sizes (XS, S, M, L and XL) with three available power cards (2.5 A, 15 A and 30 A). They are adaptable to the packaging, automotive, cosmetics, medical and technical-parts markets.

Devices: Raspberry Pi 3, Ben NanoNote, Artila, webOS

Filed under
Linux
Hardware
  • Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ Benchmarks

    Last week on Pi Day marked the release of the Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ with a slightly higher clocked Cortex-A53 processors, dual-band 802.11ac WiFi, faster Ethernet, and other minor enhancements over its predecessor. I've been spending the past few days putting the Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ through its paces the past few days with an array of benchmarks while comparing the performance to other ARM SBCs as well as a few lower-end Intel x86 systems too. Here is all you need to know about the Raspberry Pi 3 B+ performance.

  • Porting L4Re and Fiasco.OC to the Ben NanoNote (Part 2)

    Having undertaken some initial investigations into running L4Re and Fiasco.OC on the MIPS Creator CI20, I envisaged attempting to get this software running on the Ben NanoNote, too. For a while, I put this off, feeling confident that when I finally got round to it, it would probably be a matter of just choosing the right compiler options and then merely fixing all the mistakes I had made in my own driver code. Little did I know that even the most trivial activities would prove more complicated than anticipated.

    As you may recall, I had noted that a potentially viable approach to porting the software would merely involve setting the appropriate compiler switches for “soft-float” code, thus avoiding the generation of floating point instructions that the JZ4720 – the SoC on the Ben NanoNote – would not be able to execute. A quick check of the GCC documentation indicated the availability of the -msoft-float switch. And since I have a working cross-compiler for MIPS as provided by Debian, there didn’t seem to be much more to it than that. Until I discovered that the compiler doesn’t seem to support soft-float output at all.

    I had hoped to avoid building my own cross-compiler, and apart from enthusiastic (and occasionally successful) attempts to build the Debian ones before they became more generally available, the last time I really had anything to do with this was when I first developed software for the Ben. As part of the general support for the device an OpenWrt distribution had been made available. Part of that was the recipe for building the cross-compiler and other tools, needed for building a kernel and all the software one would deploy on a device. I am sure that this would still be a good place to look for a solution, but I had heard things about Buildroot and so set off to investigate that instead.

  • Artila Releases New Linux-ready Cortex-A7 System on Module M-X6ULL

    Artila's new SODIMM module based on NXP i.MX6ULL ARM Cortex A7 CPU core operating up to 800MHz speed with Linux OS. The new M-X6ULL is designed to meet the needs of many general embedded applications that require power efficient, high performance and cost optimized solution, as well as embedded systems that require high-end multimedia applications in a small form factor, this cost effective M-X6ULL is ultra-compact in size with the form factor of 68 x 43 mm. In addition, M-X6ULL has 200-pins connectors to allow extension of more I/Os for peripheral signals like two 10/100 Mbps Ethernet, LCD, CAN, UART, USB, SD and I2C.

  • LG is expanding webOS usage with open-source edition to rival Samsung’s Tizen

Porting Fedora to RISC-V

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Red Hat
Hardware

In my previous article, I gave an introduction to the open architecture of RISC-V. This article looks at how I and a small team of Fedora users ported a large part of the Fedora package set to RISC-V. It was a daunting task, especially when there is no real hardware or existing infrastructure, but we were able to get there in a part-time effort over a year and a half or so.

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First impressions of the Gemini PDA

Filed under
Linux
Hardware

Last March I discovered the IndieGoGo campaign for the Gemini PDA, a plan to produce a modern PDA with a decent keyboard inspired by the Psion 5. At that point in time the estimated delivery date was November 2017, and it wasn’t clear they were going to meet their goals. As someone has owned a variety of phones with keyboards, from a Nokia 9000i to a T-Mobile G1 I’ve been disappointed about the lack of mobile devices with keyboards. The Gemini seemed like a potential option, so I backed it, paying a total of $369 including delivery. And then I waited. And waited. And waited.

Finally, one year and a day after I backed the project, I received my Gemini PDA. Now, I don’t get as much use out of such a device as I would have in the past. The Gemini is definitely not a primary phone replacement. It’s not much bigger than my aging Honor 7 but there’s no external display to indicate who’s calling and it’s a bit clunky to have to open it to dial (I don’t trust Google Assistant to cope with my accent enough to have it ring random people). The 9000i did this well with an external keypad and LCD screen, but then it was a brick so it had the real estate to do such things. Anyway. I have a laptop at home, a laptop at work and I cycle between the 2. So I’m mostly either in close proximity to something portable enough to move around the building, or travelling in a way that doesn’t mean I could use one.

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AMD And CTS Labs: A Story Of Failed Stock Manipulation

Filed under
Hardware
Security

We have attempted to contact Jessica Schaefer from Bevel PR, the listed PR firm on the vulnerability disclosure website, only to be greeted by a full voicemail inbox. We attempted to contact both Bevel PR and CTS Labs by email and inquire about the relationship between CTS and Viceroy, and provided them with ample time to respond. They did not respond to our inquiry.

So, let's look at Viceroy Research. According to MoneyWeb, Viceroy Research is headed by a 44-year-old British citizen and ex-social worker, John Fraser Perring, in conjunction with two 23-year-old Australian citizens, Gabriel Bernarde and Aidan Lau. I wonder which of these guys is so fast at typing. Viceroy Research was the group responsible for the uncovering of the Steinhoff accounting scandal, about which you can read more here.

After successfully taking down Steinhoff, it tried to manufacture controversy around Capitec Bank, a fast-growing South African bank. This time it didn't work out so well. The Capitec stock price dropped shortly and quickly recovered when the South African reserve bank made a statement that Capitec's business is sound. Just a week ago Viceroy attempted to do the same thing with a German company called ProSieben, also with mixed success, and in alleged breach of German securities laws, according to BaFin (similar to the SEC).

Now, it appears it is going after AMD, though it looks to be another unsuccessful attack.

Investor Takeaway

After the announcement of this news, AMD stock generally traded sideways with slight downward movement, not uncommon for AMD in general. Hopefully this article showed you that CTS's report is largely nonsense and a fabrication with perhaps a small kernel of truth hidden somewhere in the middle. If the vulnerabilities are confirmed by AMD, they are likely to be easily fixed by software patches. If you are long AMD, stay long. If you are looking for an entry point, this might be a good opportunity to use this fake news to your advantage. AMD is a company with a bright future if it continues to execute well, and we see it hitting $20 per share by the end of 2018.

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How to build something ‘useful’ with a Raspberry Pi

Filed under
Linux
Hardware

In honor of Pi Day, Chaim Gartenberg and I cooked up a tiny little Raspberry Pi project for yesterday’s episode of Circuit Breaker Live.

We started with a simple concept: a button that says “Why?” when you press it, in honor of our favorite podcast. So we knew we’d need a button, some sound files, a little bit of Python code, and, of course, a Raspberry Pi.

A new Pi is $35, but we found an old Raspberry Pi 2 in my desk drawer, which was up to the task. (Newer Pis have built-in Wi-Fi and faster processors, but for our simple button project we didn’t need internet or extra horsepower.)

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More in Tux Machines

Smallest RK3399 hacker board yet ships at $129 with 4GB DDR4

FriendlyElec has launched a 100 x 64mm, $129 “NanoPC-T4” SBC that runs Android or Linux on a Rockchip RK3399 with 4G DDR4, native GbE, WiFi-ac, DP, HDMI 2.0, 0 to 80℃ support, and M.2 and 40-pin expansion. FriendlyElec has released its most powerful and priciest hacker board to date, which it promotes as being the smallest RK3399-based SBC on the market. The 100 x 64mm NanoPC-T4 opens with a $129 discount price with the default 4GB DDR4 and 16GB eMMC. Although that will likely rise in the coming months, it’s still priced in the middle range of open spec RK3399 SBCs. Read more

today's leftovers

  • How to dual-boot Linux and Windows
    Even though Linux is a great operating system with widespread hardware and software support, the reality is that sometimes you have to use Windows, perhaps due to key apps that won't run under Linux. Thankfully, dual-booting Windows and Linux is very straightforward—and I'll show you how to set it up, with Windows 10 and Ubuntu 18.04, in this article. Before you get started, make sure you've backed up your computer. Although the dual-boot setup process is not very involved, accidents can still happen. So take the time to back up your important files in case chaos theory comes into play. In addition to backing up your files, consider taking an image backup of the disk as well, though that's not required and can be a more advanced process.
  • Weather Forecasting Gets A Big Lift In Japan
    This is a lot more compute capacity than JMA has had available to do generic weather forecasting as well as do predictions for typhoons, tsunamis, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions – the weather forecasting alone is predicted to run 10X faster, according to Cray.
  • Bitwarden Password Manager Adds Command Line Vault
    Bitwarden, the secure, open source password manager we talked about recently, added a command line tool to its list of apps you can use to access your passwords. Bitwarden CLI is currently in public beta testing, and according to its documentation, it includes all the features available in other Bitwarden client applications, like the desktop or browser extension.
  • GSoC’18 Week 1
    The first week of the coding period was great and I got to learn a lot of new things. My mentors help me on every stage and the work is going on as planne [...] Improvement in the overall UI is still in progress. Other than this, I have been working on refactoring the current code for this activity and breaking the whole code into various elements. For the next week, my main task is to complete the overall UI of this activity and add more geometries for drawing.
  • Time to Test Plasma 5.13 Beta
    The forthcoming new release of Plasma 5.13 will have some lovely new features such as rewritten System Settings pages and Plasma Browser Integration. But we need testers. Incase you missed it the Plasma 5.13 release announce has a rundown of the main features. If you are an auditory learner you can listen to the Late Night Linux Extra podcast where Jonathan “great communicator” Riddell talks about the recent sprint and the release.
  • GSoC students are already hacking!
    We always enjoy that new people join openSUSE community and help them in their first steps. Because of that, openSUSE participates again in GSoC, an international program in which stipends are awarded to students who hack on open source projects during the summer. We are really excited to announce that this year four students will learn about open source development while hacking on openSUSE projects. The coding period started last week, so our students are already busy hacking and they have written some nice articles about their projects. ;)
  • CryptoFest a openSUSE Conference již tento víkend v Praze
  • openSUSE Conference a CryptoFest 2018
  • Aaeon reveals two rugged, Linux-ready embedded PCs
    Aaeon unveiled two Linux-friendly embedded systems: an “AIOT-IP6801” gateway equipped with an Apollo Lake-based UP Squared SBC with WiFi and LoRa, and a “Boxer-8120AI” mini-PC with an Nvidia Jetson TX2 module and 4x GbE ports. Aaeon announced that three of its Linux-ready embedded systems have won Computex d&j awards, including two previously unannounced models: an Intel Apollo Lake based AIOT-IP6801 gateway based on Aaeon’s community-backed UP Squared board, as well as a Boxer-8120AI embedded computer built around an Arm-based Jetson TX2 module.
  • Last Call for Purism's Librem 5 Dev Kits, Git Protocol Version 2 Released, LXQt Version 0.13.0 Now Available and More
    Purism announces last call for its Librem 5 dev kits. If you're interested in the hardware that will be the platform for the Librem 5 privacy-focused phones, place your order by June 1, 2018. The dev kit is $399, and it includes "screen, touchscreen, development mainboard, cabling, power supply and various sensors (free worldwide shipping)".

Programming: GNU Parallel, Rust, Go

OSS Leftovers

  • Openlab: what it is and why it matters
    Six months on from its announcement at Openstack Summit Sydney in late 2017, community testing project OpenLab is in full swing. OpenLab was initially formed by Intel, Huawei and the OpenStack foundation as a community-led project for improving SDK support and also introducing other platforms like Kubernetes and Cloud Foundry to the Openstack environment. Ultimately the idea is to improve usability in hybrid and multi-cloud environments. Melvin Hillsman sits on the governance board along with Dr Yih Leong Sun of Intel and Chris Hoge from the Foundation. Hillsman moved from Rackspace to Huawei to work specifically on the project. "The reason we think Openlab is important is, basically, Openstack for some time has been very specific about testing and integration for Openstack services, focusing only on the projects started at Openstack," Hillsman tellsComputerworld UK at the Openstack Vancouver Summit. "It's been working very well, it's a robust system. But for me as a person in the user community - my getting involved in Openstack was more on the operator-user side.
  • Open source innovation tips for the customer-driven economy
    New technologies, ranging from big data and blockchain to 3D printing, are giving rise to new opportunities and challenges for companies today. To stay competitive, organizations need to become more intelligent, customer-centric, and increasingly agile to cope with changing business demands. The worry for many companies which are trying to innovate is that while the speed and scope of applications are expanding rapidly, the variety and complexity of technology is increasing simultaneously, putting pressure on their IT infrastructure. Speaking at the SUSE Expert Days 2018 held in Singapore recently, Dr Gerald Pfeifer, VP of Products and Technology Program, SUSE, told attendees that these prevailing trends have come together to make Open Source the primary engine for business innovation.
  • Qualcomm is able to release the Snapdragon 845 source code in 6 weeks
    Qualcomm‘s latest high-end system-on-chip, the Qualcomm Snapdragon 845, was announced at the Snapdragon Tech Summit back in December. The chipset offers 4 Kryo 385 (A75 “performance”) and 4 Kryo 385 (A55 “efficiency”) CPU cores, the latest Adreno 630 GPU, the Spectra 280 ISP, the Hexagon 685 DSP, the Snapdragon X20 LTE modem, and a new Secure Processing Unit (SPU). The Snapdragon 845 SoC is a powerhouse in benchmarks and it is already available in devices like the Samsung Galaxy S9/S9+, Xiaomi Mi Mix 2S, and the OnePlus 6. Developers on our forums have been itching to get their hands on a device with Qualcomm’s latest and greatest, but there’s just one thing that has made some developers worry about the future of development on the platform: The lack of publicly available source code for the kernel, HALs, framework branches, and more on the CodeAurora Forums.
  • Kata Containers 1.0 Released, Formerly Intel Clear Containers
    Back in December was the announcement of Intel's Clear Containers being spun into a new project called Kata Containers in collaboration with other organizations. Kata Containers has now reached their version 1.0 milestone. Kata Containers 1.0 is now available for this container technology designed for offering a secure and scalable container experience built atop Intel VT technology.
  • What's new in OpenStack?
    As OpenStack Foundation Chief Operating Officer Mark Collier referenced in his opening keynote, the uses which OpenStack is seeing today expand far beyond what most who were involved in the early days of the project could have ever imagined. While OpenStack started out primarily in the traditional data center and found many large-scale users, particularly in the telecommunications industry, who were using it to manage huge installations of traditional x86 server hardware, the flexibility of OpenStack has today allowed it to thrive in many other environments and use cases. Today, we see OpenStack powering everything from academic and research projects to media and gaming services, from online retail and e-commerce to manufacturing and industrial applications, and from finance to healthcare. OpenStack is found in all of these different places not just because it is cheaper than using the public cloud, not just because it makes compliance with various regulations easier, but because its open source code makes it flexible to all sort of different situations.
  • Should Red Hat Buy or Build a Database?
    For a decade, at least, observers of the company have speculated about whether Red Hat would or should enter the database market. The primary argument, one made in this space eight years ago, has historically been that Red Hat is de facto leaving potential dollars on the table by limiting itself to operating platform and immediately adjacent markets. In a more recent piece, analyst Krishnan Subramanian adds that Red Hat is at risk because databases represent a control point, one that the company is effectively ceding to competitors such as AWS or Microsoft.
  • Tidelift Raises $15M Series A From General Catalyst, Foundry, & Others
    This morning Tidelift, a startup focused on helping developers work with open source technology, announced that it has closed a $15 million Series A round of funding co-led by General Catalyst, Foundry, and Matthew Szulik, the former CEO of Red Hat, a public open source-centered technology company. The subscription-powered startup has an interesting business model which we’ll dive into shortly, but it’s worth noting that the open source space as a whole is quite active. It’s something that Crunchbase News covered last year, describing how startups working with open source software have enjoyed a dramatic rise in investor interest. That puts Tidelift in the midst of a trend.
  • Tidelift lands $15M to deliver professional open-source support
    Tidelift Inc. is raising $15 million as it looks to boost its unique open-source software model that sees companies pay for professional support of their favorite projects, allowing those that maintain them to get compensated too. The Series A round was led by the investment firms General Catalyst and Foundry Group, as well as former Red Hat Inc. Chairman and Chief Executive Matthew Szulik. The company was able to attract the investment after coming up with a novel idea for maintaining the most popular open-source software projects in a way that benefits both the users and those who help to create them. It works like this: Companies pay a subscription fee that entitles them to professional-grade support, similar to the kind of commercial subscriptions offered by firms such as Red Hat, Cloudera Inc. and Docker Inc. A part of these fees are then used to pay the developers who maintain the software. The net result, at least in theory, is that everyone is happy, as companies enjoy the benefits of professional support at lower rates than they might expect from an established firm, and the developers of the software are finally rewarded for their efforts.