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Microsoft

Microsoft Doesn't Use Microsoft

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Microsoft

Another Dead Microsoft Product

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Hardware
Microsoft

I No Longer Hate Microsoft

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Microsoft

Windows kept some of its worst malignancies intact, including its need to be rebooted half a dozen times on every install, but the past few versions have been fairly stable. I have Windows and Linux running side-by-side on my desk, and I can’t say that I notice the old Windows/Linux pattern, where Windows crashes at least once a day while Linux just goes (as the song says) “on and on…”

I personally attribute this improvement in Windows to Linux. All that good stuff about competition, you know. So yes, every Windows user should say “thank you” to every Linux developer. It won’t happen, but I’ve long thought it should.

Anyway, Linux and Windows are both far more usable by ordinary people than either one was 10 years ago. So why should I hate Windows or Microsoft? It doesn’t do any good.

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Microsoft never disclosed 2013 hack of secret vulnerability database

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Microsoft
Security

Hackers broke into Microsoft's secret, internal bug-tracking database and stole information related to vulnerabilities that were exploited in later attacks. But the software developer never disclosed the breach, Reuters reported, citing former company employees.

In an article published Tuesday, Reuters said Microsoft's decision not to disclose details came after an internal review concluded the exploits used in later attacks could have been discovered elsewhere. That investigation relied, in part, on automated reports Microsoft receives when its software crashes. The problem with that approach, Reuters pointed out, is that advanced computer attacks are written so carefully they rarely cause crashes.

Reuters said Microsoft discovered the database breach in early 2013, after a still-unknown hacking group broke into computers belonging to a raft of companies. Besides Microsoft, the affected companies included Apple, Facebook, and Twitter. As reported at the time, the hackers infected a website frequented by software developers with attack code that exploited a zero-day vulnerability in Oracle's Java software framework. When employees of the targeted companies visited the site, they became infected, too.

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Microsoft Breaks Privacy Law, Adds Back Doors, Then Blames North Korea

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Microsoft

Microsoft Breaking the Law and Computer Security Woes

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Microsoft
Security

Debian, Ubuntu, elementary OS, pfSense and Windows

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OS
GNU
Linux
Microsoft
Debian
Ubuntu
  • My Free Software Activities in Jul-Sep 2017

    If you read Planet Debian often, you’ve probably noticed a trend of Free Software activity reports at the beginning of the month. First, those reports seemed a bit unamusing and lengthy, but since I take the time to read them I’ve learnt a lot of things, and now I’m amazed at the amount of work that people are doing for Free Software. Indeed, I knew already that many people are doing lots of work. But reading those reports gives you an actual view of how much it is.

  • OpenStack Development Summary – October 13, 2017

    Welcome to the seventh Ubuntu OpenStack development summary!

    This summary is intended to be a regular communication of activities and plans happening in and around Ubuntu OpenStack, covering but not limited to the distribution and deployment of OpenStack on Ubuntu.

    If there is something that you would like to see covered in future summaries, or you have general feedback on content please feel free to reach out to me (jamespage on Freenode IRC) or any of the OpenStack Engineering team at Canonical!

  • elementary OS 0.5 "Juno" GNU/Linux Distro Could Use Ubuntu's Snappy Technologies

    The guys over elementary OS, the popular GNU/Linux distribution based on Ubuntu, were interviewed recently by Canonical's Sarah Dickinson about upcoming integration of Snap packages into their infrastructure.

    As you are aware, there are three main universal binary packages available for GNU/Linux distributions, Snappy, Flatpak, and AppImage, and OS maintainers are free to implement which one they think it's best for their users, or even more of them.

    In the interview, elementary's devs revealed the fact that they want to go with Ubuntu's Snappy technologies to provide their users with a modern and secure confined app format because of the extra layer of security Snaps provide by design.

  • pfSense 2.4 BSD Operating System Debuts with New Installer, Drops 32-Bit Images

    Rubicon Communications' Jim Pingle announced the release of the pfSense 2.4.0 operating system, a major release that introduces support for new devices, new features, and numerous improvements.

    Based on the latest FreeBSD 11.1 operating system, the pfSense 2.4 release comes with an all-new installer based on bsdinstall and featuring support for the ZFS file system, UEFI machines, as well as multiple types of partition layouts, including the widely used GPT and BIOS.

  • Dutch privacy regulator says Windows 10 breaks the law

    The lack of clear information about what Microsoft does with the data that Windows 10 collects prevents consumers from giving their informed consent, says the Dutch Data Protection Authority (DPA). As such, the regulator says that the operating system is breaking the law.

    To comply with the law, the DPA says that Microsoft needs to get valid user consent: this means the company must be clearer about what data is collected and how that data is processed. The regulator also complains that the Windows 10 Creators Update doesn't always respect previously chosen settings about data collection. In the Creators Update, Microsoft introduced new, clearer wording about the data collection—though this language still wasn't explicit about what was collected and why—and it forced everyone to re-assert their privacy choices through a new settings page. In some situations, though, that page defaulted to the standard Windows options rather than defaulting to the settings previously chosen.

Devices: PureOS Rising, Microsoft is Dying, and Raspberry Pi 7" Touch Panel Gets Linux Support

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Linux
Microsoft
  • A new nerd phone promises true, open Linux and security

    Like the computer the new smartphone, called Librem 5, runs PureOS, a Linux-based operating system. Purism markets the phone as the truly pure GNU+Linux-based smartphone product.

    While Android is based on Linux too, PureOS is based on GNU free software and Debian Linux distribution and is entirely open source. This means that Librem 5 owners can, for example, change the Linux distribution to something else if they don't like PureOS.

  • Noted in Passing: Microsoft Smartphone OS Platform Passed Away

    Oh. One more bit. I was the first to also tell you that Google won the battle of the century for the OS of all high tech - when Android was passing Windows (all devices, not just smartphones, but PCs included). Nobody else told you that either. It is now becoming apparent to many experts that Google owns the tech world via Android. Who told you first? The dude who saw how Windows was truly collapsing and that iOS was never a threat to Google's world domination plans. Yeah, we'll return to those issues in coming years no doubt. Goodbye Windows smartphones and by darn it, good riddance too! Ballmer gone. Elop gone. Lumia gone. Windows smartphone OS gone. Now when can we see Microsoft the company gone too, please, next?

  • Raspberry Pi 7" Touch Panel, SiI9234 To Be Supported By Linux 4.15

    Daniel Vetter has sent in the latest feature pull request of new drm-misc-next material for staging in DRM-Next ahead of the Linux 4.15 kernel cycle.

    This latest batch of miscellaneous Direct Rendering Manager updates include continued core work around atomic mode-setting, HDMI CEC control support for the adv7511 driver, remote control support for the sii8620 driver, improved HDMI and A31 chip support in the Sun4i DRM driver, and some new driver activity too.

GNU/Linux Works, Microsoft Windows Stops Working

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GNU
Linux
Microsoft
  • Why Linux Works

    The Linux community works, it turns out, because the Linux community isn’t too concerned about work, per se. As much as Linux has come to dominate many areas of corporate computing – from HPC to mobile to cloud – the engineers who write the Linux kernel tend to focus on the code itself, rather than their corporate interests therein.

  • Windows 10 mandatory October KB4041676 update is causing machines to BSOD

    Today when people started waking up from their machines automatically updating during the night, however, they have been faced with a BSOD (Blue Screen of Death) instead of the Windows 10 desktop, and unfortunately, no-one seems to know why the installations are failing, only that it relates to KB4041676, which is yesterday's update.

  • Global shipments of PCs slump for 12th successive quarter, research suggests [iophk: "PCs no longer have any Windows or Microsoft stickers, hiding the infection"]

    An assessment by research and analysis outfit Gartner found that shipments totalled 67 million units in the third quarter of 2017; a decline of 3.6% on an annualised basis compared to the same quarter last year.

    The latest decline marked the 12th consecutive quarter of PC shipments slump.

  • The PC still isn't dead and the market is 'stabilising', says IDC

    In its Worldwide Quarterly Personal Computing Device Tracker, IDC announced worldwide shipments of traditional PCs, which includes desktops, notebooks, workstations, totalled 67.2 million units in the third quarter of 2017.

    While this translates into a slight year-over-year decline of 0.5 percent, IDC said [...]

Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform is dead, here’s why Tizen won’t face the same fate

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Linux
Microsoft

On the contrary, Samsung are currently the only ones making Tizen smartphones despite Tizen being an Open source platform. And the Korean giant haven’t dedicated their full resources to Tizen smartphones as they still are going very strong with their Android based Galaxy smartphone business. But still, Samsung have been actively promoting the Tizen OS to bring developers onboard to make apps for Tizen phones. Samsung has also hosted partner programs and even incentive programs to help indie developers to make a living out of their Tizen apps.

That is not all Samsung has done to promote Tizen app development, the company has also partnered with Microsoft itself to let C# developers build Tizen apps using .NET and the development is not limited to just Tizen smartphones. Developers can make use of .NET and Visual Studio Tools to build applications for Tizen TVs, wearables, etc.

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More in Tux Machines

Raspberry Pi arrives on PC/104… sort of

Crowd Supply is hosting a “Pi/104” carrier for the RPi Compute Module 3 featuring PC/104 OneBank expansion, a 40-pin RPi header, and -25 to 80°C support. Here’s something we haven’t seen before. Developer Adam Parker has launched a stackable PC/104 form factor carrier board on Crowd Supply designed to work with the Linux-driven Raspberry Pi Compute Module 3. The industrial-targeted carrier provides -25 to 80°C support and an 8-36V input with screw terminal connector. Read more

Today in Techrights

today's leftovers

  • Blockchain Moves Beyond its 'Moonshot' Phase
  • Some reading
    I've complained previously about disliking benchmarking. More generally, I'm not really a fan of performance analysis. I always feel like I get stuck at coming up with an approach to "it's going slower, why" beyond the basics. I watched a video of Brendan Gregg's talk from kernel recipes, and ended up going down the black hole1 of reading his well written blog. He does a fantastic job of explaining performance analysis concepts as well as the practical tools to do the analysis. He wrote a book several years ago and I happily ordered it. The book explains how to apply the USE method to performance problems across the system. This was helpful to me because it provides a way to generate a list of things to check and how to check them. It addresses the "stuck" feeling I get when dealing with performance problems. The book also provides a good high level overview of operating systems concepts. I'm always looking for references for people who are interested in kernels but don't know where to start and I think this book could fill a certain niche. Even if this book has been out for several years now, I was very excited to discover it.
  • Introducing container-diff, a tool for quickly comparing container images
    The Google Container Tools team originally built container-diff, a new project to help uncover differences between container images, to aid our own development with containers. We think it can be useful for anyone building containerized software, so we’re excited to release it as open source to the development community.
  • NATTT – A Modern Multi-Platform Time Conscious Tracker App
    It’s not that there aren’t already a lot of time tracker apps but my conscience wouldn’t let me sleep if I didn’t tell you about NATTT. So grab your cup of whatever you’re probably drinking as we delve into this app a little. NATTT is an acronym for “Not Another Time Tracking Tool”; a free and multi-platform app with which you can keep track of your work and how much you have spent at it.
  • Running Bitcoin node and ElectrumX server
  • todo.txt done
  • GNOME's Calendar & TODO Applications Are Looking Better For v3.28
    Adding to the growing list of changes for GNOME 3.28 are improvements to the Calendar and To Do applications by Georges Stavracas. Stavracas has been reworking the month view of GNOME Calendar and it's looking much better, some applications for Calendar via libdazzle, and more.
  • Compact DAQ systems offer a choice of 12- or 16-bit I/Os
    Advantech’s Linux-ready “MIC-1810” and “MIC-1816” DAQ computers offer 12- and 16-bit analog I/O, respectively, plus 24x DIOs, Intel CPUs, and 4x USB ports. Advantech’s MIC-1810 and MIC-1816 are digital acquisition computers that run Linux or Windows 7/8/10 on Intel 3rd Gen “Ivy Bridge” processors. If the aging CPU is a turn-off, keep in mind that many DAQ applications don’t require that much processing power, and perhaps Advantech’s “entry-level” label for the systems extends to the price, as well. The 165 x 130 x 59mm, DIN-rail mountable systems should also prove useful for environments with limited space.

Security: New Release of HardenedBSD, Windows Leaks Details of Windows Back Doors

  • Stable release: HardenedBSD-stable 11-STABLE v1100054
  • Kaspersky blames NSA hack on infected Microsoft software
    Embattled computer security firm Kaspersky Lab said Thursday that malware-infected Microsoft Office software and not its own was to blame for the hacking theft of top-secret US intelligence materials. Adding tantalizing new details to the cyber-espionage mystery that has rocked the US intelligence community, Kaspersky also said there was a China link to the hack.
  • Investigation Report for the September 2014 Equation malware detection incident in the US
    In early October, a story was published by the Wall Street Journal alleging Kaspersky Lab software was used to siphon classified data from an NSA employee’s home computer system. Given that Kaspersky Lab has been at the forefront of fighting cyberespionage and cybercriminal activities on the Internet for over 20 years now, these allegations were treated very seriously. To assist any independent investigators and all the people who have been asking us questions whether those allegations were true, we decided to conduct an internal investigation to attempt to answer a few questions we had related to the article and some others that followed it:
  • Kaspersky: Clumsy NSA leak snoop's PC was packed with malware
    Kaspersky Lab, the US government's least favorite computer security outfit, has published its full technical report into claims Russian intelligence used its antivirus tools to steal NSA secrets. Last month, anonymous sources alleged that in 2015, an NSA engineer took home a big bunch of the agency's cyber-weapons to work on them on his home Windows PC, which was running the Russian biz's antimalware software – kind of a compliment when you think about it. The classified exploit code and associated documents on the personal system were then slurped by Kremlin spies via his copy of Kaspersky antivirus, it was claimed.