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Top Linux Applications For Office Use

Filed under
GNU
Linux

The next time you encounter a laptop or PC, pay attention to the operating system. Most likely it is not open source because closed-source platforms such as Windows and macOS have captured most of the PC client OS market.
Open source OS programs such as Linux, makeup only a tiny bit of market share and rightly so - they still have a lot to do if they want to compete with the likes of MacOS and Windows in terms of appearance and functionality.

Although Ubuntu and other distributions are a clear sign of progress, most companies are not yet ready to establish their employees with an open source operating system. The employees themselves are reluctant to use this operating system.

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True Believer

Filed under
GNU
Linux

With the fervor of the evangelical, I began to spread the word far and wide. I read incessantly, from Stallman to Torvalds, Searles, Moody, Knaapen, Raymond and Schroder, I learned the history and mechanics of Linux. I read not only of my new freedom but of the restrictions and limitations of other proprietary operating systems. The more I read, both my anger and excitement grew in equal measure. I took it upon myself to join The Movement against anything and anyone who stood in the way of spreading the news. This new way of operating your computer could indeed change the world. The Blog of helios began...

and so it went. Surely The Year of the Linux Desktop was at hand. Year, after year, after year. and surely. It wore on me year after year, breakthrough after failure, hope dashed by hopelessness. Until the harsh, glaring truth descended upon me like a shipping container full of anvils.....

We never had a prayer. We entered a race with all other contestants miles ahead.

I rattled off a list of names above. Those who have inspired me and in more than one case, probably saved me from something terribly grim. Glyn Moody is one of those names. Glyn has been an inspiration to me since the turn of the century. I've come to count on Glyn for insightful and brutally honest commentary. He's a brilliant writer and wastes no time with hyperbole. But aside from that, Glyn aided me at a time when I thought my life was over. To this day he has no idea, the part he played in turning me away from something horrible. We'll just leave it at that.

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Libratbag + Piper Allow For Great Logitech Gaming Mouse Support On Linux

Filed under
Linux
Hardware

While Roccat previously backed their devices on Linux that is the case no more and what is left for the time being are various community/third-party applications for supporting gaming mice/keyboard configuration under Linux from Logitech to Razer and various other lesser known brands of gaming peripherals (Razer will hopefully change this, at least). One of the most promising efforts right now for unifying mouse configuration on Linux is libratbag and its GTK3 Piper interface. Ratbag and Piper have evolved into a very competent open-source project for configuring Logitech mice on the Linux desktop.

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Graphics in Linux Kernel 4.18 and Mesa 18.2 Coming

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux
  • Collabora Improves Graphics, Support for Chromebook Devices in Linux Kernel 4.18

    Collabora informs Softpedia about the contributions made by various of its developers to the recently released Linux 4.18 kernel series during its entire development cycle.

    Linux kernel 4.18 was released two weeks ago, and it's currently the most advanced Linux kernel series featuring mention Spectre V1 and V2 mitigations for 32-bit ARM architectures, Spectre V4 mitigations for ARM64 (AArch64) and ARMv8 architectures, as well as a just-in-time compiler for eBPF programs on 32-bit (x86) architectures.

    It also improves discard support for the F2FS (Flash-Friendly File System) file system, adds official support for the Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 ARM mobile processor, as well as better support for USB Type-C and USB 3.2 connections, and initial support for the upcoming Radeon Vega 20 graphics processing units.

  • Mesa 18.2 Is Releasing Soon With Many OpenGL / Vulkan Driver Improvements

    Mesa 18.2.0 is expected to be released in the days ahead as the latest quarterly feature release to this collection of open-source user-space graphics driver components. As has been the case each quarter for particularly the past few years, these timed quarterly releases are quite feature-packed.

Freespire 4.0 Released

Filed under
GNU
Linux
  • Freespire 4.0 Released

    Today we are pleased to announce the release of Freespire 4.0. Freespire 4.0 is our newest release in the Freespire line. Freespire 4.0 is a free release in both terms of cost and code. Freespire 4.0 is a migration of our current 16.04 LTS codebase to the 18.04 LTS codebase which brings with it many improvements to usability and to hardware support. Freespire 4.0 is also the base for our commercial Linspire release

  • Freespire 4.0 Released, The Linux Distribution That Originated As "Lindows"

    Earlier this year development on Linspire/Freespire was restarted for this Linux distribution that dates back to 2001 when it launched as "Lindows" before having to be renamed due to a trademark dispute with Microsoft. Back in January, PC/OpenSystems who is now developing the distribution, the Freespire 3.0 release debuted while today Freespire 4.0 is available.

    Freespire 4.0 migrates from an Ubuntu 16.04 LTS base to now relying upon the Ubuntu 18.04 "Bionic Beaver" archive and is also now serving as the base for their next Linspire release. Freespire 4.0 pushes the desktop in a different direction from upstream Ubuntu and some of its default applications include Geary, Chromium, Abiword, Gnumeric, Audacious, Totem, G-Debi, and Synaptic. Freespire 4.0 is supporting both Snaps and Flatpak packaging.

  • Freespire 4.0 Officially Released, Based on Ubuntu 18.04 LTS (Bionic Beaver)

    The Freespire 4.0 Linux-based operating system has been officially released as the first major version, as project leader Roberto J. Dohnert informed Softpedia earlier today.

    Based on the Ubuntu 18.04 LTS (Bionic Beaver) operating system series, Freespire 4.0 promises to offer users a stunning graphical interface that's familiar to those coming from another Linux OS or even from a Windows OS. It also features an intuitive dark mode for professionals and those who like dark themes.

The Impact Of The CPU Frequency Scaling Governor On AMD Threadripper 2990WX Linux Performance

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux

One of many test requests we have received concerning the AMD Threadripper 2 Linux performance was to look at the impact of the different CPU frequency scaling governors, particularly for the 32-core / 64-thread Ryzen Threadripper 2990WX. Here are those CPUFreq governor benchmarks for those interested in squeezing slightly better performance out of your HEDT system by changing how aggressively or not the system is shifting power states to higher frequencies.

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Security Things in Linux 4.18 and Embrace of Newer GCC

Filed under
Development
GNU
Linux
Security
  • security things in Linux v4.18

    One of the many ways C can be dangerous to use is that it lacks strong primitives to deal with arithmetic overflow. A developer can’t just wrap a series of calculations in a try/catch block to trap any calculations that might overflow (or underflow). Instead, C will happily wrap values back around, causing all kinds of flaws. Some time ago GCC added a set of single-operation helpers that will efficiently detect overflow, so Rasmus Villemoes suggested implementing these (with fallbacks) in the kernel. While it still requires explicit use by developers, it’s much more fool-proof than doing open-coded type-sensitive bounds checking before every calculation. As a first-use of these routines, Matthew Wilcox created wrappers for common size calculations, mainly for use during memory allocations.

  • Linux 4.19 Raises The GCC Minimum Version Required To Build The Kernel

    Officially the Linux kernel listed GCC 3.2 as the minimum version of the GNU compiler needed. However, with Linux 4.19 that is being raised to GCC 4.6.

    Various architectures on older GCC4 releases had already been failing to cleanly compile the Linux kernel so with Linux 4.19 that minimum version supported is being set at GCC 4.6.

  • Linux 4.19 Kernel Now Requires GCC 4.6 to Build, Due to Compiling Failures on Older Architecture

    For Linux developers working on the kernel, the to-be-released Linux 4.19 kernel raises the GCC minimum version required for kernel building. The official Linux kernel has listed GCC 3.2 as the minimum version of the compiler required for kernel building, but Linux kernel 4.19 is raising that to GCC 4.6.

    This is because various architectures on older GCC4 releases have been failing to cleanly compile the Linux kernel, hence why GCC 4.6 is being set as the minimum. The kernel will also explicitly check for GCC 4.6.0 or newer and if not found, the compiler will error out.

    This is also beneficial for the kernel code, as the kernel devs were able to strip out several dozen lines of code for older GCC workarounds that were aimed at compiler bugs and behavioral differences in the older compiler releases.

Nintendo Wii on Linux

Filed under
Linux
Gaming
  • Nintendo Wii's Guitar/Drums Will Work On The Linux 4.19 Kernel Plus Totem & Surface Dial

    Going back to 2011 there's been a Nintendo Wii remote "Wiimote" driver in the Linux kernel but this unofficial hardware driver hasn't worked with some of the devices that can interface with the Wiimote like devices for Rock Band and Guitar Hero. In 2018, that's now changed with the in-development Linux 4.19 kernel.

  • Updated HID Drivers in Linux 4.19 Kernel Support Wiimote Instruments for Rock Band and Guitar Hero

    It would appear that a “Wiimote” driver has existed in the Linux kernel for the Nintendo Wii remote since 2011, but being an unofficial hardware driver, it hasn’t exactly worked with some of the devices that can interface with the Wiimite such as the instruments for Rock Band and Guitar Hero. Well, guess what? Now it does, thanks to some development in that regards on the Linux 4.19 kernel.

    Even though the Nintendo Wii is discontinued for several years now, a Linux developer has gotten the guitar and drum kits for Guitar Hero and Rock Band to work with the Wiimote while attached to Linux. The method is based on some never-mainlined patches from a few years ago, but the patches have been updated to work with the latest kernel / HID interfaces.

2018 Linux Plumbers Conference and Another Linux Foundation Event in Dallas

Filed under
Linux
  • Performance and Scalability Systems Microconference Accepted into 2018 Linux Plumbers Conference

    Core counts keep rising, and that means that the Linux kernel continues to encounter interesting performance and scalability issues. Which is not a bad thing, since it has been fifteen years since the ``free lunch'' of exponential CPU-clock frequency increases came to an abrupt end. During that time, the number of hardware threads per socket has risen sharply, approaching 100 for some high-end implementations. In addition, there is much more to scaling than simply larger numbers of CPUs.

  • Trinity Desktop Environment New Release, New Read-Only File System Designed for Android Devices, CloudNative Conference Coming Up, Retro Arcade Games Coming to Polycade

    Mark your calendars for September 12-13: the CloudNative, Docker, and K8s Summit will be hosted in Dallas, Texas this year. To learn more, visit the official conference website.

  • Building a Cloud Native Future

    Cloud and open source are changing the world and can play an integral role in how companies transform themselves. That was the message from Abby Kearns, executive director of open source platform as a service provider Cloud Foundry Foundation, who delivered a keynote address earlier this summer at LinuxCon + ContainerCon + CloudOpen China, known as LC3.

    “Cloud native technologies and cloud native applications are growing,’’ Kearns said. Over the next 18 months, there will be a 100 percent increase in the number of cloud native applications organizations are writing and using, she added. “This means you can no longer just invest in IT,” but need to in cloud and cloud technologies as well.

A checklist for submitting your first Linux kernel patch

Filed under
Linux

One of the biggest—and the fastest moving—open source projects, the Linux kernel, is composed of about 53,600 files and nearly 20-million lines of code. With more than 15,600 programmers contributing to the project worldwide, the Linux kernel follows a maintainer model for collaboration.

In this article, I'll provide a quick checklist of steps involved with making your first kernel contribution, and look at what you should know before submitting a patch. For a more in-depth look at the submission process for contributing your first patch, read the KernelNewbies First Kernel Patch tutorial.

Read more

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More in Tux Machines

True Believer

With the fervor of the evangelical, I began to spread the word far and wide. I read incessantly, from Stallman to Torvalds, Searles, Moody, Knaapen, Raymond and Schroder, I learned the history and mechanics of Linux. I read not only of my new freedom but of the restrictions and limitations of other proprietary operating systems. The more I read, both my anger and excitement grew in equal measure. I took it upon myself to join The Movement against anything and anyone who stood in the way of spreading the news. This new way of operating your computer could indeed change the world. The Blog of helios began... and so it went. Surely The Year of the Linux Desktop was at hand. Year, after year, after year. and surely. It wore on me year after year, breakthrough after failure, hope dashed by hopelessness. Until the harsh, glaring truth descended upon me like a shipping container full of anvils..... We never had a prayer. We entered a race with all other contestants miles ahead. I rattled off a list of names above. Those who have inspired me and in more than one case, probably saved me from something terribly grim. Glyn Moody is one of those names. Glyn has been an inspiration to me since the turn of the century. I've come to count on Glyn for insightful and brutally honest commentary. He's a brilliant writer and wastes no time with hyperbole. But aside from that, Glyn aided me at a time when I thought my life was over. To this day he has no idea, the part he played in turning me away from something horrible. We'll just leave it at that. Read more

Android Leftovers

Mozilla on Fellows, Software Patents and Volunteer Add-on

  • Mozilla Announces 26 New Fellows in Openness, Science, and Tech Policy
    These technologists, activists, and scientists will spend the next 10 to 12 months creating a more secure, inclusive, and decentralized internet A neuroscientist building open-source hardware. A competition expert studying net neutrality enforcement in Nigeria. A technologist studying tools that combat disinformation. These are just three of Mozilla’s latest Fellows — 26 technologists, activists, and scientists from more than 10 countries. Today, we’re announcing our 2018-2019 cohort of Fellows, who begin work on September 1, 2018.
  • AV1 and the Video Wars of 2027
    Author’s Note: This post imagines a dystopian future for web video, if we continue to rely on patented codecs to transmit media files. What if one company had a perpetual monopoly on those patents? How could it limit our access to media and culture? The premise of this cautionary tale is grounded in fact. However, the future scenario is fiction, and the entities and events portrayed are not intended to represent real people, companies, or events.
  • Volunteer Add-on Reviewer Applications Open
    Thousands of volunteers around the world contribute to Mozilla projects in a variety of capacities, and extension review is one of them. Reviewers check extensions submitted to addons.mozilla.org (AMO) for their safety, security, and adherence to Mozilla’s Add-on Policies. Last year, we paused onboarding new volunteer extension reviewers while we updated the add-on policies and review processes to address changes introduced by the transition to the WebExtensions API and the new post-review process.

Games Leftovers

  • The Linux version of Graveyard Keeper is now available on GOG
    Need to hide a few bodies? Graveyard Keeper is now available for Linux on GOG after being missed at the release. It was actually added a day or so after the initial release. Sometimes the Linux version is missing when a game is released on GOG, as the Linux team at GOG discover issues in it. The game did indeed have some pressing issues at release, a fair few have been fixed now so it is quite a bit better.
  • Life is Strange 2 officially revealed with a new trailer
    While we don't yet know about Linux support, I will honestly be shocked if Feral Interactive didn't port Life is Strange 2. Especially since they ported the original to Linux and are currently porting Before the Storm which is a little delayed.
  • The Jackbox Party Pack 5 now has a Steam page and it's going to release with Linux support
    Currently scheduled to release "Fall 2018", The Jackbox Party Pack 5 is the latest pack of crazy party games from Jackbox Games, Inc. and it should be coming out with Linux support.
  • Combat helicopters are coming to War Thunder in the next update
    Gaijin Entertainment have announced that combat helicopters are coming to War Thunder [Steam, Official Site] along with a teaser trailer.
  • The action RPG Underworld Ascendant is now releasing in November
    The action RPG Underworld Ascendant [Official Site] from OtherSide Entertainment is now going to release on November 15th and they have a new trailer. They previously said it would be September, so hopefully the extra time will make it a better game. Last we heard from them, they were still planning Linux support although they didn't have a specific date nailed down for the Linux version just yet, so do keep that in mind.
  • Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night delayed again, this time until 2019
    Not for the first time, Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night has been delayed and will now launch in 2019. Writing in a Kickstarter update, they confirmed it's to increase the quality of the game as a whole after they gathered feedback from a special backer demo. Delays sadly happen and if we can get a decent game out of this then I will be happy. Hopefully it will give them time to ensure the Linux version is nicely polished too. The Vita version was cancelled along with this announcement.
  • Die for Valhalla! is an action RPG that has you possess enemies and objects
    A supernatural Valkyrie with the ability to possess things, what could possibly go wrong? Go ahead and Die for Valhalla! Released back at the end of May with full Linux support, Die for Valhalla! offers an action-RPG with single-player and local co-op options for up to four people.
  • BATTLETECH has an expansion named FLASHPOINT coming out this November
    Even though they still haven't managed to get the Linux version out yet, Harebrained Schemes and Paradox Interactive have announced the FLASHPOINT expansion for BATTLETECH. As a reminder, we spoke to the developer earlier this month about the Linux version which they do hope to release soon.