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Six Linux home automation clicks

Filed under
Linux
Gadgets

Long before people were talking about the Internet of Things, Linux-based home automation systems were available. Here are some of today's most interesting Linux-powered home gadgets.

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Systemd 215 Works On Factory Reset, DHCPv4 Server Support

Filed under
Linux
Red Hat

Lennart Poettering announced the release of systemd 215 on Thursday afternoon.

The new systemd 215 release features a new systemd-sysusers command, a new input system group, systemd-networkd has a basic DHCPv4 server, networkd now supports vxLANs, and there's an assortment of other updates and new features. Lots of the work happening now within the systemd world is about stateless systems and factory reset support.

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Wink's Linux Hub and Mobile App Take on Home Automation

Filed under
Android
Linux

The flood of Linux-based home automation hubs that has arrived over the last two years is now being joined by a wave of intermediary solutions that integrate multiple ecosystems. One of the most promising is Wink, a spinoff from crowd-investment firm Quirky. A week after announcing its Linux-based Wink home automation hub and mobile app, the well-heeled startup demonstrated the technology in a model smart home launch event in New York City, and announced 15 partners and 60 compatible devices.

Wink also released its Javascript-based API to developers interested in building Wink apps for the supported Android and iOS platforms. Last week, Wink announced it will also ship an Android Wear version that will run on Android Wear smartwatches like the LG G Watch and Samsung Gear Live. The Android Wear app will communicate with devices via the full Android smartphone app, rather than directly, and will offer more limited features.

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Linux 3.14 Is Now A Long-Term Stable Kernel

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Linux

Greg Kroah-Hartman has decided to maintain the Linux 3.14 code-base as a long-term stable kernel release.

By becoming a long-term stable release, the Linux 3.14 kernel will now be supported through August 2016. The previous LTS kernel maintained by Greg KH is Linux 3.10 and is to be supported through September 2015, while Jiri Slaby of SUSE is also maintaining Linux 3.12 as a stable kernel series maintained through some time in 2016.

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Intel Linux Driver Trying Bay Trail Aggressive Downclocking

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Linux

Intel's Linux open-source crew is toying with aggressive down-clocking for current-generation Bay Trail hardware for greater power-savings and lower heat output.

Chris Wilson of Intel OTC has proposed a patch to be more aggressive about down-clocking -- dropping the Atom/Celeron SoCs to their lower frequency/power states more quickly after being in a ramped-up state. Assuming the workload has finished, this should yield a quicker return to the lowest power state for maximum power-savings / longest battery life and lower heat output.

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BFS Scheduler Updated For The Linux 3.15 Kernel

Filed under
Linux

Con Kolivas has updated his out-of-tree process scheduler for the Linux kernel.

The Brain Fuck Scheduler has been revised to version 448 and released on Wednesday for the Linux 3.15 stable kernel.

Besides updating against the kernel interfaces of Linux 3.15, there's no reports of other changes for the BFS scheduler with the v448 revision. Kolivas continues to have no desire to mainline the Brain Fuck Scheduler.

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NSA: Linux Journal is an "extremist forum" and its readers get flagged for extra surveillance

Filed under
Linux
Security

A new story published on the German site Tagesschau and followed up by BoingBoing and DasErste.de has uncovered some shocking details about who the NSA targets for surveillance including visitors to Linux Journal itself.

While it has been revealed before that the NSA captures just about all Internet traffic for a short time, the Tagesschau story provides new details about how the NSA's XKEYSCORE program decides which traffic to keep indefinitely. XKEYSCORE uses specific selectors to flag traffic, and the article reveals that Web searches for Tor and Tails--software I've covered here in Linux Journal that helps to protect a user's anonymity and privacy on the Internet--are among the selectors that will flag you as "extremist" and targeted for further surveillance. If you just consider how many Linux Journal readers have read our Tor and Tails coverage in the magazine, that alone would flag quite a few innocent people as extremist.

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LinuxCon and ELC Europe keynotes revealed

Filed under
Linux

The Linux Foundation announced keynote speakers for LinuxCon + CloudOpen + Embedded Linux Conference Europe, to be held Oct. 13-15 in Düsseldorf, Germany.

Like last year, the Linux Foundation’s LinuxCon Europe is being co-located with CloudOpen Europe and Embedded Linux Conference Europe, with a single registration. This year the shows are joined even closer with plus signs, showing it’s just one big happy Linux fest — with plenty of good German beer.

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Docker and Linux containers: Red Hat opens up on the issues

Filed under
Linux
Red Hat

Red Hat's platform business vice president Jim Totton believes the current focus on containers could signal the growth of an alternative type of computing architecture — but says it's not yet clear how people will apply the technology.

Elements of container technology have existed in Linux in the form of cgroups since 2006 and in UNIX for decades. Containers sit on top of a single Linux instance and are a lighter-weight form of virtualisation, each capable of running an isolated app on a reduced OS under the control of a resources policy.

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10 tips for a more user-friendly Linux desktop

Filed under
GNU
Linux

The Linux desktop is leaps and bounds from where it was 10, five, even two years ago. Desktop environments that many declared unusable or dead have seen a renaissance in usability. But that doesn't mean that out of the box, every Linux desktop is ready for every type of user. For each user type there may be many ways to make a desktop more usable. Thankfully, this is Linux -- so options are never a problem.

With that in mind, I wanted to highlight my 10 best tips for creating more user-friendly Linux desktops. Not every one of these tips will apply to your particular desktop (be it GNOME, Unity, KDE, XFCE, Deepin Desktop, Cinnamon... the list goes on). But you should find more than one tip that will go a long way toward improving your experience.

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Linux and Graphics: AMD, Linux 4.14 LTS, Etnaviv Gallium3D

  • Linux 4.14 Ensures The "Core Performance Boost" Bit Gets Set For AMD Ryzen CPUs
    Recently making waves in our forums was talk of a kernel patch to address a case where the AMD CPB (Core Performance Boost) isn't being exposed by Ryzen processors. Here's more details on that and some benchmarks. Being talked about recently is f7f3dc0: "CPUID Fn8000_0007_EDX[CPB] is wrongly 0 on models up to B1. But they do support CPB (AMD's Core Performance Boosting cpufreq CPU feature), so fix that."
  • Linus Torvalds Is Confident That Linux Kernel 4.14 LTS Will Arrive on November 5
    Development of Linux 4.14, the next LTS (Long Term Support) kernel series, continues with the fifth RC (Release Candidate) milestone, which was announced by Linus Torvalds himself this past weekend. According to Linus Torvalds, things have finally starting to calm down for the development of the Linux 4.14 LTS kernel, and it looks like the RC5 snapshot is smaller than he would have expected, at least smaller than last week's RC4, which is a good thing, meaning that there won't be need for eight RCs during this cycle.
  • Etnaviv Gallium3D Is Almost To OpenGL 2.0 Compliance
    The Etnaviv Gallium3D driver that provides reverse-engineered, open-source graphics support for Vivante graphics hardware is almost to exposing OpenGL 2.0. Etnaviv contributor Christian Gmeiner today posted a set of patches for adding occlusion queries support to the driver. The code at just over one thousand lines of code is the last major feature needed for exposing desktop OpenGL 2.0 capabilities with this community-driven driver.
  • AMD Developers Begin Making Open-Source FreeSync/AdaptiveSync Plans
    While the AMDGPU DC code is expected to land for Linux 4.15 with goodies like Vega display support, HDMI/DP audio, and atomic mode-setting, one of the sought after display features won't be initially supported: FreeSync or the VESA-backed AdaptiveSync. As we've known for a while, while AMDGPU DC fills out the requirements for being able to support FreeSync, the last bits of the implementation are not present as the interfaces are basically yet to be decided among the open-source driver developers. While AMD can post their existing FreeSync code as found in AMDGPU-PRO hybrid driver, they are trying to come up with a more standardized interface that will satisfy the other upstream Linux driver developers too that might want to support AdaptiveSync.

Servers and Red Hat: Cloud Foundry, Docker, CRI-O 1.0, Alibaba and Elasticsearch

  • How to deploy multi-cloud serverless and Cloud Foundry APIs at scale
    Ken Parmelee, who leads the API gateway for IBM and Big Blue’s open source projects, has a few ideas about open-source methods for “attacking” the API and how to create micro-services and make them scale. “Micro-services and APIs are products and we need to be thinking about them that way,” Parmelee says. “As you start to put them up people rely on them as part of their business. That’s a key aspect of what you’re doing in this space.”
  • Docker Opens Up to Support Kubernetes Container Orchestration
    There's been a lot of adoption of Kubernetes in the last few years, and as of Oct. 17 the open-source container orchestration technology has one more supporter. Docker Inc. announced at its DockerCon EU conference here that it is expanding its Docker platform to support Kubernetes. Docker had been directly competing against Kubernetes with its Swarm container orchestration system since 2015. The plan now is to provide a seamless platform that supports a heterogenous deployment that can include both Swarm and Kubernetes clusters. "Docker adapts to you because it's open," Docker founder Solomon Hykes said during his keynote address at DockerCon.
  • Introducing CRI-O 1.0
    Last year, the Kubernetes project introduced its Container Runtime Interface (CRI) -- a plugin interface that gives kubelet (a cluster node agent used to create pods and start containers) the ability to use different OCI-compliant container runtimes, without needing to recompile Kubernetes. Building on that work, the CRI-O project (originally known as OCID) is ready to provide a lightweight runtime for Kubernetes.
  • Red Hat brings its open source solutions to Alibaba Cloud
    Alibaba Cloud has joined the Red Hat Certified Cloud and Service Provider program, with Red Hat solutions to become directly available to Alibaba Cloud customers in the coming months.
  • Elasticsearch now on Alibaba Cloud, eyes China market
    The Amsterdam-based company behind Elasticsearch and Elastic Stack said the new offering would be available to Alibaba Cloud customers as an add-on, giving them access to real-time search, logging, and data analytics capabilities.

Software: VirtualBox 5.1.30, Cockpit 153, GNOME Mutter 3.27.1, KDE Neon

  • Oracle Releases VirtualBox 5.1.30 to Patch Glibc 2.26 Compile Bug on Linux Hosts
    Oracle released VirtualBox 5.1.30, a minor maintenance update to the open-source and cross-platform virtualization software that addresses a few important issues reported by users from previous versions. Coming one month after the VirtualBox 5.1.28 release, which probably most of you out there use right now on your personal computers, VirtualBox 5.1.30 contains a fix for a Glibc 2.26 compilation bug for Linux hosts and a 3D-related crash for Windows guest that use the Windows Additions package.
  • Cockpit 153
    Cockpit is the modern Linux admin interface. We release regularly. Here are the release notes from version 153.
  • GNOME Mutter 3.27.1 Brings Hybrid GPU Support
    Mutter 3.27.1 has just been released as the first development release for the GNOME 3.28 cycle of this compositor / window manager. The change most interesting to us about Mutter 3.27.1 is support for hybrid GPU systems. The context for the hybrid GPU system support is explained via this bug report, "supporting systems with multiple GPUs connected to their own connectors. A common configuration is laptops with an integrated Intel GPU connected to the panel, and a dedicated Nvidia/AMD GPU connected to the HDMI ports."
  • #KDE #KDENEON Release bonanaza! Frameworks, Plasma, KmyMoney and Digikam

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