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Linux

Chromebooks Gain Important Features, Appear to Be Here to Stay

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Google

Part of what's driving Chromebooks forward is that Google is on a rapid release cycle with Chrome OS. And, very importantly, Google has relaxed the fiercely cloud-centric vision it originally had for Chrome OS, so that applications for Chromebooks can be used offline.

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Linux Has Too Few Distributions and Desktop Environments

Filed under
GNU
Linux

The Linux platform is actually the base for a multitude of operating systems, but a part of the community feels that there are too many distributions. The truth is that there are probably too few of them.

One of the points of contention that usually arise in the Linux community is the fact that there seem to be too many Linux distributions and too many desktop environments. If we were to compare Linux with any other platform that would be true, but such a comparison would be incorrect.

Linux is the only platform that allows this kind of freedom, so making a comparison with other operating systems is actually incorrect because they do not incorporate the same kind of philosophy and openness.

My point is that even if Linux seems to be the home of many operating systems and desktop environments, the reality is that, in fact, there aren't actually enough. The reason why I pick OSes and desktop environments is because they are the most visible, but the same is true for any other component.

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Robolinux turns your C Drive into a virtual Windows machine you can run in Linux

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Microsoft

Say you want to move from Windows to Linux… but there are a few Windows apps that you can’t give up, and they don’t work well under WINE. The developer of Robolinux offers a Debian-based GNU/Linux operating system designed to let you run Windows XP or Windows 7 in a virtual machine.

But the latest version of Robolinux goes a step further: It includes a tool that lets you create a virtual machine by cloning your Windows C: Drive, which means it takes just minutes to create a version of Windows that you can run in virtualization in Linux, and it will already have all of your existing programs and data.

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Linux 3.15 SSD File-System Benchmarks

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux

Now that kernel development activity is settling down for the Linux 3.15 kernel, here are some benchmarks of the EXT4, XFS, F2FS, and Btrfs file-systems compared to the stable Linux 3.14 kernel performance.

The benchmarks in this article are a Btrfs, F2FS, XFS, and EXT4 file-system comparison between the Linux 3.14 and 3.15 Git (as of 6 May) kernels when carrying out these disk workloads on a 240GB OCZ Vertex 3 solid-state drive.

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Linux desktop environment LXQt achieves first release

Filed under
GNU
Linux

Besides being stable and versatile, Linux-based operating systems are very customizable too. You see, most distributions allow you to customize the UI by selecting different environments. While GNOME, KDE and Unity are a few of the popular environments, there are many others as well.

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Making Linux Feel at Home

Filed under
GNU
Linux

Hiring Tux is a smart move for both small and large businesses. Linux once was considered a hobbyist's operating system, but it has come a long way and now is considered enterprise class. It is considered very stable and secure. Linux can easily be customized, and there is a huge community eager to help out. Those are just some of the reasons to migrate to the Linux desktop.

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Debian 8.0 Jessie To Likely Target The Linux 3.16 Kernel

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Debian

Ben Hutchings began extrapolating data of stable kernel releases and around the time of the Debian Jessie freeze will likely be the Linux 3.17 release, but that might be too close for comfort. However, at the same time, the earlier the Jessie kernel is frozen the more hardware enablement back-porting and other fixes that will need to queue up for this next major Debian GNU/Linux release.

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New Intel powered Chromebooks to feature Bay Trail chipset

Filed under
Linux
Google

A plethora of new Intel-powered Chrome OS devices were announces at a press conference hosted Wednesday by tech giant Google and chip manufacturer Intel. The event, which featured Caesar Sengupta from Google, and Navin Shenoy, vice president and general manager of mobile computing at Intel, announced, among other things, Chromebooks powered by Intel’s low-energy Bay Trail chipset, which will enable the lightweight computers running the Linux-based, web-centric operating system from Google to reportedly have 11 hours of battery life. Other devices announced include Intel’s Haswell and Core i3 chips.

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LG Chromebase will be available May 26th

Filed under
Linux
Google

The LG Chromebase, the first all-in-one Chrome OS PC, has been announced to be made available to US customers on May 26. With 2 GB of memory, a 16GB SSD (solid state drive), and a dual-core Intel Haswell CPU, LG has followed the usual specifications found on most Chromebooks. For those unfamiliar with Chromebooks, these specifications would probably be seem insufficient. However, what makes Chromebooks and the Chromebase stand out, is that they run Google‘s Chrome OS. Chrome OS is based upon Linux, so is very light and does not need many resources. In addition, since it only runs internet applications, it does not need many resources.

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Nuvola Player 2.3.3 Is an Application for Cloud Music Services

Filed under
Linux

Nuvola Player, an application that is actually a web interface for cloud music services in its own window and provides integration with a Linux desktop, is now at version 2.3.3.

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More in Tux Machines

Docker 1.13, Containers, and DevOps

  • Introducing Docker 1.13
    Today we’re releasing Docker 1.13 with lots of new features, improvements and fixes to help Docker users with New Year’s resolutions to build more and better container apps. Docker 1.13 builds on and improves Docker swarm mode introduced in Docker 1.12 and has lots of other fixes. Read on for Docker 1.13 highlights.
  • Docker 1.13 Officially Released, Docker for AWS and Azure Ready for Production
    Docker announced today the general availability of Docker 1.13, the third major update of the open-source application container engine for GNU/Linux, macOS, and Microsoft Windows operating systems. Docker 1.13 has been in development for the past couple of months, during which it received no less than seven RC (Release Candidate) versions that implemented numerous improvements for the new Swarm Mode introduced in Docker 1.12, a few security features, as well as a new Remote API (version 1.25) and Client.
  • Distributed Fabric: A New Architecture for Container-Based Applications
    There’s a palpable sense of excitement in the application development world around container technology. Containers bring a new level of agility and speed to app development, giving developers the ability to break large monolithic apps into small, manageable microservices that can talk to one another, be more easily tested and deployed, and operate more efficiently as a full application. However, containers also demand a new architecture for the application services managing these microservices and apps, particularly in regards to service discovery — locating and consuming the services of those microservices.
  • DevOps trends emerging for 2017 and beyond
    Finally, one of the biggest trends for 2017 will not be just a focus on engaging and implementing some of these DevOps best practices into your enterprise, but a sweeping adoption of the DevOps/agile culture. This is because one of the most important – if not the absolute most key –tenets to a successful DevOps organization is culture. The enterprises that most espouse the shared responsibility, the empowered autonomous teams, the can-do attitudes, and the continuous learning environment in which DevOps thrives will see the biggest benefits.

Kernel Space/Linux

  • Optimizing Linux for Slow Computers
    It’s interesting, to consider what constitutes a power user of an operating system. For most people in the wider world a power user is someone who knows their way around Windows and Microsoft Office a lot, and can help them get their print jobs to come out right. For those of us in our community, and in particular Linux users though it’s a more difficult thing to nail down. If you’re a LibreOffice power user like your Windows counterpart, you’ve only really scratched the surface. Even if you’ve made your Raspberry Pi do all sorts of tricks in Python from the command line, or spent a career shepherding websites onto virtual Linux machines loaded with Apache and MySQL, are you then a power user compared to the person who knows their way around the system at the lower level and has an understanding of the kernel? Probably not. It’s like climbing a mountain with false summits, there are so many layers to power usership. So while some of you readers will be au fait with your OS at its very lowest level, most of us will be somewhere intermediate. We’ll know our way around our OS in terms of the things we do with it, and while those things might be quite advanced we’ll rely on our distribution packager to take care of the vast majority of the hard work.
  • Long-Term Maintenance, or How to (Mis-)Manage Embedded Systems for 10+ Years
    In this presentation, kernel hacker Jan Lübbe will explain why apparently reasonable approaches to long-term maintenance fail and how to establish a sustainable workflow instead.
  • Linux 4.9 Is the Next Long-Term Supported Kernel Branch, Says Greg Kroah-Hartman
    Linux kernel maintainer Greg Kroah-Hartman confirmed today, January 19, 2017, in a short message, on his Google+ page, that the Linux 4.9 branch is now marked as "longterm," or as some of you know as LTS (Long-Term Support). The story behind Linux kernel 4.9 becoming the next long-term supported series dates from way before it's launch last month, on December 11, when Linus Torvalds officially announced the new branch. It all started back on August 12, 2016, when Greg Kroah-Hartman dropped a quick Google+ post to say "4.9 == next LTS kernel."
  • Maintainers Don't Scale
    First let’s look at how the kernel community works, and how a change gets merged into Linus Torvalds’ repository. Changes are submitted as patches to mailing list, then get some review and eventually get applied by a maintainer to that maintainer’s git tree. Each maintainer then sends pull request, often directly to Linus. With a few big subsystems (networking, graphics and ARM-SoC are the major ones) there’s a second or third level of sub-maintainers in. 80% of the patches get merged this way, only 20% are committed by a maintainer directly. Most maintainers are just that, a single person, and often responsible for a bunch of different areas in the kernel with corresponding different git branches and repositories. To my knowledge there are only three subsystems that have embraced group maintainership models of different kinds: TIP (x86 and core kernel), ARM-SoC and the graphics subsystem (DRM).

Graphics in Linux

  • RADV Vulkan Driver Has Geometry Shader Support For Testing
    David Airlie has published a set of 31 patches for testing that provide initial support for geometry shaders within the RADV Radeon Vulkan driver. While RadeonSI has long supported geometry shaders, it's been a bigger work item bringing it to this open-source Radeon Vulkan driver within Mesa. The patches are enough for Vulkan geometry shaders to get working on RADV, but Airlie explains that the support isn't gold: "This is a first pass at geometry shader support on radv, all the code should be here in reviewable pieces, it seems to mostly pass CTS tests but triggers some llvm 3.9 bugs around kill, and there might still be a GPU hang in here, but this should still be a good place to start reviewing."
  • libinput 1.6.0
    This release fixes the slow touchpad acceleration on touchpads with less than 1000dpi, a missing call to normalized the deltas was the source of the issue.
  • Libinput 1.6 Released With New Touchpad Acceleration
    Libinput 1.6.0 was announced a short time ago on wayland-devel.
  • Mesa 17 Gets a First Release Candidate, Final Planned for Early February 2017
    Collabora's Emil Velikov announced today, January 19, 2017, the availability of the first of many Release Candidate (RC) development versions of the upcoming and highly anticipated Mesa 17.0.0 3D Graphics Library. Mesa 17 is shaping up to be a huge milestone that should dramatically improve the performance of the bundled open-source graphics drivers for Intel, AMD Radeon, Nvidia graphics cards on a Linux-based operating system. Just the other day it enabled OpenGL 4.5 support for Intel Haswell GPUs, which is already a big achievement.

Android Leftovers

  • Donald Trump has surrendered his Android phone
    Donald Trump has given up his beloved Android phone ahead of today’s inauguration, the Associated Press reports, though it is unclear what type of device he will use in the White House. According to The New York Times, Trump is now using a more secure, encrypted handset that was approved by the Secret Service. He also has a different phone number, the Times reports, citing people close to the president-elect. Trump doesn’t use email, but he does use his Android phone to tweet. He’s also been very accessible throughout the presidential campaign and transition, taking calls from reporters, politicians, and world leaders. Malcolm Turnbull, the prime minister of Australia, called Trump to congratulate him on his electoral victory after getting his cellphone number from professional golfer Greg Norman.
  • Best affordable Android smartphones you can buy [January 2017]
    There are new smartphones hitting the market constantly, but which is the best to pick up when you’re trying to save a buck or two? We’ve seen some great launches this summer and we’re only expecting more over the coming months, but for now, let’s go over the best affordable Android smartphones you can go pick up today…
  • A list of every Samsung phone getting Android 7.0 Nougat this year
  • WatchMaker to support Gear S2 & Gear S3, 1000s of watchfaces incoming
    WatchMaker, a popular Android and Android Wear watchface platform, has some good news for our readers. They are currently in the process of expanding their supported platforms and will be targeting Tizen and its latest wearable smartwatches, the Samsung Gear S2 and Gear S3.