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today's leftovers

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  • Arch Linux: A simpler kind of Linux?

    Arch Linux certainly has its share of fans, with some being quite passionate about their favorite distribution. Recently a writer at wrote a post about Arch and considered it to be a “simpler kind of Linux.”

  • HDMI Audio Patches Posted For Raspberry Pi's VC4 Driver

    If these patches land soon, the Raspberry Pi could beat newer AMD graphics cards to having mainline HDMI audio support via their respective Linux kernel DRM drivers (with the AMDGPU audio support still being held up by DAL/DC mainlining efforts). Eric Anholt managed to finally put out the VC4 HDMI audio code for review.

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  • 2016 Members Choice Award Winners

    Desktop Distribution of the Year - Slackware (16.03%)
    Server Distribution of the Year - CentOS (23.86%)
    Mobile Distribution of the Year - Android (68.24%)
    Database of the Year - MariaDB (41.29%)
    Office Suite of the Year - LibreOffice (89.60%)
    Browser of the Year - Firefox (51.74%)
    Desktop Environment of the Year - Plasma Desktop - KDE (28.57%)
    Window Manager of the Year - Openbox (24.04%)
    Audio Media Player Application of the Year - VLC (33.60%)
    Video Media Player Application of the Year - VLC (64.36%)
    Network Security Application of the Year - Wireshark (26.09%)
    Host Security Application of the Year - SELinux (36.62%)

  • TGSI On-Disk Shader Cache For Mesa: Caching Comes To R600g/RadeonSI

    Timothy Arceri of Collabora has sent out his latest patches to Mesa in regards to the ongoing work for shader caches. The 40 patches published over night do benefit RadeonSI and R600g.

    Up to now Arceri's GLSL shader cache has been about having a cache of the compiled shaders on-disk for the hardware being targeted and that focus up until recently was just for the Intel i965 driver. The shader cache effort being worked on now is adding support for caching of TGSI (Gallium3D's IR) for drivers with RadeonSI caching now on his radar. With the TGSI effort, basically allowing an on-disk cache of the intermediate representation that is then consumed by the Gallium3D hardware drivers for generating their hardware-specific code.

  • KDE Plasma 5.9.1 Released With Fixes

    For those that wait until point releases before upgrading your KDE desktop stack, Plasma 5.9.1 is now available.

    KDE Plasma 5.9.0 was released last week with a variety of new features while coming out today is the first point release.

  • QtWebKit Updated With WebGL Support, MinGW On Windows

    Qt WebEngine remains the primary module on modern Qt5 tool-kit versions for having web capabilities provided by Chromium. The migration from Qt WebKit to WebEngine happened around four years ago but there still are some developers pursuing out-of-tree support for Qt WebKit.

    In 2016 we covered a few times the work being done to revive Qt WebKit while coming out this week is a fresh "technology preview" release of the Qt WebKit code for those interested in this alternative to the Chromium-based Qt WebEngine.

  • Apt Update Indicator For GNOME Shell Keeps You Informed About Available Updates [Ubuntu GNOME / Debian]

    Apt Update Indicator is a GNOME Shell extension that keeps you informed about available updates in Ubuntu GNOME / Debian.

    Using it, you get a new icon on the GNOME Shell Top Bar which displays the number of package updates, while from its menu you can see exactly which updates are pending, apply the updates, and more.

  • OpenSUSE site hacked; quickly restored

    The openSUSE team acted quickly to restore the site. When I talked to Richard Brown, openSUSE chairman, he said that “the server that hosts ‘’ is isolated from the majority of openSUSE infrastructure by design, so there was no breach of any other part of openSUSEs infrastructure, especially our build, test and download systems. Our offered downloads remain safe and consistent and there was no breach of any openSUSE contributor data.”

    The team is still investigating the reason for the breach so I don’t have much information. The site ran a WordPress install and it seems that WordPress was compromised.

    This site is not managed by the SUSE or openSUSE team. It is handled by the IT team of MicroFocus. However, Brown said that SUSE management certainly doesn’t want any such incident to happen again and they are considering moving the site to the infrastructure managed by SUSE and openSUSE team.

  • Speak at The Linux Foundation’s Open Source Summit and Automotive Linux Summit in Japan

    More than 600 open source professionals, developers and operators will convene in Tokyo this year to collaborate, share information, and learn at Open Source Summit Japan. The technical conference will cover the latest in open source technologies, including Linux, containers, cloud computing, software-defined networking, and more.

    This year Open Source Summit Japan will also be co-located with Automotive Linux Summit, to be held May 31 - June 2 at the Tokyo Conference Center. Automotive Linux Summit gathers the most innovative minds from the automotive arena including automotive systems engineers, Linux experts, R&D managers, business executives, open source licensing and compliance specialists and community developers. The event connects the developer community with the vendors and users providing and using the code in order to drive the future of embedded devices in automotive.

  • What to know before jumping into a career as an open source lawyer

    Advising clients on open source issues is a ton of fun—you often get to do deep dives into the technology to understand how it works, you can have a huge impact on their products and bottom line, and you can also help build healthy communities of paid developers and volunteers who are creating better tech.

  • Oracle Policy Change Raises Prices on AWS

    News came last week that Oracle has, in effect, doubled the price for running its products on Amazon's cloud. It has done so with a bit of sleight-of-hand on how it counts AWS's virtual CPUs. It also did so without fanfare. The company's new pricing policy went in effect on January 23, and pretty much went unnoticed until January 28, when Oracle follower Tim Hall stumbled on the change in Big Red's "Licensing Oracle Software in the Cloud Computing Environment" document and blew the whistle.

today's leftovers

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today's leftovers

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  • ISO Refresh: antergos 17.2
  • Hindi phonetic keyboard layout in openSUSE Tumbleweed

    I installed openSUSE Tumbleweed from snapshot 20170203. Surprisingly I could not find the Hindi/Bolnagri layout as I use to in previous installations of openSUSE. I’m using GNOME and getting a Hindi phonetic keyboard layout is usually not much a hassle.

  • The Fairfield Bush & CO. Maintains Position in Red Hat, Inc. (RHT)
  • Tails Linux farewells 32-bit processors with imminent version 3.0

    The privacy-paranoid Linux distribution Tails has decided it's time to send 32-bit distributions the way of the 8086, from the planned June release of version 3.0.

    Tails' developers offer two reasons in their announcement: make the distro safer and save previous developer resources.

  • Smartphone App: New battery saver app added to Tizen Store

    Modern smartphones have many different important components and the battery is one critical part, as without it your smartphone really loses all its appeal. So, there are lots of services that can decrease our smartphone’s battery life. A new Battery Saver app has been added to the Tizen Store by developer Mauro Ibba.

  • Smartphone Game: Zombo Buster Rising & Bois D’Arc are available at Tizen Store

    Steven, who is from a team of Indie game devs based in Indonesia named FIREBEAST, would like to Introduce you to two games that they have recently added to the Tizen Store:

  • Raspberry Pi As An ARMed Commodity

    The 40-Rpi job costs $745.95 + 40X$35. This gives 10/100 Ethernet, 40gB RAM and 192 gHz-cores of computing power. That would be capable of a lot but would be a dog to configure in the usual way a desktop/server is configured. I would not be happy with the limited bandwidth of networking and storage bottle-neck (USB2). Most likely this would be useful for particularly narrowly defined computing tasks rather than general-purpose computing.

  • Olimex Announces Their Open Source Laptop

    The design of this laptop is completely Open Source. Usually when we hear this phrase, the Open Source part only means the electronics and firmware. Yes, there are exceptions, but the STL files for the PiTop, the ‘3D printable Raspberry Pi laptop’ are not available, rendering the ‘3D printable’ part of PiTop’s marketing splurge incongruent with reality. If you want to build a case for the Open Source laptop to date, [Bunnie]’s Novena, random GitHub repos are the best source. The Olimex TERES I is completely different; not only can you simply buy all the parts for the laptop, the hardware files are going up too. To be fair, this laptop is built with injection molded parts and will probably be extremely difficult to print on a standard desktop filament printer. The effort is there, though, and this laptop can truly be built from source.

  • ​Catalyst snaps up open source technology veteran

today's leftovers

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  • RADV Radeon Vulkan Driver Gets Support For Sparse Binding

    Bas Nieuwenhuizen's driver hacking this weekend has led to support of Vulkan's sparseBinding feature within this open-source Radeon Vulkan Linux driver.

  • Linux App Updates Round Up: Skype, Stacer, QupZilla, Wine

    With FOSDEM 2017 in session over the weekend you might have had better things to do than monitor the web for minor updates to popular Linux apps.

  • openSUSE Tumbleweed – Review of the Week 2017/05
  • The Ubuntu Tablet Was Announced One Year Ago Today

    The world’s first, official Ubuntu Tablet was announced to the world one year ago today.

  • The Ubuntu Tablet Was Announced One Year Ago Today

    The world’s first, official Ubuntu Tablet was announced to the world one year ago today.

  • 10 tips to free up storage space on your Android phone or tablet
  • Android Circuit: Galaxy S8 Launch Date, New Nokia Smartphone Leaks, Apple Beats Samsung
  • FOSDEM 2017 Day 1: Arrival

    Extra t-shirt, check! Toothbrush, check! 60 pairs of socks, check! Friday the 3rd february was day 1 of my trip to FOSDEM with Open Source Aalborg. We’ve booked flight tickets so we can go early in the morning just to make the best out of the 4 days we’ll be staying in Brussels. 10 minutes intensive situps + 10 kilometers bike trip to the airport at 5 AM and you feel like you can do anything afterwards. At the local airport in Aalborg I met Daniel and Anders. Much of the morning we spent just talking while flights, escalators and trains would take us to our destination. In all three years I have attended FOSDEM, it has had 500-600 events happening over the course of just one weekend. Finding and planning which talks to see and handling conflicting talks is enough of a hassle that it appears there is even an apps for it. I’m not that big of a talk goer though. I’m looking much more forward to helping in the GNOME booth, visiting booths and speaking with people I haven’t had a conversation with face-to-face for many months.

  • BSD @ FOSDEM 2017: Encrypted Disks, Go, CloudABI

    On Saturday at this year's FOSDEM conference there was a BSD developer room where various talks were had for European BSD fans.

    For Phoronix BSD readers who weren't in attendance at this year's Free Open-Source Developers' European Meeting, many of the PDF slides and videos have already been uploaded. When it comes to the BSD talks this year there was work presented on packaging Golang for pkgsrc, GELIBoot for booting FreeBSD from an encrypted disk, evolution on top of the BSD's, and CloudABI for FreeBSD.

  • Global Positioning System (GPS) Energetic Particle Data

    Energetic particle data from the CXD and BDD instrument on the GPS constellation are available to the space weather research community. The release of these data supports the National Space Weather Action Plan which was recently published by the Executive Office of the President's National Science and Technology Council (NSTC).

  • Corrode Is Still Advancing For Auto-Translating C Code To Rust

    Free software developer Jamey Sharp continues working on his "Corrode" project for being able to automatically convert C code into Rust.

    Corrode is all about converting C code to Rust, largely to migrate large, legacy code-bases over to Rust, which is known for its memory safety features and other benefits of a modern programming language. But Jamey Sharp does agree that not all C projects should turn to Rust but in cases like the CVS code-base, he continues to believe it's much better off (and safer) in Rust.

  • Metasploit Targets Hardware for IoT Security Penetration Testing

    Open-source Metasploit penetration testing framework adds new hardware support, enabling researchers to target IoT devices, starting with automotive.

    Security vendor Rapid7 has been helping to lead the open-source Metasploit penetration testing framework project since October 2009, largely focused on software. On Feb. 2, Rapid7 announced a new expansion of Metasploit's capabilities to enable security researchers to directly link to hardware for vulnerability testing.

    The new hardware enablement is currently in the open-source Metasploit framework and is available via GitHub. Additionally, Rapid7 plans on packaging the capability in the standard open-source Metasploit community edition.

today's leftovers

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  • Librem 13 coreboot report – February 3rd, 2017: It’s Alive!

    It’s been 3 weeks since I wrote my last blog post but this is going to be a short update, in big part because I’ve spent the first two weeks sick in bed and thus wasn’t able to do much at all. However, in the last week I did manage to make some big progress, and the result represents such a great milestone that it warrants a blog post of its own. And, well, I doubt many will complain about not having to read through a wall of text for today’s blog post

    So the good news is: coreboot is working on the Librem 13. The laptop boots into Linux and most things are working! The only issue I have found so far is that the M.2 SATA port doesn’t seem to work properly yet (see below for more info).

  • Obsidian-1 Icon Theme Based On Faenza And It Revives Desktop

    Obsidian-1 icons are based on Faenza icon theme which is around from some years but the development of Faenza is almost stopped, hope creator again give some time to his popular icons. Obisidian-1 icon theme offers icons for panels, toolbars and buttons and colourful squared icons for devices, applications, folder, files and menu items, there are two version included to fit with light or dark themes. It is in active development which means if you find any missing icon or problem with this icon set then you can report it via linked page and hopefully it will be fixed in the next update. Arc theme suite used in the following screenshots and you can use Unity Tweak Tool, Gnome-tweak-tool to change themes/icons.

  • Enlightenment Wires In Wayland's Pointer Constraints & Relative Pointer Support

    It's been a while since we last had anything to report on Enlightenment's Wayland compositor work, but that changed as we begin February.

    Landing on Friday in Enlightenment Git is support for pointer constraints within their Wayland compositor. This protocol support is about adding constraints to the motion of pointer, such as limiting it to a given region or to its current position.

  • Take Your Writing To The Next Level With Writefull (Cross-Platform)

    Writefull is a tool that helps improve your writing by comparing your text against databases of correct language like Google Books, Web, Scholar and News.

    The application is free to use but not open source software, and is available for Linux, Windows, Mac, as well as a Chrome extension.

  • Plotinus and the quest for searchable menus

    For something that dramatically alters the UX, Plotinus is technically very clean. There is no fork of Gtk+ (the gui toolkit on GNU/Linux) or similarly hacky techniques. It uses the built-in GTK3_MODULES system to extend Gtk+.

    But this brings a downside - compatibility. Plotinus only supports Gtk+ 3 applications. While some in the GNU/Linux community would like to see all applications use Gtk+ 3, this is not the case. Some of the apps with the worst menus, like Inkscape or the GIMP, are written in the older Gtk 2 library.

  • [Video] Spring-loading functionality in Plasma 5.10's Folder View

    Folder View in Plasma 5.10 allows you to navigate folders by hovering above them during drag and drop.

  • [Video] Plasma 5.9
  • [Older] [Video] MX Linux 16 - Linux Distribution, First Impressions Review
  • Calculate Linux 17 Cinnamon released

    Calculate Linux Calculate Linux 17 was launched back at the very end of last year in KDE and MATE editions, You can check Calculate Linux 17 Released.Now it is time to taste the new flavour, Cinnamon.
    Calculate Linux Team has announced the release of Calculate Linux 17 Cinnamon.

    Well, Calculate Linux Desktop Cinnamon(CLDC) must be having key and basic features and packages just like other DE flavoured Calculate Linux variants.Apart from that CLDC is released with Cinnamon 3.2.7.Other than that Firefox, RythomBox, Gimp, Pidgin, Totem and many more packages are updated and pre-installed in CLDC.

  • [Slackware] Chromium 56, LibreOffice 5.2.5

    I had rebuilt the libreoffice-5.2.4 packages for Slackware -current last week, because library updates in Slackware had broken the spreadsheet application ‘localc‘. And voila… not long afterwards the Document Foundation blog announced 5.2.5: “all users are invited to update to LibreOffice 5.2.5 from LibreOffice 5.1.6 or previous versions“. Today on the first of february, we can even witness the 5.3 release.

  • Fedora 25 Using GLVND For Mesa Has Been Causing Headaches

    The decision to switch Mesa to enabling GLVND support in Fedora 25 as a post-release change has been causing headaches for some users.

today's leftovers

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today's leftovers

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  • CoreOS Drives Container Management Forward with Tectonic 1.5

    CoreOS is updating its flagship Tectonic platform with the new Tectonic 1.5 release, officially announced on Jan. 31. The new platform benefits from improvements in Kubernetes as well as innovations purpose-built by CoreOS.

  • Mesa 13.0.4 Released with RadeonSI and Intel ANV Vulkan Driver Improvements

    Collabora's Emil Velikov is announcing today the immediate availability of the fourth maintenance update to the latest Mesa 13 stable series of the open-source graphics driver stack for Linux-based operating systems.

  • openSUSE Cloud Images are Ripe for Users

    Cloud images for openSUSE Leap 42.2 are now available for Amazon Web Services (AWS EC2), Azure, Google Compute Engine and more cloud providers.

    Last week, openSUSE Leap 42.2 cloud image became available in the AWS Marketplace and within the past few weeks cloud images for Azure, Google Compute Engine and OpenStack also became available.

  • My free software activities, January 2017

    The debmans package I had so lovingly worked on last month is now officially abandoned. It turns out that another developer, Michael Stapelberg wrote his own implementation from scratch, called debiman.

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  • Vulkan Slides Now Available From Khronos' Vancouver Event

    Yesterday The Khronos Group hosted a one-day workshop in Vancouver, Canada with all things Vulkan.

  • Handling all those mail notifications from the bug tracker
  • OPNsense 17.1 Released, Based On FreeBSD 11

    OPNsense 17.1 is now available as the newest release of this network-focused FreeBSD-based operating system forked from pfSense.

    It's now been two years since the first official release of OPNsense and to celebrate they have out a big update. OPNsense 17.1 re-bases to using FreeBSD 11.0, there's now a SSH remote installer, new language support, more hardening features used from HardenedBSD, new plugins, integrated authentication via PAM, and many other improvements. Some of the new plug-ins include FTP Proxy, Tinc VPN, and Let's Encrypt support.

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  • Finding an Alternative to Mac OS X — Part 2 - Adventures with Linux

    This is the second in my series on finding an alternative to Mac OS X. Part 1 was about evaluating 13 alternative operating systems and then choosing one to use full time. The selected OS was elementary OS. The motivation for this change is to get access to better hardware since Apple is neglecting the Mac lineup.

    If video is more your style I gave a short (10 min) talk at work on my adventures with Linux that covers the core content of this post.

  • New Office 365 subscriptions for consumers plunged 62% in 2016

    Four years after the introduction of Office 365 for consumers, Microsoft last week said subscriptions to the productivity software had reached nearly 25 million.

    Subscribers, however, were harder to find last year than in 2015, according to the numbers Microsoft reported: Additions to Office 365's rolls were down 62% in 2016 compared to the year before.

    During an earnings call with Wall Street analysts last week, CEO Satya Nadella touted revenue increases for the Office products aimed at consumers -- which include Office 365 -- and of the latter said that the company had, "continued to see an increase in ... subscriber base."

    That it did.

  • Oracle effectively doubles licence fees to run its stuff in AWS

    That's changed: Oracle's new cloud licensing policy [PDF] says an AWS vCPU is now treated as a full core if hyperthreading is not enabled. A user renting two AWS vCPUS therefore needs to pay full freight for both, effectively doubling the number of Oracle licences required to run Big Red inside AWS. And therefore doubling the cost as well.

  • SoftMaker's FlexiPDF
  • Calamares 3.0 Gets First Point Release to Improve SDDM Autologin Config Handling
  • Best Linux Distro: Final Round of Voting Has Begun

    Arch Linux wins the qualifying round for the second year, followed by Linux Mint. In addition, eight distros qualified by write-in votes to be included in our final round. Now it’s time to get out the vote in the all-important final round to determine the Best Linux Distro according to our readers.

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Security: Dropbox, FUD, CNCF, 'Cloud'

  • Dropbox has some genuinely great security reporting guidelines, but reserves the right to jail you if you disagree

    Dropbox's position, however reasonable in many of its aspects, is woefully deficient, because the company reserves the right to invoke DMCA 1201 and/or CFAA and other tools that give companies the power to choose who can say true things abour mistakes they've made.

    This is not normal. Before DRM in embedded software and cloud connectivity, became routine there were no restrictions on who could utter true words about defects in a product. [...]

  • Hackers Infect Linux Servers With Monero Miner via 5-Year-Old Vulnerability [Ed: A five-year-old vulnerability implies total neglect by sysadmins, not a GNU/Linux weakness]
    Attackers also modified the local cron jobs to trigger a "watchd0g" Bash script every three minutes, a script that checked to see if the Monero miner was still active and restarted XMRig's process whenever it was down.
  • GitHub: Our dependency scan has found four million security flaws in public repos [Ed: No, GitHub just ran a scan for old versions being used and reused. It cannot do this for proprietary software, but the issues are there and the risks are no better.]
    GitHub says its security scan for old vulnerabilities in JavaScript and Ruby libraries has turned up over four million bugs and sparked a major clean-up by project owners. The massive bug-find total was reached within a month of the initiative's launch in November, when GitHub began scanning for known vulnerabilities in certain popular open-source libraries and notifying project owners that they should be using an updated version.
  • Envoy CNCF Project Completes Security Audit, Delivers New Release
    The Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF) has begun a process of performing third-party security audits for its projects, with the first completed audit coming from the Envoy proxy project. The Envoy proxy project was created by ride-sharing company Lyft and officially joined the CNCF in September 2017. Envoy is a service mesh reverse proxy technology that is used to help scale micro-services data traffic.
  • Hybrid cloud security: Emerging lessons [Ed: 'Cloud' and security do not belong in the same headline because 'cloud' is a data breach, typically involving a company giving all its (and customers') data to some spying giant abroad]

A Look At The Relative Spectre/Meltdown Mitigation Costs On Windows vs. Linux

The latest in our Windows versus Linux benchmarking is looking at the relative performance impact on both Linux and Windows of their Spectre and Meltdown mitigation techniques. This round of tests were done on Windows 10 Pro, Ubuntu 18.04 LTS, and Clear Linux when having an up-to-date system on each OS where there is Spectre/Meltdown protection and then repeating the same benchmarks after reverting/disabling the security functionality. Read more

Raspberry Pi atmospheric sensor HAT can detect distant explosions

OSOP’s $179 and up “Raspberry Boom” Raspberry Pi HAT add-on detects infrasound from volcanoes, explosions, and rockets. A $299 and up Shake and Boom HAT adds a seismograph. Panama-based OSOP, which found Kickstarter success with its Raspberry Shake seismograph add-on board for the Raspberry Pi, has now returned with a Raspberry Boom add-on board and infrasound sensor that detects inaudible sound. The same Kickstarter campaign is also selling a new Raspberry Shake and Boom product that combines the Boom with the seismograph capabilities of the Shake. Both products can tap into OSOPs large citizen science network to detect real-time events around the world. Read more

Wireless crazed Orange Pi boasts 4G LTE, WiFi, BT, FM, and GPS

The “Orange Pi 4G-IOT” SBC that runs Android 6.0 on a quad -A53 MediaTek MT6737 SoC, and offers a 40-pin header, WiFi, Bluetooth, FM, GPS, a 4G LTE radio, and fingerprint sensor support. Shenzhen Xunlong open spec Orange Pi 4G-IOT SBC, which just launched for $45 on AliExpress, is the most wireless savvy Orange Pi to date. The open-spec SBC includes an unnamed, 4G LTE radio module with mini-SIM card slot, as well as a combo module that includes WiFi, Bluetooth, FM, and GPS. There is also support for a fingerprint sensor. Read more