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GNU/Linux Desktop

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GNU
Linux
Microsoft
Mac
  • Want a Windows 10 PC in your pocket? GPD's tiny laptop will also run Ubuntu

    The maker of the GPD WIN, a 5.5-inch Windows 10 handheld game console released last year, is planning to launch a tablet-sized laptop, dubbed 'Pocket', which will run Windows or Ubuntu.

  • Troubleshooting tips for the 5 most common Linux issues

    Although Linux installs and operates as expected for most users, inevitably some users will run into problems. For my final article in The Queue column for the year, I thought it would be interesting to summarize the most common technical Linux issues people ran into in 2016. I posted the question to LinuxQuestions.org and on social media, and I analyzed LQ posting patterns. Here are the results.

  • Microsoft’s OS supremacy over Apple to end in 2017

    Apple will steal a march on Microsoft this year when for the first time this century shipments of devices powered by its operating systems outnumber those running Windows, research firm Gartner said today.

Finding an Alternative to Mac OS X

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Mac

This is a team that values the same things I do. The interface is clean and refined. The pre-installed application selection is minimal and each one feels like a perfect piece of the system.

The main drawback of Elementary to me is that it’s built on top of Ubuntu LTS. As time goes on all the packages get further from the current versions published upstream. I’d much rather a regular release like Fedora (6 months) or a rolling release like Arch.

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Assimilation That Confuses/Openwashing

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Microsoft
Mac

Linux World Domination, Microsoft Antitrust, Apple Against Linux

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GNU
Linux
Microsoft
Mac

Linux User Warns: “2016 MacBook Pro Is Incompatible With Linux”

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Mac

Earlier this year, the reports of Lenovo hybrid laptops not supporting Linux created a stir. Recently, the company fixed the issued by issuing a BIOS update to allow Linux installation on Yoga 900, 900S and IdeaPad 710. The update added an AHCI SATA controller mode to make the process easier.

In another event of similar nature, a Reddit user hot2 has warned the potential Apple MacBook Pro buyers. He has shared a post titled “Warning: 2016 MacBook Pro is not compatible with Linux”.

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Elementary, My Dear Siri!

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GNU
Linux
Mac

I’m not one prone to knee-jerk reactions, but I’m also not one to sit about idly without considering alternatives. So the first thing I did after the Apple keynote was to download a copy of Elementary and burn it to an SD card.

An hour or so later, after checking that my Chromebook would work OK with it1, I installed from the live image to the SSD and began the process of figuring out whether, three years after I first tried it, Elementary is finally good enough for me as a development environment.

Like last time, this isn’t a review per se, but rather a smattering of my impressions while trying to assess whether it suits me.

I’m being realistic here – I know it’s not macOS, I don’t expect it to be macOS, it will not be a magical replacement for macOS for most people who share my current disenchantment with Apple, but I am very familiar with Linux, and most definitely need to consider moving to it in the long term given the way Apple has been neglecting Mac hardware and software over the past few years.

So given this week’s keynote completely ignored desktops and that I sorely need to upgrade my six-year-old Mac mini, this is as good a time as any to evaluate what’s out there.

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Some Disappointed Apple Fans Are Moving To Ubuntu Linux

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GNU
Linux
Mac
Ubuntu

At its October event, Apple tried hard to convince the users that its latest MacBook Pro is machine built for professional users. The company showed off the brand new Touch Bar that changed its appearance depending on the applications running on the screen. The new MacBooks are thinner and more powerful than ever. But, there’s something missing that’s driving away some diehard Apple fans.

Firstly, Apple decided to ditch a large array of connectivity ports–HDMI ports, SD card slot, Thunderbolt 2 ports, and standard USB port. These ports have been replaced by 4 Thunderbolt 3/USB-C ports. So, the same power user segment that’s being aimed by Apple, is expressing lots of concerns.

Apart from the disappeared ports, these MacBooks have maximum 16GB of RAM. On the contrary, minimum 32GB RAM is becoming a standard for power users. While Microsoft is presenting itself as the new innovative tech company, some Apple loyalists are turning to another alternative, i.e., Linux.

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MacBook Pro (2016) disappointment pushes some Apple loyalists to Ubuntu Linux

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Mac
Ubuntu

The new Apple MacBook Pro looks to be a wonderful laptop, but understandably, not everyone is impressed. The "Pro" moniker literally means "professional", and there are some concerns from that segment. Some photographers, for instance, will be very hurt and disgusted by the lack of an SD card slot. More importantly, the computer maxes out at 16GB of RAM -- many pro users want 32GB or more, which is not possible on the new machine, sadly.

While you might expect some of these disappointed Apple loyalists to turn to a Windows machine -- and I'm sure some will -- some are turning to an unexpected alternative -- Linux. You see, immediately after the Apple Keynote, famed Ubuntu laptop and desktop seller, System76, saw a huge jump in traffic from people looking to buy its machines. The traffic was so intense, that it needed to upgrade servers to keep up!

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macOS 10.12 Sierra vs. Ubuntu 16.04 Linux Benchmarks

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Graphics/Benchmarks
Mac
Ubuntu

Apple released macOS 10.12 "Sierra" last week as the successor to OS X El Capitan. Given this annual update to macOS / OS X, here are benchmarks of macOS Sierra compared to Ubuntu 16.04 LTS on a MacBook Air and Mac Mini computers.

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More in Tux Machines

GNOME and Fedora

  • RFC: Integrating rsvg-rs into librsvg
    I have started an RFC to integrate rsvg-rs into librsvg. rsvg-rs is the Rust binding to librsvg. Like the gtk-rs bindings, it gets generated from a pre-built GIR file.
  • 1+ year of Fedora and GNOME hardware enablement
    A year and a couple of months ago, Christian Schaller asked me to pivot a little bit from working full time on Fleet Commander to manage a new team we were building to work on client hardware enablement for Fedora and GNOME with an emphasis on upstream. The idea was to fill the gap in the organization where nobody really owned the problem of bringing up new client hardware features vertically across the stack (from shell down to the kernel), or rather, ensure Fedora and GNOME both work great on modern laptops. Part of that deal was to take over the bootloader and start working closer to customers and hardware manufacturing parnters.
  • Fedora Atomic Workstation: Works on the beach
    My trip is getting really close, so I decided to upgrade my system to rawhide. Wait, what ? That is usually what everybody would tell you not to do. Rawhide has this reputation for frequent breakage, and who knows if my apps will work any given day. Not something you want to deal with while traveling.
  • 4 cool new projects to try in COPR for February

Why You Shouldn’t Use Firefox Forks (and Proprietary Opera)

  • Why You Shouldn’t Use Firefox Forks Like Waterfox, Pale Moon, or Basilisk
    Mozilla Firefox is an open source project, so anyone can take its code, modify it, and release a new browser. That’s what Waterfox, Pale Moon, and Basilisk are—alternative browsers based on the Firefox code. But we recommend against using any of them.
  • Opera Says Its Next Opera Release Will Have the Fastest Ad Blocker on the Block
    Opera Software promoted today its upcoming Opera 52 web browser to the beta channel claiming that it has the faster ad blocker on the market compared to previous Opera release and Google Chrome. One of the key highlights of the Opera 52 release will be the improved performance of the built-in ad blocker as Opera claims to have enhanced the string matching algorithm of the ad blocker to make it open web pages that contain ads much faster than before, and, apparently than other web browsers, such as Chrome.

Graphics: Glxinfo, ANV, SPIR-V

  • Glxinfo Gets Updated With OpenGL 4.6 Support, More vRAM Reporting
    The glxinfo utility is handy for Linux users in checking on their OpenGL driver in use by their system and related information. But it's not often that glxinfo itself gets updated, except that changed today with the release of mesa-demos-8.4.0 as the package providing this information utility. Mesa-demos is the collection of glxinfo, eglinfo, glxgears, and utilities related to Mesa. With the Mesa-demos 8.4.0 it is predominantly glxinfo updates.
  • Intel ANV Getting VK_KHR_16bit_storage Support Wrapped Up
    Igalia's Jose Maria Casanova Crespo sent out a set of patches today for fixes that allow for the enabling of the VK_KHR_16bit_storage extension within Intel's ANV Vulkan driver. The patches are here for those interested in 16-bit storage support in Vulkan. This flips on the features for storageBuffer16BitAccess, uniformAndStorageBuffer16BitAccess, storagePushConstant16 and the VK_KHR_16bit_storage extension. This support is present for Intel "Gen 8" Broadwell graphics and newer. Hopefully the work will be landing in Mesa Git soon.
  • SPIR-V Support For Gallium3D's Clover Is Closer To Reality
    It's been a busy past week for open-source GPU compute with Intel opening up their new NEO OpenCL stack, Karol Herbst at Red Hat posting the latest on Nouveau NIR support for SPIR-V compute, and now longtime Nouveau contributor Pierre Moreau has presented his latest for SPIR-V Clover support. Pierre has been spending about the past year adding SPIR-V support to Gallium3D's "Clover" OpenCL state tracker. SPIR-V, of course, is the intermediate representation used now by OpenCL and Vulkan.

Security: Updates, Tinder, FUD and KPTI Meltdown Mitigation

  • Security updates for Friday
  • Tinder vulnerability let hackers [sic] take over accounts with just a phone number

    The attack worked by exploiting two separate vulnerabilities: one in Tinder and another in Facebook’s Account Kit system, which Tinder uses to manage logins. The Account Kit vulnerability exposed users’ access tokens (also called an “aks” token), making them accessible through a simple API request with an associated phone number.

  • PSA: Improperly Secured Linux Servers Targeted with Chaos Backdoor [Ed: Drama queen once again (second time in a week almost) compares compromised GNU/Linux boxes to "back doors"]
    Hackers are using SSH brute-force attacks to take over Linux systems secured with weak passwords and are deploying a backdoor named Chaos. Attacks with this malware have been spotted since June, last year. They have been recently documented and broken down in a GoSecure report.
  • Another Potential Performance Optimization For KPTI Meltdown Mitigation
    Now that the dust is beginning to settle around the Meltdown and Spectre mitigation techniques on the major operating systems, in the weeks and months ahead we are likely to see more performance optimizations come to help offset the performance penalties incurred by mitigations like kernel page table isolation (KPTI) and Retpolines. This week a new patch series was published that may help with KPTI performance.