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SystemRescue 8.00 Released with Linux 5.10 LTS, Xfce 4.16, and Improved exFAT Support

SystemRescue 8.00 comes about five months after SystemRescue 7.00, which was the first version to ship with the new name instead of SystemRescueCd. The biggest change in this new release is the inclusion of the long-term supported Linux 5.10 LTS kernel series for improved hardware support. On top of that, SystemRescue 8.00 upgrades the default Xfce desktop environment used for the live session to the latest Xfce 4.16 release, which ships with numerous new features and improvements. Read more

today's leftovers

  • Daffodil Promoted To Being An Apache Top-Level Project

    Following the recent promotions of DataSketches and ECharts, the Apache Software Foundation has promoted Daffodil as their newest top-level project. Apache Daffodil is an open-source universal interchange implementation of the Data Format Description Language (DFDL). The Data Format Description Language (DFDL) standard is a modeling language for text and binary data in a standardized manner. DFDL basically aims to make data more portable thanks to providing an open framework for describing any data format.

  • At Least 30,000 U.S. Organizations Newly Hacked Via Holes in Microsoft’s Email Software

    At least 30,000 organizations across the United States — including a significant number of small businesses, towns, cities and local governments — have over the past few days been hacked by an unusually aggressive Chinese cyber espionage unit that’s focused on stealing email from victim organizations, multiple sources tell KrebsOnSecurity. The espionage group is exploiting four newly-discovered flaws in Microsoft Exchange Server email software, and has seeded hundreds of thousands of victim organizations worldwide with tools that give the attackers total, remote control over affected systems.

  • Linux Developers Continue Discussing "SLS" Mitigation For The Kernel - Phoronix

    Disclosed by Arm last summer was the Straight Line Speculation (SLS) vulnerability and they were quick to introduce new safeguards against SLS in the GCC and LLVM compilers. The compiler-based mitigations to straight-line speculation involves adding speculation barrier sequences around the vulnerable instructions to prevent speculatively executing instructions around changes in control flow. While compiler developers were quick to add the options, so far the Linux kernel developers are in disagreement still over its importance and the proposed patches that would flip on this option when compiling the ARM Linux kernel. While compiler support is out there for hardening against straight-line speculation on ARM, seeing these options utilized by potentially affected software hasn't been so quick. In February there were Google engineers proposing a kernel option for enabling the ARM SLS mitigation. The kernel patch is for basically enabling the "-mharden-sls=" compiler option for inserting speculation barrier (SB) instructions or otherwise DSB+ISB instructions around the instructions vulnerable to SLS.

KDE: Meeting of the KDE Itinerary Developers and Exiv2 Project

  • KDE Itinerary @ German Open Transport Meetup

    The German Open Transport Meetup started mid last year, as a get-together for anyone interested or involved in mobility or transportation in general, and in Open Data/Free Software in that context in particular. Being forced to be virtual from the start due to the pandemic is probably what gave it the critical mass to keep up the unusual high pace for such an event with its bi-weekly rhythm, and with no shortage on topics in sight. Many of the things discussed at the meetup so far had immediate impact on KDE Itinerary (and the KPublicTransport library in particular), the biggest example probably being the rental bike/scooter support. A large number of the attendees actually working for local or national transport operators or public administration has also been invaluable for getting first-hand access and insights.

  • Exiv2 project submission to the KDE community
    Ladies and Gentlemen:
    
    I am writing to you on behalf of the Exiv2 project https://exiv2.org.
    
    Exiv2 is a C++ library and a command-line utility to read, write, delete
    and modify Exif, IPTC, XMP and ICC image metadata. It is widely used in the
    Linux ecosystem and part of many applications such as digiKam, Gimp,
    darktable and many more.
    
    The Exiv2 project is hosted at the moment on GitHub (
    https://github.com/Exiv2/exiv2). We would like to evaluate the possibility
    of onboarding the Exiv2 project into the KDE community.
    
    The project is in good shape and the next release is scheduled to ship May
    2021. There is a small group of people who frequently contribute to the
    project.  However the current maintainer, Robin Mills, is retiring at the
    age of 70 after 13 years of service to the project.  Robin has written a
    book about the project and discusses every aspect of both the Exiv2
    Architecture and Image Metadata Standards.
    https://clanmills.com/exiv2/book/
    
    Last Saturday (2021-02-27) there was a meeting concerning the future of the
    Exiv2 and we tried to find a new maintainer.  Regrettably because of the
    time demand imposed on the maintainer, no one volunteered.  By joining the
    KDE community we hope to address this issue and keep this important project
    alive. The meeting notes can be found on the GitHub issue (
    https://github.com/Exiv2/exiv2/issues/1466).
    
    In addition to finding a new maintainer, being part of KDE would bring
    Exiv2 into the Open Invention Network.  We are very interested in this
    aspect of KDE as it mitigates risks involved in patent discussions.
    
    Yours,
    
    Alex Esseling and Robin Mills
    
  • Exiv2 Looks To Team Up With The KDE Project

    Exiv2, the widely-used C++ metadata library / tools for dealing with image metadata via EXIF / IPTC / XMP standards and ICC profiles is looking to join the KDE project. This C++ library and CLI tools for dealing with image metadata is widely used already in the open-source world, including by several KDE programs like Krita, digiKam, and KPhotoAlbum. Software outside of KDE like GIMP and Darktable also leverage this image metadata library.

Manage containers on Raspberry Pi with this open source tool

Containers became widely popular because of Docker on Linux, but there are much earlier implementations, including the jail system on FreeBSD. A container is called a "jail" in FreeBSD terminology. The jail system was first released in FreeBSD 4.0 way back in 2000, and it has continuously improved since. While 20 years ago it was used mostly on large servers, now you can run it on your Raspberry Pi. Jails vs. containers on Linux Container development took a very different path on FreeBSD than on Linux. On FreeBSD, containerization was developed as a strict security feature in the late '90s for virtual hosting and its flexibility grew over the years. Limiting a container's computing resources was not part of the original concept; this was added later. When I started to use jails in production in 2001, it was quite painful. I had to prepare my own scripts to automate working with them. Read more