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Linus Torvalds is Back

  • ​Linus Torvalds is back in charge of Linux
    At Open Source Summit Europe in Scotland, Linus Torvalds is meeting with Linux's top 40 or so developers at the Maintainers' Summit. This is his first step back in taking over Linux's reins. A little over a month ago, Torvalds stepped back from running the Linux development community. In a note to the Linux Kernel Mailing List (LKML), Torvalds said, "I need to change some of my behavior, and I want to apologize to the people that my personal behavior hurt and possibly drove away from kernel development entirely. I am going to take time off and get some assistance on how to understand people's emotions and respond appropriately."
  • Linus Torvalds is back in charge as Linux kernel 4.19 is released
    After taking some time out from the Linux community to "change some of [his] behavior", Linux Torvalds is back. In a post to the Linux Kernel Mailing List announcing the release of Linux kernel 4.19, Greg Kroah-Hartman -- his temporary replacement -- handed back the reins. After writing about the changes to be found in the latest release, Kroah-Hartman signed off by saying: "Linus, I'm handing the kernel tree back to you. You can have the joy of dealing with the merge window :)".
  • Linux Kernel 4.19 “People’s Front” Released; Linus Torvalds Back For 4.20 Development
    The incidents that preceded (and accompanied) the Linux kernel 4.19 development cycle have has been one of the most critical ones faced by the Linux community. In order to bring some major changes to the community, Linus Torvalds took a break from kernel development and passed the baton to Greg Kroah-Hartman. A new Code of Conduct was also adopted. Now, after eight release candidates, Greg has released the Linux kernel 4.19. Underlining the ongoing challenges, he wrote in the release post: “It’s been a long strange journey for this kernel release…”
  • [Old] With Linux’s founder stepping back, will the community change its culture? [Ed: Bill Gates-connected site really sticking it in to Torvalds. Just watch carefully who wants him out and why. LF kicked community members out of the Board, gave seats there to Microsoft. So Microsoft now has more influence over the future/direction of Linux than community members (i.e. not large corporations).]
  • Intel's IWD Linux Wireless Daemon Out With Version 0.10
    IWD continues maintaining a very small footprint in order to be suitable for embedded/IoT use-cases with having minimal dependencies though supporting networkd/NetworkManager/ConnMan if present on the system. With the new IWD 0.10 release is support for using an external Embedded Linux Library (ELL). The ELL library is another open-source Intel project providing low-level functionality for Linux system daemons and having no dependencies in turn other than the Linux kernel and C standard library. ELL can scale up from embedded to desktop systems and more while providing a lot of features around D-Bus, signal handling, crypto, and other tasks.

Linux 4.19

  • Linux 4.19
    Hi everyone! It's been a long strange journey for this kernel release... While it was not the largest kernel release every by number of commits, it was larger than the last 3 releases, which is a non-trivial thing to do. After the original -rc1 bumps, things settled down on the code side and it looks like stuff came nicely together to make a solid kernel for everyone to use for a while. And given that this is going to be one of the "Long Term" kernels I end up maintaining for a few years, that's good news for everyone. A small trickle of good bugfixes came in this week, showing that waiting an extra week was a wise choice. However odds are that linux-next is just bursting so the next -rc1 merge window is going to be bigger than "normal", if there is such a thing as "normal" for our rate of development. And speaking of development, there's that other thing that happened this release cycle, that ended up making it such that I'm the one writing this instead of Linus. Allow me the guilty pleasure of taking a few minutes to talk about that.... I've been giving my "How the kernel is developed" talk all around the world for over a decade now. After the first year or so, I was amazed that it kept needing to be given as surely everyone knew how we did this type of thing, right? But my wife, someone much smarter than I, then told me, "Every year there is a new kindergarten class." And we all need to remember that, every year new people enter our community with the goal, or requirement, to get stuff done for their job, their hobby, or just because they want to help contribute to the tool that has taken over the world and enabled everyone to have a solid operating system base on which to build their dreams. And when they come into our community, they don't have the built-in knowledge of years of experience that thousands of us already do. Without that experience they make mistakes and fumble and have to learn how this all works. Part of learning how things work is dealing with the interaction between people, and trying to understand the basic social norms and goals that we all share. By providing a document in the kernel source tree that shows that all people, developers and maintainers alike, will be treated with respect and dignity while working together, we help to create a more welcome community to those newcomers, which our very future depends on if we all wish to see this project succeed at its goals. And that goal we all share is the key here. We _ALL_ want to create the best kernel that we possibly can. We can disagree on lots of different things in other parts of our lives, but we do share this one thing. And we should focus on that shared goal as it has pulled us all together in a way that has enabled us to create something that no other company or group of people has ever been able to accomplish. We used to joke that our goal was "Total World Domination", but it really wasn't a joke. We achieved that goal, Linux really does rule the world. All companies use it, contribute to it, and it has ended up making the world a much better place because of all of us working on it. In these talks I give, I also say that "the only thing that can stop us is ourselves, it is up to us to mess this up." And that's truer now than when I first started saying that a decade ago. There is no other operating system out there that competes against us at this time. It would be nice to have something to compete against, as competition is good, and that drives us to do better, but we can live with this situation for the moment :) These past few months has been a tough one for our community, as it is our community that is fighting from within itself, with prodding from others outside of it. Don't fall into the cycle of arguing about those "others" in the "Judean People's Front" when we are the "We're the People's Front of Judea!" That is the trap that countless communities have fallen into over the centuries. We all share the same goal, let us never loose sight of that. So here is my plea to everyone out there. Let's take a day or two off, rest, relax with friends by sharing a meal, recharge, and then get back to work, to help continue to create a system that the world has never seen the likes of, together. Personally, I'm going to take my own advice. I'll be enjoying this week in Edinburgh with many other kernel developers, drinking some good whiskey, and taking some time off of reading email, by spending it with the great friends I have made in this community. And with that, Linus, I'm handing the kernel tree back to you. You can have the joy of dealing with the merge window :) thanks, greg k-h
  • The 4.19 kernel is out
    Greg Kroah-Hartman has released the 4.19 kernel. Headline features in this release include the new AIO-based polling interface, L1TF vulnerability mitigations, the block I/O latency controller, time-based packet transmission, the CAKE queuing discipline, and much more.
  • Greg KH Releases Big Linux 4.19 Kernel, Codenamed "People's Front"
    Greg Kroah-Hartman went ahead and released the Linux 4.19 kernel. When releasing the Linux 4.19 kernel, he quietly changed the codename to "People's Front" -- a nod to the Code of Conduct happenings and more that have shook the kernel community the past several weeks. Greg did note that Linux 4.19 is larger than the past three kernel releases. In terms of why it's so big, see our Linux 4.19 feature overview.

Games: Depth of Extinction Scandal, BATTLETECH, Das Geisterschiff, Entangled, Red Embrace: Hollywood, Rogue Bit and Lutris

DistroWatch Weekly and For The Record Look at elementary OS 5.0

  • Review: elementary OS 5.0
    I found a lot to like about Juno. The release announcement is detailed and shows lots of examples and screen shots. The operating system is easy to install, thanks to Ubuntu's Ubiquity installer and there is a nice collection of default software that will likely appeal to inexperienced users. The Pantheon desktop and icons are beautiful. I sometimes ran into sluggish moments with the desktop, but usually only when the disk was under load or I had a video playing. I was really impressed by how Pantheon was put together and I like a lot of the little convenience features. The picture-in-picture preview and the shared edge window resizing are great. I also love that tapping the meta key will show a list of desktop short-cuts. It is little details like these which give the distribution a polished, friendly feel. I already mentioned the icons look good and it bears repeating. Minimal icon design drives me mildly mad. I don't like functions represented by vague dots or arrows, I want a detailed icon and (preferably) text to let me know what a button does. elementary does a good job of making icons distinct, clear in purpose and typically accompanied by a text label or tooltip. There were a few problems. Some of them were fairly minor, like Epiphany using high CPU load, especially in the virtual machine, or X11 gobbling CPU cycles on my workstation. There were other little touches like the release notes link in the installer not working, that are perhaps only worth mentioning because the rest of the experience was generally so polished and showed a lot of attention to detail. My few serious complaints were with user accounts. Specifically, there appears to be a guest account enabled, but I could not find any way to sign into it. It is not a big deal to set up another account for guests, but it makes me wonder if the enabled (and hidden) account could be exploited. I also found it disappointing the parental controls did not work to block application access or forbidden websites. On the other hand, I think Pantheon includes some great features and I like that it is fairly flexible in its look and behaviour. The flexible notification area and the quick switching between application menu styles were welcome features. Generally speaking, I think elementary OS looks and feels professional. I hope it gets picked up by more hardware sellers, like System76, as I think Juno feels polished and looks good. I think it will especially appeal to less experienced users, but many of the features and the Code tool will likely be useful to more advanced users and developers too.
  • elementary os 5 Juno – For The Record
    elementary os 5 Juno first look. What’s working, what’s not and what happens to be brand new with elementary os. This first look at elementary os 5 Juno includes some things to make upgrading a little easier, suggestions for the next release and list of features I think are simply fantastic.