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LWN.net is a comprehensive source of news and opinions from and about the Linux community. This is the main LWN.net feed, listing all articles which are posted to the site front page.
Updated: 1 hour 5 min ago

Internet-enable your microcontroller projects for under $6 with ESP8266 (Opensource.com)

Tuesday 21st of February 2017 08:16:01 PM
David Egts takes a look at the ESP8266 WiFi chip, on Opensource.com. "What is the ESP8266 exactly? The ESP8266 is a 32-bit RISC CPU made by Espressif Systems. Its clock runs at 80MHz, and it supports up to 16MB of flash RAM for program storage. These specifications are quite impressive when compared to an Arduino UNO, which runs at 16MHz, only has 32KB of RAM, and is several times more expensive. Another big difference is that the ESP8266 requires only 3.3 volts of power while most Arduinos require 5 volts. Keep this voltage difference in mind when extending your existing Arduino knowledge and projects to the ESP8266 to prevent magic smoke."

Security updates for Tuesday

Tuesday 21st of February 2017 06:02:19 PM

CentOS has updated openssl (C7; C6: two vulnerabilities).

Debian-LTS has updated gtk-vnc (two vulnerabilities).

Fedora has updated kernel (F25; F24: two vulnerabilities), mingw-gstreamer1 (F25: denial of service), mingw-gstreamer1-plugins-bad-free (F25: two vulnerabilities), mingw-gstreamer1-plugins-base (F25: multiple vulnerabilities), mingw-gstreamer1-plugins-good (F25: multiple vulnerabilities), mingw-wavpack (F25; F24: multiple vulnerabilities), and xen (F25: denial of service).

Gentoo has updated adobe-flash (multiple vulnerabilities), dropbear (multiple vulnerabilities), firefox (multiple vulnerabilities), libass (multiple vulnerabilities), libvncserver (two vulnerabilities), mariadb (multiple vulnerabilities), mysql (multiple vulnerabilities), nagios-core (multiple vulnerabilities, one from 2008), ocaml (information leak), opus (code execution), php (multiple vulnerabilities), pycrypto (denial of service), qemu (multiple vulnerabilities), redis (three vulnerabilities), tcpdump (multiple vulnerabilities), thunderbird (multiple vulnerabilities), tigervnc (code execution), and xen (code execution).

Mageia has updated ruby-archive-tar-minitar (file overwrites).

openSUSE has updated libplist (42.1: multiple vulnerabilities) and nodejs (42.1: three vulnerabilities).

Oracle has updated openssl (OL7; OL6: two vulnerabilities).

SUSE has updated flash-player (SLE12-SP1: multiple vulnerabilities).

Ubuntu has updated gtk-vnc (14.04, 12.04: two vulnerabilities), spice (16.10, 16.04, 14.04: two vulnerabilities), and tomcat6, tomcat7 (14.04, 12.04: denial of service).

The return of the Linux kernel podcast

Tuesday 21st of February 2017 03:18:22 AM
After taking a few years off, Jon Masters is restarting his kernel podcast. "In this week’s edition: Linus Torvalds announces Linux 4.10, Alan Tull updates his FPGA manager framework, and Intel’s latest 5-level paging patch series is posted for review. We will have this, and a summary of ongoing development in the first of the newly revived Linux Kernel Podcast."

Monday's security advisories

Monday 20th of February 2017 07:13:16 PM

Debian-LTS has updated gst-plugins-bad0.10 (two vulnerabilities), gst-plugins-base0.10 (two vulnerabilities), gst-plugins-good0.10 (two vulnerabilities), gst-plugins-ugly0.10 (two vulnerabilities), and wireshark (denial of service).

Fedora has updated bind (F24: denial of service), python-peewee (F25; F24: largely unspecified), sshrc (F25: unspecified), and zoneminder (F25; F24: information disclosure).

Gentoo has updated glibc (multiple vulnerabilities, most from 2014 and 2015), mupdf (three vulnerabilities), and ntfs3g (privilege escalation).

Mageia has updated gnutls (multiple vulnerabilities), gtk-vnc (two vulnerabilities), iceape (multiple vulnerabilities), jitsi (user spoofing), libarchive (denial of service), libgd (multiple vulnerabilities), lynx (URL spoofing), mariadb (multiple vulnerabilities, almost all unspecified), netpbm (multiple vulnerabilities), openjpeg2 (multiple vulnerabilities), tomcat (information disclosure), and viewvc (cross-site scripting).

openSUSE has updated chromium (42.2, 42.1: multiple vulnerabilities), firebird (42.2, 42.1: access restriction bypass), java-1_7_0-openjdk (42.2, 42.1: multiple vulnerabilities), mcabber (42.2: user spoofing), mupdf (42.2, 42.1: multiple vulnerabilities), open-vm-tools (42.1: CVE with no description from 2015), opus (42.2, 42.1: code execution), tiff (42.2, 42.1: code execution), and vim (42.1: code execution).

Red Hat has updated openssl (RHEL7&6: two vulnerabilities).

Scientific Linux has updated openssl (SL7&6: two vulnerabilities).

SUSE has updated kernel (SLE12: denial of service) and kernel (SLE11: multiple vulnerabilities, some from 2004, 2012, and 2015).

Ubuntu has updated python-crypto (16.10, 16.04, 14.04: regression in previous update).

The 4.10 kernel has been released

Sunday 19th of February 2017 11:23:05 PM
Linus has released the 4.10 kernel. "On the whole, 4.10 didn't end up as small as it initially looked. After the huge release that was 4.9, I expected things to be pretty quiet, but it ended up very much a fairly average release by modern kernel standards." Features of note in this release include some long-awaited writeback throttling work, the ability to attach a BPF network filter to a control group, encryption in UBIFS filesystems, Intel cache-allocation technology support, and more. See the KernelNewbies 4.10 page for lots of details.

Stable kernels 4.9.11 and 4.4.50

Sunday 19th of February 2017 04:56:55 PM
The 4.9.11 and 4.4.50 stable kernel updates are available; each contains the usual set of important fixes.

SystemTap 3.1 has been released

Friday 17th of February 2017 09:43:55 PM
The SystemTap team has announced the 3.1 release of the tool that allows extracting performance and debugging information at runtime from the kernel as well as various user-space programs. New features include support for adding probes to Python 2 and 3 functions, Java probes now convert all parameters to strings before passing them to probes, a new @variance() statistical operator has been added, new sample scripts have been added, and more.

Security updates for Friday

Friday 17th of February 2017 03:59:18 PM

Arch Linux has updated diffoscope (file overwrite), flashplugin (multiple vulnerabilities), and lib32-flashplugin (multiple vulnerabilities).

Debian has updated spice (two vulnerabilities).

Debian-LTS has updated spice (two vulnerabilities).

Gentoo has updated imagemagick (multiple vulnerabilities).

openSUSE has updated expat (42.2, 42.1: two vulnerabilities, one from 2012), guile (42.2, 42.1: information disclosure), libgit2 (42.2: multiple vulnerabilities), mariadb (42.2, 42.1: multiple vulnerabilities), mysql-community-server (42.1: multiple vulnerabilities), openssl (42.2; 42.1: multiple vulnerabilities), and postfixadmin (42.2, 42.1: security bypass).

SUSE has updated java-1_7_0-openjdk (SLE12: multiple vulnerabilities).

Ubuntu has updated bind9 (denial of service), python-crypto (16.10, 16.04, 14.04: code execution), and webkit2gtk (16.10, 16.04: multiple vulnerabilities).

Go 1.8 released

Thursday 16th of February 2017 11:08:19 PM
The Go team has announced the release of Go 1.8. "The compiler back end introduced in Go 1.7 for 64-bit x86 is now used on all architectures, and those architectures should see significant performance improvements. For instance, the CPU time required by our benchmark programs was reduced by 20-30% on 32-bit ARM systems. There are also some modest performance improvements in this release for 64-bit x86 systems. The compiler and linker have been made faster. Compile times should be improved by about 15% over Go 1.7. There is still more work to be done in this area: expect faster compilation speeds in future releases." See the release notes for more details.

Thursday's security updates

Thursday 16th of February 2017 03:18:35 PM

Arch Linux has updated gvim (code execution) and vim (code execution).

Red Hat has updated openstack-cinder, openstack-glance, and openstack-nova (OSP7.0: denial of service from 2015).

SUSE has updated kernel (SLE12: many vulnerabilities, some from 2015 and 2014).

Ubuntu has updated libgc (code execution) and openjdk-6 (12.04: multiple vulnerabilities).

Top 10 FOSS legal stories in 2016 (opensource.com)

Thursday 16th of February 2017 01:47:16 PM
Mark Radcliffe surveys the most important legal issues surrounding free and open-source software on opensource.com. "The challenge for the Linux community is to decide when to bring litigation to enforce the GPLv2. What it means in many situations is that to be compliant is currently left to individual contributors rather than being based on a set of community norms. As Theodore Ts'o noted, this issue really concerns project governance. Although permitting individual contributors to make these decisions may be the Platonic ideal, the tradeoff is ambiguity for users trying to be compliant as well as the potential for rogue members of the community (like McHardy) to create problems. The members of the Linux community and other FOSS communities need to consider how they can best assist the members of their community to understand what compliance means and to determine when litigation might be useful in furtherance of the community's goals."

[$] LWN.net Weekly Edition for February 16, 2017

Thursday 16th of February 2017 12:38:06 AM
The LWN.net Weekly Edition for February 16, 2017 is available.

TensorFlow 1.0 released

Wednesday 15th of February 2017 09:19:20 PM
The TensorFlow 1.0 release is available, bringing an API stability guarantee to this machine-learning library from Google. "TensorFlow 1.0 introduces a high-level API for TensorFlow, with tf.layers, tf.metrics, and tf.losses modules. We've also announced the inclusion of a new tf.keras module that provides full compatibility with Keras, another popular high-level neural networks library."

[$] This is why I drink: a discussion of Fedora's legal state

Wednesday 15th of February 2017 05:40:31 PM
Tom Callaway seems to be a very nice person who has been overclocked to about 140% normal human speed. In only 20 minutes he gave an interesting and highly-amusing talk that could have filled a 45-minute slot on the legal principles that underpin Fedora, how they got that way, and how they work out in practice.

Subscribers can click below for the full report from FOSDEM by guest author Tom Yates.

Stable kernel updates

Wednesday 15th of February 2017 05:31:13 PM
Greg KH has released stable kernels 4.9.10 and 4.4.49. Both contain the usual set of important fixes.

Wednesday's security updates

Wednesday 15th of February 2017 05:17:25 PM

CentOS has updated bind (C7: denial of service).

Debian has updated libevent (three vulnerabilities).

Debian-LTS has updated libevent (three vulnerabilities).

Fedora has updated lynx (F25: invalid URL parsing) and xen (F25: multiple vulnerabilities).

Oracle has updated bind (OL7: denial of service).

Red Hat has updated bind (RHEL7: denial of service), flash-plugin (RHEL6: multiple vulnerabilities), and kernel (RHEL7.1: code execution).

Scientific Linux has updated bind (SL7: denial of service).

SUSE has updated java-1_8_0-ibm (SLE12-SP1,2: multiple vulnerabilities) and kernel (SLE12-SP1: multiple vulnerabilities).

Ubuntu has updated php5 (14.04, 12.04: multiple vulnerabilities).

Linux champion Munich takes decisive step towards returning to Windows (TechRepublic)

Wednesday 15th of February 2017 01:35:31 PM
TechRepublic reports that the Munich, Germany city council has voted to begin the move back to proprietary desktop software. "Under a proposal backed by the general council, the administration will investigate how long it will take and how much it will cost to build a Windows 10 client for use by the city's employees. Once this work is complete, the council will vote again on whether to replace LiMux, a custom version of the Linux-based OS Ubuntu, across the authority from 2021."

Malcolm: Testing… Testing… GCC

Tuesday 14th of February 2017 08:03:08 PM
David Malcolm takes a look at the testing going into the upcoming GCC 7.0 release. "The other new approach is in unit-testing: GCC’s existing testing was almost all done by verifying the externally-visible behavior of the program, but we had very little direct coverage of specific implementation subsystems; this was done in a piecemeal fashion using testing plugins. To address this, I’ve added a unit-testing suite to GCC 7, which is run automatically during a non-release build. Compilers use many data structures, so the most obvious benefit is that we can directly test corner-cases in these. As a relative newcomer to the project, one of my “pain points” learning GCC’s internals was the custom garbage collector it uses to manage memory. So, I’m very happy that the test suite now has specific test coverage for various aspects of the collector, which should make the compiler more robust when handling very large input files."

Security updates for Tuesday

Tuesday 14th of February 2017 06:07:04 PM

CentOS has updated java-1.7.0-openjdk (C7; C6; C5: multiple vulnerabilities).

Debian has updated tomcat7 (denial of service), tomcat8 (denial of service), and vim (buffer overflow).

Debian-LTS has updated tomcat7 (denial of service).

Fedora has updated bind (F25: denial of service), kernel (F25; F24: two vulnerabilities), netpbm (F25: three vulnerabilities), tcpdump (F25: multiple vulnerabilities), vim (F25: buffer overflow), and w3m (F25: unspecified).

Gentoo has updated openssl (multiple vulnerabilities) and virtualbox (multiple vulnerabilities).

openSUSE has updated kernel (42.2; 42.1: multiple vulnerabilities).

Oracle has updated java-1.7.0-openjdk (OL7; OL6; OL5: multiple vulnerabilities).

[$] LEDE-17.01 is coming

Monday 13th of February 2017 06:58:17 PM
For some years, OpenWrt has arguably been the most active router-oriented distribution. Things changed in May of last year, though, when a group of OpenWrt developers split off to form the competing LEDE project. While the LEDE developers have been busy, the project has yet to make its first release. That situation is about to change, though, as evidenced by the LEDE v17.01.0-rc1 release candidate, which came out on February 1.

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    We are now through week one of two for the Linux 4.11 kernel merge window. I've already written a number of news posts this past week covering features I find interesting for Linux 4.11. If you are short on time and behind in your Phoronix reading, here's a quick overview of the material so far for this next major kernel bump.
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  • Linux From Scratch 8.0 Released, Brings New Changes And Features

today's howtos

Jolla inks exclusive license to kick-start its Android alternative in China

Mobile OS maker Jolla, whose Sailfish platform remains one of the few smartphone alternatives in play these days, has signed an exclusive license to a Chinese consortium to develop a Sailfish-based OS for the country. Jolla says the Chinese consortium will be aiming to invest $250M in developing a Sailfish ecosystem for the country, though it’s not specifying exactly is backing the consortia at this point, nor over what timeframe the investment will happen — beyond saying one of its early investors, a local private equity investor Shan Li, will take a “leading role” in building it up. “There are very big players behind it,” Jolla chairman Antti Saarnio tells TechCrunch, speaking ahead of a press conference held to announce the news here at the Mobile World Congress tradeshow in Barcelona. Read more