Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

LWN

Syndicate content
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 week 2 days ago

[$] Some 4.16 and -stable development statistics

Monday 26th of March 2018 06:42:30 PM
The 4.16 development cycle is shaping up to be a relatively straightforward affair with little in the way of known problems and a probable release after nine weeks of work. In comparison to the wild ride that was 4.15, 4.16 looks positively calm. Even so, there is a lot that has happened this time around; read on for a look at who contributed to this release, with a brief digression into stable kernel updates.

Public Lab and Karen Sandler are 2017 Free Software Awards winners

Monday 26th of March 2018 06:11:50 PM
The Free Software Foundation (FSF) announced the winners of the 2017 Free Software Awards during LibrePlanet. "Public Lab is a community and non-profit organization with the goal of democratizing science to address environmental issues. Their community-created tools and techniques utilize free software and low-cost devices to enable people at any level of technical skill to investigate environmental concerns." The organization received the Award for Projects of Social Benefit. Karen Sandler, the Executive Director of the Software Freedom Conservancy, received the Award for the Advancement of Free Software.

Security updates for Monday

Monday 26th of March 2018 03:28:33 PM
Security updates have been issued by Arch Linux (bchunk, thunderbird, and xerces-c), Debian (freeplane, icu, libvirt, and net-snmp), Fedora (monitorix, php-simplesamlphp-saml2, php-simplesamlphp-saml2_1, php-simplesamlphp-saml2_3, puppet, and qt5-qtwebengine), openSUSE (curl, libmodplug, libvorbis, mailman, nginx, opera, python-paramiko, and samba, talloc, tevent), Red Hat (python-paramiko, rh-maven35-slf4j, rh-mysql56-mysql, rh-mysql57-mysql, rh-ruby22-ruby, rh-ruby23-ruby, and rh-ruby24-ruby), Slackware (thunderbird), SUSE (clamav, kernel, memcached, and php53), and Ubuntu (samba and tiff).

Kernel prepatch 4.16-rc7

Sunday 25th of March 2018 11:50:18 PM
The 4.16-rc7 prepatch is out; it's probably the last one. "I'm still not *planning* on an rc8 this release, because while rc7 is bigger than usual, nothing in here makes me go 'Hmm, maybe we should delay the release'. But let's see what happens this upcoming week - if next Sunday comes around, and there's lots of new stuff, I'll reconsider then."

A set of weekend stable kernel updates

Sunday 25th of March 2018 04:25:12 PM
The 4.15.13, 4.14.30, 4.9.90, 4.4.124, and 3.18.102 have all been released; each contains a relatively large set of important fixes and updates.

Stone: A new era for Linux's low-level graphics - Part 2

Friday 23rd of March 2018 03:41:37 PM
Here's the second part of Daniel Stone's series on recent improvements in low-level graphics support. "The end result of all this work is that we have been able to eliminate the magic side channels which used to proliferate, and lay the groundwork for properly communicating this information across multiple devices as well. Devices supporting ARM's AFBC compression format are just beginning to hit the market, which share a single compression format between video decoder, GPU, and display controller. We are also beginning to see GPUs from different vendors share tiling formats, in order to squeeze the most performance possible from hybrid GPU systems."

Security updates for Friday

Friday 23rd of March 2018 02:28:22 PM
Security updates have been issued by Debian (adminer, isc-dhcp, kamailio, libvorbisidec, plexus-utils2, and simplesamlphp), Fedora (exim and glibc-arm-linux-gnu), Mageia (sqlite3), openSUSE (Chromium, kernel, and qemu), SUSE (memcached), and Ubuntu (sharutils).

[$] Energy-aware scheduling on asymmetric systems

Thursday 22nd of March 2018 03:31:14 PM
Energy-aware scheduling — running a system's workload in a way that minimizes the amount of energy consumed — has been a topic of active discussion and development for some time; LWN first covered the issue at the beginning of 2012. Many approaches have been tried during the intervening years, but little in the way of generalized energy-aware scheduling work has made it into the mainline. Recently, a new patch set was posted by Dietmar Eggemann that only tries to address one aspect of the problem; perhaps the problem domain has now been simplified enough that this support can finally be merged.

Stable kernels 4.9.89, 4.4.123, and 3.18.101

Thursday 22nd of March 2018 02:29:31 PM
Yet another new crop of stable kernels has been released: 4.9.89, 4.4.123, and 3.18.101. Each contains a rather large set of changes all over the kernel tree; users of those series should upgrade.

Krita 4.0 released

Thursday 22nd of March 2018 02:24:42 PM
Version 4.0 of the Krita drawing tool has been released; see this article for a summary of the new features in this release. "Krita 4.0 will use SVG on vector layers by default, instead of the prior reliance on ODG. SVG is the most widely used open format for vector graphics out there. Used by 'pure' vector design applications, SVG on Krita currently supports gradients and transparencies, with more effects coming soon."

Security updates for Thursday

Thursday 22nd of March 2018 01:48:28 PM
Security updates have been issued by Arch Linux (lib32-libvorbis), Debian (exempi and polarssl), Gentoo (collectd and webkit-gtk), openSUSE (postgresql96), SUSE (qemu), and Ubuntu (libvorbis).

[$] LWN.net Weekly Edition for March 22, 2018

Thursday 22nd of March 2018 01:43:45 AM
The LWN.net Weekly Edition for March 22, 2018 is available.

Introducing the syzbot dashboard

Wednesday 21st of March 2018 09:20:13 PM
"Syzbot" is an automated system that runs the syzkaller fuzzer on the kernel and reports the resulting crashes. Dmitry Vyukov has announced the availability of a web site displaying the outstanding reports. "The dashboard shows info about active bugs reported by syzbot. There are ~130 active bugs and I think ~2/3 of them are actionable (still happen and have a reproducer or are simple enough to debug)."

[$] A "runtime guard" for the kernel

Wednesday 21st of March 2018 09:11:08 PM

While updating kernels frequently is generally considered a security best practice, there are many installations that are unable to do so for a variety of reasons. That means running with some number of known vulnerabilities (along with an unknown number of unknown vulnerabilities, of course), so some way to detect and stop exploits for those flaws may be desired. That is exactly what the Linux Kernel Runtime Guard (LKRG) is meant to do.

[$] The Sound Open Firmware project launches

Wednesday 21st of March 2018 07:18:04 PM
It is an increasingly poorly kept secret that, underneath the hood of the components that most of us view as "hardware", there is a great deal of proprietary software. This code, written by anonymous developers, rarely sees the light of day; as a result, it tends to have all of the pathologies associated with software that nobody can either review or fix. The 2018 Embedded Linux Conference saw an announcement for a new project that, with luck, will change that situation, at least for one variety of hardware: audio devices.

RawTherapee 5.4 released

Wednesday 21st of March 2018 02:53:36 PM
Version 5.4 of the RawTherapee image-processing tool is out. New features include a new histogram-matching tool, a new HDR tone-mapping tool, a number of user-interface and performance improvements, and quite a bit more.

Stable kernels 4.15.12 and 4.14.29

Wednesday 21st of March 2018 02:36:35 PM
Greg Kroah-Hartman has released stable kernels 4.15.12 and 4.14.29. As usual, they contain important fixes and users of those series should upgrade.

Security updates for Wednesday

Wednesday 21st of March 2018 02:27:41 PM
Security updates have been issued by CentOS (firefox), Debian (plexus-utils), Fedora (calibre, cryptopp, curl, dolphin-emu, firefox, golang, jhead, kernel, libcdio, libgit2, libvorbis, ming, net-snmp, patch, samba, xen, and zsh), Red Hat (collectd and rh-mariadb101-mariadb and rh-mariadb101-galera), and Ubuntu (paramiko and tiff).

Stone: A new era for Linux's low-level graphics - Part 1

Tuesday 20th of March 2018 07:17:03 PM
Daniel Stone begins a series on how the Linux graphic stack has improved in recent times. "This has made mainline Linux much more attractive: the exact same generic codebases of GNOME and Weston that I'm using to write this blog post on an Intel laptop run equally well on AMD workstations, low-power NXP boards destined for in-flight entertainment, and high-end Renesas SoCs which might well be in your car. Now that the drivers are easy to write, and applications are portable, we've seen over ten new DRM drivers merged to the upstream kernel since atomic modesetting was merged."

[$] Two perspectives on the maintainer relationship

Tuesday 20th of March 2018 06:40:41 PM
Developers and maintainers of free-software projects are drawn from the same pool of people, and maintainers in one project are often developers in another, but there is still a certain amount of friction between the two groups. Maintainers depend on developers to contribute changes, but the two groups have a different set of incentives when it comes to reviewing and accepting those changes. Two talks at the 2018 Embedded Linux Conference shed some light on this relationship and how it can be made to work more smoothly.

More in Tux Machines

Graphics: AMD, RADV, RadeonSI, Mesa 18.0.1

  • AMDGPU DRM Gets "GFXOFF" Patches To Turn Off Graphics Engine
    AMD's Huang Rui has posted a set of 20 patches providing "GFXOFF" support for the AMDGPU Direct Rendering Manager Linux kernel driver. GFXOFF is a new graphics processor feature that allows for powering off the graphics engine when it would otherwise be idle with no graphics workload. Obviously, this would equate to a potentially significant power savings with that engine being able to be shut-off.
  • RADV Driver Lands Support For Vulkan's New Descriptor Indexing Extension
    Earlier this month with the Vulkan 1.1.72 specification update was the new VK_EXT_descriptor_indexing extension that is quickly being well received by developers. The VK_EXT_descriptor_indexing extension allows for creating large descriptor sets made up of all their combined resources and selecting those resources via dynamic indexes in a shader.
  • RadeonSI Now Appears To Support "RX Vega M" With Intel Core CPUs
    One of the most common Linux hardware questions I've received dozens of times in the past few weeks alone has been over the support for "RX Vega M" Vega-based graphics processors found on select newer Intel Kabylake CPUs. It appears RadeonSI at least should now support these Radeon graphics on Intel CPUs.
  • mesa 18.0.1
  • Mesa 18.0.1 Released With A Number Of Fixes
    In addition to Mesa 17.3.9 being released today, Mesa 18.0.1 also rolled out the door as the first point release to last quarter's Mesa 18.0 series. Mesa 18.0.1 features improvements to its Meson build system support, several RADV Vulkan driver fixes, various fixes to the Gallium3D Nine (D3D9) state tracker, various Intel driver fixes, several core Mesa improvements, and then the other random smothering of fixes collected over the past few weeks.

Programming: nGraph Compiler, JavaScript Trademark, PyPI and Pip

  • Intel Opens Up nGraph Source Code For DNN Model Compiler
    Intel tonight announced they are open-sourcing their nGraph compiler code, which serves as a framework-neutral deep neural network model compiler. Intel claims with nGraph and Xeon Scalable hardware that researchers can obtain up to 10x performance improvements over previous TensorFlow integrations, as one example. Besides TensorFlow, nGraph also supports PyTorch, MXNet, Neon, Caffe2, and CNTK while also planning to support other frameworks moving forward.
  • Why it's finally time to give up on the name JavaScript
    An iOS developer has apparently received a cease and desist notice from Oracle over the use of the word "JavaScript" in the title of their app. The developer, Tyanya Software, shared the notice on perennial internet soapbox Reddit to seek advice on how to fight the order. [...] If user reviews are any indication, the app is not even particularly good, with reviewers stating things such as "Not ready for production," "Does not work as advertised," and "Waste of money, don't buy this." The last update to the app was in 2014, which the changelog notes was only an upgrade to add support for iOS 8. The app developer is at least honest about the intent behind the unwieldy name for the app, saying in a Reddit comment that "we game the App Store ranking by adding all the keywords to the app name." While Oracle has a duty to protect their trademarks, this type of legal bludgeoning underscores a historical problem that has been left unaddressed for too long: JavaScript is a terrible name for the thing being described. It has nothing to do with Java, an actual product developed by Sun (now owned by Oracle). JavaScript was developed at Mozilla, and the name was changed during beta releases of Netscape Navigator 2.0 from "LiveScript" to "JavaScript." It has, for some time, caused confusion among casual web users about the difference between Java and JavaScript. Given that ECMAScript is also a trademarked term, it seems best to revert to calling the language "LiveScript" to undercut trademark-related legal posturing. [...] Oracle declined to comment on this story.
  • New PyPI launched
    The new PyPI has been launched. Browser traffic and API calls (including "pip install") have been redirected from the old pypi.python.org to the new site. The old PyPI will shut down on April 30. LWN covered the new PyPI last week.
  • Pip 10.0 has been released
    The release of pip 10.0 has been announced. Some highlights of this release include the removal of Python 2.6 support, limited PEP 518 support (with more to come), a new "pip config" command, and other improvements.

Meltdown/PTI Mitigation Impact On BSDs vs. Linux

Besides the fresh BSD/Linux disk performance tests, some other tests I ran on various BSDs and Linux distributions this week was looking at the performance impact of Intel Meltdown CPU vulnerability mitigation on each of them, namely the performance impact of using kernel page-table isolation. On DragonFlyBSD 5.2, TrueOS 18.03, Ubuntu 16.04, Ubuntu 18.04, and Clear Linux I ran tests when the mitigation was enabled and then again when it was off for seeing the performance impact. Read more

Red Hat and Fedora Leftovers

  • Enterprise Node.js on OpenShift, April 19th, 12 p.m. EDT
    The next online DevNation Live Tech Talk is Thursday, April 19th at 12pm EDT. The topic is “Enterprise Node.js on Red Hat OpenShift” presented by Lance Ball, and hosted by Burr Sutter. The popularity of JavaScript on the front end and the JSON format for data has led to a “JavaScript Everywhere” movement with Node.js at the center. Node.js offers developers an event-driven, non-blocking I/O model that is perfect for high concurrency, low-latency applications that run across distributed devices. Its reactive architecture makes it an ideal technology for containerized microservices architectures you’ve been hearing so much about.
  • President to President with Luc Villeneuve, Red Hat Canada
    ITWC President Fawn Annan gets to the point with Red Hat’s general manager for Canada. Villeneuve speaks about building the open source technology firm in the country, the unique differences when dealing with the Quebec market, and how he fosters a positive culture in the workplace. Plus, he dishes on how his experience in journey hockey taught him how to build a successful sales team.
  • Be mindful of jumping into an open source project too soon: RedHat CTO
    Open source software has long been seen as a movement towards collaborative development. In a conversation with BusinessLine, Chris Wright, Vice-President & CTO at RedHat, talks about some of the challenges the open source community is facing and why it is important to set expectations right when it comes to promoting open source software. Edited excerpts:
  • DevOps Tool Market Global Manufacturers: Chef, Atlassian, Saltstac, Red Hat and Docker Inc.
  • Two sizzlers stock’s are not to be missed: Red Hat, Inc. (RHT), Navient Corporation (NAVI)
  • Fedora Community Blog: Fedora meetup at Pune – March 2018
    Long time we did not had any meetup at Pune, Maharashtra, India, so we decided to get started again. Details about this meetup are available at Fedora Wiki page. Planning for meetup started 1 month before. Initially Ompragash proposed to have meetup.com account for Fedora Pune to get more awareness. Later dropped this plan, since this is not only Fedora Pune level topic but applicable for all Fedora events.
  • Fedora 28 Beta – dnf system-upgrade
    Used DNF to remove duplicate rpms, reinstalled the new kernel and libwbclient, and corrected GNOME’s right-click behaviour, and all is well.