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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: 5 hours 18 min ago

F-Droid’s Android App Finally Gets a UI Makeover (xda developers)

Friday 28th of April 2017 10:58:39 PM
Xda developers looks at improvements coming to the F-Droid repository of free/open source apps for Android. The next version of F-Droid will have screenshot and feature graphics, bulk download and install, improved notifications for downloads and pending updates, and the ability to translate apps metadata. "F-Droid is conducting further field tests to ensure that usability issues with the new design are identified and resolved before the alpha releases for v0.103 is rolled out to the public. The team is also inviting feedback and suggestions to further improve the client. Additionally, the team mentions that this is one of the many improvements happening to the broader F-Droid ecosystem in 2017, and there’s more to come."

Security updates for Friday

Friday 28th of April 2017 03:24:11 PM
Security updates have been issued by Arch Linux (jenkins, libtiff, and webkit2gtk), Debian (ghostscript, kernel, and libreoffice), Fedora (dovecot, kernel, and tomcat), Mageia (firefox and tomcat), openSUSE (backintime and ffmpeg), and Ubuntu (ghostscript, libxslt, and nss).

Bits from the Debian Release Team: release update

Thursday 27th of April 2017 10:37:15 PM
The Debian release team has a few words about the upcoming Debian 9 "stretch" release. "At a recent team meeting, we decided that support for Secure Boot in the forthcoming Debian 9 "stretch" would no longer be a blocker to release. The likely, although not certain outcome is that stretch will not have Secure Boot support." If stretch does not release with Secure Boot support, it is possible that it will be introduced later. Other than that, the number of Release Critical bugs continues to drop and the team is considering the arrangements for the stretch release.

Tor 0.3.0.6 is released: a new series is stable

Thursday 27th of April 2017 09:51:47 PM
Tor 0.3.0.6, the first stable release of the Tor 0.3.0 series, is available. "With the 0.3.0 series, clients and relays now use Ed25519 keys to authenticate their link connections to relays, rather than the old RSA1024 keys that they used before. (Circuit crypto has been Curve25519-authenticated since 0.2.4.8-alpha.) We have also replaced the guard selection and replacement algorithm to behave more robustly in the presence of unreliable networks, and to resist guard- capture attacks."

[$] An alternative TTY layer

Thursday 27th of April 2017 05:25:11 PM
The Linux kernel is highly scalable but, while it runs nicely on the world's largest computers, it is not an entirely comfortable fit on the smallest. The difficulties involved in running Linux on machines with 1MB or less of memory have left an opening for other operating systems, such as Zephyr, with lower memory needs. Some developers have not given up on scaling Linux to the smallest computers, but the approaches they have to take have always been a bit of a hard sell with the rest of the development community. Nicolas Pitre's minitty patch set is a case in point.

Stable kernel updates

Thursday 27th of April 2017 04:07:04 PM
Greg Kroah-Hartman has released stable kernels 4.10.13, 4.9.25, and 4.4.64. They all contain important fixes and users should upgrade.

Security updates for Thursday

Thursday 27th of April 2017 04:02:22 PM
Security updates have been issued by Debian (freetype, jasper, python-django, slurm-llnl, and weechat), Fedora (dovecot and pcre2), Gentoo (adobe-flash), openSUSE (curl, gstreamer-plugins-base, libsndfile, and tiff), and Ubuntu (mysql-5.5, mysql-5.7).

[$] LWN.net Weekly Edition for April 27, 2017

Thursday 27th of April 2017 01:48:29 AM
The LWN.net Weekly Edition for April 27, 2017 is available.

[$] The great leap backward

Wednesday 26th of April 2017 04:20:02 PM
Sayre's law states: "In any dispute the intensity of feeling is inversely proportional to the value of the issues at stake". In that context, it is perhaps easy to understand why the discussion around the version number for the next major openSUSE Leap release has gone on for hundreds of sometimes vitriolic messages. While this change is controversial, the openSUSE board hopes that it will lead to more rational versioning in the long term — but the world has a way of interfering with such plans.

Security updates for Wednesday

Wednesday 26th of April 2017 03:31:24 PM
Security updates have been issued by Debian (botan1.10, mysql-5.5, and rtmpdump), Fedora (collectd, firefox, java-1.8.0-openjdk, libdwarf, nss-softokn, nss-util, and tigervnc), Red Hat (httpd24-httpd and python27), and SUSE (kernel).

No more grsecurity test patches

Wednesday 26th of April 2017 02:44:52 PM
The grsecurity project has announced that its kernel-hardening patches will now be an entirely private affair. "Today we are handing over future maintenance of grsecurity test patches to the community. This makes grsecurity for Linux 4.9 the last version Open Source Security Inc. will release to non-subscribers."

[$] Which email client for Ubuntu 17.10?

Wednesday 26th of April 2017 02:37:03 PM
An email client was once a mandatory offering for any operating system, but that may be changing. A discussion on the ubuntu-desktop mailing list explores the choices for a default email client for Ubuntu 17.10, which is due in October. One of the possibilities being considered is to not have a default email client at all.

Kali Linux 2017.1 Release

Tuesday 25th of April 2017 07:09:41 PM
The Kali Linux 2017.1 rolling release is available. Kali is a Debian derivative aimed at penetration testing and related tasks. This release includes support for RTL8812AU wireless card injection, streamlined support for CUDA GPU cracking, OpenVAS 9 packaged in Kali repositories, and more.

Linkerd 1.0 released

Tuesday 25th of April 2017 06:06:41 PM
The linkerd 1.0 release is available. "Linkerd a service mesh for cloud native applications. As part of this release, we wanted to define what this actually meant." Support for per-service router configuration has been added, along with new plugin interfaces for policy control. (LWN looked at linkerd in early April).

Bash Bunny: Big hacks come in tiny packages (InfoWorld)

Tuesday 25th of April 2017 05:44:13 PM
InfoWorld plays with the Bash Bunny, a USB device for attacking computers. "It can run anything a regular Debian Linux distro can run, such as Python scripts or common Linux commands. To infiltrate other computing devices, Bash Bunny can fake its identity as a trusted media device, networking device, keyboard, or other serial device. For example, it can load itself as a keyboard device and mimic keystrokes. You can download dozens of existing payload scripts, create your own, or ask questions in a fairly active user forum."

[$] Turmoil for Drupal

Tuesday 25th of April 2017 04:02:31 PM

The Drupal content management system (CMS) has been an open-source tool of choice for many web site owners for well over a decade now. Over that time, it has been overseen by its original developer, Dries Buytaert, who is often referred to as the benevolent dictator for life (BDFL) for the project. Some recent events have led a sizable contingent in the Drupal community to question his leadership, however. A request that a prominent developer leave the Drupal community, apparently over elements of his private life rather than any Drupal-related misstep, has led to something of an outcry in that community—it may well lead to a change in the governance of the project.

Security updates for Tuesday

Tuesday 25th of April 2017 03:59:43 PM
Security updates have been issued by Debian (activemq, libav, minicom, mysql-5.5, tiff3, and xen), Fedora (ansible, collectd, icu, and pcre), openSUSE (chromium and firefox), Red Hat (chromium-browser and kernel), Slackware (firefox), and Ubuntu (kernel, linux, linux-aws, linux-gke, linux-raspi2, linux-snapdragon, linux, linux-raspi2, linux-hwe, linux-lts-trusty, linux-lts-xenial, qemu, and samba).

Debian is shutting down its public FTP services

Tuesday 25th of April 2017 01:40:04 PM
If you're one of the few people still using FTP to access the Debian repositories, the time has come to move on: FTP service will be shut down at the beginning of November.

Collabora Office 5.3 Released

Monday 24th of April 2017 10:15:47 PM
Collabora Office 5.3 has been released with all the fixes and several backported features from the upstream LibreOffice 5.3 release. "The biggest change in this release is the inclusion of a long list of new features, combined with many User Interface improvements, making Collabora Office more powerful and at the same time faster and more comfortable to work with."

[$] Two new block I/O schedulers for 4.12

Monday 24th of April 2017 07:00:08 PM
The multiqueue block layer subsystem, introduced in 2013, was a necessary step for the kernel to scale to the fastest storage devices on large systems. The implementation in current kernels is incomplete, though, in that it lacks an I/O scheduler designed to work with multiqueue devices. That gap is currently set to be closed in the 4.12 development cycle when the kernel will probably get not just one, but two new multiqueue I/O schedulers.

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