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Softpedia News / Linux
Updated: 2 hours 49 min ago

Linus Torvalds Kicks Off Development of Linux 5.1 Kernel, First RC Is Out Now

Sunday 17th of March 2019 08:00:00 PM
Linus Torvalds kicked off today the development cycle of the forthcoming Linux 5.1 kernel series with the release of the first RC (Release Candidate) milestone for public testing.

Two weeks have passed since the release of the major Linux 5.0 kernel series, so now the merge window is closed for the next release, Linux kernel 5.1, and the new development cycle is open. Everything is in normal parameters for the Linux 5.1 kernel, which now has a first Release Candidate milestone ready for public testing.

"It's Sunday, and two weeks have passed, and everything is normal. You all know the drill by now - the merge window is closed, and things are supposed to calm down," said Linus Torvalds. "The merge window felt fairly normal to me. And looking at the stats, nothing really odd stands out either. It's a regular sized ... (read more)

Solus 4 "Fortitude" Officially Released, It's Now Available for Download

Saturday 16th of March 2019 08:20:00 PM
The Solus Project announced today the general and immediate availability for download of the long-anticipated Solus 4 Linux-based operating system.

More than a year in the making, the Solus 4 release is finally here as an up-to-date live and installable medium that users can use to deploy the independently developed GNU/Linux distribution on their computer without having to download hundreds of updates from the software repositories.

However, as a rolling released operating system, Solus users don't need to download the Solus 4 release to update their installations, but only ensure they have all the latest updates and security fixes installed on their computers. If you have an up-to-date Solus installation, then you're already running Solus 4.

Here's what's new in Solus 4

Highlights of the Solus 4 release include the latest and greatest Budgie 10.5 desktop environment with refinements t... (read more)

Canonical Releases Minor Linux Kernel Security Update for Ubuntu 14.04 LTS

Thursday 14th of March 2019 02:56:00 PM
Canonical released a new Linux kernel update for the long-term supported Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (Trusty Tahr) operating system series to address a recently discovered security vulnerability.

A security issue affects the Linux 3.13 kernel of the Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (Trusty Tahr) operating system series and its derivatives, including Kubuntu, Xubuntu, Lubuntu, Ubuntu Kylin, Ubuntu Studio, Mythbuntu, and others, allowing attackers to run programs as an administrator.

The vulnerability is a race condition (CVE-2019-6133) discovered by Jann Horn of Google Project Zero in Linux kernel's fork() system call, which could allow a local attacker to gain access to services storing cache authorizations and run programs with administrative privileges.

"The system could be made to run programs as an administrator. Jann Horn discovered a race condition in the fork() system call in the Linux kernel. A local attac... (read more)

Flatpak 1.3 Arrives with Support for Linux Systems with Multiple Nvidia Devices

Wednesday 13th of March 2019 10:48:00 PM
Flatpak developer and maintainer Alexander Larsson released a new unstable release of the Linux application sandboxing and distribution framework, targeting the upcoming Flatpak 1.4 stable series.

Flatpak 1.3 is here as the first milestone is a series of unstable releases towards the next major and stable new version of the Linux application sandboxing and distribution framework, Flatpak 1.4, adding several new features and improvements like support for systems with multiple Nvidia devices.

Furthermore, the Flatpak 1.3 release adds initial support for sandboxed dconf, introduces two new options to the build-update-repo command, namely --no-update-[summary,appstream] and --static-delta-ignore-ref=PATTERN, and improves support for large repositories by making regeneration the appstream branch faster.

Better Gentoo Linux support, other changes

Among other noteworthy changes implemented in Flatpak 1.3, we can mention that there's better support for G... (read more)

Mesa 19.0 Graphics Stack Released for Linux Gamers with Numerous Improvements

Wednesday 13th of March 2019 10:00:00 PM
The team behind the Mesa 3D Graphics Library project announced today the final release and general availability of the long-anticipated Mesa 19.0 graphics stack series for Linux-based operating systems.

Implementing the OpenGL 4.5 API, the Mesa 19.0 graphics stack is finally here after an extended development cycle that took place over the last three months. It brings dozens of new features, new extensions, and countless bug fixes. Highlights of this major new series includes support for AMD Radeon Vega 10, Vega 20, and Vega M GPUs, GNU Hurd support, and LLVM 7 compatibility.

"I'm pleased to announce the general availability of mesa 19.0.0. We've had a slightly long rc process with 7 RCs (there should have been 6, but there was a bug in the script for pulling patches resulting in two back to back RCs)," said Dylan Baker in today's announcement. "In general this release has shaped u... (read more)

GNOME 3.32 "Taipei" Desktop Environment Officially Released, Here's What's New

Wednesday 13th of March 2019 09:37:00 PM
The GNOME Project released today the highly anticipated GNOME 3.32 desktop environment for Linux-based operating systems, a major release that adds numerous new features and improvements.

Six months in development, the GNOME 3.32 desktop environment is finally here to upgrade your GNOME experience to the next level by adding lots of new features, fixing bugs from previous versions, improving existing components and apps, as well as polishing the look and feel of the user interface.

With the GNOME 3.32 release, the GNOME desktop becomes flatter, lighter, and more modern. After upgrading, users will notice that the App Menus are no longer available and their content was moved to other places, there are changes to the buttons, header bars, and switches, as well as more consistent colors and read more)

Linux Kernel 5.0 Gets Its First Point Release, It's Now Ready for Mass Adoption

Tuesday 12th of March 2019 06:47:00 PM
The Linux 5.0 kernel series received its first point release marking it as ready for mass adoption by any Linux user and GNU/Linux distribution out there.

Released on March 4th, 2019, the Linux 5.0 kernel series is a major milestone with modest features, including AMDGPU FreeSync for AMD Radeon GPUs for a stutter-free viewing experience, swap file support in the Btrfs file system, support for the Adiantum file system encryption for low power devices, and better power management for devices powered by ARM big.LITTLE CPUs.

Linux kernel 5.0 also adds support for the binderfs file system, which enables devices to run multiple instances of Android, support for the Generic Receive Offload (GRO) feature in the UDP (User Datagram Protocol) implementation, as well as support for the cpuset resource controller in cgroupv2. Now, the first point re... (read more)

KDE Plasma 5.15.3 Desktop Environment Released with Flatpak Improvements, More

Tuesday 12th of March 2019 05:19:00 PM
The KDE Project announced today the general availability of the third maintenance updat to the latest KDE Plasma 5.15 desktop environment series for Linux-based operating systems.

Coming two weeks after the KDE Plasma 5.15.2 point release, KDE Plasma 5.15.3 is here to address even more issues and other annoyances reported by users of the latest KDE Plasma 5.15 desktop environment. It brings better Flatpak support in Plasma Discover, improved support for installing GTK themes locally, and improved restoring of desktop sessions.

Furthermore, the KDE Plasma 5.15.3 maintenance update makes the Ctrl+A shortcut work despite of active focus, adds support for visualizing active selection in search heading, improves the Task Manager by fixing various bugs, and fixes OSD animation stutter on Plasma Workspace. A total of 30 ch... (read more)

GNOME 3.34 "Thessaloniki" Desktop Environment Slated for Release on September 11

Tuesday 12th of March 2019 04:59:00 PM
The GNOME Project, through Andre Klapper, announced that the release schedule of the upcoming GNOME 3.34 desktop environment was finalized and it's now available for general public.

With the final release of the GNOME 3.32 desktop environment knocking on our doors, the time has come to take a look at the release schedule of the next major release of the open-source graphical desktop environment used by numerous Linux-based operating systems, including Ubuntu.

According to the release schedule, the development cycle of the GNOME 3.34 desktop environment series will kick off soon after GNOME 3.32 release hits the streets tomorrow, March 13th, and it'll take place under the GNOME 3.33.x umbrella. The first development snapshot, GNOME 3.33.1, will be released to the public on April 24th.

Three more such development snapshots will be released throughout May-July 2019, GNOME 3.33.2 on 22nd, GNOME 3.33.3 on June ... (read more)

ExTiX 19.3 Is the First OS to Ship with Linux Kernel 5.0, Based on Ubuntu 19.04

Friday 8th of March 2019 09:46:00 PM
GNU/Linux developer Arne Exton released a new version of his ExTiX Linux distro that has been rebased on the upcoming Ubuntu 19.04 operating system and ships with Linux kernel 5.0.

ExTiX 19.3 is now available and it appears to be the first stable GNU/Linux distribution to ship with the recently released Linux 5.0 kernel. This milestone was achieved by developer Arne Exton due to the rebase on the forthcoming Ubuntu 19.04 (Disco Dingo) operating system, which will be powered by Linux kernel 5.0 too.

However, ExTiX 19.3 doesn't uses Ubuntu 19.04's GNOME desktop environment as it ships with the lightweight Xfce desktop environment, so we can say it's a derivative of Xubuntu, though it features its own mod... (read more)

Microsoft’s New Skype for Web Doesn’t Support Linux and Mozilla Firefox

Friday 8th of March 2019 10:57:00 AM
Microsoft has released the new Skype for Web, letting users chat with their contacts without the need for installing a desktop client.

And while this is possible using nothing more than the browser, the new version of the service comes with some unexpected limitations.

First and foremost, Microsoft says that you must be running Windows 10 or macOS 10.12 or higher to be able to connect to Skype for Web, which means that Linux isn’t officially supported.
Furthermore, the only browsers that are compatible with the new Skype for Web are Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge, so you won’t be able to use Mozilla Firefox to chat in the browser.

Obviously, there are ways to get around these limitations, and changing the user agent in the browser is the easiest of them all, but by the looks of things, Microsoft’s transition to the Chromium engine means Firefox users might be left behind when it comes to improvements they get on Microsoft services.

New features in Skype... (read more)

Ubuntu 14.04.6 LTS (Trusty Tahr) Released with Patched APT Package Manager

Thursday 7th of March 2019 06:42:00 PM
Canonical released today the sixth point release to the Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (Trusty Tahr) operating system series to address the recently discovered security vulnerability in the APT package manager.

After last week's Ubuntu 16.04.6 LTS (Xenial Xerus) point release, Canonical now published the Ubuntu 14.04.6 LTS (Trusty Tahr) point release to offer users a more secure installation media that contains a patched APT package manager against a security vulnerability affecting all Debian and Ubuntu-based operating systems, which could allow a remote attacker to install malicious packages.

"Unlike previous point releases, 14.04.6 is a security-targeted release for the purpose of pr... (read more)

Nine Collabora Developers Have Contributed 45 Patches to the Linux 5.0 Kernel

Thursday 7th of March 2019 01:33:00 PM
With the Linux 5.0 kernel series out the door, it's time to take a look a Collabora's contributions to this major milestone, which will soon be ready for mass adoption.

Linux kernel 5.0 brings several goodies to the table, including FreeSync support in the AMDGPU open-source graphics driver for stutter-free viewing experience on AMD Radeon GPUs, support for swap files in the Btrfs file system, a new energy-aware scheduling feature for ARM big.LITTLE CPUs, and support for the Adiantum file system encryption in fscrypt for low power devices.

Linux kernel 5.0 also introduces support for the binderfs file system to allow running of multiple Android instances, support for the Generic Receive Offload (GRO) feature in the UDP implementation, and much more. Collabora's developers managed to contribute a total of 45 patches during the developmen... (read more)

GNOME 3.32 Desktop Environment to Feature Fractional Scaling on Wayland

Thursday 7th of March 2019 01:09:00 PM
The GNOME Project revealed the fact that the forthcoming GNOME 3.32 desktop environment will feature fractional scaling for HiDPI/4K displays, implemented in the GNOME Shell and Mutter components.

Support for HiDPI monitors was available in GNOME for a while now, but it's limited to scaling windows by integral factors like 2, and most modern displays are between these DPI ranges. Fractional scaling will allow windows scaling by fractional values, such as 3/2 or 2/1.3333 to make them look better on HiDPI/4K displays.

GNOME/Ubuntu developer Marco Trevisan reports on the fractional scaling feature for the GNOME 3.32 desktop environment, which was in the works for some years now, saying the relevant proposals have been prepared for implementation in the GNOME Shell and Mutter components for the upcoming GNOME 3.32 release next week.

"We started this work some years ago (ouch!) and lead to an Hackfest in Taipei, but in between other work to do and priorities which caus... (read more)

Canonical Releases Linux Kernel Security Patch for Ubuntu 18.10, Update Now

Thursday 7th of March 2019 08:58:00 AM
Following yesterday's kernel security patch for Ubuntu 18.04 LTS (Bionic Beaver) systems, Canonical released today a new Linux kernel security patch for Ubuntu 18.10 (Cosmic Cuttlefish) users.

The Linux kernel security update addresses three vulnerabilities discovered by various security researchers in the upstream Linux kernel. These include a race condition (CVE-2019-6133) discovered by Jann Horn in Linux kernel's fork() system call, which could allow a local attacker to gain access to services caching authorizations.

It also fixes an out of bounds write vulnerability (CVE-2018-16880) was discovered by Jason Wang in Linux kernel's vhost net driver, which could allow an attacker i... (read more)

Google Fixes Zero-Day Flaw in Chrome 72 Update for Linux, Windows, and Mac

Thursday 7th of March 2019 08:29:00 AM
The most recent version of Google Chrome for Windows, Linux, and macOS resolves a zero-day vulnerability which the search giant warns is already being exploited in the wild.

Google Chrome version 72.0.3626.121 was released on March 1, but an update to the official announcement that the company published last Friday now reveals that a zero-day has also been patched.

“[$N/A][936448] High CVE-2019-5786: Use-after-free in FileReader. Reported by Clement Lecigne of Google's Threat Analysis Group on 2019-02-27,” the update reveals.

Google also mentions that it’s aware of reports that an exploit for this vulnerability already exists, so it urges everyone to install the latest version of Chrome as soon as possible.

Update as soon as possible

FileReader is an API that makes it possible for web apps to access locally-stored files, and a successful attack would technically provide a malicious actor with capabilities of run... (read more)

Ubuntu Touch OTA-8 Released for Ubuntu Phones with Multiple Improvements

Wednesday 6th of March 2019 07:18:00 PM
The UBports community released today the Ubuntu Touch OTA-8 software update for the Ubuntu Touch mobile operating system powering Ubuntu Phone devices.

A stability and bugfix release, the Ubuntu Touch OTA-8 update is here to add several improvements to the Morph Browser, among which we can mention support for the experimental system-wide dark theme, support for favicons in favorites, and support for apps to inject custom JavaScript into embedded Morph.Web views.

Moreover, Morph Browser will now display a themed error page when the loading of pages fails, no longer fails to load the initial page of certain Web Apps, closes all tabs in a window before closing it to stop any media, supports custom user scripts for Web Apps, and correctly displays the keyboard for some screens.

Among other improvements that landed in Ubuntu Touch OTA-8, we can mention that the Android container pre-start script has been updated for halium-boot, the test functionality in the Ubuntu UI ... (read more)

Infographic: Ubuntu's Snaps Work Anywhere Linux Runs, Support 42 Linux Distros

Wednesday 6th of March 2019 03:55:00 PM
Canonical informed Softpedia today about a new infographic they prepared for developers interesting in building or packaging their apps as Snaps using the Snapcraft utility.

Dubbed "Snapcraft for developers," the infographic aims to show application developers how simple is to build Snaps, Canonical's universal binary format for distributing Linux apps on Ubuntu and across a multitude of GNU/Linux distributions. The infographic also reveals that Snaps see more than 3 million installs per month from over 2,000 developers who use Snapcraft to publish their Snaps in the Snap Store.

"At the end of last year, we shared an infographic highlighting the adoption of snaps by users for their desktop, server or IoT devices. Those snaps wouldn’t be available without the growing number of developers building them behind the scenes. But why have developers, including those from some of the world’s largest software companies, decided to package their applications as a snap?," sai... (read more)

Purism Announces Convergence for Its Linux Phones and Laptops

Wednesday 6th of March 2019 01:00:00 PM
Purism revealed today that it's been working for a while on making its Debian-based PureOS Linux operating system convergent for the upcoming Librem 5 Linux phone and its Librem 13 and 15 laptops.

Following on Canonical's convergence dream for Ubuntu Linux, Purism made the convergence dream a reality for its PureOS Linux operating system that ships pre-installed with all Librem laptops, as well as the upcoming Librem 5 Linux phone, allowing users to use a single set of apps on both mobile phones and laptops.

"If you’ve ever had an app on your phone that you wanted on your laptop, you’ve wanted convergence," said Jeremiah Foster, Director PureOS at Purism. "Purism's PureOS is convergent, and has laid the foundation for all future applications to run on both the Librem 5 phone and Librem laptops, from the same PureOS release."

Since GNOME is used as default desktop environment for PureOS, Purism is also working hard on creating adaptive ​GNOME​ apps that look and wo... (read more)

LibreOffice 6.2 Office Suite Gets First Point Release with More Than 150 Fixes

Wednesday 6th of March 2019 12:36:00 PM
The Document Foundation announced today the general availability of the first point release of its latest LibreOffice 6.2 open-source and free office suite series for GNU/Linux, macOS, and Microsoft Windows platforms.

The LibreOffice 6.2 office suite was released in early February with a lot of new features and improvements, including an optional NotebookBar UI and many enhancements for the Writer, Calc, Draw, Impress, Base, Math, and LibreOffice Online. Today, the first point release, LibreOffice 6.2.1, is here to address no less than 150 bugs and issues reported since the LibreOffice 6.2 release.

"LibreOffice 6.2.1 represents the bleeding edge in term of features for open source office suites, and as such is not optimized for ente... (read more)

More in Tux Machines

Forbes Says The Raspberry Pi Is Big Business

Not that it’s something the average Hackaday reader is unaware of, but the Raspberry Pi is a rather popular device. While we don’t have hard numbers to back it up (extra credit for anyone who wishes to crunch the numbers), it certainly seems a day doesn’t go by that there isn’t a Raspberry Pi story on the front page. But given that a small, cheap, relatively powerful, Linux computer was something the hacking community had dreamed of for years, it’s hardly surprising. [...] So where has the Pi been seen punching a clock? At Sony, for a start. The consumer electronics giant has been installing Pis in several of their factories to monitor various pieces of equipment. They record everything from temperature to vibration and send that to a centralized server using an in-house developed protocol. Some of the Pis are even equipped with cameras which feed into computer vision systems to keep an eye out for anything unusual. [Parmy] also describes how the Raspberry Pi is being used in Africa to monitor the level of trash inside of garbage bins and automatically dispatch a truck to come pick it up for collection. In Europe, they’re being used to monitor the health of fueling stations for hydrogen powered vehicles. All over the world, businesses are realizing they can build their own monitoring systems for as little as 1/10th the cost of turn-key systems; with managers occasionally paying for the diminutive Linux computers out of their own pocket. Read more

Graphics: NVIDIA, Nouveau and Vulkan

  • NVIDIA 418.49.04 Linux Driver Brings Host Query Reset & YCbCr Image Arrays
    NVIDIA has issued new Vulkan beta drivers leading up to the Game Developers Conference 2019 as well as this next week there being NVIDIA's GPU Technology Conference (GTC) nearby in California. The only publicly mentioned changes to this weekend's NVIDIA 418.49.04 Linux driver update (and 419.62 on the Windows side) is support for the VK_EXT_host_query_reset and VK_EXT_ycbcr_image_arrays extensions.
  • Nouveau NIR Support Lands In Mesa 19.1 Git
    It shouldn't come as any surprise, but landing today in Mesa 19.1 Git is the initial support for the Nouveau Gallium3D code to make use of the NIR intermediate representation as an alternative to Gallium's TGSI. The Nouveau NIR support is part of the lengthy effort by Red Hat developers on supporting this IR as part of their SPIR-V and compute upbringing. The NIR support is also a stepping stone towards a potential NVIDIA Vulkan driver in the future.
  • Vulkan 1.1.104 Brings Native HDR, Exclusive Fullscreen Extensions
    With the annual Game Developers' Conference (GDC) kicking off tomorrow in San Francisco, Khronos' Vulkan working group today released Vulkan 1.1.104 that comes with several noteworthy extensions. Vulkan 1.1.104 is the big update for GDC 2019 rather than say Vulkan 1.2, but it's quite a nice update as part of the working group's weekly/bi-weekly release regiment. In particular, Vulkan 1.1.104 is exciting for an AMD native HDR extension and also a full-screen exclusive extension.
  • Interested In FreeSync With The RADV Vulkan Driver? Testing Help Is Needed
    Since the long-awaited introduction of FreeSync support with the Linux 5.0 kernel, one of the missing elements has been this variable rate refresh support within the RADV Vulkan driver. When the FreeSync/VRR bits were merged into Linux 5.0, the RadeonSI Gallium3D support was quick to land for OpenGL games but RADV Vulkan support was not to be found. Of course, RADV is the unofficial Radeon open-source Vulkan driver not officially backed by AMD but is the more popular driver compared to their official AMDVLK driver or the official but closed driver in their Radeon Software PRO driver package (well, it's built from the same sources as AMDVLK but currently with their closed-source shader compiler rather than LLVM). So RADV support for FreeSync has been one of the features users have been quite curious about and eager to see.

New Screencasts: Xubuntu 18.04.2, Ubuntu MATE, and Rosa Fresh 11

9 Admirable Graphical File Managers

Being able to navigate your local filesystem is an important function of personal computing. File managers have come a long way since early directory editors like DIRED. While they aren’t cutting-edge technology, they are essential software to manage any computer. File management consists of creating, opening, renaming, moving / copying, deleting and searching for files. But file managers also frequently offer other functionality. In the field of desktop environments, there are two desktops that dominate the open source landscape: KDE and GNOME. They are smart, stable, and generally stay out of the way. These use the widget toolkits Qt and GTK respectively. And there are many excellent Qt and GTK file managers available. We covered the finest in our Qt File Managers Roundup and GTK File Managers Roundup. But with Linux, you’re never short of alternatives. There are many graphical non-Qt and non-Gtk file managers available. This article examines 9 such file managers. The quality is remarkably good. Read more