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Fedora Magazine

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Guides, information, and news about the Fedora operating system for users, developers, system administrators, and community members.
Updated: 12 hours 15 min ago

Fedora pastebin and fpaste updates

Friday 15th of November 2019 08:00:43 AM

Fedora and EPEL users who use fpaste to paste and share snippets of text might have noticed some changes recently. Recently, an update went out which sends pastes made by fpaste to the CentOS Pastebin instead of the Modern Paste instance that Fedora was running. Don’t fear — this was an intentional change, and is part of the effort to lower the workload within the Fedora Infrastructure and Community Platform Engineering teams. Keep reading to learn more about what’s happening with pastebin and your pastes.

About the service

A pastebin lets you save text on a website for a length of time. This helps you exchange data easily with other users. For example, you can post error messages for help with a bug or other issue.

The CentOS Pastebin is a community-maintained service that keeps pastes around for up to 24 hours. It also offers syntax highlighting for a large number of programming and markup languages.

As before, you can paste files:

$ fpaste sql/010.add_owner_ip_index.sql Uploading (0.1KiB)... https://paste.centos.org/view/6ee941cc

…or command output…

$ rpm -ql python3 | fpaste Uploading (0.7KiB)... https://paste.centos.org/view/44945a99

…or system information:

$ fpaste --sysinfo Gathering system info .............Uploading (8.1KiB)... https://paste.centos.org/view/8d5bb827 What to expect from Pastebin

On December 1st, 2019, Fedora Infrastructure will turn off its Modern Paste servers. It will then redirect fpaste.org, www.fpaste.org, and paste.fedoraproject.org to paste.centos.org.

If you notice any issues with fpaste, first try updating your fpaste package. On Fedora use this command:

$ dnf update fpaste

Or, on machines that use the EPEL repository, use this command:

$ yum update fpaste

If you still run into issues, please file a bug on the fpaste issue tracker, and please be as detailed as possible. Happy pasting!

Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash.

Edit images on Fedora easily with GIMP

Wednesday 13th of November 2019 07:52:08 AM

GIMP (short for GNU Image Manipulation Program) is free and open-source image manipulation software. With many capabilities ranging from simple image editing to complex filters, scripting and even animation, it is a good alternative to popular commercial options.

Read on to learn how to install and use GIMP on Fedora. This article covers basic daily image editing.

Installing GIMP

GIMP is available in the official Fedora repository. To install it run:

sudo dnf install gimp Single window mode

Once you open the application, it shows you the dark theme window with toolbox and the main editing area. Note that it has two window modes that you can switch between by selecting Windows -> Single Window Mode. By checking this option all components of the UI are displayed in a single window. Otherwise, they will be separate.

Loading an image

To load an image, go to File -> Open and choose your file and choose your image file.

Resizing an image

To resize the image, you have the option to resize based on a couple of parameters, including pixel and percentage — the two parameters which are often handy in editing images.

Let’s say we need to scale down the Fedora 30 background image to 75% of its current size. To do that, select Image -> Scale and then on the scale dialog, select percentage in the unit drop down. Next, enter 75 as width or height and press the Tab key. By default, the other dimension will automatically resize in correspondence with the changed dimension to preserve aspect ratio. For now, leave other options unchanged and press Scale.

The image scales to 0.75 percent of its original size.

Rotating images

Rotating is a transform operation, so you find it under Image -> Transform from the main menu, where there are options to rotate the image by 90 or 180 degrees. There are also options for flipping the image vertically or horizontally under the mentioned option.

Let’s say we need to rotate the image 90 degrees. After applying a 90-degree clockwise rotation and horizontal flip, our image will look like this:

Transforming an image with GIMP Adding text

Adding text is very easy. Just select the A icon from the toolbox, and click on a point on your image where you want to add the text. If the toolbox is not visible, open it from Windows->New Toolbox.

As you edit the text, you might notice that the text dialog has font customization options including font family, font size, etc.

Adding text to image in GIMP Saving and exporting

You can save your edit as as a GIMP project with the xcf extension from File -> Save or by pressing Ctrl+S. Or you can export your image in formats such as PNG or JPEG. To export, go to File -> Export As or hit Ctrl+Shift+E and you will be presented with a dialog where you can select the output image and name.

Understanding “disk space math”

Monday 11th of November 2019 07:44:28 AM

Everything in a PC, laptop, or server is represented as binary digits (a.k.a. bits, where each bit can only be 1 or 0). There are no characters like we use for writing or numbers as we write them anywhere in a computer’s memory or secondary storage such as disk drives. For general purposes, the unit of measure for groups of binary bits is the byte — eight bits. Bytes are an agreed-upon measure that helped standardize computer memory, storage, and how computers handled data.

There are various terms in use to specify the capacity of a disk drive (either magnetic or electronic). The same measures are applied to a computers random access memory (RAM) and other memory devices that inhabit your computer. So now let’s see how the numbers are made up.

Prefixes are used with the number that specifies the capacity of the device. The prefixes designate a multiplier that is to be applied to the number that preceded the prefix. Commonly used prefixes are:

  • Kilo = 103 = 1,000 (one thousand)
  • Mega = 106 = 1,000,000 (one million)
  • Giga = 109 = 1000,000,000 (one billion)
  • Tera = 1012 = 1,000,000,000,000 (one trillion)

As an example 500 GB (gigabytes) is 500,000,000,000 bytes.

The units that memory and storage are specified in  advertisements, on boxes in the store, and so on are in the decimal system as shown above. However since computers only use binary bits, the actual capacity of these devices is different than the advertised capacity.

You saw that the decimal numbers above were shown with their equivalent powers of ten. In the binary system numbers can be represented as powers of two. The table below shows how bits are used to represent powers of two in an 8 bit Byte. At the bottom of the table there is an example of how the decimal number 109 can be represented as a binary number that can be held in a single byte of 8 bits (01101101).

Eight bit binary number

 

Bit 7

Bit 6

Bit 5

Bit 4

Bit 3

Bit 2

Bit 1

Bit 0

Power of 2

27

26

25

24

23

22

21

20

Decimal Value

128

64

32

16

8

4

2

1

Example Number

0

1

1

0

1

1

0

1

The example bit values comprise the binary number 01101101. To get the equivalent decimal value just add the decimal values from the table where the bit is set to 1. That is 64 + 32 + 8 + 4 + 1 = 109.

By the time you get out to 230 you have decimal 1,073,741,824 with just 31 bits (don’t forget the 20) You’ve got a large enough number to start specifying memory and storage sizes.

Now comes what you have been waiting for. The table below lists common designations as they are used for labeling decimal and binary values.

Decimal

Binary

KB (Kilobyte)

1KB = 1,000 bytes

KiB (Kibibyte)

1KiB = 1,024 bytes

MB (Megabyte)

1MB = 1,000,000 bytes

MiB (Mebibyte)

1MiB = 1,048,576 bytes

GB (Gigabyte)

1GB = 1,000,000,000 bytes

GiB (Gibibyte)

1 GiB (Gibibyte) = 1,073,741,824 bytes

TB (Terabyte)

1TB = 1,000,000,000,000

TiB (Tebibyte)

1TiB = 1,099,511,627,776 bytes

Note that all of the quantities of bytes in the table above are expressed as decimal numbers. They are not shown as binary numbers because those numbers would be more than 30 characters long.

Most users and programmers need not be concerned with the small differences between the binary and decimal storage size numbers. If you’re developing software or hardware that deals with data at the binary level you may need the binary numbers.

As for what this means to your PC: Your PC will make use of the full capacity of your storage and memory devices. If you want to see the capacity of your disk drives, thumb drives, etc, the Disks utility in Fedora will show you the actual capacity of the storage device in number of bytes as a decimal number.

There are also command line tools that can provide you with more flexibility in seeing how your storage bytes are being used. Two such command line tools are du (for files and directories) and df (for file systems). You can read about these by typing man du or man df at the command line in a terminal window.

Photo by Franck V. on Unsplash.

Managing software and services with Cockpit

Friday 8th of November 2019 08:00:47 AM

The Cockpit series continues to focus on some of the tools users and administrators can use to perform everyday tasks within the web user-interface. So far we’ve covered introducing the user-interface, storage and network management, and user accounts. Hence, this article will highlight how Cockpit handles software and services.

The menu options for Applications and Software Updates are available through Cockpit’s PackageKit feature. To install it from the command-line, run:

sudo dnf install cockpit-packagekit

For Fedora Silverblue, Fedora CoreOS, and other ostree-based operating systems, install the cockpit-ostree package and reboot the system:

sudo rpm-ostree install cockpit-ostree; sudo systemctl reboot Software updates

On the main screen, Cockpit notifies the user whether the system is updated, or if any updates are available. Click the Updates Available link on the main screen, or Software Updates in the menu options, to open the updates page.

RPM-based updates

The top of the screen displays general information such as the number of updates and the number of security-only updates. It also shows when the system was last checked for updates, and a button to perform the check. Likewise, this button is equivalent to the command sudo dnf check-update.

Below is the Available Updates section, which lists the packages requiring updates. Furthermore, each package displays the name, version, and best of all, the severity of the update. Clicking a package in the list provides additional information such as the CVE, the Bugzilla ID, and a brief description of the update. For details about the CVE and related bugs, click their respective links.

Also, one of the best features about Software Updates is the option to only install security updates. Distinguishing which updates to perform makes it simple for those who may not need, or want, the latest and greatest software installed. Of course, one can always use Red Hat Enterprise Linux or CentOS for machines requiring long-term support.

The example below demonstrates how Cockpit applies RPM-based updates.

OSTree-based updates

The popular article What is Silverblue states:

OSTree is used by rpm-ostree, a hybrid package/image based system… It atomically replicates a base OS and allows the user to “layer” the traditional RPM on top of the base OS if needed.

Because of this setup, Cockpit uses a snapshot-like layout for these operating systems. As seen in the demo below, the top of the screen displays the repository (fedora), the base OS image, and a button to Check for Updates.

Clicking the repository name (fedora in the demo below) opens the Change Repository screen. From here one can Add New Repository, or click the pencil icon to edit an existing repository. Editing provides the option to delete the repository, or Add Another Key. To add a new repository, enter the name and URL. Also, select whether or not to Use trusted GPG key.

There are three categories that provide details of its respective image: Tree, Packages, and Signature. Tree displays basic information such as the operating system, version of the image, how long ago it was released, and the origin of the image. Packages displays a list of installed packages within that image. Signature verifies the integrity of the image such as the author, date, RSA key ID, and status.

The current, or running, image displays a green check-mark beside it. If something happens, or an update causes an issue, click the Roll Back and Reboot button. This restores the system to a previous image.

Applications

The Applications screen displays a list of add-ons available for Cockpit. This makes it easy to find and install the plugins required by the user. At the time of this article, some of the options include the 389 Directory Service, Fleet Commander, and Subscription Manager. The demo below shows a complete list of available Cockpit add-ons.

Also, each item displays the name, a brief description, and a button to install, or remove, the add-on. Furthermore, clicking the item displays more information (if available). To refresh the list, click the icon at the top-right corner.

Subscription Management

Subscription managers allow admins to attach subscriptions to the machine. Even more, subscriptions give admins control over user access to content and packages. One example of this is the famous Red Hat subscription model. This feature works in relation to the subscription-manager command

The Subscriptions add-on can be installed via Cockpit’s Applications menu option. It can also be installed from the command-line with:

sudo dnf install cockpit-subscriptions

To begin, click Subscriptions in the main menu. If the machine is currently unregistered, it opens the Register System screen. Next, select the URL. You can choose Default, which uses Red Hat’s subscription server, or enter a Custom URL. Enter the Login, Password, Activation Key, and Organization ID. Finally, to complete the process, click the Register button.

The main page for Subscriptions show if the machine is registered, the System Purpose, and a list of installed products.

Services

To start, click the Services menu option. Because Cockpit uses systemd, we get the options to view System Services, Targets, Sockets, Timers, and Paths. Cockpit also provides an intuitive interface to help users search and find the service they want to configure. Services can also be filtered by it’s state: All, Enabled, Disabled, or Static. Below this is the list of services. Each row displays the service name, description, state, and automatic startup behavior.

For example, let’s take bluetooth.service. Typing bluetooth in the search bar automatically displays the service. Now, select the service to view the details of that service. The page displays the status and path of the service file. It also displays information in the service file such as the requirements and conflicts. Finally, at the bottom of the page, are the logs pertaining to that service.

Also, users can quickly start and stop the service by toggling the switch beside the service name. The three-dots to the right of that switch expands those options to Enable, Disable, Mask/Unmask the service

To learn more about systemd, check out the series in the Fedora Magazine starting with What is an init system?

In the next article we’ll explore the security features available in Cockpit.

Tuning your bash or zsh shell on Fedora Workstation and Silverblue

Thursday 7th of November 2019 02:45:26 PM

This article shows you how to set up some powerful tools in your command line interpreter (CLI) shell on Fedora. If you use bash (the default) or zsh, Fedora lets you easily setup these tools.

Requirements

Some installed packages are required. On Workstation, run the following command:

sudo dnf install git wget curl ruby ruby-devel zsh util-linux-user redhat-rpm-config gcc gcc-c++ make

On Silverblue run:

sudo rpm-ostree install git wget curl ruby ruby-devel zsh util-linux-user redhat-rpm-config gcc gcc-c++ make

Note: On Silverblue you need to restart before proceeding.

Fonts

You can give your terminal a new look by installing new fonts. Why not fonts that display characters and icons together?

Nerd-Fonts

Open a new terminal and type the following commands:

git clone --depth=1 https://github.com/ryanoasis/nerd-fonts ~/.nerd-fonts cd .nerd-fonts sudo ./install.sh Awesome-Fonts

On Workstation, install using the following command:

sudo dnf install fontawesome-fonts

On Silverblue, type:

sudo rpm-ostree install fontawesome-fonts Powerline

Powerline is a statusline plugin for vim, and provides statuslines and prompts for several other applications, including bash, zsh, tmus, i3, Awesome, IPython and Qtile. You can find more information about powerline on the official documentation site.

Installation

To install powerline utility on Fedora Workstation, open a new terminal and run:

sudo dnf install powerline vim-powerline tmux-powerline powerline-fonts

On Silverblue, the command changes to:

sudo rpm-ostree install powerline vim-powerline tmux-powerline powerline-fonts

Note: On Silverblue, before proceeding you need restart.

Activating powerline

To make the powerline active by default, place the code below at the end of your ~/.bashrc file

if [ -f `which powerline-daemon` ]; then powerline-daemon -q POWERLINE_BASH_CONTINUATION=1 POWERLINE_BASH_SELECT=1 . /usr/share/powerline/bash/powerline.sh fi

Finally, close the terminal and open a new one. It will look like this:

Oh-My-Zsh

Oh-My-Zsh is a framework for managing your Zsh configuration. It comes bundled with helpful functions, plugins, and themes. To learn how set Zsh as your default shell this article.

Installation

Type this in the terminal:

sh -c "$(curl -fsSL https://raw.github.com/robbyrussell/oh-my-zsh/master/tools/install.sh)"

Alternatively, you can type this:

sh -c "$(wget https://raw.github.com/robbyrussell/oh-my-zsh/master/tools/install.sh -O -)"

At the end, you see the terminal like this:

Congratulations, Oh-my-zsh is installed.

Themes

Once installed, you can select your theme. I prefer to use the Powerlevel10k. One advantage is that it is 100 times faster than powerlevel9k theme. To install run this line:

git clone https://github.com/romkatv/powerlevel10k.git ~/.oh-my-zsh/themes/powerlevel10k

And set ZSH_THEME in your ~/.zshrc file

ZSH_THEME=powerlevel10k/powerlevel10k

Close the terminal. When you open the terminal again, the Powerlevel10k configuration wizard will ask you a few questions to configure your prompt properly.

After finish Powerline10k configuration wizard, your prompt will look like this:

If you don’t like it. You can run the powerline10k wizard any time with the command p10k configure.

Enable plug-ins

Plug-ins are stored in .oh-my-zsh/plugins folder. You can visit this site for more information. To activate a plug-in, you need edit your ~/.zshrc file. Install plug-ins means that you are going create a series of aliases or shortcuts that execute a specific function.

For example, to enable the firewalld and git plugins, first edit ~/.zshrc:

plugins=(firewalld git)

Note: use a blank space to separate the plug-ins names list.

Then reload the configuration

source ~/.zshrc

To see the created aliases, use the command:

alias | grep firewall Additional configuration

I suggest the install syntax-highlighting and syntax-autosuggestions plug-ins.

git clone https://github.com/zsh-users/zsh-syntax-highlighting.git ${ZSH_CUSTOM:-~/.oh-my-zsh/custom}/plugins/zsh-syntax-highlighting git clone https://github.com/zsh-users/zsh-autosuggestions ${ZSH_CUSTOM:-~/.oh-my-zsh/custom}/plugins/zsh-autosuggestions

Add them to your plug-ins list in your file ~/.zshrc

plugins=( [plugins...] zsh-syntax-highlighting zsh-autosuggestions)

Reload the configuration

source ~/.zshrc

See the results:

Colored folders and icons

Colorls is a Ruby gem that beautifies the terminal’s ls command, with colors and font-awesome icons. You can visit the official site for more information.

Because it’s a ruby gem, just follow this simple step:

sudo gem install colorls

To keep up to date, just do:

sudo gem update colorls

To prevent type colorls everytime you can make aliases in your ~/.bashrc or ~/.zshrc.

alias ll='colorls -lA --sd --gs --group-directories-first' alias ls='colorls --group-directories-first'

Also, you can enable tab completion for colorls flags, just entering following line at end of your shell configuration:

source $(dirname $(gem which colorls))/tab_complete.sh

Reload it and see what it happens:

More in Tux Machines

Purges in Free Software

  • What is a safe space?

    When foreign people come along with a different, but no less valid, Code of Conduct, zealots start screaming out for the comfort of their safe space. That is how we get the hysteria that precipitated the Hanau shooting and the lynching of Polish workers in the UK in the name of Brexit. The Third Reich may have been the ultimate example of the search for a safe space: a safe space for the white Aryan race. Nazis really believed they were creating a safe space. Germans allowed the Nazis to rule, in the belief that they were supporting a safe space. The golden rule of a safe space is that it is only safe for some. As George Orwell puts it, All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others. Tolerance and safe spaces are mutually exclusive.

  • The right to be rude

    The historian Robert Conquest once wrote: “The behavior of any bureaucratic organization can best be understood by assuming that it is controlled by a secret cabal of its enemies.” Today I learned that the Open Source Initiative has reached that point of bureaucratization. I was kicked off their lists for being too rhetorically forceful in opposing certain recent attempts to subvert OSD clauses 5 and 6. This despite the fact that I had vocal support from multiple list members who thanked me for being willing to speak out. It shouldn’t be news to anyone that there is an effort afoot to change – I would say corrupt – the fundamental premises of the open souce culture. Instead of meritocracy and “show me the code”, we are now urged tpo behave so that no-one will ever feel uncomfortable. The effect – the intended effect, I should say, is to diminish the prestige and autonomy of people who do the work – write the code – in favor of self-appointed tone-policers. In the process, the freedom to speak necessary truths even when the manner in which they are expressed is unpleasant is being gradually strangled. And that is bad for us. Very bad. Both directly – it damages our self-correction process – and in its second-order effects. The habit of institutional tone policing, even when well-intentioned, too easily slides into the active censorship of disfavored views.

Ubuntu 20.04 Default Wallpaper Revealed

Now, it’s fair to say that the forthcoming release of Ubuntu 20.04 ‘Focal Fossa’ is shaping up to be fairly fantastic (and feature-filled). But every great Ubuntu release needs an equally great wallpaper to go alongside it. And with the ‘Disco Dingo’ and the ‘Eoan Ermine’ mascots making suitably strong impressions on their debuts last year, the flashy ‘Focal Fossa’ has some feverish expectations to live up to… So without any further ado here it is; feast your eyes on the funky, fresh new feline-themed wallpaper below. As I’m sure you’ll agree, it makes a mighty fine first impression! Read more Also: Ubuntu 20.04’s Default Wallpaper is Revealed…

IPFire 2.25 - Core Update 142 is available for testing

Only days after finally releasing our new DNS stack in IPFire 2.25 - Core Update 141, we are ready to publish the next update for testing: IPFire 2.25 - Core Update 142. This update comes with many features that massively improve the security and hardening of the IPFire operating system. We have also removed some more components of the systems that are no longer needed to shrink the size of the operating system on disk. We have a huge backlog of changes that are ready for testing in a wider audience. Hopefully we will be able to deliver those to you in a swift series of Core Updates. Please help us testing, or if you prefer, send us a donation so that we can keep working on these things. Read more

Android Leftovers