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May 2014

32-bit Enterprise Linux Still Matters

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Server

I've done a lot of support of government servers and they run for about forever, as in until they serve no further use. Even retired, old servers are often repurposed and put back into service due to budget restrictions and/or long lead times to order new equipment under the required procedures for government procurement. In the United States this is especially true at the state level. When a server is repurposed it is usually reloaded with the current enterprise standard Linux distrubution release and applications, not legacy releases. That's one common use case.

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Tails 1.1 Beta 1 Secure Distro Now Has Windows 8 Comouflage Mode

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Security
Debian

Tails is a distribution based on Debian and Tor technologies that aims to keep its users as anonymous as possible. It gained a lot more visibility after Edward Snowden said that he used exactly this Linux distribution to hide his tracks. The developers are now implementing more changes and fixes that should ensure it becomes even more secure.

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WebRTC voice and video now available on Firefox Nightly, but…

Filed under
Moz/FF

WebRTC voice and video is now available on Firefox Nightly. That’s the latest news from the Mozilla Foundation and TokBox, the Web communications company that Mozilla Foundation is working with to bring us WebRTC voice and video in my favorite Web browser. To see how this actually works, I decided to download Firefox Nightly and install or run it on my systems.

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Massive NVIDIA 337.25 Linux Driver Massive Update Released, New GPUs Supported

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux

The new driver from NVIDIA is quite an impressive one and it covers some new GPU models and numerous bug fixes for various issues and bugs.

NVIDIA has three distinct driver versions that are aimed at various users and products, but this Short Lived Branch is the most updated one. This is where the NVIDIA developers make the first updates for their products and it's also the version that receives improvements for games and applications.

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OpenCL Linux Benchmarks With The Latest Linux GPU Drivers

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks

This week there's already been a high-end OpenGL comparison using the latest proprietary drivers with newer AMD Radeon and NVIDIA GeForce graphics cards. Those OpenGL results were followed by a 2D NVIDIA/AMD Linux performance comparison and now to end out the week are some OpenCL compute benchmarks.

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Amarok 2.8.0 Review – A Different Kind of Music Player

Filed under
Reviews

Amarok is one of the most famous music players on the Linux platform and it's been around for more than a decade. It's integrated by default in KDE, which might have contributed to its fame, but it's definitely one of the most interesting alternatives.

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The Dirty List Of GPUs With Open-Source Drivers Gone Wildly Wrong

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks

This morning I shared the list of the 60+ graphics cards being tested under Linux for a set of very interesting articles coming up in the days ahead in this massive Linux graphics comparison in celebration of Phoronix.com's 10th birthday next week. While all of the graphics cards were tried, with the open-source drivers there were notable failures with both the AMD Radeon and Nouveau drivers.

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Netbook, Desktop and X Editions of Simplicity Linux 14.7 Alpha 1 Now Available

Filed under
Linux

“Simplicity Linux 14.7 Alpha is now available for download in Netbook, Desktop and X Editions. It is based on Precise Puppy and uses the excellent LXPup by SFS to provide LXDE as a desktop environment for Netbook and Desktop Editions. As usual, Netbook is our cut down version which focuses on web based applications rather than locally installed applications,” said the developer in the official announcement.

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First ideas for a better GNOME browser

Filed under
GNOME

I have tried to describe a situation where Web browsing is more tightly integrated with the desktop. There is still a lot of work to do: detailed functionality needs to be refined, assumptions need to be verified, mockups and prototypes need to be created and evaluated…
A browser is a very complex application to design, but luckily there is a lot of knowledge already available that should help us generate ideas and make informed decisions.

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Sphere 1.4 Is an Icon Pack for People Who Don't Like Flat Operating Systems

Filed under
OS

The Sphere icon pack is made by Achim Karsch and features over 24.000 icons for the operating system, covering pretty much all the known applications out there.

“I really wanted to create another theme, but over the time I'm coming back to my old design Sphere. The most icons, you find in the web, are regtangled designed, looks like iOS design. I want to create something else, something special for linux systems. I think the sphere design looks good and is a opportunity for all those other icons out there.”

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More in Tux Machines

Ubuntu/Debian: Comparison of Memory Usages, Ubuntu 18.10 (Cosmic Cuttlefish) End of Life and More

  • Comparison of Memory Usages of Ubuntu 19.04 and Flavors in 2019

    Continuing my previous Mem. Comparison 2018, here's my 2019 comparison with all editions of Ubuntu 19.04 "Disco Dingo". The operating system editions I use here are the eight: Ubuntu Desktop, Kubuntu, Lubuntu, Xubuntu, Ubuntu MATE, Ubuntu Studio, Ubuntu Kylin, and Ubuntu Budgie. I installed every one of them on my laptop and (immediately at first login) took screenshot of the System Monitor (or Task Manager) without doing anything else. I present here the screenshots along with each variant's list of processes at the time I took them. And, you can download the ODS file I used to create the chart below. Finally, I hope this comparison helps all of you and next time somebody can make better comparisons.

  • Ubuntu 18.10 (Cosmic Cuttlefish) End of Life reached on July 18 2019
    This is a follow-up to the End of Life warning sent earlier this month
    to confirm that as of today (July 18, 2019), Ubuntu 18.10 is no longer
    supported.  No more package updates will be accepted to 18.10, and
    it will be archived to old-releases.ubuntu.com in the coming weeks.
    
    
    
    
    The original End of Life warning follows, with upgrade instructions:
    
    
    
    
    Ubuntu announced its 18.10 (Cosmic Cuttlefish) release almost 9 months
    ago, on October 18, 2018.  As a non-LTS release, 18.10 has a 9-month
    support cycle and, as such, the support period is now nearing its
    end and Ubuntu 18.10 will reach end of life on Thursday, July 18th.
    
    
    
    
    At that time, Ubuntu Security Notices will no longer include
    information or updated packages for Ubuntu 18.10.
    
    
    
    
    The supported upgrade path from Ubuntu 18.10 is via Ubuntu 19.04.
    Instructions and caveats for the upgrade may be found at:
    
    
    
    
    https://help.ubuntu.com/community/DiscoUpgrades
    
    
    
    
    Ubuntu 19.04 continues to be actively supported with security updates
    and select high-impact bug fixes.  Announcements of security updates
    for Ubuntu releases are sent to the ubuntu-security-announce mailing
    list, information about which may be found at:
    
    
    
    
    https://lists.ubuntu.com/mailman/listinfo/ubuntu-security-announce
    
    
    
    
    Since its launch in October 2004 Ubuntu has become one of the most
    highly regarded Linux distributions with millions of users in homes,
    schools, businesses and governments around the world. Ubuntu is Open
    Source software, costs nothing to download, and users are free to
    customise or alter their software in order to meet their needs.
    
    
    
    
    On behalf of the Ubuntu Release Team,
    
    
    
    
    Adam Conrad
    
  • CMake leverages the Snapcraft Summit with Travis CI to build snaps

    CMake is an open-source, cross-platform family of tools designed to build, test and package software. It is used to control the software compilation process and generate native makefiles and workspaces that can be used in any compiler environment.  While some users of CMake want to stay up to date with the latest release, others want to be able to stay with a known version and choose when to move forward to newer releases, picking up just the minor bug fixes for the feature release they are tracking. Users may also occasionally need to roll back to an earlier feature release, such as when a bug or a change introduced in a newer CMake version exposes problems within their project. Craig Scott, one of the co-maintainers of CMake, sees snaps as an excellent solution to these needs. Snaps’ ability to support separate tracks for each feature release in addition to giving users the choice of following official releases, release candidates or bleeding edge builds are an ideal fit. When he received an invitation to the 2019 Snapcraft Summit, he was keen to work directly with those at the pointy end of developing and supporting the snap system. 

  • Ubuntu's Zsys Client/Daemon For ZFS On Linux Continues Maturing For Eoan

    Looking ahead to Ubuntu 19.10 as the cycle before Ubuntu 20.04 LTS, one of the areas exciting us with the work being done by Canonical is (besides the great upstream GNOME performance work) easily comes down to the work they are pursuing on better ZFS On Linux integration with even aiming to offer ZFS as a file-system option from their desktop installer. A big role in their ZoL play is also the new "Zsys" component they have been developing. 

  • Raphaël Hertzog: Freexian’s report about Debian Long Term Support, June 2019

    Like each month, here comes a report about the work of paid contributors to Debian LTS.

European Events: Apache and GStreamer

  • ApacheCon Europe 2019 Schedule Revealed by The Apache Software Foundation

    If you’ve been following Apache Software Foundation (ASF) announcements for ApacheCon 2019, you must be aware of the conference in Las Vegas (ApacheCon North America) from September 9 to September 12. And, recently, they announced their plans for ApacheCon Europe 2019 to be held on 22-24 October 2019 at the iconic Kulturbrauerei in Berlin, Germany. It is going to be one of the major events by ASF this year. In this article, we shall take a look at the details revealed as of yet.

  • GStreamer in Oslo

    Aaron discussed various ways to record RTSP streams when used with playbin and brought up some of his pending merge requests around the closed captioning renderer and Active Format Description (AFD) support, with a discussion about redoing the renderer properly, and in Rust. George discussed a major re-work of the gst-omx bufferpool code that he has been doing and then moved his focus on Qt/Android support. He mostly focused on the missing bits, discussing builds and infrastructure issues with Nirbheek and myself, and going through his old patches.

Latest Openwashing: Amazon, RedMonk/Microsoft/GitHub, Linux Foundation Energy, B2B on Red Hat/IBM Site

Security, DRM and Privacy

  • Security updates for Thursday

    Security updates have been issued by Arch Linux (chromium, firefox, and squid), CentOS (thunderbird and vim), Debian (libonig), SUSE (firefox, glibc, kernel, libxslt, and tomcat), and Ubuntu (libreoffice and thunderbird).

  • EvilGnomes Linux malware record activities & spy on users [Ed: This is something the user actually installs, harming his/her machine. Original post here.]]

    Dubbed EvilGnomes by researchers; the malware was found masquerading as a Gnome shell extension targeting Linux’s desktop users.

  • Mike Driscoll: New Malicious Python Libraries Found Targeting Linux

    They were written by a user named ruri12. These packages were removed by the PyPI team on July 9, 2019. However they were available since November 2017 and had been downloaded fairly regularly. See the original article for more details. As always, when using a package that you aren’t familiar with, be sure to do your own thorough vetting to be sure you are not installing malware accidentally.

  • Latest Huawei 'Smoking Gun' Still Doesn't Prove Global Blackball Effort's Primary Justification

    We've noted a few times now how the protectionist assault against Huawei hasn't been supported by much in the way of public evidence. As in, despite widespread allegations that Huawei helps China spy on Americans wholesale, nobody has actually been able to provide any hard public evidence proving that claim. That's a bit of a problem when you're talking about a global blackballing effort. Especially when previous investigations as long as 18 months couldn't find evidence of said spying, and many US companies have a history of ginning up security fears simply because they don't want to compete with cheaper Chinese kit. That said, a new report (you can find the full thing here) dug through the CVs of many Huawei executives and employees, and found that a small number of "key mid-level technical personnel employed by Huawei have strong backgrounds in work closely associated with intelligence gathering and military activities."

  • No love lost between security specialists and developers

    Unless you've been under a rock, you've noticed hardly a day goes by without another serious security foul-up. While there's plenty of blame to go around for these endless security problems, some of it goes to developers who write bad code. That makes sense. But when GitLab, a DevOps company, surveyed over 4,000 developers and operators, they found 68% of the security professionals surveyed believe it's a programmer's job to write secure code, but they also think less than half of developers can spot security holes.

  • GitLab Survey Surfaces Major DevSecOps Challenges Ahead

    A report based on a survey of 4,071 software professionals published this week by GitLab, a provider of a continuous integration and continuous deployment (CI/CD) platform, found that while appreciation of the potential value of DevSecOps best practices is high, the ability to implement those practices is uneven at best.

  • GitLab Survey Reveals Disconnect Between Developer And Security Teams

    In a survey conducted by GitLab, software professionals recognize the need for security to be baked into the development lifecycle, but the survey showed long-standing friction between security and development teams remain. While 69% of developers say they’re expected to write secure code, nearly half of security pros surveyed (49%) said they struggle to get developers to make remediation of vulnerabilities a priority. And 68% of security professionals feel fewer than half of developers are able to spot security vulnerabilities later in the lifecycle.

  • Cook: security things in Linux v5.2

    Over on his blog, Kees Cook runs through the security changes that came in Linux 5.2.

  • Doctorow's novella "Unauthorized Bread" explains why we have to fight DRM today to avoid a grim future

    Salima has a problem: her Boulangism toaster is locked down with software that ensures that it will only toast bread sold to her by the Boulangism company… and as Boulangism has gone out of business, there's no way to buy authorized bread. Thus, Salima can no longer have toast. This sneakily familiar scenario sends our resourceful heroine down a rabbit hole into the world of hacking appliances, but it also puts her in danger of losing her home -- and prosecution under the draconian terms of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). Her story, told in the novella “Unauthorized Bread,” which opens Cory Doctorow’s recent book Radicalized, guides readers through a process of discovering what Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) is, and how the future can look mightily grim if we don’t join forces to stop DRM now. “Unauthorized Bread” takes place in the near future, maybe five or ten years at most, and the steady creep of technology that takes away more than it gives has simply advanced a few degrees. Salima and her friends and neighbors are refugees, and they live precariously in low-income housing equipped with high-tech, networked appliances. These gizmos and gadgets may seem nifty on the surface, but immediately begin to exact an unacceptable price, since they require residents to purchase the expensive approved bread for the toaster, the expensive approved dishes for the dishwasher, and so on. And just as Microsoft can whisk away ebooks that people “own” by closing down its ebook service, the vagaries of the business world cause Boulangism to whisk away Salima’s ability to use her own toaster.

  • New Linux Malware Called EvilGnome Discovered; First Preview of Fedora CoreOS Now Available; Germany Bans Schools from Using Microsoft, Google and Apple; VirtualBox 6.0.10 Released; and Sparky 5.8 Has New Live/Install Media for Download

    Germany has banned its schools from using cloud-based productivity suites from Microsoft, Google, and Apple, because the companies weren't meeting the country's privacy requirements. Naked Security reports, that the statement from the Hessische Beauftragte für Datenschutz und Informationsfreiheit (Hesse Commissioner for Data Protection and Freedom of Information, or HBDI) said, "The digital sovereignty of state data processing must be guaranteed. With the use of the Windows 10 operating system, a wealth of telemetry data is transmitted to Microsoft, whose content has not been finally clarified despite repeated inquiries to Microsoft. Such data is also transmitted when using Office 365." The HBDI also stressed that "What is true for Microsoft is also true for the Google and Apple cloud solutions. The cloud solutions of these providers have so far not been transparent and comprehensible set out. Therefore, it is also true that for schools, privacy-compliant use is currently not possible."

  • Microsoft, Google and Apple clouds banned in Germany’s schools

    Germany just banned its schools from using cloud-based productivity suites from Microsoft, Google, and Apple. The tech giants aren’t satisfying its privacy requirements with their cloud offerings, it warned. The Hessische Beauftragte für Datenschutz und Informationsfreiheit (Hesse Commissioner for Data Protection and Freedom of Information, or HBDI) made the statement following a review of Microsoft Office 365’s suitability for schools.

  • Microsoft, Google and Apple clouds banned in Germanys schools

    Did you know that Germany just banned its schools from using cloud-based productivity suites from Microsoft, Google, and Apple? The tech giants aren’t satisfying its privacy requirements with their cloud offerings, it warned. What are your thoughts? The Hessische Beauftragte für Datenschutz und Informationsfreiheit (Hesse Commissioner for Data Protection and Freedom of Information, or HBDI) made the statement following a review of Microsoft Office 365’s suitability for schools.