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July 2016

Parsix GNU/Linux 8.10 "Erik" Officially Released Based on Debian 8.5 "Jessie"

Filed under
GNU
Linux

Today, July 31, 2016, the development team behind the Parsix GNU/Linux operating system have had the great pleasure of announcing the release of Parsix GNU/Linux 8.10 "Erik."

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IDM For Ubuntu - Install IDM On Ubuntu And Other Linux Distributions

Filed under
Linux
HowTos

IDM is the favourite download manager of most Windows users. But, after moving to Linux their favourite download manager goes away because it's not available for Ubuntu or any other distributions. But don't worry, here is a way to make IDM for Ubuntu through Wine.

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Snap! — Beyond teaching coding to would-be programmers

Filed under
Development

Block-based programming languages are not the be-all and end-all of Computer Science learning and they are not meant to be. You could use them without ever intending your students pursue a career in programming. For those who do want to become developers, tools like Snap! are a good starting point from which to get a handle on complex programming concepts, such as OOP, modularity, events, and so on. For other students, they provide a fun and consistent way of training your brain for logical reasoning and out-of-the-box problem solving.

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today's leftovers

Filed under
Misc
  • The Upgradeable Allwinner Dev Board That's Laptop-Compatible Raises $50k So Far

    At the beginning of the month I wrote about That Open, Upgradeable ARM Dev Board Is Trying To Make A Comeback, the EOMA68-spec'ed project formerly known as the Improv Dev Board. It's still using the same (rather slow) Allwinner SoC but has since seen some improvements and there's also a laptop compatible route too. The project has now raised more than $50k USD, but their goal is still three times that at $150k they are trying to raise over the next month.

  • My Microsoft Office 365 woes: Constant crashes, malware macros – and settings from Hell

    Microsoft Office remains one of the most important software products available, despite some rather nasty flaws. For me, Microsoft Office and video games anchor me to Windows. While video games seem set to remain largely Windows-only for the foreseeable future, Office is losing its grip.

    For a long time, I used Office because it was faster. Perhaps more importantly, I knew most of it worked, and I could fairly quickly make a fresh installation do what I wanted. Office 365 has changed all of that.

    To be perfectly honest, I'm not entirely certain why I got Office 365. I was perfectly happy using Office 2010 that had been beaten about the ears enough to look and feel identical to Office 2003. It was quick, the context menus gave me access to all the commands I wanted, and I managed to get rid of both the spacing after the paragraphs and all those dumb "smart quotes."

    Perhaps someone sent me a file that wouldn't open in 2010. Perhaps it was yet another attempt to make Lync work. I will probably never remember. Regardless, the shift to Office 365's version of Office 2013 – and eventually 2016 – has been a descent into madness.

  • Deploy Kubernetes with ansible on Atomic
  • Install Zulip on Ubuntu
  • Parabola 2016.07.27 Screenshot Tour
  • Create two, three, many openSUSE Guides
  • Friday Session Wrap for Red Hat, Inc. (NYSE:RHT)
  • On managing Ruby versions

    This is a little thought on packaged Ruby versions (mostly in Linux-based systems) and why I don’t get many people advising newcomers to start by installing RVM when in reality they just want to program Ruby.

  • Are You Satisfied With Your Ubuntu Phone? (Poll)

    Ubuntu OTA 12 will have completed its phased roll out by the time you read this, and feedback to the changes it brings will not doubt have begun to roll in. Now that we’re almost 18 months on from the launch of the very first Ubuntu Phone I’m curious as to you are getting on with your Ubuntu Phone?

  • Snappy Sprint Heidelberg

    I recently attended Snappy Sprint Heidelberg, the first Snappy sprint focused on upstream and cross-distribution collaboration.

    Snappy is a technology with an interesting history: initially started to provide App Store-like semantics (atomicity, declarative security) for the Ubuntu Phone project, it has since expanded to be a platform for desktop application deployment (e.g. VLC), as well as server applications and the IoT space.

  • ReactOS 0.4.2 Nears With Many Features

    The first release candidate to the upcoming ReactOS 0.4.2 release is now available, the project aiming to be an open-source re-implementation of Microsoft Windows.

  • Software Freedom Kosova Conference SFK’16 Call for Speakers

    SKF | Software Freedom Kosova is an annual international conference in Kosovo organized to promote free/libre open source software, free culture and open knowledge, now in its 7th edition. It is organized by FLOSSK, a non governmental, not for profit organization, dedicated to promote software freedom and related philosophies.

Android Leftovers

Filed under
Android

Security Leftovers

Filed under
Security
  • Xen patches critical guest privilege escalation bug

    A freshly uncovered bug in the Xen virtualisation hypervisor could potentially allow guests to escalate their privileges until they have full control of the hosts they're running on.

    The Xen hypervisor is used by cloud giants Amazon Web Services, IBM and Rackspace.

    Inadequate security checks of how virtual machines access memory means a malicous, paravirtualised guest administrator can raise their system privileges to that of the host on unpatched installations, Xen said.

  • Xen Vulnerability Allows Hackers To Escape Qubes OS VM And Own the Host
  • The Security of Our Election Systems [Too much of Microsoft]

    The FBI is investigating. WikiLeaks promises there is more data to come. The political nature of this cyberattack means that Democrats and Republicans are trying to spin this as much as possible. Even so, we have to accept that someone is attacking our nation's computer systems in an apparent attempt to influence a presidential election. This kind of cyberattack targets the very core of our democratic process. And it points to the possibility of an even worse problem in November ­ that our election systems and our voting machines could be vulnerable to a similar attack.

  • Data program accessed in cyber-attack on Democrats, says Clinton campaign [iophk: "Windows still"]

    A data program used by the campaign of the Democratic presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton, was “accessed” as a part of hack on the Democratic National Committee (DNC) that intelligence officials believe was carried out by Russia’s intelligence services, Clinton’s campaign said on Friday.

  • A Famed Hacker Is Grading Thousands of Programs — and May Revolutionize Software in the Process

    “There are applications out there that really do demonstrate good [security] hygiene … and the vast majority are somewhere else on the continuum from moderate to atrocious,” Peiter Zatko says. “But the nice thing is that now you can actually see where the software package lives on that continuum.”

    Joshua Corman, founder of I Am the Cavalry, a group aimed at improving the security of software in critical devices like cars and medical devices, and head of the Cyber Statecraft Initiative for the Atlantic Council, says the public is in sore need of data that can help people assess the security of software products.

    “Markets do well when an informed buyer can make an informed risk decision, and right now there is incredibly scant transparency in the buyer’s realm,” he says.

Linux and Graphics

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux

Games for GNU/Linux

Filed under
Gaming

GNOME Maps Is Back On Track Thanks to Mapbox

Filed under
GNOME

The desktop GNOME Maps app hit a dead-end earlier this month after the free service it used to display maps changed it usage policy.

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GNOME Maps App Is Functional Again, Switches to Mapbox API Through a GNOME Proxy

Filed under
GNOME

The GNOME developers behind the Maps application distributed as part of the GNOME Stack announced today the availability of an important release of the project since it lost access to the MapQuest service.

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More in Tux Machines

Kernel: Kernelci.org, Tripwire, Linux Foundation, R600 Gallium3D

  • Kernelci.org automated bisection
    The kernelci.org project aims at continuously testing the mainline Linux kernel, from stable branches to linux-next on a variety of platforms. When a revision fails to build or boot, kernel developers get informed via email reports. A summary of all the results can also be found directly on the website.
  • Securing the Linux filesystem with Tripwire
    While Linux is considered to be the most secure operating system (ahead of Windows and MacOS), it is still vulnerable to rootkits and other variants of malware. Thus, Linux users need to know how to protect their servers or personal computers from destruction, and the first step they need to take is to protect the filesystem. In this article, we'll look at Tripwire, an excellent tool for protecting Linux filesystems. Tripwire is an integrity checking tool that enables system administrators, security engineers, and others to detect alterations to system files. Although it's not the only option available (AIDE and Samhain offer similar features), Tripwire is arguably the most commonly used integrity checker for Linux system files, and it is available as open source under GPLv2.
  • Open Source Networking and a Vision of Fully Automated Networks
    Arpit Joshipura, Networking General Manager at The Linux Foundation, discussed open source networking trends at Open Source Summit Europe. Ever since the birth of local area networks, open source tools and components have driven faster and more capable network technologies forward. At the recent Open Source Summit event in Europe, Arpit Joshipura, Networking General Manager at The Linux Foundation, discussed his vision of open source networks and how they are being driven by full automation. “Networking is cool again,” he said, opening his keynote address with observations on software-defined networks, virtualization, and more. Joshipura is no stranger to network trends. He has led major technology deployments across enterprises, carriers, and cloud architectures, and has been a steady proponent of open source. “This is an extremely important time for our industry,” he said. “There are more than 23 million open source developers, and we are in an environment where everyone is asking for faster and more reliable services.”
  • R600 Gallium3D Gets Some Last Minute Improvements In Mesa 18.0
    These days when Dave Airlie isn't busy managing the DRM subsystem or hacking on the RADV Vulkan driver, he's been spending a fair amount of time on some OpenGL improvements to the aging R600 Gallium3D driver. That's happened again and he's landed some more improvements just ahead of the imminent Mesa 18.0 feature freeze.

OSS Leftovers

  • Reliance Jio and global tech leaders come together to push Open Source in India
    The India Digital Open Summit which will be held tomorrow at the Reliance Corporate Park campus in Navi Mumbai -is a must-attend event for industry leaders, policymakers, technologists, academia, and developer communities working towards India’s digital leadership through Open Source platforms. The summit is hosted by Reliance Jio in partnership with the Linux Foundation and supported by Cisco Systems.
  • Open-source software simulates river and runoff resources
    Freshwater resources are finite, unevenly distributed, and changing through time. The demand—and competition—for water is expected to grow both in the United States and in the developing/developed world. To examine the connection between supply and demand and resulting regional and global water stresses, a team developed Xanthos. The open-source hydrologic model is available for free and helps researchers explore the details and analyze global water availability. Researchers can use Xanthos to examine the implications of different climate, socioeconomic, and/or energy scenarios over the 21st century. They can then assess the effects of the scenarios on regional and global water availability. Xanthos can be used in three different ways. It can operate as an independent hydrologic model, driven, for example, by scenarios. It can serve as the core freshwater supply component of the Global Change Assessment Model, where multiple sectors and natural systems are modeled simultaneously as part of an interconnected, complex system. Further, it can be used by other integrated models and multi-model frameworks that focus on energy-water-land interactions.
  • “The Apache Way” — Open source done well
    I was at an industry conference and was happy to see many people stopping by the Apache booth. I was pleased that they were familiar with the Apache brand, yet puzzled to learn that so many were unfamiliar with The Apache Software Foundation (ASF). For this special issue, “All Eyes On Open Source”, it’s important to recognize not just Apache’s diverse projects and communities, but also the entity behind their success. Gone are the days when software and technology, in general, were developed privately for the benefit of the few. As technology evolves, the challenges we face become more complex, and the only way to effectively move forward to create the technology of the future is to collaborate and work together. Open Source is a perfect framework for that, and organizations like the ASF carry out a decisive role in protecting its spirit and principles.
  • ​Learn how to run Linux on Microsoft's Azure cloud
  • LLVM 6.0-RC1 Makes Its Belated Debut
    While LLVM/Clang 6.0 was branched earlier this month and under a feature freeze with master/trunk moving to LLVM 7.0, two weeks later the first release candidate is now available. Normally the first release candidate comes immediately following the branching / feature freeze, but not this time due to the shifted schedule with a slow start to satisfy an unnamed company seeking to align their internal testing with LLVM 6.0.
  • Hackers can’t dig into latest Xiaomi phone due to GPL violations
     

    Yet another Android OEM is dragging its feet with its GPL compliance. This time, it's Xiaomi with the Mi A1 Android One device, which still hasn't seen a kernel source code release.  

    Android vendors are required to release their kernel sources thanks to the Linux kernel's GPLv2 licensing. The Mi A1 has been out for about three months now, and there's still no source code release on Xiaomi's official github account.

  • 2017 - The Year in Which Copyright Went Beyond Source Code
    2017 was a big year for raising the profile of copyright in protecting computer programs. Two cases in particular helped bring attention to a myth that was addressed and dispelled some time ago but persists in some circles nonetheless. Many lawyers hold on to the notion that copyright protection for software is weak because such protection inheres in the source code of computer programs. Because most companies that generate code take extensive (and often successful) measures to keep source code out of the hands of third parties, the utility of copyright protection for code is often viewed as limited. However, copyright also extends to the “non-literal elements” of computer programs, such as their sequence, structure and organization, as well as to things such as screen displays and certain user interfaces. In other words, copyright infringement can occur when copying certain outputs of the code without there ever having been access to the underlying code itself.
  • Announcing WebBook Level 1, a new Web-based format for electronic books
    Eons ago, at a time BlueGriffon was only a Wysiwyg editor for the Web, my friend Mohamed Zergaoui asked why I was not turning BlueGriffon into an EPUB editor... I had been observing the electronic book market since the early days of Cytale and its Cybook but I was not involved into it on a daily basis. That seemed not only an excellent idea, but also a fairly workable one. EPUB is based on flavors of HTML so I would not have to reinvent the wheel. I started diving into the EPUB specs the very same day, EPUB 2.0.1 (released in 2009) at that time. I immediately discovered a technology that was not far away from the Web but that was also clearly not the Web. In particular, I immediately saw that two crucial features were missing: it was impossible to aggregate a set of Web pages into a EPUB book through a trivial zip, and it was impossible to unzip a EPUB book and make it trivially readable inside a Web browser even with graceful degradation. When the IDPF started working on EPUB 3.0 (with its 3.0.1 revision) and 3.1, I said this was coming too fast, and that the lack of Test Suites with interoperable implementations as we often have in W3C exit criteria was a critical issue. More importantly, the market was, in my opinion, not ready to absorb so quickly two major and one minor revisions of EPUB given the huge cost on both publishing chains and existing ebook bases. I also thought - and said - the EPUB 3.x specifications were suffering from clear technical issues, including the two missing features quoted above.
  • Firefox 58 Bringing Faster WebAssembly Compilation With Two-Tiered Compiler
    With the launch of Mozilla Firefox 58 slated for next week, WebAssembly will become even faster thanks to a new two-tiered compiler.
  • New Kernel Releases, Net Neutrality, Thunderbird Survey and More
    In an effort to protect Net Neutrality (and the internet), Mozilla filed a petition in federal court yesterday against the FCC. The idea behind Net Neutrality is to treat all internet traffic equally and without discrimination against content or type. Make your opinions heard: Monterail and the Thunderbird email client development team are asking for your assistance to help improve the user interface in the redesign of the Thunderbird application. Be sure to take the survey.

IBM code grandmaster: what Java does next

Reports of Java’s death have been greatly exaggerated — said, well, pretty much every Java engineer that there is. The Java language and platform may have been (in some people’s view) somewhat unceremoniously shunted into a side ally by the self-proclaimed aggressive corporate acquisition strategists (their words, not ours) at Oracle… but Java still enjoys widespread adoption and, in some strains, growing use and development. Read more

Programming/Development: Git 2.16, Node.js, Testing/Bug Hunting

  • Git v2.16.0
    The latest feature release Git v2.16.0 is now available at the usual places. It is comprised of 509 non-merge commits since v2.15.0, contributed by 91 people, 26 of which are new faces.
  • Git 2.16 Released
    Git maintainer Junio Hamano has released version 2.16.0 of this distributed revision control system.
  • Announcing The Node.js Application Showcase
    The stats around Node.js are pretty staggering. There were 25 million downloads of Node.js in 2017, with over one million of them happening on a single day. And these stats are just the users. On the community side, the numbers are equally exceptional. What explains this immense popularity? What we hear over and over is that, because Node.js is JavaScript, anyone who knows JS can apply that knowledge to build powerful apps — every kind of app. Node.js empowers everyone from hobbyists to the largest enterprise teams to bring their dreams to life faster than ever before.
  • Google AutoML Cloud: Now Build Machine Learning Models Without Coding Experience
    Google has been offering pre-trained neural networks for a long time. To lower the barrier of entry and make the AI available to all the developers and businesses around, Google has now introduced Cloud AutoML. With the help of Cloud AutoML, businesses will be able to build machine learning models with the help of a drag-and-drop interface. In other words, if your company doesn’t have expert machine-learning programmers, Google is here to fulfill your needs.
  • Re-imagining beta testing in the ever-changing world of automation
    Fundamentally, beta testing is a test of a product performed by real users in the real environment. There are a number of names for this type of testing—user acceptance testing (UAT), customer acceptance testing (CAT), customer validation and field testing (common in Europe)—but the basic components are more or less the same. All involve user testing of the front-end user interface (UI) and the user experience (UX) to find and resolve potential issues. Testing happens across iterations in the software development lifecycle (SDLC), from when an idea transforms into a design, across the development phases, to after unit and integration testing.