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July 2017

Review: Manjaro Linux 17.0.2 "Xfce"

Manjaro Linux is an Arch Linux-based desktop distribution. Like its parent, Manjaro features a rolling release approach to software updates, providing its users with cutting edge applications. Manjaro is currently available in 32-bit and 64-bit builds and there are several desktop editions from which to choose. New Manjaro users can download the project's Xfce, KDE or GNOME editions as well as a wide variety of community editions. Most of these editions feature the systemd init software, but a handful of the community editions feature the OpenRC init technology, though it can take a little digging to find the OpenRC editions among the other installation files.

For the sake of my experience, I decided to download Manjaro's Xfce edition for 64-bit computers. The download for this edition was 1.5GB in size and booting from the media presents us with the Xfce 4.12 desktop environment. Xfce is presented to us with the application menu, task switcher and system tray placed at the bottom of the screen. Icons on the desktop are available to open the Thunar file manager, a user manual, the HexChat IRC client and the project's system installer. The user manual is a 134 page PDF document that explains how to obtain a copy of Manjaro, install it, change settings and perform some common tasks. The HexChat application will, by default, open a connection to the Manjaro support channel so we can get help. Shortly after the Xfce desktop loads a welcome window appears. This welcome window supplies us with buttons we can click in order to get access to support, documentation and release notes.

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GNU/Linux Releases: Calculate Linux, Arch Linux, 4MLinux, and Netrunner

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  • Calculate Linux Operating System Celebrates 10th Anniversary with New Release

    Calculate Linux maintainer Alexander Tratsevskiy is pleased to announce the release and immediate availability for download of Calculate Linux 17.6 to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the project.

    Calculate Linux is a Gentoo-based GNU/Linux distribution, and it was first announced on June 6, 2007. Designed mainly for Russian-speaking Linux users, Calculate Linux is an optimized operating system intended for rapid deployment in corporate environments. To celebrate the 10th anniversary, the latest release, Calculate Linux 17.6, is shipping with a brand-new edition called Calculate Linux Container, supporting the installation of LXC/LXD containers.

  • Arch Linux 2017.07.01 Is Now Available for Download, Uses Linux Kernel 4.11.7

    It's that time of the month again when the developers of the popular Arch Linux operating system release a refreshed, up-to-date installation medium of their GNU/Linux distribution.

    That's right, Arch Linux 2017.07.01 has been released, and it's now available for download from the official homepage of the OS, including all the security and software updates that have been released during the entire month of June 2017 through the repositories. This new version is using updated kernel and graphics stacks based on Linux 4.11.7 and Mesa 17.1.4 respectively.

  • 4MLinux 22.0 Linux Distribution Launches with LUKS Disk Encryption Support, More

    4MLinux developer Zbigniew Konojacki is informing us today about the general availability of the final release of his independently-developed 4MLinux 22.0 operating system.

    4MLinux 22.0 is now the latest stable series of the minimal GNU/Linux distribution focusing on maintenance, multimedia, as well as basic server and gaming capabilities. It's been in development for the past one and a half months, during which it received only a Beta release, but lots of updates and some cool new features, such as support for full-disk encryptions via LUKS.

  • Netrunner 17.06 'Daedalus' Linux-based operating system available for download

    There are so many quality Linux distributions nowadays, that it can be hard to choose one. Heck, when people ask my advice on which operating system to install, it can be tough for me to match a person to a distro. While choice is a good thing, I am a firm believer that there can be too much choice. When an ice cream shop has 100 flavors, you can feel like the correct decision is an impossibility. Sometimes just offering a choice between chocolate and vanilla is the best experience. Linux could benefit from a few less flavors.

  • Debian-Based Netrunner 17.06 "Daedalus" Linux OS Launches with KDE Plasma 5.10

Announcing Rockstor 3.9.1

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Rockstor 3.9.1 is now available. Six contributors have come together to close 30+ issues, including Major feature updates and bug fixes to make this update happen. Disk encryption with LUKS is the biggest feature we’ve added and something the community has been wanting for a while. We’ve also added support for scheduling power management and jumbo frames just to name a few. This update also comes with a 4.10 kernel from elrepo and a btrfs-progs update from the BTRFS community. It is my pleasure to make this announcement.

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Linux Mint 18.2 Released

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  • Linux Mint 18.2 “Sonya” Cinnamon released!

    Linux Mint 18.2 is a long term support release which will be supported until 2021. It comes with updated software and brings refinements and many new features to make your desktop even more comfortable to use.

  • Linux Mint 18.2 out now and ready for download

    The team behind the user-friendly Linux Mint distribution has released version 18.2, dubbed Sonya. Various flavours of the release were released simultaneously; you can find Cinnamon, MATE, KDE, and Xfce editions all available for download on the Linux Mint website. It doesn’t look like the upgrade paths from older releases have been made available just yet, with the team probably want to work out a few post-release kinks before opening the flood gates.

  • Linux Mint 18.2 Cinnamon, MATE, KDE and Xfce Editions Now Available for Download

    In the July 2017 newsletter of his Linux Mint project, Clement Lefebvre reveals the fact that the highly-anticipated Linux Mint 18.2 "Sonya" operating system has passed QA (Quality Assurance) and it's now available for download.

    Linux Mint 18.2 "Sonya" has been in Beta testing for the past month or so, and it was about time to get an official release, and the good news is that all the flavors have been released at the same time, including the main Cinnamon and MATE ones, as well as the secondary KDE and Xfce editions.

    "Linux Mint 18.2 is a long term support release which will be supported until 2021. It comes with updated software and brings refinements and many new features to make your desktop even more comfortable to use," says Clement Lefebvre. "This new version of Linux Mint contains many improvements."

  • Monthly News – June 2017

    Many thanks to all the people who reported issues and who helped us fix bugs during the BETA.

    All four editions passed QA and will be released as stable in a couple of days.

    LMDE received MATE 1.18 early and some updates associated with Linux Mint 18.2. Early this month we’ll backport the rest of the updates and bring LMDE on par with the new release. These updates will include Cinnamon 3.4 and the new Xapps.

    Upgrade paths will be opened to let Mint 18 and Mint 18.1 users easily upgrade towards 18.2 from their Update Manager. Announcements will be made when this is ready.

Linux 4.12

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  • Linux 4.12

    Things were quite calm this week, so I really didn't have any real
    reason to delay the 4.12 release.

    As mentioned over the various rc announcements, 4.12 is one of the
    bigger releases historically, and I think only 4.9 ends up having had
    more commits. And 4.9 was big at least partly because Greg announced
    it was an LTS kernel. But 4.12 is just plain big.

    There's also nothing particularly odd going on in the tree - it's all
    just normal development, just more of it that usual. The shortlog
    below is obviously just the minor changes since rc7 - the whole 4.12
    shortlog is much too large to post.

    In the diff department, 4.12 is also very big, although the reason
    there isn't just that there's a lot of development, we have the added
    bulk of a lot of new header files for the AMD Vega support. That's
    almost exactly half the bulk of the patch, in fact, and partly as a
    result of that the driver side dominates everything else at 85+% of
    the release patch (it's not all the AMD Vega headers - the Intel IPU
    driver in staging is big too, for example).

    But aside from just being large, and a blip in size around rc5, the
    rc's stabilized pretty nicely, so I think we're all good to go.

    Go out and use it.

    Oh, and obviously this means that the merge window for 4.13 is thus
    open. You know the drill.


  • Linux Kernel 4.12 Officially Released with AMD Vega Support, Many Improvements

    After seven weeks of announcing Release Candidate (RC) versions, Linus Torvalds today informs the Linux community about the general availability of the Linux 4.12 kernel series.

    Development on the Linux 4.12 kernel kicked off in mid-May with the first RC, and now, seven weeks later we can finally get our hands on the final release, thanking God it wasn't one of those kernel releases that get eight RCs instead of seven. A lot of great improvements, new hardware support, and new security features were added during all this time, which makes it one of biggest releases, after Linux 4.9.

    "As mentioned in the various RC announcements, 4.12 is one of the bigger releases historically, and I think only 4.9 ends up having had more commits. And 4.9 was big at least partly because Greg announced it was an LTS kernel. But 4.12 is just plain big," said Linus Torvalds in today's announcement where he invites users to "go out" and use the Linux 4.12 kernel on their operating systems.

  • Linux 4.12 Kernel Released

    The Linux 4.12 kernel has now been officially released.

    Linux 4.12 has now been deemed as stable as opposed to issuing an additional release candidate.

Tesla’s New Linux Kernel Update Is Rolling Out Now

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Tesla is currently pushing out the long-awaited update to its entire fleet. However, additional updates that will make it improved and fully functional, are not yet ready. This sounds a whole lot like the parity situation with second-generation Autopilot.

The update is going only to the large 17-inch center display for now, and not the digital instrument cluster. The new operating system is Linux OS 4.4. According to Musk, eventually it will be the basis for a much better web browser. As we reported earlier, many Tesla owners don’t even use their in-car browsers, partly due to lack of adequate functionality. In-car apps and overall user interface will see drastic improvements as well.

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Games: Steam Linux Usage, Rocket Wars, KDE, and Retro

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  • Steam Linux Usage Saw A Notable Decline For June 2017

    The reported Steam Linux market-share according to Valve is now just 0.72%, or a drop of 0.09%. Usually we don't see close to 0.1% swings for the Linux market-share in a given month, which is a bit surprising especially during the summer months and when seeing Linux releases last month with titles like Dawn of War III. This is also well off the initial Steam Linux highs of around 2%. Granted, yes, one can argue that the Steam market is continually getting larger so there may be more Linux gamers today than a few years ago. Some also argue about potential inaccuracies in the Steam Survey's reliability.

  • A few thoughts about Rocket Wars, a hectic local multiplayer experience

    If shooting at bots or friends while controlling spacecraft is your idea of a good time, there’s good reason for you to take a look at this action game.

  • GSoC-First month analysis

    Animations are yet to be done where the seeds are seen moving in each turn to make it more interactive. Next in turn is the AI mode where I will use Alpha beta pruning for making the computer give competition to the player Smile To play the two player mode you can see Code Repository . More about the AI mode in the next blog post. Smile

  • [Older] You can now access open source code for the first ever text-based game

    Before they had mind-bending graphics and professional storylines, computer games used to be simple text-based puzzles, where outcomes changed based on choices. In fact, games like The Witcher and many others follow the same concept, but with an industry that’s bigger than Hollywood today, the graphics and storytelling have a big role to play.

KDE: Akademy, digiKam, and Plasma Vault

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  • Presentation themes for Akademy

    I’ve updated my style for LaTeX Beamer. It now comes with a few different themes built-in, where two of them are KDE Plasma inspired.

    One is rather simple - just a dash of Breeze Blue, and the other is based on Ken’s Plasma 5.6 wallpaper.

  • digiKam 5.6 Professional Photo Management Application Stable Version Released For Ubuntu/Linux Mint

    digiKam is digital photo management application for specially designed for KDE desktop environment. Digital photo management program designed to import, organize, enhance, search and export your digital images to and from your computer. It provides a simple interface which makes importing and organizing digital photographs a "snap". The photos are organized in albums which can be sorted chronologically, by folder layout or by custom collections. digiKam enables you to manage large numbers of digital photographs in albums and to organize these photographs for easy retrieval using tags (keywords), captions, collections, dates, geolocation and searches. It has many features for viewing, organizing, processing and sharing your images. Thus, digiKam is a formidable digital asset management (DAM) software including powerful image editing functions. An easy-to-use camera interface is provided, that will connect to your digital camera and download photographs directly into digiKam albums. More than 1000 digital cameras are supported by the gphoto2 library. Of course, any media or card reader supported by your operating system will interface with digiKam.

  • Plasma Vault – Easily Create Encrypted Directories on KDE Desktop

    How many times have you wanted to keep your files safe and away from the eyes of intruders?

    If you are running KDE desktop then you’re already in luck because of the nifty tool with which you can keep your files safely encrypted and away from the reach of whoever you want. Introducing Plasma Vault – a go-to encryption solution for the KDE desktop.

    Plasma Vault is an open-source encryption solution for KDE Neon with which you can create encrypted folders to contain private files of any format.

More in Tux Machines

today's howtos

Ubuntu: AWS, Podcast, Robotics and Snapcraft

  • Ubuntu Blog: Introducing the Ubuntu AWS Rolling Kernel

    The linux-aws 4.15 based kernel, which is the default kernel in the Ubuntu 18.04 LTS AMIs, is moving to a rolling kernel model. [...] The Ubuntu rolling kernel model provides the latest upstream bug fixes and performance improvements around task scheduling, I/O scheduling, networking, hypervisor guests and containers to our users. Canonical has been following this model in other cloud environments for some time now, and have found it to be an excellent way to deliver these benefits while continuing to provide LTS level stability.

  • Ubuntu Podcast from the UK LoCo: S12E35 – Feud

    This week we’ve been talking to the BBC about Thinkpads and Ubuntu goes Pro. We round up the news from the Ubuntu community and discuss our picks from the wider tech news. It’s Season 12 Episode 35 of the Ubuntu Podcast! Alan Pope and Martin Wimpress are connected and speaking to your brain.

  • The State of Robotics – November 2019

    November, for robotics, was a good month. We’re seeing new things develop, current projects finish and more cute animals in our future. So who can complain? The news we’re covering here are things that have crossed our path and that we’ve found interesting. If you have suggestions for next months post or your own projects you would like us to highlight, don’t hesitate to get in touch. Send an email and a brief summary to and we can start the discussion. As ever we want this to be a highlight reel for cool robot stuff because we like cool robot stuff. Happy December everyone.

  • Simplifying hardware management during Linux development

    Every few months we release a Snapcraft update, with improvements to both Linux development, and snap user experience. Last week, we released Snapcraft 3.9, and this blog post will focus on the remote build feature that is now a fully accessible preview. Let’s dig deeper into why you need to try remote build, and how you can use it today.

Security: Cyber Security Today, Opportunistic Wireless Encryption (OWE) and Latest Patches

  • Cyber Security Today – An email gift card scam, please stop re-using passwords and more open data found on Amazon storage

    Welcome to Cyber Security Today. It’s Friday December 6th. I’m Howard Solomon, contributing reporter on cyber security for

  • NetworkManager Adds Support For Enhanced Open / Opportunistic Wireless Encryption

    Opportunistic Wireless Encryption (OWE) provides a means of encrypting wireless data transfers without having any secret/key. Opportunistic Wireless Encryption is advertised as Wi-Fi Certified Enhanced Open. This OWE / "Enhanced Open" standard is now supported by NetworkManager for allowing supported devices connecting to Linux systems to make use of this means of opportunistic encryption. The Wi-Fi CERTIFIED Enhanced Open has been around just since summer of 2018 to better secure open WiFi networks. More details on the standard can be found via

  • Security updates for Friday

    Security updates have been issued by Debian (libav), Fedora (kernel, libuv, and nodejs), Oracle (firefox), Red Hat (firefox and java-1.7.1-ibm), SUSE (clamav, cloud-init, dnsmasq, dpdk, ffmpeg, munge, opencv, and permissions), and Ubuntu (librabbitmq).

Nordic Semi nRF52832 Powered PineTime Dev Kit is Now Available for $24.99

PineTime was announced as a $25 smartwatch & companion for PinePhone Linux smartphone which itself sells for $150. Read more