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October 2020

Hangover Alpha 2 Lets Windows x86/x64 Programs Run On ARM64, POWER 64-bit

Filed under
Software

The Wine program for running Windows games/applications on Linux and other platforms can run on a number of different architectures, but Wine doesn't handle the emulation of running Windows x86/x64 binaries on other architectures like 64-bit ARM or PowerPC. But that's what the Wine-based Hangover is about with currently allowing those conventional Windows binaries to run on AArch64 (ARM64) and 64-bit POWER too.

Hangover started out with a focus on Windows x64 binaries on ARM64 in looking at the possible use-case of running Windows software on ARM mobile devices and more. This year with the help of Raptor Computing Systems there has been Hangover support added for IBM POWER 64-bit.

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Also: Come And Find Out About Her Story

Jonathan Dieter: Switching to OSTree

Filed under
Red Hat

Given our shift towards containers, the most obvious solution would have been to switch to Fedora CoreOS, but a number of our call servers have Sangoma telephony cards with kernel drivers that are, unfortunately, out-of-tree. While there are some elegant ways to load custom kernel modules into Fedora CoreOS, we needed a more stable kernel, due to the (lack of) speed in which these modules are updated to build with new kernels.

So we decided to go with a custom OSTree distribution (surprisingly named SpearlineOS), built using rpm-ostree and CentOS 8. SpearlineOS has two streams, staging and production. At the moment, we’re manually building each new release, pushing it to staging, running it through some smoke tests, and, then, finally, pushing it to production. We are in the process of setting up a full staging environment with automatic builds and automatic promotion to production once a build has been functioning correctly for set period of time. We’ve also setup greenboot in SpearlineOS so that our servers are able to fail back to an older release if the current one fails for any reason.

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Python Programming

Filed under
Development

KDE Bug-squashing

Filed under
KDE

  • This week in KDE: Continuous bug massacre

    This week the bug squashing continues at full speed! We’ve made short work of tons of bugs throughout our software stack, including the infamous login sound bug, some very important and longstanding issues with extended attributes, and a ton of quality-of-life improvements for the Plasma Wayland session.

    But we also managed to add a few nice new features that I think you’ll like.

  • KDE Saw A "Bug Massacre" This Week With Better NVIDIA Wayland Experience, Many Fixes

    The bug fixing in KDE land continues and ends the month with a "bug massacre", for how KDE developer Nate Graham describes it in his weekly recaps. 

    Graham also commented of this week's KDE efforts as "bug squashing continues at full speed!" Some of the work that got addressed this week for KDE includes: 

    - The KDE Plasma Wayland session no longer requires manually setting an environment variable to make NVIDIA GPUs with the proprietary driver properly function. This change is with KDE Plasma 5.20.2 for offering a better KDE Wayland out-of-the-box experience on NVIDIA's proprietary driver. This is addressed by automatically detecting the NVIDIA proprietary driver and EGLStreams rather than making the user set KWIN_DRM_USE_EGL_STREAMS. 

Chromium Browser Now Officially Available in Linux Mint and LMDE, Here’s How to Install It

Filed under
Linux

After making it hard for users to install the Chromium web browser on their distributions by deciding to drop support for Ubuntu’s Snap universal packages with the Linux Mint 20 release onwards, the Linux Mint developers are now packaging Chromium and distributing it trough the official repos.

Chromium is not only available in Linux Mint, but also in the Debian spin LMDE (Linux Mint Debian Edition). Users can now easily install the open-source web browser with a few mouse clicks. Depending on the edition you’re using (Cinnamon, MATE or Xfce), all you have to do is open the Software Manager and install Chromium.

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Kick Microsoft Windows 10 to the curb — switch to Ubuntu-based Linux Lite 5.2 today!

Filed under
Linux
Ubuntu

Many technology pundits have been theorizing and discussing the possibility of Windows eventually becoming a Linux-based operating system. They cite the fact that Microsoft has become less dependent on Windows for revenue, making it silly to dedicate so many resources to it. Not to mention, Microsoft has certainly cozied up to both the Linux and open source communities nowadays.

Do I think Microsoft will make this move one day? Who knows. Years ago I'd say it was crazy, but in 2020, the company's flagship mobile device -- the Surface Duo -- runs the Linux-based Android. For now, Linux-based Windows remains pure conjecture. With that said, I think we can all agree on one thing -- Linux is the future of desktop computing, with Chrome OS leading the sea change.

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A Brief History of Ubuntu Touch

Filed under
Ubuntu

Sensing the tech trend, Ubuntu tried its hands on creating a Linux-based mobile operating system. The first announcement came a decade back and six years down the line, Ubuntu closed the curtains on the project.

What went wrong? How it started? Is Ubuntu Touch still alive? Let’s take a look at the history of Ubuntu Touch in chronological order.

The Ubuntu Touch project began with a blog post by Canonical founder Mark Shuttleworth. The blog post, dated October 31, 2011, started with a bold prediction: “By 14.04 LTS Ubuntu will power tablets, phones, TVs and smart screens from the car to the office kitchen, and it will connect those devices cleanly and seamlessly to the desktop, the server and the cloud.”

Shuttleworth went on to explain that this move would be accomplished mainly through the use of the company’s new desktop environment, Unity. (Unity was introduced in Ubuntu 10.10.) “Unity, the desktop interface in today’s Ubuntu 11.10, was designed with this specific vision in mind.”

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Control Philips Hue Lights on Ubuntu with this GNOME Extension

Filed under
GNOME
Ubuntu

In 2016 we wrote about a GTK app for managing Phillips Hue lights on the Linux desktop. Though very handy that tool hasn’t been updated for a while. But no worries: now there’s something better.

If you use Ubuntu (or any distro with GNOME Shell) and your Hue bulbs are connected to a Hue Bridge you can turn lights on or off, control their brightness, and even change their colour — directly from your desktop PC.

The brightly named “Hue Lights” GNOME Shell extension is able to discover Hue Bridges (or connect directly by IP). It lets you manage individual bulbs or groups of lights in “zones” (e.g., ‘bedroom lights’, ec).

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More in Tux Machines

today's leftovers

  • CutefishOS Built on Ubuntu Run Through - Invidious

    In this video, we are looking at CutefishOS Built on Ubuntu.

  • CutefishOS Built on Ubuntu

    Today we are looking at CutefishOS Built on Ubuntu. It comes with Linux Kernel 5.11, based on Ubuntu 21.10, and uses about 900MB of ram when idling. Enjoy!

  • Google adds VM support to Anthos, admits not everyone is ready for containerised everything [Ed: Kubernetes becoming increasingly just an openwashing shim for proprietary software with back doors]

    Google has added support for workloads running in virtual machines to its Anthos hybrid Kubernetes platform. "While we have seen many customers make the leap to containerization, some are not quite ready to move completely off of virtual machines," wrote Google Application Modernization Platform vice-presidents Jeff Reed and Chen Goldberg. "They want a unified development platform where developers can build, modify, and deploy applications residing in both containers and VMs in a common, shared environment," the pair added.

  • The Dell Inspiron 15 3501 supports Linux

    With the Inspiron 15 3501, Dell has a 15.6-inch office laptop in its lineup with its technology housed in a slim, matte-black plastic case. The chassis lacks stability: The lid and the base unit in particular can be twisted a bit too much. The matte display (Full HD, IPS) offers stable viewing angles, good contrast, and decent color reproduction. However, the brightness and color-space coverage are too low. The built-in combination of the Core i7-1165G7 processor, 16 GB of RAM (dual-channel mode), and a 512 GB NVMe SSD (M.2 2230) equips the laptop for office and Internet applications. If the storage space isn't enough, an additional 2.5-inch storage drive can be installed. You can also replace or expand the RAM.

  • Linux Foundation raises USD 10 mln to secure software supply chain
  • ISO establishes SBOM standard for open source development with SPDX

    You’re not getting attention because of your choice of text editor or the number of spaces you use to indent code blocks. However motivating those preferences are for you and me, the non-technical world sees them as private choices. You find your code in the headlines for a different and unpleasant reason: open source dependency management.

  • Printed Piano Mechanism Sure Is Grand | Hackaday

    Do you know how a piano works? Sure, you press a key and a hammer strikes a string, but what are the finer points of this operation? The intricacy of the ingenious mechanism is laid bare in [Mechanistic]’s 3D-printed scale model of a small section of the grand piano keyboard. The ‘grand’ distinction here is piano length-agnostic and simply refers to any non-upright. Those operate the same way, but are laid out differently in order to save space.

  • FPGA Boards Add VGA And HMDI Interfaces To The Original Game Boy | Hackaday

    The classic Game Boy remains a firm favorite in the realm of retrocomputing. Revolutionary as it was at the time, by today’s standards its display is rather primitive, with no backlight and a usable area measuring only 47 mm x 44 mm. [Martoni] figured out a way to solve this, by developing GbVGA and GbHdmi, two projects that enable the Game Boy to connect to an external monitor. This way, you can play Super Mario Land without straining your eyes, and we can also image potential uses for those who stream their gameplay online.

  • Art Project Fast And Fouriously Transforms Audio Into Eye Candy | Hackaday

    The overall build is relatively simple. Audio is acquired via a line-in jack or a microphone, and then piped into an ESP32. The ESP32 runs the audio through the FFT routine, sampling, slicing, and dicing the audio into 16 individual bands. The visual output is displayed on a 16 x 16 WS2812 Led Matrix. [mircemk] wrote several routines for displaying the incoming audio, with a waterfall, a graph, and other visualizations that are quit aesthetically pleasing. Some of them are downright mesmerizing! You can see the results in the video below the break.

IBM/Red Hat Leftovers

  • Reach your open source community with content marketing [Ed: IBM has totally lost direction; this is how they think of Free software...]

    Both startups and more established firms are increasingly turning to content marketing as a way of reaching prospective customers. However, corporate marketers often consider the open source software (OSS) community a challenge to reach. This article features ways your technology and content marketing teams can work together to target and reach the community around an OSS project your organization supports.

  • Why digital transformation demands a change in leadership mindset

    Recently a key retail executive forecast that their industry will change more in the next five years than it has in the past fifty. Another executive believes society will change more in the next fifty years than it has in the last three hundred. A recent headline declared that, “We are approaching the fastest, deepest, most consequential technological disruption in history”, and Ray Kurzweil, Google’s Director of Engineering and co-Founder of Singularity University, has said that there will be fourteen internet size revolutions in the next decade. Whichever way you look at it, things are shifting… fast. When you speak with the visionaries and entrepreneurs actually building the solutions of tomorrow, from on-demand retail to vertical farms, and ask how far into this new era we are, almost universally the reply is: “only one percent”. Imagine then, where we will be ten years from now? How about 50? Major industries, from medicine to energy to travel to entertainment, are radically transforming, putting pressure on others such as manufacturing, construction, transportation, finance, education…frankly, all of it. What an extraordinary opportunity this presents.

  • DevSecOps lessons learned during a pandemic | The Enterprisers Project

    As we’ve seen over the past year and a half, the pandemic has accelerated digital transformation and forever changed workplace culture. Increased reliance on digital tools has elevated the value of DevSecOps, as enterprises of all sizes and across all industries realize the importance of automating and integrating security at every phase of the software development lifecycle – from initial design through integration, testing, deployment, and product delivery. My engineering team was no exception to this shift – we had to quickly prepare to build a new Virtana SaaS platform and deliver several new modules, all while working remotely. Here I’ll share some observations, pain points, and lessons learned to help others intelligently embrace DevSecOps best practices within their teams.

Security Leftovers

  • White House ransomware summit calls for virtual asset crackdown, without mentioning cryptocurrency [Ed: They need to crack down on Microsoft Windows, instead; they use their NSA back doors as a ruse to protect big banks. Microsoft has infiltrated think tanks about ransomware, so now instead of tackling the security breaches themselves (which can lead to sabotage or worse) they treat it like a financial transaction issue.]

    The 30-nation gabfest convened under the auspices of the US National Security Council’s Counter-Ransomware Initiative has ended with agreement that increased regulation of virtual assets is required to curb the digital coins' allure to criminals. A joint statement issued after the event's conclusion opens with anodyne observations about the need for good infosec, international collaboration, and the benefits of private sector engagement. The first mention of concrete action comes in a section of the statement entitled "Countering Illicit Finance" – and while the document never mentions cryptocurrencies, it's plain they're a target. "Taking action to disrupt the ransomware business model requires concerted efforts to address illicit finance risks posed by all value transfer systems, including virtual assets, the primary instrument criminals use for ransomware payments and subsequent money laundering."

  • Thingiverse suffers breach of 228,000 email addresses • The Register

    Thingiverse, a site that hosts free-to-use 3D printer designs, has suffered a data breach – and at least 228,000 unlucky users' email addresses have been circulating on black-hat crime forums. News of the breach came from Have I Been Pwned (HIBP), whose maintainer Troy Hunt uploaded the 228,000 breached email addresses to the site after being tipped off to their circulation on the forums. Hunt claimed on Twitter that in excess of two million addresses were in the breach. He qualified that by saying the majority were email addresses that appeared to be generated by Thingiverse itself, judging from their format: webdev+$username@makerbot[.]com. HIBP's maintainer also claimed that some of the data included poorly encrypted passwords: one he highlighted was an unsalted SHA-1 hash which resolved to the password "test123".

  • Thingiverse Data Leaked — Check Your Passwords | Hackaday

    Every week seems to bring another set of high-profile data leaks, and this time it’s the turn of a service that should be of concern to many in our community. A database backup from the popular 3D model sharing website Thingiverse has leaked online, containing 228,000 email addresses, full names, addresses, and passwords stored as unsalted SHA-1 or bcrypt hashes. If you have an account with Thingiverse it is probably worth your while to head over to Have I Been Pwned to search on your email address, and just to be sure you should also change your password on the site. Our informal testing suggests that not all accounts appear to be contained in the leak, which appears to relate to comments left on the site.

  • New PureBoot Feature: Scanning Root for Tampering – Purism
    With the latest PureBoot R19 pre-release we have added a number of new changes including improved GUI workflows and new security features and published a ROM image so the wider community can test it before it turns into the next stable release. To test it, existing PureBoot users can download the R19-pre1 .rom file that corresponds to their Librem computer and flash it like any other PureBoot release. In this post I want to highlight a new experimental security feature we added in this release that will extend the tamper detection PureBoot already does with the boot firmware and the /boot directory into the main root file system. This will allow you to detect attacks that modify system binaries (like /bin/bash) with backdoored versions. I also want to give some background on this feature and my thought process behind it so people understand where I’m coming from and why I made the design decisions I did.

3 ways to manage RPG character sheets with open source

It's that time of year again for gamers everywhere. Tomorrow is Free RPG Day, a day when publishers across the tabletop role-playing game industry release games for players both new and experienced, and they're all completely free. Although Free RPG Day was canceled in 2020, it's back this year as a live event with some virtual support by way of free RPG sampler downloads from Dungeon Crawl Classics and Paizo. And if the event's virtual offerings aren't enough, you might check out my list of open source tabletop RPGs. Over the past two years, like most people, I've been playing my tabletop games online. I use open source video conferencing and some shared mapping software. Don't get me wrong: I love my pen and paper for analog games. To this day, I rarely leave home without my 2E5 quad book so I can sketch out dungeon maps on the go. But I find my computer desk gets pretty cluttered between RPG sourcebooks, splat books, random tables, dice tower, dice, and character sheets. To clear some space, I've recently adopted a digital system for my character sheets, for both my player characters and non-player characters when I DM. Read more