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About Tux Machines

Monday, 12 Nov 18 - Tux Machines is a community-driven public service/news site which has been around for over a decade and primarily focuses on GNU/LinuxSubscribe now Syndicate content

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Quick Roundup

Typesort icon Title Author Replies Last Post
Blog entry A Fishy Tale harshasrisri 01/05/2011 - 2:11pm
Blog entry Ubuntu 11.10: Screenshot preview finid 11/07/2011 - 8:09am
Blog entry Mandriva Desktop 2011 teaser finid 1 05/07/2011 - 2:40am
Blog entry Mozilla forms partnership with Tylenol Texstar 02/07/2011 - 1:04am
Blog entry PCLinuxOS KDE 2011.6 post installation tips. Texstar 28/06/2011 - 5:57am
Blog entry Welcome to the Jungle srlinuxx 25/06/2011 - 8:24pm
Blog entry Truths srlinuxx 23/06/2011 - 6:30pm
Blog entry weirdness: puppy & wd-40 srlinuxx 09/06/2011 - 4:07am
Blog entry BIOS Flash update under linux. gfranken 02/06/2011 - 7:55pm
Blog entry PCLinuxOS 2011 - Preview Graphics Texstar 9 03/06/2011 - 2:13am

Linux-driven 96Boards SBC features AI and RISC-V companion chips

Filed under
Linux
Hardware

Bitmain announced a “Sophon BM1880 EDB” 96Boards CE SBC featuring its new Sophon BM1880 AI chip plus dual Cortex-A53 cores that run Linux. There’s also a RISC-V chip and optional Raspberry Pi and Arduino modules.

Beijing-based Bitmain, which is known primarily as a leading vendor of bitcoin mining chips and computers, also has a “Sophon” AI chip business built around its BM1680 and more recent BM1682 Tensor Computing Processor (TPU) AI chips. Bitmain recently announced a third-gen BM1880 TPU along with a Sophon BM1880 Edge Development Board (EDB) 96Boards CE SBC, referred to by 96Boards.org as the “Sophon Edge.”

Read more

ScyllaDB Releases Scylla Open Source 3.0

Filed under
OSS

ScyllaDB, the real-time big data database company, is releasing Scylla Open Source 3.0, introducing new production-ready capabilities.

The company also previewed Scylla support for concurrent OLTP and OLAP, an industry first that enables simultaneous transactional and analytical processing.

Scylla Open Source 3.0 features a close-to-the-hardware design that makes optimal use of modern servers. Written from the ground-up in C++ to provide significant improvements to throughput, latency and administration, Scylla delivers scale-up performance of more than 1,000,000 IOPS per node, scales out to hundreds of nodes, and consistently achieves a 99% tail latency of less than 1 millisecond.

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VirtualBox 5.2.22

Filed under
Software
  • Changelog for VirtualBox 5.2
  • VirtualBox 5.2.22 Released, Disables 3D For Wayland & Brings Linux 4.19 Fixes

    While VirtualBox 6.0 is in beta, VirtualBox 5.2.22 was released today as the latest stable release for this Oracle virtualization software.

    Announced earlier this week was a VirtualBox zero-day vulnerability that went public with the researcher being upset over current bug disclosure processes... That 0-day vulnerability in VirtualBox touches its PRO/1000 network adapter code and allows the guest to escape to the host's ring three and from there paired with other exploits potentially hitting the host's ring zero. Details on that zero-day via virtualbox_e1000_0day. Surprisingly though there is no word in today's VirtualBox 5.2.22 release information whether this vulnerability is addressed.

Wine 3.20 and Gaming News

Filed under
Gaming
  • Wine Announcement

    The Wine development release 3.20 is now available.

  • Wine 3.20 Released With Several Improvements

    Wine 3.20 is now the latest bi-weekly development release for this increasingly popular code-base for running Windows programs/games on Linux and other operating systems.

    Wine 3.20 brings improvements to its IDL compiler, support for sub-storage transforms within MSIs, RPC/COM marshalling fixes, support for Unicode requests within WinHTTP, and shell auto-complete optimizations.

  • Snapshot Games have cancelled the Linux version of Phoenix Point [Ed: "It's clear Unity has had plenty of Linux issues in the past year though," Liam says. Unity uses Microsoft Mono. Be ready for Microsoft to vandalise GNU/Linux on the desktop by ALL MEANS POSSIBLE. Guess who Microsoft made GitHub's new chief: Mr. Mono.]

    Some news that I'm not particularly happy about. Snapshot Games, which includes X-COM creator Julian Gollop, have announced they've cancelled the Linux version of Phoenix Point.

    As a reminder: After having a succesful Fig campaign last year, where they raised well over $750K which went up to over $780K after it finished, Snapshot Games also gained over $1.2 million in pre-orders from their own store. Linux was a platform advertised during their crowdfunding campaign along with it being clearly listed as a platform on their official website's FAQ. They went on to release two backer builds, both of which had Linux support and ran quite well. After spending quite a number of hours in their second backer beta, I was extremely keen for the third build which was expanding the feature-set quite a lot.

    I ended up speaking to Snapshot Games, who gave me the news ahead of time so I've had a little time to think about this. Even so, I'm really not happy with the situation.

    They put up a dedicated page to talk briefly about it, after I told them not to leave the reasons why up to people's imaginations. Citing reasons like Linux requiring "specialised graphics programming" as it uses OpenGL and not DirectX, they also mentioned that Linux drivers are "not as comprehensive as for Windows and Mac" requiring them to make "adaptations to graphical shaders" to get them working. Additionally, they mentioned the issue of Linux having many distributions, Linux-specific Unity bugs like "not being able to correctly render the video player" and input issues. I won't comment much on those points, since I am not a game developer and so I've no idea how Unity handles different APIs and everything else Unity does. It's clear Unity has had plenty of Linux issues in the past year though.

  • The Wall, a rather unusual FPS game is planning to support Linux

    A recent discovery is The Wall, an usual competitive FPS now in Early Access on Steam and they're planning to support Linux.

    Speaking to the developer on the Steam forum, they said it was "Definitely" coming and then clarified it would be soon after the Early Access release which is out now.

  • Cheap Golf, a retro-styled comedy mini-golf adventure released with Linux support

    Cheap Golf from developer Pixeljam (Dino Run, Starr Mazer: DSP) is a surprisingly good and quite amusing retro-styled mini-golf adventure. A very easy game to get into, since it only requires a single hand to fling the mouse around.

GIMP 2.10.8 Released

Filed under
GNU
  • GIMP 2.10.8 Released

    Though the updated GIMP release policy allows cool new features in micro releases, we also take pride on the stability of our software (so that you can edit images feeling that your work is safe).

    In this spirit, GIMP 2.10.8 is mostly the result of dozens of bug fixes and optimizations.

  • GIMP 2.10.8 Gets Better Performance Boost On Lower-End Hardware

    It doesn't look like GIMP 3.0 will be under the tree this Christmas, but at least GIMP 2.10 continues progressing with new stable releases to provide new optimizations and enhancements.

    GIMP 2.10.8 should perform better on lower-end systems now with its chunk size being determined dynamically based on processing speed. This should make this imaging program more responsive. There is also the groundwork in this release towards delivering more performance optimizations moving forward.

Canonical: Surveillance ("Big Data") and "Smart" Kiosks

Filed under
Ubuntu
  • How to harness big data for maximum business value

    Canonical and Spicule have joined forces to bring your business a better option for open source big data and streaming analytics.

    You can learn more about us at some of our upcoming events – read on to find out more.

    Or, jump right in and get started using JAAS to deploy a fully supported Hadoop stack for interactive SQL based analytics.

  • The rise of the Digital Smart Kiosk

    The adaptability of smart kiosks makes them a compelling option for all sorts of projects. Essentially, if you have information to deliver visually in a public or semi-public setting, a smart kiosk can probably work. The benefits of smart kiosks extend well beyond this, though, for the reason that they can basically pay for themselves.
    Digital smart kiosk screens are, essentially, digital signage screens in miniature, and advertisers are eager to get their content up on those screens where users can see them. After all, it’s rare for more than one or two kiosks to be in a given area, meaning busy locations can expect their kiosks to get a fair bit of traffic.

Mesa 18.3 RC2

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks
  • mesa 18.3.0-rc2

    The second release candidate for Mesa 18.3.0 is now available.

  • Mesa 18.3-RC2 Released With RADV, Wayland & NIR Fixes

    The second weekly release candidate of Mesa 18.3 is now available for testing of these open-source OpenGL / Vulkan drivers.

    Mesa 18.3-RC2 comes with several RADV Radeon Vulkan driver fixes, Wayland WSI updates, a few Intel/NIR changes, some minor Android updates, Gallium Nine built with Meson now is linked against pthreads, and various other alterations.

Evaluate Linux server distros for your data center

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Server

Most data centers include Linux, but there are many Linux server distros to choose from. Deciding which one is the right fit for your data center can be confusing, but there are three main options: Ubuntu Server, Red Hat Enterprise Linux and CoreOS.

Linux is flexible, reliable, agile and secure, which makes it a strong contender for enterprises and SMBs. If you want your Linux OS to cover a wide range of use cases, you cannot go wrong with Ubuntu Server 18.04. This Ubuntu version is a long-term support release, and it's capable of serving large scale-out needs, as well as some more specific workloads, such as database servers, web servers, lightweight directory access protocol servers and OpenStack.

Ubuntu Server supports the ZFS volume management/file system, which is ideal for servers and containers because it includes all the tools you need for containers and clustering, as well as snap universal package support. It is also certified as a guest on AWS, Microsoft Azure, Joyent, IBM, Google Cloud Platform and Rackspace.

When it comes to Linux server distros, Ubuntu Server has many customization options and few system requirements. Ubuntu Server is terminal-only; you can install a GUI desktop environment, but that can consume precious system resources.

Read more

Also: Docker invites elderly Windows Server apps to spend remaining days in supervised care

Sony Needs Free Software

Filed under
Hardware
OSS
Gaming
  • Sony using open source emulator for PlayStation Classic plug-and-play

    ReARMed is a popular, modernized branch of the original PCSX emulator, which was actively developed from 2000 to 2003 for Linux, Mac, and Windows. A new branch called PCSX Reloaded picked up that development later in the decade, adding new features and fixing bugs and eventually leading to the ReARMed fork. The emulator supports network play and a "save rewind" feature that lets you easily reverse recent gameplay, two features that seem to be missing from the PlayStation Classic.

  • Playstation Classic is using the open-source PCSX emulator in order to play its games

    A lot of console gamers were hyped when Sony announced the Playstation Classic. However, it appears that Sony has not developed its own emulator and instead it is using the open source PCSX emulator that most PC gamers have been using all these years.

    What ultimately this means is that the overall emulation may not be that “authentic” as some gamers may have expected. We’ve seen this happening in SNES classic and to be honest I was expecting Sony to put some more effort to it.

  • PlayStation Classic Using Open Source Emulator, 50Hz Versions of Games in Europe

    The PlayStation Classic has always seemed like a bit of a hasty attempt by Sony to try and cash in on the popularity of the NES Classic Mini and SNES Classic Mini’s success. Which is fine, of course—the PlayStation brand has a history and a legacy that deserves to be celebrated, too.

    But the hastiness of the effort seems to have compromised it. The list of games on the hardware seems to be, well, not the best, while there are basic baffling decisions like the decision to not have the controllers be the DualShock controllers, instead reverting to the no-analog original controllers.

Solus Linux is Under New Management

Filed under
GNU
Linux

Ikey made his marks on Linux over the years by contributing to a variety of projects (not limited to the Brisk Menu and Linux Steam Integration). He worked on Linux Mint for while before starting his own Ubuntu based distro. After running into development limitations, Ikey created his own Linux distro from scratch. He did this all while working for Intel on their Linux distro. Last June, Ikey took the huge step of leaving his job at Intel to work full time on Solus.

Besides being involved with Solus full-time, Ikey joined the Late Night Linux podcast. In August of 17, the show covered a news story about the Krita project running into problems with the tax man. In that episode, Ikey revealed that he intended to make sure that Solus would not suffer a similar situation. In fact, he wanted to make sure that if something happened to him, the project would survive. Kinda prophetic

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Librem 5 Development Update

Filed under
Development
GNU
Linux
  • Librem 5 Development Kits: we are getting there!

    A few weeks ago we published an update about the forthcoming of our Librem 5 development kits when we ran into some issues which caused delays. Today we’re bringing you another update on the hardware fabrication process, as well as some pictures and a video. At the same time as the last update got posted, I was on my way to California, where we are fabricating our development kit and base boards (we are bringing everything to life there, and shipping from that same facility).

    [...]

    The MIPI DSI display interface is of extremely important, and we can not order the final batch of PCBs before we know that the display (and touch controller) work perfectly. By doing the verification we also indeed discovered some problems, minor things that did not behave as expected and which we are now able to fix. Some other issues are simply mechanical issues that are hard to evaluate just from all the datasheets. And then other things happen, like parts not conforming to standards (like the M.2 WiFi/BT card, of which we got samples just a few days after doing the prototype order). For example, the M.2 card has some pretty thick components on the bottom layer and thus can not lay flush on the PCB (which had been an assumption we had when we designed the board), so we need to change the connector for the final boards.

  • Purism Still Working On Librem 5 Developer Kits, Delayed To December

    The Librem 5 GNU/Linux smartphone was originally slated to launch in January 2019 and its developer kits were supposed to ship this past summer. Now it's looking like the Librem 5 Developer Kits will hopefully arrive in December.

    This summer the developer boards were delayed to at least August and in the months since have relayed various delays. Last month they said the kits would ship "very shortly following shipping delays while now that is turning into December.

How Do You Appreciate Fedora?

Filed under
Red Hat

This week is the first annual Fedora Appreciation Week. As an extension of the How Do You Fedora? series, this article presents how past interviewees appreciate Fedora. The Fedora Project defines four common values that it encourages all contributors and community members to uphold. Those values are known as the Four Foundations. One such value, Friends, represents the vibrant community of contributors and users from across the world, all working towards the same goal: advancing free software.

Like any community, the Fedora community evolves over time. Each contributor’s story is a little different.

Read more

Also: FAW 2018 Day 5: “Encouraging crazy ideas”

Security Updates and FUD

Filed under
Security
  • Security updates for Friday
  • Linux CryptoMiners Are Now Using Rootkits to Stay Hidden [Ed: This impacts already-cracked machines; unlike Windows, where rootkits come though official channels like CD-ROM (Sony)]

    As the popularity of cryptocurrency rises, so does the amount of cryptominer Tojans that are being created and distributed to unsuspecting victims. One problem for cryptominers, though, is that the offending process is easily detectable due to their heavy CPU utilization.

    To make it harder to spot a cryptominer process that is utilizing all of the CPU, a new variant has been discovered for Linux that attempts to hide its presence by utilizing a rootkit.

    According to a new report by TrendMicro, this new cryptominer+rootkit combo will still cause performance issues due to the high CPU utilization, but administrators will not be able to detect what process is causing it.

    "We recently encountered a cryptocurrency-mining malware (detected by Trend Micro as Coinminer.Linux.KORKERDS.AB) affecting Linux systems," stated a report by TrendMicro. "It is notable for being bundled with a rootkit component (Rootkit.Linux.KORKERDS.AA) that hides the malicious process’ presence from monitoring tools. This makes it difficult to detect, as infected systems will only indicate performance issues. The malware is also capable of updating and upgrading itself and its configuration file."

  • Linux cryptocurrency miners are installing rootkits to hide themselves [Ed: By hiring Catalin Cimpanu CBS ZDNet basically imported the same misleading headlines and style as the sensationalist Bleeping Computer (above, where he came from). Because all CBS judges "success" by is clicks and ad impressions.]

2018 Mac Mini blocks Linux, here are alternative small form factor PCs

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Hardware
Mac

Apple's long-awaited refresh of the Mac Mini includes a component called the "T2 Security Chip" which Apple touts as having "a Secure Enclave coprocessor, which provides the foundation for APFS encrypted storage, secure boot, and Touch ID on Mac," as well as integrating "the system management controller, image signal processor, audio controller, and SSD controller," which were separate components in previous Mac systems. Because of the extent to which T2 is involved with the boot sequence of this new hardware, Apple controls what operating systems can be loaded onto their hardware.

Read more

Import your files from closed or obsolete applications

Filed under
LibO
OOo

One of the biggest risks with using proprietary applications is losing access to your digital content if the software disappears or ends support for old file formats. Moving your content to an open format is the best way to protect yourself from being locked out due to vendor lock-in and for that, the Document Liberation Project (DLP) has your back.

According to the DLP's homepage, "The Document Liberation Project was created to empower individuals, organizations, and governments to recover their data from proprietary formats and provide a mechanism to transition that data into open and standardized file formats, returning effective control over the content from computer companies to the actual authors."

Read more

Essential System Tools: journalctl – query and display messages from the journal

Filed under
Linux
Software

Systemd (stylized as systemd) is a suite of software that provides fundamental building blocks for Linux. It’s a Linux-specific system and service manager, offering an init system used to bootstrap the user space and to manage system processes after booting. The software provides a standard process for controlling what programs run when a Linux system boots up. Systemd, was created by Red Hat’s Lennart Poettering and Kay Sievers. It provides more than running core programs. It also starts a journal of system activity, the network stack, a cron-style job scheduler, user logins, and many other jobs.

systemd has courted a lot of controversy with some legitimate concerns about its design details (for example, the decision to use binary logs), and debate about whether it extends its reach too far. Nevertheless, this system and service manager has been adopted by many popular Linux distributions such as Fedora, Ubuntu, Debian, openSUSE, and Arch. Why? Essentially, because it offers a fast boot-up, parallelizing the boot process, as well as being designed with security in mind with most daemons running at minimal privileges. It also unifies system objects, and offers a simple configuration file language.

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Why you should care about RISC-V

Filed under
Hardware

If you haven’t heard about the RISC-V (pronounced “risk five”) processor, it’s an open-source (open-hardware, open-design) processor core created by the University of Berkeley. It exists in 32-bit, 64-bit, and 128-bit variants, although only 32- and 64-bit designs exist in practice. The news is full of stories about major hardware manufacturers (Western Digital, NVidia) looking at or choosing RISC-V cores for their product.

But why should you care? You can’t just go to the local electronics boutique and buy a RISC-V laptop or blade server. RISC-V commodity hardware is either scarce or expensive. It’s all still early in its lifespan and development, not yet ready for enterprise tasks. Yet it’s still something that the average professional should be aware of, for a number of reasons.

By now everyone has heard about the Meltdown and Spectre issues, and related “bugs” users have been finding in Intel and AMD processors. This blog is not about how hard CPU design is – it’s hard. Even harder than you realize. The fear created by these bugs was not that there was a problem in the design, but that users of these chips had no insight into how these “black boxes” worked, no way to review code that was outside their control, and no way to audit these processors for other security issues. We’re at the mercy of the manufacturer to assure us there are no more bugs left (ha!).

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Kernel: Linux System Wrapper Library, Microsoft Mice, and EXOFS

  • Kernel Developers Debate Having An Official Linux System Wrapper Library
    As new system calls get added to the Linux kernel, these syscalls generally get added to Glibc (and other libc libraries) for developers to make easy use of them from their applications. But as Glibc doesn't provide 1:1 coverage of system calls, sometimes is delayed in their support for new calls, and other factors, there is a discussion about providing an official Linux system wrapper library that could potentially live as part of the kernel source tree. This weekend was the initial proposal for having an official Linux system wrapper library. Though that initial proposal is a bit flawed in saying that "glibc is basically not adding new system call wrappers", as they are, just sometimes it takes a while among other factors. But it is accurate in reflecting a problem with the status quo.
  • Linux Getting Two-Line Patch To Finally Deal With The Quirky Microsoft OEM Mouse
    While Microsoft is self-proclaimed to love Linux, their common and very basic Microsoft OEM Mouse has not loved the Linux kernel or vice-versa... The Linux kernel HID code is finally getting a quirk fix to deal with the Microsoft OEM mouse as it would disconnect every minute when running at run-levels one or three. The basic Microsoft OEM Mouse that's been available for years (appearing as a PixArt vendor and USB ID 0x00cb) would disconnect every 60~62 seconds on Linux systems when connected out-of-the-box. This isn't some high-end gaming mouse but Microsoft's dead basic OEM optical mouse.
  • Linux Poised To Remove Decade-Old EXOFS File-System
    The Linux kernel will likely be doing away with EXOFS, a file-system that had been around since the Linux 2.6.30 days. EXOFS is a file-system originally derived from EXT2 file-system code for basing it on an external object store. This object-based file-system was originally developed by IBM. Veteran kernel developer Christoph Hellwig is now seeking to remove the EXOFS object-based file-system on the basis of it being "just a simple example without real life users."

today's howtos and CLI examples

OpenStack vs. Cloud Foundry vs. Kubernetes: What Fits Where?

Open-source cloud application infrastructure can be a confusing landscape to navigate with multiple projects, including OpenStack, Cloud Foundry and Kubernetes. While there are some points of overlap, each technology has its own merits and use-cases. Among the vendors that uses and contributes to OpenStack, Cloud Foundry and Kubernetes is SUSE, which also has commercial products for all three technologies as well. In a video interview with eWEEK, Thomas Di Giacomo, CTO at SUSE explains how the three open-source technologies intersect at his company. "We see that our customers don't use a single open-source project, most of the time they to use different ones, with different lifecycles and sometimes they overlap," Di Giacomo said. Read more

Linux Journal Reviews the Dell XPS 13 Developer Edition Laptop, Red Hat Wants to Hear About Desktop/Laptop Setups

  • Review: the Dell XPS 13 Developer Edition Laptop
    Canonical recently made an official announcement on its company blog stating that the Dell XPS 13 Developer Edition laptop (that is, Project Sputnik) now ships with Ubuntu 18.04 LTS (Bionic Beaver) pre-installed. Upon reading this, I quickly reached out to Dell asking to review the laptop. I'm a Linux developer, and when a developer edition laptop is marketed with Linux pre-installed, I need to experience it for myself. The laptop eventually arrived, and like a child on Christmas morning, I excitedly pulled the device out of the box and powered it up for the first time. This is a pretty rock-solid notebook. The device is very light and easy to carry—meaning, it's mobile (which is very important in my book), thin and sleek. Not only does the device look good, but it also performs very well. [...] Overall, I had a very positive experience with the 7th generation Dell XPS 13. It's a powerful machine and fully capable of handling all sorts of developer workloads. And if used in a professional environment, it's very mobile as well. You can carry it from conference room to conference room and resume your work with little to no disruption. Ubuntu is well integrated with the machine, and it shows. You can't ask for more in a developer's laptop. I definitely consider this device to be well worth the investment.
  • What does your Linux setup look like?
    Jim Hall: I run Fedora Workstation on a Lenovo X1 Carbon laptop, with an ASUS 24" external display. That gives me a dual-display configuration that lets me work in one window on the larger display while having a separate space to run my music player or other apps. I love my Perixx ergonomic keyboard and my Microsoft Classic Intellimouse. When I'm feeling nostalgic, I swap out the ergo keyboard with my replica IBM Model M keyboard by Unicomp; the buckling spring keys are really easy to type with. My printer is an HP color LaserJet, which works seamlessly with Linux.