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Thursday, 21 Jan 21 - Tux Machines is a community-driven public service/news site which has been around for over a decade and a half and primarily focuses on GNU/LinuxSubscribe now Syndicate content

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GNOME: outreachy, flexbox and restrictions

Filed under
GNOME
  • Nasah Kuma: My Journey to GJS’ Backtrace “full” Option

    My outreachy internship has definitely taught me a lot of things including writing blog posts, reporting tasks, expressing myself and of course improving as a developer. When we developed a project timeline before submitting the final application weeks back, my mentor and I underestimated some of the issues because there were some hidden difficulties we only found out later.

    Initially, my timeline was set to using the first week to understand the inner workings of the debugger, using week 2-4 on the backtrace full command, using week 5-7 to display the current line of the source code when displaying the current frame in the debugger and the task for week 8-13 were still to be decided upon by my mentor and I within the course of the internship.

  • Sergio Villar Senin: Flexbox Cats (a.k.a fixing images in flexbox)

    In my previous post I discussed my most recent contributions to flexbox code in WebKit mainly targeted at reducing the number of interoperability issues among the most popular browsers. The ultimate goal was of course to make the life of web developers easier. It got quite some attention (I loved Alan Stearns’ description of the post) so I decided to write another one, this time focused in the changes I recently landed in WebKit (Safari’s engine) to improve the handling of elements with aspect ratio inside flexbox, a.k.a make images work inside flexbox. Some of them have been already released in the Safari 118 Tech Preview so it’s now possible to help test them and provide early feedback.

  • GNOME Software Jailbreak

    As many users have noticed, you cannot install all the software you want on your computer via gnome-software. This restriction has been imposed by the developers...

Free Software Leftovers

Filed under
GNU
  • Open Sesame: How Open Source technologies turbocharge enterprises

    Open source, a revolutionary idea for ICT innovations, also makes sense for business. The key is its adoption to an organisation’s culture and budget
    If one were to make an internet search for the very active Information Technology and Communication (ICT) areas of innovation, the usual suspects likely to show up are intelligent machines like Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), and Deep Learning (DL); human-machine interactions like bots, augmented realities, voice and gesture-enabled interfaces; ubiquitous computing like resilient cloud and quantum computing; and autonomous machines that include the like of drones and self-driving vehicles.

    Compared to the pace of development a couple of decades ago, today all these areas continue to develop at extremely high velocities. A deep dive into any of the technical areas will show up a common thread: open source.

  • Valetudo is a cloud-free web interface for robot vacuum cleaners

    Once you’ve done the update the Xiaomi app will not work anymore, and you’d only access the robot vacuum cleaner via its web interface which, in most cases, comes with the same features as the mobile app minus cloud connectivity. However, if you change your mind, you can simply factory reset the device to remove Valetudo and continue with the Xiaomi app, at least on Roborock models.

  • Well you look different: Apache CloudStack 4.15 lands with new UI, improved access control • DEVCLASS

    Apache CloudStack (CS), the Apache Software Foundation’s cloud infrastructure project, has pushed out new long term support version 4.15, providing users with a new UI, various VMware-related improvements and a way to define role based users in projects.

    The software was originally developed in 2008 at what soon became Cloud.com, a start-up that was bought by Citrix in 2011. The infrastructure as a service platform was accepted into the Apache Incubator in 2012 and graduated its process in 2013. Customers include Verizon, TomTom, SAP, Huawei, Disney, Cloudera, BT, Autodesk, and Apple.

  • Daniel Stenberg: bye bye svn.haxx.se

    When the Subversion project started in the early year 2000, I was there. I joined the project and participated in the early days of its development as I really believed in creating an “improved CVS” and I thought I could contribute to it.

    While I was involved with the project, I noticed the lack of a decent mailing list archive for the discussions and set one up under the name svn.haxx.se as a service for myself and for the entire community. I had the server and the means to do it, so why not?

    After some years I drifted away from the project. It was doing excellently and I was never any significant contributor. Then git and some of the other distributed version control systems came along and in my mind they truly showed the world how version control should be done…

    The mailing list archive however I left, and I had even added more subversion related lists to it over time. It kept chugging along without me having to do much. Mails flew in, got archived and were made available for the world to search for and link to. Today it has over 390,000 emails archived from over twenty years of rather active open source development on multiple mailing lists. It is fascinating that no less than 46 persons have written more than a thousand emails each on those lists during these two decades.

  • Daniel Stenberg: everything.curl.dev

    The online version of the curl book “everything curl” has been moved to the address shown in the title:

    everything.curl.dev

    This, after I did a very unscientific and highly self-selective poll on twitter on January 18 2020...

  • 17 Free Design Tools for 2021

    GIMP (GNU Image Manipulation Program) is a cross-platform tool for quality image creation and manipulation and advanced photo retouching. GIMP provides features to produce icons, graphical design elements, and art for user interface components and mockups. Price: Free.

  • Adding translations to Guix’ website

    As part of GNU, Guix aims to bring freedom to computer users all over the world, no matter the languages they (prefer to) speak. For example, Guix users asking for help can expect an answer even if they do so in languages other than English.

    We also offer translated software for people more comfortable with a language other than English. Thanks to many people who contribute translations, GNU Guix and the packages it distributes can be used in various languages, which we value greatly. We are happy to announce that Guix’ website can now be translated in the same manner. If you want to get a glimpse on how the translation process works, first from a translator’s, then from a programmer’s perspective, read on.

    The process for translators is kept simple. Like lots of other free software packages, Guix uses GNU Gettext for its translations, with which translatable strings are extracted from the source code to so-called PO files. If this is new to you, the magic behind the translation process is best understood by taking a look at one of them. Download a PO file for your language at the Fedora Weblate instance.

    Even though PO files are text files, changes should not be made with a text editor but with PO editing software. Weblate integrates PO editing functionality. Alternatively, translators can use any of various free-software tools for filling in translations, of which Poedit is one example, and (after logging in) upload the changed file. There also is a special PO editing mode for users of GNU Emacs. Over time translators find out what software they are happy with and what features they need.

    Help with translations is much appreciated. Since Guix integrates with the wider free software ecosystem, if you intend to become a translator, it is worth taking a look at the styleguides and the work of other translators. You will find some at your language’s team at the Translation Project (TP).

  • Marcin 'hrw' Juszkiewicz: Standards are boring

    Standards are boring. Satisfied users may not want to migrate to other boards the market tries to sell them.

    So Arm market is flooded with piles of small board computers (SBC). Often they are compliant to standards only when it comes to connectors.

    But our hardware is not standard

    It is not a matter of ‘let produce UEFI ready hardware’ but rather ‘let write EDK2 firmware for boards we already have’.

    Look at Raspberry/Pi then. It is shitty hardware but got popular. And group of people wrote UEFI firmware for it. Probably without vendor support even.

    [...]

    At the end you will have SBSA compliant hardware running SBBR compliant firmware.

    Congratulations, your board is SystemReady SR compliant. Your marketing team may write that you are on same list as Ampere with their Altra server.

    Users buy your hardware and can install whatever BSD, Linux distribution they want. Some will experiment with Microsoft Windows. Others may work on porting Haiku or other exotic operating system.

    But none of them will have to think “how to get this shit running”. And they will tell friends that your device is as boring as it should be when it comes to running OS on it == more sales.

Google and Mozilla Embrace More Restrictions

Filed under
Google
Moz/FF
Web
  • Extensions in Firefox for Android Update | Mozilla Add-ons Blog

    Starting with Firefox 85, which will be released January 25, 2021, Firefox for Android users will be able to install supported Recommended Extensions directly from addons.mozilla.org (AMO). Previously, extensions for mobile devices could only be installed from the Add-ons Manager, which caused some confusion for people accustomed to the desktop installation flow. We hope this update provides a smoother installation experience for mobile users.

    As a quick note, we plan to enable the installation buttons on AMO during our regularly scheduled site update on Thursday, January 21. These buttons will only work if you are using a pre-release version of Firefox for Android until version 85 is released on Tuesday, January 25.

  • Porting Firefox to Apple Silicon

    The release of Apple Silicon-based Macs at the end of last year generated a flurry of news coverage and some surprises at the machine’s performance. This post details some background information on the experience of porting Firefox to run natively on these CPUs.

    We’ll start with some background on the Mac transition and give an overview of Firefox internals that needed to know about the new architecture, before moving on to the concept of Universal Binaries.

    We’ll then explain how DRM/EME works on the new platform, talk about our experience with macOS Big Sur, and discuss various updater problems we had to deal with. We’ll conclude with the release and an overview of various other improvements that are in the pipeline.

  • Google muzzles all Chromium browsers on 15 March 2021

    What is the relevance I hear you ask.
    Well, I provide Chromium packages for Slackware, both 32bit and 64bit versions. These chromium packages are built on our native Slackware platform, as opposed to the official Google Chrome binaries which are compiled on an older Ubuntu probably, for maximum compatibility across Linux distros where these binaries are used. One unique quality of my Chromium packages for Slackware is that I provide them for 32bit Slackware. Google ceased providing official 32bit binaries long ago.

    In my Slackware Chromium builds, I disable some of the more intrusive Google features. An example: listening all the time to someone saying “OK Google” and sending the follow-up voice clip to Google Search.

    And I create a Chromium package which is actually usable enough that people prefer it over Google’s own Chrome binaries, The reason for this usefulness is the fact that I enable access to Google’s cloud sync platform through my personal so-called “Google API key“. In Chromium for Slackware, you can logon to your Google account, sync your preferences, bookmarks, history, passwords etc to and from your cloud storage on Google’s platform. Your Chromium browser on Slackware is able to use Google’s location services and offer localized content; it uses Google’s translation engine, etcetera. All that is possible because I formally requested and was granted access to these Google services through their APIs within the context of providing them through a Chromium package for Slackware.

    The API key, combined with my ID and passphrase that allow your Chromium browser to access all these Google services are embedded in the binary – they are added during compilation. They are my key, and they are distributed and used with written permission from the Chromium team.

    These API keys are usually meant to be used by software developers when testing their programs which they base on Chromium code. Every time a Chromium browser I compiled talks to Google through their Cloud Service APIs, a counter increases on my API key. Usage of the API keys for developers is rate-limited, which means if an API key is used too frequently, you hit a limit and you’ll get an error response instead of a search result. So I made a deal with the Google Chromium team to be recognized as a real product with real users and an increased API usage frequency. Because I get billed for every access to the APIs which exceeds my allotted quota and I am generous but not crazy.
    I know that several derivative distributions re-use my Chromium binary packages (without giving credit) and hence tax the usage quota on my Google Cloud account, but I cover this through donations, thank you my friends, and no thanks to the leeches of those distros.

Programming Leftovers

Filed under
Development
  • Spreadsheet annoyance no. 3: quotes have priority

    In an earlier post I complained about spreadsheet programs: Excel, LibreOffice Calc and Gnumeric. All of them confuse non-dates with dates, and automatically interpret certain number strings with 2 colons as [h]:mm:ss. Grrr.

  • Building your own Network Monitor with PyShark – Linux Hint

    Many tools for network analysis have existed for quite some time. Under Linux, for example, these are Wireshark, tcpdump, nload, iftop, iptraf, nethogs, bmon, tcptrack as well as speedometer and ettercap. For a detailed description of them, you may have a look at Silver Moon’s comparison [1].

    So, why not use an existing tool, and write your own one, instead? Reasons I see are a better understanding of TCP/IP network protocols, learning how to code properly, or implementing just the specific feature you need for your use case because the existing tools do not give you what you actually need. Furthermore, speed and load improvements to your application/system can also play a role that motivates you to move more in this direction.

    In the wild, there exist quite several Python libraries for network processing and analysis. For low-level programming, the socket library [2] is the key. High-level protocol-based libraries are httplib, ftplib, imaplib, and smtplib. In order to monitor network ports and the packet stream competitive candidates, are python-nmap [3], dpkt [4], and PyShark [5] are used. For both monitoring and changing the packet stream, the scapy library [6] is widely in use.

    In this article, we will have a look at the PyShark library and monitor which packages arrive at a specific network interface. As you will see below, working with PyShark is straightforward. The documentation on the project website will help you for the first steps — with it, you will achieve a usable result very quickly. However, when it comes to the nitty-gritty, more knowledge is necessary.

    PyShark can do a lot more than it seems at first sight, and unfortunately, at the time of this writing, the existing documentation does not cover that in full. This makes it unnecessarily difficult and provides a good reason to look deeper under the bonnet.

  • Roles, h'uh, what are they good for? | Jesse Shy

    What is a role? Put simply, roles are a form of code reuse. Often, the term shared behavior is used. Roles are said to be consumed and the methods ( including attribute accessors ) are flattened into the consuming class.

    One of the major benefits of roles is they attempt to solve the diamond problem encountered in multi-inheritance by requiring developers to resolve name collisions manually that arise in multi-inheritance. Don't be fooled however, roles are a form of multi-inheritance.

    I often see roles being used in ways they shouldn’t be. Let’s look at the mis-use of roles, then see an example of shared behavior.

    I’m using that word inheritance a lot for a reason, one of the two ways I see roles most often misused is to hide an inheritance nightmare.

    "Look ma, no multi-inheritance support, no problem. I’ll just throw stuff in roles and glum them on wherever I really want to use inheritance. It all sounds fancy, but I am just lumping stuff into a class cause I don’t really understand OO principals."

  • What Is a Software Developer?

    Software developers are highly sought-after tech professionals, and the demand for their skills is continually increasing. In this Life in Tech article, we’ll provide a general look at the various duties and requirements associated with the role of software developer.

    Let’s start with a basic description before getting into the nuances and specifics. Briefly, then, software developers conceive, design, and build computer programs, says ComputerScience.org. To accomplish this, they identify user needs, write and test new software, and maintain and improve it as needed. Software developers occupy crucial roles in a variety of industries, including tech, entertainment, manufacturing, finance, and government.

  • Steinar H. Gunderson: How others program

    How do others program? I realized today that I've never actually seen it; in more than 30 years of coding, I've never really watched someone else write nontrivial code over a long period of time. I only see people's finished patches—and I know that the patches I send out for review sure doesn't look much like the code I initially wrote. (There are exceptions for small bugfixes and the likes, of course.)

  • Sensible integer scale for Gonum Plot

    Over the years, I found myself multiple times using Gonum Plot. I do find it as a very good and easy to use plotting tool for Go.

    The problem I found myself, over and over, dealing with is the tickers scale. If you know before-hand the values that can be expected to be created by the application, it is very straightforward, but the majority of times, this is not the case. I often find myself creating a plotting application on data that track events that have not yet happened and cannot predict their range.

    To solve the issue, I create a package that has a struct that implements the Ticker interface and provides tickers that are usually sensible. Since this struct only works for integer scales, I called it sit, which stands for “Sensible Int Ticks”.

  • Learn JavaScript by writing a guessing game | Opensource.com

    It's pretty safe to say that most of the modern web would not exist without JavaScript. It's one of the three standard web technologies (along with HTML and CSS) and allows anyone to create much of the interactive, dynamic content we have come to expect in our experiences with the World Wide Web. From frameworks like React to data visualization libraries like D3, it's hard to imagine the web without it.

    There's a lot to learn, and a great way to begin learning this popular language is by writing a simple application to become familiar with some concepts. Recently, some Opensource.com correspondents have written about how to learn their favorite language by writing a simple guessing game, so that's a great place to start!

  • Getting your 3D ready for Qt 6

    As was previously discussed, since the 6.0.0 release of Qt, Qt 3D no longer ships as a pre-compiled module. If you need to use it on your projects, try out the new features, or just see your existing application is ready for the next chapter of Qt’s life, you need to compile Qt 3D from source.

    In order to do this, you can do it the traditional way ([cq]make ...; make; make install) or use the Conan-based system that is being pioneered with the latest version of the MaintenanceTool.

  • Qt Open-Source Downloads Temporarily Offline Due To Severe Hardware Failure

    Several readers have expressed concerned that Qt open-source downloads have disappeared but The Qt Company has now commented it's only a temporary issue due to a "severe hardware failure" in the cloud.

    Qt's open-source online installer and offline packages are not currently working for the open-source options but the commercial downloads are working. While that may raise concerns given Qt's increasing commercial focus, The Qt Company posted to their blog that this interruption around open-source package downloads is due to a reported major hardware problem at their cloud provider.

  • Efficient custom shapes in QtQuick with Rust

    Fortunally, the Qt API provides multiple ways to implement custom shapes, that depending on the needs might be enough.

    There is the Canvas API using the same API as the canvas API on the web but in QML. It’s easy to use but very slow and I wouldn’t recommend it.

    Instead of the Canvas API, from the QML side, there is the QtQuick Shapes module. This module allows creating more complex shapes directly from the QML with a straightforward declarative API. In many cases, this is good enough for the application developer but this module doesn’t offer a public C++ API.

    If you need more controls, using C++ will be required to implement custom QQuickItem. Unfortunately drawing on the GPU using QQuickItem is more complex than the QPainter API. You can’t just use commands like drawRect, but will need to convert all your shapes in triangles first. This involves a lot of maths like it can be seen in the example from the official documentation or from the KDAB tutorial (Efficient custom shapes in Qt Quick).

    A QPainer way is also available with QQuickPaintedItem, but it is slow because it renders your shape in a textured rectangle in the Scene Graph.

  • Changes to the Rustdoc team

    Recently, there have been a lot of improvements in rustdoc. It was possible thanks to our new contributors. In light of these recent contributions, a few changes were made in the rustdoc team.

  • Rustdoc performance improvements

    @jyn514 noticed a while ago that most of the work in Rustdoc is duplicated: there are actually three different abstract syntax trees (ASTs)! One for doctree, one for clean, and one is the original HIR used by the compiler. Rustdoc was spending quite a lot of time converting between them. Most of the speed improvements have come from getting rid of parts of the AST altogether.

  • Why and How to Use Optional in Java |

    The Optional object type in Java was introduced with version 8 of Java. It is used when we want to express that a value might not be known (yet) or it’s not applicable at this moment. Before Java 8 developers might have been tempted to return a null value in this case.

  • GraalVM 21.0 Released With Experimental JVM On Truffle - Phoronix

    Oracle on Tuesday released GraalVM 21.0 as the latest version of their Java VM/JDK that also supports other languages and modes of execution.

    One of the notable additions with GraalVM 21.0 is supporting Java on Truffle, as an example JVM implementation using the Truffle interpreter. GraalVM's Truffle framework is an open-source library for writing programming language interpreters. With Java on Truffle, it's of the same nature as the likes of JavaScript, Ruby, Python, and R within the GraalVM ecosystem. Java on Truffle allows for improved isolation from the host JVM, run Java bytecode in a separate context from the JVM, running in the context of a native image but with dynamically loaded bytecode allowed, and other Truffle framework features. More details about the Java on Truffle implementation via the GraalVM manual.

Software: Istio, VLC Media Player, Deskreen and Signal

Filed under
Software
  • Support for Istio 1.7 ends on February 19th, 2021

    According to Istio’s support policy, LTS releases like 1.7 are supported for three months after the next LTS release. Since 1.8 was released on November 19th, support for 1.7 will end on February 19th, 2021.

    At that point we will stop back-porting fixes for security issues and critical bugs to 1.7, so we encourage you to upgrade to the latest version of Istio (1.8.2). If you don’t do this you may put yourself in the position of having to do a major upgrade on a short timeframe to pick up a critical fix.

  • VLC 3.0.12 Vetinari - VideoLAN
  • VLC Media Player 3.0.12 Released with Apple Silicon Support

    The VideoLAN team announced the release of VLC 3.0.12 as the thirteenth version of the “Vetinari” branch.

    The new release features native support for Apple Silicon hardware, the M1 processor in new versions of the MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, and Mac mini.

  • Deskreen Makes Any Device With A Web Browser A Second Screen For Your Computer

    Deskreen is a new free and open source application that can be used to make any device (in the same WiFi / LAN network) with a web browser, a second screen for your computer. The tool runs on Linux, Windows and macOS.

    With Deskreen you can use a phone, tablet (no matter if they use Android, iOS, etc.), smart TV and any other device that has a screen and a web browser (without needing any plugins; it needs JavaScript to be enabled), as a second screen via WiFi or LAN.

  • Roundup of Secure Messengers with Off-The-Grid Capabilities (Distributed/Mesh Messengers)

    Amid all the conversation about Signal, and the debate over decentralization, one thing has often not been raised: all of these things require an Internet connection.

    [...]

    “Blogs” have a way to reblog (even a built-in RSS reader to facilitate that), but framed a different way, they are broadcast messages. They could, for instance, be useful for a “send help” message to everyone (assuming that people haven’t all shut off notifications of blogs due to others using them different ways).

    Briar’s how it works page has an illustration specifically of how blogs are distributed. I’m unclear on some of the details, and to what extent this applies to other kinds of messages, but one thing that you can notice from this is that a person A could write a broadcast message without Internet access, person B could receive it via Bluetooth or whatever, and then when person B gets Internet access again, the post could be distributed more widely. However, it doesn’t appear that Briar is really a full mesh, since only known contacts in the distribution path for the message would repeat it.

    There are some downsides to Briar. One is that, since an account is fully localized to a device, one must have a separate account for each device. That can lead to contacts having to pick a specific device to send a message to. There is an online indicator, which may help, but it’s definitely not the kind of seamless experience you get from Internet-only messengers. Also, it doesn’t support migrating to a new phone, live voice/video calls, or attachments, but attachments are in the works.

Security and Latest FUD (Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt)

Filed under
Security
  • Security updates for Wednesday

    Security updates have been issued by Fedora (coturn, dovecot, glibc, and sudo), Mageia (openldap and resource-agents), openSUSE (dnsmasq, python-jupyter_notebook, viewvc, and vlc), Oracle (dnsmasq and xstream), SUSE (perl-Convert-ASN1, postgresql, postgresql13, and xstream), and Ubuntu (nvidia-graphics-drivers-418-server, nvidia-graphics-drivers-450-server, pillow, pyxdg, and thunderbird).

  • BeyondTrust Privilege Management for Unix & Linux Grows Q4 Revenue 83% YoY by Securing Cloud Infrastructure [Ed: They always love talking about "Clown Computing" instead of servers (which is what they really allude to)]
  • Dangerous new malware targets unpatched Linux machines [Ed: This is not a "Linux" issue and it's nothing to do even with stuff that's installed on top of (GNU/)Linux, unless a negligent system administrator is lousy at patching]

    According to a report from Check Point Research (CPR), the malware variant, named FreakOut, specifically targets Linux devices that run unpatched versions of certain software.

  • 'FreakOut' Botnet Targets Unpatched Linux Systems [Ed: Same as above]
  • Fileless Malware on Linux: Anatomy of an Attack

    Fileless malware is a growing concern for Linux administrators. Linux is considered a very secure OS by design - and rightfully so. With its robust privilege system and the “many eyes” of the open-source community scrutinizing the increasingly popular OS’s code for security vulnerabilities, Linux users are generally much safer than their Windows-using counterparts. That being said, sound administration and the implementation of security best practices can help prevent fileless malware attacks and other dangerous modern exploits that threaten Linux systems.

  • I looked at all the ways Microsoft Teams tracks users and my head is spinning

    Microsoft Teams isn't just there to make employees' lives easier. It's also there to give bosses data about so many things.

Debian: Vendoring, FOSSHOST and Freexian’s Debian LTS

Filed under
Debian
  • Bug#971515: marked as done (kubernetes: excessive vendoring (private libraries))
    This means that you claim that the problem has been dealt with.
    If this is not the case it is now your responsibility to reopen the
    Bug report if necessary, and/or fix the problem forthwith.
    
    (NB: If you are a system administrator and have no idea what this
    message is talking about, this may indicate a serious mail system
    misconfiguration somewhere. Please contact owner@bugs.debian.org
    immediately.)
    
    
  • The Debian tech committee allows Kubernetes vendoring

    Back in October, LWN looked at a conversation within the Debian project regarding whether it was permissible to ship Kubernetes bundled with some 200 dependencies. The Debian technical committee has finally come to a conclusion on this matter: this bundling is acceptable and the maintainer will not be required to make changes

  • Kentaro Hayashi: fabre.debian.net is sponsored by FOSSHOST

    Today, we are pleased to announce that fabre.debian.net has migrated to FOSSHOST

    FOSSHOST provides us a VPS instance which is located at OSU Open Source Lab. It improves a lack of enough server resources then service availability especially.

  • Freexian’s report about Debian Long Term Support, December 2020

    A Debian LTS logo Like each month, have a look at the work funded by Freexian’s Debian LTS offering.

    Debian project funding

    In December, we put aside 2100 EUR to fund Debian projects. The first project proposal (a tracker.debian.org improvement for the security team) was received and quickly approved by the paid contributors, then we opened a request for bids and the bid winner was announced today (it was easy, we had only one candidate). Hopefully this first project will be completed until our next report.

    We’re looking forward to receive more projects from various Debian teams! Learn more about the rationale behind this initiative in this article.

The Linux Setup – Leah Neukirchen, Void Linux

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Interviews

I found Leah through a fascinating tweet where she charted out her IRC activity over the past 10 years. Leah’s setup is just as interesting, mostly in that there’s no desktop environment. Leah also helps maintain Void Linux, which is a rolling release built from scratch. It’s a little too hardcore for me, but it seems pretty beloved on Reddit. So this setup is technical and intense, but also a lot of fun.

Read more

Open Hardware: Arduino and Little Bee

Filed under
Hardware
  • Arduino Blog » Homemade machine puts a new spin on winding yarn

    If you’ve ever wanted to wind balls of yarn, then look no further than this automated machine from Mr Innovative. The YouTuber’s DIY device is powered by an Arduino Nano and an A4988 stepper driver, spinning up a round conglomeration of yarn via a NEMA17 motor and a timing belt.

    The ball is wound on an offset spindle, which is mechanically controlled to pitch back and forth and spin itself as the overall assembly rotates, producing an interesting geometric pattern.

  • Little Bee is an affordable, open hardware current & magnetic field probe (Crowdfunding)

    Little Bee is an affordable, open-source hardware, and high-performance current probe and magnetic field probe designed to debug and analyze electronic devices at a much lower cost than existing solutions such as Migsic CP2100B or I-prober 520. This type of tool is especially important for power electronics, which has become ever more important with electric vehicles, alternative energy solutions, and high-efficiency power supplies.

  • Arduino Blog » James Bruton demonstrates the Coanda effect with an Arduino-controlled rig

    The Coanda effect, as you may or may not know, is what causes flowing air to follow a convex surface. In his latest video, James Bruton shows how the concept can used as a sort of inverted ping pong ball waterfall or staircase.

    His 3D-printed rig pushes balls up from one fan stage to another, employing curved ducts to guide the lightweight orbs on their journey.

    The fan speeds are regulated with an Arduino Uno and motor driver, and the Arduino also dictates how fast a feeder mechanism inputs balls via a second driver module. While the setup doesn’t work every time, it’s still an interesting demonstration of this natural phenomenon, and could likely be perfected with a bit more tinkering.

Devices/Embedded/SBC Hardware With GNU/Linux on Top

Filed under
Hardware

  • Fanless embedded PC supports industrial GRE Tiger Lake CPUs

    Avalue’s fanless, rugged “EMS-TGL” embedded PC runs Linux or Win 10 on embedded versions of Intel’s 11th Gen ULP3 Core CPUs with up to 64GB DDR4-3200, 3x M.2, 1GbE and 2.5GbE ports, and optional “IET” expansion.

    Avalue, which recently launched a pair of NUC-APL mini-PCs based on Intel’s Apollo Lake, announced a larger, but similarly fanless embedded computer with Intel’s 10nm, 11th Gen “Tiger Lake” ULP3 processors. The rugged EMS-TGL runs Linux and Win 10 and supports applications including digital signage, smart retail, and computer vision.

  •   

  • If LG stops making smartphones, who will push the boundaries with weird devices like the LG Wing and LG Rollable? - Liliputing

    Meanwhile, folks who are still interested in weird phones might have to look to smaller companies like F(x)Tec, Planet Computers, Pine64, and Purism, which have developed phones with features like built-in keyboards, support for GNU/Linux distributions and other free and open source operating systems, and physical kill switches for wireless, mic, and camera functions, among other things.

  • MicroMod modular ecosystem offers M.2 microcontrollers cards and carrier boards

    MicroMod is a modular interface ecosystem for quick embedded development and prototyping. MicroMod comes with two components, that is a microcontroller “processor board” and a carrier board. PC industry’s M.2 connector is the interface between these two components. The carrier boards are for the usage of various peripherals and the processor board act as the brain of the application system. 

  •   

  • Odroid Go Goes Super - Boiling Steam

    Odroid continues to move beyond the simple realm of Single Board Computers (SBCs) to become and more and more credible player as a portable consoles manufacturer. After introducing the Odroid Go and the Odroid Go Advance (that both cow_killer and I reviewed), they have announced at the end of December 2020 that they were going to release yet another version, the Odroid Go Super.

  •   

  • Use Raspberry PI as FM Radio transmitter - peppe8o

    As usual, I suggest adding from now to your favourite ecommerce shopping chart all needed hardware, so that at the end you will be able to evaluate overall costs and decide if continuing with the project or removing them from shopping chart. So, hardware will be only:

    - Raspberry PI Zero W (including proper power supply or using a smartphone micro usb charger with at least 3A) or newer Raspberry PI Board

today's howtos

Filed under
HowTos
  • Essential Guide: How to Install Docker on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS (Beginners Guide)

    Docker is a combo of ‘platform as a service’ products and services which use OS virtualisation to provide software in packages called containers.

    Containers contain everything an app, tool or service needs to run, including all libraries, dependencies, and configuration files. Containers are also isolated from each other (and the underlying host system), but can communicate through pre-defined channels.

  • Demux, mux and cut MP4 in ffmpeg

    Sometimes video and audio needs to be separated into individual files (aka demuxed). This can be handy when some audio artifacts need to be removed (e.g. noise or buzz) from the audio track (aka stream). This can be done easily...

  • Oracle Linux 8: Containers made easy with short training videos

    Container technology provides a means for developers and system administrators to build and package applications together with libraries, binaries, and configuration files so they can run independently from the host operating system and kernel version. You can run the same container application, unchanged, on laptops, data center virtual machines, and on a cloud environment.

  • Fix for 2createpackages in woofQ

    WoofQ is the build system for EasyOS. It has scripts '0setup', '1download', '2createpackages' and '3buildeasydistro', that are run in that order. The script '2createpackages' splits each input package into _EXE, _DEV, _DOC and _NLS components.

    Recently, when compiling LibreOffice in EasyOS on the Pi4, the configure step reported that the system boost libraries cannot be used, as some header files were missing. So, I had to use the internal boost, which does make the final LibreOffice PET bigger than it could have been.

  • How to Install and Remove Packages in Arch Linux

    Want to install packages on Arch Linux but do not know how? A lot of people face this problem when they first migrate from Debian-based distributions to Arch. However, you can easily manage packages on your Arch-based system using package managers.

    Pacman is the default package manager that comes pre-installed in every Arch distribution. But still, there's a need for other package managers as Pacman doesn't support packages from the Arch User Repository.

  • How to Manage Systemd Services with Systemctl on Linux

    Systemd a standard process for managing start-up services in Linux operating systems. It is used for controlling which programs run when the Linux system boots up. It is a system manager and has become the new standard for Linux operating systems. Systemd allows you to create a custom systemd service to run and manage any process. In this tutorial, we will explain how to manage services with systemd on Linux.

  • How to install Synfig Studio on Linux Mint 20.1 - YouTube

    In this video, we are looking at how to install Synfig Studio on Linux Mint 20.1.

  • How to install Ubuntu Unity Remix 20.10 - YouTube

    In this video, I am going to show how to install Ubuntu Unity Remix 20.10.

  • How to Exclude a Directory While Finding Files in Linux

    In Linux, the find command is used to search for files or folders from the command line. It is a complex command and has a large number of options, arguments, and modes.

    The most common use of the find command is to search for files using either a regular expression or the complete filename(s) to be searched.

  • How to Copy Files with Specific File Extension Recursively

    In Linux, the command ‘cp‘, which standards for ‘Copy‘ is used to copy files and folders to another folder. It is available by default in Linux as part of the GNU Coreutils set of tools.

    The most basic use of the cp command is to specify the files to be copied as the arguments and to specify the target folder as the last argument.

  • How to Copy Large Number of Files in Linux

    We use the cp command in Linux to copy files and directories from one directory to another. It can be simply used to copy a few files or directories, or it can be used with the '-r' argument (which stands for ‘recursive‘) to copy a directory and the whole directory tree structure underneath it.

  • What is /dev/null in Linux

    The ‘/dev‘ directory in Linux and Unix based systems contains files corresponding to devices attached to the system. For example, as seen in the screenshot below, the CD drive is accessed using ‘cdrom‘, DVD drive with ‘dvd‘, hard drives are accessed using ‘sda1‘, ‘sda2‘, etc.

    All these files communicate with the Linux system through the respective files in ‘/dev‘. The input/output processing of the devices takes place through these files. This is due to an important feature of the filesystem in Linux: everything is either a file or a directory.

  • What is ‘> /dev/null 2>&1’ in Linux

    /dev/null is a pseudo-device file in Linux, which is used to discard output coming from programs, especially the ones executed on the command line. This file behaves like a sink, i.e. a target file which can be written, however as soon as any stream of data is written to this file, it is immediately deleted.

    This is useful to get rid of the output that is not required by the user. Programs and processes can generate output logs of huge length, and it gets messy at times to analyze the log.

  • Learn the main Linux OS components

    Evolved from Unix, Linux provides users with a low-cost, secure way to manage their data center infrastructure. Due to its open source architecture, Linux can be tricky to learn and requires command-line interface knowledge as well as the expectation of inconsistent documentation.

    In short, Linux is an OS. But Linux has some features and licensing options that set it apart from Microsoft and Apple OSes. To understand what Linux can do, it helps to understand the different Linux OS components and associated lingo.

  • How to Redirect Output to /dev/null in Linux

    In Linux, programs are very commonly accessed using the command line and the output, as such, is displayed on the terminal screen. The output consists of two parts: STDOUT (Standard Output), which contains information logs and success messages, and STDERR (Standard Error), which contains error messages.

    Many times, the output contains a lot of information that is not relevant, and which unnecessarily utilizes system resources. In the case of complex automation scripts especially, where there are a lot of programs being run one after the other, the displayed log is huge.

  • How to Move Large Number of Files in Linux

    To move files from one directory to another, the ‘mv‘ command is used in Linux. This command is available in Linux by default and can be used to move files as well as directories.

  • How to Limit the Depth of Recursive File Listing in Linux

    In this article, you will learn how to list file directory structure and limit the depth of recursive file display in Linux.

  • How to Find Top Running Processes by Memory Usage

    We will use the top command-line tool, which is a task manager in Unix and Linux systems that shows all the details about running processes with memory usage.

  • How to Extract Email Addresses from Text File in Linux

    In this article, you will learn how to extract Email addresses from a text file in Linux, using the handy command-line tool Grep.

Brave Browser Adds Native Support for Decentralized IPFS Protocol

Filed under
Web

Even though Brave browser was caught up in some controversies last year, it looks like they managed to become the first major web browser to add support for InterPlantetary File System (IPFS) protocol with the help of Protocol Labs.

This support was introduced with v1.19.86 release.

In case you didn’t know, IPFS is a peer to peer protocol that lets you store and share files. You can safely assume it as something similar to the BitTorrent protocol with some technical differences.

Just because it is totally a decentralized system to store and share files, it can be quite effective to fight censorship by big tech and the government.

Read more

today's howtos

Filed under
HowTos
  • How to Change Your Linux Password

    You've heard it before: change your password regularly. That can sometimes seem like a pain, but fortunately, changing your Linux password is easy. Today we'll show you how to change the current user's password, other users' passwords, and the superuser password with a few simple commands.

  • How To Generate Random Numbers in Unix

    It is very easy to generate random numbers in Unix. Easiest way is to use the variable $RANDOM.

    Every time if you echo $RANDOM, you would get a new number between 0 and 32767.

  • How To Find IP Address In Linux - OSTechNix

    This guide will walk you through the steps to check or find IP address in Linux using ip and hostname commands from command line interface.

  • How to Update Node.js to the Latest Version - LinuxBuz

    Node.js is an open-source and cross-platform JavaScript runtime environment used to run JavaScript code on the server-side. It is primarily used for non-blocking, event-driven servers, traditional web sites and back-end API services.

    You already know how to install Node.js and NPM using three different ways. If your application is running on the Node.js server then I would recommend updating Node.js version regularly to improve the security. There are several ways you can update your Node.js version in Linux system.

  • How to Uninstall Applications from Ubuntu [Beginner's Guide]

    Don’t use a certain application anymore? Remove it.

    In fact, removing programs is one of the easiest ways to free up disk space on Ubuntu and keep your system clean.

    In this beginner’s tutorial, I’ll show you various ways of uninstalling software from Ubuntu.

  • How to Install and Configure Apache Web Server on Debian 10

    Apache server is one of the most popular and open source web servers that is developed and maintained by Apache Software Foundation. Apache is by far the most commonly used Web Server application in Linux operating systems, but it can be used on nearly all OS platforms Windows, MAC OS, OS/2, etc. It enables the developers to publish their content over the internet

    In this article, we will explain how to install and configure the Apache webserver on Debian 10 OS.

  • How to Install Spotify on Linux Distributions

    Spotify is a free music streaming service that offers additional premium content at a minimal subscription fee. It's a widely successful music service with several million users and millions of songs at your fingertips. With Spotify, you can listen to your favorite artists, the latest hits, exclusives, and new discoveries on the go. Spotify is available on Windows, macOS, Linux (Debian), along with Android, iOS, and Windows Phone smartphones and tablets.

    We will learn in this article how to install Spotify on the latest version of Ubuntu, Mint, and Fedora.

  • How to Install SOGo on Ubuntu 20.04 | LinuxHostSupport

    SOGo is a free and open-source collaborative software with a focus on simplicity and scalability. It provides an AJAX-based Web interface and supports multiple native clients through the use of standard protocols such as CalDAV, CardDAV, and GroupDAV, as well as Microsoft ActiveSync. It also offers address book management, calendaring, and Web-mail clients along with resource sharing and permission handling.

    In this tutorial, we will show you how to install SOGo on an Ubuntu 20.04 based virtual private server.

  • How to Install LXD / LXC on Ubuntu - buildVirtual

    Learn how to install LXD on a Ubuntu Linux system, including how to install and initialise LXD manually, use --preseed and how to script the lxd install

  • How to install iTunes on Linux such as Ubuntu 20.04 LTS - Linux Shout

    iTunes for Linux systems doesn’t sound realistic because officially it is available only for Windows and macOS. However, using Wine on Ubuntu and other Linux, is absolutely possible just like any other native Linux application.

    Those who are using Apple devices can understand the value of the iTunes application on their systems. It let you not only listen to music available on your iPhone, PC, and other devices but also let access various other things such as Radio, iTunes Store, and more. Once logged in with Apple ID, in addition to managing, playing, and downloading music tracks, the iTunes app also enables direct access to the music streaming service of Apple Music.

  • How to set up tlog on Linux hosts for terminal logging | Enable Sysadmin

    Enhance your system security with tlog, a terminal logging utility.

  • How to update your server from Ubuntu 18.04 to Ubuntu 20.04 | LinuxCloudVPS Blog

    Upgrading your Ubuntu version from one version to the latest version is one of the best features of Ubuntu. It is always recommended to upgrade your current Ubuntu version regularly in order to benefits from the latest security patches. You will get several benefit including, the latest software, new security patches and upgraded technology with a new version.

    As of now, Ubuntu 20.04 LTS is the latest Ubuntu version and you will keep getting updates and support till April 2025.

    Before starting any upgrade process, it is a good idea to backup any important files, system settings, and critical content for precaution. Also remember, you cannot downgrade it. You cannot go back to Ubuntu 18.04 without reinstalling it.

  • How to use whiptail to create more user-friendly interactive scripts | Enable Sysadmin

    Do you script in bash? If so, you can provide your users with a more robust and simple TUI for entering information into scripts.

  • Install Krita 4.4.2 In Ubuntu / Linux Mint | Tips On UNIX

    Krita is a free and open-source painting tool for artists and also known as a Photoshop alternative software, Krita has been in development for 10+ years and recently it came to life and having a good response now.

    This tutorial will be helpful for beginners to install Krita 4.4.2 in Ubuntu 20.10, Ubuntu 20.04, Ubuntu 18.04 and Linux Mint 20.1, and older versions.

    The latest version of Krita is 4.4.2 and announced with over 300 changes with new features also.

  • Install VLC 3.0.12 In Ubuntu / LinuxMint / OpenSUSE | Tips On UNIX

    This tutorial will be helpful for beginners to install VLC in Ubuntu 20.04, Ubuntu 20.10, Ubuntu 18.04 and LinuxMint 20.1.

    VLC is a free and open-source cross-platform multimedia player and it is one of the best media player for Linux used by millions of peoples to play multimedia files such as DVD, VCD, MP4, MKV, Mp3, and various formats.

    VLC released the thirteenth version of “Vetinari” branch 3.0.12.

Renesas adds to RZ/G2 line with three Cortex-A55 SoCs

Filed under
Linux

Renesas unveiled three low-end “RZ/G2L” members of its RZ/G2 family of Linux-driven IoT SoCs with single or dual -A55 cores plus a Mali-G31, Cortex-M33, and up to dual GbE support. There is also a SMARC module and dev kit.

Renesas’ RZ/G2 line of industrial-focused system-on-chips include the hexa-core RZ/GM and octa-core RZ-G2H, both with mixtures of Cortex-A57 and -A53 cores and 4K support, as well as two dual-core models: a Cortex-A53 based RZ/G2E with HD video and a Cortex-A57-equipped RZ/G2N with 4K. Instead of filling in the middle of the Linux-focused product line with some quad-core models, the Japanese chipmaker has instead come back with three new low-end models, featuring single or dual-core Cortex-A55 cores.

Read more

Today in Techrights

Filed under
News

Extensions in Firefox for Android Update

Filed under
Android
Moz/FF

Starting with Firefox 85, which will be released January 25, 2021, Firefox for Android users will be able to install supported Recommended Extensions directly from addons.mozilla.org (AMO). Previously, extensions for mobile devices could only be installed from the Add-ons Manager, which caused some confusion for people accustomed to the desktop installation flow. We hope this update provides a smoother installation experience for mobile users.

As a quick note, we plan to enable the installation buttons on AMO during our regularly scheduled site update on Thursday, January 21. These buttons will only work if you are using a pre-release version of Firefox for Android until version 85 is released on Tuesday, January 25.

This wraps up our initial plans to enable extension support for Firefox for Android. In the upcoming months, we’ll continue to work on optimizing add-on performance on mobile. As a reminder, you can use an override setting to install other extensions listed on AMO on Firefox for Android Nightly.

Read more

today's leftovers

Filed under
Misc
  • Problem with Open-source Downloads

    Open-source downloads not working currently due to disk system failure at our cloud service provider.

  • How to Set Up Btrfs RAID – Linux Hint

    Btrfs is a modern Copy-on-Write (CoW) filesystem with built-in RAID support. So, you do not need any third-party tools to create software RAIDs on a Btrfs filesystem.
    The Btrfs filesystem keeps the filesystem metadata and data separately. You can use different RAID levels for the data and metadata at the same time. This is a major advantage of the Btrfs filesystem.

    This article shows you how to set up Btrfs RAIDs in the RAID-0, RAID-1, RAID-1C3, RAID-1C4, RAID-10, RAID-5, and RAID-6 configurations.

  • How to Co-author Documents in Linux with ONLYOFFICE Docs

    Document collaboration as the practice of multiple people working simultaneously on a single document is really important in today’s technologically advanced age. Using document collaboration tools, users can view, edit, and work simultaneously on a document without sending emailing attachments to each other all day. Document collaboration is sometimes called co-authoring. Real-time document co-authoring is not possible without special software.

  • Chrome Releases: Stable Channel Update for Desktop

    The Chrome team is delighted to announce the promotion of Chrome 88 to the stable channel for Windows, Mac and Linux. This will roll out over the coming days/weeks.

    Chrome 88.0.4324.96 contains a number of fixes and improvements -- a list of changes is available in the log. Watch out for upcoming Chrome and Chromium blog posts about new features and big efforts delivered in 88

  • Chrome 88 Released With Security Fixes, Adobe Flash Removed - Phoronix

    Google has released Chrome 88 as the latest stable version of their cross-platform web browser.

  • mintCast 352.5 – One Night with Ulyssa

    In our Innards section, we talk about the first 24 hours with Linux Mint 20.1

    And finally, the feedback and a couple of suggestions

Linux Mint 20.1 is a desktop anyone can love

Filed under
Linux

I'm glad Linux Mint exists. That's a strange statement, coming from someone who has never opted to make it their default desktop distribution. I've never been a fan of Cinnamon or Mate, and I've always thought Xfce was a solid desktop, but just not for me.

Even though I'm not terribly keen on the offered desktops for Linux Mint, I still believe it to be a fantastic distribution. Why is that? One reason is that it's most ardent fans are almost Apple-like in their fanaticism. From my perspective, that's a good thing. Linux has long needed a desktop distribution which elicited that much excitement from the user base. Once upon a time, that title would have been bestowed upon Ubuntu. Alas, a few bad choices along the way and the rabid fanbase isn't quite so rabid.

Read more

Games: GameMaker Studio, Aveliana and More

Filed under
Gaming
  • YoYo Games developer of GameMaker Studio sold for $10M

    Game Maker and later GameMaker Studio is a very popular game engine with indie developers and YoYo Games just recently sold it off and it appears they did so at a loss.

    Originally created by Mark Overmars, who later teamed up with YoYo Games who have carried it on since 2007. Later in 2015 the YoYo Games studio was acquired by Playtech for around $16.4 million dollars.

    [...]

    For game developers, the game engine you rely on suddenly changing hands with no prior notice and no announcement a week later must be a little frightening. Games often take multiple years to create, so for developers well into the thick of using GameMaker Studio hopefully the result will be a good one. Perhaps though, the time is ripe to check out Godot Engine since it's free and open source.

  • Aveliana is a beautiful upcoming infiltration-action game mixing 2D and 2.5D styles | GamingOnLinux

    TheFrenchDev have announced Aveliana, what they're calling an infiltration-action-adventure game that mixes together 2D and 2.5D to create a unique looking style.

    "Embrace Aveliana’s quest to bring back someone she has lost! The game takes place alternatively in an isometric or a 2D point of view and is fast-paced. Guide her through arduous paths watched by monsters, follow the trace of a mysterious fox, and find the powerful artifacts she is looking for at the core of wonderful temples. Will you stealth your way to victory? Seek a forgotten path on the edge of a cliff? Or stand and fight against your enemies? The choice is yours!"

    [...]

    We spoke with the developer behind the project, who clearly stated to us in a message how Linux will be fully supported. In fact, even their early rough work-in-progress demo on Game Jolt has a Linux build available. It's being built with the Unity game engine, which for the most part has good cross-platform support for games like this.

  • Play the charming co-op construction game Unrailed! free for a few days plus big sale

    Unrailed! from Daedalic Entertainment and Indoor Astronaut released back in September 2020 and now you have a chance to play for free to end your week. Don't pass up on it either from now until January 25 you can download and play the full game on Steam, and there's a 50% discount if you decide you like it enough to keep it.

    What do you actually do in Unrailed! and is it fun? You and up to three others need to keep a train going for as long as possible, by constantly building a track. It's pure chaos once it gets going and an absolute riot to play with friends. Plenty of communication breakdowns, shouting and laughing all bundled in together. The train will get faster as you go too, plus you can upgrade it with new carriages and all sorts.

  • Valve and others fined by the European Commission for 'geo-blocking'

    The European Commission just announced that they've now issued formal fines against Valve, Bandai Namco, Capcom, Focus Home, Koch Media and ZeniMax for breaching their antitrust rules. An investigation that has been going on for some time now since early 2017, and certainly not the first fine Valve has dealt with for breaking some rules here.

    What's the deal? The EU say that Valve and the others restricted cross-border sales on the basis of their location inside the European Economic Area (‘EEA'). To put it simply: Valve allowed certain developers and publishers to block keys being redeemed in one country, that were purchased in another (where it might have been cheaper). Out of all those named, Valve is the only company that did not cooperate with their investigation and so they got slapped a lot harder.

    [...]

    For a company as big as Valve (and the likes of ZeniMax), they won't be losing any sleep over fines that for them will most likely be a drop in the ocean. Valve especially, as the Steam store pretty much prints money for them.

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