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Thursday, 15 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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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.

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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."

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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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The Polaris/Vega Performance At The End Of Mesa 18.3 Feature Development

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks

With Mesa 18.3 feature development having wrapped up at the end of October, here are some benchmarks showing how the updated RadeonSI and RADV drivers are performing for this code that is now under a feature freeze before its official release around the end of November. AMD Radeon Vega and Polaris graphics cards were tested with a slew of NVIDIA graphics cards also tested on their respective driver to show where the Linux gaming GPU performance is at as we head into the 2018 holiday shopping season.

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Games: Steam, Holy Potatoes, OFF GRID, RPCS3 and More

Filed under
Gaming

Better Linux Support Is Coming For The Huawei MateBook X

Filed under
Linux

Some support improvements are on the way for Huawei's MateBook X, a lightweight ultrabook/laptop that aims to compete with the likes of Apple's MacBook Pro.

There are a new set of patches posted providing support for some important currently missing pieces of Linux support on the MateBooks. These patches allow the Huawei MateBook X to have working hotkeys on some models that currently are not supported and for the front speakers to actually work. Also with these patches albeit arguably less important is the microphone mute LED now working as well.

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Must-Have Tools for Writers on the Linux Platform

Filed under
Linux

I’ve been a writer for more than 20 years. I’ve written thousands of articles and how-tos on various technical topics and have penned more than 40 works of fiction. So, the written word is not only important to me, it’s familiar to the point of being second nature. And through those two decades (and counting) I’ve done nearly all my work on the Linux platform. I must confess, during those early years it wasn’t always easy. Formats didn’t always mesh with what an editor required and, in some cases, the open source platform simply didn’t have the necessary tools required to get the job done.

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Kdenlive 18.08.3 released

Filed under
KDE

Kdenlive 18.08.3 is out with updated build scripts as well as some compilation fixes. All work is focused on the refactoring branch so nothing major in this release. On the other hand in the Windows front some major breakthroughs were made like the fix of the play/pause lag as well as the ability to build Kdenlive directly from Windows. The next milestone is to kill the running process on exit making Kdenlive almost as stable as the Linux version.

In other news, we are organizing a bug squash day on the first days of December. If you are interested in participating this is a great opportunity since we have prepared a list of low hanging bugs to fix. See you!

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Android Oreo dev kit showcases the Snapdragon 670

Filed under
Android

Intrinsyc’s Android 8.0 driven Open-Q 670 HDK mobile development kit for the octa-core Snapdragon 670 SoC features a 5.65-inch touchscreen, 6GB LPDDR4, 6GB eMMC, WiFi, BT, GPS, NFC, and optional camera and sensor boards.

The 170 x 170mm, Mini-ITX form-factor Open-Q 670 HDK is one of Intrynsic’s Android mobile “open frame” kits with a smartphone like touchscreen. Most recently, these include the Open-Q 845, which taps the high-end, AI-enhanced Snapdragon 845. The similarly Android 8.0 powered Open-Q 670 HDK is built around Qualcomm’s somewhat less powerful, but still octa-core Snapdragon 670, which was announced in August.

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Belated Analysis of IBM's Acquisition of Red Hat

Filed under
Red Hat
Server
  • IBM's $34bn acquisition of Red Hat: Our take

    We take the long view on the tech giant's colossal acquisition of open-source software company Red Hat.

    Given its love of technology and innovation, the Leaders League news team was most intrigued by IBM’s announcement in late October that it was purchasing open-source software company Red Hat. Having had some time to think about it, we’ve written a recap that also points to the future.

    IBM’s move signifies a strong commitment (in the shape of a $34bn cash purchase) to keeping up at the cloud game, and there’s little doubt that this is where the future lies: even in the face of the GDPR, lawyers and industry bods alike are sanguine about the Internet of Things and the deep, broad possibilities of cloud storage. According to research and advisory firm Gartner, the hybrid cloud market will be worth $240bn by 2019.

  • Making sense of IBM-Red Hat in the multi-cloud era

    Big Blue wants Red Hat because it is “the world’s leading provider of open-source cloud solutions, and the emerging leader in the platforms for hybrid cloud and multi-cloud,” IBM CEO Ginni Rometty said in a conference call Monday.

    Red Hat Enterprise Linux is known for its CloudForms hybrid cloud management tool, based on the ManageIQ open source project.

    “This is about resetting the cloud landscape, and we will be the undisputed No. 1 leader in hybrid cloud,” Rometty said.

  • Why IBM is taking a 'leap of faith' with Red Hat acquisition

Security: DJI, Electronic Arts, ZTE, Red Hat

Filed under
Security
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More in Tux Machines

Qt/KDE: Qt for Python, Inkscape Dark Theme on KDE Plasma, Atelier at Maker Faire and QtCon 2018!

  • Python and Qt: 3,000 hours of developer insight
    With Qt for Python released, it’s time to look at the powerful capabilities of these two technologies. This article details one solopreneur’s experiences. [...] The big problem with Electron is performance. In particular, the startup time was too high for a file manager: On an admittedly old machine from 2010, simply launching Electron took five seconds. I admit that my personal distaste for JavaScript also made it easier to discount Electron. Before I go off on a rant, let me give you just one detail that I find symptomatic: Do you know how JavaScript sorts numbers? Alphabetically. ’nuff said. After considering a few technologies, I settled on Qt. It’s cross-platform, has great performance and supports custom styles. What’s more, you can use it from Python. This makes at least me orders of magnitude more productive than the default C++.
  • Inkscape Dark Theme on KDE Plasma
    On KDE Plasma, it's very easy to setup Inkscape Dark Theme. To do so, go to System Settings > Application Style > GNOME/GTK+ Style > under GTK+ Style: switch all themes to Dark ones and give check mark to Prefer Dark Theme > Apply. Now your Inkscape should turned into dark mode. To revert back, just revert the theme selections. This trick works on Kubuntu or any other GNU/Linux system as long as it uses Plasma as its desktop environment.
  • Atelier at Maker Faire and QtCon 2018!
    On the weekend of November 3 and 4, it happened on Rio de Janeiro the first Maker Faire of Latin America. And I was able to do a talk about Atelier and the current status of our project. The event hold more than 1.500 people on the first day, that saw a lot of talks and the exposition of makers of all over the country that came to Rio to participate in this edition of the Maker Faire.

Security: Updates, Systematic Evaluation of Transient Execution Attacks and Defenses, New IoT Security Regulations and GPU Side-Channel Attacks

  • Security updates for Thursday
  • A Systematic Evaluation of Transient Execution Attacks and Defenses

    [...] we present a sound and extensible systematization of transient execution attacks. Our systematization uncovers 7 (new) transient execution attacks that have been overlooked and not been investigated so far. This includes 2 new Meltdown variants: Meltdown-PK on Intel, and Meltdown-BR on Intel and AMD. It also includes 5 new Spectre mistraining strategies. We evaluate all 7 attacks in proof-of-concept implementations on 3 major processor vendors (Intel, AMD, ARM). Our systematization does not only yield a complete picture of the attack surface, but also allows a systematic evaluation of defenses. Through this systematic evaluation, we discover that we can still mount transient execution attacks that are supposed to be mitigated by rolled out patches.

  • New IoT Security Regulations
    Due to ever-evolving technological advances, manufacturers are connecting consumer goods­ -- from toys to light bulbs to major appliances­ -- to the Internet at breakneck speeds. This is the Internet of Things, and it's a security nightmare. The Internet of Things fuses products with communications technology to make daily life more effortless. Think Amazon's Alexa, which not only answers questions and plays music but allows you to control your home's lights and thermostat. Or the current generation of implanted pacemakers, which can both receive commands and send information to doctors over the Internet. But like nearly all innovation, there are risks involved. And for products born out of the Internet of Things, this means the risk of having personal information stolen or devices being overtaken and controlled remotely. For devices that affect the world in a direct physical manner -- ­cars, pacemakers, thermostats­ -- the risks include loss of life and property.
  • University Researchers Publish Paper On GPU Side-Channel Attacks
    University researchers out of University of California Riverside have published a paper this week detailing vulnerabilities in current GPU architectures making them vulnerable to side-channel attacks akin to Spectre and Meltdown. With their focus on NVIDIA GPUs, UCLA Riverside researchers demonstrated attacks both for graphics and compute by exploiting the GPU's performance counters. Demonstrated attacks included a browser-based attack, extracting passwords / keystroke logging, and even the possibility of exposing a CUDA neural network algorithm.

VirtualBox 6.0 Beta 2

  • Announcement: VirtualBox 6.0 Beta 2 released
    Please do NOT use this VirtualBox Beta release on production machines! A VirtualBox Beta release should be considered a bleeding-edge release meant for early evaluation and testing purposes. You can download the binaries here: http://download.virtualbox.org/virtualbox/6.0.0_BETA2 Please do NOT open bug reports at our public bugtracker but use our VirtualBox Beta Feedback forum at https://forums.virtualbox.org/viewforum.php?f=15 to report any problems with the Beta. Please concentrate on reporting regressions since VirtualBox 5.2! Version 6.0 will be a new major release. Please see the forum at https://forums.virtualbox.org/viewtopic.php?f=15&t=90315 for an incomplete list of changes. Thanks for your help! Michael
  • VirtualBox 6.0 Beta 2 Adds File Manager For Host/Guest File Copies, OS/2 Shared Folder
    Last month Oracle rolled out the public beta of VirtualBox 6.0 though didn't include many user-facing changes. They have now rolled out a second beta that does add in a few more features. VirtualBox 6.0 Beta 2 was released today and to its user-interface is a new file manager that allows the user to control the guest file-system with copying file objects between the host and guest. Also improved with VirtualBox 6.0 Beta 2 is better shared folder auto-mounting with the VBox Guest Additions. This beta even brings initial shared folder support to the guest additions for OS/2.

Thunderbird version 60.3.1 now Available, Includes Fixes for Cookie Removal and Encoding Issues

Thunderbird happens to be one of the most famous Email client. It is free and an open source one which was developed by the Mozilla Foundation back in 2003, fifteen years ago. From a very basic interface, it has come a long way to be what it is today in 2018. With these updates, a recent one into the 60.x series from the 52.x series was a significant one. While the 60.x (60.3.0) update started rolling out, Mozilla was keen to push out 60.3.1. This new version of Thunderbird had a few bugs and kinks here and there which needed to be addressed which Mozilla did, most of them at least. Read more