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Friday, 23 Feb 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

Type Title Author Replies Last Postsort icon
Story Android Leftovers Rianne Schestowitz 17/02/2018 - 8:54am
Story today's leftovers Roy Schestowitz 17/02/2018 - 8:30am
Story Logstash 6.2.0 Released, Alfresco Grabbed by Private Equity Firm Roy Schestowitz 17/02/2018 - 8:27am
Story Servers and GPUs: Theano, DevOps, Kubernetes, AWS Roy Schestowitz 17/02/2018 - 8:21am
Story Chrome and Firefox Roy Schestowitz 17/02/2018 - 8:17am
Story today's howtos Roy Schestowitz 17/02/2018 - 8:12am
Story Software and Games Roy Schestowitz 17/02/2018 - 8:10am
Story GNOME: GitLab, LVFS and GStreamer Roy Schestowitz 17/02/2018 - 8:08am
Story Red Hat and Fedora Roy Schestowitz 17/02/2018 - 8:04am
Story Ubuntu: Data Collection, a Decade at Canonical, Xubuntu 18.04 Community Wallpaper Contest Roy Schestowitz 17/02/2018 - 8:03am

Red Hat: .NET Promotion, Leaving Red Hat to Join Linaro, Supplemental Wallpaper for Fedora 28 and More

Filed under
Red Hat

An open source Instagram desktop photo uploader

Filed under
OSS

One of my tasks at my new communications job is to re-activate and improve our social media channels. I've used Twitter and Facebook for many years, so that was easy. Now, I need to work on Instagram.

I've never really been into Instagram (or Pinterest), but I needed to learn and start Instagramming. I had a few pictures from a recent event, and I was all set to upload them onto Instagram from my Windows 10 desktop, but Instagram is a mobile-driven application. I couldn't find an upload button on the browser; I tried Chrome, Firefox, and Brave. Hmmm. OK. Let's try the Microsoft Store and install the handy app. Uh-oh, same problem.

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MX Linux 17: An upgraded distro made for beginners

Filed under
Linux

There are tons of operating systems coming out all the time, from free laptop systems like EasyPeasy to Manjaro, Mandriva, and Kubuntu. But all of them have their share of kinks.

Naturally, many of us are scared of change, and not everyone is an early adopter when it comes to these kinds of things. While operating systems like MacOS and Chrome OS still claim larger market shares in 2018, it bears mentioning that newer operating systems have a lot to offer.

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Review: Solus 3 and the Budgie desktop

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Reviews

Solus is an independent, rolling release distribution. Solus's design is mostly aimed at home users who want a friendly desktop operating system. The distribution is available in three editions (Budgie, GNOME and MATE) and runs on 64-bit x86 computers exclusively. Each edition's installation media is approximately 1.2GB in size.

The project's latest release is Solus 3 which features support for Snap packages as well as more traditional packages managed by Solus's eopkg package manager, which is a fork of the PiSi package manager. There were many tweaks in this release with a number of improvements made to the application menu and searches. The Budgie edition also includes the ability to place the desktop panel on any of the four sides of the screen. There are more changes and tweaks listed, with accompanying screen shots, in the project's release announcement.

One of the reasons I wanted to try out Solus 3 and do it now is because I typically test rolling release distributions immediately after a new snapshot has been released. Solus 3 was made available back in August of 2017 and I was curious to see how well the distribution would handle being rolled forward several months and what changes might be visible between the August snapshot and Solus's current packages.

I decided to try out the Budgie edition of Solus. Booting from the Solus live media brings up the Budgie desktop with a panel placed along the bottom of the screen. The panel houses an application menu, task switcher and system tray. On the desktop we find a single icon for launching the project's system installer. I did not see any welcome screen or encounter any immediate issues so I jumped straight into the installer.

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What’s New in Linux Lite 3.8

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Reviews

Linux Lite 3.8 has been released by Linux Lite developer Jerry Bezencon, It’s the final release of Linux Lite 3.x series. This release brings various package updates and improvements, include implementation of the TLP power management tool for laptops in the Lite Tweaks utility, better support for the LibreOffice office suite, a new font viewer and installer, and regional support for DVDs.

Linux Lite 3.8 also ships with Xfce 4.12 series as default desktop environment, powered by the Linux 4.4.0-112 kernel from Ubuntu 16.04 LTS (Xenial Xerus), features Google-based search page as default homepage in the Mozilla Firefox web browser. Inludes the New Lite Tweaks, New Lite Welcome, New Lite Help Manual, New Lite Upgrade and New Wallpapers.

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Also: EzeeLinux Show 18.8 | A look at elementary OS and KDE Neon

Linux On Nintendo Switch? Hackers Show That It’s Possible

Filed under
Linux
Gaming

Every popular hardware in today’s times that tries to bind users to a particular software or operating system, becomes a target of hackers. They make continuous attempts to find ways to exploit the security measures. Along the similar lines, hacker group Fail0verflow has claimed to have found a Nintendo Switch hack.

The group has posted the picture of Switch booting a Debian GNU/Linux installation. The picture also shows a serial adapter connected to one Joy-Con docks. Notably, Fail0verflow is the same group that hacked Nintendo Wii and PlayStation 3.

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Are you an open-sorcerer or free software warrior? Let us do battle

Filed under
GNU
OSS

The Open Source Initiative, a non-profit that advocates for open-source software and coined the term, celebrates its 20th anniversary this month. It's difficult to conceive of where the internet, indeed the world, would be today were it not for open-source software and, perhaps more importantly, the free software movement that preceded it and continues to promote free software today.

The difference between free and open-source software is at this point largely moot, save for deep philosophical differences that don't matter much to anyone outside a very small community of thinkers.

You can read an entertaining history of the Open Source Initiative here at The Reg. Here's my extremely foreshortened version: Open-source software is of course what happened to the free software movement when, to borrow a phrase from 1980s punk rock, the suits showed up.

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OSS: GitHub, Nextcloud Talk, OpenZFS, GCC, Bruce Perens and EOMA68

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OSS
  • GitHub reveals open source project trends for 2018

    GitHub has released a report with statistics on the types of projects the GitHub community collaborated on from September 2016 to September 2017.

    Last year, 24 million people from over 200 different countries worked together on GitHub to code better and build bigger.

    From frameworks to data visualisations across more than 25 million repositories, the activity picked up more this year.

  • Two decades on, open source still brings the world together

    On Feb. 3, 1998, a few weeks after the announcement, a group of leading software developers who included Eric Raymond, Jon Hall and Michael Tiemann, among others, met to strategize how they could continue the momentum of the news. At the meeting’s close, the group agreed upon “open source” as the label for the movement.

  • Nextcloud Talk: video conferencing the open way

    For instant messaging I’ve been primarily using Telegram. I think it’s a good compromise between openness and features and mass adoption. It can also do encrypted audio calls, but it can’t do video calls and audio/video conferences of multiple people.

  • ZFS vs. OpenZFS

     

    You’ve probably heard us say a mix of “ZFS” and “OpenZFS” and an explanation is long-overdue. Our Senior Analyst clears up what ZFS and OpenZFS refer to and how they differ.  

  • GCC Lands s390 Compiler-Side Changes For Spectre V2

    Landing a few days ago for the Linux 4.16 kernel merge window was IBM z / s390 mitigation work for Spectre while now the necessary compiler-side changes are also present for the upcoming GCC 8 stable release.

    Landing this week in the GNU Compiler Collection (GCC) code-base was the s390 architecture specific code for disabling prediction of indirect branches as part of its Spectre Variant Two work on IBM Z.

  • Bruce Perens wants to anti-SLAPP Grsecurity's Brad Spengler with $670,000 in legal bills

    Having defeated a defamation claim for speculating that using Grsecurity's Linux kernel hardening code may expose you to legal risk under the terms of the GPLv2 license, Bruce Perens is back in court.

    This time, he's demanding Bradley Spengler – who runs Open Source Security Inc and develops Grsecurity – foots his hefty legal bills, after Spengler failed to successfully sue Perens for libel.

    Perens, a noted figure in the open source community, and his legal team from O’Melveny & Myers LLP – as they previously told The Register – want to be awarded attorneys' fees under California's anti-SLAPP statute, a law designed to deter litigation that aims to suppress lawful speech.

    That deterrence takes the form of presenting unsuccessful litigants with the bill for the cost of defending against meritless claims.

  • Bruce Perens Wants to Anti-SLAPP GRSecurity's Brad Spengler With $670,000 in Legal Bills [Ed: Many comments here, some of them good]
  • Remember The EOMA68 Computer Card Project? It Hopes To Ship This Year

    The EOMA68 computer card project is the open-source hardware effort that aims to be Earth-friendly and allow for interchangeable computer cards that can be installed in laptop housings and other devices. The ambitious concept relying upon ARM SoCs raised more than $170k USD via crowdfunding in 2016 but its lineage dates back to the failed Improv dev board as well as the failed KDE Vivaldi tablet years earlier. It turns out in 2018 there is hope of EOMA68 hardware finally shipping.

    Luke Kenneth Casson Leighton, the main person behind the EOMA68 Libre Laptop project and EOMA68-A20 computer card, continues work on this effort. He spoke last weekend at FOSDEM 2018 about these efforts.

Security: Fake Authentication 'Solution', Cryptojacking, and Meltdown's Linux Patches

Filed under
Security

The best Linux distro for gaming in 2018

Filed under
Linux
Gaming

A Linux gaming distro, as the name suggests, is tailored for avid gamers. As such it usually comes bundled with games to play, as well as drivers for graphics cards, games controllers and so forth.

There aren't many Linux distros specifically made for gaming. This isn't because Linux users dislike games, but rather it’s due to the fact that most modern Linux distros support virtually every type of recent graphics card anyway. As such, any regular Linux distro can easily be turned into a ‘game station’.

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Razer doesn’t care about Linux

Filed under
Linux
Gaming

Razer is a vendor that makes high-end gaming hardware, including laptops, keyboards and mice. I opened a ticket with Razor a few days ago asking them if they wanted to support the LVFS project by uploading firmware and sharing the firmware update protocol used. I offered to upstream any example code they could share under a free license, or to write the code from scratch given enough specifications to do so. This is something I’ve done for other vendors, and doesn’t take long as most vendor firmware updaters all do the same kind of thing; there are only so many ways to send a few kb of data to USB devices. The fwupd project provides high-level code for accessing USB devices, so yet-another-update-protocol is no big deal. I explained all about the LVFS, and the benefits it provided to a userbase that is normally happy to vote using their wallet to get hardware that’s supported on the OS of their choice.

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Review: Linspire 7.0

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Reviews

Linspire 7 is a solid distribution and one I would recommend to friends and family. Coming from a Windows, openSUSE, ChromeOS and CloudReady background I pretty much knew what to expect. There is nothing that seriously stands out with Linspire to make me say WOW save its stability, easy of use and compatibility. I had several older devices and newer devices that I wasn't expecting to work and they did. Would this bring me around to switching? Absolutely. ChromeOS is a serious mess and CloudReady doesn't support one of my laptops anymore. Its easier to configure than openSUSE with YAST and its a straightforward solution. I would recommend this for old folk like me and for small businesses who need a cheap and neat solution. One of the many things I like in this Linspire vs the old Linspire is that this one is more close knit with the Linux apps and doesn't have many proprietary-to-them applications. I do miss Click and Run. A few criticisms I do have is that some of the documentation is a little techy and novices would get lost easy. I would work with and get a better bug reporting system. Overall I am enjoying the experience and like I said, solid, stable and affordable. I definitely will keep this and Windows 10 around for a long time.

I want to thank PC/Opensystems for bringing Linspire back to us and I would like to thank Medium.com for hosting this review.

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Games: Summer Islands, Them's Fightin' Herds, Warbands: Bushido

Filed under
Gaming

Linux 4.16 Now in Release Candidate Mode

Filed under
Linux
  • Linux 4.16-rc1

    Two weeks have passed, -rc1 is out there, and the merge window is thus over.

    I don't want to jinx anything, but things certainly look a lot better
    than with 4.15. We have no (known) nasty surprises pending, and there
    were no huge issues during the merge window. Fingers crossed that this
    stays fairly calm and sane.

    As usual, I'm only appending my mergelog, because while this is not
    shaping up to be a particularly huge release, none of our recent
    releases have been small enough to describe with the shortlogs I use
    for later rc's.

    The actual diff is dominated by drivers, and once again the GPU
    patches stand out - this time some AMD GPU header files. Happily, this
    time the bulk of those lines is actually *removal* due to cleanups and
    getting rid of some unused headers.

    But there really is changes all over. Drivers may be the bulk (GPU,
    networking, staging, media, sound, infiniband, scsi and misc smaller
    subsystems), but we have a fair amount of arch updates (spectre and
    meltdown fixes for non-x86 architectures, but also some further x86
    work, and just general arch updates). And there's networking,
    filesystem updates, documentation, tooling..

    There's a little bit for everybody, in other words.

    Go out and test,

    Linus

  • Linux 4.16-rc1 Kernel Released With Many Changes

    Just like clockwork, the first release candidate of Linux 4.16 is now available.

    Linux 4.16-rc1 was tagged just minutes ago and remains under the "Fearless Coyote" codename that has been happening for several cycles now. Over the Linux v4.15 stable release, the Linux 4.16 merge window up to RC1 brings 11340 files changed, 491295 insertions(+), 305085 deletions(-). Yes, that's another hearty merge window.

    To learn about all of the changes for this next kernel version, see my thorough Linux 4.16 feature overview that I finished up this morning. Linux 4.16 is bringing a lot more work on Spectre/Meltdown mitigation, AMDGPU DC multi-display synchronization, better Intel Cannonlake support, VirtualBox Guest Driver is now mainline, many CPU/scalability improvements, AMD SEV encrypted virtualization support for KVM, file-system improvements, new ARM board support, and a wide range of other improvements as outlined in the aforelinked article.

  • A Look At The Plethora Of Linux 4.16 Kernel Features & Changes

    After the lengthy Linux 4.15 kernel cycle, the past two weeks have marked the Linux 4.16 merge window. Yet again it's been another heavy feature period for the kernel. There is still a lot of mitigation work going on for most CPU architectures surrounding Spectre and also Meltdown, the open-source graphics drivers have continued getting better, various CPU improvements are present, the VirtualBox Guest driver was mainlined, and dozens of other notable changes for Linux 4.16. Take a look.

    Here's our usual kernel feature overview from our original reporting the past two weeks in closely monitoring the Linux kernel mailing list and Git repository. Linus Torvalds is expected to mark the end of the merge window today by releasing Linux 4.16-rc1.

OpenBenchmarking and the Latest Phoronix Benchmark

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks
  • OpenBenchmarking.org Serves Up Its 29 Millionth Test/Suite Benchmark Download
  • Amazon EC2 Cloud Compute Performance: December vs. February

    For those wondering how Amazon's Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) performance is now after being mitigated for the recent Spectre and Meltdown CPU vulnerabilities, here are benchmarks of five Linux distributions comparing the performance to last December prior to the Linux kernel mitigations coming about to now.

    Back in mid-December I carried out a six-way Amazon EC2 cloud comparison following the recent of Amazon Linux 2. Having those results and the reproducibility and automation of the Phoronix Test Suite, I re-ran those tests on the five Linux distributions for seeing how the performance of these Linux platforms have evolved since December.

Linux: Encryption, AMDVLK and Intel DRM Driver

Filed under
Linux
  • diff -u: Adding Encryption To printk()

    A patch from Dan Aloni recently came in to create the option to encrypt printk() output. This would make all dmesg information completely inaccessible to users, including hostile attackers. His idea was that the less information available to hostile users, the better.

    The problem with this, as Steven Rostedt pointed out, was that it was essentially just a way for device makers and Linux distributions to shut out users from meaningfully understanding what their systems were doing. On the other hand, Steven said, he wouldn't be opposed to including an option like that if a device maker or Linux distribution actually would find it legitimately useful.

  • AMDVLK Driver Updated With New Extension, Better Geometry Shader Support

    The AMD developers working on their official, cross-platform Vulkan driver have carried out another weekly update to their AMDVLK public source tree.

    This week the updates to the AMDVLK open-source driver are fairly interesting. First up there is now VK_EXT_external_memory_host support. Coincidentally, this week RADV also wired in this extension. EXT_external_memory_host is used for importing host allocations and host-mapped foreign device memory to become Vulkan memory objects.

  • Selectable Platform Support Proposed Again For Intel's DRM Driver

    It seems like every few years or so comes a patch series proposing to allow the Intel DRM driver to limit its platform support in the name of saving a few bytes from the kernel build. This week the latest "selectable platform support" patches are out there.

Software: Kodi, MPV, Comparison of Software, Elisa and Auryo

Filed under
Software
  • Kodi v18 Leia - The story so far

    Around November 2017 the team decided that v17 Krypton was mature enough to start with the release steps and as such it was branched off from our main development tree. This basically means it received its own place in our development repository and would only receive bug fixes and small improvements. This is also the moment that frees up the possibility for several core developers to start another cleanup and improvement spree that was also done when just starting with v17. This usually entails to take a more evasive steps on cleaning up code and less taking in account that certain parts will be broken for a certain time. Having a good foundation to build on is key in anything and that also includes a software application.

  • The Current State Of Kodi 18 Development

    Kodi developers have written a blog post outlining their work so far on Kodi 18 "Leia", which should be out at some point this year but with no formal release schedule yet.

  • MPV, the Command Line Video Player, is Considering a GUI

    Command line video player MPV may soon have an official GUI. 

    Vincent Lang, the lead developer of the MPV media player project, has suggested the tool adopts one of the community-made MPV GUI front-ends available.

    The reason?

    To make MPV more accessible.

  • Comparison of Software in Ubuntu and Windows

    This is a list of software for Ubuntu user switching from MS Windows. This list compares free software in Ubuntu with nonfree software in Windows for everyone. This list translates what people commonly use in Windows to Ubuntu, for example, you install LibreOffice in Ubuntu to replace MS Office in Windows. All programs for Ubuntu here are available in Ubuntu repository and can be installed easily. Although this list is designed for Ubuntu, anyone can use this for another GNU/Linux distros such as Trisquel and Kubuntu.

  • Last Weeks Activity in Elisa

    Elisa is a music player developed by the KDE community that strives to be simple and nice to use. We also recognize that we need a flexible product to account for the different workflows and use-cases of our users.

    We focus on a very good integration with the Plasma desktop of the KDE community without compromising the support for other platforms (other Linux desktop environments, Windows and Android).

  • Auryo – A Cross-Platform Desktop Client for SoundCloud

    For the longest time, it seemed that those of us who are both Linux & SoundCloud users would be forever cursed with having to use a Web browser on our desktops in order to enjoy the application. But I bring you great news!

    There is now an unofficial desktop client for SoundCloud and it goes by the name of Auryo. Gone are the days when you were forced to use a browser to stream Soundcloud content. Now it is a scroll and a click away.

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More in Tux Machines

GNOME and Fedora

  • RFC: Integrating rsvg-rs into librsvg
    I have started an RFC to integrate rsvg-rs into librsvg. rsvg-rs is the Rust binding to librsvg. Like the gtk-rs bindings, it gets generated from a pre-built GIR file.
  • 1+ year of Fedora and GNOME hardware enablement
    A year and a couple of months ago, Christian Schaller asked me to pivot a little bit from working full time on Fleet Commander to manage a new team we were building to work on client hardware enablement for Fedora and GNOME with an emphasis on upstream. The idea was to fill the gap in the organization where nobody really owned the problem of bringing up new client hardware features vertically across the stack (from shell down to the kernel), or rather, ensure Fedora and GNOME both work great on modern laptops. Part of that deal was to take over the bootloader and start working closer to customers and hardware manufacturing parnters.
  • Fedora Atomic Workstation: Works on the beach
    My trip is getting really close, so I decided to upgrade my system to rawhide. Wait, what ? That is usually what everybody would tell you not to do. Rawhide has this reputation for frequent breakage, and who knows if my apps will work any given day. Not something you want to deal with while traveling.
  • 4 cool new projects to try in COPR for February

Why You Shouldn’t Use Firefox Forks (and Proprietary Opera)

  • Why You Shouldn’t Use Firefox Forks Like Waterfox, Pale Moon, or Basilisk
    Mozilla Firefox is an open source project, so anyone can take its code, modify it, and release a new browser. That’s what Waterfox, Pale Moon, and Basilisk are—alternative browsers based on the Firefox code. But we recommend against using any of them.
  • Opera Says Its Next Opera Release Will Have the Fastest Ad Blocker on the Block
    Opera Software promoted today its upcoming Opera 52 web browser to the beta channel claiming that it has the faster ad blocker on the market compared to previous Opera release and Google Chrome. One of the key highlights of the Opera 52 release will be the improved performance of the built-in ad blocker as Opera claims to have enhanced the string matching algorithm of the ad blocker to make it open web pages that contain ads much faster than before, and, apparently than other web browsers, such as Chrome.

Graphics: Glxinfo, ANV, SPIR-V

  • Glxinfo Gets Updated With OpenGL 4.6 Support, More vRAM Reporting
    The glxinfo utility is handy for Linux users in checking on their OpenGL driver in use by their system and related information. But it's not often that glxinfo itself gets updated, except that changed today with the release of mesa-demos-8.4.0 as the package providing this information utility. Mesa-demos is the collection of glxinfo, eglinfo, glxgears, and utilities related to Mesa. With the Mesa-demos 8.4.0 it is predominantly glxinfo updates.
  • Intel ANV Getting VK_KHR_16bit_storage Support Wrapped Up
    Igalia's Jose Maria Casanova Crespo sent out a set of patches today for fixes that allow for the enabling of the VK_KHR_16bit_storage extension within Intel's ANV Vulkan driver. The patches are here for those interested in 16-bit storage support in Vulkan. This flips on the features for storageBuffer16BitAccess, uniformAndStorageBuffer16BitAccess, storagePushConstant16 and the VK_KHR_16bit_storage extension. This support is present for Intel "Gen 8" Broadwell graphics and newer. Hopefully the work will be landing in Mesa Git soon.
  • SPIR-V Support For Gallium3D's Clover Is Closer To Reality
    It's been a busy past week for open-source GPU compute with Intel opening up their new NEO OpenCL stack, Karol Herbst at Red Hat posting the latest on Nouveau NIR support for SPIR-V compute, and now longtime Nouveau contributor Pierre Moreau has presented his latest for SPIR-V Clover support. Pierre has been spending about the past year adding SPIR-V support to Gallium3D's "Clover" OpenCL state tracker. SPIR-V, of course, is the intermediate representation used now by OpenCL and Vulkan.

Security: Updates, Tinder, FUD and KPTI Meltdown Mitigation

  • Security updates for Friday
  • Tinder vulnerability let hackers [sic] take over accounts with just a phone number

    The attack worked by exploiting two separate vulnerabilities: one in Tinder and another in Facebook’s Account Kit system, which Tinder uses to manage logins. The Account Kit vulnerability exposed users’ access tokens (also called an “aks” token), making them accessible through a simple API request with an associated phone number.

  • PSA: Improperly Secured Linux Servers Targeted with Chaos Backdoor [Ed: Drama queen once again (second time in a week almost) compares compromised GNU/Linux boxes to "back doors"]
    Hackers are using SSH brute-force attacks to take over Linux systems secured with weak passwords and are deploying a backdoor named Chaos. Attacks with this malware have been spotted since June, last year. They have been recently documented and broken down in a GoSecure report.
  • Another Potential Performance Optimization For KPTI Meltdown Mitigation
    Now that the dust is beginning to settle around the Meltdown and Spectre mitigation techniques on the major operating systems, in the weeks and months ahead we are likely to see more performance optimizations come to help offset the performance penalties incurred by mitigations like kernel page table isolation (KPTI) and Retpolines. This week a new patch series was published that may help with KPTI performance.