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Saturday, 15 Dec 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 GNOME 3.31.3 released Roy Schestowitz 13/12/2018 - 11:04am
Story Linux on the Desktop: Are We Nearly There Yet? Roy Schestowitz 13/12/2018 - 10:51am
Story Android Leftovers Rianne Schestowitz 13/12/2018 - 10:26am
Story Mozilla Firefox 64 Is Now Available for All Supported Ubuntu Linux Releases Rianne Schestowitz 13/12/2018 - 10:21am
Story Relax by the fire at your Linux terminal Rianne Schestowitz 13/12/2018 - 10:15am
Story FSF Licensing and Compliance Lab: 2018 and the future Roy Schestowitz 13/12/2018 - 10:09am
Story Android Leftovers Rianne Schestowitz 13/12/2018 - 1:17am
Story Pantheon Desktop Makes Linux Elementary Rianne Schestowitz 13/12/2018 - 1:00am
Story leftovers and howtos Roy Schestowitz 13/12/2018 - 12:19am
Story Debian and Derivatives Roy Schestowitz 13/12/2018 - 12:16am

Essential System Tools: Timeshift – Reliable system restore tool for Linux

Filed under
GNU
Linux

This is the twelfth in our series of articles highlighting essential system tools. These are small, indispensable utilities, useful for system administrators as well as regular users of Linux based systems. The series examines both graphical and text based open source utilities. For this article, we’ll look at Timeshift, a graphical and command-line tool similar to the System Restore functionality offered by Windows, and the Time Machine Tool in Mac OS. For details of all tools in this series, please check the table at the summary page of this article.

Timeshift is a GTK3-based, open source, system restore utility which takes incremental snapshots of the system using rsync and hard-links. These snapshots can be restored at a later date to undo all changes that were made to the system after the snapshot was taken. Snapshots can be taken manually or at regular intervals using scheduled jobs.

This application is designed to protect only system files and settings. User files such as documents, pictures and music are not protected. This ensures that your files remains unchanged when you restore your system to an earlier date.

For the avoidance of any doubt, if you’re looking for a complete backup solution (including data backups), you’ll need to use different software.

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Meet The Linux Desktop That's More Beautiful Than Windows 10 And MacOS

Filed under
Linux

As a fairly new desktop Linux user I've been a distro-hopping fanatic, exploring the functionality and key differences between the array of excellent options out there. While a "forever distro" is the ultimate goal, the journey has been exciting and educational. Recently my Linux adventures led me to Deepin, an OS that captured my attention and boasts a few key ingredients I fell in love with.

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The Open-Source NVIDIA "Nouveau" Linux Driver Performance At The End Of 2018

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks

As it's been a while since last looking at the NVIDIA vs. Nouveau Linux OpenGL driver performance, here's a look at the current performance difference as the end of the year quickly approaches. This benchmarking roundabout features multiple generations of GeForce GPUs while testing with the NVIDIA 415 proprietary driver against the Nouveau stack on Linux 4.19 and Mesa 19.0-devel.

Sadly there isn't much positive news to report as 2018 draws to a close for the open-source NVIDIA scene... The main highlight of the year is the ongoing work by Red Hat (Karol Herbst and others) on bringing up SPIR-V/compute support to the Nouveau driver and somewhat related work by Jerome Glisse around Heterogeneous Memory Management and the new Heterogeneous Memory System with Nouveau driver support. The Nouveau SPIR-V compute support isn't yet mainlined but hopefully will be in 2019.

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When Linux required installation parties

Filed under
Linux

I studied math in college. Back then, ordinarily, math students didn't have access to the computer lab; pen and paper were all we needed to do our work. But for my one required programming class, I got access to the college computer lab.

It was running SunOS with remote X terminals (this was circa 1996). I immediately fell in love with Unix. I fell in love with the command line, X Windows, the utilities—all of it.

When the class ended, I lost my access. A friend told me about this thing called Linux, where you could install a Unix operating system on your own PC. Back then, installing Slackware on your PC was non-trivial.

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Try the Dash to Dock extension for Fedora Workstation

Filed under
Red Hat
HowTos

The default desktop of Fedora Workstation — GNOME Shell — is known and loved by many users for its minimal, clutter-free user interface. However, one thing that many users want is an always-visible view of open applications. One simple and effective way to get this is with the awesome Dash to Dock GNOME Shell extension.

Dash to Dock takes the dock that is visible in the GNOME Shell Overview, and places it on the main desktop. This provides a view of open applications at a glance, and provides a quick way to switch windows using the mouse. Additionally, Dash to Dock adds a plethora of additional features and options over the built-in Overview dock, including autohide, panel mode, and window previews.

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Snake your way across your Linux terminal

Filed under
Linux
Gaming

Welcome back to the Linux command-line toys advent calendar. If this is your first visit to the series, you might be asking yourself what a command-line toy even is. It's hard to say exactly, but my definition is anything that helps you have fun at the terminal.

We've been on a roll with games over the weekend, and it was fun, so let's look at one more game today, Snake!

Snake is an oldie but goodie; versions of it have been around seemingly forever. The first version I remember playing was one called Nibbles that came packaged with QBasic in the 1990s, and was probably pretty important to my understanding of what a programming language even was. Here I had the source code to a game that I could modify and just see what happens, and maybe learn something about what all of those funny little words that made up a programming language were all about.

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Growing Your Small Business With An Affordable OS

Filed under
OS
Linux

Your small business needs to grow, there's no doubt about that. Expansion is the name of the game when you have a one or two man company, and you're going to want to bring on at least 20 or more people to really get the cogs grinding. And if you're working on a digital interface, slowly phasing pen and paper out of the office you operate in, you're going to need plenty of people around to oil the engine and keep the tech in a usable state.

Because of this, technology helps your small business grow, and can do quite a few wonders for the time and effort you invested into it. Even if you're working on a minimal budget, there's quite a few option to look into to make sure you've got just as much of a chance as the shop next door to you that seems to have a never ending stream of customers. After all, you've got to get your internal processes working perfectly first, and with a bit of technological aid, you might manage that faster than you first thought.

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Security: Polkit, CSP, Ansible and Router Hardening Checklist

Filed under
Security
  • Polkit CVE-2018-19788 vs. SELinux
  • Why is your site not using Content Security Policy / CSP?

    Yesterday, I had the pleasure of watching on Frikanalen the OWASP talk by Scott Helme titled "What We’ve Learned From Billions of Security Reports". I had not heard of the Content Security Policy standard nor its ability to "call home" when a browser detect a policy breach (I do not follow web page design development much these days), and found the talk very illuminating.

    The mechanism allow a web site owner to use HTTP headers to tell visitors web browser which sources (internal and external) are allowed to be used on the web site. Thus it become possible to enforce a "only local content" policy despite web designers urge to fetch programs from random sites on the Internet, like the one enabling the attack reported by Scott Helme earlier this year.

  • Red Hat Ansible Playbooks Password Exposure Vulnerability [CVE-2018-16859]

    CVE-2018-16859. A vulnerability in Red Hat Ansible could allow a local attacker to discover plaintext passwords on a targeted system.

  • Router Hardening Checklist

Games: DiRT 4, SuperTuxKart and The 10 Best Free Linux Games

Filed under
Gaming
  • DiRT4 Power Slides onto Linux in 2019

    DiRT 4 is the latest instalment of the popular franchise to drift on to free software platforms (as well as a non-free software platform in macOS). It follows on from the successful Linux release of DiRT Rally last spring.

    DiRT 4 was originally released on Windows, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One in June 2017 and has garnered plenty of praise, positive reviews and high review scores.

  • SuperTuxKart Spruces Up Its In-Game Visuals

    SuperTuxKart, the famous free software kart racer, is picking up some improved visuals within the in-game user interface and racing screens.

    Detailing their plans on the game’s official dev blog, the team behind the iconic racer have shared more details about the graphical spit and polish they’ve given the game ahead of its next major release.

  • Refreshing the GUI

    Online multiplayer won't be the focus of this new blog post : we will tell you more about it when launching the official beta in the coming weeks.

    Instead, we'll tell you more about the many changes in the game's UI.

  • The 10 Best Free Linux Games

    There are plenty of excellent games on Linux, and a fair amount of them are completely free. Some are open source, and others are fairly big names available through Steam. In every case, these are quality games that you can play any time on Linux at absolutely no cost.

Programming Leftovers

Filed under
Development

Review: openSUSE Tumbleweed (2018)

Filed under
Reviews
SUSE

My experiment with openSUSE's Tumbleweed was a mixed experience. On the positive side, Tumbleweed stays constantly up to date, providing the latest packages of software all the time. For people who regularly want to stay on the cutting edge, but who do not want to re-install or perform a major version-to-version upgrade every six months, Tumbleweed provides an attractive option. I also really like that file system snapshots are automated and we can revert most problems simply by restarting the computer and choosing an older snapshot from the boot menu.

On the negative side, a number of things didn't work during my time with the distribution. Media support was broken, the Discover software manager had a number of issues and some configuration modules caused me headaches. These rough edges sometimes get fixed, but may be traded out for other problems since the operating system is ever in flux.

In the long term, a bigger issue may be the amount of network bandwidth and disk space Tumbleweed consumes. Just to keep up with updates we need set aside around 1GB of downloads per month and (when Btrfs snapshots are used) even more disk space. In a few weeks Tumbleweed consumed more disk space with far fewer programs installed as my installation of MX Linux. Unless we keep on top of house cleaning and constantly remove old snapshots we need to be prepared to use significantly more storage space than most other distributions require.

Tumbleweed changes frequently and uses more resources to keep up with the latest software developments. I would not recommend it for newer Linux users or for people who want predictability in the lives. But for people who want to live on the cutting edge and don't mind a little trouble-shooting, Tumbleweed provides a way to keep up with new versions of applications while providing a safety net through Btrfs snapshots.

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Linux 4.20-rc6

Filed under
Linux

Hmm. Things look fairly normal. just under half of the patch is to
drivers (gpu, networking, nvdimm, block, media..), with the rest being
tooling (mostly bpf selftests) core networking, documentation and some
arch updates, Some filesystem, core kernel and mm fixes in there too
(we've had some last-minute THP reverts and discussion for how to
re-do it next time).

Most of it looks pretty small and normal. Would I have preferred for
there to be less churn? Yes. But it's certainly smaller than rc5 was,
so we're moving in the right direction, and we have at least one more
rc to go.

I say "at least", not because I'm particularly worried about the
technical details and any outstanding bugs, but because of the whole
holiday season timing. I still suspect that what I'll do is release
4.20 just before xmas (so with the usual "rc7->final" cadence) but
then just leave a dead week for the holiday season. Again encouraging
everybody to send in their pull request for the merge window *before*
the holiday season, but I might just either ignore them for a week, or
take it very slow and easy.

And of course, if we have something worrisome come up, any technical
issues can derail that plan, but I don't think there's anything bad
pending now.

Linus

Read more

Also: Linux 4.20-rc6 Kernel Released - "Looks Fairly Normal"

Audiocasts: Linux Action News, OpenBSD in Stereo, GNU World Order, Coder Radio and Open Source Security Podcast

Filed under
Interviews
  • Linux Action News 83

    Plus the Kernel team’s clever Spectre slowdown fix, Emby goes proprietary, Steam Link lives on, and more.

  • OpenBSD in Stereo | BSD Now 275

    DragonflyBSD 5.4 has been released, down the Gopher hole with OpenBSD, OpenBSD in stereo with VFIO, BSD/OS the best candidate for legally tested open source Unix, OpenBGPD adds diversity to the routing server landscape, and more.

  • GNU World Order

    More listener email about ZFS. Noise music. More about workflows, and how to find the right application for your task.

  • Coder Radio 334

    Mike and Chris don’t claim to have a time machine, but they still have a major problem to solve.

  • Open Source Security Podcast: Episode 126 - The not so dire future of supply chain security

    Josh and Kurt continue the discussion from episode 125. We look at the possible future of software supply chains. It's far less dire than previously expected.

OpenShift in Fedora Infrastructure

Filed under
Red Hat

I thought I would write up a quick post to fill folks in on what our OpenShift setup is in Fedora Infrastructure, what we are doing with it now, and what we hope to do with it in coming years.
For those that are not aware, OpenShift is the Red Hat version of OKD, which is a open source, container application platform. That is, it’s a way to deploy and manage application containers. Each of your applications can use a known framework to define how they are built, managed and run. It’s pretty awesome. If you need to move your applicaiton somewhere else, you can just export and import it into another OpenShift/OKD and away you go. Recent versions also include monitoring and logging frameworks too. There is also a very rich permissions model, so you can basically give as much control to a particular application as you like. This means the developer(s) of the applications can also deploy/debug/manage their application without needing any ops folks around for that.
Right now in Fedora Infrastructure we are running two separate OpenShift instances:One in our staging env and one in production. You may note that OpenShift changes the idea of needing a staging env, since you can run a separate staging instance or just test one container of a new version before using it for all of production, however, our main use for the staging OpenShift is not staging applications so much as having another OpenShift cluster to upgrade and test changes in.

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Also: NeuroFedora update: week 49

Editorial: An open letter to Valve on why they should keep on embracing Linux

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Gaming

News in the last week, heck, in the last few weeks and months have the potential to shake up the games industry significantly. It certainly may have huge repercussions for Linux gaming. It’s also been a little hard to follow sometimes, so I decided to explain many of the developments of the past few months and put them within an easy-to-understand context.

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More in Tux Machines

today's leftovers

OSS Leftovers

  • #RecruitmentFocus: Open source skills in high demand
    The unemployment rate in South Africa rose to 27.5% in the third quarter of 2018, while the demand for skills remains high - leaving an industry conundrum that is yet to be solved. According to SUSE, partnerships that focus on upskilling graduates and providing real-work skills, as well as placement opportunities - could be exactly what the industry in looking for.
  • Stable: not moving vs. not breaking
    There are two terms that brings a heavy controversy in the Open Source world: support and stable. Both of them have their roots in the “old days” of Open Source, where its commercial impact was low and very few companies made business with it. You probably have read a lot about maintenance vs support. This controversy is older. I first heard of it in the context of Linux based distributions. Commercial distribution had to put effort in differentiating among the two because in Open SOurce they were used indistictly but not in business. But this post is about the adjectivet stable…
  • Cameron Kaiser: A thank you to Ginn Chen, whom Larry Ellison screwed
    Periodically I refresh my machines by dusting them off and plugging them in and running them for a while to keep the disks spinnin' and the caps chargin'. Today was the day to refurbish my Sun Ultra-3, the only laptop Sun ever "made" (they actually rebadged the SPARCle and later the crotchburner 1.2GHz Tadpole Viper, which is the one I have). Since its last refresh the IDPROM had died, as they do when they run out of battery, resetting the MAC address to zeroes and erasing the license for the 802.11b which I never used anyway. But, after fixing the clock to prevent GNOME from puking on the abnormal date, it booted and I figured I'd update Firefox since it still had 38.4 on it. Ginn Chen, first at Sun and later at Oracle, regularly issued builds of Firefox which ran very nicely on SPARC Solaris 10. Near as I can determine, Oracle has never offered a build of any Firefox post-Rust even to the paying customers they're bleeding dry, but I figured I should be able to find the last ESR of 52 and install that. (Amusingly this relic can run a Firefox in some respects more current than TenFourFox, which is an evolved and patched Firefox 45.)
  • Protecting the world’s oceans with open data science
    For environmental scientists, researching a single ecosystem or organism can be a daunting task. The amount of data and literature to comb through (or create) is often overwhelming. So how, then, can environmental scientists approach studying the health of the world’s oceans? What ocean health means is a big question in itself—oceans span millions of square miles, are home to countless species, and border hundreds of countries and territories, each of which has its own unique marine policies and practices. But no matter how daunting this task may seem, it’s a necessary and vital one. So in 2012, the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS) and Conservation International publicly launched the Ocean Health Index (OHI), an ambitious initiative to measure the benefits that oceans provide to people, including clean water, coastal protections, and biodiversity. The idea was to create an annual assessment to document major oceanic changes and trends, and in turn, use those findings to craft better marine policy around the world.

Openwashing Leftovers

The Last Independent Mobile OS

The year was 2010 and the future of mobile computing was looking bright. The iPhone was barely three years old, Google’s Android had yet to swallow the smartphone market whole, and half a dozen alternative mobile operating systems—many of which were devoutly open source—were preparing for launch. Eight years on, you probably haven’t even heard of most of these alternative mobile operating systems, much less use them. Today, Android and iOS dominate the global smartphone market and account for 99.9 percent of mobile operating systems. Even Microsoft and Blackberry, longtime players in the mobile space with massive revenue streams, have all but left the space. Then there’s Jolla, the small Finnish tech company behind Sailfish OS, which it bills as the “last independent alternative mobile operating system.” Jolla has had to walk itself back from the edge of destruction several times over the course of its seven year existence, and each time it has emerged battered, but more determined than ever to carve out a spot in the world for a truly independent, open source mobile operating system. After years of failed product launches, lackluster user growth, and supply chain fiascoes, it’s only been in the last few months that things finally seem to be turning to Jolla’s favor. Over the past two years the company has rode the wave of anti-Google sentiment outside the US and inked deals with large foreign companies that want to turn Sailfish into a household name. Despite the recent success, Jolla is far from being a major player in the mobile market. And yet it also still exists, which is more than can be said of every other would-be alternative mobile OS company. Read more