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Reviews

Musique for Linux Review – A Minimalistic Player for You and Your Music

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Reviews

Musique is a minimalistic music player for the Linux platform that features a simple and clean interface. It's not like there is a lack of open source music players, so we've decided to see if this one is any good.

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Calibre for Linux Review – The Best App for Anything Related to eBooks

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Linux
Reviews

I reviewed Calibre back when it was at version 0.8.24 and the 1.0 version was nowhere in sight. Even back then, the software was chock-full of features and options. It was difficult to imagine that it could bring even more improvements to the table, but it did.

In fact, it's safe to say that a large number of eBook readers crossed paths with Calibre at one point or another, and it's likely that most of those users found what they had been looking for.

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Calibre for Linux Review – The Best App for Anything Related to eBooks

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Software
Reviews

Calibre is the premiere application on the Linux platform to convert, edit, view, and download eBooks. It has so many features it would be difficult just to count them all, but it's time to take a closer look at this app and see what changed in the years that passed since our last review.

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Black Lab Linux 6.0 Beta 2 Is a Bizarrely Attractive Xfce Desktop

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Black Lab Linux 6.0 Beta 2, a distribution that is now based on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS and is using the Xfce desktop environment, has been released for download and testing.

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OpenMandriva 2014.1 review

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MDV
Reviews

OpenMandriva Lx 2014.1 is the latest edition of OpenMandriva, a desktop distribution derived from the old Mandriva Linux.

Though OpenMandriva Lx 2014.1 is a minor update to OpenMandriva Lx 2014.0, which was released back in June (2014), it comes with some significant changes, including, according to the Release Notes, support for booting on computers with UEFI firmware. To quote from the Release Notes: “This is the first release of OpenMandriva Lx that incorporates support for UEFI booting.” Interestingly, the same thing was said of OpenMandriva 2014.0.

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Hands-on review: Probox2 EX Android 4.4 TV box

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This hands-on review examines the Probox2 EX media streaming box, featuring Android 4.4, a quad-core Cortex-A9 SoC, 4k video, Miracast, and an air-mouse.

W2Comp began shipping the Android 4.4-based Probox2 EX media streaming mini-PC last month. Compared to the company’s earlier media streaming products, the $150 Probox2 EX uses a faster Amlogic quad-core processor and runs Android 4.4 (“KitKat”). On the wireless side it advances from Bluetooth 2.0 to 4.0, and features dual-band 802.11 b/g/n support that uses 5.8GHz instead of 5GHz as its upper band, resulting in reduced interference, according to W2Comp. (More hardware details appear farther below.)

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Unchanging Unicorn: Don't be disappointed with Ubuntu 14.10, be happy

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Reviews
Ubuntu

A number of Ubuntu flavours – Kubuntu, Ubuntu Gnome, Xubuntu and the brand new Ubuntu Mate (yes, it's official now) – this month participated in the first beta release of the next Ubuntu – 14.10, or Utopic Unicorn.

The main Unity Desktop was absent, meaning what's called the second beta (and is now available) is the first and only beta for the main Ubuntu 14.10.

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Manjaro Linux 0.8.10 Ascella KDE Edition : Video Review and Screenshots

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Linux
Reviews

Manjaro Linux 0.8.10 Ascella KDE Edition is the latest version of manjaro linux distribution with KDE desktop environment. Manjaro Linux is a lightweight, user-friendly, desktop-oriented Linux distribution based on Arch Linux. Key features include intuitive installation process, automatic hardware detection, stable rolling-release model, ability to install multiple kernels, special Bash scripts for managing graphics drivers and extensive desktop configurability.

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A Norsified Linux for Windows and OS X wobblers

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Reviews

You'll find all the updated hardware support in Ubuntu 14.04, but Elementary replaces GTK 3.10 with the more cutting edge GTK 3.12, which gets Elementary a nice combined window bar/title bar that saves a bit of space and looks great with the rest of Elementary's very polished desktop theme.

You'd be forgiven for thinking Elementary is based on GNOME Shell. It looks a bit like GNOME Shell, with a clock in the middle of the top bar, an Applications menu to the left and some indicator apps to the right. In Luna the top bar was black by default, which made it look even more like GNOME Shell.

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elementary OS Freya beta review

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Ok, enough about tarnished acronyms. Let’s get back to elementary OS Freya beta, which was released in early August. As with any distribution that I review, there are stuff that I like about elementary OS Freya and stuff that I don’t like. A particular issue that I don’t like is the same one I drew attention to in my review of the Luna edition.

Before I rehash that issue, let me first point out stuff that I like about this edition.

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Mir 0.8 Works On Less ABI Breakage, Touchspots, Responsiveness

While Ubuntu 14.10 on the desktop isn't using Mir by default, Mir 0.8.0 is being prepared for release by Canonical and it has a number of interesting changes. Read more

Open source history, present day, and licensing

Looking at open source softwares particularly, this is a fact that is probably useful to you if you are thinking about business models, many people don't care about it anymore. We talk about FOSS, Free and Open Source Software, but if we really are strict there's a difference between free software and open source software. On the left, I have free software which most typically is GPL software. Software where the license insures freedom. It gives freedoms to you as a user, but it also requires that the freedoms are maintained. On the right-hand side, you have open source software which is open for all, but it also allows you to close it. So here we come back to the famous clause of the GPL license, the reciprocity requirement which says, "If I am open, you need to be open." So software that comes under the GPL license carries with it something that other people call a virus. I call it a blessing because I think it's great if all software becomes open. Read more

Mozilla Wants to Save the Open Web, but is it Too Late?

Again, I think this is absolutely correct. But what it fails to recognise is that one of the key ways of making the Web medium "less free and open" is the use of legally-protected DRM. DRM is the very antithesis of openness and of sharing. And yet, sadly, as I reported back in May, Mozilla has decided to back adding DRM to the Web, starting first with video (but it won't end there...) This means Mozilla's Firefox is itself is a vector of attack against openness and sharing, and undermines its own lofty goals in the Open Web Fellows programme. Read more

Open source is starting to make a dent in proprietary software fortunes

Open source has promised to unseat proprietary competitors for decades, but the cloud may make the threat real. Read more