GNU

News about GNU, the FSF, and Free\libre software

Tech-Friendly: Bring new life to an old PC with Linux Mint

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GNU
Linux

Linux Mint (Xfce) has a simple interface and is pretty perky, even on old computers. The installer will install Firefox, the LibreOffice office suite, and a variety of programs for managing e-mail, videos and music; perfect for a backup Internet surfing and word processing computer. The installer will ask if you want to install third-party utilities — choose “yes” for compatibility with websites that use Adobe Flash and other multimedia software. Depending on your computer, the installation should complete in fewer than 30 minutes.

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No, Linux is not dead on the desktop

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GNU
Linux

I hate having to wade through these kinds of articles, but it's necessary to answer them lest the perception take root that "Linux is doomed!" and all the usual blather that goes along with such nonsense. Every single time I read one of these articles my eyes roll into the back of my head and various profanities burst from my lips.

The article focuses on the corporate desktop, but as we all know there has been a revolution going on inside companies as people move their focus from desktop computers to mobile devices. And Linux has been a part of that via Android and Chrome OS since the very beginning. And let's not forget that we'll soon have phones and tablets coming from Canonical that run Ubuntu.

The author acknowledges the transition to mobile, but then downplays it and focuses back on Windows on the desktop. Well, if Windows is still the main OS being used on the desktop then who's fault is that exactly? I hardly think that the users can be blamed for that, it's much more likely the IT department that is making those kinds of decisions.

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Chrome Remote Desktop adds Linux to supported OS list

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GNU
Linux
Google

Chrome Remote Desktop is a Chrome (the browser) extension that provides remote access to another desktop. Often suggested as a remote support tool, the technology is also a nice way to access a remote PC on which you left that file you really need to discuss in that meeting starting in ten minutes.

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Free software to assist indigenous access to computers

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GNU
Linux

But he adds that it is important to make sure there are no compatibility problems between GNU/Linux and hardware, which is often a problem due to its complexity, and to ensure automatic updates are available.

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SparkyLinux 3.4 GameOver -- a Linux distro for gamers

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GNU
Linux
Reviews

Historically, Linux and gaming were like oil and water -- it did not mix. For the most part, this was just accepted as a fact of life. Quite frankly, this was OK as users were more interested in maintaining their box and chatting with other Linux users anyway. However, as time went by, jealousy of DOS, and then ultimately Windows, definitely grew as more and more amazing games were released for Microsoft's operating system. Even Linus Torvalds himself dual-booted Linux and DOS to play Prince of Persia.

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The First Alpha Is Out Of The Qt5 Moonlight Desktop

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GNU
Linux

Moonlight v0.5 Alpha is the first release and its aimed at hackers and developers wishing to forward their dream of "a simple, lightweight, functional and beautiful desktop environment." Moonlight is written against the Qt5 tool-kit and the desktop environment is designed to be very modular. Moonlight shares some goals and code with the LXQt lightweight desktop project.

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Frameworks 5 and Plasma 5 almost done!

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GNU
KDE
Linux

KDE Frameworks 5 is due out today, the most exciting clean-up of libraries KDE has seen in years. Use KDE classes without brining in the rest of kdelibs. Packaging for Kubuntu is almost all green and Rohan should be uploading it to Utopic this week.

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Benchmarking Deepin 2014 With DDE 2.0 Using Linux Games

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GNU
Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux
Moz/FF
Gaming

The Deepin Desktop Environment is written using Google's Go language and makes use of heavy HTML5. DDE also uses Compiz as its compositing window manager. As in the past some desktop environments / window managers have impaired the full-screen Linux gaming performance, I ran some simple Linux gaming benchmarks on Sunday to see if the Deepin 2014 performance differed at all from upstream Ubuntu 14.04 LTS. Ubuntu 14.04 was tested with the stock Unity 7.2 desktop using Compiz, GNOME Shell 3.10.4, and Xfce 4.10 all from the stock Trusty Tahr archive.

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Ubuntu saves Munich millions -- should all governments switch to Linux?

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GNU
Linux
Ubuntu

Trust in government is not exactly at an all-time high. Sure, there are oppressive governments such as Iran and China that filter and block web content, but even the USA has a spotty record. With all the news of PRISM and other spying programs, it is hard to tell which way is up anymore.

One way to solve this dilemma is through transparency and honesty. Unfortunately, as long as governments use closed-source software, it is hard to audit and trust the actions. Today, Canonical announces that not only has Munich taken an open approach to computing with Ubuntu, but the city is saving millions of euros too. Using open-source software and saving money? Hell, maybe all governments should make the switch to Linux.

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4MLinux 9.0 Allinone Edition Has Been Declared Stable

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GNU
Linux

Zbigniew Konojacki announced the stable release of the 4MLinux 9.0 Allinone Edition operating system, which includes the 4MLinux 9.0 Media Edition, 4MLinux 9.0 Game Edition, 4MLinux 9.0 Rescue Edition, and 4MLinux 9.0 Server Edition distributions.

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Operating System U Now Solicits Community Ideas

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GNU
Linux

Operating System U, the newest distribution out there that plans for commercial opportunities with laptop pre-loads and is powered by Arch Linux and Wayland, is now soliciting development ideas from the community.

Operating System U has been largely criticized by Phoronix readers since mentioning it on Saturday. OSu plans for a Kickstarter campaign to provide initial funding for the distribution that has commercial endeavors and is hoping for pre-loads on systems to compete with the likes of Windows and OS X while to date having no partners. OSu has also drawn heat for trying to be end-user and newbie friendly while being based on Arch, the choice of the MATE Desktop especially with the Wayland goal, little upstream collaboration/contributions from the software packages it plans to use, etc.

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Build the best Linux desktop

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GNU
Linux

Like all things Linux and open source, users are spoilt for choice when it comes to selecting a desktop environment (or DE). But this choice that many perceive as freedom, others may also see as a little bewildering and confusing.

Right after making the soul-shaking decision of switching operating systems and installing an unknown system – by hand no less – a new Linux user is then greeted with weird sounding desktops to choose from with names like Gnome (a mini-desktop perhaps?), KDE (Isn't that a double-glazing firm?) and Xfce (No idea). What veteran users herald as Linux's crown jewels, to the innocent newcomer it's like stumbling into a sci-fi convention where everyone is discussing a new TV series that you've never heard of but apparently it's been around for years.

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Linux Mint 17 KDE Overview & Screenshots

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GNU
KDE
Linux
Reviews

Linux Mint 17 ‘Qiana’ KDE and Xfce editions were released late last month, just a few weeks after the main editions (Cinnamon and MATE) were put out. This release will have the same lifespan as the distribution which is based on, Ubuntu 14.04 Trusty Tahr, so it will be supported until 2019, for no less than five years.

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Korean govt to turn its back on Microsoft… and use what instead, Hangul?

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GNU
Linux
Microsoft

Usage of idiosyncratic software could push the Korean government away from Microsoft’s offerings and into open-source OSes like Linux

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Also: S Korea to break away from Windows by 2020

The Latest Distro Trying For Commercial Success Uses Arch & Wayland

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GNU
Linux

A new Linux distribution under development is among the latest dreaming of commercial success in hopes of finally conquering the Linux desktop and having their OS pre-installed on systems being sold in brick and mortar stores.

The project's founder, Andrew Bernstein, wrote into Phoronix this morning to share Operating System U. The short story is that he and a handful of other developers want to create "the ultimate operating system" built for the user. Operating System U is to be based off Arch Linux, run a modified version of the MATE Desktop Environment, and will use Wayland in place of the X.Org Server. Operating System U also plans to modify the MATE Desktop to make it better while also developing a new component they call Startlight, which pairs the Windows Start Button with Apple's Spotlight.

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Ubuntu MATE Remix 14.04 Alpha Now Available for Download

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GNU
Linux
BSD
Ubuntu

We are pleased to announce today, July 4, that the Ubuntu MATE Remix 14.04 has reached Alpha stage and is available for download as Live DVD/USB images that can be installed.

Ubuntu MATE Remix 14.04 Alpha comes as a July 4 surprise to many who believed the controversial project would become reality sooner or later. It beautifully integrates the MATE desktop environment into the latest upstream Ubuntu release.

The distribution was developed by a few members of the Ubuntu community and provides users with an old-school graphical desktop environment, which reminds us of the good ol’ times of Ubuntu 10.04.

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Is it possible to create the ultimate operating system?

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GNU
Linux

How are the Operating System U team planning to create the ultimate operating system ever.

Operating System U will use Arch Linux as the base distribution and the desktop will be a customised version of MATE with less bugs and more features.

In addition, Operating System U will be dispensing with the XOrg system and will instead be using Wayland which is apparently less clunky and it directly renders with applications.

OSu (A shorter name for Operating System U) will also have something called Startlight which is akin to the Windows Start button fused with Apple's Spotlight. According to the website this will make the system easy to use and familiar to most users.

OSu will be a partial rolling release and the main concept appears to be around consistency. The look and feel won't ever change based on the developer's whims unlike certain other operating systems such as Windows.

Possibly the most ambitious plan is that the developers plan to have OSu pre-installed on laptops and available for sale in shops.

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Firms wasting over £1bn per year on Linux-based cloud servers

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GNU
Linux
Server

Firms that use Linux-based cloud servers are overspending on their cloud capacity by more than £1 billion annually for Infrastructure-as-a-Service (Iaas).

According to cloud provider ElasticHosts, the dominant payment model for IaaS is highly inefficient, and even at its best, companies are overpaying by as much as 50 per cent.

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Doing VFX Work in Linux? Here’s Your Reference Platform

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GNU
Linux

The Visual Effects Society (VES) has released its Calendar Year 2014 Reference Platform, which specifies versions of different Linux tools and libraries as a target for VFX software. VES said the platform aims to minimize incompatibilities, make it easier to support Linux pipelines, and encourage more software vendors to release tools that run on Linux.

Anyone who's done much work on Linux systems knows about the tangles that can arise when different software packages rely on different iterations of crucial libraries. Standardizing a baseline set of tools for installation on a VFX-ready Linux workstation should help, assuming vendors cooperate and users are made aware of the recommendations. To that end, the VES plans to announce the 2015 version of the platform at SIGGRAPH, and is currently inviting industry feedback on its draft version.

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Episode 299: Turnkey Linux

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Interviews

Turnkey GNU/Linux is a free Debian based library of system images that pre-integrates and polishes the best free software components into secure, easy to use solutions.

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