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

Parsix GNU/Linux 6.0r1 Is an Interesting Debian and GNOME 3.10 Mix

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GNU
Linux
Debian

Parsix GNU/Linux 6.0r1, a live and installation DVD based on Debian, aiming to provide a ready-to-use, easy-to-install desktop and laptop-optimized operating system, has been released for testing.

The developers' ultimate goal is to offer customers an easy-to-use OS based on Debian's Wheezy branch, which employs a release of the GNOME desktop environment. The devs have made a few minor modifications to the desktop and now it's much easier to set it apart from other distros.

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Neptune 4.0 Release with new homepage

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GNU
Linux

Grab this new version from our new Neptune Homepage.

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Linus Torvalds to developers: Make it personal

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GNU
Linux
Interviews

"It's not that Linux was new from a technical standpoint. It was new because it was done differently," says Linus Torvalds in his interview with the IEEE Computer Society. "Linux made it clear how well open source works, not just from a technical standpoint, but also from a business, commercial, and community standpoint."

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Black Lab Linux 5.1 Alpha Ditches Mac OS Look

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GNU
Linux
Mac

Black Lab Linux is a distribution designed for general desktop and power users that comes with a lot of applications and features. In the past, the developers tried to market this distribution as a replacement for Windows and Mac OS X systems and they even tried to make it look like those OSes.

It turns out that users didn't really go for that look, so the makers of Black Lab Linux had to change gears and make some important modifications. The current build of this Linux distribution looks very different from the previous editions, but that might turn out to be a good thing...

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Smooth like btrfs: Inside Facebook’s Linux-powered infrastructure

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GNU
Linux
Server

Facebook engineer Chris Mason is unequivocal about the primacy of Linux in Facebook’s storage infrastructure.

“If it runs on a computer, and it’s storing important data,” he said, “it’s running Linux.”

Mason, speaking at the Linux Enterprise End-User Summit on Monday in New York, joined Facebook just six months ago in order to spearhead the social network’s move to btrfs (usually pronounced “butter eff ess.”), the Linux-based file system that he created in 2008 while working at Oracle.

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Also: Linux dominates supercomputers as never before

Peppermint Five is Live

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GNU
Linux

The People Who Support Linux: Systems Engineer Teaching Himself Python

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GNU
Linux

Systems engineer Renault Ellis started using Linux five years ago when he was enrolled in a security and forensics program. He was studying IP tables and read the C Programming Language manual by Ken Thompson and Dennis Ritchie along with Cliff Stoll’s The Cuckoo’s Egg.

“I was hooked,” Ellis said via email. “I knew then I wanted to be a Linux Engineer.”

Ellis is now a Senior Linux and Unix Engineer at electronics distributor Premier Farnell in Chicago, Illinois, where he creates, tests and deploys scripts in an eCommerce environment. He works with Apache and several different monitoring tools, both open source and commercial, and leads a lot of the DR (disaster recovery) and PCI (payment card industry) processes in their Unix environment.

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OpenStack chair: Linux at the cutting edge of the cloud

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GNU
Linux
Server

The cloud-dominated world of modern IT is the perfect breeding ground for the spread of Linux in particular and open-source software in general, according to the man responsible for guiding one of the most important open-source projects.

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Linux Mint KDE 17 review; is this the Plasma you were looking for?

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GNU
Linux
Reviews

The Linux Mint team has announced the release of the Plasma Desktop edition of the popular GNU/Linux based operating system – Linux Mint KDE 17. Being a Plasma user myself, and since I keep a close eye on what this team is doing, I was obviously interested in testing it out.

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Makulu Linux 6.0 KDE: Guaranteed to make you smile

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GNU
Linux
Reviews

Another Makulu Linux distribution was released today, and that's always good news! This time it is the KDE desktop for the Makulu 6.x series. The Xfce version of this was just released a couple of weeks ago, so i don't exptect for there to be any major surprised: I hope that means this will not be a very lengthy post.

As usual, the release announcement gives a good overview of the what and why in this release. The most important specifics are that it is built on Linux kernel 3.14.7 and KDE SC 4.13.1. The download images are available from the Makulu Linux KDE page, it is a 32-bit (i686) build that is approximately 1.7GB in size. It is a hybrid ISO, so you can burn it to disk or dump it with dd to a USB stick, and it does not support UEFI boot.

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Also: MakuluLinux 6.0 KDE

Clonezilla Live 2.2.3-23 Now Features Support for New Filesystems

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GNU
Linux

The Clonezilla team has just a released a new development version for this Linux distribution, but unlike the latest versions, the current build integrates a larger number of improvements, besides the regular Debian updates.

“The underlying GNU/Linux operating system was upgraded. This release is based on the Debian Sid repository, as of June 24, 2014,” reads the official announcement.

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A June ’14 Distro Categorization

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GNU
Linux

I thought it might help a few people (including myself!) to perform the following categorized and referenced summary of the current “families” of non-commercial Linux distros. All of these distros have brief descriptions and rankings at the DistroWatch.com listing site [1].

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Quick Look: Linux Mint 17 Xfce

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GNU
Linux
Reviews

Linux Mint 17 Xfce includes enhancements to Update Manager, new artwork, better language settings, Xfce 4.10, long term support and much more.

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Antergos: An Easy, Quick Way To Try Out Arch Linux

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GNU
Linux

Arch Linux fans are frequently requesting more benchmarks of their preferred Linux distribution at Phoronix over claims that it's faster than the likes of Ubuntu, more versatile, etc. Every once in a while I do deliver benchmarks of Arch but it's not too frequent given that it's a rolling-release distribution that's very open to end-user tweaking and modification, thus hard to give a defined reference point for other users to compare their results against ours, as opposed to just say "download XYZ ISO, install, and then benchmark!" Thus when benchmarking a distribution like Gentoo or Arch, I prefer using one of the derivatives that at least deploys out of the box quickly, gives some sane default values to use for benchmarking, etc.

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Linux gaming

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GNU
Linux
Gaming

Back in 2006, when I was contemplating a move from Windows to Linux, I knew I would have to give up computer games. This wasn’t because there were no games written for Linux, it’s just that they weren’t very good. Most of the best commercial games were (and still are) written for Windows, but that’s been changing dramatically over the last year, thanks to Steam, the Internet-based software distribution platform from Valve Corp.

The move to support Linux came fairly late but is drawing impetus from the top.

In July 2012, Valve managing director Gabe Newell had complained that Windows 8 was “a catastrophe for everyone in the PC space.”

Observing that many people still stayed away from Linux because of a lack of games, he said Valve was working to bring Steam titles to Linux as a hedging strategy.

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Linux Deepin Brings Mac-Like Sensibility to the Linux Desktop

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GNU
Linux

When we consider the Linux desktop, most often GNOME 3, Ubuntu Unity, KDE, Cinnamon, and XFCE come to mind. Those desktops range from the old-school functional to the new-school modern. Each has its strengths and weaknesses along with a vocal following to give it a push into the eyes of the public. For the most part, we use one of those desktops with little thought to making a switch. That’s been my modus operandi for the longest time. Ubuntu Unity has been my desktop. I enjoy its combination of efficiency, powerhouse search, and modern flare.

But then along comes Linux Deepin, a distribution from China that looks to upturn the Linux desktop with an almost Apple-like sensibility. Linux Deepin offers a keen UI design that outshines most every desktop you’ve experienced. Along with that total redesign of the UI, comes a few bonus apps that might easily steal the show from most default apps.

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Top500 Supercomputer Remains Stuck at 33.86 Petaflops/s

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GNU
Linux
Server

While there are competing vendors, chip architectures, core counts and networking fabrics at play in the list of the worlds top 500 supercomputers, when it comes to the operating system of choice, there is no debate. Linux dominates the list with a 97 percent share, being installed on 485 systems on the top 500 list.

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Russia Government Chooses GNU/Linux with Chips

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GNU
Linux

Russia's government has been flirting with the idea of switching to open source for some time, but often that's been just another example of waving the threat around to encourage Microsoft to offer more favourable licensing terms for using its software, as has happened frequently in the UK. However, a new move by the Russian authorities might finally see them making the switch:

Russia’s Industry and Trade Ministry plans to replace US microchips Intel and AMD, used in government’s computers, with domestically-produced micro processor Baikal in a project worth dozens of millions of dollars, business daily Kommersant reported Thursday.

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RUSSIA FINALLY MOVING TO */LINUX

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GNU
Linux

These will, of course, run some */Linux operating system. At the rate the government replaces PCs this changeover could take years or, if they accelerate the change, just a year or two. I expect countries like China and India have the will and ability to make such changes. This is a clever move because the savings on hardware could more or less pay for the cost of changing software. The move to */Linux accelerates.

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Feasibility of desktop on ARM cpu

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GNU
Linux
OLPC

Thinkpad X60 is old, Core Duo@1.8GHz, 2GB RAM notebook. But it is still pretty usable desktop machine, as long as Gnome2 is used, number of Chromium tabs does not grow "unreasonable", and development is not attempted there. But eats a bit too much power.

OLPC 1.75 is ARM v7@0.8GHz, .5GB RAM. According to my tests, it should be equivalent to Core Solo@0.43GHz. Would that make an usable desktop?

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Related to: debootstrap, olpc, and gnome

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