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GNU

Munich sticks with Free Software

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GNU
Linux
OSS

On Tuesday, Munich's first mayor finally reacted to an inquiry by the Green Party (in German) related to rumours regarding a possible switch back to a Windows-based desktop environment. The answer to the inquiry shows that there is no factual basis for the claims made by first mayor and second mayor. An evaluation of the IT infrastructure and -processes is underway. FSFE calls on the city council to include vendor independence as well as interoperability as factors in the investigation, since they were central reasons for Munich to switch to Free Software in the first place.

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Do-It-Yourself Linux Machine

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GNU
Linux

What ARC does have is Linux support. In fact, Synopsys’s brand new ARC HS38 processor supports both “standard” single-core and SMP multicore implementations of Linux, something a bit new and unusual in the DIY processor arena. So just because you’ve rolled your own processor hardware doesn’t mean you have to give up on familiar operating systems.

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Open source startup targeting DevOps-defined networking

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GNU
Linux
OSS

A software startup debuted this week proposing software-defined networking to Docker, the open source software for creating Linux application virtualization containers.

SocketPlane was founded by former Cisco, Red Hat, HP, OpenDaylight and Dell officials. In the open source world, their names are well known: Madhu Venugopal, John Willis, Brent Salisbury and Dave Tucker.

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Also:

  • SDN News: Flexible NEC Pricing, HP Cloud, Industry Predictions and More

    The above are just a sampling of this week's SDN and NFV news, attesting to the industry interest in the emerging technologies, interest that was further evidenced by yesterday's announcement from Dell'Oro Group that SDN datacenter sales will grow more than 65 percent this year. "With architectures ratified and production deployments under way, network security appliances and Ethernet switches will continue to comprise the majority of SDN's impact, with SDN gaining a foothold outside of the major cloud providers," the research firm said while hawking a for-sale report.

  • Setting the SDN Agenda

    So what are going to be the hot topics of debate this week? I've been here a day, sitting in on the Open Networking Foundation (ONF) workshop and chatting to a number of companies with a vested interest in SDN's future success, and there are a number of debates likely to rage all week:

Is open source really harder work? Munich's experience shows it's more complicated than that

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GNU
Linux
Microsoft

Georg Greve is CEO of Kolab Systems, the company that recently began implementing groupware software to manage mail, calendar, task, and contact lists for the council.

The reason the mayor was unable to access email through his smartphone is due to how a legacy server had been set up, he explained, and would still have been a problem if the council had stuck with Microsoft.

"They had a system in place which was a plain old mail system, an IMAP server, the same system they've been using for a very long time," he said.

"It's behind a firewall and the firewall is configured in a way that a mobile phone shouldn't be able to access it, because all of this goes back to pre-mobile phone days.

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Munich sheds light on the cost of dropping Linux and returning to Windows

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GNU
Linux
Microsoft

No return to using Windows as the main desktop OS is planned, but the council is intending to conduct a study to see which operating systems and software packages - both proprietary and open source - best fit its needs. The audit would also take into account the work already carried out to move the council to free software.

Now in a response to Munich's Green Party the mayor Dieter Reiter has revealed the cost of returning to Windows.

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Linux clusters in German finance ministry data centre

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GNU
Linux
Server
SUSE

The shared IT service centre for Germany's federal government (ZIVIT) has awarded a 10 million euro support contract for open source software, it announced on 8 October. The four-year contract was won by CGI, a large ICT service provider. The contract is for maintenance and management of a high availability Linux cluster running databases, file and network services and backups systems, used by the Federal Ministry of Finance.

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For Ada Lovelace Day, highlighting FSF sysadmin Lisa Maginnis

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GNU

Today is Ada Lovelace Day, when we share stories of women in technology and their achievements.

The holiday is named after a 19th-century English mathematician who is considered by many to be the first programmer. Though generations passed before her contribution was fully acknowledged, she was a pioneer both as a scientist and as a challenger of rigid gender roles. For this Ada Lovelace Day, we're profiling Lisa Maginnis, who is the FSF's senior systems administrator.

As the leader of the technical team, Lisa is responsible for choosing, configuring, and maintaining the FSF's office computers and servers. She uses extensive knowledge of hardware, networking, and electrical engineering to maintain a complex array of all-free software. An alert system sends text messages to her OpenMoko if servers have problems, and she's no stranger to urgent after-hours trips to the office to get something back online.

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GOG Linux Update: We've reached the 100-title mark

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GNU
Linux
Gaming

Not even two months ago we've rolled out a feature that you, dear GOGgers, have requested almost since day one of our service: support for Linux games. It took us some time to do it the GOG-way, but we managed to unite our ideals of how DRM-free gaming should be, with the idea of the truly free OS, so passionately loved by many. We've kick-started our Linux games catalog with a selection of 50 titles, old and new, many of them available officially for that OS for the very first time! Doing that, we've mentioned our plans to expand this offer to over 100 titles in the coming months. Well, the day has come. With today's 15 additions we've passed the 100-title. And, boy, what great additions these are! Just look at those titles:

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The Linux Setup - Eric Hameleers, Slackware Linux

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GNU
Linux
Interviews
Slack

When you’re interviewing a Slackware developer, you have certain expectations about what they’ll say in terms of controlling your own system and Eric delivers. In fact, he makes the case that Slackware, known as a more challenging system to setup and maintain, is valuable because it requires so much thought. Which is true—I’ve always seen Slackware as one part distro and one part teaching tool. The rest of Eric’s interview is great as he’s a very smart guy who’s spent a lot of time thinking about what makes a distro work, not just in terms of specific software, but also in terms of what’s ultimately best for the user in the long-term.

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The Divisive Linux Community

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GNU
Linux

For the most part, this friction has led to new ideas that have provided ease of use and in some instances, improved functionality. Distros such as Ubuntu best showcase this example, despite the grief it gets from parts of the Linux community. Digging deeper beyond the surface, however, some of this friction has proven to be more divisive than productive.

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Watch a working Project Ara prototype demonstrated ahead of Spiral 2 reveal

The engineers behind Project Ara are trying to make the last smartphone you'll ever need. Their design for a modular device has users slotting components — a camera, extra storage space, a Wi-Fi connector — into their phones, as and when they need them. It's an ambitious scheme, but engineers working at NK Labs in Boston have already produced a working prototype, which they showed off to modular smartphone evangelist Dave Hakkens during a recent visit. Read more