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Major Zorin OS Linux Release Is Coming This Fall Based on Ubuntu 18.04.1 LTS

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OS
Ubuntu

Shipping with the updated HWE (Hardware Enablement) stack from the recently announced Ubuntu 16.04.5 LTS point release, which is powered by the Linux 4.15 kernel from Ubuntu 18.04 LTS (Bionic Beaver), as well as an updated X graphics stack, Zorin OS 12.4 brings all the latest software and security updates from the Ubuntu repositories, along with performance enhancements and bug fixes.

"Zorin OS 12.4 introduces an updated hardware enablement stack. The newly-included Linux kernel 4.15, as well as an updated X server graphics stack," reads the release announcement. "In addition, new patches for system vulnerabilities are included in this release, so you can have the peace of mind knowing that you’re using the most secure version of Zorin OS ever."

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Amiga Enthusiast Gets Quake Running On Killer NIC PowerPC CPU Core

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OS
Hardware
Gaming

The Amiga community remains one of the most passionate and inventive we have ever seen, even now, decades after Commodore’s demise. A couple of weeks back, we featured just a few recent projects that were designed to breathe new life into aging Amiga systems, or at the very least ensure they remain repairable for the foreseeable future. Our article explaining how to build a cheap Amiga emulator using a Raspberry Pi was immensely popular as well. Today, however, we stumbled across a video that encapsulates the ingenuity of many of the more technical folks in the Amiga community. What it shows is an Amiga 3000UX, equipped with a Voodoo 3 card and BigFoot Networks Killer NIC M1, running some software – including Quake – on the Killer NIC’s on-board Power PC processor.

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Elementary OS Juno Brings Only Slight Changes to an Outstanding Platform

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OS
Linux

Elementary OS has been my distribution of choice for some time now. I find it a perfect blend of usability, elegance, and stability. Out of the box, Elementary doesn’t include a lot of apps, but it does offer plenty of style and all the apps you could want are an AppCenter away. And with the upcoming release, the numbering scheme changes. Named Juno, the next iteration will skip the .5 number and go directly to 5.0. Why? Because Elementary OS is far from a pre-release operating system and the development teams wanted to do away with any possible confusion.

Elementary, 0.4 (aka Loki) is about as stable a Linux operating system as I have ever used. And although Elementary OS 5.0 does promise to be a very natural evolution from .4, it is still very much in beta, but ready for testing. Because Juno is based on Ubuntu 18.04, it enjoys a rock-solid base, so the foundation of the OS will already be incredibly stable.

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OpenWrt, the Linux OS for your router, releases a first major update in over two years

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OS
Linux

OpenWrt, the Linux-based open source operating system for routers and other embedded devices, has been updated to version version 18.06. It is the first stable release since the reunification with the forked LEDE (Linux Embedded Development Environment) project. OperWrt 18.06 is the successor to the previous stable LEDE 17.01 and OpenWrt 15.05 releases.

OpenWrt last released a major update, OpenWrt 15.05.1, in March 2016. A few months later, a separate project, LEDE, was forked out of OpenWrt, in an attempt to create an open source community with greater transparency and inclusiveness. LEDE was formed by a group of OpenWrt developers who were not happy with some of the decisions being made by the core OpenWrt team.

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OpenWRT 18.06 Released, Their First Update Since Merging With LEDE

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OS

OpenWRT 18.06 is now available as the router/networking/embedded-focused Linux distribution.

OpenWRT 18.06 is a significant release in that it's the first since the OpenWRT and LEDE projects decided to merge under the unified OpenWRT umbrella following the two year fork of the "Linux Embedded Development Environment" (LEDE).

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Also: IPFire 2.21 – Core Update 122 Introduces New Linux Kernel Support and Overall Improvements

A single-user, lightweight OS for your next home project

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OS

What on earth is RISC OS? Well, it's not a new kind of Linux. And it's not someone's take on Windows. In fact, released in 1987, it's older than either of these. But you wouldn't necessarily realize it by looking at it.

The point-and-click graphic user interface features a pinboard and an icon bar across the bottom for your active applications. So, it looks eerily like Windows 95, eight years before it happened.

This OS was originally written for the Acorn Archimedes. The Acorn RISC Machines CPU in this computer was completely new hardware that needed completely new software to run on it. This was the original operating system for the ARM chip, long before anyone had thought of Android or Armbian.

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Linux Without systemd: Why You Should Use Devuan, the Debian Fork

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OS

Debian 8 was the first version to adopt systemd. The Devuan project began at that time, but the first stable release didn’t land until 2017, alongside the release of Debian 9.

Devuan uses the same APT package manager as Debian, but it maintains its own package repositories. Those are the servers that store the software you download using APT.

Devuan’s repositories contain the same software as Debian, only with patches that enable programs to run without systemd. This mainly refers to backend components such as policykit, which manages which users can access or modify certain parts of your PC.

What Is It Like to Use Devuan?

Just like with Debian, there are multiple ways to install Devuan. The “minimal” download provides you with the essential tools you need to get Devuan up and running on your machine. The “live” download provides you with a working desktop that you can test out before installing Devuan onto your computer.

Devuan uses the Xfce desktop environment by default. This is a traditional computing environment akin to how PC interfaces looked several decades ago. Functionally, Xfce is still able to handle most tasks people have come to expect from computers today.

The live version of Devuan comes with plenty of software to cover general expectations. Mozilla Firefox is available for browsing the web. LibreOffice is there for opening and editing documents. GIMP can alter photos and other images. These apps all function as you would expect, with no concern for which init system you’re running.

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HOPE XII: A FOSS Operating System for e-Readers

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OS
OSS

Free and open source software (FOSS) was a recurring theme during many of the talks during the HOPE XII conference, which should probably come as no surprise. Hackers aren’t big fans of being monitored by faceless corporate overlords or being told what they can and cannot do on the hardware they purchased. Replacing proprietary software with FOSS alternatives is a way to put control back into the hands of the user, so naturally many of the talks pushed the idea.

In most cases that took the form of advising you to move your Windows or Mac OS computer over to a more open operating system such as GNU/Linux. Sound advice if you’re looking for software freedom, but it’s a bit quaint to limit such thinking to the desktop in 2018. We increasingly depend on mobile computing devices, and more often than not those are locked down hard with not only a closed proprietary operating system but also a “Walled Garden” style content delivery system. What’s the point of running all FOSS software at home on your desktop if you’re carrying a proprietary mobile device around?

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New SteamOS Stable Release Brings Latest Updates from Debian GNU/Linux 8.11

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OS
Debian

SteamOS 2.154 has been released today to the brewmaster channel as the new stable version of the operating system and it appears to be based on Debian GNU/Linux 8.11, the last point release of the Debian Jessie operating system series, which reached end of life last month on June 17, 2018.

According to Valve's Pierre-Loup Griffais, SteamOS 2.154 contains the same updates that were pushed earlier this month to the SteamOS 2.151 beta release, so it should be considered a minor bugfix release as Valve continues to work on a major new version that would probably be based on Debian GNU/Linux 9 "Stretch" and feature updated kernel and graphics stacks.

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Also: SteamOS 2.154 Released As Valve Preps Kernel & Driver Upgrades

ReactOS 0.4.9 released

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OS

The ReactOS Project is pleased to announce the release of version 0.4.9, the latest in our accelerated cadence targeting a release every three months.

While a consequence of this faster cycle might mean fewer headliner changes, much of the visible effort nowadays comes in the form of quality-of-life improvements in how ReactOS functions. At the same time work continues on the underlying systems which provide more subtle improvements such as greater system stability and general consistency.

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Also: ReactOS 0.4.9 Officially Released As The First Self-Hosting Version, Better Stability

ReactOS 0.4.9 Officially Released with Self-Hosting Capabilities, New Features

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More in Tux Machines

GNOME: NVMe Firmware and GSConnect

  • Richard Hughes: NVMe Firmware: I Need Your Data
    In a recent Google Plus post I asked what kind of hardware was most interesting to be focusing on next. UEFI updating is now working well with a large number of vendors, and the LVFS “onboarding” process is well established now. On that topic we’ll hopefully have some more announcements soon. Anyway, back to the topic in hand: The overwhelming result from the poll was that people wanted NVMe hardware supported, so that you can trivially update the firmware of your SSD. Firmware updates for SSDs are important, as most either address data consistency issues or provide nice performance fixes.
  • Gnome Shell Android Integration Extension GSConnect V12 Released
    GSConnect v12 was released yesterday with changes like more resilient sshfs connections (which should make browsing your Android device from the desktop more reliable), fixed extension icon alignment, along with other improvements. GSConnect is a Gnome Shell extension that integrates your Android device(s) with the desktop. The tool makes use of the KDE Connect protocol but without using any KDE dependencies, keeping your desktop clean of unwanted packages.
  • Linux Release Roundup: Communitheme, Cantata & VS Code
    GSconnect is a magical GNOME extension that lets your Android phone integrate with your Linux desktop. So good, in fact, that Ubuntu devs want to ship it as part of the upcoming Ubuntu 18.10 release (though last I heard it probably just end up in the repos instead). Anyway, a new version of GSconnect popped out this week. GSconnect v12 adds a nifty new features or two, as well as a few fixes here, and a few UI tweaks there.

Red Hat Leftovers

  • Red Hat Advances Container Storage
    Red Hat has moved to make storage a standard element of a container platform with the release of version 3.1 of Red Hat OpenShift Container Storage (OCS), previously known as Red Hat Container Native Storage. Irshad Raihan, senior manager for product marketing for Red Hat Storage, says Red Hat decided to rebrand its container storage offering to better reflect its tight integration with the Red Hat OpenShift platform. In addition, the term “container native” continues to lose relevance given all the different flavors of container storage that now exist, adds Raihan. The latest version of the container storage software from Red Hat adds arbiter volume support to enable high availability with efficient storage utilization and better performance, enhanced storage monitoring and configuration via the Red Hat implementation of the Prometheus container monitoring framework, and block-backed persistent volumes (PVs) that can be applied to both general application workloads and Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform (OCP) infrastructure workloads. Support for PVs is especially critical because to in the case of Red Hat OCS organizations can deploy more than 1,000 PVs per cluster, which helps to reduce cluster sprawl within the IT environment, says Raihan.
  • Is Red Hat Inc’s (NYSE:RHT) ROE Of 20.72% Sustainable?
  • FPgM report: 2018-33

OSS Leftovers

  • Infineon enables open source TSS ESAPI layer
    This is the first open source TPM middleware that complies with the Software Stack (TSS) Enhanced System API (ESAPI) specification of the Trusted Computing Group . “The ease of integration on Linux and other embedded platforms that comes with the release of the TPM 2.0 ESAPI stack speeds up the adoption of TPM 2.0 in embedded systems such as network equipment and industrial systems,” says Gordon Muehl, Global CTO Security at Huawei.
  • Open source RDBMS uses spurred by lower costs, cloud options
    As the volumes of data generated by organizations get larger and larger, data professionals face a dilemma: Must database bills get bigger in the process? And, increasingly, IT shops with an eye on costs are looking to open source RDBMS platforms as a potential alternative to proprietary relational database technologies.
  • Progress open sources ABL code in Spark Toolkit
    New England headquartered application development company Progress is flexing its programmer credentials this month. The Massachusetts-HQ’d firm has now come forward with its Progress Spark Toolkit… but what is it? The Progress Spark Toolkit is a set of open source ABL code combined with some recommended best-practices.
  • Mixing software development roles produces great results
    Most open source communities don’t have a lot of formal roles. There are certainly people who help with sysadmin tasks, testing, writing documentation, and translating or developing code. But people in open source communities typically move among different roles, often fulfilling several at once. In contrast, team members at most traditional companies have defined roles, working on documentation, support, QA, and in other areas. Why do open source communities take a shared-role approach, and more importantly, how does this way of collaborating affect products and customers? Nextcloud has adopted this community-style practice of mixing roles, and we see large benefits for our customers and our users.
  • FOSS Project Spotlight: SIT (Serverless Information Tracker)
    In the past decade or so, we've learned to equate the ability to collaborate with the need to be online. The advent of SaaS clearly marked the departure from a decentralized collaboration model to a heavily centralized one. While on the surface this is a very convenient delivery model, it simply doesn't fit a number of scenarios well. As somebody once said, "you can't FTP to Mars", but we don't need to go as far. There are plenty of use cases here on Earth that are less than perfectly suited for this "online world". Lower power chips and sensors, vessel/offshore collaboration, disaster recovery, remote areas, sporadically reshaping groups—all these make use of central online services a challenge. Another challenge with centralization is somewhat less thought of—building software that can handle a lot of concurrent users and that stores and processes a lot of information and never goes down is challenging and expensive, and we, as consumers, pay dearly for that effort. And not least important, software in the cloud removes our ability to adapt it perfectly for use cases beyond its owner's vision, scope and profitability considerations. Convenience isn't free, and this goes way beyond the price tag.
  • ProtonMail's open source encryption library, OpenPGPjs, passes independent audit
    ProtonMail, the secure email provider, has just had its credentials re-affirmed after its encryption library, OpenPGPjs, passed an independent security audit. The audit was carried out by the respected security firm, Cure53, after the developer community commissioned a review following the release of OpenPGPjs 3.0 back in March.
  • Uber Announces Open Source Fusion.js Framework
    Uber Announces Fusion.js, an open source "Plugin-based Universal Web Framework." In the announcement, Uber senior software engineer Leo Horie explains that Uber builds hundreds of web-based applications, and with web technologies changing quickly and best practices continually evolving, it is a challenge to have hundreds of web engineers leverage modern language features while staying current with the dynamic nature of the web platform. Fusion.js is Uber's solution to this problem.
  •  
  • ASAN And LSAN Work In rr
    AddressSanitizer has worked in rr for a while. I just found that LeakSanitizer wasn't working and landed a fix for that. This means you can record an ASAN build and if there's an ASAN error, or LSAN finds a leak, you can replay it in rr knowing the exact addresses of the data that leaked — along with the usual rr goodness of reverse execution, watchpoints, etc. Well, hopefully. Report an issue if you find more problems.
  • Oracle Open-Sources GraphPipe to Support ML Development
    Oracle on Wednesday announced that it has open-sourced GraphPipe to enhance machine learning applications. The project's goal is to improve deployment results for machine learning models, noted Project Leader Vish Abrams. That process includes creating an open standard. The company has a questionable relationship with open source developers, so its decision to open-source GraphPipe might not receive a flood of interest. Oracle hopes developers will rally behind the project to simplify and standardize the deployment of machine learning models. GraphPipe consists of a set of libraries and tools for following a deployment standard.
  • OERu makes a college education affordable
    Open, higher education courses are a boon to adults who don’t have the time, money, or confidence to enroll in traditional college courses but want to further their education for work or personal satisfaction. OERu is a great option for these learners. It allows people to take courses assembled by accredited colleges and universities for free, using open textbooks, and pay for assessment only when (and if) they want to apply for formal academic credit. I spoke with Dave Lane, open source technologist at the Open Education Resource Foundation, which is OERu’s parent organization, to learn more about the program. The OER Foundation is a nonprofit organization hosted by Otago Polytechnic in Dunedin, New Zealand. It partners with organizations around the globe to provide leadership, networking, and support to help advance open education principles.
  • Tomu Is A Tiny, Open Source Computer That Easily Fits In Your USB Port
    There are a number of USB stick computers available in the market at varying prices. One of them that really stands out is Tomu — a teeny weeny ARM processor that can entirely fit inside your computer’s USB port. Tomu is based on Silicon Labs Happy Gecko EFM32HG309 Arm Cortex-M0+ microcontroller that runs at 25 MHz. It sports 8 kb of RAM and 60 kb of flash onboard. In spite of the small size, it supports two LEDs and two capacitance touch buttons.
  • RcppArmadillo 0.9.100.5.0
    A new RcppArmadillo release 0.9.100.5.0, based on the new Armadillo release 9.100.5 from earlier today, is now on CRAN and in Debian. It once again follows our (and Conrad's) bi-monthly release schedule. Conrad started with a new 9.100.* series a few days ago. I ran reverse-depends checks and found an issue which he promptly addressed; CRAN found another which he also very promptly addressed. It remains a true pleasure to work with such experienced professionals as Conrad (with whom I finally had a beer around the recent useR! in his home town) and of course the CRAN team whose superb package repository truly is the bedrock of the R community.
  • PHP version 7.1.21 and 7.2.9
    RPM of PHP version 7.2.9 are available in remi repository for Fedora 28 and in remi-php72 repository for Fedora 25-27 and Enterprise Linux ≥ 6 (RHEL, CentOS). RPM of PHP version 7.1.21 are available in remi repository for Fedora 26-27 and in remi-php71 repository for Fedora 25 and Enterprise Linux (RHEL, CentOS).

GNU/Linux on Laptops and Desktops

  • Endless OS and Asus, Update on L1TF Exploit, Free Red Hat DevConf.US in Boston, Linux 4.19 Kernel Update
    Some of us may recall a time when ASUS used to ship a stripped down version of Xandros Linux with their line of Eee PC netbooks. Last week, the same company announced that Endless OS will be supporting non-OS offerings of their product. However it comes with a big disclaimer stating that ASUS will not officially support the operating system's compatibility issues.
  • The Chromebook Grows Up
    What started out as a project to provide a cheap, functional, secure and fast laptop experience has become so much more. Chromebooks in general have suffered from a lack of street-cred acceptance. Yes, they did a great job of doing the everyday basics—web browsing and...well, that was about it. Today, with the integration of Android apps, all new and recently built Chrome OS devices do much more offline—nearly as much as a conventional laptop or desktop, be it video editing, photo editing or a way to switch to a Linux desktop for developers or those who just like to do that sort of thing.
  • Windows 10 Linux Distribution Overload? We have just the thing [Ed: Microsoft is still striving to control and master GNU/Linux through malware, Vista 10]
  • What Dropbox dropping Linux support says
    You've probably already heard by now that Dropbox is nixing support for all Linux file systems but unencrypted ext4. When this was announced, much of the open source crowd was up in arms—and rightfully so. Dropbox has supported Linux for a long time, so this move came as a massive surprise.
  • Winds Beautifully Combines Feed Reader and Podcast Player in One Single App
    Billboard top 50 playlist is great for commuting. But I’m a nerd so I mostly prefer podcasts. Day after day, listening to podcasts on my phone has turned into a habit for the better and now, I crave my favorite podcasts even when I’m home, sitting in front of my computer. Thus began, my hunt for the perfect podcast app for Linux. Desktop Linux doesn’t have a huge selection of dedicated podcast applications. Of course, you can use Rhythmbox music player or VLC Media player to download podcasts (is there anything VLC can’t do?). There are even some great command line tools to download podcasts if you want to go down that road.
  • VirtualBox 5.2.18 Maintenance Update fixed VM process termination on RDP client disconnect
    Virtualbox developers released a maintenance update for virtualization solution on the 14th of August, 2018. The latest update raised the version of VirtualBox to 5.2.18. The improvements and additions have been welcomed by several users as it makes the virtualization product even more convenient to use.