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OS

Why the operating system matters even more in 2017

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OS

Operating systems don't quite date back to the beginning of computing, but they go back far enough. Mainframe customers wrote the first ones in the late 1950s, with operating systems that we'd more clearly recognize as such today—including OS/360 from IBM and Unix from Bell Labs—following over the next couple of decades.

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Solus Packagers Rejoice: Solbuild Is the New, Faster Solus Package Build System

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OS

We knew it was destined to happen sooner or later, the evobuild package build system used in the Solus Linux-based operating system for building packages in the .eopkg format is now officially deprecated.

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Make Q4OS Look Like Windows With XPQ4

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OS

Many Linux distributions over the years have tried to look like Windows including Lindows, to a certain extent Linux Mint and of course Zorin OS.

Q4OS with the XPQ4 theme is definitely the one that has achieved the best results.

Zorin OS looks to be moving in a slightly different direction now and I have just installed version 12 as a dual boot to Q4OS so a review will be coming shortly.

I could have made my experience with XPQ4 better by installing the ttf-mscorefonts-installer package from Synaptic.

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An Everyday Linux User Review Of Q4OS - Part 2

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OS
Reviews

So now I have all the software I need installed, all hardware setup and running and I am using Q4OS on a daily basis.

As an operating system I am finding the performance is extremely good and everything is extremely stable.

Check out this guide which shows how to make Q4OS look like Windows XP, 2000, 7, 8 and 10.

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Zorin OS 12 Improves Linux Desktop Access for Windows Users

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OS

There is a seemingly endless variety of Linux distributions in the marketplace, each attempting to carve out its own unique market niche. Zorin OS is one such flavor — a desktop-focused Linux distribution with the goal of helping Windows and macOS users to make the transition to Linux. Zorin OS 12, its latest milestone release, became generally available Nov. 18. Among the improvements in the new release is the updated Zorin Desktop 2.0, based on the open-source Gnome Shell. The new desktop provides users with redesigned icons and a new look for windows and navigation. A feature of Zorin worth noting is the ability to configure the desktop using Zorin Appearance, a tool that provides configurable options for layout, theme, fonts and panel display. Zorin OS also aims to help make the transition from Windows easier by directly integrating the Wine software compatibility layer, which enables many different types of Windows applications to run natively on Linux. Additionally, the included PlayOnLinux tool provides Zorin OS users with a menu of games, internet and office applications that can be installed easily. This slide show covers some of the key highlights of the Zorin OS 12 release.

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Jolla’s Sailfish OS now certified as Russian government’s first ‘Android alternative’

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OS

The future for one of the few remaining alternative mobile OS platforms, Jolla’s Sailfish OS, looks to be taking clearer shape. Today the Finnish company which develops and maintains the core code, with the aim of licensing it to others, announced Sailfish has achieved domestic certification in Russia for government and corporate use.

In recent years the Russian government has made moves to encourage the development of alternatives to the duopoly of US-dominated smartphone platforms, Android and Apple’s iOS — flagging Sailfish as one possibility, along with Tizen. Although Sailfish looks to have won out as the preferred Android alternative for Russia at this point.

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FreeDOS 1.2 RC2

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OS
OSS
  • FreeDOS 1.2 Release Candidate 2

    We started FreeDOS in 1994 to create a free and open source version of DOS that anyone could use. We've been slow to make new releases, but DOS isn't exactly a moving target anymore. New versions of FreeDOS are mostly about updating the software and making FreeDOS more modern. We made our first Alpha release in 1994, and our first Beta in 1998. In 2006, we finally released FreeDOS 1.0, and updated to FreeDOS 1.1 in 2012. And all these years later, it's exciting to see so many people using FreeDOS in 2016.

  • FreeDOS 1.2 RC2 Arrives, Still Evolving After 22 Years

    The second release candidate of FreeDOS 1.2 is now available, approximately one month after FreeDOS 1.2-RC1 and twenty-two years after the FreeDOS open-source project began.

Endless OS 3.0.5

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OS
Reviews

Endless OS is a Linux-based operating system which seeks to provide a streamlined, simplified user experience. A large part of the user experience is provided by a custom desktop environment (EOS Shell) which is a fork of GNOME 3.8. The distribution is available in two editions, a 1.5GB Basic edition and a larger (approximately 13GB) Full edition. The Basic edition offers a small number of applications and is suitable for most situations where the user has an Internet connection. The Full edition ships with a large collection of software and is therefore more suited to off-line installations.

The Endless OS website mentions that support for audio formats, such as OGG and MP3, are built into the operating system, but most video formats are not supported. Video codecs and Netflix support are available for purchase through the Endless on-line store.

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Solus Lands AMDGPU and Radeon Goodies for AMD Radeon Users, Linux Kernel 4.8.8

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OS

New major versions of the open-source AMDGPU (xf86-video-amdgpu) and Radeon (xf86-video-ati) drivers that promise a much-improved graphics desktop experience for Linux users landed the other day.

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ReactOS 0.4.3 Release

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OS
  • ReactOS 0.4.3 Released

    The ReactOS Project is pleased to announce the release of another incremental update, version 0.4.3. This would be fourth such release the project has made this year, an indication we hope of the steady progress that we have made. Approximately 342 issues were resolved since the release of 0.4.2, with the oldest dating all the way back to 2006 involving text alignment.

  • ReactOS 0.4.3 Released, Fixes Over 300 Issues

    ReactOS 0.4.3 is now available as the newest version of this open-source OS that seeks to re-implement the interfaces of Windows.

    As described earlier, ReactOS 0.4.3 has a ton of changes. ReactOS 0.4.3 has many fixes/improvements to its kernel, less crashes in the Win32 subsystem, file-system fixes, a USB audio driver has been started, a basic filter driver added, TCP/IP fixes, improvements to kernel-mode DLLs, a rewritten WinSock 2 DLL, and much more.

  • ReactOS 0.4.3 Officially Released with New Winsock Library, over 340 Bug Fixes

    Today, November 16, 2016, the development team behind the ReactOS free and open-source computer operating system designed to be compatible with Windows applications and drivers, announced the release of ReactOS 0.4.3.

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More in Tux Machines

Docker 1.13, Containers, and DevOps

  • Introducing Docker 1.13
    Today we’re releasing Docker 1.13 with lots of new features, improvements and fixes to help Docker users with New Year’s resolutions to build more and better container apps. Docker 1.13 builds on and improves Docker swarm mode introduced in Docker 1.12 and has lots of other fixes. Read on for Docker 1.13 highlights.
  • Docker 1.13 Officially Released, Docker for AWS and Azure Ready for Production
    Docker announced today the general availability of Docker 1.13, the third major update of the open-source application container engine for GNU/Linux, macOS, and Microsoft Windows operating systems. Docker 1.13 has been in development for the past couple of months, during which it received no less than seven RC (Release Candidate) versions that implemented numerous improvements for the new Swarm Mode introduced in Docker 1.12, a few security features, as well as a new Remote API (version 1.25) and Client.
  • Distributed Fabric: A New Architecture for Container-Based Applications
    There’s a palpable sense of excitement in the application development world around container technology. Containers bring a new level of agility and speed to app development, giving developers the ability to break large monolithic apps into small, manageable microservices that can talk to one another, be more easily tested and deployed, and operate more efficiently as a full application. However, containers also demand a new architecture for the application services managing these microservices and apps, particularly in regards to service discovery — locating and consuming the services of those microservices.
  • DevOps trends emerging for 2017 and beyond
    Finally, one of the biggest trends for 2017 will not be just a focus on engaging and implementing some of these DevOps best practices into your enterprise, but a sweeping adoption of the DevOps/agile culture. This is because one of the most important – if not the absolute most key –tenets to a successful DevOps organization is culture. The enterprises that most espouse the shared responsibility, the empowered autonomous teams, the can-do attitudes, and the continuous learning environment in which DevOps thrives will see the biggest benefits.

Kernel Space/Linux

  • Optimizing Linux for Slow Computers
    It’s interesting, to consider what constitutes a power user of an operating system. For most people in the wider world a power user is someone who knows their way around Windows and Microsoft Office a lot, and can help them get their print jobs to come out right. For those of us in our community, and in particular Linux users though it’s a more difficult thing to nail down. If you’re a LibreOffice power user like your Windows counterpart, you’ve only really scratched the surface. Even if you’ve made your Raspberry Pi do all sorts of tricks in Python from the command line, or spent a career shepherding websites onto virtual Linux machines loaded with Apache and MySQL, are you then a power user compared to the person who knows their way around the system at the lower level and has an understanding of the kernel? Probably not. It’s like climbing a mountain with false summits, there are so many layers to power usership. So while some of you readers will be au fait with your OS at its very lowest level, most of us will be somewhere intermediate. We’ll know our way around our OS in terms of the things we do with it, and while those things might be quite advanced we’ll rely on our distribution packager to take care of the vast majority of the hard work.
  • Long-Term Maintenance, or How to (Mis-)Manage Embedded Systems for 10+ Years
    In this presentation, kernel hacker Jan Lübbe will explain why apparently reasonable approaches to long-term maintenance fail and how to establish a sustainable workflow instead.
  • Linux 4.9 Is the Next Long-Term Supported Kernel Branch, Says Greg Kroah-Hartman
    Linux kernel maintainer Greg Kroah-Hartman confirmed today, January 19, 2017, in a short message, on his Google+ page, that the Linux 4.9 branch is now marked as "longterm," or as some of you know as LTS (Long-Term Support). The story behind Linux kernel 4.9 becoming the next long-term supported series dates from way before it's launch last month, on December 11, when Linus Torvalds officially announced the new branch. It all started back on August 12, 2016, when Greg Kroah-Hartman dropped a quick Google+ post to say "4.9 == next LTS kernel."
  • Maintainers Don't Scale
    First let’s look at how the kernel community works, and how a change gets merged into Linus Torvalds’ repository. Changes are submitted as patches to mailing list, then get some review and eventually get applied by a maintainer to that maintainer’s git tree. Each maintainer then sends pull request, often directly to Linus. With a few big subsystems (networking, graphics and ARM-SoC are the major ones) there’s a second or third level of sub-maintainers in. 80% of the patches get merged this way, only 20% are committed by a maintainer directly. Most maintainers are just that, a single person, and often responsible for a bunch of different areas in the kernel with corresponding different git branches and repositories. To my knowledge there are only three subsystems that have embraced group maintainership models of different kinds: TIP (x86 and core kernel), ARM-SoC and the graphics subsystem (DRM).

Graphics in Linux

  • RADV Vulkan Driver Has Geometry Shader Support For Testing
    David Airlie has published a set of 31 patches for testing that provide initial support for geometry shaders within the RADV Radeon Vulkan driver. While RadeonSI has long supported geometry shaders, it's been a bigger work item bringing it to this open-source Radeon Vulkan driver within Mesa. The patches are enough for Vulkan geometry shaders to get working on RADV, but Airlie explains that the support isn't gold: "This is a first pass at geometry shader support on radv, all the code should be here in reviewable pieces, it seems to mostly pass CTS tests but triggers some llvm 3.9 bugs around kill, and there might still be a GPU hang in here, but this should still be a good place to start reviewing."
  • libinput 1.6.0
    This release fixes the slow touchpad acceleration on touchpads with less than 1000dpi, a missing call to normalized the deltas was the source of the issue.
  • Libinput 1.6 Released With New Touchpad Acceleration
    Libinput 1.6.0 was announced a short time ago on wayland-devel.
  • Mesa 17 Gets a First Release Candidate, Final Planned for Early February 2017
    Collabora's Emil Velikov announced today, January 19, 2017, the availability of the first of many Release Candidate (RC) development versions of the upcoming and highly anticipated Mesa 17.0.0 3D Graphics Library. Mesa 17 is shaping up to be a huge milestone that should dramatically improve the performance of the bundled open-source graphics drivers for Intel, AMD Radeon, Nvidia graphics cards on a Linux-based operating system. Just the other day it enabled OpenGL 4.5 support for Intel Haswell GPUs, which is already a big achievement.

Android Leftovers

  • Donald Trump has surrendered his Android phone
    Donald Trump has given up his beloved Android phone ahead of today’s inauguration, the Associated Press reports, though it is unclear what type of device he will use in the White House. According to The New York Times, Trump is now using a more secure, encrypted handset that was approved by the Secret Service. He also has a different phone number, the Times reports, citing people close to the president-elect. Trump doesn’t use email, but he does use his Android phone to tweet. He’s also been very accessible throughout the presidential campaign and transition, taking calls from reporters, politicians, and world leaders. Malcolm Turnbull, the prime minister of Australia, called Trump to congratulate him on his electoral victory after getting his cellphone number from professional golfer Greg Norman.
  • Best affordable Android smartphones you can buy [January 2017]
    There are new smartphones hitting the market constantly, but which is the best to pick up when you’re trying to save a buck or two? We’ve seen some great launches this summer and we’re only expecting more over the coming months, but for now, let’s go over the best affordable Android smartphones you can go pick up today…
  • A list of every Samsung phone getting Android 7.0 Nougat this year
  • WatchMaker to support Gear S2 & Gear S3, 1000s of watchfaces incoming
    WatchMaker, a popular Android and Android Wear watchface platform, has some good news for our readers. They are currently in the process of expanding their supported platforms and will be targeting Tizen and its latest wearable smartwatches, the Samsung Gear S2 and Gear S3.