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Microsoft

From Windows to GNU/Linux

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GNU
Linux
Microsoft
  • Turn an old laptop into a Chromebook-Linux hybrid

    Common scenario: You buy a new laptop, thinking you'll sell, donate or hand down the old one... but it never happens. Maybe you don't want to deal with the hassles of Craigslist or Ebay, not to mention wiping all your data, reinstalling Windows and so on.

    Whatever the case, now it's just taking up space. But it doesn't have to: You can give that old laptop new life.

    With Linux, right? Wrong! I mean, yes, you could install Linux, which has always been the go-to option, but not everybody needs or wants the complexity of that operating system. For some, Chromium might be the better choice.

    Chromium is the OS that's at the heart of Chromebooks -- those fast-booting, cloud-powered devices that are so popular these days. Think about it: For whatever reason, no one buys Linux laptops. They buy Chromebooks.

    If you like the idea of giving your old system a Chromebook-like lease on life, good news: It's fast, free and easy. And it's not even permanent unless you want it to be.

  • When Peer Pressure Nukes Linux for Windows

    Several months ago, my 16-year-old grandson decided he wanted a powerful computer for gaming. I showed him Steam and some other stuff in Linux and he thought that looked good, so I started accumulating parts. If it was substantially more powerful than anything I have for myself, it was on the list. Sorry I don’t have the details list nearby, but it had a motherboard with a name I had heard, a fairly fast AMD processor with six cores, maxed out RAM, 1TB hard drive, video that took up two slots and had two fans, power supply you could use for welding, and a pair of 22″ monitors.

    I installed Mint 17.3 KDE in less than half an hour (the usual), including separate swap and home partitions (it’s a neurotic thing), setting wallpaper and the like, and doing whatever came to mind at the time. It ran flawlessly and I was happy, so I played with it a while. I really liked it. If I could think of a use, I’d build one for myself.

  • That Other Operating System Continues Its Decline

    The big winner is the Linux kernel. The vociferous opponents of GNU/Linux who haunt this blog can’t have it both ways. If GNU/Linux is not “GNU” and is Linux, then Android/Linux can’t be just Android. It’s Linux underneath.

SUSE and Microsoft E.E.E.

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Microsoft
SUSE
  • openSUSE Tumbleweed – Review of the Week 2017/02

    I hope you all ended up well fed and healthy in the new year. For the last few weeks we have seen quite a slow pace for Tumbleweed, just as pre-announced in my last review of the year 2016. We can surely expect an increased pace again as people from all around the world resume their regular life rhythms. For completeness sake I will cover in this weeks’ review not only this week, but also the few snapshots since my last review. That means, we cover 8 snapshots: from 2016: 1216, 1217, 1219, 1222 and 1226 and from 2017: 0104, 0109 and 0110. Sadly, 0111 and 0112 ran into some issues on openQA – but the issues are to most parts in the testing framework, not the product (from what we know). But not being able to fully confirm it, I did not feel comfortable releasing them into the wild onto you. After all, I know some of you are still having issues with the kernel 4.9 series (but good new on that part is on the horizon). 0112 might still cut it, if we solve the openQA issues in time.

  • Forget Ubuntu, now OpenSuse Linux comes to Windows 10

    If you have been following Techworm, you will know that you can run Ubuntu Apps on Windows using Bash. Microsoft brought the fun and power of Linux to Windows 10 with Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL). This allowed the Windows 10 users to run Bash on Ubuntu on Windows 10 and enjoy Ubuntu Apps without having to install the Ubuntu distro separately.

  • You can now install SUSE Linux distribution inside WSL on Windows 10
  • It's Now Possible to Use openSUSE Inside Windows 10, Here's How to Install It
  • Microsoft celebrates ChakraCore's first anniversary with an update on the road to parity on Linux [Ed: Another example of Microsoft hijacking projects' (e.g. GNU/Linux projects') names]

Tired of Windows? Switching to Linux Will Be Easy If You Know This

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GNU
Linux
Microsoft

Linux sounds intimidating, but it’s essentially just another operating system. When you buy a pre-built PC, it arrives with an operating system pre-installed, usually Windows or Mac. But Linux distros such as Ubuntu are just as capable as Windows.

The process of installing Linux is rather simple. But actually using Linux is a bit different. There are many incentives for migrating from Windows to Linux. For instance, Linux variants often use less RAM or offer a lightweight environment.

Overall, there’s simply more choice. If you’re tired of Windows, switching to Linux will be pretty easy if you know these things.

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Microsoft and Openwashing

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Microsoft

Today's most popular operating systems

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GNU
Linux
Microsoft

The Federal Digital Analytics Program (DAP) reports that while Windows is the most popular end-user operating system, it's dropped below 50 percent to 49.2 percent. This is based on 2.17 billion visits over the past 90 days to more than 400 executive branch government domains across about 5,000 total websites, including every cabinet department.

That's quite a drop. According to DAP, Windows accounted for 58.4 percent of all government website visitors in March 2015.

Looking closer, you can see Windows' loss didn't come because users are switching to other desktop operating systems. MacOS still comes in at No. 2, with 9.2 percent. All other operating systems, with Chrome OS leading the way at 1.1 percent, amount to only 2 percent.

True, other sites show desktop Linux gaining serious market share. NetMarketShare reports Linux has held more than two percent of the market since June 2016, while W3counter reports that Linux accounted for 3.80 percent of desktops in December 2016. However, since neither site broke out Chrome OS, I suspect that vast majority of these gains go to Chrome OS' credit rather than traditional Linux desktops.

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GNU/Linux Desktop

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GNU
Linux
Microsoft
Mac
  • Want a Windows 10 PC in your pocket? GPD's tiny laptop will also run Ubuntu

    The maker of the GPD WIN, a 5.5-inch Windows 10 handheld game console released last year, is planning to launch a tablet-sized laptop, dubbed 'Pocket', which will run Windows or Ubuntu.

  • Troubleshooting tips for the 5 most common Linux issues

    Although Linux installs and operates as expected for most users, inevitably some users will run into problems. For my final article in The Queue column for the year, I thought it would be interesting to summarize the most common technical Linux issues people ran into in 2016. I posted the question to LinuxQuestions.org and on social media, and I analyzed LQ posting patterns. Here are the results.

  • Microsoft’s OS supremacy over Apple to end in 2017

    Apple will steal a march on Microsoft this year when for the first time this century shipments of devices powered by its operating systems outnumber those running Windows, research firm Gartner said today.

Microsoft Cuts

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Microsoft

Microsoft Finally Admits Its Malware-Style Windows 10 Upgrade Sales Pitch Went Too Far

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Microsoft

We've talked a lot about how Microsoft managed to shoot Windows 10 (and consumer goodwill) squarely in the foot by refusing to seriously address OS privacy concerns, and by using malware-style tactics to try and force users on older versions of Windows to upgrade. While Microsoft's decision to offer Windows 10 as a free upgrade to Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 made sense on its surface, the company repeatedly bungled the promotion by making the multi-gigabyte upgrade impossible to avoid, which was a huge problem for those on capped and metered broadband connections.

But at times Microsoft made things even worse by engaging in behavior that would make even the lowest scumware peddlers proud. Like that time the Redmond-giant began pushing Windows 10 upgrade popups that pretended to let users close the popup dialogue by pressing X, only to have that begin the upgrade anyway against the user's wishes.

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Openwashing

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Microsoft

Broken Connections

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Microsoft
Security
  • A Ton of Popular Netgear Routers Are Exposed—With No Easy Fix

    A vulnerability in some popular Netgear routers has gone unpatched for months. Left unchecked, it leaves thousands of home networking devices exposed to full control by hackers, who can then ensnare them in havoc-wreaking botnets. While Netgear has finally released a tentative fix for some models, the delays and challenges in patching all of them help illustrate just how at risk the Internet of Things is—and how hard it is to patch up when things go wrong.

    Andrew Rollins, a security researcher who also goes by Acew0rm, notified Netgear about the flaw on August 25, but says that the company never responded to him. After waiting more than three months, he went public with the vulnerability, and the Department of Homeland Security’s CERT group released an advisory about it on Friday. Its advice? Pull the plug.

  • Windows 10 is dropping WiFi connections, with no fix from Microsoft yet

    WINDOWS 10 is back to its old tricks again, with a recurrence of problems with WiFi connections dropping, something we’ve not seen since the early days.

    Although Microsoft has released a new version of Windows 10 in the last few days (1607) it doesn’t seem to be that, because most of the complaints predate the code drop by two days.

    KB3201845 was released on 9 December, but the problems started on 7 December and appear to be affecting some Windows 7 and 8.1 machines as well. There’s no pattern in terms of ISPs, routers, and WiFi cards - at the moment, at least, it’s all random.

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More in Tux Machines

Leftovers: Software

  • systemd 233 about to be released, please help testing
    systemd 233 is scheduled to be released next week, and there is only a handful of small issues left. As usual there are tons of improvements and fixes, but the most intrusive one probably is another attempt to move from legacy cgroup v1 to a “hybrid” setup where the new unified (cgroup v2) hierarchy is mounted at /sys/fs/cgroup/unified/ and the legacy one stays at /sys/fs/cgroup/ as usual. This should provide an easier path for software like Docker or LXC to migrate to the unified hiearchy, but even that hybrid mode broke some bits.
  • Keep : A personal shell command keeper
    Introducing a new command line tool which solves the issue of memorizing commands or storing them somewhere which is difficult to find. With the grep and run commands, one can easily find their long forgotten commands and use them them right away.
  • qutebrowser v0.10.0 released
    I'm happy to annouce the release of qutebrowser v0.10.0! qutebrowser is a keyboard driven browser with a vim-like, minimalistic interface. It's written using PyQt and cross-platform. I haven't announced the v0.9.0 release in this blog (or any patch releases), but for v0.10.0 it definitely makes sense to do so, as it's mostly centered on QtWebEngine!
  • GNOME Pomodoro: A Pomodoro Timer With AppIndicator And GNOME Shell Support
    GNOME Pomodoro is, like the name suggests, a Pomodoro timer for GNOME. The application website mentions that it's currently only for GNOME Shell, however, an AppIndicator is also available.
  • 7 Awesome Open Source Build Automation Tools For Sysadmin/DevOps/Developers
    Build automation is a vital tool for devops, sysadmins, and developers. It is nothing but scripting or automating the process of compiling source code into binary. Sysadmins can use build tools to manage and update config files. Following is a list of awesome open source and popular tools associated with automating build processes on Linux or Unix-like system.

Android Leftovers

Security Leftovers

  • Major Cloudflare bug leaked sensitive data from customers’ websites
    Cloudflare revealed a serious bug in its software today that caused sensitive data like passwords, cookies, authentication tokens to spill in plaintext from its customers’ websites. The announcement is a major blow for the content delivery network, which offers enhanced security and performance for more than 5 million websites. This could have allowed anyone who noticed the error to collect a variety of very personal information that is typically encrypted or obscured.
  • SHA1 collisions make Git vulnerable to attakcs by third-parties, not just repo maintainers
    After sitting through an endless flood of headless-chicken messages on multiple media about SHA-1 being fatally broken, I thought I'd do a quick writeup about what this actually means.
  • Torvalds patches git to mitigate against SHA-1 attacks
    Linux creator Linus Torvalds says two sets of patches have been posted for the distributed version control system git to mitigate against SHA-1 attacks which are based on the method that Dutch and Google engineers detailed last week. The post by Torvalds detailing this came after reports emerged of the version control system used by the WebKit browser engine repository becoming corrupted after the two proof-of-concept PDF files that were released by the Dutch and Google researchers were uploaded to the repository.
  • Linus Torvalds on "SHA1 collisions found"
  • More from Torvalds on SHA1 collisions
    I thought I'd write an update on git and SHA1, since the SHA1 collision attack was so prominently in the news. Quick overview first, with more in-depth explanation below: (1) First off - the sky isn't falling. There's a big difference between using a cryptographic hash for things like security signing, and using one for generating a "content identifier" for a content-addressable system like git. (2) Secondly, the nature of this particular SHA1 attack means that it's actually pretty easy to mitigate against, and there's already been two sets of patches posted for that mitigation. (3) And finally, there's actually a reasonably straightforward transition to some other hash that won't break the world - or even old git repositories.
  • [Older] Wire’s independent security review
    Ever since Wire launched end-to-end encryption and open sourced its apps one question has consistently popped up: “Is there an independent security review available?” Well, there is now!
  • Malware Lets a Drone Steal Data by Watching a Computer’s Blinking LED
  • FCC to halt rule that protects your private data from security breaches
    The Federal Communications Commission plans to halt implementation of a privacy rule that requires ISPs to protect the security of its customers' personal information. The data security rule is part of a broader privacy rulemaking implemented under former Chairman Tom Wheeler but opposed by the FCC's new Republican majority. The privacy order's data security obligations are scheduled to take effect on March 2, but Chairman Ajit Pai wants to prevent that from happening. The data security rule requires ISPs and phone companies to take "reasonable" steps to protect customers' information—such as Social Security numbers, financial and health information, and Web browsing data—from theft and data breaches. "Chairman Pai is seeking to act on a request to stay this rule before it takes effect on March 2," an FCC spokesperson said in a statement to Ars.
  • Google releases details of another Windows bug
  • How to secure the IoT in your organisation: advice and best practice for securing the Internet of Things
    All of the major technology vendors are making a play in the Internet of Things space and there are few organisations that won’t benefit from collecting and analysing the vast array of new data that will be made available. But the recent Mirai botnet is just one example of the tremendous vulnerabilities that exist with unsecured access points. What are the main security considerations and best practices, then, for businesses seeking to leverage the potential of IoT?

GNOME News

  • FEDORA and GNOME at UNSAAC
    Today I did a talk to introduce students of UNSAAC to the Fedora and GNOME world as it was announced by the GDG Cusco group. We started at 8:30 am and it was a free event:
  • GNOME Theme For Firefox Gets Updated, Looking Great
    There are a lot of complete themes for Firefox. We spoke about 3 of them in one of our previous articles. The good news today is that “GNOME 3” theme (which was also called Adwaita) for Firefox was updated. Now it’s working with all versions higher than Firefox 45. Previously, the theme didn’t work with the recent versions of Firefox. So people had to switch to other available themes. Fortunately, this finally changed today when another developer took the code, fixed the compatibility problems and re-released the theme.
  • GStreamer Now Supports Multi-Threaded Scaling/Conversion For Big Performance Win
    With the addition of over two thousand lines of code, GStreamer's video-convert code within gst-plugins-base is now properly multi-threaded. Video scaling and conversion can now be multi-threaded when using GStreamer. With this multi-threading work by Sebastian Dröge, he commented with the commit, "During tests, this gave up to 1.8x speedup with 2 threads and up to 3.2x speedup with 4 threads when converting e.g. 1080p to 4k in v210."