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Operating System U: A new Linux based OS with a firm focus on you the user and functionality over UI overhauls, hits KickStarter

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OS
Linux

There's isn't probably a piece of software that is as hated as Windows 8's Metro UI. Some seasoned Windows enthusiasts like it, but most of the normal day-to-day user had a hard time getting used to it. Operating System U is being readied with the regular user in mind, and is based on Manjaro Linux. A quick overview of the project.

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Xen & Docker: Made for Each Other

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Linux

Containers and hypervisors are often seen as competing technologies – enemies even. But in reality the two technologies are complementary and increasingly used together by developers and admins. This recent Linux.com article talked about this supposed battle, noting however that developers are using Docker in traditional VMs to bolster security. Containers allow users to develop and deploy a variety of applications with incredible efficiency, while virtualization eliminates any constraints and/or exposure to outside attacks.

Uniting these technologies helps developers and system administrators be even more efficient. Let’s take a closer look at how to achieve this with Docker and Xen Project virtualization, and why we expect more and more organizations to use them together in the near future. This will also be a key topic at the September 15 Xen Project User Summit at the Lighthouse Executive Conference Center in New York City. Register today to learn more about enabling Docker in Xen environments for a truly open infrastructure.

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FSF and Debian join forces to help free software users find the hardware they need

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Debian

The Free Software Foundation (FSF) and the Debian project today
announced cooperation to expand and enhance h-node [1], a database to
help users learn and share information about computers that work with
free software operating systems.

1: http://h-node.org

While other databases list hardware that is technically compatible with
GNU/Linux, h-node lists hardware as compatible only if it does not
require any proprietary software or firmware. Information about hardware
that flunks this test is also included, so users know what to avoid. The
database lists individual components, like wifi and video cards, as well
as complete notebook systems.

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Why Did Docker Catch on Quickly and Why is it so Interesting?

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Linux

One reason Docker is interesting is that all four answers are each individually useful, but can be used in combination. This causes cross-pollination of ideas and patterns. For example, someone might start using Docker because they like the speed and portability, but find that they end up adopting the configuration and Docker hub patterns as well.

The Docker technology is still fairly new; work is underway to add missing features, and a large ecosystem of related projects and companies is forming around it. There’s a lot of interest in the technology from the VC community, as we try to figure out whom to fund to do what, and how the story will play out in the longer term.

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Linus Torvalds Says Linux Binary Packages Are Terrible, Valve Might Save the Desktop

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Linux

One of the main problems with Linux platform fragmentation is that there are a number of concurrent binaries available for various platforms and they are not compatible with each other. Linus Torvalds explains why he thinks that the binary concept on Linux is broken and why he doesn't use them for his projects..

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It's time to split Linux distros in two

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Linux

You can take a Linux installation of nearly any distribution and turn it into a server, then back into a workstation by installing and uninstalling various packages. The OS core remains the same, and the stability and performance will be roughly the same, assuming you tune they system along the way. Those two workloads are very different, however, and as computing power continues to increase, the workloads are diverging even more.

Maybe it's time Linux is split in two. I suggested this possibility last week when discussing systemd (or that FreeBSD could see higher server adoption), but it's more than systemd coming into play here. It's from the bootloader all the way up. The more we see Linux distributions trying to offer chimera-like operating systems that can be a server or a desktop at a whim, the more we tend to see the dilution of both. You can run stock Debian Jessie on your laptop or on a 64-way server. Does it not make sense to concentrate all efforts on one or the other?

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Raspberry Pi-powered in-car computer project shifts up a gear

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Development
Linux
Interviews

After watching classic TV shows such as Knight Rider and Street Hawk in his youth, IT professional and Raspberry Pi enthusiast Derek Knaggs was inspired to create a low-cost in-car computer using a Raspberry Pi.
The Pi sits in the centre console of his Ford Focus, wired to the display of an Xtrons DVD player (optional) as well as two TFT screens in the rear headrests. Control is via a Xenta wireless keyboard with mouse touchpad, while a smartphone can be used as a wireless hotspot to give the Pi an internet connection on the move.
Having recently added a reverse camera to his already top-notch project, we caught up with Derek to learn more about it…

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GNOME 3.14 Still Depends On ConsoleKit, More Systemd Still Planned

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Linux
GNOME

Some plans for the GNOME 3.14 cycle didn't materialize but they're still being developed for future GNOME updates.

For the GNOME 3.14 development cycle was a plan to make most GNOME modules depend on a systemd logind-like API that would only implement the API bits actually used by the respective pieces of GNOME software. The goal was to make this minimal API a shim between the GNOME code and logind for allowing other non-Linux platforms to write an alternative implementation against the API. The purpose of this would be for the BSDs also using GNOME to only have to write a portable implementation of the logind-derived API calls actually being used by GNOME rather than a full, drop-in replacement.

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Also: OpenBSD Made Progress On Their Systemd-Compatible Replacement

Linus 3.17-rc4

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Linux

For a short while there, this week was really nice and calm, but that
was mostly because the "linux-foundation.org" entry fell off the DNS
universe, and my mailbox got very quiet for a few hours. The rest of
the week looked pretty normal.

"Pretty normal" isn't bad, though, and I'm not complaining. There is
nothing particularly big or scary going on - we had a quick scare
about a stupid compat layer bug, but it seems to have been just a
false positive and resulted in some added commentary rather than any
real code changes.

The diffstat is pretty reasonable, and it's fairly spread out. We have
the usual arch and driver updates, but there's actually more changes
under fs/ than under either of those. That's largely due to just a
late f2fs update, which I decided I couldn't be bothered to get too
upset about, most of it being pretty clear-cut fixes, with just a few
cleanups mixed in.

And really, if the f2fs changes look biggish, it's mostly because the
rest is pretty small.

Let's hope it all stays calm. I do note that neither Greg nor Davem
ended up sending me anything for rc4, which is probably the _real_
reason why it's pretty calm and small.

Linus

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CBI demands high-end gadgets

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Linux

Use of LINUX technology at its forensic lab is also the top priority of the agency.

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Android L Will Keep Your Secrets Safer

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WHAT THE GNOME RELEASE TEAM IS DOING

At the release team BoF at this years Guadec, I said I would write a blog post about the whats and hows and ifs of release team work. I’m a little late with this, but here it is: a glimpse into the life of a GNOME release team member. We are in the end phase of the development cycle, when the release team work is really kicking into high gear. Read more