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Ubuntu Linux server with ARM processor rolled out by Boston Limited

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Linux

Boston Limited has announced a new server based on ARM processors and certified to run Ubuntu Linux 13.10, a move that could further stir up growing interest in ARM servers.

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In support of open source launchers

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Linux
News

After many years of using traditional desktop environments like Gnome 2 and KDE and XFCE, I recently spent a few months with Ubuntu 13.04. Overall, my experience with the Unity desktop was fairly positive after I tweaked and configured it to my liking. Since then, I’m using a different non-Ubuntu based distribution, so I’m currently using Mate 1.6. Probably the feature that I most miss from Unity is the launcher. Frankly, I’m surprised that the Unity launcher was so useful and intuitive for me, since I have never been particularly fond of keyboard navigation. Although I still don’t use the keyboard much for window management or within the applications, now that I’m back on Mate I find myself really missing the convenience of searching and launching both apps and files from one unified interface with just a few keywords. With the online results all disabled, Unity’s launcher learns from the user’s habits and quickly becomes uncannily accurate at suggesting relevant local files and applications based on a few letters of input. It really did significantly add to my productivity. The only problem is that the Unity desktop environment, apart from its launcher, is not what everyone wants in a desktop. Additionally, despite a few efforts to port it to other distributions with varying degrees of success, Unity continues to be an option almost exclusively for Ubuntu based systems. So, what other options are available for users who want a launcher like Unity’s, but in a different desktop environment and/or distribution? That’s what I set to find out.

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New Linux Hypervisor Announced: Jailhouse

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Linux

Siemens announced to the world this morning Jailhouse, a Linux-based partitioning hypervisor. Jailhouse is a lighter weight alternative to KVM but still in early development stages.

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AMD Radeon R9 290 On Linux

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Linux

AMD unveiled the Radeon R9 290 graphics card at the beginning of November as one step down from the new flagship Radeon R9 290X graphics card. Numerous Windows reviews praised the graphics card for its great performance, but what wasn't clear at the time was how the Linux performance and compatibility was for this new $399 USD graphics card. AMD hadn't offered any review samples to Phoronix for conducting any Linux-based testing and benchmarking, but it's more clear now why that didn't happen: the Linux performance isn't stellar. I bought an XFX Radeon R9 290 and now there's many Linux benchmarks coming out of this graphics card that's riddled by what might be driver issues. I already regret having purchased the AMD Radeon R9 290 for use on Linux; the graphics card is hot, power hungry, noisy, and the OpenGL results aren't too good.

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Samsung defies critics, ships 800,000 Galaxy Gear smartwatches in two months

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Linux

The company recently updated its watch to improve notification support — a major issue for many reviewers — and says it plans to expand sales promotions for the holiday season in order to boost sales further. Samsung is also looking to expand the number of (Samsung) devices that can interface with the Gear; at launch, the smartwatch was limited to just one smartphone, the Galaxy Note III, but is now also compatible with the company's bestselling Galaxy S 4.

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Viber updates desktop app, brings support for stickers; launches Linux client

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Linux

Viber Desktop is now also available on Linux, in addition to Windows and Mac platforms.

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Looking For A Linux Laptop? Here's Help

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Linux

There are many benefits of installing Linux on your PC or laptop. When selecting a new laptop that can support Linux, there are not many that can perform efficiently with a Linux OS. This poses a bit of a problem for people who like to use open-source software as Windows 8 prevents dual-booting, which means you cannot have two OSes running at the same time.

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Tiny open source board runs Linux on i.MX6

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Linux

Slovakia-based Fedevel and its Voipac manufacturing partner are prepping an open source computer-on-module and baseboard built around Freescale’s dual-core i.MX6 system-on-chip. The credit-card sized i.MX6 Rex module is equipped with up to 4GB of soldered DDR3 RAM, as well as I/O including gigabit Ethernet, SATA, HDMI, USB, and PCI Express.

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How Munich rejected Steve Ballmer and kicked Microsoft out of the city

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Linux

The prospect of such a high profile loss, and other organisations following Munich's lead, spurred Microsoft to mount a last ditch campaign to win the authority back. A senior sales executive at the time told general managers in EMEA "under NO circumstances lose against Linux." Steve Ballmer himself took time out of a skiing holiday to make a revised offer in March 2003, followed two months later by Microsoft knocking millions of Euros off the price of sticking with Windows and Office.

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Linux Mint falsely accused of being “insecure”

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Linux

Oliver Grawert made a pretty blunt claim on the Ubuntu Developer mailing list a couple of weeks ago, stating that Linux Mint is insecure, and that he wouldn’t deem it secure enough to do his banking. This claim appears to be mostly based on the fact that Linux Mint, by default, does not install certain updates, because they form a danger to the stability of the system.

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More in Tux Machines

Leftovers: Gaming

Leftovers: Software

  • Hyper Is a Terminal Emulator Built Using Web Technologies
    A lot of us use the terminal on Ubuntu, typically from an app like GNOME Terminal, Xterm or an app like Guake. But did you know that there’s an JS/HTML/CSS Terminal? It’s called Hyper (formerly/also known as HyperTerm, though it has no relation to the Windows terminal of the same/similar name) and, usefulness aside, it’s certainl a novel proof-of-concept. “The goal of the project,” according to the official website, “is to create a beautiful and extensible experience for command-line interface users, built on open web standards.”
  • Little Kids Having Fun With “Terminal Train” In Ubuntu Linux
    Linux is often stereotyped as the operating system for tech savvy users and developers. However, there are some fun Linux commands that one can use in spare time. A small utility named sl can be installed in Linux to play with the Terminal Train.
  • This Cool 8-Bit Desktop Wallpaper Changes Throughout The Day
    Do you want a dynamic desktop wallpaper that changes throughout the day and looks like the sort of environment you’d be able to catchPokemon in? If so, check out Bit Day wallpapers. Created by Redditor user ~BloodyMarvelous, Bit Day is a collection of 12 high-resolution pixel art wallpapers.
  • This Script Sets Wallpapers from Imgur As Your Desktop Background
    Pyckground is a simple python script that can fetch a new desktop background on the Cinnamon desktop from any Imgur gallery you want. I came across it while doing a bit of background on the Bit Day wallpaper pack, and though it was nifty enough to be of use to some of you. So how does it work?
  • Productivity++
    In keeping with tradition of LTS aftermaths, the upcoming Plasma 5.9 release – the next feature release after our first Long Term Support Edition – will be packed with lots of goodies to help you get even more productive with Plasma!
  • Core Apps Hackfest 2016: report
    I spent last weekend at the Core Apps Hackfest in Berlin. The agenda was to work on GNOME’s core applications: Documents, Files, Music, Photos, Videos, Usage, etc.; to raise their overall standard and to make them push beyond the limits of the framework. There were 19 of us and among us we covered a wide range of modules and areas of expertise. I spent most of my time on the plumbing necessary for Documents and Photos to use GtkFlowBox and GtkListBox. The innards of Photos had already been overhauled to reduce its dependency on GtkTreeModel. Going into the hackfest we were sorely lacking a widget that had all the bells and whistles we need — the idiomatic GNOME 3 selection mode, and seamlessly switching between a list and grid view. So, this is where I decided to focus my energy. As a result, we now have a work-in-progress GdMainBox widget in libgd to replace the old GtkIconView/GtkTreeView-based GdMainView.

Leftovers: OSS and Sharing

  • Did Amazon Just Kill Open Source?
    Back in the days, we used to focus on creating modular architectures. We had standard wire protocols like NFS, RPC, etc. and standard API layers like BSD, POSIX, etc. Those were fun days. You could buy products from different vendors, they actually worked well together and were interchangeable. There were always open source implementations of the standard, but people could also build commercial variations to extend functionality or durability. The most successful open source project is Linux. We tend to forget it has very strict APIs and layers. New kernel implementations must often be backed by official standards (USB, SCSI…). Open source and commercial implementations live happily side by side in Linux. If we contrast Linux with the state of open source today, we see so many implementations which overlap. Take the big data eco-systems as an example: in most cases there are no standard APIs, or layers, not to mention standard wire protocols. Projects are not interchangeable, causing a much worse lock-in than when using commercial products which conform to a common standard.
  • Firebird 3 by default in LibreOffice 5.4 (Base)
    Lots of missing features & big bugs were fixed recently . All of the blockers that were initially mentioned on tracking bug are now fixed.
  • Linux & Open Source News Of The Week — Comma.ai, Patches For Firefox and Tor, And OSS-Fuzz
  • Open Source Malaria helps students with proof of concept toxoplasmosis pill
    A team of Australian student researchers at Sydney Grammar School has managed to recreate the formula for Daraprim, the drug made (in)famous by the actions of Turing Pharmaceuticals last year when it increased the price substantially per pill. According to Futurism, the undertaking was helped along by an, “online research-sharing platform called Open Source Malaria [OSM], which aims to use publicly available drugs and medical techniques to treat malaria.” The students’ pill passed a battery of tests for purity, and ultimately cost $2 using different, more readily available components. It shows the potential of the platform, which has said elsewhere there is, “enormous potential to crowdsource new potential medicines efficiently.” Although Daraprim is already around, that it could be synthesized relatively easily without the same materials as usual is a good sign for OSM.
  • Growing the Duke University eNable chapter
    We started the Duke University eNable chapter with the simple mission of providing amputees in the Durham area of North Carolina with alternative prostheses, free of cost. Our chapter is a completely student-run organization that aims to connect amputees with 3D printed prosthetic devices. We are partnered with the Enable Community Foundation (ECF), a non-profit prosthetics organization that works with prosthetists to design and fit 3D printed prosthetic devices on amputees who are in underserved communities. As an official ECF University Chapter, we represent the organization in recipient outreach, and utilize their open sourced designs for prosthetic devices.

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