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9 Linux distros to watch in 2015

Filed under
GNU
Linux

A list of the most interesting Linux distros to keep up with in 2015.

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3 ways to run 'normal' Linux on a Chromebook

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GNU
Linux
Google
HowTos

I’ve had the good fortune of having a Chromebook Pixel to work on for the last few months. And, despite what my preconceived notions told me, I’ve actually quite enjoyed working and living in ChromeOS on a day-to-day basis.

But, I’m a nerd. And nerds need to tinker, which means that I needed to try every possible method of running “traditional” (i.e. “not ChromeOS”) Linux distributions on this laptop as humanly possible. Here are the three methods currently available and my experiences with them.

First and foremost: Installing Linux directly on a Chromebook and wiping out ChromeOS.

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Gen-2 SmartThings hub migrates to Linux

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Linux
Hardware

SmartThings debuted a 2nd generation home automation hub that moves to Linux, and adds new sensors, battery backup, optional cellular, and premium services.

Prior to Samsung’s acquisition of SmartThings last August, the company told us its next-generation home automation hub would likely move from an embedded RTOS (real-time operating system) to Linux. A SmartThings rep now tells us the newly announced second-generation SmartThings Hub does indeed run Linux. Not so surprisingly, consider the Samsung acquisition, the rep also said “We will be moving to Tizen over time.”

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Native WhatsApp Shown Running on Samsung's Z1 Tizen Smartphone

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Linux

Samsung first-ever Tizen smartphone, the Z1 has gained a mythical status. The handset has been announced, delayed, cancelled, brought back from the dead only to make itself scarce again.

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The 4 Best New Linux Distributions to Watch in 2015

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GNU
Linux

There was a time when new Linux distributions popped up on what seemed like a daily basis. They came and went so fast, you might have completely missed their short lives. That’s not so much the case these days. Linux distributions arrive a bit less frequently and, when they do finally arrive, tend to have a bit more staying power.

Why is that? My guess would be that the stable of standard distributions has become so strong, it’s hard for competition to stand up to the likes of Ubuntu, Arch, Mint, Fedora, SUSE, and Debian. That doesn’t mean, however, that new distributions don’t try to take down the mighty standard bearers. In fact, there are a few distributions that could give those kings and queens of Linux a run for their money this year. Which ones, you ask? Let’s take a look at what I believe will be the distributions to watch in 2015.

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Systemd and Upstart Comparison and Usage on Ubuntu 15.04 Detailed in Great New Wiki

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Linux
Ubuntu

The adoption of systemd in Debian has caused quite a ruckus, but it has other ramifications. For example, Ubuntu will soon use systemd by default, most likely in Ubuntu 15.04. The community has put together a great wiki page that explains the differences between upstart and systemd and how you use it right now.

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Audio in Linux becomes annoying again

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Linux

At the moment I seem to be having more audio problems than usual. Last month I blogged about having to fix the ALSA Speaker volume level resetting to zero at boot, and recently two other audio problems have cropped up (again): Thunderbird's system sound, and Skype.

Awesome Window Manager v3.5.6 Debuts

Filed under
GNU
Linux

This highly-configurable GPLv2 window manager is out with a new version, but it mostly comes down to fixes and smaller work items. Awesome is still dependent on X11 and it doesn't appear there's any visible work at this point in porting it to become a Wayland compositor, etc.

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Government’s Boss move: Now a homegrown system to run computers

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GNU
Linux

In keeping with its larger ‘Make in India’ pitch, the government has asked states to deploy an open source Linux-based operating system — meant to run official computers — called BOSS, an acronym for Bharat Operating System Solutions. This is being proposed as a ‘homegrown’ alternative to the Microsoft Windows operating system, which is the predominant OS in use across Central and state government computer systems, alongside other Linux variants such as Redhat and Ubuntu, as well as Android and Unix systems.

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Jeff Hoogland On the Future of & Life After Bodhi

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GNU
Linux
Interviews

Unlike many Linux developers, he doesn’t earn his living in the software business — not entirely anyway. He’s a mathematician by trade, who pays his room and board as an adjunct faculty member teaching mathematics at ITT Technical Institute in Springfield, Illinois.

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Collaboration Events: Pakistan Open Source Summit, GNOME+Rust Hackfest, DataworksSummit Berlin

  • Pakistan Open Source Summit 2018 concludes [Ed: Not about software]
    A large number of attendees from industry, academia, government, and students participated in the summit. Portuguese Ambassador to Pakistan Dr Joao Sabido Costa was the chief guest at the opening ceremony while former Naval Chief Admiral (r) Asif Sandila graced the occasion as the chief guest at the closing ceremony.
  • ‘Open Summit key to create industry-academy linkages’
    Ambassador of Portugal to Pakistan Dr Joao Sabido Costa has said that events such as the Open Source Summit are excellent for spreading awareness and for creating industry-academia linkages and enhancement of the information technology. He stated this while addressing a concluding ceremony of the two-day informative ‘Pakistan Open Source Summit 2018’ attended by large number of people from industry, academia, government and students. Former naval chief Admiral (R) Asif Sandila co-chaired the concluding session. Dr Joao Sabido Costa said that the organisations should utilise open source platforms to build their IT infrastructures in future. To build open source culture in Pakistan, he recommended roadmap with future activities and timelines for spreading open source.
  • Madrid GNOME+Rust Hackfest, part 2
    Yesterday we went to the Madrid Rust Meetup, a regular meeting of rustaceans here. Martin talked about WebRender; I talked about refactoring C to port it to Rust, and then Alex talked about Rust's plans for 2018. Fun times.
  • DataworksSummit Berlin - Wednesday morning
    Data strategy - cloud strategy - business strategy: Aligning the three was one of the main themes (initially put forward in his opening keynote by CTO of Hortonworks Scott Gnau) thoughout this weeks Dataworks Summit Berlin kindly organised and hosted by Hortonworks. The event was attended by over 1000 attendees joining from 51 countries. The inspiration hat was put forward in the first keynote by Scott was to take a closer look at the data lifecycle - including the fact that a lot of data is being created (and made available) outside the control of those using it: Smart farming users are using a combination of weather data, information on soil conditions gathered through sensors out in the field in order to inform daily decisions. Manufacturing is moving towards closer monitoring of production lines to spot inefficiencies. Cities are starting to deploy systems that allow for better integration of public services. UX is being optimized through extensive automation.

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today's howtos

10 Great Linux GTK Themes For 2018

Customization is a big part of the Linux experience, and your desktop theme is no exception. The world of Linux desktop themes is an ever-evolving one, with new ones replacing old favorites all the time. Of course, the desktop environments and GTK itself are always changing, so that adds another dynamic element to consider. That said, some of the best desktop customization happens on the simplest desktop environments, like XFCE. As of now, in early 2018, there are some really excellent GTK themes available. These themes aren’t ranked in any particular order. That comes down to a matter or preference. Any one of them can add a whole new look to your GTK-based desktop. Read more