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Ottawa Linux Symposium needs your help

Filed under
Linux

Several economic changes conspired to put OLS into the financial bind it is today. You can read Andrew’s take about it on the Indiegogo site. I think the problems started before the temporary move to Montreal. In OLS’s growth years, the Kernel Summit was co-located, and preceded OLS. After several years with this arrangement, the Kernel Summit members decided that OLS was getting too big, that the week got really really long (2 days of KS plus 4 days of OLS), and that everyone had been to Ottawa enough times that it was time to move the meetings around. Cambridge, UK would be the next KS venue (and a fine venue it was). But in moving KS away, some of the gravitational attraction of so many kernel developers left OLS as well.

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3D Engine for Linux UNIGINE Now Features a Complex City Traffic System

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Gaming

UNIGINE, a real-time 3D engine built to run on all major platforms, including Linux, has been updated again and its developers have implemented numerous features, including a comprehensive City Traffic System.

The UNIGINE Engine is built by Unigine Corp., the company behind the Heaven DX11 Benchmark software. The technology they develop is getting better all the time and the updates for the engine always bring numerous improvements...

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Major South Korean Pharmaceutical Company Ditches Windows for Ubuntu

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Ubuntu

Canonical published some very interesting details about a South Korean company called Bukwang Pharmaceuticals, which ditched most of its Windows OSes for Ubuntu and saved a lot of money. On top of the obvious savings, it also got a lot of good press, and other businesses found out that it can be done...

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Linux-based home automation hub gains Android app

Filed under
Android
Linux

The Revolv Smart Home Automation Solution is now available with an Android control app, greatly expanding its appeal beyond its core iOS user base. Until now, Android users have required an Insteon Remote in order to perform functions like assigning manual-triggered “Actions.” You can now use your Android phone to unify devices and customize automations based on four triggers, three of which are automatic: GeoSense, time of day, and device-to-device/motion sensor. The fourth is an On Demand manual trigger.

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Zorin OS 9 - Linux for Windows users

Filed under
Linux
Reviews

Zorin OS 9 is based on Ubuntu Linux 14.04 which is the long term support release and this means you will get software updates until 2019.

The unique selling point for Zorin OS is that it is has multiple themes which make it look like the operating system that you are used to using. For instance if you are used to Windows XP then you are able to switch to an XP style interface and if you use Windows 7 you can switch to a Windows 7 interface.

In the core version which is free the available interfaces are Windows XP, Windows 7 and Gnome 2. If you upgrade to the premium version you will get the user interfaces for Unity, Mac OSX and Windows 2000.

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Marvell lifts curtain on popular NAS SoCs

Filed under
Linux
Hardware

[Updated 12:00PM] — Marvell has posted detailed datasheets on its previously opaque Armada 370 and XP SoCs, used in Linux-based NAS systems from Buffalo, Netgear, and Synology.

Until now, datasheets and other details about the ARM-based Armada 370 and Armada XP system-on-chips have been available only under NDA to Marvell customers and partners. During the past month, however, the chipmaker released detailed datasheets on the SoCs, with no restriction or registration required. Both functional and hardware spec datasheets were released, each of which is more like a manual than a typical datasheet.

We were tipped to the Marvell Armada 370 and XP datasheet releases by embedded Linux development and training specialist Free Electrons. (The company is well known here for its regular contributions of videos and slide decks from shows like the Embedded Linux Conference, released under a Creative Commons license.)

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Linux will not become a gaming platform, it already is one

Filed under
Linux
Gaming

The true measure of any great gaming platform is not the number of games available. Nor is it the need to have the same games as other competing platforms (the Playstation 4 doesn't need Mario games to be considered successful). And it really isn't even about how many total games are sold, though that certainly helps.

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Odroid-W Joins Growing Ranks of Raspberry Pi Clones and Extensions

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Android
Linux

Time was, if you had a hankering for a nice Raspberry Pi, you had but one choice: the Raspberry Pi Model B. You plunked down your $35, and like millions of other Pi-heads, you liked it. Then came the stripped-down $25 Model A, followed this year by the Raspberry Pi Compute Module. Now they've got this gussied up Raspberry Pi Model B+ with four USB ports and a backward-compatible 40-pin expansion connector. What's the world coming to?

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Zorin OS Educational 9 Features Windows 7, Windows XP, and GNOME 2 Look Changer App

Filed under
GNU
Linux

Zorin OS Educational, an Ubuntu-based operating system aimed at Windows users who are switching over to Linux, is now at version 9.

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Converting A Small School To GNU/Linux in 1 Hour

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Debian

There are 2600 packages installed in the main file-system and the chroot for thin clients. It even installs LDAP and xrdp, much more than a minimal installation. I fear this is bloat for a lot of schools who just need a lab running… Without a fast local mirror, this installation takes many hours and I can see teachers taking up much of a weekend to do it.

I recommend doing a minimal installation of Debian GNU/Linux and adding the LTSP parts manually to avoid the bloat. That way you can get XFCE4, turn off encryption and use a local mirror or cache of packages. That will save downloading packages twice, once for the file-system and once again for the chroot and if you need to repeat the installation, the second try will be much faster.

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OSS Leftovers

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OpenBSD Gets Mitigated For Meltdown CPU Vulnerability

  • OpenBSD Gets Mitigated For Meltdown CPU Vulnerability
    A few days back FreeBSD 11 stable was mitigated for Meltdown (and Spectre vulnerabilities), which came more than one month after these nasty CPU vulnerabilities were disclosed while DragonFlyBSD was quickly mitigated and the first of the BSDs to do so. While OpenBSD is known for its security features and focus, only today did it land its initial Meltdown mitigation.
  • Meltdown fix committed by guenther@

    Meltdown mitigation is coming to OpenBSD. Philip Guenther (guenther@) has just committed a diff that implements a new mitigation technique to OpenBSD: Separation of page tables for kernel and userland. This fixes the Meltdown problems that affect most CPUs from Intel. Both Philip and Mike Larkin (mlarkin@) spent a lot of time implementing this solution, talking to various people from other projects on best approaches.

    In the commit message, Philip briefly describes the implementation [...]

France Proposes Software Security Liability For Manufacturers, Open Source As Support Ends

It sometimes seems as though barely a week can go by without yet another major software-related hardware vulnerability story. As manufacturers grapple with the demands of no longer building simple appliances but instead supplying them containing software that may expose itself to the world over the Internet, we see devices shipped with insecure firmware and little care for its support or updating after the sale. The French government have a proposal to address this problem that may be of interest to our community, to make manufacturers liable for the security of a product while it is on the market, and with the possibility of requiring its software to be made open-source at end-of-life. In the first instance it can only be a good thing for device security to be put at the top of a manufacturer’s agenda, and in the second the ready availability of source code would present reverse engineers with a bonanza. Read more

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