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Stable kernels 4.16.7, 4.14.39, 4.9.98, 4.4.131 and 3.18.108

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Linux

Major Debian Linux Kernel Patch Fixes 8-Year-Old Privilege Escalation Flaw

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Linux
Debian

First and foremost, the security update again patches Debian GNU/Linux's kernel against both variants of the Spectre vulnerability (CVE-2017-5715 and CVE-2017-5753). These could allow an attacker that has control over an unprivileged process to read memory from arbitrary addresses, including kernel memory.

While Spectre Variant 2 was mitigated for the x86 architecture (amd64 and i386) via the retpoline compiler feature, Spectre Variant 1 was mitigated by first identifying the vulnerable code sections and then replacing the array access with the speculation-safe array_index_nospec() function.

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Raspberry Pi educational hacker kit includes 7-inch touchscreen

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Linux

Elecrow has launched a Kickstarter campaign for a “CrowPi” computer education kit for the Raspberry Pi, featuring a breadboard, servo, stepper motor, LEDs, and more, including a 7-inch touchscreen built into a briefcase.

On Kickstarter, Hong Kong based Elecrow is launching a CrowPi educational kit for teaching the basics of Raspberry Pi hardware hacking for classrooms or informal DIY education. The kit, which is available with or without a Raspberry Pi Zero or new Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+, is built around a CrowPi Development Board that fits into the bottom of the kit’s briefcase. When you flip up the top of the case, you’ll find the built-in 7-inch HD touchscreen. Different models bundle add-ons including a servo and stepper motor.

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Linux Foundation: vRAN, OPNFV and CNCF

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Linux
  • Is vRAN a Natural Fit For a Linux Foundation Project?

    A virtualized radio access network (vRAN) is a key part of the 5G network architecture as defined by the 3GPP. And vRAN is getting a lot of attention from network operators because it promises to lower operator capex and opex costs as well as make it possible for them to add new capabilities to the network more quickly.

    The growing interest in vRAN has prompted the creation of three different groups — the xRAN Forum, the Telecom Infra Project’s OpenRAN Group, and Cisco’s Open vRAN initiative. All of these groups say they are working to make the RAN more open by using standardized interfaces and white box network elements.

  • Open Source Network Functions Virtualization Project Brings NFV Closer to Cloud Native with Sixth Platform Release, OPNFV 'Fraser'

    The OPNFV Project, an open source project within The Linux Foundation that facilitates the development and evolution of Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) components across various open source ecosystems through reference platform development, integration, deployment, and testing, today announced the availability of the sixth OPNFV platform release, OPNFV Fraser. Making the mission of OPNFV more operationally relevant, Fraser advances the state of NFV around cloud native applications and new upstream project integration while continuing end user support as they deploy and test virtualized networks.

  • Cloud Computing in Focus: Serverless, Microservices, KubeCon + CloudNativeCon, and More

    Cloud computing concepts can seem as nebulous as clouds themselves, but in April, we published several cloud-related articles to help clarify a few underlying ideas and look at some specific implementations.

    This month, Swapnil Bhartiya tackled the subject of serverless computing with There’s a Server in Every Serverless Platform. According to a recent whitepaper from the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF) Serverless Working Group, “serverless computing refers to the concept of building and running applications that do not require server management.” However, as Bhartiya explains, there are still servers involved.

Fedora 28 Released! Here are the New Features

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Linux

Fedora 28 has been released. Im proved battery life, Thunderbolt support, GNOME 3.28 are some of the new features. Have a look at other new features of Fedora 28.
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Release of Linux 4.16-ck1 and Plans for Linux 4.18

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Linux
  • linux-4.16-ck1, MuQSS version 0.171 for linux-4.16

    Announcing a new -ck release, 4.16-ck1 with the latest version of the Multiple Queue Skiplist Scheduler, version 0.171. These are patches designed to improve system responsiveness and interactivity with specific emphasis on the desktop, but configurable for any workload.

  • Linux 4.16-ck1 Kernel Released, Bundles In The MuQSS 0.171 Scheduler

    Independent Linux kernel hacker Con Kolivas today released the Linux 4.16-ck1 stable kernel as his collection of kernel patches applied atop the vanilla Linux 4.16 upstream code-base. Most notable to that patch-set is the updated MuQSS 0.171 scheduler, which is also available for download on its own for patching against your own kernel build.

  • It's Looking Hopeful V3D DRM Driver Will Make It Into Linux 4.18

    Work continues in an expedited manner on the "V3D" DRM driver formerly known as VC5 for supporting next-generation graphics hardware found on Broadcom SoCs.

    A few weeks ago VC5/V3D began its review process for the mainline kernel while the Broadcom graphics driver developer Eric Anholt has expressed optimism in his latest status update that the new driver will be ready for merging with the next cycle, Linux 4.18.

Void Linux Infrastructure In Limbo With Project Leader M.I.A.

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GNU
Linux

The rolling-release Void Linux independent OS known for its XBPS package manager, use of Runit as an init system rather than systemd, LibreSSL rather than OpenSSL, and other offerings making this Linux distribution fairly different is in a bit of a trouble. The project leader of Void Linux is missing in action, making much of the project's infrastructure inaccessible.

There still are multiple members to the Void Core Team and others working on this independent Linux distribution, but their project leader has "disappeared". There's been no contact since January but no "meaningful contact" in over one year.

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Linux Mistakes Newbies Make

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Linux

If you are new to the world of Linux, it is important to learn from the mistakes that others have made before you so that you can avoid making them yourself. After all, while some mistakes can simply be annoying, others can be costly. So, with that in mind, let's take a look at the common Linux newbie mistakes to avoid.

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Tough, COM-sized SBC runs Linux on i.MX6

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Linux

Versalogic unveiled a 95 x 95mm “Zebra” SBC that runs Linux on an i.MX6 Solo or DualLite SoC, and offers up to 4GB RAM, MikroBUS, CAN, -40 to 85°C support, and MIL-STD-202G shock/vibration resistance.

VersaLogic’s Zebra is its second rugged Arm-based SBC after the Tetra model launched in February. Whereas the Tetra offers a 125 x 95 COM Express Basic footprint and mounting holes, the Zebra has a 95 x 95mm COM Express Compact form factor and mounting holes. The smaller footprint is matched with a somewhat reduced feature set.

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Graphics: Vulkan and Vega M

  • Vulkan Virgl Has Kicked Off For Supporting This Graphics/Compute API Within VMs
    Of the hundreds of projects for this year's Google Summer of Code, there are many interesting GSoC 2018 projects but one of those that I am most excited for is Vulkan-Virgl for getting this modern API supported with hardware acceleration by guest virtual machines. As implied by the name, this effort is based upon the Virgl project started by David Airlie and originally tasked with getting OpenGL acceleration to guest VMs using a fully open-source Linux driver stack. Virgl has been in good shape for a while now with OpenGL, while this summer the hope is to get the Vulkan API support going for opening up VMs to using this high-performance graphics and compute API.
  • AMDVLK Driver Lands Half-Float Additions, Many Other Improvements
    There's been another weekly-ish public code push to the AMDVLK open-source AMD Vulkan Linux driver stack and this time around it's heavy on feature work. There has been a fair amount of changes pertaining to half-float (FP16) support including support for the AMD_gpu_shader_half_float extension, prepping for VK_AMD_gpu_shader_half_float_fetch, FP16 interpolation intrinsics and register settings, and more.
  • Vega M Graphics On Intel Kabylake G CPUs Are Beginning To Work Under Linux
    We have been covering the Linux driver upbringing of "Vega M" for the Vega/Polaris graphics found in select newer Intel "Kabylake G" processors. The code is still in flight before it will work in all released versions of the Linux driver components, but for those willing to build the code or rely upon third party repositories, Vega M is now working on Linux. As I have covered in various past articles, the open-source driver support for Radeon Vega M is queued into DRM-Next for the upcoming Linux 4.18 kernel cycle, Mesa 18.1 albeit with new hardware I always recommend using the latest Git (current Mesa 18.2), and there are also binary GPU microcode files needed too.

Plasma 5.13 – Amazing Tux, How Sweet Plasma

Plasma 5.13 is (going to be) a very nice release. It builds on the solid foundation that is the LTS edition, and adds cool, smart touches. The emphasis is on seamless integration of elements, which is what separates professionals from amateurs. It’s all around how the WHOLE desktop behaves, and not individual programs in isolation. And Plasma is making great strides, offering a polished version of an already mature and handsome product, with extra focus on fonts, media and browser connectivity and good performance. There are some rough patches. Apart from the obvious beta issues, those goes without saying, KDE Connect ought to be a true multi-phone product, the network stack really needs to be spotless, and that means full Microsoft Windows inter-operability, Spectacle should allow for configurable shadows and alpha channel, and I want to see if the decorative backend has been cleaned up, i.e. can you search and install new themes and icons without encountering useless errors and inconsistencies. But all in all, I’m quite impressed. The changes are big and noticeable, and above all, meaningful. You don’t just get features for the sake of it, you get things that improve the quality and consistency of the desktop, that maximize fun and productivity, and there’s deep thought in orchestrating it all together. It ain’t just a random bunch of options that happen to work. I like seeing patterns in things, and I’m happy when there’s functional harmony. This spring season of distro testing hasn’t been fun, and Plasma 5.13 is balm for my weary wrists, so hurting from all that angry typing. More than worth a spin, and highly recommended. Full steam on, Tuxers. Read more Also: This week in Usability & Productivity, part 20

Sad News! Development Stopped for Korora and BackSlash Linux

It seems more and more small distributions are facing a had time. Recently we saw the crisis at Void Linux. Now we have two more small Linux distributions calling it quit, albeit temporarily. Read more

Android Leftovers