The Amnesic Incognito Live System, also known more simply as Tails, is a privacy-focused Linux distribution loaded with tools and features to help users stay somewhat anonymous on the internet. Tails first rose to prominence in 2013 as the Linux distribution used by U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) whistleblower Edward Snowden and reached the 1.0 milestone in April 2014. The latest Tails release is version 2.10, which became generally available Jan. 24, providing users with security patches and some incremental feature updates. Among the new features in the Tails 2.10 release is the Onion Share anonymous file-sharing tool. Staying anonymous online is a core element of Tails, thanks to the integration with the Tor (The Onion Router) network technology. Tor also is updated in the Tails 2.10 release, to version 0.2.9.9 and the included Tor Browser, which is based on Mozilla's Firefox, is updated to version 6.5. To help protect users against online tracking in advertisements, Tails 2.10 now includes the uBlock Origin plugin with the Tor Browser, replacing the AdBlock Plus plugin that had been in previous releases. This slide show examines the important features of the Tails 2.10 release.
If you run Debian or one of its derivatives like Linux Mint or Ubuntu, sooner or later you come across apt-get and dpkg, the main commands for package management. However, these are only the most common Debian package tools. Over the years, Debian has evolved literally dozens of scripts and tools to make installing and configuring packages easier.
Many of these scripts and tools aid in creating packages. However, many are useful for everyday users, too. Often, they include features you simply won't find in desktop tools.
Here are nine of the most useful package management tools in Debian. Most should be available in Debian-derivatives as well:
I'm announcing the release of the 4.9.7 kernel.
All users of the 4.9 kernel series must upgrade.
The updated 4.9.y git tree can be found at:
and can be browsed at the normal kernel.org git web browser:
Also: Linux 4.4.46
Installing Linux on a laptop is one of the biggest stumbling blocks to adoption of the OS. After all, taking a perfectly good PC, nuking Windows, and replacing it with an unfamiliar OS can seem a lot like performing open-heart surgery to an inexperienced user. When you take into account that there are precious few laptops with Linux preinstalled, it’s no wonder that desktop Linux adoption numbers are so grim. (There are other reasons too, but I won’t go into those here.)
One of the few laptops to come correct with a Linux OS is Dell’s XPS 13 Developer Edition. I got a chance to benchmark the 2015 model a few months ago, and really enjoyed playing with the little ultrabook. Physically, it's virtually identical to the consumer version of the XPS 13, only it came loaded with Ubuntu 14.04. Flash forward, and Dell has updated its Developer Edition with Intel’s Kaby Lake CPU and Ubuntu 16.04. I have to say, there’s not much to dislike about the revamp.
(If you’re curious, Gordon Ung put a Core i5-equipped Windows model of the 2016 XPS 13 through its paces, too.)
Arch Linux is called the simple Linux because it eschews the layers of abstraction and "helper" apps that come with so many Linux distributions. It as close to vanilla Linux as a packaged distribution can get.
Consequently, you need to be more comfortable with do-it-yourself than with most modern distributions, and more comfortable with the command line and editing text files. I would rather take 10 seconds to edit a text configuration file than spend all kinds of time wading through graphical configuration menus. You know what would make me like graphical configurations more? Batch operations. Sometimes I like to change more than one thing at a time. No, really, it's true.
Last May the Raspberry Pi Foundation announced the Pi Zero (v1.3), with a camera connector. Thanks to the good people at Pi-Shop.ch, I was fortunate enough to get one in the first week after the announcement, but demand has been so high that they have been like hen's teeth ever since. Now it seems like production is finally catching up with the demand, and they have been showing up in stock at some distributors.
They're still not growing on trees (or raspberry bushes), though. There are two ways to buy a Pi Zero - either the board only, for about £4/$5, or in a "Kit" or "Starter Pack" with some assortment of port adapters and/or GPIO headers and/or cables and/or microSD card and/or power supply. The kits cost something like £10-£25 / $15-$50 depending on the content.
While it may not be as popular as Windows or MacOS, Linux is often the operating system of choice for those in the know. A combination of power and versatility has made Linux a firm favourite among developers and self-professed tech geeks over the years.
Contrary to popular belief, however, you don't need to be a programmer or a lifelong tech head to start using Linux. Most of the more popular distros are exceedingly easy to use, with heaps of documentation and guides available online. Best of all, Linux is classed as 'open source' software, meaning that it's completely free!
One brief disclaimer before we dive in; due to the nature of open source development, most of these distros are available in multiple different flavours - each of which will have various strengths and weaknesses. They'll all be broadly similar, but it's worth having a quick look at the specifics to decide which particular variant is best for you.