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Linux

Game over for PS3 Linux settlement—judge concerned gamers won’t get paid

Filed under
GNU
Linux

A few months ago we reported that the "devil was in the details" about how Sony Playstation 3 owners could go about getting either $9 or $55 from Sony as part of a class-action settlement over a 2010 software update that removed the ability to run Linux on the popular gaming consoles.

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Linux Kernel 3.12.70 Is a Big Patch with Over 220 Improvements, Security Fixes

Filed under
Linux
Security

Jiri Slaby is announcing the release of the 70th maintenance update to the long-term supported Linux 3.12 kernel series, which will be supported for a few more months in 2017.

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Privacy-Focused Tails 2.10 Linux Includes Security Updates, New Tools

Filed under
Linux
Security

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.

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Improving Debian Linux Package Management: Seven Tools

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Linux
Debian

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:

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Linux 4.9.7

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Linux

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:
git://git.kernel.org/pub/scm/linux/kernel/git/stable/linux-stable.git linux-4.9.y
and can be browsed at the normal kernel.org git web browser:
http://git.kernel.org/?p=linux/kernel/git/stable/linux-st...

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Also: Linux 4.4.46

The new Dell XPS 13 Developer Edition is the little Linux laptop that can

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Reviews

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.)

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Arch Linux: The Simple Linux

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Linux

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.

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Calculate Linux Desktop 17 Cinnamon released

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Slack

Meet the new Calculate Linux Desktop with Cinnamon flavour!

Calculate Linux Desktop Cinnamon (CLDC) features a collection of Gnome 3 applications combined with the classic CL design and the OpenRC init system.

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Hands-On: A case for the Raspberry Pi Zero with camera

Filed under
Linux

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.

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Best Linux distros

Filed under
GNU
Linux

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.

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Security Leftovers

  • Atom Installer
    One thing that I miss about using Ubuntu is PPA’s there are lot’s of PPA in Ubuntu and you can hack around and install all types of software which are required for your usage. In the Fedora side of the world there are copr repos but they don’t have as many repos as in Ubuntu and you can’t build non-free software (don’t get me wrong here, I love FREEdom software but couldn’t resist not using some beautiful non-free applications such as Sublime). I am creating a work around for this by using shell scripts which are open source (cc0) but when those scripts are executed they install non-free software on your system.
  • MKVToolNix 9.9.0 MKV Manipulation Tool Released with New GUI Improvements, More
    MKVToolNix developer Moritz Bunkus announced today, February 20, 2017, the release and general availability of MKVToolNix 9.9.0 "Pick Up" for all supported platforms, including GNU/Linux, macOS, and Microsoft Windows. MKVToolNix 9.9.0 represents a month of hard work, during which the developer managed to add a bunch of new and interesting features, fix as many bugs reported by users since last month's MKVToolNix 9.8.0 point release, as well as to improve the build system, especially in regards to the man pages of the software.
  • Chakra GNU/Linux Users Get KDE Plasma 5.9.2 and KDE Applications 16.12.2, More
    The developers behind the Chakra GNU/Linux operating system have announced today the immediate availability of all the latest KDE technologies released this month in the stable repositories of the distribution. Yes, we're talking about the KDE Plasma 5.9.2 desktop environment, KDE Applications 16.12.2 software suite, KDE Frameworks 5.31.0, and KDE Development Platform 4.14.29, all of which can be found in your Chakra GNU/Linux's repos if you want to run the newest KDE software.

today's howtos

Leftovers: Ubuntu

  • IOTA: IoT revolutionized with a Ledger
    Ever since the introduction of digital money, the world quickly came to realize how dire and expensive the consequences of centralized systems are. Not only are these systems incredibly expensive to maintain, they are also “single points of failures” which expose a large number of users to unexpected service interruptions, fraudulent activities and vulnerabilities that can be exploited by malicious hackers. Thanks to Blockchain, which was first introduced through Bitcoin in 2009, the clear benefits of a decentralized and “trustless” transactional settlement system became apparent. No longer should expensive trusted third parties be used for handling transactions, instead, the flow of money should be handled in a direct, Peer-to-Peer fashion. This concept of a Blockchain (or more broadly, a distributed ledger) has since then become a global phenomenon attracting billions of dollars in investments to further develop the concept.
  • Return Home and Unify: My Case for Unity 8
  • Can netbooks be cool again?
    Earlier this week, my colleague Chaim Gartenberg covered a laptop called the GPD Pocket, which is currently being funded on Indiegogo. As Chaim pointed out, the Pocket’s main advantage is its size — with a 7-inch screen, the thing is really, really small — and its price, a reasonable $399. But he didn’t mention that the Pocket is the resurrection of one of the most compelling, yet fatally flawed, computing trends of the ‘00s: the netbook. So after ten years, are netbooks finally cool again? That might be putting it too strongly, but I’m willing to hope.

Linux Devices

  • Compact, rugged module runs Linux or Android on Apollo Lake
    Ubiqcomm’s 95 x 95mm, Apollo Lake-based “COM-AL6C” COM offers 4K video along with multiple SATA, USB, GbE, and PCIe interfaces, plus -40 to 85°C operation. Ubiqconn Technology Inc. has announced a “COM-AL6C” COM Express Type 6 Compact form factor computer-on-module built around Intel’s Apollo Lake processors and designed to withstand the rigors of both fixed and mobile industrial applications. The module offers a choice among three Intel Apollo Lake processors: the quad-core Atom x5-E3930, quad-core x5-E3940, and dual-core x7-E3950, which are clocked at up to 2.0GHz burst and offer TDPs from 6.5 to 12 Watts.
  • Internet-enable your microcontroller projects for under $6 with ESP8266
    To get started with IoT (the Internet of Things), your device needs, well, an Internet connection. Base Arduino microcontrollers don't have Internet connectivity by default, so you either need to add Ethernet, Wi-Fi shields, or adapters to them, or buy an Arduino that has built-in Internet connectivity. In addition to complexity, both approaches add cost and consume the already-precious Arduino flash RAM for program space, which limits what you can do. Another approach is to use a Raspberry Pi or similar single-board computer that runs a full-blown operating system like Linux. The Raspberry Pi is a solid choice in many IoT use cases, but it is often overkill when all you really want to do is read a sensor and send the reading up to a server in the cloud. Not only does the Raspberry Pi potentially drive up the costs, complexity, and power consumption of your project, but it is running a full operating system that needs to be patched, and it has a much larger attack surface than a simple microcontroller. When it comes to IoT devices and security, simpler is better, so you can spend more time making and less time patching what you already made.
  • Blinkenlights!
  • Blinkenlights, part 2
  • Blinkenlights, part 3
  • [Older] Shmoocon 2017: The Ins And Outs Of Manufacturing And Selling Hardware
    Every day, we see people building things. Sometimes, useful things. Very rarely, this thing becomes a product, but even then we don’t hear much about the ins and outs of manufacturing a bunch of these things or the economics of actually selling them. This past weekend at Shmoocon, [Conor Patrick] gave the crowd the inside scoop on selling a few hundred two factor authentication tokens. What started as a hobby is now a legitimate business, thanks to good engineering and abusing Amazon’s distribution program.
  • 1.8 Billion Mobile Internet Users NEVER use a PC, 200 Million PC Internet Users never use a mobile phone. Understanding the 3.5 Billion Internet Total Audience
    As I am working to finish the 2017 Edition of the TomiAhonen Almanac (last days now) I always get into various updates of numbers, that remind me 'I gotta tell this story'.. For example the internet user numbers. We have the December count by the ITU for year 2016, that says the world has now 3.5 Billion internet users in total (up from 3.2 Billion at the end of year 2015). So its no 'drama' to know what is 'that' number. The number of current internet total users is yes, 3.5 Billion, almost half of the planet's total population (47%).