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Linux

How we built a Linux desktop app with Electron

Filed under
Linux
HowTos

Tutanota is a secure, open source email service that's been available as an app for the browser, iOS, and Android. The client code is published under GPLv3 and the Android app is available on F-Droid to enable everyone to use a completely Google-free version.

Because Tutanota focuses on open source and develops on Linux clients, we wanted to release a desktop app for Linux and other platforms. Being a small team, we quickly ruled out building native apps for Linux, Windows, and MacOS and decided to adapt our app using Electron.

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What the Linux desktop must have to become mainstream

Filed under
GNU
Linux

Linux runs the computing world. It is by far the most used operating system on servers and perhaps the only OS on supercomputers. It has taken over much of the mobile world thanks to Android and is on the cusp of taking a majority share in education via Chrome OS.

The one area where it has had difficulty expanding year after year is the desktop. Not because it’s terrible at it but because it needs a few missing pieces that will stop the Year of the Linux desktop from being a running joke.

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Also: You're in control

Linux and Unikernels

Filed under
OS
Linux
  • How to quickly deploy, run Linux applications as unikernels

    A unikernel is a very specialized single-address-space machine image that is similar to the kind of cloud applications that have come to dominate so much of the internet, but they are considerably smaller and are single-purpose. They are lightweight, providing only the resources needed. They load very quickly and are considerably more secure -- having a very limited attack surface. Any drivers, I/O routines and support libraries that are required are included in the single executable. The resultant virtual image can then be booted and run without anything else being present. And they will often run 10 to 20 times faster than a container.

  • HermiTux: a unikernel that’s binary-compatible with Linux
  • HermiTux

    HermiTux is a unikernel: a minimal operating system with low memory/disk footprint and sub-second boot time, executing an application within a single address space on top of an hypervisor. Moreover, HermiTux is binary-compatible with Linux: it can run native Linux executables.

    Although being a proof-of-concept, HermiTux supports multiple compiled (C, C++, Fortran) and interpreted (Python, LUA) languages. It provides binary analysis and rewriting techniques to optimize system call latency and modularize a kernel in the presence of unmodified binaries. It supports statically and dynamically linked programs, different compilers and optimization levels. HermiTux also provides basic support for multithreading, debugging and profiling.

PPT Article

Filed under
GNU
Linux

The Open Source Initiative®’s first African Affiliate, Powering Potential Inc. (PPI), is pleased to announce a pilot program expansion in Peru of their award-winning solar-powered Raspberry Pi computer labs already enhancing education throughout rural Tanzania, Africa.

The organization has installed 29 solar-powered systems and 203 computers with servers in 29 secondary schools in Tanzania over the last 13 years. As a result, more than 23,000 students and teachers have been provided with direct access to educational materials and technology training with minimal impact to the environment.

PPI created their Solar-Powered Access to Raspberry Computing (SPARC) installation model using Raspberry Pi computers with an abundance of open source software, such as RACHEL from WorldPossible.org, Kolibri from Learning Equality. Educational resources include Khan Academy videos, UNESCO textbooks, and Project Gutenberg literature with health and medical information.

A basic SPARC lab installation consists of five Raspberry Pi computers, two 85-watt panels, three 108Ah batteries, a 15 amp charge controller, a 350 watt inverter, and a lightning arrester system. A SPARC+ installation includes 15 more computers, additional solar panels, six new batteries, and a new charge controller. PPI also uses local vendors to work with school districts to provide solar power and additional equipment.

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Linux 5.2 To Enable GCC 9's Live-Patching Option, Affecting Performance In Select Cases

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux

The GCC 9 compiler is due to be released in the next few weeks and among the many new and improved features is an option designed to help generate binaries that are friendly for live-patching purposes. With the Linux 5.2 kernel, this option will be used by default when building a kernel with live-patching support and that has the potential for some slight slowdowns.

GCC 9 introduces the -flive-patching option that controls what optimizations are used in trying to ensure they don't mess up (or yield unsafe behavior) if the binary is to potentially see live-patching for the applying of security updates against the running kernel without the need for a reboot. This is relevant for the likes of kGraft, Ksplice, and Kpatch in helping to ensure the GCC compiler doesn't fudge their live-patching work.

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Also: Intel NEO OpenCL driver for Disco

The Asian Penguins

Filed under
GNU
Linux

When I was young, Apple computers dominated the schools I attended. The Apple II and, later, the Macintosh Plus were kings of the classroom in the late 1980s.

This was a brilliant move by Apple Computer (this was back before Apple dropped the word "Computer" from its company name). Get the kids used to using Apple hardware and software, and then those kids will be more likely to use it when they grow up. Plus, the parents of the kids will become at least a little more likely to pick up Apple gear, so that any computer schoolwork can also be done at home. And, the same goes for the teachers. It's just a fantastic strategy to encourage adoption of a computer platform.

When it comes to Linux and, more generally, open-source software, there's no singular company responsible for promoting the platform. Luckily, many individuals and small organizations have taken up the charge of teaching free and open-source software (like Linux) to the next generation of computer users.

One such group is a computer club at a Hmong charter school in Minnesota known as the Asian Penguins.

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Linux Partition Management

Filed under
Linux

​Making Linux partitions is one of the toughest tasks for new Linux users. In this article, I will cover various topics on Linux partitioning. I'll use different Linux partition managers to list, create, resize, extend and delete Linux partitions.

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Top 20 Best Tizen Apps for March 2019

Filed under
Linux

March 2019 has come and gone. We can now report on the status of the Tizen Store and the most downloaded games and Apps for your Tizen mobile. We have quite a few new games to add to the list, 5 in total, and one new utility.

Top two spots are still with WhatsApp Messenger and Facebook. Death itself can’t separate these guys from the Store. The rest of the story is pretty much the same: Facebook Messenger, Hancom Office Viewer, Opera Web Browser, Xender, Instagram etc.

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Linux Server Hardening Using Idempotency with Ansible: Part 1

Filed under
Linux
Server

I think it’s safe to say that the need to frequently update the packages on our machines has been firmly drilled into us. To ensure the use of latest features and also keep security bugs to a minimum, skilled engineers and even desktop users are well-versed in the need to update their software.

Hardware, software and SaaS (Software as a Service) vendors have also firmly embedded the word “firewall” into our vocabulary for both domestic and industrial uses to protect our computers. In my experience, however, even within potentially more sensitive commercial environments, few engineers actively tweak the operating system (OS) they’re working on, to any great extent at least, to bolster security.

Standard fare on Linux systems, for example, might mean looking at configuring a larger swap file to cope with your hungry application’s demands. Or, maybe adding a separate volume to your server for extra disk space, specifying a more performant CPU at launch time, installing a few of your favorite DevOps tools, or chucking a couple of certificates onto the filesystem for each new server you build. This isn’t quite the same thing.

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SOMs based on RK3399 and PX30 SoCs target IoT

Filed under
Android
Linux
Hardware

The RK3399-based SOM-RK391 and the Rockchip PX30-based SOM-RP301 are a pair of SOMs launched by Arbor. The boards both support Linux and Android. A carrier board supporting these, and future Arbor Arm-based SOMs is provided as well.

Arbor Technology has introduced a pair of System-on-Module (SOM) products both based on Rockchip SoCs, the RK3399-based SOM-RK391 and the Rockchip PX30-based SOM-RP301. Both modules run Ubuntu, Buildroot, or Android 9.0. Along with the pair of modules, the company has also released the PBA-9000-A, its SOM-Series, single pin-out design carrier board.

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More in Tux Machines

Excellent Utilities: lnav – the log file navigator

This is the second in a new series highlighting best-of-breed utilities. We’ll be covering a wide range of utilities including tools that boost your productivity, help you manage your workflow, and lots more besides. For this article, we’ll put lnav under the spotlight. lnav is a curses-based utility for viewing and analyzing log files. The software is designed to extract useful information from log files, making it easy to perform advanced queries. Think of lnav as an enhanced log file viewer. For many years system and kernel logs were handled by a utility called syslogd. Most Linux-based operating systems have since moved to systemd, which has a journal. That’s a giant log file for the whole system. Various software and services write their log entries into systemd’s journalctl. lnav can consume the JSON version of journalctl’s output. And it supports a wide range of other log formats. For systems running systemd-journald, you can also use lnav as the pager. We included a couple of log analyzers in our Essential System Tools feature. And lnav wouldn’t be totally out of place in that feature. lnav is optimized for small-scale deployments. Read more

Android Leftovers

Today in Techrights

Video/Audio: Manjaro 18.0 Deepin Edition, Open Source Security Podcast, This Week in Linux, Linux Gaming News Punch, Linux Action News, GNU World Order and Talk Python to Me

  • What’s New in Manjaro 18.0 Deepin Desktop Edition
    Manjaro 18.0 Deepin Edition is official Manjaro Linux flavour with Deepin Desktop Environment 15.8 as default desktop environment includes several deepin applications a free open source software. Manjaro 18.0 Deepin Edition is powered by the latest Long-Term Support of Linux Kernel 4.19, include pamac version 7.3. in manjaro 18.0, The Manjaro Settings Manager (MSM) now provides an easy-to-use graphical interface for installing and removing the many series of kernels. At the time of this release, eight kernel-series are available directly from manjaro binary repositories, from 3.16 series to the latest 4.19 release.
  • Open Source Security Podcast: Episode 142 - Hypothetical security: what if you find a USB flash drive?
    Josh and Kurt talk about what one could do if you find a USB drive. The context is based on the story where the Secret Service was rumored to have plugged a malicious USB drive into a computer. The purpose of discussion is to explore how to handle a situation like this in the real world. We end the episode with a fantastic comparison of swim safety and security.
  • Episode 64 | This Week in Linux
    On this episode of This Week in Linux, we got a lot of releases week. Ubuntu and all of the Flavours have released 19.04 versions along with an interesting update from the Ubuntu derivative Pop!_OS. The KDE Community announced the availability of a bunch of new versions of various KDE Applications.
  • Linux Gaming News Punch - Episode 9
    Coming in hot (please save me from this heat) is the ninth episode of the Linux Gaming News Punch, your weekly round-up of some interesting bits of news. For regular readers, as always this might not be too helpful but for those who don't visit too often this should help keep you updated.
  • Linux Action News 102
    Ubuntu 19.04 is released we share our take, OpenSSH has an important release, and Mozilla brings Python to the browser. Also WebThings is launched and we think it might have a shot.
  • GNU World Order 13x17
  • Talk Python to Me: #208 Packaging, Making the most of PyCon, and more
    Are you going to PyCon (or a similar conference)? Join me and Kenneth Retiz as we discuss how to make the most of PyCon and what makes it special for each of us.