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NSA: Linux Journal is an "extremist forum" and its readers get flagged for extra surveillance

Filed under
Linux
Security

A new story published on the German site Tagesschau and followed up by BoingBoing and DasErste.de has uncovered some shocking details about who the NSA targets for surveillance including visitors to Linux Journal itself.

While it has been revealed before that the NSA captures just about all Internet traffic for a short time, the Tagesschau story provides new details about how the NSA's XKEYSCORE program decides which traffic to keep indefinitely. XKEYSCORE uses specific selectors to flag traffic, and the article reveals that Web searches for Tor and Tails--software I've covered here in Linux Journal that helps to protect a user's anonymity and privacy on the Internet--are among the selectors that will flag you as "extremist" and targeted for further surveillance. If you just consider how many Linux Journal readers have read our Tor and Tails coverage in the magazine, that alone would flag quite a few innocent people as extremist.

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LinuxCon and ELC Europe keynotes revealed

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Linux

The Linux Foundation announced keynote speakers for LinuxCon + CloudOpen + Embedded Linux Conference Europe, to be held Oct. 13-15 in Düsseldorf, Germany.

Like last year, the Linux Foundation’s LinuxCon Europe is being co-located with CloudOpen Europe and Embedded Linux Conference Europe, with a single registration. This year the shows are joined even closer with plus signs, showing it’s just one big happy Linux fest — with plenty of good German beer.

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Docker and Linux containers: Red Hat opens up on the issues

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Linux
Red Hat

Red Hat's platform business vice president Jim Totton believes the current focus on containers could signal the growth of an alternative type of computing architecture — but says it's not yet clear how people will apply the technology.

Elements of container technology have existed in Linux in the form of cgroups since 2006 and in UNIX for decades. Containers sit on top of a single Linux instance and are a lighter-weight form of virtualisation, each capable of running an isolated app on a reduced OS under the control of a resources policy.

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10 tips for a more user-friendly Linux desktop

Filed under
GNU
Linux

The Linux desktop is leaps and bounds from where it was 10, five, even two years ago. Desktop environments that many declared unusable or dead have seen a renaissance in usability. But that doesn't mean that out of the box, every Linux desktop is ready for every type of user. For each user type there may be many ways to make a desktop more usable. Thankfully, this is Linux -- so options are never a problem.

With that in mind, I wanted to highlight my 10 best tips for creating more user-friendly Linux desktops. Not every one of these tips will apply to your particular desktop (be it GNOME, Unity, KDE, XFCE, Deepin Desktop, Cinnamon... the list goes on). But you should find more than one tip that will go a long way toward improving your experience.

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Wayland: tomorrow’s graphics tech today (by way of the Raspberry Pi)

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Linux

It already powers the hardware behind some set-top boxes and in-car infotainment solutions, but few realise that some development work on Wayland, the proposed display server replacement for X, is thanks in part to the Raspberry Pi…

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Linux 3.16 Aims To Enable Radeon BAPM By Default

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Linux

A DRM-fixes pull request for the open-source Radeon Linux graphics driver for the Linux 3.16 kernel is going to enable BAPM by default for some APU systems.

BAPM is a power management feature that handles power budgeting between the CPU/GPUs on APUs. Up to now BAPM has been disabled by default, but for fixing some power-related bugs, this feature is looking to be turned on post-3.16 merge window for some AMD APU hardware.

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Chumby back from the dead with 1,000 apps

Filed under
Linux
Gadgets

Chumby, which sold Linux-based tabletop devices that ran Flash-based apps, is back in business under Blue Octy, with an overhauled website and 1,000 apps.

Chumby Industries went out of business a year ago, leaving Chumby owners and subscribers in the lurch. Blue Octy LLC, quickly snatched up the assets and revamped the website. As reported first by Engadget, the company has now reopened the Chumby service.

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kGraft Being Discussed For Inclusion Into Linux-Next

Filed under
Linux
SUSE

The SUSE method for live kernel patching, kGraft, is being proposed for possible inclusion into the linux-next branch in hopes it will be merged into an upcoming Linux kernel release cycle.

The kGraft patches for live kernel patching continue to be revised and reviewed but at the same time there's still Kpatch that's been developed by Red Hat with some different design principles for updating the running kernel in real-time. To date there's been no general consensus on the superior solution nor any agreement to try to merge Kpatch and kGraft.

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BrickPi Bookreader 2 interview

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Linux
Interviews
Gadgets

A robotic, mechanical reader of printed books that melds together the Raspberry Pi and Lego Mindstorms.

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Steam Linux Usage Was Up Slightly In June

Filed under
Linux

With the start of a new month brings our monthly recap and it also brings Valve's updated Steam hardware/software survey numbers.

For June 2014, the overall Linux market-share using this randomly-sampled Steam survey was at 1.20%, an increase over May's 1.13%. Ubuntu 14.04 LTS 64-bit continued gaining ground as did Linux Mint 17 Qiana. The 32-bit Linux distributions continue to be (fortunately) declining.

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10 reasons to use Cinnamon as your Linux desktop environment

Recently I installed Fedora 25, and found that the current version of KDE Plasma was unstable for me; it crashed several times a day before I decided to try to try something different. After installing a number of alternative desktops and trying them all for a couple hours each, I finally settled on using Cinnamon until Plasma is patched and stable. Here's what I found. Read more

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