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Gaming

Games: Yogscast Jingle Jam, GCompris 0.97, Geneshift, RetroArch, Steam, Curious Expedition, Neon Noodles and Crusader Kings III

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Gaming
  • The Yogscast Jingle Jam bundle is back with 100% of the proceeds going to charity

    The Yogscast Jingle Jam, a bundle that Humble Bundle host each year is back with new games being added each day up until December 20 with 100% of the proceeds going to charity.

    Quite a different bundle to anything else they do, since it constantly adds new games and all the money goes to whatever charities have been selected. This year they include Wallace & Gromit's Grand Appeal, Stand Up to Cancer, Mental Health Foundation, Whale and Dolphin Conservation, War Child UK, Special Effect and more including our chosen charity The Free Software Foundation (FSF).

  • Release GCompris 0.97

    You can find packages of this new version for GNU/Linux, Windows and MacOS on the download page. This update will also be available soon in the Android Play store and the Windows store. For Raspberry Pi, we’ll provide an installer soon. The updated version for iOS is still not available. Note that the MacOS package is not yet notarized, we will look at doing this during next year.

    On the voices side, we added a new voice “try again” which is used in several activities instead of “check answer”. You can check on this page if this voice is available in your language: https://gcompris.net/voicestats/ (in the “Misc” section). You can help us by providing a nice recording of your voice for all the missing entries in your native language.

    On the translation side, we have 20 languages fully supported: Basque, Brazilian Portuguese, Breton, British English, Catalan, Chinese Traditional, Dutch, French, Galician, Greek, Italian, Macedonian, Malayalam, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Slovak, Spanish, Swedish, Ukrainian.

    We also have 15 languages partially supported: Belarusian (65%), Catalan (Valencian 95%), Chinese Simplified (66%), Estonian (93%), Finnish (86%), German (96%), Hindi (73%), Hungarian (95%), Indonesian (95%), Irish Gaelic (78%), Norwegian Nynorsk (93%), Russian (76%), Scottish Gaelic (67%), Slovenian (54%), Turkish (95%).

  • Geneshift Battle Royale just got a lot prettier with a big update, also on sale right now

    Geneshift just keeps getting better! This indie action game that has a sweet fast-paced Battle Royale mode (along with a full single-player and co-op campaign) just had another rather huge update.

    For starters, it's had a bit of a graphical upgrade. It now has multisample anti-aliasing, upgraded player models that actually hold the weapons and an entirely new tilted camera angle. The new camera is a big improvement, giving you a proper sense of the height of objects around you, like getting some cover which the older top-down view just didn't give you.

  • RetroArch is getting hardware video decoding, manual content scanning and more

    The team behind the RetroArch front-end used with emulators, game engines and media players have announced that it will be getting proper hardware accelerated video decoding soon.

    Currently, all video decoding is done "entirely in software", so your CPU is doing the work instead of sending it off to your GPU which can cause slowdowns when your CPU is busy. They've said they're now going to be using FFmpeg supporting VDPAU and VAAPI. This might be good news for anyone using something like a Raspberry Pi, or other lower powered devices. You can see their full post on it here.

  • Steam Survey For November Points To Flat Linux Percentage

    With the start of a new month always comes the excitement of seeing what Valve's Steam Survey is pointing at for gaming trends as to the percentage of Linux gamers.

    For October 2019 the Linux gaming population on Steam according to Valve was about 0.83%, basically flat compared to September, at least on a percentage term. Meanwhile for the newly-published November figures it comes at 0.81%, or a decline of 0.02%.

  • Curious Expedition adds a RIVALS multiplayer mode with massive maps and it's great fun

    Curious Expedition, a roguelike expedition simulation game set in the late 19th century just recently had a big RIVALS update to add in multiplayer support. This isn't a DLC either, it's a full free update for everyone who owns the game which is fantastic.

    I'm quite a late arrival on this one, only picking it up in the sales recently and I ended up a little hooked on it so this was all rather good timing. The RIVALS mode is very similar to how it all works in single-player, with you each leading an expedition. You have to keep your people alive, deal with hostile wildlife and any random events as they pop up but all this is done across a map that's many times larger and you can see other expeditions roaming around which is quite odd.

  • Automate a futuristic food factory in Neon Noodles, out now in Early Access

    After a very promising early demo, Neon Noodles is out now in Early Access putting you in charge of automating food preparation. What could possibly go wrong?

    Directly inspired by similar such games from Zachtronics like Opus Magnum and Infinifactory, you're in charge of designing and building a fully automated kitchen. No programming needed, as it's all using simple blocks and commands. It's a lot more interesting than it sounds that's for sure!

  • Paradox give a little insight into murder and seduction in Crusader Kings 3's new Scheme system

    Crusader Kings III will allow you to run various secret schemes with a brand new system. Not just giving you the ability to take out a rival but perhaps sway someone over to your side too.

    In the latest developer diary, they talk about wanting a system like the Murder Plot from CKII but have it "slightly easier to predict while keeping it unreliable in its outcome" so that murder is still an option but not quite as safe as before. It also sounds like it's been both expanded and streamlined at the same time, to give you more options for scheming while also needing to send out less agents.

Games and Programming: Epic Games, Godot, Haskell and Python

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Development
Gaming
  • Epic Games have awarded the FOSS game manager Lutris with an Epic MegaGrant

    The Lutris team announced yesterday that Epic Games have now awarded them a sum of money from the Epic MegaGrants pot.

    In the Patreon post, the Lutris team announced they've been awarded $25,000. While this might be quite a surprise to some, Tim Sweeney the CEO of Epic Games, did actually suggest they apply for it which we covered here back in April. To see it actually happen though, that's seriously awesome for the team building this free and open source game manager.

  • Play-ing with Godot

    I’ve finally come to a point where I have a project that is useful, and at a good enough quality (anyone with graphics skills who wants to help?) to be shared with the broader world: Mattemonster. What I’m trying to say is that I just went through the process of publishing a Godot app to the Google Play store.

    There is already good documentation for how you export a Godot app for Android, and detailed guides how to publish to Google Play. This blog is not a step by step tutorial, but instead mentioning some of the things I learned or noticed.

    First of all, when setting up the Android tooling, you usually have an android-tools package for your distro. This way, you don’t have to install Android Studio provided by Google.

    The configuration settings that you use to export your app goes into the export_presets.cfg file. Once you put the details for your release key in, you should avoid storing this file in a public git, as it contains sensitive data. But even before then, it contains paths that are local to your machine, so I would recommend not storing it in a public git anyway, as it makes merging with others painful.

  •      

  • Haskell
  • Python 3.7.5 : Script install and import python packages.

    This script will try to import Python packages from a list.
    If these packages are not installed then will be installed on system.

Games: Euro Truck Simulator 2, Atari VCS and XWayland Improvements

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Gaming
  • Euro Truck Simulator 2 heads to the Black Sea with the next DLC release on December 5

    Euro Truck Simulator 2 is expanding again, with the Road to the Black Sea expansion that's now been announced for release on December 5.

    Quite a big DLC giving you access to travel through and expand your company through Romania, Bulgaria and some of Turkey too with Istanbul. Coming with it are 11 new local company docks and industries, 20 new major cities and many smaller towns and settlements, a bunch of new unique 3D assets, local AI trains, trams, and traffic cars, border crossings with feature-rich border controls and more.

  • Atari VCS enters the final stages of pre-production as it heads towards mass production

    Ah yes, Atari VCS, the delayed Linux-powered gaming box that was crowdfunded on IndieGoGo. It's still a thing and the team seem to think it's all going well.

    In a new development update on the Atari VCS Medium account, the team posted a set of questions and answers from the COO Michael Arzt as to what's been happening recently. This follows on from the news back in October, where their system architect Rob Wyatt quit citing non-payment.

  • XWayland Multi-Buffering Lands To Avoid Stuttering / Tearing

    When X.Org Server 1.21 finally lands those relying upon XWayland for running various Linux games should find less (or ideally, none at all) stuttering or tearing.

    The recently reported work on XWayland improvements around game tearing and stuttering have landed! There was some improvements that landed earlier this month while now the multiple buffering support for xwl_window has landed. This is designed to avoid stuttering and eliminating tearing issues thanks to double/triple buffering.

Wine 4.21

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Software
Gaming

  • Wine Announcement
    What's new in this release (see below for details):
      - HTTP proxy configuration through DHCP.
      - Parameter block support in D3DX9.
      - A few more dlls converted to PE.
      - Various bug fixes.
    
    The source is available from the following locations:
    
      https://dl.winehq.org/wine/source/4.x/wine-4.21.tar.xz
      http://mirrors.ibiblio.org/wine/source/4.x/wine-4.21.tar.xz
    
    Binary packages for various distributions will be available from:
    
      https://www.winehq.org/download
    
    You will find documentation on https://www.winehq.org/documentation
    
    You can also get the current source directly from the git
    repository. Check https://www.winehq.org/git for details.
    
    Wine is available thanks to the work of many people. See the file
    AUTHORS in the distribution for the complete list.
    
    
  • The Wine 4.21 development release is now available

    They say Wine improves with age, well my puns certainly don't get any better so you can relax as this week I'm all out of juice for the release of Wine 4.21.

  • Wine 4.21 Released As Wine 5.0 Inches Closer

    Wine 4.21 is out today as the newest bi-weekly development release as the feature freeze approaches for the Wine 5.0 release in early 2020.

    Wine 4.21 brings with it 50 bug fixes ranging from various games to IE8 issues to other problems now resolved.

Games: Techland, Impostor Factory, The Long Dark and Google Stadia

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Gaming
  • Techland have updated Dying Light again, Drop Attack should be fixed on Linux

    Techland continue to improve their 2015 game, Dying Light. Another patch went out this week and it's a nice one for Linux owners of Dying Light too.

    For some people, an issue that has plagued Dying Light on Linux is a crash when using the Drop Attack ability. Techland said with Patch 1.22, that's actually been finally fixed. Additionally they said the overall stability of the game has been improved.

  • Impostor Factory, following on from To the Moon has a new trailer and more confusing details

    Freebird Games are finally starting to give us a little more information on the upcoming narrative-driven adventure Impostor Factory.

    If you've not been following Freebird Games previously made To the Moon, A Bird Story and most recently Finding Paradise. All of which support Linux and it seems their next game, Impostor Factory, will as well. Details have been extremely light on it, at least until now. Still not exactly clear what's going on and their updated description of it doesn't exactly help "Impostor Factory is a narrative-driven adventure game that is categorically out of its mind."—okay then.

  • Hinterland tease new info for the upcoming Survival Mode update to The Long Dark

    Cold and lonely survival game The Long Dark is getting a huge update to the survival mode next month, it sounds great too with some of the details Hinterland Studio have teased.

    The Long Dark is certainly an interesting one, especially since it has a Story Mode and a Survival Mode to give the best of both worlds. It hasn't been long since the release of Episode 3 for the story back in October, so Hinterland have certainly been busy.

  • Google Stadia Pro games for December, Buddy Pass is live and new hires - a roundup

    For people who purchased the Founders Edition, it came with a Buddy Pass system enabling you to gift a three month Stadia Pro subscription to a friend. That's now actually live. If you have it, you can find the option to do so in the Stadia mobile application (the little ticket button in the top left corner).

    Also announced recently is the next set of games available to those with Stadia Pro, which everyone has right now since Stadia Base doesn't launch until next year.

Games: DRM-Free Options and Web Games

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Gaming
  • MOLEK-SYNTEZ from Zachtronics is now DRM-free on GOG and it's great

    Combine and convert ordinary industrial chemicals into a variety of small molecules with various pharmacological effects in MOLEK-SYNTEZ, the latest puzzle sim from Zachtronics. Recently, the team at Zachtronics announced that GOG have accepted their game onto their store!

  • DRM-free store GOG have started up their own big Black Friday sale

    No store will miss an opportunity to run a big sale now of course, we already have Steam and Humble Store running their own and now the DRM-free store GOG has a massive sale too.

  • Khronos + W3C Collaborating On SPIR-V Potentially Being The Shading Language For The Web

    The W3C put out an interesting status update this week on web games technologies and the various standardization efforts at play.

    The updated included that the core WebAssembly specifications are "imminent" for publishing, the web gamepad specification continues being moved along, WebCodecs continue to be explored, and on the WebGPU front they are exploring the choice of shading language to use for next-generation web graphics.

  • STATUS UPDATE ON WEB GAMES TECHNOLOGIES

    The report from the Workshop on Web Games, held in June 2019, recommended next standardization steps for individual topics discussed at the workshop to enrich the open Web platform for games. Now, less than 6 months after the workshop, thanks to the efforts of workshop participants and a few others, most of these topics have already made significant progress. This seemed to warrant a status update.
    The creation of a games activity at W3C, to gather continuous feedback on Web technologies from the games community, track identified needs and steer standardization efforts, is still being investigated. If you’re interested, please reach out to François Daoust.

Games: ΔV, Atari Vault, Total War: WARHAMMER II

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Gaming
  • Checking up on the latest huge updates to sci-fi mining game, Rings of Saturn

    ΔV (pronounced DeltaVee), the top-down space mining game has been under constant development since its Early Access launch in August. In the last few weeks, however, a number of major updates were made to add places of interest, a crew roster, expanded upgrades and more.

    Liam has covered ΔV in quite a few articles recently, but as a reminder, this Godot-powered game is based on real science, applying thermal dynamics, pressure and realistic physics to each element of your ship as you mine minerals from the asteroid comprising Saturn’s rings. The term for this is “hard sci-fi”. The game itself isn’t “hard” as such, but the science is made as realistic as possible, given the fictional setting.

    So what’s new in the latest release? Well, when I first dropped around 8 hours into the game on release, the feeling of the ship and its mechanics blew me away. However, the rings themselves felt a bit empty. The desolation was quite atmospheric in fact, but it was hard to sustain interest in mining the same rocks on each run, with only an occasional other ship to break up the bleak asteroid belt.

  • Love the classics? The Atari Vault has added 50 more retro titles with a new DLC

    Sometimes you just can't beat the classics, if you feel like that and love the old Atari games this is for you.

    The Atari Vault, said to be the "ultimate collection" of titles across old Atari systems includes around 100 games with the base package. It includes online and local Steam leaderboard support, online multiplayer, Steam Controller support and more wrapped in an easy to use interface.

  • The Shadow & The Blade pack announced for Total War: WARHAMMER II

    Total War: WARHAMMER II is set to expand again with another Legendary Lords Pack, this time it's The Shadow & The Blade and it actually sounds like it includes quite a lot for one of their smaller packs.

    Feral Interactive, who ported Total War: WARHAMMER II to Linux have confirmed the Linux version will support the DLC "shortly after Windows" which releases on December 12.

    I must admit, showing a Dark Elf riding what's pretty much a Dinosaur certainly got my attention. Just look at this below, that's quite an awesome shot. Even if you're not traditionally a WARHAMMER fan, that certainly does look like it could be fun to see in battle.

Games: Heroes Of Avranche, Lutris and Proton

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Gaming
  • Heroes Of Avranche, a new action RPG is heading to Linux in early December

    The endless dungeons await in Heroes Of Avranche, an Early Access action RPG that's going to appear on December 3 on Steam.

    According to the information from the developer, Heroes Of Avranche has gameplay that's comparable to the likes of Diablo and Torchlight. Unlike certain others, your character isn't locked into a specific class. You can easily swap between them and each class has two different stances changing their play-style too.

  • Lutris game manager 0.5.4 released with Python 3.8 support and lots of fixes

    Managing games across multiple stores, emulators and compatibility layers doesn't need to be a hassle. Lutris takes the majority of that annoyance away and a big new release is now available.

    Included in Lutris 0.5.4 is support for Python 3.8, due to some distributions upgrading this caused some features of Lutris to not work and so now things should be smooth again. It also adds in config validation, support for NVIDIA PRIME off-load, a pop-up now appears when a game is successfully imported and they've added support for alacritty as a terminal option.

  • Steam Play Proton 4.11-9 is out with a few fixes, plus a new release of Proton GE

    First, the official Proton 4.11-9 release handled by Valve and CodeWeavers which is quite a small one. There's a performance regression fix that affected 32-bit games using DXVK and D9VK, reporting to little GPU memory for certain GPUs was fixed and they fixed a crash when launching Crazy Machines 3 with certain GPUs. The only other improvement in this release is the restoration of force feedback for steering wheels.

Games: Stardew Valley, Football Story, World of Warcraft Classic and Book of Travels

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Gaming
  • The ridiculously large Stardew Valley 1.4 update is out

    Stardew Valley, that relaxing and colourful game about taking over a worn-down farm just had a big 1.4 update release with a ton of new content and bug fixes.

    The full details of the update are…how do I put this? Humongous? Yeah, that sounds about right. Looking over the changelog, I honestly don't know where to begin to talk about it.

  • Football Story sounds like an incredibly weird mix with a story-based campaign and competitive multiplayer

    From publisher Crytivo (The Universim) and Russian developer Fructus Temporum we have Football Story, an incredible intriguing Football (Soccer to some of you…) adventure game with a narrative campaign and competitive multiplayer matches.

    It blends together a sort-of exploration adventure RPG in the story mode, giving you a massive city loaded with quests to run around in with four customizable characters, each with skills you can progress. On top of that, when playing matches online with others each player on the team is controlled by someone. It sounds thoroughly amusing and it certainly sounds like something I want to try.

  • World of Warcraft Classic: Hell is other people

    I didn’t play World of Warcraft when it launched 15 years ago when I played some World of Warcraft with friends seven years ago, around the time of the Mists of Pandaria expansion. I hadn’t played it before and I didn’t get into the lore. I enjoyed running around in the big open world, seeing new places, and completing quests.

    This year I got the opportunity to experience the original game with the release of World of Warcraft: Classic. The game rolled back the clock and got back to its roots. The Classic game is less complicated with fewer distinct systems to keep track of. There’s less to do in the world, but I don’t miss the busywork that has been added to the modern game. I thought I’d give it a try.

  • The unique online RPG Book of Travels from the dev of Shelter has been funded

    Not exactly surprising to see but Book of Travels, the unique small online RPG from Shelter developer Might and Delight has been fully funded over on Kickstarter so that's another game coming to Linux.

Games: Dota 2 and Quake II RTX

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Gaming
  • Dota 2 just got massive overhaul with The Outlanders Update

    The Outlanders Update has arrived for Dota 2, with it introducing new heroes and some pretty big changes to the gameplay. As someone who has always enjoyed the gameplay of Dota 2 but found some elements of it highly frustrating, the gameplay update sounds fantastic.

  • Dota Underlords also got a huge update with a new Knockout game mode and multiple heroes

    It's not just Dota 2 seeing a massive upgrade, as Valve also pushed out The Outlanders Update for Dota Underlords as well with a new fast game mode and a better on-boarding experience for new players.

    Like Dota 2, Underlords has also gained two brand new heroes with Snapfire and Void Spirit. Void was also joined by Storm Spirit, Ember Spirit, and Earth Spirit entering the White Spire to create the new Spirit Alliance as well.

    Heroes work quite differently in Underlords though so let's take a quick look at their abilities.

  • Quake II RTX got an update to further improve the graphical fidelity

    It seems NVIDIA aren't quite done with Quake II RTX, seemingly now using it as a testing area to keep pushing more advanced features for ray tracing.

    Yesterday, an update was released for Quake II RTX to update over 400 textures used to improve the image quality. They also improved the rendering of metals, which together enhance the look quite a lot, especially since it's quite an old game now. In addition, rendering with water was improved as well. There's now underwater god rays and god rays in reflections and refractions.

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More in Tux Machines

Linux 5.6 Preview

  • Linux 5.6 Is Looking Like It Will Be Spectacular With A Long List Of Features

    Linux 5.5 is likely to be released later today and with that are many new features. But as soon as 5.5 is released it marks the opening of the Linux 5.6 merge window and this next kernel has us particularly exciting... It's certainly shaping up to be one of the most exciting kernel cycles in recent times with many blockbuster features and improvements.

  • Intel SST Core-Power Support Ready For Linux 5.6

    Earlier this month I wrote about Intel SST Core-Power patches as part of Intel's Speed Select's functionality for more control over per-core power/frequency behavior based upon the software running on each core. The "core-power" profile support appears ready now for Linux 5.6. While Intel Speed Select Technology support was added to Linux last year as one of the new features with Cascade Lake, the "Core-Power" (or SST-CP) profile hadn't been wired up in full to this point. Intel SST-CP allows for dealing with per-core priorities when encountering power constraints.

New Debian Developers and Maintainers (November and December 2019)

The following contributors got their Debian Developer accounts in the last two months: Louis-Philippe Véronneau (pollo) Olek Wojnar (olek) Sven Eckelmann (ecsv) Utkarsh Gupta (utkarsh) Robert Haist (rha) The following contributors were added as Debian Maintainers in the last two months: Denis Danilov Joachim Falk Thomas Perret Richard Laager Congratulations! Read more

Python Programming

  • Prettier logging with Rich

    There are a few things going on here. Important fields are rendered in their own column to make it easier to scan. To reduce visual clutter, the time field is only rendered if it changes and I've set the date format to time only, which is fine for local development (if you forget what day it is you need a vacation). The message column has some syntax highlighting applied to it, tuned for web development, but more importantly it is word-wrapped. Finally there is a column for the python file and line that called the log method. This would be my ideal logging for web-development, your mileage may vary and you may want to tune it for your domain.

  • Release of Relatorio 0.9.1

    We are glad to announce the release of Relatorio version 0.9.1. Relatorio is a templating library mainly for OpenDocument using also OpenDocument as source format.

  • How to write a very simple calculator in Python as a complete beginner programmer

    As I progress with my journey as a computer coder, I have realized that for one to master the art of writing scripts and applications, hours of practice matter more than months of study being spent on How To Program books. Reading theory about computer programming matters, but it does not make one a code writer. Based on such conclusion, I have decided to share real world scenarios materialized in computer code, mostly Python. Through this article you're going to learn how to put in practice basic concepts in Python with the main purpose of pushing your skills to the next level as a doer, instead of just a thinker. Although once finished you will end up with a simple calculator which supports basic maths, at least you will know how to properly make use of builtin utilities such as input, def statements and the while True loop.

  • How to create image quotes from scratch with nider open source python package

    Being a blogger, I have needs on tools which can ease my job as a content producer. Having knowledge on the Python programming language I have discovered an open source package which fits my needs when it comes to generating images with text. As an 'advanced' terminal user, I truly like automating stuff on the console. Before launching a fresh command prompt on your own computer, make sure you meet the requirements shown below in order to follow me through the rest of this blog post.

  • An open source alternative to Internet Download Manager written in Python, pyIDM

    Most of the computer geeks are familiar with the Internet Download Manager tool. Although it is one of the best among download managers; being a soldier of open source software, I decided to share pyIDM as an alternative for anyone who is passionate about computer programming. According to the official documentation shared on the Github platform, pyIDM supports multi-connections at a high speed due to its download engine which relies entirely on LibCurl.

KeePassXC 2.5.3 and Some Tips

  • KeePassXC 2.5.3

    KeePassXC is a community fork of KeePassX, a native cross-platform port of KeePass Password Safe, with the goal to extend and improve it with new features and bugfixes to provide a feature-rich, fully cross-platform and modern open-source password manager. KeePassXC currently uses the KeePass 2.x (.kdbx) password database format as its native file format in versions 3.1 and 4. Database files in version 2 can be opened, but will be upgraded to a newer format. KeePass 1.x (.kdb) databases can be imported into a .kdbx file, but this process is one-way.

  • How to manage your entire passwords with KeePassX, single master key for all of them

    Having many accounts on different social media networks, I have to keep trace of different usernames and passwords. Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter and chat applications; different login credentials for each one of them. Not to mention the local accounts. Due to the struggle that comes with remembering all usernames and passwords, and of course due to loss of many important accounts in the past, I have decided to store my entire login credentials in a database which can be accessed through a single master key.

  • How to fully take control of KeePassX through the command line with pykeepass open source python package

    Having needs on secure personal data management, KeePassX is the software which I have chosen to solve my own problem. Being open source, many developers have written their own libraries from scratch to fully interact with KeePassX from the command line. After many hours of research on Github, and a lot of tests on my local environment, pykeepass ended in my toolset. Fully open source and free of charge, this python tool supports interaction with the entire features being integrated on KeePassX; directly from the command line.