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System76 Launches Two Linux Laptops Powered by Coreboot Open-Source Firmware

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Linux
OSS

Driven by the idea that technology should always be free and open, System76 is launching today the Galago Pro and Darter Pro laptops with their new Coreboot-based open-source firmware, which not only makes these computers boot faster than with a proprietary firmware, but it also protects them against various security vulnerabilities and other threats.

"Our lightweight open source firmware gets users from boot screen to desktop 29% faster," said System76. "Removing unnecessary features from the firmware such as network connectivity and execution environments also decreases the potential for vulnerability, meaning users who upgrade to the new laptops will benefit from increased security."

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Also: System76 Will Begin Shipping 2 Linux Laptops With Coreboot-Based Open Source Firmware

System76 launches two Linux with Comet Lake chips and Coreboot

System76 Launches Two Intel Laptops With "Open-Source Firmware" Coreboot

Freedom from censorship on mailing lists

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OSS

One prominent tool used to construct the fake community is the email discussion list.

When people join a discussion list, they assume and believe that they are being exposed to a wide range of opinions. Therefore, when some opinions or critical information is hidden, ordinary members of the list are deceived. People have not consented to this deception.

In 2018, FSFE used these tactics to make it appear that nobody supported elections any more. In 2019, rogue elements of the Free Software Foundation (FSF) staff used the same tactics to undermine their own founder, Richard Stallman. FSF is the organization that explains their use of the word Free using the phrase Free as in speech, not free as in beer. When they don't even allow Free Speech on their own LibrePlanet-discuss mailing list, the organization loses all credibility.

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BleachBit 2.3 Beta

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OSS

When your computer is getting full, BleachBit quickly frees disk space. When your information is only your business, BleachBit guards your privacy. With BleachBit you can free cache, delete cookies, clear Internet history, shred temporary files, delete logs, and discard junk you didn't know was there.

Designed for Linux and Windows systems, it wipes clean thousands of applications including Firefox, Internet Explorer, Adobe Flash, Google Chrome, Opera, Safari, and more. Beyond simply deleting files, BleachBit includes advanced features such as shredding files to prevent recovery, wiping free disk space to hide traces of files deleted by other applications, and vacuuming Firefox to make it faster. Better than free, BleachBit is open source.

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Beware open source vendor lock-in

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OSS

With open source having become not only mainstream but also so ubiquitous it is all but invisible, there is a real danger that open source users could find themselves in a whole new world of “open source” vendor lock-in.

That was the warning sounded by Obsidian’s Karl Fisher at the start of LinuxConf [ZA] 2019, a Linux and open source conference which marked the start of Open Source Week in South Africa this week.

Fisher took the delegates, mainly open source aficionados and developers, though a potted evolutionary history of open source – from the days when it was disparaged by Microsoft founder Bill Gates, and later his successor as CEO Steve Ballmer who infamously dubbed Linux a 'cancer'; to Microsoft’s recent, multi-billion dollar acquisition of GitHub, the world’s largest open source code hosting platform.

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TeXstudio - A cushty yet nerdy LaTeX frontend

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OSS
HowTos

TeXstudio is a complex, powerful program, and it definitely appeals to my sense of nerdonics. It's rich in features, and it can take a while before you figure everything out - prior knowledge with similar software definitely helps. But then, I think LyX is friendlier and simpler, especially for beginners. With TeXstudio, there were a few errors throughout my test, which ought to be handled a bit more gracefully. Beamer sounds like a great thing, but then, frankly, most people will make do with Powerpoint, for better or worse.

I definitely intend to spend more time learning TeXstudio, as it may come handy in technical work now and then. Plus, there's the simple joy of mastering difficult tools, which then magically turn repetitive burdens into simple tasks. It's all about the optimization of energy. I believe I'm already there with conventional tools as well as LyX, so this ought to be an interesting experiment. For document lovers among you, this software definitely warrants some extended testing. We're done.

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OSS: LibreOffice et al, OpenBSD crossed 400,000 commits, CMS news and Collapse OS

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OSS
  • 8 tech freebies: Firewall, cloud storage, Office software and more

    LibreOffice is a set of open source software that’s equivalent to Microsoft Office. It lets you save and open documents in Microsoft formats and do everything Microsoft Office lets you do, like type in documents, set up spreadsheets and create presentations.

    If you’d like access to Microsoft Office, you can get the free trial of Office 365 for a month or you can try Office Online, a cloud-based version of the Microsoft Office Suite available to those with Microsoft accounts. Whichever software you get, you’ll have some amazing office capabilities without paying any money at all.

  • OpenBSD crossed 400,000 commits

    Sometime in the last week OpenBSD crossed 400,000 commits (*) upon all our repositories since starting at 1995/10/18 08:37:01 Canada/Mountain. That's a lot of commits by a lot of amazing people.

  • Steve Kemp: A blog overhaul

    All in all the solution was flexible and it wasn't too slow because finding posts via the SQLite database was pretty good.

    Anyway I've come to realize that freedom and architecture was overkill. I don't need to do fancy presentation, I don't need a loosely-coupled set of plugins.

    So now I have a simpler solution which uses my existing template, uses my existing posts - with only a few cleanups - and generates the site from scratch, including all the comments, in less than 2 seconds.

    After running make clean a complete rebuild via make upload (which deploys the generated site to the remote host via rsync) takes 6 seconds.

  • WordPress 5.3 Beta 3

    WordPress 5.3 Beta 3 is now available!

    This software is still in development, so we don’t recommend you run it on a production site. Consider setting up a test site to play with the new version.

  • Introducing Collapse OS, a z80 kernel that can be designed with “scavenged parts and program microcontrollers”

    There is a new operating system in the market which is designed in anticipation of the collapse of the current economic system – Collapse OS. The goal of this project is “to be as self-contained as possible.” With a copy of this project, its developer Virgil Dupras says, a capable person will be able to easily build and install Collapse OS without external resources. It will also be possible to build a machine with an exclusive design, and from discarded parts with low-tech tools.

    Dupras believes that the global supply chain will collapse before 2030 and post-collapse, it would be difficult to reproduce most of the electronics due to lack of supply chain. This will make it impossible to bootstrap the new electronic technology and thus limit its growth. At this point, Dupras says, Collapse OS can prove to be a good “starter kit”. He affirms that this operating system can be designed from “scavenged parts and program microcontrollers” with sufficient RAM and storage.

Devs Engage in Soul-Searching on Future of Open Source

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OSS

Companies can choose to build on open source and maintain its balance, said Nousiainen. The future of open source depends on the viewpoints of the potential collaborating organizations.

Issues arise, however, when developers or companies monopolize open source code or use it only for personal gain. Those actions, which alter the original purpose of open source licensing, sparked the current debate.

While open source software is available for public use, Nousiainen said, developers should remember that the work they do is for the benefit of all.

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Extreme Gifts StackStorm to Linux Foundation

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Linux
OSS

Extreme Networks handed over governance of StackStorm, its open source workflow automation platform, to the Linux Foundation.

It will continue as a standalone project under the Linux Foundation’s governance, said Arpit Joshipura, GM for networking, edge, and IoT at the Linux Foundation (LF).

“Given the focus of the community and the requirements from the project regarding the neutral governance provided by LF, the current plan is to host the project under the LF,” Joshipura said in an email to SDxCentral.

StackStorm allows users to automate workflows across data center servers, clouds, and containers using an infrastructure-as-code approach to DevOps. So, for example, after receiving an IT alert in the data center, the open source software kicks in to automate remediation. Other common applications include continuous deployment (CD), ChatOps, and automated security response.

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Events: GStreamer Conference, Linux App Summit and All Things Open

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OSS
  • GStreamer Conference 2019 (including GStreamer and PipeWire hackfests)

    Anyway, 20 years later there will be a talk and presentation by GStreamer co-founder Wim Taymans (wearing blue shirt and black pants in picture above) at the GStreamer Conference commemorating 20 years of GStreamer. Detailing taking the project from idealistic spare time effort to the multimedia industry juggernaut it is today.
    Of course the conference is not going to be focused on the past, as there is a long line up of great talks talking about modern streaming with DASH, HDR support in GStreamer, latest developments around GStreamer and Rust, Virtual reality, Vulkan and more. Actually on the ‘and more’ topic, Wim Taymans will also do a presentation on PipeWire, the next generation audio and video server, at the GStreamer Conference this year, hopefully demoing some of the great improvements in things like our pro-audio Jack emulation support.
    So if you haven’t already, make your way to the GStreamer Conference 2019 website and register for the 10th annual GStreamer Conference!

    For those going be aware that there will also be a joint GStreamer fall hackfest and PipeWire hackfest in the two days following the GStreamer Conference. So be sure to sign up for those if interested. They will be co-located with participants flowing freely between the two events.

  • Linux App Summit 2019 schedule is out!

    We published the Linux App Summit 2019 schedule last week.

    We have a bunch of interesting talks (sadly we had to leave almost 40 almost as interesting talks out, we had lots of awesome submissions!) ranging from flatpak and snaps to how product management is good for Free Software projects with some thought provoking talks thrown in to make us think what's the future of our platform.

    I am going and you should totally come too!

  • Announcing the All Things Open 2019 lightning talk lineup

    If you're attending the All Things Open conference in Raleigh, NC this year be sure to check out our Lightning Talk series on Tuesday, October 15 at 12:45 pm EDT.

    This is an amazing line-up of quick talks you won't want to miss. Speakers have five minutes to enlighten the audience about an open source topic they are passionate about. We've got everything from DevOps to Kubernetes, and how open source is used in education, healthcare, government, design, and more. Grab your lunch, find a seat, warm up your Twitter fingers, and get ready for the fastest hour at All Things Open.

Introduction to open source observability on Kubernetes

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OSS

With the advent of DevOps, engineering teams are taking on more and more ownership of the reliability of their services. While some chafe at the increased operational burden, others welcome the opportunity to treat service reliability as a key feature, invest in the necessary capabilities to measure and improve reliability, and deliver the best possible customer experiences.

This change is measured explicitly in the 2019 Accelerate State of DevOps Report. One of its most interesting conclusions (as written in the summary) is...

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Devices Leftovers

  • Khadas VIM3L (Amlogic S905D3) Benchmarks, Settings & System Info

    Khadas VIM3L is the first Amlogic S905D3 SBC on the market and is sold as a lower-cost alternative to the company’s VIM3 board with a focus on the HTPC / media player market.

  • Semtech SX1302 LoRa Transceiver to Deliver Cheaper, More Efficient Gateways
  • In-vehicle computer supports new MaaS stack

    Axiomtek’s fanless, rugged “UST100-504-FL” automotive PC runs Ubuntu 18.04 or Windows on 6th or 7th Gen Intel chips, and offers SATA, HDMI, 2x GbE, 4x USB 3.0, 3x mini-PCIe, a slide-rail design, and the new AMS/AXView for MaaS discovery. Axiomtek announced a rugged in-vehicle PC that runs Ubuntu 18.04, Windows 10, or Windows 7 on Intel’s Skylake or Kaby Lake processors. The UST100-504-FL is aimed at “in-vehicle edge computing and video analytics applications,” and is especially suited for police and emergency vehicles, says Axiomtek. There’s also a new Agent MaaS Suite (AMS) IoT management suite available (see farther below).

  • Google Launches the Pixel 4 with Android 10, Astrophotography, and Motion Sense

    Google officially launched today the long rumored and leaked Pixel 4 smartphone, a much-needed upgrade to the Pixel 3 and 3a series with numerous enhancements and new features. The Pixel 4 smartphone is finally here, boasting upgraded camera with astrophotography capabilities so you can shoot the night sky and Milky Way without using a professional camera, a feature that will also be ported to the Pixel 3 and 3a devices with the latest camera app update, as well as Live HDR+ support for outstanding photo quality.

  • Repurposing A Toy Computer From The 1990s

    Our more youthful readers are fairly likely to have owned some incarnation of a VTech educational computer. From the mid-1980s and right up to the present day, VTech has been producing vaguely laptop shaped gadgets aimed at teaching everything from basic reading skills all the way up to world history. Hallmarks of these devices include a miserable monochrome LCD, and unpleasant membrane keyboard, and as [HotKey] found, occasionally a proper Z80 processor. [...] After more than a year of tinkering and talking to other hackers in the Z80 scene, [HotKey] has made some impressive headway. He’s not only created a custom cartridge that lets him load new code and connect to external devices, but he’s also added support for a few VTech machines to z88dk so that others can start writing their own C code for these machines. So far he’s created some very promising proof of concept programs such as a MIDI controller and serial terminal, but ultimately he hopes to create a DOS or CP/M like operating system that will elevate these vintage machines from simple toys to legitimate multi-purpose computers.

today's howtos

Audiocasts/Shows/Screencasts: FLOSS Weekly, Containers, Linux Headlines, Arch Linux Openbox Build and GhostBSD 19.09

  • FLOSS Weekly 551: Kamailio

    Kamailio is an Open Source SIP Server released under GPL, able to handle thousands of call setups per second. Kamailio can be used to build large platforms for VoIP and realtime communications – presence, WebRTC, Instant messaging and other applications.

  • What is a Container? | Jupiter Extras 23

    Containers changed the way the IT world deploys software. We give you our take on technologies such as docker (including docker-compose), Kubernetes and highlight a few of our favorite containers.

  • 2019-10-16 | Linux Headlines

    WireGuard is kicked out of the Play Store, a new Docker worm is discovered, and Mozilla unveils upcoming changes to Firefox.

  • Showing off my Custom Arch Linux Openbox Build
  • GhostBSD 19.09 - Based on FreeBSD 12.0-STABLE and Using MATE Desktop 1.22

    GhostBSD 19.09 is the latest release of GhostBSD. This release based on FreeBSD 12.0-STABLE while also pulling in TrueOS packages, GhostBSD 19.09 also has an updated OpenRC init system, a lot of unnecessary software was removed, AMDGPU and Radeon KMS is now valid xconfig options and a variety of other improvements and fixes.

MX-19 Release Candidate 1 now available

We are pleased to offer MX-19 RC 1 for testing purposes. As usual, this iso includes the latest updates from debian 10.1 (buster), antiX and MX repos. Read more