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Mac

Proprietary Software Insecurity

Filed under
Microsoft
Mac
  • Why recent hacks show Apple’s security strength, not its weakness [Ed: Spinning bug doors as a strength? Apple has its share of liars coming to the rescue of proprietary software (not the first such bug). Moving from Microsoft to Apple "for security" is like swapping vodka for rum to cure one's liver.]

    It might be tempting to follow that line of thinking in light of two recent stories of vulnerabilities affecting the Mac and the Apple Watch. In the first instance, the Zoom video-calling app could be abused to let someone spy on you through your webcam. In the second, a flaw in Apple’s Walkie Talkie app could let a hacker eavesdrop on your iPhone conversations. They’re both troubling security issues.

  • Eavesdropping Concerns Cause Apple Watch’s Walkie-Talkie App to Be Disabled

    Just like any other Internet of things device, it’s important to remember that smartwatches are still devices. And many cool features can also be used for unethical purposes. There is always another side of the coin.

    This is what Apple Watch users found this week when Apple disabled the Walkie-Talkie app when it was discovered that it allowed users to listen in on each other’s iPhone calls without the other person’s knowledge.

  • 250M Accounts Affected By ‘TrickBot’ Trojan’s New Cookie Stealing Ability

    Popular malware TrickBot is back and this time it has learned some new capabilities like stealing cookies. So far, it has infected around 250 million Gmail accounts.

    As per the research firm Deep Instinct, among the affected accounts, some belonging to the governments of the US, the UK, and Canada have also fallen victim to TrickBot.

  • TrickBooster – TrickBot’s Email-Based Infection Module - Deep Instinct

    Seeing a signed malware binary delivered to a customer environment prompted us to investigate further. We analyzed the malware sample and found swaths of PowerShell code in its memory. Analysis of this PowerShell code immediately led us to the conclusion that we are dealing with a mail-bot.

  • A better zip bomb

    This article shows how to construct a non-recursive zip bomb that achieves a high compression ratio by overlapping files inside the zip container. "Non-recursive" means that it does not rely on a decompressor's recursively unpacking zip files nested within zip files: it expands fully after a single round of decompression. The output size increases quadratically in the input size, reaching a compression ratio of over 28 million (10 MB → 281 TB) at the limits of the zip format. Even greater expansion is possible using 64-bit extensions. The construction uses only the most common compression algorithm, DEFLATE, and is compatible with most zip parsers.

Microsoft DRM, Security, and Apple's Combustion Threat

Filed under
Microsoft
Mac
Security
  • You Don't Own What You've Bought: Microsoft's Books 'Will Stop Working'

    The latest in our forever ongoing series, recognizing in the digital age how you often no longer own what you've bought, thanks to DRM and copyright: this week, people with Microsoft ebooks will discover they're dead.

  • Security updates for Tuesday

    Security updates have been issued by Arch Linux (firefox, firefox-developer-edition, libarchive, and vlc), CentOS (firefox, thunderbird, and vim), Debian (firefox-esr, openssl, and python-django), Fedora (glpi and xen), Mageia (thunderbird), openSUSE (ImageMagick, irssi, libheimdal, and phpMyAdmin), Red Hat (libssh2 and qemu-kvm), Scientific Linux (firefox, thunderbird, and vim), SUSE (389-ds, cf-cli, curl, dbus-1, dnsmasq, evolution, glib2, gnutls, graphviz, java-1_8_0-openjdk, and libxslt), and Ubuntu (python-django).

  • Kali Linux in the DigitalOcean Cloud

    DigitalOcean is a cloud provider similar to AWS, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform, and many others. They offer instances, called “droplets”, with different Linux distributions such as Debian, Ubuntu, FreeBSD, etc. Similar to AWS, DigitalOcean has datacenters around the world and sometimes multiple datacenters in each country.

    However, one feature in particular sets them apart them from their competitors. A little while ago, they added support for custom images, which allows users to import virtual machine disks and use them as droplets. This is perfect for us as we can use our own version of Kali Linux in their cloud.

    While it might be possible to load the official Kali Linux virtual images, it wouldn’t be very efficient. Instead, we’ll build a lightweight Kali installation with the bare minimum to get it working.

  • Cybersecurity Experts Blocked 5 Million Attempted Hacks of IoT Cameras

    Trend Micro cybersecurity experts report that they blocked an astounding five-million hack attempts on IoT cameras. It’s quite frightening to think what may have happened if these experts weren’t hard at work.

  • Public Certificate Poisoning Can Break Some OpenPGP Implementations

    OpenPGP installations can grind to a halt and fail to verify the authenticity of downloaded packages as the keyserver network has been flooded with bogus extra signatures attesting ownership of a certificate.

    Vulnerabilities that allow this type of certificate spamming attack have been known for years and a timely fix or mitigation is nowhere in sight, neither from the keyserver network community nor the OpenPGP Working Group.

  • Report: Apple Discovers MacBook Air Logic Board Issue

                   

                     

    Not all 13-inch MacBook Air with Retina Display units from 2018 are believed to be affected by the logic board issue. The memo reportedly said that only units with certain serial numbers were affected; Apple plans to inform the owners of those devices via email. Affected units can be taken to Apple's retail stores or authorized repair shops until four years after their original purchase date, 9to5Mac said. 
     

                     

    It's not clear why Apple didn't publicly announce the replacement program.  

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  • Apple finds issue w/ logic board in some 2018 MacBook Airs, offers free repair

                   

                     

    Apple has confirmed in an internal document to repair staff that it’s identified an issue with the main logic board in what it says is a “very small number” of MacBook Air models. Apple Stores and authorized repair staff have been informed to replace the main logic board in affected machines at no cost to customers, according to the document obtained by 9to5Mac.  

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  • Apple Recalls 15-Inch MacBook Pro Laptop Computers Due to Fire Hazard

                   

                     

    The batteries in the recalled laptop computers can overheat, posing a fire hazard.  

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  • Apple recalls 432,000 MacBook Pro laptops for fire and burn risks

                   

                     

    Manufactured in China, the recalled computers had a retail price of $2,000 and more, and were sold at Apple and electronics stores nationwide, as well as online, from September 2015 through February 2017.  

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  • 2015 15" MacBook Pro Recall Applies to About 432,000 Units, Apple Received 26 Reports of Batteries Overheating

                   

                     

    Last week, Apple launched a worldwide recall and replacement program for select 2015 15-inch MacBook Pro units, sold primarily between September 2015 and February 2017, due to batteries that "may overheat and pose a fire safety risk." Apple will replace affected batteries free of charge.  

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  • 'Dangerous' Muslim Brotherhood fatwa app in Apple Store's top 100 downloads

                       

                         

    The Euro Fatwa app, which was launched in April, was created by the European Council for Fatwa and Research, a Dublin private foundation set up by Yusuf Al Qaradawi, spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood.
     

                         

    Touted as a guide to help Muslims adhere to Islam, critics including Germany’s security service, say the app is a radicalisation tool.  

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  • Jony Ive found Tim Cook's disinterest in design 'dispiriting'

                       

                         

    But more damagingly, the WSJ highlights that Ive was left "dispirited" by Tim Cook, in stark contrast to his close relationship with Steve Jobs. Cook, apparently "showed little interest in the product development process" according to the paper's sources. Ive was also left frustrated by the makeup of Apple's board of directors, which was filled with people with backgrounds outside of Apple's core business (the pun is ours, and very much intended). 
     

                         

    As well as these reports, Ive's own words have come back to haunt the company. Back in 2014, he told The Times he'd leave Apple if it stopped innovating. Awkward.  

Audio With DeaDBeeF, Demise of Apple's "Pod" Empire, New Podcast About Go

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Mac
  • DeaDBeeF 1.8.1 Released! How to Install in Ubuntu 18.04 / Higher

    Deadbeef audio player 1.8.1 was released a few days ago with various bug-fixes and performance improvements for the 1.8 series.

  • Jony Ive ‘dispirited’ by Tim Cook’s lack of interest in product design: WSJ

    The WSJ report follows a similar piece published by Bloomberg last week. Both reports describe an Apple design team, led by Jony Ive, increasingly frustrated by his absence after the launch of the Apple Watch in 2015. They tell the story of a company that once put design at the forefront, progressively being led by operational concerns. Ive’s absence was “straining the cohesion central to product development,” according to the WSJ, causing several key design team members to leave Apple over the last few years.

  • Gabbing About Go | Coder Radio 364

    Mike and Wes burrow into the concurrent world of Go and debate where it makes sense and where it may not.

    Plus gradual typing for Ruby, a new solution for Python packaging, and the real story behind Jony Ive’s exit.

Darling Still Has A Goal Of Running macOS Apps On Linux

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Mac

Darling is the open-source project we first covered back in 2012 that aimed to be able to run macOS software (binaries) on Linux. It's what Wine is to running Windows programs on Linux but rather to be able to handle Apple/Mac software. While we haven't heard much from the project recently, they still are pursuing their goal.

Over the years Darling has made some project on handling Mac binaries on Linux albeit times that the project seemed on hiatus without any development work. The last time we covered Darling on Phoronix was in November of 2017 when they were still aiming for macOS apps on Linux.

Read more

Direct: Darling Progress Report Q1 2019

Switching From Mac to Linux? 5 Tips to Make Your Life Easier

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Mac

There are a lot of things to love about macOS, but there are definitely issues with using it. One of the bigger problems is that it’s exclusive to Apple computers. If you don’t like the hardware the company offers, you’re out of luck when it comes to using macOS.

If you’re looking for a desktop operating system that runs on top of a solid Unix-based foundation, Linux can be a good alternative. To make it easier to get used to Linux, you might want to make your installation a little more Mac-like.

[...]

There are two types of Mac users: those who launch applications through Launchpad and those who use Spotlight. If you’re in the latter group, moving to Linux will be much easier for you, since you can replicate this very easily. Some Linux desktops will come with this type of behavior by default, but if not, it’s easy to install a Spotlight-style launcher.

A few launchers for Linux will seem familiar to Mac users, but the most Spotlight-like is Cerebro. In addition to launching apps and searching files, it can function as a basic calculator, show maps, and add other functions with plugins. If you’re more familiar with the third-party launcher Alfred, you might want to look into Albert instead. Both apps are free.

Those two are far from the only app launchers available. If neither is your cup of tea, we have a list of nine of the best app launchers for Linux. Chances are good you’ll find at least one that you really like among them.

Read more

GAFAM: Microsoft's Misappropriation of "Linux", Google 'Invents' Linux Support for Sound, Apple Shuns GNU/Linux

Filed under
Google
Microsoft
Mac

So long, Macbook. Hello again, Linux.

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Mac

Long story short, after a decade on my Macbook, I switched back to Linux. Recently I’ve just found myself disenchanted with Apple in a way similar to how I felt maybe twelve years earlier with Microsoft, when I switched to Linux the first time.

Read more

5 of the Best Linux Distributions for Mac Users

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Mac

The Mac is an ever-increasingly closed-off ecosystem, with users finding that they need to use dongles and converters for everything from ethernet cables to SD card readers. The decision to replace the Escape and Command keys with the gimmicky “touch bar” a couple of years ago wasn’t great either.

It’s safe to say that when it comes to macOS, the honeymoon is over. Longtime users are starting to get fed up with Apple from the way they restrict compatibility to their amateur file system, to the way their operating system takes away advanced functions longtime users are used to using.

In this article we’ll go over the best Linux distributions that Mac users can install either on their Macs or on dedicated Linux computers.

Read more

Apple Poverty and Dodgy Reviews

Filed under
Mac
  • Apple Users In China Are The ‘Invisible Poors’: Report

    Owning an Apple iPhone has been synonymous with great class. However, a new research report has something contradicting to say about Apple’s ownership status in China.

    According to a report by the research agency MobData, Apple iPhone users in China are the ones with low income, less education, and fewer valuable assets.

  • Never trust the Apple army of iPhone reviewers

    The reason you will not get a fair unbiased honest review of an iPhone or any other Apple product by mainstream reviewers is because nearly all of the reviewers get their review products from Apple. They are on Apple’s Christmas list – otherwise no review product. Understand?

    Thus, in order to get an honest review you need to be able to find an independent reviewer who purchased his own iPhone. Even in that rare case, however, you are still not likely to get an honest review. The reviewer just paid through the nose to buy a new iPhone! Do you really think he is going to rubbish his own hard earned acquisition?

Unhappy With Apple

Filed under
Hardware
Mac
  • New iPad Pro Reportedly Suffering From Bending Issues

    It has not been one month since Apple launched its latest iPad Pro models. It has been found that the nearly bezel-less iPad Pro models are prone to bending issues.

    In a durability test video by the famous YouTuber JerryRigEverything, iPad Pro models bent when a slight force was applied to it. Many new iPad owners also took to MacRumor’s forum to complain about the bending of the latest iPad.

  • How Apple tricked me into buying a new MacBook Air

     

    I have been using MacBook Air laptops for several years now and I like them much better than anything in the Windows space. However, my experience has been far from problem-free and I am angry at what I believe is a deceptive business practice designed to screw money out of loyal users.
     

     

    [...]

     

    So for $175 I got my computer completely fixed after being told by both Apple and an Authorised Apple repairer that it could not be salvaged. Furthermore, I subsequently discovered through online inquiry that this particular keyboard had a design fault and that I was not to blame at all for the damage. I had been tricked into buying a new computer needlessly.

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More in Tux Machines

Mutter 3.33.4

About mutter
============

Mutter is a window and compositing manager that displays and manages
your desktop via OpenGL. Mutter combines a sophisticated display
engine using the Clutter toolkit with solid window-management logic
inherited from the Metacity window manager.

While Mutter can be used stand-alone, it is primarily intended to be
used as the display core of a larger system such as GNOME Shell. For
this reason, Mutter is very extensible via plugins, which are used
both to add fancy visual effects and to rework the window management
behaviors to meet the needs of the environment.

News
====

* Discard page flip retries on hotplug [Jonas; !630]
* Add xdg-output v2 support [Olivier; #645]
* Restore DRM format fallbacks [Jonas; !662]
* Don't emit ::size-changed when only position changed [Daniel; !568]
* Expose workspace layout properties [Florian; !618]
* Don't use grab modifiers when shortcuts are inhibited [Olivier; #642]
* Fix stuttering due to unchanged power save mode notifications [Georges; !674]
* Add API to reorder workspaces [Adam; !670]
* Make picking a new focus window more reliable [Marco; !669]
* Defer actor allocation till shown [Carlos; !677]
* Try to use primary GPU for copy instead of glReadPixels [Pekka; !615]
* Unset pointer focus when the cursor is hidden [Jonas D.; !448]
* Fix modifier-drag on wayland subsurfaces [Robert; !604]
* Fix background corruption on Nvidia after resuming from suspend [Daniel; !600]
* Only grab the locate-pointer key when necessary [Olivier; !685, #647]
* Misc. bug fixes and cleanups [Florian, Jonas, Daniel, Robert, Olivier,
  Georges, Marco, Carlos, Emmanuele; !648, !650, !647, !656, !658, !637,
  !663, !660, !659, !665, !666, !668, !667, #667, !676, !678, #672, !680,
  !683, !688, !689, !687]

Contributors:
  Jonas Ådahl, Emmanuele Bassi, Adam Bieńkowski, Piotr Drąg, Jonas Dreßler,
  Olivier Fourdan, Carlos Garnacho, Robert Mader, Florian Müllner,
  Georges Basile Stavracas Neto, Pekka Paalanen, Marco Trevisan (Treviño),
  Daniel van Vugt

Translators:
  Fabio Tomat [fur], Kukuh Syafaat [id]
Read more Also: GNOME Shell + Mutter 3.33.4 Released

KDE Usability & Productivity: Week 80

Somehow we’ve gone through 80 weeks of progress reports for KDE’s Usability & Productivity initiative! Does that seem like a lot to you? Because it seems like a lot to me. Speaking of a lot, features are now pouring in for KDE’s Plasma 5.17 release, as well as Applications 19.08. Even more is lined up for Applications 19.12 too, which promises to be quite a release. Read more

Android Leftovers

IBM Announcements