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Real Linux on a Smartphone: PinePhone and openSUSE Tumbleweed

Why is that phone so special? My wife asked me. I was exited like a child with my shiny new toy: the PinePhone KDE Community Edition. So how do you explain the history of failing efforts to get ‘real’ Linux on a smartphone in 5 minutes? How do you explain the difficulties of developing an operating system for the always changing ARM ecosystem? I tried: It’s not normal that you can install an Operating System on a phone. Normally you have 2 choices: you buy an Android phone or you buy an Apple iOS phone. In both cases, the phone hardware (read: boot loader) is locked down. So you can’t change the Operating System. At least not easily (because you can root some Android phones). Read more

Audiocasts/Shows: Late Night Linux, Destination Linux, and More

  • Late Night Linux – Episode 115

    Why so many distros ship GNOME by default, a retro OS on modern hardware, Mint’s update woes, your feedback, and more.

  • Destination Linux 216: Firewalls On Linux & Google’s Change Of Heart On Tracking?

    This week on Destination Linux, we’re going to discuss firewalls. Specifically, what the heck are they? Do you need to set one up? Does your distro have a default firewall and our favorite firewall software. Google is now a privacy ally…or at least that’s what they’re marketing. Later in the show, we’re going to discuss 0 A.D. and Steam Link enhancements for Linux. Plus we’ve also got our famous tips, tricks and software picks. All of this and so much more this week on Destination Linux. So whether you’re brand new to Linux and open source or a guru of sudo. This is the podcast for you.

  • Sunday Morning Linux Review - Episode 326 (Audio-Only)

    I normally don't post episodes of the Sunday Morning Linux Review on my channel, but I've decided to post the latest episode to let people know about it that aren't already subscribed. Presented as audio only.

  • Solve Problems With Shell Scripting And Dmenu

    While dmenu is a great way to launch your programs, dmenu is much more than just a run launcher. You can have shell commands output to dmenu. This makes dmenu a fantastic tool to incorporate into your shell scripts.

today's howtos

  • HOWTO: install MongoDB on Slackware

    Today I am going to show you how to install MongoDB, create a database admin account and enforce basic security. Why MongoDB when Slackware already has MariaDB? Well, the two are not comparable. MariaDB is a SQL database server, whereas MongoDB is a “NoSQL” database server, aka “Not only SQL“, and its queries – just like its object storage format – are in JSON. The two types of databases have entirely different usage targets. MongoDB is a ‘general-purpose, document-based database server‘. It has use-cases where it is more powerful than the traditional row/column model of a relational database management system. NoSQL databases, in particular MongoDB, are preferred over RDBMS in Cloud services, Big Data environments and for high-volume web based data processing services. These are typically environments where flexibility is required to handle big amounts of unstructured data and constantly varying schemas. A distributed cluster of MongoDB servers excels at “map-reduce“, the framework invented by Google for condensing large volumes of data into useful aggregated results – the very paradigm that catapulted Google Search into the number one position of search engines shortly after the turn of the millennium.

  • How to install Telegram on Linux Mint 20.1 - YouTube

    In this video, we are looking at how to install Telegram on Linux Mint 20.1.

  • How to install Badlion on a Chromebook

    Today we are looking at how to install Badlion on a Chromebook. Please follow the video/audio guide as a tutorial where we explain the process step by step and use the commands below. Please take note that you need the full account of Minecraft to use the application.

  • MariaDB/MySQL Auto-Сlustering with Load Balancing and Replication

    These days high availability and database clustering are very important for highly loaded production applications. If your server is down for a fraction of time, you are losing customers and money. Therefore making a database environment highly available has typically one of the highest priorities. Set up a highly available cluster is not easier for any developers and system administrators.

  • How To Fix The GIMP Eraser Not Working

    GIMP is a free and reasonably good alternative to Photoshop. The app’s UI isn’t the best or the most modern but it has all the tools that you’d find in Photoshop. GIMP has the same tools as Photoshop but many of its tools work differently and the workflow is different. Despite having the same tools, there is a noticeable difference between the two apps.

  • How to use screen command to improve your productivity on Linux terminal

    Similar to many tools utilized by system administrators, the Linux screen command is another great tool that helps with productivity. screen can be seen as an alternative to Tmux, but it has many other useful options outside of just saving screen space. screen allows you to create multiple sessions of terminals/interactive shells. In this tutorial I will give you a quick rundown of screen and present several use cases of the command.

  • Hunting Excel date twins

    Certain versions of Microsoft Excel for Mac counted days from 1 January 1904, while other Excel versions numbered their days from 1 January 1900. Microsoft calls these "the 1904 date system" and "the 1900 date system", and says there are problems you may encounter when you use workbooks that use different date systems. I wrote about one of those problems in a 2017 post for The Linux Rain blog. If you compile a spreadsheet using a mix of "1900" and "1904" dates, you might have the same record represented twice, with dates exactly 4 years and 1 day apart (1462 days). These pseudo-duplicates are "Excel date twins". The first twins I found (by accident) were in the Atlas of Living Australia (ALA) and had been imported from the Tasmanian Natural Values Atlas (TNVA). From the ALA they went to the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF). Both records say that I observed the peripatus species Ooperipatellus cryptus at a certain spot in Tasmania. One record says I did it on 3 February 1976, the other on 2 February 1972. The second date is an Excel date twin and impossible: I first came to Australia in January 1973.

  • Removing qtwebengine from a Gentoo Linux installation | Fitzcarraldo's Blog

    At the beginning of March I updated the world set in Gentoo Testing (~amd64) running the KDE suite (Plasma, Frameworks and Applications) on my secondary laptop, an eleven-year-old Compal NBLB2. It has a first-generation Core i7 CPU and the maximum amount of RAM that can be installed in that model (8 GB).

today's leftovers

  • Distro Hopping Doesn't Make Sense Too Me - YouTube

    I've been using Arch Linux since I first started with Linux and the idea of distro hopping jas just never appealed to me, not to say that I'll never leave Arch it's just that swapping for the sake of swapping seems kind of weird.

  • Quick Unboxing of my new Thelio Major

    I decided to show off the unboxing my my new desktop - I purchased a new Thelio Major desktop from System76. This particular unboxing was very awkward, the box was very tall and hard to position with my tripod. So please excuse the overall clumsiness of this entire video.

  • Run an Edge AI K3s Cluster on NVIDIA Jetson Nano Boards

    For several years I have worked with customers who wanted to use artificial intelligence (AI) in their products (mostly embedded hardware) but ended up relying on the cloud. With the advances of embedded platforms in recent years, this dependency is gradually disappearing, giving rise to the so-called Edge AI.

  • Traditional doesn’t mean staid: how banks should be innovating today

    When looking into a fiduciary for your assets, a bank with a long-standing history may seem like a stable, trustworthy choice. However, that very legacy may be one of the reasons large banks lose out to the competition in an age where customers are expecting open, quick, and real-time banking. Not unique to banks, big companies have a challenge of navigating legacies. These legacies do not just pertain to mainframes with monoliths on them, but also how they work. Along with their associates, senior managers should also show a desire to change. It’s harder to move fast if you are huge, but embracing an open culture from the top down can be a good starting point. I’ve seen huge amounts of talent, smart people, and big budgets hindered by a staid way of working. The strategy still needs to come from the top, but everyone should be enabled—and perhaps more importantly, empowered—to contribute. Regulations have forced banks to be more siloed, and now they continue to operate like that because it is easier, and traceable. IT in a bank was merely a cost center, a service provider until about 10 years ago. Technology was never an enabler, but seen as a cost-sink. We’re still struggling with this mindset today, even though we have continuously seen how technology can be a competitive differentiator. Large banks often don’t know where to start with some of their legacy, often the product of mergers and acquisitions. Then, you throw in a pandemic, during which the world of banking had to transform at a rapid pace to expand digital banking and chatbot services, and it ends up being a lot to take on all at once for large institutions. It can feel easier to keep legacy systems in place to stay afloat. Traditional banks still need help with faster transaction times, integrating artificial intelligence to improve the customer experience, and implementing agile ways of working for their IT teams. The hurdle lies in figuring out a way to get started. As a customer, I saw this innovation from Red Hat.

  • Quick-publishing of poudriere packages

    An essential tool in the FreeBSD porter’s arsenal (“porters” are the people who package third-party software, software like KDE Plasma, Haskell, ..) is poudriere, which is an evolution of the old tinderbox. It leverages ZFS and FreeBSD jails to do clean, consistent builds even on an otherwise occupied workstation, and can build for OS versions and architectures you’re not even running. Using the packages you’ve built can be slightly harder, so here’s some notes. Poudriere has a chapter in the porter’s handbook. There are straightfoward guides to setting it up, also on DigitalOcean. Most of those guides describe setting up nginx to serve the lovely and detailed build progress and results. I tend to follow the build progress in konsole, so I’m not interested in that part. What I do need to do is serve the resulting packages to other machines on my local network (e.g. my laptop) so that everything can enjoy the latest packages. That is doubly useful when trying out things like KDE Plasma on Wayland on FreeBSD, which needs plenty of testing and doesn’t work on all my hardware. tl;dr Install lighttpd, write 2-line configuration file, run lighttpd; on client, configure pkg to use what lighttpd serves.

  • Intel Already Started Working On Linux Driver Code For Lunar Lake - Phoronix

    While Intel 11th Gen Rocket Lake desktop processors are launching this month, Intel's open-source Linux driver developers known for their punctual support are already preparing early code around their 14th Gen "Lunar Lake" platform. Intel's punctual open-source/Linux support across desktop, mobile, and server platforms is one of the strong selling points for those preferring to use something on their PC besides Windows (Intel normally also does more for BSD/FreeBSD than other vendors as well). A year ago Intel began upstreaming their Rocket Lake Linux enablement code and that was quickly followed by Alder Lake, which we'll hopefully see launch before the end of the calendar year. Towards the end of 2020 Intel open-source developers were already working on the initial support around Meteor Lake while now as we end Q1'2021, there are patches beginning to surface for Lunar Lake, the successor to Meteor Lake and what will be Intel's 14th Gen client processors.