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Firefox 64 released

LWN.net - Tor, 12/11/2018 - 20:49
The Mozilla Blog takes a look at the Contextual Feature Recommender (CFR) in Firefox 64. "Aimed at people who are looking to get more out of their online experience or ways to level up. CFR is a system that proactively recommends Firefox features and add-ons based on how you use the web. For example, if you open multiple tabs and repeatedly use these tabs, we may offer a feature called “Pinned Tabs” and explain how it works. Firefox curates the suggested features and notifies you. With today’s release, we will start to rollout with three recommended extensions which include: Facebook Container, Enhancer for YouTube and To Google Translate. This feature is available for US users in regular browsing mode only. They will not appear in Private Browsing mode. Also, Mozilla does NOT receive a copy of your browser history. The entire process happens locally in your copy of Firefox." The release notes contain more details about this release.

An Initial Look At The Intel Iris Gallium3D Driver Performance

tuxmachines.org - Tor, 12/11/2018 - 20:45

One of the most exciting developments in the open-source Intel driver space this year was the Iris Gallium3D driver taking shape as what's destined to eventually succeed their "classic" i965 Mesa driver. With Iris Gallium3D maturing, here's a look at how the performance currently stacks up to their mature OpenGL driver.

The Intel Iris Gallium3D driver is designed for Skylake (potentially Broadwell too) support and newer generations while being a forward-looking driver and utilizes their mature NIR compiler support. Iris holds much more performance potential than their classic Mesa driver albeit the developers haven't really taken to performance optimizations yet but rather getting the driver up and running, eliminating test suite failures, and getting to the point of feature parity with the i965 driver.

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[$] Large files with Git: LFS and git-annex

LWN.net - Tor, 12/11/2018 - 20:43

Git does not handle large files very well. While there is work underway to handle large repositories through the commit graph work, Git's internal design has remained surprisingly constant throughout its history, which means that storing large files into Git comes with a significant and, ultimately, prohibitive performance cost. Thankfully, other projects are helping Git address this challenge. This article compares how Git LFS and git-annex address this problem and should help readers pick the right solution for their needs.

Games Leftovers

tuxmachines.org - Tor, 12/11/2018 - 20:38
  • Epic Store influences developers to pull Steam releases

    Some game developers are pulling their upcoming releases from the Steam page entirely, or choosing to make their titles a timed exclusive with the Epic Games Store.

  • DiRT 4 Coming to macOS and Linux in 2019

    Feral Interactive today announced that DiRT 4, the acclaimed off-road and rally racing game, will be released on macOS and Linux in 2019. Originally developed and published by Codemasters for PC and consoles, DiRT 4 is the latest of the studio's world-renowned racing games to be brought to macOS and Linux by Feral, following the success of DiRT Rally, GRID Autosport, and F1 2017.

  • Doom’s next expansion pack, made by John Romero, will be free—or cost up to $166

    John Romero—co-creator of the classic and influential 1990s first-person shooter Doom—has announced that he will release 18 new levels for the game for its 25th anniversary next year.

  • HEARTBEAT, a monster-filled RPG looks really sweet and it's getting a Linux version

    While it may not arrive for Linux at release, the developer of the sweet looking RPG HEARTBEAT has confirmed their intention to do a Linux build.

    Speaking on both itch.io and Steam, they seem rather positive about putting out a Linux version of their rather interesting adventure.

  • Jon Shafer's At the Gates to finally released next month, with Linux support

    After nearly seven years of development, the strategy game Jon Shafer's At the Gates is going to release next month with Linux support. For those who don't recognise the name, Shafer is the designer behind Civilization V.

    A game I completely lost track of, after previously highlighting it back in 2013. The developer announced on Twitter today, that the release is finally happening on January 23rd, 2019. After sending a quick message, the developer confirmed to us Linux will see support at release.

  • Rocket League updated with progression tweaks and a second Rocket Pass

    Rocket League, the insanely addictive rocket-powered sports game from Psyonix, Inc. has a few important tweaks released along with the second Rocket Pass.

    Firstly, let's quickly go over the progression changes. They're not overly dramatic, but there's some nice differences. From now, every time you touch the ball you will get two points (limited to one per second), the win bonus was doubled from 50 to 100, the Weekly Win Bonus was expanded from two to three games along with a max per week going up from 14 to 21 wins. On top of that, placement matches now count towards your Bronze Season Reward Level which is a nice tweak.

    Additionally, they've finally added some leaderboards for the new Ranked modes and there's also plenty of bug fixes that have come in this month.

  • The Odd Realm to enter Early Access on Steam with Linux support in January

    The Odd Realm, the simulation game where you will lead a group of settlers to a new home is coming to Steam next month. Get your calendar out, mark down January 11th, 2019 for when it will be up and ready for purchase on Steam.

    We recently highlighted this one, so it might sound familiar. However, we didn't know when it would be coming to Steam.

  • The developer of the retro FPS 'DUSK' has confirmed a Linux build is on the way

    While we knew DUSK would be getting a Linux version, it's always good to see confirmation that's up to date and positive.

    When asked this month on Steam, if it was coming to Linux the developer said "Yep! Linux / Mac builds are on the way! STAY TUNED" which is a rather clear-cut reply about it.

  • Battle Royale Tycoon has you designing and building arenas to watch the AI fight

    Now available with Linux support in Early Access, Battle Royale Tycoon flips the hype train upside down and has you building the arena rather than fighting in it.

    I must admit, I'm surprised. I was genuinely expecting this to see a wave of negative reviews. So far though, it seems players actually like it. I'm happy to see that, because it's actually quite an interesting idea for a building/tycoon style game. It's styled more like a theme park building game, with you setting up various battle arenas.

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Linux Kernel Developers Discuss Dropping x32 Support

Phoronix - Tor, 12/11/2018 - 20:09
It was just several years ago that the open-source ecosystem began supporting the x32 ABI, but already kernel developers are talking of potentially deprecating the support and for it to be ultimately removed...

Mozilla Firefox 64.0

tuxmachines.org - Tor, 12/11/2018 - 19:40

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Red Hat Openwashing Leadership, Promoting VirtIO-FS and Explaining HID

tuxmachines.org - Tor, 12/11/2018 - 19:30
  • 5 things you won't learn from The Open Organization Leaders Manual

    Today the open organization community—a global group of writers, consultants, theorists, managers, and other organizational leaders dedicated to helping others understand how open principles can transform organizational culture and design—unveiled the second edition of The Open Organization Leaders Manual. Billed as "a handbook for building innovative and engaged teams," the book is available now as a Creative Commons-licensed eBook and a paperback.

  • Companies behind on digital transformation get ahead with open leaders

    One source of that disruption is digitization. Digitization is reshaping the way we lead, manage, and work. Even in the scope of the last decade, we've seen rapid adjustments to how we live, connect, and receive services. While we've been discussing ad nauseum how (or whether) we should be redefining organizational cultures and business models, the clock has been ticking, and the pace of digitization has not been slowing. In his book The Digital Matrix: New Rules for Business Transformation Through Technology, author Venkat Venkatraman argues that, by 2025, differences between digital and non-digital functions, processes, and business models will no longer exist.

  • VirtIO-FS: A Proposed Better Approach For Sharing Folders/Files With Guest VMs

    Red Hat developers have proposed a new VirtIO-FS component to provide better support for shared folders/files between the host and guest virtual machines. 

    VirtIO-FS was developed out of the need to share folders/files with guest VMs in a fast, consistent, and secure manner. They designed VirtIO-FS for Kata containers but coud be used with other VMs too. The closest existing project to fulfilling their needs was Virtio-9p, but there were performance issues and other factors leading them to designing this new solution.

  • Peter Hutterer: Understanding HID report descriptors

    This time we're digging into HID - Human Interface Devices and more specifically the protocol your mouse, touchpad, joystick, keyboard, etc. use to talk to your computer.

    Remember the good old days where you had to install a custom driver for every input device? Remember when PS/2 (the protocol) had to be extended to accommodate for mouse wheels, and then again for five button mice. And you had to select the right protocol to make it work. Yeah, me neither, I tend to suppress those memories because the world is awful enough as it is.

    As users we generally like devices to work out of the box. Hardware manufacturers generally like to add bits and bobs because otherwise who would buy that new device when last year's device looks identical. This difference in needs can only be solved by one superhero: Committee-man, with the superpower to survive endless meetings and get RFCs approved.

    Many many moons ago, when USB itself was in its infancy, Committee man and his sidekick Caffeine boy got the USB consortium agree on a standard for input devices that is so self-descriptive that operating systems (Win95!) can write one driver that can handle this year's device, and next year's, and so on. No need to install extra drivers, your device will just work out of the box. And so HID was born. This may only an approximate summary of history.

    Originally HID was designed to work over USB. But just like Shrek the technology world is obsessed with layers so these days HID works over different transport layers. HID over USB is what your mouse uses, HID over i2c may be what your touchpad uses. HID works over Bluetooth and it's celebrity-diet version BLE. Somewhere, someone out there is very slowly moving a mouse pointer by sending HID over carrier pigeons just to prove a point. Because there's always that one guy.

    HID is incredibly simple in that the static description of the device can just be bytes burnt into the ROM like the Australian sun into unprepared English backpackers. And the event frames are often an identical series of bytes where every bit is filled in by the firmware according to the axis/buttons/etc.

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Security updates for Tuesday

LWN.net - Tor, 12/11/2018 - 17:14
Security updates have been issued by Debian (php7.0), Fedora (keepalived, kernel, kernel-headers, kernel-tools, mingw-uriparser, and uriparser), openSUSE (pdns-recursor), Oracle (kernel), SUSE (compat-openssl098, glibc, java-1_8_0-ibm, kernel, opensc, python, python-base, python-cryptography, python-pyOpenSSL, samba, and soundtouch), and Ubuntu (cups).

An Initial Look At The Intel Iris Gallium3D Driver Performance

Phoronix - Tor, 12/11/2018 - 17:00
One of the most exciting developments in the open-source Intel driver space this year was the Iris Gallium3D driver taking shape as what's destined to eventually succeed their "classic" i965 Mesa driver. With Iris Gallium3D maturing, here's a look at how the performance currently stacks up to their mature OpenGL driver.

Canonical makes Kubernetes moves

tuxmachines.org - Tor, 12/11/2018 - 16:56

When last I spoke to Mark Shuttleworth, Canonical's founder, in Berlin, he told me that -- when it comes to Kubernetes -- enterprise "Kubernetes runs on Ubuntu." Kubernetes, the most popular cloud container orchestration program, "makes life easier for people who want portability across public clouds. With multiple Kubernetes clusters you have one common way to run workloads on Linux over both private and public clouds."

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DAV1D v0.1 AV1 Video Decoder Released

Phoronix - Tor, 12/11/2018 - 16:56
Out today is DAV1D as the first official (v0.1) release of this leading open-source AV1 video decoder...

Devices: Raspberry Pi, Winmate (With Intel ME Back Doors), and Purism

tuxmachines.org - Tor, 12/11/2018 - 16:22
  • Raspberry Pi projects for IT professionals

    The single-board design is affordable and has been used to promote computer science in schools. Despite this and a strong consumer base, the applications for Raspberry Pi have become more advanced over the years beyond just education and is being used in industry too.

    There are various ways the Raspberry Pi can be embedded to create huge value in the enterprise world. Such projects developed using Raspberry Pi may transform traditional businesses.

    Here are some ways to use Raspberry Pi effectively in your business.

  • Apollo Lake mini-PC offers WiFi and a USB Type-C port with DP

    Winmate’s rugged, Linux-friendly “EAC Mini EACIL22S” mini-PC runs on an Intel Apollo Lake processor and offers 64GB eMMC, WiFi, a DisplayPort-ready USB Type-C port, and dual GbE and USB 2.0 ports,

    Winmate has begun adding some Linux-supported systems to its largely Windows-driven embedded lineup, including the recent FM10A VMC touch-panel computer for forklifts. Now, it has launched a rugged, Apollo Lake based mini-PC with Ubuntu 16.04, Linux 4.1.5, or Win 10 IoT Enterprise. The 115 x 90 x 31mm, 0.8 Kilogram EAC Mini EACIL22S follows a similar, but NXP i.MX6 based, EAC Mini EACFA20 system that runs Android 6.0.

  • Break Free from Privacy Prison with Purism

    As 2018 comes to a close, people around the world have to face the stark truth of surveillance capitalism. Nearly all consumer products — speakers, phones, cars, and perhaps even mattresses — are recording devices, storing metrics on our movements and behavior. The New York Times just published a detailed report on location tracking in leaky Android and iOS apps. That’s just a fact of life when people use smartphones, right? Wrong. In 2019, Purism’s Librem 5 smartphone will be proof that no one has to live with spies in their pockets.

    If anything has changed since Facebook’s Cambridge Analytica scandal, it’s that more and more people are jumping ship from the Frightful Five: Google, Amazon, Facebook, Apple, and Microsoft. At Purism, we offer an alternative to the polluted software ecosystems of these tech giants.

    Our code is Free and Open-Source Software (FOSS), the industry standard in security because it can be verified by experts and amateurs alike. The software on our Librem laptops and our upcoming phone stands on a strong, foundational chain of trust that is matched by hardware features such as kill switches. These switches give people the added assurance that their devices won’t record or “phone home” to advertisers, spies, and cyber criminals. Turn off WiFi, microphone, and webcam on the Librem 5 and they’re off, no question about it.

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[$] Measuring container security

LWN.net - Tor, 12/11/2018 - 15:55

There are a lot of claims regarding the relative security of containers versus virtual machines (VMs), but there has been little in the way of actually trying to measure those differences. James Bottomley gave a talk in the refereed track of the 2018 Linux Plumbers Conference (LPC) that described work that targets filling in that gap. He and his colleagues have come up with a measure that, while not perfect, gives a starting point for further efforts.

Nouveau Lands Initial Open-Source NVIDIA Turing Support - But No GPU Acceleration

Phoronix - Tor, 12/11/2018 - 15:03
Just in time for the upcoming Linux 4.21 kernel, the developers working on the reverse-engineered, open-source support for NVIDIA GeForce RTX "Turing" GPUs have published their preliminary code. But before getting too excited, there isn't GPU hardware acceleration working yet...

Graphics: V3D, AMD/Vega, Flicker-Free Boot

tuxmachines.org - Tor, 12/11/2018 - 13:12
  • V3D Compute, VC4 display, PM

    For V3D last week, I resurrected my old GLES 3.1 series with SSBO and shader imgae support, rebuilt it for V3D 4.1 (shader images no longer need manual tiling), and wrote indirect draw support and started on compute shaders. As of this weekend, dEQP-GLES31 is passing 1387/1567 of tests with “compute” in the name on the simulator. I have a fix needed for barrier(), then it’s time to build the kernel interface. In the process, I ended up fixing several job flushing bugs, plugging memory leaks, improving our shader disassembly debug dumps, and reducing memory consumption and CPU overhead.

  • AMD Outs New Vega 10 & 20 IDs With Linux Driver Patch

    AMD may have accidentally revealed some new products containing its Radeon RX Vega 10 and Radeon RX Vega 20 graphics technologies. The company patched its RadeonSI Mesa and AMDKFD/AMDGPU kernel drivers with new PCI IDs; no other changes were made with the patch.

    Phoronix reported that the patch added six new IDs released to Vega 10: 0x6869, 0x686A, 0x686B, 0x686D, 0x686E, and 0x686F. These are new IDs that were previously only referenced in an update to macOS Mojave and GPUOpen's lists of GFX9 parts. That could mean AMD plans to introduce new Vega 10 products sooner than later, but the company might also be internally testing new products that are a ways from release.

  • AMD Files Trademark For Vega II

    It looks like AMD could be announcing Vega II as new 7nm Vega GPUs soon complementing the recently announced Vega 20 Radeon Instinct MI50 / MI60 accelerators.

  • Arch Linux Users With Intel Graphics Can Begin Enjoying A Flicker-Free Boot

    It looks like the recent efforts led by Red Hat / Fedora on providing a flicker-free Linux boot experience and thanks to their upstream-focused approach is starting to pay off for the other desktop Linux distributions... A flicker-free boot experience can now be achieved on Arch Linux with the latest packages, assuming you don't have any quirky hardware. 

    A Phoronix reader reported in earlier today that Arch Linux as of the 4.19.8-arch1-1-ARCH kernel is working out well for the seamless/flicker-free boot experience. The caveat though -- like with Fedora -- is that it only works with Intel graphics hardware/driver for now and does require setting the "i915.fastboot=1" kernel module parameter.

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KDE4 and Plasma 5 for Slackware

tuxmachines.org - Tor, 12/11/2018 - 13:02
  • KDE4 and Qt4 deprecation in FreeBSD

    This is a reminder — for those who don’t read all of the FreeBSD mailing lists — that KDE4 is marked deprecated in the official ports tree for FreeBSD, and will be removed at the end of this year (in about 20 days). Then Qt4 will be removed from the official ports tree in mid-march.

    Since both pieces of software are end-of-life and unmaintained upstream already for several years, the kde@ team at FreeBSD no longer can maintain them. Recent time-sinks were dealing with OpenSSL 1.1.1, libressl, C++17, .. the code is old, and there’s newer, nicer, better-maintained code available generally by replacing 4 with 5.

  • KDE Plasma 5 for Slackware – end of the year edition

    I just uploaded a whole new batch of packages containing KDE Plasma5 for Slackware. The previous batch, KDE 5_18.10 is already two months old and has some library compatibility issues. The new KDE 5_18.12 for Slackware consists of KDE Frameworks 5.53.0, Plasma 5.14.4 and Applications 18.08.3. All this on top of Qt 5.11.3.
    Compiled on the latest Slackware -current, it’s running smoothly here on my laptop.
    I decided against upgrading to QT 5.12.0. This is a new LTS release, but I will wait for the other distros to find bugs in this new software. Next week, KDE will release KDE Applications 18.12.0 and that too is something I want to check a bit before releasing Slackware packages. Therefore it’s likely that a new batch of packages containing Qt 5.12 and KDE Applications 18.12 will see the light shortly after the New Year.

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