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GNU Rush Version 2.0, GNU World Order, GnuPG Bug

Pon, 07/01/2019 - 13:46
  • GNU Rush Version 2.0

    Version 2.0 is available for download from GNU and Puszcza archives.

    This release features a complete rewrite of the configuration support. It introduces a new configuration file syntax that offers a large set of control structures and transformation instructions for handling arbitrary requests. Please see the documentation for details.

  • GNU World Order 13x27

    Listener feedback, and a short review of GNOME 3.

  • Poison certs imperils GnuPG checking of Linux software [Ed: The corporate media calls everything "Linux" when there's a chance to make it sound bad by association]

    GnuPG is used to verify downloaded software packages for Linux-based operating systems, and attackers could attempt to poison a vendor's public certificate and upload it to the keyserver network.

    Doing so would make GnuPG choke, making it impossible to verify the authenticity of downloaded packages.

    Robert Hansen (rjh) who maintains the GnuPG frequently asked questions list and is the unofficial crisis communicator for the project said that unknown attackers had exploited a defect in the OpenPG protocol in order to poison his and high-profile contributor Daniel Kahn Gillmor's (dkg) certificates.

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Teleport is a Simple File Transfer App for Linux Desktops

Pon, 07/01/2019 - 13:30

Teleport works a lot like Wormhole, a terminal-based app we reviewed last year, but with the added benefit of having a very simple user interface.

Now, the app is designed to share files over a local network and not to other people on the internet (the free, encrypted Firefox Send services works well for that).

This means you can’t use Teleport to send a LibreOffice document or .zip file full of photos to your auntie in Amsterdam unless you’re with your Auntie in Amsterdam and you’re both sharing the same network.

So what is Teleport useful for, then?

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Ubuntu or Fedora: Which One Should You Use and Why

Pon, 07/01/2019 - 11:47

Ubuntu or Fedora? What’s the difference? Which is better? Which one should you use? Read this comparison of Ubuntu and Fedora.

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Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols on Microsoft Gaining Greater Control Over Linux

Pon, 07/01/2019 - 08:51
  • Microsoft asks to join private Linux security developer list

    All of which makes good sense. Besides, Levin revealed in a follow-up note to the discussion that: "the Linux usage on our cloud has surpassed Windows, as a by-product of that MSRC has started receiving security reports of issues with Linux code both from users and vendors. It's also the case that issues that are common for Windows and Linux (like those speculative hardware bugs)."

    Greg Kroah-Hartman, the Linux stable branch kernel maintainer, vouched for Levin. "He is a long-time kernel developer and has been helping with the stable kernel releases for a few years now, with full write permissions to the stable kernel trees."

    Indeed, Kroah-Hartman had "suggested that Microsoft join linux-distros a year or so ago when it became evident that they were becoming a Linux distro, and it is good to see that they are now doing so".

  • Microsoft developer reveals Linux is now more used on Azure than Windows Server

    It's now a Linux world -- even at Microsoft headquarters in Redmond, Washington.

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today's howtos and programming bits

Pon, 07/01/2019 - 08:47

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Audiocasts/Shows: Open Source Security Podcast, Linux Action News, This Week in Linux, Cinnamon Videos

Pon, 07/01/2019 - 08:42
  • Open Source Security Podcast: Episode 152 - Tavis breaks the world ... again

    Josh and Kurt talk about the disclosure of security vulnerabilities. It's still not a settled topic, we frame the conversation around a recent disclosure from Tavis Ormandy of Google Project Zero.

  • Linux Action News 112

    We've got the new Raspberry Pi 4 and share our thoughts, why Microsoft applied to join the linux-distros mailing list, and Ubuntu's 32-bit future is clarified.

    Plus Mozilla's big plans Firefox on Android, and the future of Steam on Linux.

  • Episode 72 | This Week in Linux

    On this episode of This Week in Linux, we have a massive show for you with a ton of great news! The Raspberry Pi 4 has arrived! Ubuntu Reverts their decision on 32-bit Packages, Valve. issues an Official Statement About their plans for Future Linux Support to reiterate their commitment. Valve also launched the highly anticipated and wallet frightening Steam Summer Sale. Mozilla announced a big update for their Android browser offerings with the new Firefox Preview. Mozilla also announced a new way to combat advertising trackers called, “track THIS”! Just in time for the Raspberry Pi 4, Kodi “Leia” 18.3 was Released this week. I recently was acquainted with some really cool projects called Drawpile for online collaborative drawing and RPCS3, a Linux emulator for the PlayStation 3. There’s also some potentially weird stuff that Microsoft is doing but let’s focus on the positive with a new central location for blogs from Linux Kernel Developers and a new Humble Bundle. All that and much more on Your Weekly Source for Linux GNews!

  • How to install Cinnamon 4.2 on Ubuntu 18.04
  • Cinnamon 4.2 Run Through

    In this video, we look at Cinnamon 4.2 which will be in Linux Mint 19.2. Enjoy!

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Review: OpenMandriva Lx 4.0

Pon, 07/01/2019 - 08:20

OpenMandriva is a desktop-oriented distribution that originally grew from the Mandriva family of Linux distributions. Like other community projects which rose from the ashes of Mandriva, OpenMandriva places a focus on providing a polished desktop experience that is easy to install. Unlike most other community distributions in the Mandriva family, OpenMandriva uses the Calamares installer, its own custom settings panel for managing the operating system, and builds packages using the Clang compiler instead of the GNU Compiler Collection.

OpenMandriva 4.0 introduces some other changes too, including using Fedora's DNF command line package manager and switching from using Python 2 to Python 3 by default. Python 2 is still available in the distribution's repositories for people who need to use the older version of the language.

The project's latest release is available in two builds and both of them feature the KDE Plasma desktop and run on 64-bit (x86_64) machines. One build (called "znver1") is for modern CPUs while the other is a generic 64-bit build. I was unable to find any precise information on what the minimal requirements were for running "znver1" and so used the generic build for my trial. There are mentions of ARM support in the project's release notes, but at the time of writing there is just one tarball for an ARM build on the distribution's mirrors.

Curiously, on release day, the release notes also mentioned a LXQt build of OpenMandriva and a minimal desktop build. Neither of these were available on release day and it seems the release notes are out of date (or premature). The release announcement also offers a link to torrent downloads, but there were no torrents available on the server, even a week after OpenMandriva 4.0 was launched. (The following week torrent files were made available.) All of this is to say the documentation did not match what was actually available when version 4.0 became available.

The generic 64-bit build of OpenMandriva was a 2.4GB download. Booting from the project's ISO seemed to get stuck for a minute after passing the boot menu, but eventually a splash screen appeared, followed by a welcome window. The welcome screen offers us information on package versions and displays links to on-line resources. The welcome window also offers to help us change settings, which we can probably skip until after the distribution has been installed.

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GNU Guile 2.2.6 released

Pon, 07/01/2019 - 08:17

We are delighted to announce GNU Guile release 2.2.6, the sixth bug-fix release in the 2.2 stable release series. See the NEWS excerpt that follows for full details. * * * Guile is an implementation of the Scheme programming language. The Guile web page is located at https://gnu.org/software/guile/, and among other things, it contains a copy of the Guile manual and pointers to more resources. Guile can run interactively, as a script interpreter, and as a Scheme compiler to VM bytecode. It is also packaged as a library so that applications can easily incorporate a complete Scheme interpreter/VM. An application can use Guile as an extension language, a clean and powerful configuration language, or as multi-purpose "glue" to connect primitives provided by the application. It is easy to call Scheme code from C code and vice versa. Applications can add new functions, data types, control structures, and even syntax to Guile, to create a domain-specific language tailored to the task at hand. Guile implements many common Scheme standards, including R5RS, R6RS, and a number of SRFIs. In addition, Guile includes its own module system, full access to POSIX system calls, networking support, multiple threads, dynamic linking, a foreign function call interface, and powerful string processing. Guile 2.2.6 can be installed in parallel with Guile 2.0.x; see https://www.gnu.org/software/guile/manual/html_node/Parallel-Installations.html.

Also: GNU Guile 2.2.6 released

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today's leftovers

Pon, 07/01/2019 - 02:42
  • The Linux Kernel Getting Fixed Up For Booting On Some Intel Systems - No "8254"

    There have been Linux reports of problems pertaining to "8254 Clock Gating" going back a while but more so recently. This problem is some newer Intel Skylake~Apollolake derived systems particularly with Intel SoCs where certain systems ship with the 8254 PIT to be gated via a special register and up until now that has caused Linux to fail to boot. 

  • Vulkan 1.1.113 Brings Two More Extensions

    It's been just one week since the release of Vulkan 1.1.112 but it's now been succeeded by Vulkan 1.1.113 and two new extensions are in tow.

    Vulkan 1.1.113 comes with its usual assortment of specification corrections and clarifications to the massive Vulkan API. Additionally, Vulkan 1.1.113 has two new extensions for EXT_texel_buffer_alignment and EXT_shader_demote_to_helper_invocation.

  • Introducing PyOxidizer, an open source utility for producing standalone Python applications, written in Rust

    On Monday, Gregory Szorc, a Developer Productivity Engineer at Airbnb, introduced PyOxidizer, a Python application packaging and distribution tool written in Rust. This tool is available for Windows, macOS, and Linux operating systems.

  • Joplin is an open source note taking app for iOS, Android, Windows, macOS and Linux

    Note taking apps are handy and can be used for simple tasks like jotting down lists, to storing important information. The primary use of such an app, at least for me, is that you can pull up the data that you require quickly.  Joplin is an open source and cross platform app that is available for iOS, Android, Windows, macOS and Linux.

    It's also available as a terminal app for macOS, Linux, and FreeBSD, if that is your cup of tea. 

  • Paradox Interactive on Linux support, it's being done on a "case by case basis"

    There's been a lot of chatter in the Linux gaming community recently, centred around Paradox Interactive and future Linux support. It's not all doom and gloom.

  • Toontown Rewritten Available to Install in Ubuntu 18.04 / Higher

    Toontown Rewritten, a fan-made recreation of Disney’s closed MMORPG Toontown Online, now is available to install via Snap package in Ubuntu 16.04, Ubuntu 18.04, and higher.

    Toontown Rewritten (TTR) is free to play and open to anybody. The TTR snap package contains a slightly modified version of the official Toontown Rewritten launcher, including python 3 support. Due to the fact that this launcher is modified, the TTR team will not provide support if anything goes wrong with the launcher.

  • Debunking Microsoft's anti-Right-to-Repair FUD [Ed: The 'new' Microsoft is an enemy of freedom. There's no "new Microsoft"; it's just a PR campaign.]

    Microsoft is no stranger to the use of "Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt" in the pursuit of monopolistic goals; the company perfected the tactic in the early 1990s as a way of scaring enterprise customers away from GNU/Linux; today, the company shows off its mastery of FUD in its filings to the Federal Trade Commission condemning proposals for Right-to-Repair rules.

    In its comments, Microsoft argues that allowing third-party repairs of Microsoft products could compromise its DRM systems, including dual-purpose security systems like the "Trusted Platform Module" (TPM) that are used to lock out rival operating systems as well as malicious actors.

    Luckily, we have Securepairs, a coalition of security experts devoted to debunking claims from repair monopolists who claim that opening repair markets will pose a security threat.

    Microsoft submitted its comments ahead of the FTC's "Nixing the Fix" workshop on Right to Repair, arguing that "If the TPM or other hardware or software protections were compromised by a malicious or unqualified repair vendor, those security protections would be rendered ineffective and consumers’ data and control of the device would be at risk. Moreover, a security breach of one device can potentially compromise the security of a platform or other devices connected to the network."

  • Red Hat Expecting X.org to “Go into Hard Maintenance Mode Fairly Quickly”

    Once we are done with [their Wayland improvements] we expect X.org to go into hard maintenance mode fairly quickly. The reality is that X.org is basically maintained by us and thus once we stop paying attention to it there is unlikely to be any major new releases coming out and there might even be some bitrot setting in over time. We will keep an eye on it as we will want to ensure X.org stays supportable until the end of the RHEL8 lifecycle at a minimum, but let this be a friendly notice for everyone who rely the work we do maintaining the Linux graphics stack, get onto Wayland, that is where the future is."

  • Jonathan Dieter: An update

    Apparently coding experience doesn’t translate into interview experience, as I found out when I did my first. In the stress of the moment, I completely bombed one of the low-level skill questions, painting myself, I’m sure, as a first-class idiot. The interviewer was very gracious, but the interview ended shortly afterwards and I got my official rejection a few minutes later. It was only afterwards that I realized that, at age 37, this had been the very first interview I had ever done in my life.

    I applied for positions in companies around Ireland, and one thing I found interesting is that a majority of the interviews I got were as a result of connections I’d made, mostly through Fedora. In the tech world, as much as any other field, it seems that our ability to build and foster relationships is still essential to our professional growth. It’s not a substitute for competence, but skill can’t replace it either.

    One thing that paints a compelling picture of a company is how it handles rejections. Most companies did well enough, having the courtesy to send out an email when they had decided against me. A number ghosted me, which still puts a sour taste in the mouth when thinking about them. And then there was Red Hat. Now, to be fair, my interviews at Red Hat were different anyway, but a Red Hat rep personally called me and let me know that they were passing on me because they’d found a more qualified applicant. While I was obviously disappointed, I felt that this set a really high bar for other companies.

    In November, I got hired on by a local automated phone number testing company called Spearline. They test phone call quality using in-country servers around the world, and I quickly settled in, getting the opportunity to move their web applications over to a micro-services architecture. The company gave me a lot of responsibility, was a great place to work, and I built a lot of good friendships there.

  • Purism's Security Key Will Generate Keys Directly on the Device, Made in the USA

    Purism, the hardware manufacturer known for its secure Linux-powered laptops and the upcoming Librem 5 security-focused Linux smartphone, announced the upcoming release of the second version of its Librem Key security key.
    Launched last year in September, Librem Key is the first and only OpenPGP-based security key designed to offer a Heads-firmware-integrated tamper-evident boot process for laptops. It has the ultimate goal of protecting users' digital lives by storing security keys on the devices, encrypted with the highest cryptographic algorithms.

    Next month, Purism wants to launch the second generation of Librem Key, which promises even more protection for users by securely generating security keys directly on the device, while being able to store up to 4096-bit RSA keys and up to 512-bit ECC keys. Best of all, Purism has moved the production of the Librem Key to the U.S..

    "Having a secure supply chain is critical for hardware that holds your most sensitive secrets," said Kyle Rankin, Chief Security Officer of Purism. "By making the Librem Key in the USA, we've removed even more links in the supply chain and can directly oversee the complete process from Librem Key production to shipping to the customer."

  • LG and Qt partner up to expand webOS to automobiles and smart home devices

    LG Electronics has partnered up with The Qt Company to expand the application of its open source webOS platform.

    The South Korean electronics giant and Finnish software developer said they will be teaming up to embed webOS into future automotive, robotics, and smart home devices.

    LG's webOS will also officially become a reference operating system of Qt, the companies added, which means LG will get the latest version of Qt software faster so it can be used for the development of webOS.

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Server and OSS Leftovers

Pon, 07/01/2019 - 02:36
  • Breaking IT Down: What Is Kubernetes?

    Kubernetes is an open source tool used for automating and managing container operations. Ever since its launch as an open source platform in 2014, Kubernetes has grown to become the preferred choice for container orchestration. It has the support of tech majors and is the most popular open source project after Linux among the open source community of developers.

    Container technology enables packaging of an application together with all its dependencies, such as OS, SSL libraries, and configuration files, into a single container. This technology is not new; it has been a part of Linux operations for years.

  • Platform9 Extends Scope of Kubernetes Services

    Platform9 announced this week it is adding support for a range of complementary technologies to the managed Kubernetes service it already provides.

    Company CEO Sirish Raghuram says now that Kubernetes adoption is achieving critical mass, organizations are looking to invoke additional services. Platform9 now supports the open source Prometheus monitoring tools and an instance of the open source MySQL database to support stateful containerized applications running on Kubernetes that need access to persistent sources of data.

  • We’re talking Kubernetes at TC Sessions: Enterprise with Google’s Aparna Sinha and VMware’s Craig McLuckie

    Over the past five years, Kubernetes has grown from a project inside of Google to an open source powerhouse with an ecosystem of products and services, attracting billions of dollars in venture investment. In fact, we’ve already seen some successful exits, including one from one of our panelists.

    On September 5th at TC Sessions: Enterprise, we’re going to be discussing the rise of Kubernetes with two industry veterans. For starters we have Aparna Sinha, director of product management for Kubernetes and the newly announced Anthos product. Sinha was in charge of several early Kubernetes releases and has worked on the Kubernetes team at Google since 2016. Prior to joining Google, she had 15 years experience in enterprise software settings.

  • Should Google be a bit less like Google to succeed in cloud?

    It's also very possible that it oversteps the mark. As James Urquhart put it, "Google is the Sun Microsystems of this decade. Engineering for engineering to engineer by engineering. A phenomenal approach for discovering innovative solutions, but not necessarily a great one for product-market fit." Is Google too Googley for its own good?

  • SIM swap horror story: I've lost decades of data and Google won't lift a finger

    We pay for Google Drive, Google Fi, and Google Play Movies so I was hoping there would be some level of customer service for paying customers. There are no phone numbers available for customers who pay for services or those who only use free services. Google prides itself on collecting my information and using it to help with search results. Thus, it has all sorts of information on how I conduct my daily life, including tracking my every movement, tracking my business trips, seeing who I contact daily, and much more. You would think it would be smart enough to see when some stranger appears and completely changes my account information.

    According to Gmail, my Google account has now been deleted so I'm no longer trying to just reset the password, but instead I am trying to recover my account. I have countless PR folks, friends, family, and others who are in my long Gmail history and am currently unable to access any of that information. I also have thousands of photos that may be lost forever if Google won't work with me to get my account back.

  • The Risks Of Outsourcing

    One risk that is often underestimated is that the security of IT outsourced to a cloud provider has a single point of failure, the security of the account at the cloud provider. Brian Wilson of Backblaze pointed to the risk that the account suffers a billing problem: [...]

  • Is Hadoop Dead?

    When you hear "No one needs big data", look over the CV of the speaker. An African telecoms carrier going through amazing levels of growth is not going to reach out to a greenfield JavaScript Web Developer and ask them if they could help architect their data platform and optimise their billing calculations. You might find a lot of internally-hosted web applications in an Airline's headquarters but when it comes to analysing PBs of aircraft telemetry for predictive maintenance there might not be any PHP developers on that project.

    The above projects often aren't advertised in a way that web developers would be exposed to them. This is why someone could spend years working on new projects that are at the bottom of their S-curve in terms of both growth and data accumulated and largely never see a need for data processing outside of what could fit in RAM on a single machine.

  • NZTA open sources security tool for use by other agencies

    The New Zealand Transport Agency is open sourcing a security assurance tool it is developing with Wellington company Catalyst.
    Catalyst has been working with NZTA to open source the tool that automates aspects of the security assurance process and embeds security requirements earlier in the product development life-cycle.

    The Security Development Lifecycle Tool (SDLT), aligns with common government security classifications and risk assessment practices to deliver "security by design" across the agency's tech teams.

    NZTA opted to open source the tool so other government agencies can similarly reduce their compliance overheads and focus on core delivery.

  • 5 common open source software licenses you need to know

    There are two versions of the GNU General Public License (GPL). The terms of the latest iteration, GPL version 3, are clear and readable overall; it allows open copy, redistribution and modification. Developers who use open source code covered by GPL version 3 can choose to charge a fee for their open source software.

    However, the GPL imposes several important restrictions on developers and users. The GPL emphasizes copyleft behaviors for activities such as including linking, distribution, modification and re- or sub-licensing. Generally, copyleft clauses require that uses of the work observe the same terms and conditions to which the original code adheres. Thus, open source software obtained under GPL version 3 retains those rights indefinitely. In addition, developers must include a copy of the GNU GPL with the software as it's redistributed and within the software itself. Other restrictions exist for source and binary software distributions under the GPL.

    The GNU Lesser General Public License (LGPL) provides a slightly more permissive option than version 3. The agreement, for instance, allows linking the LGPL code with code under non-GPL licenses -- a practice prohibited under GPL version 3. Consequently, developers often use LGPL when they want to allow for the use of non-GPL open source libraries, but preserve other copyleft restrictions.

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Moving to GNU/Linux: Chrome OS Breaks Crostini, Upgrading from Windows 7 to Ubuntu and Microsoft Antitrust

Pon, 07/01/2019 - 01:59
  • Latest Chrome OS beta brakes Linux support (Crostini) on multiple devices – here’s what you should know

    Chrome OS from Google is widely popular among students and casual PC users due to its simplicity and lightweight nature. You don’t need to bother about maintenance, antivirus or BSOD – just get the work done with the familiar interface of Google Chrome.


    Well, there are some convoluted terminologies regarding the Linux compatibility. In short, Crostini is the unified term used by Google to describe the container based Linux app support layer.


    The root cause is actually hidden underneath this commit, which is responsible to break hardware virtualization support, which results in the disappearance of Crostini (Linux apps) altogether from the affected Chromebooks/Chromeboxes.

    The team is discussing the aftereffects of the bug, while internally pushing code commits to fix the disaster. The proper patch is already submitted to the v77 branch, and the Platform version 12239.20.0 of v76 now contains the fix as well.

  • 3 easy ways for Windows users to try out Linux

    People are talking about Linux more and more in the mainstream these days, and even Windows users are starting to take an interest in the platform. However, trying out a new type of operating system can be scary if you’ve never used it before. Since Linux has a perception of being difficult to install, we’ve compiled a list of 3 easy ways you can try out Linux, while keeping your Microsoft Windows PC intact.

  • Upgrade from Windows 7 to Ubuntu Part 1: Intro

    Ubuntu is a free, libre, easy to use, secure, popular desktop operating system capable to replace Windows 7. As many people anticipated, soon Windows 7 will cease away just like XP, and this is the time for them to consider switching to GNU/Linux operating system. This article is the first part of my migration guide to Ubuntu for Windows 7 users anywhere. You will find here intro to Ubuntu and its goodness, its user interface, difference to Windows, and its terminology. I'm trying my best to make every part short and easy enough to understand for everybody. Finally, enjoy Ubuntu!


    Ubuntu is a popular computer operating system developed by Canonical Ltd., that is free and libre, easy to use, modern and complete with worldwide community and commercial support. Its name comes from ancient African word meaning humanity to others. Ubuntu is capable to replace Windows or macOS in everybody's computing life. Ubuntu first released in 2004 as version 4.10 and reached version 18.04 in 2018. Everybody can obtain Ubuntu gratis at its website www.ubuntu.com.

  • 5 Lessons From Microsoft’s Antitrust Woes, by People Who Lived It

    Interviews with several of the people at the center of the government’s case against the company, as well as antitrust experts, suggest that tech executives will need to be careful and flexible in navigating their turn in the cross hairs.

    Here are five lessons that today’s executives might want to take away from the Microsoft experience, according to the people who lived through it.

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Debian LTS and Sparky

Pon, 07/01/2019 - 01:49
  • Sylvain Beucler: Debian LTS - June 2019

    Here is my transparent report for my work on the Debian Long Term Support (LTS) project, which extends the security support for past Debian releases, as a paid contributor.

    In June, the monthly sponsored hours were split evenly among contributors depending on their max availability - I declared max 30h and got 17h.

  • Chris Lamb: Free software activities in June 2019

    Whilst anyone can inspect the source code of free software for malicious flaws almost all software is distributed pre-compiled to end users. The motivation behind the Reproducible Builds effort is to ensure no flaws have been introduced during this compilation process by promising identical results are always generated from a given source, thus allowing multiple third-parties to come to a consensus on whether a build was compromised.

  • Ben Hutchings: Debian LTS work, June 2019

    I was assigned 17 hours of work by Freexian's Debian LTS initiative and worked all those hours this month.

    I applied a number of security fixes to Linux 3.16, including those for the TCP denial-of-service vulnerabilities. I uploaded the updated package to jessie and issued DLA-1823.

    I backported the corresponding security update for Linux 4.9 from stretch to jessie and issued DLA-1824.

  • Sparky 5.8 RC2 ARMHF

    New images of Sparky 5.8 RC2 for RaspberryPi are ready to go. Sparky 5.8 RC is a release candidate and is based on upcoming Debian stable Buster.

  • Sparky news 2019/06

    The 6th monthly report of 2019 of the Sparky project:

    • Sparky 5.8 RC based on Debian testing Buster has been released
    • Linux kernel updated up to version 5.1.15 & 5.2-rc7
    • added to repos: Baka-MPlayer, Atom editor
    • preparations to next Sparky stable 5 “Nibiru” are on the way
    • Sparky 5.8 RC2 ARMHF for RaspberryPi is out and ready for testing

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Security: VLC, Threats, FUD and More

Pon, 07/01/2019 - 01:42

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Cinnamon 4.2.0 Packs Plenty of Bug Fixes, But Nothing Particularly Exciting

Pon, 07/01/2019 - 01:40

A new version of the Cinnamon desktop is tagged for release, but Linux Mint fans who favour major changes won’t be too excited by this update.

Cinnamon 4.2.0 is squarely a bug fix release that does not bring any shiny new things to the fore. Instead, the update focuses on improving the features and functions that are already present in the popular desktop environment.

Such updates may be short on excitement, but they’re always big on fit and finish.

Among the many bug fixes and resolved issues shipping as part of Cinnamon 4.2.0 is a patch that allows auto-hidden desktop panels to ‘peek’ in to view for 1.5 seconds when highlighted or selected in the panel or applet settings.

Other changes include window animation tweaks, layout adjustments, and the addition of tooltips to the workspace switcher applet.

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GNOME Shell Adds Another Much-Requested Feature

Pon, 07/01/2019 - 01:37

Sound the ‘long-requested-feature-finally-materalises-in-reality‘ alarm because it looks like GNOME Shell is FINALLY adding drag and drop folder creation to the Applications Overview.

Long time coming, right?

Code contributed by GNOME dev Georges Basile Stavracas Neto (aka Feaneron), and already proposed for merging, is said to “…implement drag n’ drop as a way to way manage folders in GNOME Shell.”

GNOME Shell does support app folders natively, you just can’t create app folders directly from the apps grid by using drag and drop. In fact, the process is really rather hidden, obtusely tucked away in GNOME Software (of all places).

There are third-party extensions which make it easier to create app folders in GNOME Shell, having the functionality native, blessed, and included out-of-the-box is always preferable, isn’t it?

And that’s precisely what Georges’ promising code proposal purports to provide.

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Programming Leftovers

Pon, 07/01/2019 - 01:31
  • SD Times Open-Source Project of the Week: Sorbet

    Stripe is open sourcing its Ruby type checker in the hopes to help and collaborate with the Ruby community.

  • The V programming language is now open source – is it too good to be true?

    Yesterday, a new statically-typed programming language named V was open sourced. It is described as a simple, fast, and compiled language for creating maintainable software. Its creator, Alex Medvednikov, says that it is very similar to Go and is inspired by Oberon, Rust, and Swift.

  • SD Times news digest: V language now open sourced, SmartBear acquires BDD provider Cucumber, and Kaggle integrates into BigQuery

    The language is very similar to Go and its domain is very similar to that of Rust, the team explained. It has a ui module that uses native GUI toolkits, allowing developers to build native apps with native controls without the need to embed a browser to develop cross-platform apps quickly, according to the language’s website.

  • Open Source Kotlin Continues to Climb

    Kotlin is continuing its "meteoric" rise in the software development world, with recent research providing new insights into its increasing popularity.

  • Azul Systems Announces General Availability of Zulu Mission Control v7.0

    QCON NYC – Azul Systems (Azul), the award-winning leader in Java runtime solutions, today announced the general availability of Zulu Mission Control v7.0. Based on the OpenJDK Mission Control project, Zulu Mission Control is a powerful Java performance management and application profiling tool that works with Azul’s Zing and Zulu JDKs/JVMs and supports both Java SE 8 and 11.

  • A Golden Age for Developers

    There’s probably never been a time since the dawn of programming when there has been more opportunity for developers—individuals and teams—to imagine, create and be successful. Developers are able to do a lot more (and do things a lot faster) with more tools, a better development ecosystem and a tighter connection with the rest of the enterprise than was possible even a few years ago.


    A major factor in enabling this approach is the widespread use of open source code. Open source has democratized access to powerful tools and platforms that can greatly accelerate work for any developer. Open source projects are mature, stable and growing, which provides equal access for citizen and enterprise developers alike. The size of your IT operation no longer matters: Developers everywhere can call up on their laptops the same tools that once were available only to web-scale unicorns. It removes limits to a developer’s imagination and the ability to create something new.

    Finally, the ever-expanding realm of cloud-native computing is putting incredible resources and computing ability within reach of every developer. Tools such as Kubernetes, which let you create and orchestrate applications in containers that can then be deployed and run in the cloud; serverless technologies; and other new ways of using distributed computing power remove barriers. Where a developer once might have been reluctant to create apps that required high levels of computing power, that’s not the case now with the cloud. What once may have taken access to a Cray supercomputer is now at a developer’s fingertips.

  • RProtoBuf 0.4.14

    A new release 0.4.14 of RProtoBuf is arriving at CRAN. RProtoBuf provides R with bindings for the Google Protocol Buffers (“ProtoBuf”) data encoding and serialization library used and released by Google, and deployed very widely in numerous projects as a language and operating-system agnostic protocol.

    This release contains two very helpful pull requests by Jarod Meng that solidify behaviour in two corner cases of message translation. Jeroen also updated the Windows build settings which will help with the upcoming transition to a new Rtools version.

  • Smart Pointers in Qt Projects

    Besides the QObject ownerships there is another, more subtle problem that one should be aware of when injecting objects into the QQmlEngine. When using QtQuick in an application, often there is the need to inject objects into the engine (I will not go into detail here, but for further reading see https://doc.qt.io/qt-5/qtqml-cppintegration-topic.html). The important important fact one should be aware of is that at this point there is a heuristic that decides whether the QML engine and its garbage collector assumes ownership of the injected objects or if the ownership is assumed to be on C++ side (thus managed by you and your smart pointers).

    The general rule for the heuristic is named in the QObjectOwnership enum. Here, make sure that you note the difference between QObjects returned via a Q_PROPERTY property and via a call of a Q_INVOKABLE methods. Moreover, note that the description there misses the special case of when an Object has a QObject parent, then also the CppOwnership is assumed. For a detailed discussion of the issues there (which might show you a surprisingly hard to understand stack trace coming from the depths of the QML engine), I suggest reading this blog post.

    Summing up the QML part: When you are using a smart pointer, you will hopefully not set any QObject parent (which automatically would have told the QML engine not to take ownership…). Thus, when making the object available in the QML engine, you must be very much aware about the way you are using to put the object into the engine and if needed, you must call the QQmlEngine::setObjectOwnership() static method to mark your objects specifically that they are handled by you (otherwise, bad things will happen).

  • Using the Bash case Statement in Shell Scripting

    Learn to use the Bash case statement to conditionally execute commands based on pattern matching, it's different clause terminators and explore examples.

  • Create a Python function to compare the end string

    Hello friend, we will start a new Python project in the next chapter but before that let us solve another Python problem first in this article. This is one of the questions in codewars which I have solved today : Given a string and an end string, compare the end string part with the end part of the given string, if they match each other, then return true, otherwise return false. For example, if the given string is “Hello” and the end string is “ello” then the function will return true. If the given string is “World” and the end string is “rld!” the the function will return false.

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Achieving consistency between SDDM and Plasma

Pon, 07/01/2019 - 01:25

With the first phase of Google Summer of Code over it’s high time some substantial progress on achieving the main goal of the project was presented. Since the last post, there’s two things that have been done.

First, Plasma is now going to be following upstream advice on config file location, which means the location has been changed from /etc/sddm.conf to etc/sddm.conf.d/kde_settings.conf. Since the former file takes preference, duplicate keys will be deleted from it when saving to the latter.

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BSD: NetBSD Google Summer of Code and How to Configure FreeNAS

Pon, 07/01/2019 - 01:11
  • Porting Wine to amd64 on NetBSD, first evaluation report

    This report was written by Naveen Narayanan as part of Google Summer of Code 2019.

    I have been working on porting Wine to amd64 on NetBSD as a GSoC 2019 project. Wine is a compatibility layer which allows running Microsoft Windows applications on POSIX-complaint operating systems. This report provides an overview of the progress of the project during the first coding period.

  • NetBSD Is Seeing Better Wine Support Thanks To Google Summer of Code

    One of the interesting Google Summer of Code projects on the BSD front this year is porting Wine to run on AMD64 (x86_64) under NetBSD.

    NetBSD has been running Wine to some extent on i386 but this effort has been about getting a Wine 64-bit port running nicely with 32-bit Windows program compatibility.

  • DIY Open Source NAS: How to Configure FreeNAS

    Here are some of the more essential configuration options to get you going with FreeNAS.

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