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Links 16/01/2009: Russia’s GNU/Linux Distribution, Sun Chooses BSD Licence

Posted in IRC Logs at 9:58 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish


  • Russia to create “National OS” Based on GNU/Linux?

    Although the proposal is still in its early stages, the attractiveness of the proprosal to a government keen to assert its independence at all levels is obvious. It will be interesting to see how this develops.

  • Stop power leaks; smile at savings

    I also found that my backup Linux computer consumes 2 watts of power even when shut down. Most computers are shut down through a software command, rather than a physical switch. This puts the computer in a “soft off” state, with a low level of power still flowing to the motherboard. As a result, I’m paying $2.75 a year in power costs on my Linux box just to keep it plugged in. That won’t break the bank, but consider that there are a few hundred million machines in the United States running up the same tab.

  • In Over My Head: Blinux

    The experience has caused me to explore Linux for the Blind, or “Blinux.” This more than just screen readers and magnification. I took the time to play with the version of Orca bundled with CentOS 5 and it’s quite disappointing when compared to the expensive ZoomText my friend uses. Those who are completely blind have long had better resources, taking advantage of the superiority of Linux on the commandline.

  • Linux Elitism: Fact or Fiction?

    Most open source enthusiasts want more people to embrace Free and Open Source Software solutions, but just like how the style of products is important to Apple aficionados, familiarity with the terminal and an appreciation of the under-the-hood mechanics matter to the FOSS lovers. That said, FOSS has an added element absent from the corporate-backed technologies. Whereas fans of products made by rather large businesses need to appeal in aggregate (or focus groups) to get noticed in the product design process, FOSS is a free-for-all. Anyone is free to bring anything to the table. While a lot of folks may get corporate logo tattoos and/or pontificate about what such-and-such company did right or wrong, few of them will ever have any actual input. On the other hand, if Joe Sixpack wants to make his own Linux- or BSD-based operating system with his own logo and software, he’s free to do that. FOSS is based on empowerment and the appreciation of empowerment, and with empowerment comes responsibility.

  • Warrantless Intrusion: yet another reason for Using GNU/Linux (but it may not be enough)

    All manner of campaigns have been tried to persuade Windows users to make the switch to GNU/Linux and every year is heralded as the year of GNU/Linux on the desktop. Whether these things come to pass or not only time will tell, but the latest electronic assault on the integrity of computers which emanates from the British Government via a European directive might just tilt the balance in favour of free and open software. I suspect however that the hard-core Redmondnites will blunder on as usual making the internet a gold mine for any individual, corporation or government maliciously inclined to steal or plant information your computer. So, what exactly is warrantless intrusion?


    I’m not a technical expert but it seems to me that the only theoretical way to defeat the government’s insatiable lust for information, power and control is to create an open source ISP funded by its members like some kind of modern Friendly Society which would be founded on democratic principles and funded by the members. It seems impossible but the Wikipedia project ought not to exist either — but it does. The other long shot is to pray for the sudden emergence of a technological singularity which moves so impossibly fast that governments cannot keep pace with counter measures. Failing that we all become Luddites and forswear computers and the internet entirely. The withdrawal symptoms would be horrendous. So, the technical hand, having written, cannot unwrite a single word. There is no going back. Uninventing technology is the stuff of dystopian fantasies.

  • It’s time to start issuing PC licenses

    If you think I’m about to make fun of Windows users because one in three of them haven’t patched their PCs for a known security hole, which has been used by the Conficker worm to infect more than a million Windows PC in 24-hours, you’d be wrong. I’m also not going to make fun of Ubuntu Linux, because one Dell user couldn’t get Linux to connect to the Internet or run a word processor.

  • Linux Mint 6.0 Felicia – Minty and sweet

    Linux Mint 6.0 Felicia is a fabulous distro. It’s complete, well-polished, fast, simple, rich in features, and offering solid hardware support. It worked well with both my Nvidia and ATI cards and even loved my web camera. There were some small issues with a Wireless drivers and some mundane Windows media formats, but other than that, the performance was spotless.

    Compiz, MP3, Flash, even Skype worked out of the box. Reading and writing to NTFS drives was a breeze. The distro was beautiful and stable. The installation was simple. Superb.

    Felicia is a great choice for everyone, be they Windows users of all persuasions, new Linux users or even veterans. It has something for everyone. Combined with the healthy Ubuntu community that sort of shadows Linux Mint as a sort of an unofficial chaperon, a well written User Guide, and the now standard friendliness of Ubuntu-based distros, you’re in for a great, minty treat.

  • Jono Bacon

    • Special Source 5 Released

      On this special edition of the_source I interview Jono Bacon (Ubuntu Community Manager) about the demise of Lugradio, Ubuntu Intrepid Ibex and his musical pursuits.

    • Jono Bacon announces CC-licensed book project

      Bacon says that the book, which is called Art of Community, will cover a wide range community-related topics, including governance, promotion, and conflict resolution. It will also provide real-world anecdotes to provide greater insight into the subject area. He aims to have the book on shelves this Summer and will also make it broadly available on the Internet. He plans to document the process and provide ongoing updates at a new web site that he created for the project.

      “This book is much more than merely a textbook on building a compelling community. I believe that we learn how to build strong community through the exchange of stories and experiences,” he wrote in a blog entry. “The Art Of Community is a compendium of stories, anecdotes and experiences inside and outside the Open Source world.”

  • Australia

    • LCA 2009: Making Linux more secure

      Russell Coker is not a man who sleeps with his computers. But he does come pretty close – two servers are positioned in a little cabinet in his bedroom, one being his server and the other his Security Enhanced Linux “play machine.”

    • Linux.Conf.Au – Getting Ready

      January is here and it’s that time of year for penguin-lovers everywhere to make their annual migration south to Australia to flock together. Linux.conf.au is one of the world’s most popular technical Linux conferences, and for it’s 10th anniversary is being held at the University of Tasmania in Hobart. The conference runs for a week, with two days of mini-confs followed by the main conference programme and culminating in an Open Day on Saturday.

  • Vs. Windows

    • A Sound of Thunder

      Coming at the time of an economy in recession it looks like Microsoft might actually be scared that customers might not spend money on a Windows upgrade. There’s no way to go back in time and prevent the damage to Microsoft’s credibility done by the Windows Vista release, we’ll just have to wait and see what the future actually holds for Windows 7. In the mean time, try and ignore the marketing thunder and check out a version of Linux. You might just find it gets you off the Windows upgrade treadmill for good!

    • Proprietary Barriers to Education

      But that’s a rant for another day. Today’s topic is about foolish schools that let themselves get locked into restrictive, proprietary technologies that cost a mint, and then they cry about not having enough budget to retain good IT staff, and students and teachers who are wise enough to eschew Microsoft’s junkware face an uphill battle.


      Is it really that hard to make smarter IT infrastructure decisions? When did higher education decide that its fundamental mission was something other that widest possible access to learning? Or that understaffing crucial functions was a good thing to do? My tax dollars at work. I feel so proud!

  • Migration

    • Migrating from Windows to Linux v1.79

      There are many articles written about the reasons why users may wish to convert to Linux. Frequently cited reasons include the favorable licensing terms, the freely distributable software (with source code), support from the Linux community, improved security, open file formats, the fact that Linux can run on a wide variety of platforms, etc. However, unless a desktop user is provided with real alternatives to the existing software he or she currently uses, migration to a different operating system is going to be very difficult.

    • New Website Ushers The HeliOS Project Into 2009

      The HeliOS Project begins the 2009 year with a hardware drive. They hope to get enough hardware to carry them through the first half of the year. KUT, the National Public Radio affiliate in Austin is running PSA’s and calendar entries for the event for the next 30 days. It is through people like the one’s at KUT that this effort can meet the challenges of the coming year. The first week of January brought the group 19 requests for computers. Hopefully, this hardware drive will gain them the materials they need to meet the challenges that are sure to come.

  • Desktop Environments

    • GNOME 2.24.3 released

      This is the third update to GNOME 2.24. It contains many fixes for important bugs that directly affect our users, documentation updates and also a large number of updated translations. Many thanks to all the contributors who worked hard on delivering those changes in time. We hope it will help people feel better in their daily use of computers!

  • Applications

    • Holiday Cheer, Holiday Uncheer – Part 2

      Continuing my holiday machine maintenance saga I move on to some notable trials and tribulations with Ubuntu, but not before I report on a little more holiday cheer.

    • Tribler: BitTorrent and Beyond

      P2P (peer-to-peer) is the nature of the Net. You can fight that, or you can embrace it. Here in the US, the mainstream entertainment business has mostly been fighting it. Hollywood and its phone and cable company allies have long regarded P2P, and BitTorrent in particular, as a copyright piracy system and a bandwidth hog. In the European Union, however, P2P is more than accepted: it’s supported by the Union itself.


      “Everything we’re doing is based on open source”, says Johan Pouwelse, PhD, scientific director of P2P-Next and Assistant Professor of Computer Science at Delft. The good doctor also runs P2P-Next’s first trial application: Tribler (pronounced “tribe-ler”), a BitTorrent-based client with no servers and a “zero-cost” business model. Tribler provides an all-in-one way to find, consume and share media.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Lightweight Linux-ready RDBMS rev’d

      Enea announced the availability of a new version of its lightweight, Linux-ready Polyhedra SQL RDBMS (relational database management system). Polyhedra 8.1 adds MIPS support for Linux, as well as improvements to “active query” and “historian” features aimed at process control and industrial automation applications.

    • Review: Phoenix Technologies HyperSpace instant-on desktop

      For some time now we have been talking about Splashtop, the Linux-based instant-on desktop that we’ve seen on Asus notebooks and motherboards, as well as the Lenovo IdeaPad S10e and the VooDoo Envy 133. Splashtop solves the problem of having a bloated OS (like Vista) on a computer with limited power, but it currently has to come from the factory on a notebook, netbook, or motherboard.

    • Android

      • Geo-location SDK ports to Android

        Skyhook Wireless has ported its SDK (software development kit) for “hybrid” geo-positioning to the Google-sponsored, Linux-based Android mobile-device stack. The company claims its “XPS” kit can provide “iPhone-quality” fixes within a second or two — much faster than Android’s firmware running on the TMobile/HTC G1.

      • Movit Android mystery solved: It was running Cupcake

        The Android-based Movit tablet caused a lot of buzz earlier this month when it was displayed at CES. Featuring a nice sized touchscreen (either 4.3″ for the Mini model or 7″ for the Maxx model) with a touch-based keyboard, the question on everyone’s minds was whether this prototype was running the Cupcake development branch of Android or whether the Giinii developers had backported the Cupcake keyboard into a more stable Android release.

      • Debian on Android installer released.

        I have created and installer and bootloader (download below) for getting Debian running on your Android (G1 at the moment) device, the whole install process will take you about 10 mins, and leaves you with access to the full plethora of programs available in Debian and let’s you continue using your phone as it was intended to be: as an Android device with all the capabilities thereof.

    • Palm

      • Palm request for app store advice opens floodgate

        Andrew Shebanow didn’t imagine that asking for feedback about how Palm Inc.’s app store should work would open up a flood of input. He also didn’t expect the move would change his job description. But now both have happened.

        On Jan. 8, Shebanow, who is working on a third-party application distribution system for Palm’s new operating system, posted an item on his blog looking for input from developers on how that system should work. He threw out a few questions, such as: How should application updating and installation work? Should Palm offer payment processing or leave it to third parties? Should application trials be available? How should Palm handle featured applications?

        By Wednesday, he had removed the post, replacing it with one saying that its popularity had caught him and Palm by surprise. “My boss has asked me to hide the post while management decides what they want me to do about it,” he wrote.

      • StyleTap Considering Creating a Palm OS Emulator for webOS

        One of the more controversial features of Palm’s new webOS is something it doesn’t offer: a way to run Palm OS applications. However, StyleTap may change this, if it finds that making a Palm OS emulator for webOS to be doable.


  • Mozilla Tweets Away With Snowl

    Thanks to social networks and tools like Twitter and RSS, online communications today are made up of much more than just simply Web pages. Yet while these technologies have increased the volume of messages on the Internet, they’re not all easily accessed through one of the most-used Internet applications — the Web browser.

  • Sun

    • [advocacy-discuss] Proposal for OSUG in Kabul, Afghanistan

      I’d like to propose an OSUG for Kabul, Afghanistan. It could be called “Kabul OpenSolaris User Group” or “Afghanistan OpenSolaris User Group”. We don’t want to lay claim to the whole country, but I’m pretty sure there’s no-one apart from us who does UNIX here.

      The initial participants of the OSUG are Abdullah Ghaznawi, Said Adil Hashemi and myself, Said Hakim Hamdani. We all work at the same place (http://www.medical-kabul.com/) and since I brought OpenSolaris with me to Afghanistan, I was able to get both of them interested enough that they are going to make their systems dual-boot with OpenSolaris and WinXP


      We are located in Kabul, Afghanistan and as far as I know we’re the only Solaris users around. The computing infrastructure in Afghanistan is still pretty much in its infancy and I am doing what I can to get people to try out UNIX (best of Solaris of course) and use it for their daily computing tasks. There’s some Linux around here, but I’m not too fond of that and having seen a single (!) copy of Solaris 10 in the software market the other day, I sat down with Abdullah and Adil and we decided to try and get people more interested in OpenSolaris.

    • Announcing Open Source Web Server

      I’m happy to announce that our Web Server product (about which I’ve been writing here for a few years now) is now open sourced and available as part of the OpenSolaris Web Stack community!


      The code is placed under BSD license, this should allow for good cross pollination with other web tier projects.

  • ‘Cloud’

    • 5 Cost-Efficient, Flexible Open Source Resources for Cloud Computing

      Just as open source itself has gathered more interest during the economic downturn because of the cost savings it can offer businesses, cloud computing is getting more attention because it can allow businesses to take advantage of IT infrastructure on a pay-as-you-go model. Increasingly, there is an intersection between these two trends: the open source cloud. Ignacio Martin Llorente has a very good roundup of the tools available at this intersection–open source cloud resources that can let businesses customize their own infrastructures. Here are some of his good citations, and several of our own.

    • Open source developers moving to the cloud

      The data comes from a survey of 360 developers conducted in November 2008 by Evans Data. The biggest winner in terms of what cloud service developers plan to use is Google’s App Engine at 28 percent of respondents. Amazon came in second at 15 percent.

      Not surprisingly developers 52 percent of developer claimed to be using a virutalized Linux environment and over half are using the MySQL database.

      It all seem fairly obvious to me.


  • Intel’s Net Profit Drops 90 Percent

    Intel’s fourth-quarter profit plunged 90 percent from a year earlier, as the chip maker battled a worsening economy and recorded a steep loss from investments.

  • Police in India sweep for unsecured Wi-Fi networks

    The Mumbai, India, police have launched their previously announced plan to secure Wi-Fi networks. A team of police is using a battery of devices to systematically identify and eliminate unsecured Wi-Fi networks in the wake of last year’s attacks, where terrorists used the Internet and other communications networks.

  • UK.gov ‘to create anti-net piracy agency’

    Following its failure to foster voluntary solution between ISPs and rights holders, the government will create a new agency and regulations to clamp down on copyright infringement via peer-to-peer networks, it’s reported today.

    A proposal for a body called the Rights Agency will be at the centre of anti-internet piracy measures, according to the Financial Times, which cited sources who had read a draft of Lord Carter’s report on Digital Britain. The Rights Agency will be introduced alongside a new code of practice for ISPs and rights holders, to be overseen by Ofcom, according to the leaked draft. The final report is due out by the end of this month.

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  1. Friend said,

    January 17, 2009 at 3:51 am


    Does anyone know where can I get free email ? I want to move away from gmail proprietor code..

    What we need to build a free web :

    search engine
    email + chat
    online sharing of photos, documents, etc

  2. aeshna23 said,

    January 17, 2009 at 8:33 am


    I like where Friend is going in his questions. I’ve wondered about the idea of a non-profit, open search engine. It shouldn’t be that hard, because non-profit doesn’t mean no ads. The ads could pay for the hardware and maintenance and some staff. Perhaps, it could be done under the auspices of an already existing free software institution–if some director wants to empire build, he or she couldn’t do better than this.

  3. Roy Schestowitz said,

    January 17, 2009 at 8:40 am


    Europe tried raising such a thing. The press has not said anything about it for ages.

DecorWhat Else is New

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    Links for the day

  2. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, January 26, 2022

    IRC logs for Wednesday, January 26, 2022

  3. [Meme] EPO: Pursuing an Eastern and Western District of Europe (for Patent Trolls and Software Patents)

    With the EPO so flagrantly lying and paying for misinformation maybe we should expect Benoît Battistelli and António Campinos to have delusions of grandeur… such as presiding over the Eastern and Western District of Europe, just like Mr. Gilstrap and Mr. Albright (political appointment by Donald Trump, ushering in “the swamp”)

  4. Gemini at 2,000: 86% of Capsules Use Self-Signed Certificate, Just Like the Techrights Web Site (WWW)

    As shown in the charts above (updated an hour ago), the relative share of ‘Linux’ Foundation (LE/LF; same thing, same office) in the capsules’ certificates has decreased over time; more and more (in terms of proportion) capsules choose to sign their own certificate/s; the concept of ‘fake security’ (centralisation and consolidation) should be rejected universally because it leaves nobody safe except plutocrats

  5. [Meme] UPC: Many Lies as Headlines, Almost Exclusively in Publishers Sponsored by EPO and Team UPC to Produce Fake News (Lobbying Through Misinformation)

    Lest we forget that EPO dictators, like Pinky and the Brainless Benoît Battistelli and António Campinos, have long littered the EPO's official Web site as well as publishers not directly connected to the EPO (but funded by it) with disinformation about the UPC

  6. EPO as the 'Ministry of Truth' of Team UPC and Special Interests

    The 'Ministry of Truth' of the patent world is turning the EPO's Web site into a propaganda mill, a misinformation farm, and a laughing stock with stock photography

  7. Microsoft 'Delighted' by Windows 11 (Vista 11) Usage, Which is Only 1% Three Months After Official Launch and Six Months After Release Online

    Microsoft boosters such as Bogdan Popa and Mark Hachman work overtime on distraction from the failure Vista 11 has been (the share of Windows continues to fall relative to other platforms)

  8. Links 27/1/2022: Preinstalled GNU/Linux (Ubuntu) and Arch Linux-Powered Steam Deck 30 Days Away

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  9. Don't Fall for Microsoft's Spin That Says Everything is Not Secure and Cannot be Secured

    Microsoft keeps promoting the utterly false concept that everything is not secure and there's nothing that can be done about it (hence, might as well stay with Windows, whose insecurity is even intentional)

  10. At Long Last: 2,000 Known Gemini Capsules!

    The corporate media, looking to appease its major sponsors (such as Web/advertising giants), won't tell you that Gemini Protocol is rising very rapidly; its userbase and the tools available for users are rapidly improving while more and more groups, institutions and individuals set up their own capsule (equivalent of a Web site)

  11. Links 26/1/2022: Gamebuntu 1.0, PiGear Nano, and Much More

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  12. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, January 25, 2022

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  13. Links 26/1/2022: No ARM for Nvidia, End of EasyArch, and WordPress 5.9 is Out

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  14. Why the Unified Patent Court (UPC) is Still Just a Fantasy and the UPC's Fake News Mill Merely Discredits the Whole Patent 'Profession'

    Patents and science used to be connected; but now that the patent litigation 'sector' is hijacking patent offices (and even courts in places like Texas) it's trying to shove a Unified Patent Court (UPC) down the EU's throat under the disingenuous cover of "community" or "unity"

  15. Links 25/1/2022: Vulkan 1.3 Released, Kiwi TCMS 11.0, and antiX 19.5

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  16. Gemini Milestones and Growth (Almost 2,000 Known Gemini Servers Now, 39,000 Pages in Ours)

    The diaspora to Gemini Protocol or the transition to alternative 'webs' is underway; a linearly growing curve suggests that inertia/momentum is still there and we reap the benefits of early adoption of Gemini

  17. [Meme] Get Ready for Unified Patent Court (UPC) to be Taken to Court

    The Unified Patent Court (UPC) and Unitary Patent system that’s crafted to empower EPO thugs isn’t legal and isn’t constitutional either; even a thousand fake news 'articles' (deliberate misinformation or disinformation) cannot change the simple facts because CJEU isn’t “trial by media”

  18. The EPO Needs High-Calibre Examiners, Not Politicians Who Pretend to Understand Patents and Science

    Examiners are meant to obstruct fake patents or reject meritless patent applications; why is it that working conditions deteriorate for those who are intellectually equipped to do the job?

  19. Free Software is Greener

    Software Freedom is the only way to properly tackle environmental perils through reuse and recycling; the mainstream media never talks about it because it wants people to "consume" more and more products

  20. Links 25/1/2022: Git 2.35 and New openSUSE Hardware

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  21. IRC Proceedings: Monday, January 24, 2022

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  22. Links 25/1/2022: GPL Settlement With Patrick McHardy, Godot 4.0 Alpha 1, and DXVK 1.9.4 Released

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  23. Proprietary Software is Pollution

    "My daughter asked me about why are we throwing away some bits of technology," Dr. Andy Farnell says. "This is my attempt to put into words for "ordinary" people what I tried to explain to a 6 year old."

  24. Microsoft GitHub Exposé — Part XV — Cover-Up and Defamation

    Defamation of one’s victims might be another offence to add to the long list of offences committed by Microsoft’s Chief Architect of GitHub Copilot, Balabhadra (Alex) Graveley; attempting to discredit the police report is a new low and can get Mr. Graveley even deeper in trouble (Microsoft protecting him only makes matters worse)

  25. [Meme] Alexander Ramsay and Team UPC Inciting Politicians to Break the Law and Violate Constitutions, Based on Misinformation, Fake News, and Deliberate Lies Wrapped up as 'Studies'

    The EPO‘s law-breaking leadership (Benoît Battistelli, António Campinos and their corrupt cronies), helped by liars who don't enjoy diplomatic immunity, are cooperating to undermine courts across the EU, in effect replacing them with EPO puppets who are patent maximalists (Europe’s equivalents of James Rodney Gilstrap and Alan D Albright, a Donald Trump appointee, in the Eastern and Western Districts of Texas, respectively)

  26. Has the Administrative Council Belatedly Realised What Its Job in the European Patent Organisation Really Is?

    The "Mafia" which took over the EPO (the EPO's own workers call it "Mafia") isn't getting its way with a proposal, so it's preventing the states from even voting on it!

  27. [Meme] Team UPC is Celebrating a Pyrrhic Victory

    Pyrrhic victory best describes what's happening at the moment (it’s a lobbying tactic, faking/staging things to help false prophecies be fulfilled, based on hopes and wishes alone), for faking something without bothering to explain the legal basis is going to lead to further escalations and complaints (already impending)

  28. Links 24/1/2022: Scribus 1.5.8 and LXLE Reviewed

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  29. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, January 23, 2022

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  30. [Meme] Team UPC Congratulating Itself

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