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09.30.10

Links 30/9/2010: GNU/Linux Growth in Data Centres, XtreemOS Opening Up

Posted in News Roundup at 11:31 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Softpedia Linux Weekly, Issue 116
  • Windows users face as many choices as Linux users

    When I want to install Windows or Linux, I can opt for support by a company, or not. If I want support for Windows, I have to buy it from Microsoft or one of their resellers. When I want support for Linux, I have to buy it from RedHat, Novell, Oracle or Canonical.

    When defining a distribution as a ‘collection of software’, Microsoft offers different distributions of Windows for different goals. Microsoft offers ten different Windows distributions for servers, called Windows 2008, and six distributions for desktops, called ’7′. If I want, I can still buy the older six distributions of Windows Vista.

    Those distributions are aimed at different needs: Microsoft has a software collection for netbooks, another for developing countries, one for enthusiasts and small businesses, one for the family, one distribution with all those features included, and one for large enterprises – which has its own distribution channel. Because of a requirement of the EU, all those have a distribution with or without Windows Media Player. The cheaper versions have different distributions per language.

    Looking at corporate backed Linux, the situation is not that different: There are different distributions for different goals. The only difference is, there are more companies to buy from if you want ‘enterprise Linux’. When it comes to ‘consumer Linux’, not so much, Canonical seems about the only choice, now Mandriva seems fading and Linspire disappeared. Most Linux distributions include all languages and a media player, leading to less choices to be made.

  • Real Men Run Linux (and not Windows)

    Last Wednesday was The Day. IE9 had me convinced that it was time to finally leave Vista behind and move to Windows 7, ignoring the iron rule that you should never change a running (Windows) system. I got what I deserved: A failed Windows 7 upgrade that destroyed my Vista installation, a screwed up hard drive with new partitions and useless support from Microsoft. Having spent more than 40 hours to restore my PC, once again, I am ready to leave my wimpy self behind. It is time to switch to Linux.

  • Server

    • Data centres increasing reliability on Linux

      “The penetration of Linux has been going up even in the data centre, and this has been to Dell’s advantage and benefit,” he said. “Linux is replacing Unix based systems with more growth coming from open source.”

      [...]

      “We now see as much as 40 per cent of data centres being built on Linux,” he said. “When you look at cloud computing, you’re seeing higher penetration of software companies which are open source, and I think this trend will only continue.”

    • XtreemOS Consortium Announces Public Access to Open Test Bed

      The XtreemOS consortium, an FP6 European research project, funded in part by the European Commission, is pleased to announce the opening of a publicly accessible test bed.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • Download Faenza Icon Theme For KDE4

        KDE4 users will be glad to know that the gorgeous Faenza icons theme has been ported to KDE4. Unfortunately since this pack is not supported by Thieum (the original Faenza icon theme author), the package is not available in the Equinox PPA – but that shouldn’t be such a big issue since the icons are very easy to install.

    • GNOME Desktop

      • GNOME 2.32 released

        The GNOME development team has released version 2.32 of the GNOME desktop for GNU / Linux and Unix. It includes numerous bug fixes, but relatively few significant new features because many GNOME developers have moved on to working on GNOME 3. Version 3 of GNOME was originally scheduled for release about now, but in July the release date was put back by six months to April 2011 because the GNOME release team felt it wasn’t sufficiently mature.

      • Celebrating the release of GNOME 2.32!
  • Distributions

    • Red Hat Family

      • Is Red Hat Just Too Red Hot?

        “When it comes to tech,” Cramer said Tuesday, “value destruction is far more important than value creation.”

        [...]

        Of course, you may wonder how Red Hat makes its money given that open-source software is free for anyone to use. Well, it earns revenues through services. Any system, open source or not, needs maintenance and that’s where Red Hat comes in. The company presently controls 75% of the pay-for-support Linux market, but has also used acquisitions to move into virtualization, consulting, middleware and storage-infrastructure software, expanding its addressable market to $50 billion.

      • Red Hat: The New Big Monopoly?

        First, I think it’s misleading (at best) to say these companies are “stealing” Linux. How is what they are doing any different from what Canonical, Novell, and Red Hat do to Linux? Are they also “stealing” Linux to make their own distribution? I feel like this is the point of free software — allowing anyone to build customized versions of software to fit their own needs; good for Oracle and Amazon for taking full advantage of the benefits of Linux and free software. I don’t think Oracle and Amazon are going to prevent loading other Linux distributions; it’s just that the bundled distribution will be Oracle Linux or Amazon Linux AMI, as opposed to Microsoft Windows or Ubuntu.

      • Mad Money goes up close, personal with Red Hat CEO
      • Fedora

        • Fedora 14 beta takes MeeGo for a spin

          This release will also see the expansion of Fedora’s netbook “spin” – as the Fedora project calls them – integrating MeeGo for mobile devices. For most users that means netbooks, though MeeGo is designed to support multiple platforms – think in-dash car systems, handsets and more.

        • Security features of Linpus Lite 1.4

          Linpus Lite 1.4 is the latest update to the Linux distribution published by Linpus Technologies, Inc. of Taipei, Taiwan. Though designed for use on netbooks and low-power computers, it is one of the best distributions that I have reviewed for publication on this website. It boots up real fast and shuts down even faster. It features a slick installation program (see the screenshots) and a Simple Mode interface that would make it an ideal distribution for tablet computers.

    • Debian Family

      • Canonical/Ubuntu

        • Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat Release Candidate Is Out – See What’s New!

          Ubuntu 10.10 Release Candidate has just been released. There aren’t too many visual changes since the beta version (most of the visual changes happened before the beta so see THIS post), but there are a few things worth mentioning. Read on to see what’s new in Ubuntu 10.10 Release Candidate (since Ubuntu 10.10 beta)!

        • Ubuntu developing open source font family

          In his blog Tuesday, Ubuntu creator and lead developer Mark Shuttleworth announced the publishing of the first source code for Ubuntu — the font — and revealed plans for an entire open source font family.

        • Flavours and Variants

          • Linux Mint: the tastier Ubuntu

            So what’s the bottom line on Linux Mint? Actually, I like it a lot! So much so that I just might decide to blow away my main desktop’s long-standing Ubuntu OS in favor of a tasty new Linux Mint alternative.

          • The Gaia ’10 Linux Desktop

            Reader gabriela2400′s desktop uses the Gaia customization set to completely revamp the Linux interface into a beautiful work of art, complete with wallpapers, icons, and a custom GTK theme.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Minimalist kiosk distro revs to Ubuntu 10.04 foundation

      Linutop released version 4.0 of a Ubuntu Linux-based distro optimized for kiosk applications on small, energy-efficient fanless PCs, including legacy 386-based PCs and the company’s own mini-PCs. Linutop OS 4.0 is based on Ubuntu 10.04 (“Lucid Lynx”), has a 700MB footprint, is available in a bootable USB key, and offers a variety of display and security features, says the company.

    • Vision control PC supports six IP video cameras

      Lanner announced an Atom-based PC that supports up to six IP video cameras and is designed for vision control applications. Featuring a separate Ethernet controller for each port, the LEC-2026 runs fanlessly, supports either hard disk or CompactFlash storage, and has connectors for both a VGA monitor and a serial console, the company says.

    • Phones

      • Android

        • Life-sized robotic android running Android

          Check out this fantastic life-sized robotic RIC Android from RT Corporation and Brilliant Service. The arms and head are controllable, walks on two legs, and can be controlled via an Android smartphone

Free Software/Open Source

  • Teambox is an Open Source, Social Network-Influenced Online Project Management App

    Teambox is a neat online project management app that integrates what works with social networking to try to make a more enjoyable and effective collaborative experience. Plus it’s open source, so you can fully customize it, too.

    While the idea of bringing a Twitter-like experience into a working environment doesn’t really sound too appealing at first, it’s actually a more speed-appropriate channel for communication (which we like). It’s good for reducing email volume, plus project communication is heavily status updates anyhow. While I found the idea off-putting at first, it really looks to be an effective means of communication in the workplace.

  • Events

    • Open World Forum opens with optimism

      The Open World Forum began this morning in Paris with several keynotes that were universally optimistic about the future of open source and the importance of openness.

  • Web Browsers

  • Databases

    • Couchapp Walkthrough: Part 2: The couchapp tool
    • MySQL fork Drizzle goes beta

      With the release of Build 1802, Drizzle, the community driven fork of MySQL, is now officially “beta” software. The new version includes an enhanced version of drizzledump which can now be used to migrate databases from MySQL to Drizzle without any intermediate files. When connected to a Drizzle server it will perform a normal dump, but it it detects a MySQL server it converts all structures and data into a Drizzle compatible format which can be sent directly to a Drizzle server.

      Other improvements in what is officially referred to as Drizzle7, include the introduction of Sphinx based documentation and the ability for the Drizzle server to understand MySQL’s network protocol, which should allow MySQL applications to run with Drizzle with only minor changes. The current development work is expected to be completed in February 2011.

  • Oracle

    • Everyone but Oracle demands Java independence

      Earlier this month, the Java Community Process (JCP) – the only body with the power to ratify and approve changes to Java – passed a resolution calling on Oracle to spin the group out as an as a independent, vendor-neutral body where all members are equal. In 2007, Oracle itself called for such a spin-out, and this month’s resolution insists that Oracle live up to its three-year-old proclamation.

  • Blender/Video/Graphics

    • Online film release: September 30

      Well you never know… Amsterdam can flood or so. But we target at next week thursday for spreading our film online! Work on the DVD with the loads of extras still continues, when this goes to be duplicated I’ll notify you!

    • OpenShot bug suggests UI redesign
    • Novacut – FLOSS ideals for Video editing

      Why am I excited about this and telling you about it (and aside from them seeking donations via Kickstarter)? Because in their video (embedded below) they sold me with the promise that not only will artists be able to share their final product, but Novacut will also allow others to see the process that the creator took to make that product. In effect, the source files of the video. We have this for code, most definitely. We also are starting to have this more often for music with people uploading the individual tracks to community sites like ccmixter.org. But aside from really awesome projects like the Blender Foundation, there isn’t much of this for the video world.

    • Inkscape is finalist of Open Source Awards 2010

      Packt Publishing announced finalists of the Open Source Awards 2010, and Inkscape is among them in the Open Source Graphics Software category! Voting for the winner among finalists started this Monday and will last till November 5.

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • Richard Stallman and the free software movement

      Richard Stallman is something of a legend in the global software community. In 1983 he created the free software movement, through which highly trained and often highly paid professionals give their time to producing software for the public good.

      The movement produced the GNU operating system, a free alternative to proprietary software such as the Microsoft or Apple operating systems. GNU is a both a humorous “recursive acronym” standing for “GNU is Not Unix”, and the animal mascot of the GNU system and GNU Project.

    • Quillen: The curse of Ref. A

      In the fall of 2003, I was getting comfortable with GNU/Linux after ditching Microsoft Windows because I was sick of the Blue Screen of Death. In Linux, I found many new programs to play with, among them one called “wget,” which would fetch the entire contents of a website and store it on my computer.

    • Free Form: Free Software News for September 29th 2010
  • Government

    • UK.gov refines pub sector software code, database re-use licence

      UK public sector workers have been handed a new Open Government licence this morning from The National Archives office that allows easier re-use of some gov data.

      It is interoperable with the Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) licence, but it also comes loaded with a number of restrictions.

      Public sector employees throughout Blighty can use the licence, which covers databases and software source codes to copy, publish and distribute information. Data can additionally be adapted and “exploited” commercially, said The National Archives office.

Leftovers

  • Late Night Frustrations

    I use Evolution as my mail/contacts/calendar/task manager. About three days ago my outgoing email stopped working. I could access the incoming email, but all outgoing email simply stayed in the outbox of Evolution. When I tried to schedule the email for delivery, dialog boxes would come up telling me that my smtp server was denying access. Almost simultaneously I saw a brief tweet from my ISP mentioning that they were “working on a problem” (but no real description of the problem), so at first I thought the issue was with the ISP.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • UK to Europe: Trees Not Tricks!
    • Earth-Like Planet Can Sustain Life

      A new member in a family of planets circling a red dwarf star 20 light-years away has just been found. It’s called Gliese 581g, and the ‘g’ may very well stand for Goldilocks.

      Gliese 581g is the first world discovered beyond Earth that’s the right size and location for life.

      “Personally, given the ubiquity and propensity of life to flourish wherever it can, I would say that the chances for life on this planet are 100 percent. I have almost no doubt about it,” Steven Vogt, professor of astronomy and astrophysics at University of California Santa Cruz, told Discovery News.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • Singer imprisoned for publishing “subversive songs”

      ‘Torture Without Trace’ was banned by Chinese authorities in central Henan province in November 2009 after 3,000–5,000 copies of the album had already been sold within a month after its October-2009-release in the Amdo region of eastern Tibet. A member of the Henan Mongolian Autonomous Region Arts Troupe, Tashi Dondrup is a popular music star in the region.

    • Privacy Is Ultimately about Liberty While Surveillance Is Always about Control

      Speaking on behalf of the GNU Telephony project, we do intend to openly challenge and defy any such a law should it actually come to pass, so I want to be very clear on this statement. It is not simply that we will choose to publicly defy the imposition of such an illegitimate law, but that we will explicitly continue to publicly develop and distribute free software (that is software that offers the freedom to use, inspect, and modify) enabling secure peer-to-peer communication privacy through encryption that is made available directly to anyone worldwide. Clearly such software is especially needed in those places, such as in the United States, where basic human freedoms and personal dignity seem most threatened at present.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality/DRM

    • Putting the EU in (Net) Neutrality

      The deadline is 30 September, and the address for submitting comments is mailto:INFSO-NETNEUTRALITY@ec.europa.eu. The document also asks for “the name of a contact person in your organisation for any questions on your contribution .”

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Internet Access And Human Rights Highlighted Alongside UN Human Rights Council

      Can the digital environment be used in a way that promotes real human rights? A group of activists speaking yesterday alongside the ongoing UN Human Rights Council believes that it can, and provided several examples of work they are doing to make that happen.

      The internet can facilitate community building, and help coordinate the activities of human rights activists, speakers said. But there are dangers. There is a new action before the European Parliament that would challenge anonymity online, which demonstrates the risk that new technologies could become new tools in the hands of governments in order to control, rather than to encourage more participation, said Marco Perduca, a member of the Italian Senate for the Nonviolent Radical Party, Transnational & Transparty.

    • Trademark Rights for Sound Recordings

      Recently, the USPTO issued a trademark registration certificate for his “sensory mark.” The mark consists of a sixteen-second musical introduction that Oppedahl uses for his recorded lectures on patent law practice.

      [...]

      The USPTO has registered a number of sound marks, including the NBC chimes in 1972. Harley Davidson eventually withdrew its application to register a mark on the sound made by the roar of its V-Twin engine.

    • Copyrights

      • Guest column: Copyright is no justification for digital locks

        Many creators start with views similar to what Stephen Ellis wrote in this space on Friday. While some retain this naive view, others take the time to learn how the technology in question works. They change their views once they speak with independent technical people, and go through the legal and economic analysis of real-world technology. Far from digital locks protecting copyright, they are the greatest threat to copyright and the interests of creators.

        I will not speak about audiences of copyrighted works. I am a creators’ rights activist trying to protect the interests of fellow creators, and oppose the C-32 digital locks based on this. The fact that digital locks also harm the interests of consumers is in addition to its harm to creators, not a matter of allegedly balancing the interests of one over the other.

      • Cmec Copyright Consortium Pursues Legal Option On Fair Dealing Rights For Students In Canadian Schools

        The Copyright Consortium of the Council of Ministers of Education, Canada (CMEC), is appealing the July decision of the Federal Court of Appeal upholding the Copyright Board of Canada’s photocopying tariff for K-12 educational institutions. This decision establishes a narrow interpretation of “fair dealing” in the federal Copyright Act as it pertains to making copies of learning materials for distribution to students.

      • The Pirate Bay Appeal Day 2: Lost Sales

        The Pirate Bay appeal is moving forward faster than expected. On the second day representatives for the music and movie industries talked about lost sales and revenues they claim can be attributed to The Pirate Bay. In addition, the prosecution uncovered ad sales and money trails to portray The Pirate Bay as a commercial organization.

      • ACTA

        • ACTA Negotiators ‘Meeting’ With Consumer Advocates Involved ‘Negotiators Eating With Negotiators’

          We already discussed how ACTA negotiators last week announced the timing of a “meeting” lunch for negotiators with consumer rights groups in such a way that it was impossible for most of those groups to attend, and then the negotiators refused to reschedule to a more convenient time. Of course, some people were able to make it, and their reports suggest that ACTA negotiators never really intended to talk to consumer rights groups in the first place…

Clip of the Day

“The GNU Record Utilities”


Credit: TinyOgg

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