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07.17.12

Links 17/7/2012: Linux 3.5 RC7, Fedora 18 Plans Laid Out

Posted in News Roundup at 6:19 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • The Linux Setup – Tom Chandler, Writer

    I’m an Ubuntu guy, though the advent of Unity has pushed me to try the other Ubuntu flavors like Xubuntu and Lubuntu (both of which are running on my netbook and laptop). Xfce might just become my standard desktop; I launch everything using Synapse anyway, and Unity’s universal menus and lack of document identification don’t work for me.

  • 2 new mini Linux boxes

    After the success of Raspberry Pi, it seems mini PCs that run Linux has become a technology trend. Recently, 2 new mini Linux-enabled PCs have joined the party.

  • Desktop

    • My new test box – and how it wasn’t

      Let me tell you a secret: Although I often claim I have no friends, I do! A few, but still, they are present and accounted for. One of these friends happened to give me his T61 for extensive, long-term operating system testing, which you’ve been enjoyed recently, with all the latest-gen SSD benchmarking and quadruple boot setup and whatnot. And now, that same friend has loaned me another one of his machines, for an indefinite period of abuse. This means more fun.

      [...]

      The laptop is going back to its owner. I’m sorry to say, but with its crappy graphics and Wireless, it’s simply unusable. I could blame Linux of course, but then, that same Linux works fine everywhere else. Moreover, my other machines with N-capable cards are running just fine, since they happen to have other devices. And let’s not even mention the graphics card. You know what I think about non-Nvidia cards, or non-Nvidia drivers. You’ve seen what happens with Nouveau.

    • Why the Linux desktop doesn’t shine in business: A perspective

      I’ve been keeping track lately of what it is I do most during a full day of remote support. The three top things I deal with are:

    • Perfect Storm Brewing: The Linux Desktop – Part One

      From time to time I get the question of “Why has Linux failed on the Desktop?” Recently Linus was also asked this question, and he considered it a personal failure, since his first desire was to have Linux as a desktop machine. He attributed this to the fact that end user customers just do not like installing operating systems on their machines that they purchased.

    • Project Sputnik Versus Microsoft

      Dell is toying with the idea of loading up Ubuntu onto an XPS 13 laptop to create a developer environment in which people can create Web and mobile apps. It’s called Project Sputnik. Should Microsoft be worried? My thinking is no.

    • Dell ‘Project Sputnik’ Ubuntu laptop programme enters beta phase
  • Kernel Space

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

      • An old KDE user finds his way back…

        I left KDE back in the early KDE4 days. It wasn’t a matter of the fact I didn’t like the changes made, it was a matter of the plasma desktop simply being too unstable (for me) to get anything done.

        I had always been a KDE user since first using Linux. When I first installed Red Hat 7.1, the friend who gave me the disk gave me this simple instruction “When it asks you GNOME or KDE, choose KDE.” – and I was off.

        Oddly enough, I’ve made my way back to Fedora after leaving Fedora at FC2 for better KDE support, or I should say a more ‘upstream’ KDE (I grew to not like the Bluecurve thing that attempted to make KDE and GNOME look alike). I initially went to Mandrake (for maybe a week), tried out a little distro called Yoper (is it still around?), and finally settled in with Slackware for a while (and learned a *lot* in the process). After that I flopped around mostly between Kubuntu and Debian (usually Sid) with KDE.

      • [GSoC] Amarok gets more social
    • GNOME Desktop

      • Gnome Web 353 and beyond!

        Gnome Web (Epiphany) is a misjudged and underestimated project when web-browsers are the most popular and significant software in any OS. The reasons? The two powerful open source alternatives, Chromium and Firefox, but also the bad quality and poor in features Web.

  • Distributions

    • Mint and openSUSE: My take on four Linux release candidates

      I spent the weekend looking at the release candidates for four — or two, depending on how you count them — upcoming Linux distributions. Perhaps it is a good commentary on the state of Linux distributions that the most important thing to say about all four is that they just work.

      From installation to hardware detection and driver support, and the full range of packages and applications included, everything just works with no huge drama.

    • First Impressions of Netrunner 4.2

      The Netrunner distribution is one I’ve been asked to review recently. It’s a project based on Kubuntu and the latest release of Netrunner, version 4.2, is based on Kubuntu 12.04, making it a long term support release. According the to the project’s website, Netrunner aims to be a complete desktop OS that will feel comfortable to new users while remaining flexible. The latest release is offered in both 32-bit and 64-bit builds and the ISO download is approximately 1.6GB in size.

    • 4 less-known Linux distros for beginners

      If you are a long time user of Windows or Mac and want to try Linux, there is a high chance that your first distro will be either Ubuntu, Linux Mint or Fedora since these distros are very popular. However, there are some other distros that are more suitable for beginners in my opinion. All of these distros work out of the box, come with a very friendly, easy-to-use desktop and are super easy to install and very well-supported.

    • Happy Birthday to Slackware Linux

      Today, Slackware celebrate it’s 19th birthday and i think it would be a perfect timing if we could have Slackware 14 on this wonderful moment, but unfortunately it’s not possible. Even though -Current is now stabilizing, there are still some things to do before we can have Slackware 14 ready for public.

    • 31 Flavors of Linux

      What do Bill Reynolds, Fabio Erculiani, and Clement Lefebvre have in common? They spearheaded new distributions that have become staples in Linux desktop computing. Beginning new projects is particularly difficult and not all who try succeed. So, that’s why Todd Robinson might sound a little nuts with his newest experiment. He’s going to attempt to create and release a complete Linux operating system each and every day for a whole month.

    • Todd Robinson and the 31 flavors project

      There is a joke that there are more Linux distros than the total amount of Linux users. When this saying is obviously exaggerating, it is true that we have a lot of Linux distros already out there. But there will be more. At least there will be 31 more Linux distros after August this year.

    • Open Ballot: What’s your ideal distribution look like?

      Package managers, desktops, installers, multimedia codecs, proprietary driver support, start up and shutdown, and release models. All these things, and many more, separate the different distributions from one another. In this week’s open ballot, we want to know if you were king for a day, what combination of components would you pluck out of which distributions to recombine into your perfect operating system?

    • New Releases

      • Pear Linux 5 – Sunsprite released
      • Arch 2012.07.15
      • Uploaded early alpha of SimplyMEPIS 12: version 11.9.60 Will hit public download sites within 48 hours. Subscribers can get it now.
      • Sophos UTM 9
      • Finnix 105 has been released
      • VectorLinux 7.0 SOHO Edition

        The final release of VectorLinux 7.0 SOHO is now available. This release is built on the 7.0 GOLD release featuring the recently released KDE4.8.3 desktop experience. VectorLinux is the fastest Linux desktop in it’s class bar none. We have spared no expense to bring the KDE4 desktop to the Linux community in a unique fashion that is best tried to see KDE4 at its most awesome potential. With the custom artwork, visual tweaks and a little Vector magic, behold SOHO as you have never seen it before.

      • First 64-bit edition of VectorLinux 7.0 now available

        Nearly eight months after the 32-bit edition arrived, a 64-bit edition of version 7.0 of the Slackware-based operating system has been announced by the VectorLinux developers. Like the project’s Standard edition, the 64-bit release of VectorLinux 7.0 – referred to as “VLocity Linux 64-7.0″ – includes support for DVD playback, audio and video codecs, and plugins for multimedia and Java support out of the box.

      • Linux Deepin 12.06 Final Release Out !

        Linux Deepin is one of the most active Linux distributions in China. The developers of LD endeavour to provide its users with an operating system of high stability and efficiency, in order to fulfil our goal to “Keep newbies free from pain and save time for the experts”. With the efforts from both the community and the company that work behind the project, LD is becoming easier to use every day. We would like to say thanks to all of you who join us and support us. Please follow our blog ( http://planet.linuxdeepin.com ). Linux Deepin is released twice a year. Last major release was Linux Deepin 11.12.

    • Red Hat Family

    • Debian Family

      • DebConf 12: Linux Gaming, Mobile, 64-bit ARMv8 Planning

        The DebConf 12 developer summit ended on Saturday in Managua. Here is a recap of the prominent Debian Linux and open-source discussions that took place in Nicaragua’s capitol for the past week.

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Valve ports Steam and L4D2 to Ubuntu

            Valve has a working version of Steam and Left for Dead 2 on Ubuntu. The software company revealed this on a new blog about its efforts to bring its popular online game distribution platform to Linux.

            This official announcement confirms months of speculation about Valve’s Linux development plans. In fact, Phoronix first broke the news in 2010, but it seems that it’s only recently that there was enough reason to believe that Valve was serious.

          • Second-Class Citizens?

            Jonathan Riddell, who has been working on the Kubuntu for the last 7 years as its sole paid developer, announced back in February that Canonical would no longer provide financial support for Kubuntu after the release of Kubuntu 12.04.

            And article on OMGUbuntu! explains further that the decision boils down to business. Riddell in the Kubuntu article above did say, “it has not taken over the world commercially and shows no immediate signs of doing so…”

            While this shake up does not spell the end of Kubuntu it does shift the way it is supported. Canonical will, from Kubuntu 12.10 onwards, provide backing for the KDE flavour in the same way as it does Xubuntu, Edbuntu, and Lubuntu – with infrastructure and resources rather than money.

          • How to Undo Unity

            Like Ubuntu’s Unity interface? Great. If not, you can easily change it to look and act like Ubuntu used to. This tutorial shows how.

            I won’t debate whether Unity is an improvement. This article is simply a “How To” for those who want to alter it.

            We’ll start by customizing Unity. We’ll add and delete icons from the applications Launcher on the left-hand side of the screen, then we’ll add icons and folders to the desktop. I’ll introduce some Unity tweaking tools.

          • Ubuntu For Beginners: A Series Of Ubuntu Articles

            These articles are first and foremost meant for beginners in Ubuntu world and open source in general. That doesn’t mean that others, who are already very well involved in both the worlds, are forbidden to read. All of you are very welcome with your suggestions/ideas what could be better.

          • Flavours and Variants

            • Thinking About Fuduntu

              Funduntu 2012.3 is somewhat unique among Linux distributions. While you find many Debian and Ubuntu spins and forks you do not find as many Red Hat spins and forks that are user friendly, and more, optimized for laptops and netbooks.

              It seems not only optimized for netbooks and laptops, it is also very “Google friendly” having the Chromium browser, the Gmail application on the dock, and only having Google Docs for a word processor. I get this as Fuduntu is a distribution aimed at being light weight, and I credit the developers for having updated versions of Firefox, Thunderbird, and LibreOffice in the repository.

            • Linux Mint 13 XFCE Screenshots
  • Devices/Embedded

    • Overclocked Raspberry Pi running Raspbian OS is lightning quick

      The goal of the Raspberry Pi Foundation in releasing limited quantities of the Raspberry Pi was to accelerate the development of software for the machine before targeting schools. It seems to be working, and anyone lucky enough to have received their Raspberry Pi will soon be enjoying a much faster operating system.

    • Small low cost linux pc’s, an overview from 07-2012

      You might have heard of the Raspberry Pi, or the Cotton Candy, or the Snowball. Those are, besides nice pi, candy and snow, also small Linux pc’s. Most of them have an ARM chip, a small amount of memory and run some for of Linux.

      This page will provide an overview of what is on the market, specs, an image, and links to the boards. It is probably not complete, and if I forgot one, please leave a comment. I think I’ll be doing another overview at the end of the year.

    • Raspberry Pi Sales Restrictions Are Lifted

      As we’ve noted recently, when it comes to the top open source stories of 2012, it’s clear that one of the biggest is the proliferation of tiny, inexpensive Linux-based computers at some of the smallest form factors ever seen. And, the diminutive, credit card-sized Raspberry Pi (shown at left), priced at $25 and $35, is one of the most widely followed of these miniature systems. Now, the folks behind Raspberry Pi have announced that strict sales restrictions on the devices have been lifted.

    • Raspberry Pi: Making DIY computing cool again

      When it comes to the types of products and stories I cover, I’m rarely the most popular guy in the office. When Apple released all its new MacBooks several weeks ago, we had marketing folks streaming into the lab to get a glimpse. The CEO reportedly came by to try out the Windows 8 touchscreen PC we had set up. And it probably goes without saying that the phone, tablet, and camera guys around here get a lot more love than I do. Sadly, video cards, solid-state drives, motherboards, CPUs, and the like are all seen as too geeky, too user-unfriendly for the masses of my colleagues, so they usually leave me alone until some rare news happening forces them to remember I exist for a few hours.

    • Raspberry Pi waiting list scrapped: Let the bulk buying begin
    • The Value of Pi

      The sudden popularity of mini-board systems like Raspberry Pi have brought back the pioneering spirit of Linux’ early days. But will it bring a much-needed resurgence in programming and development?

      I have yet to get a Raspberry Pi unit for myself, nor do I think I will get one anytime soon. For one, I already have a nice mobile Linux laptop, currently running Ubuntu 12.04, so my Linux needs are quite well handled by that.

    • Raspberry Pi rivalled by rival quad-core Linux board

      The success of the Raspberry Pi has inspired a Korean firm to publish details of a new and more powerful version of the same ARM-based Linux computer-on-a-board concept, the ODROID-X.

      Marketed as a US $129 ($162) development board, the higher price of Hardkernel’s ODROID-X offers a taste of what the Raspberry Pi itself might one day turn into.

      At its heart is Samsung’s powerful Exynos4412 Cortex-A9 Quad Core running at1.4Ghz (also used in the Samsung SIII smartphone), enough grunt to run Ubuntu 12.04 as well as Android 4.04 on the 1GB of onboard RAM.

    • Phones

      • Android

        • Android 4.1 Jelly Bean: Complete List of All New Features

          Google officially unveiled its next-generation Android mobile OS, v4.1 Jelly Bean, in June at its annual I/O developer conference. The brand new software is currently only officially available for two devices, the Samsung Galaxy Nexus smartphone and Google’s brand new Nexus 7 tablet—check out a Nexus 7 hands-on here—but Jelly Bean should make its way to the bulk of new Android devices in the coming months, starting with the Samsung Galaxy S III and Motorola XOOM tablet.

    • Sub-notebooks/Tablets

      • Tablet price battle apparent in US market

        Tablet prices are dropping in the US with Samsung’s 7-inch Galaxy Tab now priced at US$219 from US$399 in various stores such as Wal-Mart and Best Buy along with white-brand tablets that are on sale for as low as US$59.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Open source offense could be our best defense against cyberattacks

    A core dilemma for IT today is how to properly protect the organizations’ information systems and assets given security tools often seem like a black hole sucking down both time and money. But a strong defense doesn’t have to be expensive, and a good place to start is assessing what information is publicly available and figuring out how to safeguard it from attack.

  • 5 Questions with David A. Wheeler

    Meet David A. Wheeler. He’s a Research Staff Member for the Institute for Defense Analyses (IDA) and a well-known speaker, author, and expert on open source software and security. He helped develop the Department of Defense’s open source software policy and FAQ and has written other guidance materials to help people understand how to use and collaboratively develop open source software in government. He has a Ph.D. in Information Technology, an M.S. in Computer Science, and a B.S. in Electronics Engineering. We hope you enjoy getting to know David.

  • Google Open Sources Turing Machine Doodle

    This past week, Google open sourced the code for the animated Turing Machine logic puzzle it posted to its homepage in celebration of the computing pioneer’s centenary. Turning would have been 100 on June 23rd, and one of his most famous creations was Turning Machine, which exhibited some of the fundamental concepts that underpin today’s computers.

  • Break free with Miro!

    Miro is a free and open source music player, video player, media converter, internet tv application, podcast organizer, downloader and generally a feature-rich multimedia playing, organizing and synchronizing application.

  • Events

    • Berlin in August: Free Software at Campus Party

      From August 21. to 26. there is Campus Party in Berlin. I was asked beforeif I can make suggestions for good speakers from the Free Software community.That is what I did. So beside the already announced keynote speakers like Jon “maddog” Hall, MarkSurman (Mozilla Foundation), and Rainey Reitman (EFF) to following talks will take place in the Free Software track…

  • Web Browsers

    • Chrome

    • Mozilla

      • Firefox 16 with new Address Bar Word Highlighting

        Sometimes it is the little things that are worth talking about. When you enter a phrase or word in Firefox’s address bar, you receive a listing with suggestions in a menu that opens up automatically. Depending on your configuration of the feature, you may see history items or bookmarks listed in the window. We have previously detailed how you can modify the Firefox address bar so that nothing, only bookmarks or history items, or both are displayed in it. Privacy is one reason why you may want to modify the settings but there are others, for instance to load bookmarks faster in the browser by only displaying bookmarks in the results.

      • The Grounding of Mozilla’s Thunderbird

        “Thunderbird does everything I want it to do right now,” said Google+ blogger Kevin O’Brien. “I grant that someone out there probably wants it to become a feed reader, a floor polish, and a dessert topping, but I’m fine with it just the way it is. If they just keep up the security patches (which they say they will do), I am fine with it.”

      • Ubuntu and Thunderbird: What the Future Might Hold

        For years, Ubuntu’s default email client was Evolution. Then, last year, Canonical switched to Mozilla Thunderbird. But now recent doubts over the future of Thunderbird — most of them pretty speculative — have spawned worries that Thunderbird might, in its turn, disappear from Ubuntu. Will it? And more importantly, would it really matter to many people? Here are some thoughts.

  • SaaS

  • Databases

    • 5 Interesting Things You Can Do With PostgreSQL

      One could write thousands of pages about all the features PostgreSQL offers. Instead, let’s take a look at five features that are particularly interesting and find out where PostgreSQL sits in relation to other open source and proprietary database systems. PostgreSQL has a lot more to offer than might be immediately obvious.

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

  • BSD

    • BSD For Human Beings?

      As the founder of PC-BSD, what can you tell us about your decision to start this project? How did you get involved with BSD systems, and what drove you into creating one?

  • Project Releases

    • Firebug 1.10 released with new cookie manager

      Version 1.10.0 of the Firebug web development tool has been released with several new features, such as a cookie manager and support for syntax highlighting. The major update to the open source web debugger is now compatible with the current stable Firefox 13 release as well as the Beta (14), Aurora (15) and Nightly (16) branches. It no longer requires the browser to be restarted upon installation; however, users upgrading from version1.9 will need to restart.

    • GParted update brings refresh of live CD partitioning tools

      Following the recent release of GParted 0.13.0, there has been a new release of the project’s own GParted Live distribution, as well as one from the Parted Magic developer. GParted Live 0.13.0-1 includes several important, and in one case long-awaited, bug fixes and Parted Magic 2012_07_13 has been updated with new packages and an improved icon theme.

    • Parted Magic 2012_07_13 Incorporates GParted 0.13.0
  • Public Services/Government

    • Italian Local Government Warms to Open Source

      There is a natural tendency to concentrate on what is happening locally, and so most of the stories here on Open Enterprise are about what’s happening in the UK, or developments that affect it directly. But it’s important to remember that open source is a global development, and that things are bubbling away everywhere, all the time.

  • Openness/Sharing

  • Programming

    • What Exactly Is GitHub Anyway?

      Andreessen Horowitz announced a whopping $100 million investment in GitHub this week. You can read commentary and speculation all over the web about what GitHub will do with the money, whether this was a good investment for Andreessen Horowitz and whether taking such a large investment is a good thing for GitHub.

      But what the heck is GitHub and why are developers so excited about it? You may have heard that GitHub is a code sharing and publishing service, or that it’s a social networking site for programmers. Both statements are true, but neither explain exactly why GitHub is special.

Leftovers

  • Security

    • Apple losing battle with hacker

      While the fruity cargo cult Apple advertises that its systems are totally secure, it is fighting a losing a battle with a Russian hacker who appears to be having a laugh.
      Alexey Borodin published a video on YouTube showing users how they could avoid paying for in-app purchases without even having to gain root access to the system.
      The method is actually simple. All you need to do is install two security certificates and change the DNS settings on their device.
      Borodin claimed that more than 30,000 illegal in-app purchases have taken place since he told the world+dog about the hack.
      The Russian seems to have a beef with the business model which offers you free software but insists you pay out for new features.

      Read more: http://news.techeye.net/security/apple-losing-battle-with-hacker#ixzz20t3bbriH

  • Finance

    • Goldman Sachs and the $580 Million Black Hole

      THE business deal from hell began to crumble even before the Champagne corks were popped.

      The deal, the $580 million sale of a highflying technology company, Dragon Systems, had just been approved by its board and congratulations were being exchanged. But even then, at that moment of celebration, there was a sense that something was amiss.

      The chief executive of Dragon had received a congratulatory bottle from the investment bankers representing the acquiring company, a Belgian competitor called Lernout & Hauspie. But he hadn’t heard from Dragon’s own bankers at Goldman Sachs.

      “I still have not received anything from Goldman,” the executive wrote in an e-mail to the other bank. “Do they know something I should know?”

    • Former Goldman Sachs director convicted

      Former Goldman Sachs board member Rajat Gupta lived the American Dream before being led astray by a wealthy friend who was a master at insider trading.

      That was the view of two jurors who on Friday voted with 10 others to convict Gupta of three counts of securities fraud and one count of conspiracy for sharing corporate secrets with hedge fund manager Raj Rajaratnam.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • Tar Heel Lawmakers Put Global Warming on Hold! (or, a Rising Tide Lifts No Votes)

      In a backward leap of anti-Copernican proportions, North Carolina’s state legislature recently passed what may be the nation’s first state-wide global warming denial legislation.

      The legislature on July 2 effectively nullified the state’s own science panel’s report predicting a 20 to 55-inch rise in sea level. The statehouse also commanded scientists to wait until July 1, 2016, to make their next report (and only after it is approved/scrubbed by the powers that be).

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • Censored by Copyright

        This week, I made a parody music video criticising Lord Finesse for being a copyright draconian. Guess what. He had my video pulled down, claiming it infringed his copyright. Which proves my point more than anything I could have said myself. Techdirt has written an article on the issue here.

        Anyway, in response to that, I got my Michael Moore on and have made this video. Ridiculously, I have had to avoid showing you any segment of the censored video, or of the song which I am discussing, for fear that Finesse will try to have THIS video removed too. With that in mind, please mirror and share as much as possible in case this one gets hit with a take-down as well.

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