08.27.21

Gemini version available ♊︎

Links 27/8/2021: Alpine 3.14.2 and EndeavourOS ISO

Posted in News Roundup at 9:58 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • Does the Dell XPS 15 come with Linux? Can I install it?

        Most of the best laptops on the market today are based on Windows, and there’s a good reason for that. It’s been the most popular desktop operating system for decades, so everyone is familiar with it. But that doesn’t mean it’s a perfect fit for everyone. Laptops with Linux are rare, but they do exist, and the Dell XPS 13 is one of the few premium laptops available with Ubuntu. But what if you want a bigger display? Can you also run Linux on the Dell XPS 15? Yes you can, but it’s going to take a bit of work.

        With the smaller XPS 13, Dell gives you the option to buy the Developer Edition, which runs Ubuntu out of the box. Unfortunately, you can’t do that with the Dell XPS 15 or 17. You have to buy it with Windows. But the great thing about Linux is it’s free, and for the most part, widely compatible. If you’re willing to put in the work, you can still install it.

    • Server

      • Ravi Gudimetla (Red Hat), Maciej Szulik (Red Hat): Minimum Ready Seconds for StatefulSets

        Prior to Kubernetes 1.22 release, once a StatefulSet Pod is in the Ready state it is considered Available to receive traffic. For some of the StatefulSet workloads, it may not be the case. For example, a workload like Prometheus with multiple instances of Alertmanager, it should be considered Available only when Alertmanager’s state transfer is complete, not when the Pod is in Ready state. Since minReadySeconds adds buffer, the state transfer may be complete before the Pod becomes Available. While this is not a fool proof way of identifying if the state transfer is complete or not, it gives a way to the end user to express their intention of waiting for sometime before the Pod is considered Available and it is ready to serve requests.

        Another case, where minReadySeconds helps is when using LoadBalancer Services with cloud providers. Since minReadySeconds adds latency after a Pod is Ready, it provides buffer time to prevent killing pods in rotation before new pods show up. Imagine a load balancer in unhappy path taking 10-15s to propagate. If you have 2 replicas then, you’d kill the second replica only after the first one is up but in reality, first replica cannot be seen because it is not yet ready to serve requests.

        So, in general, the notion of Availability in StatefulSets is pretty useful and this feature helps in solving the above problems. This is a feature that already exists for Deployments and DaemonSets and we now have them for StatefulSets too to give users consistent workload experience.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • Navigating DeGoogling | Self-Hosted 52

        We report back on our DeGoogle challenge and read your top Google Alternative apps and services.

        Plus, a new way to locally capture network cameras, our reaction to Kobol pulling the plug, and more.

      • DOUBLE Your FPS In All Steam Proton Games!?

        You’ve probably heard about AMD’s FidelityFX Super Resolution (FSR). BUT did you know it works on EVERY SINGLE Steam Proton game? AND Nvidia GPUs? Here’s what it is, how to use it, and some compelling examples of how awesome FSR can be!

    • Kernel Space

      • Brendan Gregg: Slack’s Secret STDERR Messages
      • AMD Adds 17 PCI IDs to Linux Kernel Driver, Teasing a Possible RDNA 2 Refresh | Tom’s Hardware

        AMD’s Radeon product line-up based on RDNA 2 could get expanded with even more products, that are possibly a refreshed designs for additional performance and efficiency. According to the report coming from Phoronix, AMD has added as many as 17 new PCI IDs to the Linux kernel driver, showing us some hints of refreshing the RDNA 2 GPU line-up soon.

        Today, AMD engineers have submitted the latest round of patches for the AMDGPU Linux kernel DRM driver, which adds as many as 17 additional PCI IDs over the existing plethora of device IDs already present in the driver. While these new IDs show us what GPU codename they correspond to, we are still left to wonder why AMD has decided to do this.

      • AVX2-Optimized SM4 Cipher Implementation Queued Ahead Of Linux 5.15 – Phoronix

        The Linux kernel has already sported SM4 cipher algorithm implementation optimized for AES-NI and AVX while now an Alibaba engineer has contributed an AVX2 optimized variant for even greater performance.

        Tianjia Zhang of Alibaba has submitted and now queued in crypto-next an AES-NI/AVX2 optimized implementation for the SM4 cipher algorithms. The SM4 cipher is backed by China and used for their WLAN WAPI standard and other purposes. Alibaba previously worked on speeding up the SM4 AVX/AES-NI code while now they are providing this alternative implementation for AVX2 with AES-NI.

      • AMD Adds 17 More PCI IDs For RDNA2 GPUs To Their Linux Driver – Phoronix

        On top of all the PCI IDs in place already for the AMDGPU Linux kernel graphics driver, another 17 PCI IDs were added in a new patch for this open-source Radeon graphics driver.

        Seeing 17 more PCI IDs being added to the AMDGPU kernel driver at this stage is a bit surprising given all the other IDs already in place. However, it’s important to keep in mind this doesn’t necessarily mean there are 17 more RDNA2 graphics cards being launched but often times some PCI IDs may be reserved for engineering models, added proactively for possible future but currently unplanned models, and similar cases. Some of these IDs may also be used for AMD’s custom designs for partners.

        The new IDs sent out over night add five more to Sienna Cichlid (0x73A5, 0x73A8, 0x73A9, 0x73AC, and 0x73AD) on top of the 7 Sienna Cichlid PCI IDs already in place.

    • Applications

      • The 8 Best Productivity Apps for Linux

        The computer has become the center of many of our working lives. If you’ve come to adopt Linux as your digital workplace, there’s a good chance you’re using the GNOME desktop interface.

        In recent years a number of handy apps have popped up to help you be more productive at whatever professional or creative task you’re hard at work on. Here are eight options worth taking a look at.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • How To Install Elasticsearch on Debian 11 – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Elasticsearch on Debian 11. For those of you who didn’t know, Elasticsearch is the distributed, RESTful search and analytics engine at the heart of the Elastic Stack. Elasticsearch is well-liked and popular amongst sysadmins and developers as it is a mighty search engine based on the Lucene library. It is generally used as the underlying engine/technology that powers applications with complex search features and requirements.

        This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you through the step-by-step installation of Elasticsearch on a Debian 11 (Bullseye) server.

      • Everything You Need To Know About Linux /tmp Directory

        The “/tmp” or tmp directory (temporary directory) in Linux is a place where any program stores the necessary files it can use during an executive session. It is one of the most used directories in Linux. Let us say you are writing a document. You are doing that in vscode. The vscode will save a temporary copy of your document in the tmp file and will update it on a regular basis. You can always go there and can restore it if necessary.

        Learning about the tmp directory thoroughly is a must if you want to be an effective Linux user. Knowing how it works, what are the attributes of this directory, etc., is going to enhance your Linux controlling a lot. We shall answer all of the possible questions that can come to your mind. Stay with us to learn.

      • How to Install Latest PHP 8 on Rocky Linux

        According to the W2techs surveys, there is 79% of all websites using PHP as a server-side programming language. On top of that, there are 67% of websites using PHP version 7, after 4 years after its initial release. PHP is one of the most popular server-side programming languages for websites. Some notable web applications are based on PHP like WordPress, Magento E-commerce, Wikipedia, Drupal, etc.

        At this time, the PHP version 8 has been released with additional features and improvements, including named arguments, union types, attributes, constructor property promotion, match expression, nullsafe operator, JIT, and improvements in the type system, error handling, and consistency.

      • How to detect and manage devices on Linux – VITUX

        Many of the Linux beginners coming from Windows know how to manage devices on their Windows systems. But they do not know how to do the same on Linux unfortunately. This is not because Linux is different, rather they are new and unaware of where to find the right help. Here I am going to help you how to detect and manage devices in your Linux system. I will be using Ubuntu 20.04 distribution. All commands are valid for related distribution which uses the apt package manager.

      • Hardening filesystem Centos/RHEL 8 – Unixcop

        Linux has continued used for many years beyond multiple industries and offers customizable and versatile systems. It is, therefore, essential that computers, servers, and even virtual machines that run Linux have specific security measures in place. In addition, because Linux-based operating systems (Ubuntu, Debian, RedHat, etc.) are so different and widely used, it’s essential to establish robust security standards to hold each specific operating system. The Center for Internet Security (CIS) has published benchmarks as standards for securing operating systems, a process known as hardening filesystem.

        Linux is not a secure operating system. These steps can be practiced and be improved. This tutorial aims to explain how to harden Linux as much as possible for security and privacy vulnerabilities. This will show you how to make distribution-agnostic and is not attached to any specific one. Also, try types of filesystem Centos/RHEL 8.

      • Perform a vulnerability scan with Openscap scanner – Unixcop

        RHEL 7 makes it simple to support secure and compliant systems with the openscap scanner. Also, try openssl.

      • Easy way to Install PHP 8.0 on Debian 11 Bullseye Server – Linux Shout

        A quick guide for installing PHP 8.0 on Debian 11, 10, and 9 Servers to install various web applications or CMS based on this server-side scripting language.

        Php 8.0 is the latest stable version of this programming language to use for commercial purposes. It is a server-side language, this means that the language can only perform actions on the server: For example, it can establish connections to a database or delete files on the server. You can easily convert an HTML file into PHP. To do this, you simply have to save the HTML file under .php. You can upload this PHP file to your server and call it up – without the actual PHP code. The output is unchanged.

        PHP is a cross-platform language hence can be executed on all popular operating systems. If you want to use PHP 8.0.x for your web application installed on Debian Linux then here is the tutorial to follow.

      • 15 Docker Commands to Manage Containers [List, Stop, Start, Remove and More]

        In Docker, you either build your own images to run your application as a container, or you can pull and use thousands of public images from the Docker repository and use them in your project. Once your image is ready, you can launch your containers using those images. A container is a running instance of a Docker image.

        Managing Docker containers is one of the most important aspects to look after as a system administrator who manages Docker hosts/containers.

      • Install and Run Citrix Workspace on Linux

        Citrix Workspace app for Linux enables users to access virtual desktops and hosted applications delivered by XenDesktop and XenApp from devices running the Linux operating system. Workspace app for Linux is available in English, German, Spanish, French, Japanese, Dutch, Portuguese (Brazil), Simplified Chinese, Russian and Italian. It can be used:

        Thin clients with x86 and ARM architecture, repurposed PCs with supported Linux distributions
        Additional performance enhancements can be achieved using the Platform Optimization SDK
        If your distribution allows, install Citrix Workspace app from the Debian package or RPM package. These files are generally easier to use because they automatically install any required packages. If you want to control the installation location, install Citrix Workspace app from the tarball package.

        You can install the Citrix Workspace app by downloading the file from the Citrix website at Downloads. Download the appropriate package using your browser or wget or any other method that suits you and save it in Disk.

      • You Can Now Upgrade to MATE Desktop 1.26 on Ubuntu – OMG! Ubuntu!

        Users of Ubuntu 20.04 LTS and 21.04 can now upgrade to the recent MATE desktop 1.26 release through a dedicated PPA.

        The ‘Fresh MATE PPA’ is maintained by Ubuntu MATE developers, and is aimed at existing users of Ubuntu MATE who want to install MATE desktop 1.26 on their systems.

        However, the PPA (and the packages within) are compatible with all Ubuntu flavours, meaning you can add this PPA to install the MATE desktop experience alongside whichever DEs you use at present (just, be careful).

        The PPA provides updated MATE desktop components (including new versions of core apps like Pluma and Caja) for Ubuntu MATE 20.04 LTS and Ubuntu MATE 21.04 (Ubuntu 20.10 went EOL last month).

      • How to Change Background Wallpaper in Ubuntu

        The simplest way to customize Ubuntu is to change the wallpaper. A good wallpaper changes the looks of the desktop drastically.

        Changing desktop background in Ubuntu is just a matter of a right click. However, I am writing this tutorial to share a few behind-the-scene tips and information which you might miss or never know even after using Ubuntu for years.

      • How to Install and Use Konsole Terminal Emulator in Linux

        The idea of imitating the normal Linux terminal environment through flexible terminal emulators like Konsole confirms several obvious facts. First, the evolution of the Linux terminal environment is still ongoing. Second, this terminal environment has more discoveries to offer to the Linux computing world.

        The emulative prowess of Konsole as a terminal emulator is in its powerful support for customizable terminal features like output monitoring, saved sessions, and schemes. Through detachable tabs, a Linux system user can still interact with multiple terminal sessions from a single terminal window.

      • Bash Redirection Explained With Examples – OSTechNix

        Redirection and piping are two useful features in bash scripting that sysadmins and developers use often. In this guide, we will discuss what is Bash Redirection and how to work with Redirection in Bash with example commands.

        Before understanding how redirection works, it is important to learn what file descriptor is.

      • Install LAMP Stack on Debian 11

        The LAMP Stack is a common set of open-source tools used to host websites and applications on the web. LAMP Stack is a web development platform that uses Linux as an operating system, Apache as a web server, MariaDB/MySQL as a database server, and PHP as a scripting language. It is so widely used and provides a proven set of software for delivering high-performance web applications.

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install the LAMP stack on Debian 11.

      • Level up your Ansible skills while having fun: Sysadmin after dark | Enable Sysadmin

        After a long day at work, sysadmins deserve a little downtime. But even downtime can be an opportunity to practice your sysadmin skills. For example, I created an Ansible playbook to install a classic game to help me relax and clear my mind. You can use my playbook to practice using Ansible, and you can use it as inspiration for writing your own playbooks.

        LBreakoutHD is a simple, fun, and addictive game developed for Linux (thus “L” at the beginning) but now also available for other platforms. LBreakoutHD is an HD remake of LBreakout2, which is itself a remake of the classic Breakout developed in the 1970s.

        The game’s idea is to use a ball to break bricks at the top of the screen using a paddle at the bottom to bounce and redirect the ball. You go up a level after breaking all the bricks, and you lose the game if you let the balls fall below the paddle.

      • Using virtual functions with DPDK on Red Hat OpenShift | Red Hat Developer

        For many years, organizations have optimized their networking hardware by running multiple functions and containers on Single Root I/O Virtualization (SR-IOV) network devices. The SR-IOV specification assigns a portion of a network interface card (NIC) or another device to a Kubernetes pod, so that you can share the same physical NIC among multiple pods while giving the pods direct access to the network. Organizations also use the Data Plane Development Kit (DPDK) to accelerate network traffic. This article shows you how to set up SR-IOV and DPDK on Red Hat OpenShift and run virtual functions in that environment.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • 17 KDE Plasma Features That You Didn’t Know About

          KDE Plasma is just packed with features, some of which, even long term plasma users might not know about. I have been using the Plasma desktop for many years now and I am still finding new cool features. Here is a list of 17 cool features of KDE Plasma that you probably didn’t know about.
          In addition to this article, I made a video demonstrating all of these features so if you would like to see examples of any of these then be sure to check out the video below. I also added my personal settings for how I customize these features in my setup if you’d like to see how my workflow is configured. Each tip that I customize will have a note at the bottom for how I customize it, if you don’t see a note then I simply use the default for that feature.

        • Qt Creator 5.0 Released with Experimental Docker Support

          QT Creator 5.0 heralds the switch to Semantic Versioning (SemVer) announced as part of the roadmap for 2021.

          Qt Creator is an open source full-featured Integrated Development Environment (IDE) for C++, QML, and JavaScript applications. It is an all-inclusive, cross-platform IDE that enables users to scale above the code and create UIs, applications, and connected devices.

          For those unfamiliar, Qt is not a programming language on its own. It is a framework written in C++. With Qt, GUIs can be written directly in C++ using its Widgets module.

    • Distributions

      • Reviews

        • elementary OS 6.0 | Review From and openSUSE User

          It has been about a year and a half since I dipped my toes in to the spring fed, constantly fresh, warm waters of elementary OS. The elementary team continues to impress with their incredibly well designed user interface that is clearly going for a very focused target of what it sees as their ideal user. As with the last time I reviewed elementary OS, I am quite certain, I am still not their target user but I highly, wholeheartedly, respect the project in their course of action and project goals. They are clearly focused and continually charging forward in their quest for the perfect user experience.

          I want to give the elementary OS project a lot of credit for their blog posts and release announcements. They do a fantastic job of informing users what is going on. Their latest announcement paints a great picture of version 6.0, called Odin. The quick stats that are important to me, this is running on Linux Kernel 5.11.0, built on top of Ubuntu 20.04. That means, all the great work and tech from the Ubuntu community is at the core of elementary OS.

          Bottom Line Up Front: elementary OS 6.0 is a nicely designed distribution that continually refines their user experience. Their recent addition of a “dark theme” has made using elementary OS a lot more enjoyable for me and makes using it much better than it has historically. The addition of a quick selection for a “highlight color” makes elementary OS a lot more my own than it used to be. From my perspective and personal requirements, elementary OS is hitting a lot of the marks to make it something I could actually use. It doesn’t fit, for me, as well as Plasma does, but maybe it is because I am an old dog, at this point. This is my review as an openly biased openSUSE user that prefers Plasma as my Desktop Environment.

      • New Releases

        • Alpine 3.14.2 released

          The Alpine Linux project is pleased to announce the immediate availability of version 3.14.2 of its Alpine Linux operating system.

          This release includes fixes for openssl CVE-2021-3711 and CVE-2021-3712.

          The full lists of changes can be found in the git log.

        • EndeavourOS: Our ISO-Next has arrived

          After working so hard on this release, we are proud to present our new release. Proud is an understatement, in this case, the ISO is a significant step for the future of this project, so let me guide you through the changes.

          New mirrors

          Our mirror network is expanding rapidly lately by kind mirror admins who offer their services to us. With this release, we are welcoming two new mirrors, Remi ESSAISSI, a mirror located in France and Jingk a mirror located in Singapore.

          [...]

          As you might have noticed, we now present a new install with a new default wallpaper, the previous one is now available in the file eos-wallpapers-classic.

          We also have uploaded some new wallpapers in our community wallpapers, including the new wallpapers with our mascot Endy. We like to thank every contribution made by the community members, unfortunately, we couldn’t include all of them, since we weren’t sure if some images were entirely free to use.

          You can download the wallpapers, classic and community, through the Welcome app by clicking the “Download more EndeavourOS wallpapers” button For new users clicking the button, the folders will be installed, for existing users, the folders will then be updated.

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

        • openSUSE Tumbleweed – Review of the week 2021/34

          Thanks to Richard for taking care of Tumbleweed for us the last few weeks, while I did an electro-detox. Took some effort, but I did actually manage to stay away from all and any computers. But now I’m back, full in swing and helping Tumbleweed to roll at full speed again. Richards last review covered up to Snapshot 0817. Since then, and thus during the one-week time frame, 4 snapshots have been published (0820, 0823, 0824, and 0825).

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Building your first Red Hat OpenShift cluster on Verizon 5G Edge

          Red Hat® OpenShift® is an open-source container application platform based on the Kubernetes® container orchestrator that supports an enterprise hybrid cloud. Using Verizon 5G Edge, developers can extend their containerized architecture to the network edge by moving worker nodes to mobile edge computing (MEC) zones while keeping the control plane in the parent region (e.g., the traditional Amazon Web Services® [AWS®] region).

        • Red Hat Patch Proposal To Split FBDEV Core Support – Phoronix

          For nearly the past decade there has been calls for deprecating the Liux kernel’s frame-buffer “FBDEV” device code though the code remains within the kernel. While these days most display drivers are DRM-based even in the embedded world, a lot of FBDEV code still ends up in kernel builds even when just wanting to use DRM’s FBDEV emulation layer. But a patch proposal out of Red Hat would further split-up the FBDEV core support to allow less of it to be built.

          Now that Linux 5.14 is bringing the SimpleDRM code, it’s possible to boot from SimpleDRM to the real DRM driver for the GPU/display device without having to use a legacy FBDEV driver like the EFI frame-buffer or SimpleFB for early console support. Red Hat’s Javier Martinez Canillas is working on the ability to build Fedora’s kernel so that the DRM FBDEV emulation layer is available but that the rest of the FBDEV frame-buffer code and drivers are disabled.

        • Automatically Light Up a Sign When Your Webcam is in Use – Fedora Magazine

          At the beginning of COVID lockdown and multiple people working from home it was obvious there was a need to let others know when I’m in a meeting or on a live webcam. So naturally it took me one year to finally do something about it. Now I’m here to share what I learned along the way. You too can have your very own “do not disturb” sign automatically light up outside your door to tell people not to walk in half-dressed on laundry day.

          At first I was surprised Zoom doesn’t have this kind of feature built in. But then again I might use Teams, Meet, Hangouts, WebEx, Bluejeans, or any number of future video collaboration apps. Wouldn’t it make sense to just use a system-wide watch for active webcams or microphones? Like most problems in life, this one can be helped with the Linux kernel. A simple check of the uvcvideo module will show if a video device is in use. Without using events all that is left is to poll it for changes. I chose to build a taskbar icon for this. I would normally do this with my trusty C++. But I decided to step out of my usual comfort zone and use Python in case someone wanted to port it to other platforms. I

        • IT careers: 3 key skills for remote jobs

          Gone are the days when you could say, “I’m just not a people person,” and rest on solid technical skills to build your IT career. As hiring efforts rebound, there is a greater pool of talent looking to make their mark in the industry.

          But what sets you apart from the competition? Core skills – also known as soft skills – like communication, collaboration, organization, and critical thinking are quickly rising to the top of the list for recruiters in 2021.

          Hard skills are important for sure, and employers should focus on these more than on formal education and pedigree, especially for tech and IT roles. However, core skills are transferable across roles and even industries.

          To stand out from the crowd, in addition to touting and demonstrating your expansive technical skills, it’s important to strengthen the following soft skills ahead of your next interview. It could be the deciding factor when going head-to-head with another candidate with evenly matched technical skills.

      • Debian Family

        • OpenEmbedded Dunfell aarch64 rebuild

          I posted yesterday about an updated OpenEmbedded Dunfell x86_64 build:

          https://bkhome.org/news/202108/807-packages-compiled-in-openembedded-for-easyos.html

          This evening doing the same for aarch64. This is generic aarch64, not optimised for any particular board (such as the RPi) or SoC.

          There are 774 packages, less than for the x86_64 build.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Canonical releases Ubuntu 20.04.3 ISO with latest fixes

          Canonical, the firm behind the popular Ubuntu Linux distribution, has released the third point release of Ubuntu 20.04. This includes all the latest security updates so you don’t have to install them when performing a clean install and it includes the latest hardware enablement stacks to ensure the long-term support release continues to operate on newer hardware that came out since Ubuntu 20.04 launched last year.

        • Kubuntu 20.04.3 LTS Update Available | Kubuntu

          The third point release update to Kubuntu 20.04 LTS (Focal Fossa) is out now. This contains all the bug-fixes added to 20.04 since its first release in April 2020. Users of 20.04 can run the normal update procedure to get these bug-fixes.

    • Devices/Embedded

      • Open Hardware/Modding

        • Imagination Technologies to design RISC-V cores – CNX Software

          Now better known for its PowerVR embedded GPUs, Imagination Technologies tried to enter the CPU market by purchasing MIPS Technologies and introducing microAptiv, interAptiv, and proAptiv cores in 2012.

          It did not end up well, as the company had to sell its MIPS technology a few years later, and the MIPS architecture is now barely supported. But Imagination is now working on getting back into the CPU space by designing RISC-V cores.

        • Giving Google Glass a run for its money | Arduino Blog

          Google rarely enters the hardware world and when they do, they receive a mixed reception. The smart glasses were very controversial when they first launched, due to privacy and fashion concerns. But the idea was a good one: a wearable computer that gave you a heads-up display (HUD) at all times. Unfortunately, even today’s Google Glass models are very expensive. That’s why this Redditor built their own DIY smart glasses using affordable components.

          The pair looks a lot like a bulkier version of Google Glass and they perform a similar function. The wearer gets a HUD positioned in front of one eye that displays useful information. In this case, the information comes from a separate device via Bluetooth. The software is still in development, but these glasses could theoretically display any information from a connected smartphone, such as navigation or text messages. The screen is monochrome and has a low resolution, but it is enough for basic graphics and text.

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • The Apache News Round-up: week ending 27 August 2021

        Hello, Friday –let’s take a look at the Apache community’s activities from the past week…

      • Programming/Development

        • Calculate date and time ranges in Groovy | Opensource.com

          Every so often, I need to do some calculations related to dates. A few days ago, a colleague asked me to set up a new project definition in our (open source, of course!) project management system. This project is to start on the 1st of August and finish on the 31st of December. The service to be provided is budgeted at 10 hours per week.

        • 21 developers transforming Silicon Valley: these are the people shaking up the tech industry and redefining what it means to be a programmer
        • Rust

          • Learning Rust: Interfacing with C · Martin Pitt

            I had spent the last two rainy days of my summer vacation on learning Rust. Rust is becoming ever-more popular and is even making its way into the Linux kernel – so it feels like something I should know a little about.

            There have been a lot of new languages in the last year, like Kotlin or Go. None of them are particularly attractive to me personally, as their strenghts and “selling points” just don’t apply enough to what I do – so far, that has been covered rather well between C, Python, and JavaScript. But Rust’s central design of “you can’t write unsafe code” is a really convincing argument to start letting go of C code at last.

            In particular, Cockpit has a lot of C code, much of which is very security critical – messing up the webserver or its setuid root session helper can have dire consequences. Both of these look like great candidates for Rust (in some still rather distant future..).

          • This Week In Rust: This Week in Rust 405
  • Leftovers

    • The madness of strategic desk ornaments

      The metal called Tungsten is “one of the more rare elements”. Tungsten is strategic, and considered by the EU “one of the highest supply risks of all materials on the list”.

      The world has been “running out of tungsten, and you should care”, since at least 2012. China domination “makes tungsten critical” (2020). Eight months ago, the global tungsten market was “in flux on supply chain woes”. Three weeks ago, “rising demand, low supply fueled EU tungsten price rally”.

      [...]

      With tungsten, instead, the opposite is true. Selling it as a toy really seems to me an absurdity that should not happen. Not in the most polluting way at least. And generally, not in this time of increasing scarcity of raw materials, and all the geopolitical tension and pollution that come with it. “Free markets” are one thing. This seems more “stupid markets”, or more exactly “stupid regulators” to me.

    • Science

      • DIY Bitcoin Private Key Project – Bitcoin Magazine: Bitcoin News, Articles, Charts, and Guides

        You can make these 256 bits of random data any way you want, as long as it’s actually random. If it’s not random, someone might be able to reproduce the data. They would then be able to recreate your private key and could take all of your bitcoin. For example, if you make 256 bits of all zeroes (clearly not random), then someone will be able to guess your private key. Here’s proof: I generated a private key from that terrible all-zeroes randomness and found someone’s existing wallet. If it hadn’t already been emptied, I could have stolen the funds.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Security

          • Security updates for Friday

            Security updates have been issued by Fedora (haproxy and libopenmpt), openSUSE (aws-cli, python-boto3, python-botocore,, dbus-1, and qemu), Oracle (rh-postgresql10-postgresql), Red Hat (compat-exiv2-023, compat-exiv2-026, exiv2, libsndfile, microcode_ctl, python27, rh-nodejs12-nodejs and rh-nodejs12-nodejs-nodemon, rh-nodejs14-nodejs and rh-nodejs14-nodejs-nodemon, and rh-python38), Scientific Linux (compat-exiv2-023 and compat-exiv2-026), SUSE (compat-openssl098), and Ubuntu (libssh, openssl, and openssl1.0).

          • Reproducible Builds (diffoscope): diffoscope 182 released

            The diffoscope maintainers are pleased to announce the release of diffoscope version 182. This version includes the following changes:

            [ Chris Lamb ]

            * Also ignore, for example, spurious “fwGCC: (Debian … )” lines in output

            from strings(1).

            * Only use “java -jar /path/to/apksigner.jar” if we have a .jar as newer

            versions of apksigner use a shell wrapper script which will obviously be

            rejected by the JVM. Also mention in the diff if apksigner is missing.

            * Pass “-f” to apktool to avoid creating a strangely-named subdirectory and

            to simplify code.

            * If we specify a suffix for temporary file or directory, ensure it starts

            with a “_” to make the generated filenames more human-readable.

            * Drop an unused File import.

            * Update the minimum version of the Black source code formatter.

            [ Santiago Torres Arias ]

            * Support parsing the return value of squashfs versions which discriminate

            between fatal and non-fatal errors.

          • [IBM’s ‘Linux Man’: Understanding the Impact of Cybersecurity on International Trade

            The explosive success of the Internet in the 1990s led to a historical transition from the industrial age of the past two centuries to an economy and society increasingly based on global, digital interactions. This transition has continued to advance over the past two decade with the advent of billions of smartphones, hundreds of billions of IoT devices, a wide variety of online applications and mobile apps, and huge amounts of data, all connected via Internet-based broadband networks.

            Then came Covid-19. A recent McKinsey survey found that the pandemic has accelerated the overall adoption of digital technologies and applications by three to seven years in just a few months.

            At the same time, cybersecurity threats have been growing. Large-scale fraud, data breaches, and identity thefts have become far more common. As we moved from a world of physical interactions and paper documents, to a world primarily governed by digital data and transactions, our existing cybersecurity methods have been far from adequate.

            More recently, international cyberthreats have escalated, with a growing number of high profile attacks by criminal groups and adversarial governments. Cybersecurity is now invoked by governments as a major aspect of national security, as they focus on protecting their critical infrastructures and the overall wellbeing of their nations. In early June, for example, FBI Director Christopher Wray compared the danger of ransomware attacks on US firms by Russian criminal groups to the September 11 terrorist attacks. And, in a recent editorial, the NY times editorial board argued that ransomware attacks have emerged as “a formidable potential threat to national security,” given “their ability to seriously disrupt economies and to breach strategically critical enterprises or agencies,” urging governments that “It is a war that needs to be fought, and won.”

            Beyond terrorism and national security, cyber threats have the potential to wreak havoc with international trade and the global economy. In a recent paper, Framework for Understanding Cybersecurity Impacts on International Trade, MIT professors Stuart Madnick and Simon Johnson and research scientist Keman Huang said that cybersecurity concerns have become a key issue for international trade policy.

    • Monopolies

      • Data shows the true productivity GAIN of the city exodus | Stop at Zona-M

        To begin with, the whole current system of “intellectual property” is severely screwed, and counterproductive. I could add tens of links on this, but this an this should be enough. Whatever real, meaningful productivity is, patents are a terrible way to measure it these days. Even if patent quality had not had “a serious problem – arguably a full-blown crisis” already before the pandemic. Anything that turns the current patents system upside down has good probabilities to increase real productivity, eventually.

      • Patents

        • One Step Closer to a Unified EU Patent Court [Ed: Nonsense and lunacy from Team UPC because UPCA demands London in the EU and this can never happen; any workarounds will be challenged]

          The Agreement on a Unified EU Patent Court (UPC Agreement) has been ratified by Germany following legal challenges in recent years over the constitutionality of the ratification bill.

          The UPC Agreement provides for the establishment of a Unified Patent Court (UPC) as a court common to all participating Member States, with exclusive competence in respect of European patents and European patents with unitary effect.

          The UPC will replace all individual enforcement courts in participating Member States and is intended to remove the need for and the cost of multi-jurisdictional patent disputes.

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DecorWhat Else is New


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