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Links 24/06/2009: Fedora Elections Over, HP's TouchSmart Printers Use Linux

GNOME bluefish



  • From where do you get Linux?
    If you would rather shop from a place that is specialized in Linux computers, there are a few online retailers that can provide you with computers designed for Linux. In the US Zareason has an excellent reputation for its Ubuntu computers, they even sell them with special Ubuntu keyboards on which the Windows key has been replaced by an Ubuntu Logo. If you live in Europe you should check out UK based : they have a decent selection of computer that can be provided with several flavors of Ubuntu or even dual booting with Windows. They ship in the whole EU and have decent shipping charges. Finally, Dell is selling some models of computers pre-installed with Ubuntu, but only in some countries. Their Linux page is sometimes hard to find though.

  • IBM, Google to Poach on Microsoft's Territory
    IBM offers on-site systems than can run Windows or open-source Linux applications. Big Blue also offers hosted services, such as an Internet-based social network that helps companies link to their clients and partners.

  • Linux touchscreen advances
    French development group at ENAC have developed native multitouch using the Linux 2.6.30 kernel, and can support swipe, flip, rotate and pinch-resize gestures...

  • Softpedia Linux Weekly, Issue 50
    Summary: Editorial: Mandriva Linux 2010 Distributions announced last week: €· SystemRescueCd 1.2.1 Is Powered by Linux Kernel €· Available Now: Fedora 11 LXDE Remix €· Parted Magic 4.2 Has Clonezilla and Linux Kernel 2.6.30 €· GeeXboX 1.2.2 Is Capable of Multi-Threaded Video Decoding €· First Alpha of Mandriva Linux 2010 Is Out

  • Desktop

    • 25 Great-Looking Compiz Emerald Themes

    • Project FrankenMac Needs Your Help!
      My plan is to get down to this after I do my monthly backups on July 1st, and if all goes well I can wipe OS X entirely by the end of the year.


      3. Do I need to reformat HFS+ drives?

      * I understand that Linux support for Apple’s proprietary disk format is sketchy to non-existant. I’ll obviously have to reformat my boot drive — will I have to do the same with the other three internal drives on my machine?

    • Windows and Linux desktop enterprise support comparison.
      Personally I found the Linux end user troubleshooting experience to be far more pleasant than with windows troubleshooting. In my mind there are more advantages than disadvantages.

    • Changing the Desktop Metaphor
      But now, the metaphor is shifting yet again. Servers have grown powerful enough with clustering and processing advances that they have started to take back the heavy workloads from the desktop/laptop clients. Sure, some work is done locally, but more and more we are seeing really big workloads going back to the server environment, which thanks to Internet connectivity, we euphemistically refer to as "the cloud." For me, I am watching the cycle of the early 90s reverse itself, as the data lives and works out in the cloud, and we access it through more sophisticated browsers and add-ons.

      The desktop metaphor, then, is dying. The new metaphor is the window.

  • Server

    • GNU/Linux Tops TOP500 Supercomputers Again
      The fact that GNU/Linux totally dominates the top 500 supercomputing list is hardly news, but the fact that it has managed to *increase* its market share yet further is.

      Here are the results for June 2009:

      GNU/Linux 443 (88.6%) Windows 5 (1.0%) Unix 22 (4.4%)

      and here are the figures for six months ago:

      GNU/Linux 439 (87.8%) Windows 5 (1.0%) Unix 23 (4.6%)

    • Police expert calls for open-source data tools
      Currently police forces use a patchwork of proprietary and open source systems. The Holmes 2 (Home Office Large Major Enquiry System) police database, which is run on behalf of the police by Unisys, is optimised to run on both Linux and propietary systems. The police communicate using a mixture of propietary systems from companies including Airwave, Blackberry and Orange.

  • Kernel Space

    • NVIDIA 190.xx Linux Driver Leaks Onto The Web
      The latest stable NVIDIA Linux driver release is in the 185.xx series, but NVIDIA developers have been hard at work on the forthcoming 190.xx driver series. Among other features, this next major driver update is expected to bring their talked about OpenCL support.

    • Kernel Log : Winding down the IDE subsystem, LinuxTag Kernel presentations
      David Miller has stepped in to maintain the IDE subsystem, but plans to make it maintenance only, with no major development work. On Friday, one LinuxTag venue will be dedicated entirely to the Linux kernel. An Intel developer has expressed wide-ranging criticism of various graphics benchmarks for Linux/

    • Intel develops simpler alternative to ACPI for Linux
      A few days ago, version 4.0 of the Advanced Configuration and Power Interface (ACPI) specification was released, weighing in at a hefty 727 pages. Lead by Intel, PC manufacturers as well as operating system, driver, BIOS, firmware and software developers have, for more than a decade, been working on this specification, which is designed to enhance the configuration management and power saving features of computer hardware. Despite this, there are still flaws in many implementations.

  • Applications

    • Opera 10 Beta - Preview and Screenshots
      The last time I had a look at Opera 10 it was in alpha state, meaning no new features were introduced, and only the rendering engine was replaced with a newer one compared to 9.x series. This first Opera 10 beta comes with various new features.

    • Move Over Opera Unite: Welcome Meiga
      It can punch holes through uPnp-aware routers to make the operation automatic. Meiga can even publish an RSS feed of your shared items. The program's lighter than gnome-user-share since Meiga doesn't use Apache. Since Meiga uses Gnome technologies, it fits right into the standard Ubuntu desktop. Packages are available for Hardy, Intrepid, and Jaunty.

    • The Proprietary Software/Linux Conundrum
      For most people, computing comes down accomplishing their daily tasks with as much time saved and cost efficiency as possible.


      Can proprietary software/driver modules find a home in the heart of a platform that was designed to be the complete opposite?

    • Taking screenshots in Linux
      So you’ve been reading about Linux on ghacks for a few months now and you’ve noticed plenty of screenshots or images of applications in action. Now it’s time you found out just how those images are taken. No it’s not magic, but in one instance it’s ImageMagick. Actually there are a few ways to take screenshots in Linux, ranging from a simple keypress to a command line tool.

    • Alien Arena 2009 Brings New Gaming Improvements
      Back in October we reported on the release of Alien Arena 2008, which brought several graphical improvements, such as GLSL enhancements, parallax mapping, and new shaders. The developers behind Alien Arena and its Quake 2 derived engine had not stopped there, but they immediately began work on Alien Arena 2009. Now just a mere six months later, we have Alien Arena 2009 and it brings more graphics improvements along with many other technical improvements and new game content.

  • Distributions

    • Red Hat

      • YPF Migrates to Red Hat on Intel€® Xeon€® Processor-based Servers and Achieves Reduced Costs and Improved Performance
        Red Hat (NYSE:RHT), the world’s leading provider of open source solutions, today announced that YPF SA, a leading oil and gas company in Argentina, has migrated from proprietary UNIX operating systems to Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5 with integrated virtualization technology on Intel€® Xeon€® processor-based servers for its YPF Gas business unit. With the Red Hat on Intel processor combination, YPF Gas' IT infrastructure has experienced reduced costs, boosted performance, increased scalability and agility and expanded flexibility.

      • Red Hat Accelerates JBoss Partner Initiative
        Linux put Red Hat on the map. But growing sales of JBoss open source middleware should make Red Hat a $1 billion company within the next few years. With that goal in mind, Red Hat is launching “partner-only” JBoss roadmap briefings the week of July 20. Here’s the scoop from The VAR Guy.

      • Board results.
        The Fedora Board election results and the Fedora Engineering Steering Committee election results have been posted.

    • Ubuntu

      • ANN: Kernel Mode-Setting for Intel Graphics
        Today we've switched kernel mode-setting on by default for Intel graphics, a change which arrived with the 2.6.30-10.12 kernel.

        Many of you already know all about KMS, and can stop reading here.

        For those who are wondering what the heck this new acronym is, I've attached some background explanation below, and answered some questions I expect to be common.

        Thanks go to apw and the kernel team for wrangling all the patches, and to the ubuntu-x team and community members who have been testing out this new stuff the past few months.

      • Great themes for Ubuntu 9.04 Jaunty jackalope
        This is a collection of great themes for Ubuntu 9.04 Jaunty Jackalope, these themes are from zgegblog a blog of François Vogelweith, on the blog exist a collection of wonderful gnome themes for Ubuntu (see the total collection)

      • Ubuntu: Miracles Are Happening
        As an aside to my utter surprise at coming across two Ubuntu users at random. I am starting to note a pattern, of the 5 chance encounters that have needed Ubuntu support in the last year: all have all been women. Now either it’s because women are more willing to try something new when offered by Dell, are less invested in Microsoft’s desktop familiarity, are more willing to go out and find help (and thus find me or the LoCo group) or some unforeseen force, but I’m very happy to see the 50% of people who have been typically excluded from technical areas coming to Ubuntu naturally.

        Anyone else found Ubuntu users randomly because you were helping someone else with their Ubuntu machine in a coffee shop? Because I think there is progress in the air.

      • Ubuntu 9.04 Desktop Edition
        Stability: 5/5 – No Linux distro could have a PERFECT stability rating. So I’m scaling the score because Ubuntu rocks the socks off of stability.

        Simplicity:4/5 – Ubuntu aims at Linux for human beings and that is what they deliver. Setup is a synch and using it is amazingly simple also. However, due to the lack of a centralized configuration feature I did have to drop the point off but a four out of five ain’t bad.

        Speed:4/5 – Speed is one of the fundamental features of Linux and that is what Ubuntu does, they deliver speed. Now maybe not lightning here but certainly a good offering on speed.

      • From Arch to Ubuntu?
        In the end, it’s a trade-off…ease of use versus control over your system. In any case, my Arch install needed to be updated, because of the whole ext3 thing, and the fact that I just want to clean it after trying to install every possible open source application on it. Installing and configuring Arch still takes me something like an hour though, so I’ll stick with Ubuntu for a while. Knowing me, I’ll get bored of it soon enough.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Nokia to develop Intel-based pocket internet gadgets
      Until now. Like Nokia, Intel is keen on Linux, initiating the development of Moblin, a distro for netbooks and MIDs. Nokia's own Linux tablet OS is Maemo, and the two companies today said they will "develop common technologies for use in the Moblin and Maemo platform projects" which will feed into future mobile computing devices.

    • Intel, Nokia to develop mobile Linux devices

    • Cisco offers Linksys 802.11n router with Linux
      The choice of Linux still allows for media sharing and, through USB storage, can share media to any computer or other device that recognizes UPnP. Security is also as advanced as other routers with a single-button Wi-Fi Protected Setup link for those computers that support it. Cisco's latest hardware should be available today and sells for $120.

    • Cisco releases Linux-powered 802.11n router and media-server
      At first glance that may not seem that interesting. But, this isn’t just a new Wi-Fi router with Linux. Cisco, via its Linksys subsidiary has long been offering users Linux-powered, hackable Wi-Fi routers like the WRT54GL. But, this one also includes integrated Storage Link functionality that lets you use inexpensive USB storage devices as NAS (Network Attached Storage) and a built-in media-sharing server that Cisco says can handle video, photo, and music sharing.

    • Splashtop Adds Instant-On to Acer, Sony Computers
      DeviceVM, the folks behind Splashtop, are expanding their instant-on, Linux solution to new brands today. The company just announced deals with Acer and Sony. The Acer AspireRevo Nettop and the Sony VAIO NW notebook line get the Splashtop treatment, although Acer is calling theirs “RevoBoot.”

      By using Splashtop, the devices can boot into a functional work environment complete with Internet access in a browser. It’s similar to the Hyperspace offering from Phoenix, but doesn’t add any additional cost to the consumer. Hyperspace requires a yearly subscription fee, but offers more than a browser, music and photo app: Programs like the ThinkFree Office suite are included, for example.

    • Splashtop In Sony Notebooks and Acer Nettops
      DeviceVM, the company behind the quickboot mini-linux Splashtop, announces two great deals: Splashtop will now be embedded in Sony Notebooks and Acer Nettops (Aspire Revo).

    • Netgear to ship 24TB NAS system for SMBs
      The ReadyNAS 3200 combines the features of the other ReadyNAS for Business products, including the recently launched ReadyNAS 2100 1U rack-mount and ReadyNAS NVX desktop systems. The 3200 can function as a NAS or iSCSI SAN system and, like its smaller ReadyNAS brethren, runs the Linux-based ReadyNAS RAIDiator operating system.

    • HP's TouchSmart Printers Print Web Content, No PC Required
      The underlying technology is HTML and Linux based; the Web kit browser runs on the embedded Linux OS; inside, there's an IMX 31 processor. The apps don't take a lot of resources, according to Joshi.

  • Phones

    • Palm

      • Is Palm a Player or Just a Pre-Tender?
        What about the gaggle of PalmOS applications written by those intrepid mobile developers over the past decade? Thankfully Palm has addressed that opportunity in the form of the “Classic” emulator application which may be purchased and run on the Palm Pre. This emulator allows you to use your favorite PalmOS application from yesteryear. That is exciting, and in my not so humble opinion a necessity to draw people back to the brand. Of course Palm has to make sure that new WebOS applications are readily available and begin to woo back their development base. I personally am very excited to learn more about WebOS. I just have to count the cost of sneaking another smartphone into the house.

      • Palm Pre, webOS: Software outshines device
        The software? webOS is a brand new mobile operating system, built by Palm from the ground up using common Web technologies like Javascript, HTML and CSS. That means experienced developers should be able to jump right in to create Pre apps with relatively little new knowledge. And the faster that great applications become available for webOS, the more attractive it will become to potential users. I look forward to seeing what kind of apps spring up for the Pre.

    • Android

      • Android OS for the HTC Touch Diamond and HTC Touch Pro!
        It’s not everyday you see a Windows Mobile smartphone running a Linux-based mobile operating system. But, in the crazy (crazy cool, that is) world of handset hackery, anything is possible.

      • T-Mobile's Android-powered myTouch 3G due in August
        Designed by HTC, the myTouch 3G will be available for presale to T-Mobile customers on July 8 and will sell for $200 for users who sign a two-year service contract. The phone, which features a 3.2-inch touchscreen, is being released just under a year after T-Mobile launched its first Android-powered smartphone, the HTC G1.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Red Hat, Alfresco Attack Microsoft SharePoint
    The VAR Guy hears it all the time: VARs and managed service providers generate hefty profits with on-premise and hosted Microsoft SharePoint. In fact, SharePoint has grown to become a $1 billion business for Microsoft. But now, Red Hat and Alfresco are trying to direct some of those SharePoint channel dollars toward open source alternatives. Here’s the scoop from The VAR Guy.

  • Opengear Goes Remote for Power Management
    Additionally, the new software benefits from a number of different open source power management projects that stand to benefit in return from Opengear's contributions.

  • How friendly is the Movable Type fork?
    Movable Type did not become open source until 2007, after WordPress had passed it by in many ways, proving the value of the open source model. In a way, Melody is Movable Type’s effort to build community following the release of its software, something most projects do the other way around.

  • Other Operating Systems

  • Firefox

    • about:mozilla – Firefox 3.5, add-ons contest, screencasts, hacks, multi-process, collections, art, security, and a whole lot more…
      In this issue…

      * Firefox 3.5 Release Candidate! * Extend Firefox 3.5 contest * Help Firefox users transition to 3.5 * More Firefox 3.5 hacks and demos * Multi-process Firefox, Phase I demo

    • Feedinvader: News Ticker and Feed Reader for Firefox
      Feedinvader is an interesting Firefox plugin that combines an online feed reader with a news ticker right underneath your bookmarks bar. The feed reader in the back-end is currently mostly for managing the feeds in the ticker, but with a bit of additional work, it could also become a great reader in its own right.

      The core of the plugin is the ticker, though, which also features a nice pop-up with a story's excerpt when you hover the mouse over a story. While a lot of similar tickers can be distracting because the developers insist on making new stories scroll horizontally, Feedinvader just fades stories in and out, making the ticker far less intrusive.

    • Mozilla's new security policy
      In an article on its security blog, the Mozilla Foundation has presented a new security policy – known as content security policy (CSP) – intended to guard against the epidemic of cross-site scripting attacks (XSS) and other vulnerabilities. This allows web administrators, by sending special headers, to tell the browser which domains it should accept as sources for trusted code. Standard XSS attacks sometimes utilise vulnerabilities in web applications in order to execute JavaScript in the browser with the rights of trusted domains.

    • Firefox 3.5 Release May Accelerate IE's Downfall
      Looking at the early 2009 numbers compared to the mid-2009 numbers, it appears the shift has been accelerating on its own -- and that's despite both the lack of any major Mozilla releases and the presence of a high-profile Microsoft release. Given that, and considering the huge surge seen with the previous Firefox release, it seems entirely plausible that Firefox 3.5 could move the market shift into overdrive.



  • AP: Others Who Use Our Work For Free Are Stealing... Now Who Wants To Provide Content To Us For Free?
    The Associated Press has been going on quite the rampage over the past few months about all those evil online sites that are "stealing" its content, demanding that those who use its content absolutely must pay for it. We joked in response that the AP and other newspapers complaining about people "stealing" their coverage should actually be paying the people who make the news. After all, aren't they really creating the "content"? That was meant as a joke, but sometimes you have to wonder if people at the Associated Press even realize the double standard they've set for themselves.

Digital Tipping Point: Clip of the Day

Alexandro Colorado, international open source evangelist 06 (2004)

Digital Tipping Point is a Free software-like project where the raw videos are code. You can assist by participating.


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