Links 17/01/2009: New Wine, ALT Linux

Posted in News Roundup at 10:41 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish


  • ALT Linux 4.1.1 Desktop Released

    Alexey Rusakov announced on January 14th the immediate availability of the desktop edition of ALT Linux 4.1.1 DVD, a general purpose GNU/Linux distribution designed to be used on workstations, laptops and netbooks. Besides the usual bug fixes and improvements, ALT Linux 4.1.1′s most important feature is the inclusion of an installation DVD ISO image with English as the default language. “ALT Linux proudly presents a new release of our desktop distribution, ALT Linux 4.1.1 Desktop. [...] We also released a separate DVD with English as the default language so that you don’t need to crawl through cryptic Russian letters on early steps. Happy using!” -
    Alexey Rusakov said in the official release announcement.

  • Wine Announcement

    The Wine development release 1.1.13 is now available.

    What’s new in this release (see below for details):
    – Freedesktop.org-compliant startup notifications.
    – Many fixes for 64-bit application support.
    – Improved graphics support in Internet Explorer.
    – Various Richedit improvements.
    – Better certificate manager dialog.
    – Various bug fixes.

  • Fastest web serving on earth made possible by 64 Bit Linux

    When aicache.com wanted to move their web acceleration software from Java to C’ they took a long look at the available operating platforms. After months of testing it became clear that 64 Bit Linux offered the most efficient network I/O model.

    The multiplexed EPOLL mechanism is without question the most powerful option available. No other systems offered this particular mechanism or scale. Honestly nothing is anywhere close to how EPOLL scales.

  • HP Thin Client Portfolio Now Certified for VMware View

    HP Certifies Linux-based Thin Clients for VMware View Manager

  • Foomatic 4 brings PDF workflow to Linux

    The OpenPrinting working group at the Linux Foundation has released version 4.0 of the Foomatic printer database. The most important new development, the result of decision taken at the 2006 Printing Summit in Atlanta, is support for the Portable Document Format (PDF) in the printing work flow, rather than the traditional PostScript format. The Foomatic filter, which renders print data into a printer-specific format, now accepts both Postscript as well as PDF, and the Foomatic driver database generates PostScript Printer Description (PPD) files suitable for the PDF workflow.

  • Desktop Environments

  • Distributions

    • Three SMALL Linux Distributions

      The first thing you need to do when you start considering small Linux distributions is decide what your priorities are – what do you need it for and what are you planning to do with it? There are a number of different small/mini/tiny/whatever distributions available, and each has its own special strengths. I have been looking at three of them:

      - Damn Small Linux
      - TinyMe Linux
      - Puppy Linux

  • Ubuntu

    • Ubuntu 9.04 “Jaunty Jackalope” Alpha 3 Released

      The last Ubuntu 9.04 development update was in the middle of December (Alpha 2), but today Mark Shuttleworth’s development posse has come out with a new update for the Jaunty Jackalope.

      In Ubuntu 9.04 Alpha 3 is the latest code based upon the Linux 2.6.28 kernel, X Server 1.6, and EXT4 installation support as we previously detailed. The Ubiquity installer also has home encryption support within this release.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Linux-based platforms likely to undergo fast consolidation, says Wind River executive

      The varied commercial Mobile Linux platforms, now with active involvement from the OHA (Open Handset Alliance) and LiMo Foundation, are likely to undergo a consolidation process through which two or three standard mobile Linux platforms will dominate the market by 2012-2013, according to Richard Lee, country manager, Wind River Taiwan.

    • Volante POS Systems Announces Wireless, Linux POS Solution

      The number of POS ( point of sale ) terminals running Linux in North America has increased dramatically in recent years. For many business owners, there’s good reason to go with a Linux POS solution. As an operating system, Linux is more cost effective, flexible, and allows for greater freedom of choice in software than more mainstream operating systems. Savings can also be found in regards to licensing, installation, administrative and support costs. Linux offers all this without sacrificing functionality. The challenge however, has been finding a flexible point of sale system that can actually run on Linux.

    • Linux 2.6 BSP for Freescale i.MX27 PDK development kit now available from Adeneo Embedded

      Adeneo Embedded has announced the full commercial release of the Linux 2.6 Board Support Package (BSP) for Freescale’s i.MX27 Product Development Kit (PDK_ ARM9 processor-based micro-controller. This BSP targets the i.MX27 PDK, a standard development platform from Freescale. It supports key features of the i.MX27 PDK.

    • Jungo and Wisair Announce End-to-End Wireless USB Solution for Linux-Based and Embedded Platforms Used in Set-Top Boxes, TVs, DVRs, Smart Phones

      Consumer Electronics Show (CES) January 8-11, 2009 Jungo, a leading provider of connectivity software solutions and Wisair, a leading provider of single-chip based Wireless USB solutions, today announced the availability of an end-to-end Wireless USB solution for Linux-based and embedded operating systems used in CE devices.

  • Sony

    • ACCESS Linux Platform appears as small part of new Sony Cybershot camera

      The last time I posted about the ACCESS Linux Platform was in August 2007 when some screenshots were shown at LinuxWorld. If you remember, ALP was the Linux-based operating system that Palm was planning to use for their mobile phones at one time. Palm then broke off into software (PalmSource) and hardware (PalmOne) and then PalmSource was aquired by ACCESS. ACCESS then created the ALP, which Palm was intending to use in their new devices. Palm then said they were working on their own Linux OS and we now see they have launched their own Linux-based OS as Palm WebOS. It appears that ALP is still alive though as we see it being a part of the new Sony Cybershot DSC-G3 camera

    • Sony Vaio P Review

      Sony also includes a Linux-based instant-on interface that uses the PS3-like Xross Media Bar UI but its implementation is a mixed bag. The raw functionality and design of the software is decent, allowing you to access music, photos, movies, messaging software and a custom version of Firefox. But some of the visual design and nuanced functionality are lacking to the point where you’d rather just launch Vista.

  • Sub-notebooks

    • EMTEC Bows Linux-Based Netbook

      The Linux-based system comes equipped with a variety of software including a Firefox Web browser…

    • The evolution of the Netbook

      Except when you look at the bottom line of the companies making them. Though initially thought of as a way to sell cheaper, less powerful companion devices to notebooks, Netbooks are beginning to lose their distinction, as evidenced by the new Netbooks unveiled at CES 2009. While it’s good for consumers, the blurring of lines between the two could potentially be destroying the business models of PC manufacturers.


      But Asus broke the category open for consumers in late 2007 with its Eee PC, at first equipped with a tiny 7-inch screen, little chiclet keys, solid-state memory, and Linux instead of Windows.


  • Here we go again

    In many ways, the previous IT downturn marked the industry’s coming of age. In its wake, the industry was no longer mainly about “hot” new technologies that made maximal use of Moore’s law….Firms have since started to opt more for good-enough “cold” wares, which save them money and allow for more flexibility: commodity hardware, open-source software such as the Linux operating system and programs accessed over the Internet, or “software as a service” (SaaS). The crisis will only speed up this shift, not least because many of the cold technologies have themselves become more mature.

  • Linux-Based AtMail Releases 5.6

    AtMail has announced the release of AtMail 5.6. The new AtMail 5.6 version includes new iPhone push mail support, DKIM filtering and improved WebAdmin functionality.

  • Firebird Roadmap for 2009

    The Firebird project publishes the following roadmap. During this year, Firebird users can expect more supported releases (2.1.x and 2.5.0) and the first alpha of FB 3. Many new features are planned, as described in the roadmap.

  • Evolution gets a D-Bus API for mail metadata

    Philip Van Hoof, the developer behind the lightweight Tinymail e-mail framework, has written a plugin for GNOME’s Evolution e-mail client that exposes the application’s functionality through D-Bus. It is the first step towards creating a standardized D-Bus API for Linux mail clients.

    The aim of the project is to provide desktop search and indexing systems like Tracker and Beagle with a more practical and efficient way to extract e-mail metadata. The current strategy employed by such indexing systems is to parse the raw mbox data files, which can be clumsy and inefficient. The new D-Bus API will require indexers to register with the e-mail client over D-Bus to receive a notification every time mail data is altered.

  • Open for Collaboration

    An off-the-shelf CRM solution would have made Sharma’s job much easier but he believed that a CRM tool should have customer feedback at every step and only a system based on Open Source would give him the agility that he was looking for.

  • ‘Open Source Activism’ Surfaces In Tyler

    In Tyler that social networking and “open source activism” has been vividly demonstrated with the “Call + Response” turnout, which largely was an Internet, text-messaging, e-mail phenomenon. Open source activism is defined loosely as “add your own idea to the cause” and it’s not just surfacing here. It’s all over our city, the continent and the countries of the globe.

  • OpenOffice Spreadsheet Template for Filing KVAT Returns ported by Zyxware

    By Kerala IT Policy 2007, Clause 8.4, knowledge generated through public funding should be freely available to the public. So we would believe that the original excel file was already under a Free Software License. We hereby give all derived work under GPLv3.

  • Teluu Shares Industry Insight with TMC

    RT: How did your company get to where it is and where is it headed?

    PI: Open source. We started with a pure open source project, and build a business around it. From a business point of view, it’s like having an unlimited trial license. No sales pressure. We let them know we’re easy to get in touch, and then stepped out of the way.

  • Is Web 2.0 Possible with Existing Open Source Technologies?

    In fact, if you sift through those eight million Google hits, you’ll find only a handful of open source technologies that address the problems associated with pushing content asynchronously to the user through standard browser mechanisms. We’ll provide an overview of those technologies later, but first some basics.


  • Learning How To Benefit From Piracy Is Not The Same As Endorsing Piracy

    John Gunn, the General Manager of a DRM company, alerted us to a blog post he wrote taking me to task for the post I wrote last week concerning a software developer who didn’t freak out when his app was cracked, but used the experience to learn what the market wanted from his app. Gunn’s post is slightly odd, and a bit troubling to me, in that he says that, by showing how this developer learned to use the piracy to his advantage, I “crossed the line” I have always avoided, and “actively promoted the criminal act of software piracy.”


    And, finally, to the question “wouldn’t I do the same?” The answer is no. I wouldn’t (and don’t) limit my customers. I’d put together a business model where it doesn’t make sense to do so. I would put together a business model where I get benefits the more my content is spread widely — rather than taking an adversarial stance against my customers. Plenty of folks are doing so today, and are finding stronger and better relationships with their customers and bigger and bigger businesses. And, when my customers do something new and unique with my content, I’d learn from it and encourage it in order to make my future work that much more valuable.

Digital Tipping Point: Clip of the Day

Digital Tipping Point: Dirk-Willem van Gulik, road builder for the Information Super-highway 04 (2004)

Ogg Theora

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

Novell News Summary – Part III: Busy Week’s Assortment

Posted in Mail, Microsoft, Novell, Security, Virtualisation at 9:04 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Novell-SUSE event

THERE IS A LOT to go through, so this post will be quick.

Savio believes that forces in the east might acquire some (or many) western technology companies and there is a reference to this recent survey (more here) which says that Novell may not survive this year.

Read the rest of this entry »

Off Topic: Politics of Software (and Everything Else)

Posted in Humour at 8:34 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

A lot of people seem surprised by the news that Obama exchanged standards for lock-in (Microsoft). But none of this should be shocking and the candidacy/parties do not matter. That’s just how this system is intended to be run.

Corporocracy map

“Geeks like to think that they can ignore politics, you can leave politics alone, but politics won’t leave you alone.”

Richard Stallman

Novell News Summary – Part II: H-P SUSE, Linspire, Xandros, and Turbolinux

Posted in GNU/Linux, HP, Linspire, Novell, SLES/SLED, Turbolinux, Xandros at 6:54 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

YaST bootSoftware patent dealers/peddlers in the news


Novell’s PR people spoke about H-P’s small computer that may run SLED.

Read the rest of this entry »

Novell News Summary – Part I: OpenSUSE 11.1′s Good, Bad and Technical Sides

Posted in Debian, GNU/Linux, KDE, Mandriva, Novell, OpenSUSE, Ubuntu at 6:37 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

THE MORE INTERESTING NEWS this week was the availability of a KDE 3.5-based Live CD which sits inside the ‘shell’ of OpenSUSE 11.1.

Want classic KDE on openSUSE, without the full DVD download? Carlos Goncalves has you covered. openSUSE 11.1 Live CDs and USB images featuring KDE 3.5 are now available for download.

Created by openSUSE community member Carlos Goncalves, the KDE 3.5 Live CD and USB images contain openSUSE 11.1 plus several key updates.

Read the rest of this entry »

The Microsoft-Gartner Deal (Analysts Cartel Part I)

Posted in Antitrust, Deception, FUD, Microsoft at 11:00 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“Analysts sell out – that’s their business model… But they are very concerned that they never look like they are selling out, so that makes them very prickly to work with.”

Microsoft, internal document [PDF]

WE HAVE WRITTEN extensively over the past couple of years about the Gartner Group and how it really operates [1, 2, 3].

This post is part of a series that explores antitrust exhibits where Gartner and other analysts are looked at more closely.

We start with Comes vs. Microsoft Exhibit PX09701 (May 2004) [PDF], which contains details about the Gartner deal, along with some figures.

Included in this correspondence, which is added in full at the bottom, we have Gerri Elliott, who worked on changing the law against Free software in education [1, 2] and Bill Veghte (alias billv), who fights against GNU/Linux with EDGI, as we showed yesterday.

Among the recipients we have Susan Hauser, who is now using FUD to market the Microsoft/Novell deal [1, 2].

In this 2004 Microsoft-Gartner deal, worth paying attention is the part where Microsoft says: “I agree that we cannot have them [Gartner] order naked PCs.”

To quote with context:

I agree that we cannot have them order naked PCs. That won’t work.

You might decide to have them order the PCs with windows pre-installed and then rebate them back some money or credit for other software.

Here are some numbers (we’ll come to this in future parts):

Thanks seems clear, BTW I am carrying about $500K in my budget for next year to pay for this as one of 4 deals mike made that we need to work out of over the next 3 years.

Another tidbit:

The issue is the first concession, the granting of 3,700 Windows XP Professional Upgrade OS Licenses. Gartner is refreshing a portion of their desktops with IBM as the installer/SI.
Gartner wants to use the upgrade license on these new Desktops without buying an underlying OS/license from the OEM, which we have never conceded to a customer. Our Windows Upgrade license requires an underlying OS from an OEM. Kevin has tried to position that he has Windows 2000 on the original desktops and wants to transfer the OS. We do not allow transfer of OS.

The correspondence, in full, is below.

Appendix: Comes vs. Microsoft – exhibit px08592, as text

Read the rest of this entry »

What Was Microsoft’s “Big Bet” Post Novell-SCO (2002)?

Posted in Antitrust, Asia, IBM, Microsoft, Novell, SCO, UNIX at 9:59 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Cryptic reference to Novell-SCO from Microsoft General Manager months before the lawsuits began

THE other day in the IRC channel, we discussed what had come from this antitrust exhibit. What did Microsoft’s General Manager in India mean by “big bet plan in India (post Novell – Sco and Trishul)”? That was a very private/confidential E-mail. We did some searching to find out what Trishul was about (partial IRC log at the bottom), but we were unable to see what SCO and Novell had to do with this.

That was less than 6 months before SCO launched its assault on Linux, using intellectual property that belonged to Novell.


neighborlee schestowitz, Rajeev Kaul comment about post novel-sco is weird Jan 15 17:06
schestowitz I missed that. where? Jan 15 17:06
schestowitz in response to it? Jan 15 17:07
schestowitz we need context Jan 15 17:07
neighborlee Given the impact of Education market in India globally for us and the threats from Linux and piracy, I want to make this a big bet plan in India (post Novell – Sco and Trishul).  < this Jan 15 17:08
schestowitz Any close links b/w them prior to 2003? Jan 15 17:08
neighborlee odd phrasing there ‘big bet plan’ but whatever ;) Jan 15 17:08
schestowitz novell= netware; sco=unix Jan 15 17:09
moogstrap sorry. phonecall. I was going to say that, as a seaman, I have actually been chased by pirates. they weren’t offering copyrighted materials. Jan 15 17:09
*schestowitz on phone Jan 15 17:10
schestowitz Big bet Jan 15 17:11
schestowitz betting on replacing unix? Jan 15 17:11
schestowitz Baystar? Jan 15 17:11
schestowitz Where’s Trishul? Jan 15 17:12
schestowitz Or who is it? Jan 15 17:12
schestowitz Worth googling. Jan 15 17:12
neighborlee schestowitz, joseX well said last few posts..very nice. http://boycottnovell.com/2009/01/11/ms-mai… Jan 15 17:18
neighborlee schestowitz, I feel  exactly the same. Jan 15 17:19
moogstrap that API patent really takes the piss Jan 15 17:21
neighborlee yup Jan 15 17:22
moogstrap an optimistic view: http://www.sdtimes.com/FROM_THE_EDITORS_M… Jan 15 17:24
schestowitz Should i post something about that SCO-NOVELL thing in isolation? Jan 15 17:24
moogstrap you mean from the email quote? Jan 15 17:26
schestowitz Intel is corrupting the term “open source” now (just spotted in the news): http://www.brandrepublic.asia/Media/Advertisingarti… Jan 15 17:26
schestowitz moogstrap: yes. Jan 15 17:26
schestowitz It could be worth bearing in mind. Jan 15 17:27
schestowitz SCO and India are not so isolated Jan 15 17:27
schestowitz They had Sandi Jan 15 17:27
schestowitz They also had some deals there and deployments Jan 15 17:27
moogstrap I don’t really know Jan 15 17:31
moogstrap I mean, is that the only reference? Jan 15 17:33
moogstrap still it’s omninous Jan 15 17:35
schestowitz Yes, only this reference. Jan 15 17:37
schestowitz Where’s Trishul? Let’s google it.. :-) Jan 15 17:37
schestowitz http://www.google.com/search?sourceid=mozcli… Jan 15 17:37
schestowitz BN at top spot Jan 15 17:37
schestowitz http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trishul Jan 15 17:38
schestowitz Trishul may refer to: Jan 15 17:38
schestowitz     * Trishul (weapon), a type of traditional trident from India Jan 15 17:38
schestowitz     * Trishul (missile), a surface-to-air missile under development in India Jan 15 17:38
schestowitz     * Trishul (film), a 1978 Hindi film Jan 15 17:38
schestowitz     * INS Trishul, an Indian guided missile frigate bought from Russia Jan 15 17:38
schestowitz     * Trishul or Trisul, the name of a Himalayan mountain peak. Jan 15 17:38
schestowitz Are they trying to torpedo Linux with Novell/SCO? ;-) Jan 15 17:38
moogstrap or Trishul Apartments Jan 15 17:39
schestowitz PJ might know.. Jan 15 17:39
moogstrap http://www.microsoft.com/india/me… Jan 15 17:42
moogstrap “Contributed to conceiving and developing “Trishul” plan as a core member with Sanjay Mirchandani, Rajiv Kaul and Tarun Gulati” Jan 15 17:42
schestowitz Ahhhhhhh. Jan 15 17:43
schestowitz Good find. Jan 15 17:43
schestowitz So how does this related to “Novell – Sco”? Jan 15 17:43
moogstrap meh. All I can find are articles about missiles Jan 15 17:48
moogstrap and some Java thing for mobiles Jan 15 17:48
moogstrap uh, cellphones Jan 15 17:49
*karabas has quit (Remote closed the connection) Jan 15 17:49
schestowitz At least we know, thanks to you, that it’s a project Jan 15 17:49
schestowitz Like Sco -Novell maybe? Jan 15 17:49
schestowitz I don’t know the chronicles of this too welll… Jan 15 17:49
schestowitz PJ has historical summaries… Jan 15 17:49
moogstrap doubtful: http://www.few.vu.nl/~srijith/masters/t… Jan 15 17:50
schestowitz So I don’t know how SCO related to Novell before litigation Jan 15 17:50
schestowitz GrokDoc/GrokLine with timelines and all might help Jan 15 17:50
schestowitz SCO did some mobile stuff recently (failed of course) Jan 15 17:50
schestowitz Signed some deals in India IIRC Jan 15 17:50
schestowitz Now it sells the assets Jan 15 17:50
moogstrap google has forsaken me. sorry dude Jan 15 18:03
moogstrap A patent invented by a guy called Trishul, owned by Microsoft: http://www.highbeam.com/doc/1G1-85342158.html Jan 15 18:13
schestowitz Heh :-) Jan 15 18:15
schestowitz Thanks for looking. Jan 15 18:15

Novell Cozies Up to Microsoft SharePoint

Posted in Identity Management, Mail, Microsoft, Novell, Office Suites at 9:50 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“[The partnership with Microsoft is] going very well insofar as we originally agreed to co-operate on three distinct projects and now we’re working on nine projects and there’s a good list of 19 other projects that we plan to co-operate on.”

Ron Hovsepian, Novell CEO

HERE IS THE press release announcing this latest development.

Novell today announced a new version of its access management solution. Novell® Access ManagerTM 3.1 now offers built-in support for WS-federation, a single sign-on feature typically offered in costly, supplementary federated identity products. This makes Novell Access Manager the industry’s most full-featured Web access management offering.

Leveraging Novell’s groundbreaking technical collaboration with Microsoft, Novell Access Manager 3.1 offers support for WS-Federation, one of the WS-* standard set of interoperable access and authentication standards, allowing organizations to easily and securely share business data in mixed-source IT environments. As a result, Novell Access Manager enables IT security administrators to grant non-Windows directory users, partners or organizations, single sign-on access to Microsoft web-based products such as Microsoft Office SharePoint*.

This was promptly covered by IDG News Service (also in here and slightly modified here).

Novell Monday unveiled support for a federation protocol in its identity software that represents the first fruits of its 18-month-old interoperability lab work with Microsoft as it relates to access management.

Novell released version 3.1 of its Access Manager with support for the WS-Federation protocol that is prominent in Microsoft’s Active Directory Federation Services and its forthcoming Geneva identity platform for the cloud.

There’s little more information about it here and here.

Novell Releases Access Manager 3.1 with Built-in Support for WS-Federation


Earlier this week, Novell released its Access Manager 3.1, which includes an SSL-VPN that provides authentication integration.

From ZDNet (also here):

Novell on Tuesday released a new version of its Access Manager authentication system that allows non-Windows directory users to more easily access Microsoft Web-based products such as Microsoft Office SharePoint.

CRN covered this too:

Novell has updated its access management solution, Novell(R) Access Manager (TM) 3.1, to include a built-in support for Web Services Federation.

Anthony Turco, business leader for identity and security management at Novell APAC told CRN that the single sign-on feature is typically offered in supplementary federated identity products

We’ll be hearing more about it later this month in GWAVACon.

Omni (www.omni-ts.com), the GroupWise Integration Company, today announced that it will unveil two new integration options for Novell GroupWise and Microsoft SharePoint at GWAVACon Las Vegas (January 25-27). The first integration option delivers transparent, bi-directional, server-side synchronization of GroupWise and SharePoint appointments, tasks, address books and support issues. End-users can access the data from the application of their choice. The second option is to embed GroupWise WebAccess Web Parts directly into the SharePoint Portal user interface. This integration provides the same functionality for GroupWise WebAccess in SharePoint as is available for Microsoft Outlook/Exchange.

GWAVACon sort of replaces BrainShare, which was called off [1, 2, 3]. NetworkWorld (IDG) does not forget it so quickly.

FUN STUFF: This came too late to include in the fun stuff I told you about before the holidays, but you still could spend a few minutes watching this great video developed for last year’s Novell BrainShare conference.

All in all, here we have another case of Novell enabling Microsoft lock-in.

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