12.22.09

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Links 22/12/2009: Tiny Core Linux 2.7 and Amahi 5.0 Released

Posted in News Roundup at 9:49 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

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Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Linux and Open Source: Best of 2009

    This year, we saw the new releases of major distributions such as Ubuntu’s Jaunty Jackalope and Karmic Koala; Mandriva 2009 and 2010; Fedora 11 and 12; and openSUSE 11.2. It was also a big year for Google in the open source arena with the release of the Google Chrome OS beta, the new Chrome browser, and the Android 2.0 platform for the Droid smartphone.

  • A good year for desktop Linux

    2010 is going to be a good year for Linux on the desktop.

  • Linux on the desktop: it’s so good it’s boring

    I believe that at this point there no use anymore in asking the question “Is Linux ready for the desktop?”. It is, and it works so well it’s boring.

  • Desktop

    • Of Thunderbolts and Revelations

      At any rate, Daniel was a guest in the home of Mark Van Kingsley. Mark is a long-time Linux Advocate and has his own Linux-based business in New York. He is also a good and treasured friend of The HeliOS Project. He’s one of many who have put their sweat equity and money into doing what we do.

      [...]

      Oh, did I mention that Daniel had figured out how to dual boot his Windows partition with his new Linux one?

      He called Mark the next day too. Not to ask questions but to let him know that he had installed and configured Skype and was talking to his friends in Italy about his new operating system and all the things it could do.

      They did not believe him.

      Not one of them had heard of Linux.

      They have now, I have been so assured.

    • Linux or Windows: Most hardware support plans are worthless

      If you really want real technical support for a Linux system, but one from Dell, system76, or another vendor that sells and supports Linux systems. Expecting support from a chain store or a vendor that doesn’t pre-bundle Linux with their systems is just a waste of your time.

  • Server

  • Google

    • Opinion: All Google, all the time, everywhere

      Think about it: Google has primarily been about computer-based search. You sit at your PC and find what you want on the Web. But if you put those three new features together, where do they shine the best? On mobile devices. With Google’s Android powering phones and Chrome OS on netbooks, I see the company making a preemptive strike to take over mobile computing.

  • Kernel Space

    • Kernel Log: Linux 2.6.33 enters test phase

      With the end of the next kernel version’s main development phase, the most important new features of Linux 2.6.33 have been determined: DRBD, Nouveau, support of the Trim ATA command and a bandwidth controller for block devices. The developers have also improved the Radeon drivers and the support of Intel Wi-Fi chips. New stable kernels also fix a vulnerability in the code of Ext4, but will shortly be superseded by even more current versions.

  • Graphics Stack

    • AMD Publishes Evergreen Shader Documents

      Yesterday some R500+ PowerPlay code was started on (but not yet usable), and now at the same time we have more exciting AMD news to report. AMD has just released their shader instruction set documentation for the R800 “Evergreen” graphics processors!

    • Open ATI Driver To Receive PowerPlay Push?

      AMD’s Alex Deucher just pushed out new power table define statements for the xf86-video-ati and xf86-video-radeonhd drivers. Nothing is yet depending upon these new C define statements within the open-source ATI drivers, but it will allow a variety of new PowerPlay information to revealed.

    • Mesa 7.7 Released (Mesa 7.6.1 Too)

      Mesa 7.7 delivers on VMware’s virtual Gallium3D driver (the SVGA driver) that allows for Gallium3D to be used on their virtualization platform, several new OpenGL extensions, major improvements to the ATI R300 Gallium3D driver (named “r300g”), and a new Mesa texture/surface format infrastructure.

    • Nouveau TV-Out Progresses For NV30/40 GPUs

      The Nouveau driver now has TV-Out working and being considered “done” for the NV30 class GPUs (the GeForce 5 / FX series) and is mostly done for NV40 GPUs (the GeForce 6 series). The TV output support for the earlier GPUs and also the newer GPUs is still considered a work in progress.

  • Applications

    • From all of us to all of you

      A few weeks ago when we released Opera 10.20 alpha, many of you were asking for a test version of Opera 10.5. The desktop and core team have been working on 10.5, codename Evenes, for more than 18 months now. As a Christmas present, we’re happy to share all the goodies of Opera 10.5 with Presto 2.5 with you in an early pre-alpha release.

    • Digikam 1.0 on Time for Christmas

      DigiKam main developer Gilles Caulier has released version 1.0 of the KDE photo management software just in time for Christmas 2009.

    • Opera 10.50 Pre-Alpha Beats Firefox, Closes Gap To Google Chrome Speedwise

      DigiKam main developer Gilles Caulier has released version 1.0 of the KDE photo management software just in time for Christmas 2009.

  • Instructionals

  • Distributions

    • Does the distro matter?

      But it got me thinking. A few weeks ago, I asked, Is there a best distro?. The question this phone call raised was, does it matter which distribution you are running? For the moment, let us put aside which has a better desktop and focus on the server. Is there really a difference between distributions when it comes to what you run on a server? Is there anything so specific within a distribution that it matters whether you are experienced with Debian or Red Hat? I will admit that in all my years of working in the Windows world, no one has asked me if I have experience with Datacenter instead of Standard. Why, in the Linux world should it matter if I have experience with CentOS instead of Unbreakable?

    • New Releases

      • Amahi 5.0

        Amahi version 5.0 is released. Amahi Linux Home Server is a server targeted for home and home office environments.

      • Tiny Core Linux 2.7 arrives

        Tiny Core lead developer Robert Shingledecker has announced the availability of version 2.7 of Tiny Core Linux. Tiny Core is a minimal Linux distribution that’s only about 10 MB in size and is based on the 2.6 Linux kernel. The latest release includes several bug fixes, changes and updates.

      • Available Now: Tiny Core Linux 2.7

        The founder of the Tiny Core Linux project, Robert Shingledecker, announced on December 19th the immediate availability of the Tiny Core Linux 2.7 operating system, a version that brings lots of updated applications and scripts, various improvements and, of course, a couple of bug fixes. Without further ado, let’s take a closer look at some of the most important changes brought by the new Tiny Core Linux 2.7 operating system:

        · appbrowser was updated and it now features a single “Install” button, and the “Download Only” button was renamed to “OnDemand;”
        · appsaudit was updated and it now features a new menu option, called “Install Options;”

        [...]

    • Debian Family

      • 26 Ubuntu Wallpapers That Don’t Suck

        The world of Ubuntu wallpapers is a place full of disaster. There are too many wallpapers of Tux vs Windows, Ubuntu logos printed on sexy ladies (which I believe no Linux geek has any chance with), and many which are just plain unoriginal.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Phones

      • Acer to launch 8-10 smartphones in 2010; to adopt ST-Ericsson 3G solutions for Android models

        Acer plans to launch 8-10 new smartphones in 2010 with Android-powered models likely to be slightly more than Windows Mobile-based ones, according to sources at Taiwan handset industry.

        Acer will outsource the production of three Android-based smartphones to Foxconn International Holdings (FIH), using ST-Ericsson PNX6719 3G chipset solutions for the entry-level segment, the sources said. On the other hand, Inventec Appliances will roll out entry-level Windows Mobile-based smartphones for Acer.

      • Acer to ship lots of smartphones, many of them Android, claims mole

        Acer intends to release ten smartphones in 2010. Or possibly only eight. Whatever the total, more of them will run Android than Windows Mobile. Maybe.

        You just can’t get quality rumours these days…

      • HTC Sends Cease & Desist To Developer Who Made Similar Android Widgets

        Tim K alerts us to the news that phone maker HTC has sent a cease & desist nastygram to the developers of an Android widget that certainly had a similar look and feel to HTC’s own Sense UI. Except, many people claim that this newer widget, from LevelUp Studios, was actually better.

    • Sub-notebooks

      • ASUS Eee PC 1201N On Linux

        As was alluded to last week, I ended up purchasing the ASUS Eee PC 1201N as soon as it was made available on the Internet. This is now the initial Phoronix rundown on the 1201N for how it works with Ubuntu Linux, including many benchmarks.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Given 250,000 tools on the shelf, how do you manage them?

    About 15 years ago I noticed that the explosion of ready to use FOSS tools plus the trend toward general purpose tools and away from custom software was leading to a combinatorial crisis in software maintenance. I saw that it was the systems administrator’s responsibility to address the situation.

    It has become apparent to me that the solution would require use of convention, standards and policy to reduce the complexity of the problem to manageable proportions. I searched for the most “standardized” conventions and policy-enforcing environment that would also provide the most flexible access to the most FOSS tools. The solution I found is Debian/GNU Linux, the universal operating system (although Ubuntu and other Debian derivatives also provide most of these benefits as well).

  • Tech Data’s Open Source Strategy: A Closer Look

    It has been roughly a month since Tech Data launched Open Tech — an open source channel partner initiative. Why is the big distributor interested in the open source market? And how is Open Tech performing so far? I caught up with Tech Data VP Stacy Nethercoat for answers.

  • 10 best free applications

    Software can cost you a fortune but there are also hundreds of applications that are essential to have on your desktop and are free. We look at ten of the best free applications.

  • What Google Really Means by ‘The Meaning of Open’

    Read “The Meaning of Open” by Jonathan Rosenberg, Google senior vice president of product management, because it’s a great read, but read it knowing a few things.

    First, Google open-sources a lot of software; in fact, Rosenberg claims Google is the largest open-source contributor in the world, contributing over 800 projects that total over 20 million lines of code to open source.

  • Google’s Meaning of Open: Is It Yours?

    Google has made some headlines recently about its stance on privacy. This week the company is taliking about what “open” means to Google. Jonathan Rosenberg, senior vice president of product management for Google, says that “open will win” across the Internet and “then cascade across many walks of life.” It might be a good idea for other businesses in the open business to think about what open means to them as well.

    The impetus for the post was that Rosenberg had been seeing disagreement within Google about what “open,” means to the company in practice. It’s easy to say that a company should be more “open,” but difficult to execute when the people involved don’t agree on what open is.

  • Mozilla

    • Firefox for mobile ‘days away’ from launch

      The first mobile phone version of the popular web browser Firefox is “days away” from launch, the head of the project has told the BBC.

      The browser, codenamed Fennec, will initially be available for Nokia’s N900 phone, followed by other handsets.

    • Firefox 3.5 wins top dog browser crown – sort of

      Firefox 3.5 trundled passed Internet Explorer 7 in the past few days to become, temporarily at least, the world’s most popular web browser.

      According to analysis outfit StatCounter, Mozilla’s latest browser just slipped ahead of Microsoft’s surfing tool in the week commencing 7 December by grabbing 21.93 per cent of the global market.

      But it’s of course worth noting that while Firefox might be top dog by version number, it’s important to point out that Microsoft’s Internet Explorer 8 is also pulling in plenty of punters.

    • Firefox 4.0: New Design Changes Revealed [IMAGES]

      The release of Firefox 4.0 may still be nearly a year away, but the excitement for the new version is already growing. In July, we revealed the first images of Firefox 4.0. Now one of the designers behind the browser has shared on his blog updated mock-ups of the new design.

    • Mozilla unveils new Firefox interface ideas for 2010

      Mozilla yesterday said that its planned overhaul of Firefox’s interface will be pushed back to Firefox 4.0, the major release now slated to ship before the end of 2010.

      Previously, Mozilla said it would revamp the look and feel of its open-source browser in a two-step process, with part of the redesign debuting in Firefox 3.7 — a minor refresh scheduled for late in the first quarter of next year — with the rest following in version 4.0.

      Mozilla’s interface plans, particularly those intended for Firefox for Windows, have attracted attention because the company last September said it would “ribbonize” the browser by borrowing graphics concepts from Microsoft’s Windows 7 and Office 2007. Users blasted the idea.

Leftovers

  • Intel Atom Platform: Smaller, More Energy-Efficient

    With its usual focus on optimization, the chip vendor now provides the Atom 45-nanometer processor, with minimal energy consumption and better performance. Intel claims a 20% reduction in power consumption over Atom’s predecessor. Integrated graphics and memory management for the first time in a CPU do the rest and allow for a smaller form factor. Said differently, the memory controller eliminates one of three chips, with only the CPU and chipset remaining. Intel claims this translates to a 60% smaller footprint for netbooks and mobile Internet devices.

  • NEC NP901W Projector

    One of the major benefits to having a wireless network is when a display device has the facility to utilise the connection, therefore removing any copying of content from one drive to another when the devices are several feet away. The NEC NP901W is a rare beast in that it can connect to a network and stream content, making it perfect for either an office or home cinema.

  • Environment

    • Doing the maths on Copenhagen

      They’ve essentially agreed to, um, well, try – and they’ll think a little bit more about what they’re going to try sometime later. And that’s the best result we could have hoped for. We already know what needs to be done, as the economists have worked it out. It is true that economists are not exactly the flavour of the month right now, but they are still the experts here.

  • PR/AstroTurf

    • Health-care bill wouldn’t bring real reform

      If I were a senator, I would not vote for the current health-care bill. Any measure that expands private insurers’ monopoly over health care and transfers millions of taxpayer dollars to private corporations is not real health-care reform. Real reform would insert competition into insurance markets, force insurers to cut unnecessary administrative expenses and spend health-care dollars caring for people. Real reform would significantly lower costs, improve the delivery of health care and give all Americans a meaningful choice of coverage. The current Senate bill accomplishes none of these.

  • Censorship/Civil Rights

    • Ferry giant refuses ID card

      Norman Eastwood, from Salford, and his wife Jeanette had booked a passage from Hull with P&O Ferries on Saturday. The ID card, which has been offered on a voluntary basis to the public in Greater Manchester as part of a limited trial since last month, is meant to allow travel across Europe as an alternative to a passport.

    • China Imposes New Internet Controls

      China’s government censors have taken fresh aim at the Internet, rolling out new measures that limit its citizens’ ability to set up personal Web sites and to view hundreds of Web sites offering films, video games and other forms of entertainment.

    • Point Out A Potential Photoshopping Of A Demi Moore Picture, And She Has Her Lawyers Send Out The Nastygrams

      Apparently Demi Moore and her lawyers missed that whole story. Back in November some folks noticed what appeared to be a photoshopping of Demi Moore’s left hip on the cover of W magazine. There was some debate over it, but either way, people moved on and it was forgotten. Not so fast! While there was some discussion about it — and Moore herself chimed in on Twitter to claim that the photo was not altered — she’s now had her lawyers threaten at least two publications over the original story. Their claim is that the posts are defamatory. Even if there was no retouching of the photo, it’s hard to see what is possibly “defamatory” in the story. Digital retouching happens all the time, and claiming that a photo was retouched, if anything, would implicate the photographers or graphic artists at W, not Moore. There’s simply nothing even close to defamatory in regards to Moore herself.

  • Internet/Web Abuse

    • Beware of Comcast’s Growing Power

      I write a lot of about the battle among large technology corporations in this space and the importance of competitive checks and balances. Yet Comcast seems to be growing into a super power with control over the very pipes that provide many of us with internet access, but without any real competition and often with government support.

      Most places in this country get internet access through one or at most two providers. That kind of concentration of power is increasingly a threat to the very foundation of business and society, as so many of us use the internet on one level or another to do our jobs, get our information and connect to one another.

    • Groundless copyright threats

      Just as the human mind is changeable and inconsistent, so intellectual property law is not without anomalies. For example, while copyright protects even the most banal 2-D images, the Lucasfilm judgment sets the bar for 3-D creations at a daunting height. Another anomaly that has risen to the surface in recent days is the penalty for groundless threats of infringement proceedings. There are stiff penalties for most intellectual property rights – patents, trade marks, registered and unregistered designs – but none for copyright.

      Lord Lucas is seeking to set this right by proposing a new section in the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988. The noble lord, as previously noted, is eager to see some checks and balances in the Digital Economy Bill to rein in heavy-handed right owners, especially top-shelf copyright proprietors.

  • Intellectual Monopolies/Copyrights

    • Big Music: damn the numbers, give us antipiracy laws anyway

      If P2P use is declining or holding steady without new “antipiracy” laws, are those laws still needed? Music trade groups say yes.

      The UK has just started to consider a new Digital Economy bill that could eventually usher in sanctions for illegal P2P use. From a rightsholder perspective, this makes it an inconvenient time for studies showing that P2P use is actually dropping, so the music industry commissioned a new study of its own which shows that other techniques for infringing copyright are picking up the slack. Would you believe that newsgroup usage is soaring?

    • Alternative 2009 Copyright ExpirationsAlternative 2009 Copyright Expirations

      “It’s nearly the end of 2009. If the 1790 copyright maximum term of 28 years was still in effect, everything that had been published by 1981 would be now be in the public domain — so the original Ultima and God Emperor of Dune and would be available for remixing and mashing up. If the 1909 copyright maximum term of 56 years (if renewed) were still in force, everything published by 1953 would now be in the public domain, freeing The City and the Stars and Forbidden Planet. If the 1976 copyright act term of 75* years (* it’s complicated) still applied, everything published by 1934 would now be in the public domain, including Murder on the Orient Express. But thanks to the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act, nothing in the US will go free until 2018, when 1923 works expire.”

    • Are Music Artists Profiting From iTunes’ Price Increases?

      Most companies realize that lowering prices is their only ploy to stay in business. Some companies are unaware, or simply don’t care – that financial times are tough. As an example, Apple Inc. has recently increased the cost of music downloads on their iTunes music site from $0.99 to a staggering $1.29.

    • Oh Look, People Are Already Looking At Expanding How Selectable Output Control Will Be Abused

      For quite some time we’ve been covering how the MPAA has been pushing to get the FCC to allow them to use “Selectable Output Control” (SOC) to stop you from being able to record certain movies. In theory, the Hollywood studios claim that this will let them put movies out on video-on-demand offerings earlier than they do now. In actuality, there’s nothing stopping them from putting these VoD offerings out now (and some do already).

    • Argentina Extends Copyright Term

      Argentina has extended the term of protection on sound recordings from 50 to 70 years.

Digital Tipping Point: Clip of the Day

Joerg Heilig, Sun Microsystems Senior Engineering Director talks about OpenOffice.org 08 (2004)


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