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Links 17/04/2009: A Lot More Support for Mobile Linux, New NetworkManager



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Contents







GNU/Linux

  • Open-source server distro builds on Ubuntu
    Zaragoza, Spain-based eBox Technologies announced the availability of version 1.0 of its Ubuntu Linux-based eBox server distribution.The open source eBox 1.0 features LDAP, DHCP, NTP, DNS, and email servers, among other features, and provides a new development framework for building add-on modules, says the company.


  • Linux Delivered Your Way
    No more troubleshooting a demo version of your software-no more endless hours of support calls only to find out that your customer is missing a critical dependency — and no more "your mileage may vary" disclaimers because you've removed all the variables. It's your application in an environment that you've created. You know it works. All the customer has to do is power it on.


  • Desktop-Linux Can Shape Enterprise Cost
    As enterprises are actively moving their business into remote cloud model, only standard interfaces are required on the desktop to access the data in the cloud. This can potentially open a window (pun not intended) for the IT department to train its employees in free software such as Linux, with the double benefit of adding expertise to its employees and slaying unnecessary IT investments.


  • Linux in Trying Times: Growth Predictions Start to Materialize
    Depending on extraneous factors, one or two hundred dollars might not be a substantial enough difference to opt for a Linux machine, especially if you've never used Linux before. Even if half of those sales that make up the 61% revenue increase are attributable solely to a lower price point, it means the other half were spurred by something else.

    Personally, I paid for the convenience and powerful hardware. The fact that the software platform onboard was free and could do everything I needed reliably and quickly? That's not without value. This is where "cost-effective" steals the limelight from merely "inexpensive," and where open source has the real edge.




  • Internet

    • You will upgrade to NetworkManager 0.7.1
      This release fixes more than 50 bugs, including 17 from Fedora, 22 from GNOME, 6 from Ubuntu, and 3 from Debian. Packages are already in updates-testing for Fedora. If you don’t use Fedora, and your distro doesn’t have 0.7.1 soon, then you need to harrass them until they get it :)


    • Groupware and bulletin board for Linux
      Version 7.50 of the Citadel open source groupware for Linux has been released.










  • Multimedia

    • Can Open Source Songbird Compete with iTunes?
      The developers promise further tools in the near future. They say they'd like to expand device support, which right now does not include Apple iPhones, iPod Touch, and Microsoft Zune devices.


    • The List: The Top 5 Media Center Programs for Linux
      I though I would share my thoughts on my exploits with the popular Media Center Solutions for Linux. While none of them are perfect some come very close. Please keep in mind these are my opinions and you do not have to agree with me, but I feel my points are pretty spot on as of 4/09 , the current month and year. Some of the points made are with my personal experience with the program while one is based off a review, as I had trouble installing it. Please feel free to comment or use the “Contact Us” page at the top of the site.










  • KDE

    • Kontact: To-do (KOrganizer)
      Welcome again. This is going to be a small overview, since the "To-Do" is in fact part of KOrganizer, which was mostly seen on the last article. It's just going be fast view at the main interface, the changes to the interface remain the same as on Calendar.


    • fewer magical appearances
      It doesn't work with QWidget based popups yet, though there's no reason it couldn't; Plasma::Dialog just doesn't have the logic for it yet. That means that things like kickoff or the device notifier still behave a bit magically.


















  • Distributions

    • BSD

      • PC-BSD 7.1 Galileo Edition Review
        I love FreeBSD and I tried really hard to like PC-BSD but I'm sorry to say that I don't. I like the concept of the BSD desktop but I feel its still a few years behind the Linux desktop in hardware support and you're likely going to have more luck there.








    • Red Hat

      • Fedora 11 Leonidas - King of Spartans
        You may be wondering why I chose the particular title for this article. Well, you will learn soon. Today, we are going to test the latest (beta) release of the RedHat-based Fedora, version 11 named Leonidas, slated for release in mid-May.










    • Ubuntu

      • Jaunty Jackalope release candidate unleashed
        Jaunty Jackalope has sprung a step closer, with the release of final pre-production code for Ubuntu 9.04 Desktop and Server, and Ubuntu Netbook Remix edition.

        The Ubuntu 9.04 release candidate was kicked out Thursday afternoon. The Ubuntu team behind it has reported that the release candidate is "complete, stable, and suitable for testing by any user", but that it does provide the caveat that there are still a few known bugs.


      • Ubuntu 9.04 Release Candidate Is Here
        The Release Candidate version of the upcoming Ubuntu 9.04 (codename Jaunty Jackalope) was uploaded a few minutes ago on the official mirrors. As usual, we've downloaded a copy of it in order to keep you up to date with the latest changes in the Ubuntu 9.04 development.


      • The five best, new things in Ubuntu Linux 9.04
        Overall, I'm sold on this new Ubuntu. Good solid features and better performance makes for a winning package. Try it yourself. I think you'll agree.


      • PC, Server Makers Prepare for Canonical’s Ubuntu 9.04 Launch
        First, the pure facts: Small Ubuntu proponents — such as PC maker System76 — plan to begin offering Ubuntu 9.04 on systems starting April 23, with shipments beginning the following week. But this is more than a PC push. System76 will preload the new Ubuntu on servers, desktops, notebooks and event a forthcoming netbook, according to System 76 President Carl Richell. Oh, and by the way: System76’s revenues are growing fast thanks to its focus on Ubuntu.

        Meanwhile, Dell continues to test Ubuntu 9.04 on selected desktops, notebooks and netbooks — though it will be a few months before Dell moves its Ubuntu product lineup to the latest operating system release. In the meantime, roughly 30 percent of the company’s netbooks are sold with Ubuntu 8.04 pre-installed, according to one Dell insider.


      • Shuttleworth: Oracle a Litmus test for Linux, Ubuntu
        Shuttleworth added that he expect that Oracle will eventually certify on Oracle, in his view it's just a matter of time as Ubuntu gains momentum. In my opinion, while certainly Oracle has its own Linux now, they are also a very customer focused organization.

        So simply put, if enterprises want Oracle certified to run on Ubuntu, they should start asking for it.








































Devices/Embedded

  • Networking giant switching switches to Linux?
    The switch from Wind River's VxWorks to an unnamed Linux distribution should come by early next year, says an InternetNews.com story, attributing the comments to Minka Nikolova, senior product manager at Alcatel-Lucent.


  • RP retailer goes for Linux-based system
    Local retailer Puregold is deploying a Linux-based point-of-sale or POS system, as it looks to cutting down costs on security while expanding its network of stores.

    Puregold has ordered more than 2,000 licenses of TPLinux software, according to Paderborn, Germany-based Wincor Nixdorf, which sells niche solutions for banks and retail firms.


  • One of the Philippines Leading Retailers to Use Linux-based System




  • Phones/Portables

    • Panasonic, NEC unveil Linux phones
      NEC and Panasonic will unveil nine new cellphone models running the open source LiMo operating system, wireless Linux foundation LiMo said at the Mobile World Congress trade show in Barcelona.

      The focus of the cellphone market has been shifting to software development since Google and Apple entered the mobile market in the past two years, with phone vendors and operators increasingly looking for open source alternatives like LiMo to cut costs.


    • Japan takes Android beyond phones; Nokia may respond with Maemo
      Android may only be available in one handset, but it could soon appear in a wide range of devices from set-top boxes to netbooks, as the Japanese consumer electronics sector shows rising interest in Google's Linux-based system. However, it will not have the show to itself - not only is the LiMO Foundation holding on in the mobile space, but Intel is opening up its Moblin Linux platform and Nokia looks increasingly likely to put Linux further towards the center of its strategy, building on its Maemo-based offering.


    • Taiwan's Asustek to use Linux in new smartphone
      Netbook PC pioneer Asustek (2357.TW) will use a Linux-based operating system in one of its first two smartphones, a senior company official said on Friday, in a boost for the system's developer.




    • Sub-notebooks

      • Death of Linux on netbooks greatly exaggerated
        Initiatives like the Moblin project, which will make it easier for hardware vendors to deploy Linux on netbook devices, can help ensure that the open source operating system remains competitive in the netbook market.
































Free Software/Open Source

  • First beta of PostgreSQL 8.4 released for testing
    The first beta of version 8.4 of PostgreSQL, the free object-relational database system, developed under the umbrella of the PostgreSQL Global Development Group, has been released. After fourteen months in development, the new release contains hundreds of patches and dozens of new features.


  • Why should schools use open source software?
    Awareness of open source software amongst teachers, technical staff and students is certainly far greater now than even a few years ago, thanks to projects like Moodle, Firefox and Audacity leading their respective fields. For schools, the appeal of open source is that it's free. But 'free' is about freedom at least as much as it's about price: Liberté rather than gratuite as the French would have it. The free software movement have identified the four freedoms underpinning open source software, and these offer compelling reasons for educators to look seriously at this software.


  • 6 Must-Have Firefox Extensions for Enhancing the Apps You Use Most
    There has been a general trend among Firefox extensions toward extending the way the browser helps you get more out of the applications that you use all the time. In this post, you'll find six of the best examples of these app-helper extensions, which you can grab and install in minutes.




  • Voting/Security

    • Open Source SSL Acceleration
      Nginx once again has shown that it is a versatile open source project. For the cost of a server and a few hours work, any system administrator can increase the capacity of their existing server farm by building an Open Source SSL Accelerator. Reducing the complexity of certificate management, reducing the number of certificates needed and reducing the overall load per request on the existing server farm, this solution offers a cost-effective way of breathing new life into an existing server farm.


    • On open source vs. disclosed source voting systems
      On Tuesday, the Election Technology Council (a trade association of four major American voting system manufacturers) put out a white paper on open-source and voting systems. It's nice to see them finally talking about the issue, but there's a distinctive cluelessness in this paper about what, exactly, open source is and what it means for a system to be secure. For example, in a sidebar titled "Disclosed vs. Open: Clarifying Misconceptions", the report states:
      ... taking a software product that was once proprietary and disclosing its full source code to the general public will result in a complete forfeiture of the software's security ... Although computer scientists chafe at the thought of "security through obscurity," there remains some underlying truths to the idea that software does maintain a level of security through the lack of available public knowledge of the inner workings of a software program.
      Really? No. Disclosing the source code only results in a complete forfeiture of the software's security if there was never any security there in the first place. If the product is well-engineered, then disclosing the software will cause no additional security problems. If the product is poorly-engineered, then the lack of disclosure only serves the purpose of delaying the inevitable.


    • Open-source misperceptions live on
      The enterprises, vendors, developers, analysts, and journalists I speak with regularly are mostly pretty savvy about the basics of open source at this point. Even if they're not licensing geeks or otherwise expert in all the minutiae and subtle implications of open-source development, community, and usage, they generally have the important basics down.










  • Business

    • Open source = market development
      It is such a simple model, and so effective. The only thing preventing more software vendors from changing to the model is years spent cheating customers on an anomalous 20th-century proprietary model. That model is dead: just look at what VCs are funding. The dinosaurs of the proprietary world will be with us for many years to come, but the new companies being born are open-source and SaaS (software as a service). That is the future.








  • FSFE

    • The professionalisation of free software
      The structures described above were among coders, and represent the creation of an organisational chart among them. What we have seen more recently is something rather different: the rise of professional managers who are not generally programmers, to oversee the day-to-day running and future development of the larger projects. The first instance was Mitchell Baker at the Mozilla Corporation in 2003, and Stormy Peters at the GNOME Foundation last year.






  • Government

    • Will the U.S. follow UK into the open source market?
      The ‘Open Source, Open Standards and Re-Use: Government Action Plan' released last month praises the benefits of non-proprietary technologies. In a statement accompanying the report, Tom Watson, Minister for Digital Engagement, said that open source was a great example of how people working together can come up with products to "rival and sometimes beat those of giant corporations."








  • Licensing









































Leftovers

  • Impeach Bezos for Amazon's Kindle Swindle
    We hope he gets the message that he's swindling his customers and in the process undermining important fundamental freedoms to read and share. Amazon seems to understand this message when it comes to music -- why don't they get it when it comes to the Kindle?


  • Time Warner halts metered billing tests
    Time Warner Cable has put the brakes on a trial that was testing its new "consumption-based billing" system for its broadband service, the company said Thursday.








  • Copyrights

    • TOC 09 "Digital Distribution and the Whip Hand: Don't Get iTunesed with your eBooks" -- Cory Doctorow
      Cory Doctorow (craphound.com) is a science fiction novelist, blogger and technology activist. He is the co-editor of the popular weblog Boing Boing (boingboing.net), and a contributor to Wired, Popular Science, Make, the New York Times, and many other newspapers, magazines and websites


    • Shepard Fairey Counterfiles in Associated Press Obama Poster Conflict
      Attorneys for the recently-legally-beleaguered artist Shepard Fairey have filed a countersuit against the Associated Press over claims Fairey violated intellectual property rights in creating the iconic Obama poster. Fairey and his supporters argue that his work falls squarely within the boundaries of transformation and fair use. PDFs of the counterclaim documents below, at the bottom of this blog post.


    • UK dons dunce hat on copyright law
      Copyright reform in the UK has 'stalled' as the Government has caved in to the 'vested interests' of the content industry, the head of a digital rights activist group has said. The view comes as the UK 'abjectly fails' a test of its copyright laws.

      The international umbrella body for consumer rights organisations, Consumers International, has surveyed the copyright laws of 16 countries and has concluded that the UK's is the worst for protecting users' rights.


    • Of RMS, Ethical Visions, and Copyright Law
      As RMS emphasises again and again, at the heart of free software lies an ethical vision of sharing and mutual respect. Although open source blurs that vision somewhat thanks to the glasses of pragmatism that it wears, the basic idea is still there. And yet we talk relatively little about that ethical aspect, which is a pity, because it is both important and interesting.
























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