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Links 28/09/2009: Linux 2.6.32 @ RC1; Ubuntu 9.10 Outperforms FreeBSD 8.0

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  • Intel plans 45nm Atom, Linux attack on digital TV
    Intel's acquisition of Wind River in the summer means it has a choice of Linux-based operating systems to support with its set-top boxes processors, namely Android, LiMO and its own Moblin OS.

  • Softpedia Linux Weekly, Issue 64
    Welcome to the 64th issue of Softpedia Linux Weekly!

    We'll start this edition of our weekly with a fine overview of the newly released GNOME 2.28 desktop environment. The following Linux distributions were announced last week: Ultimate Edition Gamers 2.3, Network Security Toolkit 2.11.0 and Moblin 2.0.

  • Want To Impress Your Friends? Run Chrome OS
    We have all read the news that Google is planning to enter the operating system market with their soon to be released Google Chrome OS which is initially targeting the netbook market. Google Chrome OS is based on Google’s web browser Google Chrome and a Linux kernel. Little information are know as of yet. The ones that are available state that Google Chrome OS will be released as Open Source, that it will use a minimalistic design and that it will likely be released in the second half of 2010.


    To be 100% clear here. This is a custom Linux distribution and not the official Google Chrome OS. It still resembles the operating system and can be used as a Live CD to run the Google Chrome web browser on Linux. Interested users can download the Live CD or the virtual image from the Chrome OS Linux website.

  • Desktop

    • Are Schools Giving Students The Wrong Idea About Technology?
      Now, I’m a pretty lenient guy. Sure, I prefer Linux, but I’m not going to preach to you on why I prefer it. Whatever operating system you use is your business. That’s the entire point: It shouldn’t matter which OS you use, things should just work. That’s what makes me valuable to my company. I can use whatever operating system you throw at me, and the application logic I have learned over the years enables me to use almost all applications after a few minutes of clicking around. I can tell you from experience that diversity matters to businesses, even the Microsoft-centric ones. I’m not necessarily saying you must be a master of Windows, Unix and Linux, but at least know the basics of each!

    • Power to the user.
      The cost of proprietary software is high and some are just a huge money grab. It is important not to give the power to the companies but instead to the users of a product. Linux is excellent in this because the user has tremendous power. Freedom and open source are a great concept.

    • My ideal operating system
      Kernel: Linux. I have to go this route simply because it’s the only kernel of the major players that can be customized. And, in order for this to be an IDEAL operating system, you can bet this kernel would have to be customized. Naturally the idea here would be to avoid bloat.

    • Sharing Linux
      Some of the other regional Linux shows, in no particular order, are: Notacon in Cleveland, Ohio; LinuxFest Northwest, Bellingham, Wash.; COSSFEST, Calgary, Alberta; LCA in New Zealand; LinuxDays Luxembourg ; Ontario Linux Fest; SouthEastLinuxFest; Atlanta Linux Fest; and Ohio LinuxFest, which was just held over the last weekend. Most shows meet annually.

      With Linux meetings around the world, chances are there is one near you. Take a look around. You may just find that there are other Linux fans ready to share their knowledge and enthusiasm with you just a car drive away.

  • Kernel Space

    • Linux 2.6.32-rc1
      It's been two weeks (and then some - but with last week being LinuxCon and Plumbers conf I extended it by a few days), and as usual that means that the merge window is all over and done with. 2.6.32-rc1 is out, so give it a whirl.

    • Fat or Fit? The Penguin's Bulging Waistline
      On the other hand, "you can still make a build of Linux that will fit on a floppy," blogger Robert Pogson told LinuxInsider. "The kernel running on my machine is:

      du --si /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.26-2-686 1.6M /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.26-2-686

      "Is that bloated? I think not," Pogson asserted. "With that kernel, I also have 59 MB of drivers. I only load what I need."

    • X.Org 7.5 Gets Closer While X Server 1.6.4 Is Out
      Just in time for the start of the X Developers' Conference this week in Portland, there are two new X Server releases to report. X Server 1.6.4, which is a bug-fix release in the X Server 1.6 series for X.Org 7.4, has been released. Additionally, X Server 1.7 RC3 has been released, which is the final release before X Server 1.7 and X.Org 7.5 are to be released.

    • FreeBSD 8.0 vs. Ubuntu 9.10 Benchmarks
      The hardware used in this testing included two AMD Opteron 2384 processors (Quad-Core CPUs; clocked at 2.70GHz), a Tyan Thunder n3600M (NVIDIA MCP55) motherboard, 4GB of DDR2 Registered Memory, a 160GB Western Digital WD1600YS-01S SATA HDD, and an ATI FirePro V8750 2GB graphics card.


      Well, more times than not, Ubuntu 9.10 Alpha 6 came out on top compared to FreeBSD -- both the 7.2 and 8.0-RC releases. Only in the 7-Zip, C-Ray, John The Ripper MD5, BYTE Unix Benchmark Dhrystone 2, and SQLite tests did FreeBSD outperform Ubuntu Linux.

  • Applications

    • Wine 1.1.30 released
      The Wine development release 1.1.30 is now available. With Wine it's possible to run Windows applications on top of Linux.

    • 6 of the best media burners for Linux
      Back in the day, a custom audio CD with the best love songs made a wonderful Valentine's Day gift. Now she'd hardly be impressed.

      You'd need to throw in the holiday videos and make sure it works on the high definition plasma to sweep her off her feet.

    • 5 alternative image manipualtion apps for Linux newbies.
      One of the drawbacks to most people who want to migrate to Linux is that it lacks some really good image manipulation applications. However, thanks to the tireless efforts of a lot of programmers, there are some pretty cool image manipulation applications out there that most newbies are bound to find useful.

  • Desktop Environments

    • First KDialogue Is Now Open
      Today, the KDE Community Forums, in collaboration with "People Behind KDE", have launched a new initiative to give the community an opportunity to get to know each other a bit closer: KDialogue.

  • Distributions

    • Gentoo Will Celebrate 10th Birthday With LiveDVD
      At this point, there are no special customizations or anything to mark Gentoo's 10th birthday within this Gentoo LiveDVD, but it is simply a snapshot of the current state of Gentoo. Expect Gentoo Ten to be officially released later this year.

    • Gentoo Ten LiveDVD Testing
      In honor of Gentoo's 10th birthday, we are producing a new livedvd! We need YOU to test it on as many x86 and x86_64 machines as you can and post bugs. Please report your bugs. Feel free to entertain yourself and fellow Gentoo rock stars on our forum.

    • Ubuntu

      • Bazaar 2.0.0 Based on New Repository Format
        The Bazaar version control system largely developed by the Ubuntu company Canonical is available in version 2.0.0 and has a new repository format.

      • Crimeware gets worse - How to avoid being robbed by your PC
        Do online banking from Linux using Firefox.

        You can run Linux on pretty much any computer from a CD, a USB flash drive, an SD card or a Compact Flash card.

        Linux is free. You can download any of dozens of different versions (called "distributions") in ISO format and burn them to a CD.

        If you don't want to create a bootable copy of Linux on your own, you can buy one from CDs are very cheap, flash drives and SD cards are more. If you are new to Linux, I suggest ordering Ubuntu, it's reasonably mainstream and comes with Firefox pre-installed (not all Linux distributions include Firefox).

        Concerned about using a new operating system? Windows users may find the learning curve for Ubuntu is very small.

      • Ubuntu gets set to mark fifth birthday
        The new kid on the GNU/Linux block is getting long in the tooth. In about three weeks, Ubuntu will be five years old.


        Let me caution the Ubuntu fanboys as usual - this is not a review.

      • Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter Issue 161
        Welcome to the Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter, Issue #161 for the week September 20th - September 26th, 2009. In this issue we cover: Ubuntu 9.10 beta approaching, Ubuntu 9.10 beta freeze in effect, Sponsorship deadline for UDS-Lucid approaching, Ubuntu Community Council Elections 2009, New LoCo Council member sought, New Ubuntu members, Ubuntu California is approved LoCo, Mark Shuttleworth: Don't give up the Linux Desktop, New Ubuntu Developers, LoCo News: New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Israel, and Florida, Launchpad 3.0, The Planet: Kenneth Wimer, Collin Pruitt, and Neil Jagdish Patel, Full Circle Magazine, Atlanta LinuxFest: Top 9 Ubuntu Highlights, Ubuntu User Magazine, and much, much more!

      • Buying Software in Ubuntu
        For the sake of argument let us say that Adobe saw the error of their ways and starting selling proprietary Adobe Illustrator through the Ubuntu Store. I would then like to see Inkscape get some money every time it was sold. Why? because channeling software products is a valuable service and Canonical should not sell it’s values in Freedom so lightly as to ignore the nature of the products it channels.

        Anyway, this thought experiment is pure fantasy so long as Ubuntu doesn’t handle money in any way. Once it does however, the questions must be asked about weather we believe in Libre Software or Gratis Software.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Phones

      • Wal-Mart selling Palm Pre for $80
        Just one day after Amazon dropped the price of the popular Palm Pre smartphone to $100 USD, Wal-Mart has begun selling the phone for $80 USD with two-year contract with exclusive carrier Sprint.

      • Mozilla developers move to Palm
        Dion Almaer and Ben Galbraith, who have been at Mozilla directing the Developer Tools Lab since its inception in October 2008, creating products such as Bespin, have moved to smartphone manufacturer Palm. They will become the Directors of the Palm Developer Relations Team. The team handles relations between the community of web developers and the firm. Almaer announced the move in his web log.

      • Mozilla coders join Palm, apparently jabbing Apple

    • Sub-notebooks

      • Dell Reveals Inspiron Mini 10 with Intel Moblin Linux OS
        At IDF Dell Company unveiled the fact that it plans to distribute an updated variant of the Inspiron Mini 10v gadget comprising the Intel Moblin Linux. The new system targets developers, but can be purchased by anyone who wants it due to the fact that the new hardware represents a more efficient substitute to Ubuntu in matters concerning Internet browsing and playing videos or music. Dell`s new hardware comes with the Moblin Netbook Remix from Canoncal which is a version specially designed for displays and user interfaces comprised by mini laptops.

      • Intel's new Moblin 2.1 OS available for download
        Intel has made available for download its latest Linux-based operating system, Moblin 2.1, just a few days after announcing the new software.

      • Dell Inspiron Mini 10v review
        The unit reviewed has a 10.1 inch, 1024 x 600 pixel display, 1.6GHz Intel Atom N270 CPU, 1GB of RAM, 160GB hard drive and 6 cell battery. The model I received ships with Windows XP, but the Inspiron Mini 10v is also available with Ubuntu or Moblin Linux. The laptop is available for purchase from Dell for $299 and up.

      • First look at HP Mini 110 Mi edition
        Those who don't mind the oversimplified and somewhat older Ubuntu as the pre-installed operating system on the netbook will be able to perform all the common computing tasks, but for those who'd prefer something newer and more cutting-edge, the latest Karmic alpha offers decent hardware support for the netbook. With the hardware specifications much superior to the Eee PC 900, I find HP Mini a much better value for money. The final rating? Eight stars out of ten.

      • Xtra Ordinary OS Review: Better than Ubuntu!
        This past weekend, I tried out the Xtra Ordinary OS for the XO from On-Disk. This Deb-XO distribution really is an extraordinary full featured operating system for adult users of the One Laptop Per Child computer.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Organic Software
    Some people do ask whether the farmers' market is scalable - surely having a big corporation planning all the production is better? But no, each week the market is full of produce produced by local people who love growing it, and customers turn up to sell in proportion to the number of people who show up to buy. No-one seemed to be struggling to make a living. The stallholder had never heard of or Firefox, but easily got the idea that software made by a community could be great and that having everyone doing the part they can for themselves means there's no need to have a big corporation wanting you to pay. There are no hidden ingredients either, and despite the lack of pesticides there seem to be fewer bugs...

    Open source is "organic software" and its time has come. He's going home to his organic produce and to look for "open source software" and "open office" on the web. Me - I'm reflecting on Software Freedom Day as I prepare my trout.

  • Apache Holds Steady in a Changing Web Server Landscape
    It's obviously good news for the Web's ecosystem that so many different servers now hold significant market share, since this makes it far more resilient. It's also good to see from the latest Netcraft survey that Apache's share is holding up under this onslaught. The same cannot be said about Microsoft's IIS, which has now dropped back to pretty much the base level it had before it began its big push. So much for countering that advertisement for free software.

  • 10 Open-Source Developments You Need To Know About
    Openbravo debuted its Openbravo QuickStart Edition, a version of its open-source ERP application set that the company said can be implemented in as little as 40 to 80 hours -- a fraction of the time needed to install most ERP software. Targeting SMBs, the preconfigured, entry-level software package offers application templates and other tools that solution providers use to sell the product with fixed-price services.

  • 50 Open Source Apps for Small Biz/Home Office
    With these business owners in mind, we've put together a list of 50 superb open source apps for SOHO users. We tried to narrow the list to well-tested, easy-to-use applications that average small business owners with minimal technical expertise would be able to install and use on their own.

  • Mozilla

    • firefox breaks 24%
      Looking at a rolling 1 week average, Firefox has been above 24% global usage share for for several days now. We probably won't break 24% for the month of September but we're going to come pretty close and I think this puts us on track to easily reach 25% of global usage by the end of the year.

    • Interview with Robert Kaiser, SeaMonkey project coordinator
      Ricardo Palomares from Mozilla Hispano, had an interview with Robert Kaiser, long time SeaMonkey project coordinator on what’s going on with SeaMonkey, the motivations, and other activities including promotion and T-shirts. Oh, and real sea monkeys also.


      2- Why use (and help with) SeaMonkey instead of Firefox + Thunderbird?

      Because it’s nice (for a certain group of people) to have browser and messaging closely integrated with each other in one single application, and because it’s nice to have a lot of advanced features like the cookie viewer right available from the browser menus, not needing deep clicking into subwindows of subwindows to finally arrive there like in Firefox.

  • Openness

    • Get it out in the open
      The plan to create OCW, a website publishing virtually all MIT's course material, was announced in 2001. Today almost 2,000 courses, or 80 per cent of those offered by the university, are available online at no cost. The potential benefits to learners were immediately clear - but what was in it for the university?

    • Banned Books Week: Celebrating the Freedom to Read
      The books featured during Banned Books Week have been targets of attempted bannings. Fortunately, while some books were banned or restricted, in a majority of cases the books were not banned, all thanks to the efforts of librarians, teachers, booksellers, and members of the community to retain the books in the library collections.

  • Programming

    • The C programming language and its importance
      Also I wish to point out that the efforts in learning C and the big picture are richly paid. No doubt about that. The deeper you go into technology, you want to know about memory, CPU, registers and so on. Embedded programming involves tight programming practices. You should be careful with buffer sizes, with mallocs and so on. Your brain learns to think like a genius once you do C programming for a while.


  • Privacy

  • AstroTurf

    • Anatomy of an Attack Ad
      Standing in a medical exam room, a neurosurgeon in a white lab coat stares solemnly into the camera and warns that President Obama’s health care plan “will hurt our seniors” and “end Medicare as we know it.” Two networks, NBC and ABC, declined to run the 30-second ad, but it has probably reached millions of people on Fox, CBS and local stations as well as on the Web.


      The group that says it paid for the campaign– the League of American Voters – incorporated less than two weeks before the ad was released online. The League’s executive director, its only employee, declined to identify its founders or donors but claims that in less than two months of existence it has built a membership of 16,000 and raised about $1.7 million in donations. The group says it rents space inside a downtown Washington, D.C., office, an address shared with at least four other conservative groups.

    • Won't Someone Please Think of the, er, Plants?
      Oh lordy, those poor little plants and animals - deprived of the life-giving CO2. How could mankind be so cruel and insensate? How could we have overlooked such an obvious thing until now?

      Update: Don't miss Adam Pope's super-sleuthing in the comments that suggests this site just might have something to do with the gas and oil industries...

  • Censorship/Web Abuse

    • AT&T fires back at Google on net neutrality rules
      AT&T has written the Federal Communications Commission’s Wireline Competition Bureau to insist that any new net neutrality rules need be apply to everyone in the industry, including web companies like Google.

    • Freedom is Slavery, Slavery is Freedom
      The Competitive Enterprise Institute is always good for a laugh thanks to its transparent agenda (the use of the weasel word "competitive" gives it away)...


      Painting the freedom of net neutrality as a kind of slavery in this way is really a tour-de-force of topsy-turvism, even by the high standards of the Competitive Enterprise Institute.

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