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Links 25/1/2022: Vulkan 1.3 Released, Kiwi TCMS 11.0, and antiX 19.5

  • GNU/Linux

    • Some Old Linux Journal Articles: MacOS to Linux Guides

      Way back when in June of 2019, Linux Journal published one of its final issues of the digital magazine. The publications ceased its operations in the beginning of August. Anyway, some articles were not able to make it online and to the Linux Journal website. I just realized that two of those articles were mine. So, I took the liberty of posting the PDF versions of those articles here.

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • Jrnl: Your Digital Diary in the Linux Terminal

        Imagine this: somebody has broken your heart and what you want is to write your feelings in a journal without distraction. Did you get the idea? No? Neither do I. I am not heartbroken (or maybe I am and I don’t want to tell you).

        But I would still like to show you a wonderful minimalistic open-source, note-taking application to keep journal entries.

      • Framework Laptop Now Enjoys Open-Source EC Firmware

        While just one part of the overall equation for a system with open-source firmware, the Framework Laptop has joined the ranks of the Linux-focused laptops these days being backed by open-source firmware for its embedded controller (EC).

        Framework announced last month that as part of "open sourcing our firmware" they have now published the EC firmware.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • Linux Essentials - htop - Invidious

        There's no shortage of monitoring tools available for Linux servers and workstations, but htop is a a classic. By installing htop, you can see an overview of your resource usage, including meters for CPU, RAM, Swap, and more.

      • Pop!_OS 21.1 Quick overview #Shorts - Invidious
      • Destination Linux 262: Do You Need An Anti-Virus On Linux?

        This week’s episode of Destination Linux, we’re going to discuss the increase in Malware on Linux and ask the question – do you need anti malware software now that Linux is growing in popularity? Then we’re going to discuss some nice enhancements to Microsoft Office alternative OnlyOffice. Plus we’ve also got our famous tips, tricks and software picks. All of this and so much more this week on Destination Linux. So whether you’re brand new to Linux and open source or a guru of sudo. This is the podcast for you.

    • Kernel Space

      • Graphics Stack

        • Vulkan 1.3 Released with Dynamic Rendering, Improved Synchronization API

           More than a year in development, the Vulkan 1.3 API is here to introduce dynamic rendering through the VK_KHR_ extension as a streamlined path to start rendering and to significantly reduce application complexity, as well as additional dynamic state through the VK_EXT_extended_dynamic_state2 extension to further reduce the number of pipeline permutations.

          Vulkan 1.3 also introduces the VK_EXT_pipeline_creation_cache_control and VK_EXT_pipeline_creation_feedback extensions to give developers more control over how and when pipelines are compiled, as well as to provide them with information about the compiled pipelines, and makes the buffer device address support mandatory to allow devs to start using pointers across the ecosystem.

        • Vulkan 1.3 Released With Dynamic Rendering In Core, New Roadmap Guidance For Modern GPUs - Phoronix

          It's crazy to think that in a few days it will already be six years since the debut of Vulkan 1.0, but here we are. The Khronos Group is continuing on their two year major update regiment for Vulkan and today debuting Vulkan 1.3 with more extensions moved to core as well as introducing a new "profiles" concept.

        • Vulkan API 1.3 released, new roadmap and profiles feature | GamingOnLinux

          Today is the release of the Vulkan API 1.3 specification update and The Khronos Group has put up a press release going over the changes. A vital API for the future of Linux gaming and the Steam Deck of course, with Steam Play Proton using Vulkan for the translation from Direct 3D for DXVK and VKD3D-Proton.

    • Applications

      • The 5 Most Useful Linux Text-Manipulation Commands

        Want to up your Linux game and learn more about text-manipulation? Here are the top five Linux command-line tools to begin your journey.

        Linux developers follow the philosophy of creating small programs that do one task and do it well. Take Linux text processing tools as an example, they are lightweight and have modular functionality. Even though these text manipulation tools differ in complexity and functionality, they come in handy in an environment where the graphical user interface isn't available.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • Sending logs to Elastic Cloud using syslog-ng - Blog - syslog-ng Community - syslog-ng Community

        The Elastic Cloud is a service by Elastic providing Elasticsearch and related services in an easy-to-use package. Last year someone reported an issue that it does not work properly with syslog-ng. I did not have time to investigate at that time. Now I started a free trial and soon my log messages from syslog-ng started to appear in Kibana in Elastic Cloud.

        From this blog you can learn how to configure syslog-ng for the Elastic Cloud. I go with the most basic settings: exploring Elastic Cloud and syslog-ng Elasticsearch features are both out of scope, as both are very well documented on their respective websites.

      • Fast backups of Fedora with btrbk - Lukáš Zapletal

        Last year, I did full reinstall of my workstation in order to change from XFS to BTRFS file system, which is now the default in Fedora Workstation. The plans were simple - I wanted to achieve fast backups. And one year later, I finally got to setting it up. Here is how to do it.

        Scenario is simple, a host with BTRFS filesystem, a USB drive connected and also formatted as BTRFS for ultra-fast snapshots/backups.

      • How to Solve the Most Common WordPress Errors | RoseHosting

        Today we are going to explain and give you some instructions on how can you fix the most common WordPress errors that may occur on your WordPress website.

        There is no strict rule to fix the issues since we need to debug first and understand what the problem may be, but sometimes some errors are very common and there are quick fixes, that all WordPress users need to know.

      • Snowflake Role Based Access Control (RBAC) Explained - OSTechNix

        Access control is one of the crucial concepts in all the Database environments. In this article, we will learn about Snowflake Role based Access Control (RBAC) and how to create custom roles and grant access to the roles from Snowflake WebUI and using SnowSQL CLI client.

      • How to Install Enlightenment Desktop 0.25.1 in Ubuntu 20.04, 21.10, 18.04 | UbuntuHandbook

        For Ubuntu and Linux Mint users, the latest Enlightenment DR 0.25 now is easy to install via an unofficial Ubuntu PPA.

        Enlightenment (aka, E) released version 0.25 (then v0.25.1) as well as Enlightenment Foundation Libraries (EFL) 1.26 a few weeks ago. Here’s how to install them in Ubuntu via PPA.

        E 0.25 series comes with lots of minor bug fixes, flat look to match new flat theme, new touchpad gesture recognition bindings, new Procstats module can show mem/CPU usage in titlebar, and many more other changes.

      • How to get started with the Vi editor | Enable Sysadmin

        The Vi application is the default text editor on most Linux systems, so it's the primary interface you will use when you need to edit a configuration file. If you're used to a graphical text editor, such as Notepad++ or VS Code, Vi can be confusing at first.

        In its default form, Vi launches and runs in a terminal and is entirely keyboard-driven. But once you learn the basics of Vi, you're likely to find that it's a fast, efficient, and flexible editor.

      • Install Git 2.35.0 On Ubuntu / Linux Mint / Rocky Linux & Fedora | Tips On UNIX

        This tutorial will be helpful for beginners to install git 2.35.0 on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS, Ubuntu 21.10, LinuxMint 20.3, Rocky Linux 8, AlmaLinux 8, and Fedora 35.

        Git is the most popular Free and Open-source distributed version control system in the world. It is easy to learn and has a lightning-fast performance.

        Git is fast and built to work with the Linux kernel, the latest version of GIT is 2.35.0 and it is a stable version released on 24-JAN-2022.

      • How to install MongoDB 5 on Debian 11 – NextGenTips

        MongoDB is an open-source NoSQL database that provides high throughput for data-driven applications. Unlike relational databases such as MySQL, Oracle, and SQL servers which store data in tables according to a rigid schema, MongoDB stores data in documents with flexible schema.

      • Enable or Disable Automatic Login in Debian 11 Bullseye - Linux Shout

        To secure our system we generally use password to login in to a Linux and other OS. However, if you are the only person who has access to your Linux system such as Debian 11 Bullseye then you can enable the autologin feature and here we will know how?

        Systems that are in offices or in insure location need to secure with a login “password”. That a user has to enter every time he or she want to access the files and other data residing in it. Well, this happens everytime when we start our computer or logout. It is actually a good thing but if you only work with the computer alone anyway, the repeated password entry is quite annoying. If you want to boot straight through to the desktop, you can log in automatically and switch off the password prompt when the system starts. Here we will show you how to do that in Debian based systems.

    • Games

      • Heroic Games Launcher for Epic Games on Linux adds gamepad support | GamingOnLinux

        Making things even easier for the upcoming Steam Deck, the unofficial Heroic Games Launcher for Epic Games can now be navigated with a gamepad. Testing it out today, it works really nicely too. Just goes to show what amazing things a community can do, even when Epic doesn't support Linux directly with their store.


        Work is still in progress to support Flatpak / Flathub, once that is done installing this on a Steam Deck or any other Linux distribution should be super-simple.

      • Heroic Games Launcher 2.1 Now Supports Gamepad Control in the Interface - Boiling Steam

        A quick post today following the recent release of the new version of Heroic Games Launcher, the unofficial (and FOSS) client for the Epic Games Store on Linux (and other platforms). The latest update brings several changes but the most interesting one is the addition of gamepad support. You can now control most of the interface using a connected Gamepad (I tried it with Xinput and it was recognized instantly) and modify settings and launch your games with it. This makes for a better experience a la Big Picture Mode, and this is a very welcome addition as the Steam Deck is about the be released!

      • DXVK 1.9.4 is out as Valve prepares Proton 7.0 | GamingOnLinux

        The Vulkan-based implementation of D3D9, D3D10 and D3D11 for Linux / Wine named DXVK (used with Proton) has a 1.9.4 version release, plus it appears that Proton 7.0 is closing in. More info on Steam Play Proton on our dedicated page.

      • Dynamic Cloud Sync to let you easily switch between PC and Steam Deck | GamingOnLinux

        Valve has announced the latest upgrade to help players with a Steam Deck. It's called Dynamic Cloud Sync and will let you easily switch between your PC and a Steam Deck.

        The idea is that when you enter suspend mode on the Steam Deck, like you might with other consoles, the Steam Deck will then upload any modified save data to the Steam Cloud ready to be picked up anywhere else. When you wake the device, it will then automatically download any changes ready for you to carry on.

        Valve say this is not a requirement but they "recommend" developer use it to give players the best experience possible. Without it though, there may be problems as Valve say: "Without Dynamic Cloud Sync enabled, Steam will still track when save game data is changed on the Steam Deck. However, any user who suspends their Deck while your game is running and then tries to resume that game on a different device, will be prompted to first return to their Deck to close the running process or continue without their most recent save game progress".

      • We're living in a weird world with Sony's Shuhei Yoshida excited about a Linux handheld | GamingOnLinux

        Sometimes it feels like I've somehow fallen through the multiverse into a very different and thoroughly weird world. When Valve put Steam on Linux back in 2013 (see our full history), who could have imagined what that would bring us many years later?

        At the end of February the Steam Deck should be releasing to the lucky first few who managed to get their reservation in (not me), ushering in a new era of PC gaming on the go. A Linux handheld. Powered by SteamOS 3, Valve's latest bundling of Steam with open source based on Arch Linux. Excitement levels keep rising every time Valve announce something new, but its the posts from developers we keep seeing with units that really gets us excited.

        When you have the likes of Shuhei Yoshida, the Head of Sony PlayStation Indies (and former President of SCE Worldwide Studios), putting up a clearly very excited Twitter post showing off a previously PlayStation exclusive running on a Linux handheld (the Steam Deck), you know something big is brewing that's about to be unleashed on the world.

      • SUPERHOT: MIND CONTROL DELETE fixes up Steam Deck support | GamingOnLinux

        SUPERHOT: MIND CONTROL DELETE had a small patch released today and it seems they're another developer hoping to see their game fully verified for the upcoming Steam Deck handheld from Valve.

        This first-person shooter is built on the foundation of the original hit SUPERHOT, where time moves in slow motion until you make a move. It's a huge amount of fun and it's highly replayable thanks to it having basically more of everything. It seems like a game that would be great to have on the go.

      • Lutris game manager getting Ubisoft Connect integration | GamingOnLinux

        Is any service safe from Lutris? Apparently not. This impressive free and open source game manager will gain support for another way to install games on Linux in an upcoming update.

        Just like the previous article highlighting the upcoming Origin support, this newly introduced Ubisoft Connect is not available in a released build as they code has only recently been added to the GitHub development area.

    • Distributions

      • Arch Family

        • 5 Arch Linux Distros That Are Easier to Install and Use

          Arch Linux is probably one of the most “for geeks” Linux distributions, with a delightful experience for every aficionado seeking to push the bleeding edge of what Linux can do. Its nature and target user make it challenging to use and install, with a steep learning curve that can put off even seasoned Linux users. Your computer becomes a project, you become the engineer in charge of it, and Arch hands you a magic wand to achieve your wildest dreams – provided you learn how to use it.

          If you’d like to harness the power of Arch Linux but don’t want to have to build everything from the ground up, the good news is that there are plenty of Arch-based Linux distributions that offer varying levels of granularity to your experience. Nearly all of them offer the simplicity of GUI-based installation, and each provides its own unique take on Arch Linux.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • 14 years old and changing the world: how Red Hat is supporting one girl’s mission to diversify coding

          Diversity, equity and inclusion is a key commitment of Red Hat. We aim to reflect it in our people and also want to help improve representation and inclusivity in the tech industry for women, people of color, and other marginalized groups. More diversity produces a broader spectrum of ideas, and ensures everyone progresses further, faster. So given the opportunity to support a new coding movement for girls, we jumped at the chance. What’s extraordinary about this movement is that it’s being led by a London schoolgirl.

          When Avye Couloute started attending coding workshops, aged just seven, she was struck by two things: how much she loved them, and how few girls there were. She wasted no time putting the latter right. Since launching her Girls Into Coding (GIC) movement in 2018, the London schoolgirl has shared her knowledge and passion with more than 900 girls. "I just want to give other girls the chance to feel the way that I do about this stuff," she says.

        • The disadvantages of microservices | Red Hat Developer

          Microservices have many benefits—but they come with downsides, too. Learn what trade-offs to keep in mind when using them in your applications.

        • Cockpit 261

          Cockpit is the modern Linux admin interface. We release regularly.

        • IT careers: 5 soft skills for engineering teams in 2022 | The Enterprisers Project

          2021 showed the tech industry that we have to think long-term. We can’t afford to hire all of our talent based on one specific hard skill, because things change fast, and today’s in-demand hard skills will eventually be tomorrow’s outdated skills.

        • Digital transformation: 5 future and 3 fading trends for 2022 [Ed: "Digital transformation" was mocked as a buzzword by Red Hat yesterday. Today it's back to this meaningless garbage.]

          Digital transformation is nothing new. Depending on your definition, it can go back as far as the middle of the twentieth century. Even by the most conservative interpretations, leading enterprises have been on the digitalization path for a couple of decades.

          Over the last two years, however, digital transformation has taken on a new urgency. As organizations have weathered the upheavals instigated by the pandemic, digitization has become integral to their responses and also their future plans. Looking ahead to the next year, it’s clear that digital technologies will continue to play a seminal role in enterprise strategy and success.

          However, certain aspects of digital transformation are likely to increase in importance while others will diminish. Following are some of the trends IT leaders can expect to become more prevalent in 2022 – and others that are more likely to fade.

        • Outreachy Project “Improve NeuroFedora’s user consumable artifacts” progress update

          Vanessa Christopher is working with the NeuroFedora team as an outreachy Intern. This blog post is her experience and project update so far.

      • Debian Family

        • Coronor's Report: Lucy Wayland & Debian Abuse Culture

          Molly de Blanc couldn't do any technical work. She decided to use her new status to intimidate other people. On 17 December 2018 she was involved in the plot that secretly expelled Dr Norbert Preining. They began to blackmail him: he must bow down before them or they would tell everybody he was expelled.

          Dr Preining and other victims bravely spoke out publicly. For several weeks, Debian volunteers were exposed to hundreds of negative emails about Molly's blackmail recipes.

          Christmas is normally a season when organizations thank their volunteers and give them the time and space to relax. Debian stole this rest from people including Lucy Wayland. Wayland started 2019 stressed.

        • antiX-19.5 point release update – antiX Linux

          antiX-19.5 is a point release update of our 19 series based on Debian buster.

          As usual we offer the following completely systemd-free (and for this particular upgrade – elogind-free) flavours for both 32 and 64 bit architecture. Available iso files for sysVinit or runit.

          antiX-full (c1.2GB) – 4 windows managers – IceWM (default), fluxbox, jwm and herbstluftwm plus full libreoffice suite.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Kubuntu 21.04 (Hirsute Hippo) Reaches End of Life
          Kubuntu Hirsute Hippo was announced on April 22, 2021 with 9 months support.

          As of January 20, 2022, 21.04 reached ‘end of life’.

          No more package updates will be accepted to 21.04, and it will be archived in the coming weeks.

          You can read the official end of life announcement for Ubuntu as a whole.

        • The Next Ubuntu Wallpaper Contest Needs to Focus on Quality

          A new long-term support release of Ubuntu is on the way, and so too is a brand new Ubuntu wallpaper contest.

          In recent years long term support releases of Ubuntu have tended to include a “greatest hits” package of supplementary wallpapers, often sourced from those that won wallpaper competitions in the preceding three releases.

          That approach has a logic to it as an LTS release, is, in many ways, a “best of” itself. Plus, there’s some real honour for those whose art is selected to ship in a version of Ubuntu that gets used across tens of millions of desktops, as opposed to just a few hundred thousand (which is still a pretty awesome feat, as is).

          But for the next LTS Ubuntu’s community team is going back to basics. They’re going to run a wallpaper contest that community artists, professional and amateur alike, can take part in. Further details on the contest are going be be announced at some point, but they’ve already begun hyping it up on their social media.

        • Smart, agile MLOps on any cloud – Canonical releases Charmed Kubeflow 1.4 | Ubuntu

          Today, the Canonical Data Platform team announced the release of Charmed Kubeflow 1.4 – the state-of-the-art MLOps platform. The new release enables data science teams to securely collaborate on AI/ML innovation on any cloud, from concept to production.

          Charmed Kubeflow is free to use: the solution can be deployed in any environment without constraints, paywall or restricted features. Data labs and MLOps teams only need to train their data scientists and engineers once to work consistently and efficiently on any cloud or on-premise. Charmed Kubeflow offers a centralised, browser-based MLOps platform that runs on any conformant Kubernetes – offering enhanced productivity, improved governance and reducing the risks associated with shadow IT.

          The latest release adds several features for advanced model lifecycle management, including upstream Kubeflow 1.4 and support for MLFlow integration.

          Data scientists can get started today with Charmed Kubeflow 1.4 using Juju, the unified operator framework for hyper-automated management of applications running on both virtual machines and Kubernetes. The new release is in the CharmHub stable channel now, and can be deployed to any conformant Kubernetes cluster using a single Juju command.

        • Ubuntu Fridge | Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter Issue 719

          Welcome to the Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter, Issue 719 for the week of January 16 – 22, 2022. The full version of this issue is available here.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Content Management Systems (CMS)

        • Kiwi TCMS: Kiwi TCMS 11.0

          IMPORTANT: This is a new major release which contains security related updates, several improvements, API changes, bug fixes and new translations!

        • Kiwi TCMS: Properties, Environments and test matrix generation

          The upcoming Kiwi TCMS v11 contains new functionality around TestCase properties and TestRun environments which has an impact on how your final test execution matrix will look like. This article provides detailed information about these features but have in mind that they are still considered to be a technology-preview.

  • Leftovers

    • Hardware

      • An Entire Computer In ICMP Packets | Hackaday

        The earliest stored program computer in the modern sense was not one of the names such as ENIAC or Colossus that you might expect, but the Manchester Baby, an experimental prototype computer built at the University of Manchester in 1948. Its 550 tubes gave it the multi-rack room-filling size common to 1940s machines, but its architecture makes it a comparatively simple processor by the standards of today. So simple in fact, that [Hrvoje ÄŒavrak] has recreated it using ICMP packets as its storage, and a custom packet filter as its processor emulation. It’s a project that’s simultaneously both elegant and gloriously pointless, but as he says, “It’s still better than doing drugs or JavaScript”.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Security

          • This sneaky ransomware is now targeting Linux servers, too | ZDNet [Ed: It's not a Linux issue; ZDNet is a very Linux-hostile site, funded partly by Microsoft]

            One of the most prolific families of ransomware now has additional Linux and VMware ESXi variants that have been spotted actively targeting organisations in recent months.

            Analysis by cybersecurity researchers at Trend Micro identified LockBit Linux-ESXi Locker version 1.0 being advertised on an underground forum. Previously, LockBit ransomware – which was by far the most active ransomware family at one point last year – was focused on Windows.

          • Vulnerabilities that aren’t. Cross Site Tracing / XST

            This is the first of my posts that explain why some common security vulnerabilities are most likely not real threats. They should be treated as security enhancements rather than vulnerabilities. Bearing in mind the number of scanning tools that rate such vulnerabilities as “high” it’s no wonder people make the mistake of reporting them. It’s also a reminder to mistrust the output from something until you’ve verified it.

            I’m going to start with the not-a-vulnerability mother of them all, the HTTP TRACE (and TRACK) method. Something that could lead to an attack called Cross Site-Tracing (XST). In 20 years I have never seen a real-world exploit for it.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • Joint statement on the UAE’s adoption of Federal Decree Law No. 34 of 2021 on Combatting Rumours and Cybercrime - Access Now

        We, the undersigned organisations, are writing to express our deep concern regarding the United Arab Emirates’ (UAE) recent adoption of a new Law on Combatting Rumours and Cybercrime, which severely threatens and unduly restricts the right to freedom of expression (both online and offline) and the rights to freedom of association and of peaceful assembly in the UAE.

        The new Cybercrime Law, adopted by Federal Decree Law No. 34 of 2021, went into effect on January 2, 2022, replacing the Emirates’ former Federal Law No. 5 of 2012 on Combatting Cybercrime. However, the new text does not address the problematic provisions of its predecessor and, on the contrary, further restricts civic space and free speech within the UAE and maintains the criminalisation of acts that are protected under international law.

        We are concerned that the overbroad and vague terminology used, particularly on “national security” related issues, provide the authorities with excessive discretion to criminalise and impose lengthy prison sentences on individuals exercising their rights to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly. The law further enables the criminalisation of the work of journalists, whistleblowers, activists and peaceful critics, subjecting those engaged in lawful activities to harsh prison sentences and excessive fines. As such, we call on the Emirati authorities to immediately repeal the law or sufficiently amend its provisions so that it is brought into line with international human rights standards.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Facebook critics call for release of its India human rights report - The Economic Times

        About 20 organisations, as well as whistleblowers Frances Haugen and Sophie Zhang, and former Facebook Vice President Brian Boland, have urged the world’s largest social network to release its long-delayed India Human Rights Impact Assessment (HRIA) report, which allegedly highlights the company’s role in spreading hate speech and inciting violence in India.

        The group sent a letter to Facebook’s Director of Human Rights Miranda Sissons on Jan. 3, arguing that the India human rights report was an important element of Facebook’s human rights due diligence and—at a minimum—should be made public.

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • Revealed: Over two thousand news publishers furnished their details to the MIB, despite Bombay HC’s stay

        Recently, we were informed by digital news publishers that the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (“MIB”), has issued notices to digital news media publishers under the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021 (“IT Rules 2021”), asking them to furnish their details. Accordingly, IFF filed an RTI Application to find out whether the MIB has indeed issued such notices, and to which publishers. The MIB has admitted that it has indeed issued two such notices, and that more than two thousand publishers have responded to these notices!


        Some of our requests for information were denied, refused or flat out ignored, such as our question regarding how many publishers furnished their information after the Bombay High Court’s order. Other than this, we also sought a list of publishers to whom these notices were issued, and a list of publishers who responded to this notice with their details. Not only were reasons not provided for MIB’s refusal to provide these lists, but the MIB did not even explicitly refuse to provide these lists - the MIB simply ignored those parts of our questions!

        When we asked for information regarding the authority under which the MIB could issue such communications after the Bombay HC’s order, the MIB simply stated that this information does not fall in the definition of information in Section 2(f) of the RTI Act. We have thus been provided no details regarding how and under what legal authority the notices were issued.

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