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Sunday, 25 Aug 19 - Tux Machines is a community-driven public service/news site which has been around for over a decade and a half and primarily focuses on GNU/LinuxSubscribe now Syndicate content

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Quick Roundup

Type Title Author Replies Last Postsort icon
Story GNU Radio Launches 3.8.0.0, First Minor-Version Release In Six Years Roy Schestowitz 24/08/2019 - 3:59am
Story IBM/Red Hat Leftovers Roy Schestowitz 24/08/2019 - 2:43am
Story Simplicity Linux 19.10 Alpha ISOs are here! Roy Schestowitz 24/08/2019 - 2:40am
Story Programming Leftovers Roy Schestowitz 24/08/2019 - 2:37am
Story weston 7.0.0 Roy Schestowitz 24/08/2019 - 2:27am
Story today's howtos Roy Schestowitz 24/08/2019 - 2:23am
Story MicroK8s Gets Powerful Add-ons Roy Schestowitz 24/08/2019 - 2:21am
Story Save Web Pages As Single HTML Files For Offline Use With Monolith (Console) Roy Schestowitz 24/08/2019 - 2:18am
Story Welcome to the August 2019 Friends of GNOME Update! Roy Schestowitz 24/08/2019 - 2:07am
Story Cryptocurrency OS Makes It Easy to Buy and Spend Digital Cash Roy Schestowitz 24/08/2019 - 2:04am

Top 3 Video Players for Ubuntu

Filed under
Software
Ubuntu

There are a lot of free and open-source video players available for Ubuntu. Most of them do the basic job pretty well and you do not miss anything from Windows that you could use on Ubuntu. However, some players provide additional features and you can pick which one would suit you best depending on the feature list. In this article, we will give you an introduction to some famous video players for Ubuntu. We will also tell you where to find their websites and how to install them on Ubuntu. All of these players can be reliably downloaded graphically from the Ubuntu Software but we will also explain other methods of installation for educational purposes. Also, some methods let you install the latest available version of the software from the Internet so we will not miss out on those.

Read more

Also: Translatium – Simply Yet Powerful Translation Tool For Linux

Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6 and CentOS 6 Receive Important Kernel Security Update

Filed under
Linux
Red Hat
Security

The new Linux kernel security update is marked by the Red Hat Product Security team as having an "Important" security impact due to the fact that it patches several critical flaws, including the Spectre SWAPGS gadget vulnerability (CVE-2019-1125) affecting x86 processors.

Also patched are a security vulnerability (CVE-2019-5489) leading to page cache side-channel attacks, an issue in the Salsa20 encryption algorithm that could allow local attackers to cause a denial of service (CVE-2017-17805), and a flaw (CVE-2018-17972) that let unprivileged users inspect kernel stacks of arbitrary tasks.

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Meet the GNOMEies: Max Huang

Filed under
Interviews
GNOME

Max Huang has been GNOME since 2010, starting with forming a GNOME users group in Taiwan. Max has a story you may understand: being a user, meeting the right person, and slowly finding yourself more and more deeply involved with a community in terms of working together and making friends.

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Review: Raspberry Pi 4

Filed under
Hardware
Reviews

The Raspberry Pi began life as a hacker's dream: a cheap, low-power, highly extendable, hackable PC that shipped as a bare circuit board. Intended as one part educational device, one part tinkering tool, it became something of a phenomenon that has been used to power everything from scaled-down Mars rovers to millions of science and hackday experiments in schools around the world.

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Debian: No longer a “Universal” operating system

Filed under
Debian

The Debian project has removed support for the MIPS architecture. This is the latest CPU architecture to be removed from Debian, betraying their tagline of being “The Universal Operating System”.

I take issue not only with their removal of the MIPS architecture, but of their reasoning for doing it.

Read more

today's leftovers

Filed under
Misc
  • Google's Chrome OS 76 Improves Support for Multiple Accounts on Chromebooks

    Google promoted the Chrome OS 76 operating system for supported Chromebook devices to the stable channel, and it is now rolling out to users from around the world with new features and improvements.
    Based on the latest Google Chrome 76 web browser release, which brings many new features and improvements on its own, Chrome OS 76's probably most exciting is a unified account management for those who use multiple Google accounts on their Chromebook, either by you or if the devices is shared with other people.

    Users can check out the new account management feature under Settings > Google Accounts, and they should keep in mind that they can now apply all the permissions and access granted to apps, add-ons, websites, Google Play, and in Chrome to all of their signed-in Google accounts.

    [...]

    Chrome OS 76 is now rolling out to all supported Chromebook devices. You can update your Chromebook to Chrome OS 76 by going to Chrome settings and accessing the About Chrome OS section. The new version will be automatically downloaded and installed on your Chromebook. A restart is required for Chrome OS 76 to be successfully installed.

  • Netrunner 19.08 Run Through

    In this video, we are looking at Netrunner 19.08.

  • Asterisk Celebrates 25 Million Downloads

    Sangoma Technologies Corporation (TSX VENTURE: STC), a trusted leader in delivering Unified Communications solutions for SMBs, Enterprises, OEMs, and Service Providers, both on-premises and in the cloud, today announced that September will mark the 25 millionth download of Asterisk, the world's most widely used open source communications software.

  • Mozilla Mornings on the future of EU content regulation

    On 10 September, Mozilla will host the next installment of our EU Mozilla Mornings series – regular breakfast meetings where we bring together policy experts, policymakers and practitioners for insight and discussion on the latest EU digital policy developments.

    The next installment will focus on the future of EU content regulation. We’re bringing together a high-level panel to discuss how the European Commission should approach the mooted Digital Services Act, and to lay out a vision for a sustainable and rights-protective content regulation framework in Europe.

  • FreeIPMI 1.6.4 Released

    o In libfreeipmi, add additional workarounds for packets that are
    re-ordered during sensor bridging.
    o In libfreeipmi, add additional sensor / event interpretations.
    o In libfreeipmi, fix error return value on bridging requests.
    o Add workaround in ipmi-sel for QuantaPlex T42D-2U motherboard,
    whichlists a SDR record that makes no sense.
    o Add workaround for Dell Poweredge FC830, which have an error
    when reading the last SDR record on a motherboard.
    o Support Supermicro X10 OEM dimm events.

  • The world’s first mobile phone type crypto digital currency hardware cold wallet officially opened source code

    Recently, the world's first mobile phone type crypto digital asset hardware cold wallet SAFEGEM officially opened source code [...] The cryptography-based blockchain technology is characterized by openness, transparency, and traceability. As an crypto digital asset management system based on blockchain applications, it should have the same characteristics and should have higher security. Therefore, the SAFEGEM development team decided to open up all source code, open source follows the GPL agreement, defines the business boundary, uses open source code for commercial use, and chooses not to open source.

  • Western Digital's Long Trip from Open Standards to Open Source Chips

    It started as a microprocessor pioneer in the 1970s. Now, the company is charting a new course in open source silicon.

  • Excellent Free Books to Learn Go

    Go is a compiled, statically typed programming language that makes it easy to build simple, reliable, and efficient software. It’s a general purpose programming language with modern features, clean syntax and a robust well-documented common library, making it a good candidate to learn as your first programming language. While it borrows ideas from other languages such as Algol and C, it has a very different character. It’s sometimes described as a simple language.

    Go is an open source project developed by a team at Google and many contributors from the open source community. Go’s first release was in 2009, and it’s distributed under a BSD-style license.

    This article selects the best open source books that will give readers a firm foundation in developing Go applications.

  • Corner cases and exception types

    Some unanticipated corner cases with Python's new "walrus" operator—described in our Python 3.8 overview—have cropped up recently. The problematic uses of the operator will be turned into errors before the final release, but just what exception should be raised came into question. It seems that the exception specified in the PEP for the operator may not really be the best choice, as a recent discussion hashed out.

  • Dirk Eddelbuettel: Rcpp now used by 1750 CRAN packages

    Since this morning, Rcpp stands at just over 1750 reverse-dependencies on CRAN. The graph on the left depicts the growth of Rcpp usage (as measured by Depends, Imports and LinkingTo, but excluding Suggests) over time.

    Rcpp was first released in November 2008. It probably cleared 50 packages around three years later in December 2011, 100 packages in January 2013, 200 packages in April 2014, and 300 packages in November 2014. It passed 400 packages in June 2015 (when I tweeted about it), 500 packages in late October 2015, 600 packages in March 2016, 700 packages last July 2016, 800 packages last October 2016, 900 packages early January 2017,
    1000 packages in April 2017, 1250 packages in November 2017, and 1500 packages in November 2018. The chart extends to the very beginning via manually compiled data from CRANberries and checked with crandb. The next part uses manually saved entries. The core (and by far largest) part of the data set was generated semi-automatically via a short script appending updates to a small file-based backend. A list of packages using Rcpp is availble too.

    Also displayed in the graph is the relative proportion of CRAN packages using Rcpp. The four per-cent hurdle was cleared just before useR! 2014 where I showed a similar graph (as two distinct graphs) in my invited talk. We passed five percent in December of 2014, six percent July of 2015, seven percent just before Christmas 2015, eight percent last summer, nine percent mid-December 2016, cracked ten percent in the summer of 2017 and eleven percent in 2018. We are currently at 11.83 percent: a little over one in nine packages. There is more detail in the chart: how CRAN seems to be pushing back more and removing more aggressively (which my CRANberries tracks but not in as much detail as it could), how the growth of Rcpp seems to be slowing somewhat outright and even more so as a proportion of CRAN – just like one would expect a growth curve to.

  • GSoC final report

    The idea of this GSoC project was to implement new Domain-Specific language for LibreOffice to be used in UI testing by logging the user interactions with LO applications then generate the python code needed for the python UI framework which asaswill make testing easier. Also, the project aims to improve the logger that logs all the user interaction to be logged in the new DSL syntax to be more readable. Then we can use this replaying all the user interactions as a UI test.

  • Day 88 [Ed: Karina Passos on her time in KDE GSoC]

    Today, I’ll talk about my GSoC experience and won’t focus so much on Khipu, even because i still have some things to do, so in the next days I’ll publish a post about Khipu and what I’ve done.

    As I said in the old posts, the begin was the most complicated part for me. I made a project thinking that I’d be able to complete, I started studying the code and the things I’d make many weeks before the start. But I couldn’t understand the code and I think it’s my fault. I even lost three weeks after the start stuck in this situation. It was hard for me, because I was really scared about failing and at the same time dealing with my college stuff, because in Brazil, our summer (and our summer vacation), is in December-February, in July we have a three week vacation, but GSoC lasts three months. I wasn’t having a good time at college as well, but with the help of my therapist and my mentors I found a way to deal with the both things and as everything went well.

    After this complicated start, to not fail, my mentor suggested that I could change my project. My initial project was to create new features to Khipu and Analitza (Khipu’s main library) to make it a better application and move it out from beta. Then, my new project was to refactor Khipu (using C++ and QML). I was scared because I didn’t know if I’d be able to complete it, but the simplicity of QML helped me a lot, and before the first evaluation (approx. two weeks after I decided my new project) I finished the interface, or at least most of it.

    [...]

    And, of course, I’d like to say to KDE, Google and my mentors: thanks for this opportunity.

  • How To Check Your IP Address in Ubuntu [Beginner’s Tip]
  • Phoronix Test Suite 9.0 Milestone 2 Released, OpenBenchmarking.org Serves 42 Millionth Download

    The second development release of the forthcoming Phoronix Test Suite 9.0-Asker is now available for testing.

    Phoronix Test Suite 9.0 Milestone 2 continued evolving the brand new result viewer being introduced with PTS 9.0 and various new graphing visualizations. Various fixes and other improvements have landed into this new release. Screenshots and more details on the new result viewing experience soon.

Intel SoC, Mesa Driver, and Quad Core Cortex-A35

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux
  • Linux Begins Preparing For Intel's New "Lightning Mountain" SoC

    Linux kernel development activity has shown light on a new Intel SoC we haven't anything about to date... Lightning Mountain. 

    We haven't seen Intel Lightning Mountain referenced elsewhere yet but in our original monitoring of the various Linux kernel patch flow, this is a new Atom SoC on the way. 

  • ARB_gl_spirv and ARB_spirv_extension support for i965 landed Mesa master

    And something more visible thanks to that: now the Intel Mesa driver exposes OpenGL 4.6 support, the most recent version of OpenGL.

    As perhaps you could recall, the i965 Intel driver became 4.6 conformant last year. You have more details about that, and what being conformant means in this Iago blog post. On that blog post Iago mentioned that it was passing with an early version of the ARB_gl_spirv support, that we were improving and interating during this time so it could be included on Mesa master. At the same time, the CTS tests were only testing the specifics of the extensions, and we wanted a more detailed testing, so we also were adding more tests on the piglit test suite, written manually for ARB_gl_spirv or translated from existing GLSL tests.

  • Compulab CL-SOM-iMX8X SoM & SBC Feature NXP i.MX 8QuadXPlus Quad Core Cortex-A35 Processor

    NXP i.MX 8X Cortex-A35 processor designed for automotive infotainment and a variety of industrial applications was officially announced in early 2017...

Red Hat/Fedora: Flock’19 Budapest, Cockpit 201 and Systemd 243 RC2

Filed under
Red Hat
  • Flock’19 Budapest

    This was the first occurrence of the conference for me to attend. Its an annual Fedora Community gathering, which happens in a new city of Europe every year. This time it was in Budapest, the capital of Hungary, last year it was hosted in Dresden. Dates for the same were: 8th Aug through 11th Aug 2019. Also I got an opportunity to present there on my proposal: “Getting Started with Fedora QA”.

    Day 1 Started with a Keynote by Mathew Miller (mattdm). In here he spoke about where we as a community are and where we need to go further. It was a knowledgeable discussion for a first timer like me who was always looking out for the Vision and Mission of Fedora community. There are people who are with Fedora since its first release and you get to meet them here at the annual gathering.

    [...]

    Groups were formed and people decided for themselves where they wanted to go for the evening hangout on the Day 1. We were 7 people who decided to hangout at the Atmosphere Klub near the V.Kerulet and left at around 9:00 pm by walk.

    Day 2 started with a keynote by Denise Dumas, Vice President, Operating System Platform, Red Hat. She spoke on “Fedora, Red Hat and IBM”. I woke up late, 20 minutes before the first session as I went to bed late last night and had walked for around 11 kms the day before.

  • Fedora 30 : Set up the Linux Malware Detect.
  • Cockpit 201

    It’s now again possible to stop a service, without disabling it. Reloading is now available only when the service allows it.

    Furthermore, disabling or masking a service removes any lingering “failed” state, reducing noise.

  • Systemd 243 RC2 Released

    Released nearly one month ago was the systemd 243 release candidate while the official update has yet to materialize. It looks though like it may be on the horizon with a second release candidate being posted today.

    Red Hat's Zbigniew Jędrzejewski-Szmek has just tagged systemd 243-RC2 as the newest test release for this new version of this de facto Linux init system. Over the past month have been new hardware database (HWDB) additions, various fixes, new network settings, resolvectl zsh shell completion support, bumping timedated to always run at the highest priority, and other changes.

Announcing Qt for MCUs

Filed under
Development
Hardware
  • Announcing Qt for MCUs

    Today we announce the launch of Qt for MCUs – a comprehensive toolkit to deliver smartphone-like user experience on displays powered by microcontrollers. What started as a research project is now in the final leg of its journey to being released as a product.

    Connected devices found in vehicles, wearables, smart home, industrial and healthcare often have requirements that include real-time processing capabilities, low power consumption, instant boot time and low bill of materials. These requirements can be fulfilled by a microcontroller architecture. However, as devices get smarter and offer more features and capabilities, users expect an enhanced and intuitive experience on par with today’s smartphones. Qt for MCUs delivers an immersive and enriching user interface by utilizing a new runtime specifically developed for ARM Cortex-M microcontrollers and leveraging on-chip 2D graphics accelerators such as PxP on NXP’s i.MX RT series, Chrom-Art Accelerator on STM32 series and RGL on Renesas RH850.

  • Qt for MCUs – Qt Announces support for Microcontrollers

    About Qt for MCUs Qt- The well known opensource toolkit for creating graphical interface announced their new release: Qt for MCUs, targeting MCU’s.

  • The Qt Company Is Now Working On Qt For Microcontrollers

    There have been a lot of announcements pertaining to Qt as of late, most of which have been about forthcoming efforts around Qt 6 development. A new announcement out of The Qt Company catching us off-guard is their plans for the tool-kit on micro-controllers.

    Qt for MCUs is the company's newest commercial endeavour. In particular, they are working on the Qt tool-kit for displays powered by micro-controllers for smartphone-like user experiences. Qt for MCUs has been a research project at the company but is now being worked out as a new commercial offering. Considering how well though Qt works on mobile devices, it's only another step down catering it to low-power micro-controllers.

Games: Rogue State Revolution, No Man's Sky, Two Point Hospital: Close Encounters

Filed under
Gaming
  • Little Red Dog Games announce Rogue State Revolution, a political thriller roguelike

    Little Red Dog Games (Precipice, Deep Sixed, Rogue State) have announced Rogue State Revolution, what they say is the "first" political roguelike game.

    It's being published by Modern Wolf, a new indie publisher who doesn't believe in crunch who say they treat their developers "like partners, not like cogs in a machine".

    [...]

    Doesn't seem to have a trailer yet, will let you know what it does. They're also continuing to use the FOSS game engine Godot Engine again, nice to see!

  • Hello Games appear to be keeping an eye on Steam Play with No Man's Sky, temp fix needed for NVIDIA

    No Man's Sky recently had an absolutely ridiculous update to add in tons of new features and greatly expanded multiplayer. This update also added in Vulkan support too!

    It seems Hello Games are keeping an eye on Steam Play as well, with a recent update changelog noting "Fixed Steam VR in Linux.". Quite interesting! However, there is a bit of a problem for NVIDIA users with Steam Play on Linux, with the game performing quite poorly. Although, there's a slightly amusing workaround.

  • Things are about to get weird in the Two Point Hospital: Close Encounters expansion

    Two Point Studios and SEGA just announced the next expansion for their amusing hospital building sim with Two Point Hospital: Close Encounters.

    It's coming soon too! Their plan is to release it on August 29th next week. This will be the third expansion following on from Bigfoot and Pebberley Island. Two Point Hospital is already quite weird but this is really…out there. It will be adding in 3 new hospitals full of patients to cure, 34 new illnesses although they say only 11 of these are new visually along with a promise of "new" gameplay, new music and so on.

Useful security software from the Snap Store

Filed under
Security
Ubuntu

Once upon a time, password management was a simple thing. There were few services around, the Internet was a fairly benign place, and we often used the same combo of username and password for many of them. But as the Internet grew and the threat landscape evolved, the habits changed.

In the modern Web landscape, there are thousands of online services, and many sites also require logins to allow you to use their full functionality. With data breaches a common phenomenon nowadays, tech-savvy users have adopted a healthier practice of avoiding credentials re-use. However, this also creates a massive administrative burden, as people now need to memorize hundreds of usernames and their associated passwords.

The solution to this fairly insurmountable challenge is the use of secure, encrypted digital password wallets, which allow you to keep track of your endless list of sites, services and their relevant credentials.

KeePassXC does exactly that. The program comes with a simple, fairly intuitive interface. On first run, you will be able to select your encryption settings, including the ability to use KeePassXC in conjunction with a YubiKey. Once the application is configured, you can then start adding entries, including usernames, passwords, any notes, links to websites, and even attachments. The contents are stored in a database file, which you can easily port or copy, so you also gain an element of extra flexibility – as well as the option to back up your important data.

Read more

Also: US Hangs Tough on Restricting Huawei’s Participation in Standards Development

Raccoon – APK Downloader for Linux, MacOS, and Windows

Filed under
OSS

We’ve covered APK stories before in articles like the one about F-Droid and Google Play Downloader, but never have we covered an app as cool as this one with a name inspired by the North American mammal, Raccoon.

Raccoon is a free and modern open-source APK downloader application that enables you to safely download any Android app available on Google Play Store to your Linux, Windows, or Mac desktop.

The incentive of Raccoon is to enable users to install Android apps without sending any kind of information to Google. It also works to store APK files locally, use a “Split APK” format, bypass application region restrictions, and aims to improve your phone’s battery life.

Read more

Games: MMO Path of Titans, Steam Play Milestone, Rocket Pass, Stay Safe: Labyrinth, OBS Studio

Filed under
Gaming
  • Try the first demo of the dino MMO Path of Titans, we have some testing keys to give away

    After Alderon Games successful crowdfunding campaign on IndieGoGo for their dino themed survival MMO Path of Titans, the developer reached out to gather more Linux testers.

    They've released a first demo and it's currently quite limited with the character creation ability the only thing possible. However, once a month they will be deploying a big new feature for it like the ability to run around, AI, quests and so on.

  • Steam Play passes six thousand Windows games playable on Linux, according to ProtonDB

    On the day of Steam Play hitting the big one year anniversary (August 21st), it seems another milestone has been reached in terms of compatibility.

    According to ProtonDB, the handy (but unofficial) tracking website, over six thousand games are now working. At time of writing, exactly 6,023 "games work" against the 9,134 total of games that currently have user reports to see if they run or not. That's quite an impressive number!

    It's worth noting though, that with little over nine thousand games currently reported, Steam does host well over thirty thousand so there's a huge amount that hasn't yet been tested.

    How about a question for you to answer in the comments: What does Steam Play mean to you? I'll start.

  • Rocket Pass 4 is coming to Rocket League on August 28th, with a new rally-inspired Battle-Car

    The fourth Rocket Pass is due to arrive in Rocket League soon, along with the start of Competitive Season 12.

    For those of you wanting to rank up and ensure you get the best rewards possible, Season 11 is ending really soon on August 27th. A day later, Rocket Pass 4 is going to be released.

  • Roguelike Stay Safe: Labyrinth of the Mad now has a Linux beta, sounds quite unique

    Stay Safe: Labyrinth of the Mad from Yellowcake Games is a roguelike with plenty of random generation, including an interesting way of generating the world.

    When starting a new game, the developer said you can use files on your PC or a combination of keyboard/gamepad button presses to generate the dungeon, items and gems. That's not all that makes it somewhat unique, there's also another feature where you will come across a copy of other players. It's a single-player game, so you're not directly facing other people only a shadow of what they had. Although that feature is entirely optional.

  • OBS Studio has a fresh release candidate available for a major new version

    OBS Studio, the free and open source video livestreaming and recording software is my one and only stop for video capturing and it continues to mature.

    The upcoming 24.0 release has a first release candidate now available and it has some fun new features. For starters, you can now actually pause recordings to easily cut away parts you know you don't need. I've tested that and it works perfectly. It does need you to have separated encoders for streaming and recording though, so you can't have the recording encoder set to "same as stream".

LWN: Spectre, Linux and Debian Development

Filed under
Linux
Debian
  • Grand Schemozzle: Spectre continues to haunt

    The Spectre v1 hardware vulnerability is often characterized as allowing array bounds checks to be bypassed via speculative execution. While that is true, it is not the full extent of the shenanigans allowed by this particular class of vulnerabilities. For a demonstration of that fact, one need look no further than the "SWAPGS vulnerability" known as CVE-2019-1125 to the wider world or as "Grand Schemozzle" to the select group of developers who addressed it in the Linux kernel.
    Segments are mostly an architectural relic from the earliest days of x86; to a great extent, they did not survive into the 64-bit era. That said, a few segments still exist for specific tasks; these include FS and GS. The most common use for GS in current Linux systems is for thread-local or CPU-local storage; in the kernel, the GS segment points into the per-CPU data area. User space is allowed to make its own use of GS; the arch_prctl() system call can be used to change its value.

    As one might expect, the kernel needs to take care to use its own GS pointer rather than something that user space came up with. The x86 architecture obligingly provides an instruction, SWAPGS, to make that relatively easy. On entry into the kernel, a SWAPGS instruction will exchange the current GS segment pointer with a known value (which is kept in a model-specific register); executing SWAPGS again before returning to user space will restore the user-space value. Some carefully placed SWAPGS instructions will thus prevent the kernel from ever running with anything other than its own GS pointer. Or so one would think.

  • Long-term get_user_pages() and truncate(): solved at last?

    Technologies like RDMA benefit from the ability to map file-backed pages into memory. This benefit extends to persistent-memory devices, where the backing store for the file can be mapped directly without the need to go through the kernel's page cache. There is a fundamental conflict, though, between mapping a file's backing store directly and letting the filesystem code modify that file's on-disk layout, especially when the mapping is held in place for a long time (as RDMA is wont to do). The problem seems intractable, but there may yet be a solution in the form of this patch set (marked "V1,000,002") from Ira Weiny.
    The problems raised by the intersection of mapping a file (via get_user_pages()), persistent memory, and layout changes by the filesystem were the topic of a contentious session at the 2019 Linux Storage, Filesystem, and Memory-Management Summit. The core question can be reduced to this: what should happen if one process calls truncate() while another has an active get_user_pages() mapping that pins some or all of that file's pages? If the filesystem actually truncates the file while leaving the pages mapped, data corruption will certainly ensue. The options discussed in the session were to either fail the truncate() call or to revoke the mapping, causing the process that mapped the pages to receive a SIGBUS signal if it tries to access them afterward. There were passionate proponents for both options, and no conclusion was reached.

    Weiny's new patch set resolves the question by causing an operation like truncate() to fail if long-term mappings exist on the file in question. But it also requires user space to jump through some hoops before such mappings can be created in the first place. This approach comes from the conclusion that, in the real world, there is no rational use case where somebody might want to truncate a file that has been pinned into place for use with RDMA, so there is no reason to make that operation work. There is ample reason, though, for preventing filesystem corruption and for informing an application that gets into such a situation that it has done something wrong.

  • Hardening the "file" utility for Debian

    In addition, he had already encountered problems with file running in environments with non-standard libraries that were loaded using the LD_PRELOAD environment variable. Those libraries can (and do) make system calls that the regular file binary does not make; the system calls were disallowed by the seccomp() filter.

    Building a Debian package often uses FakeRoot (or fakeroot) to run commands in a way that appears that they have root privileges for filesystem operations—without actually granting any extra privileges. That is done so that tarballs and the like can be created containing files with owners other than the user ID running the Debian packaging tools, for example. Fakeroot maintains a mapping of the "changes" made to owners, groups, and permissions for files so that it can report those to other tools that access them. It does so by interposing a library ahead of the GNU C library (glibc) to intercept file operations.

    In order to do its job, fakeroot spawns a daemon (faked) that is used to maintain the state of the changes that programs make inside of the fakeroot. The libfakeroot library that is loaded with LD_PRELOAD will then communicate to the daemon via either System V (sysv) interprocess communication (IPC) calls or by using TCP/IP. Biedl referred to a bug report in his message, where Helmut Grohne had reported a problem with running file inside a fakeroot.

Flameshot is a brilliant screenshot tool for Linux

Filed under
Software

The default screenshot tool in Ubuntu is alright for basic snips but if you want a really good one you need to install a third-party screenshot app.

Shutter is probably my favorite, but I decided to give Flameshot a try. Packages are available for various distributions including Ubuntu, Arch, openSuse and Debian. You find installation instructions on the official project website.

Read more

IBM/Red Hat and Intel Leftovers

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Red Hat
Hardware
  • Troubleshooting Red Hat OpenShift applications with throwaway containers

    Imagine this scenario: Your cool microservice works fine from your local machine but fails when deployed into your Red Hat OpenShift cluster. You cannot see anything wrong with the code or anything wrong in your services, configuration maps, secrets, and other resources. But, you know something is not right. How do you look at things from the same perspective as your containerized application? How do you compare the runtime environment from your local application with the one from your container?

    If you performed your due diligence, you wrote unit tests. There are no hard-coded configurations or hidden assumptions about the runtime environment. The cause should be related to the configuration your application receives inside OpenShift. Is it time to run your app under a step-by-step debugger or add tons of logging statements to your code?

    We’ll show how two features of the OpenShift command-line client can help: the oc run and oc debug commands.

  • What piece of advice had the greatest impact on your career?

    I love learning the what, why, and how of new open source projects, especially when they gain popularity in the DevOps space. Classification as a "DevOps technology" tends to mean scalable, collaborative systems that go across a broad range of challenges—from message bus to monitoring and back again. There is always something new to explore, install, spin up, and explore.

  • How DevOps is like auto racing

    When I talk about desired outcomes or answer a question about where to get started with any part of a DevOps initiative, I like to mention NASCAR or Formula 1 racing. Crew chiefs for these race teams have a goal: finish in the best place possible with the resources available while overcoming the adversity thrown at you. If the team feels capable, the goal gets moved up a series of levels to holding a trophy at the end of the race.

    To achieve their goals, race teams don’t think from start to finish; they flip the table to look at the race from the end goal to the beginning. They set a goal, a stretch goal, and then work backward from that goal to determine how to get there. Work is delegated to team members to push toward the objectives that will get the team to the desired outcome.

    [...]

    Race teams practice pit stops all week before the race. They do weight training and cardio programs to stay physically ready for the grueling conditions of race day. They are continually collaborating to address any issue that comes up. Software teams should also practice software releases often. If safety systems are in place and practice runs have been going well, they can release to production more frequently. Speed makes things safer in this mindset. It’s not about doing the “right” thing; it’s about addressing as many blockers to the desired outcome (goal) as possible and then collaborating and adjusting based on the real-time feedback that’s observed. Expecting anomalies and working to improve quality and minimize the impact of those anomalies is the expectation of everyone in a DevOps world.

  • Deep Learning Reference Stack v4.0 Now Available

    Artificial Intelligence (AI) continues to represent one of the biggest transformations underway, promising to impact everything from the devices we use to cloud technologies, and reshape infrastructure, even entire industries. Intel is committed to advancing the Deep Learning (DL) workloads that power AI by accelerating enterprise and ecosystem development.

    From our extensive work developing AI solutions, Intel understands how complex it is to create and deploy applications for deep learning workloads. That?s why we developed an integrated Deep Learning Reference Stack, optimized for Intel Xeon Scalable processor and released the companion Data Analytics Reference Stack.

    Today, we?re proud to announce the next Deep Learning Reference Stack release, incorporating customer feedback and delivering an enhanced user experience with support for expanded use cases.

  • Clear Linux Releases Deep Learning Reference Stack 4.0 For Better AI Performance

    Intel's Clear Linux team on Wednesday announced their Deep Learning Reference Stack 4.0 during the Linux Foundation's Open-Source Summit North America event taking place in San Diego.

    Clear Linux's Deep Learning Reference Stack continues to be engineered for showing off the most features and maximum performance for those interested in AI / deep learning and running on Intel Xeon Scalable CPUs. This optimized stack allows developers to more easily get going with a tuned deep learning stack that should already be offering near optimal performance.

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