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Rugged, expandable 3.5-inch Skylake SBC supports Linux

LXer - Thu, 2017-03-23 05:19
Diamond’s 3.5-inch “Venus” SBC offers an Intel 6th Gen CPU, -40 to 85°C support, up to 20GB of ruggedized RAM, and mini-PCIe and PCIe/104 OneBank. The Venus is “believed to be the very first rugged small form factor single-board-computer” based on Intel’s 6th Generation “Skylake” Core processors, says Diamond Systems. This may well be true, depending on how you define “rugged” and “SBC.”

Fedora 25, it's not a hat.

Reddit - Thu, 2017-03-23 04:52

kernel 4.9 and skylake processors

Reddit - Thu, 2017-03-23 03:17

I heard that the kernel had some problems with intel skylake processors regarding battery usage on laptops.

I'm planning on buying a skylake laptop and since fedora 25 ships with 4.9 I wonder if this problem is already solved on 4.9 or if I have to use an even newer kernel version.

thanks in advance

submitted by /u/Eldrik
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Rockstor 3.9.0 NAS Distro Adds Big Enhancements to the Disk Management Subsystem

TuxMachines - Thu, 2017-03-23 03:13

Suman Chakravartula from the Rockstor project, an open-source NAS (Network-attached storage) solution using the Linux kernel and Btrfs file system, announced the general availability of Rockstor 3.9.0.

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Escuelas Linux 5.2 Officially Released with LibreOffice 5.3.1 & Google Chrome 57

TuxMachines - Thu, 2017-03-23 03:08

Alejandro Diaz informs Softpedia today about the general availability of Escuelas Linux 5.2, the newest and most advanced version of his Bodhi/Ubuntu-based GNU/Linux distribution designed for educational purposes.

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Google Continues to Make Strides in Improving Android Security

LinuxToday - Thu, 2017-03-23 03:00

eWEEK: Google made significant strides in 2016 to get more Android devices updated and reduce the number of harmful applications, but more work remains.

It's Official: Linux Users Can Now Watch Netflix Movies Using Mozilla Firefox

LXer - Thu, 2017-03-23 02:42
It took them a few years to realize that Linux could be a very important player for their video-on-demand streaming platform, and now Netflix is announcing that it "finally" supports playback on the Mozilla Firefox web browser.

My review of the Litebook so far

Reddit - Thu, 2017-03-23 02:16

I had been toying around with the idea of buying a Chromebook as a secondary laptop for a while, when I saw the post last month about the "Alpha Litebook", 'an affordable, high performance laptop, which runs a slightly modified version of elementary OS'. While it is literally a cheap chinese laptop (that's not derogatory or paraphrasing, check the link), it was still a pretty good deal for the hardware and while I could have bought the same machine from Alibaba, I preferred to have the bare minimum of a warranty that the Litebook team claimed to offer.

I ordered the "double drive" version and it arrived today. I had especially been intrigued by the 1080p screen at this price point, and while it is a TN panel, the horizontal viewing angles are at least acceptable. I'm a bit disappointed by the maximum range of the hinge, however.

The build quality is fine, but I wouldn't call it good. The casing is very thick plastic, which flexes a lot, especially on the keyboard deck, but it's not overly flimsy.

The keyboard is surprisingly good. Aside from the flexing, it has good travel and feels better than I expected. It didn't come with an ElementaryOS sticker for the super key like they said in their AMA, but that's not exactly a dealbreaker for me.

The trackpad is pretty bad, frankly. It's not detected as a proper trackpad in Ubuntu, so I suspect there were some special modifications in the stock Elementary image. The buttons are hinged in the middle, so you have to click on the outer edges of each. I thought mine was broken at first, because I tried to left-click near the center and it wouldn't depress.

Here are some pictures of the thing, something their AMA was mostly lacking.

When it arrived, the HDD wasn't screwed into anything and had actually slid out of the SATA port, meaning it didn't show up in the OS. When I figured it out and plugged it in properly, it was curiously formatted into four empty ~120GB NTFS partitions.

Speaking of storage, the EMMC "SSD" is very slow. I think it's almost disingenuous to call it an SSD, and it's certainly not doing the overall system performance any favors. I installed an old 64GB Sandisk SSD in the SATA slot and it's dramatically faster than it was on the stock OS image and drive. The CPU is pretty capable, but the slow storage really drags down the whole system in the Litebook-provided configuration.

The inside of the laptop is amusingly sparse. It takes a stunning 20 screws to get the bottom cover off, and there's actually nothing that can be replaced under there, aside from the 2.5" drive slot, which has it's own 2-screw cover separate from the bottom panel. I had taken the bottom panel off to see if I could swap out the wifi card, because it's really not all that good and has the usual Realtek driver problems, but it's part of the motherboard, like pretty much all the other components.

The InsydeH20 BIOS is a high point. It has mouse control and is pretty comprehensive. Obviously, Coreboot would have been preferable, but it's nice to see a good BIOS on a cheap, obscure machine.

The provided Elementary OS image didn't exactly match their description (for example, it had OnlyOffice instead of WPS Office). I got rid of it because I needed to swap drives anyway, and I installed Ubuntu 16.04. After upgrading the kernel to 4.10 and manually installing RTL drivers, it's working pretty well and system performance is good, even on Unity. Wifi is still flaky, and sometimes drops the connection or refuses to connect in the first place. If anyone has any tips about this, please let me know (I believe the chipset is a RTL8723bu). Haven't noticed any instances of the Atom freezing bug.

With TLP installed, the Unity power manager estimates about 6 hours of battery life, which is in line with the seller's claim.

Overall I'm satisfied with it, except for the wifi issues and the trackpad. I wasn't expecting a home run for $250. I was happy to see that they used Square for payments so I could return it easily if I wanted to, but I don't think I will. If anyone has any questions regarding the laptop, I'm happy to share information about it.

submitted by /u/MrBensonhurst
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Libinput 1.7 Released With Support For Lid Switches, Scroll Wheel Improvements

Phoronix - Thu, 2017-03-23 01:26
Peter Hutterer has announced the new release of libinput 1.7.0 as the input handling library most commonly associated with Wayland systems but also with Ubuntu's Mir as well as the X.Org Server via the xf86-input-libinput driver...

Toughened up PC/104 SBC runs Linux

LXer - Thu, 2017-03-23 01:19
WinSystems unveiled a rugged “PCM-C418” SBC with a dual-core, Vortex86DX3SoC, Fast and Gigabit Ethernet ports, SATA and CF storage, and PC/104 expansion. The WinSystems PCM-C418 SBC offers a combination of PC/104 expansion, GbE and Fast Ethernet ports, shock and vibration resistance, and a Linux-friendly, x86-based Vortex86DX3 SoC — attributes shared by the Diamond Systems Helix […]

A preliminary Litebook review

Reddit - Thu, 2017-03-23 00:50

A few weeks back, you may recall that the folks from the Litebook project (https://litebook.store/) posted about their $250 Linux laptop running Elementary Linux. I ordered (along with the SSD for quicker boots) and it arrived today. I'm not much of a review writer, so I'll just put down my impressions and answer questions as I'm able.

First impressions: The Litebook is a nice, compact little computer, on par in size and weight with a medium-sized Chromebook. I like having two USB 3.0 ports, particularly since they're far apart from each other that wider plugs can coexist in peace. Opening it up, you find a very standard small laptop layout - nothing really weird.

The setup and customization processes are very simple. I'm a big fan of LXDE and was happy to see that there was no learning curve at all in figuring out how to make things work. Everything was almost comically simple, which seems to be the point. Installing my very favorite apps (LibreOffice, KDEnlive, Kolourpaint, Chromium) took me literally three minutes.

I've had three problems with the Litebook, one of which has sent me running back to the makers for resolution:

  • Small issue #1: The trackpad seems a little too close to the keyboard, which makes it hard to type without sending the pointer all over the place. Not a big deal, but a little annoying.
  • Small issue #2: The keyboard is a little flimsy looking and it requires somewhat harder keystrokes in order to work. Not a big deal for me (I learned to type long ago on manual typewriters), but I suspect it might be a little disconcerting at first to those who grew up with a light touch while typing.
  • Big issue: Hitting the ctrl +1 and shift+1 combinations causes the computer to completely shut down. I'm not sure why, and I've contacted them for help on the matter - I'll updated as I hear back.

Given that my Litebook was order 210, I see my purchase as being part of the Litebook beta test - I assume that the shutdown problem is one of those things that they'll keep an eye out for in subsequent orders. Given their responsiveness and otherwise very nice product, I'm not concerned.

I'm curious: What have other people's experiences been?

submitted by /u/retard_patrol
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Google Gives Devs First Look at Android O

LinuxInsider - Thu, 2017-03-23 00:35
Google on Tuesday unveiled a developer preview of the latest version of its mobile operating system, code named "Android O." The new OS is designed to improve on battery life and interactive performance of devices, according to Dave Burke, vice president of engineering, Android, at Google. The new release puts automatic limits on what applications do in the background in three areas: implicit broadcasts, background services and location updates. Updated developer previews will become available in the coming months.

today's leftovers

TuxMachines - Thu, 2017-03-23 00:14
  • Linux Kernel Podcast for 2017/03/21
  • Announcing the Shim review process [Ed: accepting rather than fighting very malicious things]

    However, a legitimate criticism has been that there's very little transparency in Microsoft's signing process. Some people have waited for significant periods of time before being receiving a response. A large part of this is simply that demand has been greater than expected, and Microsoft aren't in the best position to review code that they didn't write in the first place.

  • rtop – A Nifty Tool to Monitor Remote Server Over SSH

    rtop is a simple, agent-less, remote server monitoring tool that works over SSH. It doesn’t required any other software to be installed on remote machine, except openSSH server package & remote server credentials.

  • Chakra GNU/Linux Users Get KDE Plasma 5.9.3 and KDE Applications 16.12.3, More

    Neofytos Kolokotronis from the Chakra GNU/Linux project, an open-source operating system originally based on Arch Linux and the KDE Plasma desktop environment, announced the availability of the latest KDE updates in the distro's repositories.

    Those of you using Chakra GNU/Linux as your daily drive will be happy to learn that the stable repos were filled with numerous up-to-date packages from the recently released KDE Plasma 5.9.3 desktop environment, KDE Applications 16.12.3 software suite, and KDE Frameworks 5.32.0 collection of over 70 add-on libraries for Qt 5.

  • YaST Team: Highlights of YaST development sprint 32

    One of the known limitations of the current installer is that it’s only able to automatically propose an encrypted schema if LVM is used. For historical reasons, if you want to encrypt your root and/or home partitions but not to use LVM, you would need to use the expert partitioner… and hope for the best from the bootloader proposal.

    But the new storage stack is here (well, almost here) to make all the old limitations vanish. With our testing ISO it’s already possible to set encryption with just one click for both partition-based and LVM-based proposals. The best possible partition schema is correctly created and everything is encrypted as the user would expect. We even have continuous tests in our internal openQA instance for it.

    The part of the installer managing the bootloader installation is still not adapted, which means the resulting system would need some manual fixing of Grub before being able to boot… but that’s something for an upcoming sprint (likely the very next one).

  • Debian stretch on the Raspberry Pi 3 (update) (2017-03-22)

    I previously wrote about my Debian stretch preview image for the Raspberry Pi 3.

  • Asus Tinker Board – Chromium YouTube Performance

    One of the many strengths of the Asus Tinker Board is its multimedia support. This 4K video capable machine is a mouthwatering prospect for the multimedia enthusiast. The machine has a respectable 1.8GHz ARM Cortex-A17 quad-core processor. It’s only 32-bit (unlike the Raspberry Pi 3) but has a higher clock speed. The Tinker Board also sports an integrated ARM-based Mali T764 graphics processor (GPU).

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Microsoft vs GNU/Linux

TuxMachines - Thu, 2017-03-23 00:14

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TuxMachines - Thu, 2017-03-23 00:10
  • Device Tailored Compositors with Qt Wayland at CLAAS E-Systems

    Have you heard about software in cars that run on embedded devices? Do you think that creating such software might be challenging? Well, welcome to a complete new world of complexity, welcome to the world of agriculture machines! For many years, automatic steering (on fields), terminals to control the complex mechanical operations of a self-driving 16 ton combine harvester on a soft ground, and self-optimization systems to optimize any tiny bit of your harvester, are key demands from customers. I, myself, am working at CLAAS E-Systems, the electronics and software department within the CLAAS group. Our group is well known for being among the leading manufacturers for combine harvesters, tractors and forage harvesters.

  • Qt Wayland Is Next Appearing On Tractors & Farm Equipment

    With Qt 5.8's Qt Wayland Compositor Framework taking shape, more developers are beginning to tailor a Qt Wayland compositor to their use-cases. One of those is a company specializing in farm equipment like combine harvesters, tractors, and harvesters.

    As a guest post on the official Qt blog, developer Andreas Cord-Landwehr of CLAAS E-Systems talked up Qt Wayland for their purposes in the highly-regulated agriculture industry.

  • KDevelop 5.1 Open-Source IDE Launches with LLDB and OpenCL Support, Many Changes

    The development team behind the popular, open-source, cross-platform, free and powerful KDevelop IDE (Integrated Development Environment) were proud to announce the official release and general availability of KDevelop 5.1.

    KDevelop 5.1 is now the most advanced stable version of the application, which is written entirely in Qt and designed to be used on various GNU/Linux distributions that usually ship with the KDE Plasma desktop environment, but also on the latest releases of the Microsoft Windows operating system.

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Leftovers: Gaming

TuxMachines - Thu, 2017-03-23 00:10

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GNOME News: GNOME 3.24 Everywhere

TuxMachines - Thu, 2017-03-23 00:09
  • GNOME 3.24 released

    The GNOME Project is proud to announce the release of GNOME 3.24, "Portland".

  • GNOME 3.24 Released, This Is What’s New

    Hurrah! GNOME 3.24 is now available to download. The latest stable release of the open-source GNOME desktop, GNOME 3.24 brings a number of new features and improvements to the proverbial table, including one that might even help you sleep better!

  • GNOME 3.24 Linux desktop environment is here

    My absolute favorite desktop environment for Linux is GNOME. Quite frankly, if the DE went away tomorrow, I might have to rethink my use of Linux entirely. Yeah, I am that passionate about it. Environment aside, the GNOME experience also includes a collection of applications, creating a coherent user experience.

  • GNOME 3.24 Released

    GNOME 3.24, the latest version of GNOME 3, is now available. Introducing an updated platform and applications, the release includes a number of major new features and enhancements, as well as many smaller improvements and bug fixes. 3.24 represents another step forward for GNOME, and has much to offer both users and developers.

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