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Archive for October, 2009

LXer Article

Linux: Access 100+ Games Instantly With DJL: For those who always feel that gaming is not suitable in Linux OS and it is always an hassle to install and get games to run in Linux platform, then DJL will definitely change the way you think. Djl is an open-source (GPL licensed) game manager written in Python 2.5 for the GNU/Linux Operating Systems. In short, it is an application that allows you to install/uninstall/manage your games easily. With Djl, you can browse through its repository of 100+ games and install the game you want with a simple click. No longer do you need to worry about game dependencies and all the command lines.

10 of the Best Free Linux Relational Databases: To provide an insight into the quality of software that is available, we have compiled a list of 10 open source Relational Database Management Systems. Hopefully, there will be something of interest here for anyone who wants to store data in an efficient way.

Is there a best distro?: Yesterday, I had a good friend ask me What is the best Linux distribution to familiarize myself with Linux? This was not someone who is unfamiliar with technology, or UNIX for that matter, but someone who is one of us, which made the question difficult to answer.

SCO boots boss McBride: Unix code claimant SCO Group has jettisoned its controversial captain, Darl McBride, as part of the company’s latest scheme to emerge from bankruptcy. The serially litigious SCO’s executive ousting was revealed in a filing today with US regulators, although corresponding paperwork gives McBride’s actual dismissal date as October 14. The decision to remove McBride was done under the auspices of the Chapter 11 bankruptcy trustee assigned to SCO by the US Justice Department. That leaves COO, Jeff Hunsaker, CFO, Ken Nielsen, and General Counsel, Ryan Tibbitts grappling for the helm.

10 things to do after installing Linux: You’ve finally decided to try Linux. The installation went without a hitch (they usually do these days) and you’ve got a shiny new desktop sitting in front of you. What do you do next? It’s a whole world of limitless possibilities. Thanks to the nature of open-source development, thousands of applications, games, tools and utilities can be installed with just a few mouse clicks.

Ubuntu Linux powers up: Just how important are computer operating systems, anyway? We’re going to get an indication Thursday morning, when Microsoft Corp. is scheduled to launch Windows 7, successor to the much-maligned Windows Vista and what many critics believe is the replacement for Windows XP that Vista should have been. XP will be exactly eight years old next Sunday, and that is kind of old. In late August, Apple Inc. launched Snow Leopard, which has had a good reception among users and critics. I’ve reviewed Snow Leopard and shall review Windows 7 in due course. My early impressions of Win7 are positive, however.

Fedora 12 beta code is go: Red Hat has announced the first and only beta of its next Linux development release, Fedora 12. Emperor Constantine the Great knew a good means to hold a crumbling empire together when he saw it – namely, Christianity – and by code-naming the 12th release of Fedora after Constantine, Red Hat is by no means suggesting that the Linux empire is crumbling or that the warring between the political, military, and religious powers that led to Constantine’s ascension to rule is somehow also going on in the Linux arena. Rather, Red Hat is emphasizing Constantine’s openness to new ideas.

Netherlands: Police forces to use open source software ‘where possible’: The Dutch police force will move to open source wherever that is possible, but not exclusively, a spokesperson said this week, correcting a statement published by Linux distributor Red Hat a week ago.

Stallman calls on EU to set MySQL free: Richard Stallman demanded the EU cut MySQL loose from Oracle yesterday in an open letter to Brussels’ competition supremo Neelie Kroes. The self-described software freedom activist’s intervention came just a day after MySQL founder Monty Widenius made a similar call, saying that Oracle could offset the EU’s go-slow examination of its purchase of Sun by simply putting MySQL on the block. In yesterday’s letter, also signed by James Love and Malini Aisola of Knowledge Ecology International and Jim Killock of the Open Rights Group Stallman says that Oracle’s objective in borging MySQL is to prevent further market share erosion and “to protect the high prices now charged for its proprietary database software licenses and services”.

Hannah Montana Linux: Meet Hannah Montana Linux or HML for short. Hannah Montana Linux is a unix-like Linux Operating System based on Kubuntu.

Browsers in Linux: They own your CPU (and do so in Windows and Mac, too): I laugh — LAUGH! — when a tech journalist writes something to the effect of, “for lightweight tasks such as Web browsing,” when you know, and I know, that there ain’t nothing light about using present-day Web browser on present-day Web pages filled with Javascript, Flash and enough CSS to fill a book.

LXer Book Review: Pro Linux System Administration: “By the end of this book, You’ll be well on your way to becoming a Linux expert” is quite a bold claim for a book that is aimed at people who only have some familiarity with Windows and networking. “Pro Linux System Administration” by James Turnbull, Peter Lieverdink and Dennis Matotek aims to do precisely that and surprisingly, it largely succeeds. In its 1080 pages it explains how you can set up and configure multiple Linux servers to operate a small business network. Starting with basic Linux management and working up the stack through networking, e-mail and webservers you will end up with a pretty complete network that includes document management, groupware and disaster recovery.

Cloud Computing: Good or Bad for Open Source?: Cloud computing: you may have heard of it. It seems to be everywhere these days, and if you believe the hype, there’s a near-unanimous consensus that it’s the future. Actually, a few of us have our doubts, but leaving that aside, I think it’s important to ask where does open source stand if the cloud computing vision *does* come to fruition? Would that be a good or bad thing for free software?

Why Adobe likes open source: He’s the man who brought open source to Silicon Graphics and NEC and advisor to Warburg Pincus on how to make money investing in open source. “At one point I got the title of open source’s undercover agent,” recalls Dave McAllister. He was recruited by Adobe as Director of open source and standards with a specific mission: “I was hired to, a) start an open source process and, b) get PDF approved as an ISO standard.” So: mission accomplished?

Linux Netbooks: They’re Still Out There: Suddenly I was surveying the market again for a good buy on a netbook preloaded with Linux. I found a wide variety of systems with Linux available from mainstream outlets and factory direct, at least here in the United States where I live. While I don’t have updated market share figures it’s clear, despite claims by Microsoft and their supporters, that Linux remains entrenched in the netbook market and is spreading out from there.

Ubuntu 9.10 Netbook Performance: There is just one week left until Ubuntu 9.10 “Karmic Koala” will be released, but is it worth the upgrade if you are running a netbook? From our testing of the development releases, it is most certainly worth the upgrade, especially when compared to Ubuntu 9.04 with its buggy Intel driver stack that caused many problems for Atom netbook users. Ubuntu 9.10 brings many usability improvements to the Linux desktop, various new packages, and the overall system performance has improved too. We have ran a set of benchmarks on both a Dell Inspiron Mini 9 and Samsung NC10 under Ubuntu 9.04 and 9.10 to illustrate the performance gains along with a few regressions.

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LXer Article

ARMing desktop Linux: For a brief time in 2008, the Linux desktop actually owned a segment of the desktop industry: netbooks. When netbooks first showed up, they ran Linux and nothing but Linux. Microsoft panicked and brought XP back from the dead, offering it for next to nothing to netbook vendors and thus successfully fighting off the Linux challenge.

10 important Linux developments everyone should know about: The Linux technology, development model, and community have all been game-changing influences on the IT industry, and all we can really do is stand back and look at it all, happy to have been along for the ride for developerWorks’ first 10 years. The Linux zone team has put together this greatly abbreviated collection of things that stand out in our minds as having rocked the world of Linux in a significant way.

Linux Foundation Rolls Out New Member Benefits: The Linux Foundation rolls out some new member benefits this week, along with a membership classification just for students. Though there were already a ton of cool membership perks to begin wtih, new access to employee purchase pricing on products from HP, Dell, and Lenovo is a really terrific addition to the list.

The Many Ways to Copy, Move, Rename, and Archive in KDE 4: In my last post, I covered some of the features in Dolphin that I find particularly useful. In this post, you will learn about some very basic features that everyone uses, but you may not know all of the various easy methods of accomplishing them. In KDE, there are several ways to copy, move, rename, and archive files. Let’s take a look at a few them.

I’ll Use Linux When $App Magically Appears: I’m sure you’ve seen this is as often as I have, even from supposed Free Software advocates: “I can’t switch completely to Linux now because I still need this $foo application. When a free alternative appears then I’ll switch.” They may or may not be sincere; they are certainly missing the point. Because it’s not enough to just sit around and wait for the Magic Software Fairy to deliver your perfect applications with all the bells and whistles for free.

Smokin’ Guns a free Old West game for Linux: Smokin’ Guns is a free FPS and Open Source game that take you back to the old time of the ‘Old West’. Based on the engine of Quake 3, Smokin’ Guns has all the attributes of a traditional FPS

First Glimpse at What the Chrome Browser May Look Like in Chrome OS: Over the weekend someone stumbled onto a Chrome browser build for Chrome OS on Google’s servers. We’ve seen several false-alarm looks at Chrome OS, and while it is only the browser, it provides a glimpse into the direction Google’s going.

Linux-Windows gap to remain for five years: The Linux desktop experience is now closer to the Windows environment than before, but the gap in mainstream adoption for the open source OS will not close anytime soon, says an industry analyst.

The Washington Post Says Thumbs-Up to Linux for Banking: In a recent post I wrote called “Linux has no marketing, but what if it did?” I made the point that with Microsoft’s Windows 7 OS coming out on October 22nd, there will be a blitz of marketing around it, and noted that there never is any such blitz promoting Linux. That post suggested that if Linux could have an equivalent marketing blitz, a very effective campaign might be built around how very much more secure and out of the line of fire of malware purveyors Linux is.

Five Web Operating Systems You Can Take for a Spin: Web operating systems (OSs) are basically websites that replicate the desktop environment of modern OSs, all inside a Web browser. They are installed onto Web servers and live on the Internet, thus we can access our virtual desktop from anywhere that’s connected to the net. You might hear these Web OSs referred to as “webtops” or “cloud” computers as well. After a brief discussion, we’ll look at 5 different Web OSs. We’ll see what they look like and what they offer. Then you might want to sign-up for one of the services or set up your own cloud server.

Gentoo: “We’re Not Dead”: In 2008 the Gentoo Foundation ceased to exist, sending rumors of Gentoo’s demise and ultimate death circulating around the Internet. Almost two years on, the distro is still here and celebrating its 10th anniversary. How close did the distro come to disaster, and where does it stand now?

Comparing “KDE 4” and “GNOME 3”: There is small trend currently to write a blog entry or article comparing “KDE 4” and “GNOME 3”. Now, I’m not involved in the least with the GNOME 3 efforts (no big surprise there, I’m sure 🙂 so I can’t and won’t comment on what they are doing now or in the future (they can do so themselves quite well :), but there are two interesting points I keep seeing raised that I really do want to address … and I don’t feel like commenting on every blog post out there. 😉

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LXer Article

My Upgrade to Karmic Koala: I’ve upgraded ever since Gutsy: to Hardy, Intrepid and Jaunty. But this time, I did a fresh install of Karmic Koala, given the new Grub, ext4 and so on. Here are some things (bugs I mean – with potential fixes) I’ve experienced running Ubuntu Karmic Koala as my main OS (for about 2 days now):

The Grand Experiment – Linux Ads on Radio: For those that are not aware, two radio ads introducing people to Linux and our services/non profit recently ran on KLBJ AM radio in Austin Texas. The results were surprising in part…some of them confirmed wide-held suspicions about computer users in general. Some of them fostered thoughts of running knitting needles through my eyes… often.

Open core, closed heart?: When is an open source license not an open source license? The recent rush to “Open Core Licensing” as defined by Andrew Lampitt, the business development director of JasperSoft, raises many questions as to the meaning and purpose of free and open source software. The terms “open source” and “free software” are often confused by companies who want to gain the benefits of a wider developer community. More often than not this has arisen from a misunderstanding of the full implications of “open source” and “free software”, and how free software licensing works to the advantage of developers and the companies that are formed to market the software.

Google Begins Test Phase for Wave: Four months have gone by since Google announced their new, innovative communication solution, Wave. Last week was the beginning of its test phase.

Palm Pre Linux-Based Smartphone Reviewed: The Linux-based Palm Pre is a sleek smartphone full of features– but is it feature-ful enough? Gerry Blackwell gives a detailed report on this new entry in the smartphone marketplace.

Upgrading a Motherboard in Linux: Kernel Panic: Replacing a motherboard on a Linux system is usually a 30-minute chore, but sometimes things go haywire. Carla Schroder tells a tale of kernel panics and kernel transplants.

Open Source Makes Big Gains at the London Stock Exchange: At first sight, news that the London Stock Exchange (LSE) is moving from the Microsoft .Net-based TradElect to the GNU/Linux-based MillenniumIT system, is just another win for free software. But the details provide some fascinating insights into the world of very high performance – and very expensive – enterprise systems.

The Day The Netbook Died: … On that Friday, with no warning, the little netbook failed to boot up. I couldn’t even get to the BIOS. For the third time a Sylvania netbook I owned had suffered a premature hardware failure. The netbook had a one year warranty and it was only seven months old so I expected to send it in for repair at no charge.

The Ubuntu obsession of Tanner Helland: I’ve been looking in on Tanner Helland’s Ubuntu-rich blog for some time, and today I found a virtual motherlode of well-researched and -reasoned opinion on where Ubuntu should be headed. Helland hits it right on the head: While there’s a whole lot right with open-source software, specifically the Linux operating system and the wildly popular (in an obscure, cultish kind of way) Ubuntu distribution, there’s quite a bit that’s not so right and needs both minor and major improvement before a free, open-source, Unix-based operating environment can really challenge Windows and Macintosh for significant share on the desktops of non-geeks and geeks alike.

Where In the World Are the Most Debian Developers?: Christian Perrier (Bubulle) issued statistics in his blog that show which countries of the world have the largest per capita Debian developers. First place goes to Finland.

Study: Windows 7 doesn’t boot faster: Although Windows 7 has been praised for loading and shutting down faster than prior versions of Windows, one software company says that, in many cases, the new operating system can take longer to get started than Windows Vista. The results are also fairly similar to what CNET found in its testing of the operating system. A Microsoft representative was not immediately able to comment on Iolo’s findings.

Open Core: The worst of both worlds: A lot has been written recently about so called “Open Core” software ever since Andrew Lampitt coined the term back in August of 2008. Many analysts have been critical about it, such as Richard Hillesley from The H Open in his recent article “Open core, closed heart?”. Many are also very positive about it such as Matt Aslett from The 451 Group. However, I think that most them are missing the elephant in the room: Open core is not sustainable in the long term because it represents the worst of both worlds. Open core tries to find a middle ground between proprietary software and free software, but it reaps the benefits of neither and inherits the problems of both.Let me show you by example. SugarCRM is one of the more popular open core software products available. The company offers the Community Edition for free under a GPLv3 license but also offers a Professional and Enterprise edition under a proprietary license. SugarCRM has been around since 2004 but it is already showing many signs of not being sustainable.

Gnome 3.0 Stealth Preview: Will Anyone Notice?: The introduction of KDE 4.0 was met with such an avalanche of outrage and criticism that Gnome developers can be forgiven for being a bit gun-shy. Gnome 2.28 appears to be almost a stealth introduction of Gnome 3.0; will anyone notice?

5 Useful Tools to Access Linux Partition from Windows: How to access Linux partitions from Windows. If you currently have Windows OS running and you need some files for your work which you have stored on the Linux installation, you no longer have to shut down Windows and boot Linux! Explore2fs is a GUI explorer tool for accessing ext2 and ext3 filesystems. It runs under all versions of Windows and can read almost any ext2 and ext3 filesystem.

Microsoft reveals time-based licensing model: Microsoft has filed for a patent for ‘Time-Based Licenses’ and the application abstract reveals this to be a method and system for “issuing a number of different types of time-based licenses associated with software products”.

How to turn a spare Linux machine into a media server: Linux is brilliant at serving files. It’s this ability that keeps the enterprise world turning to Linux for its heavy lifting jobs and that keeps the world Googling 24/7. But it’s just as good at serving files from a computer tucked away under the stairs or stuck in the loft, and a server in your house is now becoming an essential accessory. Mobile phones, games consoles and even televisions are rapidly developing the ability to read, display and play files held on a media centre PC, and Linux is the perfect free software solution. All you need is a relatively low-powered PC, a decent amount of storage and somewhere safe to hide it.

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