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Archive for the ‘KDE’ Category

LXer Article

In the LXWR this week we have part 1 and 2 of Steven Rosenberg’s farewell to Fedora. why Glyn Moody is rooting for Microsoft, a long overdue look at XFCE, Dr. Tony Young’s final (or is it?) installment in his switching to KDE 4.4 adventures and the Linux foundation releases their annual list of who writes Linux. Enjoy!

Goodbye Fedora, welcome back Debian, Part 1: I really did like Fedora 13. I liked it enough to solve more than a handful of problems. I liked it enough to use a proprietary graphics driver for the first time (didn’t like that; not only was it outside the package-management system and hard to update, it didn’t perform so well either). I love the Fedora community, the openness that’s everywhere, the lack of pretense. But just as everything was roses, furry kittens and such when I first ran Fedora 13 with the 2.6.33 Linux kernel, it started to go dark with the change — in mid-cycle, mind you — to the 2.6.34 kernel.

Open Source Does Not Need Monetising: It’s common to hear commentators and business leaders justifying practices that wouldn’t be recognised as “open source” by many of us on the grounds that they have to make money somehow. Actions that deny the software freedoms of end users – and even developers – appear like a fungus, spuriously justified by the need for profit. Phrases like “we can’t give everything away” garnish the thought, and it’s easy to be drawn into sympathising with them. But they are wrong. Open source itself is not about making money – that’s the job of its participants. Open source is the pragmatic product and projection of software freedom.

How a “Welded-to KDE 3.5 User” Began a Move to KDE 4.4 – Part 2: In this second part of a two part guest editorial and tutorial Dr. Tony Young (an Australian Mycologist by trade) shares his trials, tribulations, successes and disappointments in working with the new version of KDE. In this installment he configures media players, K3b, Crossover Office, Lucid and Post Script and his final thoughts on his adventures.

Why I’m Rooting for Microsoft: It will not have escaped your notice that the patent system has been the subject of several posts on this blog, or that the general tenor is pretty simple: it’s broken, and nowhere more evidently so than for software. Anyone can see that, but what is much harder is seeing how to fix it given the huge vested interests at work here.

The bad guys are worried – did we win?: Recently two pieces of first class anti-free software diatribe hit the headlines. The first is Microsoft’s “please don’t use OpenOffice.org” video and the second is Steve Jobs’ anti-Android rant. Both are pretty shallow attempts at deflection and have been rightly called out as actually endorsing the subject of the attack as a valid opponent. In both cases it does seem to say that Microsoft and Jobs are concerned enough about OpenOffice.org and Android respectively that they need to tell the rest of us how bad they are.

6 Best Linux Terminal Applications for Linux: A Quake-style terminal is a drop-down terminal which can be shown/hidden just like the console in Quake (and most of the first-person shooter games out there), using the press of a key (~ in Quake). Guake is a terminal application written in GTK which uses the F12 keyboard shortcut by default to show or hide it.

Goodbye Fedora, welcome back Debian, Part 2: Review of Debian Squeeze: I’ve been keeping my eye on Debian Squeeze (and Sid) for the past few months via live images, and in the course of the release’s life there have been changes in the application lineup. Notable inclusions in the now-frozen Squeeze are the Ubuntu Software Center as an alternative way of managing applications. Yep, you read right: Debian is using the Ubuntu Software Center. It looks like Debian’s developers are in a more cooperative mood than they get credit for. I for one am glad to see such cross-pollination between Ubuntu and Debian.

A Long Overdue Look at XFCE: Here at MakeTechEasier, we’ve covered Linux desktop issues of all kinds, and we’ve examined desktop environments both well known (Gnome and KDE) as well as somewhat obscure (Window Maker, LXDE). For some reasons, we’ve never taken a close look at the very popular XFCE desktop environment. It’s nearly as feature-rich as Gnome, but with a smaller footprint. As it’s been a big name in the Linux desktop world for quite a few years now, it seems we’re long overdue to check out this polished and useful collection of software.

World Wildlife Fund WWF format cracked!: I heard about the new .WWF format this morning. It is an initiative of the World Wildlife Fund to prevent people printing .PDF files. As a matter of fact, it is a .PDF format, but slightly modified and with the “no printing” flag enabled. But I don’t like it when people are forbidding me something. It is sending the wrong message. So I set out to crack it.

Who Writes Linux?: This is an annual report published by The Linux Foundation that measures the the rate of Linux kernel development, who is doing it (developer names) and who is sponsoring it (company names). It has become an annual check on the state of the world’s largest open source project and collaborative development effort.

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LXer Article

In the Roundup this week we have all kinds of Open Source goodness for you including the news that Novell has been acquired by a company that may or may not have ties to Microsoft, how to wake up a Linux server remotely, Part 1 of how a KDE 3.5 user moved to KDE 4.4, ARM’s co-founder says Intels days of dominating the desktop are numbered and on a personal note today is the 5 year anniversary of the day my relationship with Linux got serious. Enjoy!

What’s Microsoft’s role in the Novell-Attachmate deal?: Seattle-based Attachmate Corp. is buying Novell for $2.2 billion, the companies announced on November 22. At the same time, Novell announced the “concurrent sale of certain intellectual property assets to CPTN Holdings LLC, a consortium of technology companies organized by Microsoft Corporation, for $450 million in cash.” So far, Microsoft is saying little about its role in the deal.

Novell Agrees to be Acquired by Attachmate Corporation: Novell, Inc., the leader in intelligent workload management, today announced that it has entered into a definitive merger agreement under which Attachmate Corporation would acquire Novell for $6.10 per share in cash in a transaction valued at approximately $2.2 billion. Attachmate Corporation is owned by an investment group led by Francisco Partners, Golden Gate Capital and Thoma Bravo. Novell also announced it has entered into a definitive agreement for the concurrent sale of certain intellectual property assets to CPTN Holdings LLC, a consortium of technology companies organized by Microsoft Corporation, for $450 million in cash, which cash payment is reflected in the merger consideration to be paid by Attachmate Corporation.

How a “Welded-to KDE3.5 User” Began a Move to KDE4.4 – Part 1: In this first part of a two part guest editorial and tutorial Dr. Tony Young (an Australian Mycologist by trade) shares his trials, tribulations, successes and disappointments in working with the new version of KDE. As a long time KDE 3.5 user he decided to see if he could get KDE 4.4 to look, feel and work the way he was used to KDE 3.5 working. Hang on everyone, its going to be a bumpy ride..

Linux Backup Server: Remote Wakeup, Automatic Shutdown: At last I can write this up for you, my fine readers. Today we’re going to learn about using Wake-on-LAN to wake up a server remotely, and automatic shutdowns. My master plan for my backup server is to automate everything– wake it up, run backups for all the computers in my house, and then everyone shuts down for the night.

Wayland VS X – Some Perspectives: The Linux world has been very talkative for the last few weeks with the news that Ubuntu plans on switching from the classic X server to Wayland for it’s graphics environment. What is Wayland exactly and why the change?…

Top Five Linux Deployment Mistakes: The days when Linux is an unknown quantity in a business are largely over — but that doesn’t mean that every organization has tons of experience deploying Linux. Even if your organization has deployed Linux before, there are some common mistakes to be aware of. Here’s five things you need to watch for when planning a new Linux deployment.

The best open source netbook distro of 2010 revealed!: Linux User & Developer magazine reviews four of the best netbook distros currently available in a bid to uncover the ultimate open source user experience for your netbook computer…

Intel Is Dead on the Desktop, Says ARM Co-Founder: Its days are numbered and the downfall of the Wintel monopoly has been forecast for some time. Intel has indeed lost significant ground to ARM chips, and Microsoft faces equally annoying competition from the likes of Google’s Android, which is climbing onboard practically every computer that isn’t a desktop PC or server.

Moving Desktop Windows users to Linux: More than a year ago I wrote a post concerning my personal experience. I manage our computer systems at work and never tried to convert user Pc’s to Linux, instead sometimes I showed them some of the nice stuff and played with them when their windows system crashed, or simply because network printers stopped working.

Goodbye Fedora, welcome back Debian, Part 1: I really did like Fedora 13. I liked it enough to solve more than a handful of problems. I liked it enough to use a proprietary graphics driver for the first time (didn’t like that; not only was it outside the package-management system and hard to update, it didn’t perform so well either). I love the Fedora community, the openness that’s everywhere, the lack of pretense. But just as everything was roses, furry kittens and such when I first ran Fedora 13 with the 2.6.33 Linux kernel, it started to go dark with the change — in mid-cycle, mind you — to the 2.6.34 kernel.

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LXer Article

In the Roundup this week we have news of IBM deciding to back Oracle’s OpenJDK instead of Harmony, Phoronix releases the 2010 Linux graphics survey results, 5 mistakes Linux newcomers make and lastly John E. Dunn gets the crazy idea to ditch Windows for Ubuntu. Enjoy!

IBM backs Oracle against Apache and Google’s Android: Oracle is no longer totally isolated on Java — IBM now stands with the giant, in a move that potentially stymies Google’s Android. IBM said Monday that it’s putting its efforts into the OpenJDK project, run by Oracle, and switching away from the Apache Software Foundation’s (ASF’s) Project Harmony on Java Standard Edition (Java SE).

Was Taken For Granted, Now Forgotten: I found a computing treasure in a local Goodwill store three weeks ago: a book about System/360 assembly language. (Assembly language is the human-readable form of the concrete instructions carried out by the computer.) In earlier years, this would have been a wonderful surprise, but a previous find precludes that from happening… Last year, I found a special treat in the discount bin of a local grocery store: a movie, in Mongolian. In the rural Midwest USA, that is difficult to surpass that for surprise finds.

2010 Linux Graphics Survey Results: Last month we carried out our fourth annual Linux Graphics Survey in which we sought feedback from the Linux community about the most common graphics drivers and hardware in use, what display/GPU-related features desktop users are most interested in, and collect other metrics to aide developers.

Linux Gaming: Wine vs. Cedega vs. CrossOver Games: In previous posts, I have highlighted some of the outstanding new native Linux games that are coming out soon or have been out but may not be well known. For many Linux gamers, however, the pool of native Linux games is still too small. As most already know, it is possible to play some Windows games in Linux using Wine. Additionally, there are two prominent commercial spin-offs of Wine that are both designed specifically for gaming: Cedega and CrossOver Games. At one time, there was little difference between the three, other than the graphical configuration interfaces

Top 5 mistakes by Linux first-timers: With the arrival of Ubuntu 10.10, the list of reasons to try Linux for your business just got a little longer. The free and open source operating system is now more user-friendly than it’s ever been before while still offering the many security and other advantages it has over its competitors. If you’re among the legions of new Linux users out there, congratulations on making a smart move! Now that you’re on your way to a lifetime of freedom from high costs, vendor lock-in, constant malware attacks, and the many other disadvantages associated with Windows and Mac OS X, you should be aware of some of the classic mistakes Linux newcomers sometimes make.

Here’s a crazy security idea – ditch Windows for Ubuntu 10.10 Linux: After some days with the latest Ubuntu Linux desktop release, I was planning to devote a few graphs to extolling its many virtues. This is not a hard exercise because Ubuntu 10.10 is exemplary, about as good as it gets at doing the main things desktop operating systems were originally invented to do. It’s refined, uncluttered, comes with plenty of apps for most people and, most of all, it’s stable and fast. It runs happily in 1GB of RAM, something no version of Windows has done since the obsolete XP. There’s even a netbook edition with larger icons.

Is Linux Gaining share at Windows Expense? Maybe, Maybe not: The study also doesn’t shed much light on potential hybrid deployments where Linux is deployed alongside Windows and Unix. “We didn’t ask that question exactly,” McPherson said. “I bet you are correct that many would be hybrid, and that would be good to ask next time.”

KDE 4 vs. GNOME 3: An Early Comparison: How will GNOME 3 compare to KDE 4? The picture is still emerging, since GNOME 3’s official release is still months away. However, with GNOME Shell available as a preview in the latest GNOME releases, a general outline is starting to be visible. Of course, some elements cannot be compared yet. It would be unfair, for instance, to compare panels in any detail, because in the previews GNOME Shell’s panel has neither applets nor configurations. Nor, for that matter, can much be said yet about the upcoming KDE 4.6, which should be the latest version when GNOME 3.0 is released.

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LXer Article

In this week’s LXWR OpenOffice.org gets liberated, a nice review of Linux Mint, The GNU Project celebrates its 27th birthday, Jono Bacon talks about how Ubuntu gets built, a case for Linux in schools, Rad Hat’s CEO makes it on Mad Money, Microsoft sues Motorola because of Android and a LXer Feature by our own Hans Kwint on the choices Windows and Linux users both have. Enjoy!

LibreOffice: OpenOffice.org Liberated: It has been a long time coming, but finally it happened: OpenOffice.org has been forked under the name of LibreOffice. The Document Foundation will oversee the development of LibreOffice. According to the press release, “The Document Foundation is the result of a collective effort by leading independent members of the former OpenOffice.org community, including several project leads and key members of the Community Council.” Red Hat, Canonical, Google, and Novell are among the backers of The Document Foundation and the new fork.

Goodbye OpenOffice. LibreOffice, Here I Come!: I was ecstatic today to hear the news that former members of the OpenOffice.org Foundation have decided to create a fork of OpenOffice called LibreOffice. This fork will be a democratic and community-driven project, free from the dubious motivations of Oracle Corporation. I suspected that someone would eventually do something like this, but I was not expecting it so soon.

Windows users face as many choices as Linux users: A while ago, Graham Morrison wrote: “The trouble with Linux: there’s too much choice”. Implicitly, the article refers to “more choice than with Windows”. The article led to reactions from Carla Schroeder, Caitlyn Martin, Alastair Otter and Ron Miller. While the articles provided for an interesting discussion, none of them addressed the fundamentals of Linux distributions and choice of desktop software in my opinion. Because from an objective point of view, Windows users face as many choices as Linux users do. But most Windows users are just not aware of all the choices they’re making.

5 Intriguing KDE Apps : The beauty of an open development platform is that anyone can take a stab at creating an application. KDE, which is built upon the Qt application and UI framework, is a shining example of this. A quick look at KDE-Apps.org reveals that new apps are added daily. I periodically browse through the latest KDE apps to see if anything stands out, and I found these five, some of which are in early development.

Linux Mint: the tastier Ubuntu: Launched in October of 2004, Linux Mint has rapidly emerged as one of the most popular desktop Linux distributions. In this review, LinuxTrends takes a look at the latest Linux Mint release and finds it to be preferable to Ubuntu (on which it’s based) in several significant ways.

Happy 27th Birthday GNU Project!: A hearty Happy 27th Birthday to the GNU Project! Here is a link to the original announcement of the GNU Project posted by Richard Stallman on September 27, 1983. Without the GNU project FOSS as we know it today would not exist. Thank You to everyone who works and has worked on the GNU project over the last 27 years. You have helped make the world a better place. We at LXer take our hats off to you.

How we build Ubuntu: Ubuntu is one of the most polished Linux distributions available, fusing the work of a global community of contributors who provide a diverse range of skills to make Ubuntu what it is. While we all enjoy the fruits of a new Ubuntu release every six months, many people have asked the team over the years how this wide range of contributors manage to come together to build a new Ubuntu release.

Linux in Schools: Why schools should have students use and learn Linux instead of some other OS. What computer operating system should students learn at school? Most schools use MS Windows or Mac, but a number have switched or are in the process of switching to Linux. For schools the advantages are lower costs, greater security, no viruses or spyware, easier upgrades and better reliability. Lastly, there are very few licensing hassles or concerns about pirated software.

Red Hat Linux is Mad Money: Over the years, I’ve heard a lot of different people try and explain the economic proposition that open source and Linux offers. One of the best such explanations I’ve ever heard came on CNBC’s Mad Money show this week during which host Jim Cramer was interviewing Red Hat CEO Jim Whitehurst. With Red Hat, Cramer noted that it is a disruptive force and that’s what makes it attractive. His view is that in tech, disruptive forces are the most valuable types of companies.

Microsoft sues Motorola over patents, citing Android phones: Microsoft has filed suit against Motorola, alleging that the mobile phone maker’s Android-based smartphones violate nine of the Redmond company’s patents. Motorola promised to “vigorously defend” against the allegations, citing the strength of its own intellectual property portfolio.

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LXer Article

In the LXWR this week we have some new happenings with Diaspora, debunking the 1% Myth and a rather subdued response to the announcement of the Open Solaris fork known as OpenIndiana. Also, a Gartner report predicts Android will the top mobile OS by 2014 and could Oracle fracture open source community? Enjoy!

Open-Source GPU Drivers Causing Headaches In KDE 4.5: Martin Gräßlin, the KDE developer known for working on KWin and working on advanced features like OpenGL 3.x compositing in KDE 4.7, has written a new blog post in which he details some of the driver issues currently being experienced by some users of the recently released KDE 4.5 desktop.

Diaspora coming: It’s probably not true to say that everybody hates Facebook. But there are many millions (of the hundreds of millions that use the site) that claim to hate Facebook’s cavalier approach to privacy and founder Mark Zuckerberg’s equally vague approach to the future of our privacy. There are even groups dedicated to encouraging users to leave Facebook (some on Facebook itself, ironically).

Five tips for a smooth Linux migration: We’ve talked a little bit before about ways to bring your new Linux users along so that their migration experience is positive. Here are a few more tips to help make the switch to Linux a pain-free experience for you and for them.

Could Oracle fracture open source community?: An Oracle was a person or agency considered to be a source of wise counsel or prophetic opinion. How can that particular definition be applied to Oracle the company? It can’t. In fact I would claim that Oracle, the company, is quite the opposite of “wise” or “prophetic”.

A Look at KDE Desktop Effects: KDE’s visual effects for windows and menus technically dates back to KDE 3. Experimental programs like kompmgr provided drop shadows and transparency for windows, and the KDE desktop itself had built-in support for basic menu transparency, shadows, and other effects. With the coming of KDE 4, the number of effects has multiplied, and KWin (KDE’s window manager) is now on par with Compiz (a window manager with numerous desktop effects). Moreover, KWin’s primary advantage over Compiz is that it is part of KDE and integrates perfectly with the rest of the desktop. While support for Compiz has been added, there are still some outstanding glitches when run on top of KDE.

Debunking the 1% Myth: It seems like almost every day someone in the tech press or someone commenting in a technical forum will claim that Linux adoption on the desktop (including laptops) is insignificant. The number that is thrown around is 1%. These claims are even repeated by some who advocate for Linux adoption. Both the idea that Linux market share on the desktop is insignificant and the 1% figure are simply false and have been for many years.

Whither with Ubuntu?: In the Autumn of 2004, I was searching the net and came across this new Linux distribution called Ubuntu Linux. It was based on Debian and was supposedly easy to use. It promoted these seemingly humanitarian concepts and touted itself as shipping with over 1000 pieces of software. Overtime, the colors of the site remained odd, and the default color scheme of the desktop did as well. The word “Linux” was made less and less a part of the website through the few years I followed it closely. By 2009, Linux was only one word in relatively small font size as part of the description of Ubuntu. One of the coolest things about Ubuntu was that you could the install discs for free via snail mail. This also stopped. Over the 6 years of life that Ubuntu has had so far, it has changed drastically.

Linux Mint Based On Debian Released – And It’s A Rolling Distribution!: Linux Mint based on Debian Testing has been released yesterday. Besides being based on Debian and not Ubuntu, there’s something else very special about the new Linux Mint Debian: it’s a rolling release distribution!

OpenIndiana: OpenIndiana is a continuation of the OpenSolaris operating system. It was conceived during the period of uncertainty following the Oracle takeover of Sun Microsystems, after several months passed with no binary updates made available to the public. The formation proved timely, as Oracle discontinued OpenSolaris soon after in favour of Solaris 11 Express, a binary distribution with a more closed development model to debut later this year.

Is Apple Now Blocking Contributions To GCC?: Yesterday on the mailing list for GCC is was brought up if Apple’s Objective-C 2.0 patches for the GNU Compiler Collection could be merged back into the upstream GCC code-base as maintained by the Free Software Foundation. Even though Apple’s modified GCC sources still reflect the FSF as the copyright holder and are licensed under the GNU GPLv2+, it doesn’t look like Apple wants their compiler work going back upstream any longer.

Android Might Be Top Mobile OS Globally By 2014: Gartner has released a report predicting that by 2014, Android will be second only to Symbian in mobile operating system marketshare worldwide, with the two platforms accounting for nearly 60 percent of the mobile OS market within the next four years. The news follows numerous recent bullish reports on the state of Android in the U.S.

99.4 percent of malware is aimed at Windows users: Have you ever thought about measuring the Internet in terms if malware per minute? Me neither, but someone has and it makes for uncomfortable reading if you are a Microsoft Windows user.

5 Things I Miss From Linux When Using OSX: Recently I purchased a MacBook Pro. Principally because I like the hardware, and can put Linux on it. However, it has also given me the opportunity to use OSX. In fact I’ve been using OSX quite a lot – given I’ve paid for it, I want to really see how it works. However, in the course of using it, I’ve come across a number of features of Linux and the KDE desktop that I greatly miss.

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LXer Article

Smitten with Xfce 4: If you’ve read me long enough, you know I am a desktop junkie. Much to Jaqui’s chagrin, I do love my desktops. So much so I could have a different desktop every day and still not be completely happy. During my trials and tribulations with the Linux desktop I have, surprisingly, missed the whole Xfce train. Why? I have no idea. I’ve known of it, I’ve used it briefly, and never really thought much more about it. That is, until recently.

Benchmarking ZFS On FreeBSD vs. EXT4 & Btrfs On Linux: ZFS is often looked upon as an advanced, superior file-system and one of the strong points of the Solaris/OpenSolaris platform while most feel that only recently has Linux been able to catch-up on the file-system front with EXT4 and the still-experimental Btrfs. ZFS is copy-on-write, self-healing with 256-bit checksums, supports compression, online pool growth, scales much better than the UFS file-system commonly used on BSD operating systems, supports snapshots, supports deduplication, and the list goes on for the features of this file-system developed by Sun Microsystems. In this article we are seeing how well the performance of the ZFS file-system under PC-BSD/FreeBSD 8.1 stacks up to UFS (including UFS+J and UFS+S) and on the Linux side with EXT4 and Btrfs.

No Operating System is Replaceable: So many people out there just love to talk about how Linux is now a “drop in replacement” for Microsoft Windows or Macintosh OSX. This isn’t the case. The sad truth is that there are no “drop in replacements” for most software, and especially so for operating systems.

Emulating an Amiga in Linux: The Amiga was one of the most powerful PC’s of it’s time, easily trumping the emerging IBM PC’s in the 80’s. You can relive this classic PC on your Linux desktop thanks to a number of emulators that are available.

What’s the Latest in the Psystar Appeal?: Let’s catch up quickly in the Psystar/Apple situation, so we don’t miss any of the action. When I read the new DMCA exemptions EFF won, I immediately started to think about Psystar, so I wanted to see what’s new. Maybe you did too. So here’s the latest I could find. The appeal is going forward. Presumably the next step in the appeal will be oral argument, although I can’t swear to it, since Psystar filed its brief under seal with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals back in May, so we can’t read it, and that’s when they would have made the request or not. I can’t believe the entire document needed to be sealed, but that is what happened. Perhaps they’d prefer we not get a chance to analyze it?

Interview with Richard Stallman: Richard Stallman answers the top 25 questions from reddit readers.

Linux Mint 9 KDE Review and Screenshots: In my opinion Linux Mint is one of the top 3 distributions out today for basic desktop usage. It features incredibly useful Mint-specific tools that make it the perfect distro for beginners. All flavors of Linux Mint usually come with a jaw dropping look and feel. I decided to look at both of these while using the recent release of Linux Mint 9 KDE and take some screenshots along the way.

Ubuntu Empire Strikes Back: The old “Ubuntu doesn’t contribute back” argument cropped up again when Dave Neary released a report of the talk he gave at GUADEC on the contributions made to the GNOME desktop environment. He found that Red Hat and Novell contributed the most and that Ubuntu and Mandriva (primarily a KDE distribution) was among the lowest. A firestorm of debate ensued and Shuttleworth was accused of name calling and guilt to try to win the argument.

Ubuntu, the Bad Selfish Linux: In my grumpier moments their relentlessly positive, cult-like Kumbaya-or-else approach makes me want to turn the hose on them. But I don’t remember them attacking anyone else the way they’ve been attacked.

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LXer Article

Some of the big stories this past week included Cisco creating their own tablet, SCALE moves to a larger venue, Bruce Byfield asks is KDE 3 Zombified or Resurrected?, Run Chrome the easy way and Carla Schroder sets off a nuclear weapon in the LXer forums. Ever drink a bottle of Rum all to yourself? I hope all our U.S. readers had as much fun July 4th as I apparently did. Enjoy!

Cisco To Have An Android Tablet Of Their Very Own: First came Android, the mobile OS. Then came the first Android phone, the G1. Then came the Nexus One, the first true gPhone — Google top to bottom. And it just kept going from there. Today, not yet three years into development, Android is available on dozens of devices, from phones to e-readers to netbooks and more. It’s taken the #2 spot in the mobile OS world — well ahead of the “unkillable” iPhone — and reportedly is slated to take on Apple’s other hot toy of the moment. Given the explosive growth and variety of devices sporting the OS, it comes as little surprise when a manufacturer announces they have a new Android offering in the works. Unless, that is, if the manufacturer is a networking giant and the announcement comes out of nowhere.

The Linux Chronicles, Part 1: Last Autumn I volunteered to review Windows 7. But in the following weeks, I found Linux to be preferable in many ways. This is pretty significant progress, and outside the ‘community’ has gone largely unnoticed, too – I haven’t seen all that many Ubuntu stories in the Wall Street Journal. But what comes next is going to be pretty challenging for everyone involved – and that’s what I’ll look at here. But first a bit of history, starting with a confession.

GNU HURD – Altered states and lost promise: The HURD was meant to be the true kernel at the heart of the GNU operating system. The promise behind the HURD was revolutionary – a set of daemons on top of a microkernel that was intended to surpass the performance of the monolithic kernels of traditional Unix systems and in doing so, give greater security, freedom and flexibility to the users – but it has yet to come down to earth.

Programming with Scratch: As a homeschooling parent, I’m a big fan of educational software and I’ve written quite about about various programs in the past. But, as a programmer, I’m also a big fan of any program that makes computer programming more approachable by younger children. So, when I heard about Scratch, I was pretty enthusiastic.

How to Run Chrome OS the Easy Way: A few of us here at MTE have a bit of a crush on Chrome OS. It’s not just the system itself, it’s the fact that someone is finally taking the concept of an operating system in a new direction. We wrote a brief synopsis of Chrome OS shortly after the first announcement that showed how things stood at the very beginning, then more recently did a manual build guide. Building Chrome OS from source code can take several hours, and can be a somewhat challenging process even for an experienced Linux user. To help solve that problem, some developers have begun releasing custom Chrome OS builds with included installers and software tweaks. This guide will show you where to find the images and how to get the latest Hexxeh release, Flow, on to your netbook or VM from a Linux host.

SCALE moves to larger venue starting in 2011: In order to accommodate its steady growth over the past few years, the Southern California Linux Expo (SCALE) will move to its new home, the Hilton Los Angeles Airport, starting with SCALE 9X in 2011. The new venue – larger than SCALE’s former home for the last four years at the Westin Los Angeles Airport – will allow SCALE to expand its offerings at SCALE 9X, slated for Feb. 18-20, 2011.

5 Little Linux Computers: This month we take a look at a number of small form factor PCs that either come with Linux or would make a perfect fit for your favorite Linux distro. Each of the computers mentioned takes up very little space, but all deliver plenty of computing performance to handle everything from basic web browsing to watching videos. They make nice little firewalls, basic file/web/print servers, and quiet, low-power media servers. All of these units typically consume a fraction of the power of a conventional desktop and less than many traditional laptops.

16 Gorgeous Linux Wallpapers From Pr09studio: Pr09studio guys are also actively contributing for bisigi themes project and they really do have some stunning wallpapers to showcase. Here, I have deliberately tried to avoid wallpapers with branding for most part, but some wallpapers with branding are worth mentioning. So here it goes, 16 beautiful Linux wallpapers for desktop.

Trinity KDE: KDE 3 Zombified or Resurrected?: Several weeks ago, I ended a comparison of the KDE 4 and 3 desktops by saying “Unless a project takes over KDE 3 development, sooner or later it may become unusable with the latest generation of computers.” What I had missed — free software being a large place where events move at near-light speeds — was that a project had already taken over KDE 3 development. It’s called Trinity KDE, and is organized by Timothy Pearson, who has been releasing Kubuntu releases that use KDE 3.5 for some time. According to Facebook rumor, he has been planning to revive KDE 3 for some time.

Copying is Stealing: Staying focused on one simple principle clears away any confusion: creative artists have a right to be paid. If we enjoy a piece of recorded music, a book, drawing, photo, movie, and the condition of owning a copy of that work is paying for it, then not paying for it is stealing. Legally it is copyright infringement, but I call it stealing, just like shoplifting or any petty theft.

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