LinuxScribe writes with this bit from IT World: "In an effort to foil crackers' attempts to cover their tracks by altering text-based syslogs, and improve the syslog process as a whole, developers Lennart Poettering and Kay Sievers are proposing a new tool called The Journal. Using key/value pairs in a binary format, The Journal is already stirring up a lot of objections." Log entries are "cryptographically hashed along with the hash of the previous entry in the file" resulting in a verifiable chain of entries. This is being done as an extension to systemd (git branch). The design doesn't just make logging more secure, but introduces a number of overdue improvements to the logging process. It's even compatible with the standard syslog interface allowing it to either coexist with or replace the usual syslog daemon with minimal disruption.
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An anonymous reader writes "Scientists have performed an ecological analysis of software packages in the Debian GNU/Linux distribution over time; they found that dependencies can be successfully modeled as a predator-prey relationship."
mask.of.sanity writes with this excerpt from SC Magazine: "Australian researcher Silvio Cesare has released a tool capable of automatically detecting bugs and vulnerabilities in embedded Linux libraries. The script correlates vulnerability advisory CVEs for third-party libraries to determine if holes have carried over to Linux platforms or have not been patched. Such holes often escape the eye of developers because the libraries may not be kept updated with sources. This is further compounded because vulnerabilities in cross distributed packages can leave Linux platforms vulnerable."
rsk writes "Since the Ubuntu One desktop synchronization service was launched by Canonical it has always been powered by CouchDB, a popular document-oriented NoSQL data store with a powerful master-master replication architecture that runs in many different environments (servers, mobile devices, etc.). John Lenton, senior engineering manager at Canonical, announced that Canonical would be moving away from CouchDB due to a few unresolvable issues Canonical ran into in production with CouchDB and the scale/requirements of the Ubuntu One service. Instead, says Lenton, Canonical will be moving to a custom data storage abstraction layer (U1DB) that is platform agnostic as well as datastore agnostic; utilizing the native datastore on the host device (e.g. SQLite, MySQL, API layers, 'everything'). U1DB will be complete at some point after the 12.04 release."
dartttt writes "Not many people know that Kernel releases have their codenames. Most of the Linux 2.6 and 3.x kernels include a name in the Makefile of their source trees, which can be found in the git repository. They are not publicized as such but some of them are really hilarious."
An anonymous reader points out an interesting, detailed interview with Andrew Tanenbaum at Linuxfr.org; Tanenbaum holds forth on the current state of MINIX, licensing decisions, and the real reason he believes that Linux caught on just when he "thought BSD was going to take over the world." ("I think Linux succeeded against BSD, which was a stable mature system at the time simply because BSDI got stuck in a lawsuit and was effectively stopped for several years.")
AmyVernon writes "We combed through about two years' worth of data on SourceForge, looking at the platforms of the users who downloaded projects, and millions more Mac users are downloading open source projects now than were in February 2010. In the same time, Windows downloads have increased by a much smaller percentage and Linux downloads have actually declined." I wonder how much of this last part can be chalked up to the ever-better download infrastructure that the various Linux distros have. (Note: SourceForge and Slashdot are both part of Geeknet.)
An anonymous reader writes "Desura is a digital distribution platform for video games, focusing on releases from indie developers and mods rather than AAA titles. After a two-month beta period, Desura has launched a Linux client, which supports the installation and patching of games on any Linux distribution. With this release, Desura is the first client to work on both Windows and Linux systems, enabling games to be installed with a click. They're currently in discussions to release the code under the GPL."
MasterPatricko writes "The openSUSE project is proud to present the release of openSUSE 12.1! This release represents more than eight months of work by our international community and brings you the best Free Software has to offer. Improvements include the latest GNOME 3.2 desktop as well as the newest from KDE, XFCE and LXDE; your ownCloud made easy with mirall; Snapper-shots of your file system on btrfs; and much, much more. Other notable changes include moving from sysvinit to systemd, improving the boot process, and being built on GCC 4.6.2 including link-time optimization. More packages than ever are available from the openSUSE instance of the Open Build Service, and soon you'll be able to create customized respins on SUSE Studio."
An anonymous reader writes "The Linux kernel power bug that caused high power usage for many Intel Linux systems has finally been addressed. Matthew Garrett of Red Hat has devised a solution for the ASPM Linux power problem by mimicking Microsoft Windows' power behavior in the Linux kernel. A patch is on LKML for this solution to finally restore the battery life under Linux."
MrSeb writes "In the Linux world, a war has been raging for a couple years. At stake are the hearts and minds of its user base. The combatants: the various distributions of Linux itself. For some time, Ubuntu Linux has been the clear leader in the fight, amassing more users than any other. Canonical and its baby seemed poised to take over the Linux desktop/laptop market completely — until it released Unity. Unity has caused an uproar in the Linux community — especially amongst the power users who decry its lack of customizability and inability to scale on big- and multi-monitor setups — and users are defecting in droves to Linux Mint, now the second most popular Debian-based distro and gaining fast on Ubuntu. Mint has very similar commands and shortcuts to Ubuntu, runs most apps the same as Ubuntu, and you can customize it to look and feel exactly how you want — which, for most users of Linux, is exactly what they want."
tearmeapart writes "It may be time again for another discussion/flamewar on the reasons why a lot of us are (still) using Microsoft. The last big discussion on Slashdot was close to 10 years ago, and a lot has changed since then: Windows XP and 7 have proven to be stable (and memories of Windows ME are mostly gone.) There are many more distributions for Linux, especially commercial options. Distributions like Ubuntu and CentOS have made GNU/Linux more friendly. Options for word processing, spreadsheets, etc. have grown. Apple and their products have changed considerably, though their philosophy hasn't. Microsoft Silverlight came and is on the way out. Wine and solutions like Transgaming have matured. So... why are a lot of us still using Windows? What would it take for us to switch?"
jfruhlinger writes "Edward Naughton has been insisting for months that Android violates the GPL because Google created a new set of Linux kernel headers that it hasn't released the source code for, despite the fact that it incorporates open source code. While numerous commentators, including those who helped write the kernel headers, claimed this code isn't copyrightable, Naughton in persisting in his crusade, saying that the questions need to be resolved in court for the good of the open source movement."
itwbennett writes "The Banshee music application, and Mono, the open source implementation of Microsoft's .NET framework, on which Banshee is dependent, may be excluded from the next release of Ubuntu. In 'a blog entry titled Bansheegeddon,' Banshee and Mono developer Joseph Michael Shields says the reasons given for the change are that Banshee is 'not well maintained' and 'porting music store to GTK3 is blocked on banshee ported to GTK3.' Other reasons mentioned but not in the session logs are complaints that it doesn't work on ARM. Ubuntu Community Manager Jono Bacon pointed out in a blog post that the decision to drop Banshee, Mono or other apps that are dependent on Mono has not been finalized. But the blogosphere is lit up with speculation that this is a deliberate move to exclude Mono because of its emulation of Microsoft .NET."