First time accepted submitter Paradigm_Complex writes "From the distro's front page: 'Bedrock Linux is a Linux distribution created with the aim of making most of the (often seemingly mutually-exclusive) benefits of various other Linux distributions available simultaneously and transparently. If one would like a rock-solid stable base (for example, from Debian or a RHEL clone) yet still have easy access to cutting-edge packages (from, say, Arch Linux), automate compiling packages with Gentoo's portage, and ensure that software aimed only for the ever popular Ubuntu will run smoothly — all at the same time, in the same distribution — Bedrock Linux will provide a means to achieve this.' The timing of this release is particularly nice for those who were excited to hear that Valve was bringing Steam to Linux, but were disappointed that it was targeting Ubuntu as Ubuntu was not their distro of choice. If it works on Ubuntu, it should work fine on Bedrock Linux, while still ensuring the majority of the system feel very, very similar to Fedora or Slackware or whatever you prefer."
Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive
New submitter junkrig writes "After a highly successful Kickstarter campaign, Jordan Weisman, creator of Shadowrun, has returned to bring the series back to the screen as Shadowrun Returns; an old-school, turn-based tactical RPG. Their successful initial fundraising (over $1.8 million) allowed them to commit to developing a native Linux version of the game. A second team, working closely with Weisman, now hopes to bring a similar, turn-based Shadowrun game to life: Shadowrun Online. To be built with the Unity 4 engine, Shadowrun Online will be massively multiplayer and have native Linux support from the start — assuming, of course, they manage to fund their project. Both games are expected for release in 2013."
Duggeek writes "There's been a lot of discussion lately about Valve, Steam and the uncertain future of the Windows platform for gaming. While the effect of these events is unmistakably huge, it raises an interesting question: Would Valve consider putting out its own Linux distro? One advantage of such a dedicated distro would be tighter control over kernel drivers, storage, init processes and managing display(s), but would it be worth all the upstream bickering? Would it be better to start anew, or ride on a mature foundation like Fedora or Debian? Might that be a better option than addressing the myriad differences of today's increasingly fracturing distro-scape?"
An anonymous reader writes "Damn Small Linux is back from the dead, with a version 4.11 RC1 release announcement at Distrowatch and another at the DSL Forums! Quoting: 'Here is the first release candidate for Damn Small Linux (DSL) 4.11. The changes in this release are a step toward making DSL a friendly alternative for older hardware. I've fixed some bugs, updated some applications, and replaced others. Applications: updated JWM to 2.1.0 (now supports rounding); updated Dillo to 3.0.2 (much improves CSS support); added XChat 1.8.9; added sic 1.1 IRC client; added XCalc-color. Modified desktop functionality: it is now possible to switch between JWM and Fluxbox without shutting down X; added menu items to switch between DFM and xtdesk icon engines or use none at all." Here's the download page."
dartttt writes "John Carmack recently presented a keynote at QuakeCon. He said Linux is still not a commercially viable gaming platform, and the two forays they have made into the Linux commercial market have not been successful. Valve's announcement about Steam for Linux changes things a bit, but it remains a tough sell."
itwbennett writes "Assuming that Microsoft doesn't choose to implement Secure Boot in the ways that the Linux Foundation says would work with Linux, there 'will be no easy way to run Linux on Windows 8 PCs,' writes Steven Vaughan-Nichols. Instead, we're faced with three different, highly imperfect approaches: Approach #1: Create UEFI Secure Boot keys for your particular distribution, like Canonical is doing with Ubuntu. Approach #2: work with Microsoft's key signing service to create a Windows 8 system compatible UEFI secure boot key, like Red Hat is doing with Fedora." itwbennet finishes with: "Approach #3: Use open hardware with open source software, an approach favored by ZaReason CEO Cathy Malmrose." When you can't even use a GPLv3 licensed bootloader to boot your system, you might have a problem. Why is everyone so quick to accept the corpse of TCPA in new clothes?
The Liberated Pixel Cup draws to a close. The deadline for code entries was July 31st, and those entries were posted online Thursday (with descriptions). You'll have to wait longer than expected for the results though: "Note that due to the larget volume of entries (48 code entries alone, plus a large number of art entries), judging may take longer than we had originally thought. Our current time frame for judging is the end of August. We'll keep people posted on our progress." Good luck to all the entrants. Anyone see anything interesting in the submitted games?
ptorrone writes "Open-source hardware company Adafruit has released a Linux Raspberry Pi distro for hardware hacking and teaching electronics. This distro comes with SPI, I2C, & OneWire WiFi. It also has some things to make overall hacking easier, such as sshd on startup (with key generation on first boot) and Bonjour (so you can simply ssh raspberrypi.local from any computer on the local network). The distro is called Occidentalis v0.1. Rubus occidentalis (the black raspberry) is derived from Raspbian Wheezy, and is available for download here."
Caught via the H is news that more components of webOS have been released: "The core applications provide a comprehensive set of platform user applications, including Email, Calendar, Contacts, Memos, Accounts, Clock and Calculator." Additionally, HP has opened up the development branch of system manager: "We are excited to open up the active development branch of our upleveled System Manager. This major upgrade incorporates the latest QtWebKit and Qt technologies in an improved architecture. Modern QtWebKit now underlies all applications, providing state-of-the-art support for HTML rendering and I/O. The latest stable release of Qt has been integrated across the system, eliminating alternate rendering paths and providing a clean base for the future. These changes bring enhanced stability and performance to Open webOS." As always, source can be had from the Open webOS github. A bit of bad news for existing device owners, however: "...we are aiming for support on future hardware platforms where SoC’s support Linux 3.3+ kernel and where open source replacements for proprietary components are integrated. Existing devices cannot be supported because of those many proprietary components, including graphics, networking and lack of drivers for a modern kernel." Existing device owners will have to live with the "webOS community edition."
New submitter nschubach writes in with an update on Valve's progress porting one of their games to GNU/Linux. From the article: "One factor in creating a good gaming experience is throughput. This post discusses some of what we've learned about the performance of our games running on Linux. ... After this work, Left 4 Dead 2 is running at 315 FPS on Linux. That the Linux version runs faster than the Windows version (270.6) seems a little counter-intuitive, given the greater amount of time we have spent on the Windows version. However, it does speak to the underlying efficiency of the kernel and OpenGL. Interestingly, in the process of working with hardware vendors we also sped up the OpenGL implementation on Windows. Left 4 Dead 2 is now running at 303.4 FPS with that configuration." nschubach adds "It seems there are good things coming out of this for both Operating Systems!"
An anonymous reader writes "The Nvidia binary driver has been exploited by an anonymous hacker, who reported it to nvidia months ago and it was never fixed. Now the exploit was made public." The one releasing the exploit (relayed to him anonymously) is David Arlie, well known X hacker. The bug lets the attacker write to any part of memory on the system by shifting the VGA window; the attached exploit uses this to attain superuser privileges. It appears that this has been known to Nvidia for at least a month.
jrepin writes "KDE announces 4.9 releases of Workspaces, Applications, and Development Platform. Version 4.9 provides many new features, along with improved stability and performance. Some of the highlights include, but are not limited to: more thorough integration of Activities throughout the Workspaces, ability to display metadata (ratings, tags, image and file sizes...) next to file names in Dolphin file manager, Mercurial versioning system support in Dolphin, detachable tabs in Konsole terminal emulator, support for MPRIS2 protocol in various places, ability to store and print PDF annotations from Okular document viewer, Okular can also play videos embedded in PDFs, Lokalize translation tool supports Qt's TS translation files, Kontact PIM suite gains ability to import data from Thunderbird and Evolution, Pairs is a new memory training game added to KDE Education package, and Marble desktop globe includes Open Source Routing Machine and support for bicycle and pedestrian routing. This release is dedicated to the memory of recently deceased KDE contributor Claire Lotion."
An anonymous reader writes "One day after word leaked out that Nokia is shutting down its Qt Australia office, which is responsible for Qt3D, QtDeclarative, QtLocation, QtMultimedia, QtSensors, and QtSystems, reports are beginning to surface that Nokia is trying to sell off all Qt assets." Seems like selling itself to Nokia wasn't the best option for Trolltech after all.
YokimaSun writes "Fans of classic graphical point-and-click adventure games, will be happy to learn that a new version of ScummVM has been released with support for new games such as 'Once Upon A Time: Little Red Riding Hood,' 'Backyard Baseball 2003,' 'Blue Force,' 'Darby the Dragon,' 'Dreamweb,' 'Geisha,' 'Gregory and the Hot Air Balloon,' 'Magic Tales: Liam Finds a Story,' and more. ScummVM not only supports Windows, Linux and new platforms such as iPhone and Android but also consoles such as Dreamcast, Gamecube and Nintendo 64 and rarer handhelds such as Openpandora and Dingoo."
New submitter zixxt writes "GTK+ Developer Benjamin Otte talks about the stagnation and decline of the Gnome Project. He describes how core developers are leaving GNOME development, how GNOME is understaffed, why GNOME is a Red Hat project and why GNOME is losing market and mind share. Is the Gnome project on its deathbed? Quoting: 'I first noticed this in 2005 when Jeff Waugh gave his 10×10 talk. Back then, the GNOME project had essentially achieved what it set out to do: a working Free desktop environment. Since then, nobody has managed to set new goals for the project. In fact, these days GNOME describes itself as a “community that makes great software”, which is as nondescript as you can get for software development. The biggest problem with having no goals is that you can’t measure yourself. Nobody can say if GNOME 3 is better or worse than GNOME 2. There is no recognized metric anywhere. This also leads to frustration in lots of places.'"