After a successful campaign to liberate the English translation of the French Debian Administrator's Handbook, Roland Mas and Raphaël Hertzog announced its availability under the Creative Commons BY-SA license. You can read it online, download it for free, apt-get install debian-handbook if you're using Debian, or buy a physical copy (or donate for an electronic version). I skimmed through it, and discovered a few debconf and libvirt tricks I hadn't known about within a few minutes.
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An anonymous reader tipped us to news that the Software Freedom Conservancy is expanding its GPL compliance efforts. Quoting Bradley Kuhn: "This new program is an outgrowth of the debate that happened over the last few months regarding Conservancy's GPL compliance efforts. Specifically, I noticed that, buried in the FUD over the last four months regarding GPL compliance, there was one key criticism that was valid and couldn't be ignored: Linux copyright holders should be involved in compliance actions on embedded systems. Linux is a central component of such work, and the BusyBox developers agreed wholeheartedly that having some Linux developers involved with compliance would be very helpful. Conservancy has addressed this issue by building a broad coalition of copyright holders in many different projects who seek to work on compliance with Conservancy, including not just Linux and BusyBox, but other projects as well." The anonymous reader adds: "This news was also discussed in the latest episode of the Free as in Freedom Oggcast." Update: 05/30 14:20 GMT by U L: It may not be entirely clear, but several Linux developers have assigned copyright so that the Conservancy can pursue violations for them.
ekimd writes "Fedora 17 aka "Beefy Miracle" is released. Some of the major features include: ext4 with >16TB filesystems, dynamic firewall configuration, automatic multi-seat, and more. Major software updates include Gnome 3.4, GIMP 2.8, and GCC 4.7. The full feature list can be found here. Personally, I still find Gnome 3 to be an 'unholy mess' so I'm loving XFCE with Openbox."
An anonymous reader writes "In Friday's story about IBM's ban on Cloud storage there was much agreement, such as: 'My company deals with financial services. We are not allowed to access Dropbox either.' So why isn't Linux the first choice for all financial services? I don't know any lawyers, financial advisers, banks, etc., that don't use Windows. I switched to Linux in 2005 — I'm well aware that it's not perfect. But the compromises have been so trivial compared to the complete relief from dealing with Windows security failings. Even if we set aside responsibility and liability, business already do spend a lot of money and time on trying to secure Windows, and cleaning up after it. Linux/Unix should already be a first choice for the business world, yet it's barely even known of. It doesn't make sense. Please discuss; this could use some real insight. And let's at least try to make the flames +5 funny."
New submitter OceanMan7 writes "Linux Mint 13 (Maya) has just been released. DVDs come in four flavors — MATE (with and without codecs) and Cinnamon (with and without codecs) — in both 32-bit and 64-bit versions. The codec-free versions comply with U.S. and Japanese IP regulations. MATE 1.2 is Linux Mint's community-powered extension of Gnome 2. Cinnamon 1.4 is built upon Gnome 3, but has a more traditional look and feel. As with Ubuntu 12.04, upon which Linux Mint draws, all editions come with Long-term support (LTS) until April, 2017. The release notes provide a list of changes.
jrepin writes "In the wake of the announcement of the first ever KDE powered tablet, quite a few interesting things are happening in the background. One of them is the formation of a professional Partner Network for devices such as the Vivaldi tablet. The Make Play Live Partner Program is designed to build and support a collaborative business and economic network. Members work together to provide comprehensive professional service and product offerings around Plasma Active and devices such as Vivaldi. Professional support options make it easier to convince potential parties, such as users, clients, customers and partners, bringing KDE software to a larger group of users. Nine organizations have already joined."
Dog's_Breakfast writes "This week's edition of DistroWatch Weekly News features a unique story entitled 'Linux Accessibility — What is it and Why Does It Matter?' The article was written by Robert Cole, a blind person with a computer science degree. Mr Cole points out that Linux offers an excellent set of free tools for seeing-impaired users. Putting together a similar set of tools on Windows would cost at least US$600, about double what a retail copy of Windows itself costs."
jrepin writes with news of today's release (here's Linus's announcement) of Linux 3.4: "This release includes several Btrfs updates: metadata blocks bigger than 4KB, much better metadata performance, better error handling and better recovery tools. There are other features: a new X32 ABI which allows to run in 64 bit mode with 32 bit pointers; several updates to the GPU drivers: early modesetting of Nvidia Geforce 600 'Kepler', support of AMD RadeonHD 7xxx and AMD Trinity APU series, and support of Intel Medfield graphics; support of x86 cpu driver autoprobing, a device-mapper target that stores cryptographic hashes of blocks to check for intrusions, another target to use external read-only devices as origin source of a thin provisioned LVM volume, several perf improvements such as GTK2 report GUI and a new 'Yama' security module."
jfruh writes "Mandriva SA, one of the oldest pure Linux companies still out there, was on the verge of shutting down earlier this year, but escaped by the skin of its teeth. Now, however, the company is punting control of its flagship Linux distribution to its developer community, leaving Mandriva SA's future prospects up in the air. From the blog post: 'This means that the future of the distribution will not be arbitrary[sic] decided by the Mandriva company anymore, but we intend to let the distribution evolve in and under the caring responsibility of the community.'"
darthcamaro writes "Guess What? Linux is not a primary platform for Mozilla. For Mozilla's upcoming Web Apps marketplace, Linux support is not part of the initial release. Some Mozilla developers simply are shrugging this off as Windows and Mac dominate the Mozilla user landscape today."
dartttt writes "There was a very interesting session at the Ubuntu Developer Summit by Google developer Thomas Bushnell. He talked about how Ubuntu, its derivatives and Goobuntu (Google's customized Ubuntu based distro) are used by Google developers. He starts by saying 'Precise Rocks,' and that many Google employees use Ubuntu — including managers, software engineers, translators, people who wrote the original Unix, and people who have no clue about Unix. Many developers working on Chrome and Android use Ubuntu. Ubuntu systems at Google are upgraded every LTS release. The entire process of upgrading can take as much as four months, and it is also quite expensive, as one reboot or a small change can cost them as much as a million dollars across the company." Bushnell also mentions that Google Drive will soon be available for Linux. Other news out of UDS: there was discussion of a GNOME flavor of 12.10, Electronic Arts reaffirmed that they "won't delay their Windows work for Linux," and Unity 2D is likely to disappear in 12.10.
dartttt writes "Florian Echtler has developed an open-source driver for the Microsoft Surface 2.0 touch screen. According to him, the open source implementation works surprisingly well on Ubuntu 11.10. The process requires you to boot Linux on your Surface 2.0 in the first place. However, it can be done by just booting Ubuntu from a USB hard disk without modify anything on the original Win7 installation."
An anonymous reader sends word that Apache OpenOffice 3.4 has been released (download). This is the first release since OpenOffice became a project at the Apache Software Foundation. The release notes list all of the improvements, the highlights of which The H has summarized: "According to its developers, Apache OpenOffice (AOO) 3.4.0, the first update since OpenOffice.org 3.3.0 from January 2011, now starts up faster than its predecessor and introduces a number of new features such as support for documents secured using AES256 encryption. The Linear Programming solver in the Calc spreadsheet program has been replaced with the CoinMP C-API library from the Computational Infrastructure for Operations Research (COIN-OR) project. As in LibreOffice 3.4.0, the DataPilot functionality has been renamed to Pivot Table, and now supports an unlimited number of fields. A new 'Quote all text cells' CSV (Comma Separated Values) export option has been also added to Calc. Other changes include improved ODF 1.2 encryption and Unix Printing support and various enhancements to the Impress presentation and Draw sketching programs."
An anonymous reader writes with an excerpt from Phoronix: "Chris Kenyon, the VP of sales and business development for Canonical, just spoke this afternoon at the Ubuntu 12.10 Developer Summit about what Canonical does with OEMs and ODMs. He also tossed out some rather interesting numbers about the adoption of Ubuntu Linux. Namely, Ubuntu will ship on 5% of worldwide PC sales with a number of 18 million units annually."