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How Google is pushing the Linux envelope.

  LXer Feature: 20-Apr-06

I am a member of the Phoenix Linux Users Group or PLUG, and at our last meeting Google gave a presentation on how Linux is used at Google. Vince and Pat explained what Linux is used for and many of the challenges they have faced in pushing the Linux envelope.

FOSS Community to Microsoft: Earn Our Trust

  LXer Feature: 21-Jan-06

Last week, LXer Editor-in-Chief, Don Parris had strong words for Microsoft's Port 25 project. He suggested that Microsoft's appalling behavior has left a credibility gap that would hurt their Port 25 effort. The question remains whether Microsoft can or will change their behavior. Can Microsoft earn the trust of the FOSS Community? Will they even try?

Chinese $150 Linux mini-PC races OLPC to market

A Chinese company is touting an inexpensive Linux-based computer as a way to close the "digital divide." YellowSheepRiver's $150 "Municator" appears to be available now, with a three-month leadtime, suggesting it could reach market well ahead of MIT's $100 "One Laptop Per Child" (OLPC) device.

Sony puts up Blu-ray player BDP-S1 for pre-order

It's been quite the Blu-ray party today, what with the LF-MB121JD from Panasonic, the BRD-UM2 and BRD-AM2B from IODATA, and that decisive word from Panasonic's CEO that dashed any hopes left for talks between the Blu-ray and HD DVD camps. Now Sony is joining the club with the pre-order availability of their BDP-S1 Blu-ray player. That's the good news. The bad news is that the unit will be going for the expected $1000, and has a targeted availability of August 15th. Sure, all that 1080p, multi channel digital audio, and HDMI action is still here, but Sony sure isn't driving that hard of a bargain.

[Before you rush right out and buy one, you may want to see the negative impact of these devices on your freedom. The FSF links to the Boycott Blue Ray page as well. - dcparris]

Training programme on open source software

KOCHI: The Software Division of Computer Society of India in association with CICC, Singapore, National Resource Centre for Free and Open Source Software of CDAC, Chennai, and RMK Engineering College, will hold a five-day southern regional training programme on Open Source Software from May 22 to 26 in Chennai.

Renovating the Homepage

  • Debianhomepage.org; By Josh (Posted by jimf on Apr 22, 2006 4:01 AM EDT)
  • Story Type: News Story; Groups: Debian
When Josh at DebCentral.com came to me with his new plans for renovating our Debian Homepage RSS links page, I must say, I was less than enthusiastic. I've never been much use for or been a fan of RSS. When he showed me the new Ajax / DHTML which he was intending to implement, my ears picked up, but my question was still 'is it really a practical and usable feature. Well, it's now finished and up at http://debianhomepage.org/. All I can say is 'Wow!', It really lives up to the promises. I think this is something that many of us will find entirely useful, and if nothing else, fun to play with. Just give it a try.

Linux System Administration: First Tasks

You might know how to write code or build applications, but do you know what is required of a good Linux sysadmin?

Testing assumptions and the big stack

The coming of Fusion, both as products and architecture, is inevitably set to change the ground on which applications development has stood for many years, as is its part in the move towards delivery Service Oriented Architectures (SOA). But the company is aware it is now stepping out into uncharted ground, where some of its claims are inevitably based on assumption.

Linux distributors unite on standard for desktop software

In a move to make the freely distributed Linux operating system a stronger alternative to Microsoft Corp.'s Windows, a group of major Linux distributors announced Friday they have united on a standard set of components for desktop versions of Linux.

Linux.com weekly security advisory - April 21, 2006

This week, Debian, Fedora, FreeBSD, Gentoo, Red Hat, and Ubuntu released updates to address security problems with Firefox, Cacti, the Mozilla Suite, the GNOME Display Manager (GDM) and several others.

Moobella: Linux-Powered Ice Cream Machine

On the machine's front is a computer screen running on a Linux operating system. It displays menus of possible flavors and allows the user to create any combination, such as low-fat coffee ice cream with Oreo cookies. If the machine runs out of a flavor, it stops putting it on the menu and sends a message to MooBella asking for a refill.

[Whatever you do, don't try this with Windows, boys and girls. Who knows what you'd wind up with after recovering from a crash! - dcparris]

Scheduling Backup Jobs using at and crontab

Scheduling Backup Jobs using at and crontab

Xandros Server, Utilizing BRU, Delivers Linux Alternative To The Windows Lock On The SMB Space

Xandros, provider of easy-to-use Linux alternatives to Windows, and TOLIS Group, developer of the ultra-reliable BRU announced an agreement to integrate a complete BRU backup and recovery system into the forthcoming Xandros Server – the first truly viable alternative to the dominance of Microsoft Windows servers in the SMB (small-to-medium business) and departmental markets.

Edubuntu 6.06 LTS Beta is born !

Linux: vmslplice() versus COW

While explaining the new splice() and tee() buffer management system calls [story], Linus Torvalds made reference to some possible future extensions. This included vmsplice(), a system call "to basically do a 'write to the buffer', but using the reference counting and VM traversal to actually fill the buffer." Reviewing the implications of using such a system call lead to a comparison with FreeBSD's ZERO_COPY_SOCKET which uses COW (copy on write).

Linus explained that while this may look good on specific benchmarks, it actually introduces extra overhead, "the thing is, the cost of marking things COW is not just the cost of the initial page table invalidate: it's also the cost of the fault eventually when you _do_ write to the page, even if at that point you decide that the page is no longer shared, and the fault can just mark the page writable again." He went on to explain, "The COW approach does generate some really nice benchmark numbers, because the way you benchmark this thing is that you never actually write to the user page in the first place, so you end up having a nice benchmark loop that has to do the TLB invalidate just the _first_ time, and never has to do any work ever again later on." Linus didn't pull any punches when he summarized:

"I claim that Mach people (and apparently FreeBSD) are incompetent idiots. Playing games with VM is bad. memory copies are _also_ bad, but quite frankly, memory copies often have _less_ downside than VM games, and bigger caches will only continue to drive that point home."

Is Linux ready for YOUR desktop?

Another Interesting article about Linux on desktop ability. Can linux really cut it as a valid end user desktop platform? Well... Judge for yourself I guess. As for me and mine... We use linux. :-)

My sysadmin toolbox

I'm a young Linux developer from Serbia and Montenegro and a big fan of networking under Linux. Most of my favorite tools help with Linux networking and data security.

VectorLinux 5.1 "Standard" Live CD RC3 has been released

  • Distrowatch.com; By Uelsk8s (Posted by uelsk8s on Apr 21, 2006 4:02 PM EDT)
  • Story Type: News Story
vector The third release candidate of VectorLinux 5.1 "Standard" Live CD has been released: "The VectorLinux team is proud to announce the release of the VL-5.1 standard RC3 Live CD. This version fixes bugs from RC2. We have added GParted for all of your GUI partitioning needs, and an icon for the Live CD installer.

Brazil's free software forum: to the favelas

  • O'Reilly Network; By Andy Oram (Posted by andyo on Apr 21, 2006 3:05 PM EDT)
  • Story Type: Editorial; Groups:
After chatting with X Window System founder Jim Gettys yesterday about One Laptop Per Child, I happened to pass today, on the highway to the conference, the first favela I've ever seen.

PCLinuxOS 0.93 MiniME Screenshot Tour

DistroWatch reports - Texstar has announced the first release of the "MiniME" edition of PCLinuxOS 0.93, a minimal and customisable desktop system with KDE: "PCLinuxOS 0.93 MiniME is available for download and testing. This release is for those who have been asking for a minimum live CD / hard disk install allowing for full personalization. This release includes 2.6.15-oci3 kernel, basic KDE 3.5.2 desktop (kdebase and kdelibs only), PCLOS Control Center, the Synaptic software installer and a customized X.Org server from Thac to provide additional 3D support for many graphic cards.

OSDir has some cool screenshots of this MiniME edition in the PCLinuxOS 0.93 MiniME Screenshot Tour.

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