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Unisys throws weight behind 'mature' Linux

Enterprise services provider sees open source as a "key area" for growth, as it tries to make Linux more attractive to large companies.

Mozilla Kicks Off "Extend Firefox" Competition

MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA - Nov. 3, 2005 -- Mozilla Corporation today announced the Extend Firefox Contest to encourage development of extensions to the award-winning Firefox Web browser. Extensions are small add-ons that add new functionality to Firefox. They can be anything from a toolbar button to a completely new feature. The contest is expected to generate hundreds of new extensions for Firefox, allowing people to further personalize their Web browsing experience and to make surfing the Web even more fun and convenient.

Developers can tap into the Mozilla Developer Center (MDC), which will be hosting the contest, to find resources and pointers to help create extensions for Firefox. The contest also coincides with the launch of Firefox 1.5 – expected later this year – and developers are encouraged to take advantage of Firefox 1.5's new features.

The New Linux Kernel: Better Wi-Fi, Better File Systems

It took longer than expected, but the new, improved Linux kernel is now out, and it features Centrino Wi-Fi support.

Spyware: Firefox and IE

  • Seattle Post Intelligencer (Posted by tadelste on Nov 3, 2005 7:56 PM EDT)
  • Story Type: News Story
I'm over at the University of Washington computer science department's Industrial Affiliates Meeting today, where UW computer science grad students and professors are showing some of their latest projects to a variety of people from the computer industry. One of the talks this morning, by grad student Alexander Moshchuk, showed some preliminary results from a study that used automated methods to try to attract spyware and study its prevalence. The study looked at spyware delivered not only through downloaded programs but also via "drive-by downloads," picked up by simply visiting Web sites that deliver the spyware.

Quad-core Opteron SBC runs Debian AMD64 Linux

Win Enterprises is sampling an SHB Express (system host board) single-board computer (SBC) that supports a range of single- and dual-core Opteron processors, and runs Debian AMD64 Linux. The MB-06049 features optional high-end Nvidia graphics, and an optional daughtercard that adds a second dual-core Opteron CPU. The SBC targets industrial control, medical and military imaging, and telecom applications.

The Knoppix Advantage

There is a great deal of discussion going on about which distribution is most ideal for the desktop, with people taking different sides. If you ask me, Knoppix scores over other distros when it comes to installing Linux on old machines. Let me elaborate on how I reached this conclusion.

GIMP - The graphics suite par excellence

  • All About Linux (; By Ravi (Posted by VISITOR on Nov 3, 2005 4:31 PM EDT)
  • Story Type: Reviews; Groups: GNU
A very strong review of the graphics package GIMP.

Kennards shifts 400 desktops to Linux

  • Computerworld Australia; By Rodney Gedda (Posted by dcparris on Nov 3, 2005 4:02 PM EDT)
  • Story Type: News Story; Groups: Fedora
Rodney Gedda writes: "National equipment hire company Kennards Hire will migrate more than 400 desktops to Linux in a national deployment of the open source operating system. Scheduled for completion next January, the migration, which started about 18 months ago, began with a trial of one branch, according to StraTech Consulting Linux systems engineer Lindsay Holmwood."

Return of the BSDs

  •; By Sean Michael Kerner (Posted by VISITOR on Nov 3, 2005 3:34 PM EDT)
The clocks have fallen back, the leaves are hitting the ground and new BSD releases are on the Net. Among all the noise and buzz created by Linux, it's important to remember that it's not the only open source variant of Unix. OpenBSD, NetBSD and FreeBSD are all still very much alive and kicking and have recently been released from their respective projects.

The Real Cost of Retraining for

One of the most frequently voiced objections when discussing a migration to is the cost of retraining the users. The argument is raised as a cost barrier, and essentially amounts to claiming that it would be cheaper to upgrade to the next version of Microsoft Office than to retrain users on It's an attempt at the old "libre software isn't gratis" argument. Let's examine this argument closely to find out why it doesn't hold water.

Enterprisedb releases version 2 of Oracle-beater database

  •; By Staff, Network World (Posted by tadelste on Nov 3, 2005 1:07 PM EDT)
  • Groups: Oracle; Story Type: News Story
EnterpriseDB has made release 2 of its open-source database available, less than three months after the release of its first version.

The software, built on PostgreSQL, lets you run unmodified Oracle apps and includes various improvements and enhancements to the basic PostgreSQL but at a tenth of the cost of an Oracle database, the company claims.

Sony DRM is worse than you might think

  • The Inquirer; By Charlie Demerjian (Posted by tuxchick on Nov 3, 2005 12:38 PM EDT)
  • Story Type: News Story
If you look at the Sony rootkit, it does several things. It strips you of your rights, it potentially causes your computer harm, it breaks your computer if you remove it, and eats your CPU time. All of these things are bad, no question there. It also does the end user no good in any way, shape or form, not even by the most demented stretch of the imagination. It only hurts those who spent money to buy it.

It does Sony no good either because the files are rippable on a whim by anything more intelligent than a half-drunk monkey. So, you have software that does you flat out harm, and no good for the producer. What isn't malware about this, and how can Sony claim this?

[Ed.- Boycott time. It won't happen, but at least they don't get my money.]

Mozilla Extension Unblocks Google Cache in China

  • Attribution: Search Engine Journal (Posted by tadelste on Nov 3, 2005 12:09 PM EDT)
  • Story Type: News Story; Groups: Mozilla
An anonymous reader writes "A new feature in CustomizeGoogle (Firefox extension) modifies the Google Cache urls so that they are no longer blocked by the Chinese firewall. This feature is only available in CustomizeGoogle zh-CN.

Unisys throws weight behind "mature" Linux

  • ZDNet UK; By Colin Barker (Posted by ralph on Nov 3, 2005 11:41 AM EDT)
  • Story Type: News Story
Open source is now "a mature technology" and the right, cost-effective option for many companies, according to Peter Blackmore, executive vice-president and president of worldwide sales at Unisys.

Novell Announces Restructuring to More Closely Align Expenses with Core Business Strategy

WALTHAM, Mass. – Novell (NASDAQ:NOVL) has said that it will concentrate its business on key growth opportunities in the Linux and Open Source and Identity and Resource Management markets, resulting in a restructuring of the business that will reduce annual run rate expenses by more than $110 million. Novell anticipates that it will record a restructuring charge in the range of $30-35 million in the fourth fiscal quarter ended Oct. 31, 2005.

The full effect of the cost reductions is expected to be realized in the first fiscal quarter ending Jan. 31, 2006. When completed in the first fiscal quarter 2006, the cost restructuring is expected to result in a total headcount reduction of approximately 600 positions, more than 10% of Novell’s worldwide workforce.

Solaris Kernel in Debian Distro

Sean Michael Kerner writes: A new effort is aiming to take the Solaris kernel (SunOS) and use it as the core of GNU systems with Debian-based packages. The effort could potentially represent an affront to Sun's open source effort OpenSolaris. Then again it might not.

[Sounds pretty interesting. I'm sure Sun is thrilled by this news! The question is, how will the GNU/Linux community view this? - Ed]

Microsoft patches may break Web sites -- again

Web sites that use certain custom applications won't display as expected in Internet Explorer after installing two Microsoft security updates. To fix the situation one can download Mozilla Firefox 1.0.7 or developers can recompile the affected ActiveX control and mark it as safe when run in an Internet browser. Pick your poison!

Security elite hash out encryption alternatives

  • NewsForge (Posted by dave on Nov 3, 2005 10:01 AM EDT)
  • Story Type: News Story
At this week's Cryptographic Hash Workshop in Washington, DC, the giants of the cryptography field met to discuss the problem of our disintegrating hash algorithms. Today, the security of the algorithms that protect our online banking and digital signature systems is crumbling, and no one has a simple answer to the problem.

Tivoli ITCAM tracks user transaction end-to-end

Download a new and free Linux compatible trial version of Tivoli Composite Application Manager for Response Time Tracking. Tivoli Composite Application Manager for Response Time Tracking lets you follow the path of a user transaction end-to-end across your business infrastructure. You can drill down into each step that the transaction takes as it travels across multiple systems, and measure how each transaction component contributes to the overall response time.

Red Hat evolves in the name of reducing infrastructure costs

Nowadays, Red Hat has real competition in Novell SuSE, said Warren Shiau, senior IT analyst for The Strategic Council in Toronto. Shiau said the enhancements Red Hat has made to its Enterprise Linux and the company's forthcoming solutions are all good news. Furthermore, Red Hat is giving Unix shops pause to consider Linux in terms of a long-term platform strategy.

[Healthy competition is a beautiful thing! Companies like Red Hat have to keep in shape. Customers benefit from this in more ways than one. - Ed]

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