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Growing a Linux Software RAID 5 completely online

With 320GB SATA drives on sale with free shipping, I decided to increase my workstation’s RAID capacity for the last time. One nice things about SATA drives with Linux these days is you don’t ever need to shut the system down. In fact, with SATA, Linux software RAID, and the XFS filesystem I was able to add 320GB of capacity to the RAID filesystem without even unmounting it. During the entire time the system was completely usable, including all data on the RAID volume. Here is how I did it.

Windows Server Woos (BIG) Linux Customers?

I was reading a recent article in which the argument and proof is given for a number of Linux customers moving from Linux to Windows Server. To say so is a little misleading. What I see is, large companies like, Jelly Belly, and Unilever probably have something in common - a poor supporting IT staff to make Linux work, and work well!

Getting around Windows Activation when Virtualizing

When I first setup my VMware Server to run an existing Windows Install from a physical partition, I was asked to reactivate Windows XP before I could use it as a guest OS. I received a lot of complaints from people saying that they were then again asked to reactivate Windows again once they booted back into Windows natively, and then again under VMware and so on every time the OS was booted in a different environment. If you replace the WPA files prior to booting based on whether you’re using VMware or booting natively you won’t have to reactivate. Here's how to do it.

Episode 200 of The Linux Link Tech Show released

Episode 200 of The Linux Link Tech Show is available for download:
We're back after a 4 week vacation
We interview John Hull from Dell regarding their pre-installed Linux offerings
Dan updates his Linux podcast directory
Linc reviews the Apple mini-mouse and talks about setting up dual monitors
Linux distros and magazines that are now defunct
We discuss our plans for Ohio Linux Fest 2007
And much, much more

Audio Files available:

Microsoft OOXML spec 'dangerously flawed'

Microsoft's Office Open XML (OOXML) document format specification is fatally flawed where it comes to spreadsheets, with many functions filled with careless errors, according to Rob Weir, a systems architect for IBM and a member of various ODF technical committees. Weir documented seven specific problems in a blog post, and said there are others.

Ultra-lite MEPIS spinoff goes gold

MEPIS on July 9 announced the "Spartacus" release of antiX, a community-built, ultralight derivative of the MEPIS Linux distribution. AntiX (pronounced "Antics") is the personal project of MEPIS community member "anticapitalista," who engineered it as a free version of MEPIS aimed at old 32-bit PC hardware. AntiX is built using the MEPIS Linux 6.5 core, but mostly it has a different set of default user applications.

Dell fixes Ubuntu laptop pricing

Dell Ubuntu Linux buyers were recently outraged when a price comparison between identical Inspiron 1420 laptops showed that instead of the Ubuntu system being cheaper, it actually ended up costing $225 more than the same laptop with Vista Home Basic Edition. "Bottom line this was an oversight, pure and simple," a Dell spokesperson told The prices have been reset to the appropriate prices.

AMD Radeon HD 2000 Series & Linux

  • Phoronix; By Michael Larabel (Posted by phoronix on Jul 12, 2007 8:45 AM EDT)
  • Groups: Linux; Story Type: News Story
Since January of this year we have been telling you that AMD has been silently working on R600 (Radeon HD 2000) support for their proprietary Linux "fglrx" driver. However, for the end-user the support isn't complete and still equates to being useless. But how does the recently announced Avivo R500 driver function with the newer R600 series? We have tried out an RV610 GPU in several configurations under Linux, and in this article we will tell you what works and what doesn't right now for the Radeon HD 2000 series.

Lenovo quietly selling Linux-compatible laptops

  •; By Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols (Posted by Scott_Ruecker on Jul 12, 2007 8:03 AM EDT)
  • Story Type: News Story; Groups: Linux
Lenovo seems to have a love/hate relationship with Linux. Last year, it began offering its high-end T60p ThinkPad laptop with SLED 10 (SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop). This year, the company is releasing its newest high-end laptop, the T61p ThinkPad, and once more, while it runs desktop Linux, the company isn't overly eager to let the world know about it.

The LXer Interview: Sebastian Kügler of KDE

LXer Feature: 12-Jul-2007

A look inside what makes KDE tick, a glimpse of what the future holds and more in The LXer Interview of Sebastian Kügler.

LPI Exam Training: Administrative Tasks

  • IBM/DeveloperWorks; By Ian Shields (Posted by IdaAshley on Jul 12, 2007 6:36 AM EDT)
  • Story Type: Tutorial; Groups: IBM, Linux
Prepare for your Linux certification or build fundamental skills on Linux systems administration. In this sixth installment from a series of nine tutorials on exam 102 topics, you will know how to manage users and groups, set user profiles and environments, use log files, schedule jobs, back up your data, and maintain the system time.

Linux to gain "completely fair scheduler"

The next release of the Linux kernel will apparently gain an all-new scheduler said to deliver better desktop scheduling. Ingo Molnar's CFS ("completely fair scheduler") implements a fair scheduling approach long advocated by Con "Conman" Kolivas. Molnar, a Red Hat employee who maintains the kernel's scheduling subsystem, describes CFS as follows: "Eighty percent of CFS's design can be summed up in a single sentence: CFS basically models an 'ideal, precise multi-tasking CPU' on real hardware."

IBM Pledges Free Access to Patents Involved in Implementing 150+ Software Standards

IBM today announced that it is granting universal and perpetual access to certain intellectual property that might be necessary to implement more than 150 standards designed to make software interoperable. IBM's commitment not only applies to the distributors, developers or manufacturers that are implementing the specifications involved, but also extends to their users or customers. It is valid as long as adopters are not suing any party -- not just IBM -- over necessary patented technology needed to implement the standards.

Newest FSF board member Hill discusses free software goals

"I'm a bit of a rebel," Benjamin Mako Hill says,"with rather too many causes." Best known for his many roles in Debian, Hill is also a member of the Ubuntu Community Council, an advisor to One Laptop Per Child, a director of Software Freedom International, and the originator of several free software projects -- to say nothing of an active voice for the Free Culture Movement, and the occasional organizer of such activities as last fall's iPod Liberation Event in Cambridge, Mass. Hill recently took on his largest challenge yet as the youngest director on the Free Software Foundation's board of directors.

Counter-FUD on patents

Another move in the software patent game. IBM is offering a patent covenant to implementers of a bunch of IT standards, with the catch being that you lose all of the covenant protection if you sue over any patent that reads on any software that's also covered by the covenant.

Linux: Revisiting Swap Prefetch

Another thread discussed potentially merging the swap prefetch patch into the mainline Linux kernel. Con Kolivas started the thread saying "I fixed all bugs I could find and improved it as much as I could last kernel cycle. Put me and the users out of our misery and merge it now or delete it forever please." Replying to an off-list message, Andrew Morton asked users of the patch, "please provide us more details on your usage and testing of that code. Amount of memory, workload, observed results, etc?"

Tux Paint gets a face lift

Five years after the debut of its popular open-source drawing program for children, New Breed Software announced the release of Tux Paint 0.9.17.

Web 2.0 is built on Open Source

Amazon uses Linux. eBay uses Windows. But what OSs and webservers run Web 2.0? We tested 17 of our favorites and found out. The script is included to check for yourself. They all use Linux. Linux is pretty much it for Web 2.0 startups. If you’ve ever wondered why a site called VentureCake has so much Linux content, you now have your answer.

IBM pledges free access to patents for standards

IBM announced today that they are simplifying access to their patent portfolio as it applies to open standards. "IBM's commitment not only applies to the distributors, developers or manufacturers that are implementing the specifications involved, but also extends to their users or customers. It is valid as long as adopters are not suing any party -- not just IBM -- over necessary patented technology needed to implement the standards."

Staffing for Linux, not distribution X

The general corporate strategy of standardising the platform and hiring accordingly is an echo of that argument from the 70s. Organizations standardising on Red Hat Enterprise Server generally try, for example, to hire people with Red Hat Enterprise Server experience and then press the combination as the one size fits all solution for whatever Linux needs line managers may have. Take a close look, however, at the Linux staffing issue and you should see notice that the average tenure generally exceeds the average life of a distribution -meaning that when you hire Joe, he’s likely to be around longer than the particular Linux distribution you hire him to run.

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