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Open Source and You

No one would buy a car with the hood welded shut, but that is essentially what commercial software is. However, since computing began, some software has been distributed in such a way that users can change or repair it by modifying its source code--the step-by-step instructions that the computer executes when the software runs. Software distributed under a license that allows a programmer to modify the source code and freely distribute an improved version of it is called open source.

Dual-licensed Linux router distro ships v2.0

Vyatta is shipping version 2.0 of its dual-licensed, Debian Linux-based router distribution. Vyatta Subscription Edition 2.0 (VS2), optionally available with Dell hardware, aims to enable hosting facilities, Internet service providers, and enterprises to replace pricey proprietary router hardware with commodity PCs.

Open Source: Tell Me Why I Care

My first planel for South by Southwest was titled, "Open Source: Tell Me Why I Care." Four advocates discussed the reasons for using open source. Pleasantly, there was almost no Microsoft-bashing, and only a little discussion of using open source because it's socially the right thing to do. "One of the myths that keeps people away from open source is that it smells a little bit like patchouli," said one audience participant. Instead, the panel offiered hard-headed, practical reasons why using open source makes sense. The arguments will be pretty familiar to open source advocates, but they'll be compelling to anyone who's sitting on the fence, currently committed to proprietary software and worried about the risks of using open source.

KDE Commit-Digest for 11th March 2007

In this week's KDE Commit-Digest: The Oxygen iconset is moved from playground to kdelibs, changes made throughout KDE to support the new icon names specification. The Crystal iconset is moved from kdelibs to its kdeartwork retirement home. More work on the Oxygen widget style. Security fixes in KTorrent. Initial work on "uninstall" functionality for the KDE Windows installation utility. New "Snowish" theme for the Kamion user information migration utility. Continued graphics improvements across kdegames. Improved wireless network encryption support in Solid. Further work on the Amarok 2.0 porting, with particular attention to the Music Store integration elements. KPilot is to make a surprise return for the KDE 4.0 release.

Windows Vista Problems

Want to go out and buy a Vista computer or upgrade from XP to Vista? You will want to read this first.

My Journey to Linux

  • on Smalltalk; By Ramon Leon (Posted by kozmcrae on Mar 11, 2007 8:19 PM EDT)
  • Story Type: News Story; Groups: Linux
I’m a Windows guy, I’ve always been a Windows guy. Windows today is more stable than ever. Seems now would be the best time of all to be a Windows guy. Slowly but surely though, I’m becoming a Linux guy. K3b Enters New Era With Approaching 1.0 Release

"One of free software's premier applications, KDE's CD and DVD burning suite K3b, is about to hit the big 1-0. This milestone touts rewritten DVD video ripping and a refocused interface design. The new release represents a level of feature-completeness and stability that surpasses all previous K3b releases and, perhaps, all free software competitors."

NZ objects to Microsoft Open XML standard fast-track proposal

  • Computerworld New Zealand; By David Watson (Posted by d0nk3y on Mar 11, 2007 5:15 PM EDT)
  • Groups: Microsoft; Story Type: News Story
Standards New Zealand, our representative organisation in dealings with the ISO, objects on the grounds that Open Document has already been approved

Free Software Foundation to Jobs: Be First to Drop DRM

A branch of the Free Software Foundation known as DefectiveByDesign launched an online petition last week that calls on Apple CEO Steve Jobs to "set the ethical example" by eliminating DRM from iTunes. The petition, a response to an open letter on digital rights management Jobs wrote in February, reached its initial goal of one thousand signatures about five hours after going live.

Freespire 2.0 Alpha 1 Screenshots

With the switch to an Ubuntu base, development of Freespire 2.0 has restarted. The first alpha release of Freespire 2.0 is now available for download and we had decided to check it out for ourselves. Freespire 2.0 Alpha 1 utilizes the Linux 2.6.20 kernel, X.Org 7.2, KDE 3.5.6, and all of the other latest packages. However. for the Freespire team there remains a great deal of work ahead before we shall see Freespire 2.0 final.

Setting Up A DNS Server On Ubuntu Edgy With MyDNS And MyDNSConfig

  • HowtoForge; By Till Brehm (Posted by falko on Mar 11, 2007 11:29 AM EDT)
  • Story Type: Tutorial; Groups: Ubuntu
In this tutorial I will describe how to install and configure MyDNS and MyDNSConfig. MyDNS is a DNS server that uses a MySQL database as backend instead of configuration files like, for example, Bind or djbdns. The advantage is that MyDNS simply reads the records from the database, and it does not have to be restarted/reloaded when DNS records change or zones are created/edited/deleted. A secondary nameserver can be easily set up by installing a second instance of MyDNS that accesses the same database or, to be more redundant, uses the MySQL master / slave replication features to replicate the data to the secondary nameserver.

The Evolution of Wikis in the Enterprise

To help protect against incorrect edits, another feature of a wiki is robust change control mechanics and auditing. This would not only include naming who changed, added or deleted what from a particular page, but often a means by which to get a change history of an article, or retrieve earlier versions of it for reviewing purposes.

Virtualization and Open Source Are Big

About four months ago, Bernard Golden predicted that virtualization would play a big part in the open source world . The fact that the Novell-Microsoft collaboration agreement centered on it is one more indication that virtualization is “it” for tomorrow’s data centers, he said.

This week at LWN: Short topics in memory management

Memory management has been a relatively quiet topic over much of the life of the 2.6.x kernels. Many of the worst problems have been solved and the MM hackers have gone on to other things. That does not mean that there is no more work to do, however; indeed, things might be about to heat up. A few recent discussions illustrate the sort of pressures which may lead to a renewed interest in memory management work in the near future.

Is Google becoming the next evil empire?

I heard on the news this morning something about Google's founders getting close to being richer than Bill Gates. Is money the root or the root of all evil? I don't know.

Security-oriented Linux live CD achieves major release

The Switzerland-based project team earlier this week announced the release of BackTrack 2.0, a SLAX-based live CD with a comprehensive collection of security and forensics tools. The distribution features a 2.6.20 Linux kernel (with several patches) and the KDE desktop environment.

Colors and Prompts in Bash

Bourne Again Shell offers a lot of power, flexiblity and fun. Many new Unix users do not realize the flexibility of the shell environment; indeed; many new Unix users regard the shell as primitive and too restricted: nothing could be further from the truth. With very little time investment a new Unix user can learn how not to just make their work environment in the shell more productive but even a little fun.

OpenOffice confab selects Barcelona

Organizers of's annual conference, "OOoCon," have voted to stage this year's event in Barcelona, Spain, in September. Exact dates are expected to be announced soon. Barcelona won out with 297 votes over Dehradun, India (224), and Beijing, China (82).

How to flash motherboard BIOS from Linux (no DOS/Windows, no floppy drive)?

You've finally made the move to a Windows-free computer, you're enjoying your brand new Linux OS, no trojans/viruses, no slowdown, everything's perfect. Suddenly, you need to update the BIOS on your motherboard to support some new piece of hardware, but typically the motherboard vendor is offering only DOS based BIOS flash utilities. You panic! Fortunately, this problem is easy to solve...

Open Source Web Designs

HTMLfixIT is a help and news site for anything Internet or web design related. We welcome and encourage you to check out the site and make use of the tools, tutorials, forum and chatroom.

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