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Xubuntu: Xubuntu at Mexican collection agencies

Planet Ubuntu - Sat, 02/21/2015 - 17:42

The Xubuntu team hears stories about how it is used in organizations all over the world. In this “Xubuntu at..” series of interviews, we seek to interview organizations who wish to share their stories. If your organization is using Xubuntu and you want to share what you’re doing with us please contact Elizabeth K. Joseph at lyz@ubuntu.com to discuss details about your organization.

Late last year we heard from developer Greg Blumenthal when he told us that he’d been deploying Xubuntu to customers who where “extremely happy” with their new systems. This month we took some time to ask him some questions about his work and the deployments.

Can you tell us a bit about yourself and the organizations you work with?

I am a freelance LAMP developer. Most of my clients are Mexican debt collection agencies, although I also work with food processing companies, telemarketers, and B2B VoIP companies.

What influenced your decision to use Free/Open Source Software for your customers?

Stability, ease of installation, ease of management, timely security updates. Interestingly, cost is NOT an issue here, as pirate copies of Windows are readily available.

What made you select Xubuntu specifically?

Low memory footprint, ease of installation on older systems, and ease of configuration to appear as familiar as possible to the end-users.

Can you tell us a bit about your Xubuntu setup?

I remove games, xchat, and other work distractions, and add openssh-server (allowing remote management), ntp, samba, and a SIP client (usually Zoiper or SFLphone). Everything is configures for Spanish with either Spanish or Latin American keyboards. I even install it in Spanish, even though English is my first language.

Is there anything else you wish to share with us about your work or how you use Xubuntu?

The biggest challenge is always sound. Whether it is ALSA or PulseAudio, I spend more time and effort managing sound issues for my clients than all other issues combined.

Huge thanks to Greg for taking the time to talk to us, and best of luck in his continued work with Xubuntu!

Oliver Grawert: Meet node-snapper a helper to easily create .snap packages of your node.js projects

Planet Ubuntu - Sat, 02/21/2015 - 10:42

When I created the “Snappy Chatroom” package for WebRTC Video chat on snappy I used node.js to provide the necessary server bits. During building the snap I noticed how hard it is to actually put the necessary binaries and node modules in place. Especially if you want your snap to be arch independent (javascript is arch independent, so indeed our snap package should be too).

The best way I found was to actually build node.js from source on the respective target arch and run “npm install” for the necessary modules, then tarring up the matching dirs and putting them into my snap package tree.

This is quite some effort !!!

I’m a lazy programmer and surely do not want do that every time I update the package. Luckily there are already binaries of node for all architectures in the Ubuntu archive and it is not to hard to make use of them to run npm install in a qemu-user-static chroot for all target arches and to automate the creation for the respective tarballs. As little bonus i thought it would be nice to have it automatically generate the proper snap execution environment in form of a service startup script (with properly set LD_LIBRARY_PATh etc) so you only need to point node to the to-execute .js file.

This brought me to write node-snapper, a tool that does exactly do the above. It makes it easy to just maintain the actual code I care about in a tree (the site itself and the packaging data for the snap). I leave the caring for node itself or for the modules to the archive, respectively the npm upstreams and just pull in their work as needed.

See https://launchpad.net/node-snapper for the upstream code.

To outline how node-snapper works I took some notes below how I roll the chatroom snap as an example.

Using node-snapper:

First we create a work dir for our snap package.

ogra@anubis:~$ mkdir package

To create the nodejs and npm module setup for our snap package we use node-snapper, let’s branch this so we can use it later.

ogra@anubis:~$ bzr branch lp:node-snapper

Now we move into the package dir and let node-snapper create the tarballs with the “express”, “webrtc.io”, “webrtc.io-client” and “ws” node modules since chatroom makes use of all of them.

ogra@anubis:~$ cd package
ogra@anubis:~/package$ sudo ../node-snapper/node-snapper express webrtc.io webrtc.io-client ws
...

This created three files.

ogra@anubis:~/package$ ls
amd64-dir.tgz  armhf-dir.tgz  start-service.sh

We unpack the tarballs and remove them.

ogra@anubis:~/package$ tar xf amd64-dir.tgz
ogra@anubis:~/package$ tar xf armhf-dir.tgz
ogra@anubis:~/package$ ls
amd64  amd64-dir.tgz  armhf  armhf-dir.tgz  start-service.sh
ogra@anubis:~/package$ rm *.tgz
ogra@anubis:~/package$ ls
amd64  armhf  start-service.sh

… and branch the chatroom site and packaging code branch.

ogra@anubis:~/package$ bzr branch lp:~ogra/+junk/chatroom
...
ogra@anubis:~/package$ ls site/
add.png      cam_on.png    expand.png      fullscreen.png  mute.png   server.js  unmute.png
cam_off.png  collapse.png  index.html      script.js  style.css  webrtc.io.js
ogra@anubis:~/package$ ls meta/
icon.png  icon.svg  package.yaml  readme.md

The file we want node to execute on startup is the server.js file in the “site” dir in our snap package. We edit start-service.sh so that the MY_EXECUTABLE variable looks like:

MY_EXECUTABLE=site/server.js

This is it, we are ready to roll a .snap package out of this

ogra@anubis:~/package$ cd ..
ogra@anubis:~$ snappy build package
...
ogra@anubis:~$ ls
chatroom.ogra_0.1-5_multi.snap  package

As you can see, node-snapper makes supplying javascript nodejs code as snap package a breeze. You only need to keep your site and package files in a git or bzr tree and node-snapper will always provide you the latest nodejs setup and npm installed modules as needed just at package build time.

Indeed we now want to test our snap package. I have a RPi2 running snappy at 192.168.2.57 with enabled developer mode, so I can easily use snappy-remote to install the package.

ogra@anubis:~$ snappy-remote --url=ssh://192.168.2.57 install chatroom.ogra_0.1-5_multi.snap

The service should start automatically. Opening chromium, pointing it to http://192.168.2.57:6565 and approving access to microphone and camera will now give us a Video chat (pointing an android phone to it at the same time enables you to talk to yourself while watching you from different angles ;) … note that the mute button is very helpful when doing this …)

I hope we will see some more node.js projects land in the snappy app store soon. A PPA with node-snapper to make it easier installable should be ready next week and if I see there is demand I will also push it to universe in the Ubuntu archive.

I hope you found that little howto helpful :)


Sean Davis: Xfce 4.12, One Week Away

Planet Ubuntu - Sat, 02/21/2015 - 09:06

After what seems like an eternity, a new release of Xfce is finally just around the corner.  Xfce 4.10 was released in 2012, and since then development has happened in small bursts for each project.  Once a release date was set, interest spiked and development along with it.

The continued development has been recorded by ToZ on the Xfce Forums, and Skunnyk in his blog (parts 1, 2, and 3).  Both are worth a look to see how far Xfce has come in recent months.  If you’re looking for screenshots, you’ll find a few at those links and a gallery at the end of this post.

With just one week until the determined release date (February 28), string freeze is behind us and all that remains is bug fixes.  If you’ve got some development skills, why not swing by the Xfce Bugzilla and provide some patches?  Right now your patches have the best chance of being noticed and merged, so your hard work won’t go to waste!  And development is not the only way to contribute…

Areas for Contribution

Check out the Xfce Contribute page for more details

  • Fixing “easy“, “critical“, and any other bugs you never want to see again
  • Reviewing bugs and patches: Some bugs date back to 2007 and there is a good possibility they are no longer valid. If you don’t think one applies any longer, comment on it indicating as much.
  • Testing: With the sudden influx of fixes and new releases, we need testers more than ever.  Take the new releases for a spin and let us know if you see anything… odd.
  • Translations: Is your native language missing from Xfce? Is the choice of words not quite right?  Help us out!
 Screenshots

The following screenshots are not an exhaustive list of the new features, but rather a select list of highlights in the upcoming release.

Ronnie Tucker: Unofficial Ubuntu Store for Phones Now Available on PCs

Planet Ubuntu - Sat, 02/21/2015 - 02:23

Ubuntu for phones doesn’t have an official online store for the applications accessible from the PC, but that doesn’t mean someone didn’t manage to put one together. It’s not official, but it works very well.

Now that there is an Ubuntu phone in the wild, users have started paying much more attention to the applications available in store. There are a lot of them, but you can’t see them unless you are booting an Ubuntu OS on a phone, like Aquaris E4.5 Ubuntu Edition or Nexus 4. Now that has been changed because an unofficial store is available.

 

Source: http://linux.softpedia.com/blog/Unofficial-Ubuntu-Store-for-Phones-Now-Available-on-PCs-473334.shtml

Submitted by: Silviu Stahie

Lubuntu Blog: Lubuntu 14.04.2 available

Planet Ubuntu - Fri, 02/20/2015 - 18:28
Lubuntu developers are proud to announce that (with a delay of two weeks) version 14.04.2 of the fast and lightweight operating system is now available for download via this link.

Release Manager Walter Lapchynski explains: we had to delay the release for two weeks because of problems with X meta-packages which caused us numerous re-spins. But we wanted to do it right in order to maintain stability of existing installations and – on the other hand - roll up accumulated stable updates into updated images to reduce download requirements for new deployments.
Jens Leineweber, Head of Lubuntu Press adds in: and because we want our users to experience a stable environment even for computers with low resources, we decided to not release a .2 version of the alternate installation. That's due to the fact, that we were not able to fix all the bugs brought to our attention.

One major issue the team is fighting with is the debian-installer that causes troubles. Once again Walter Lapchynski: we've been asked a lot lately to stop doing alternates in lieu of netboot, but that's not really a good solution.

The Lubuntu Team will now team up with the Ubuntu Release Team and Servers Team to develop a possible low resource version of the Ubiquity installer.

Caution: before you install Lubuntu, we advice you to have a read of the Release notes!

The Fridge: Ubuntu 14.04.2 LTS released

Planet Ubuntu - Fri, 02/20/2015 - 16:55

The Ubuntu team is pleased to announce the release of Ubuntu 14.04.2 LTS (Long-Term Support) for its Desktop, Server, Cloud, and Core products, as well as other flavours of Ubuntu with long-term support.

We have expanded our hardware enablement offering since 12.04, and with 14.04.2, this point release contains an updated kernel and X stack for new installations to support new hardware across all our supported architectures, not just x86.

As usual, this point release includes many updates, and updated installation media has been provided so that fewer updates will need to be downloaded after installation. These include security updates and corrections for other high-impact bugs, with a focus on maintaining stability and compatibility with Ubuntu 14.04 LTS.

Kubuntu 14.04.2 LTS, Edubuntu 14.04.2 LTS, Xubuntu 14.04.2 LTS, Mythbuntu 14.04.2 LTS, Ubuntu GNOME 14.04.2 LTS, Lubuntu 14.04.2 LTS, Ubuntu Kylin 14.04.2 LTS, and Ubuntu Studio 14.04.2 LTS are also now available. More details can be found in their individual release notes:

https://wiki.ubuntu.com/TrustyTahr/ReleaseNotes#Official_flavours

Maintenance updates will be provided for 5 years for Ubuntu Desktop, Ubuntu Server, Ubuntu Cloud, Ubuntu Core, Ubuntu Kylin, Edubuntu, and Kubuntu. All the remaining flavours will be supported for 3 years.

To get Ubuntu 14.04.2

In order to download Ubuntu 14.04.2, visit:

http://www.ubuntu.com/download

Users of Ubuntu 12.04 will be offered an automatic upgrade to 14.04.2 via Update Manager. For further information about upgrading, see:

https://help.ubuntu.com/community/TrustyUpgrades

As always, upgrades to the latest version of Ubuntu are entirely free of charge.

We recommend that all users read the 14.04.2 release notes, which document caveats and workarounds for known issues, as well as more in-depth notes on the release itself. They are available at:

https://wiki.ubuntu.com/TrustyTahr/ReleaseNotes

If you have a question, or if you think you may have found a bug but aren’t sure, you can try asking in any of the following places:

Help Shape Ubuntu

If you would like to help shape Ubuntu, take a look at the list of ways you can participate at:

http://www.ubuntu.com/community/get-involved

About Ubuntu

Ubuntu is a full-featured Linux distribution for desktops, laptops, clouds and servers, with a fast and easy installation and regular releases. A tightly-integrated selection of excellent applications is included, and an incredible variety of add-on software is just a few clicks away.

Professional services including support are available from Canonical and hundreds of other companies around the world. For more information about support, visit:

http://www.ubuntu.com/support

More Information

You can learn more about Ubuntu and about this release on our website listed below:

http://www.ubuntu.com/

To sign up for future Ubuntu announcements, please subscribe to Ubuntu’s very low volume announcement list at:

http://lists.ubuntu.com/mailman/listinfo/ubuntu-announce

Originally posted to the ubuntu-announce mailing list on Fri Feb 20 01:13:08 UTC 2015 by Adam Conrad on behalf of the Ubuntu Release Team

Ubuntu 14.04.2 LTS released

The Fridge - Fri, 02/20/2015 - 16:54

The Ubuntu team is pleased to announce the release of Ubuntu 14.04.2 LTS (Long-Term Support) for its Desktop, Server, Cloud, and Core products, as well as other flavours of Ubuntu with long-term support.

We have expanded our hardware enablement offering since 12.04, and with 14.04.2, this point release contains an updated kernel and X stack for new installations to support new hardware across all our supported architectures, not just x86.

As usual, this point release includes many updates, and updated installation media has been provided so that fewer updates will need to be downloaded after installation. These include security updates and corrections for other high-impact bugs, with a focus on maintaining stability and compatibility with Ubuntu 14.04 LTS.

Kubuntu 14.04.2 LTS, Edubuntu 14.04.2 LTS, Xubuntu 14.04.2 LTS, Mythbuntu 14.04.2 LTS, Ubuntu GNOME 14.04.2 LTS, Lubuntu 14.04.2 LTS, Ubuntu Kylin 14.04.2 LTS, and Ubuntu Studio 14.04.2 LTS are also now available. More details can be found in their individual release notes:

https://wiki.ubuntu.com/TrustyTahr/ReleaseNotes#Official_flavours

Maintenance updates will be provided for 5 years for Ubuntu Desktop, Ubuntu Server, Ubuntu Cloud, Ubuntu Core, Ubuntu Kylin, Edubuntu, and Kubuntu. All the remaining flavours will be supported for 3 years.

To get Ubuntu 14.04.2

In order to download Ubuntu 14.04.2, visit:

http://www.ubuntu.com/download

Users of Ubuntu 12.04 will be offered an automatic upgrade to 14.04.2 via Update Manager. For further information about upgrading, see:

https://help.ubuntu.com/community/TrustyUpgrades

As always, upgrades to the latest version of Ubuntu are entirely free of charge.

We recommend that all users read the 14.04.2 release notes, which document caveats and workarounds for known issues, as well as more in-depth notes on the release itself. They are available at:

https://wiki.ubuntu.com/TrustyTahr/ReleaseNotes

If you have a question, or if you think you may have found a bug but aren’t sure, you can try asking in any of the following places:

Help Shape Ubuntu

If you would like to help shape Ubuntu, take a look at the list of ways you can participate at:

http://www.ubuntu.com/community/get-involved

About Ubuntu

Ubuntu is a full-featured Linux distribution for desktops, laptops, clouds and servers, with a fast and easy installation and regular releases. A tightly-integrated selection of excellent applications is included, and an incredible variety of add-on software is just a few clicks away.

Professional services including support are available from Canonical and hundreds of other companies around the world. For more information about support, visit:

http://www.ubuntu.com/support

More Information

You can learn more about Ubuntu and about this release on our website listed below:

http://www.ubuntu.com/

To sign up for future Ubuntu announcements, please subscribe to Ubuntu’s very low volume announcement list at:

http://lists.ubuntu.com/mailman/listinfo/ubuntu-announce

Originally posted to the ubuntu-announce mailing list on Fri Feb 20 01:13:08 UTC 2015 by Adam Conrad on behalf of the Ubuntu Release Team

Brian Murray: Automatic crash reporting

Planet Ubuntu - Fri, 02/20/2015 - 14:53

Now that apport-noui, a package to automatically report crashes to the Ubuntu Error Tracker without user interaction, has been proven to work well on Ubuntu devices I was wondering what it would take to get it running on my Mythbuntu 14.04 install as I was tired of getting the occasional apport dialog when I was trying to watch TV.

I had to backport a couple of apport fixes and also backported one whoopsie fix that will log the OOPS ID of any reported crashes to /var/log/syslog. I’ve put these updated versions of apport and whoopsie in my PPA, however they are acceptable for a Stable Release Update and depending on the interest I will upload them to the SRU queue.

I added my PPA to my 14.04 system:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:brian-murray/ppa

I then installed the apport-noui package on it.

sudo apt-get install apport-noui

I’ve been running it for about a week now and looked in my /var/crash/ directory on my Mythtv system to discover a .crash and a correpsonding .uploaded file. The .uploaded file means that the crash was sent to the Ubuntu Error Tracker.

While I could inspect the .crash file on my system to see what it is about let’s look for the OOPS ID in /var/log/syslog.


Feb 20 10:38:54 flash whoopsie[8223]: Parsing
/var/crash/_usr_share_mythtv_metadata_Movie_tmdb3.py.110.crash.
Feb 20 10:38:54 flash whoopsie[8223]: Uploading
/var/crash/_usr_share_mythtv_metadata_Movie_tmdb3.py.110.crash.
Feb 20 10:38:56 flash whoopsie[8223]: Sent; server replied with: No error
Feb 20 10:38:56 flash whoopsie[8223]: Response code: 200
Feb 20 10:38:56 flash whoopsie[8223]: Reported OOPS ID
2ad9d3f0-b6b8-11e4-bf61-fa163e707a72

The crash can be found at the Error Tracker at https://errors.ubuntu.com/oops/2ad9d3f0-b6b8-11e4-bf61-fa163e707a72. On the problem instance page we can see a line labelled Problem and that is a link to the bucket for these crashes. These crashes seem to occur pretty frequently, so I’ve opened a Launchpad bug report corresponding to the crash.

Let me know if you think this is useful (or if you have any issues) and I’ll work on getting this into the Trusty and Utopic SRU queues.

Andrea Corbellini: Are LXC and Docker secure?

Planet Ubuntu - Fri, 02/20/2015 - 09:36

Since its initial release in 2008, LXC has become widespread among servers. Today, it is becoming the preferred deployment strategy in many contexts, also thanks to Docker and, more recently, LXD.

LXC and Docker are used not only to achieve modular architecture design, but also as a way to run untrusted code in an isolated environment.

We can agree that the LXC and Docker ecosystems are great and work well, but there’s an important question that I believe everyone should ask, but too few people are asking: are LXC and Docker secure?

A system is as safe as its weakest component.

In order to answer this question, I won’t go deep into the details of what LXC and Docker are. The web is full of information on namespaces and cgroups. Rather, I’d like to show what LXC and Docker can do, what they cannot do, and what their default configuration allows them to do. My hope is to provide a quick checklist for those who want to go with LXC/Docker, but are unsure on what they need to pay attention to.

What LXC and Docker can do

As we all know, LXC confines processes mainly thanks to two Linux kernel features: namespaces and cgroups. These provide ways to control and limit access to resource such as memory or filesystem. So, for example, you can limit the bandwidth used by processes inside a container, you can limit the priority of the CPU scheduler, and so on.

As it is well known, processes inside a LXC guest cannot:

  • directly interact with the host processes, or with other LXC containers;
  • access the root filesystem, unless configured otherwise;
  • access special devices (block devices, network interfaces, …), unless configured otherwise;
  • mount arbitrary filesystems;
  • execute special ioctls, special syscalls or special interrupts, that would affect the behavior host.

And at the same time, processes inside an LXC guest can find an environment that is perfectly suitable to run a working operating system: I can run init, I can read from /proc, I can access the internet.

This is most of what LXC can do, and it’s also what you get by default. Docker (when used with the LXC backend) is a wrapper around LXC that provides utilities for easy deployment and management of the containers, so everything that applies to LXC, applies to Docker too.

If this sounds great, then beware that there are the things you should know…

You need a security context

LXC is somewhat incomplete. What I mean is that some parts of special filesystems like procfs or sysfs are not faked. For example, as of now, I can successfully change the value of host’s /proc/sys/kernel/panic or /sys/class/thermal/cooling_device0/cur_state.

The reason why LXC is “incomplete” doesn’t really matter (it’s actually the kernel to be incomplete, but anyhow…). What matters is that certain nasty actions can be forbade, not by LXC itself, but by an AppArmor/SELinux profile that blocks read and write access certain /proc and /sys components. The AppArmor rules were shipped in Ubuntu since 12.10 (Quantal), and have been included upstream since early 2014, together with the SELinux rules.

Therefore, a security context like AppArmor or SELinux is required to run LXC safely. Without it, the root user inside a guest can take control of the host.

Check that AppArmor or SELinux are running and are configured properly. If you want to go with Grsecurity, then remember to configure it manually.

Limit resource consumption

LXC offers ways to limit resource usage, but no special restrictions are put in place by default. You have to configure them by yourself.

With the default configuration, I can run fork-bombs, request huge memory maps, keep all CPUs busy, doing high loads of I/O. All of this without special privileges. Remember this when running untrusted code.

To limit resource consumption in LXC, open the configuration file for your container and set the lxc.cgroup.<system> values you need.

For example, if you want to limit the container memory usage to 512 MiB, set lxc.cgroup.memory.limit_in_bytes = 512M. Note that the container with that option, once it exceeds the 512 MiB cap, will start using the swap without limits. If this is not what you want, then set lxc.cgroup.memory.memsw.max_usage_in_bytes = 512M. Note that to use both options you may need to add cgroup_enable=memory and swapaccount=1 to the kernel command line.

To have an overview of all possible options, check out Red Hat’s documentation or the Kernel documentation.

With Docker, the story is similar: just use --lxc-conf from the command line to set LXC’s options.

Limit disk usage

Something that LXC cannot do is limiting mass storage usage. Luckily, LXC integrates nicely with LVM (and brtfs, and zfs, and overlayfs), and you can use that for easily limiting disk usage. You can, for example, create a logical volume for each of your guests, and give that volume a limited size, so that space usage inside a guest cannot grow indefinitely.

The same holds for Docker.

Pay attention at /dev/random

Processes inside LXC guests, by default, can read from /dev/random and can consume the entropy of the host. This may cause troubles if you need big amounts of randomness (to generate keys or whatever).

If this is something that you don’t want, then configure LXC so that it denies access to the character devices 1:8 (random) and 1:9 (urandom). Denying access to the path /dev/random is not enough, as mknod is allowed inside guests.

Note however that doing so may break many applications inside the LXC guest that need randomness. Maybe consider using a different machine for processes that require randomness for security purposes.

Use unprivileged containers

Containers can be run from an unprivileged user. This means UID 0 of the guest can’t match UID 0 of the host, and many potential security holes can’t simply be exploited. Unfortunately, Docker has not support for unprivileged containers yet.

However, if Docker is not a requirement and you can do well with LXC, start experimenting with unprivileged containers and consider using them in production.

Setuid programs like ping will stop working inside your unprivileged container (as they are not allowed to change to the real UID 0). Also Apache will complain that it’s unable to change its ulimit (because setting the ulimit is a privilege of the real root user). If you need to run programs that require special privileges, either configure them so that they do not complain, or consider using capabilities (but do not abuse them, and be cautious, or you risk introducing more problems then the ones your are trying to solve!)

Conclusion

LXC, Docker and the entire ecosystem around them can be considered quite mature and stable. They’re surely production ready, and, if the right configuration is put in place, it can be pretty difficult to cause troubles to the host.

However, whether they can be considered secure or not is up to you: what are you using containers for? Who are you giving access to? What privileges are you giving, what actions are you restricting?

Always remember what LXC and Docker do by default, and what they do not do, especially when you use them to run untrusted code. Those that I have listed may only be a few of the problems that LXC, Docker and friends may expose. Remember to carefully review your configuration before opening the doors to others.

Further reading

If you liked this article, you’ll find these ones interesting too:

Rhonda D'Vine: Queer-Positive Songs

Planet Ubuntu - Fri, 02/20/2015 - 09:05

Just recently I stumbled upon one of these songs again and thought to myself: Are there more out there? With these songs I mean songs that could from its lyrics be considered queer-positive. Lyrics that cointain parts that speak about queer topics. To get you an idea of what I mean here are three songs as examples:

  • Saft by Die Fantastischen Vier: The excert from the lyrics I am refering to is: "doch im Grunde sucht jeder Mann eine Frau // Wobei so mancher Mann besser mit Männern kann // und so manche Frau lässt lieber Frauen ran" ("but basically every man looks for a woman // though some man prefer men // and some women prefer women").
  • Liebe schmeckt gut by Grossstadtgeflüster: Here the lyrics go like "Manche lieben sich selber // manche lieben unerkannt // manche drei oder fünf" ("some love themself // some love in secrecy // some three or five"). For a stereo sound version of the song watch this video instead, but I love the video. :)
  • Mein schönstes Kleid by Früchte des Zorns: This song is so much me. It starts off with "Eines Tages werd ich aus dem Haus geh'n und ich trag mein schönstes Kleid" ("One day I'll go out and I'll wear my most beautiful dress" sung by a male voice). I was made aware of it after the Poetry Night at debconf12 in Nicaragua. As long as people still think of people like me as "a dude in a dress" there is a lot work to do to fight transphobia and gain tolerance and acceptance.

Do you have further examples for me? I know that I already mentioned another one in my blog entry about Garbage for a start. I am aware that there probably are dedicated bands that out of their own history do a lot songs in that direction, but I also want to hear about songs in which it is only mentioned in a side note and not made the central topic of the whole song, making it an absolutely normal random by-note.

Like always, enjoy—and I'm looking forward to your suggestions!

/music | permanent link | Comments: 0 |

Kubuntu: Kubuntu 14.04 LTS Update Out

Planet Ubuntu - Fri, 02/20/2015 - 07:48

The second update to our LTS release 14.04 is out now. This contains all the bug fixes added to 14.04 since its first release in April. Users of 14.04 can run the normal update procedure to get these bug fixes.

See the 14.04.2 release announcement.

Download 14.04.2 images.

Ronnie Tucker: Vivaldi Web Browser Now Has 32-bit Builds for Linux

Planet Ubuntu - Fri, 02/20/2015 - 03:22

Vivaldi, a new web browser based on Chromium, built by an Opera founder and his team, has just received an upgrade and 32-bit versions for the application, among other things.

One of the most important requests of the community regarding Vivaldi was a 32-bit version of the application. It looks like there are a lot of users out there with 32-bit processors that would love to give Vivaldi a try, but they couldn’t do that in the absence of a special build. Now that build has been made available, along with a host of fixes and various improvements.

This is a stable app, which makes things very easy, but in fact it’s still pretty much a technical preview. That means that it’s not even an Alpha release. This is built for testing purposes only, but it has most of the functions you would expect to find.

 

Source: http://news.softpedia.com/news/Vivaldi-Web-Browser-Now-Has-32-bit-Builds-for-Linux-473416.shtml

Submitted by: Silviu Stahie

James Page: OpenStack Summit Vancouver: Ubuntu OpenStack team presentations

Planet Ubuntu - Fri, 02/20/2015 - 02:58

Amongst the numerous submissions for speaking slots at the OpenStack Summit in Vancouver in May, you’ll find a select number of submissions from my team:

Multi-node OpenStack development on single system (Speakers: James Page, Corey Bryant)

Corey has been having some fun hacking on enabling deployment from source in the OpenStack Juju Charms for Ubuntu – come and hear about what we’ve done so far and how we’re trying to enable a multi-node OpenStack deployment from source in a single node using KVM and LXC container, with devstack style reloads!

Scaling automated testing of Ubuntu OpenStack (Speakers: James Page, Ryan Beisner, Liam Young)

The Ubuntu OpenStack team have a ever increasing challenge of supporting testing of numerous OpenStack versions on many different Ubuntu releases; we’ll be covering how we’ve used OpenStack itself to help us scale-out our testing infrastructure to support these activities, as well as some of the technologies and tools we use to deploy and test OpenStack itself.

OpenStack HA Nirvana on Ubuntu (Speaker: James Page)

We’ve been able to deploy OpenStack in Highly Available configurations using Juju and Ubuntu since the Portland Summit in 2013 – since then we have evolved and battle-tested our HA reference architecture into a rock-solid solution to ensure availability of cloud services to end users.  This session will cover the Ubuntu OpenStack HA reference architecture in detail – we might even manage a demo as well!

Testing Openstack with Openstack (Speaker: Ryan Beisner)

Ryan Beisner has been leading Ubuntu OpenStack QA for Canonical since 2014; he’ll be deep-diving on the challenges faced in ensuring the quality of Ubuntu OpenStack and how we’ve leveraged the awesome tool set we have in Ubuntu for deploying and testing OpenStack to support testing of OpenStack both virtually and on bare-metal 100’s of times a day.

also of interest, and building on and around the base technology that the Ubuntu OpenStack team delivers:

OpenStack IPv6 Support (Speaker: Edward Hope-Morley)

Ed’s team have made great in-roads into enabling Ubuntu OpenStack deployments in IPv6 only environments; he’ll be discussing the challenges encountered and how the team overcame them as well as setting out some suggested improvements that would make IPv6 support a first class citizen for OpenStack.

Autopiloting OpenStack (Speaker: Dean Henrichsmeyer)

Dean will be talking about how the Ubuntu OpenStack Autopilot pulls together all of the various technologies in Ubuntu (MAAS, Juju and OpenStack) to fully automate deployment and scale-out of complex OpenStack deployments on Ubuntu.

Containers for Dummies (Speaker: Tycho Andersen)

Tycho promises an enlightening and fun talk about containers introducing all the basic technologies in Linux that support containers – all done through the medium of pictures of cats!

You can find the full list of Canonical submissions here – see you all in Vancouver!


Edubuntu: Edubuntu 14.04.2 Release Announcement

Planet Ubuntu - Fri, 02/20/2015 - 01:22
Edubuntu Long-Term Support The Edubuntu team is proud to announce Edubuntu 14.04.2 LTS, which is the second Long Term Support (LTS) update as part of the Edubuntu 14.04 5 years support cycle. This point release includes all the bug fixes and improvements that have been applied via updates to Edubuntu 14.04 LTS since it has been released. It also includes updated hardware support and installer fixes. If you have an Edubuntu 14.04 LTS system and have applied all the available updates, then your system will already be on 14.04.2 LTS and there is no need to re-install. For new installations, installing from the updated media is recommended since it will be installable on more systems than before and will require less updates than installing from the original 14.04 LTS media.
  • Information on where to download the Edubuntu 14.04.2 LTS media is available from the Downloads page.
To ensure that the Edubuntu 14.04 LTS series will continue to work on the latest hardware as well as keeping quality high right out of the box, further point releases will be made available during its lifecycle. More information will be available on the release schedule page on the Ubuntu wiki. See also Thanks for your support and interest in Edubuntu!

Ubuntu GNOME: Ubuntu GNOME 14.04.2 LTS

Planet Ubuntu - Thu, 02/19/2015 - 17:10

Hi,

Ubuntu GNOME Team is glad to announce the release of the second point release for Ubuntu GNOME 14.04 LTS.

  • Q: What are point releases for LTS versions of Ubuntu family?
  • A: Please, see the answer.
  • Q: What the difference between Ubuntu GNOME 14.04 and Ubuntu GNOME 14.04.2 LTS?
  • A: Linux Kernel 3.16, bug fixes and updated packages. Everything else should be the same as 14.04 LTS.

Get Ubuntu GNOME 14.04.2

  1. First of all, kindly do read the release notes. THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT!
  2. For NEW installations, you can download from here.
  3. Current users do NOT need to reinstall anything. You may only want to update your system, that is all. Again, please do read the release notes!

Special thanks
Special thanks to each and everyone who have taken the time to test Ubuntu GNOME 14.04.2 (and the other flavours as well) and helped to release yet another rock solid release with less bugs. Without our great testers, we shall never make it. Keep up the great work!

To contact Ubuntu GNOME:
Please see our full list of contact channels.

Thank you for choosing and using Ubuntu GNOME!

Xubuntu: Xubuntu 14.04.2 released

Planet Ubuntu - Thu, 02/19/2015 - 16:11

Xubuntu 14.04 Trusty Tahr

The Xubuntu team is pleased to announce the immediate release of Xubuntu 14.04.2 Xubuntu 14.04 is an LTS (Long-Term Support) release and will be supported for 3 years. This is the second Point Release of it’s cycle.

The final release images are available as Torrents and direct downloads at http://cdimage.ubuntu.com/xubuntu/releases/14.04.2/release/

As the main server will be very busy in the first days after the release, we recommend using the Torrents wherever possible.

For support with the release, navigate to Help & Support for a complete list of methods to get help.

Bug fixes for the second point release
  • Black screen after wakeup from suspending by closing the laptop lid. (1303736)
  • Setting Manager items not searchable in Whisker Menu (1310264)
  • Weather plugin updated. (1377612)
  • Both XChat and Pidgin have had security updates
  • Updated versions of Firefox and Thunderbird
Highlights, changes and known issues

The highlights of this release include:

  • Light Locker replaces xscreensaver for screen locking, a setting editing GUI is included
  • The panel layout is updated, and now uses Whiskermenu as the default menu
  • Mugshot is included to allow you to easily edit your personal preferences
  • MenuLibre for menu editing, with full Xfce support, replaces Alacarte
  • A community wallpapers package, which includes work from the five winners of the wallpaper contest
  • GTK Theme Config to customize your desktop theme colors
  • Updated artwork, including various enhancements to themes as well as a new default wallpaper

Some of the known issues include:

  • Window manager shortcut keys don’t work after reboot (1292290)
  • Sorting by date or name not working correctly in Ristretto (1270894)
  • Due to the switch from xscreensaver to light-locker, some users might have issues with timing of locking; removing xscreensaver from the system should fix these problems

To see the complete list of new features, improvements and known and fixed bugs, read the release notes.

Costales: BQ E4.5 Ubuntu Edition: Calidad de fotos y autonomía de batería

Planet Ubuntu - Thu, 02/19/2015 - 13:34
Para hacernos idea de estos 2 factores que importan y mucho, lo mejor será aportar ejemplos.

Cámara
Formato JPG, pesos de imágenes varían entre 700KB - 1,3MB a 8Mpx y una resolución de 4352x2448.
Hay una opción de HD que las hace a 13Mpx.

Calidad de fotografíaBatería
Respecto a la batería, tras cargarla toda la noche y hacer un uso normal, alternando con 3G y WIFI, es tal que 15 horas de uso y 14% de autonomía restante.
Según se ve en el gráfico, la WIFI consumió mucha menos batería que el 3G.
De 8:00 a 23:30 con uso normal y queda un 14% de batería

Costales: Interview in RTPA Radio about Ubuntu Phone

Planet Ubuntu - Thu, 02/19/2015 - 12:40
I was interviewed in the Asturian RTPA Radio about the Ubuntu Phone.

OGG MP3

Sebastian Kügler: Say hi to cuttlefish!

Planet Ubuntu - Thu, 02/19/2015 - 08:42

Cuttlefish icon previewer

One of the things I’ve been sorely missing when doing UI design and development was a good way to preview icons. The icon picker which is shipped with KDE Frameworks is quite nice, but for development purposes it lacks a couple of handy features that allow previewing and picking icons based on how they’re rendered.

Over the christmas downtime, I found some spare cycles to sit down and hammer out a basic tool which allows me to streamline that workflow. In the course of writing this little tool, I realised that it’s not only useful for a developer (like me), but also for artists and designers who often work on or with icons. I decided to target these two groups (UI developers and designers) and try to streamline this tool as good as possible for their usecases.

Cuttlefish is the result of that work. It’s a small tool to list, pick and preview icons. It tries to follow the way we render icons in Plasma UIs as close as possible, in order to make the previews as realistic as possible. I have just shown this little tool to a bunch of fellow Plasma hackers here at the sprint, and it was very well received. I’ve collected a few suggestions what to improve, and of course, cuttlefish being brand-new, it still has a few rough edges.

You can get the source code using the following command:

git clone kde:scratch/sebas/cuttlefish>

and build it with the cmake.

Enjoy cuttlefish!

Ronnie Tucker: Microsoft Reportedly Uses Patent Blackmail Against Android to Force Samsung to Spread Microsoft Spyware (Incorporated Into Android) (Updated)

Planet Ubuntu - Wed, 02/18/2015 - 21:21

Microsoft is reportedly pressuring Samsung, by means of expensive patent lawsuits, to turn Android into “Microsoft Android” (Microsoft spyware installed by default)

The clown called Microsoft, which claims to “love Linux”, is still attacking Linux in a big way. Usually this is done more or less covertly, so enough“useful idiots” won’t see it and even defend Microsoft.

The other day we saw Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols addressing Microsoft’s attack on Android through Cyanogen. Microsoft wants the world to believe that it ‘owns’ part of Android as it even claims to be ‘licensing’ Android, despite having nothing to do with Android development.

Microsoft actively attacks Android from multiple directions and as Vaughan-Nichols put it:

“The only thing that makes me take Cyanogen’s plans seriously is that Amazon and Microsoft appear to be looking into investing in Cyanogen to help create an Android software eco-system that’s not under Google’s control. But, honestly, even if Amazon and Microsoft backed Cyanogen to the hilt, would that really matter?”

 

Source: http://techrights.org/2015/02/14/patent-blackmail-tactic/

Submitted by: Roy Schestowitz

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