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Nekhelesh Ramananthan: Ubuntu Developer Story - Part 1

Planet Ubuntu - Wed, 04/29/2015 - 09:31

It has been over 2 years since Canonical announced Ubuntu Touch. In my opinion, the success of Ubuntu Touch depends to a large extent on its developer story. After all when you use your phone, it is important that it allows you to get work done which in turn requires applications and scopes. So let's evaluate that developer experience today and see how it fares.

The developer story is sort of a like a jigsaw puzzle where many different pieces come together to create something meaningful. The key pieces in this puzzle include the Ubuntu UI Toolkit, Qtcreator IDE, Ubuntu Developer Portal, Ubuntu Touch Store and Platform Services. Hopeful this review will raise attention to how far we have come and the current drawbacks or holes in this story.

I will split this review into a couple of parts to help me review each piece of the puzzle in more detail without making this too long. Also it helps with my short attention span.

Ubuntu UI Toolkit

The toolkit reached its first beta in August 2013. It was the beginning of something new, exciting and powerful. With a standard toolkit offering, users get a consistent experience across their apps and devices. The SDK has come a long way both in terms of the maturity of the components that it offers and the ability to customize them. I remember just a few months back where changing something as simple as the font color of a Standard list item was just not possible.

The Ubuntu SDK components were rigid, forcing app developers to by-pass it with their own components.

On one hand this rigidity promoted a uniformity amongst ubuntu apps at the cost of customization and developers being unable to brand their apps to their liking and requirement. As a result, developers usually find a way around it by either creating their own components or using undocumented APIs which can break at any point. I have already noticed a few apps like Pockit which break in Vivid due to using APIs that were not stable and undocumented.

Taking a peek behind the curtains, Ubuntu Components 1.3 does come with a brand new app theming tutorial and sub-theming capabilities that will allow app developers to customize various parts of their apps to their liking. This should alleviate the rigidity issue, but the fact that this will land only in 15.10 which is a good 6 months away seems a bit too long to wait for.

Ubuntu Components 1.2 currently shipped in vivid (which the phone will transition to in a few weeks) comes with a nifty set of improvements like new list items that are way more customizable and feature filled (reordering, multi-selection mode, better performance). A natural evolution to the list items that we have come to love and hate in the past release of the SDK. This is exciting and I can't wait to get around to using them.

However the one thing that stomped on these bells and whistles of Ubuntu Components 1.2 was unfortunately the absence of a ubuntu-sdk-15.04 development framework during the Ubuntu 15.04 development cycle. Why is that so important? Well it is always to the benefit of everyone that app developers and SDK developers work together and help test new SDK features before they become final.

During the 14.10 development cycle, this was possible by using the ubuntu-sdk-14.10-dev1, -dev2 framework. This allows app developers to test the new features of the toolkit and provide timely feedback. That however has been completely missing in the 15.04 cycle which concerns me of the issues that new app developers might face when they get their hands on the new features that landed in the 15.04 cycle.

The whole framework concept has sadly not been handled to the expectations that one would expect after working with them for more than a year.

To make matters worse, once the toolkit for a certain ubuntu release like vivid becomes final, it is a horrendous nightmare to get bug fixes backported to it. Here's a classic example of a bug that was never fixed in the current ubuntu phones based on utopic (RTM).

Bug 1341814: Using search in the header can sometimes have a text field from a different tab

The above bug literally makes the new header features like head.contents impossible to use in a app that has a somewhat complicated navigation structure and affected apps like the Music App, Flashback, Podbird etc. The temporary fix these apps had to use was to add some workaround code in every page that used the head.contents feature. Granted these app developers were aware of the bug and knew how to temporarily patch it, what about new developers?

If you look at the merge proposal, it was fixed in the toolkit (vivid) in January 2015. Between Jan 2015 and April 2015, we have had 3 OTAs been pushed to phone users. If such a high priority get glanced over, how can one hope that other bug fixes would be backported to current production phones? Considering that we have been dealing with frameworks for over a year, I would expect this to become smoother over time, but sadly it has been the exact opposite.

And most importantly guys, please support other ubuntu projects like U1db better! In my testing, I have noticed that the SortFilterModel which can be used to sort and filter rows in a list model doesn't work with Ubuntu's own U1db model. Personally I am disappointed that U1db is in maintenance mode with no new features nor bug fixes being committed to trunk.

Don't get me wrong, the SDK devs are doing a great job. They have a lot in their plate and when looking at the size of their team, what they have achieved over the past couple of months is nothing short of being impressive. But it still raises questions as to if that is enough? I mean that are still tons of bugs in the SDK and the conversation there always starts with, "well if you use this workaround then you can get around it..." that just won't cut it new developers.

There is Ubuntu Online Summit (UOS) coming up on the May 5th-7th where we can bring this up to the SDK team. We all have the same goal which is to provide this awesome developer experience. Let's help make that happen.

James Page: Neutron, 0mq and Git – Ubuntu OpenStack 15.04 Charm release!

Planet Ubuntu - Wed, 04/29/2015 - 09:25

Alongside the Ubuntu 15.04 release on the 23rd April, the Ubuntu OpenStack Engineering team delivered the latest release of the OpenStack charms for deploying and managing OpenStack on Ubuntu using Juju.

Here are some selected highlights from this most recent charm release.

OpenStack Kilo support

As always, we’ve enabled charm support for OpenStack Kilo alongside development. To use this new release use the openstack-origin configuration option of the charms, for example:

juju set cinder openstack-origin=cloud:trusty-kilo

NOTE: Setting this option on an existing deployment will trigger an upgrade to Kilo via the charms – remember to plan and test your upgrade activities prior to production implementation!


As part of this release, the team have been working on enabling some of the new Neutron features that were introduced in the Juno release of OpenStack.

Distributed Virtual Router

One of the original limitations of the Neutron reference implementation (ML2 + Open vSwitch) was the requirement to route all north/south and east/west network traffic between instance via network gateway nodes.

For Juno, the Distributed Virtual Router (DVR) function was introduced to allow routing capabilities to be distributed more broadly across an OpenStack cloud.

DVR pushes alot of the layer 3 network routing function of Neutron directly onto compute nodes – instances which have floating IP’s no longer have the restriction of routing via a gateway node for north/south traffic. This traffic is now pushed directly to the external network by the compute nodes via dedicated external network ports, bypassing the requirement for network gateway nodes.

Network gateway nodes are still required for snat northbound routing for instances that don’t having floating ip addresses.

For the 15.04 charm release, we’ve enabled this feature across the neutron-api, neutron-openvswitch and neutron-gateway charms – you can toggle this capability using configuration in the neutron-api charm:

juju set neutron-api enabled-dvr=true l2-population=true \ overlay-network-type=vxlan

This feature requires that every compute node have a physical network port onto the external public facing network – this is configured on the neutron-openvswitch charm, which is deployed alongside nova-compute:

juju set neutron-openvswitch ext-port=eth1

NOTE: Existing routers will not be switched into DVR mode by default – this must be done manually by a cloud administrator.  We’ve also only tested this feature with vxlan overlay networks – expect gre and vlan enablement soon!

Router High Availability

For Clouds where the preference is still to route north/south traffic via a limited set of gateway nodes, rather than exposing all compute nodes directly to external network zones, Neutron has also introduced a feature to enable virtual routers in highly available configurations.

To use this feature, you need to be running multiple units of the neutron-gateway charm – again it’s enabled via configuration in the neutron-api charm:

juju set neutron-api enable-l3ha=true l2-population=false

Right now Neutron DVR and Router HA features are mutually exclusive due to layer 2 population driver requirements.

Our recommendation is that these new Neutron features are only enabled with OpenStack Kilo as numerous features and improvements have been introduced over the last 6 months since first release with OpenStack Juno.

Initial 0mq support

The 0mq lightweight messaging kernel is a library which extends the standard socket interfaces with features traditionally provided by specialised messaging middleware products, without the requirement for a centralized message broker infrastructure.

Interest and activity around the 0mq driver in Oslo Messaging has been gathering pace during the Kilo cycle, with numerous bug fixes and improvements being made into the driver code.

Alongside this activity, we’ve enabled 0mq support in the Nova and Neutron charms in conjunction with a new charm – ‘openstack-zeromq’:

juju deploy redis-server juju deploy openstack-zeromq juju add-relation redis-server openstack-zeromq for svc in nova-cloud-controller nova-compute \ neutron-api neutron-openvswitch quantum-gateway; do juju deploy $svc juju add-relation $svc openstack-zeromq done

The 0mq driver makes use of a Redis server to maintain a catalog of topic endpoints for the OpenStack cloud so that services can figure out where to send RPC requests.

We expect to enable further charm support as this feature matures upstream – so for now please consider this feature for testing purposes only.

Deployment from source

A core set of the OpenStack charms have also grown the capability to deploy from git repositories, rather than from the usual Debian package sources from Ubuntu.   This allows all of the power of deploying OpenStack using charms to be re-used with deployments from active development.

For example, you’ll still be able to scale-out and cluster OpenStack services deployed this way –  seeing a keystone service deploy from git, running with haproxy, corosync and pacemaker as part of a fully HA deployment is pretty awesome!

This feature is currently tested with the stable/icehouse and stable/juno branches – we’re working on completing testing of the kilo support and expect to land that as a stable update soon.

This feature is considered experimental and we expect to complete further improvements and enablement across a wider set of charms – so please don’t use it for production services!

And finally…

Alongside the features delivered in this release, we’ve also been hard at work resolving bugs across the charms – please refer to milestone bug report for the full details.

We’ve also introduced features to enable easier monitoring with Nagios and support for Keystone PKI tokens as well as some improvements in the failure detection capabilities of the percona-cluster charm when operating in HA mode.

You can get the full low down on all of the changes in this release from the official release notes.

Kubuntu Wire: OMG! You can get your Plasma 5.3 now!

Planet Ubuntu - Tue, 04/28/2015 - 09:51

OMG! UBUNTU! tells you how.

Note that the new Bluetooth support is being held back.

Ubuntu App Developer Blog: A magnifying glass in QML

Planet Ubuntu - Tue, 04/28/2015 - 09:39

To create sharp visual components, we need to make sure our renderings look good at the pixel level. This is a common task and the terms precision and pixel-perfectness have become ubiquitous in discussions among programmers and designers at Canonical. In the last years, the industry started to increase the pixel density of screens, again (remember the CRT era), resulting in a higher number of pixels within a specified space (see Retina Display for instance). A consequence is that jaggies are less visible than before because we are reaching the point where the pixels are small enough that the eye is not able to detect them. In an idealized world of high density screens that would completely remove the need of anti-aliasing algorithms to smooth edges, but the fact of the matter is that we are not there yet and we will still have to thoroughly inspect the quality of anti-aliasing algorithms for a while.

At a previous job, a colleague of mine used to keep a handheld magnifying glass on his desk. I was quite amused to see him glued to his screen validating the visual quality of commits with this thing. As the graphics engine programmer, I barely remember the reason for which I never proposed the inclusion of a software magnifier, it could be because of the overloaded backlog we had to deal with at the time but I guess it actually was just out of sheer mischief. Most desktop environments include a software magnifier, but depending on its quality (efficiency and ease of use), it often makes sense to integrate a custom magnifier directly in the application being developed (it makes less sense to ship it in release builds though...). This article explains how to implement an efficient one with QML using offscreen framebuffers and shaders.

Offscreen framebuffers (exposed as FBOs in OpenGL), vertex shaders and fragment shaders are now widely available in mobile and mid-range GPUs allowing the creation of interesting real-time post-processing effects for most devices on the market. Magnification, or to be more precise zooming & panning (magnification solely being the process of rendering an image at a higher scale), is one of it. In low-level graphics programming terms, all it takes is to do a first pass that renders the scene in a FBO and a second pass that renders a texture mapped quad to the default framebuffer reading the FBO as a texture. Image zooming and panning is a basic 2D scale and translate transformation that can be efficiently implemented by tweaking the texture coordinates used to sample the FBO at the second pass. The vertex shader, executed for the 4 vertices making our quad, will easily take care of it using a single multiply-add op (transformed_coords = scale * coords + translation) and the hardware accelerated rasterizer and texture units will make the actual rendering very efficient. In order to clearly distinguish the magnified pixels, it is important to use a simple nearest neighbour filter. These low-level bits are nicely exposed to QML through the ShaderEffectSource and  ShaderEffect items. The former allows to render a given Item to a FBO and the latter provides support for quads rendered using custom vertex and fragment shaders.

Here is the QML code of the magnifier:

import QtQuick 2.4

Item {
    // Public properties.
    property Item scene: null
    property MouseArea area: null

    id: root
    visible: scene != null
    property real __scaling: 1.0
    property variant __translation: Qt.point(0.0, 0.0)

    // The FBO abstraction handling our first offscreen pass.
    ShaderEffectSource {
        id: effectSource
        anchors.fill: parent
        sourceItem: scene
        hideSource: scene != null
        visible: false
        smooth: false  // Nearest neighbour texture filtering.

    // The shader abstraction handling our second pass with the
    // translation and scaling in the vertex shader and the simple
    // texturing from the FBO in the fragment shader.

    ShaderEffect {
            id: effect
            anchors.fill: parent
            property real scaling: __scaling
            property variant translation: __translation
            property variant texture: effectSource

            vertexShader: "
                uniform highp mat4 qt_Matrix;
                uniform mediump float scaling;
                uniform mediump vec2 translation;
                attribute highp vec4 qt_Vertex;
                attribute mediump vec2 qt_MultiTexCoord0;
                varying vec2 texCoord;
                void main() {
                    texCoord =

                        qt_MultiTexCoord0 * vec2(scaling)
                        + translation;
                    gl_Position = qt_Matrix * qt_Vertex;

            fragmentShader: "
                uniform sampler2D texture;
                uniform lowp float qt_Opacity;
                varying mediump vec2 texCoord;
                void main() {
                    gl_FragColor =

                        texture2D(texture, texCoord) * qt_Opacity;


    // Mouse handling.
    Connections {
        target: scene != null ? area : null


And here is how to use it:

import QtQuick 2.4

Item {
    id: root

    Item {
        id: scene
        anchors.fill: parent

    ZoomPan {
        id: zoomPan
        anchors.fill: parent
        scene: scene
        area: mouseArea

    MouseArea {
        id: mouseArea
        anchors.fill: parent
        enabled: true
        hoverEnabled: true
        acceptedButtons: Qt.AllButtons


Mouse handling has been snipped off the code for conciseness but it can be studied directly from the code repository. One important point to notice is that for zooming to be a pleasant experience, it has to be implemented using a logarithmic scale as opposed to a linear scale. Each scale value at a zooming level is the previous one multiplied by the desired scale factor, so a scale factor of 2 and a zooming level n give a scale value of 2n. Another point is that to scale an image up, the range of its texture coordinates must be scaled down, this explains why the actual scaling is inverted. So a scale value of 2n would give an actual scaling of 2-n. A bit counterintuitive at first…

We’re done with the theory. Let’s have a look at the final result:


This technique helped me in the making of several visual elements, I would be glad if other programmers find it useful too. Zooming and panning is a very common feature in image viewers, the technique could be adapted for that use case too (with potentially some tweaks to support tiling of big pictures). Maybe that would be a good addition to the Ubuntu UI toolkit, don’t hesitate to ask if you would like official support for it.

The source code is available on launchpad:

$ bzr branch lp:~loic.molinari/+junk/magnifier

Daniel Holbach: Ubuntu 15.04 is changing the game

Planet Ubuntu - Tue, 04/28/2015 - 06:42
15.04 is out!


And another Ubuntu release went out the the door. I can’t believe that it’s the 22nd Ubuntu release already.

There’s a lot to be excited about in 15.04. The first phone powered by Ubuntu went out to customers and new devices are in the pipeline. The underpinnings of the various variants of Ubuntu are slowly converging, new Ubuntu flavours saw the light of day (MATE and Desktop next), new features landed, new apps added, more automated tests were added, etc. The future of Ubuntu is looking very bright.

What’s Ubuntu Core?

One thing I’m super happy about is a very very new addition: Ubuntu Core and snappy. What does it offer? It gives you a minimal Ubuntu system, automatic and bulletproof updates with rollback, an app store and very straight-forward enablement and packaging practices.

It has been brilliant to watch the snappy-devel@ and snappy-app-devel@ mailing lists in recent weeks and notice how much interest from enthusiasts, hobbyists, hardware manufacturers, porters and others get interested and get started. If you have a look at Dustin’s blog post, you get a good idea of what’s happening. It also features a video of Mark, who explains how Ubuntu has adapted to the demands of a changing IT world.

One fantastic example of how Ubuntu Snappy is already powering devices you had never thought of is the Erle-Copter. (If you can’t see the video, check out this link.)

It’s simply beautiful how product builders and hobbyists can now focus on what they’re interested: building a tool, appliance, a robot, something crazy, something people will love or something which might change a small art of the world somewhere. What’s taken out of the equation by Ubuntu is: having to maintain a linux distro.

Maintaining a linux distro

Whenever I got a new device in my home I could SSH into, I was happy and proud. I always felt: “wow, they get it – they’re using open source software, they’re using linux”. This  feeling was replaced at some stage, when I realised how rarely my NAS or my router received system updates. When I checked for changelog entries of the updates I found out how only some of the important CVEs of the last year were mentioned, sometimes only “feature updates” were mentioned.

To me it’s clear that not all product builders or hardware companies collaborate with the NSA and create backdoors on purpose, but it’s hard work to maintain a linux stack and to do it responsibly.

That’s why I feel Ubuntu Core is an offering that “has legs” (as Mark Shuttleworth would say): as somebody who wants to focus on building a great product or solving a specific use case, you can do just that. You can ship your business logic in a snap on top of Ubuntu Core and be done with it. Brilliant!

What’s next?

Next week is Ubuntu Online Summit (5-7 May). There we are going to discuss the plans for the next time and that’s where you can get involved, ask questions, bring up your ideas and get to know the folks who are working on it now.

I’ll write a separate blog post in the coming days explaining what’s happening next week, until then feel free to have a look at:


Kubuntu: Plasma 5.3

Planet Ubuntu - Tue, 04/28/2015 - 04:26

Packages for the release of KDE's desktop suite Plasma 5.3 are available for Kubuntu 15.04. You can get it from the Kubuntu Backports PPA.

Bugs in the packaging should be reported to kubuntu-ppa on Launchpad. Bugs in the software to KDE.

The Fridge: Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter Issue 414

Planet Ubuntu - Mon, 04/27/2015 - 19:49

Welcome to the Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter. This is issue #414 for the week April 20 – 26, 2015, and the full version is available here.

In this issue we cover:

The issue of The Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter is brought to you by:

  • Paul White
  • Elizabeth K. Joseph
  • Aaron Honeycutt
  • Jose Antonio Rey
  • And many others

If you have a story idea for the Weekly Newsletter, join the Ubuntu News Team mailing list and submit it. Ideas can also be added to the wiki!

Except where otherwise noted, content in this issue is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License BY SA Creative Commons License

Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter Issue 414

The Fridge - Mon, 04/27/2015 - 19:49

Welcome to the Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter. This is issue #414 for the week April 20 – 26, 2015, and the full version is available here.

In this issue we cover:

The issue of The Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter is brought to you by:

  • Paul White
  • Elizabeth K. Joseph
  • Aaron Honeycutt
  • Jose Antonio Rey
  • And many others

If you have a story idea for the Weekly Newsletter, join the Ubuntu News Team mailing list and submit it. Ideas can also be added to the wiki!

Except where otherwise noted, content in this issue is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License BY SA Creative Commons License

Kubuntu Wire: Swapnil Bhartiya Finds a Totally Different Kubuntu

Planet Ubuntu - Mon, 04/27/2015 - 10:52

Swapnil Bhartiya writes:

Kubuntu 15.04, aka Vivid Vervet, was released last week. With this release it has become the first major distro to ship Plasma 5 as the default desktop environment.


Fast forward to 2014 and Kubuntu turned out to be a totally different OS. I have been running it on one of my production systems since 14.04. It’s extremely stable, polished and offers a great experience.


Kubuntu features one of the best notification systems in the Linux world.


Kubuntu 15.04 is undoubtedly the best Plasma 5 desktop so far, for the simple fact that this is the first distro to ship with it. Since Kubuntu offers a vanilla Plasma experience, you can enjoy what KDE developers originally developed without it being heavily patched or modified. Well, modification can be good in some cases where a particular may not gel very well with the distro.


In a nutshell, I found Kubuntu 15.04 to move consistently on the path of improvement, getting better with each release. If you are hesitant about Kubuntu due to a previous release, let me tell you that a lot of water has flowed under the bridge since. It’s a totally different Kubuntu.


Try it out and you will be surprised with what you have been missing until now.

And that is even before Plasma 5.3

Matthew Helmke: Battle Lines: A Graphic History of the Civil War

Planet Ubuntu - Mon, 04/27/2015 - 09:33

I confess that I have never been deeply interested in The American Civil War. After reading this book, I’m convinced that the only reason I wasn’t interested is because of how the topic was presented to me. I am now very interested.

Battle Lines: A Graphic History of the Civil War takes the history and scholarship surrounding the conflict which shaped the United States and which still has an impact on its internal politics and struggles and adds what was always missing for me: the human element. Each chapter takes an ordinary, everyday object from the era and uses that object to begin a vignette that demonstrates how the war affected real people. We are given solid history, but within a context that gives the facts meaning. As Jonathan Fetter-Vorm did with Trinity: A Graphic History of the First Atomic Bomb, a difficult and complex topic is deftly broken down into easily digestible portions along with a moving and real sense of why I as a reader should care.

The artwork in the book is powerful and evocative. The narrative is cinematic. It is not hyperbole to say that I was transported into the story while reading, to the extent that I often forgot I was reading; I was so moved with emotion that more than once I found myself in tears. Combine this with the solid presentation of historical facts and I am left with a hunger to know more. For this, I say this book belongs in every school library in the country and on the shelf of anyone interested in good art, excellent storytelling, and careful scholarship.

Disclosure: I was given my copy of this book by the publisher as a review copy. See also: Are All Book Reviews Positive?

Matthew Helmke: The GNU Make Book

Planet Ubuntu - Mon, 04/27/2015 - 08:58

The GNU Make Book is intended for people who already have an understanding of GNU Make, what it is, and the basics of how and why someone would use it. The reader is assumed to know enough about programming and source code, about compiling and creating software executables to not need an introduction. The book begins by talking about setting environment variables in your makefile. If you know what this means, you will likely benefit from the book. If you don’t, you aren’t ready for this book.

The GNU Make Book has six clear chapters, arranged in a logical order:

  • The Basics Revisited covers topics like variables and version checking in your makefile.
  • Makefile Debugging helps you find problems with tips and tricks like variable tracing and dynamic breakpoints.
  • Building and Rebuilding uses example makefiles to demonstrate things like automatic dependency generation and rebuilding under specific circumstances.
  • Pitfalls and Problems clarifies many troublesome aspects of makefiles and helps you avoid common difficulties.
  • Pushing the Envelope takes you beyond the typical use of make with a few cool ideas.
  • The GNU Make Standard Library works as a reference for an open source project started by the book’s author, John Graham-Cumming, to collect and provide common functions that makefile authors “end up writing over and over again.”

I think this book is fantastic. It does have one weakness that, once addressed, would be likely to broaden its appeal. Many people who want or need to learn to use GNU make more effectively do not yet have the foundational knowledge necessary for reading or benefiting from this book. That could be remedied in a 15-20 page introductory chapter covering topics like “what is make?” and “how is make typically used?” The descriptions could be short, but would set the context for the rest of the book and ease the nervous reader in. Perhaps starting with something like, “GNU make is a tool that enables you to automate the generation of program executables from program source code” would be useful and could be followed by, “This is typically accomplished by writing a Makefile, which includes a list of instructions for make to use as it does its work.”

Disclosure: I was given my copy of this book by the publisher as a review copy. See also: Are All Book Reviews Positive?

Scott Kitterman: Enabling DNSSEC Support For OpenDKIM

Planet Ubuntu - Mon, 04/27/2015 - 08:35

If you are using DNSSEC you can now use it to verify DKIM keys with opendkim.

This does require a bit of configuration.

Opendkim uses unbound for DNSSEC support.

You have to:

  • Install the unbound package (not just the library, which is already pulled in as an opendkim dependency)
  • Configure the DNSSEC trust anchor for unbound ( either in /etc/unbound/unbound.conf or by adding a configuration snippet to /etc/unbound/unbound.conf.d – the latter makes it much less likely you’ll have to resolve conflicts in the configuration file if the default file is changed on later package upgrades)
  • Update /etc/opendkim.conf and add:

ResolverConfiguration     /etc/unbound/unbound.conf

Once that’s done, restart opendkim and your DKIM key queries are DNSSEC protected (you can verify this in your mail logs since opendkim annotates unprotected keys when it logs).

Note:  This should also apply to Ubuntu 14.04, 14.10, and 15.04.

Update: In Wheezy (and Squeeze, at least the version in backports, I didn’t check the release version) and Ubuntu 10.04 (similarly with backports) this was possible too.  The opendkim.conf parameter was called UnboundConfigFile.  You may have to update your local configuration to use the new name when you upgrade.

Jhosman Lizarazo: I’m back!

Planet Ubuntu - Sat, 04/25/2015 - 21:25

Several years ago did not write them, I was working on many things, but I’m back! Soon I will publish new post about Ubuntu and novelties. You can see the news from my website at: http://www.jhosman.com/en

As a bonus track, Ubuntu will sponsor Flisol Bogotá 2015. We are grateful to the community! http://www.flisolbogota.org


Adolfo Jayme Barrientos: LibreOffice 5.0 avañe’ẽme!

Planet Ubuntu - Sat, 04/25/2015 - 20:15

Among all of the great new features that will ship in the upcoming LibreOffice 5.0, there is one that I’m especially excited about: this will be the first release that will include a brand new translation into Guarani, the millenary language of approximately eight million people in South America, mainly in Paraguay.

As you may know, I’m a translator and an activist who supports language preservation. This is also one of the principles supported by the Document Foundation, which aims to provide the world with free tools for document creation and preservation to all the world’s peoples, regardless of their economic status or social situation, helping to make the world a bit more egalitarian towards those sectors of the population that are still being discriminated due to their knowledge of a different tongue, and fighting towards lessening the digital divide.

What makes this so groundbreaking is that there are no other professional software tools available in Guarani yet, and hopefully we will help convince other software makers to push towards supporting this and other “indigenous” languages—which are our own, in contrast with the languages that the destructive European colonialism left us with.

I would like to thank Giovanni Caligaris, the volunteer translator who is driving this effort forward.

Scott Kitterman: Where’s the Ubuntu (the Linux distribution) in Ubuntu Online Summit?

Planet Ubuntu - Sat, 04/25/2015 - 08:58

I was surprised to find that in the UOS announcement there was no mention of work on defining the development of an actual Linux distribution.  Here’s the tracks:

  • App & scope development: the SDK and developer platform roadmaps, phone core apps planning, developer workshops
  • Cloud: Ubuntu Core on clouds, Juju, Cloud DevOps discussions, charm tutorials, the Charm, OpenStack
  • Community: governance discussions, community event planning, Q+As, how to get involved in Ubuntu
  • Convergence: the road to convergence, the Ubuntu desktop roadmap, requirements and use cases to bring the desktop and phone together
  • Core: snappy Ubuntu Core, snappy post-vivid plans, snappy demos and Q+As
  • Show & Tell: presentations, demos, lightning talks (read: things that break and explode) on a varied range of topic
  • App & scope development: Supporting upstream development
  • Cloud: Tools for using Ubuntu in a cloud environment
  • Community: Important, but not distribution development
  • Convergence: Unity upstream development
  • Core: Development of an alternative to Ubuntu
  • Show & Tell: Interesting, but still not development

I’ve been involved in Ubuntu development for over 8 years now.  Except for Community, none of that looks anything like the Ubuntu I knew.

The last few UOS there has been a session to coordination Qt5 planning between Kubuntu and Canonical’s developers that use Qt5 (I’ve lost track of what they’re called and I also know they don’t all work for Canonical, but close enough).  I have no idea what track that would even be a part of now.  Kubuntu has never really used UOS.  It’s simpler for us just to schedule our own online meeting (in addition to in person meetings at Akademy for some of us), but it’s been a useful coordination point with other teams in the Ubuntu ecosystem.  I’m not sure how that’ll even work now.

Svetlana Belkin: Introducing “The Sense of Openness”

Planet Ubuntu - Fri, 04/24/2015 - 14:56

As I said in this post, I renamed “The Ubuntu Sense”, to (drum roll please) to “The Sense of Openness”. I started with voluteering in the Ubuntu in July 2013 and within six months, I recieved my Ubuntu Memebership. But I started to extend invoulment into Open Science, since I’m a biologist. I noticed that I started to post/talk about non-Ubuntu things on my everything-Ubuntu-related blog and decided to open up a “new” (I imported my old one) one that emcompasses everything that is Open * related. Also, I’m keeping the “sense” theme.

To accomplish this, before exporting the old content from the old blog, I organized the categories into six main ones (that may change, as I have some that I’m not sure of) and within the categories, I have sub-categories that relate to the groups that I’m in (Ubuntu Women in Ubuntu and Center of Open Science in Open Science are two examples). This will allow me to only use categories for RSS feeds for the Planets in order to stay on topic.

Also, I broke down my “About” page into three pages, one that explains who I am, one for FOSS, and one for Open Science.  These pages will explain what the topic is, what groups that I am in, and what roles, that I take up, in those groups are.  These pages will act like my “resume” because I want to show the world what I have done within the communities and my skills, as it’s scattered around the web.

I want to thank Rafael Laguna for creating me the logos (wordless and with words) below:

Stephan Adig: 10 Years of Ubuntu

Planet Ubuntu - Fri, 04/24/2015 - 13:30

Ok, eventually I am 2 months early, but I was appointed an Ubuntu Member on 2005-06-15… but I was starting earlier with Ubuntu Packaging…

Anyhow, I already wrote my praise on Google+.

So just to make this public:

Thanks for 15.04 and all the other releases before (especially the LTS ones).

I think during the last 10 Years, Ubuntu made a difference towards the Linux Community,

When I joined this journey, Ubuntu was just another distribution, with a SABDFL who was pumping a lot of money into his free project. I guess it was his private money, and the whole Linux community should be so thankful to this Geek.

Without Marks engagement, I don’t think that Linux on the Desktop is so known to the wider public.

Don’t get me wrong, we had SuSE, we had Red Hat, we had Debian (and other smaller Distros), but most of the global players today were famous for the involvement on the servers (Well, not SuSE because they were focused on Desktop before they lost track and made the wrong turn [and no I am not saying openSuSE this is a different story)

10 Years ago, actually 10 years and a couple of months, a small group of people were working on an integrated desktop environment, based on GNOME. And they were right to do so. Those people, many of them still are doing their Job at Canonical, were right to invest their time into that.

And look, where are we today! On the Desktop, on the server, in the middle of the cloud and on a freaking Phone!

Who thought about this 10 and half years ago?

Yeah, I know, there were some decisions which were not so Ok for the community, but honestly, even those wrong decisions were needed. Without wrong decisions we don’t learn. Errors are there to learn from them, even in a social environment.

To make my point, I think it’s important to have one public figure, to bring a project like Ubuntu forward. One person who directs all fame and hate towards him, and especially Mark is one of those figures.

Just see other huge OpenSource Projects, like OpenStack or Hadoop. Great projects, I give them that, but there is no person who drives it. No Person who is making decisions, where the project has to go. That’s why OpenStack as stock OpenSource project is not a product. Hadoop, with all its fame, is not a product out of the box.

Too many companies do have a say. That’s why, i.e. it’s far from practical to install OpenStack from Source and have a running Cloud System. This is wrong, and those Communities, they need someone who has the hat on to say where these Communities are moving forward.

Democracy is good, I know, but in some environments Democracy blocks innovation. Too many people, too many voices, too many wrong directions. Just see the quality of Ubuntu Desktop, pre-installed on Dell Workstations or Laptops? That’s how you do it. You concentrate on Quality, and you get your Vendors who will ship your PRODUCT!

Let’s see:

  • We have nowadays Ubuntu as Desktop OS (with Unity as Desktop)
  • We have Ubuntu as a Server OS, running on many uncounted bare metal machines.
  • We have Ubuntu as a Cloud OS, running on many, many Amazon instances, Docker instances and eventually Rackspace Instances.

But Ubuntu is more. The foundation of Ubuntu is driving many other Projects, like:

  • Kubuntu (aka the KDE Distro of Choice)
  • Ubuntu GNOME Remix
  • Ubuntu with XFCE, etc.
  • Mint Linux
  • Goobuntu
  • etc.

All those derivatives are based on the Ubuntu Foundation, made and integrated and plumbed by so many smart and awesome people.

Thanks to all of You!

So what now?

Mobile is growing. Mobile first. Mobile is the way to go!

Ubuntu on the Phone is not an idea anymore, it’s reality. Well done people. You made it!

But Ubuntu can even do more. Let’s think about the next hype.

Hype like CoreOS.

A Linux OS which is image based, no package management, just driven my some small utilities like systemd, fleetd and/or etcd.

CoreOS is one of the projects, I am really looking forward to use. But, I really want to see Ubuntu there.

And yes, there is Ubuntu Snappy….so why not trying to use Snappy as CoreOS replacement?

There is Docker. Docker is being used as the Dev Util for spinning up Instances, with specialised software on it.

Hell, Stephane Graber and his Friends over at the Linux Container Community, they have LXD! LXD driven by Stephane and his friends. Stephane is working for Canonical. So, I say: LXD is a Canonical Project!

And what is Canonical? Canonical is a major contributor to Ubuntu. I want to see LXD as the Docker Replacement, with more security, with more energy, with better integration into Cloud Systems like OpenStack and/or CloudStack!

To make a long story short, Ubuntu is one of those Projects, which are not going away.

Even with Mark (hopefully not) retiring, Canonical will be the driving force. There will be another Mark, and that’s why Ubuntu is one of the driving forces in our OpenSource Development. Forget about Contributor Licenses, forget about all decisions which were wrongly made.

We are here! We don’t go away! We are Ubuntu, Linux for Human Beings! And we are here to stay, whatever you say! We are better, we are stronger, we are The Borg! ^W ^W ^W ^W forget this, this is a different movie ;)

And if you ask: “Dude, you are saying all this, and you were a member of this Project, where is your CONTRIBUTION!?!?”

My Answer is:

"I bring Ubuntu to the Business! I installed Ubuntu as Server OS in many Companies during the last couple of years. I integrated Ubuntu as SupportOS in companies where you don't expect it would run and support Operations or Service Reliability Departments. I am the Ubuntu Integrator and Evangelist you won't see, hear or read (normally). I am the one of the Ubuntu Apostles, who are not bragging, but bringing the Light to the Darkness"


PS: Companies Like Netviewer AG, Podio (Both Belong now to Citrix Inc.) and Sony/Gaikai for their PlayStation Now product

Ronnie Tucker: Full Circle Magazine #96 – It’s a whopper!

Planet Ubuntu - Fri, 04/24/2015 - 11:56

It has arrived. Quite possibly the biggest issue ever. A whopping 63 pages of FCM goodness!


This month:
* Command & Conquer
* How-To : Program in Python, LibreOffice, Using LaTeX, and [NEW!] Programming JavaScript
* Graphics : Inkscape.
* [NEW!] Chrome Cult
* Linux Labs: OwnCloud
* [NEW!] Ubuntu Phones – Interview with Cristian Parrino
* Review: Precision m3800 DE laptop
* Ubuntu Games: Cities: Skylines
plus: News, Arduino, Q&A, and soooo much more.


David Planella: Announcing the next Ubuntu Online Summit

Planet Ubuntu - Fri, 04/24/2015 - 09:47

The 15.04 release frenzy over, but the next big event in the Ubuntu calendar is just around the corner. In about a week, from the 5th to 7th of May, the next edition of the Ubuntu Online Summit is taking off. Three days of sessions for developers, designers, advocates, users and all members of our diverse community.

Along the developer-oriented discussions you’ll find presentations, workshops, lightning talks and much more. It’s a great opportunity for existing and new members to get together and contribute to the talks, watch a workshop to learn something new, or ask your questions to many of the rockstars who make Ubuntu.

While the schedule is being finalized, here’s an overview (and preview) of the content that you should expect in each one of the tracks:

  • App & scope development: the SDK and developer platform roadmaps, phone core apps planning, developer workshops
  • Cloud: Ubuntu Core on clouds, Juju, Cloud DevOps discussions, charm tutorials, the Charm, OpenStack
  • Community: governance discussions, community event planning, Q+As, how to get involved in Ubuntu
  • Convergence: the road to convergence, the Ubuntu desktop roadmap, requirements and use cases to bring the desktop and phone together
  • Core: snappy Ubuntu Core, snappy post-vivid plans, snappy demos and Q+As
  • Show & Tell: presentations, demos, lightning talks (read: things that break and explode) on a varied range of topics

Joining the summit is easy, you’ll just need to follow the instructions and register for free to the Ubuntu Online Summit >

UOS highlights: back to the desktop, snappy and the road to convergence

This is going to be perhaps one of the most important summits in recent times. After a successful launch of the phone, followed by the exciting announcement and delivery of snappy Ubuntu Core, Ubuntu is entering a new era. An era of lean, secure, minimal and modular systems that can run on the cloud, on Internet-enabled devices, on the desktop and virtually anywhere.

While the focus on development in the last few cycles has been on shaping up and implementing the phone, this doesn’t mean other key parts of the project have been left out. The phone has helped create the platform and tools that will ultimately bring all these projects together, into a converged code base and user experience. From desktop to phone, to the cloud, to things, and back to the desktop.

The Ubuntu 15.10 cycle begins, and so does this exciting new era. The Ubuntu Online Summit will be a unique opportunity to pave the road to convergence and discuss how the next generation of the Ubuntu desktop is built. So the desktop is back on the spotlight, and snappy will be taking the lead role in bringing Ubuntu for devices and desktop together. Expect a week of interesting discussions and of thinking out of the box to get there!

Participating in the Ubuntu Online Summit

Does this whet your appetite? Come and join us at the Summit, learn more and contribute to shaping the future of Ubuntu! There are different ways of taking part in the online event via video hangouts:

  • Participate or watch sessions – everyone is welcome to participate and join a discussion to provide input or offer contribution. If you prefer to take a rear seat, that’s fine too. You can either subscribe to sessions, watch them on your browser or directly join a live hangout. Just remember to register first and learn how to join a session.
  • Propose a session – do you want to take a more active role in contributing to Ubuntu? Do you have a topic you’d like to discuss, or an idea you’d like to implement? Then you’ll probably want to propose a session to make it happen. There is still a week for accepting proposals, so why don’t you go ahead and propose a session?

Looking forward to seeing you all at the Summit!

The post Announcing the next Ubuntu Online Summit appeared first on David Planella.

Sean Davis: What’s New in Xubuntu 15.04

Planet Ubuntu - Thu, 04/23/2015 - 16:41

Another 6 months of development has come and gone and we have a new Xubuntu release!  This release includes the hotly anticipated Xfce 4.12, released on February 28, as well as all of the typical application, appearance, documentation, and translation updates.

Left: Xubuntu 14.10, Right: Xubuntu 15.04

What’s New?

With the release of Xfce 4.12, this list is a bit longer than usual…

  • Xfce 4.12, and all of the wonderful things it includes!
  • A new application, LightDM GTK Greeter Settings, has been included to configure the login screen.
  • Light Locker is now configured through Xfce Power Manager
  • New “Xubuntu Light” and “Xubuntu Dark” colorschemes in Mousepad and Xfce Terminal
    • Xubuntu Light is the new default Mousepad scheme
    • Xubuntu Dark is a refreshed version of the previous terminal scheme
  • QT applications now look better out of the box
  • abiword 3.0.1
  • apt-offline 1.6
  • blueman 1.99
  • exo (Xfce support library) 0.10.4
  • firefox 37.0
  • garcon (Xfce menu library) 0.4.0
  • gnumeric 1.12.18
  • inxi 2.2.16
  • light-locker 1.6
  • lightdm-gtk-greeter 2.0
  • lightdm-gtk-greeter-settings 1.1.0
  • mousepad 0.4.0
  • parole 0.8.0
  • pavucontrol 2.0.3
  • ristretto 0.8.0
  • thunar 1.6.6
  • thunderbird 31.6
  • tumbler (Xfce thumbnailer) 0.1.31
  • xfce4-appfinder 4.12.0
  • xfce4-dev-tools 4.12.0
  • xfce4-indicator-plugin 2.3.3
  • xfce4-netload-plugin 1.2.4
  • xfce4-panel 4.12.0
  • xfce4-places-plugin 1.7.0
  • xfce4-power-manager 1.4.3
  • xfce4-screenshooter 1.8.2
  • xfce4-session 4.12.1
  • xfce4-settings 4.12.0
  • xfce4-systemload-plugin 1.1.2
  • xfce4-taskmanager 1.1.0
  • xfce4-weather-plugin 0.8.5
  • xfce4-whiskermenu-plugin 1.4.3
  • xfce4-xkb-plugin 0.7.1
  • xfconf 4.12.0
  • xfdesktop4 4.12.0
  • xfwm4 4.12.1
Screenshots Known Issues
  • Catfish: Authentication in live session accepts any value as password (LP: #1395720)
    • A minor issue since the live session does not use a password.
  • Xfce Panel: Dragging applications in the task bar causes repaint errors (LP: #1397095)
  • Xfce Notes/Panel: When upgrading, the notes plugin is removed from the panel (LP: #1446598)
    • No data is lost here, simply add the plugin back to your panel.
  • Power Indicator: indicator-power icons are incorrect after upgrade (LP: #1446605)
  • Virtualbox/VMWare: Shutdown/Restart of live session guest does not work (LP: #1447038)
    • The installation completes and no data is lost. Simply restart your virtual machine.

Head over to the Xubuntu website to grab the latest LTS or stable version here.


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