This week we’re doing some Linux mythbusting and talking retro gaming with Jay LaCroix from Learn Linux TV. This is a preview of what’s to come from our trip to All Things Open next week. By the way, make sure you come and check us out at booth 60. We’ll be recording podcasts, shaking hands, giving out t-shirts and stickers…and speaking of gaming, you can go head-to-head with us on Mario Kart or Rocket League on the Nintendo Switch. We’re giving that Switch away to a lucky winner at the conference, but you have to play to win. If you’re there, make sure you come see us because we want to see you.
The GNU Debugger is powerful, but it can also be inscrutable at times. Maybe this GUI will help?
eBPF is a revolutionary kernel technology that has lit the cloud native world on fire. If you’re going to have one person explain the excitement, that person would be Liz Rice. Liz is the COSO at Isovalent, creators of the open source Cilium project and pioneers of eBPF tech.
On this episode Liz tells Jerod all about the power of eBPF, where it came from, what kind of new applications its enabling, and who is building the next generation of networking, security, and observability tools with it.
What’s this? Basically:
- A Raspberry Pi CM4
- WiFi, 8GB RAM
- Up to 16TB of SSD Storage
- An App Store, backups, remote access, and much more
Batch 1 is shipping now, but they’re taking pre-orders for batch 2, which ships in October. Starts at $159 and goes up from there.
Do you ever send the output of a process to
/dev/null and regret it, but can’t afford to stop and restart the process?
catp is here for you!
chiark is my “colo” - a server I run, which lives in a data centre in London. It hosts ~200 users with shell accounts, various websites and mailing lists, moderators for a number of USENET newsgroups, and countless other services…
chiark’s last major OS upgrade was to jessie (Debian 8, released in April 2015). That was in 2016.
A harrowing tale of planning and peril. Surprisingly, it went quite well!
John Goerzen built a computer for his 3yo, installed Debian on it, and set up a GUI for it.
The looks of shock I get from people when I explain, as if it’s perfectly natural, that my child has been able to log in by himself to a Linux shell since age 3, are amusing and astounding. Especially considering that it is really not that hard.
It’s not that hard, but it is so foreign to people that they’re quickly impressed by such things. Still, John decided to introduce his kids to a GUI eventually:
Jacob mastered the basics of xmonad really quickly. Alt-Shift-C to close a window. Alt-Shift-Q to quit back to the “big black screen”. Alt-Shift-Enter to get a terminal window.
We launched thunar (the XFCE file manager) and plugged in his camera. He had a good deal of fun looking at photos and videos from it. But then I dropped the true highlight of the day for him: I offered to install Tuxpaint for him. That’s probably his favorite program of all time.
Speaking this morning at The Linux Foundation’s Open-Source Summit, Linus Torvalds talked up the possibilities of Rust within the Linux kernel and that it could be landing quite soon – possibly even for the next kernel cycle…
The Linux 5.20 merge window will open following the release of Linux 5.19 stable around the end of July, so at that point we’ll see if the Rust PR is submitted and lands for this next kernel version. It wouldn’t be too surprising with how things have been pacing and already having the blessing of Linus.
Lots of positivity about this in the attached comment thread.
Cheeky title, but they’re talking about
cheat, which is different than
info in that it’s entirely example based and community maintained.
The cheat system cuts to the chase. You don’t have to piece together clues about how to use a command. You just follow the examples. Of course, for complex commands, it’s not a shortcut for a thorough study of the actual documentation, but for quick reference, it’s as fast as it gets.
If you’ve ever wondered how the Linux kernel does its thing:
The goal is simple - to share my modest knowledge about the insides of the linux kernel and help people who are interested in linux kernel insides, and other low-level subject matter. Feel free to go through the book Start here
Mainboard Terminal is not just any cyberdeck, it’s a full-feature PC powered by Framework’s Mainboard. It has a 5” (1080x1080) round LCD, a fully 3D printable case, and is compatible with OLKB Preonic mechanical keyboard.
This week we’re joined by Mike Riley and we’re talking about his book Portable Python Projects (Running your home on a Raspberry Pi). We breakdown the details of the latest Raspberry Pi hardware, various automation ideas from the book, why Mike prefers Python for scripting on a Raspberry Pi, and of course why the Raspberry Pi makes sense for home labs concerned about data security.
Use the code
PYPROJECTS to get a 35% discount on the book. That code is valid for approximately 60 days after the episode’s publish date.
A solid rant by Terence Eden, who has to use macOS for work but would rather not:
I know you’re going to be tempted to reply with “you’re using it wrong” - but I’m not. This is how I like to use my computer. And it is clear that the MacBook isn’t my computer - it is Apple’s. (OK, OK! It belongs to my employer!)
Some of his grievances like window snapping and moving/removing UI elements can be alleviated with 3rd-party solutions, but he’s not wrong that the operating system doesn’t provide these features.
Though the application overall is stable and usable, it should not be considered safe for critically important work. There are numerous bugs and half working implementations. Pull requests are greatly appreciated.
If this kind of thing is your bag, I’ve also heard Geany is worth a look.
Asahi Linux is a project and community with the goal of porting Linux to Apple Silicon Macs, starting with the 2020 M1 Mac Mini, MacBook Air, and MacBook Pro.
Our goal is not just to make Linux run on these machines but to polish it to the point where it can be used as a daily OS. Doing this requires a tremendous amount of work, as Apple Silicon is an entirely undocumented platform. In particular, we will be reverse engineering the Apple GPU architecture and developing an open-source driver for it.
Asahi Linux is developed by a thriving community of free and open source software developers.
They brand CasaOS as an operating system, but it’s really a layer on top of Linux that provides a nice UI and easy app (docker container) installation. It’s early days for the project, but we definitely need some open source options in this space, so here’s hoping they continue to progress!
This is a ‘Linux Swiss Army Knife’, offering maximum utility while still being able to fit in your pocket. Is it fast? No. Can it run a GUI? Also no. But it can run scripts, ping a server, toggle a few GPIOs, and interact with a USB device.
Linux users on Tuesday got a major dose of bad news—a 12-year-old vulnerability in a system tool called Polkit gives attackers unfettered root privileges on machines running any major distribution of the open source operating system.
Previously called PolicyKit, Polkit manages system-wide privileges in Unix-like OSes. It provides a mechanism for nonprivileged processes to safely interact with privileged processes. It also allows users to execute commands with high privileges by using a component called pkexec, followed by the command.
Oh my. It requires local access first, which is the only good news here.
I built my own laptop over the holiday break and it’s a developer’s dream come true. I took a chance and ordered a Framework Laptop DIY Edition. I’m so glad I did. The Framework is an excellent platform to customize and build a very capable and stable Linux machine for development. Here’s what I love about it and things that could be better.
Check out the original RFC to find the genesis of this effort. Here’s the opening pitch:
We know there are huge costs and risks in introducing a new main language in the kernel. We risk dividing efforts and we increase the knowledge required to contribute to some parts of the kernel.
Most importantly, any new language introduced means any module written in that language will be way harder to replace later on if the support for the new language gets dropped.
Nevertheless, we believe that, even today, the advantages of using Rust outweighs the cost. We will explain why in the following sections.
Godspeed to everyone collaborating on what will surely be a massive, years-long undertaking.
A fascinating look at the state of packaging apps for the Linux desktop:
The stability of the Linux desktop has dramatically improved in recent years. Core library developers are finally seeing the benefits of maintaining compatibility. Despite this, many developers are not interested in depending on a stable base of libraries for binary software. Instead, they have decided to ignore and override almost all libraries pre-installed on the user’s system.
And why the author thinks Flatpak (which some believe is the future) is not the way to go.
I am not a fan. I’m going to outline here some of the technical, security and usability problems with Flatpak and others. I’ll try to avoid addressing “fixable” problems (like theming) and instead focus on fundamental problems inherent in their design. I aim to convince you that these are not the future of desktop Linux apps.
eBPF (7 years old) is a sandbox that can run code inside the linux kernel. It started as a technology to build firewalls, and has evolved over time to include a range of new features.
The panel discuss the origins of eBPF and how it works, as well as dig into some real-world use cases. While eBPF programs themselves aren’t written in Go (more like C), we will hear about how you can communicate with eBPF programs from your Go code.
Jim Salter writing for Ars Technica:
In our main Windows 11 review posted earlier this week, we covered the majority of new features and design decisions in Microsoft’s newest consumer OS—and it feels reasonable to characterize the overall impression given there as “lukewarm.” The good news is that we still hadn’t covered the best part of Windows 11: Linux.
If you could travel back in time and read this headline to college-me… I would’ve laughed you out of the room. Also, why didn’t you tell me about Bitcoin, ya jerk?! 😆
I’ve never gone full mouseless (nor do I necessarily recommend it), but there’s extreme productivity wins to be mined by keeping your hands on the home row as much as possible.
Building a development environment with the shell as a keystone offers multiple benefits. You can use tools that fit nicely with each other, you can customize everything depending on your own needs, and the biggest of all, you can control your entire development environment with your keyboard. This can save a lot of cognitive energy as well as deliver a pleasant user experience.
This is an excellent walk-through on Smashing Mag for those ready to level up their terminal game:
Today, I’d like to share with you these tools so that you too can increase your efficiency and your comfort in your daily job. They work well together — shaping what I call my Mouseless Development Environment. More precisely, we’ll discuss:
- Why using the Linux shell can be very powerful when working with plain text (including code);
- Why using the dreaded Arch Linux;
- The advantage of a tiling window manager;
- How to have a great terminal experience with URxvt, tmux, and tmuxp;
- Why Vim can become your best friend.