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Linux FormatLinux Format

Linux Format March 2019

Linux Format is your complete guide to the world of Linux. Whether you've just discovered Linux, or you're a full-time guru, Linux Format has everything you need to make the most of your OS. The editorial formula is a mix of features, reviews and practical tutorials that tackle topics as far ranging as installing software to socket programming and network management. Thought-provoking features and interviews also provide a focus on key technologies, trends and issues in the fast-paced world of Free and Open Source software.

Country:
United Kingdom
Language:
English
Publisher:
Future Publishing Ltd
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13 Issues

IN THIS ISSUE

access_time1 min.
who we are

Jonni Bidwell I like the olde fashion’d idea of just unplugging network cables. But setting up a Raspberry Pi VPN/Tor router is a less drastic way to frustrate any efforts to snoop on your comms. A little black magick goes a long way too, so venturing to the Otherworld and giving goblins shiny things might buy you some security. Matt Hanson Tor has always been my pick for a more secure Linux life, especially these days when it feels like everyone and their grandma is out there sniffing around our internet activity. Combine it with running Tails off a USB drive and I can safely remove my tinfoil hat while browsing. Nick Peers I’m exploring how to add 2FA to Mint. It’s technically possible, but you’re not adding an extra layer of security, simply replacing…

access_time1 min.
reasonably secure linux

Put a lock on your door and they get in through a window. Lock the window and they’ll just smash it. Put bars on the windows and they pick your door lock. Deadbolt the door and they will trick their way in pretending to be the gas man. An analogy, how quaint! Computer security can, at times, feel like an arms race between global superpowers. Yet at least with the Linux kernel and open source everything’s out in the open. Indeed, there’s an entire world of developers whose livelihoods depend on the FOSS ecosystem being secured. While we can’t guarantee absolute security, we can at least take the sensible steps down the path of reasonable security. Keep in mind that the majority of security breaches occur through human error. All too often…

access_time2 min.
librem 5 gets closer to launch

We’ve been eagerly awaiting Purism’s Librem 5 open source smartphone, and a recent update from the team suggests that the device is steadily getting closer to release. In case you’ve missed us harping on about the Librem 5 (https://puri.sm/products/librem-5 ) , this is a smartphone that uses the PureOS (https://pureos.net) operating system with a focus on privacy and utilising ethical, open-source software and technology. In a recent blog post (see http://bit.ly/lxf247-librem-blog), Eric Kuzmenko of Purism outlined how the project ensured that the Librem 5 uses completely free software. Eric explains how the development of the Librem 5’s dev kit took shape, with the team deciding which electronic design automation tool they would use. According to the blog “the idea was to modify FEDEVEL’s i.MX 6QP OpenRex board, which would have satisfied the…

access_time2 min.
claim your eu bug bounty!

The European Commission has launched 14 bug bounties, encouraging people to find security issues in free software projects that EU institutions use. By highlighting these issues, so-called bug hunters can help make sure that no serious problems affect the software that EU governments rely on. The Free and Open Source Software Audit project (FOSSA, read more at https://juliareda.eu/fossa) has been running since 2015, and it’s now offering various rewards depending on the severity of the bug found, and in which open source software. FOSSA is offering up to €58,000 for bugs found in FileZilla and VLC, €89,000 for Drupal, €45,000 for GNU C Library and much more. Those high prices show how keen the EU is on finding any bugs in the software that it uses, and it should encourage people to…

access_time1 min.
time’s up for 32-bit linux in 2038

Want to feel old? Of course you do! We’re now closer to the year 2038 than we are to the year 2000. This is important, because in January 2038 the 32-bit time_t value that’s used in Unix-like systems, will run out of bits and won’t be able to represent the correct time. The Millennium Bug crises was averted thanks to the hard work of developers and engineers around the world, and hopes are high that a similar effort will be successful for 2038’s problem. The good news is that work is well underway. In a blog post titled “Approaching the kernel year-2038 end game”, which can be read at http://bit.ly/lxf247-kernal-2038, Jonathan Corbet, founder of LWN.net, observes that while “the fact that systems being deployed now will still be operating in 2038 adds…

access_time1 min.
driving ahead

“Panfrost, the latest effort to deliver a free and open source implementation of a driver for the newest versions of the Arm Mali family of GPUs, is gaining traction. It can now run applications on Wayland and directly on top of kernel mode-setting, including Wayland compositors such as Weston, and other applications such as media center Kodi. The efficient implementation supports zero-copy display of GPUrendered Wayland clients, as well as media content from external hardware blocks. This work removes one more barrier to widespread adoption of Panfrost, while making it easier for developers to work on the rendering aspect. While the winsys and rendering support are based on Arm’s out-of-tree kernel driver, the community is working on a Mali DRM driver for mainline kernel inclusion. Panfrost could finally be an open source…

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