Articles about Linux

GNOME 40 beta is here -- the best Linux desktop environment is getting better

There are a lot of great desktop environments for Linux, such as Cinnamon, KDE Plasma, and Xfce to name a few. With that said, only one can be the best, and that is GNOME. If you prefer a different environment, you are simply wrong or ignorant on the subject. You know what? That's fine. As they say, ignorance is bliss, so if you are happy not using GNOME, more power to you.

For those of us superior Linux users that prefer GNOME, it is time to get excited. You see, the GNOME 40 beta is finally here. Yes, the next version of the desktop environment will be forty thanks to a new confusing naming scheme. This version of the DE is most notable for a series of UI changes, such as a horizontal workspace switcher and the movement of the Dash (favorites launcher) to the bottom of he screen (like the dock on macOS).

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Framework Laptop is upgradeable, repairable, good for the environment, and Linux-friendly

It used to be, when you bought a computer, you could upgrade or repair parts when needed. Running out of storage? Upgrade the hard disk or solid state drive. Not enough memory? Add some RAM. Laptop battery no longer holding a charge? Just replace it. Over time, however, manufacturers have increasingly turned to soldering in components, making them virtually impossible to upgrade or replace.

Of course, we largely have Apple to blame for this trend, but other manufacturers are guilty too. We also must take a look at ourselves for enabling this customer unfriendly behavior. Hell, I bought a Mac mini recently that can't be upgraded at all. If the SSD, RAM, or other component fails, I will pretty much have to toss it in the trash. So, yes, I am personally guilty of this landfill-filling behavior.

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Google funds two Linux kernel developers to focus on security

Linux kernel

Google and the Linux Foundation are prioritizing funds to underwrite two full-time maintainers for Linux kernel security development.

Gustavo Silva and Nathan Chancellor will focus on maintaining and improving kernel security and associated initiatives in order to ensure the world's most pervasive open source software project is sustainable for decades to come.

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Debian-based Netrunner 21.01 'XOXO' is the perfect Linux alternative to Windows 10

Here at BetaNews, we report on many Linux distribution releases, because, well, there are a lot of them. Not all of these operating systems are great, and only a handful are legitimate replacements for Windows 10. With that said, Microsoft's operating system is very good, so if you are happy with Windows, you should probably just stick with it. Don't switch for the sake of change, folks.

Unfortunately, some people strongly dislike Windows 10, and they are eager to move onto a Linux-based alternative. If that is you, I have some great news. One of the best Windows alternatives, Netrunner, has a new version. The Debian-based operating system, which uses the excellent KDE Plasma desktop environment, now sits at version 21.01 and carries the moniker "XOXO."

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Linux Mint users are surprisingly irresponsible regarding updates

Linux users are more knowledgeable regarding computer maintenance than Windows users, right? Maybe. That is certainty up for debate. With that said, Linux user may not be very responsible computer users. Well, Linux Mint users, at least.

You see, in a stunning development, it turns out Linux Mint users are often very behind in installing both operating system and application updates. In other words, Linux Mint users are often running outdated software, which could be no longer supported, or even worse, it could contain exploitable vulnerabilities. For example, a surprisingly high number of these users are running Linux Mint 17.x, which is unsupported since 2019!

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Get 'Practical Linux Security Cookbook: Second Edition' ($35.99 value) FREE for a limited time

Over the last few years, system security has gained a lot of momentum and software professionals are focusing heavily on it.

Linux is often treated as a highly secure operating system. However, the reality is that Linux has its share of security flaws, and these security flaws allow attackers to get into your system and modify or even destroy your important data. But there’s no need to panic, since there are various mechanisms by which these flaws can be removed, and this book will help you learn about different types of Linux security to create a more secure Linux system.

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OpenMandriva Lx 4.2 Linux distribution now available for PC, Raspberry Pi, and more

As more and more computer users sour on Windows 10, they are increasingly turning to Linux as an alternative. They aren't just choosing traditional desktop Linux distributions like Ubuntu and Manjaro, but Chrome OS too. Yes, folks, Chromebooks run a Linux-based operating system. Make no mistake, Linux is a threat to Microsoft's desktop stranglehold.

Unfortunately, there are way too many Linux distributions nowadays, making it hard for curious Windows users to pick one. My advice to Linux newbies is to start with Ubuntu -- or a variant of it -- such as Mint or Pop!_OS. As you get more comfortable, you can then begin distro-hopping, starting a quest to find the best Linux-based operating system to meet your needs.

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Forget pricey Microsoft Windows 10 -- the Ubuntu Linux-based Linspire 10 is cheaper

Windows 10 is actually a really great operating system. The problem? It is actually quite expensive at its normal retail price. Amazon sells Windows 10 Home for a whopping $130! Not to mention, Microsoft's desktop OS is quite resource intensive, making it a bad choice for those with aging hardware. For those with older computers, Linux-based operating systems are often a better option.

While many people associate Linux distributions with "free," the truth is, some can actually cost money. There is nothing wrong with paying for a Linux distro either -- it is a fine way to support the development. One such operating system, Linspire (formerly known as "Lindows") recently hit a major milestone -- version 10. Starting at just $29.99, the Ubuntu-based operating system is far cheaper than the expensive Windows 10.

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Apple fixes serious sudo vulnerability in macOS

Apple logo and padlock

A serious vulnerability was recently discovered in the sudo tool which could be used to gain root access on Linux-based systems. It soon transpired that the very same issue also affects macOS.

The security vulnerability -- known as Baron Samedit and tracked as CVE-2021-3156 -- is a years-old heap-based buffer overflow bug, and Apple has now issued a patch that fixes the problem for users of Big Sur, Catalina and Mojave flavors of macOS.

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Linux-based Raspberry Pi OS is secretly installing a Microsoft repo

Raspberry Pi site through magnifying glass

Raspberry Pi owners are being warned that the officially supported Raspberry Pi OS installs a Microsoft repo without notification.

A recent update to the Debian Linux-based operating system -- previously known as Raspbian -- secretly installs a Microsoft apt repository that can call home to the company's servers. For anyone concerned about telemetry in general, or who is trying to avoid contact with the Windows maker, this is clearly not good news and raises questions about trust.

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Download Mageia 8 RC1 Linux distro now

Mageia 8 has been in development for a while now, and fans of that Linux-based operating system are likely chomping at the bit for a stable release. Back in August, we shared that the first Beta of the distribution was available for testing, and then, the second Beta came out in December.

And now, finally, the first release candidate arrives. As with the Beta releases, RC1 is available with your choice of three desktop environments --  KDE Plasma, GNOME, and Xfce. It seems Mate is a post-install option, but there is no dedicated ISO for it like the aforementioned trio of DEs.

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Update Chrome for Windows, Mac and Linux to protect against a dangerous zero-day vulnerability

Cartoon Chrome logo

A serious security vulnerability has been discovered in Chrome, forcing Google to push out an emergency update to the browser. Affecting the Windows, Mac and Linux versions of Chrome, the high severity vulnerability is being tracked as CVE-2021-21148.

Described as a "heap buffer overflow in V8", it is being actively exploited in the wild, although few details of the exploit are available. Because of the severity of the vulnerability, Google has released a fix and is urging everyone to install it.

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The Internet Archive exists thanks to Ubuntu and the Linux communities

The Internet Archive is unquestionably one of the most useful sites on the web. The Wayback Machine makes it possible to find snapshots of most websites at any given point in their history, and the archive itself is also home to a wealth of books, magazines, games, software, movies and more.

You probably don’t give too much thought (or any thought for that matter) to the day-to-day running of the archive, but it relies on a long-term support server distribution of Ubuntu Linux and everything on its servers (with the possible exception of the JP2 compression library) is free and open-source software.

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Solus 4.2 Fortitude Linux distro is here with Budgie, GNOME, KDE Plasma, and MATE

So far, 2021 is a definite improvement over 2020, but it's not all great. Due to the ever-mutating COVID-19 virus, many of us remain isolated in our homes. Thankfully, we computer nerds have been training most of our lives for this -- we have experienced plenty of extended time away from other humans, instead tinkering with our computers.

One thing I have enjoyed doing to pass the time during the pandemic is installing Linux distributions. Distro-hopping isn't just fun, but educational too. Today, Solus 4.2 becomes available for download, and it is an operating system you should check out. It is offered with your choice of four great desktop environments -- Budgie, GNOME, KDE Plasma, and MATE.

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Ubuntu Core 20 offers secure Linux for IoT devices

Wireless internet of things

Canonical is making Ubuntu Core 20, a minimal, containerized version of Ubuntu 20.04 LTS for IoT devices and embedded systems, generally available from today.

It improves device security with secure boot, full disk encryption, and secure device recovery and builds on the Ubuntu application ecosystem in order to create ultra-secure smart things.

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