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- Thunar 1.8.8 releasedThe latest version of the powerful Thunar file manager for the leading Linux desktop environment Xfce fixes six bugs. There is also translation updates for seven languages. There is nothing new in terms of features, just small fixes in preparation for the launch of Xfce 4.14 stable.
- It's over, Kubuntu 18.10 Cosmic Cuttlefish is EOLThe Ubuntu Linux distributions non-LTS releases are supported for nine months and then you're on your own. Their KDE flavored variant Kubuntu 18.10 Cosmic Cuttlefish was released October 18th 2018 which means that it's life is over, it's done and there will be no more package updates. Users will have to move on.
- Xfce Image Viewer Ristretto 0.8.5 releasedThe latest version of the Ristretto image viewer fixes some memory leaks and some minor bugs. It is still based on GTK 2 and it is still too cumbersome to use as a general-purpose image viewer. The new version does not fix the very fundamental problems with this particular image viewer.
- New Steam Clients Available with Faster Game DownloadsValve has released both a new stable and a new beta version of their immoral Digital Rights Management riddled game store. The new clients have better logic for choosing what servers it's clients use to download games and updates which should result in faster downloads for those who happen to live close to one of their servers. This is good news for those willing to trade freedom for hours or weeks of temporary entertainment.
- User-friendly XMPP client Kaidan 0.4.1 releasedA major update to the simple and easy to use XMPP/Jabber messaging program Kaidan was released one week ago following one and a half year of hard development word. That long-awaited 0.4.0 release had the minor problem of not being able to connect to the Internet on some Linux distributions. Version 0.4.1 has fixed that bug as well as some other minor issues discovered after the 0.4.0 release. Kaidan is available for Linux, Android, macOS and Windows.
- AMD Navi Support is merged into the upcoming Linux Kernel 5.3Linux kernel creator and architect Linus Torvalds has accepted the proposed Direct Rendering Management code required for AMD Navi GPU support from DRM maintainer Dave Airlie and merged it into the Linux kernel git tree. This ensures that the upcoming 5.3 version of the Linux Kernel will support these new GPUs. Kernel support is required for the Vulkan and OpenGL support the upcoming 19.2 version of the Mesa graphics stack will have for the newly released AMD Navi GPUs.
- KDE Connect now lets you connect your Mac to Android phones and Linux desktopsKDE Connect is a multi-platform project for securely synchronizing and controlling one device from another. It has so far been been limited to synchronization between Linux desktops and Android phones. This technology is now available to Mac and Windows users thanks to KDEs Summer of Code students Weixuan Xiao and Piyush Aggarwal.
- Happy birthday KDE Plama 5The current iteration of the most advanced GNU/Linux desktop environment is five year old today; KDE Plasma 5.0 was launched July 16th, 2014. KDE itself is much older, it's launch date of October 14th, 1996 makes it 22 years old. Plasma itself is also older with the first version being introduced with KDE 4 on 23rd October 2007 - nearly 12 years ago.
- Microsoft's Terms of Service Updated to be even more DraconianMicrosoft just spammed us informing that they are updating their terms of service. Their new terms are even more big-brother like than their previous terms. Their e-mail spam claims that you agree them reading your e-mails and sharing the content with contractors and partners just by using any of their products. You should absolutely resist and close your Microsoft accounts and remove all traces of Microsoft software from computing devices in your vicinity.
- AntiX 19 beta 2 releasedAntiX is a systemd-free Linux distribution forked off Debian with IceWM as the default desktop environment. It is essentially Debian with a really light-weight default configuration. The current stable 17.4 release is based on Debian Stretch. AntiX 19 is based on the newly released Debian 10 Buster. There is not much new since the first AntiX 19 beta was released, there's some new themes, icons and wallpapers included in the default installation and that's about it. The difference between 17.4 and the 19-series is huge.
- AMD Admits Ryzen 3000 Series CPUs are Broken, promises BIOS updateAMD claims to have figured out why their new Ryzen 3000 CPUs are unable to produce random data when the RDRAND instruction is called. They promise that a BIOS update will be made available shortly. This is good news for those who want to run modern Linux distributions or Windows games like Destiny 2 on these chips since it is currently impossible to use any software which takes advantage of the RDRAND instruction on AMDs flawed new CPUs.
- Mozilla's Firefox 68 vs Firefox 68 from Fedora: No difference. At all.Curiosity will sometime result in a complete waste of time and that's exactly what benchmarking Firefox 68 directly from Mozilla vs the Firefox 68 update shipped by Fedora in that distributions repositories. There is absolutely no difference.
- Kdenlive 19.04.3 released with a whole lot of bug-fixesThe latest stable version of the best free software video editor has a really long list of bug-fixes, 12 of which were causing crashes. Cursor tools now work as they should when hovering a timeline and the clip selection code, which previously would cause lags when working with lots of clips, is now a whole lot faster.
- Linux Kernel 5.2 can't into Chromium VAAPI accelerated video on Intel i915The annoyance when you just want to watch Oh My Girls new music video and you find that you can't because your shiny new kernel's got a broken driver for your Intel iGPU can be avoided by either not upgrading kernel 5.2 or by not using Chromium the VAAPI accelerated video patch.
- Web Browser Showdown: Firefox 68 vs Chromium 75 vs Firefox NightlyChromium is the fastest web browser on Linux when it comes to everything and anything graphics-intensive. Is is not that clear-cut when it comes to overall performance and real-world use. What is clear is that both Firefox and Chromium appear to get slower with each new release and that is specially true if they are running on Intel hardware.
- Finance Manager KMyMoney v5.0.5 Released30 bugs have been eradicated since the last release of the double-entry bookkeeping program KMyMoney which is self-described as "the BEST Personal Finance Manager for FREE Users". It is similar to the more well-known commercial product Quicken. KMyMoney is cross-platform and the most important bugfix in this release is only for macOS users who could previously not open saved files.
- GnuPG 2.2.17 released with An Easy Fix for the current Keyserver Signature Spam ProblemThe GnuPG hackers have released a new version of GnuPG with a simple fix for the not-ongoing key-server signature spam problem: The new version will simply ignore all key-signatures received from key-servers. There is also a new "self-sigs-only" import option.
- FreeBSD 11.3 released
- Firefox 68 esr released with better Dark Mode, redesigned addons dashboard and more enterprise-policiesThis is both a regular release and a Extended Support Release which makes it more important than other releases since some distributions tend to use the ESR release for years. It is also the basis for Firefox re-brands like GNU IceCat.
- Free Software which Censors and Restricts what Sites and services the user is Allowed To Read and use is still Free SoftwareFree Software which restricts the user in certain ways is not a new concept. Gentoo Linux started shipping a modified version of the Bitcoin crypto currency software which restricted who users were allowed to send BTC to using a big blacklist in 2014. The question of censorship in free software is becoming increasingly important as more and more developers are building blacklists restricting what the end-user can do into their software. Does user-restricting censoring software qualify as being free software? We asked the senior authority on this matter and apparently, it does.
- Mesa 19.1.2 releasedThose who play Wolfenstein II will be happy to hear it no longer crashes when using the RADV drivers. There's also a DirectX to Vulkan fix for Intel gen7 iGPUs and some fixes for the Freedreno driver for Qualcomm's Adreno graphics hardware.
- Revisiting Intel CPU bug workarounds with Linux Kernel 5.2The impact of all the workarounds for all the Intel security is not that bad when it comes to every-day workloads like kernel compilation if you risk leaving SMT on. Turning SMT off does have a very real and noticeable impact on performance. Leaving SMT on and sticking with the kernels default settings will only add about a minute to a half-an-hour long compile job compared to turning the workarounds off with mitigations=off
- AMD Ryzen 3000 series CPUs can't do Random on boot causing Boot Failure on newer Linux distributionsThe fun part is that very old AMD APUs have a very similar well-known problem with it's implementation of the CPU instruction RDRAND. systemd implemented a work-around for it back in May but distributions do not have it since there has been no stable systemd releases since then. The result is that newer distributions - with the exception of Debian 10 - will simply fail to boot on Ryzen 3000 series CPUs due to a bug in those CPUs which causes them to fail to produce random data when RDRAND is called early in the boot process.
- XMPP client Kaidan 0.4.0 released after one and a half years of developmentThis is a big update to this lesser-known Jabber/XMPP client for Linux, Android, macOS and Windows. Major changes includes support for file sharing, downloadable attachments, offline message support and image previews in chats. Too bad it doesn't even compile.
- Linux kernel version 5.2 released big performance improvementsFaster memory allocations, improvements to most file systems like ext4, btrfs and xfs, better support for peripherals - specially those from Logitech and perhaps most scary: x64 FPU optimizations. Those are some of the highlights in the latest Linux Kernel version.
- Debian Buster is ReleasedThe Debian Project has released a new stable version of their distribution. It comes with now old versions of Xfce, GNOME and KDE as well as the Linux kernel and other components; the versions included are, however, newer than the versions Debian 9 Stretch used. Debian 10 Buster uses Wayland as the default display server if you use the GNOME desktop option. It has AppArmor security enabled by default.
- The Linux kernel will not get support for the fsgsbase instructions from Intel any time soonIntel submitted some patches which added support for the four FSGSBASE CPU assembler instructions to the kernel tip staging area two weeks ago. These were promptly shut down by kernel maintainer Thomas Gleixner on the grounds that they have "serious bugs" and they weren't even tested before they were submitted to the kernel mailing list. That is not something anyone wants in very critical kernel pathways.
- Wine 4.12 released with Support for Plug and Play devices drivers and Multi-Monitor SetupsThere's also 27 bug-fixes for games in this bi-weekly Wine release. The list of game-specific bug-fixes includes Tomb Raider 4, Need for Speed Hot Pursuit, Dune 2000, Golden Krone Hotel and Overwatch. There's also non-game fixes for specific applications like Adobe Acrobat Reader DC, Lego digital designer and RT Se7en Lite.
- Valve's got a new shader compiler for AMD GPUs ready for testingValve's "open-source graphics group" has been working on an alternative to the LLVM shader compiler currently used by all free graphics drivers. Their ACO shader compiler, specific to AMD hardware, has now reached a level of performance, stability and maturity where Valve feels comfortable asking for public feedback and testing.
- AMD RX 5700 and 5700 XT GPUs launching with No Linux SupportAMD is launching two new GPUs on July 7th. There is zero Linux Kernel support for these two GPUs and there is also no Mesa support at all. There is no hint of them in the Linux git kernel, not even in header files, and there are no patches submitted to the Linux Kernel Mailing List. The same is true for the Mesa graphics stack. Version 19.1 launched with zero support for these cards and 19.2 isn't due until the end of August.
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