| DistroWatch Weekly
|DistroWatch Weekly, Issue 634, 2 November 2015
Welcome to this year's 44th issue of DistroWatch Weekly!
The Ubuntu distribution, despite its developers making frequent controversial design decisions, has remained one of the most widely used desktop and server distributions in recent years. At the end of October we saw the release of Ubuntu 15.10 and this week we share our thoughts on the latest version of Ubuntu. In this issue we also explore ways to display log files in reverse order in our Questions and Answers column. In our News section we talk about Chakra GNU/Linux upgrading their default desktop environment, OpenMandriva's plan to offer more diverse editions and the MINIX developers planning their first conference. As usual, we share the torrents we are seeding and supply a list of the distributions released last week. In our Opinion Poll we ask how many computers our readers have around the home. We wish you all a wonderful week and happy reading!
Listen to the Podcast edition of this week's DistroWatch Weekly in OGG (24MB) and MP3 (19MB) formats
• Music credit: Clouds Fly With Me by Matti Paalanen
|Feature Story (by Jesse Smith)
The good, the bad and the Ubuntu 15.10
The Ubuntu distribution is probably the most widely used desktop distribution in the Linux community. A few weeks ago Canonical, the company which develops and supports Ubuntu, launched Ubuntu 15.10. The release of Ubuntu 15.10 offers mostly minor changes and package updates. The new release ships with LibreOffice 5 and version 4.2 of the Linux kernel. The Firefox and Chromium packages have been updated, but otherwise the release notes do not have much to say about the new release. I suspect this version of Ubuntu may be intended to help Canonical polish some features before the distribution's next long term support release, due to arrive in April 2016. The 15.10 release, while tame with regards to new features, provides just nine months of support.
Ubuntu 15.10 is available in 32-bit and 64-bit builds for the x86 architecture. I downloaded the 64-bit build. The installation media for the latest release of Ubuntu is about 1.1GB in size. Booting from this media brings up a graphical screen where we can select our preferred language from a list. The screen also provides a link to the distribution's release notes. From this screen we can either jump straight into installing the distribution or explore the distribution's Unity desktop environment.
Ubuntu's system installer is a graphical application which has not changed much in recent years. The installer begins by asking if we would like to download security updates during the installation process. We are also asked if we would like to install third-party software, such as multimedia support. The following screen asks if we would like Ubuntu to take over our entire hard drive or if we would like to manually partition our disk. The partition manager screen is streamlined and easy to navigate. I found the installer will support working with Btrfs, JFS, XFS and ext2/3/4 file systems. I decided to set up Ubuntu on a Btrfs volume. We can also select where to install the GRUB boot loader from the partition management screen. Once our disk has been divided up we are then walked through screens which get us to select our time zone from a map of the world, confirm our keyboard's layout and create a user account. Our account's home directory can optionally be encrypted. From there the installer copies it files to our computer and then offers to reboot the machine.
I like Ubuntu's installer. It works fairly quickly and it is easy to navigate. The release notes mention a potential bug that can appear if the computer is connected to the network during the installation, but I did not encounter any problems while installing the distribution.
Booting our new copy of Ubuntu brings us to a graphical login screen. From here we can sign into the user account we created during the installation or we can log into a guest account. The guest account can be accessed without a password and any changes made or files created while logged into the guest account are wiped clean when we logout again.
Ubuntu 15.10 -- The Unity dash
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The first time we sign into our account a screen appears with a list of keyboard short-cuts we can use. Dismissing this helpful screen leaves us at the Unity desktop. Down the left side of the screen we find a quick-launch bar that doubles as a task switcher. In the upper-left corner there is an icon for opening the Unity dash. Over in the upper-right corner we see a system tray and a user menu where we can change settings or sign out of our account. Opening the Unity dash we are presented with a nearly-full-screen search page where we can type in the name of applications, files or other items we want to find. The dash allows us to filter the search results by file type. We can further narrow down search results by applying filters. For example, we can search for applications and then filter software based on categories, By default, the dash will show us purchasing options for items on Amazon when we search for things like software, music or games. The Amazon search results can be turned off through a setting in the Unity settings panel.
The Unity settings panel provides a nice, central location for managing the look and feel of the desktop. We can also manage some lower-level aspects of the operating system from this panel. For example, we can create user accounts using a program launched from the panel. We can also schedule backups and restore files from backup archives. I quite like Unity's configuration panel as it is easy to navigate and the available modules work well.
Ubuntu 15.10 -- The settings panel
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I tried running Ubuntu 15.10 in two test environments. When run on my desktop computer the distribution worked well, Unity was quick to respond and I encountered no problems. My screen was set to its maximum resolution, sound worked out of the box and my network connection was automatically enabled. However, when run in a VirtualBox virtual machine, Ubuntu did not integrate into the virtual environment and performance was very poor. The Unity desktop was slow to respond, applications took a long time to open and visual effects were displayed in slow motion. I have encountered similar poor performance with Unity in the past and it could previously be fixed by enabling 3-D video acceleration in VirtualBox's settings and installing VirtualBox's guest modules. I tried both of these approaches and, while these changes did allow me to run Unity with my screen's full resolution, performance remained poor. In either test environment, Ubuntu used a fairly large amount of memory compared to other Linux distributions, typically just over 600MB when sitting idle at the desktop.
Ubuntu ships with a useful collection of software. Looking through the dash we find the Firefox web browser, the Thunderbird e-mail application, the Transmission bittorrent software, a remote desktop client and the Empathy messaging software. The Network Manager software is present to help us get on-line. LibreOffice is included along with a PDF document viewer, the Totem video player and the Rhythmbox audio player. Ubuntu ships with a webcam utility, the Brasero disc burning software, a simple image viewer, the Shotwell photo manager and a scanner utility. We are also given an archive manager, a calculator and a text editor. There are a few games on the system and a virtual keyboard program. In the background we find multimedia codecs are available (assuming we opted to include them during the installation) and Flash support is included in Firefox. The distribution ships with systemd 225, the GNU Compiler Collection (version 5.2.1) and version 4.2 of the Linux kernel.
Most users will want to add extra software to their operating system and this can be achieved in a few ways. One of the easiest approaches to adding software to Ubuntu is to search for an application in the dash. Searching for names or descriptions of software will return relevant results of both installed programs and additional software in the distribution's repositories. Clicking on an application's entry will either launch the program (if it is already installed) or give us the option of downloading and running the application.
Ubuntu 15.10 -- The Ubuntu Software Centre
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Another way to install new applications is to use the Ubuntu Software Centre. This program provides users with a graphical interface for searching for new software. I like the Software Centre interface, it provides us with lists of programs in a given category and we can search for items by name. I found the pages of available items easy to navigate and clicking on a program brings up a full page description of the selected software. This information page tells us a little about the program and provides a screen shot of the application in action. Software can be installed or removed with a single button click and installation actions happen in the background while we continue to search for additional software packages.
When new software updates are available in Ubuntu's repositories, a notification appears on the desktop. The distribution's update manager shows us a simple list of software that can be upgraded and waits for us to confirm it can download and install the waiting updates. During my trail there were just three updates available, totalling approximately 30MB in size.
Ubuntu takes two unusual approaches to working with application menus. By default, the application which holds focus on the desktop has its menu placed in Unity's top bar. This means the application's window takes up less screen space, but it also means when we are working with applications that are not in maximized windows we need to use more mouse movement to reach the program's menu. However, it is possible to change Unity's settings so that application menus are included in the program's window, causing menus to work about the same as they do in other desktop environments.
The second unusual feature involving menus is the HUD. When operating in Unity, we can tap the ALT key and type the name of a feature or menu item we want to access. This causes a list of relevant menu items the application supports to appear on the screen and we can select a menu item with the keyboard or mouse. Though it took me a while to get accustomed to the HUD, I eventually found it very useful. I like being able to quickly search for and select menu entries without taking either hand off my keyboard. The HUD is especially useful when working with applications that have a lot of menu options, such as LibreOffice or the GNU Image Manipulation Program. Tapping ALT, followed by typing the word "page" gets me to the "Format Page" menu item faster than moving my hand to the mouse, clicking the Format menu and moving down to the "Page..." entry in LibreOffice. The HUD is definitely a feature I would like to see other desktop environments support, at least as an option.
Ubuntu 15.10 -- Running various desktop applications
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I had mixed feelings from my time with Ubuntu. On the one hand, the distribution feels fairly polished and the installer, applications and system tools all worked well. My desktop's hardware was properly detected and utilized and this release offers us updated versions of popular software. However, in a virtual machine, Ubuntu performed poorly and this surprised me since the previous release worked quite smoothly in a VirtualBox instance. Not only that, but this version of Ubuntu used quite a bit more memory than the last version did on the same test equipment.
What really stood out most about Ubuntu 15.10 though was this release felt virtually identical in every way to Ubuntu 15.04 and very similar to 14.10. One of the few changes I noticed was that this version of Ubuntu appears to no longer support both the Upstart and systemd init programs, as the previous version did. I see this as an unfortunate (though expected) change as Canonical moves to support just one init package. On the one hand, this lack of adjustments in 15.10 is good news for people who do not want to experience a lot of change. The development team appears to have been working almost exclusively over the past year to fix bugs and keep things working as they have been. This makes Ubuntu feel like a more stable platform.
On the other hand, having a platform that does not boast any new features makes me wonder if there is a point to pushing out a new release. The minor package updates presented probably could have been handled by a backports repository for Ubuntu 15.04. While projects like openSUSE and Fedora are experimenting with new system admin tools, file system snapshots, Wayland and boot environments, Ubuntu appears to be sitting idle. I know there are behind-the-scenes changes planned (such as Snappy packages, Mir and a new version of Unity), but those items keep getting pushed back. In short, I feel this release of Ubuntu was good, but it isn't bringing anything new to the table over the previous version.
* * * * *
Hardware used in this review
My physical test equipment for this review was a desktop HP Pavilon p6 Series with the following specifications:
- Processor: Dual-core 2.8GHz AMD A4-3420 APU
- Storage: 500GB Hitachi hard drive
- Memory: 6GB of RAM
- Networking: Realtek RTL8111 wired network card
- Display: AMD Radeon HD 6410D video card
|Miscellaneous News (by Jesse Smith)
Chakra adopts Plasma 5, OpenMandriva introduces new editions and Tanenbaum plans MINIX conference
The developers of Chakra GNU/Linux, a desktop oriented distribution based on Arch Linux, have announced Chakra is transitioning from using the KDE 4 desktop environment to Plasma 5. The shift brings Chakra up to date with the latest desktop software from the KDE project and migrates users off KDE 4, which will no longer be receiving support. "With this move, Plasma 5 related packages will replace the current kde-workspace group of packages in our repositories. In addition, many applications which in the meantime have been ported to Frameworks 5 and Qt 5, including the ones developed by KDE, will become available. Detailed instructions on how to perform the switch will be published in a following announcement. As always, a new ISO release will follow very soon to provide all the latest updates and changes so new users don't have to go through the manual process. Also many of you may prefer starting with a clean installation or wish to have the ISO at hand in case something goes wrong."
* * * * *
The OpenMandriva distribution is well known as a newcomer friendly desktop operating system. While the developers are still focused on providing an easy to use desktop platform, they are also branching out and experimenting with different roles. The OpenMandriva blog talks about some of the new projects the OpenMandriva team plans to explore. "Some days ago OMA conducted a strategic meeting (this time in Krakow, Poland - beautiful city!), and a whole bunch of important things were discussed and taken forward. To prepare and present them in detail (and to implement) will take time, so for now we just give some highlights: Server distribution; smoother and simpler contribution process; semi-rolling release; improved support features; simpler communications (for bugs and other)." The blog post does not provide any time line for the planned features.
* * * * *
Andrew Tanenbaum, creator of the MINIX operating system, sent out an e-mail last week in which he invited people to come out and talk about MINIX in the operating system's first dedicated conference. "The www.minix3.org website has been visited 380,000 times in 2015 (and 2.6 million times since 2007). The .iso image file has been downloaded 50,000 times in 2015 (and 674,000 times since 2007) so clearly there is a lot of interest in MINIX 3. My colleagues and I thought maybe it is time for a conference about MINIX, just as there are Linux and BSD conferences, so we have scheduled one, for 1 Feb. 2016 at the VU, in Amsterdam." A page on the MINIX website invites people involved with MINIX to come give talks and discuss the Unix-like operating system.
|Questions and Answers (by Jesse Smith)
Display log files in reverse order
Viewing-upside-down asks: Most log files are written top to bottom so the most recent entry is at the end. I want to see my log with the most recent stuff at the top. Is there an easy way to do this?
You are quite correct, with the exception of using the last command to see who has signed into their account recently, virtually all log files are shown with the latest entries at the bottom of the file. This typically makes them easier to read if you're looking for events that are happening in a particular order. Still, there are times when it would be useful to see the most recent items first, in a manner similar to the way blogs are organized. There are a few utilities that will "flip" log files so that they appear with the most recent data first.
On a computer running a GNU/Linux distribution you can display the contents of a log in reverse order using the tac command. While the cat command is commonly used to display text files, the tac command displays files in reverse order. For example, the following command displays the contents of the boot log with the last entries displayed on the screen first:
For people running a flavour of BSD, I do not think the tac command is available. However, there is a way to achieve the same result. The BSD implementation of the tail command, which is usually used to show the end of a text file, has a parameter that will reverse the contents of a file. The following command, on a computer running BSD, will display the security log in reverse order:
tail -r /var/log/security
Since both of the above commands display the entire contents of the file they are turning upside down, it is usually a good idea to pipe the above commands through another program to reduce the amount of output. For instance, we can use the head command to show us only the ten most recent log entries:
tac /var/log/boot.log | head
We could alternatively send all the output to the less command which makes it easy to browse through the pages of data and perform searches for keywords.
tail -r /var/log/security | less
However, perhaps the best solution is to dump our upside down log file into another text file so we can come back and look at it later. We can do this using the redirect (>) symbol.
tac /var/log/boot.log > my-reversed-log-file.txt
Hopefully one of the above examples will provide the results desired.
* * * * *
Past Questions and Answers columns can be found in our Q&A Archive.
Bittorrent is a great way to transfer large files, particularly open source operating system images, from one place to another. Most bittorrent clients recover from dropped connections automatically, check the integrity of files and can re-download corrupted bits of data without starting a download over from scratch. These characteristics make bittorrent well suited for distributing open source operating systems, particularly to regions where Internet connections are slow or unstable.
Many Linux and BSD projects offer bittorrent as a download option, partly for the reasons listed above and partly because bittorrent's peer-to-peer nature takes some of the strain off the project's servers. However, some projects do not offer bittorrent as a download option. There can be several reasons for excluding bittorrent as an option. Some projects do not have enough time or volunteers, some may be restricted by their web host provider's terms of service. Whatever the reason, the lack of a bittorrent option puts more strain on a distribution's bandwidth and may prevent some people from downloading their preferred open source operating system.
With this in mind, DistroWatch plans to give back to the open source community by hosting and seeding bittorrent files. For now, we are hosting a small number of distribution torrents, listed below. The list of torrents offered will be updated each week and we invite readers to e-mail us with suggestions as to which distributions we should be hosting. When you message us, please place the word "Torrent" in the subject line, make sure to include a link to the ISO file you want us to seed. To help us maintain and grow this free service, please consider making a donation.
The table below provides a list of torrents we currently host. If you do not currently have a bittorrent client capable of handling the linked files, we suggest installing either the Transmission or KTorrent bittorrent clients.
Archives of our previously seeded torrents may be found here. All torrents we make available here are also listed on the very useful Linux Tracker website. Thanks to Linux Tracker we are able to share the following torrent statistics.
Torrent Corner statistics:
- Total torrents seeded: 127
- Total data uploaded: 18.4TB
|Released Last Week
Simplicity Linux 15.10
Simplicity Linux is a Puppy-based distribution which ships with the LXDE desktop environment. The developers of Simplicity have launched a new version of their distribution, Simplicity Linux 15.10. This version offers users version 4.1.1 of the Linux kernel and is offered exclusively in a 32-bit x86 build. "We are very pleased to announce the release of Simplicity Linux 15.10. Due to some issues users were finding with the 64-bit edition of Simplicity 15.7, we've decided to put our 64-bit releases on hiatus until we can resolve the issue. The two 32-bit editions of Simplicity 15.10 both feature the 4.1.1 Linux kernel and are based on the excellent LXPup. LXDE is used as the desktop, and wbar is used as a dock for pre-installed software and features." The distribution's two editions are Netbook, which is designed to be lighter and use more cloud-based technology, and Desktop, which offers more locally installed applications such as LibreOffice. Further information is available in the release announcement.
Simplicity Linux 15.10 -- Initial configuration screen
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IPFire 2.17 Core 94
The development team behind IPFire, a independent Linux distribution for firewalls, has released a new update. The new release, IPFire 2.17 Core Update 94, includes a number of package upgrades, including OpenSSH 7.1p1. This release also cleans up the web interface and includes a mail agent in the base system. "OpenSSH was updated to version 7.1p1. With that we added support for elliptic curves (ECDSA and ED25519) and removed support for DSA which is considered broken. Too small RSA keys are removed as well and regenerated. These changes may require to import the keys of the IPFire system on your admin computer again. An internal mail agent was added that is used by internal services to send out reports or alerts. So far only a few services use this (like the squid accounting add-on), but we expect to add more things in the future. This is a very simple and lightweight mail agent that can be configured on the web user interface and will usually require an upstream mail server." Further details on the release of IPFire 2.17 Core Update 94 can be found in the project's release announcement.
Suman Chakravartula has announced the release of Rockstor 3.8-9, an updated build of the project's CentOS-based Linux distribution designed for Network Attached Storage (NAS) and private cloud storage solutions: "Rockstor 3.8-9 update is now available. This is our first update released under the stable update channel. Current users running prior versions can update to 3.8-9 after activating the Stable channel subscription. New users can just install from the 3.8-9 ISO. We closed 20 issues in this release. We have a development log in our forum detailing the ongoing work and some of you may already be aware of the coming changes. Detailed list: improved service orchestration by leveraging systemd more; fixed Web-UI to dynamically refresh management interface IP; fixed a Web-UI issue with network interface management; clarify password reset instructions; refresh Pool state automatically after delete; improved logic to update /etc/issue with Web-UI link; improved certificate labeling on the Web-UI; fixed and improved Active Directory integration support....." Continue to the release announcement for a complete changelog.
GParted Live 0.24.0-2
The developers of GParted Live, a Debian-based live distribution for managing disk partitions, have announced the launch of a new version of their distribution. The new version, GParted Live 0.24.0-2, is based on the latest Debian Unstable packages and includes the ability to detect ZFS storage pools. "The GParted team is pleased to announce a new stable release of GParted Live. This release includes GParted 0.24.0 which detects ZFS file systems, recognizes NVMe devices, prevents a hang when labelling fat16/32 file systems if illegal characters in label, and prevents a core dump if invalid or non-existent device paths are passed on the command line. Items of note include: Based on the Debian Sid repository (as of 2015/Oct/28); Linux kernel updated to 4.2.0-1; Fixed vi entry in right-click Editors menu (bug 755602); Added zerofree (bug 753446), efibootmgr (bug 754587), and ddrescue (bug 750240) to live image." The full release announcement can be found on the distribution's website.
The developers of Sabayon, a Gentoo-based rolling release distribution, have announced the launch of Sabayon 15.11. The new version ships with a number of interesting new features, one of which is a server edition. "This release will introduce the Sabayon server edition, which is just perfect for those who want to run this distro as a pure server. The installer is still Calamares (just GUI install as for now), but running on a ad hoc instance of X, that consequentially bloats the ISO size, but after install all the additional components requested by Calamares are removed from the system. We now also service you with Vagrant images." This release also includes Docker images and the KDE edition of Sabayon 15.11 now ships with LightDM as the default login manager. This release is available for 64-bit x86 machines only. Further information on Sabayon 15.11 can be found in the project's release announcement).
The 4MLinux project has released version 14.0 of the independent utility distribution. 4MLinux 14.0 ships with version 5.2.0 of the GNU Compiler Collection. Several additional multimedia applications are available as separate downloads. "The status of the 4MLinux 14.0 series has been changed to STABLE. Major change in the core of the system, which now uses GNU Compiler Collection 5.2.0 to compile programs designed for the i686 architecture. Audacious (audio player), Opera (web browser), SMTube (YouTube browser) and VLC (media player) are now available as downloadable extensions. The way in which 4MLinux handles audio and video files has been greatly improved." The project's full release announcement can be found on the project's blog. Information on adding multimedia support and additional applications can be found in this blog post.
* * * * *
Development, unannounced and minor bug-fix releases
|Upcoming Releases and Announcements
Summary of expected upcoming releases
Number of home computers
People who like to download and try out new operating systems often have a reputation for also collecting computer hardware. It's not unusual for open source enthusiasts to have some extra computers, in various states of repair, around the home. Some being used for parts, another being run as a NAS or home e-mail server. This week we would like to learn how many general purpose computers (we are not including cell phones or toasters, unless they run NetBSD) our readers have around the home.
Do you keep it light, with just one computer for the family, perhaps one PC per person? Do you have a collection that would make a data centre jealous? Let us know in the comments below.
You can see the results of last week's poll on open source web browsers here. All previous poll results can be found in our poll archives.
Number of home computers
|0: ||2 (0%)|
| 1: ||229 (8%)|
| 2 - 5: ||1770 (61%)|
| 6 - 10: ||657 (23%)|
| > 10: ||240 (8%)|
DistroWatch database summary
* * * * *
This concludes this week's issue of DistroWatch Weekly. The next instalment will be published on Monday, 9 November 2015. To contact the authors please send email to:
- Jesse Smith (feedback, questions and suggestions: distribution reviews, questions and answers, tips and tricks)
- Ladislav Bodnar (feedback, questions, suggestions and corrections: news, donations, distribution submissions, comments)
- Michael DeGuzis of Libre Geek (podcast)
If you've enjoyed this week's issue of DistroWatch Weekly, please consider sending us a tip.
(Tips this week: 0, value: US$0.00)
|Linux Foundation Training
|• Issue 789 (2018-11-12): Fedora 29 Workstation and Silverblue, Haiku recovering from server outage, Fedora turns 15, Debian publishes updated media|
|• Issue 788 (2018-11-05): Clu Linux Live 6.0, examining RAM consumpion, finding support for older CPUs, more Steam support for running Windows games on Linux, update from Solus team|
|• Issue 787 (2018-10-29): Lubuntu 18.10, limiting application access to specific users, Haiku hardware compatibility list, IBM purchasing Red Hat|
|• Issue 786 (2018-10-22): elementary OS 5.0, why init keeps running, DragonFly BSD enables virtual machine memory resizing, KDE neon plans to drop older base|
|• Issue 785 (2018-10-15): Reborn OS 2018.09, Nitrux 1.0.15, swapping hard drives between computers, feren OS tries KDE spin, power savings coming to Linux|
|• Issue 784 (2018-10-08): Hamara 2.1, improving manual pages, UBports gets VoIP app, Fedora testing power saving feature|
|• Issue 783 (2018-10-01): Quirky 8.6, setting up dual booting with Ubuntu and FreeBSD, Lubuntu switching to LXQt, Mint works on performance improvements|
|• Issue 782 (2018-09-24): Bodhi Linux 5.0.0, Elive 3.0.0, Solus publishes ISO refresh, UBports invites feedback, Linux Torvalds plans temporary vacation|
|• Issue 781 (2018-09-17): Linux Mint 3 "Debian Edition", file systems for SSDs, MX makes installing Flatpaks easier, Arch team answers questions, Mageia reaches EOL|
|• Issue 780 (2018-09-10): Netrunner 2018.08 Rolling, Fedora improves language support, how to customize Kali Linux, finding the right video drivers|
|• Issue 779 (2018-09-03): Redcore 1806, keeping ISO downloads safe from tampering, Lubuntu makes Calamares more flexible, Ubuntu improves GNOME performance|
|• Issue 778 (2018-08-27): GuixSD 0.15.0, ReactOS 0.4.9, Steam supports Windows games on Linux, Haiku plans for beta, merging disk partitions|
|• Issue 777 (2018-08-20): YunoHost 220.127.116.11, limiting process resource usage, converting file systems on Fedora, Debian turns 25, Lubuntu migrating to Wayland|
|• Issue 776 (2018-08-13): NomadBSD 1.1, Maximum storage limits on Linux, openSUSE extends life for 42.3, updates to the Librem 5 phone interface|
|• Issue 775 (2018-08-06): Secure-K OS 18.5, Linux is about choice, Korora tests community spin, elementary OS hires developer, ReactOS boots on Btrfs|
|• Issue 774 (2018-07-30): Ubuntu MATE & Ubuntu Budgie 18.04, upgrading software from source, Lubuntu shifts focus, NetBSD changes support policy|
|• Issue 773 (2018-07-23): Peppermint OS 9, types of security used by different projects, Mint reacts to bugs in core packages, Slackware turns 25|
|• Issue 772 (2018-07-16): Hyperbola GNU/Linux-libre 0.2.4, UBports running desktop applications, OpenBSD auto-joins wi-fi networks, boot environments and zedenv|
|• Issue 771 (2018-07-09): Linux Lite 4.0, checking CPUs for bugs, configuring GRUB, Mint upgrade instructions, SUSE acquired by EQT|
|• Issue 770 (2018-07-02): Linux Mint 19, Solus polishes desktop experience, MintBox Mini 2, changes to Fedora's installer|
|• Issue 769 (2018-06-25): BunsenLabs Helium, counting Ubuntu users, UBports upgrading to 16.04, Fedora CoreOS, FreeBSD turns 25|
|• Issue 768 (2018-06-18): Devuan 2.0.0, using pkgsrc to manage software, the NOVA filesystem, OpenBSD handles successful cron output|
|• Issue 767 (2018-06-11): Android-x86 7.1-r1, transferring files over OpenSSH with pipes, LFS with Debian package management, Haiku ports LibreOffice|
|• Issue 766 (2018-06-04): openSUSE 15, overview of file system links, Manjaro updates Pamac, ReactOS builds itself, Bodhi closes forums|
|• Issue 765 (2018-05-28): Pop!_OS 18.04, gathering system information, Haiku unifying ARM builds, Solus resumes control of Budgie|
|• Issue 764 (2018-05-21): DragonFly BSD 5.2.0, Tails works on persistent packages, Ubuntu plans new features, finding services affected by an update|
|• Issue 763 (2018-05-14): Fedora 28, Debian compatibility coming to Chrome OS, malware found in some Snaps, Debian's many flavours|
|• Issue 762 (2018-05-07): TrueOS 18.03, live upgrading Raspbian, Mint plans future releases, HardenedBSD to switch back to OpenSSL|
|• Issue 761 (2018-04-30): Ubuntu 18.04, accessing ZFS snapshots, UBports to run on Librem 5 phones, Slackware makes PulseAudio optional|
|• Issue 760 (2018-04-23): Chakra 2017.10, using systemd to hide files, Netrunner's ARM edition, Debian 10 roadmap, Microsoft develops Linux-based OS|
|• Issue 759 (2018-04-16): Neptune 5.0, building containers with Red Hat, antiX introduces Sid edition, fixing filenames on the command line|
|• Issue 758 (2018-04-09): Sortix 1.0, openSUSE's Transactional Updates, Fedora phasing out Python 2, locating portable packages|
|• Issue 757 (2018-04-02): Gatter Linux 0.8, the UNIX and Linux System Administration Handbook, Red Hat turns 25, super long term support kernels|
|• Issue 756 (2018-03-26): NuTyX 10.0, Neptune supplies Debian users with Plasma 5.12, SolydXK on a Raspberry Pi, SysV init development|
|• Issue 755 (2018-03-19): Learning with ArchMerge and Linux Academy, Librem 5 runs Plasma Mobile, Cinnamon gets performance boost|
|• Issue 754 (2018-03-12): Reviewing Sabayon and Antergos, the growing Linux kernel, BSDs getting CPU bug fixes, Manjaro builds for ARM devices|
|• Issue 753 (2018-03-05): Enso OS 0.2, KDE Plasma 5.12 features, MX Linux prepares new features, interview with MidnightBSD's founder|
|• Issue 752 (2018-02-26): OviOS 2.31, performing off-line upgrades, elementary OS's new installer, UBports gets test devices, Redcore team improves security|
|• Issue 751 (2018-02-19): DietPi 6.1, testing KDE's Plasma Mobile, Nitrux packages AppImage in default install, Solus experiments with Wayland|
|• Issue 750 (2018-02-12): Solus 3, getting Deb packages upstream to Debian, NetBSD security update, elementary OS explores AppCentre changes|
|• Issue 749 (2018-02-05): Freespire 3 and Linspire 7.0, misunderstandings about Wayland, Xorg and Mir, Korora slows release schedule, Red Hat purchases CoreOS|
|• Issue 748 (2018-01-29): siduction 2018.1.0, SolydXK 32-bit editions, building an Ubuntu robot, desktop-friendly Debian options|
|• Issue 747 (2018-01-22): Ubuntu MATE 17.10, recovering open files, creating a new distribution, KDE focusing on Wayland features|
|• Issue 746 (2018-01-15): deepin 15.5, openSUSE's YaST improvements, new Ubuntu 17.10 media, details on Spectre and Meltdown bugs|
|• Issue 745 (2018-01-08): GhostBSD 11.1, Linspire and Freespire return, wide-spread CPU bugs patched, adding AppImage launchers to the application menu|
|• Issue 744 (2018-01-01): MX Linux 17, Ubuntu pulls media over BIOS bug, PureOS gets endorsed by the FSF, openSUSE plays with kernel boot splash screens|
|• Issue 743 (2017-12-18): Daphile 17.09, tools for rescuing files, Fedora Modular Server delayed, Sparky adds ARM support, Slax to better support wireless networking|
|• Issue 742 (2017-12-11): heads 0.3.1, improvements coming to Tails, Void tutorials, Ubuntu phasing out Python 2, manipulating images from the command line|
|• Issue 741 (2017-12-04): Pop!_OS 17.10, openSUSE Tumbleweed snapshots, installing Q4OS on a Windows partition, using the at command|
|• Issue 740 (2017-11-27): Artix Linux, Unity spin of Ubuntu, Nitrux swaps Snaps for AppImage, getting better battery life on Linux|
|• Issue 739 (2017-11-20): Fedora 27, cross-distro software ports, Ubuntu on Samsung phones, Red Hat supports ARM, Parabola continues 32-bit support|
|• Issue 738 (2017-11-13): SparkyLinux 5.1, rumours about spyware, Slax considers init software, Arch drops 32-bit packages, overview of LineageOS|
|• Full list of all issues|
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OPNsense is a FreeBSD-based specialist operating system (and a fork of pfSense) designed for firewalls and routers. It is developed by Deciso B.V. in the Netherlands. Some of the features of OPNsense include forward caching proxy, traffic shaping, intrusion detection, two-factor authentication and easy OpenVPN client setup. The project's focus on security brings a number of unique features, such as the option to use LibreSSL instead of OpenSSL (selectable in the GUI) and a custom build based on HardenedBSD. OPNsense also includes an update mechanism that delivers important security updates in a timely fashion.