Mint 18: Convenience Over Security | LAS 426

Mint 18: Convenience Over Security | LAS 426

We review Linux Mint 18 & our experience turns out to be a roller coaster ride from impressed glee to cautious concern. We’ve never felt more conflicted over a version of Linux Mint.

Plus we discuss the Ubuntu Forum hack, a Fedora bug that’s bricking some laptops & why we just can’t quit FreeNAS.

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Mint 18 Review

​Linux Mint 18: The best desktop — period

I’ve been using Linux desktops since the leading desktop front-end was Bash. Things have changed in those 25 years. Today, the best Linux desktop is the latest version of Linux Mint: Linux Mint 18 Sarah with the Cinnamon 3.0 interface.

Linux Mint 18 Cinnamon: Quick Screenshot Tour

Linux Mint 18 improves security, but at a cost – TechRepublic

While this is a much-needed improvement, the explanation of this change on the Linux Mint website is baffling. The website claims that kernel updates “aren’t really updates, but the availability of packages for newer kernels.” Aside from the fact that this is literally the definition of an update, this appears to be an attempt at minimizing the importance of kernel updates. In Linux Mint 18, users are only notified of kernel updates, but they are not installed by default.

As excited as we are about Linux Mint 18, upgrading blindly for the sake of running the latest version does not make much sense, especially if you’re already happy and everything is working perfectly.

Given the history of Linux Mint with their weird view on security (Linux
Mint is the very definition of a FrankenDebian [1]) where they withhold
important security updates because their weird mixture of packages would
otherwise break too often or their hijacking of package names (mdm, for
example), I don’t really trust them to come up with a clean design for
desktop agnostic applications. Heck, the first thing they wanted to do
was naming their forked version of Pluma “xedit”.

— PICKS —

Runs Linux

Fors Fusion RUnS LINUX on a Raspberry Pi

Desktop App Pick

recalbox.com

Recalbox allows you to re-play a variety of videogame consoles and platforms in your living room, with ease! RecalboxOS is free, open source and designed to let you create your very own recalbox in no time! Raspberry Pi.

Spotlight

Felony: 🔑🔥📈 Next Level PGP

Felony is an open-source pgp keychain built on the modern web with Electron, React, and Redux. Felony is the first PGP app that’s easy for anyone to use, without a tutorial. Security++ to the greatest extreme!

Coder Radio Coding Challenge


— NEWS —

Ubuntu Forums Hacked, 2 Million Users’ Details Stolen

Canonical CEO Jane Silber explains: “We were able to confirm there had been an exposure of data and shut down the Forums as a precautionary measure. Deeper investigation revealed that there was a known SQL injection vulnerability in the Forumrunner add-on in the Forums which had not yet been patched.”

The attacker was able to “download portions of the ‘user’ table which contained usernames, email addresses and IPs for 2 million users.”

​Early Look at Skype for Linux and Chromebooks

Skype for Linux is no longer an afterthought for Microsoft as the company introduces new versions of Skype for Linux Chromebooks and the Chrome web browser.

GNOME Maps Hits A Dead End, Can No Longer Display Maps

As of this week the nifty desktop navigation app canno longer fetch maps tiles to display.

MapQuest, the application’s tile provider, has amended its usage policy and discontinued direct tile access. GNOME developers have the choice of paying to keep using the service or, ultimately, using a new one.

PSA: Failure to boot after kernel update on Skylake systems

So in the last couple of days a significant issue in all Fedora releases has come to our attention, affecting (so far) several systems that use the Intel ‘Skylake’ hardware platform.

CrossOver For Android Now Running On Chromebooks

CodeWeavers confirmed today that it’s possible to run CrossOver on Chromebooks now via the Android support. CodeWeavers was even able to install Steam for Windows on the Chromebooks via the CrossOver support.

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