A new version of Fedora hits the web and we share our thoughts & chat with a member of the project, Noah joins us to answer your live calls & we’re all excited about Firefox’s new quantum release.

Plus Gnome 4’s ambitious goals, a new Linux Kernel that really matters, OpenShot woes & more!

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Follow Up / Catch Up

Firefox 57 “Quantum” Web Browser Now Available to Download, Here’s What’s New

Firefox Quantum is roughly 2X faster than Firefox 49 on the Speedometer 2.0 benchmark, thanks to its new CSS engine, its “just right” multi-process architecture, the way it prioritizes your active tab, and much more,” reads the preliminary release notes for Firefox 57.0 beta.

Entering the Quantum Era—How Firefox got fast again and where it’s going to get faster

Over the past seven months, we’ve been rapidly replacing major parts of the engine, introducing Rust and parts of Servo to Firefox. Plus, we’ve had a browser performance strike force scouring the codebase for performance issues, both obvious and non-obvious.

We call this Project Quantum, and the first general release of the reborn Firefox Quantum comes out tomorrow.

RedHat Enterprise Linux Announces ARM Support

Today marks a milestone for Red Hat Enterprise Linux with the addition of a new architecture to our list of fully supported platforms. Red Hat Enterprise Linux for ARM is a part of our multi-architecture strategy and the culmination of a multi-year collaboration with the upstream community and our silicon and hardware partners.

Red Hat took a pragmatic approach to Arm servers by helping to drive open standards and develop communities of customers, partners and a broad ecosystem. Our goal was to develop a single operating platform across multiple 64-bit ARMv8-A server-class SoCs from various suppliers while using the same sources to build user functionality and consistent feature set that enables customers to deploy across a range of server implementations while maintaining application compatibility.
In 2015, we introduced a Development Preview of the operating system to silicon partners, such as Cavium and Qualcomm, and OEM partners, like HPE, that designed and built systems based on a 64-bit Arm architecture. A great example of this collaboration was the advanced technology demonstration by HPE, Cavium, and Red Hat at the International Supercomputing conference in June 2017. That prototype solution became part of HPE’s Apollo 70 system, announced today. If you are attending SuperComputing17 this week, please stop by Red Hat’s booth (#1763) to learn more about this new system.

Qualcomm Launches 48-core Centriq for $1995: Arm Servers for Cloud Native Applications

The cores are 64-bit only, and are grouped into duplexes – pairs of cores with a shared 512KB of L2 cache, and the top end design will also have 60 MB of L3 cache. The full design has 6 channels of DDR4 (Supporting up to 768 GB) with 32 PCIe Gen 3.0 lanes, support for Arm Trustzone, and all within a TDP of 120W and for $1995.

Cray will use Cavium’s ThunderX2 processors in a version of its XC50 supercomputer scheduled to arrive in the second quarter of 2018, Cray said in a press release Monday. I

Kernel 4.14 Released

Linux 4.14 features a number of new features and changes, and is set to become the next long term support (LTS) release backed by several years of ongoing maintenance and support.

  • New Realtek Wi-Fi driver (RTL8822BE)
  • Btrfs Zstd compression support
  • HDMI CEC support for Raspberry Pi
  • Secure memory encryption for AMD EPYC processors
  • ASUS T100 touchpad support
  • Heterogeneous Memory Management
  • AMDGPU DRM Vega improvements
  • Better support for Ryzen processors

Linux Academy

OpenShot 2.4 Released

Among the big changes OpenShot 2.4.1 features is improved image quality. You should now see sharper images in the preview window when editing thanks to an “improved image processing pipeline”.

There’s also improved playback smoothness when working with high frame-rate videos at 50fps, 60fps, and 120fps.

GNOME Shell 4 Proposal Published To Be More Wayland-Focused

Jonas Adahl of Red Hat has volleyed his initial proposals for how a “future” GNOME Shell could be architected on a page entitled GNOME Shell 4. This GNOME Shell 4 would potentially break compatibility with GNOME Shell 3 extensions while being more designed around Wayland rather than X11.

Initiatives/Wayland/GnomeShell/GnomeShell4 – GNOME Wiki!

To sum it up, there are a number of problem areas that needs new solutions.

  1. Low latency input forwarding
  2. Low latency visual input event feedback (pointer cursor movement)
  3. Low latency & zero copy client content forwarding (scan-out of client buffer)
  4. Input methods in the shell UI
  5. Stalls on the main thread stalls compositor frame redraws

James Nugent

This week we interview James Nugent, a software developer from Bath, England. He currently works in engineering at Joyent, an open source public cloud company recently acquired by Samsung Electronics. Previously, James was a core contributor at HashiCorp building operations tooling, and Event Store LLP, which produces an open source stream database with a built in projections system. For a comprehensive breakdown of the episode and showlinks take a look at the shownotes below or by clicking the episode title.


Fedora 27

New Fedora 27 Workstation Features

  • End of the Alpha release of Fedora

  • Gnome 3.26. This brings a new and improved Builder IDE to bear for developers, providing a new interface, contextual popups, improved search functions and a new debugger.

  • GNOME 3.26 adds support for fractional scaling for high DPI screens.
  • Both the Display and Network configuration panels have been updated, along with the overall Settings panel appearance improvement.
  • Also the antiquated system tray has been removed to reduce visual clutter and confusion

  • TRIM support for encrypted disks which enhances the performance of Fedora Workstation on solid-state drives (SSDs).

Other Fedora 27 Changes

  • Fedora Atomic: changed the way of setting up containers. Kubernetes is now containerized and Cockpit includes Dashboard installation on Atomic Host via rpm package layering
  • Pipewire. Our new media handling deamon. It will be used in Fedora Workstation 27 to handle screen sharing and screen capture under GNOME Shell.

  • Fedora KDE Switched to the version 5.9.1 of QT5

  • What’s New in Fedora 27 Workstation – Fedora Magazine

Fedora 27 Workstation is the latest release of our free, leading-edge operating system. You can download it from the official website here right now. There are several new and noteworthy changes in Fedora Workstation.


Encryption Another Point of View

We’ve all seen it plastered on the national news these last two years. The encryption debate between tech companies and civilians wanting to keep their data private is being weighed against the government’s desire to gain access to anything and everything they can in the hunt to stop terrorists. Anyone besides me ever notice it’s always “terrorists,” not just criminals? Anyway, the thought occurred to me late last night to look at the argument another way and see what I’d feel about it. It’s not a hard decision for me, personally. I’m firmly ensconced on the side of a person’s right to privacy over some government’s desire to monitor its citizens. Still, maybe it’s worth trying to have the conversation another way. Let’s take the technology out of it and consider the idea as it would relate to the rights of privacy of the individual.

The government argues that the kinds of data being hidden behind encryption provides important clues they need to stop terrorists. The data able to be retrieved from a cell phone or tablet, or encrypted text messaging, can be viewed in very simple terms, and I think I can probably give you an inclusive list. Let’s see:

  • Where they have been (using the GPS tracking)
  • When they were there, when they communicated, etc. (using time stamps from apps)
  • What they’ve read online (using browser/app histories)
  • Who they’ve talked to (using messenger/email contact lists)
  • How they’ve communicated (analyzing what apps they use to talk to other people)
  • The contents of any textual conversations/emails (reading the message history)
  • What files they might have downloaded, saved, or deleted. (using information within the device)

I didn’t intend it this way, but the list above shows you can literally tell Who, What, When and Where some suspect was doing something. The only thing you can’t definitively tell is the “why” of it all. We assume the why factor is able to be extrapolated from the other four to provide a complete picture of the terror suspect’s life.

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