LINUX FORMAT WEBSITE NEWSLETTER -- #79, February 2012

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LINUX FORMAT WEBSITE NEWSLETTER -- #79, February 2012

Postby Ben » Wed Feb 08, 2012 1:30 pm

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LINUX FORMAT WEBSITE NEWSLETTER -- #79, February 2012

www.linuxformat.com

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CONTENTS

1. Welcome

2. LXF 155 on sale

3. Special subscription offer

4. In the news...

5. This month on the forum

6. This month on TuxRadar

7. Special newsletter feature

8. Coming up next issue

9. Receiving this newsletter

10. Contact details



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1. Welcome
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Hello and welcome to the Linux Format website newsletter. There's been a bit of a gap in the newsletters as we've struggled to cope without Mike, but we're back up to speed now. Issue 155 has now hit the news stands, and the much-anticipated season four of the TuxRadar podcast has launched (http://tuxradar.com/content/podcast-season-4-episode-1).

Below you'll find all the Linux goodness that you've come to expect. Don't forget, if you like the newsletter, you'll love the magazine. Look for it in all good newsagents, or for a special deal, take a look at the subscription offer available here: http://www.myfavouritemagazines.co.uk/c ... nuxformat/

Ben Everard
Newsletter editor
Ben.Everard@futurenet.com


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2. LXF 155 on sale
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Highlights include:
*A guide to get new users started on Linux. Perfect if you're just getting started with the OS, or if you're introducing new users to the wonderful world of free software.
*Graham Morrision interviews Damian Conway about Perl and where the language is going.
*Our tutorials show you how to make internet calls without Skype, manage a Drupal website, turn Arduino into a waveform generator, use Zina to share your music with the web and run automated scripts over SSH.
* Polish up your programming skills with our Coding Academy. This month, it includes subroutines and stacks in Assembler, adding interactivity to Perl programs using Dancer, creating packages in Python, and the first in a two-part series covering everything you need to know about sorting.
*Former newsletter editor Mike shares his experiences running an open source project (MikeOS).


If that's not enough, it also comes with seven bootable distros, including a special LXF remix of Ubuntu that comes with GNOME 3 in place of Unity.


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3. Special subscription offer
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Subscribing to Linux Format not only has the benefit of fantastic savings. Subscribers will also get exclusive, unlimited access to the Linux Format subscriber-only area, featuring magazine PDFs, complete issues and coverdisc downloads! That's access to more than 80 issues of Linux learning, free to subscribers to download! See our latest offers at:

http://www.myfavouritemagazines.co.uk/c ... nuxformat/



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4. In the news
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The biggest developments from around the net...

# Ubuntu introduces HUD
http://www.markshuttleworth.com/archives/939
Ubuntu 12.04 will bring the second controversial new feature from Ubuntu in as many major version numbers. The Head-Up Display (commonly known as HUD) is Canonical's answer to old-fashioned, but much loved, hierarchical menus. Currently, it's only available as an add-on to a pre-release alpha version of 12.04, but if Mark Shuttleworth has his way, it'll soon take over your desktop.

# Red Hat increases support for RHEL five and six to ten years
http://investors.redhat.com/releasedeta ... eID=644005
Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) versions five and six will now be supported for ten years from their initial release, giving users extra time before they need to upgrade.

# First Plasma Active tablet announced
http://aseigo.blogspot.in/2012/01/reveal.html
The Linux kernel has been powering Android tablets for sometime, but as yet we haven't seen a tablet running a more traditional version of the operating system we know and love. All that is set to change, however. KDE hacker Aseigo recently announced the Spark, which will be available with KDE's Plasma Active installed as default and will hopefully be on the shelves for 200 euros.

#Bada may or may not merge with Tizen
http://www.techradar.com/news/phone-and ... ld-1055624
In the last newsletter, we announced Tizen (take a look here: http://linuxformat.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=14308), and now we can tell you that the project is growing through the inclusion of Bada, Samsung's proprietary mobile operating system. Well, maybe. After seeming to announce that they were merging the two platforms, Samsung have now taken a step back and all the company will confirm is that it's looking into the option and that it won't make any announcements until a product is ready.

#Greg Kroah-Hartman Leaves SUSE ...
http://www.marketwatch.com/story/leadin ... 2012-02-01
... and becomes a fellow at the Linux Foundation. This is a big loss for SUSE and their parent company Novell/Attachmate, but should benefit the Linux community as a whole because he is now better positioned to work on the kernel in a distribution-agnostic way. He is one of the most prolific Linux kernel contributors and an all-round nice guy. We wish him all the best in his new position.

#Firefox For Organisations
http://www.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/organizations/
To combat criticism that the new ultra-quick release schedule is too fast for businesses to keep up with, the Firefox developers have introduced Firefox Extended Support Release (aka Firefox ESR or Firefox for organisations). This new version will be supported for a whole year before being superseded. This may seem short compared to Red Hat's new support schedule, but it's eight times longer than regular Firefox releases.

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5. This month on the TuxRadar
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There's been grumbling over our tardiness in starting the new season of the TuxRadar podcast. Well, we've finally pulled our collective fingers out and the first episode is now live here: http://tuxradar.com/content/podcast-season-4-episode-1

The question we put to you in the latest Open Ballot (discussed on the podcast) was “Which is the biggest threat to freedom - Google, Microsoft or Apple?” Well, there wasn't much love for any of the companies, although a few of you were willing to forgive Google, at least to some extent. The US Government also came under fire, and a couple of you nominated the one-time darling of the Linux community – Canonical. It looks as if Richard Stallman will have his hands full for a few more years.

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6. This month on the forums
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Madoba suggested that the PC market may be overtaken by tablets in the near future – a comment that seemed to split opinions. Ram, Marrea, Heiowge and Bazza came out in the pro-keyboard camp, whereas Rhakios and Nelz backed the original post. [1]

Bananaoomarang is a fan of Ubuntu's HUD (see news section), whereas everyone else remains skeptical. [2]

Chris0161 (among others) helped RolandS get a new version of Linux installed on his machine despite problems with his graphics cards. [3]

[1] http://linuxformat.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=14438
[2] http://linuxformat.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=14518
[3] http://linuxformat.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=14469

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7. Special newsletter feature
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If you've listened to the Podcast (and if you haven't you should!), you'll know that I'm a recent convert to Cinnamon, Mint's new user interface. It's a fork of Gnome Shell that's designed to provide users with a traditional desktop environment done in an elegant way. The philosophy of the project is summed up in the website's tag line “Love your Linux, Feel at Home, Get things Done”, and it does a good job of making me feel at home on my desktop, and get things done (I loved my Linux already).

The latest version, 1.2, brings a raft of changes to the internal workings of the software, but for users the most obvious changes are the inclusion of a graphical configuration tool, an improved main menu, applets, and support for different desktop layouts.

As it stands, the desktop supports only three layouts, traditional (where the panel is at the bottom), flipped (with the panel at the top), and classic (with panels at the top and bottom). This is a bit more limited than some other desktops, but covers most set-ups.

It always takes a little while for developers to create a full repertoire of applets for a new desktop, and as you may expect, the choice is currently a little limited. At the time of writing, there are only seven listed on the website, but there's a great tutorial on the website to get potential applet writers started, so expect more soon.

My only gripe with the otherwise excellent user interface is the default effect for opening a window. It looks as if the window is being thrown from behind and splatting on the screen. Perhaps some people like it, but it seemed a bit aggressive to me. Fortunately, thanks to the new configuration tool, switching to a more sedate effect only took a couple of clicks.

It's still a young piece of software, but it shows a lot of promise, and I look forward to seeing how it develops in future versions.

You can get more information about Cinnamon from their website (http://cinnamon.linuxmint.com), and packages for Mint and other major distributions are available from http://cinnamon.linuxmint.com/?page_id=61.


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8. Coming up next issue
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Linux Format 156, on sale 1 March 2012

# We give an introduction to the Raspberry Pi, and tell you everything you need to know about this credit card-sized Linux hardware.
# Speed up your Linux Box to boost your productivity (or drinking time).
# Mike Saunders reports on a week exploring Minecraft.


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9. Receiving this newsletter
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If you've been forwarded this newsletter from someone else, and want to sign up for future issues, just follow the steps below. Each month you'll receive a sparkling new LXF newsletter straight in your Inbox, and the 30-second sign-up process is even easier than writing Hello World in BASIC:

1. Go to the website forums and log in (or sign up first):
http://www.linuxformat.com/forums/
2. At the top of the main forum page, click on 'Usergroups'
3. Join the 'Newsletter' group, and you're done!

If for some reason you no longer wish to receive this newsletter
(which'll make the internet cry) you can opt-out like this:

1. Log into the LXF site and go to the forums
2. Click Usergroups at the top of the page
3. Select Newsletter and then View information
4. Click Unsubscribe next to 'You are a member...'



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10. Contact details
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If you have any questions or suggestions, please send them to the Newsletter editor at the address below:

Newsletter editor: Ben Everard – Ben.Everard@futurenet.com

Letters for the magazine: lxf.letters@futurenet.com

LXF website: http://www.linuxformat.com

Subscriptions: 0870 837 4722 (overseas +44 1858 438794)
Website subscription page: http://www.linuxformat.com/subscribe/


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(C) 2012 Future Publishing Limited
Ben
 
Posts: 25
Joined: Wed Feb 01, 2012 11:42 am

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