Cliff’s List Filter – March 31 – April 7


Author: Ian Palmer

Serving up another plate full of news and information culled from the mailing lists of Unix and Linux related projects. Right now, we’re following the Linux Kernel, GNOME, KDE and Mozilla circles. If you’d like to see information from other projects in these pages, please let us know.
There’s quite a bit to cover in this update, including the usual tips and tricks, the long awaited GNOME 2.6 release, and Mozilla’s 6th birthday!

Linux Kernel

  • ACPI users on the bleeding edge might be interested in trying out the
    latest patches from Len Brown. There are versions of the patches for both
    Linux 2.4 and
    Linux 2.6.
  • Users who have tried 2.6.x kernels but have balked due to the fact that the new
    kernels report different cylinder, and head counts for your drives than the 2.4
    series did, should take a look at this
    from Patrick J. LoPresti. It appears that 2.6 reports these counts
    via an “extended IN13 BIOS interface” while 2.4 kernels used an interface more
    compatible with other operating systems. See if these tips help you get a working
    system under Linux 2.6.
  • Kristian Sorensen announces the release of Umbrella 0.3 for the Linux 2.6 series. Umbrella is a framework, for handhelds, which implements new process and file security features on top of the existing
    Linux Security framework.
  • The ever prolific Greg KH announces the
    First release of his hotplug scripts
  • Serial console users might be interested in these
    patches from Bjorn Helgaas
    , that will allow most of the boot kernel messages to appear on your 8250-based serial terminals.
  • Genesys USB users on the Linux 2.6 series will probably appreciate these fixes, from Brandstetter Thomas, which should allow them to access their external
    USB HDs.
  • Users making use of Linux 2.6’s Out-of-Memory killer might want to take a look at some changes, from Kurt Garloff which will allow you to assign a “priority” to certain processes, allowing them to be killed off earlier, or later within the OOM-killer’s heuristics.
  • Greg KH releases version 024 of udev. udev is a userspace replacement for devfs.
  • Linux 2.6 users who use Realtek 8169 hardware and are experiencing lockups may want to see if the
    following fixes, from Adam Nielsen
    , will solve that particular problem.
  • Linus
    releases Linux v2.6.5
    to the world on April 3.
  • If you are experiencing a kernel panic during intensive disk access on large firewire
    drives, you might want to see if these corrections, from Dmitri Torokhov, will work for you.
  • Linux 2.6 users who access FAT32 partitions, please be sure you are not using the UTF8 charset for your filesystems as these are buggy and may cause problems.
  • Willem de Bruijn announces the release of various development tools related to the Linux kernel. Some of the tools included deal with device handling, memory mapping and profiling as well as a few other tools that may be useful to the budding kernel hacker.
  • Marty Ridgeway announces the April release of the Linux Test Project which includes over 2100 tests for Linux on several platforms.
  • Users who have been using the latest in the 2.6 series kernels and are experiencing
    dramatic temperature increases in the last few revisions may wish to follow Pasi Savolainen’s
    advice and adjust their lazy_idle parameter in an attempt to bring that temperature down, a bit.
  • Sreenivas Bagalkote announces the release of the megaraid unified driver v2.20.0.0 on April 7.




  • Mozilla celebrated its 6th birthday as an open source project. Mozilla was released by Netscape to the Open Source world on March 31, 1998.
    Congratulations to all of the Mozilla developers on their fine accomplishments!
  • Mozilla users who can’t access the default profile should remove the parent.lock file in the profile directory to see if that helps.
  • As referenced from this thread — Mozilla users who would like quick access to common preferences may want to check into the prefbar for fast an easy access to operations that may usually require several clicks and menus. Unfortunately, Prefbar only supports the pure Mozilla browser. Sorry, Firefox users.
  • Roland Mains announces the release of Xprint
    version 009
    . Xprint is a printing API that supplements applications like Mozilla
    and Thunderbird and, among other things, can allow you to print web pages to printer or to file formats like PDF or SVG.