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Open Source Group Wants Windows 7 Source Code In A Blank Hard drive

Just when Microsoft ended the support for Windows 7, Free Software Foundation filed a petition demanding Windows 7 to be open source. Now, the open-source community went a little further by making another bold move. Reportedly, the FSF mailed a blank upcycled hard drive to Microsoft. The foundation wants Microsoft to send back the hard drive, but after copying Windows 7 source code in it, along with license notice. What’s even more interesting is that the foundation offers its help to Microsoft for the process to go smoother.

“It’s as easy as copying the source code, giving it a license notice, and mailing it back to us. As the author of the most popular free software license in the world, we’re ready to give them all of the help we can. All they have to do is ask,” said the Free Software Organization.

[Source: Fossbytes]

Download Debian-based MX Linux 19.1 Now

Ever find yourself bored with the same ol’ “mainstream” Linux-based operating system such as Ubuntu, Fedora, or Mint? Yeah, I get it. Sometimes you just want to dig a bit deeper and try out something a tad less known. It can be fun to distro-hop and try new things!

One such excellent Linux distribution is MX Linux. It has become wildly popular in the Linux community lately, but is still largely off the radar of those that aren’t “in the know.” Today, a new version of the operating system, MX Linux 19.1, becomes available for download. The Debian-based distro uses the Xfce desktop environment and comes pre-loaded with some great software, such as Firefox, LibreOffice, and more.

[Source: BetaNews]

The best free and open-source alternatives to Google Keep on Android

While it might be difficult to switch away from feature-packed products like Gmail and Google Maps, there are thankfully plenty of competitors to Google Keep. After all, you don’t need millions of data points and industry-leading artificial intelligence to make a note-taking app. In this post, we’ll be checking out some free and open-source alternatives to Google Keep, some of which even have cloud sync.

Nextcloud Notes: It’s a server application that lets you set up your own cloud storage, and with the help of some plugins, you can essentially have your own suite of Google service alternatives. Case in point: if you set up a NextCloud instance and install the free Notes extension, you get a self-hosted clone of Google Keep that you can access from the web.

[Source: Android Police]

Free From Epic Games Exclusivity, ‘Metro Exodus’ Is Coming To Linux

First the good news. As of Valentine’s Day 2020, Metro Exodus has been liberated from its Epic Games exclusivity agreement and is now available to purchase on Steam. And now the great news, especially for my regular readers: it looks like Deep Silver and developer 4A Games are working on bringing the post-apocalyptic shooter to Linux.

While many Linux gamers appreciate the availability of a native version, Metro Exodus already runs on Linux thanks to “Proton,” a collaboration between CodeWeavers and Valve. “Proton” is a compatibility layer that’s built-in to the Steam for Linux client that allows literally thousands of Windows-exclusive games to be installed and played in the same way as the Steam for Windows client. No messing with Wine, no terminal tweaking.

[Source: Forbes]

Simplicity Does More Than Simplify Linux

If you want a new Linux distro catering to gaming, check out the Simplicity Linux Gaming release. If you prefer a general-purpose computing platform without a gaming focus, try Simplicity’s revamped release. Either way, you will experience a no-nonsense Linux OS that requires no assembly.

Simplicity Linux, originating in the UK, is a Devuan-based distribution with Cinnamon as the default window manager desktop environment. Devuan is a fork of Debian Linux that replaces the systemd initialization processes. Disgruntled Debian community members rejected a Linux-wide trend to replace older init processes such as Upstart and System V with systemd. Initialization is a background process that starts when the computer boots and runs until the computer shuts down.

[Source: LinuxInsider.com]

Baidu releases open-source tool to detect faces without masks

Search giant Baidu has released an open-source tool to detect whether individuals in crowds are wearing face masks, as cities around the country impose rules requiring use of such protection in public spaces.

The face-scanning model uses artificial intelligence to identify people in real-time who are not wearing masks or those who are wearing them incorrectly, Baidu said on Thursday. The system can identify non-mask wearers with 96.5% accuracy, which meets the needs of routine inspections, according to the company.

Developers then only need a small amount of data to train the tool for their own use. The model was trained on a dataset of 100,000 faces, Baidu said.

[Source: TechNode]

Linux 5.7 Getting A “Tiny Power Button” Driver

A new driver already queued in the power management code for the Linux 5.7 cycle not opening up until April is a “tiny power button” driver. This ACPI tiny power button driver is not for a physically tiny power button, but rather a simple ACPI power button driver out of Intel intended for virtual machines and more basic than the generic ACPI button driver given the limited scope of VMs.

Virtual machines tend to rely on simulated ACPI power button events for having the VM power off gracefully but can rely on a daemon like acpid or systemd-logind for processing the said event.

[Source: Phoronix]

Python programming language: Now you can take NSA’s free course for beginners

Developers already have numerous options from the likes of Microsoft and Google for learning how to code in the popular Python programming language. But now budding Python developers can read up on the National Security Agency’s own Python training materials.

Software engineer Chris Swenson filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request with the NSA for access to its Python training materials and received a lightly redacted 400-page printout of the agency’s COMP 3321 Python training course. Swenson has since scanned the documents, ran OCR on the text to make it searchable, and hosted it on Digital Oceans Spaces. The material has also been uploaded to the Internet Archive.

[Source: ZDNet]

Linux is ready for the end of time

On 03:14:08 Greenwich Mean Time (GMT, aka Coordinated Universal Time) January 19, 2038 (that’s a Tuesday), the world ends. Well, not in the biblical Book of Revelations sense. But, what will happen is the value for time in 32-bit based Unix-based operating systems, like Linux and older versions of macOS, runs out of numbers and starts counting time with negative numbers. That’s not good. We can expect 32-bit computers running these operating systems to have fits. Fortunately, Linux’s developers already had a fix ready to go.

The problem starts with how Unix tells time. Unix, and its relations — Linux, macOS, and other POSIX-compatible operating systems — date the beginning of time from the Epoch: 00:00:00 GMT on January 1, 1970. The Unix family measures time by the number of seconds since the Epoch.

[Source: ZDNet]

Looking for an open-source VPN? We’ve got the answer

After undergoing a successful independent security audit earlier this year, IVPN has announced that it will open source all of its VPN clients. The VPN provider’s Android, macOS, iOS and Windows apps are now open source under the GPLv3 license.

However, this is just the first step in IVPN’s multi-year plan to open source many other parts of its service. The company’s next step is to release key parts of its infrastructure to the public with end goal of enabling anyone to set up and verify its VPN server configuration.

[Source: Techradar]