Linux in the news
All in one big page
See also: last week's Distributions page.
Please note that security updates from the various distributions are covered in the security section.
News and Editorials
University Linux distributions unveil. Boston University unveiled BU Linux this week, a private Linux distribution based on Red Hat that has been tailored for the Boston University environment, with Kerberos, OpenSSH and other features preconfigured. Within moments of our mention of this distribution on the daily page last week, we received a note from Michael Katz-Hyman, pointing out Carnegie Mellon's Andrew-Linux. Andrew-Linux has been available since April of 1999, according to the documentation. The installation document for Andrew-Linux still refers to Red Hat 4.2.
A third University Linux distribution is CAEN Linux, from the College of Engineering at the University of Michigan. Similar to the other two, it is Red Hat-based. They've got a list of frequently asked questions and answers that is worth checking out. CAEN Linux was created and is supported by Chris Wing, also known for his work on 32-bit UID support for the Linux 2.4 kernel series.
One difference between these distributions: their public availability. Andrew-Linux is definitely available only internally to Carnegie Mellon. BU Linux is currently only available internally, but they have hopes that will change. CAEN Linux is available now.
To further discussion of University Linux distributions, Boston University is hosting a mailing list on the topic. To subscribe, send your request to firstname.lastname@example.org and put "subscribe" in the body of your message (majordomo).
We will certainly have to give up keeping a list of distributions in the right-hand column of this page if each and every University publishes their own version ... and they likely may, since it is a time savings for any major organization to tailor their distribution of choice to their own needs and then duplicate that exactly, rather than risk having a slightly unique version of Linux on each and every PC.
VA-enhanced Red Hat Linux 6.2. VA Linux, which has been known to distribute Debian Linux CDs in the past, has now announced a VA-enhanced Red Hat Linux 6.2. DaLinuxFrenchPage (in French) reports that the VA-enhanced version includes all the updates, plus cluster support, the watchdog kernel patch, and the latest version of Enlightenment. VA sports a comparison page where you can quickly see the additional packages, updated packages, kernel patches and bug fixes that they've added.
This does not necessarily mean a diminished support for Debian; VA has enough customers that may require Red Hat to justify their support of their own version. Making that enhanced version more widely available is certainly a reasonable step to take.
Number of Linux Distributions Surpasses Number of Users (BBSpot). This brief article from BBSpot takes a humorous look at the number of Linux distributions. "'We've been expecting it for some time,' Merrill Lynch technology analyst Tom Shayes said, 'but this is a little sooner than most expected. We've seen explosive growth in the number of Linux distributions, in fact my nephew just put out Little Tommy Linux 1.1 last week.'" (Thanks to Paul Hewitt)
The Embedded Debian Project. Announcing... the Embedded Debian Project. As the name suggests, this project seeks to help get the Debian distribution into embedded applications. It's not officially part of the Debian project, but plans to work closely with them. Their first project will be to put together a guide to embedding Debian as it stands today; thereafter they will head into extending the distribution to better address embedded tasks.
China Backs Red Flag Linux, It's Unofficial (IT-Director.com). We get occasional mail asking us for more information on Red Flag Linux and whether or not it has been officially chosen by China as the national Linux distribution. This IT-Director.com article tackles this question with an ironic answer. "This year the level of Linux usage in China is expected to double and it will be the home grown Red Flag Linux that prospers. In a very Chinese manner, the Chinese government is encouraging the use of Linux, while at the same time pretending not to." In other words, don't expect an official answer any time soon ... but draw your own conclusion.
Updates for Caldera eDesktop 2.4. New packages for both dump and lisa have been posted to the Caldera update directory. The lisa update is reported to also fix problems with COAS under 2.4.
Caldera and Pervasive Bundle Tango. Caldera and Pervasive Software have announced plans to bundle Tango with Caldera OpenLinux eServer 2.3. The combination of the Tango commercial web infrastructure software and eServer is intended to give an easy-to-deploy, remotely manageable web platform. Tango includes the Pervasive.SQL 2000 Server database engine for Linux.
Conectiva Linux Server 5.1 beta. Conectiva has announced the first beta of "Conectiva Linux Server Edition 5.1." It has a number of goodies, including a 2.2.15 kernel with the logical volume manager and ReiserFS patches, LDAP support, Stackguard-protected servers, and more.
Debian Weekly News (May 2nd). This week's Debian Weekly News talks about Debian's first Testing Cycle, a possible new source package format, and a long thread on what to do next.
Debian at LinuxTag 2000. Debian is planning a booth for LinuxTag 2000, coming up June 29th - July 2nd, in Stuttgart, Germany.
Kernel Cousin Debian Hurd. The May 10th edition of the Kernel Cousin Debian Hurd reports the auto-builder is now up and running, an important hurdle, the Hurd conference in Paris is on schedule for June 17th with over 150 people expected and a "fatfs" file system translator may be on the way.
Jason Haas returns to LinuxPPC. Jason Haas dropped us a note this week to let us know he was recovering well from his car accident and back to work at LinuxPPC. To prove it, we've started getting brief status messages from him. The latest: LinuxPPC has their new SSL certificate in place. "There was a slight delay between the time when our old SSL certificate expired and the new one renewed. However, users (buyers) can be assured that warnings about expired certificates were largely meaningless and that all connections made were still completely secure. The new certificate is now in place."
Changelog-current report. Due to problems with gcc-2.95.2 and the Linux 2.2.15 kernel, gcc-2.95.2, which was installed the week before, was removed this week in favor of egcs-1.1.2. The remainder of work this week included small bug fixes and upgrades for util-linux, biff+comsat, bsd-finger, gnu-pop3d, nettools and netkit packages.
Section Editor: Liz Coolbaugh
May 11, 2000