Linux in the news
All in one big page
See also: last week's Distributions page.
Lists of Distributions
Please note that security updates from the various distributions are covered in the security section.
News and Editorials
ODS Linux. ODS Linux announced its existence this week. The company plans on selling preconfigured versions of the Linux operating system, with support and service. Using a web-based GUI, users can preconfigure a Debian Linux distribution for an existing system. The user tells the ODS system about the hardware they have and the software they want and ODS will ship out a package consisting of a custom boot floppy, manuals and software CDs. Versions of the service for other Linux distributions are planned..
OpenBSD 2.8 (DukeOfUrl). The DukeOfUrl reviews OpenBSD 2.8. "OpenBSD is designed for security, and is "secure by default" (as their motto states), users wishing to have a functional and secure server need not toil with permissions and services, and in some cases, one needs to do nothing more than install the operating system and watch in awe as it does its work. Having worked on securing many Linux servers, believe me, OpenBSD is quite a vacation for both the system administrator or even just a user concerned with his or her security."
SuSE Linux 7.1. Here's a review of SuSE Linux 7.1 on SuSE's Linux Knowledge Portal. "Purists and Linux oldies might regard this abundance of graphical functions as an unnecessary concession to the colorful realm of contemporary desktops and its mass market. However, it is a great help for Linux newcomers and former users of other operating systems, who would be quite baffled by rather cryptic configuration files. Yet, this should not hinder any of the newcomers to try to acquire some background knowledge to understand them :-)"
NBROK Linux. NBROK Linux is a small Linux distribution which fits on a ZIP-100 drive.
Linux-Mandrake News. Here's a press release from MandrakeSoft and Macmillan USA proclaiming that, according to PC Data, Linux-Mandrake 7.2 was the best selling Linux distribution in December, 2000; it had a 28% market share. The PR is not explicit, but one assumes they are looking at the U.S. market.
Cooker CD images available. ISOs of the current Linux-Mandrake development version, "Cooker", (eventually Linux-Mandrake version 8.0), have been made available on the ISO mirrors. "These ISOs represent a development version, a lot of work is still needed, however you can see what chosen directions are, and give your feedbacks and comments about the present choices. Please be aware that this version is not considered as stable, and should not in any way be used in a production environment."
Debian Weekly News. The Debian Weekly News for February 13 is out. It covers the continuing campaign for the next project leader (four candidates now), changes to the new maintainer process, troubles with the "testing" distribution, and more.
Kernel Cousins. The Debian Kernel Cousin Issue #22 contains "Wishful Thinking About Package Management", "Translation of Install Messages" and other topics. The Debian Hurd Kernel Cousin Issue #79 contains "Hurd Ports" and more.
Debian OpenBSD? Andreas Schuldei has announced his intent to create a "Debian OpenBSD" distribution. His purpose is to create a highly secure system with the feel of a Debian system - using the Debian package manager, SysV init scripts, etc. It would be based, however, on the OpenBSD kernel and userland utilities (i.e. no GNU tools).
Needless to say, this suggestion raised some eyebrows. Debian has always been an overtly GNU system; would it still be Debian without the GNU tools? Might not it be better to just port dpkg to OpenBSD, if OpenBSD is what you want to use? Or, could not the effort of making this distribution be used to perform an OpenBSD-style security audit of the existing Debian distribution?
The overall reception was skeptical, to say the least. Mr. Schuldei may find it difficult to attract enough developers to build his distribution in the near future. Everybody, however, agreed that he has the right to try...
Astaro Security Linux. Astaro Security Linux has a new version based on a specially hardened Linux 2.4 kernel.
Lineo releases uCdimm. Lineo, Inc. announced the availability of the uCdimm microcontroller module for the DragonBall VZ microcontroller and uCevolution, a new host platform which gives developers a quick way to cross port a variety of processors. These two new products will be bundled in the Lineo uClinux Development Kit.
M-Systems and TUXIA Announce Support for DiskOnChip. M-Systems Flash Disk Pioneers Ltd. and TUXIA announced support for DiskOnChip(R) within TASTE (TUXIA Appliance Synthesis Technology Enabled), an embedded Linux distribution.
Coyote Linux. The Coyote Linux Windows Disk Creator has been updated a couple of times this week. Also Coyote Linux v1.28 has been released and is available for download. This version fixes a security exploit in the SSHd daemon and adds the ICQ and H.323 masquerading modules. Anyone with a version of Coyote Linux prior to 1.28 that is using the SSH daemon should upgrade.
Section Editor: Rebecca Sobol
February 15, 2001