Saturday, July 30, 2011

Security Update: libpng, samba, dhcpcd

Slackware has released three security updates on -Current (not all of them goes into -Stable release though) and also one update on -Current. The affected packages are libpng which is now upgraded to libpng-1.2.46 and libpng-1.4.8, dhcpcd upgraded to 5.2.12, and Samba upgraded to 3.5.10.

On -Current, screen is rebuilt to use a larger buffer for the termtype variable to fix crashes with long names. It's probably an annoying bugs, so Pat decided to release it early on -Current.

Digikam 2.0.0 SlackBuild Update


I love photos and i love Digikam that can manage my photos very well. I like it even more since it's open source and very customizable. It also has SlackBuild script for creating a native Slackware package, thanks to the SlackBuilds project and also to Frank Caraballo who maintained the script.

The SlackBuild was submitted when Digikam was still in 1.9.0 and now 2.0.0 has come up. What happened if i used it to compile 2.0.0? Does it work? The answer is YES!!! It does work, but there's some modifications that you need to do to make it even better. The new Digikam 2.0.0 come up with less documentation, so you can delete them in the SlackBuild or you will see several errors saying that it cannot stats the file.

Basically, you only need to change the VERSION line and also change
cp -a \
AUTHORS ChangeLog COPYING* DESIGN HACKING INSTALL NEWS README tips TODO \
$PKG/usr/doc/$PRGNAM-$VERSION
into
cp -a \
NEWS README \
$PKG/usr/doc/$PRGNAM-$VERSION

After that, you could start compiling by running the updated SlackBuild to compile Digikam 2.0.0.

Lots of new features has been integrated in Digikam 2.0.0 and most of the dependencies are already contained within the Digikam source, so no more third party libraries, except for OpenCV in which you need to install it by yourself (SlackBuild script is available though). It's all included in extra/ directory inside the source. This includes libkdcraw, libkface, libkipi, libmediawiki, kipi-plugins, libkexiv2, libkgeomap, and libksane. If you don't have those libraries on your system, it will use it's internal version, so just a single source of Digikam will be sufficient to build.

FYI, i used FFMPEG-0.6.3 from AlienBOB's repository and OpenCV-2.3.0, the latest version available nowadays to build this package. Suppose you want to have a successful build, try the same combination i used.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

KDE SC 4.7.0 Released

As planned, KDE SC 4.7.0 is now officially released!!!

It's another major upgrade for KDE and this release will have a monthly updates as usual, so if you don't really think .0 release is stable enough for you, you can wait for their first update next month to bring you bug fixes and translations updates which should be sufficient for you to consider and wait for others to review and test this release first.

KDE SC 4.7.0 brings quite a lot of improvements compared to KDE 4.6.x. Here are some of them:
  • Plasma Workspaces Become More Portable and able to run on OpenGL ES supporting hardware
  • Better KDE/GTK integration and well polished icons through Oxygen icons and Oxygen GTK
  • Experimental support for NetworkManager 0.9
  • KDE-Telepathy is being integrated into desktop
  • Dolphin receive lots of improvements, including deeper integration with source code management systems
  • Marble has voice navigation support, a map creation wizard, and new plug-ins
  • Gwenview is now able to compare images
  • KDevelop gained support for predefined indentation styles, Python interpreter using Kross, improved Python auto-completion and support for lex/yacc file extensions.
  • Improved Kate with more plugins
  • DigiKam 2.0 brings face detection and recognition, image versioning support, and geotagging
  • VLC is now considered a stable and preferred back-ends and so does GStreamer (Linux only)
  • GRUB2 support on KDM, enables users to pick which OS to boot on the next boot sequence
  • Improved KIO Proxy, including SOCKS proxy support and multiple proxy URL addresses
It might take some time before Eric or Pat releases KDE 4.7.0 packages for Slackware-Current users as KDE is now partly switching to modular release (the full migration will likely be done in KDE SC 4.8), thus it requires more time to adapt the SlackBuild scripts to build KDE SC 4.7.0.

Be patient. Give Eric some time to work on KDE SC 4.7.0 time out

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

KCalc Fixed

KCalc issue for not receiving any digit input is now fixed as Eric has included the patch for kdeutils and rebuilt it for Slackware users. He posted the announcement on his blog soon after he came back from his vacations (no wonders he didn't update VLC even though there was a security vulnerabilities previously).

Beware that the rsync module for some of Eric's work has been changed. Here are the new list:
  • KTown: rsync://alien.slackbook.org/alien/ktown/
  • Multilib: rsync://alien.slackbook.org/alien/multilib/
Please update your rsync script if you use the old rsync module winking

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Slackware Turns 18

Slackware 1.0 was released by Patrick Volkerding exactly 18 years ago in 16 July 1993 in an official release when he was still a student. At that time, it was distributed under 24 disks (yes, floppy disks) and it only has two series, A and X. No one will ever thought that it's now being the oldest maintained Linux distribution up to now Applause

In 1993, there wasn't much Linux distribution. Slackware is one of the first batch of Linux Distribution at that time along with SLS, Debian Linux, YggDrasil, and MCC Interim. It turned out good so that many Linux distributions are now based on Slackware, such as SuSE (turned OpenSUSE), VectorLinux, Slax, ZenWalk, Salix, and many more.

Today, it's released using a DVD (and an option of using 6 CDs) and it has so many directories inside. It supports so many hardwares thanks to the Linux 2.6.x (soon to be replaced by 3.0 series) series being developed by great developers around the world under the command of Linus Torvalds and also utilizes the best open source applications available provided by upstreams. Slackware follows the tradition of being a fully open source Linux distribution by providing the source available both on the CD/DVD medias and the official repositories.

Slackware still has Patrick Volkerding as the BDFL, but some of the long contributor of Slackware Linux has now become part of Slackware Crew, such as Robby Workman and Eric Hameleers. Both are respected Slackware Contributor who has done so many great contribution projects to Slackware development, such as XFCE and XOrg project by Robby and also KDE and Multilib by Eric. Both are also working as admin in SlackBuilds project where thousands of SlackBuild script are maintained in order to provide the best solution to install software applications that are not (yet) included in the official Slackware Linux.

It's been a long 18 years, but i still think Slackware still is the best Linux distribution i have ever used so far. I have tried several Linux distribution, including Mandrake (now turned into Mandriva), OpenSUSE, Debian, Red Hat (now turned into Fedora), Knoppix, and many more, but at the end (exactly in 2005), i fully migrated to Slackware and i have been using it since then. It's now becoming my primary operating system on all of my desktops and laptops, including the servers i maintained on my office. You can say i'm a Slackware addicts cool

Happy Birthday to Slackware Linux and congratulation for Patrick Volkerding who has become a GREAT father for this 18 years. We hope you keep enjoying this position and release more and better Slackware versions in the future thumbs up

Friday, July 15, 2011

How to Merge .001 Files

Sometimes, when we downloaded a file which has big size (say over 500 MB), the provider often split them into several parts using a splitter program. There are a lot of applications that can do this so easily. The problem is how to merge them back?

Today, i downloaded a file which was split and comes with .001 and .002 format. From the format, i can see that it was a file that was split by using HJSplit tool (or any tool that results with the same format) and since it was on my server, it doesn't come up with GUI and i can only use SSH to remotely connect to the server. I couldn't ran any HJSplit tool since it doesn't have any X Server, so i have to think of another option.

Well, it seems that there is a command line version of HJSplit called LXSplit made by Richard Stellingwerff and O. Sezer. I used the SlackBuild script to compile and install them as usual using installpkg and by using this simple command line, i'm able to merge the .001 and .002 files together:
lxsplit -j filename.001

If you want to split a big file (say slackware.bin with 1GB in size) into 100MB part each, you can use this command
lxsplit -s slackware.bin 100MB

Simple right?

Who says that you can't do much in command line?big grin

Security Update: Firefox and Seamonkey

There are two security updates released today, but each update belongs to different Slackware version.

The first one is Seamonkey which is now updated to Seamonkey 2.2 and aimed for Slackware 13.37 and -Current only. Older version of Slackware still shipped with previous version of Seamonkey.

The second update was Mozilla Firefox which is upgraded to 3.6.19 and it aimed for Slackware 13.0 and 13.1 only. Firefox on -Current is upgraded to 5.0.1, the latest stable even though it was supposed to be a Mac OS X fixes only.

The only surprise is that Thunderbird 5 is now included in -Current. Only last week Thunderbird gets upgraded on -Current and it was still using the previous 3.x series and 6 six days later, it moves on to Thunderbird 5 Yahoo

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Adobe Flash Player for 64 bit

For those who have been waiting for an official release of Adobe Flash Player for 64 bit systems, well, it's time to party partyas Adobe has officially released Adobe Flash Player 11 which is now on Beta version. Although it's still not the final release, a beta version is way better than the previous Preview Release (Square).
Citing from Phoronix:
It hasn't supports the VA-API acceleration interface available to the open-source Intel driver and AMD Catalyst users, among other drivers/hardware. Nor does it support XvBA. It appears that for hardware-assisted video playback that, for the moment at least, it's still bound to NVIDIA VDPAU under Linux.
Here are the new features in Adobe Flash Player 11 taken from the Release Notes:
  • Stage3D Accelerated Graphics Rendering
  • H.264/AVC Software Encoding for Cameras (desktop)
  • Native JSON (JavaScript Object Notation) Support
  • G.711 Audio Compression for Telephony
  • Garbage Collection Advice
  • Cubic Bezier Curves
  • Secure Random Number Generator
  • Protected HTTP Dynamic Streaming (HDS) and Flash Access Enhancements
  • Socket Progress Events
  • JPEG-XR support
  • Enhanced high resolution bitmap support
  • High efficiency SWF compression support
  • DisplayObjectContainer.removeChildren and MovieClip.isPlaying
  • Native 64-bit Support (Flash Player desktop)
  • Asynchronous Bitmap Decoding (new for Flash Player)
  • TLS Secure Sockets Support (new for Flash Player)

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

KCalc is Not Accepting Numbers

If you upgraded to KDE 4.6.5 from Eric Hameleers and you have been using KCalc, you might have noticed that it doesn't accept inputs from the keyboard and only works with mouse clicks. This is a regression found on KDE 4.6.5 and also in the development version of KDE 4.7, so it's not Eric's fault. It's upstream code, and not due to compilation process.

If you want to fix this, you will have to recompile kdeutils package with the patch described on KDE Bug Tracking System.

Actually i realized this few days ago and i thought there was a problem with my keyboard, but today i realized that it was a regression from the upstream code itself and it's not my keyboard's whose faulty whistling

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

GSB Repository Changes

There has been a slight changes on GSB directory naming for GSB 3.0. In the past, it was using current as the Slackware version, but since -Current is slipping away from Slackware 13.37, GSB developers think it would be wise to rename the directory so that users will not be confused.

GSB 3.0 is meant for Slackware 13.37, so if you use Slackware-Current, you *might* have some problems in the future since more and more packages will be upgraded in the development version of Slackware and that could bring some incompatibilities to your system.

If you happened to use UKDW's repository, please have a look on the repository again and please rename your local directory to the same name before starting a new rsync session so that you won't have to resync everything again

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Security Update: Bind + Thunderbird

There are two new security updates coming up this weekend. They are BIND package which affects only Slackware 13.37 and -Current, while Thunderbird packages are being updated back to Slackware 13.0.

While Mozilla has released Thunderbird 5, it seems it will take a while before that version comes up in Slackware-Current. I think Pat is still evaluating Thunderbird 5 before he decided to include it in -Current. It's a nice update though, because it's now based on Firefox 5 codes, which has previously included in Slackware also.

Friday, July 8, 2011

KDE 4.6.5 Released

Another KDE monthly update and this time, it will KDE 4.6.5 and this release should be the last release of KDE 4.6.x series before KDE starts focusing on KDE 4.7 in the future.

As usual, Eric Hameleers has been so generously providing Slackware users with a precompiled KDE 4.6.5 Slackware packages on his mirrors and now it has been mirrored in several places.

Since Slackware-Current has moved on and there were some incompatible changes (mostly in Perl), it's safer for you to upgrade to Slackware-Current if you want to use Eric's packages or if you want to be safe, you can compile KDE by downloading the sources only and start the SlackBuild script (beware, it's very time and resource consuming).

You can start downloading/mirroring those packages from these repositories:

Thursday, July 7, 2011

LibreOffice 3.4.1: Near Rock-Solid Release

The Document Foundation has released LibreOffice 3.4.1 after a month since their initial release of LibreOffice 3.4.0. This release brings many updates compared to previous release and also translations update, but the developers still added a little warning for those who wanted to use this version on corporate/enterprise level.

The stable version for both enterprise and desktop users are planned in the next release: LibreOffice 3.4.2 and it should be released next month. But that doesn't stop you to use LibreOffice 3.4.1 for now. From my experience, it's working well and it's very stable. Also, you can have a look on the new features on LibreOffice 3.4.x series.

As usual, Eric is the one who provided a precompiled package for Slackware Linux on his repository and now it has been mirrored on several mirror sites below:
Below is the milestone list for LibreOffice development. It should give you a better schedule if you are planning to adapt LibreOffice on your working environment.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

New Poll

Along with the release announcement of Slackware 13.37, Pat also announced that there's a new limited edition of Slackware T-Shirt in Slackware Store. I would like to know what's your opinion about that new item in Slackware Store. The poll will be running for another two months (it's just another laziness of my side) and i hope you can give your votes too

Happy Voting Yahoo

Poll Results

It's been two months and now it's time to recap the poll results. There are 134 voters for this poll and i thank you all who have voted for this, so without further ado, here are the final results:
2.6.35.12 2 (1%)
2.6.37.6 64 (47%)
2.6.38.4 33 (24%)
2.6.39-rc4 2 (1%)
Custom Kernel 33 (24%)

Nearly 50% of the voters decided to use the default kernel shipped with Slackware 13.37. It seems that they believe in Pat's choice. I also believe this is the best option at the time Slackware 13.37 was released, even though 2.6.38 has been released.

24% chose to pick 2.6.38.4, which supports better hardware and also provides better performance if combined with the correct xorg, mesa, and intel driver package, but there's a power consumption problem spotted on this release by Michael Larabel of Phoronix.

Another 24% picked to build custom kernel for their machine. I think Slackware's kernel configuration is nearly perfect for day to day configuration, but some people (like me for example) wanted to optimize the kernel or even trimming down the unneeded modules or filesystems, so we end up tweaking the kernel configuration to have different configuration and build it by ourself.

I would like to thank to all voters and see you in the next poll