Collection of Linux related news hopefully!

The second beta release of elementary OS ‘Freya’ is now available for download, and arrives some six months after the first beta was released to much excitement.

Although not yet considered stable enough for regular desktop use — as such do install with caution — the latest development milestone of the attractive Ubuntu-based Linux distribution comprises more than 600 bug fixes and a wealth of package updates, including a notable bump to GTK 3.14.

Those of you who do jump in to test you’ll also find several new and updated apps, an improved multitasking experience, icon theme tweaks and (in what will please many) UEFI/Secure Boot support. There are also new settings panes for configuring the behaviour and frequency of ‘Notifications’ and setting up/adjusting the built-in ‘Firewall’.

Other notable changes in this release over earlier betas include new Calculator and Video apps, which help bring basic functionality up-to-spec. Updates to the Calendar, Photos and ‘Switchboard’ system settings apps add more finesse to elementary’s in-house roster of apps.

elementary Freya Beta 2 is a free download available from the elementary beta website. If you give it a whirl let us know what you think of it in the comments below.

Download Elementary Freya Beta 2

The post Elementary OS ‘Freya’ Beta 2 Released first appeared on OMG! Ubuntu!.

Qbertino writes I've been a linux user for more than 15 years now and in the last ten I've done basically all my non-trivial web development on Linux. SuSE in the early days, after that either Debian or, more recently, Ubuntu, if I want something to click on. What really bugs me is, that every time I make a new setup, either as a virtual machine, on concrete hardware or a remote host, I go through 1-2 hours of getting the basics of a web-centric system up and running. That includes setting PHP config options to usable things, setting up vhosts on Apache (always an adventure), configging mod_rewrite, installing extra CLI stuff like Emacs (yeah, I'm from that camp) walking through the basic 10-15 steps of setting up MySQL or some other DB, etc. ... You get the picture. What has me wondering is this: Since Linux is deeply entrenched in the field of server-side web, with LAMP being it's powerhouse, I was wondering if there aren't any distros that cover exactly this sort of thing. You know, automatic allocation of memory in the runtime settings, ready-made Apache http/https/sftp/ftp setup, PHP all ready to go, etc. What are your experiences and is there something that covers this? Would you think there's a need for this sort of thing and would you base it of Debian or something else? If you do web-dev, how do you do it? Prepareted scripts for setup? Anything else? ... Ideas, unkown LAMP distros and opinions please."

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jones_supa writes It looks like the release of Xfce 4.12 is finally about to materialize. It has been about two and half years since the last stable release. There is now a concerted effort underway to ship a new release of this lightweight GTK+2 desktop environment out around the end of February or early March. "As we have discussed the status and progress of core components with many of you individually, we feel confident that the state of Xfce is good enough to polish some final edges and push more translations until then," wrote Simon Steinbeiß on the xfce4-dev mailing list. The official list of showstopper bugs does not look too bad either. However, looking at the long time between releases certainly makes one think if the project could have use for some extra resources.

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You can expect to see a number of “unboxing videos” for the Bq Ubuntu Phone appear online in the coming days, as those gifted handsets at the Feb 6 event take to the ‘tubes to share their thoughts.

While we also got a handset we won’t be posting an unboxing video of our own. This isn’t because we don’t want to, rather we just didn’t have time. That and, like most, we’ve already opened it ;)

Another thing you will need to be aware of while watching the videos that surface is that the consumer packaging for the Bq Aquaris E4.5 Ubuntu Edition will be different and may lack some of the extras given in our gift boxes.

YouTuber Jordan Keyes nabs the honour of being the first to post a video of someone unboxing an Ubuntu Phone online. His video offers a thorough rundown of the packaging and, importantly, some decent hands-on time with the device itself.

One thing you will note is the lengthy boot time. This is something that I can attest to and, more frustratingly, seems to only be a fraction faster when restarting. Here’s hoping a future update can fix that!

We’ll keep this article updated as more — from hob-nobbing at the event it seems everyone and their auntie is planning an unboxing video of some kind — arrive. If you spot one before we do, give us a shout using our tip form. We’d sure appreciate it!

The post First Ever Ubuntu Phone Unboxing Video Appears Online first appeared on OMG! Ubuntu!.

As the AllSeen Alliance’s senior director of IoT, Philip DesAutels works with Alliance members to advance the Internet of Everything by building out an open source software framework, AllJoyn, to seamlessly connect a range of objects and devices in homes, cars and businesses. He oversees and guides all aspects of the Alliance, from governance and technology, to the developer community and marketing efforts.

So, there we have it. After all the waiting, griping and pining we’re now only days away from the first Ubuntu Phone going on sale in Europe, courtesy of Spain-based Bq.

As we shared towards the end of last year, the Bq Aquaris E4.5 Ubuntu Edition handset will go on sale in Europe from next week priced at €169. 

The Ubuntu Phone from Bq

But you’ll need to act fast if you plan on buying one: Canonical and Bq plan to hold a series of online ‘Flash Sales’ over the coming weeks during which the handsets will be available in limited quantities.

This approach should help the first batches of Ubuntu Phone “sell out” — though without knowing specific quantities it’ll be worth taking any such claims made in the coming weeks with caution.

Qualify

To ‘quality’ for a purchase potential buyers will also need to complete a small mini-game to ensure they understand the phone’s purpose, differentiation — i.e., what it can and, perhaps more importantly, can’t do.

We’ve written a lot about what makes Ubuntu on a phone such a unique proposition, especially amidst a crowded and well entrenched mature mobile space (hint: they’re called Scopes).

Hardware

We’ve also covered the hardware of the Aquaris E4.5 a lot, so I’m sure most of you are well aware of its ins and outs by now. To recap the specifications:

  • 4.5-inch screen (qHD resolution @ 540×960)
  • 1.3 GHz Quad Core ARM Cortex A7 (MediaTek)
  • Mali 400 GPU @ 500 MHz (MediaTek)
  • 8GB eMMC Storage (plus MicroSD card slot)
  • 1GB RAM
  • 2150 mAh Battery
  • Dual micro-SIM
  • 8MP rear camera

I know: it’s hardly a beast of a phone, and far from being the ‘PC in your pocket’ that so many Ubuntu enthusiasts want. The lack of 4G will cause some to sneer, too.

But as firsts go — and one really shouldn’t forget how hard it is to get a device launched in a market so complacent with its victors — it does all it needs to.

Based on a few (rather gleeful) hours of playing with the device (admittedly hardly enough time to write a full review) it is a capable conduit for the Ubuntu Phone experience and what it’s trying to achieve — i.e., beyond apps, information at your fingertips, etc.

Carrier Options

In what was described as a ‘gesture’ of approval at Ubuntu’s mobile ambitions a select number of carriers will be offering some nifty SIM-only deals to those buying the device in/from certain countries, including:

  • Sweden — 3
  • Spain — amena.com
  • UK – GiffGaff
  • Portugal — Portugal Telecom

These are entirely optional: the dual-SIM phone ships entirely unlocked to allow you to use it with whatever network you’re currently on.

More to Come

If you kept up with us over on Twitter during the Ubuntu Phone Insiders Event then you’ll have seen this tweet:

#UbuntuPhone news confirmed to me by Canonical: Meizu to launch an Ubuntu version of the MX4 internationally. More info at MWC2015.

— OMG! UBUNTU! (@omgubuntu) February 6, 2015

Yes, while attention may be on Bq right now it’ll be shifting to Canonical’s other hardware partner later this month, the China-based Meizu.

Meizu will be unveiling four phones during Mobile World Congress of which one, a repurposed version of its well-received MX4, will be running Ubuntu. The device will sit alongside YunOS, FlymeOS and another and be sold both in China (where the OS will ships with slightly different features due to locale) and Europe.

The post Bq Ubuntu Phone Goes on Sale Next Week at €169, Meizu Device Coming Soon first appeared on OMG! Ubuntu!.

Last week I was in Italia at the Cisco Live! Milano event where I also had the opportunity to speak about OpenDaylight (ODL) and Software-Defined Networking (SDN). What stood out for me the most during my time there was the tremendous progress being made on technologies that are really disrupting the networking space SDN and NFV have been advancing innovation in the networking industry over the past few years, but it’s still early, and not many of the technologies have made it out of the lab and into the networks – until now. I joined developers in the Cisco DevNet Zone to get  a look at the company’s SDN and NFV software and what I saw was a portfolio of applications, mostly based on OpenDaylight, that are advancing the transition to networks managed by software. By far, the high point was the CloudVPN, which is offering open APIs to allow developers to create their own apps, portals, and automation on top of the platform.    

tedlistens writes: To tackle the chicken-and-egg problem faced by the Windows Phone or Blackberry — you need an app ecosystem to gain market share, but you need market share in order to entice developers to your platform — Canonical, the creators of the free, open-source Linux-based OS Ubuntu, have taken a novel approach with their new phone, which will be launched in Europe next week: The phone — the Aquaris E4.5 Ubuntu Edition, made with Spanish manufacturers BQ — won't feature apps. Instead, it will have a new user experience paradigm called Scopes. These are "essentially contextual home-screen dashboards that will be much simpler and less time-consuming to develop than full-on native apps." For instance, the music Scope will pull songs from Grooveshark alongside music stored locally on your device, without strong differentiation between the two. The user experience, writes Jay Cassano at Fast Company, seems a lot more intuitive than the "app grids" that dominate most devices.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








tedlistens writes: To tackle the chicken-and-egg problem faced by the Windows Phone or Blackberry — you need an app ecosystem to gain market share, but you need market share in order to entice developers to your platform — Canonical, the creators of the free, open-source Linux-based OS Ubuntu, have taken a novel approach with their new phone, which will be launched in Europe next week: The phone — the Aquaris E4.5 Ubuntu Edition, made with Spanish manufacturers BQ — won't feature apps. Instead, it will have a new user experience paradigm called Scopes. These are "essentially contextual home-screen dashboards that will be much simpler and less time-consuming to develop than full-on native apps." For instance, the music Scope will pull songs from Grooveshark alongside music stored locally on your device, without strong differentiation between the two. The user experience, writes Jay Cassano at Fast Company, seems a lot more intuitive than the "app grids" that dominate most devices.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








tedlistens writes: To tackle the chicken-and-egg problem faced by the Windows Phone or Blackberry — you need an app ecosystem to gain market share, but you need market share in order to entice developers to your platform — Canonical, the creators of the free, open-source Linux-based OS Ubuntu, have taken a novel approach with their new phone, which will be launched in Europe next week: The phone — the Aquaris E4.5 Ubuntu Edition, made with Spanish manufacturers BQ — won't feature apps. Instead, it will have a new user experience paradigm called Scopes. These are "essentially contextual home-screen dashboards that will be much simpler and less time-consuming to develop than full-on native apps." For instance, the music Scope will pull songs from Grooveshark alongside music stored locally on your device, without strong differentiation between the two. The user experience, writes Jay Cassano at Fast Company, seems a lot more intuitive than the "app grids" that dominate most devices.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.