News & Tutorials

The Tortoise and the Hare: The tale of Android evolution

Android is all the rage these days. In my meetings and correspondences with consumer electronic vendors around the world it is as if they have totally forgot about the “old“ “embedded operating systems” – pSOS, VxWorks, MontaVista, Nucleus, OSE, or any of the Linux and Unix variants that people have been using for years now. While there are a few […]

On a tour of YALI

On a tour of YALI

YALI, Yet Another Linux Installer, is the installation program of Pardus, a desktop-oriented Linux distribution with roots in the National Research Institute of Electronics and Cryptology (UEKAE), Turkey. The next stable release of Pardus will be Pardus 2011. According to the release announcement of Pardus 2011 beta, which was released a couple of days ago, YALI will ship with a […]

Amazon app store for Android welcomes DRM

Molly de Blanc: In 2007, Amazon announced their music store. It would, they promised, deliver DRM-free music to U.S. Amazon users. And they did just that. With much fanfare, they rolled out Amazon MP3, touting music downloads for any device. On their website, they explain what’s special about their music sales. “DRM-free means that the MP3 files you purchase from Amazon.com […]

Exploring the KDE Plasma Netbook interface

Exploring the KDE Plasma Netbook interface

The latest K Desktop Environment, KDE, features two modes of interacting with the desktop – the classic Desktop interface and the Netbook interface. On recent KDE-based distributions that I have reviewed for this website, the default is the classic Desktop, but switching to the Netbook interface is an easy, few seconds process. I posted a few screenshots of the Netbook […]

How to install and configure a graphical firewall client in Ubuntu 10.10

How to install and configure a graphical firewall client in Ubuntu 10.10

Like all Linux distributions, Ubuntu 10.10, aka, Maverick Meerkat, the latest version of the popular Linux distribution, ships with a firewall installed. The firewall is actually embedded in the kernel. In Ubuntu, the firewall’s original command line interface has been replaced by ufw, a more user-friendly command line script. Ufw, the Uncomplicated FireWall, has a graphical interface that is also […]

Guest session and guest user accounts in Ubuntu

Guest session and guest user accounts in Ubuntu

If you are reading this article on a Ubuntu-powered computer, odds are that it is your computer. Whether it is a notebook, netbook, or a standard desktop, it is your computer. Ok, it could be owned by another entity, but for simplicity’s sake, let us just say it is your computer. You log in with a username and password, and […]

Spice up Ubuntu 10.10 desktop with Cairo-Dock

Spice up Ubuntu 10.10 desktop with Cairo-Dock

Ubuntu 10.10, the latest edition of the popular Linux distribution, which was just reviewed here, ships with the same blank desktop that has come to identify the Ubuntu desktop. But you do not have to live with it. You can spice it up with a very simple and elegant application. You can go from the default desktop shown below, to […]

Ubuntu 10.10 manual disk partitioning guide

Ubuntu 10.10 manual disk partitioning guide

The installation program on Ubuntu desktop is pretty basic. It lacks the other features, like support for LVM, RAID, and full disk encryption, that the Ubuntu text installer edition has. By default, it creates just one partition onto which it installs everything. If you want to install Ubuntu on a disk with separate partitions for the major file systems, you […]

Voice Phishing: System to Trace Telephone Call Paths Across Multiple Networks Developed

Phishing scams are making the leap from email to the world’s voice systems, and a team of researchers in the Georgia Tech College of Computing has found a way to tag fraudulent calls with a digital “fingerprint” that will help separate legitimate calls from phone scams. Voice phishing (or “vishing”) has become much more prevalent with the advent of cellular […]

Blind Inventors Develop Free Software to Enable the Blind to Use Computers

For many blind people, computers are inaccessible. It can cost upwards of $1000 to purchase “screen reader” software, but two blind computer programmers have solved this problem. Queensland University of Technology (QUT) graduate James Teh and business partner Michael Curran developed a free, open-source program, called NVDA (NonVisual Desktop Access), which provides a synthetic voice to read the words on […]

How to manage disk encryption passphrases and key slots

How to manage disk encryption passphrases and key slots

Disk encryption is one method you may use to enhance the physical security rating of your computer. From my experience, it is rarely used, which is a shame because it is one of the most effective safeguards against unauthorized physical access to data stored on a computer. Disk encryption, which can be full disk, or per partition, may be configured […]

How to password-protect GRUB

How to password-protect GRUB

Password-protecting the bootloader is one method you may employ to enhance the physical security profile of your computer. GRUB, the GRand Unified Bootloader, is the default bootloader on virtually all Linux distributions, but on a significant number, the installer does not have support for setting a GRUB password. This article presents the step involved in password-enabling GRUB – on a […]

Security features of Linpus Lite 1.4

Security features of Linpus Lite 1.4

Linpus Lite 1.4 is the latest update to the Linux distribution published by Linpus Technologies, Inc. of Taipei, Taiwan. Though designed for use on netbooks and low-power computers, it is one of the best distributions that I have reviewed for publication on this website. It boots up real fast and shuts down even faster. It features a slick installation program […]

LibreOffice: A fork of OpenOffice.org

Exactly ten days after Mandriva was forked, another major Free Software has also been forked. And this time, it is OpenOffice.org, the free suite of office applications similar to Microsoft Office. The fork, or the new office suite, will be temporarily known as LibreOffice. It has the backing of community heavyweights, and its development will be overseen by a newly […]

Best of Proposed Mageia Logo

Best of Proposed Mageia Logo

The Mageia project is a fork of Mandriva Linux. It is a brand new project, announced on September 18, 2010. There is an ongoing discussion about different aspects of the project, and one of those discussion revolves around the project’s logo. There have been some very good and some not so good logos proposed by community members, and what is […]

Forking Mandriva Linux: The birth of Mageia

Mandriva, one of my favorite Linux distributions, has been forked, and the new distribution is named Mageia. With the well publicized mass exodus of developers and contributors, this does not come as shock. I usually view these developments with caution, but this one I am actually happy about. Here are my reasons: Mandriva’s management has done a very lousy job […]