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Blacklisting modules on Linux

2 months 1 week ago

NetworkWorld: Blacklisting modules prevents them from being loaded and used, and it is sometimes an important step in keeping a system running properly

Firefox Quantum, Bcachefs, Ubuntu, Devuan 2.0

2 months 1 week ago

News briefs for May 10, 2018.

It is here: Firefox 60 "Quantum" is available for download! Now with Client Side Decorations (CSD) and much more!

And development for Firefox 61 has already begun.

Kent Overstreet of Bcache and now, Bcachefs is working his way to push patches for Bcachefs upstream and into the Linux kernel. Bcachefs is an advanced Linux COW filesystem that boasts a lot of the features used by ZFS and Btrfs.

It would seem that the main Ubuntu distribution may not be the only *buntu to drop support for 32-bit x86 (i386) architectures. A proposal has just been put forth by Bryan Quigley to drop support for Lubuntu, Xubuntu, Kylin and Kubuntu.

While the beta for Devuan 2.0 ASCII (a Debian fork without systemd) landed back in February, yesterday marked the availability of the first official release candidate.

News
Petros Koutoupis

Android P Tackles Phone Addiction, Distraction

2 months 1 week ago
Google has revealed some major new features in the next version of its Android operating system for mobile devices. Now in public beta, the OS known as "Android P" includes features designed to address growing concerns about phone addiction and distraction. For example, a dashboard will show users how often, when and for how long they use each application on their phone.
John P. Mello Jr.

Read-Only Memory

2 months 1 week ago
by Zack Brown

Igor Stoppa posted a patch to allow kernel memory pools to be made read-only. Memory pools are a standard way to group memory allocations in Linux so their time cost is more predictable. With Igor's patch, once a memory pool was made read-only, it could not be made read-write again. This would secure the data for good and against attackers. Of course, you could free the memory and destroy the pool. But short of that, the data would stay read-only.

There was not much controversy about this patch. Kees Cook felt that XFS would work well with the feature. And, having an actual user would help Igor clarify the usage and nail down the API.

This apparently had come up at a recent conference, and Dave Chinner was ready for Igor's patch. He remarked, "we have a fair amount of static data in XFS that we set up at mount time and it never gets modified after that. I'm not so worried about VFS level objects (that's a much more complex issue) but there is a lot of low hanging fruit in the XFS structures we could convert to write-once structures."

Igor said this was exactly the kind of thing he'd had in mind.

A bunch of folks started talking about terminology and use cases, and speculating on further abilities. No one had any negative comment, and everyone was excited to get going with it.

The thing about a patch like this is that people can use the feature or not. It helps them with security, or it costs them nothing. It adds an ability but adds no complexity to the code. Unless something weird happens, I'd expect this patch to go into the kernel as soon as the API stabilizes.

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Zack Brown

OpenShift Brings Full Cross-Platform Flexibility to Azure Cloud

2 months 1 week ago
Microsoft and Red Hat introduced OpenShift on Azure at Red Hat Summit 2018 in San Francisco. This release is the first fully managed, easy-to-use version of OpenShift in the cloud, the companies said. The fully managed integration of OpenShift on Azure means that Microsoft and Red Hat will join to engineer, operate and support the platform. That combined support will keep it up-to-date.
Jack M. Germain