In this post, we’re covering all the latest news from Linux this month, including a deep dive into GNOME 41, the Fedora Linux 35 Beta release, extended support for Ubuntu 14.04 and 16.04, Google Android “Upstream First” kernel approach, OpenSSH 8.8, Red Hat Summit: Connect, and Netflix adding gaming to its subscription service.
Let’s jump right in!
GNOME 41 Desktop environment has been released
The GNOME 41 Desktop environment has been released with lots of new features. Improvements include a new software app and support for the creation of encrypted zip archives with Nautilus file compression. It also includes a new connections app that now displays tiled connections that makes it easy to switch between different remote sessions. I love this new feature because it’s so much easier to manage those connections within one application.
The GNOME 41 Desktop also has a new graphical interface for new connections. In addition, there are new power profiles and options in the status menu including an awesome improvement that lets users know when an app requests to change a power profile — since it impacts overall system performance.
They’ve also included a new multitasking panel and a cellular section in the control panel. The multitasking panel allows you to adjust hot corners and active screen resizing options, and the cellular section allows for configuring modems and mobile connections easily.
There are also changes to the calendar that allows file handling which now makes it possible to use it as the default calendar application. The calculator application has had a complete overhaul as well, now with more color and the ability to see calculator modes.
Overall, many improvements have been made to our favorite desktop shell which now adds more color and better icons. You can test it for yourself by downloading it from gnome.org.
Red Hat Summit: Connect events scheduled for in-person (and virtual)
The third wave of the Red Hat Summit conference has been announced! 20 in-person Red Hat Summit: Connect sessions have been scheduled for October, November, and December and will be held in 20 different major cities.
Locations include Boston, New York, Austin, Chicago, Raleigh, Houston, and San Francisco — just to name a few. These Connect sessions offer in-person opportunities to explore hands-on labs, training, demos, and networking opportunities. You’ll also have ask-the-expert sessions available.
One exciting lab that you may want to check out at the Connect sessions is the Definitive Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 Hands-on lab to bring you up to speed on new RHEL 8 content.
There’s also a session on “Assessing and addressing security at scale with Red Hat Insights and Red Hat Enterprise Linux” If you haven’t heard of Insights, it’s a valuable tool for identifying configuration drift, security vulnerabilities, and critical patches at a high level over large scale environments — a great tool for any systems administrator or engineer to have in their tool belt.
Red Hat Summit is an amazing opportunity to learn about, run, and test the latest software from Red Hat . . . and have access to your favorite support team while doing so to ask questions and get clarification on technical configurations.
You’ll also get access to one-on-one meetings with your Red Hat support representative if you have one.
Attendees will be required to show proof of full Covid-19 vaccination and wear a mask while onsite. If you prefer, or if you’re located outside of the US, you can still access the Red Hat Summit 2021 Virtual Experience on-demand as well. You can find out more about dates and locations as well register, at redhat.com/summit.
Fedora Linux 35 Beta released for public testing
Fedora Linux 35 Beta has been released for public testing. It’s based on the Linux 5.14 kernel and it contains the release candidate version of the GNOME 41 Desktop Environment. If you’d like to test this beta version, check out the many types of images that are available including a server image, a desktop image, a cloud-based image and a Linux container image. This release includes firewalld 1.0.0, LLVM 13, a GNU toolchain update, Python 3.10 and support for DNS over TLS.
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Support extended for Ubuntu 14.04 and 16.04 LTS
Ubuntu Long Term Support versions 14.04 and 16.04 now have extended support maintenance, which requires an active Ubuntu Advantage subscription. These versions were already end of life, in 2019 and 2021 respectively, but they’re both still heavily in production in many enterprise-level businesses. This extended support maintenance brings these versions up to speed with the new 10-year support period. Find out more, at ubuntu.com.
OpenSSH 8.8 has been released
OpenSSH 8.8 has been released, with a major update. It now disables the use of RSA-SHA or SHA-1 hashed digital signatures by default. This ensures more secure passwords, but you may want to look further into this update if your applications are dependent on SHA-1 and you’re planning to upgrade to the latest version of OpenSSH. Support for RSA signatures with SHA-256 and SHA-512 hashes remains unchange
Google Android moving to an “upstream first” approach for new kernel features
Google has announced a new “upstream first” approach to new kernel updates.
Android, known for historically using downstream patches, will now push kernel patches into the main line Linux kernel upstream.
The Linux kernel for Android is forked extensively before it reaches an Android phone and bug fixes take a long time to make their way down the tree. Android.com documentation shows that “these modifications can be extensive, to the point that as much as 50% of the code running on a device is out-of-tree code (not from upstream Linux or from AOSP common kernels).” This results in a large amount of time spent between the initial kernel release and the phone shipping, sometimes shipping phones with kernels that are already two years old.
This new “upstream first” approach is wonderful for Android and customers alike because it ensures that new features and new bug fixes are included in the newly released devices
Linux Gaming: Night School Studio joins Netflix
In Linux gaming news, Night School Studio, the creator or Oxenfree, has been acquired by Netflix. The first round of gaming will be for mobile-focused games, but the acquisition suggests that bigger games — non-mobile or VR games — could be coming along as well.
Level up your Linux learnings
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Until next time, may your source remain open and your code compile. Keep being awesome, cloud gurus!