QuoteSamsung and Acer will each be offering the first Chromebook laptops starting June 15. The Samsung Chromebook will cost $429 for the Wi-Fi only version and the 3G version will cost $499. Acer's Wi-Fi only Chromebook will cost $349.
The devices will be available for sale in the U.S. from Amazon and Best Buy starting June 15.
QuoteBloomberg, which broke the news this afternoon, reported that sources familiar with Microsoft's plans said this version of Windows will continue to work on x86 processors, but that it should improve battery performance on devices like tablets and other devices that use ARM processors.
Additional confirmation of Microsoft's plans came from The Wall Street Journal, which added that this new version will not be available for another two years. CNET heard similar reports from a source who added that Microsoft plans to detail this version of Windows at an invite-only press event several hours ahead of its CES keynote.
QuoteUbuntu founder Mark Shuttleworth told press recently that a move to daily updates would help the popular Linux disto keep pace with an increasingly complex software and platform ecosystem as Ubuntu goes on more devices and syncs up Android and iPhones.
Software Center - barely a year old - is leading these changes, and Shuttleworth has promised this would "go further and faster than people might have envisioned in the past."
"Today we have a six-month release cycle," Shuttleworth said. "In an internet-oriented world, we need to be able to release something every day.
"That's an area we will put a lot of work into in the next five years. The small steps we are putting in to the Software Center today, they will go further and caster than people might have envisioned in the past."
QuoteThe next major transition for Unity will be to deliver it on Wayland, the OpenGL-based display management system. We’d like to embrace Wayland early, as much of the work we’re doing on uTouch and other input systems will be relevant for Wayland and it’s an area we can make a useful contribution to the project.
We’re confident we’ll be able to retain the ability to run X applications in a compatibility mode, so this is not a transition that needs to reset the world of desktop free software. Nor is it a transition everyone needs to make at the same time: for the same reason we’ll keep investing in the 2D experience on Ubuntu despite also believing that Unity, with all it’s GL dependencies, is the best interface for the desktop. We’ll help GNOME and KDE with the transition, there’s no reason for them not to be there on day one either.
QuoteShuttleworth described desktop adoption of Unity as the "most significant change ever" for Ubuntu. He also acknowledged that it is a "risky step" and that much work remains to be done to prepare for the transition. The move reflects Ubuntu's growing divergence from the standard upstream GNOME configuration and effort to differentiate itself with a distinctive user experience. During the keynote, Shuttleworth emphasized that Ubuntu is still committed to GNOME despite the fact that it will ship with Unity instead of GNOME Shell. He contends that diversity and competition between different kinds of GNOME environments will encourage innovation and benefit the GNOME ecosystem.
The decision to ship a custom interface in Ubuntu is going to be controversial. Critics in the upstream community are already expressing disappointment with what they view as a move to fork the desktop. It's worth noting, however, that Canonical isn't the first company to build a unique user experience for GNOME that deviates from the standard upstream user interface stack. Intel also similarly produced a custom shell with the Clutter that is used on the MeeGo platform. Canonical's deviations from the upstream configuration receive closer scrutiny because Ubuntu's popularity among Linux users makes the distribution a king-maker on the Linux desktop. Canonical's decision to ship Unity could deeply marginalize GNOME Shell.
QuoteIndeed, Microsoft executives from Windows unit President Steven Sinofsky on down have been hesitant to say anything about the company's future Windows plans. While the desktop team has been quiet, Microsoft's server team did say last year that a major release of Windows Server was due in 2012 and server versions typically slightly lag a desktop release.
A presentation leaked in June suggests that the next version of Windows will include, among other things, an app store similar to ones offered by Apple and other mobile device makers. Apple announced this week that it will bring an app store to the Mac within 90 days.
QuoteToday’s an exciting day! We are announcing that more than 240 million licenses of Windows 7 have been sold. Windows 7 is the fastest selling operating system in history. As of September, Windows 7 was running on 93% of new consumer PCs and has over 17% global OS market share (according to Net Applications as of October 1st). There is an amazing array of great PCs out on the market today. Six months after launch, 100% (over 18,000) of our OEM partners were selling Windows 7 PCs versus 70% for Windows Vista PCs at a comparable time period. And there is an incredible ecosystem of products – software and hardware – that work great with Windows 7 too. You can check out and discover many of those products at Windows Product Scout which was announced yesterday.
QuoteNevertheless, the Ubuntu Project does bring something unique, special and important to free software: a total commitment to everyday users and use cases, the idea that free software should be “for everyone” both economically and in ease of use, and a willingness to chase down the problems that stand between here and there. I feel that commitment is a gift back to the people who built every one of those packages. If we can bring free software to ten times the audience, we have amplified the value of your generosity by a factor of ten, we have made every hour spent fixing an issue or making something amazing, ten times as valuable. I’m very proud to be spending the time and energy on Ubuntu that I do. Yes, I could do many other things, but I can’t think of another course which would have the same impact on the world.
I recognize that not everybody will feel the same way. Bringing their work to ten times the audience without contributing features might just feel like leeching, or increasing the flow of bug reports 10x. I suppose you could say that no matter how generous we are to downstream users, if upstream is only measuring code, then any generosity other than code won’t be registered. I don’t really know what to do about that – I didn’t found Ubuntu as a vehicle for getting lots of code written, that didn’t seem to me to be what the world needed. It needed a vehicle for getting it out there, that cares about delivering the code we already have in a state of high quality and reliability. Most of the pieces of the desktop were in place – and code was flowing in – it just wasn’t being delivered in a way that would take it beyond the server, or to the general public.
QuoteWhat do we do for free software? And what do I do myself?
For a start, we deliver it. We reduce the friction and inertia that prevent people trying free software and deciding for themselves if they like it enough to immerse themselves in it. Hundreds of today’s free software developers, translators, designers, advocates got the opportunity to be part of our movement because it was easy for them to dip their toe in the water. And that’s not easy work. Consider the effort over many years to produce a simple installer for Linux like http://www.techdrivein.com/2010/08/massive-changes-coming-to-ubuntu-1010.html which is the culmination of huge amounts of work from many groups, but which simply would not have happened without Canonical and Ubuntu.
There are thousands of people who are content to build free software for themselves, and that’s no crime. But the willingness to shape it into something that others will find, explore and delight in needs to be celebrated too. And that’s a value which is celebrated very highly in the Ubuntu community: if you read planet.ubuntu.com you’ll see a celebration of *people using free software*. As a community we are deeply satisfied to see people *using* it to solve problems in their lives. That’s more satisfying to us than stories about how we made it faster or added a feature. Of course we do bits of both, but this is a community that measures impact in the world rather than impact on the code. They are very generous with their time and expertise, with that as the reward. I’m proud of the fact that Ubuntu attracts people who are generous in their contributions: they feel their contributions are worth more if they are remixed by others, not less. So we celebrate Kubuntu and Xubuntu and Puppy and Linux Mint. They don’t ride on our coattails, they stand on our shoulders, just as we stand on the shoulders of giants. And that’s a good thing. Our work is more meaningful and more valuable because their work reaches users that ours alone could not.
QuoteThis release includes numerous updated software packages, such as the K Desktop Environment 3.5.10 (KDE), an updated version of the GNOME desktop environment 2.22.2, the Xfce 4.4.2 desktop environment, LXDE 0.3.2.1, the GNUstep desktop 7.3, X.Org 7.3, OpenOffice.org 2.4.1, GIMP 2.4.7, Iceweasel 3.0.6 (an unbranded version of Mozilla Firefox), Icedove 184.108.40.206 (an unbranded version of Mozilla Thunderbird), PostgreSQL 8.3.6, MySQL 5.0.51a, GNU Compiler Collection 4.3.2, Linux kernel version 2.6.26, Apache 2.2.9, Samba 3.2.5, Python 2.5.2 and 2.4.6, Perl 5.10.0, PHP 5.2.6, Asterisk 220.127.116.11, Emacs 22, Inkscape 0.46, Nagios 3.06, Xen Hypervisor 3.2.1 (dom0 as well as domU support), OpenJDK 6b11, and more than 23,000 other ready-to-use software packages (built from over 12,000 source packages).
QuoteIn the letter sent to "Windows Customers" and titled "An Update on the Windows Roadmap," Veghte said "our plan is to deliver Windows 7 approximately three years after the January 2007 general availability launch date of Windows Vista." Veghte wrote, "You have told us you want a more regular, predictable Windows release schedule" and he said that was the impetus for setting the 2010 the ship date. Vista has been slowly gaining steam, but is still drawing fire from critics who say it has not lived up to promises.
QuoteDisappointingly, the OS image hasn’t even been updated with the latest versions of Windows Media Player, Windows Live Messenger and so on. This makes for a massive update session the first time the user goes online, and that’s not a good way to start the relationship. Supplied CDs include the XP Home OEM install disc and Asus’ support DVD containing the necessary XP drivers and a recovery utility.
However, it’s worth noting that Asus is prepping a special edition Eee PC that will be preloaded with a cut-down version of XP which is expected to be available within the next eight weeks. Emmanuele Silanesu, National Retail Manager for ASUSTeK Australia, told apcmag "we’ve been working with Microsoft on a special condensed version of XP which has just passed the R&D tests this week". The pared-back image, which includes the Microsoft Works suite and will be based on Windows XP Home with SP3, "will be approximately 1.5-1.8GB in total depending on Windows updates" Silanesu says.
Quote"We are offering free-of-charge support to anyone who is having issues installing Windows Vista SP1," Microsoft blogger Brandon Le Blanc said. Unlimited installation and compatibility support is available at no charge until March 18, 2009, according to the Microsoft Service Pack 1 support site. There are three options available under the free support plan for U.S. users: e-mail support, which will be answered within one business day; online chat, which has a current waiting time of around 40 minutes; and call, available only for users who have a software-assurance agreement, professional contract, TechNet subscription, or MSDN subscription, or for those who come under the Microsoft Partner Program.
QuoteWill a bug in KDE 3.5 receive upstream attention in March 2011?
In order for Canonical to make a commercial commitment to their customers, who have signed contracts and terms of service with them, they need to be sure that they can honour the terms of their agreements. The KDE upstream position appears clear, KDE 4 is the focus of developer attention; KDE 3.5 will be supported as long as KDE 4 isn't suitable for support. Given the attention being paid to KDE 4, it is difficult to believe that this will not be the preferred release in three years time. Thus it is difficult to guarantee that upstream will still support the current stable series for the timescale required.
QuoteEven some consumers and small businesses have been opting for the downgrade path. Dell and other PC makers brought back XP on consumer and small-business machines early in the year, while more recently, some PC makers have made it easier for those buying Vista machines to return to XP. Ballmer said that while there may be a few PCs still on the market that have XP, it's Vista that consumers are buying. "Yes, there's one or two models you can find someplace in the world of PCs that don't run Windows Vista," Ballmer said. "But the machines that sell all run Windows Vista." Still, Microsoft recently bowed to concerns from large PC makers and said they wouldn't have to stop selling XP machines in January, giving them instead until the end of June to sell the operating system.
QuotePrinting also has had an overhaul, with a virtual "PDF printer" set up by default to allow any application to output into PDF format. The old printer management system has been replaced and a new configuration tool should mean that printers are set up just by plugging them in and turning them on, developers said. The Tribe 5 release also includes the latest version of the Gnome desktop, the public test version of what will become Gnome 2.20. Other additions scheduled for the final release include faster desktop search, fast user switching, a new deskbar applet and the AppArmor security framework, released as open-source software by Novell. The final release is scheduled for October 18.
QuoteMicrosoft has had to create a new build of Windows XP Professional for computer makers because the six-year-old operating system's continued popularity has nearly exhausted the supply of product activation keys. The new build, dubbed SP2c, includes no fixes or feature changes, but was created simply to address the shrinking pool of product keys. XP Pro SP2c, which has been released to manufacturing, will be made available to OEMs and system builders next month, said Microsoft.
QuoteSimilar to what we've done in the United States, we will configure and install open source drivers for hardware, when possible for these new products. See John Hull's Technical Details post for a more detailed explanation. Recently, some IdeaStorm readers asked why we discontinued the Inspiron E1505N in the United States. The answer is that we transitioned to the Inspiron 1420N, which is a product that we do not offer in the United Kingdom, France and Germany.
QuoteTo fulfil the aims of our mission and in response to the technical challenges that these devices pose, we are announcing the Ubuntu Mobile and Embedded project. We will start more detailed planning at the Ubuntu Developer Summit next week in Seville and the first release of this edition will be in October with Ubuntu 7.10. If you are interested in the project, please get involved. We will be working through our normal development processes on Launchpad, the developer mailing lists and IRC.
QuoteUbuntu is the award-winning Linux distribution for the desktop, laptop, thin client and server which brings together the best of open source software every 6 months. Ubuntu 7.04 desktop edition includes a ground-breaking Windows migration assistant, excellent wireless networking support and improved multimedia support. Ubuntu 7.04 server edition adds support for hardware facilities that speed up the use of virtual machines as well as other improved hardware support, making it an excellent choice as a web, database, file and print server, the fastest growing area of Linux server use. Ubuntu's already outstanding support for thin clients is boosted with advanced print and sound support.
QuoteWe are pleased to announce the immediate availability of CentOS-5 for the i386 and x86_64 Architectures.
CentOS-5 is based on the upstream release 5, and includes packages from all variants including Server and Client. All upstream repositories have been combined into one, to make it easier for end users to work with. And the option to further enable external repositories at install time is now available in the installer.
QuoteThe Debian Project is pleased to announce the official release of Debian GNU/Linux version 4.0, codenamed "etch", after 21 months of constant development. Debian GNU/Linux is a free operating system which supports a total of eleven processor architectures and includes the KDE, GNOME and Xfce desktop environments. It also features cryptographic software and compatibility with the FHS v2.3 and software developed for version 3.1 of the LSB.
Using a now fully integrated installation process, Debian GNU/Linux 4.0 comes with out-of-the-box support for encrypted partitions. This release introduces a newly developed graphical frontend to the installation system supporting scripts using composed characters and complex languages; the installation system for Debian GNU/Linux has now been translated to 58 languages.
Quote"As far as software vulnerabilities go, Vista's cover is blown," said Nand Mulchandani, a vice president at Determina, the company that discovered the latest security bug. "It is not Superman; it is just a human being. It is just software. Vista is going to be very similar to the other operating systems Microsoft has delivered in terms of bugs." Microsoft officially launched Vista for consumers in January, promoting the operating system as the most secure version of Windows yet. It is the first client version of Windows built with security in mind, meaning that it should have fewer coding errors that might be exploited in attacks, Microsoft has said.
QuoteThat's because Vista uses a compatibility database and several heuristics to recognize installer executables and, every time the OS detects that an executable is a setup program, "it will only allow running it as administrator." This, in Rutkowska's mind, is a "very severe hole in the design of UAC." "After all, I would like to be offered a choice whether to fully trust given installer executable (and run it as full administrator) or just allow it to add a folder in Crogram Files and some keys under HKLMSoftware and do nothing more. I could do that under XP, but apparently I can’t under Vista, which is a bit disturbing," she added. A few days after Rutkowska flagged the UAC shortcoming, Microsoft's Mark Russinovich wrote a detailed technical explanation of the way the mechanism works. One thing that stood out in Russinovich's explanation is an admission of sorts that the default configuration of UAC puts the user at risk of a sophisticated code execution attack.