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Review: Artemis Fowl

Planet Debian - Mar, 26/09/2017 - 6:36pd

Review: Artemis Fowl, by Eoin Colfer

Series: Artemis Fowl #1 Publisher: Disney-Hyperion Copyright: 2001 ISBN: 1-4231-2452-9 Format: Kindle Pages: 281

Artemis Fowl is the heir to the Fowl criminal empire and a child prodigy. He's also one of the few humans to know of the existence of fairies, who are still present in the world, hiding from humans and living by their own rules. As the book opens, he's in search of those rules: a copy of the book that governs the lives of fairies. With that knowledge, he should be able to pull off a heist worthy of his family's legacy.

Captain Holly Short is a leprechaun... or, more correctly, a LEPrecon. She's one of the fairy police officers that investigate threats to the fairies who are hiding in a vast underground civilization. The fairies have magic, but they also have advanced (and miniaturized) technology, maintained in large part by a grumpy and egotistical centaur (named Foaly, because it's that sort of book). She's also the fairy unlucky enough to be captured by Artemis's formidable personal bodyguard their first attempt to kidnap a hostage for their ransom demands.

This is the first book of a long series of young adult novels that has also spawned graphic novels and a movie currently in production. It has that lean and clear feeling of the younger side of young adult writing: larger-than-life characters who are distinctive and easy to remember, a short introductory setup that dives directly into the main plot, and a story that neatly pulls together every element raised in the story. The world-building is its strongest point, particularly the mix of tongue-in-cheek technology — ships that ride magma plumes, mechanical wings, and helmet-mounted lights to blind trolls — and science-tinged magic that the fairies build their police and army on. Fairies are far beyond humans in capability, and can be deadly and ruthless, but they have to follow a tightly constrained set of rules that are often not convenient.

Sadly, the characters don't live up to the world-building. I did enjoy a few of them, particularly Artemis's loyal bodyguards and the dwarf Mulch Diggums. But Holly, despite being likable, is a bit of a blank slate: the empathetic, overworked trooper who is mostly indistinguishable from other characters in similar stories. The gruff captain, the sarcastic technician Foaly, and the various other LEP agents all felt like they were taken straight from central casting. And then there's Artemis himself.

Artemis is the protagonist of the story, in that he's the one who initiates all of the action and the one who has the most interesting motivations. The story is about him, as the third-person narrator in the introduction makes clear. He's trying very hard to be a criminal genius with the deductive abilities of Sherlock Holmes and the speaking style of a Bond villain, but he's also twelve, his father has disappeared, and his mother is going slowly insane. I picked this book up on the recommendation of another reader who found that contrast compelling.

Unfortunately, I thought Artemis was just an abusive jerk. Yes, yes, family tragedy, yes, he's trapped in his conception of himself, but he's arrogant, utterly uncaring about how his actions affect other people, and dismissive and cruel even to his bodyguards (who are much better friends than he deserves). I think liking this book requires liking Artemis at least well enough to consider him an anti-hero, and I can squint and see that appeal if you have that reaction. But I just wanted him to lose. Not in the "you will be slowly redeemed over the course of a long series" way, but in the "you are a horrible person and I hope you get what's coming to you" way. The humor of the fairy parts of the book was undermined too much by the fact that many of them would like to kill Artemis for real, and I mostly wanted them to succeed.

This may or may not have to do with my low tolerance for egotistical smart-asses who order other people to do things that they refuse to explain.

Without some appreciation for Artemis, this is a story with some neat world-building, a fairly generic protagonist in Holly, and a plot in which the bad guys win. To make matters worse, I thought the supposedly bright note at the end of the story was just creepy, as was everything else involving Artemis's mother. The review I read was of the first three books, so it's entirely possible that this series gets better as it goes along, but there wasn't enough I enjoyed in the first book for me to keep reading.

Followed by Artemis Fowl: The Arctic Incident.

Rating: 5 out of 10

Russ Allbery https://www.eyrie.org/~eagle/ Eagle's Path

Kubuntu General News: Kubuntu Artful Aardvark (17.10) Beta 2 testing

Planet Ubuntu - Mar, 26/09/2017 - 5:17pd

Artful Aardvark (17.10) Beta 2 images are now available for testing.

The Kubuntu team will be releasing 17.10 in October. The final Beta 2 milestone will be available on September 28.

This is the first spin in preparation for the Beta 2 pre-release. Kubuntu Beta pre-releases are NOT recommended for:

  • Regular users who are not aware of pre-release issues
  • Anyone who needs a stable system
  • Anyone uncomfortable running a possibly frequently broken system
  • Anyone in a production environment with data or workflows that need to be reliable

Kubuntu Beta pre-releases are recommended for:

  • Regular users who want to help us test by finding, reporting, and/or fixing bugs
  • Kubuntu, KDE, and Qt developers

Getting Kubuntu 17.10 Beta 2:

To upgrade to Kubuntu 17.10 pre-releases from 17.04, run sudo do-release-upgrade -d from a command line.

Download a Bootable image and put it onto a DVD or USB Drive via the download link at http://iso.qa.ubuntu.com/qatracker/milestones/382/builds. This is also the direct link to report your findings and any bug reports you file.

See our release notes: https://wiki.ubuntu.com/ArtfulAardvark/Beta2/Kubuntu

Please report your results on the Release tracker.

Didier Roche: Ubuntu GNOME Shell in Artful: Day 14

Planet Ubuntu - Hën, 25/09/2017 - 11:35md

The Ubuntu desktop team and a lot other people from the Ubuntu community are gathering for the week in New York for the Ubuntu Rally. It’s time to get the final touch and bug fixes for Ubuntu artful which is turning itself soon into Ubuntu 17.10. As you probably know if you follow this blog series, it will feature GNOME Shell by default, with slight modifications to ease and adapt to our audience for this new user experience. For more background on our current transition to GNOME Shell in artful, you can refer back to our decisions regarding our default session experience as discussed in my blog post.

Day 14: Badges and progress bar on Ubuntu Dock

One of the latest thing we wanted to work on as we highlighted on our previous posts is the notification for new emails or download experience on the Shell. We already do ship the KStatusNotifier extension for application indicator, but need a way to signal the user (even if you are not looking at the screen when this happens) for new emails, IM or download/copy progress.

Andrea stepped up on this and worked with Dash to Dock upstream to implement the unity API for this. Working with them, as usual, was pleasing and we got the green flag that it’s going to merge to master, with possibly some tweaks, which will make this work available to every Dash to Dock users! It means that after this update, Thunderbird is handily showing the number of unread emails you have in your inbox, thanks to thunderbird-gnome-support that we seeded back with Sébastien.

Similarly, we now have progress bar support on Nautilus, Firefox downloads and every applications using that API to get updated on transactional actions.

And we are all done on our changes to adapt GNOME Shell to our targeted audience! Meanwhile Marco is working on HDPI (and sim cards…) to deliver a fantastic fractional scaling experience.

As usual, if you are eager to experiment with these changes before they migrate to the artful release pocket, you can head over to our official Ubuntu desktop team transitions ppa to get a taste of what’s cooking!

Let’s see how many bugs we can squash. We will of course update you on the slight readjustment we are planning to do during this week at the Ubuntu rally and for the release. Let’s target first the incoming beta which will enable you to test all of this.

Started work on an internet-of-things Radio

Planet Debian - Hën, 25/09/2017 - 11:00md

So recently I was in York at the Bytemark office, and I read a piece about building a radio in a Raspberry Pi magazine. It got me curious, so when I got home to sunny Helsinki I figured I'd have a stab at it.

I don't have fixed goal in mind, but what I do have is:

  • A WeMos Mini D1
    • Cost €3.00
    • ESP8266-powered board, which can be programmed easily in C++ and contains on-board WiFi as well as a bunch of I/O pins.
  • A RDA5807M FM Radio chip.
    • Cost 37 cents.
    • With a crystal for support.

The initial goal is simple wire the receiver/decoder to the board, and listen to the radio.

After that there are obvious extenstions, such as adding an LCD display to show the frequency (What's the frequency Kenneth), and later to show the station details, via RDS.

Finally I could add some buttons/switches/tweaks for selecting next/previous stations, and adjusting the volume. Initially that'll be handled by pointing a browser at the IP-address of the device.

The first attempt at using the RDA5807M chip was a failure, as the thing was too damn small and non-standardly sized. Adding header-pins to the chips was almost impossible, and when I did get them soldered on the thing just gave me static-hisses.

However I later read the details of the chip more carefully and realized that it isn't powerfull enough to drive (even) headphones. It requires an amp of some kind. With that extra knowledge I was able to send the output to the powered-speakers I have sat beside my PC.

My code is basic, it sets up the FM-receiver/decoder, and scans the spectrum. When it finds a station it outputs the name over the serial console, via RDS, and then just plays it.

I've got an PAM8403-based amplifier board on-order, when that arrives I'll get back to the project, and hookup WiFi and a simple web-page to store stations, tuning, etc.

My "token goal" at the moment is a radio that switches on at 7AM and switches off at 8AM. In addition to that it'll serve a web-page allowing interactive control, regardless of any buttons that are wired in.

I also have another project in the wings. I've ordered a software-defined radio (USB-toy) which I'm planning to use to plot aircraft in real-time, as they arrive/depart/fly over Helsinki. No doubt I'll write that up too.

Steve Kemp https://blog.steve.fi/ Steve Kemp's Blog

Didier Roche: Ubuntu GNOME Shell in Artful: Day 14

Planet GNOME - Hën, 25/09/2017 - 10:39md

The Ubuntu desktop team and a lot other people from the Ubuntu community are gathering for the week in New York for the Ubuntu Rally. It’s time to get the final touch and bug fixes for Ubuntu artful which is turning itself soon into Ubuntu 17.10. As you probably know if you follow this blog series, it will feature GNOME Shell by default, with slight modifications to ease and adapt to our audience for this new user experience. For more background on our current transition to GNOME Shell in artful, you can refer back to our decisions regarding our default session experience as discussed in my blog post.

Day 14: Badges and progress bar on Ubuntu Dock

One of the latest thing we wanted to work on as we highlighted on our previous posts is the notification for new emails or download experience on the Shell. We already do ship the KStatusNotifier extension for application indicator, but need a way to signal the user (even if you are not looking at the screen when this happens) for new emails, IM or download/copy progress.

Andrea stepped up on this and worked with Dash to Dock upstream to implement the unity API for this. Working with them, as usual, was pleasing and we got the green flag that it’s going to merge to master, with possibly some tweaks, which will make this work available to every Dash to Dock users! It means that after this update, Thunderbird is handily showing the number of unread emails you have in your inbox, thanks to thunderbird-gnome-support that we seeded back with Sébastien.

Similarly, we now have progress bar support on Nautilus, Firefox downloads and every applications using that API to get updated on transactional actions.

And we are all done on our changes to adapt GNOME Shell to our targeted audience! Meanwhile Marco is working on HDPI (and sim cards…) to deliver a fantastic fractional scaling experience.

As usual, if you are eager to experiment with these changes before they migrate to the artful release pocket, you can head over to our official Ubuntu desktop team transitions ppa to get a taste of what’s cooking!

Let’s see how many bugs we can squash. We will of course update you on the slight readjustment we are planning to do during this week at the Ubuntu rally and for the release. Let’s target first the incoming beta which will enable you to test all of this.

Lintian: We are all Perl developers now

Planet Debian - Hën, 25/09/2017 - 6:26md

Lintian is a static analysis tool for Debian packages, reporting on various errors, omissions and general quality-assurance issues to maintainers.

I've previously written about my exploits with Lintian as well as authoring a short tutorial on how to write your own Lintian check.

Anyway, I recently uploaded version 2.5.53 about two months since previous release. The biggest changes you may notice are supporting the latest version of the Debian Policy as well the addition of checks to encourage the migration to Python 3.

Thanks to all who contributed patches, code review and bug reports to this release. The full changelog is as follows:

lintian (2.5.53) unstable; urgency=medium The "we are all Perl developers now" release. * Summary of tag changes: + Added: - alternatively-build-depends-on-python-sphinx-and-python3-sphinx - build-depends-on-python-sphinx-only - dependency-on-python-version-marked-for-end-of-life - maintainer-script-interpreter - missing-call-to-dpkg-maintscript-helper - node-package-install-in-nodejs-rootdir - override-file-in-wrong-package - package-installs-java-bytecode - python-foo-but-no-python3-foo - script-needs-depends-on-sensible-utils - script-uses-deprecated-nodejs-location - transitional-package-should-be-oldlibs-optional - unnecessary-testsuite-autopkgtest-header - vcs-browser-links-to-empty-view + Removed: - debug-package-should-be-priority-extra - missing-classpath - transitional-package-should-be-oldlibs-extra * checks/apache2.pm: + [CL] Fix an apache2-unparsable-dependency false positive by allowing periods (".") in dependency names. (Closes: #873701) * checks/binaries.pm: + [CL] Apply patches from Guillem Jover & Boud Roukema to improve the description of the binary-file-built-without-LFS-support tag. (Closes: #874078) * checks/changes.{pm,desc}: + [CL] Ignore DFSG-repacked packages when checking for upstream source tarball signatures as they will never match by definition. (Closes: #871957) + [CL] Downgrade severity of orig-tarball-missing-upstream-signature from "E:" to "W:" as many common tools do not make including the signatures easy enough right now. (Closes: #870722, #870069) + [CL] Expand the explanation of the orig-tarball-missing-upstream-signature tag to include the location of where dpkg-source will look. Thanks to Theodore Ts'o for the suggestion. * checks/copyright-file.pm: + [CL] Address a number of issues in copyright-year-in-future: - Prevent false positives in port numbers, email addresses, ISO standard numbers and matching specific and general street addresses. (Closes: #869788) - Match all violating years in a line, not just the first (eg. "2000-2107"). - Ignore meta copyright statements such as "Original Author". Thanks to Thorsten Alteholz for the bug report. (Closes: #873323) - Expand testsuite. * checks/cruft.{pm,desc}: + [CL] Downgrade severity of file-contains-fixme-placeholder tag from "important" (ie. "E:") to "wishlist" (ie. "I:"). Thanks to Gregor Herrmann for the suggestion. + [CL] Apply patch from Alex Muntada (alexm) to use "substr" instead of "substring" in mentions-deprecated-usr-lib-perl5-directory's description. (Closes: #871767) + [CL] Don't check copyright_hints file for FIXME placeholders. (Closes: #872843) + [CL] Don't match quoted "FIXME" variants as they are almost always deliberate. Thanks to Adrian Bunk for the report. (Closes: #870199) + [CL] Avoid false positives in missing source checks for "CSS Browser Selector". (Closes: #874381) * checks/debhelper.pm: + [CL] Prevent a false positive of missing-build-dependency-for-dh_-command that can be exposed by following the advice for the recently added useless-autoreconf-build-depends tag. (Closes: #869541) * checks/debian-readme.{pm,desc}: + [CL] Ensure readme-debian-contains-debmake-template also checks for templates "Automatically generated by debmake". * checks/description.{desc,pm}: + [CL] Clarify explanation of description-starts-with-leading-spaces tag. Thanks to Taylor Kline for the report and patch. (Closes: #849622) + [NT] Skip capitalization-error-in-description-synopsis for auto-generated packages (such as dbgsym packages). * checks/fields.{desc,pm}: + [CL] Ensure that python3-foo packages have "Section: python", not just python2-foo. (Closes: #870272) + [RG] Do no longer require debug packages to be priority extra. + [BR] Use Lintian::Data for name/section mapping + [CL] Check for packages including "?rev=0&sc=0" in Vcs-Browser. (Closes: #681713) + [NT] Transitional packages should now be "oldlibs/optional" rather than "oldlibs/extra". The related tag has been renamed accordingly. * checks/filename-length.pm: + [NT] Skip the check on auto-generated binary packages (such as dbgsym packages). * checks/files.{pm,desc}: + [BR] Avoid privacy-breach-generic false positives for legal.xml. + [BR] Detect install of node package under /usr/lib/nodejs/[^/]*$ + [CL] Check for packages shipping compiled Java class files. Thanks Carnë Draug . (Closes: #873211) + [BR] Privacy breach is no longer experimental. * checks/init.d.desc: + [RG] Do not recommend a versioned dependency on lsb-base in init.d-script-needs-depends-on-lsb-base. (Closes: #847144) * checks/java.pm: + [CL] Additionally consider .cljc files as code to avoid false- positive codeless-jar warnings. (Closes: #870649) + [CL] Drop problematic missing-classpath check. (Closes: #857123) * checks/menu-format.desc: + [CL] Prevent false positives in desktop-entry-lacks-keywords-entry for "Link" and "Directory" .desktop files. (Closes: #873702) * checks/python.{pm,desc}: + [CL] Split out Python checks from "scripts" check to a new, source check of type "source". + [CL] Check for python-foo without corresponding python3-foo packages to assist in Python 2.x deprecation. (Closes: #870681) + [CL] Check for packages that Build-Depend on python-sphinx only. (Closes: #870730) + [CL] Check for packages that alternatively Build-Depend on the Python 2 and Python 3 versions of Sphinx. (Closes: #870758) + [CL] Check for binary packages that depend on Python 2.x. (Closes: #870822) * checks/scripts.pm: + [CL] Correct false positives in unconditional-use-of-dpkg-statoverride by detecting "if !" as a valid shell prefix. (Closes: #869587) + [CL] Check for missing calls to dpkg-maintscript-helper(1) in maintainer scripts. (Closes: #872042) + [CL] Check for packages using sensible-utils without declaring a dependency after its split from debianutils. (Closes: #872611) + [CL] Warn about scripts using "nodejs" as an interpreter now that nodejs provides /usr/bin/node. (Closes: #873096) + [BR] Add a statistic tag giving interpreter. * checks/testsuite.{desc,pm}: + [CL] Remove recommendations to add a "Testsuite: autopkgtest" field to debian/control as it is added when needed by dpkg-source(1) since dpkg 1.17.1. (Closes: #865531) + [CL] Warn if we see an unnecessary "Testsuite: autopkgtest" header in debian/control. + [NT] Recognise "autopkgtest-pkg-go" as a valid test suite. + [CL] Recognise "autopkgtest-pkg-elpa" as a valid test suite. (Closes: #873458) + [CL] Recognise "autopkgtest-pkg-octave" as a valid test suite. (Closes: #875985) + [CL] Update the description of unknown-testsuite to reflect that "autopkgtest" is not the only valid value; the referenced URL is out-of-date (filed as #876008). (Closes: #876003) * data/binaries/embedded-libs: + [RG] Detect embedded copies of heimdal, libgxps, libquicktime, libsass, libytnef, and taglib. + [RG] Use an additional string to detect embedded copies of openjpeg2. (Closes: #762956) * data/fields/name_section_mappings: + [BR] node- package section is javascript. + [CL] Apply patch from Guillem Jover to add more section mappings. (Closes: #874121) * data/fields/obsolete-packages: + [MR] Add dh-systemd. (Closes: #872076) * data/fields/perl-provides: + [CL] Refresh perl provides. * data/fields/virtual-packages: + [CL] Update data file from archive. This fixes a false positive for "bacula-director". (Closes: #835120) * data/files/obsolete-paths: + [CL] Add note to /etc/bash_completion.d entry regarding stricter filename requirements. (Closes: #814599) * data/files/privacy-breaker-websites: + [BR] Detect custom donation logos like apache. + [BR] Detect generic counter website. * data/standards-version/release-dates: + [CL] Add 4.0.1 and 4.1.0 as known standards versions. (Closes: #875509) * debian/control: + [CL] Mention Debian Policy v4.1.0 in the description. + [CL] Add myself to Uploaders. + [CL] Drop unnecessary "Testsuite: autopkgtest"; this is implied from debian/tests/control existing. * commands/info.pm: + [CL] Add a --list-tags option to print all tags Lintian knows about. Thanks to Rajendra Gokhale for the suggestion. (Closes: #779675) * commands/lintian.pm: + [CL] Apply patch from Maia Everett to avoid British spelling when using en_US locale. (Closes: #868897) * lib/Lintian/Check.pm: + [CL] Stop emitting {maintainer,uploader}-address-causes-mail-loops for @packages.debian.org addresses. (Closes: #871575) * lib/Lintian/Collect/Binary.pm: + [NT] Introduce an "auto-generated" argument for "is_pkg_class". * lib/Lintian/Data.pm: + [CL] Modify Lintian::Data's "all" to always return keys in insertion order, dropping dependency on libtie-ixhash-perl. * helpers/coll/objdump-info-helper: + [CL] Apply patch from Steve Langasek to accommodate binutils 2.29 outputting symbols in a different format on ppc64el. (Closes: #869750) * t/tests/fields-perl-provides/tags: + [CL] Update expected output to match new Perl provides. * t/tests/files-privacybreach/*: + [CL] Add explicit test for packages including external fonts via the Google Font API. Thanks to Ian Jackson for the report. (Closes: #873434) + [CL] Add explicit test for packages including external fonts via the Typekit API via <script/> HTML tags. * t/tests/*/desc: + [CL] Add missing entries in "Test-For" fields to make development/testing workflow less error-prone. * private/generate-tag-summary: + [CL] git-describe(1) will usually emit 7 hexadecimal digits as the abbreviated object name, However, as this can be user-dependent, pass --abbrev=0 to ensure it does not vary between systems. This also means we do not need to strip it ourselves. * private/refresh-*: + [CL] Use deb.debian.org as the default mirror. + [CL] Update locations of Contents-<arch> files; they are now namespaced by distribution (eg. "main"). -- Chris Lamb <lamby@debian.org> Wed, 20 Sep 2017 09:25:06 +0100

Chris Lamb https://chris-lamb.co.uk/blog/category/planet-debian lamby: Items or syndication on Planet Debian.

Recruiting for Open Source jobs

Planet Debian - Hën, 25/09/2017 - 3:34md

Part of services of Kaplan open source consulting is recruiting services to help companies find good open source people. In addition, we also try to help the community to find open source friendly businesses to work at.

Expect the “Usual Suspects” (e.g. RedHat), I encounter job descriptions which convince me these companies know the advantages of using open source projects and hiring open source people.

A few recent examples I found in Israel:

  • Advantages: People who like to build stuff (we really like people who maintain/contribute to open source projects) (Wizer Research)
  • You will: Incubate and contribute to open source projects (iguazio)
  • The X factor – significant contribution to an open-source community (unnamed startup)
  • An example open source project our team released is CoreML (Apple)
  • Job Responsibilities: Write open-source tools and contribute to open-source projects. (unnamed startup)
  • We’d like to talk to people who: Appreciate open-source culture and philosophy. (Seeking Alpha)

From the applicant side, the possibility to know which code base he or she is going to work on could help do a better and more educated choice about the offered position. While from the company side, getting “hard” evidence of what are the applicant capabilities and code looks like instead of just describing them or trying to demonstrate them on short tests. Not to mention the applicant’s ability to work as part of a team or community.

For the Israeli readers, you can see the full list at https://kaplanopensource.co.il/jobs/


Filed under: Israeli Community, Open source businesses Kaplan https://liorkaplan.wordpress.com Free Software Universe

APT 1.5 is out

Planet Debian - Dje, 24/09/2017 - 9:32md

APT 1.5 is out, after almost 3 months the release of 1.5 alpha 1, and almost six months since the release of 1.4 on April 1st. This release cycle was unusually short, as 1.4 was the stretch release series and the zesty release series, and we waited for the latter of these releases before we started 1.5. In related news, 1.4.8 hit stretch-proposed-updates today, and is waiting in the unapproved queue for zesty.

This release series moves https support from apt-transport-https into apt proper, bringing with it support for https:// proxies, and support for autodetectproxy scripts that return http, https, and socks5h proxies for both http and https.

Unattended updates and upgrades now work better: The dependency on network-online was removed and we introduced a meta wait-online helper with support for NetworkManager, systemd-networkd, and connman that allows us to wait for network even if we want to run updates directly after a resume (which might or might not have worked before, depending on whether update ran before or after network was back up again). This also improves a boot performance regression for systems with rc.local files:

The rc.local.service unit specified After=network-online.target, and login stuff was After=rc.local.service, and apt-daily.timer was Wants=network-online.target, causing network-online.target to be pulled into the boot and the rc.local.service ordering dependency to take effect, significantly slowing down the boot.

An earlier less intrusive variant of that fix is in 1.4.8: It just moves the network-online.target Want/After from apt-daily.timer to apt-daily.service so most boots are uncoupled now. I hope we get the full solution into stretch in a later point release, but we should gather some experience first before discussing this with the release time.

Balint Reczey also provided a patch to increase the time out before killing the daily upgrade service to 15 minutes, to actually give unattended-upgrades some time to finish an in-progress update. Honestly, I’d have though the machine hung up and force rebooted it after 5 seconds already. (this patch is also in 1.4.8)

We also made sure that unreadable config files no longer cause an error, but only a warning, as that was sort of a regression from previous releases; and we added documentation for /etc/apt/auth.conf, so people actually know the preferred way to place sensitive data like passwords (and can make their sources.list files world-readable again).

We also fixed apt-cdrom to support discs without MD5 hashes for Sources (the Files field), and re-enabled support for udev-based detection of cdrom devices which was accidentally broken for 4 years, as it was trying to load libudev.so.0 at runtime, but that library had an SONAME change to libudev.so.1 – we now link against it normally.

Furthermore, if certain information in Release files change, like the codename, apt will now request confirmation from the user, avoiding a scenario where a user has stable in their sources.list and accidentally upgrades to the next release when it becomes stable.

Paul Wise contributed patches to allow configuring the apt-daily intervals more easily – apt-daily is invoked twice a day by systemd but has more fine-grained internal timestamp files. You can now specify the intervals in seconds, minutes, hours, and day units, or specify “always” to always run (that is, up to twice a day on systemd, once per day on non-systemd platforms).

Development for the 1.6 series has started, and I intent to upload a first alpha to unstable in about a week, removing the apt-transport-https package and enabling compressed index files by default (save space, a lot of space, at not much performance cost thanks to lz4). There will also be some small clean ups in there, but I don’t expect any life-changing changes for now.

I think our new approach of uploading development releases directly to unstable instead of parking them in experimental is working out well. Some people are confused why alpha releases appear in unstable, but let me just say one thing: These labels basically just indicate feature-completeness, and not stability. An alpha is just very likely to get a lot more features, a beta is less likely (all the big stuff is in), and the release candidates just fix bugs.

Also, we now have 3 active stable series: The 1.2 LTS series, 1.4 medium LTS, and 1.5. 1.2 receives updates as part of Ubuntu 16.04 (xenial), 1.4 as part of Debian 9.0 (stretch) and Ubuntu 17.04 (zesty); whereas 1.5 will only be supported for 9 months (as part of Ubuntu 17.10). I think the stable release series are working well, although 1.4 is a bit tricky being shared by stretch and zesty right now (but zesty is history soon, so …).


Filed under: Debian, Ubuntu Julian Andres Klode https://juliank.wordpress.com Blog of Julian Andres Klode

Julian Andres Klode: APT 1.5 is out

Planet Ubuntu - Dje, 24/09/2017 - 9:32md

APT 1.5 is out, after almost 3 months the release of 1.5 alpha 1, and almost six months since the release of 1.4 on April 1st. This release cycle was unusually short, as 1.4 was the stretch release series and the zesty release series, and we waited for the latter of these releases before we started 1.5. In related news, 1.4.8 hit stretch-proposed-updates today, and is waiting in the unapproved queue for zesty.

This release series moves https support from apt-transport-https into apt proper, bringing with it support for https:// proxies, and support for autodetectproxy scripts that return http, https, and socks5h proxies for both http and https.

Unattended updates and upgrades now work better: The dependency on network-online was removed and we introduced a meta wait-online helper with support for NetworkManager, systemd-networkd, and connman that allows us to wait for network even if we want to run updates directly after a resume (which might or might not have worked before, depending on whether update ran before or after network was back up again). This also improves a boot performance regression for systems with rc.local files:

The rc.local.service unit specified After=network-online.target, and login stuff was After=rc.local.service, and apt-daily.timer was Wants=network-online.target, causing network-online.target to be pulled into the boot and the rc.local.service ordering dependency to take effect, significantly slowing down the boot.

An earlier less intrusive variant of that fix is in 1.4.8: It just moves the network-online.target Want/After from apt-daily.timer to apt-daily.service so most boots are uncoupled now. I hope we get the full solution into stretch in a later point release, but we should gather some experience first before discussing this with the release time.

Balint Reczey also provided a patch to increase the time out before killing the daily upgrade service to 15 minutes, to actually give unattended-upgrades some time to finish an in-progress update. Honestly, I’d have though the machine hung up and force rebooted it after 5 seconds already. (this patch is also in 1.4.8)

We also made sure that unreadable config files no longer cause an error, but only a warning, as that was sort of a regression from previous releases; and we added documentation for /etc/apt/auth.conf, so people actually know the preferred way to place sensitive data like passwords (and can make their sources.list files world-readable again).

We also fixed apt-cdrom to support discs without MD5 hashes for Sources (the Files field), and re-enabled support for udev-based detection of cdrom devices which was accidentally broken for 4 years, as it was trying to load libudev.so.0 at runtime, but that library had an SONAME change to libudev.so.1 – we now link against it normally.

Furthermore, if certain information in Release files change, like the codename, apt will now request confirmation from the user, avoiding a scenario where a user has stable in their sources.list and accidentally upgrades to the next release when it becomes stable.

Paul Wise contributed patches to allow configuring the apt-daily intervals more easily – apt-daily is invoked twice a day by systemd but has more fine-grained internal timestamp files. You can now specify the intervals in seconds, minutes, hours, and day units, or specify “always” to always run (that is, up to twice a day on systemd, once per day on non-systemd platforms).

Development for the 1.6 series has started, and I intent to upload a first alpha to unstable in about a week, removing the apt-transport-https package and enabling compressed index files by default (save space, a lot of space, at not much performance cost thanks to lz4). There will also be some small clean ups in there, but I don’t expect any life-changing changes for now.

I think our new approach of uploading development releases directly to unstable instead of parking them in experimental is working out well. Some people are confused why alpha releases appear in unstable, but let me just say one thing: These labels basically just indicate feature-completeness, and not stability. An alpha is just very likely to get a lot more features, a beta is less likely (all the big stuff is in), and the release candidates just fix bugs.

Also, we now have 3 active stable series: The 1.2 LTS series, 1.4 medium LTS, and 1.5. 1.2 receives updates as part of Ubuntu 16.04 (xenial), 1.4 as part of Debian 9.0 (stretch) and Ubuntu 17.04 (zesty); whereas 1.5 will only be supported for 9 months (as part of Ubuntu 17.10). I think the stable release series are working well, although 1.4 is a bit tricky being shared by stretch and zesty right now (but zesty is history soon, so …).


Filed under: Debian, Ubuntu

RcppGSL 0.3.3

Planet Debian - Dje, 24/09/2017 - 5:41md

A maintenance update RcppGSL 0.3.3 is now on CRAN. It switched the vignette to the our new pinp package and its two-column pdf default.

The RcppGSL package provides an interface from R to the GNU GSL using the Rcpp package.

No user-facing new code or features were added. The NEWS file entries follow below:

Changes in version 0.3.3 (2017-09-24)
  • We also check for gsl-config at package load.

  • The vignette now uses the pinp package in two-column mode.

  • Minor other fixes to package and testing infrastructure.

Courtesy of CRANberries, a summary of changes to the most recent release is available.

More information is on the RcppGSL page. Questions, comments etc should go to the issue tickets at the GitHub repo.

This post by Dirk Eddelbuettel originated on his Thinking inside the box blog. Please report excessive re-aggregation in third-party for-profit settings.

Dirk Eddelbuettel http://dirk.eddelbuettel.com/blog Thinking inside the box

Easier recipe to observe the cell phones around you

Planet Debian - Dje, 24/09/2017 - 8:30pd

A little more than a month ago I wrote how to observe the SIM card ID (aka IMSI number) of mobile phones talking to nearby mobile phone base stations using Debian GNU/Linux and a cheap USB software defined radio, and thus being able to pinpoint the location of people and equipment (like cars and trains) with an accuracy of a few kilometer. Since then we have worked to make the procedure even simpler, and it is now possible to do this without any manual frequency tuning and without building your own packages.

The gr-gsm package is now included in Debian testing and unstable, and the IMSI-catcher code no longer require root access to fetch and decode the GSM data collected using gr-gsm.

Here is an updated recipe, using packages built by Debian and a git clone of two python scripts:

  1. Start with a Debian machine running the Buster version (aka testing).
  2. Run 'apt install gr-gsm python-numpy python-scipy python-scapy' as root to install required packages.
  3. Fetch the code decoding GSM packages using 'git clone github.com/Oros42/IMSI-catcher.git'.
  4. Insert USB software defined radio supported by GNU Radio.
  5. Enter the IMSI-catcher directory and run 'python scan-and-livemon' to locate the frequency of nearby base stations and start listening for GSM packages on one of them.
  6. Enter the IMSI-catcher directory and run 'python simple_IMSI-catcher.py' to display the collected information.

Note, due to a bug somewhere the scan-and-livemon program (actually its underlying program grgsm_scanner) do not work with the HackRF radio. It does work with RTL 8232 and other similar USB radio receivers you can get very cheaply (for example from ebay), so for now the solution is to scan using the RTL radio and only use HackRF for fetching GSM data.

As far as I can tell, a cell phone only show up on one of the frequencies at the time, so if you are going to track and count every cell phone around you, you need to listen to all the frequencies used. To listen to several frequencies, use the --numrecv argument to scan-and-livemon to use several receivers. Further, I am not sure if phones using 3G or 4G will show as talking GSM to base stations, so this approach might not see all phones around you. I typically see 0-400 IMSI numbers an hour when looking around where I live.

I've tried to run the scanner on a Raspberry Pi 2 and 3 running Debian Buster, but the grgsm_livemon_headless process seem to be too CPU intensive to keep up. When GNU Radio print 'O' to stdout, I am told there it is caused by a buffer overflow between the radio and GNU Radio, caused by the program being unable to read the GSM data fast enough. If you see a stream of 'O's from the terminal where you started scan-and-livemon, you need a give the process more CPU power. Perhaps someone are able to optimize the code to a point where it become possible to set up RPi3 based GSM sniffers? I tried using Raspbian instead of Debian, but there seem to be something wrong with GNU Radio on raspbian, causing glibc to abort().

Petter Reinholdtsen http://people.skolelinux.org/pere/blog/ Petter Reinholdtsen - Entries tagged english

Converting Mbox to Maildir

Planet Debian - Sht, 23/09/2017 - 5:52pd

MBox is the original and ancient format for storing mail on Unix systems, it consists of a single file per user under /var/spool/mail that has messages concatenated. Obviously performance is very poor when deleting messages from a large mail store as the entire file has to be rewritten. Maildir was invented for Qmail by Dan Bernstein and has a single message per file giving fast deletes among other performance benefits. An ongoing issue over the last 20 years has been converting Mbox systems to Maildir. The various ways of getting IMAP to work with Mbox only made this more complex.

The Dovecot Wiki has a good page about converting Mbox to Maildir [1]. If you want to keep the same message UIDs and the same path separation characters then it will be a complex task. But if you just want to copy a small number of Mbox accounts to an existing server then it’s a bit simpler.

Dovecot has a mb2md.pl script to convert folders [2].

cd /var/spool/mail mkdir -p /mailstore/example.com for U in * ; do ~/mb2md.pl -s $(pwd)/$U -d /mailstore/example.com/$U done

To convert the inboxes shell code like the above is needed. If the users don’t have IMAP folders (EG they are just POP users or use local Unix MUAs) then that’s all you need to do.

cd /home for DIR in */mail ; do U=$(echo $DIR| cut -f1 -d/) cd /home/$DIR for FOLDER in * ; do ~/mb2md.pl -s $(pwd)/$FOLDER -d /mailstore/example.com/$U/.$FOLDER done cp .subscriptions /mailstore/example.com/$U/ subscriptions done

Some shell code like the above will convert the IMAP folders to Maildir format. The end result is that the users will have to download all the mail again as their MUA will think that every message had been deleted and replaced. But as all servers with significant amounts of mail or important mail were probably converted to Maildir a decade ago this shouldn’t be a problem.

Related posts:

  1. Why Cyrus Sucks I’m in the middle of migrating a mail server away...
  2. Moving a Mail Server Nowadays it seems that most serious mail servers (IE mail...
  3. Mail Server Training Today I ran a hands-on training session on configuring a...
etbe https://etbe.coker.com.au etbe – Russell Coker

Ubuntu Insights: Canonical Distribution of Kubernetes: Dev Summary (Sept 22 2017)

Planet Ubuntu - Pre, 22/09/2017 - 10:13md

This article originally appeared on Tim Van Steenburgh’s blog

September 15th concluded our most recent development sprint on the Canonical Distribution of Kubernetes (CDK). Here are some highlights:

Canal Bundle

Our new Canal bundle is published! If you need network policy support in your cluster, try it out:

juju deploy canonical-kubernetes-canal

In the future you’ll be able to choose between Flannel and Calico when deploying Kubernetes via conjure-up.

Blogs and Demos

In case you missed them, check out some new blog posts and demos of CDK from members of the CDK engineering team:

RBAC

We added more tests for RBAC and updated CI to start testing an RBAC-enabled cluster. Our remaining task for RBAC is to plan and test the upgrade path for old clusters once we make RBAC on-by-default.

s390x

We built and published an s390x nginx-ingress-controller image and an e2e snap, and started testing a lxd CDK cluster on s390x. Since then we’ve gotten access to more hardware and are now testing on s390x vms using the Juju manual provider.

1.8.0

In our current sprint we’ve started testing 1.8.0 in anticipation of the upstream release at the end of this month. We’re also testing with docker 1.13.1, which will soon become the default in CDK.

If you’d like to follow along more closely with CDK development, you can do so in the following places:

Until next time!

Sebastian K&uuml;gler: The Evolution of Plasma Mobile

Planet Ubuntu - Pre, 22/09/2017 - 5:19md
Plasma Mobile

Back around 2006, when the Plasma project was started by Aaron Seigo and a group of brave hackers (among which, yours truly) we wanted to create a user interface that is future-proof. We didn’t want to create something that would only run on desktop devices (or laptops), but a code-base that grows with us into whatever the future would bring. Mobile devices were already getting more powerful, but would usually run entirely different software than desktop devices. We wondered why. The Linux kernel served as a wonderful example. Linux runs on a wide range of devices, from super computers to embedded systems, you would set it up for the target system and it would run largely without code changes. Linux architecture is in fact convergent. Could we do something similar at the user interface level?

Plasma Netbook

In 2007, Asus introduced the Eee PC, a small, inexpensive laptop. Netbooks proved to be all the rage at that point, so around 2009, we created Plasma Netbook, proving for the first time that we could actually serve different device user interfaces from the same code-base. There was a decent amount of code-sharing, but Plasma Netbook also helped us identifying areas in which we wanted to do better.

Plasma Mobile (I)

Come 2010, we got our hands on an N900 by Nokia, running Maemo, a mobile version of Linux. Within a week, during a sprint, we worked on a proof-of-concept mobile interface of Plasma:

Well, Nokia-as-we-knew-it is dead now, and Plasma never materialized on Nokia devices.

Plasma Active

Plasma Active was built as a successor to the early prototypes, and our first attempt at creating something for end-users. Conceived in 2011, the idea was not just to produce a simple Plasma user interface for a tablet device, but also deliver on a range of novel ideas for interaction with the device, closely related to the semantic desktop. Interlinked documents, contacts, sharing built right into the core, not just a “dumb” platform to run apps on, but a holistic system that allows users to manage their digital life on the fly. While Plasma Active had great promise and a lot of innovative potential, it never materialized for end-users in part due to lack of interest from both, the KDE community itself, but also from people on the outside. This doesn’t mean that the work put into it was lost, but thanks to a convergent code-base, many improvements made primarily with Plasma Active in mind have improved Plasma for all its users and continue to do so today. In many ways, Active proved valuable as a playground, as a clean slate where we want to take the technology, and how we can improve our developemnt process. It’s not a surprise that Plasma 5 today is developed in a process very similar to how we approached Plasma Active back then.

Plasma Mobile (II)

Learning from the Plasma Active project, in 2015 we regrouped and started to build a rather simple smartphone user interface, along with a reference software stack that would allow us not only to develop Plasma Mobile further, but to allow us to run on a growing number of devices. Plasma Mobile (II)’s goal wasn’t to get the most innovative of interfaces out, but to create a bread-and-butter platform, a base to develop applications on. From a technology point of view, Plasma is actually very small. It shares approximately 95% of the code with its desktop companion, widgets, and increasingly applications are interchangeable between the two.

Plasma Mobile (in any shape or form) has never been this close to actually making it into the hands and pockets of end users. A collaboration project with Purism, a company bringing privacy and software freedom to end-users, we may create the first Plasma phone for end users and have it on the market as soon as januari 2019. If you want to support this project, the crowdfunding campaign has just passed the 40% mark, and you can be part of it — either by joining the development crew, or by pre-ordering a device and thereby funding the development.

Ubuntu Insights: Ubuntu Desktop Weekly Update: September 22, 2017

Planet Ubuntu - Pre, 22/09/2017 - 3:45md

We’re less than a week away from Final Beta! It seems to have come round very quickly this cycle. Next week we’re at the Ubuntu Rally in New York City where we will be putting the finishing touches to the beta. In the meantime, here’s a quick rundown on what happened this week:

GNOME
  • The release of GNOME 3.26 last week meant lots of package updates in 17.10. Thanks Jeremy for leading the charge on this.
  • More work is happening on the progress bars in Dash to Dock.
  • We’re working on a fix for a bug which shows your desktop for a few seconds when resuming from suspend. This affects Unity and GNOME Shell.
  • We’ve made a few more tweaks to GDM, and you can now see the Ubuntu logo at bottom of the greeter.
  • Some new additions to Didier’s series of blog posts on the transition to GNOME Shell covers alt-tab behaviour
  • And the transparency settings for Dash to Dock:
  • The new wallpaper and mascot were released.
Snaps

We’ve been working on a Platform Snap for GNOME 3.26 to allow you to run the latest GNOME apps on Xenial as well as making Snaps for the new apps. This should be ready for testing soon and we’d appreciate some feedback.

Some desktop specific updates to snapd are also in the going to be rolling out soon; Snaps using the new Desktop interface will automatically get access to host system fonts and font caches.

Updates
  • Chromium 61.0.3163.79 is ready for publication. Chromium beta updated to 62.0.3202.18 and dev updated to 63.0.3213.3 for all series except Trusty.
  • Libreoffice 5.4.1-0ubuntu1 now in Artful.
In The News
  • OMG talks about the changes to the Dock.
  • Dustin Kirkland presents the results of the app survey at UbuCon Paris.

PTT

Planet Debian - Pre, 22/09/2017 - 12:32pd

“Hello,” said Adrian, but Adrian was lying.

“My name is Adrian,” said Adrian, but Adrian was lying.

“Today I took a pic of myself pulling a train,” announced Adrian.

Posted on 2017-09-21 Tags: bgs C https://xana.scru.org Yammering

Ubuntu Podcast from the UK LoCo: S10E29 – Adamant Terrible Hammer - Ubuntu Podcast

Planet Ubuntu - Enj, 21/09/2017 - 10:10md

This is Le Crossover Ubuntu Mashup Podcast thingy recorded live at UbuCon Europe in Paris, France.

It’s Season Ten Episode Twenty-Nine of the Ubuntu Podcast! Alan Pope, Martin Wimpress, Marius Quabeck, Max Kristen, Rudy and Tiago Carrondo are connected and speaking to your brain.

In this week’s show:

That’s all for this week! If there’s a topic you’d like us to discuss, or you have any feedback on previous shows, please send your comments and suggestions to show@ubuntupodcast.org or Tweet us or Comment on our Facebook page or comment on our Google+ page or comment on our sub-Reddit.

Ubuntu Insights: Microsoft and Canonical Increase Velocity with Azure Tailored Kernel

Planet Ubuntu - Enj, 21/09/2017 - 6:00md

By Leann Ogasawara, Director of Kernel Engineering

Ubuntu has long been a popular choice for Linux instances on Azure.  Our ongoing partnership with Microsoft has brought forth great results, such as the support of the latest Azure features, Ubuntu underlying SQL Server instances, bash on Windows, Ubuntu containers with Hyper-V Isolation on Windows 10 and Windows Servers, and much more.

Canonical, with the team at Microsoft Azure, are now delighted to announce that as of September 21, 2017, Ubuntu Cloud Images for Ubuntu 16.04 LTS on Azure have been enabled with a new Azure tailored Ubuntu kernel by default.  The Azure tailored Ubuntu kernel will receive the same level of support and security maintenance as all supported Ubuntu kernels for the duration of the Ubuntu 16.04 LTS support life.

The kernel itself is provided by the linux-azure kernel package. The most notable highlights for this kernel include:

  • Infiniband and RDMAcapability for Azure HPC to deliver optimized performance of compute intensive workloads on Azure A8, A9, H-series, and NC24r.
  • Full support for Accelerated Networking in Azure.  Direct access to the PCI device provides gains in overall network performance offering the highest throughput and lowest latency for guests in Azure.  Transparent SR-IOV eliminates configuration steps for bonding network devices.  SR-IOV for Linux in Azure is in preview but will become generally available later this year.
  • NAPI and Receive Segment Coalescing for 10% greater throughput on guests not using SR-IOV.
  • 18% reduction in kernel size.
  • Hyper-V socket capability — a socket-based host/guest communication method that does not require a network.
  • The very latest Hyper-V device drivers and feature support available.

The ongoing collaboration between Canonical and Microsoft will also continue to produce upgrades to newer kernel versions providing access to the latest kernel features, bug fixes, and security updates.  Any Ubuntu 16.04 LTS image brought up from the Azure portal after September 21st will be running on this Azure tailored Ubuntu kernel.

How to verify which kernel is used:

$ uname -r 4.11.0-1011-azure

 

Instances using the Azure tailored Ubuntu kernel will, of course, be supportable through Canonical’s Ubuntu Advantage service, available for purchase on our online shop or through sales@canonical.com in three tiers:

  • Essential: designed for self-sufficient users, providing access to our self-support portal as well as a variety of Canonical tools and services.
  • Standard: adding business-hours web and email support on top of the contents of Essential, as well as a 2-hour to 2-business days response time (severity 1-4).
  • Advanced: adding 24×7 web and email support on top of the contents of Essential, as well as a 1-hour to 1-business day response time (severity 1-4).

The Azure tailored Ubuntu kernel will not support the Canonical Livepatch Service at the time of this announcement, but investigation is underway to evaluate delivery of this service in the future.

If, for now, you prefer livepatching at scale over the above performance improvements, it is possible to revert to the standard kernel, using the following commands:

 

$ sudo apt install linux-virtual linux-cloud-tools-virtual $ sudo apt purge linux*azure $ sudo reboot

 

As we continue to collaborate closely with various Microsoft teams on public cloud, private cloud, containers and services, you can expect further boosts in performance, simplification of operations at scale, and enablement of new innovations and technologies.

Ante Karamatić: Ime odbijeno

Planet Ubuntu - Enj, 21/09/2017 - 5:47md

Nakon 8-9 dana i poslanog maila, danas sam dobio obavijest o tome što se dešava s mojom prijavom. Pa prenosim u cijelosti:

dana 12.09.2017 poslano je rezervacija u TS Zagreb (e – tvrtka). i poštom je poslana dok. i  RZ obrazac u Hitro.hr Zagreb
Papirna dokumentacija je predana  na sud 13.09.2017.Rezevacija imena nije prošla . .Obavijest je predignuta sa suda 18.09.2017(.Hirto.hr  – Zagreb)
Obavijest je poštom danas stigla u Hitro.hr  – Šibenik (21.09.2017.). Zvala sam Vas na mobitel da bi mogli predigniti potvrdu ,ali mi se niko ne javlja.
Stoga Vas obavještvam da možete predignuti obavijest u HITRO:HR Šibenik.

Dakle, eTvrtka je jedno veliko ništa; obična laž i prijevara. I dalje se dokumenti šalju poštom. Da se razumijemo, ovo nije problem službenika koji su bili sustretljivi. Ovo je problem organizacije države, odnosno Vlade. Službenici su tu žrtve isto kao i mi, koji pokušavamo nešto stvoriti.

Dakle, ime je odbijeno.

U Republici Hrvatskoj je potrebno proći 10 dana kako biste saznali možete li pokrenuti tvrtku s određenim imenom. U drugim državama ovakve stvari ni ne postoje, već se tvrtke pokreću unutar jednog dana. Ako želimo biti plodno tlo za poduzetništvo, hitro.hr treba ukinuti (potpuno je besmislen) i uvesti suvremene tehnologije; algoritmi mogu pregledavati imena i to treba biti samo web stranica. Nikakvi protokoli, plaćanja, stajanja u redu.

The Fridge: Ubuntu Community Council 2017 election under way!

Planet Ubuntu - Enj, 21/09/2017 - 5:30md

The Ubuntu Community Council election has begun and ballots sent out to all Ubuntu Members. Voting closes September 27th at end of day UTC.

The following candidates are standing for 7 seats on the council:

Please contact the community-council@lists.ubuntu.com list if you are an Ubuntu Member but did not receive a ballot. Voting instructions were sent to the public address defined in Launchpad, or your launchpad_id@ubuntu.com address if not. Please also make sure you check your spam folder first.

We’d like to thank all the candidate for their willingness to serve in this capacity, and members for their considered votes.

Originally posted to the ubuntu-news-team mailing list on Tue Sep 12 14:22:49 UTC 2017 by Mark Shuttleworth

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