Linux This Month - Kernel 5.8-rc3 and big changes for SUSE & openSUSE

Alex Alex 13 August 2020
Linux This Month - Kernel 5.8-rc3 and big changes for SUSE & openSUSE

In this article, we're going to be covering the latest updates to the Linux kernel, which were announced with the release of Kernel 5.8 - RC 3. There are also big changes for openSuse, but before we delve into the kernel, let's take a look at this month, noteworthy news. 

First up this month, Linux mint released Linux Mint 20 AKA Ulyana. Now, though this release occurred in late June. I think it's still important to note because it's a longterm supported release, which means it's going to be supported until 2025. The release includes options for Cinnamon, Mate and XFCE.

LinuxFX has released version 10.3. It's also dubbed windowsFX, and it's an interesting distribution as the graphical desktop is designed to feel and look just like Windows 10. It has a modified Cinnamon desktop environment that might suit you best. It has a Windows 10 style taskbar, systems tray, and curiously... it displays the Windows logo before booting up.

Microsoft has now unveiled a new threat detection service for Linux project Freta? Freeta? You're going to have to look that one up. Is a cloud-based tool for Linux that is able to detect malicious software such as rootkits. Microsoft's research blog states that this "is a roadmap towards trusted sensing for the cloud that can allow enterprises to engage in regular complete discovery sweeps for undetected, malware".

SUSE, the world's largest independent open source company and developers of SUSE Linux Enterprise has entered an agreement to acquire Rancher Labs. Rancher Labs offers a variety of Kubernetes products, which allows management of Kubernetes operations that can be deployed and managed at scale.

I'm sad to report that Defcon in Vegas has indeed been canceled this year because Defcon is going into safe mode, AKA virtual. Keeping the same dates of August 6th through 9th, but better yet this year it's free. The third annual DevConf not Dev Conf now has its call for presentations open. This is a free technology conference happening from September 23rd through 25th. It covers a range of topics from system engineering, focusing on low level workings of Linux to the user experience with open source technologies.

Linus Torvill has released Linux kernel 5.8 - RC3. And though it won't be out as a stable release to early in August, Linux enthusiast are ready to jump on it. Originally it was thought to be the biggest release ever with over 15,000 mergers, 8,000 lines of new code and 14,000 files expected to be changed. Now that's a lot of changes. That was so much so that Linus our beloved dictator even wrote to the Linux mailing list.

I don't think that there's anything particularly scary here and the size of this RC is probably simply a direct result of the fact that 5.8 is a big release.

He did wrap up saying, let's see what happens during the rest of the release. It seemed that he called it correctly because July found the release actually being on the smaller side. But what does this release bring about? Half of these updates are drivers, from networking, to sound, to USB. The remaining includes a variety of upgrades from security enhancements to updates to the core kernel. The community is now speculating that given the timeline for the release, this might be the kernel release that is shipped with the Ubuntu 20.10 and Fedora 33 later this year.

OpenSUSE has released version 15.2, this release spring software updates, security fixes, and an improved installer offering better management of storage devices for the Raspberry Pi. It also brings new technologies such as TensorFlow, a free and open source software library, helping develop and train machine learning, models. Marco Varlese, developer for this project states: "Leap 15.2 represents a huge step forward in artificial intelligence space, openSUSE endusers can now finally consume machine learning and deep learning frameworks and applications via our repositories." And if SUSE is going to get some new container technology, what about openSUSE? Included in this release are several container options, including Kubernetes and the container runtime interface. The most exciting part for me though, a completely new setting dialogue that manages color profiles allowing for out-of-the-box support for colored managed printing and scanning.

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