Ubuntu 15.04 Beta 1 Officially Released, Ubuntu MATE Officially Official

ubuntuUbuntu 15.04 Beta 1 was announced today with "a number of software updates that are ready for wider testing." Ubuntu and a couple of its derivatives were included in a list of distributions recommended for new users yesterday. The Ubuntu MATE project announced they’ve been accepted as an official member of the Ubuntu family with their Beta 1 and Serdar Yegulalp reviews LibreOffice 4.4 at InfoWorld.com today.

Ubuntu 15.04 Beta 1 was announced this morning on The Fridge with the usual "it’s a beta" disclaimer. The announcement said, "Beta 1 includes a number of software updates that are ready for wider testing. This is quite an early set of images, so you should expect some bugs. This Beta features images for Kubuntu, Lubuntu, Ubuntu GNOME, UbuntuKylin, Ubuntu Mate, Xubuntu and the Ubuntu Cloud images."

You may have noticed a new distro in the list of images from the Ubuntu announcement, namely Ubuntu MATE. The Ubuntu MATE project yesterday posted of its acceptance into the official Ubuntu family on the project Website saying, "This official release builds on Ubuntu MATE Alpha2, introduces some new features and is officially official." The big change this release is the change from the unofficial builds to the Canonical server builds.

Speaking of Ubuntu, it got a mention yesterday in Foss Force’s "Distros for new users" list. The piece said, "It’s impossible to talk about user friendly Linux distros without mentioning Ubuntu, which is near the top of most lists when it comes to ease-of-use and robustness. It’s a solid choice for anyone wanting to use Linux for the first time." They also liked Mint and elementary OS, which are Ubuntu derivatives, but check the full article for the others.

Also of interest:

* Review: LibreOffice 4.4 raises the bar

* Puppy Linux-Based Quirky Distribution Reaches Version 7.0

* Pearl OS Could Be a Gem in the Making

* Half a dozen reasons why openSUSE is a great OS for your PC

* The Tremendous Features Of Fedora 22

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​Canonical and Juniper team up on carrier-grade OpenStack SDN

Can a Linux company and a networking power join forces to make an open-source cloud and software defined network that’s good enough for telecommunications data-centers? Canonical and Juniper think so.

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​Red Hat invites all to work on its OpenShift PaaS cloud

Red Hat’s OpenShift Commons invites open-source programmers and users to work on its OpenShift Platform-as-a-Service cloud.

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Docker Rolls Out Very Robust Orchestration Tools

Docker, which continues to take the tech world by storm, launched a robust set of orchestration tools for its container platform yesterday, and developers can get the tools now. You can learn more about each of the tools here.

Docker Machine, very notably, lets developers rapidly deploy Docker on popular cloud platforms including Amazon EC2, Digital Ocean, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform, OpenStack, RackSpace Cloud and many VMware platforms. A single command can enable Docker for them.

Then there is Docker Swarm. According to Docker’s announcement:

"Docker Swarm provides native clustering as well as integrations with third party tools and services. This ensures a uniform developer experience at any scale, as developers build and ship multi-container, multi-host distributed applications, while preserving the operational freedom to choose an infrastructure optimized for the performance and availability of these applications."

"Swarm’s native clustering and scheduling capabilities can scale with the application development lifecycle from one laptop to spanning hundreds of hosts in production. Swarm’s scheduling capabilities determine the right host in a cluster for specific containers, assigns the right resources, and leverages Docker Hub for its host discovery."

"Swarm supports a ‘batteries included but swappable’ approach that allows for partner integrations that replace and enhance Swarm’s capabilities. Integration partners hook into Swarm APIs to create value-added capabilities under Docker, while maintaining a uniform Docker experience for developers. The Swarm API supports alternative implementations of container scheduling and host discovery. The beta version of Swarm supports host discovery drivers for ZooKeeper, Consul and etcd."

 Swarm integrates with third-party container orchestration products as well as with orchestration services offered by cloud providers. Mesosphere and Docker have collaborated to develop reference implementations for Apache Mesos and the Mesosphere Datacenter Operating System (DCOS), which are the first integrations available. Integrations are planned for Amazon EC2 Container Service, IBM Bluemix Container Service, Joyent Smart Data Center and Microsoft Azure.

(See our interview with Mesosphere’s Ben Hindman here.)

“Docker is becoming the foundation for how modern developers create and deploy applications,” said Florian Leibert, CEO of Mesosphere. “And when it comes to the operations side, enterprises want flexibility of choice in how they manage and scale containers in production. We applaud Docker’s decision to provide an open back-end for Swarm, rather than prescribe a single approach. And we believe that Mesos and the Mesosphere Datacenter Operating System (DCOS) offer the most practical way for enterprises to operate containers at scale, so we are excited to integrate with Docker Swarm to support those Docker users.”

“Customers want container solutions that are open, portable and that don’t place restrictions on application architecture,” said John Gossman, architect for Microsoft Azure. “Working with Docker, we are delivering on that need, through offering extensions, templates and drivers that make it simple to deploy Docker’s orchestration technologies on Microsoft Azure. We believe this makes Azure a great place to run portable Docker applications while giving our customers the flexibility and freedom of choice they require.”

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The News Was Mixed for Big Data Players This Week

There was good news and bad news for some of the big players on the Big Data scene this week. Cloudera and Hortonworks are both well-known for their focus on Hadoop, the open source framework that is allowing many organizations to cull insights from huge data sets.

This week, Hortonworks reported financial results that were below many estimates, only a few short months after the company’s very successful IPO. Cloudera, however, scored a big win when researchers at Gartner named the company a Challenger in the 2015 Magic Quadrant for Data Warehouse and Data Management Solutions for Analytics. Gartner’s Magic Quadrant rankings are hugely influential.

According to Gartner, "In 2015, organizations require solutions capable of managing and processing external data in combination with their traditional internal sources, and may even include data from the Internet of Things. This is creating new demands on the data warehouse market — for broader data management solutions for analytics, with features and functionality that represent a significant augmentation to existing enterprise data warehouse strategies."

"Cloudera is continually recognized for its innovation and functionality – most recently we announced improvements in and brought to market Impala, Cloudera Director, Cloudera Navigator, Cloudera Search and Sentry," said Mike Olson, founder and chief strategy officer, Cloudera. "As big data has assumed a central role for enterprises, we’ve driven more capabilities — real-time streaming, compliance-ready data protection, powerful new analytics and more — into our platform. Cloudera’s able to attack more business-critical problems for our customers, and that’s accelerated adoption. We believe that our position in the Gartner MQ reflects not just the maturation of our product, but the increasing sophistication of the enterprises we work with." – See more at: http://ift.tt/1E483BV

 "Cloudera is continually recognized for its innovation and functionality – most recently we announced improvements in and brought to market Impala, Cloudera Director, Cloudera Navigator, Cloudera Search and Sentry," said Mike Olson, founder and chief strategy officer, Cloudera. "As big data has assumed a central role for enterprises, we’ve driven more capabilities — real-time streaming, compliance-ready data protection, powerful new analytics and more — into our platform. Cloudera’s able to attack more business-critical problems for our customers, and that’s accelerated adoption. We believe that our position in the Gartner MQ reflects not just the maturation of our product, but the increasing sophistication of the enterprises we work with."

The news was less bright for Hortonworks. In its first quarterly filing since its IPO, it reported a net loss of $90.6 million, or $5.38 per share. Wall Street was expecting a loss of $2.04 per share.

As Coudera and Hortnworks march forward they are rapidly diversifying their service offerings, including training and support options for companies leveraging Hadoop. On the Cloudera front, though, many reports are rolling in noting that the company is in no rush to go public. 

According to Re/Code:

"Instead of filing for an IPO, on Tuesday Cloudera put out a momentum press release that included the disclosure that its revenue topped $100 million in 2014…That press release suggests that Cloudera’s IPO is in no way imminent."

 

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Linux Basics: How To Find Maximum Supported RAM By Your System

Mostly, you will find maximum supported RAM by your system from the BIOS, Product catalog, or manuals. Here is the simple, yet useful trick, to find out maximum supported RAM using Dmidecode without…

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LibreOffice 4.4.1 Update Released

libreofficeA "Fresh" version of LibreOffice was announced today. LibreOffice 4.4.1 updates the latest and greatest branch with over 100 bugs fixes. In other software news, Jack Wallen today reported on the fallout from the resignation of GIMP UX maintainer and Kyle Orland examined the state of Linux gaming these days thanks to Valve. For something a bit different, CrazyEngineers.com posted of a new six-sided Linux cube computer.

The Document Foundation’s Italo Vignoli today announced the release of LibreOffice 4.4.1, the first minor update to the "Fresh" branch of the popular Open Source office suite. Download your "fresh" copy from www.libreoffice.org. This release brings over 100 fixes to users and these include:

* transparency data lost when copy and pasting bitmaps into documents
* consistent naming of toolbar alignment button functions
* copy and pasting strings containing hyperlinks losing links
* floating sidebar box snapping back to default side of window
* dialogue text alignment issue obstructing neighboring dropdown
* postscript printing hang
* added some missing icons
* missing fontwork objects upon reopening
* lots formatting, importing, and crashing bugs

Jack Wallen today said that the loss of Peter Sikking, GIMP User eXperience maintainer, might end up being a good opportunity for GIMP, one that Wallen said could be a "major turning point." He suggested the new maintainer realize that not just Linux users use GIMP. He said the UI needs easier interaction and the tools need to be more intuitive. The whole thing needs an interface overhaul, but GIMP is crucial to Open Source and Linux said Wallen, so they need to find a way to keep it growing.

Crazy Engineers today featured a story on a new cube computer running Linux dubbed Cuberox. Sitting on the table it looks like a shiny black cube that responds to the user’s tap. "It has no ports or holes. Users can wirelessly charge it. Each side of the Cuberox can be made to display different things based on its position. So, essentially each side can run a stand-alone application."

Finally, Kyle Orland looked at the state of gaming today "in the era of SteamOS." He said, "A company as big as Valve putting its weight behind Linux—and behind a specific distribution of Linux, to boot—had a clarifying effect on what used to be a tough market for even willing developers." Despite that, the gaming demographic in Linux is still small and to most publishers it just doesn’t pay. Valve has helped a lot, but Orland said until the SteamOS console is released with sufficient games, Linux gaming will continue to stagnate.

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