Monthly Archives: February 2020

No More WhatsApp! The EU Commission Switches To ‘Signal’ For Internal Communication





In a move to improve the cyber-security, EU has recommended its staff to use open source secure messaging app Signal instead of the popular apps like WhatsApp.

Signal is an open source secure messaging application with end to end encryption. It is praised by the likes of Edward Snowden and other privacy activists, journalists and researchers. We’ve recently covered it in our ‘open source app of the week‘ series. This is part of EU’s new cybersecurity strategy. There has been cases of data leaks and hacking against EU diplomats and thus policy is being put in place to encourage better security practices.

[Source: It’s FOSS]



Ubuntu 20.04 Screenshots Tour | Ubuntu Geek


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This is screenshots of Ubuntu 20.04 LTS which is due to be released on April 23, 2020.The Ubuntu 20.04 codename is “Focal Fossa”. This is LTS Release and Every LTS release is supported for 5 years on the desktop and server.

Ubuntu 20.04 Screenshots Tour

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X.Org/FreeDesktop.org Is Looking For Sponsors Or May Have To Cut Continuous Integration Hosting


X.ORG --

The cost of cloud hosting — or in particular hosting their own GitLab instance and running continuous integration (CI) support for FreeDesktop.org projects — is putting financial strain on the X.Org Foundation.

The X.Org Foundation estimates their annual hosting expenses this year to top out at 75k USD and at 90k USD for 2021. The gitlab.freedesktop.org hosting is done within the Google Cloud. This cost doesn’t include that of any continuous integration runners but just the expenditures from storing and serving build artifacts and images from the cloud to external runners.

Due to rising costs and not having any guaranteed recurring sponsors while the current hosting costs being unsustainable, the X.Org Foundation may need to disable continuous integration (CI) functionality in the months ahead if they don’t obtain additional funding. The board estimates hosting without any CI functionality would cost around 30k USD annually. Currently they estimate they may need to cut their CI hosting in May~June should they not obtain extra sponsorships.

The X.Org Foundation board issued this early warning on the mailing list and as a call for any sponsors. If your organization is interested in helping to pick up this significant cloud tab, get in contact with the X.Org board.

FreeDesktop.org/X.Org infrastructure was previously housed on servers at the likes of Portland State University and MIT, but their GitLab hosting setup is found in Google’s cloud. It seems like the other option would be trying to migrate CI efforts back to a dedicated server(s) or finding a lower-priced cloud provider. While hosted in Google Cloud, the extent of the gratis services that appear to be offered by Google at this point is hiring an administrator for the FreeDesktop.org setup. These meeting notes indicate Google is willing to hire an admin as long as they can pick the administrator overseeing it.

The FreeDesktop.org GitLab provides hosting not only for X.Org but also Wayland, Mesa, and related projects as well as to the likes of PipeWire, Monado XR, LibreOffice, and many other open-source/Linux desktop projects.


South Korea Government Considers Move to Linux… » Linux Magazine


The South Korean Government is on the verge of migrating from Windows 7 to Linux on the desktop. This began back in May 2019, when South Korea’s Interior Ministry announced the plans to look into making the switch. 

Since that initial date, the South Korean Ministry of Strategy and Planning announced the government is now exploring migrating over three million Windows 7 desktops over to Linux. According to Choi Jang-hyuk (head of the Ministry of Strategy and Finance), South Korea will resolve their dependency on Microsoft while reducing the budget by migrating to an open source operating system. 

What is driving this migration? It’s primarily a financial decision. The cost of migrating so many desktops from Windows 7 to Windows 10 would reach over $650 million dollars. With the Ministry of National Defense and the National Police Agency already using Harmonica OS 3.0 (based on Ubuntu Linux 18.04), and the Defense and the Ministry of Public Administration and Security using Gooroom Cloud OS (based on Debian), the choice to make the nation-wide switch to Linux made perfect sense. Once the migration officially begins, the Korean Postal Service will be moving to Korean-based TMaxOS, which includes a unique desktop environment and uses ToGate, a Chromium-based web browser.

Although this may be nothing more than a bid to get Microsoft to offer South Korea a significant discount for a Windows 7 to 10 migration, until that comes to fruition, it looks as though the move to Linux is happening.

Source: https://www.fosslinux.com/29117/south-korea-switching-their-3-3-million-pcs-to-linux.htm



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What are Open Source Security Approaches? With Examples





Open source security approaches enable organizations to secure their applications and networks while avoiding expensive proprietary security offerings. An open source approach allows organizations to secure their applications across cloud providers and other platforms using platform-agnostic APIs. These APIs are written by contributors to the open source software code while cloud providers may use open source code that allows the open APIs to connect to the cloud.

Open source approaches, for security or not, also bring in collaboration across an industry. It isn’t just one organization that benefits from a program or technology, but everyone who contributes to and uses it.

[Source: SDxCentral]