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Open Source

NetBSD To Support Kernel Development In Lua Scripting 311

An anonymous reader writes "NetBSD 7.0 will support the Lua scripting language within its kernel for developing drivers and new sub-systems. A Lua scripting interpreter is being added to the NetBSD kernel along with a kernel API so developers can use this scripting language rather than C for developing new BSD kernel components. Expressed reasons for supporting a scripting language in a kernel were rapid application development, better configuration, and "modifying software written in C is hard for users." In a presentation it was said that Lua in the kernel will let users explore their system in an easy way."
Linux

Linux 3.6 Released 143

diegocg writes "Linux 3.6 has been released. It includes new features in Btrfs: subvolume quotas, quota groups and snapshot diffs (aka 'send/receive'). It also includes support for suspending to disk and memory at the same time, a TCP 'Fast Open' mode, a 'TCP small queues' feature to fight bufferbloat; support for safe swapping over NFS/NBD, better Ext4 quota support, support for the PCIe D3cold power state; and VFIO, which allows safe access from guest drivers to bare-metal host devices. Here's the full changelog."
Open Source

Linux 3.1 Released With Support for the OpenRISC CPU 165

diegocg writes "Linux 3.1 has been released. The changes include support for the OpenRISC opensource CPU; performance improvements to the writeback throttling; some speedups in the slab allocator; a new iSCSI implementation; support for NFC chips; bad block management in the generic software RAID layer; a new 'cpupowerutils' utility for power management; filesystem barriers enabled by default in Ext3; Wii Controller support; and [the usual] new drivers and many small improvements."
Security

A Flood of Stable Linux Kernels Released 105

Julie188 writes "Greg Kroah-Hartman has released five new stable Linux kernels, correcting minor errors of their predecessors and including improvements which are unlikely to generate new errors. As so often with kernel versions in the stable series, it remains undisclosed if the new versions contain changes which fix security vulnerabilities, although the number of changes and some of the descriptions of those changes certainly suggest that all the new versions contain security fixes."
Linux Business

75% of Linux Code Now Written By Paid Developers 368

i_want_you_to_throw_ writes "During a presentation at Linux.conf.au 2010 in Wellington, LWN.net founder and kernel contributor Jonathan Corbet offered an analysis of the code contributed to the Linux kernel between December 24 2008 and January 10 2010. The Linux world makes much of its community roots, but when it comes to developing the kernel of the operating system, it's less a case of 'volunteers ahoy!' and more a case of 'where's my pay?'" It's not clear from the article why anyone should perceive a contradiction between having high ideals and getting paid to do something you enjoy.
Communications

Brain Drain, Admin Failures Threaten the FCC's Role 121

coondoggie writes "The Federal Communications Commission has brain drain and administration problems that could decrease its effectiveness at a time when advanced service technologies such as wireless and broadband present significant regulatory challenges. On the brain drain front, a report out today (PDF) from watchdogs at the Government Accountability Office stated that from fiscal year 2003 to 2008, the number of engineers at the FCC decreased by 10%. Similarly, the overall number of economists decreased by 14%. While the total number of engineers and economists in the workforce has decreased from 2003 to 2008, the percentages remained the same. The GAO also criticized the FCC's public comment policy, saying, 'While FCC relies heavily on public input to inform its decisions, it tends to do so without giving the public access to the actual text of a given proposal. If parties are able to submit vague summaries that may not fully reflect meetings between FCC officials and outside parties, then stakeholders will continue to question whether commission decisions are being influenced by information that was not subject to public comment or rebuttal and that, in some cases, is submitted just before a commission vote.'"
Operating Systems

Next Linux Kernel Due Early March 196

swandives writes "The Linux.conf.au is in full-swing in Wellington, New Zealand, and Computerworld Australia has an interview with Jon Corbet in the leadup to his Kernel Report. The latest kernel release is due early March and will include reversed-engineered drivers for Nvidia chipsets."
Linux

Deadline Scheduling Proposed For the Linux Kernel 113

c1oud writes "At the last Real-Time Linux Workshop, held in September in Dresden, there was a lot of discussion about the possibility of enhancing real-time capabilities of Linux by adding a new scheduling class to the Linux kernel. According to most kernel developers, this new scheduling class should be based on the Earliest Deadline First (EDF) real-time algorithm. The first draft of the scheduling class was called 'SCHED_EDF,' and it was proposed and discussed on the Linux Kernel Mailing List (LKML) just before the workshop. Recently, a second version of the scheduling class (called 'SCHED_DEADLINE,' to meet the request of some kernel developers) was proposed. Moreover, the code has been moved to a public git repository on Gitorius. The implementation is part of a FP7 European project called ACTORS, and financially supported by the European commission. More details are available."
Linux

According to Linus, Linux Is "Bloated" 639

mjasay writes "Linus Torvalds, founder of the Linux kernel, made a somewhat surprising comment at LinuxCon in Portland, Ore., on Monday: 'Linux is bloated.' While the open-source community has long pointed the finger at Microsoft's Windows as bloated, it appears that with success has come added heft, heft that makes Linux 'huge and scary now,' according to Torvalds." TuxRadar provides a small capsule of his remarks as well, as does The Register.
Programming

Apple Open Sources Grand Central Dispatch 342

bonch writes "Apple has open sourced libdispatch, also known as Grand Central Dispatch, which is technology in Snow Leopard that makes it easier for developers to take advantage of multi-core parallelism. Kernel support is not required, but performance optimizations Apple made for supporting GCD are visible in xnu. Block support in C is required and is currently available in LLVM (note that Apple has submitted their implementation of C blocks for standardization)." Update: 09/11 15:32 GMT by KD : Drew McCormack has a post up speculating on what Apple's move means to Linux and other communities (but probably not Microsoft): "...this is also very interesting for scientific developers. It may be possible to parallelize code in the not too distant future using Grand Central Dispatch, and run that code not only on Macs, but also on clusters and supercomputers."
Operating Systems

Linux Kernel 2.6.31 Released 374

diegocgteleline.es writes "The Linux kernel v2.6.31 has been released. Besides the desktop improvements and USB 3.0 support mentioned some days ago, there is an equivalent of FUSE for character devices that can be used for proxying OSS sound through ALSA, new tools for using hardware performance counters, readahead improvements, ATI Radeon KMS, Intel's Wireless Multicomm 3200 support, gcov support, a memory checker and a memory leak detector, a reimplementation of inotify and dnotify on top of a new filesystem notification infrastructure, btrfs improvements, support for IEEE 802.15.4, IPv4 over Firewire, new drivers and small improvements. The full list of changes can be found here."
Programming

Con Kolivas Returns, With a Desktop-Oriented Linux Scheduler 333

myvirtualid writes "Con Kolivas has done what he swore never to do: returned to the Linux kernel and written a new — and, according to him — waaay better scheduler for the desktop environment. In fact, BFS appears to outperform existing schedulers right up until one hits a 16-CPU machine, at which point he guesses performance would degrade somewhat. According to Kolivas, BFS 'was designed to be forward looking only, make the most of lower spec machines, and not scale to massive hardware. i.e. [sic] it is a desktop orientated scheduler, with extremely low latencies for excellent interactivity by design rather than 'calculated,' with rigid fairness, nice priority distribution and extreme scalability within normal load levels.'"
Programming

Alan Cox Quits As Linux TTY Maintainer — "I've Had Enough" 909

The Slashdolt writes "After a stern criticism from Linus, the long-time kernel hacker Alan Cox has decided to walk away as the maintainer of the TTY subsystem of the Linux Kernel, stating '...I've had enough. If you think that problem is easy to fix you fix it. Have fun. I've zapped the tty merge queue so anyone with patches for the tty layer can send them to the new maintainer.'" A response to a subsequent post on the list makes it quite clear that he is serious.
Security

New Linux Kernel Flaw Allows Null Pointer Exploits 391

Trailrunner7 writes "A new flaw in the latest release of the Linux kernel gives attackers the ability to exploit NULL pointer dereferences and bypass the protections of SELinux, AppArmor and the Linux Security Module. Brad Spengler discovered the vulnerability and found a reliable way to exploit it, giving him complete control of the remote machine. This is somewhat similar to the magic that Mark Dowd performed last year to exploit Adobe Flash. Threatpost.com reports: 'The vulnerability is in the 2.6.30 release of the Linux kernel, and in a message to the Daily Dave mailing list Spengler said that he was able to exploit the flaw, which at first glance seemed unexploitable. He said that he was able to defeat the protection against exploiting NULL pointer dereferences on systems running SELinux and those running typical Linux implementations.'"
Security

Ksplice Offers Rebootless Updates For Ubuntu Systems 211

sdasher writes "Ksplice has started offering Ksplice Uptrack for Ubuntu Jaunty, a free service that delivers rebootless versions of all the latest Ubuntu kernel security updates. It's currently available for both the 32 and 64-bit generic kernel, and they plan to add support for the virtual and server kernels by the end of the month, according to their FAQ. This makes Ubuntu the first OS that doesn't need to be rebooted for security updates. (We covered Ksplice's underlying technology when it was first announced a year ago.)"

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