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Submission + - MS Signature PC Requirements Now Blocks Linux Installation

sombragris writes: According to a well-documented /r/linux thread on Reddit, the Signature PC program by Microsoft now requires to lock down PCs. This user found out that his Lenovo Yoga 900 ISK2 UltraBook has the SSD in a proprietary RAID mode which Linux does not understand and the BIOS is also locked down so it could not be turned off. When he complained that he was unable to install Linux, the answer he got was: "This system has a Signature Edition of Windows 10 Home installed. It is locked per our agreement with Microsoft."

Even worse, as the original poster said, "[t]he Yoga 900 ISK2 at Best Buy is not labeled as a Signature Edition PC, but apparently it is one, and Lenovo's agreement with Microsoft includes making sure Linux can't be installed."

As some commenter said: "If you buy a computer with this level of lockdown you should be told."

There is also a report on ZDNet which looks very understanding towards Lenovo, but the fact remains: the SSD is locked down in a proprietary RAID mode that cannot be turned off.

Comment Paraguay has been doing this for 40 years (Score 4, Informative) 226

My country (Paraguay) went 100% renewable after 1973, when the Acaray dam went operational and covered 100% of the energy needs of the country. In 1983 the world's largest operational dam (Itaipú) began to serve energy and we own 50% of it (with Brazil). We also own 50% of another large dam (Yacyreta). Now, and save for biomass-burning usines used in the Mennonite colonies at the far north, isolated Chaco area, we still are 100% covered by hydropower. There are plans to convert these biomass plants either to solar power or to lay down wires so they could use power from Itaipu. So, I would say that covering large energy needs with renewable power is totally possible, and we are proof of it since 1973.

Comment It's not dying at all, but it could use more devs. (Score 1) 515

KDE is not dead at all, not even by a long shot. I'm using the latest Plasma 5 desktop in Slackware (current) and I find it lean, fast, and quite stable.

I think the problem lies in the fact that the codebase is quite big and the developer base is shrinking. There are not many hobbyists working on it right now, and there are simply no distros sponsorinng any paid developers to work on KDE. The result is that there are a lot of emblematic KDE apps/frameworks which still need to be ported to Plasma 5, such as Kile or Krusader, KHTML, or Reqonk (some may say that some of those apps/frameworks are already ported but there are no releases of them). One by one, the applications and frameworks get abandoned.

Among the latest to suffer this behavior was KDE-Telepathy, which is right now losing its maintainer.

So, there was a time where several distros sponsored some developers, and there were also other high-profile developers working on KDE as a hobby. These got new jobs, so their involvement in KDE had to be cut, and there was no replacement in sight.

I think KDE is trying to correct the problem. They are a good community, but to be honest, it is a difficult process.

Comment He will be missed (Score 4, Interesting) 68

This was a real computer giant. I remember that my dad got wind of his ideas, and he made sure I had a computer available to tinker with in my late childhood and teen years, something that here (Paraguay, South America) was by no means taken for granted back in the time (late 1970s/1980s). Even to this day Dr. Papert made a significant contribution to Paraguayan education in the form of the XO/OLPC laptops, which are instrumental in educating many Paraguayan children. RIP and thanks for everything Dr. Papert.

Comment Re:Great news (Score 1) 179

I enter "init 5", I expect the graphical system (usually X11 with a chooser) to start.
Different UNIX/Linux init subsystems handle this differently, but the 1/2/3/5 runlevels can generally be counted on to be the same.

Breaking this is introducing incompatibilities for the sake of being different.

Why? If you have to edit inittab, it shows you the meaning of each runlevel just above the "Default runlevel" line as the (grand)parent post shows. Not exactly "breaking things to introduce incompatibilities".

Submission + - Slackware 14.2 Released, Still systemd-Free

sombragris writes: Slackware, the oldest GNU/Linux distribution still in active maintenance, was released just minutes ago. Slackware is noted for being the most Unix-like of all Linux distributions. While sporting kernel 4.4.14 and gcc 5.3, other goodies include Perl 5.22.2, Python 2.7.11, Ruby 2.2.5, Subversion 1.9.4, git-2.9.0, mercurial-3.8.2, KDE 4.14.21 (KDE 4.14.3 with kdelibs-4.14.21) Xfce 4.12.1... and no systemd!

According to the ChangeLog:

The long development cycle (the Linux community has lately been living in "interesting times", as they say) is finally behind us, and we're proud to announce the release of Slackware 14.2. The new release brings many updates and modern tools, has switched from udev to eudev (no systemd), and adds well over a hundred new packages to the system. Thanks to the team, the upstream developers, the dedicated Slackware community, and everyone else who pitched in to help make this release a reality.

Grab the ISOs at a mirror near you. Enjoy!

Comment Re:This post brought to you... (Score 1) 85

Not in my Kindle Voyage. All I have is Baskerville, Bookerly, Helvetica, Palatino, Futura, Caecilia and Caecilia Condensed. No Verdana here. Seriously, the only worthwile choices IMHO are Baskerville, Bookerly and Palatino. Caecilia is awful in its bold weight (almost indistinguishable from the normal one).

Seriously, Amazon needs to improve the font situation on its e-ink Kindles.

Comment Re:mod parent up (Score 5, Informative) 253

I will give MS the benefit of the doubt in this one. Good for them, and for the cause of Free Software.

However, about your rhetorical question:

Okay, I'll bite: how many entities has MS sued for .net patent violations on the subsequent versions, as you referenced? It's been the better part of a decade now, right? No doubt they have sprung their trap...?

I'll answer: I don't know, but MS doesn't need to sue when half of all Android devices worldwide paid extortion money to MS to the tune of USD 28 billion in confidential settlements, and it refuses to disclose which exact patents it is using for (extortion) licensing.

IMHO, the trap has sprung, and has bitten a lot of people. So yes, some distrust in MS is well warranted.

Comment Re:Why Chemistry? (Score 2) 29

I think it's for two reasons: first, because the technique enables to watch molecular processes at the 'single molecule' level, and this is highly significant for chemistry, obviously.

I think there might be a second reason too: the effectiveness of the technique depends on a lot of photochemical knowledge and proper selection of dyes, which again is another significant area of study and research in chemistry.

Submission + - What do Slashdotters do on long flights? 3

gannebraemorr writes: I’m about to take a long flight (5 hours, then layover, then 7 hours). It will be evening when I land, so I don’t want to sleep too much on the flight. What the heck do I do to pass the time? Battery life and no internet remove the laptop option. I’ve never been a big book reader. I’m not a big fan of exchanging life stories with people I’ll never see again. maybe it would be fun to just make stuff up as your life story.

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