[ Prev ][ Table of Contents ][ Front Page ][ FAQ ][ Next ]

"Linux Gazette...making Linux just a little more fun!"

News Bytes


Selected and formatted by Michael Conry and Mike Orr

Submitters, send your News Bytes items in PLAIN TEXT format. Other formats may be rejected without reading. You have been warned! A one- or two-paragraph summary plus URL gets you a better announcement than an entire press release.

 Linux 2.4.3

Linux 2.4.3 is out. See the changelog or find a kernel mirror.

 Linux Journal and Embedded Linux Journal

The April issue of Linux Journal is on newsstands now. This issue focuses on Internet/Intranet. Click here to view the table of contents, or here to subscribe. All articles through December 1999 are available for public reading at Recent articles are available on-line for subscribers only at

The March/April issue of Embedded Linux Journal was mailed to subscribers in February. Click here to view the table of contents. Professionals working in the embedded field in the US, Canada or Mexico can get a free subscription by clicking here. Paid subscriptions to other countries are also available.

Distro News


Caldera Systems have announced the open beta availability of its new OpenLinux server product, code-named "Project 42," and an agreement with Lutris to ship the Enhydra Open Source Java/XML application server with the new version. The product is based on the new Linux 2.4 kernel and targets OEMs and VARs. Project 42 incorporates a secure Web server, a file and print server, and a set of network infrastructure servers, including DHCP, DNS, and firewall.

Caldera and SCO have unveiled Open UNIX 8, incorporating support for Linux applications. Open UNIX 8 will maintain compatibility and continuity with the UnixWare 7 operating system while providing a complete Linux environment. In addition, the product will incorporate support for the execution of unmodified Linux Intel Architecture binaries.


Debian has chosen Ben Collins as the new Debian Project Leader (DPL).

 Progeny Debian

Progeny Linux Systems have announced that Release Candidate 1 of Progeny Debian is now available for download. Progeny Debian is based on woody, the current testing version of Debian, and made by a team of leading Debian developers. Company CEO Ian Murdock, has said that he expects any changes after RC1 to be bug-fixes and cosmetic improvements

Features of RC1 include: graphical installation and configuration tools, a GNOME interface for debconf, improved hardware detection and USB support, optional migration to GRUB, and automated multiple installations.

Software included in RC1 includes:

For more information about Progeny Debian, visit


SuSE Linux have released apparently very positive news about the future of Linux in Germany. A poll commissioned by SuSE showed that 56 percent of the interviewed PC users have heard of Linux and ten percent already use the alternative operating system at home or at work. This statistic indicates that, in terms of distribution, Linux is second to Windows. Furthermore, 23 percent of the computer users consider switching to Linux when upgrading their equipment. This information was obtained from a survey recently conducted by the market research institute TNS EMNID, Bielefeld, Germany.

SuSE Linux are now offering a new Server Version for professional users. SuSE presented the SuSE Linux Enterprise Server at CeBIT in Hanover, Germany. SuSE Linux Enterprise Server is an operating system streamlined for the utilization in servers. It has been optimized for security and stability and comprises all relevant server services.
SuSE's PowerPC Edition 7.1 will be released in early April. It has k ernel 2.4.2 and ALSA (Advanced Linux Sound Architecture) for PowerMacs. SuSE's administration and configuration tool YaST2 is complemented by YOU (YaST Online Update) for updating individual packages after the install.

It also has KDE2, XFree86 4.0.2 and SaX2, the expanded graphical configuration tool which ensures a simple and secure setup of supported graphics cards, is also a new feature. An improved version of MOL (Mac on Linux), the virtual machine used to start MacOS in Linux, complements the distribution.

The range of supported IBM computers with PowerPC processors has been considerably enlarged. SuSE Linux 7.1 PowerPC Edition now runs on IBM Power3 machines. The possibility to use up to 3 GB RAM and an expanded multi-processor support provided by Kernel 2.4 make SuSE Linux 7.1 PowerPC Edition especially attractive for IBM pSeries 640. Thus, SuSE Linux 7.1 PowerPC Edition is the first Linux solution that supports these computers "out of the box".

The package includes 6 CDs, a 500-page manual and 60 days installation support for EURO 49.00.

News in General

 Lion worm (DNS/BIND security alert!)

Anyone using BIND should be aware that there is a new worm on the loose. The Lion worm attacks certain versions of BIND (the domain name server program). The Sans Institute have plenty of information on the worm, and indicate that Bind versions 8.2, 8.2-P1, 8.2.1, 8.2.2-Px are vulnerable. BIND 8.2.3-REL has been reported as not being vulnerable (this information is preliminary and potentially incomplete). The BIND vulnerability is the TSIG vulnerability that was reported back on January 29, 2001. If you believe your system has been compromised, the SANS Institute has a program Lionfind that detects it. Now is a good time to get the latest version of BIND from your distribution vendor, run named as non-root, or switch to a BIND alternative.

It is also worth looking at general security issues. To get an idea of how security should be done, check out the results of the Honeynet forensic challenge. Candidates downloaded the partition images of a compromised Linux system and had to find out "who, what, when, where, how". The results show how professionals go about doing these things, but also how difficult and time consuming recovering from a compromise can be. The lesson is "BE PREPARED!"

 Upcoming conferences and events

Listings courtesy Linux Journal. See LJ's Events page for the latest goings-on.

LINUX Business Expo
April 2-5, 2001
Chicago, IL

Free Web ROI Seminar by Akami Technologies
April 3, 2001
Seattle, WA

Linux Expo, Madrid
April 4-5, 2001
Madrid, Spain

Lugfest IV
April 21-22, 2001
Simi Valley, CA

Linux Expo Road Show
April 23-27, 2001
Various Locations

Linux Africa 2001
April 24-26, 2001
Johannesburg, South Africa

Open Source Development Network Summit
April 30 - May 1, 2001
Austin, TX

Linux for Industrial Applications
3rd Braunschweiger Linux-Tage
May 4-6, 2001
Braunschweig, Germany

Linux@Work Europe 2001
May 8 - June 15, 2001
Various Locations

Linux Expo, São Paulo
May 9-10, 2001
São Paulo, Brazil

SANS 2001
May 13-20, 2001
Baltimore, MD

7th Annual Applied Computing Conference
May 14-17, 2001
Santa Clara, CA

Linux Expo, China
May 15-18, 2001
Shanghai, China

SITI International Information Technologies Week
OpenWorld Expo 2001
May 22-25, 2001
Montréal, Canada

Strictly e-Business Solutions Expo
May 23-24, 2001
Minneapolis, MN

Linux Expo, Milan
June 6-7, 2001
Milan, Italy

USENIX Annual Technical Conference
June 25-30, 2001
Boston, MA

PC Expo
June 26-29, 2001
New York, NY

Internet World Summer
July 10-12, 2001
Chicago, IL

O'Reilly Open Source Convention
July 23-27, 2001
San Diego, CA

10th USENIX Security Symposium
August 13-17, 2001
Washington, D.C.

HunTEC Technology Expo & Conference
Hosted by Hunstville IEEE
August 17-18, 2001
Huntsville, AL
URL unkown at present

August 25-26, 2001
Dayton, OH

LinuxWorld Conference & Expo
August 27-30, 2001
San Francisco, CA

The O'Reilly Peer-to-Peer Conference
September 17-20, 2001
Washington, DC

Linux Lunacy
Co-Produced by Linux Journal and Geek Cruises

Send a Friend LJ and Enter to Win a Cruise!
October 21-28, 2001
Eastern Caribbean

LinuxWorld Conference & Expo
October 30 - November 1, 2001
Frankfurt, Germany

5th Annual Linux Showcase & Conference
November 6-10, 2001
Oakland, CA

Strictly e-Business Solutions Expo
November 7-8, 2001
Houston, TX

LINUX Business Expo
Co-located with COMDEX
November 12-16, 2001
Las Vegas, NV

15th Systems Administration Conference/LISA 2001
December 2-7, 2001
San Diego, CA


LinuxFocus is a Linux webzine that's been around for years, but may not be familiar to some LG readers. Unlike LG, which is essentially in English with some foreign-language translations, LF was founded with the goal of providing non-English speakers with "enough [Linux] information in their native language that they can join in the Linux community." Currently, seven languages are fully supported and four more are partially supported. Translations happen both ways: there are currently six French articles waiting to be adopted by English translators. LG fully supports LF and wishes it success.

 NetworX and AMD Supply Cluster to Boeing

The Boeing Company is using a Linux NetworX cluster powered by 96 AMD Athlon processors. The system, designed as a high performance cluster, is being used by Boeing Space & Communications in Huntington Beach, Calif. to run computational fluid dynamics applications in support of the Delta IV program. Boeing Delta IV engineers tested multiple processor platforms at Linux NetworX facilities prior to buying the cluster, and selected the AMD Athlon for its price and performance advantages.

Linux NetworX has also announced the development of LinuxBIOS for the Alpha platform. In conjunction with the LinuxBIOS Open Source project, Linux NetworX has replaced SRM firmware on the Alpha platform with a Linux-based BIOS. Users will now have the ability to boot to Linux directly out of the ROM on the motherboard.

 Python Software Foundation & Python Cookbook

ActiveState have announced involvement in the launch of a collaborative programming book, the Python Cookbook, with O'Reilly & Associates. The Cookbook will be a repository of reviewed Python recipes that have been contributed by the Python community for the community. It will be freely available for download. For details please go to the website. Activestate will also be a founding co-sponsor of the new Python Software Foundation (PSF). The PSF's is to provide educational, legal and financial resources to the Python community. More information is available in the full press release

 Penguin Computing Selects Arkeia Backup for Linux Servers

Knox Software Corp. have announced that the company has entered into a reseller agreement with Penguin Computing Inc. Under the agreement, Penguin Computing will now offer Knox's flagship network backup application, Arkeia, for bundling with Penguin's pre-configured custom Linux servers.

 IBM, Biotech and Linux

IBM has been very active on the Linux front in recent months. IBM efforts in the emerging biotechnology marketplace received a boost with the announcement that Structural Bioinformatics has chosen DB2 for Linux as its strategic development platform for future applications. DB2 will be used to manage more than two terabytes of high-resolution 3-D protein structures, which are used in the development of new medicines.

For more information on IBM's Linux developments, refer to their website.

 OEone Teams Up with EarthLink

OEone and EarthLink are working together to integrate EarthLink's Linux based Internet access software with OEone's Internet-computer operating environment platform.

 TeamLinux and Muze to Expand Relationship

TeamLinux is to expand its relationship with Muze Inc. to provide hardware support and service for its existing and future kiosk customers. This new multi-year contract provides for TeamLinux to be the premiere provider for all hardware and service. Muze will continue to provide its proprietary software and be the first level of contact for any Muze system issues.

 Sair Linux & GNU Certification

Sair Linux have announced their new website The Web site has information about Sair Linux and GNU Certification. The company provides training, certification, and educational aids (books etc.,). Sair also invites LUG's to sign up and receive a "Welcome Kit" including T-shirts, brochures, information on Sair Linux, Distro CD's.

 Agenda Computing Sell Linux PDA

California-based Agenda Computing are launching a pure Linux PDA (personal digital assistant) to challenge Palm in the war for market share. Each Agenda VR3 and VR3r is loaded with unique software and hardware features like 16MB of Flash memory, which eliminates the problem of data loss associated with RAM-based units. It also supports 7 languages, is e-mail compatible, and will send a memo or message to a printer by wireless infrared transfer.

 Keyspan Ships 4-port USB Serial Adapter for Linux

The Keyspan USB 4-Port Serial Adapter is intended to allow 4 serial devices to be connected to a single USB port. Each of its male DB9 ports allows connection to RS232 serial devices at data rates up to 960 Kbps. In addition to supporting Linux 2.4, the Keyspan USB 4-Port Serial Adapter works with various Windows flavours. (Note, this is not a review, consult the company for full details.)

 Linux Links

Galleo is a mobile multimedia communicator. It's a nifty-looking PDA with e-mail, web and music capabilities. Unfortunately, their web site is not so nifty: I can't get the menu buttons to show. So click on the Galleo image or try this link to their follow this link to get to the products page and use the text links from there, and click on "Virtual Tour". (Requires Javascript and who knows what [Shockwave?] for the movie.)

The Duke of URL has the following to offer:

Some links from the folks at ZDNet's Anchordesk UK offers, um, help on Debian.

Linux Valley, an Italian portal for the Linux operating system, has been updated. It offers a range of interactive and community services.

Microsoft says Linux is a threat to intellectual-property rights. Linux Journal disagrees.

Paranoid Backup is designed to "work with cheap tape drives and cheap tapes without shoe-shining or losing data; to never overwrite old backups; and to use as few tapes as possible."

The Pentagon's research agency is preparing to demonstrate a soldier's radio designed to provide mobile communications among individual troops on the battlefield. The network will be based on the Linux operating system. Courtesy Slashdot.

The Linux Expo Birmingham 2001 web site is now online. For information on other Linux-Expo events, consult their website.

OLinux have an interview with Rick Lehrbaum from OLinux are also currently looking for an investor or a company willing to translate and promote OLinux around the world.

Doug Eubanks has put together a new Linux/RoadRunner help site. He aims to consolidate the various threads in the field.

An article on Microsoft's complicated licensing terms for enterprise users. The title for the Slashdot link is, "Microsoft Turning Screws on Customers".

Software Announcements

 Tom's Root/Boot Updated

Tom Oehser has released a minor, but recommended, update to tomsrtbt. Current version is now 1.7.218. Get it from: This is something everybody should have on hand in case you someday have to boot from an emergency floppy.

 AbsoluteX Now Available for Download

AbsoluteX, "Linux With a Twist," is available for download at It was unveiled at the Annual Linux Showcase in Atlanta and is now available to developers worldwide under LGPL. AbsoluteX is an X-Window developer toolkit created by Epitera to streamline and facilitate the process of developing customized GUIs for the Linux operating system. Based on the C++ programming language, AbsoluteX is a standard template library (STL) with multiple inheritance methodology, efficient messaging, and programming methods that separate logical and visual aspect class libraries.

 Loki Games

Loki Software has announced an agreement with developer-driven computer and videogame publisher Gathering of Developers to bring the hit PC games Rune and Heavy Metal: F.A.K.K.2 to Linux early this year. Testers are required, register here.

Furthermore, in a race to GPL freedom, Loki Software, Inc. are releasing the latest in their line of open source projects: a complete set of end-user and developer tools for managing software releases.

 "Emerald Isle" Ispell

A new version of the package "ispell-gaeilge" which lets users of International Ispell check their Irish Gaelic spelling has been released recently. Developed by Kevin P. Scannell, a mathematician at Saint Louis University, the package boasts a dictionary of over 200,000 entries covering the many grammatical variations of Irish language words. Mentions of it in Irish national newspapers have introduced many people to the world of Linux for the first time. For people frustrated with the lack of support for minority languages in Windows, projects such as the Irish localisation of Mandrake Linux offer real encouragement. Other projects, such as the spelling checker GaelSpell, are improving the tools available to Windows users, but also help all computer users by providing quality word-lists.

 GARLIC Version 1.1 Released

Version 1.1 of garlic, free GPL molecular visualisation program for Linux and Unix, is available at It aims to be ANSI and POSIX compliant and may be easily ported to different Unix-like platforms. Garlic may be used to analyse proteins, DNA and other large molecules. The latest version includes a number of plot-options, not available in version 1.0: helical wheel, averaged hydrophobicity, hydrophobic moment, Venn diagram and Ramachandran plot. A screenshot gallery is available.

 The FIEN Group to Sell Teamware Office for Linux in the U.S.

Teamware Group , a Fujitsu subsidiary, and The FIEN Group, a Southern California-based technology consulting organisation have signed a partner agreement according to which The FIEN group will sell Teamware Office 5.3 for Linux groupware to customers across the USA. Teamware Office 5.3 for Linux includes facilities for electronic mail, time and resource scheduling, discussion groups as well as document storage and retrieval. The famous Teamware Office groupware suite has been in the market since 1989 and was ported to Linux platform in spring 2000.

 Opera to be released as ad-ware

Opera Software has announced that the final release of its Linux browser will be available for free to all users. The free version has full functionality but contains banner ads. If you don't want banner ads, you can register your free copy for $39, or buy the adless version for the same price. If you are interested in this product, Opera 5 for Linux beta 7 is now out.

 Open Motif Now Supports Latest Linux 2.4 Kernel Distributions

Integrated Computer Solutions has released an updated version of Open Motif Everywhere. This new release officially incorporates Open Group Patch 3 and Patch 4 into the Open Motif release. These patches include bug fixes and updates to the Motif libraries, clients and the demo source code. RPM (version 4) are also provided for both Red Hat Linux 7, SuSE Linux 7.1 and other distributions using glibc 2.2. The latest ICS Open Motif binary and source packages are available for free download at ICS's Motif Community site, the MotifZone. They are also available for $29.95 on ICS's Open Motif Everywhere distribution CD that can be purchased through the ICS Store.

 Kaspersky Lab Introduces the New Version of Kaspersky Anti-Virus for Linux

Kaspersky Lab have announced the release of the new version of Kaspersky Anti-Virus for Linux (3.0 Build 135.3). This new version adds several features, including installer support for different Linux distributions, and a ready-made solution to integrate centralised virus filtering for Postfix e-mail gateways. The new version of Kaspersky Anti-Virus is available for download from the Kaspersky Lab Web site. All registered users of previous versions of Kaspersky Anti-Virus for Linux may upgrade to the new version free of charge.

 Other software

Rob Pitman has released a LGPL licensed software package that provides a "graphical user interface" between a Java application and an ASCII terminal. The package emulates the API of the Java AWT and the Swing toolkit. It provides "graphical" widgets such as Frames, Dialogs, Labels, TextFields and Buttons. One can design the GUI of an application using any Java IDE and then port it to use a text interface with little work. You can get more information about the package at:

Mahogany Version 0.62 is out. Mahogany is an OpenSource(TM) cross-platform mail and news client. It supports a range of protocols and standards (POP3, IMAP4, MIME, etc.,), secure communications via SSL, and can be extended using its built-in Python interpreter and loadable modules.

TUXIA specialises in embedded Linux software suites for Internet and Information appliances. TASTE (TUXIA Appliance Synthesis Technology Enabled) is a solution based on Linux Kernel 2.4 with an embedded Mozilla browser and other functionalities, that can be integrated into any hardware platform.

Copyright © 2001, Michael Conry and the Editors of Linux Gazette.
Copying license
Published in Issue 65 of Linux Gazette, April 2001
[ Prev ][ Table of Contents ][ Front Page ][ FAQ ][ Next ]