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 May Linux Journal

The May issue of Linux Journal will be hitting the newsstands April 10. The focus of this issue is Cross Platform Development with articles on building reusable Java Widgets, debugging your Perl programs, Modula-3, doubly-linked lists, the Python DB-API and much more. Check out the Table of Contents. To subscribe to Linux Journal, click here.

 Linus Torvalds Receives VA Research Excellence Award

February 26, 1998
VA Research granted its Excellence in Open Source Software Award to Linus Torvalds, father of the Linux operating system and one of the most important leaders in information technology. Linus received a VArStation YMP, worth $4500, at The Silicon Valley Linux Users Group meeting in March. (See article in this issue by Chris Dibona.)

The VA Research Excellence in Open Source Software Award honors exceptional individuals within the free software community. Torvalds led this community to create Linux, a freely distributable multi-user, multi-tasking Unix-like operating system. Linux is now used in a range of applications from mission critical servers to desktop workstations.

VA Research is the oldest and largest Linux systems company. Founded in 1993 by electrical engineering doctoral students at Stanford University, VA Research pioneered high performance workstations and servers based on Linux. In 1997, VA Research became an affiliate of Umax.

For More Information:
VA Research, www.varesearch.com
Samuel Ockman, ockman@varesearch.com.

 New Linux and Open Source Business Usage Advocacy page

Date: Thu, 12 Mar 1998 21:06:35 +1100 (EST)
There is a new advocacy page for Linux (and other open source, free software). This site is primarily focused on solid business reasons as to why companies should use Linux. The opening blurb states:

... We (and a growing number of other firms) are heavy users of software such as Linux, GNU and FreeBSD which can be classified as 'freely redistributable' or 'co-operatively developed', but feel that there is considerable lack of knowledge of these systems and applications in the general business community. We (and some of the companies listed below) are therefore building this web presence to help provide information, documentation, showcase projects, links to related sites and other useful resources to to help redress this. This will include freely redistributable systems software, and free and commercial applications which run on these systems which may be of interest to helping you run your business. ...


For More Information:
Con Zymaris, Cybersource Pty. Ltd.

 UniForum Spring Conference

UniForum's Spring Conference will be held Sunday, May 17 to Wednesday, May 20, 1998 in Ocean City, Maryland. Ralph Nader Janpieter Scheerder, Eric Raymond and Rick Ross are among the speakers.

For more information: UniForum Association, http://www.uniforum.org

 FREENIX at USENIX Annual Conference

Date: Mon, 16 Mar 1998 08:54:19 -0800
Here's more than you ever wanted to know:

Share ideas, and actual code, with developers and avid users of freely redistributable software--Linux, FreeBSD, NetBSD, OpenBSD, and more--at the 23RD ANNUAL USENIX TECHNICAL CONFERENCE, includes FREENIX, the Freely Redistributable Software Track, June 15-19, 1998 in New Orleans, Louisiana. Sponsored by USENIX, the Advanced Computing Systems Association

FREENIX is co-sponsored by The FreeBSD Project, Linux International, The NetBSD Foundation, Inc., and The OpenBSD Project

Full program and on-line registration:
Email: conference@usenix.org

FREENIX, a Special Track within the conference, showcases the latest developments and interesting applications in freely redistributable software. FREENIX offers 28 talks, plus evening BoF sessions.

USENIX is the Advanced Computing Systems Association. Its members are the computer technologists responsible for many of the innovations in computing we enjoy today.

For More Information:
Cynthia Deno, USENIX ASSOCIATION, cynthia@usenix.org

 Samba: Integrating UNIX and Windows

Date: Fri, 6 Mar 1998 08:36:32 GMT
Samba is the tool of choice for providing Windows file sharing and printer services from UNIX and UNIX-like systems. Freely available under the GNU Public License, Samba allows UNIX machines to be seamlessly integrated into a Windows network without installing any additional software on the Windows machines. Used in tandem with Linux or FreeBSD, Samba provides a low-cost alternative to the Windows NT Server.

This book, a combination of technical tutorial, reference guide, and how-to manual, contains the depth of knowledge experienced network administrators demand without skipping the information beginners need to get fast results. UNIX administrators new to Windows networking will find the information they need to become Windows networking experts. Those new to UNIX will find the details they need to install and configure Samba correctly and securely.

The book also contains a CD-ROM containing version 1.9.18 of the Samba server, a library of useful tools and scripts, the Samba mailing list archives, and all examples discussed in the book.

Currently available at Computer Literacy (Book shops + Online). www.clbooks.com * 1-800-789-8590 * FAX 1-408-752-9919

 Netscape turns to Debian for Licensing Guidance!

Date: Fri, 6 Mar 1998 09:23:38 GMT
When Netscape decided to make their client software free, they used the Debian Free Software Guidelines for a guide on how to write their license. You can find the draft Netscape license at http://www.mozilla.org/NPL/. This is a historic day for us, since it means that "Mozilla" (Netscape Communicator) will eventually be in the "main" part of Debian and all Linux systems, instead of the "non-free" section as it is now.

A link to a Netscape press release (containing a quote from Bruce Perens) can be found at http://www.netscape.com/newsref/pr/newsrelease579.html. The Debian Social Contract and licensing guidelines are at http://www.debian.org/social_contract.html. A web page on the Open Source promotional program for free software can be found at http://www.opensource.org/.

There is work yet to be done - a few license bug-lets will be resolved within the next few days, and once the source code is released there are some parts that Netscape does not own that will most likely have to be replaced with free software.

For More Information:
Bruce Perens, bruce@debian.novare.net

 Linux Web Watcher News

Date: Tue, 10 Mar 1998 13:18:11 GMT

Linux Web Watcher, http://webwatcher.org/

The "Linux Web Watcher" now has its own domain, thanks to VA Research. LWW isn't an ordinary links page. It actually keeps track of when the pages were last updated, so you don't have to waste hours checking to see if your favorite web pages have been updated since your last visit to them.

The non-tables page of the Linux Web Watcher have been greatly enhanced to make things easier to read for Lynx users.

For More Information:
Robert E. Blue, reblue@emry.net

 Linux questionnaire

Date: Tue, 10 Mar 1998 13:19:49 GMT
Aachen Linux User Group (ALUG) proudly presents the Linux Questionnaire.

The questionnaire consists of 20 questions which cover software, hardware, documentation and installation issues. The questions are a mixture of multiple choice and text areas. The results are updated hourly and can be seen at:

The objective of the questionnaire is to provide a somewhat standardized way to report your experience with Linux and the results should give (in particular, to the newcomer) a coarse-grained view on Linux and its users.

For More Information:
Aachener Linux User Group (Aachen/Germany), http://aachen.heimat.de/alug
Michael Eilers, eilers@rmi.de

 Perl Conference 2.0 - Call for Participation

Date: Tue, 10 Mar 1998 14:43:42 GMT
The second annual O'Reilly Perl Conference will be held August 17-20, 1998 at the Fairmont Hotel in San Jose, California. The conference will feature two days of tutorials followed by a two day conference. The conference will include sessions for submitted papers on practical and experimental uses of Perl; invited presentations; daily Q and A sessions with leading Perl developers and trainers; a by-invitation Developers Workshop; and nightly user-organized Birds-of-a-Feather sessions for special interest groups.

In the practical spirit of Perl, we seek papers that describe how you are using Perl right now for work or play, and how your experience and your code can help others. This is not a traditional solicitation for academic papers. While we look forward to papers on new and useful extensions, applications, and tools, we are most interested in receiving papers that show Perl hard at work, saving time, money, and headaches for you and your organization. We welcome submissions that work under both Unix and non-Unix systems, such as Win32.

For More Information:
The Perl Institute, Chip Salzenberg
3665 E. Bay Drive, Suite 204-A
Largo, FL 33771-1990

 UK Linux Conference

Date: Mon, 23 Mar 1998 09:18:30 GMT
These are very preliminary details:

Venue: UMIST Conference Centre, Manchester.

Date: Saturday 27th June

Time: A Jam-packed day from 10am (sharp) to around 5:30

Programme (provisional):

For More Information:
UKUUG, http://www.ukuug.org/

 French Translation of LG Issue 25

A French translation of some parts of Issue 25 of the Linux Gazette is available at the following URL's :
and http://www.linux-france.com/article/lgazette/;

For more information:
Eric Jacoboni : jaco@mail.dotcom.fr

Software Announcements

 Help ToolKit for Motif V0.9: Binary beta release now available

Date: Sun, 1 Mar 1998 23:58:55 -0500
Columbia, MD -- The Help ToolKit for Motif V0.9 has been released and is now available on the web. The Help ToolKit for Motif allows developers to easily add and modify various types of on-line context-sensitive help to Motif applications. Using a small set of functions to install the library, every widget and gadget in a Motif application seemingly inherits new resources allowing help to be configured and changed via X resource files.

The ToolKit supports three core help types: Tips, Cues, and Hints. All of these help types can be assigned to any widget and any Motif-based gadget.

The Help ToolKit distribution can be downloaded from http://www.softwarecomp.com. The complete Programmer's Manual can also be downloaded in PDF format from the same site.

Although the Linux version of this product is freely available for non-commercial purposes, it is copyrighted and is not in the public domain. There is a license associated with the distribution; please read it if you have an interest in the product.

For more information:
Robert S. Werner, rob.werner@softwarecomp.com
info@softwarecomp.com, http://www.softwarecomp.com/


Date: Tue, 03 Mar 1998 16:16:34 -0500
Research Triangle Park, NC--March 2, 1998--Red Hat Software, Inc., publisher of Red Hat Linux 5.0, the Operating System that was named InfoWorld Magazine's Product of the Year, has announced the availability of Red Hat Motif 2.1 for the Intel Computer. Red Hat Motif 2.1 for the Intel computer is the full OSF/Motif development system. As with the 2.0.1 version of Red Hat Motif, Red Hat Motif 2.1 can turn your Intel computer running Linux into a complete Motif development workstation.

For more information:
Red Hat Software, Inc., "http://www.redhat.com/, melissa@redhat.com

 PostShop, ScanShop and OCR Shop

Date: Fri, 6 Mar 1998 11:38:10 -0800 (PST)
Vividata, Inc. announced the release of Linux versions of its PostShop, ScanShop and OCR Shop software products PostShop transforms inkjet and laser printers to PostScript-enabled ones and makes PostScript printers up to 100 times faster. ScanShop scans, prints, compresses, stores, retrieves and displays pictures and documents in full color, grayscale, and bi-level (black & white), and OCR Shop converts paper documents and images into editable text.

For more information:
Vividata, Inc., info@vividata.com, http://www.vividata.com/. Cobalt Qube Ships

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., March 17, 1998 - Cobalt Microserver Inc. today announced that its Cobalt Qube(tm) microserver products, which were introduced last month at the DEMO 98 conference, have begun shipping to customers. Cobalt develops and markets simple, low-cost Internet and Intranet servers.

The Cobalt Qube microservers are aimed at work groups and branch offices, Internet service providers, Web developers and educational organizations. They are simple, versatile, scalable, and offer excellent performance for work groups at a fraction of the cost of traditional UNIX(R) and Windows(R) NT servers.

For more information:
Nancy Teater, Hamilton Communications, nrt@hamilton.com, http://web.hamilton.com/

 LinkScan 4.0

Date: Fri, 13 Mar 1998 13:24:29 -8
San Jose, CA, March 10, 1998 - Electronic Software Publishing Corp. (Elsop) introduces a number of new features to enhance the central management of multiple Intranet/Internet web sites in organizations where many different individuals may be responsible for the content. These developments build upon earlier releases which laid down the foundations for these exciting new features. LinkScan enables users to split-up very large sites into smaller sub-sites, to produce different reports for different departments and to configure LinkScan to handle multiple domains hosted on a single server. LinkScan/Dispatch adds a new higher level of capability to those features.

LinkScan/Dispatch is included with LinkScan Version 4.0. It is designed for operators of large web sites where the responsibility for maintenance and updates is distributed among many individuals.

LinkScan 4.0 is priced at $750 per server. Volume discounts are available in single order quantities of five copies or more. Orders may be placed online via a secure server.

For more information:
Kenneth R. Churilla, ken@elsop.com
Electronic Software Publishing Corporation, http://www.elsop.com/


Date: Thu, 12 Mar 1998 14:25:12 +0000
Sangoma Technologies Inc. (OFFER VALID UNTIL APRIL 15TH OR WHILE SUPPLIES LAST) is making available our WANPIPE kit that includes the T1 and Fractional T1 DSU/CSU for an END USER price of $799.00! This represents a reduction of 30% from our already low standard price of $1139.00.

WANPIPE provides all you need to turn your NT, Linux, or NetWare server or Windows workstation into a powerful T1 or Fractional T1 router for your LAN. Just plug your server into the wall.

For more information:
David Mandelstam, dm@sangoma.com
Sangoma Technologies Inc.

 XFree86 3.3.2 Released

Date: Fri, 6 Mar 1998 09:59:39 GMT XFree86 version 3.3.2 is now available. The XFree86 3.3 distribution is available in both source and binary form. Binary distributions are currently available for FreeBSD (2.2.2+ and 3.0-CURRENT), NetBSD (1.2 and 1.3), OpenBSD, Interactive Unix, Linux (ix86 and AXP), SVR4.0, UnixWare, OS/2, Solaris 2.6 and LynxOS AT.

The XFree86 documentation is available on-line on our Web server. The documentation for 3.3 can be accessed at http://WWW.XFree86.org/3.3/.

Source patches are available to upgrade X11R6.3 PL2 from the X Consortium (now The Open Group) to XFree86 3.3.2. Binaries for many OSs are also available. The distribution is available from:

For more information:
The XFree86 Team, robin@interlabs.com

 scwm 0.6 - Scheme Configurable Window Manager

Date: Tue, 10 Mar 1998 12:38:35 GMT
Scwm 0.6 is released. Scwm is the Scheme Configurable Window Manager. This is a highly dynamic and extensible window manager for the X Window System (based originally on FVWM2, but now much enhanced) with Guile Scheme as the configuration/extension language. Nearly all decorations can be changed at run-time or per-window, and eventually many decoration styles and additional features will be supported through dynamically loaded code. A powerful protocol is provided for interacting with the window manager while it is running.

You can download the latest scwm package from:

For more information:
Maciej Stachowiak, mstachow@mit.edu,
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, http://web.mit.edu/mstachow/www/scwm.html

 Yalsim, Yet Another Logic/Timing Simulator

Date: Tue, 10 Mar 1998 12:44:50 GMT This is the second Alpha version of a logic/timing simulator called Yalsim. Yalsim is a hierarchical timing and logic simulator that has been in development (on and off) for over fifteen years and the second pre-beta version is now being sampled. Yalsim can now be obtained (with source code) by individuals from:


The current cost for Yalsim is $1 CDN, when you have time to send it. Sending four U.S. quarters is also acceptable. This may change in the future. However, seriously, please do read the LICENSE file. Yalsim is not public domain or being released under a GNU-like license, although individuals, at non-profit institutions, will always be able to obtain at least binary versions of Yalsim at no or minimal (overhead) cost.

For more information:
Ken Martin, martin@isis.eecg.toronto.edu

 SQL RDBMS PostgreSQL v6.3 released for Linux

Date: Tue, 10 Mar 1998 12:56:10 GMT
SQL RDBMS PostgreSQL v6.3 released for Linux. PostgreSQL is a RDBMS SQL server which is the "default SQLserver" shipped with most Linux distributions.

For more information:
http://www.postgresql.org/, gold_bag@yahoo.com

 nosql-0.9 - Unix RDBMS

Date: Tue, 10 Mar 1998 12:57:56 GMT
A new release of NoSQL is available at : ftp://ftp.linux.it/pub/database/nosql-0.9.tar.gz

NoSQL is a simple Relational Database Management System for Unix. There have been several major changes from v0.8 to v0.9. Please read file README-v0.9 distributed with the package.

For more information:
ILS - Italian Linux Society, Carlo Strozzi, carlos@linux.it

 RITW: Very simple network monitoring tool

Date: Tue, 10 Mar 1998 13:12:39 GMT
RITW is a small set of scripts that allow any user to monitor network/host status using a common WWW browser and a central monitoring site through ICMP and HTTP. Although it will probably run on any platform, it was only tested on Linux.

Primary site is at
http://www.terravista.pt/Ancora/1883/ritw.html (portuguese)

For more information:
Rui Pedro Bernardinoa, Parque Expo'98, Portugal, rbernardino@expo98.pt

 Socket Script v1.5

Date: Tue, 10 Mar 1998 13:30:15 GMT Socket Script has been made for people who wants to create networking-oriented programs, but don't want to learn all the socket stuff. It has multiple network commands that enable you to tell the SScript interpreter where you want to connect, and all you have to do is focus on the script itself, leaving the connection parts to SScript. The best part is that most scripts will run on most Unix workstations, and win32 platforms.

Available at:

 newsfetch-1.11 - pull news via NNTP to a mailbox

Date: Tue, 10 Mar 1998 14:10:57 GMT
newsfetch: Most Compact and Powerful Utility to download the news from an NNTP server and stores in the mailbox format. New version of newsfetch (1.11) is uploaded to sunsite.unc.edu:

newsfetch-1.11.tar.gz newsfetch-1.11-1.i386.rpm newsfetch-1.11-1.src.rpm

available in ftp://sunsite.unc.edu/pub/Linux/Incoming/ and in proper place (/pub/Linux/system/news/reader) when they move the files. New version is available in .tar.gz and .rpm format.

For more information:
Yusuf Motiwala, ymotiwala@hss.hns.com

 nv-dc1000 digital camera image reader v0.1 beta

Date: Tue, 10 Mar 1998 14:30:22 GMT
A small program to transfer images from the digital still camera known as NV-DC1000 or PV-DC1000 from Panasonic. First beta version, but it works.

For more information:
Societas Datoriae Universitatis Lundensis et Instituti Technici Lundensis
Fredrik Roubert, roubert@df.lth.se, http://www.df.lth.se/~roubert/NV-DC1000.html

 Cecilia2.0 - electroacoustic music software

Date: Tue, 17 Mar 1998 08:45:31 GMT

We are happy to announce version 2 of CECILIA, the musician's software that makes you funnier, smarter and more attractive to the opposite sex.

Cecilia was developed by composers of electroacoustic music for composers of electroacoustic music. If you have to ask, don't bother. Cecilia is probably the wackiest sound maker in the world at this time. In fact, we believe nothing else even comes close. Cecilia is for high-concept audio processing. It is not for sequencing your rinky-dink samplers and synths.

Cecilia is freeware at present. The next version will not be. Count your blessings. Cecilia runs on Macintoshes, Linux boxes and SGIs. It does not run on Windows. When it does, we'll sell it and become obscenely wealthy.

Cecilia is strictly for people who have a sense of humour. We, on the other hand, are very cranky people.

Cecilia is available for download at :

Cecilia's home page for manuals and info:

For more information:
Jean Piche, Universite de Montreal
http://mistral.ere.umontreal.ca/~pichej, http://www.musique.umontreal.ca/electro/CEC/

 Free CORBA 2 ORB - omniORB 2.5.0 released.

Date: Tue, 17 Mar 1998 09:12:28 GMT
The Olivetti and Oracle Research Laboratory has made available the second public release of omniORB (version 2.5.0). We also refer to this version as omniORB2. The main change since the last public release (release 2.4.0) is the addition of support for type Any and TypeCode. For further details of the changes, see http://www.orl.co.uk/omniORB/omniORB_250/

omniORB2 is copyright Olivetti & Oracle Research Laboratory. It is free software. The programs in omniORB2 are distributed under the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation. The libraries in omniORB2 are distributed under the GNU Library General Public License.

Source code and binary distributions are available from our Web pages: http://www.orl.co.uk/omniORB/omniORB.html

omniORB2 is not yet a complete implementation of the CORBA core.

For more information:
Eoin Carroll, ewc@orl.co.uk
Olivetti & Oracle Research Lab, Cambridge, UK

 Mtools 3.9 - Access MS-Dos/Win 95 disks from Unix without mounting

Date: Tue, 17 Mar 1998 08:38:33 GMT
I would like to announce a new release of Mtools, a collection of utilities to access MS-DOS disks from Unix without mounting them.

Mtools supports Win'95 style long file names, FAT32, OS/2 Xdf disks and 2m disks (store up to 1992k on a high density 3 1/2 disk). Mtools also includes mpartition, a simple partitioning programming to setup Zip and Jaz media on non-PC machines (SunOs, Solaris and HP/UX).

Mtools can currently be found at the following places:

For more information:
Alain Knaff, knaff@tux.org

 New XML.com site

Date: Wed, 25 Mar 1998 20:08:29 -0800 (PST) SEBASTOPOL, CA--XML, the industrial-strength mark-up language used for Web development, is a tool for electronic commerce and information management. With the recent approval of the XML Specification by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), interest in XML development has picked up considerable steam.

To promote the development and commercial acceptance of XML, three companies that have long been Web insiders--O'Reilly & Associates, their affiliate Songline Studios, and Seybold Publications--have joined together to create XML.com (http://www.xml.com), a new Web site that serves as a key resource and nerve center for XML developers and users. A preview site is now available, and the launch date for the full site is May 1, 1998.

XML.com features a rich mix of information and services for the XML community. The site is designed to serve both people who are already working with XML and those HTML users who want to "graduate" to XML's power and complexity.

For more information:
Sara Winge, sara@ora.com

Published in Linux Gazette Issue 27, April 1998

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