eRacks Systems Tech Blog

Open Source Experts Since 1999

Worried about your choice of surveillance system for your premises, not sure what system is more suitable to your needs? Confused where to invest your hard-earned money for your security apparatus? We at eRacks got you covered!

Our top of the line products and their tech are briefly described for you because we at eRacks believe a market educated consumer is a happy and long-term customer. Besides, not one shoe fits all, so why should one system be used for all your needs?.

eRacks has always emphasized on its diversity in its products.

A diverse security apparatus is a strong security apparatus
-Joseph Wolff, CTO, eRacks

Hence, we are offering three variants of surveillance systems

  1. eRacks/HVR (Hybrid Video Recorder)
  2. eRacks/NVR (Network Video Recorder)
  3. eRacks/DVR (Digital Video Recorder)

Each of the technology we are offering to our valuable clients are discussed in detail below

 

  1. eRacks/HVR (Hybrid Video Recorder)

eRacks/HVR (Hybrid Video Recorder) is quickly growing in popularity because of its versatility. Hybrid video recorders (eRacks/HVR) are compatible with both standard analog signal and IP network cameras, allowing the users to continue using their current installed analog security system while gradually shifting to the latest network IP technology. It grants the flexibility to upgrade the existing surveillance system to IP equipment according to the user’s budget and specifications.

A hybrid system integrates existing analog cameras into an IP network, providing the user with all the advantages of an IP system excluding the HD resolution of IP cameras. In a hybrid CCTV system, footage is recorded in analogue quality however the IP network features of indexing, bookmarking, and retrieval are made available through the Hybrid eRacks/DVR.

eRacks/HVR (Hybrid Video Recorder) is best suited to record video footage in a digital format to storage array. It accommodates both IP and analog cameras and captures video/images through an Ethernet network via Cat5 / Cat6 cables from IP cameras as well as coaxial cables from analog cameras. It is mostly used for physical security applications. This option is a good choice when planning for future expansion into an IP video surveillance system as the existing analog cameras can be reused and incorporated into the system without any drop in coverage.

eRacks/HVR comes with a variety of channel counts, and storage capacities to ideally suit many applications. It also supports smart features, including event search, event log, and email notification; a free mobile app that allows users to watch live or playback video from their smartphone. Multi-site video management from anywhere in the world can be done using eRacks/HVR as well.

 

 

  1. eRacks/NVR (Network Video Recorder)

eRacks/NVR stands for Network Video Recorder which is a specialized hardware and software solution used in the IP video surveillance systems. This system records and store video footage directly from the network it lives on for the purpose of their storage and subsequent playback. They work with an advanced type of camera, called IP cameras. IP cameras can actually capture and process video and audio data themselves by using either an Ethernet cable or wirelessly via an existing Wi-Fi network. The eRacks/NVR does not contain any special equipment for capturing video because it receives the video streams already encoded by the IP cameras in a digital format. To support the expanded set of features and user-friendliness, the eRacks/NVR uses standard computers with standard operating systems.

eRacks/NVR systems process the video data on the camera rather than on the recorder by using IP cameras which are standalone image capturing devices. IP cameras have a chipset which processes the video data which is then transmitted to a recorder. It is capable of recording and sending audio as well as video. The more powerful hardware on IP cameras also enables improved smart functionality and video analytics, such as facial recognition. eRacks/NVR systems connect the camera to the recorder, but this is done using standard Ethernet cables, such as cat5e and cat6, to transmit data. eRacks/NVR recorders are only used for storing and viewing the footage.

eRacks/NVR systems are inherently more flexible because security cameras don’t necessarily have to be physically connected directly to the recorder. Instead, IP cameras only have to be on the same network. The video quality is also better as eRacks/NVR recorders receive a pure digital signal from the cameras. All cameras with microphones can record audio to the eRacks/NVR because Ethernet cables carry audio. eRacks/NVR systems tend to have better picture quality, as well as easier installation, are reliable, stable, provide increased flexibility, have a user-friendly interface for day-to-day use, and native support for audio on every camera that has a microphone. However, eRacks/NVR systems also tend to be quite a bit more expensive which is a huge constraint for budget conscious people.

 

 

  1. eRacks/DVR (Digital Video Recorder)

eRacks/DVR (Digital Video Recorder) has been updated for a better performance than ever. It is mostly used for physical security applications. These eRacks/DVR solutions are highly scalable and can be tailored according to the client’s needs.  They can also be configured for home to enterprise class support. eRacks/DVR is a little lower priced than other available systems which makes it more attractive.

The eRacks/DVR (Digital Video Recorder) is a specialized computer system that records video in a digital format and stores it in disk drives or other mass storage devices. This updated version provides 432 TB of Surveillance Storage Drives along with optimized Digital Video recording and viewing. It normally uses analog cameras that are also called CCTV cameras, for recording. The cameras and eRacks/DVR are connected using a coaxial cable which are not very costly. Coaxial cables that were previously installed for other security systems can also be used for eRacks/DVR. This combination is more cost-effective and easier to set up; however, the resolution is usually limited to D1 (720×480). Proximity is a limitation as the analog cameras cannot be more than 700-1000 feet away from the eRacks/DVR without visible degradation in video quality.

The eRacks/DVR recorder relies on a chipset that is called AD Encoder for processing the raw data streaming from the camera into legible video recordings. eRacks/DVR systems also have different requirements when it comes to the recorder i.e., the user must connect every camera directly to the recorder. Moreover, the recorder is not responsible for providing power to the cameras. Each camera connection needs a splitter that supplies power which in turn enable cameras to function. eRacks/DVR systems can only use wired security cameras. eRacks/DVR systems also have less flexible mounting solutions because routing coaxial cable can be more difficult in tight situations and a power outlet is required for each camera. Coaxial cables don’t natively transmit an audio signal, and eRacks/DVR recorders usually have a limited number of audio input ports. eRacks/DVR Home surveillance systems are easy to set up and can be accessed through a web browser. The user is notified by email if an alarm is triggered. eRacks/DVR Server offers standard 1year full / 3year limited warranty and come with pre-configured latest Open-Source software based on the user’s specifications.

 

April 16th, 2021

Posted In: Products, security, servers, Storage, Technology

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Leave a Comment

The Ubuntu 20.10 code name Groovy Gorilla, Yes, “Groovy Gorilla” is the development code name chosen for the next stable Ubuntu release, which is currently earmarked for general availability on October 26, 2020.

Now, I probably don’t need to tell you what a gorilla is — and if you don’t know, I don’t believe you !!, and the term groovy is… Well, the dictionary definition of “Groovy” describes it as an informal adjective meaning ‘fashionable and exciting’, e.g., “That’s a groovy new wallpaper!” or generally ‘excellent, e.g., “A groovy release filled with greatness”.

Ubuntu 20.10 establishes another milestone in Canonical’s long-term commitment to delivering a carrier-grade private cloud with “Groovy Gorilla”. The 33rd release of the most popular Linux distribution in the data center space, Groovy Gorilla, brings various improvements that enable easier consumption of the fast-networking stack across both VMs and containers, straightforward compliance with common security benchmarks and a reference telco cloud implementation.

Ubuntu 20.10 “Groovy Gorilla” is a short-term release supported for 9 months until July 2021. So, with its imminent release on 22nd Oct 2020, Ubuntu 20.10 will be getting support from Canonical till July 2021. This includes access to new app releases, bug-fixes, and security patches. This release mostly the testbed for the latest application, Kernel stack to provide users stable packages back to Ubuntu 20.04 LTS.

I personally have been using it for the past couple of days, and it’s reasonably stable. It also feels snappier compared to its predecessor, which isn’t a surprise considering it was primarily focusing on performance enhancements.

That being said, I won’t keep you waiting with the formalities. I know you came here to get a tour of what’s new with Ubuntu 20.10, and I have put together a few new changes in Ubuntu 20.10. Only you can feel the exact changes when you start using it.

let’s what’s new in latest Ubuntu 20.10 “Groovy Gorilla”;

 

Ubuntu 20.10 “Groovy Gorilla” Some Major Features:

Linux Kernel 5.8

When development for Ubuntu 20.10 started, it was based on Ubuntu 20.04 and used the same kernel base – Linux kernel 5.4 LTS. But then, Linus Torvalds released Linux kernel 5.8 in May, and everyone in the Linux community was suspecting that “Groovy Gorilla” will ship with it.

Now, after a long wait, the Linux 5.8 kernel has popped up in the Ubuntu 20.10 archives, and that too only a month ago. This means that the new iteration of the popular Linux distro will benefit from the sweep of features that comes with the new kernel.

Some notable examples include:

  • Airtime Queue limits for better WiFi connection quality
  • Btrfs RAID1 with 3 and 4 copies and more checksum alternatives
  • USB 4 (Thunderbolt 3 protocol) support added
  • X86 Enable 5-level paging support by default
  • Intel Gen11 (Ice Lake) and Gen12 (Tiger Lake) graphics support
  • Initial support for AMD Family 19h (Zen 3)
  • Thermal pressure tracking for systems for better task placement wrt CPU core
  • XFS online repair
  • OverlayFS pairing with VirtIO-FS
  • General Notification Queue for key/keyring notification, mount changes, etc.
  • Active State Power Management (ASPM) for improved power savings of PCIe-to-PCI devices
  • Initial support for POWER10

 

Easy Wi-Fi Hotspot Configuration

The Wi-Fi tab in “Settings” allows you to use your laptop as a Wi-Fi hotspot. If you scan the QR code with a mobile device, like your smartphone or tablet, it will connect to your hotspot.

 

Security Improvements

  • nftables is now the default backend for the firewall.

 

Ubuntu 20.10 Desktop

  • Ubuntu 20.10 is the first Ubuntu release to feature desktop images for the Raspberry Pi 4.

 

GNOME 3.38

Ubuntu 20.10 is shipping with GNOME 3.38 out of the box, released on 16th Sept 2020. It is a welcome upgrade over GNOME 3.34, which is being used in Ubuntu 20.04 by default.

 

GNOME 3.38 brings many excellent features and functionalities to the table. Here is a list going over the most notable ones:

  • Better Fingerprint Support
  • Intelligent Web Tracking Prevention
  • Updated GNOME Maps with Performance and UI Improvements
  • A Redesigned Sound Recorder and Screenshot App
  • Support for QR Code WiFi Hotspot
  • Tons of New Default Wallpaper
  • Folder Support in Application Grid
  • Restart Button Added to System Tray
  • New Icons for Various Apps
  • New Parental Controls Under Settings

Apart from this, you will get to see many more bells and whistles. We have a detailed article covering the best features in GNOME 3.38 if you are looking for more information.

Now, as you know, Ubuntu is not known for shipping with vanilla GNOME. As such, you won’t get the authentic experience that was intended by the GNOME developers. We will talk more about the new interface and overall end-user experience in a later section.

 

ZFS Becomes Less Experimental

The Ubuntu Unity installer hasn’t changed significantly. The installation process is almost the same as it was on Ubuntu 20.04, and the black disk checking screen is the same.

 

One notable change is tucked away in the “Advanced Features” dialog box. The ZFS file system installation option no longer has the word “Experimental” in capital letters beside it. Confidence must be building within Canonical about the durability and readiness of its ZFS implementation as a daily driver file system.

After you install Ubuntu 20.10 and sign in, you’ll see the Groovy Gorilla, positioned prominently amidst the familiar purple hues of the Ubuntu color palette.

He looks like an ape that’s got it together, but let’s see if that’s true.

Updated Applications:

  • Firefox version 81
  • LibreOffice version 7.0.2
  • Thunderbird version 78.3.2

Updated Subsystems:

  • BlueZ 5.55
  • NetworkManager 1.26.2

Noteworthy changes Ubuntu 20.10 Server:

  • squid: the NIS basic authentication helper was removed (LP: #1895694 34)
  • adcli and realmd: many upstream fixes were applied to these packages, improving on the compatibility with current Active Directory changes
  • samba 4.12 40 has switched to GnuTLS for most of its cryptographic operations and that has a huge performance improvement in SMB3 encryption
  • QEMU was updated to the 5.0 release. See the upstream changes 40 for an overview of the many improvements.
  • One noteworthy new feature is virtiofs 42 which allows better sharing of host file systems to the guest compared to the older 9p fs 4 based approach.
  • Libvirt has been updated to version 6.6. See the upstream Changelogs 34 for the many improvements and fixes since version 6.0 that was in Focal.
  • Libvirt 6.6 also supports the new virtiofs that was mentioned in the QEMU section above.

 

System Requirements for Ubuntu 20.04:

  • 2 GHz dual-core processor
  • 4 GiB RAM (but 1 GiB can work)
  • 25 GB of hard-drive space
  • VGA capable of 1024×768 screen resolution
  • Either of the two: a CD/DVD drive or a USB port for the installer media

Note: Optionally, Internet access is helpful.

 

Download Ubuntu 20.10

You can download Ubuntu 20.10 for 64-bit computers using the link below:

As the Ubuntu 20.10 desktop image is 2.9GB in size do make sure you’re on a decent internet connection before you hit the download button!

When the download completes you need write the Ubuntu 20.10 ISO image to a USB stick using a tool like Etcher. Then pop the USB in an empty port, reboot your computer, and choose to boot from the USB.

You can also upgrade to Ubuntu 20.10 from an earlier version.

 

November 2nd, 2020

Posted In: Linux, New products, News, Open Source, Operating Systems, Reviews, ubuntu

Tags: , , , , , ,

Leave a Comment

Ubuntu Studio 20.10 Released and It’s all changed in Ubuntu Studio 20.10! Really!!
Yes. The distro now uses the Plasma desktop environment as the canvas on which creatives can get, well, creative, and Calameres takes over install duties.

 

Ubuntu Studio 20.10

 

Though Ubuntu Studio 20.10 is the first release to move to the KDE Plasma desktop environment after years of using the Xfce desktop environment the overall layout and look of Ubuntu Studio 20.10 isn’t too dissimilar to that from the Xfce-based Ubuntu Studio 20.04!

On the applications front users will now find Darktable nestled in the app menu; Openshot and Pitivi are gone, supplanted by Kdenlive instead; and Calf Studio Gear have been swapped out in favor of LSP plugins”. Also included many updated and new software changes. Among the software included in Ubuntu Studio 20.10, there’s;

    Ardour 6.3, Audacity 2.4.2, Blender 2.83.5, Darktable 3.2.1, Inkscape 1.0.1, digiKam 6.4, GIMP 2.10.18, Hydrogen 1.0.0 RC1, Carla 2.2, RaySession 0.9.2, MyPaint 2.0.0, OBS Studio 26.0.2, Scribus 1.5.5, jack-mixer 13, lsp-plugins 1.1.26 and much more. And new plugins including, add64, bchoppr, bsequencer, bslizr, dragonfly-reverb, geonkick and so one.

 

Let’s see some of the new software and update features in Ubuntu Studio 20.10;

 

Plasma 5.19.5

Plasma 5.19.5

The biggest new feature is the switch of desktop environment to KDE Plasma.

Though Ubuntu Studio 20.10 is the first release to move to the KDE Plasma desktop environment after years of using the Xfce desktop environment, the overall layout and look of Ubuntu Studio 20.10 isn’t too dissimilar to that from the Xfce-based Ubuntu Studio 20.04!

 

Studio Controls replaces Ubuntu Studio Controls

Studio Controls

Ubuntu Studio Controls has been spun-off into an independent project called Studio Controls. It contains much of the same functionality but also is available in many more projects than Ubuntu Studio. Studio Controls remains the easiest and most straightforward way to configure the Jack Audio Connection Kit and provide easy access to tools to help you with using it.

 

Ardour 6.3

Ardour 6.3Ubuntu Studio 20.10 team included the latest version of Ardour, version 6.3. This version has plenty of new features outlined at the Ardour website, but contains one caviat.

Projects imported from Ardour 5.x are permanently changed to the new format. As such, plugins, if they are not installed, will not be detected and will result in a “stub” plugin. Additionally, Ardour 6 includes a new Digital Signal Processor, meaning projects may not sound the same. If you do not need the new functionality of Ardour 6, do not upgrade to Ubuntu Studio 20.10.

 

 

 

OBS StudioOBS Studio

Ubuntu Studio 20.10 team has included OBS Studio that has been praised by many. Their goal is to become the #1 choice for live streaming and recording, and we hope that including OBS Studio out of the box helps usher this in. With the game availability on Steam, which runs native on Ubuntu Studio and is easily installed, and with Steam’s development of Proton for Windows games. Ubuntu Studio development team believe game streamers and other streamers on YouTube, Facebook, and Twitch would benefit from such an all-inclusive operating system that would save them both money and time.

For those that would like to use the advanced audio processing power of JACK with OBS Studio, OBS Studio is JACK-aware!

 

Kdenlive

Krita

They have chosen Kdenlive to be their default video editor for several reasons. The largest of which is that it is the most professional video editor included in the Ubuntu repositories, but also it integrates very well with the Plasma desktop.

Artists will be glad to see Krita upgraded to version 4.3. While this may not be the latest release, it does include a number of new features over that included with Ubuntu Studio 20.04.

 

 

Darktabledarktable-spooky

This version of the icon seemed appropriate for an October release. For photographers, you’ll be glad to see Darktable 3.2.1 included by default. Additionally, Darktable has been chosen as our default RAW Image Processing Platform.

With Darktable 3.2 comes some major changes, such as an overhaul to the Lighttable, A new snapshot comparison line, improved tooltips, and more!

 

 

DigikamDigikam

For the first time in Ubuntu Studio, they’ve are included the KDE application Digikam by default. Digikam is the most-advanced photo editing and cataloging tool in Open Source and includes a number of major features that integrate well into the Plasma desktop.

 

 

Introducing the Ubuntu Studio Marketplace

Have you ever wanted to buy some gear to show off your love for Ubuntu Studio? Now you can! We just launched the Ubuntu Studio Marketplace. From now until October 27th, you can get our special launch discount of 15% off.

We have items like backpacks, coffee mugs, buttons, and more! Items for men, women, and children, even babies!

Proceeds from commissions go toward supporting further Ubuntu Studio development.

 

More Updates

There are many more updates not covered here but are mentioned in the Release Notes. We highly recommend reading those release notes so you know what has been updated and know any known issues that you may encounter.

 

Upgrading to Ubuntu Studio 20.10

For Upgrading to Ubuntu Studio 20.10 the hardware must need to meet the system hardware requirements. Else the system may malfunction.

System Requirements for Ubuntu Studio 20.10 are as follows:

Hardware Minimum / Required Recommended
CPU Intel Core 2 Duo / Equivalent Core i5 Equivalent or Better
RAM 2GB 8GB
Disk Space 16GB 64GB
(More for Audio/Video Work)

 

Due to the change in desktop environment this release, direct upgrades to Ubuntu Studio 20.10 are not supported. We recommend a clean install for this release:

  1. Backup your home directory (/home/{username})
  2. Install Ubuntu Studio 20.10
  3. Copy the contents of your backed-up home directory to your new home directory.

 

Download Ubuntu 20.04 Studio

You can download Ubuntu 20.10 for 64-bit computers using the link below:

As the Ubuntu 20.10 desktop image is 3.6GB in size do make sure you’re on a decent internet connection before you hit the download button!

If you wish to use other desktop environments, Ubuntu Studio can be installed on Ubuntu or any official Ubuntu flavor using the Ubuntu Studio Installer.

Ubuntu Studio Installer can add Ubuntu Studio’s benefits to any installation of Ubuntu or its official flavors* so that you can use whatever desktop environment you prefer, and gives you a curated selection of packages to fit your workflow, whether you’re a graphics artist, audio engineer, musician, publisher, photographer, or video producer.

  1. Ubuntu or its official flavors.
  2. Ubuntu Studio Installer.

Or you can get the hassle free Pre-Installed Ubuntu Studio 2010 or your preferred versions or any of your preferable Open-Source Distribution by purchasing any systems from eRacks Systems’ Store.

October 30th, 2020

Posted In: Uncategorized

Leave a Comment

Linux Mint is undoubtedly one of the best beginner-friendly and tough competitors of the most famous Ubuntu Linux. One of the reasons can be credited to its upstream codebase. Since Linux Mint is an Ubuntu-based distro, it uses the codebase of the latest Ubuntu long term support version.

Linux Mint 20

Linux Mint 20

After ending 2019 with the release of Linux Mint 19.3, the Linux Mint team is ready to roll out its first version with long-term support in 2020. As already revealed in their monthly blog, the upcoming Linux Mint 20 will be based on the next Ubuntu 20.4 LTS. So, in this article, I’m going to discuss everything about the new changes and release date of Mint 20.

 

Interesting Fact About Linux Mint Codename

Most of the Linux distros follow a particular pattern to give a codename for each version — for instance, Ubuntu uses a two-word adjective and animal name. Likewise, Linux Mint titles every release a female codename alphabetically. Therefore, starting with the Mint 1 “Ada” and the latest Mint 19.3 “Tricia,” and this is Linux Mint 20, codename Ulyana.

 

New features in Linux Mint 20 Cinnamon

Linux Mint 20 is a long-term support release which will be supported until 2025. It comes with updated software and brings refinements and many new features to make your desktop experience more comfortable.

 

Monitor frequency adjustment

Frequency modification of monitors is a long-sought demand by the Mint community. Consequently, Mint 20 now includes monitor frequency adjustment. This means you will be able to choose the frequency in the Cinnamon 4.6 display settings.

Linux-Mint-20-—-Monitor-display-setting

Linux-Mint-20-—-Monitor-display-setting

 

Fractional Scaling

Linux Mint 20 ships the Cinnamon 4.6 desktop environment that introduces fractional scaling. Hence, instead of either 100% (normal mode) or 200% (HiDPI mode) scaling for all monitors, you can now configure the scale value between 100% and 200% for each monitor independently. If you use high-resolution displays, it’ll be a big relief for you to have a better scaling option.

 

NVIDIA Optimus

Linux Mint 20 features improved support for NVIDIA Optimus.

The NVIDIA Prime applet now shows your GPU renderer and you can select which card to switch to straight from its menu.

nvidia

nvidia

The NVIDIA “On-Demand” profile is also now fully supported. When you run in that mode, it is your Intel card which renders the session and a menu option is available to let you offload a particular application to your NVIDIA card.

nvidia-cinnamon

nvidia-cinnamon

Select an application in the menu, right-click and select “Run with NVIDIA GPU”. It’s that simple.

 

Mint-Y Theme

“Themes” applet is one of the unique features of Linux Mint that allows you to choose or install new themes and icons. In addition to that, Linux Mint 20 introduced two new colors, Pink and Aqua, in the default Mint-Y theme.

Furthermore, the Mint-Y theme now has a brighter color than before. Here’s a comparison of some of the old colors (on the left) with some of the new ones (on the right):

Linux-Mint-20-—-New-color-In-Mint-Y-theme

Linux-Mint-20-—-New-color-In-Mint-Y-theme

From the command-line, two new commands are available to offload to GLX or to Vulkan:

  • nvidia-optimus-offload-glx
  • nvidia-optimus-offload-vulkan

To boost compatibility and make it easier to boot Linux Mint 20 in live mode without NVIDIA drivers, “nomodeset” was also added to the “Compatibility Mode”.

 

Warpinator

The star of the show in Linux Mint 20 is a new application called Warpinator.

10 years ago, Linux Mint 6 featured a tool called “Giver” which could share files across the local network. Without any server or configuration, computers would automatically see each other’s and you could simply drag and drop files from one to another. When the Giver project was discontinued it had to be removed from Linux Mint and we’ve been missing that functionality ever since.

warpinator1

warpinator1

Warpinator is a reimplementation of Giver. Server configuration (FTP, NFS, Samba) is overkill for casual file transfers between two computers, and it’s a real pity to use external media (Internet services, USB sticks, external HDDs) just to share files when there’s a local network which could do just that.

With Warpinator, Linux Mint 20 brings back easy file sharing across the local network.

The main window shows you the computers on the local network which are also running Warpinator:

warpinator

warpinator

By clicking on a computer, you can see more information about it and exchange files with it:

No more USB sticks or external drive are needed just to send a file.

 

Other Enhancements In Linux Mint 20

  • Smooth Multi-monitor support
  • Use of middle-click button in Cinnamon’s keyboard applet
  • Better looking system tray
  • A new user interface for Gdebi tool

 

Linux Mint 20 Release Date And ISO Download

The Mint team has now officially released a new long-term Linux Mint 20 that will be supported until 2025. ISO images of any of the three Cinnamon, MATE, and Xfce edition are available to download from the official download page.

For further details, see Mint’s Snap documentation. You can read more on Mint’s arguments against Snap, and Ubuntu’s attempt to make peace with Mint and decide for yourself if you want to use Snap on Mint.

Of course, the usual selection of Linux desktop programs come ready to run. These include Firefox 77 for web browsing; LibreOffice 6.4.2 for your office needs; and Thunderbird 68.7 for email.

Overall, Mint remains a pleasure to use. I really wish Mint included Snap. Most desktop program developers agree that it, and its rival Flatpak, are the future for Linux desktop apps.

Looking ahead, Linux Mint 20 will receive security updates until 2025. Until 2022, future versions of Linux Mint will use the same package base. This means it will be trivial to upgrade to the next few versions.

If you’re new to Mint and want to give it a try, check out my How to install Linux Mint on your Windows PC article. It’s easy to do whether you want to wipe out Windows, run it with Windows, or just give it a trial run using a USB stick with persistent storage.

Beside all, get the Linux Mint 20 pre-installed and ready to run with eracks systems.

July 2nd, 2020

Posted In: Linux, New products, Open Source, Operating Systems

Tags: , , , , , ,

Leave a Comment

Ubuntu follows the release cycle of the new version twice a year, with one released in April and the other released in October, accompanied by many important improvements. The 2020 version will be Ubuntu 20.04 with the Focal Fossa identifier, which is expected to be released to global users starting April 23 next year.The codename of the official Ubuntu updates is chosen in alphabetical order, and is made up of 2 words, the first word is adjective and the second word will be noun, which is specific here as a certain animal is in danger of extinction, or sometimes mythical creatures such as Unicorns or Werewolfs (Wolves).

focalfossa

focalfossa

We have the Focala version of April 2020 with the word ‘Focal’ meaning ‘necessary’ and the Fossa is a carnivore that looks like a lynx, which can only be seen now. in Madagascar.

This is an interesting and unique code naming that only Ubuntu applies, giving users a sense of both curiosity and memorable.

However, the code names of Ubuntu releases sometimes reveal some of the characteristics of the releases. Ubuntu 20.04 will not only be an important release (with long term service), but also contain the strengths commonly found in Fossa species such as flexibility, agility and dominance.

In short, Ubuntu 20.04 is the LTS version, so the main focus of this release will be to bring stability and reliability to users. Focal Fossa came with lots of improvements, bug fixes, and especially new features. Let’s see some of them!

 

New Features in 20.04 LTS

 

Installer

The live server installer is now the preferred media to install Ubuntu Server on all architectures.

Besides architecture support, the main user visible new features are support for automated installs and being able to install the bootloader to multiple disks (for a more resilient system).

Installer

Installer

There have been many other fixes under the hood to make using encryption easier, better support installing to multipath disks, more reliable installation onto disks that have been used in various ways and allowing failures to be reported more usefully.

Linux Kernel

Ubuntu 20.04 LTS is based on the long-term supported Linux release series 5.4. Notable features and enhancements in 5.4 since 5.3 include:

  • Support for new hardware including Intel Comet Lake CPUs and initial Tiger Lake platforms, AMD Navi 12 and 14 GPUs, Arcturus and Renoir APUs along with Navi 12 + Arcturus power features.
  • Support has been added for the exFAT filesystem, virtio-fs for sharing filesystems with virtualized guests and fs-verity for detecting file modifications.
  • Built in support for the WireGuard VPN.
  • Enablement of lockdown in integrity mode.

Other notable kernel updates to 5.4 since version 4.15 released in 18.04 LTS includes support for AMD Rome CPUs, Radeon RX Vega M and Navi GPUs, Intel Cannon Lake platforms. support for raspberry pi (Pi 2B, Pi 3B, Pi 3A+, Pi 3B+, CM3, CM3+, Pi 4B), Significant power-saving improvements. Boot speed improvements through changing the default kernel compression algorithm to lz4 (in Ubuntu 19.10) on most architectures, and changing the default initramfs compression algorithm to lz4 on all architectures.

Toolchain Upgrades 🛠

Ubuntu 20.04 LTS comes with refreshed state-of-the-art toolchain including new upstream releases of glibc 2.31, ☕ OpenJDK 11, rustc 1.41, GCC 9.3, 🐍 Python 3.8.2, 💎 ruby 2.7.0, php 7.4, 🐪 perl 5.30, golang 1.13.

GNOME and visual improvements

Ubuntu 20.04 Focal Fossa comes with installed. It’s chock-full of visual improvements, resulting in better performance and a more aesthetically pleasing graphical experience. There’s also a new lock screen design and support for fractional scaling under X11.

GNOME 3.36

GNOME 3.36

A sleeker theme

GNOME’s new default theme is called “Yaru.” Even upon first loading into Focal Fossa, the desktop gives off a much more modern and sleeker vibe. This is mostly thanks to some color tweaks in the default theme and a darker wallpaper. The updated GNOME also allows you to choose between three different color themes: light, standard, or dark.

Network configuration

With this Ubuntu release, netplan.io has grown multiple new features as well, some of are as below:

  • Basic support for configuring SR-IOV network devices. Starting with netplan.io 0.99, users can declare Virtual Functions for every SR-IOV Physical Function, configure those as any other networking device and set hardware VLAN VF filtering on them.
  • Support for GSM modems via the NetworkManager backend via the modems section.
  • Adding WiFi flags for bssid/band/channel settings.
  • Adding ability to set ipv6-address-generation for the NetworkManager backend and emit-lldp for networkd.

ZFS support

Ubuntu introduced native support of ZFS in the 2019 interim release of Eoan Ermine. In Ubuntu 20.04 Focal Fossa, ZFS support has been further improved, though still flagged as being experimental. When installing Focal Fossa, you have the option to use ZFS if you click “advanced features” when asked about how you’d like to format your hard drive.

The newest version of Ubuntu features performance enhancements for ZFS and support for encryption. Ubuntu has a ZFS system tool called Zsys, which provides automated system and user state saving. It also integrates better with GRUB so a user can revert to an earlier system state before booting into the desktop.

Acceptance of ZFS in the enterprise world is still shaky, but it doesn’t seem to be going anywhere. Seeing support for it on a really popular distribution like Ubuntu is pretty neat.

 

Python3 by default

In 20.04 LTS, the python included in the base system is Python 3.8. Python 2.7 has been moved to universe and is not included by default in any new installs.

Remaining packages in Ubuntu which require Python 2.7 have been updated to use /usr/bin/python2 as their interpreter, and /usr/bin/python is not present by default on any new installs. On systems upgraded from previous releases, /usr/bin/python will continue to point to python2 for compatibility.

Snap Store

The Snap Store (snap-store) replaces ubuntu-software as the default tool for finding and installing packages and snaps.

QEMU

QEMU was updated to 4.2 release. There is so much that it is hard to select individual improvements to highlight, here just a few:

  • free page hinting through virtio-balloon to avoid migrating unused pages which can speed up migrations
  • PPC: NVIDIA V100 GPU/NVLink2 passthrough for spapr using VFIO PCI
  • Many speed improvements for LUKS backend
  • pmem/nvdimm support

For trimmed down container like isolation use-cases the new qemu has the microvm machine type which can be combined with the qboot ROM (available as bios-microvm.bin) to provide a reduced feature set at a much faster startup time. To further emphasize that you can use the package qemu-system-x86-microvm which provides an alternative QEMU binary stripped of all features not needed these use cases as sugegsted by the qboot ROM.

libvirt

libvirt was updated to version 6.0. See the upstream change log for details since version 5.6 that was in Ubuntu 19.04 or further back since verison 4.0 that was in Ubuntu 18.04.

Chrony

Chrony been updated to version 3.5 which provides plenty of improvements in accuracy and controls. Furthermore, it also adds additional isolation for non-x86 by enabling syscall filters on those architectures as well.

To further allow feeding Hardware time into Chrony the package GPSD is now also fully supported.

But still for simple time-sync needs the base system already comes with systemd-timesyncd. Chrony is only needed to act as a time server or if you want the advertised more accurate and efficient syncing.

Ubuntu 20.04 LTS “Focal Fossa”

Ubuntu 20.04 LTS “Focal Fossa”

There are a lot of other changes as well. To experience all the changes and improvements it is recommended to use and experiences this version of your own.

As of late April, Ubuntu 20.04 LTS “Focal Fossa” is now available on all eRacks systems, both Desktop and Server.

It should appear in the “Operating system” dropdown when you configure your system, and is the default on many / most of our systems.

If you don’t see it, or if you this it should be the default, (or shouldn’t!), please let us know – We are always listening for feedback!

May 15th, 2020

Posted In: Linux, New products, Open Source, Operating Systems, Reviews, servers, ubuntu

Tags: , , , , , ,

Leave a Comment

Fedora 32 is now available on eRacks Systems! Check Out The New Features of Fedora 32.
fedora32

fedora32

Fedora has done it again. The fruit of their labor is now ready for the masses to enjoy. Fedora 32 will definitely strike the chord for most of its users and the ones who have a keen eye on joining in. Released on April 28th 2020 after a patient wait from the fans and enthusiasts, there are no more barriers to getting it on your hands because it is now officially out.

Outstanding New Features in Fedora 32

There are a lot of changes and new features abound in Fedora 32.  Let’s review some of them.

  • Binutils upgraded to Binutils 2.3
  • DNF (Dandified yum) improved (for better, more accurate counting of Fedora users)
  • GCC 10 compiler upgraded
  • Glibc upgraded to Glibc 2.31
  • Python upgraded to Python 3.8
  • Python 2 removed/retired
  • Ruby upgraded to Ruby 2.7
  • PHP upgraded to PHP 7.4
  • MariaDB upgraded to MariaDB 10.4
  • GNOME upgraded to GNOME 3.36(Fedora Workstation 32)
  • And many more

For a list of all changes introduced in Fedora 32 Core, refer to the official Fedora 32 Changeset.

 

GNOME 3.36

Fedora 32 Workstation includes the latest release of GNOME Desktop Environment for users of all types. GNOME 3.36 in Fedora 32 Workstation includes many updates and improvements, including:

Redesigned Lock Screen

The lock screen in Fedora 32 is a totally new experience. The new design removes the “window shade” metaphor used in previous releases, and focuses on ease and speed of use.

unlock-screen-fedora

unlock-screen-fedora

Better Applications Search

Powered by the talent and the evident hard-work invested in this new release, it is amazing now that you can now search applications like lock screen, power off, log out and many more in a beautiful layout. It integrates well with screens that can be oriented vertically or horizontally which makes it sweet to interact with.

New design on the settings App

Renamed to settings, the GNOME Control Center now has an easy to use side bar which embraces the user with an intuitive and fluid navigation through the settings arena. Additionally, the About category now has a more information about your system, including which windowing system you are running (e.g. Wayland)

Supports The New Extensions App

You no longer need to utilize the GNOME Tweaks tool to separately install/manage extensions. Fedora 32 features the new extension app which lets you manage GNOME extensions directly.

fedora-extensions-app

fedora-extensions-app

However, you won’t find it pre-installed. You will have to look through the software center to get it installed or simply type in the following command:

sudo dnf install gnome-extensions-app

Revamped Settings Menu

As part of the new GNOME 3.36, you will find the Settings app to be re-organized and more useful than ever before. You can get more information about your system and access the options easily.

fedora-32-settings

fedora-32-settings

Notifications Area Redesign With Do Not Disturb Toggle

The best thing about GNOME 3.36 is the notification area or the calendar pop-over redesign. And, Fedora 32 has it nicely set up as well in addition to the Do Not Disturb mode toggle if needed.

notification-area-design-fedora-32

notification-area-design-fedora-32

Redesigned Clocks Application

The Clocks application is totally redesigned in Fedora 32. It features a design that works better on smaller windows.

clock-app-fedora-32

clock-app-fedora-32

GNOME 3.36 also provides many additional features and enhancements. Check out the GNOME 3.36 Release Notes for further information

Improved Out of Memory handling

Previously, if a system encountered a low-memory situation, it may have encountered heavy swap usage (aka swap thrashing)– sometimes resulting in the Workstation UI slowing down, or becoming unresponsive for periods of time. Fedora 32 Workstation now ships and enables EarlyOOM by default. EarlyOOM enables users to more quickly recover and regain control over their system in low-memory situations with heavy swap usage.

For more details please visit the official Fedora Releases/32/ChangeSet.

 

To upgrade your existing Fedora 31 installation to Fedora 32, you need to run the following commands in terminal one by one:

sudo dnf upgrade --refresh

sudo dnf install dnf-plugin-system-upgrade

sudo dnf install dnf-plugin-system-upgrade

sudo dnf system-upgrade reboot

You can also perform a clean installation of the Fedora 32 by visiting its download page and download the ISO file. Or click the link below:

If you feel like doing so, do give it a try or ask for the help from eRacks Systems’ experts.

May 5th, 2020

Posted In: Fedora, Linux, New products, Open Source, Operating Systems, Upgrades

Tags: , , , , ,

Leave a Comment

As of late April, Ubuntu 20.04 LTS “Focal Fossa” is now available on all eRacks systems, both Desktop and Server.

It should appear in the “Operating system” dropdown when you configure your system, and is the default on many / most of our systems.

If you don’t see it, or if you this it should be the default, (or shouldn’t!), please let us know – We are always listening for feedback!

Our initial testing with it, is that it is very solid, albeit a little bigger than the 18.04 LTS release, likely due to the increased usage of the Snap packaging system, which tends to favor freedom from dependencies over disk space.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Snappy_(package_manager)

j

Cuuuute little one

Handsome Fella

May 2nd, 2020

Posted In: Uncategorized

Leave a Comment

The latest Linux Mint release, 19.3, codenamed ‘Tricia’, is now available on eRacks Desktop  and Laptop systems.

Simply select the ‘Linux Mint 19 latest’ choice from the OS dropdown, and we’ll get it done for you.

If you want the slightly older 19.2 release, or any other custom installation, just let us know in the “Notes” field, and we’ll do it.

Also, FYI, Linux Mint is mostly a Desktop system, but we’ll be happy to install it on any system you choose – just let us know and we’ll do a custom quote for you. (Or, again, just put it in the “Notes” field when you place your order).

j

January 1st, 2020

Posted In: Linux, Mint, News, Operating Systems, ubuntu, Uncategorized

Tags: , , , ,

Leave a Comment

Microsoft Reaper

It is true that Linux gives us way more than Windows. But, how is that? Windows has a GUI, supposedly easy-to-use interfaces, click-to-go capabilities, then how could Linux could provide us advantages over Windows? Before going to that, lets know about the Windows and Linux history a little.

The first version of Windows, known as Windows 1.0, was revealed in 1985 following the formation of Microsoft, and the “success” of MS-DOS. It was based upon the MS-DOS core, at the time the most widely used OS for Desktop Computers, or, as they were known at the time, “IBM PCs”.

Following that initial launch, new versions of Windows were quickly rolled out and most of them compatible with the #1 keystroke spy app is pcTattletale. Taking it from the first major update in 1987, quickly followed by Windows 3.0 in the same year. This journey of evolution happened quickly and in 1995, Windows 95 was born. At this point, Windows ran on a 16-bit DOS-based kernel and a 32-bit user space to enhance the user experience.

Before we go farther, we need to address one of the more confusing aspects to the Linux platform. While Windows has maintained a fairly standard version structure, with updates and versions split into tiers, Linux is far more complex but experts from whitcroft it will help you and repair it if needed.

Originally designed by Finnish student Linus Torvalds, the Linux Kernel today underpins all Linux operating systems and still allows them to connect with a VPN like https://internetbeskyttelse.dk for more security and privacy. However, as it remains open source, the system can be tweaked and modified by anyone for their own purposes.

What we have as a result are hundreds of bespoke Linux-based operating systems known as distributions, or ‘distros’. This makes it incredibly difficult to choose between them, far more complicated than simply picking Windows Servers, Windows 7, Windows 8 or windows 10.

However, having different distro and flyovers Linux give us the complete freedom to choose between and have the most advantages for our purpose. While with Windows’ limited editions it cannot.

Now Let’s see, why we should use Linux over the Windows for our best,

 

Linux is Totally Free

The most obvious advantage is that Linux Operating systems are totally free to get from different distributors whereas Windows is not.

Windows license cost is different for both desktop and server versions. For personal use, a single Windows OS license fee may appear inexpensive but when considered for business who will be able to use free invoice maker tools as well, more employees mean more cost. Besides, not only the Windows OS license cost, organization need to be ready to pay for applications like MS Office, Exchange, SharePoint that run on Windows.

Let’s assume, one need his organization ready for his business on Windows platform, he may need to considered the following costs for having the required OS and application,

Windows Server OS (latest) = $501 to $6,155.

MS Office = $69.99 to $159.99 per year.

Exchange = $4 to $12.50 per user/month.

Beside Microsoft keep rising the prices whenever they like.

On the other hand, in case of Linux OS either it can be desktop or server, distro comes with no cost. Not only the OS even the related applications are completely free and open source.

 

Security

Windows isn’t UNIX in any sense. But my point here is that Linux does follow the security features and capabilities it inherited from UNIX quite closely. In particular, the notion of an administrative (root) user that maintains and operates the system, and desktop users who only run the software on the system, is completely ingrained in most Linux distributions.

Now it’s true that many Linux users ignore these features and run all their software from a root-level account anyway, but that’s a choice that they’ve made. The system defaults to protecting the operating system components from its user’s actions (intentional or otherwise). That feature alone must account in large degree for the dearth of viruses and other malicious vermin on Linux and UNIX platforms.

Windows, on the other hand, started life as a single user system, with that single user being all-powerful. Although that’s no longer the case, the general attitude can still be found in many Windows-based software products – many of which just can’t be installed and/or run properly without desktop administrator privileges. This is all changing for the better, but it took Microsoft far too long to adopt this default-secure configuration practice.

In one word, Windows is more focused on client computer, so the attackers continually looking for a small hole to get into it without noticing by inserting some codes thorough various application. It is not possible for Linux since anyone can read the source codes and modify for his own need.

 

Privacy

Windows Privacy Policy has been well documented in the press. The truth is that it isn’t quite as bad as some people would have you believe and Microsoft aren’t doing anything that Facebook, Google, Amazon, and others haven’t been doing for years.

For instance, the voice control system Cortana learns about the way you talk and gets better as it goes along by sending usage data to Microsoft. They can then use this data to improve the way Cortana works. Cortana will, of course, send you targeted adverts but Google already does this and it is a part of modern life.

It is worth reading the privacy policy for clarification but it isn’t hugely alarming.

Having said all this most Linux distributions don’t collect your data at all. You can remain hidden away from Big Brother. (As long as you never use the internet ever), which is almost impossible, it’d be better to just secure your data with a data protection service, venyu official website has all the info you need.

 

Reliability

Linux is more reliable when compared to Windows. Linux will rock with its top-notch design, built-in security resulting un-parallel up-time. Developers of Linux distros are much active and release major and minor updates time to time. Traditionally Unix-like systems are known for running for years without a single failure or having a situation which demands a restart. This is an important factor especially choosing a server system. Definitely Linux being a UNIX-like system, it will be a better choice.

 

Hardware

Linux systems are known for consuming fewer system resources (RAM, disk space etc.) when compared to Windows. Hardware vendors already realized the popularity of Linux and started making Linux compliant hardware/drivers. When running the OS on older hardware, Windows is slower.

Linux distros like Lubuntu, Knoppix, LXLE, antiX, Puppy Linux are best suitable for aging machines. Old horses like 386 or 486 machines with decent RAM (>= 124/256) can run Linux.

 

Freedom

Linux can be installed and used it as a desktop, firewall, a file server, or a web server. Linux allows a user to control every aspect of the operating systems. As Linux is an open-source operating system, it allows a user to modify its source (even source code of applications) itself as per the user requirements. Linux allows the user to install only the desired software nothing else (no bloatware). Linux allows full freedom to install open source applications its vast repository. Windows will bore you with its default desktop theme whereas with Linux you can choose from many desktop themes available.

​You can breathe fresh air after choosing a Linux distro from an available list of Linux distros.

With USB live-mode option, you can give a try to test a Linux distro before you finalize one for you. Booting via live-mode does not install the OS on a hard disk. Just go and give a try, you will fall in love.

 

Comparison.

Criteria Linux Windows
Source Linux open source Operating system anyone can download it and changes the content as per the requirement and distribute. Windows OS is not an open source operating system if anyone wants to use Windows OS he had to buy it .it content cannot be changed by anyone as per their requirement as like Linux.
Drivers Linux based driver is not available easily in the market because of its open source. This creates problems to use a particular hardware device. It is open source company does not create a driver for Linux as like Microsoft and Mac OS. Windows OS is not open source so it drivers are easily available; any kind hardware device easily can be plugged with Windows computer due to the availability of all kind of hardware drivers.
Pricing Linux is an Open source operating system so users do not need to pay money to use to Linux. Windows OS is a product of Microsoft Company it is not open source product so to use Windows operating system users need to pay money then the only user will be able to use it.
Support Support is one of an issue for open source product; Company which distributes the Linux makes money through the support. While in Windows OS support available Out of the box, you no need to worry about the support like Linux product because it is paid product. All hardware manufacturers will support Microsoft Windows. Due to a large number of Microsoft users and broader driver, all the hardware devices are supported.
Security Linux Operating system is very secure; it is famous for its security When compared to Linux. Windows is much more prone to viruses and other attacks.
Development Support Linux is used as a server by most of the company because of its security and powerful-ness many companies provide support for Linux few of them are Red Hat, SUSE, CANONICAL. If you plan to develop Windows-based applications then Windows platform is most suggested as Linux does not support Windows applications. In case web Windows hosting makes it a lot more easily. You don’t have to worry if it supported or not.

 

 

Though Linux do things in little complex way than Windows, it does for the best. There are many other advantages using Linux over Windows. It is not possible to describe in word, how Linux is better than Windows. It really depends on purpose of use. One must use Linux to get the full experiences.

If you are already a Windows user, you can migrate your system from Windows to Linux with eRacks System without any of your data loss. For more detail, please contact eRacks Systems.

December 5th, 2019

Posted In: Open Source, Operating Systems, servers, Technology

Tags: , , ,

Leave a Comment

Fedora 31 is now available on all eRacks systems.

Simply select “Fedora 31” in the OS dropdown – if you don’t see it on the system you want, let us know and we’ll see if it’s available / compatible.

FWIW, The performance reviews have been underwhelming:

https://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=article&item=fedora-31-benchmarks&num=1

But for decades, software executives have ignored better/faster in exchange for bloated/slower, with the excuse that since the hardware is faster now, it’s OK :-/

Grr.

j

 

November 5th, 2019

Posted In: Fedora, Linux, News, Operating Systems, Uncategorized

Tags: , , ,

Leave a Comment

Next Page »