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Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8

Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 (RHEL 8) is now available on all eRacks Systems with lots of developer-friendly capabilities.

Red Hat Inc. announced the official release of Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 8 on May 7, 2019.

Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 (RHEL 8) comes with new features and improvements as compared to the predecessor – RHEL 7. Some of the new features of RHEL 8 are as described below.

Kernel & OS

Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8.0 is based on Fedora 28 and upstream kernel 4.18. This provides users with a secure, stable and consistent foundation across hybrid cloud and Data Center deployments with tools needed to support all levels of workloads.

 

Storage and File systems

Stratis is the new local storage manager for RHEL 8. It provides managed file systems on top of pools of storage with additional features to the user. Stratis provides ZFS/Btrfs-style features by integrating layers Linux’s device mapper subsystem, and the XFS filesystem.

Stratis supports LUKSv2 disk encryption and Network-Bound Disk Encryption (NBDE) for more robust data security.

  • With Stratis, you can easily perform storage tasks such as:
  • Maintain file systems
  • Manage snapshots and thin provisioning
  • Automatically grow file system sizes as needed

Pools are created from one or more storage devices, and volumes are created from a pool. The file system is created on top of a volume, hence resizing a volume automatically resize FS as well. The default file system used by Stratis is XFS.

Other notable Storage features are:

  • The XFS file system now supports shared copy-on-write data extent functionality. This enables two or more files to share a common set of data blocks. Creating shared copies does not utilize disk I/O nor consume additional disk space. The files sharing common blocks act like regular files.
  • The shared copy-on-write data extents are now enabled by default when creating an XFS file system, starting with the xfsprogs package version 4.17.0-2.el8.
  • Support for Virtual Data Optimizer (VDO) on all of the architectures supported by RHEL 8.
  • LUKS2 is now the default format for encrypting volumes. This replaces the legacy LUKS (LUKS1) format distributed in RHEL 7. LUKS2 provides encrypted volumes with metadata auto-recovery and redundancy if partial metadata corruption is encountered.

 

Virtualization

  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 is distributed with qemu-kvm 2.12 with – Q35 guest machine type support, UEFI guest boot support, vCPU hot plug and hot unplug, NUMA tuning and pinning in the guest and guest I/O threading
  • The QEMU emulator introduces the sandboxing feature. QEMU sandboxing provides configurable limitations to what systems calls QEMU can perform, and thus makes virtual machines more secure
  • KVM virtualization now supports the User-Mode Instruction Prevention (UMIP) feature, which can help prevent user-space applications from accessing to system-wide settings
  • KVM virtualization now supports the 5-level paging feature, which significantly increases the physical and virtual address space that the host and guest systems can use.
  • NVIDIA vGPU is now compatible with the VNC console
  • Ceph storage is supported by KVM virtualization on all CPU architectures supported by Red Hat
  • Q35, a more modern PCI Express-based machine type is supported by RHEL 8 Virtualization. All virtual machines created in RHEL 8 are set to use Q35 PC machine type by default

 

eRacks/INTELLINATOR22

Configure your Own eRacks/INTELLINATOR Server With Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 (RHEL 8).

 

Networking

Below are the new changes in the Networking Level:

  • RHEL 8 is distributed with TCP networking stack version 4.16, which provides higher performances, better scalability, and more stability.
  • The networking stack upgraded to upstream version 4.18
  • Iptables has been replaced by the nftablesframework as the default network packet filtering facility.
  • The nftables framework is the designated successor to the iptables, ip6tables, arptables, and ebtables tools. This provides a single framework for both the IPv4 and IPv6 protocols
  • The firewalld daemon now uses nftables as its default backend.
  • Support for IPVLAN virtual network drivers that enable the network connectivity for multiple containers.
  • Network Manager now supports single-root I/O virtualization (SR-IOV) virtual functions (VF). Network Manager allows configuring some attributes of the VFs, such as the MAC address, VLAN, the spoof checking the setting and allowed bitrate

 

Content Distribution

Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 has two modes of Content distribution and will only need two repositories enabled.

  1. BaseOS repository – The BaseOS repository provides the underlying core OS content in the form of traditional RPM packages. BaseOS components have a life cycle identical to that of content in previous Red Hat Enterprise Linux releases.
  2. AppStream repository – The Application Stream repository provides all the applications you might want to run in a given userspace. Other software that has special licensing are available on a Supplemental repository.

 

Web servers, Web Tools, Web Management – Cockpit, Compilers, Languages & Databases, Software Management

Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 includes Application Streams of multiple versions of databases, languages, compilers, and other tools available for your use.

RHEL 8 comes with Cockpit automatically installed and firewall ports required by Cockpit are automatically opened. Cockpit interface can be used to apply Policy-Based Decryption (PBD) rules to disks on managed systems.

RHEL 8 YUM package manager is now based on the DNF technology and it provides support for modular content, increased performance, and a well-designed stable API for integration with tooling. The version of RPM is 4.14.2 and it validates the whole package contents before it starts the installation.

 

Desktop Environment

RHEL default Desktop Environment is GNOME. The GNOME Project is supported by the GNOME Foundation. Gnome version 3.28 shipped in RHEL 8 which has automatic downloading of operating systems in Boxes. Other new features include:

  • New on-screen keyboard
  • New GNOME Boxes features
  • Extended devices support, most significantly integration for the Thunderbolt 3 interface
  • Improvements for GNOME Software, dconf-editor and GNOME Terminal
  • GNOME Software utility, which enables you to install and update applications and gnome-shell extensions.
  • GNOME Display Manager (GDM) use Wayland as their default display server instead of the X.org server

Features of Wayland display server

    • Stronger security model
    • Improved multi-monitor handling
    • Improved user interface (UI) scaling
    • The desktop can control window handling directly.

 

Security

RHEL 8 comes with support for OpenSSL 1.1.1 and TLS 1.3. This enables you to secure customer’s data with the latest standards for cryptographic protection.

RHEL 8 comes with System-wide Cryptographic Policies which helps you with the management of cryptographic compliance. No need to modify and tune specific applications.

OpenSSH has been rebased to version 7.8p1– with no support for SSH version 1 protocol, Blowfish/CAST/RC4 ciphers, hmac-ripemd160 message authentication code.

 

Red Hat Developer Subscriptions

Red Hat Developer members have been enjoying no-cost developer subscriptions for 3+ years now, and RHEL 8 is now automatically part of that. If your company wants developer support, there are several Red Hat Enterprise Linux Developer Subscriptions options with Red Hat support, too.

For more detail please contact eRacks Systems or visit Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 official Page.

May 12th, 2019

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

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fedora30Fedora 30 is now available on all eRacks systems.

Fedora is a community-driven Linux distro that’s sponsored by the open source giant Red Hat. As Fedora is the upstream source of the company’s commercial RHEL distro, it’s also used as a testing ground for RHEL. As Linux enthusiasts might already know, Fedora is known as an innovative Linux distro that doesn’t hesitate when it comes to testing new technologies and helping other distros by making changes upstream for all distros. Shipping with many useful open source software, it’s known for providing a GNOME-based fluid desktop experience.

 

 

 

Fedora community recently released Fedora 30 just after about the 6 months from the version release as Fedora 29. On Fedora magazine they wrote about the early release of Fedora 30.

It seems like it was just six months ago that we announced Fedora 29, and here we are again. Today, we announce our next operating system release. Even though it went so quickly, a lot has happened in the last half year, and you’ll see the results in Fedora 30.

Many desktop users love Red Hat’s community Linux Fedora. They have good reason. Fedora is a great Linux desktop. But Fedora’s far more than just a desktop. It comes in three major versions: One for the workstation, another for containers, and still another that works as a server both on your server hardware and on the cloud.

 

About many changes, “Matthew Miller”, the Fedora Project Leader, explained in a statement:

Computing scenarios don’t remain static and neither does Fedora. With the updates around Fedora 30, we’re providing an evolving spectrum of operating system editions to better meet diverse IT challenges. From containerized developer workspaces with Flatpak and Silverblue to expanded server and container infrastructure options in Fedora 30 Cloud and Fedora CoreOS, the Fedora Project remains focused on Linux innovation.

 

 

New features in Fedora 30

The biggest change in Fedora 30 is the new GNOME 3.32 desktop environment. Over the course of past few releases, GNOME desktop has made many changes to reduce its memory consumption; GNOME 3.32 takes things further and makes things more fluid and snappier by making enhancements in the core GNOME libraries.

On the visual front, the desktop environment adds a refreshed visual style that makes the overall look more polished. Moreover, the application icons, user icons, buttons, switches, etc., are also redesigned.

Talking about different packages that are included in the distro, you get the latest GCC 9, PHP 7.3, Bash 5.0, Ruby 2.6, and other apps.

This release is powered by the latest Linux 5.0, which brings better hardware support and display performance. You also get new features like support for energy-aware scheduling, Btrfs swap file, AMDGPU FreeSync, etc.

With the Fedora 30 release, the cloud and server releases are being combined into the Fedora Server Edition. Also, Fedora CoreOS is replacing Fedora Atomic Host as the container-focused offering. There are other variants as well, including Fedora Spins and Labs.

 

Fedora 30 Workstation

fedora_30_workstation

 

Fedora 30 Workstation includes the latest version of the GNOME interface, GNOME 3.32. Fedora also supports the other major Linux desktop environments, including Cinnamon, KDE, LXDE, MATE, and Xfce. It also includes fractional scaling, a refreshed visual style, animation improvements, and new icons. The net effect is to make a more visually pleasing desktop, which works well on high-end monitors.

Fedora Workstation now uses the “flicker-free boot” system, so the display does not turn on and off during the boot process.

You can also now run the Fedora desktop as a containerized desktop, Fedora Silverblue, with rpm-ostree at its heart. This replaces the traditional RPM package management with atomic upgrade/rollback. In this model, Fedora provides ready-made base operating system image. When you install a program, using either rpm-ostree or Flatpak, it creates essentially a restore point. These are then tracked, and if something goes wrong, you can reset to your restore point with minimal harm done.

 

Fedora 30 Server

fedora_30_server

 

Fedora 30, released April 30, 2019, has the following new and improved features:

The product definitions for Fedora’s “Editions” have been revamped. Fedora Cloud and Fedora Server editions are now a single product, simply called Fedora Server. Fedora Atomic Host has been replaced with Fedora CoreOS, in the wake of Red Hat’s acquisition of that container-based Linux distribution. Fedora Workstation remains mostly the same.

Fedora Server now supports Linux System Roles, created by Ansible to provide consistent ways to configure common Linux subsystems such as the network, the email system (Postfix), SELinux, and a few others. The list of roles is constantly being expanded.

Almost all Python 2 packages have been removed from the system, as part of Fedora’s switch from Python 2 to Python 3.

MongoDB has been removed from Fedora, as its licensing (the Server-Side Public License v1) is not believed to be compatible with other free software licenses.

Support for many deprecated cryptography standards is being removed: DES, 3DES, CRC32, and MD4. RC4 and MD5 are being marked as deprecated.

As with each edition of Fedora, many individual software components have been upgraded:

  • Bash 5.0
  • Boost 1.69
  • Erlang 21
  • FreeIPA 4.8 (which now uses Python 3.6)
  • GCC 9
  • glibc 2.29
  • Golang 1.12
  • GNOME 3.32
  • Haskell GHC 8.4
  • java-openjdk JDK12
  • PHP 7.3
  • Ruby 2.6
  • Vagrant 2.2

For more details please visit the official Fedora Releases/30/ChangeSet.

 

To upgrade your existing Fedora 29 installation to Fedora 30, 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 30 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 4th, 2019

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

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Ubuntu 19.04, aka “Disco Dingo“, is now available on all eRacks systems.

Ubuntu 19.04 (Disco Dingo)

Canonical – The company behind Ubuntu published its regular (non-LTS) version as Ubuntu 19.04 (Disco Dingo) on April 18, 2019. The first Ubuntu 19.04 beta released on March 28. Other milestones during “Disco Dingo” development included feature freeze on February 21, 2019, UI freeze on March 14, 2019, and kernel freeze on April 1, 2019.

Up until this version, the codename of each Ubuntu release is traditionally made up of an adjective and an animal, both beginning with the same letter. But that’s only partly true this time – The word “Disco is actually both a noun and a verb rather than adjective. A disco is a type of club or party at which people dance to music, often under lights.

A “Dingo” is a type of feral dog native to Australia and known for its sand-colored coat. Dingo dogs hunt alone or in cooperative packs. Inspired by the nature of the Dingo (which often sulks off when humans are around) the word has become informal Australian slang meaning ‘cowardly’, e.g., ‘he dingoes his way out of the date’.

Ubuntu 19.04 Disco Dingo is only the second Ubuntu release to use the letter ‘D’, following Ubuntu 6.06 “Dapper Drake” (released back in the land before time, aka 2006).

Since Ubuntu 19.04 (Disco Dingo) is a non-LTS version (not a Long Term Support version), it will be supported for 9 months until January 2020. If you need Long Term Support, it is recommended you use Ubuntu 18.04 LTS instead.

This article for Ubuntu 19.04 (Disco Dingo) provides an overview of the release and documents the known issues with Ubuntu 19.04 and its flavors.

Since the release of Ubuntu 19.04, everyone is talking about its Desktop Version. We’re going to do something a little different. We’re going to start with the Ubuntu 19.04 Server version first. Let’s what’s new:

Ubuntu 19.04 (Disco Dingo) Server Updates.

Every time Canonical releases a new version, it brings many new and noticeable changes. Each new version improves the previous one and strives to provide better user experiences.

Canonical made many changes on Ubuntu 19.04 (Disco Dingo) Server – the following are notable:

QEMU

In Ubuntu 19.04, QEMU was updated to the 3.1 release.

Migrations from former versions are supported just as usual. When upgrading it is always recommended to upgrade the machine types allowing guests to fully benefit from all the improvements and fixes of the most recent version.

Qemu now has virglrenderer enabled which allows to create a virtual 3D GPU inside qemu virtual machines. That is inferior to GPU pass-through, but can be handy if the platform used lacks the capability for classic PCI pass through as well as more modern mediated devices.

For more details, see the QEMU 3.1 change log.

LIBVIRT

Among many other changes worth to mention is the ability to have GL enabled graphics as well as mediated devices to be configured while still being guarded by custom apparmor profiles generated per guest. This is required for the use of GPU based mediated devices as well as VirGL (mentioned above in the QEMU section). For bringing these changes libvirt was updated to version 5.0.

DPDK

Ubuntu includes 18.11.x the latest stable release branch of DPDK. The very latest (non-stable) version being 19.02 was not chosen for downstream projects of DPDK (like Open vSwitch) not being compatible.

DPDK dependencies were reorganized into more or less common/tested components. Due to that most DPDK installations will now have a smaller installation footprint and less potentially active code to care about.

For more details see the release notes.

SAMBA

Samba was updated to version 4.10.x, and one of the big changes here is python3 support. In Disco, samba and its dependencies are all python3 only now, with the exception of tdb. tdb still builds a python2 package, namely python-tdb, but all the others, including samba itself, are python3 only.

Open-VM-Tools

To run well integrated as VMware guest Ubuntu 19.04 comes with the latest open-vm-tools version 10.3.10. Details about the changes can be found in the upstream changelog

Raspberry Pi

Ubuntu 19.04 comes with an easy way of enabling Bluetooth support on the raspi3 Ubuntu-server preinstalled images. Install the Pi-Bluetooth package (now available in multiverse) with ‘sudo apt install pi-bluetooth’.

Please note that supported Pi devices which have Bluetooth (at the time of writing, the Raspberry Pi 3B, 3B+, and 3A+) can have either serial console or Bluetooth support enabled at any given time (not both). With the Pi-Bluetooth package installed, edit it at ‘/boot/firmware/config.txt’ and set ‘enable_uart=1’ to enable serial console, or ‘enable_uart=0’ to enable Bluetooth. The change will take effect after the next reboot.

Open vSwitch

Open vSwitch has been updated to 2.11. This updated Open vSwitch version has support for the kernel versions 4.16.x and 4.17.x. Also the following features can be found on this version.

  • “mod-table” command can now change OpenFlow table names.
  • The environment variable OVS_SYSLOG_METHOD, if set, is now used as the default syslog method.
  • The environment variable OVS_CTL_TIMEOUT, if set, is now used as the default timeout for control utilities.
  • OVN-SB schema changed: duplicated IP with same Encapsulation type is not allowed any more. Please refer to Documentation/intro/install/ovn-upgrades.rst for the instructions in case there are problems encountered when upgrading from an earlier version.
  • New support for IPSEC encrypted tunnels between hypervisors.
  • ovn-ctl: allow passing user:group ids to the OVN daemons.
  • IPAM/MACAM add the capability to dynamically assign just L2 addresses
  • IPAM/MACAM add the capability to specify a static ip address and get the L2 one and it is allocated dynamically using the following syntax: ‘ovn-nbctl lsp-set-addresses <port> “dynamic <IP>”.’

Please read the Open vSwitch release notes for more detail.

OpenStack Stein

Ubuntu 19.04 includes the latest OpenStack release, Stein, including the following components:

  • OpenStack Identity – Keystone.
  • OpenStack Imaging – Glance.
  • OpenStack Block Storage – Cinder.
  • OpenStack Compute – Nova.
  • OpenStack Networking – Neutron.
  • OpenStack Telemetry – Ceilometer, Aodh, Gnocchi, and Panko.
  • OpenStack Orchestration – Heat.
  • OpenStack Dashboard – Horizon.
  • OpenStack Object Storage – Swift.
  • OpenStack Database as a Service – Trove.
  • OpenStack DNS as a Service – Designate.
  • OpenStack Bare-metal – Ironic.
  • OpenStack Filesystem – Manila.
  • OpenStack Key Manager – Barbican.

Please refer to the OpenStack Stein release notes for full details of this release of OpenStack.

WARNING: Upgrading an OpenStack deployment is a non-trivial process and care should be taken to plan and test upgrade procedures which will be specific to each OpenStack deployment. For Upgrading successfully please make sure you read the OpenStack Charm Release Notes for how to deploy Ubuntu OpenStack using Juju. Or simply contact eRacks Systemsexperts for help.

There are many other changes on newly released Ubuntu 19.04 non-LTS Server. Please read the Ubuntu 19.04 (Disco Dingo) non-LTS Server release note for more details.

 

 

 

Ubuntu 19.04 (Disco Dingo) Desktop (And Kernel) updates.

Linux Kernel 5.0.0-8 “Shy Crocodile”

The Linux Kernel had its number bumped to 5.0.0-8 by Linus Torvalds, but not because of particularly noteworthy code changes. Usually, a significant number jump like this would echo an equally significant code or functionality change, but that isn’t the case. In an email to the Linux Kernel Mailing List, he explained:

The numbering change is not indicative of anything special. If you want to have an official reason, it’s that I ran out of fingers and toes to count on, so 4.21 became 5.0.

Torvalds went on to give a breakdown of the code changes in Linux 5.0:

This new kernel should be faster, too, as work was done to speed up the anti-Spectre and Meltdown code.

GNOME desktop 3.32

Ubuntu 19.04 ships with the latest GNOME desktop 3.32. This brings performance improvements, a host of bug fixes and some important new features. Beyond the visual changes, GNOME itself is faster and uses fewer GPU resources thanks to work done by both Canonical and the upstream GNOME team.

Of course, there’s a new wallpaper in latest GNOME desktop 3.32. But the first thing you’ll probably notice is a new icon on the desktop for your home directory. If you don’t like it, you can install GNOME Tweaks and use it to hide the home directory icon.

In keeping with modern “flat” design, the desktop’s top bar and launcher have solid-black backgrounds. The application menus have been moved back to each application’s window. They no longer appear in the toolbar. That’s a change in GNOME and not a design decision from Canonical. Some applications always kept their menus in their own application windows, which made the experience inconsistent. There were also some long-standing issues that were tough to fix. Now, that whole initiative has been canned in favor of a traditional menu placement—each applications menu is in the application’s own window.

Fractional Display Scaling (Possibly)

GNOME 3.32 includes support for fractional scaling, which is of interest to people with high DPI (Dots Per Inch) displays.

Unfortunately, in the modified version of GNOME supplied with Ubuntu, the fractional scaling settings are either hidden or not accessible to us. Eventually, a tool might allow access to these settings—or another means of accessing those settings will emerge from the user community. After all, they’re in GNOME.

Live patch for Reboot-Free Kernel Updates

Canonical introduced Live patch in Ubuntu 18.04 LTS, only to remove it again in 18.10. It’s now back, complete with this new tab in Software & Updates.

Livepatch

 

Ubuntu 19.04’s Software and Updates app has a new tab called Live-patch. This new feature is intended to allow critical kernel patches to be applied without rebooting. For people using Ubuntu at home, on machines that get powered off frequently, requiring a power cycle to install a kernel update isn’t a hardship. If your Ubuntu computer is providing an external service or is hosting a website, it becomes trickier to try to schedule in the reboots.

New Icons and Visual Tweaks

The Yaru icon set has had a refresh, and new icons have been added to cater for more third-party applications. This icon set looks more coherent and slick. There’s evidence of attention being paid to the user interface all over. Files has had a facelift, and it looks crisp and feels responsive. That’s not a surprise.

Icons

 

Even the Terminal window has been polished up. The GNOME Terminal application has a new title bar with a prominent “New Tab” button and search icon.

The System menu has a new cogwheel Settings icon that replaces the old “crossed wrench and screwdriver” icon.

Application Permission Controls

GNOME’s Settings app now lets you control various application permissions. You can even choose whether or not each application can show notifications.

Application

 

Night Light Improvements

The Night Light feature changes the hue of your computer’s display, reducing the amount of blue in the display illumination as the sun sets. You can now configure the schedule for the Night Light yourself. You can also select the color temperature—or “warmth”—of the display when Night Light is activated.

Light

 

Updated Sound Controls

The Sound controls have been revamped. You don’t get more functionality than before, but the controls are laid out more conveniently and logically.

Sound

 

Raspberry Pi Touch Support

The bulk of the driver work in the kernel has been to graphics drivers, with enhanced support for displays ranging in size and capability—from the AMD FreeSync NVIDIA RTX Turing to the Raspberry Pi Touch Display. The Debian-derived Raspbian Linux already supported the Raspberry Pi Touch Display, but now you have the choice of using native Ubuntu with your Pi Touch.

There are many other changes as well. Some of them are mentioned below:

  • Tracker is now included by default. This allows the desktop to keep track of recently used files and improves searching.
  • Right click handling is now “area” by default. This allows both two-finger right clicking and clicking in the bottom right corner of the touchpad
  • alt-tab handling now switches windows by default. Switching applications by default can be done with super-tab
  • Preview order of windows in the dock is now static and based on the order in which the windows were added
  • IWD can now be enabled for use with Network Manager. IWD is a new alternative to wpa supplicant and is in testing for consideration in the future.
  • Installing Ubuntu Desktop on vmware will now automatically install the open-vm-tools package to improve integration.
  • The Yaru theme has seen further refinement and updates and includes a new icon theme.
  • Safe Graphics Mode. A new option is added to the Grub menu which will boot with “NOMODESET” on. This may help you resolve issues on certain graphics cards and allow you to boot and install any propriatary drivers needed by your system.
  • The latest releases of Firefox (66.0) and LibreOffice (6.2.2) are available and installed by default.

 

 

Some of the Common New features and Updated Packages in both Ubuntu 19.04 (Disco Dingo) non-LTS Desktop and Server Version.

Linux kernel 🐧

Both Ubuntu 19.04 (Disco Dingo) non-LTS Desktop and Server are based on the Linux release series 5.0. It includes support for AMD Radeon RX Vega M graphics processor, complete support for the Raspberry Pi 3B and the 3B+, Qualcomm Snapdragon 845, many USB 3.2 and Type-C improvements, Intel Cannonlake graphics, significant power-savings improvements, P State driver support for Skylake X servers, POWER memory protection keys support, KVM support for AMD Secure Encrypted Virtualization, enablement of Shared Memory Communications remote and direct (SMC-R/D), Open for Business (OFB), and zcrypt on IBM Z among with many other improvements since the v4.15 kernel shipped in 18.04 LTS.

Toolchain Upgrades 🛠️

Ubuntu 19.04 comes with refreshed state-of-the-art toolchain including new upstream releases of glibc 2.29, ☕ OpenJDK 11, boost 1.67, rustc 1.31, and updated GCC 8.3, optional GCC 9, 🐍 Python 3.7.3 as default, 💎 ruby 2.5.5, php 7.2.15, 🐪 perl 5.28.1, golang 1.10.4. There are new improvements on the cross-compilers front as well with POWER and AArch64 toolchain enabled to cross-compile for ARM, S390X and RISCV64 targets.

 

There are many other changes on newly released Ubuntu 19.04 non-LTS verson. Please read the Ubuntu 19.04 (Disco Dingo) non-LTS release note for more or Disco Dingo Release Notes.

Get your system with Ubuntu 19.04 (Disco Dingo) as pre-installed from eRacks Systems’ show room with Quote request. Or download Ubuntu 19.04 (Disco Dingo) directly from below.

 

April 24th, 2019

Posted In: Linux, Open Source, Operating Systems, ubuntu

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Ubuntu 18.10, aka ‘Cosmic Cuttlefish’, is available now on all eRacks systems.

 

cosmic_cuttlefish

 

Ubuntu 18.10 ‘Cosmic Cuttlefish’ supported with 9 months of security updates, bug fixes and select app upgrades. Users of it will be able to upgrade to Ubuntu 19.04 when it’s released in April, 2019.

When the release of a new version as Ubuntu 18.10 ‘Cosmic Cuttlefish’, the first question arrives in mind, “What are updated comparing with the current Ubuntu 18.04 LTS version?”

Linux Kernel

 

The most important update in ‘Cosmic Cuttlefish’ is, it has updated Linux Kernel. Ubuntu 18.10 has Linux Kernel 4.18. This Kernel version has some improvements for AMD and Nvidia GPU, USB Type-C and Thunderbolt, and performance optimizations in CPUfreq among several other features.

 

Another important thing is having faster installation and boot with new compression algorithms. Working with new compression algorithms like LZ4 and ztsd, ‘Cosmic Cuttlefish’ is supposed to have around 10% faster boot. The installation will be slightly faster as well. Which is definitely the good news for all Ubuntu users.

 

As always Ubuntu 18.10 will have this new GNOME version. Most of the visual and under the hood changes in GNOME 3.30 will be seen in Ubuntu 18.10 as well.

 

GNOME 3.30

 

Taking cue from Fedora 28, Canonical is also working to improve battery life for laptops. Linux kernel has options to switch HDD controllers, USB controllers and other such devices to a low power state when not in use. This lowers the overall power consumption and thus improves the battery life.

Ubuntu 18.04 was supposed to have a new look with the community developed Community theme. This theme could not be completed in time for the 18.04 release. But Ubuntu 18.10 has it. The ‘Cosmic Cuttlefish’ has the Yaru Community theme installed by default, giving it a ravishing fresh look.

 

Some other changes in the Ubuntu 18.10 ‘Cosmic Cuttlefish’ are as follows:

  • Support for fingerprint scanner.
  • Startup time boost and XDG Portals support for Snap applications.
  • 32-Bit support diminishing from flavors.
  • UI and UX improvements to GNOME Software (possibility).
  • DLNA support for connecting Ubuntu with DLNA supported Smart TVs, tablets and other devices.
  • A new and improved installer (less likely to be completed before 18.10 release).
  • Ubuntu Software removes dependencies while uninstalling software.
  • Ubuntu Software will show a green verified tick for Snap applications developed by the owner of the brand. The same can be found on the recently redesigned Snap store website.

 

Ubuntu 18.10 ‘Cosmic Cuttlefish’ is a modest update compared to 18.04. The vast majority of notable improvements are tucked away out of sight, ‘under the hood’. Ubuntu 18.10 feels faster than 18.04, But you can’t “see” the changes that shape Ubuntu 18.10 ‘Cosmic Cuttlefish’, you almost certainly will feel them.

October 24th, 2018

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

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Microsoft Reaper

Shortly after the first news appeared, that Microsoft was in the process of buying Github, a new Github repo appeared –

The Github Evacuation Center.

This repo quickly soared to the #1 spot in the “Trending” area on Github, and as this was politically inconvenient, it was removed by Github without notice or reason given.

Sadly, I expect this to be the future of Github, now, no more transparent bastion of Open Source and code.

Wired Magazine has an article saying as much, and laments that it’s inevitable that Github will be come more restrictive, take down controversial repos, and stop hosting projects which are not in Microsoft’s interest.

When I saw the photo at the right, my first reaction, was “Yes! But why only Skype and Mojang?!” – So, this prompted me to write, on the spur of the moment, the following letter as a comment on the Github issue:


The row of doors isn’t nearly long enough. This has been going on for 4 decades.

A few notable examples from memory, without having to research or refer to the many books about Microsoft and/or Bill Gates:

From the eighties:

Quarterdeck systems – QEMM – (Quarterdeck Extended Memory Manager) a utility which made better / efficient use of DOS “High” memory above 640K. Microsoft cloned a vastly inferior version of the product, and bundled it for free with a newer version of DOS, thus killing the market for the product.

From the nineties:

Digital Research – DR Dos – a superior DOS clone. Microsoft introduced a vaguely-worded dialog box, in it’s apps (eg, early MS Word [UPDATE: Windows 3.1]) which it displayed when it figured out it was running on top of DR dos, which used simple FUD (without any actual faults) to scare people away from DR DOS.

The code to detect DR DOS, was encrypted and hidden, and was obviously written to do nothing but target a competitor – this was discovered and dubbed the infamous AARD code, written about by Andrew Shulman and covered in countless publications including Dr Dobbs, etc

Yet no DOJ inquiry or any other action was taken, despite obviously breaking several laws against anticompetitive behavior, and then hiding it (shows intent).

From the 90s / 2000s:

Novell, Word Perfect (Maybe MS was just after Provo, UTAH? JK) – Both these stories are more well known –

WordPerfect was the only real competitor to the mediocre-at-best MS line of productivity apps (no incentive not to be mediocre, that way they can sell you a new copy every year or two of the product you already bought, and call it an “Upgrade”) – and MS killed the superior WordPerfect Write and Quattro Spreadsheet products with a weak “Look-and-feel” lawsuit – which they LOST, but not until the parent company was destroyed and unable to recover.

Novell is a more involved story, but suffice it to say that they again, like QEMM, built a successful product on DOS’s shortcomings – which then simply acted like product feature vetting for MS, so they could build / buy or copy the solutions that Novell introduced, thus rendering Novell redundant (in the British sense).

From the 2000s / 2010s:

Borland – Despite a vastly superior suite of developer products, MS poached it’s head developer and architect, Anders Heijlsberg, to be their head architect for .NET. His first task was to specifically copy several key innovations from Borland, which supposedly (according to MS) didn’t violate any copyright or IP agreements from the departing Borland – although this was controversial, again, lawsuits or the threat thereof were used effectively by MS to prevail.

This Rant / Diatribe

Sorry, I got carried away – 🙂

This was written on impulse, as a reaction to the door photo, completely off the top of my head in about 20 minutes, without so much as a quick Google to check dates, so forgive me if the above has minor issues to correct – I will update if I need to make corrections, but I do know from memory, that it’s essentially correct.

I remember these events over 3-4 decades, because of the MS’s consistently appalling and astounding behavior, that has continued unchecked, and remains to this day still unpunished and unaddressed, despite a slap on the wrist from our country’s DOJ, and from Europe, who’s various efforts to stop MS’s anticompetitive behavior were ineffective at best, and simply encouraged them to play brinkmanship at worst and improve their knowledge of the line, so they could push it.

I write this because MS’s behavior, as I slowly learned by experience of living though the above events, and the light slowly dawning on me that this was a pattern, and not just one or two coincidental events, is what motivated me to start my company, and try and have a higher bar for ethics and how to treat one’s competitors – and to encourage, foster, and sponsor more egalitarian software products and superior technical solutions in the process.

Republish

Feel free to republish this, along with the reaper image (it doesn’t make sense without it), wherever you see fit.

Sincerely,
Joseph Wolff
Founder and CEO
eRacks Open Source Systems
Founded 1999
eracks.com

We have our code on Github too. We’re looking for where we’re going to move.

Maybe we’ll self-host, or use our colo and hosting resources to host a new Git-like startup for Open Source?


j

Update 6/7/18: corrected software that raised DR DOS dialog box (Windows 3.1), added references to AARD and FUD.

 

June 7th, 2018

Posted In: Open Source

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    Ubuntu 18.04 LTS (Bionic Beaver) has been released on 26th April 2018 following its planned release schedule. Canonical named this Long Term Support version with codename “Bionic Beaver”, where ‘Bionic‘ is an adjective meaning to have or use an artificial, typically electromechanical, body part. And a ‘Beaver‘ is large nocturnal rodent able to swim in water. Beavers are famous for building dams, canals, and homes along river banks.

Ubuntu 18.04 LTS (Bionic Beaver)

Ubuntu 18.04 LTS (Bionic Beaver)

 

    On 26 January 2018, Will Cooke (Desktop Engineering Manager) wrote in an Ubuntu’s Blog post about Ubuntu 18.04 LTS (Bionic Beaver) as, “Bionic Beaver, the codename for the next Ubuntu LTS release, is due in April 2018 and will ship with both the traditional Xorg graphics stack as well as the newer Wayland based stack, but Xorg will be the default.

 

Ubuntu 18.04 LTS (Bionic Beaver) Support lifespan

    Ubuntu 18.04 is an LTS version, which means that the ‘main’ archive of Ubuntu 18.04 LTS will be supported for 5 years until April 2023 from its release date April 2018. Ubuntu 18.04 LTS will be supported for 5 years for Ubuntu Desktop, Ubuntu Server, and Ubuntu Core. Ubuntu Studio 18.04 will be supported for 9 months. All other flavors will be supported for 3 years.

Compared with the previous Ubuntu LTS edition (Ubuntu 16.04.4 LTS Xenial Xerus), there are a lot of changes in the new Ubuntu LTS release (Ubuntu 18.04 LTS Bionic Beaver).

Let’s see what’s new in Ubuntu 18.04 LTS Bionic Beaver release:

what’s new in Ubuntu 18.04 LTS Bionic Beaver

What’s new in Ubuntu 18.04 LTS (Bionic Beaver)

 

Xorg will be used by default instead of Wayland

    Ubuntu 17.10 used the Wayland graphics server by default. With Ubuntu 18.04, the default graphics server will change to Xorg. Wayland will still be available as an option, but Xorg will be the default, out-of-the-box one. The Ubuntu Desktop team decided to go with Xorg for its compatibility with services like Skype, Google Hangouts, WebRTC services, VNC and RDP, and more.

Xorg with Ubuntu 18.04 LTS

Xorg with Ubuntu 18.04 LTS

 

Ubuntu 18.04 minimal install option

    Ubuntu 18.04 will use Ubiquity, the Ubuntu installer you’re probably already familiar with. Though the developers plan on implementing Subiquity, 18.04 will use Ubiquity, which will have a new “minimal install” option that you can choose during setup. Minimal install basically means the same Ubuntu, but without most of the pre-installed software. The minimal install option saves about 500 MB, and is only 28MB in size when it is compressed.

Minimal Install

Minimal Install

 

CPU usage improvements and bug fixes

    The most notable improvement will be in CPU usage. The Ubuntu Desktop team has greatly improved and reduced the CPU usage caused by Ubuntu 18.04. They’ve also fixed hundreds of bugs and made hundreds of other small improvements.

 

Software, updates and other tweaks

    If you missed the Ubuntu Welcome tool you can still enable LivePatch via Software & Updates. Open Activities and search for Software & Updates.

Software & Updates.

Software & Updates.

 

    From the Updates tab you can enable and disable Live Patch:

Enable/ Disable Live Patch

Enable/ Disable Live Patch

 

    There are some other useful settings in GNOME Control Center which you might like to toggle:

GNOME Control Center

GNOME Control Center

 

    By enabling Location Services your clock can automatically switch to the correct time zone for where you are which is useful for frequent travelers. By enabling automatic error reporting crash reports will be automatically generated and uploaded. By collecting these error reports, Canonical can easily spot trends in common problems and make sure they work on getting the most common bugs fixed first.

 

Ubuntu 18.04 Desktop will have a new theme

    Ubuntu 18.04 will ship with Ambience and it won’t use a new theme by default. The new Communitheme won’t even be installed. The Desktop team has decided to do this for various reasons, including bugs and lack of testing.

Luckily, you can still use the Communitheme, but you’ll have to install it yourself. The Communitheme can be installed easily via a snap, but you can always install it manually.

New Communitheme with Ubuntu 18.04 LTS

New Communitheme with Ubuntu 18.04 LTS

 

GNOME Desktop Environment

    Ubuntu started using the GNOME desktop environment with Ubuntu 17.10 instead of the default Unity environment. Ubuntu 18.04 will continue using GNOME. This is not a major change to Ubuntu, but GNOME has also done a lot of changes to their desktop environment, as well as new features. An improved dock, an on-screen keyboard, and more.

GNOME Desktop Environment

GNOME Desktop Environment

 

Ubuntu 18.04 Desktop will have a new app pre-installed

    The new LTS desktop release will ship with a new app pre-installed by default. The app is GNOME To Do and it’s a very useful app for organizing lists, tasks, and more. You can prioritize them. color them, set due dates, and a number of other features.

GNOME To Do

GNOME To Do

 

Applications will be installed as snaps by default

    They been planning on using snaps for a while, and they finally shipped GNOME Calculator as a snap instead of a deb. This is a test to help the Desktop team find and fix any bugs. They’ll later on move more applications to snap in the final release. Using snaps will make the process of installing and updating apps much easier. You can even install snaps on any distro and device.

 

Some New Apps

Some New Apps

Some New Apps

 

    New snaps are being added to the store all the time, and you can already download essentials like Spotify, Skype and Slack. You can browse the full range of applications via GNOME Software (click the Open “Software” now button) or access the highlights directly by clicking on their icon.

 

A Brand New Icon Set

A Brand New Icon Set

A Brand New Icon Set

 

    Open source icon project Suru has been incorporated into Ubuntu 18.04. These icons were originally seen in the abandoned Ubuntu Touch mobile operating system. Despite hopes to the contrary and a dedicated community project, Ubuntu 18.04 will not boast a fresh new look. However, while the Ambiance theme is hanging around, new icons are expected in Ubuntu.

 

Color Emojis

Color Emojis

Color Emojis

 

    Some tweaks will give you color emojis on versions of Ubuntu prior to 18.04 LTS, this is the first time they’ve been included by default. The emojis you’ll find in Ubuntu 18.04 LTS are the same open source emojis as found on Android. For many users, these will be familiar.

 

Ubuntu 18.04 will collect data about your system and make it public

    Ubuntu 18.04 will collect data like the Ubuntu flavor you’re using, hardware stats, your country etc. Anyone can opt-out of this, but it’s enabled by default. What’s interesting about this is that the data they collect will be public, and no sensitive data will be collected. so most of the Ubuntu community supports this decision.

However, there is a potential security concern that you should be aware of. With Ubuntu 18.04 LTS, Canonical intends to collect data from your computer. Though there is nothing personally identifiable in this data. Instead, it is to establish your computer’s hardware components, what version of Ubuntu you’re running, your location (based on your choice when setting up Ubuntu) and a few other things.

Collecting data about your system

Collecting data about your system

 

    This marks a change from Canonical’s previous attitude to this sort of data collection, but is understandable given how flakey figures are for Linux usage around the world. Crucially, this data collection can be opted out of; if you’re upgrading from a previous version of Ubuntu, meanwhile, you can also opt in.

 

 

Alongside these changes Canonical has made some noticeable upgrade on packages for Ubuntu 18.04 Bionic Beaver too. Some of them are as follows,

Linux kernel 4.15

Ubuntu 18.04 ships with a v4.15 based Linux kernel, enabling the latest hardware and peripherals available. The 18.04 kernel delivers new features inherited from upstream, including:

  • CPU controller for the cgroup v2 interface.
  • AMD secure memory encryption support.
  • The latest MD driver with software RAID enhancements.
  • Improved power management for systems with SATA Link Power Management.
  • Linux security module stacking support.
  • Support for signing of POWER host and NV kernels.

 

OpenJDK

As of 18.04 release, OpenJDK 10 is the default JRE/JDK. Once OpenJDK 11 reaches GA in September 2018, it will become the default in 18.04.

OpenJDK 8 has moved to universe and will remain available there for the life of 18.04, to provide migration time for packages, custom applications, or scripts that can’t be built with OpenJDK 10 or 11. OpenJDK 8 will be updated in 18.04 after Ubuntu 16.04 LTS reaches EOL in April 2021.

 

Security Improvements

In Ubuntu 18.04 LTS, gcc is now set by default to compile applications as position independent executables (PIE) as well as with immediate binding, to make more effective use of Address Space Layout Randomization (ASLR). All packages in main have been rebuilt to take advantage of this, with a few exceptions. Also, bolt and thunderbolt-tools have been promoted to main to provide security controls for Thunderbolt devices.

 

Default CIFS/SMB protocol version change in CIFS mounts

Since 17.10, the default SMB protocol used when mounting remote CIFS file systems via “mount.cifs” is changed to 2.1 or higher, depending on what is negotiated with the server.

 

At a glance change in Ubuntu 18.04 LTS (Bionic Beaver) Desktop Edition

  • Wayland is provided as a Technical Preview and is expected to be the default display server in 20.04 LTS. To try it out, just choose Ubuntu on Wayland from the cog on the log in screen.
  • The installer offers a minimal install option for a basic desktop environment with a web browser and core system utilities. Many official 18.04 desktop flavors are using this new feature too!
  • Apps provided by GNOME have been updated to 3.28.
  • LibreOffice has been updated to 6.0.
  • Emoji now show in color in most apps. Keyboard shortcuts for the emoji input chooser are Ctrl+. or Ctrl+;
  • Calendar now supports weather forecasts.
  • Some utilities have been switched to the snap format for new installs. Snap apps provide better isolation which allows them to be upgraded to new stable releases during the LTS lifecycle.
  • The Characters app replaces the older Character Map by default.
  • The Ubuntu Software app allows easy switching between different channels for Snap apps.
  • The ‘To Do’ app has been added to the default normal install.
  • spice-vdagent is pre-installed for better performance for spice clients such as the GNOME Boxes app.
  • The right-click method for touchpads without physical buttons has changed to a two-finger click instead of clicking in the bottom right of the touchpad.
  • Although libinput is the default driver for mice and touchpads, it is now possible to use the synaptics driver with the Settings App. Support for the synaptics driver will be dropped in a future Ubuntu release.
  • Computers will automatically suspend after 20 minutes of inactivity while on battery power.
  • GNOME Shell now supports Thunderbolt 3.

 

 

 

eRacks/FLASH48

eRacks/FLASH48

Configure eRacks/FLASH48 an All-Flash Server With Ubuntu 18.04 LTS (Bionic Beaver) Server Edition.

 

 

 

Comparing with Ubuntu 17.10 (Artful Aardvark) & Ubuntu 16.04.4 LTS (Xenial Xerus) the latest Ubuntu 18.04 Bionic Beaver Server edition’s packages are upgraded as well. Some of them are as follows,

Server installer

The next generation Subiquity server installer, brings the comfortable live session and speedy install of Ubuntu Desktop to server users at last.

Ubuntu 18.04 Bionic Beaver Server Edition Installer

Ubuntu 18.04 Bionic Beaver Server Edition Installer

 

Netplan.io

ifupdown has been deprecated in favor of netplan.io and is no longer present on new installs. Backend configuration on Ubuntu Server by default is provided by systemd-networkd.

 

LXD 3.0

LXD is the system container manager that ships with all Ubuntu servers. Ubuntu 18.04 includes the all new LXD 3.0 release, some of the highlights include:

  • Clustering of LXD servers (one big virtual LXD)
  • Support for NVIDIA runtime pass-through
  • Remote transfer of custom storage volumes
  • Extended /dev/lxd API inside the containers
  • Support for port redirection
  • Numerous improvements to the command line tools

A new external tool called lxd-p2c is also available to turn existing systems into LXD containers.

 

QEMU 2.11.1

QEMU has been updated to the 2.11.1 release.

Among many other changes, fixes around Meltdown/Spectre are included. Since fully utilizing these mitigations needs more than just an upgrade, it is recommended to read details at the qemu.org blog post.

QEMU in Ubuntu 18.04 now has rdma support enabled as over the past year much unification in the rdma-core project has occurred.

Migrations from former versions are supported just as usual. When upgrading it is always recommended to upgrade the machine types allowing guests to fully benefit from all the improvements and fixes of the most recent version.

 

libvirt 4.0

libvirt has been updated to version 4.0.

The packaging now builds libvirt storage drivers as pluggable libraries. This slims down the installation requirements but some drivers of less general interest will now be found in universe. On the other hand, that means that a few formerly integrated features like rbd or zfs now might require you to install the package after upgrade.

 

DPDK 17.11.x

Ubuntu includes 17.11.x the latest stable release branch of DPDK.

By the new Stable Release exception for DPDK future stable updates to 17.11.x will be made available to Ubuntu 18.04 LTS.

 

Open vSwitch 2.9

Open vSwitch has been updated to 2.9.

  • NSH implementation now conforms to latest draft (draft-ietf-sfc-nsh-28).
  • Ovs-vsctl and other commands that display data in tables now support amax-column-width option to limit column width.
  • Added support to send IPv6 Router Advertisement packets in response to the IPv6 Router Solicitation packets from the VIF ports.
  • No longer send packets to the Linux TAP device if it’s DOWN unless it is in another networking namespace.

 

Chrony

In Ubuntu 18.04 LTS chrony will replace ntpd as the recommended server for the NTP protocol. The comparison among ntp servers by the chrony maintainers may interest some users looking to see a high-level reason why this change was made. It does lack the rather new and not yet completely ready ntpsec, but otherwise is a fair analysis.

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.

Going along with this change, ntpd has been demoted from main to universe. ntpd will continue to work but will only receive best-effort security maintenance. When upgrading to Ubuntu 18.04 LTS it is highly recommended to migrate to chrony if you had set up ntpd before.

 

Cloud-Init

The version was updated to 18.2. Notable new features include:

  • VMware: support for 64-bit platforms and identifying OVF data source provided.
  • GCE: Improvements and changes to ssh key behavior for default user.
  • Azure pre-provisioning speed improvements.
  • NoCloudKVM and EC2 tests now run in continuous integration.
  • New cloud support: IBMCloud and HetznerCloud now have official data sources and OpenTelekom is now recognized by cloud-id.
  • OpenNebula: Improve network configuration support.
  • New cloud-init command-line tools available: status, analyze and clean.
  • New ubuntu cloud-config modules for managing snaps and ubuntu-advantage services.

 

Curtin

The version was updated to 18.1. Notable features include:

  • Add experimental zpool and zfs filesystem support, including ZFS on root.
  • Add support for installing remote sources that are a filesystem image.
  • Add pollinate user-agent configuration support.
  • Improved device teardown of dirty devices to support re-deployment.
  • Default config now automatically tars curtin logs upon error using new curtin collect-logs command.
  • storage: accept filesystem mount options.
  • Extensive integration test coverage and improvements.

 

MAAS

The version was updated to 2.4b2. Notable features include:

  • Add audit logging.
  • Add KVM pod support to create tags, select the storage pool, and compose machines with multiple storage pools.
  • Add UI for DNS management.
  • Add the commissioning template framework for HBA management.
  • Add the commissioning template framework for Firmware Upgrades.
  • Improve UI performance by performance.
  • Improve MAAS’ backend performance.
  • Improve the UI for the Settings.
  • Add experimental support to configure zfs as the root filesystem.
  • Switch to use Chrony instead of ntp.

 

SSSD

SSSD was updated to version 1.16.x and its secrets service is now enabled. Previously it was disabled because it required the http-parser library which lived in Universe, but a successful MIR brought it to main so SSSD could link with it.

 

Nginx

nginx was updated to version 1.14.0. New features include the mirror module, HTTP/2 push, and the gRPC proxy module.

 

PHP

PHP is updated to version 7.2.x.

 

Apache

Apache was updated to version 2.4.29. Additionally, HTTP/2 support is now enabled in 18.04 LTS.

 

landscape-client

landscape-client has been ported to Python 3 and is now available to install on the default image.

 

Ubuntu-advantage-tools

  • New dynamic MOTD support for Canonical Livepatch. This indicates, at a glance, the status of livepatches when logging in on a console.
  • New enable-fips-updates command to enable a special FIPS repository with non-certified updates for FIPS enabled systems.

 

OpenStack Queens

Ubuntu 18.04 includes the latest OpenStack release. OpenStack Queens is also provided via the Ubuntu Cloud Archive for OpenStack Queens for Ubuntu 16.04 LTS users.

eRacks’ Custom Cloud Server system with OpenStack Queens and Ubuntu 18.04 LTS OS.

eRacks’ Custom Cloud Server system with OpenStack Queens and Ubuntu 18.04 LTS OS.

Note: Upgrading an OpenStack deployment is a non-trivial process and care should be taken to plan and test upgrade procedures which will be specific to each OpenStack deployment.

 

To make things easier, eRacks Systems offers Custom Enterprise Cloud Server with OpenStack Queens (or another cloud software according to custom request) and Ubuntu 18.04 LTS OS.

 

To download Ubuntu 18.04 LTS (Bionic Beaver) select the desire install image or visit Ubuntu 18.04 LTS (Bionic Beaver) official download page.

    As with release of latest version of Ubuntu 18.04 LTS Bionic Beaver, we, the eRacks Systems (Open Source experts since 1999) offer latest Ubuntu 18.04 LTS (Bionic Beaver) both Desktop or Server edition with our systems as pre-configured according to your custom quote…

May 18th, 2018

Posted In: Open Source, Operating Systems, ubuntu

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Fedora 28 is now available on all eRacks systems.

Choose Freedom. Choose Fedora.

    Surprised! Well this tag line is directly from the Fedora 28 official website, a complete Linux based Operating System. Fedora released their ‘Fedora 28 Final version‘ on ‘2018-05-01‘. It is very well known that ‘Fedora’ is always free for anyone to use, modify, and distribute. It is built and used by people across the globe who work together as a community known as ‘The Fedora Project’. Under the tagline Fedora offers,

Less setup, more innovation. Choose a flavor of Fedora
streamlined for your needs and get to work right away.

    Fedora 28 provides software to suit a wide variety of applications. The storage, memory and processing requirements vary depending on usage. For example, a high traffic database server requires much more memory and storage than a business desktop, which in turn has higher requirements than a single-purpose virtual machine.

 

Fedora28

Fedora 28

 

Fedora 28 is offered in 3 different streamlined flavors as,

    As flavor Fedora Workstation is a polished, easy to use operating system for laptop and desktop computers, with a complete set of tools for developers and makers of all kinds.

    Fedora Server is a powerful, flexible operating system that includes the best and latest datacenter technologies. It puts you in control of all your infrastructure and services.

    And Fedora Atomic provides the best platform for your Linux-Docker-Kubernetes (LDK) application stack.

What’s New in Fedora 28!

    It’s a great thing that Fedora 28 Accepted System Wide Changes Proposals and these changes have been made by the Fedora Engineering Steering Committee for the Fedora 28 Release as System Wide Changes.

Fedora 28 Boost 1.66 upgrade

    This change brings ‘Boost 1.66.0’ to Fedora 28. This will mean F28 ships with a recent upstream Boost release.

The aim is to synchronize Fedora with the most recent Boost release. Because ABI stability is one of explicit Boost non-goals, this entails rebuilding of all dependent packages. This has also always entailed yours truly assisting maintainers of client packages in decoding cryptic boost-ese seen in output from g++. Such care is to be expected this time around as well.

AArch64 Server Promotion

    Fedora community promoted Aarch64 server technologies to Primary Architecture status. This would include the Server installer, the DVD installer ISOs, the Cloud (qcow2 images) and Docker base images to the same status as other primary Server architectures. This would NOT currently include other components such as Workstation images/installs, any of the various spins, or Fedora Atomic components.

Though Fedora developers are looking to promote their AArch64 / ARM64 / ARMv8 server offerings to being a “primary architecture” for this next Fedora release but The Fedora AArch64 server installer, Cloud images, and Docker base images would be the same status then as the other primary server architectures like x86_64.

This promotion wouldn’t affect Fedora Workstation 28 with 64-bit ARM not being a primary architecture on that front for the time being. Additionally, it wouldn’t affect Fedora Atomic either.

The Red Hat / Fedora developers are confident in their AArch64 support now and believe on the server front it’s ready to be a primary architecture.

Among the supported AArch64 platforms by Fedora include the 96Boards HiKey, 96Boards Dragonboard, ARM Juno, Rapberry Pi 3, Pine64, and others.

GNOME 3.28

    Fedora 28 will also feature the latest version of GNOME desktop environment, GNOME 3.28. GNOME 3.28 has some improvements to the Calendar, Contacts and Clock apps. The default Cantarell font has been updated as well. Default video and music players of GNOME now support more media formats.

 

GNOME3.28

GNOME 3.28

 

A new Usage application has been introduced in GNOME 3.28 for examining CPU and memory consumption.

You can find the new features in GNOME 3.28 on its official website.

Anaconda modularization

    Anaconda installer splits into several modules those communicate over DBus using stable API.

 

Anaconda modularization

Anaconda Modularization

 

When talking about the Fedora/RedHat Anaconda installer it still brings back bad memories from the Anaconda fallout a few years ago when they went through some painful transitions that also led to release delays. In 2018, Fedora/RedHat developers are taking up the initiative of modularizing the Anaconda installer.

For the Fedora 28 release due out this spring, the plan is to split the Anaconda installer into several modules that in turn will communicate with eachother using a DBus API. The modularization effort sounds nice as long as it goes smoothly and doesn’t lead to any fallout like with past Anaconda overhaul initiatives (though admittedly Anaconda has been playing nicely the past number of releases and no complaints on my end currently).

Annotated Binaries

    This change causes extra information to be stored in binary files compiled by gcc. This information can be used by scripts to check on various features of the file, such as the hardening options used or potential ABI conflicts.

A new feature being considered for Fedora 28 is Annobin as a new GCC plugin that would implant extra information into generated binaries.

The GCC Annobin plugin would store extra information within binary files. Among the possibilities are storing ABI details, hardening options, or other build information into binaries that in turn could be picked up by used by other scripts for e.g. detecting potential ABI conflicts or embedding unit test results.

Annobin stores information in Fedora’s toolchain watermark format and currently this plugin is just for GCC.

The proposal for incorporating Annobin by default in Fedora 28 is outlined on the Fedora Wiki while this change more broadly outlines their toolchain watermark work.

Already this proposal has received some criticism, namely that embedded extra information into binaries will increase the file size but this embedded information isn’t relevant to all users, so perhaps it may be better kept into the debug-type builds.

Cloud-base and Container images for s390x

    This change is to bring s390x architecture closer to other Fedora architectures by adding widely used Fedora variants. This includes container images and Cloud-base images (qcow2 and raw format).

Deprecate TCP wrappers

    TCP wrappers is a simple tool to block incoming connection on application level. This was very useful 20 years ago, when there were no firewalls in Linux. This is not the case for today and connection filtering should be done in network level or completely in application scope if it makes sense. After recent discussions I believe it is time to go for this package, if not completely, then at least as a dependency of modern daemons in system by default.

Add-On Modularity

    Beginning in Fedora 28, Fedora will provide a new set of repositories for software and updates with alternative versions from those shipped in the default release.

Improved Laptop Battery Life

    No more manual tweaks! Fedora 28 will deploy several tweaks on its own to provide improved battery life. Improve Fedora (Workstation) Battery Life by enabling various hardware power-saving features by default.

 

Improved Laptop Battery Life

Improved Laptop Battery Life

 

    Fedora 28 will have the following power management tweaks:

  • Enabling auto-suspend for Intel HDA codecs saves around 0.4 W.
  • Enabling SATA ALPM by default saves up to 1.5 W.
  • Enabling i915 Panel Self Refresh by default saves around 0.5 W.

With these tweaks in place, some laptop models will see up to 30% of battery life improvements. While ‘power users’ can do these tweaks manually and achieve the same result, the idea is to provide an out of the box experience to every Fedora user. Indeed, a good thinking there.

Drop TCP wrappers support, OpenLDAP defaults to use only Shared System Certificates

    TCP wrappers are being deprecated in Fedora. Also, upstream discourages its usage in favour of other means of protection (e.g. firewall). After this change OpenLDAP will no longer be affected by TCP wrappers configuration.

In order to go forward with adoption of SharedSystemCertificates after this change OpenLDAP clients and server will default to use only the system-wide certificates store.

Switch OpenLDAP from NSS to OpenSSL

    Currently, OpenLDAP in Fedora is compiled with NSS (aka MozNSS) for crypto. OpenLDAP is going to be compiled with OpenSSL, instead.

Reduce Initial Setup Redundancy

    Currently there is a high level of redundancy between the Anaconda installer and gnome-initial-setup. This change aims to eliminate these redundancies and streamline the initial user experience in Fedora Workstation.

To make Fedora more beginner friendly, Fedora 28 Workstation will have fewer ‘questions’ to answer at the install time. There will be no root password anymore and the user password itself will be sufficient for the root actions, same as Ubuntu.

There will be some more code changes to reduce the redundancy between Anaconda installer and gnome-initial-setup.

Ruby 2.5

    Ruby 2.5.0 is the latest stable version of Ruby. Many new features and improvements are included for the increasingly diverse and expanding demands for Ruby. With this major update from Ruby 2.4 in Fedora 26 to Ruby 2.5 in Fedora 28, Fedora becomes the superior Ruby development platform.

 

Ruby 2.5.0

Ruby 2.5.0

 

Packaging Rust applications/libraries

    Added required tools/instructions for packaging applications/libraries written in Rust. Rust is a systems programming language that runs blazingly fast, prevents segfaults, and guarantees thread safety.

Enabling Python Generators

    This change enables the ability to choose to use the Python module dependency generator for packages that provide Python Egg/Wheel metadata.

Django 2.0

    This change is about upgrading python-django to version 2.0. The latest Django release drops support for Python 2, but a few Django apps packaged in Fedora do not yet support Python 3. A compatibility package will be provided for those.

 

Python 3.6 + Django2.0 on Fedora 28

Python 3.6 + Django2.0 on Fedora 28

 

Kerberos in Python modernization

    Replace usage of python-krbV and pykerberos with python-gssapi in all Fedora packages to enable their removal from Fedora. rharwood will author all necessary code changes; no new code from maintainers is required.

VirtualBox Guest Integration

    VirtualBox is popular, easy to use virtual-machine software. The purpose of this change is to ship the VirtualBox guest-drivers and -tools by default in the Fedora workstation product.

Fedora 28 will see the addition of guest-drivers to the Fedora kernel package, packaging the userspace-tools (VirtualBox Guest Additions) and adding the VirtualBox Guest Additions package to the default package list for the Workstation product.

This means using Fedora in VirtualBox will have a better experience.

Stratis Storage

    Add initial support for Stratis, a local storage management solution. This will allow initial testing and user feedback that will guide Stratis’s development and stabilization.

VA-API 1.0.0

    This change is about upgrading libva and others to version 2.x. This change affects several multimedia players as there are both API and ABI changes. This will allow some VA-API backends to be updated, improving support for recent hardware.

librealsense2

    A new version of librealsense has been released, which does not support older camera versions. Bump librealsense to the new release and add the old library as librealsense1.

java-openjdk 10 – rolling release for Short Term Support releases of OpenJDK

    OpenJDK have release cadence of 6 months. but 3/4 of them are Short Term Supported for 6 months only. This package is designed to harbore them. Currently it is built on openJDK 10. LTSs (next is 11) will go as separate packages.

PHP 7.2

    Update the PHP stack in Fedora to latest version 7.2.x.

    Including these Engineering Steering Committee also made others important change as

  • GCC8
  • GHC 8.2
  • The GNU C Library version 2.27
  • Glibc collation update and sync with cldr
  • Hardening Flags Updates for Fedora 28
  • IBus Unicode Typing
  • Switch libidn-using applications to IDNA2008
  • NIS switching to new libnsl to support IPv6
  • NSS Default File Format SQL
  • Rename “nobody” user
  • Replace glibc’s libcrypt with libxcrypt
  • Strong crypto settings: phase 1
  • Removal of Sun RPC Interfaces From glibc
  • Golang 1.10
  • Switch libcurl to use libssh instead of libssh2
  • A new time tool version 1.8 has changed output format.
  • Make authselect default tool instead of authconfig
  • Binutils version 2.29.1
  • Update Erlang/OTP to version 20.
  • Update fontconfig package to Fontconfig 2.13 as latest version.
  • Update the giflib package to the latest giflib-5.x version (currently 5.1.4).
  • Update Sugar to the new upstream 0.112 stable feature release.
  • Enabled Thunderbolt 3 peripherals in a secure way hardware out of the box.

 

 

NAS6

eRacks/NAS6

Get your Systems as per-configured with Fedora 28 or with any other Open Source Operating System from eRacks Store.

 

 

Minimum System Configuration for Fedora 28

    The figures below are a recommended minimum for the default installation. Your requirements may differ, and most applications will benefit from more than the minimum resources.

  • 1GHz or faster processor
  • 1GB System Memory
  • 10GB unallocated drive space

Low memory installations

    Fedora 28 can be installed and used on systems with limited resources for some applications. Text, VNC, or kickstart installations are advised over graphical installation for systems with very low memory. Larger package sets require more memory during installation, so users with less than 768MB of system memory may have better results preforming a minimal install and adding to it afterward.

 

Installation Fedora 28

Installation Fedora 28

 

Note:For best results on systems with less than 1GB of memory, use the DVD installation image.

Display resolution

    Graphical Installation requires 800×600 resolution or higher

Graphical installation of Fedora requires a minimum screen resolution of 800×600. Owners of devices with lower resolution, such as some netbooks, should use text or VNC installation.

Once installed, Fedora will support these lower resolution devices. The minimum resolution requirement applies only to graphical installation.

Minimum Hardware for Accelerated Desktops

    Fedora 28 supports most display adapters. Modern, feature-rich desktop environments like GNOME3 and KDE Plasma Workspaces use video devices to provide 3D-accelerated desktops. Older graphics hardware may not support acceleration:

  • Intel prior to GMA9xx
  • NVIDIA prior to NV30 (GeForce FX5xxx series)
  • Radeon prior to R300 (Radeon 9500)
  • CPU Accelerated Graphics

Systems with older or no graphics acceleration devices can have accelerated desktop environments using LLVMpipe technology, which uses the CPU to render graphics. LLVMpipe requires a processor with SSE2 extensions. The extensions supported by your processor are listed in the flags: section of /proc/cpuinfo

Choosing a Desktop Environment for your hardware

    Fedora 28’s default desktop environment, GNOME3, functions best with hardware acceleration. Alternative desktops are recommended for users with older graphics hardware or those seeing insufficient performance with LLVMpipe.

Desktop environments can be added to an existing installation and selected at login. To list the available desktops, use the dnf grouplist command:

# dnf grouplist -v hidden | grep desktop

Install the desired group:

# dnf groupinstall “KDE Plasma Workspaces”

Or, use the short group name to install:

# dnf install @mate-desktop-environment

 

 

Get Fedora 28

    If you want to have your system pre-configured with Fedora 28, simply choose as your Fedora Linux 28 Workstation / Server or Atomic for your “Operating System’ option with eRacks/FLASH10 or with any other system from eRacks Store. You Could call or email us for the configuration details. We do cover your requirements with our systems.

 

eRacks/FLASH10

eRacks/FLASH10

 

    Or, Fedora 28 is available to download in ISO format from here. It is available in various flavors mainly Fedora 28 Workstation for desktops, Fedora 28 Server for servers and Fedora 28 Atomic for containers.

May 8th, 2018

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

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There are many Open Source DNS server services for Linux systems. Here we’ll discuss about installing and configuring one of the most popular DNS server services among them known as “Bind9”. We’ll use another most popular Debian based Linux server operating system distributed by Canonical which is Ubuntu 16.04 LTS Server edition.

Other good DNS implementations include the native OpenBSD DNS implementation, as well as Dan Bernstein’s tinyDNS (AKA djbdns), but these are topics for future articles. (We use djbdns on OpenBSD, internally).

Successfully installing and configuring Bind9 Server service on Ubuntu 16.04 LTS server edition require several steps. For better understanding we’ll divide the total process into two main steps as ‘Basic installs’ and ‘Securing the DNS Server’ service. Each main category could be divided into several additional steps.

Basic Installing Steps:

  1. Install fresh Ubuntu 16.04 LTS Server OS on a server.
  2. Preparing the Ubuntu 16.04 LTS Server OS for installing Bind9 DNS Server Service.
  3. Install Bind9 DNS Server Service and configure Caching-only name server.
  4. Install and configure Primary DNS server or Master DNS server.
  5. Bind9 Post installation Configurations for successful service run on Ubuntu Server.
  6. Install and configure Secondary DNS server or Slave DNS server.

Securing Bind9 DNS Server Service:

  1. Configure SPF record for securing mail server under Bind9 DNS service.
  2. Configure DKIM record for securing mail server under Bind9 DNS service.
  3. Configure DNSSEC signing on Bind9 DNS Server Services.
  4. Configure DMARC Record for securing mail server under Bind9 DNS service.

For this tutorial we’ll use ‘eracks.com’ as domain and local IP address for demo and real time configurations (tested) behind the NAT network. The global & dedicated Systems could be configured just by replacing with your own domain and real IP assigned from your ISP. If you need further assistance please contact our eRacks Systems’ experts. Also, you could buy securely configured “DNS Server” as your requirements from eRacks SystemsshowRoom without any hassle. For your requirement please checkout.

For configuring DNS Servers we’ll use private IP from 192.168.88.0/24 network block where the usable Host IP Range is: 192.168.88.1 – 192.168.88.254; and Subnet Mask: 255.255.255.0. Our Router/NAT-gateway IP address is already configured as 192.168.88.1.

IP Address Block:	192.168.88.0/24
Usable Host IP Range:	192.168.88.1 - 192.168.88.254
Broadcast Address:	192.168.88.255
Total Number of Hosts:	256
Number of Usable Hosts:	254
Subnet Mask:	255.255.255.0
Wildcard Mask:	0.0.0.255
Options Primary/Master DNS Server Secondary/Slave DNS Server Client/Host Server
Host Name dnsmaster dnsslave hostserver
Domain eracks.com eracks.com eracks.com
IP Address IPv4: 192.168.88.17
IPv6: ::8817
IPv4: 192.168.88.250
IPv6: ::8250
IPv4: 192.168.88.17
IPv6: ::8221
FQDN dnsmaster.eracks.com dnsslave.eracks.com hostserver.eracks.com

Enough talk – Let’s see how it’s done!

 

eRacks/DNS


Get your Own Open Source DNS Server as pre-configured as ‘plug & Play’ from eRacks Systems’ ShowRoom.

 

 

 

Step 1: Install fresh Ubuntu 16.04 LTS Server OS on a server.

For learn how to install a fresh copy of Ubuntu 16.04 LTS Server OS on a server system visit this link.

Step 2: Preparing the Ubuntu 16.04 LTS Server OS for installing Bind9 DNS Server Service.

After installing, login the server directly or using SSH tunnel with IP address with user with root privileges.

The login screen will look like this;

 

Then run the following command and press enter and your given password to update the system.

administrator@ubuntu:~$ sudo apt-get update

 

For avoiding “sudo” command, we’ll configure the server as ‘root’ user. To do so, type the following command and press enter.

administrator@ubuntu:~$ sudo -s

 

Once the Update and Upgrade are done as root user, we need to edit the network interface for setting up the static IP address for the system with the following command;

root@ubuntu:~$ nano /etc/network/interfaces

Here On the popped-up screen find # The primary network interface and replace the beneath lines with the following;

# Static Primary Network Interface IPv4 Address
# Required for IPv4 (A) Records
auto eth0
	iface eth0 inet static
	address 192.168.88.17
	netmask 255.255.255.0
	network 192.168.88.0
	broadcast 192.168.88.255
	gateway 192.168.88.1
	dns-nameservers 8.8.8.8 8.8.4.4
	dns-domain eracks.com
# Optional Static IPv6 Address for Primary Network Interface
# Required for IPv6 (AAAA) Records
iface eth0 inet6 static	
	address fe80::215:5dff:fe58:6500
	netmask 65
	gateway fe80::2a3b:82ff:fe74:58f6

 

Once it is done, press Ctl + X to exit and Press ‘Y’ then Enter button to save the changes.

 

Next, we need to set up the hostname for this server. Thus, Run the following command to edit the host name;

root@ubuntu:~$ nano /etc/hostname

On the popped up screen replace the existing default host name “Ubuntu 16.04 LTS” with “dnsmaster” (since we’ll be setting the hostname as “dnsmaster“) then Press control + X to exit. And Press ‘Y’ then Enter button to save the changes. And then Run the following command to edit the hosts file;

Replace the existing with the following host record entries with the following;

root@ubuntu:~$ nano /etc/hosts

The entries will look like this;

Once done, press control + X to exit and Press ‘Y’ then Enter button to save the changes and reboot your system with the “reboot” command.

 

After rebooting and login to the server we’ll see that the default host name “ubuntu” is replaced with hostname “dnsmaster”. To get assure we could check the hostname and FQDN with the following commands respectively;

root@dnsmaster:~$ hostname
root@dnsmaster:~$ hostname -f

Once these are done the system is ready for installing the Bind9 DNS Server Service. And we could proceed to the next steps.

Note:We’ll login as as root user from the start.

 

Step3: Install Bind9 DNS Server Service and configure Caching-only name server.

Before installing ‘Bind9’ DNS Server on this server we need to make sure all the packages are up to date. So, we’ll update and upgrade all the apt packages with following command;

root@dnsmaster:~$ apt-get update && apt-get upgrade

 

Once the Update and Upgrade are done, we’ll install the ‘Bind9’ Packages with the following command;

root@dnsmaster:~$ apt-get install bind9

The screen will pop up for your permission for using additional disk space. For approval, press “Y” and then Enter button for installing the packages. The installation process will take a few whiles.

 

When the installation is done the system is ready for configuring Caching-only name server with Bind9 DNS Server service package. For configuring Caching-only name server run the following command.

root@dnsmaster:~$ nano /etc/bind/named.conf.options

 

On the popped-up screen find & uncomment the forwarders & set the forwarders as follows with google public DNS IP address & or with your ISP’s DNS IP address.

The entries will look like this

 

Next, press control + X to exit and Press ‘Y’ then Enter button to save the changes. And restart the Bind9 DNS Service with the following command.

root@dnsmaster:~$ systemctl restart bind9.service

 

For testing the Caching-only name server we need to run the dig command as follows;

root@dnsmaster:~$ dig google.com

If everything is okay, the command will dig up the following records;

Step4: Install and configure Primary DNS server or Master DNS server.

Before proceeding further, first we need to make sure the Ubuntu server is up-to-date. We could make sure by running the following commands;

root@dnsmaster:~$ apt-get update && apt-get upgrade

 

Before configuring Primary Name Server with Bind9, we could verify all the required packages are installed by running the following command;

root@dnsmaster:~$ apt-get install bind9 bind9utils bind9-doc

 

Once it is done, we are ready to configure our Primary Name Server with Bind9 on Ubuntu 16.04 LTS Server. And All configuration files be will be available under /etc/bind/ directory. To do so, we need to edit ‘named.conf.local’ file first, and make entry for our domain zone.

So, we’ll run the following command line for setting up our domain’s forward look up zone.

root@dnsmaster:~$ nano /etc/bind/named.conf.local

 

Then make the following entries for Forward Look Up Zone

// ### Forward Look Up Zone
zone "eracks.com" {
	type master;
	file "/etc/bind/forward.eracks.com";
	allow-transfer {none;};
	};

 

Reverse, look up zone is also recorded here. So, we’ll add the reverse look up zone with the first there part of the IP address in reverse way by ending with “.in-addr.arpa”. The zone name it’ll look like “88.168.192.in-addr.arpa” this. So, we’ll add the following records beneath the forward look up zone as well as following;

// ### Reverse Look Up Zone
zone "88.168.192.in-addr.arpa" {
	type master;
	file "/etc/bind/reverse.eracks.com";
	allow-transfer {none;};
	};

These entries will look like this;

 

Then we need to save the file and exit.

 

We’ve identified forward lookup zone via “file “/etc/bind/forward.eracks.com”;” and reverse lookup zone via “file “/etc/bind/reverse.eracks.com”;” on the “named.conf.local” file. Therefore, we need to create those two-database files for use as forward & reverse lookup zone under “/etc/bind/” directory.

For “forward.eracks.com” database, we’ll copy the existing “db.local” database file that is created as default with Binid9 installation under ‘/etc/bind/’ directory. To, do so we’ll run the following command;

root@dnsmaster:~$ cp /etc/bind/db.local /etc/bind/forward.eracks.com

Then we’ll edit the newly copied database file with the following command;

root@dnsmaster:~$ nano /etc/bind/forward.eracks.com

Then make the following entries for the database records;

; ###########################################################################
; ### ******************************************************************* ###
; ##### Forward Look Up Zone Data Files For eRacks.Com Domain ###############
; ###########################################################################
$TTL    3600
$ORIGIN eracks.com.
@	IN	SOA	dnsmaster.eracks.com.	root.eracks.com. (
								2018110111	;	Serial
										4800	;	Refresh
										360	;	Retry
									2419200	;	Expire
										7200 )	;	Negative Cache TTL
;
@	IN	NS	dnsmaster.eracks.com.
@	IN	NS	dnsslave.eracks.com.
@	IN	AAAA	::8817
@	IN	A	192.168.88.17
; ################################
; NameServer Records
; ###########################################################################
dnsmaster.eracks.com.	IN	A	192.168.88.17
dnsmaster.eracks.com.	IN	AAAA	::8817
dnsslave.eracks.com.	IN	A	192.168.88.250
dnsslave.eracks.com.	IN	AAAA	::8250
; ################################
; Other Host Records
; ###########################################################################
hostserver.eracks.com.	IN	A	192.168.88.221
hostserver.eracks.com.	IN	AAAA	::8221
;

 

It’ll look like this;

 

Next for “reverse.eracks.com” database, we’ll copy the existing “db.127” database file that is created as default with Binid9 installation under ‘/etc/bind/’ directory as well. So, we’ll run the following command;

root@dnsmaster:~$ cp /etc/bind/db.127 /etc/bind/reverse.eracks.com

And edit using the following command

root@dnsmaster:~$ nano /etc/bind/reverse.eracks.com

Entries for the database are follows

; ###########################################################################
; ### ******************************************************************* ###
; ##### Reverse Look Up Zone Data Files For eRacks.Com Domain ###############
; ###########################################################################
$TTL    3600
@	IN	SOA	dnsmaster.eracks.com.	root.eracks.com. (
								2018110111	;	Serial
										4800	;	Refresh
										360	;	Retry
									2419200	;	Expire
										7200 )	;	Negative Cache TTL
;
@	IN	NS	dnsmaster.eracks.com.
@	IN	NS	dnsslave.eracks.com.
; ################################
; NameServer Records
; ###########################################################################
17.88.168.192.in-addr.arpa.	IN	PTR	dnsmaster.eracks.com.
250.88.168.192.in-addr.arpa.	IN	PTR	dnsslave.eracks.com.
; ################################
; Other Host Records
; ###########################################################################
221.88.168.192.in-addr.arpa.	IN	PTR	hostserver.eracks.com.
;

Once it is done, we’ll save the file and exit.

It’ll look like this;

 

After that, we’ll restart the bind9 DNS Server Service with the following command.

root@dnsmaster:~$ systemctl restart bind9.service
root@dnsmaster:~$ service bind9 status

Note: We should be careful that all the records that finishes with letter (other than IP addresses), we need to add full-stop (“.”) at their end point to declare it is finished. Else, the bind9 will show an error.

 

For instant checkup, we need to set the resolver with nameserver as localhost IP 127.0.0.1 using following command;

root@dnsmaster:~$ nano /etc/resolv.conf

 

And at the beginning of the name server lists we need to add the following line, then save and exit.

nameserver 127.0.0.1

 

For checkup we’ll use the “dig” command for specific host record like following

root@dnsmaster:~$ dig eracks.com

 

The command will dig up the host records from the local DNS Server as follow

 

If the configuration is correct then the above command will not show any error. or if there is any error, we need to look at log file and troubleshoot the error. For detail about bind9 troubleshooting on Ubuntu Server please visit Ubuntu’s official “DNS Troubleshooting Page” or contact eRacks Systems’ expertise for the help.

 

Step 6: Bind9 Post installation Configurations for successful service run on Ubuntu Server.

When, the bind9 shows no error, we need to set the post installation configuration for Bind9 DNS Server Service to run successfully on Ubuntu Server. To do so, we’ll run these following commands for give appropriate access permission to the Bind9 Server Service and Allow through Ubuntu Firewall (ufw).At first, we’ll enable the bind9 DNS Server Service at the system start up with the following command. So that the Bind9 always starts automatically after the system reboot.

root@dnsmaster:~$ systemctl enable bind9.service

 

Then for the access permission for Bind9 on ubuntu server, we’ll run the following commands;

root@dnsmaster:~$ chmod -R 755 /etc/bind
root@dnsmaster:~$ chown -R bind:bind /etc/bind

 

We’ll also configure the Ubuntu firewall in order to allow Bind9 through Ubuntu firewall (ufw). For configuring ufw we’ll run the following commands one by one.

root@dnsmaster:~$ ufw app list
root@dnsmaster:~$ ufw allow “Bind9”
root@dnsmaster:~$ ufw reload
root@dnsmaster:~$ ufw status
root@dnsmaster:~$ ufw status verbose

 

Then we’ll restart both servives Bind9 and the ufw with the following commands;

root@dnsmaster:~$ systemctl restart bind9.service
root@dnsmaster:~$ systemctl restart service.service

 

We could always restart and check status of the Bind9 DNS Server Service with following command.

root@dnsmaster:~$ service bind9 restart
root@dnsmaster:~$ service bind9 status

 

If everything is alright, the Bind9 status report will show no error. Beside, we could always visit this MxToolbox website for more detail reports and troubleshooting by entering the domain.

May 8th, 2018

Posted In: How-To, Linux, Open Source, servers

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    Ubuntu 17.10, code named Artful Aardvark; I guess you already know that Artful means full of art or skill. And Aardvark is a medium-sized, burrowing, nocturnal mammal native to Africa. Colloquially, it is called African Ant Eater.

Nowadays Ubuntu become the world’s most popular desktop Linux operating system, and with its latest short-term support release, it’s clear Canonical want to keep a firm grip on the title.

Artful Aardvark

‘Artful Aardvark’ (Ubuntu 17.10)

As release with Artful Aardvark (Ubuntu 17.10) in October 19, 2017 Canonical continues Ubuntu’s proud tradition of integrating the latest and greatest open source technology into a high-quality, easy-to-use Linux distribution. Ubuntu 17.10 Artful Aardvark marks an all-new chapter in Ubuntu’s already rich history. As always, the team has been hard at work through this cycle, introducing new features and fixing bugs.

Ubuntu 17.10 Debuts with An All-New Desktop

This is the first version of Ubuntu to use GNOME Shell as the default desktop. ‘The HUD, global menu, and other Unity features are no longer included’. By choosing to drop Unity most of Ubuntu’s home-grown usability efforts also fall by the wayside.

Ubuntu 17.10 Desktop

Ubuntu 17.10 Desktop

In Unity’s place comes a bespoke version of GNOME Shell that is ‘customized’ to resemble something that’s superficially close to the Unity desktop layout. The Ubuntu 17.10 desktop uses a two-panel layout: a full-height vertical dock sits on the left-hand side of the screen, while a ‘top bar’ is stripped across the top.

The top bar plays host a new type of app menu, a calendar applet/message tray, app indicators, and a unified status menu for managing network, volume, Bluetooth and user sessions.

Ubuntu Dock

The new Ubuntu Dock is both a task manager and an application launcher. It shows icons for open and running software windows as well as ‘pinned’ launchers for user’s favorite apps.

Ubuntu Dock

Ubuntu Dock

The dock is also global; it displays icons/applications from all workspaces regardless of which one user is actually viewing.

Both the Ubuntu Dock and the top bar are semi-transparent, which adds nice visual presence. When a window touches either element the “dynamic transparency” feature kicks in to render both dock and top bar darker, making panel label contents more legible in the foreground.

Activities & Workspaces

The main “desktop” area remains a usable space on which user can place icons, folders and files.

Though there’s no longer a true global app menu, but the majority of apps place a small menu in the top bar bearing the name of the app in focus. These app menus contain a solitary ‘quit’ button at the least, or a full complement of options at most.

Workspaces

Activities & Workspaces

Workspaces are a common feature found on most modern desktop operating systems including Windows 10, so it’s a good thing that Ubuntu hasn’t ditched them. User can easily move windows between workspaces by clicking on a window and moving it on over the workspace.

Applications Overview

In Ubuntu 17.10 Applications are listed alphabetically, ordered into scrollable pages. User can launch an application by clicking on it, selecting it with keyboard arrow keys and pressing enter, or by touching it.

Applications Overview

Applications Overview

After years of ‘footnote’ releases that brought only minor tweaks, the ‘Artful Aardvark’ brings all-out with change, ready to usher in the new era. Under the hood, there have been updates to many core packages, including a new 4.13-based kernel, glibc 2.26, gcc 7.2, and much more in Ubuntu Desktop. Let’s have a brief list view on some of those updates.

  • On supported systems, Wayland is now the default display server. The older display server is still available: just choose Ubuntu on Xorg from the cog on the log in screen.
  • GDM has replaced LightDM as the default display manager. The login screen now uses virtual terminal 1 instead of virtual terminal 7.
  • Printer configuration is now done in the Settings app: Choose Devices and then Printers. The tool uses the same algorithms for identifying printers and choosing drivers as the formerly used system-config-printer, and makes full use of driverless printing to support as many printers as possible.
  • The default on screen keyboard is GNOME’s Caribou instead of Onboard.
  • Calendar now supports recurring events.
  • LibreOffice has been updated to 5.4.
  • Python 2 is no longer installed by default. Python 3 has been updated to 3.6.
  • The ‘Rhythm box’ music player now uses the alternate user interface created by Ubuntu Budgie developer David Mohamed.
  • The Ubuntu GNOME flavor has been discontinued. If a user is using Ubuntu GNOME, he will be upgraded to Ubuntu.

Note: Install gnome-session and choose GNOME from the cog on the login screen if user would like to try a more upstream version of GNOME. If any user’ d like to also install more core apps, he’d install the vanilla-gnome-desktop met package.

 

    Not only the Ubuntu 17.10 Desktop but also, there are significant changes into the Ubuntu 17.10 Server version too. For the Ubuntu Server 17.10, the OS Version for the printing server has been increased to announce Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 ID mapping checks added to the testparm(1) tool. There are some ID mapping backends too, which are not allowed to be used for the default backend. Winbind will no longer start if an invalid backend is configured as the default backend. The others are as follows,

Ubuntu 17.10 Server

Ubuntu 17.10 Server

Qemu 2.10

Qemu has been updated to the 2.10 release. Since the last version was 2.8.

Among many other changes there is one that might need follow on activity by the user/admin: Image locking is added and enabled by default. This generally makes execution much safer, but can break some old use cases that now explicitly have to opt-in to ignore/share the locks by tools and subcommands using the –force-share option or the share-rw dqev property.

Libvirt 3.6

Libvirt has been updated to version 3.6.

LXD 2.18

LXD was updated to version 2.18. Some of the top new features of LXD 2.18 are:

  • Native Ceph RBD support.
  • Support for cloud instance types.
  • Pre-seeding of the “lxd init” questions through yaml.
  • New client library.
  • Improved storage handling (volume resize, auto re-mapping on attach, …).
  • A lot of small improvements to the client tool.

DPDK 17.05.2

Ubuntu 17.10 includes the latest release of DPDK that has stable updates: 17.05.2. This made it possible to integrate Open vSwitch 2.8.

Open vSwitch 2.8

Open vSwitch has been updated to 2.8. Though user need to specify dpdk devices via dpdk-devargs.

New BIND9 KSK

The DNS server BIND9 was updated to include the new Key Signing Key (KSK) that was published on July 11, 2017. Starting on October 11, 2017, that key will sign the root zone key, which in turn is used to sign the actual root zones.

Cloud-Init

The cloud-init version was updated to 17.1. Notable new features for cloud-init are as follows,

  • Python 3.6 support.
  • Ec2 support for IPv6 instance configuration.
  • Expedited boot time through cloud-id optimization.
  • Support for netplan yaml in cloud-init.
  • Add cloud-init subcommands collect-logs, analyze and schema for developers.
  • Apport integration from cloud-init via ‘ubuntu-bug cloud-init’.
  • Significant unit test and integration test coverage improvements.

Curtin

The Curtin version is updated to ‘0.1.0~bzr519-0ubuntu1’. New features are:

  • Network configuration passthrough for ubuntu and centos.
  • More resilient UEFI/grub interaction.
  • Better support for mdadm arrays.
  • Ubuntu Core 16 Support.
  • Improved bcache support.

Samba

Samba is updated to version 4.6.7. Important changes in the 4.6.x series are:

  • Multi-process Net logon support.
  • New options for controlling TCP ports used for RPC services.
  • AD LDAP and replication performance improvements.
  • DNS improvements.

    There are many other changes too. We recommend that all users read the release notes, which document caveats, workarounds for known issues, as well as more in-depth Release Notes.

    Users of Ubuntu 17.04 will be offered an automatic upgrade to 17.10. As always, upgrades to the latest version of Ubuntu are entirely free of charge.

Remember, here at eRacks, we offer pre-installed Ubuntu 17.10 Artful Aardvark with our new systems either directly from the OS dropdown, or by custom quote.

October 25th, 2017

Posted In: Debian, Linux, Open Source, servers, ubuntu

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    Fedora (formerly Fedora Core) is a Unix-like operating system based on the Linux kernel and GNU programs (a Linux distribution), developed by the community-supported Fedora Project and sponsored by the Red Hat company. Fedora contains software distributed under various free and open-source licenses and aims to be on the leading edge of such technologies. Fedora is the upstream source of the commercial Red Hat Enterprise Linux distribution.

Since the release of Fedora 21, three different editions are available: Workstation, focused on the personal computer, Server and Cloud for servers, and Atomic being the edition meant for cloud computing. As released on July, 11, 2017 they introduced Fedora 26!

fedora26

Fedora 26 has arrived with thousands of improvements to development tools, partitioning tools, better caching of user and group information, better debugging, an improved DNF package manager, and so much more.

Let’s see some of many upgraded System Requirements & features, those are new Fedora 26 offering.

Minimum System Requirements

Fedora 26 provides software to suit a wide variety of applications. The storage, memory and processing requirements vary depending on usage. For example, a high traffic database server requires much more memory and storage than a business desktop, which in turn has higher requirements than a single-purpose virtual machine. Your requirements may differ, and most applications will benefit from more than the minimum resources.

Fedora 26 recommended minimum System Configuration for the default installation are as follows:

  • 1GHz or faster processor
  • 1GB System Memory
  • 10GB Usable Drive Space

Fedora 26 can be installed and used on systems with limited resources. Text, VNC, or kickstart installations are advised over graphical installation for systems with very low memory. Larger package sets require more memory during installation, so users with less than 768MB of system memory may have better results preforming a minimal install and adding to it afterward.

For best results on systems with less than 1GB of memory, one should use the DVD installation image. Fedora also give us some guidelines for it’s best practices and performances.

  • Graphical installation of Fedora requires a minimum screen resolution of 800×600. Owners of devices with lower resolution, such as some netbooks, should use text or VNC installation. Once installed, Fedora will support these lower resolution devices. The minimum resolution requirement applies only to graphical installation.

  • Fedora 26 supports most display adapters. Modern, feature-rich desktop environments like GNOME3 and KDE Plasma Workspaces use video devices to provide 3D-accelerated desktops. Systems with older or no graphics acceleration devices can have accelerated desktop environments using LLVMpipe technology, which uses the CPU to render graphics. LLVMpipe requires a processor with SSE2.

 

Features

Fedora 26 offers latest GNOME 3.24, LibreOffice 5.3, Fedora Media Writer, Improved Qt app compatibility & so on…

GNOME 3.24

gnome-3-24

Newest version of the GNOME desktop now has a Natural Light Filter feature that changes display’s color temperature. It works based on the time of day and helps prevent sleeplessness and eye strain. Also, there are updates to the Settings panel for online accounts, printers, and users. The notifications area sports a cleaner, simpler layout, with integrated weather information.

For developers, Builder now features improved support for systems like Flatpak, CMake, Meson, and Rust. It also integrates Valgrind to help profile your project. There are numerous other improvements, which you can find in the GNOME 3.24 release notes.

 

LibreOffice 5.3

The latest version of the popular office suite features many changes. It includes a preview of the experimental new NotebookBar UI. There’s also a new internal text layout engine to ensure consistent text layout on all platforms.

 

Fedora Media Writer

The new version of the Fedora Media Writer can create bootable SD cards with Fedora for ARM devices such as Raspberry Pi. It also features better support for Windows 7 and screenshot handling. The utility also notifies you when a new release of Fedora is available.

 

Improved Qt app compatibility

The Adwaita theme contains many improvements and looks closer to its GTK counterpart than ever. There are also two variants ported to Qt, dark and high contrast. If you switch to dark or high contrast Adwaita, your Qt apps will switch as well.

 

            Matthew Miller, Fedora Project Leader, wrote in a Fedora Magazine post about Fedora 26. As he wrote “First, of course, we have thousands of improvements from the various upstream software we integrate, including new development tools like GCC 7, Golang 1.8, and Python 3.6. We’ve added a new partitioning tool to Anaconda (the Fedora installer) — the existing workflow is great for non-experts, but this option will be appreciated by enthusiasts and sysadmins who like to build up their storage scheme from basic building blocks. F26 also has many under-the-hood improvements, like better caching of user and group info and better handling of debug information. And the DNF package manager is at a new major version (2.5), bringing many new features. Really, there’s new stuff everywhere — read more in the release notes.”

 

Among the current Fedora users, most of may wish to go straight for the clean install—which makes perfect sense and always winds up with a reliable and stable instance.

As with release of latest version of Fedora, we offer latest Fedora 26 with our systems as pre-configured according to your custom quote…

July 15th, 2017

Posted In: Fedora, News, Open Source, Operating Systems

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