[sticky] Tired of paying for Windows? Linux is your answer!

Welcome to PrescottLinux.com, we are a local team dedicated to informing dispirited computer users of the tri-city area that there is an alternative to Microsoft Windows. You may very well have a Dell PC right now, did you know you paid Microsoft a percentage of the cost of that PC? With Microsoft’s versions of Windows, you are paying them for the privilege of providing you with an operating system that will open you up viruses, spyware, and all types of malware. Windows by far is the biggest platform for attracting all the unwanted nuisances floating around on the Internet.

If you have kids in the house going online, then you probably have had problems with your Windows computer catching a virus, and all the popups, hijacking of your computer, etc. It is an expensive nightmare to try to get that computer cleaned out. That’s where Linux has a huge advantage over Windows- It is designed from the ground-up with security in mind.

Linux is Free and Open Source Software, a concept known by the acronym, FOSS. As such, you don’t have to pay for Linux, most of the software that runs on Linux is also free and open source. All your favorite applications, such as Mozilla Firefox, web browser, Mozilla Thunderbird E-mail client, Sun’s Open Office, their office suite that is compatible with Microsoft’s Office, as well as many other programs you are probably using already.

Linux also gives you freedom from knowing that there isn’t a big, centralized corporation controlling what do you with your computer, with just its shareholders in mind.

We will add more posts here to explain the virtues of Linux periodically and hope to inform the public.

25 Years of Linux: What a Long, Strange Trip It’s Been


Happy Birthday Linux! You’re 25! When Linux was born on Aug. 25, 1991, it was little more than a hobby for then 21-year old Linus Torvald. Today the Linux community is estimated to be upwards of 86 million users strong. It has become the backbone of large enterprises, and it is installed in government systems and embedded in devices worldwide.
The Linux operating system started out as an alternative to other platform architectures in use on mainframes and enterprise back-ends. It has grown into a major mainstream computing platform.

Latest Slackware Version Doesn’t Cut Newbies any Slack


Slackware is one of those Linux distros often described as being difficult to use. The Slackware Project version 14.2 released on July 1 does little to change that view — at least, as far as installing it is concerned. Its KDE desktop is probably the most contemporary trait. Other than an update under the hood, the latest Slackware release offers little that’s new in terms of usability and few new features. If you are comfortable with Debian-style Linux distros, prepare to be uncomfortable.

The Linux Foundation Gives PNDA a Home


The Linux Foundation on Tuesday added PNDA — the Platform for Network Data Analytics — to its project menagerie. PNDA provides an open source, scalable platform for next-generation network analytics. It integrates data from multiple sources on a network and works with Apache Spark to crunch the numbers in order to find useful patterns in the data more effectively. The project is now available in its initial platform release. Early PNDA supporters include Cisco, Deepfield, FRINX, Intersec, Moogsoft, NGENA, Ontology, OpenDataSoft and Tupl.

Intel’s Project Alloy Tosses Reality Into a Blender


Intel on Tuesday presented its virtual reality vision — a vision that mixes virtual and real worlds into a kind of merged reality — to developers attending a conference in San Francisco. Mixing reality and unreality sometimes can be a recipe for disaster, but Intel thinks it will be a formula for success. At the center of Intel’s vision is its Project Alloy mobile headset and its cutting edge RealSense software. The Alloy head-mounted device departs from other VR devices in that the headset housese all sensors and computing power.

Google May Paint IoT Fuchsia


A team at Google is working on a new operating system called “Fuchsia,” but details are sparse. Fuchsia “is a new open source project that is not at all related to Android or Chrome OS,” said Google spokesperson Joshua Cruz. He declined to provide further details about Fuchsia, saying only that “we have many revolving open source projects at Google.” Fuchsia reportedly already has undergone some testing, and it is booting “reasonably well” on NUCs based on Intel’s Skylake and Broadwell processors.

Vivaldi, the power-user friendly Web Browser, hits version 1.3

We have discussed Vivaldi before. It’s a feature packed and very power-user friendly web browser for Windows, Mac and Linux. And from our limited experience, the browser seems pretty darn fast too.

vivaldi for linux

Vivaldi 1.3 Released

Living up to its tagline “the most customisable web browser”, the new update brings a whole host of new features that enhances Vivaldi’s customisability. The new version comes with powerful themeing abilities for example. In our earlier review of Vivaldi web browser, we did complain about the slightly overdone color schemes and such. The new changes give you powers to tweak its looks the way you want. I especially liked the new dark themes.

vivaldi browser new release

Mouse gestures is perhaps one of my favourite feature in Vivaldi, even though I always prefer keyboard shortcuts. There are more than 90  browser actions that can be performed with mouse gestures now.
Also in this release, the developers have addressed some of Linux platform specific issues, which means that “tab hibernation now works as it should, and some proprietary media embedded in HTML5 content can now be enjoyed in Vivaldi on Linux without problems.” 
There are other improvements on the Privacy front too with the added ability to turn off WebRTC. Overall, I’m really impressed with Vivaldi’s improvements on the performance front. It is definitely faster and more responsive than before, and without any compromises on functionality. Features like ‘Tab Stacks’ work just as good. Both 32 and 64 bit DEB/RPM packages are available (see link below). Share your thoughts on Vivaldi. Thanks for reading.
Download Vivaldi for Linux (DEB, RPM) | Changelog and other details

TCP Flaw Opens Linux Systems to Hijackers


A flaw in the RCP 2159 specification the Internet Engineering Task Force developed to protect TCP against blind in-window attacks could threaten Android smartphones, as well as every Linux computer on the planet. The flaw is described in a paper a team of researchers presented at the 25th Usenix Security Symposium, ongoing in Austin, Texas, through Friday. The researchers are affiliated with the University of California at Riverside and the United States Army Research Laboratory.

Linux Mint 18: Fresher Than Ever


The Linux Mint 18 Sarah will please long-time users and impress new adopters for its growth in features and overall consistent performance. Linux Mint 18, released at the end of June, is a long-term edition supported through 2021. The in-house built Cinnamon desktop and the GNOME 2 fork MATE desktop were available at its introduction. The Xfce edition became available earlier this month, and the KDE edition is coming soon. Linux Mint 18 Sarah is based on Ubuntu 16.04 and comes loaded with numerous significant new features.

Linux Botnets on a Rampage


Linux-operated botnet Distributed Denial of Service attacks surged in this year’s second quarter, due to growing interest in targeting Chinese servers, according to a Kaspersky Lab report released this week. South Korea kept its top ranking for having the most command-and-control servers. Brazil, Italy and Israel ranked among the leaders behind South Korea for hosting C&C servers, according to Kaspersky Lab. DDoS attacks affected resources in 70 countries, with targets in China absorbing 77 percent of all attacks.

A New ‘Battery Monitor’ for Ubuntu with Clever Notifications Support

I’m not really happy with my laptop’s battery performance, and hence the need for reliable battery indicator apps. From simple widgets to full-fledged apps, there are quite a few to choose from. ‘Battery Monitor’ is the latest entrant. Use the following PPA to install Battery Monitor in Ubuntu and other Debian based distros.

Battery Monitor for Ubuntu 16.04 LTS

What makes Battery Monitor different from a whole host of similar apps is its clever integration with Ubuntu notifications. It will notify user about charging, discharging, not charging and critically low battery states. Installation is pretty straight forward. Fire up your Terminal and do as following.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:maateen/battery-monitor -y
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install battery-monitor -y

After installation, there are two ways to start Battery Monitor immediately. Either run battery-monitor in your Terminal itself OR hit ALT + F2 and run battery-monitor. I prefer the later. A few more screenshots.

Project homepage. Do share your thoughts.