Red Hat Fedora Turns Ten!

Fedora LinuxFedora is cool, hard to believe it is 10 years old! Time flies!

Fedora, Red Hat’s community Linux, turns 10

ZDNet – Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols – “Today, Fedora is one of the most beloved Linux distributions. Top Linux kernel programmers, including Linus Torvalds himself, use Fedora for developing the next generation of Linux. For Red Hat, Fedora’s parent company, Fedora is its road-map for its market-leading Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL). It didn’t start that way. When Fedora first launched, it was hated.

Why? Because in 2003 Red Hat had just decided to drop its low-end Linux desktop distribution, Red Hat Linux, in favor of its business distribution, RHEL. The users were not happy. Comments I heard at the time included, ‘Red Hat has betrayed Linux’ and ‘Red Hat wants to be the next Microsoft.’ One mid-major Linux company of the day, Progeny offered paid support for angry Red Hat Linux 9 users.

Red Hat made this move because it found itself on the horns of a dilemma. On the one hand, its most loyal fans wanted Red Hat to continue to be a fast-paced hacker Linux company, always turning out the latest stuff like all the other Linux firms of its day. Red Hat’s paying customers, however, wanted a rock-stable business distribution.

As Greg DeKoenigsberg, today the VP of Community for Eucalyptus Systems, an open-source cloud company, and an early Fedora project leader, said, ‘We had a product in Red Hat Linux that was trying to perform two duties at the same time: It was trying to be enterprise software and it was trying to be cutting edge, ‘release early, release often’ software. Once the business realized that these were two conflicting goals they made the move to splitting the two.’

Fun or money? Which would you choose?

Red Hat made its decision to go for the gold. They were right to do so. In 2012, Red Hat became the first billion dollar Linux company. With the exception of SUSE, the other major Linux companies of the early 21st century, Caldera, MandrakeSoft (later Mandriva), Lindows, etc. have either disappeared or are a shadow of their former selves.

At the same time, Red Hat did not want to lose its strong developer community. So, with the help of its community, noteably Warren Togami who first created Fedora as a community Red Hat software-package repository, and Bill Nottingham, the first Fedora leader, Fedora Core was born. It would become the first successful commercially-sponsored community Linux distribution. This combination of a business distribution and a pure open-source one would become a popular open-source business model. In 2007, Red Hat merged Core with another community Linux project, Extra, to form the Fedora you know in 2013.

Today, ten years after Red Hat decided to have both a business Linux and a community Linux, Fedora is the most popular technical Linux of them all. Its cutting-edge code leads the way for many Linux developers.

Red Hat states on its site that ‘For 10 years, the Fedora Project has beaten the drum for the open-source world, delivering the latest features and technologies approximately every six months, thanks to the dedication of a diverse global community of contributors. Advancing technologies like virtualization, cloud computing, and software-defined everything, Fedora releases from Yarrow to Heisenbug have continuously pushed open source to new heights and addressed the most complex challenges of next-generation computing.’

As Michael Tiemann, Red Hat’s VP of Open Source Affairs, said, ‘We could not make the kind of big bets that we make with major updates of RHEL without … Fedora.’ Looking ahead, current Fedora leader, Robyn Bergeron, said in an interview, ‘For us in Fedora, I think it’s important for us to continue to evolve ways for people to find the OS a fruitful place for them to contribute.”

Happy birthday Fedora! And, here’s to another ten-years of Fedora, long may it innovate!”

Dr. Bill.TV #312 – Video – “The Kit Kat Pandora App Edition”

Google Android Kit Kat officially released, with a video, too. Pandora app has been added to Chromecast, but why does Chromecast even need apps? ‘BadBIOS’ Malware jumps air gaps? GSotW: Ad-Aware Free Anti-Virus+ Windows XP drops, while Windows 8.1 rises!

Links that pertain to this Netcast:

TechPodcasts Network

International Association of Internet Broadcasters

Blubrry Network

Dr. Bill Bailey.NET

Ad-Aware Free Antivirus+

Start the Video Netcast in the Blubrry Video Player above by
clicking on the “Play” Button in the center of the screen.

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Dr. Bill.TV #312 – Audio – “The Kit Kat Pandora App Edition”

Google Android Kit Kat officially released, with a video, too. Pandora app has been added to Chromecast, but why does Chromecast even need apps? ‘BadBIOS’ Malware jumps air gaps? GSotW: Ad-Aware Free Anti-Virus+ Windows XP drops, while Windows 8.1 rises!

Links that pertain to this Netcast:

TechPodcasts Network

International Association of Internet Broadcasters

Blubrry Network

Dr. Bill Bailey.NET

Ad-Aware Free Antivirus+

Start the Video Netcast in the Blubrry Video Player above by
clicking on the “Play” Button in the center of the screen.

(Click on the buttons below to Stream the Netcast in your “format of choice”)
Streaming M4V Audio

Streaming MP3 Audio

Streaming Ogg Audio

Download M4V Download WebM Download MP3 Download Ogg
(Right-Click on any link above, and select “Save As…” to save the Netcast on your PC.)

Available on YouTube at:

Available on Vimeo at:

Windows XP Drops – Windows 8.1 Rises

Rise and Fall

…In market share of usage, that is. Actually, this is good news from a security perspective. If Windows XP is still in use after April 2014, it will become a huge gaping security issue on the Internet! Why? No more patches. Stop using XP now!

Windows 8.1 surges in usage as XP continues to drop

ZDNet – “If you want people to adopt your platform, make it free.

That’s the lesson in this month’s web usage statistics from NetMarketShare, which measure worldwide usage share of desktop and mobile operating systems and browsers.

In October, both Microsoft and Apple released free updates to their flagship desktop and notebook operating systems. And despite the fact that the updates arrived late in the month, their impact was substantial.

Microsoft’s Windows 8.1 clocked usage of 1.72 percent, doubling its share from the previous month. That gives the Windows 8.x family a total usage share of 9.25 percent after one full year on the market. (Historically speaking, it appears that Windows 8 is following the same adoption patterns as Windows XP, whose share of the installed base was also just under 10 percent after its first year on the market.)

Usage of Windows XP, which celebrated its 12th birthday in October, continues to drop precipitously in NetMarketShare’s measurements as it heads toward its end-of-support date less than six months from now. For October, XP usage dropped to 31.24 percent, a new low. Windows 7 usage is virtually unchanged from the previous month, with just under half of all PCs running that flavor of Windows.

Meanwhile, Apple’s new OS X Mavericks (officially OS X 10.9), hit a usage level of 0.84 percent in its first (partial) month of availability. Overall, OS X usage continues to climb, slowly, with all OS X versions combined reaching 7.73 percent for the month, a new high. Linux advocates can also celebrate as usage of that free alternative also hit a new high of 1.61 percent.

In the desktop browser segment, Internet Explorer continues its steady growth, reaching 58.22 percent usage. That’s the highest level of usage for the Internet Explorer family in more than two years, and it comes as usage of Firefox and Chrome on traditional desktop operating systems continue to slide. According to the NetMarketShare numbers, Chrome usage hit a two-year low of 15.42 percent in October after briefly nearing the 20 percent mark earlier in the year.

It’s worth noting that the modern, standards-compliant versions of Internet Explorer, 10 and 11, combined for a total usage of 20.43 percent for the month. That’s more than the Firefox or Chrome figures. And Internet Explorer 10, which doesn’t run on Windows XP, is poised to overtake IE 8 as the most-used version.

The PC market is no longer growing as it once was, but even with lower shipments the installed base of traditional PCs continues to grow, with hundreds of millions of new shipments per year. For consumers (and increasingly for businesses), tablets and mobile devices are where the market momentum and excitement are to be found. But in most cases those new tablets are still going to be companion devices in households and offices that also have at least one PC or Mac.”

Geek Software of the Week: Ad-Aware FREE Anti-Virus+!

Ad-Aware Free Anti-Virus+Yes, you read that right, a FREE anti-virus. And it comes very highly rated, and recommended! Let’s face it, Microsoft Security Essentials really isn’t up to today’s evil minions of virus writing! But this is truly commercial quality, and is free too!

Ad-Aware Free Antivirus+

“Combining our legendary anti-spyware with a powerful antivirus, Ad-Aware Free Antivirus+ enhances them with real-time protection, download protection and continuously updated filters against malicious URLs, providing top-of-the-line anti-malware protection for the casual computer user.

Complementing its proprietary anti-spyware technology with one of the best antivirus engines available today (Bitdefender), Ad-Aware 11 features a packed, lean and powerful anti-malware solution, without the conflicts or slow-downs typically associated with running multiple security programs.

Our extensive in-house tests have revealed that even our free product, Ad-Aware Free Antivirus+, easily bested some of the most complete security suites from our competitors. This testing revealed that Ad-Aware will closely match Bitdefender’s impressive test results in independent lab tests. With such a powerful engine at its core Ad-Aware 11 will provide serious protection against even the most advanced threats.


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Game Mode
Silent mode protection that allows you to play your games and watch your movies without being disturbed.

Safe Browsing
Protects you while you browse the web by validating a constantly updated list of known bad URLs and websites.

Legendary Antispyware
Ad-Aware is the world’s most downloaded security software. 450 million downloads and counting…

Real-Time Protection
Blocks or suspends malicious processes and infected files before they try to start or connect to your system.

Pin-Point Scanning
Scan only the files or folders you want directly from their original location.

Malware Sandbox Emulator
Emulation technology that helps protecting users from unidentified or new variants of malware.”

‘BadBIOS’ malware Jumps Airgaps – What?

And you thought you had seen the worst malware ever? Nope. This is one is badder! Ouch!

Meet ‘badBIOS,’ the mysterious Mac and PC malware that jumps airgaps

Ars Technica – “Three years ago, security consultant Dragos Ruiu was in his lab when he noticed something highly unusual: his MacBook Air, on which he had just installed a fresh copy of OS X, spontaneously updated the firmware that helps it boot. Stranger still, when Ruiu then tried to boot the machine off a CD ROM, it refused. He also found that the machine could delete data and undo configuration changes with no prompting. He didn’t know it then, but that odd firmware update would become a high-stakes malware mystery that would consume most of his waking hours.

In the following months, Ruiu observed more odd phenomena that seemed straight out of a science-fiction thriller. A computer running the Open BSD operating system also began to modify its settings and delete its data without explanation or prompting. His network transmitted data specific to the Internet’s next-generation IPv6 networking protocol, even from computers that were supposed to have IPv6 completely disabled. Strangest of all was the ability of infected machines to transmit small amounts of network data with other infected machines even when their power cords and Ethernet cables were unplugged and their Wi-Fi and Bluetooth cards were removed. Further investigation soon showed that the list of affected operating systems also included multiple variants of Windows and Linux.

‘We were like, ‘Okay, we’re totally owned,” Ruiu told Ars. ”We have to erase all our systems and start from scratch,’ which we did. It was a very painful exercise. I’ve been suspicious of stuff around here ever since.’

In the intervening three years, Ruiu said, the infections have persisted, almost like a strain of bacteria that’s able to survive extreme antibiotic therapies. Within hours or weeks of wiping an infected computer clean, the odd behavior would return. The most visible sign of contamination is a machine’s inability to boot off a CD, but other, more subtle behaviors can be observed when using tools such as Process Monitor, which is designed for troubleshooting and forensic investigations.

Another intriguing characteristic: in addition to jumping ‘airgaps’ designed to isolate infected or sensitive machines from all other networked computers, the malware seems to have self-healing capabilities.

‘We had an air-gapped computer that just had its [firmware] BIOS reflashed, a fresh disk drive installed, and zero data on it, installed from a Windows system CD,’ Ruiu said. ‘At one point, we were editing some of the components and our registry editor got disabled. It was like: wait a minute, how can that happen? How can the machine react and attack the software that we’re using to attack it? This is an air-gapped machine and all of a sudden the search function in the registry editor stopped working when we were using it to search for their keys.’

Over the past two weeks, Ruiu has taken to Twitter, Facebook, and Google Plus to document his investigative odyssey and share a theory that has captured the attention of some of the world’s foremost security experts. The malware, Ruiu believes, is transmitted though USB drives to infect the lowest levels of computer hardware. With the ability to target a computer’s Basic Input/Output System (BIOS), Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI), and possibly other firmware standards, the malware can attack a wide variety of platforms, escape common forms of detection, and survive most attempts to eradicate it.

But the story gets stranger still. In posts here, here, and here, Ruiu posited another theory that sounds like something from the screenplay of a post-apocalyptic movie: ‘badBIOS,’ as Ruiu dubbed the malware, has the ability to use high-frequency transmissions passed between computer speakers and microphones to bridge airgaps.”

Pandora is now on Google Chromecast… but Wait.. Isn’t Everything?

I still don’t get why people think Chromecast is a bust because it “doesn’t have apps.” It can stream ANYTHING that you can view in your Chrome browser! Come on, people, think! That means anything I can see, or listen to, on the Internet, I can now watch on my big screen TV… that’s pretty much the world!!! Last night, I watched a TV show (“Tomorrow People” on the CWBut, if you want local apps… here’s Pandora.

Google Chromecast Now Streams Pandora to Your TV

Mashable – “Music-streaming service Pandora is finally offering support for Google’s Chromecast device, which plugs into any HDTV to stream online videos and music, controlled from your tablet or smartphone.

Chromecast users can access Pandora starting now via the free Android and iOS mobile app update. The $35 HDMI dongle, which debuted this summer, already supports Vimeo, Redbox Instant, Netflix, YouTube and Hulu Plus. Compatibility with HBO is also reportedly in the works.

Google Chromecast‘More than one-third of radio listening takes place in the home and we are continually innovating and investing in new platforms that help us seamlessly deliver access to Pandora across a broad range of connected devices,’ Pandora CTO and Executive VP of product Tom Conrad said in a statement. ‘By integrating Google Cast technology into our mobile apps, users now have another easy access point to a better listening experience from the biggest screen in their living room.’

After launching the Pandora app on a mobile device, users can stream music from the cloud to the TV when the Chromecast dongle is attached. It also offers basic control functionality such as pressing play, pause and skip, so users can use the Pandora app like a remote control.

Chromecast is currently only available in the United States, but international users have reportedly accessed the Android app in the Google Play store, hinting at a possible launch of Chromecast in other markets.”

It is Official – The “Kit Kat” Version of Android is Out!

The big news for me? It is coming to my Nexus 10 soon! YES!

Android For All and the New Nexus 5

Google Blog – “Just in time for Halloween, we have two new treats for Android fans. First, we’re excited to unwrap our latest platform release, KitKat, which delivers a smarter, more immersive Android experience to even more people. And second, we’re introducing Nexus 5—a new Nexus phone developed with LG.

The first thing you’ll notice about KitKat is we’ve made the experience much more engaging: the book you’re reading, the game you’re playing, or the movie you’re watching—now all of these take center stage with the new immersive mode, which automatically hides everything except what you really want to see.

Bringing more Google smarts to Android
Behind the polish on the screen is the power under the hood. Take the Phone app, which for most people hasn’t really changed since the days of flip phones. Now, we’re making calling easier than ever, by helping you search across your contacts, nearby places, or even Google Apps accounts (like your company’s directory), directly from within the app. And with the new Hangouts app, all of your SMS and MMS messages are together in the same place, alongside your other conversations and video calls, so you’ll never miss a message no matter how your friends send it. This is just a small taste of KitKat—learn more on our site.

Google has always focused on helping users get immediate access to the information they need, and we want to bring this same convenience and power to users on Android. With the new Nexus 5 launcher, Google smarts are deeply integrated into the phone you carry around with you, so getting to the information you need is simple, easy and fast. Swipe once from the home screen to get Google Now literally at your fingertips. Put Google to work for you by saying ‘OK, Google’ to launch voice search, send a text, get directions or even play a song you want to hear. And in the coming weeks, we’re enhancing Now with important new card types that bring you information about contextual topics that interest you such as updates from a favorite website or blog.

Reaching the next 1 billion users
Building a platform that makes mobile phones accessible for everyone has always been at the heart of Android. Until now, some lower-end Android phones couldn’t benefit from more recent Android releases due to memory constraints. With KitKat, we’ve slimmed down Android’s memory footprint by doing things like removing unnecessary background services and reducing the memory consumption of features that you use all the time. We did this not only within Android but across Google services like Chrome and YouTube. RAM (or memory) is one of the most expensive parts of a phone, and now Android can run comfortably on the 512MB of RAM devices that are popular in much of the world, bringing the latest goodies in Android 4.4 within reach for the next billion smartphone users.

Introducing Nexus 5
Along with our sweet naming tradition, we also introduce a new device with each platform release to showcase the latest Android innovations. For KitKat, we partnered with LG to develop Nexus 5 — the slimmest and fastest Nexus phone ever made. Its design is simple and refined to showcase the 5″ Full HD display. Nexus 5 also keeps you connected at blazing speeds with 4G/LTE and ultra fast wifi. The advanced new lens on Nexus 5 captures more light for brighter night and sharper action shots. And with optical image stabilization, you no longer have to worry about shaky hands and blurry pictures. A new HDR+ mode automatically snaps a rapid burst of photos and combines them to give you the best possible single shot. Learn more on our site.

Nexus 5 is available today, unlocked and without a contract, on Google Play in the U.S., Canada, U.K., Australia, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, Japan and Korea (and coming soon to India), starting at $349. Just in the time for the holidays, Nexus 5 will be available soon at the following retailers: Sprint, T-Mobile, Amazon, Best Buy and RadioShack.

Android 4.4, KitKat, which comes on Nexus 5, will also soon be available on Nexus 4, 7, 10, the Samsung Galaxy S4 and HTC One Google Play edition devices in the coming weeks.

How’s that for a treat?”

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