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Basic Use of pthreads
Threads strike fear into the hearts of many programmers. UNIX's process model is simple and well understood, but it is sometimes inefficient. Threading can often allow for substantial improvements in performance, at the cost of a little confusion. This article demystifies the POSIX thread interface, providing practical examples of threaded code for consideration.

( Permalink: Basic Use of pthreads      Submitted by Anonymous Thu Feb 5, 2004 )

A Happy MythTV User Shows the Way
Newsforge talks about setting up a MythTV based PVR (Personal Video Recorder) and Firing Squad has some interesting comments about the hardware you can select when building a PVR.
"Would I say that anyone could put together their own PVR? No! It takes a level of competency and comfort with Linux to attempt such an undertaking. You need a good deal of patience with often time-confusing documentation. But if you persist, ask questions of those in IRC, and purchase high-end hardware, I am confident that you too will be satisfied with your results."

( Permalink: A Happy MythTV User Shows the Way      Submitted by Noel Wed Feb 4, 2004 )

Secure Electronic Registration and Voting
NetworkWorld Fusion tells us to Vote 'nay' on 'Net balloting and as proof points us at: A Security Analysis of the Secure Electronic Secure Electronic Registration and Voting Experiment (SERVE).
"We have examined numerous variations on SERVE in an attempt to recommend an alternative Internet-based voting system that might deliver somewhat less voter convenience in exchange for fewer or milder security vulnerabilities. However, all such variations suffer from the same kinds of fundamental vulnerabilities that SERVE does; regrettably, we cannot recommend any of them."

( Permalink: Secure Electronic Registration and Voting      Submitted by Noel Wed Feb 4, 2004 )

SUSE Linux Openexchange Server 4.1
PC Magazine reviews: SUSE Linux Openexchange Server 4.1.
"SUSE Linux Openexchange Server 4.1's Web-based groupware capabilities are so good, your company might be able to use the Web interface exclusively. By doing this, you would avoid the cost and time of installing Microsoft Outlook and a plug-in on every employee's desktop. That's a distinct advantage over competing products in this roundup, such as CommuniGate and MailSite, neither of which has a viable Web-based groupware interface."

( Permalink: SUSE Linux Openexchange Server 4.1      Submitted by Noel Wed Feb 4, 2004 )

Sharp Zaurus SL-5600
Linux Journal takes a look at the Sharp Zaurus SL-5600.
"The Zaurus is not like any other PDA on the market. What really differentiates it from other PDAs is what's inside: Linux. This OS choice allows development on many different platforms. Libraries are available for Python, PyQt and Java. There also is version of Xfree86 for the Zaurus. There's even a small Debian distribution that runs on a CF card; I haven't tried it yet, but I hope to soon."

( Permalink: Sharp Zaurus SL-5600      Submitted by Noel Wed Feb 4, 2004 )

POWER Programmer Primer
Developer Works brings us: Linux on Mac: a POWER programmer's primer.
"A more important situation where Linux is worthwhile as an operating system for G3, G4, or G5 machines from Apple is when you want to assure a uniform system/user interface across machines. Many enterprises, hosting companies, schools, or research facilities will have a mixture of x86 and PPC systems that it provides to users. While you can recompile most specific Linux applications for OS X, doing so does not bring the systems all the way to having a uniform GUI, configuration files, directory structure, and build environment between the various maintained machines. "Linux everywhere" assures a much greater degree of consistency."

( Permalink: POWER Programmer Primer      Submitted by Noel Wed Feb 4, 2004 )

How the Linux Kernel Gets Built
Computerworld talks about Linux kernel development.
"During the course of my kernel testing, I ran into a few interesting anomalies with the v2.6-test kernel series and posted my findings and thoughts to the list. The first post detailed an issue regarding poor per-character performance of the v2.6.0-test8 kernel. Less than 30 minutes later, Linus Torvalds had responded to my post and offered some suggestions, followed by Bill Rugolsky Jr. and Andrew Morton adding insight. Within six hours, the problem had been reliably reproduced by a number of core Linux kernel developers, and traced to an issue with a library linked by the Native POSIX Thread Library (NPTL) code. The problem was fixed by Ulrich Drepper of Red Hat and incorporated into the next release."

( Permalink: How the Linux Kernel Gets Built      Submitted by Noel Wed Feb 4, 2004 )

SCO Distributed Denial of Service Scenarios
Netcraft makes us laugh with a set of SCO distributed denial of service scenarios.
"Eric Raymond calls for “restraint in the face of SCO’s continual provocation”. Undeterred, Linux community launches internet-wide round the clock hackathon, and finds six “trivially insecure” US military installations shortly after the US military go home on Friday afternoon. Spend Saturday soaking up the totally awesome graphics on the Stealth bomber flight simulators, and then obliterate most of Utah, sco.com name servers and all, on Sunday morning hours before the DDoS is due to hit Slashdot."

( Permalink: SCO Distributed Denial of Service Scenarios      Submitted by Noel Tue Feb 3, 2004 )

Intel Pentium4 Prescott
Intel's new Pentium4 Prescott has been reviewed by Lostcircuits, anandtech, HardOCP, and HotHardware.
"The word Prescott has been hovering around in the IT world for quite some time as the Sword of Damocles hanging over AMD, with rumors about the streamlined SSE3 instruction set and additional thread synchronizers to boost HyperThreading performance. An additional feature to position Prescott between the existing Northwood and the as elusive as it is exclusive P4 ExtremeEdition is the increased Level2 cache size of 1 MB. "

( Permalink: Intel Pentium4 Prescott      Submitted by Noel Tue Feb 3, 2004 )

Caution: This Game is Pathological
Newforge reviews the game Pathological.
"Pathological game boards center around "wheels" you can turn 90 degrees at a time by right-clicking on them. They have four slots apiece, and each slot on the wheel can hold a single marble. When all four slots on a wheel are filled with marbles of the same color, the marbles vaporize and the wheel is said to be "completed." Your task is to "complete" each wheel on the board."

( Permalink: Caution: This Game is Pathological      Submitted by Noel Tue Feb 3, 2004 )

Introduction to Unix and Linux
In this book John Muster will teach you how to use UNIX and Linux through clear presentation of the concepts. The subjects covered in each chapter are organized in a way the reader can quickly find learning objectives, skills-check sections, hands-on tutorial, fundamental skill-building exercises, illustrations and figures, chapter self-tests, end-of-chapter summaries, quizzes, and projects.

( Permalink: Introduction to Unix and Linux      Submitted by LogError Tue Feb 3, 2004 )

Stallman in India
The Hindu reports on Richard Stallman's trip to India.
"Besides explaining the political philosophy of FOSS movement, Dr. Stallman said he also spoke to the President about the real intention behind Microsoft's plan to spread the use of computers in schools which was "akin to the colonial system of recruiting the local elite to help keep others in line.'"

( Permalink: Stallman in India      Submitted by Noel Tue Feb 3, 2004 )

Talin: Linux Laptops
The Register reports on Talin laptops.
"Tadpole has taken its longstanding relationship with Sun technologies a step further, as this family of Linux based laptops is the first to sport a fully supported mobile installation of the Sun Java Desktop System. "

( Permalink: Talin: Linux Laptops      Submitted by Noel Tue Feb 3, 2004 )

Election Boxes Easy to Mess With
Sunspot reported that in a test Election boxes easy to mess with.
"One guy picked the locks protecting the internal printers and memory cards. Another figured out how to vote more than once - and get away with it. Still another launched a dial-up attack, using his modem to slither through an electronic hole in the State Board of Elections software. Once inside, he could easily change vote totals that come in on Election Day."

( Permalink: Election Boxes Easy to Mess With      Submitted by Noel Mon Feb 2, 2004 )

Thread Level Parallelism Explained
Ace's Hardware has published the first article in a series discussing thread level parallelism (TLP) in modern day and upcoming CPUs. TLP is on the horizon for more processors in 2004 and beyond, and all major server and desktop CPU manufacturers are slated to introduce chips implementing such features. Through the use of hardware threading (Hyperthreading in the Pentium 4) and on-chip multi-processing (the dual-core IBM POWER4), these microprocessors have been able to take advantage of multi-threaded software to boost overall performance. This has particularly been the case in multi-user server workloads where the applications are inherently parallel in nature.

Click here to read TLP and the Return of KISS

( Permalink: Thread Level Parallelism Explained      Submitted by Brian Neal Mon Feb 2, 2004 )

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