Issue #206 / Jan 2018

DVD: Ubuntu 17.10 Server and Desktop (64-bit)

Article Code

Approximate on sale dates:

  • UK/Europe: Dec 02
  • USA/Canada: Dec 29
  • Australia: Jan 29


This month we look at the Linux boot process and explore some tools and tricks for better and safer startup, including the Shim first-stage bootloader and the Trusted Platform Module (TPM) chip. Other highlights include:

  • DDoS Defense – Some providers offer special services aimed at thwarting denial-of-service attacks.
  • MakerSpace – Check out our articles on FM radio and Volumio audio playback on the Raspberry Pi.

Elsewhere up ahead, LinuxVoice looks at audio and video with Audacity and the FFmpeg command-line video editor, and Graham puts the focus on small stuff with minimal browsers and minimal text editors in this month’s FOSSPicks.

SERVICE: Welcome


When I started working for this magazine, way back in 2004, Linux was really picking up momentum. That was back in those years when every year was supposed to be "the year of the Linux desktop," and the epic Linux vs. Windows battle was revving to a full burn.

SERVICE: This Month's DVD

Ubuntu 17.10 Server and Desktop (64-bit)

NEWS: News

This month in the news: Samsung to bring Linux to the Galaxy phone, System76 releases Pop!_OS, Linux comes to Windows, Docker embraces Kubernetes, and we are under a Bad Rabbit attack. 

NEWS: Kernel News

Chronicler Zack Brown reports on I3C support, fixing mmap(), and tracing RAM usage in OOM conditions.


Customizing the UEFI boot process

The traditional BIOS dates back decades and has not been able to keep up with the rapid development of PCs and laptops. Its powerful successor UEFI takes over its tasks and provides more features, more convenience, and better security.

: Linux Secure Boot with Shim

Linux control over Secure Boot

The Shim bootloader lets Linux users regain some control over the Secure Boot process.

: Trusted Platform Module

Security with the Trusted Platform Module

The Trusted Platform Module on your computer's motherboard could lead to better security for your Linux system.

REVIEWS: Automatic Backup

Automate data backup at the command line

Backing up data is an unpopular task that many users – and even some administrators – consider a chore, prompting us to take a look at some command-line automatic backup programs.

: Stacer

Convenient system clean-up with Stacer

Stacer is a handy graphical tool for cleaning up your Linux system.

: Programming Snapshot – AI Sequences

Teach Neural Networks to identify sequences of values

2, 5, 7, 10, 12 – and what number comes next? Mike Schilli tests whether intelligence tests devised by psychologists can be cracked with modern AI Networks.

NEWS: DDoS Defense

Providers that protect against DDoS attacks

To ward off DDoS attacks, websites and services often seek the protection of Internet giants, such as Amazon, but you have other ways to protect your connectivity.

: Peek

Record screencasts with Peek on Gnome

A screencast shows what happens on the desktop. Peek lets you create screencasts in the blink of an eye and export them to popular formats.

: Charly's Column – inxi

The sys admin's daily grind: inxi

The name of the tool that columnist Charly Kühnast recommends this month may sound like the Teletubbies, but it is but far from infantile when it comes to functionality. In fact, inxi provides detailed and precisely controllable hardware and system usage information for the host computer.

LINUXUSER: Command Line – Melt

Playing and editing audio-visual from the command line

Whether you are an expert or a beginner, you can learn to edit audio and video clips at the command line with Melt.

: Smart Cities

Smarter with open source

Making the city of Messina, Italy, smarter with open source and IoT.

: Pi FM Radio

Build an FM radio using an RTL-SDR dongle

Low-cost RTL-SDR dongles can read frequencies between 24 and 1,766MHz. We built a simple FM radio with a Raspberry Pi, a USB dongle based on the RTL2832U chipset, an LCD HAT, and some Python code.

: Volumio 2

The Volumio 2.0 web-based audio player

Volumio and a Raspberry Pi can add smart functions to any stereo system. Whether playing diverse audio formats or streaming Spotify, the combination of smartphone control, a Raspberry Pi Display, and Volumio outperforms many commercial solutions.

: Open Hardware – Signet

Signet password manager

At the intersection of free software and crowdfunding, a USB password manager offers an innovation in security.

LINUX VOICE: Introduction

This month in Linux Voice


The Linux Voice view on what's going on in the world of Free Software.

Open source communities need equal rights.


Field-programmable gate arrays

Take some advice from Linus Torvalds and learn how to program an FPGA.


Marketing FOSS requires some novel approaches compared with proprietary software. We share our experiences.

LINUX VOICE: Digitizing Analog Music Media

Armed with the Audacity sound editor, you can convert the analog content of LPs, tapes, and cassettes to the digital world.


Graham looks at qutebrowser 1.0, Min, Storyboarder, BorgBackup 1.1, Argentum Age, and much more!

LINUX VOICE: Tutorials – FFmpeg

Linux has some excellent graphical video-editing tools, but sometimes working from the command line with FFmpeg is just better.

Issue 206/2018

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