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  • Booting the IBM 1401: how a 1959 punch-card computer loads a program

    Tue 9:02pm By Thom Holwerda
    How do you boot a computer from punch cards when the computer has no operating system and no ROM? To make things worse, this computer requires special metadata called “word marks” that can’t be represented on a card. In this blog post, I describe the…
  • Playstation 2 architecture: a practical analysis

    Tue 8:59pm By Thom Holwerda
    The Playstation 2 was not one of the most powerful consoles of its generation, yet it managed to achieve a level of popularity unthinkable for other companies. This machine is nowhere near as simple as the original Playstation was, but we will see why it…
  • Firefox 86 introduces total cookie protection

    Tue 8:58pm By Thom Holwerda
    Today we are pleased to announce Total Cookie Protection, a major privacy advance in Firefox built into ETP Strict Mode. Total Cookie Protection confines cookies to the site where they were created, which prevents tracking companies from using these cookies to…
  • Re-review: System76’s Lemur Pro, now with 11th Gen Intel processors and Xe graphics

    Mon 5:07pm By Thom Holwerda
    In the middle of last year I reviewed System76’s Lemur Pro, a lightweight, battery-life focused Linux laptop. I concluded that the Lemur Pro did not have any big failings, and packed a few stand-out features such as the amazing battery life and open source…
  • Oracle Solaris 11.4 SRU30 released

    Mon 5:07pm By Thom Holwerda
    Solaris is still a thing, even though it’s now developed by a company nobody likes and seems to have lost all of the momentum among enthusiasts, so much so that I doubt anyone will even really care about this news item. Oracle released Solaris 11.4 almost…
  • Understanding KDE Plasma theming system

    Mon 7:40am By Thom Holwerda
    KDE Plasma’s theming system is actually quite complex. It has many ways to be customized. It’s normal ever for expert users to not fully get how it works. I’ll try to explain how it works to the best of my knowledge. I’m pretty sure most KDE users here…
  • The modern packager’s security nightmare

    Mon 6:19am By Thom Holwerda
    One of the most important tasks of the distribution packager is to ensure that the software shipped to our users is free of security vulnerabilities. While finding and fixing the vulnerable code is usually considered upstream’s responsibility, the packager…
  • What’s new in the first Android 12 Developer Preview

    Mon 6:10am By Thom Holwerda
    The first Android 12 developer preview hit the streets Thursday, and we’ve played with it for a day. There’s not a lot to see in this release—at least not at first. Most of the interesting bits are hidden, and the developer community is slowly enabling…
  • OSNews Patreon update: the SunFire V245 and other planned projects

    Fri 5:15pm By Thom Holwerda
    It’s time for an update on the OSNews Patreon, and the projects I’m working on as part of it. Almost three weeks ago I wrote about the Sunfire V245 delivered to my door, ready to be turned into an entirely impractical and loud UltraSPARC workstation. Last…
  • Wayland on Wine: an exciting first update

    Fri 5:13pm By Thom Holwerda
    The focus of this update is to support a number of new features that are useful for applications and games, and which have also been considered potential integration pain points for the Wayland driver. These are copy/paste, drag-and-drop and support for…
  • Apple subpoenas Valve as part of its legal battle with Epic: Valve fights back

    Fri 5:09pm By Thom Holwerda
    A new court filing has revealed that, as part of the ongoing legal battle between Apple and Epic Games, Apple subpoenaed Valve Software in November 2020, demanding it provide huge amounts of commercial data about Steam sales and operations going over multiple…
  • First Android 12 Developer Preview released

    Thu 8:00pm By Thom Holwerda
    Today, we’re releasing the first Developer Preview of Android 12, the next version of Android, for your testing and feedback. With each version, we’re working to make the OS smarter, easier to use, and better performing, with privacy and security at the…
  • To address GPU shortage, NVIDIA cripples RTX 3060 for cryptominers

    Thu 7:58pm By Thom Holwerda
    You may have noticed that it’s kind of hard to find any new graphics card as of late, since supplies are limited for a whole variety of reasons. For the launch of its upcoming RTX 3060 GPU, which might prove to be a relatively affordable and capable upgrade…
  • Introducing the next feature update to Windows 10, version 21H1

    Thu 7:54pm By Thom Holwerda
    Today, we are introducing the next feature update to Windows 10, version 21H1. As people continue to rely on Windows more than ever to work, learn and have fun, we understand the importance of providing the best possible update experience to help people and…
  • Microsoft Office 2021 is on its way

    Thu 7:50pm By Thom Holwerda
    If Microsoft had its way, Office 2021 probably wouldn’t be news at all—the Redmond giant would almost certainly prefer that everyone simply subscribe to Microsoft 365, pay a small monthly or annual fee, and get new features and fixes as they’re rolled…