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25 July, 2016

Sandy Armstrong: Link

15:30 UTC


Calvin Gaisford: Link

15:00 UTC



Machinery is a command line application to gather information about a system by inspection. The data is stored in a system description which can be accessed without the system being available. So these can be viewed and compared at any time using the console and additionally in the web browser using the graphical user interface of Machinery. This interface offers a nice and easy way to do the same in the web browser.

What's New?

Starting from version 1.21.0 you'll experience an improved graphical user interface, where show and compare views are connected. With this you can navigate between viewing different descriptions as well as comparing them, so working with multiple system descriptions is much faster and offers greater usability.

When you start the graphical user interface you will get a list of all available system descriptions, where you can choose one to view more details. The following screen shot shows this list. You can use the search mask to filter them for certain terms. Simply click on the description you would like to see and it will get you to the details view. Run the command `machinery list --html` to get to the list view.

View of all available system descriptions

The next screen shot displays the content of a single system description where each part of the system is shown in more detail. The name of the currently selected description is provided in the drop down menu in the top left corner. For showing another one, click on this menu. You will get back to the list of all descriptions and can choose again from there.

It is also possible to get to this view by running the command `machinery show --html ‹description›`.

View of a single system description
For comparing a system description to the current one, click on the drop down menu on the right. You are then presented with the familiar menu from the first screen shot, in which you can choose another description for comparing.

The result is then provided in a two-column view, where you can see all the differences between the two system, section by section.

Get to this view from the command line by running `machinery compare --html <description1> <description2>`.

Comparison of two different descriptions
For going back to the details view of one description just close the comparison by clicking on the button with the "x".

No matter if you browse through your systems, drill down to details of individual ones, or compare different machines, or versions of the same system, the new interface will give you a consistent view, where the next step is just one click away.


As static images can't do justice to the new GUI, we invite you to give it a try and experience it yourself. Download Machinery 1.21.0 from the Machinery home page via one-click install, or update to the latest version by running zypper in machinery. We love to hear feedback, so tell us what


We are happy to announce that Azure image type has been enabled for SUSE Linux Enterprise 12 SP1 appliances. From now on you can build and upload SLE12 SP1 based appliances in the Microsoft Azure Cloud.

24 July, 2016


Dear Tumbleweed users and hackers,

Week 29 brought us, as usual, 4 snapshots. Those were 0715, 0716, 0718 and 0720. The most spectacular update was in 0715, but the entire week is noteworthy as Tumbleweed brought you those updates:

  • Plasma 5.7.0
  • KDE Framework 5.24.0
  • KDE Applications 16.04.3
  • Freetype 2.6.5
  • Kernel 4.6.4
  • The Live images again contain an installer option – now based on NET install

The following this are still brewing in staging areas:

  • TeXLive 2016 – issues are solved, we can expect this in week 30
  • Plasma never sleeps: version 5.7.2 pending

Seems short, but we can also see quite some resources from developers and testers redirected to openSUSE Leap 42.2 – which is a very welcome addition of course.

22 July, 2016


The Cloud has gained quite a bit of popularity within the past decade such that many companies can roll out their own or one hosted by a cloud provider with relative ease. However with this new world come new threats and it is important that organizations adequately model their networks, data and possible threats to ensure sensitive data is kept secure. Kenn White was kind enough to create this threat scenarios mind map and I thought it was worth sharing as it does a great job of showing scenarios that different security technologies help protect against.


Michael Meeks: 2016-07-22 Friday.

10:42 UTCmember

  • Up early, chat with Eloy, Tor, ownCloud Webinar practice with Lenny, Snezana & Cornelius.

21 July, 2016

Michael Meeks: 2016-07-21 Thursday.

21:00 UTCmember

  • J's birthday - presents at breakfast; dug through the mountainous admin-queue, synched with Andras & Kendy.


I have both N9 and N950 here. Unfortunately, both are useless, as developer mode can not be enabled (because Nokia servers are down?).

There's tutorial -- how to install Sailfish. I'd love that. Neccessary images for N9 are no longer available. N950 images are still there, but... tutorial needs developer mode, and that's no longer possible.
Is there any way out of this for me?
Would it be possible to download image of working N9/N950 from some device, so that I could flash it?

Jigish Gohil: Tally ERP 9 on Linux

08:47 UTCmember


Recently we implemented Tally ERP 9 solution for Antico Pumps. That itself is not interesting, the interesting part is they are using LTSP Fat client system on openSUSE. They have only one server from which all their client computers boot over the network, the clients do not have hard disk, client OS with all softwares they need including wine(Tally is Windows only software), as well as users’ data resides on the server. Once the client boots all the local resources are used so single low power server can be used to serve many clients.

Tally multiuser is served from a Samba share  on a NAS device, Tally folder is copied to samba share and path to Tally Data is changed so that it points there. Everything they need including printing and export(CSV) works from all clients. Same way Tally can be run on standalone computers. Neither Tally, Wine or openSUSE are modified for getting it working as it would under Windows environment.

20 July, 2016

Michael Meeks: 2016-07-20 Wednesday.

21:00 UTCmember

  • Calls variously through the day; chased this & that, admin left & right.


Intex Aqua Fish

A few days ago the Intex Aqua Fish became publicly available. This is the first 3rd party phone officially running SailfishOS from Jolla.

Unfortunately the phone is only for sale in India currently, for the price of 5.499 rupees (roughly 80 (eighty) USD!). If you are in India you can get it from one of these outlets:

I’m told that build quality and camera are pretty decent, especially considering the price. The performance is very good, as you would expect, SailfishOS 2.0 is running very smooth even on the Jolla Phone which has much lower specs than the Intex Aqua Fish.


SailfishOS stands out because of:

  • Very elegant and efficient swipe based UI great for one-handed use
  • Long battery life
  • The Android runtime letting you run most Anodroid apps
  • Real multitasking
  • Proper GNU/Linux system underneath including use of SUSE technologies like libzypp, zypper and Open Build Service.
  • It’s based in Finland and started by ex-Nokia people.

Other options

Recently Jolla sold a few hundred identical phones aimed at the developer community, but they sold out in a matter of hours. So for the time being the rest of us not in India, are left jealously waiting for the Turing Phone to become widely available or for Fairphone to officially offer Sailfish as an option. Or hoping for Intex to start offering the phone globally, or for some other entrepreneurial people to start exporting it.


There is a lot of excitement around the latest openSUSE Tumbleweed snapshots because of new KDE features and the newest stable Linux Kernel, which is expected in the next snapshot.

Snapshot 20160715 brought all those KDE updates Tumbleweed users were looking forward to like Framework 5.24.0, Plasma 5.7.0 and Applications 16.04.3. Breeze icons have a new feature and there is now jump list actions for tasks within an application available with KRunner thanks to the new Plasma. There is plenty of other new features with Plasma 5.7, so check out the video to see what is new.

Another snapshot expected today will likely update the kernel to 4.6.4.

The 20160716 snapshot brought updates in the repositories for bash, glibc and GNU Compiler Collection 6, which fixes compile-time issues in the C++ front end.

There was also updates to autoyast2 and python-requests in the 20160716 snapshot and three libraries were also updated.

Leap-greenAlpha 3

The latest information on openSUSE Leap is that the Alpha 3 release is expected to be released this week.

The first Beta for openSUSE Leap 42.2 will likely be released at the end of August and a submission deadline will shortly follow that, according to the Road Map.

19 July, 2016

Michael Meeks: 2016-07-19 Tuesday.

21:00 UTCmember

  • A lamentable lack of blog authoring recently; just overwhelmed with a huge quantity of admin and sales work. Anyhow - good news - we've changed how CODE is distributed and updated to make it great for home use - and also announced an exciting partnership with Nextcloud - it is good to work with old friends on both sides of this situation. Thanks to Andras Timar for some extraordinary work here, with help from Lukas Reschke, great stuff.


In this years edition of Google Summer of Code, an international annual program in which stipends are awarded to students to hack on Free Software during the summer, openSUSE members are mentoring seven students who all passed their mid-term evaluation last week. Go on to read what they have to say about their first 10 weeks in the program.

Ana María Martínez Gómez

This year, we have three students working on the Open Source Event Manager (OSEM), which is a Ruby on Rails application that is used to organize openSUSE conferences. One of these three students is Ana Maria from Madrid. Her project is to improve the conference schedule to make it more functional and mobile friendly. In her midterm blog post, she shows and explains how she reimplemented the schedule within a bootstrap carousel.


She also worked on a talks overview page and several smaller issues. For instance, several openSUSE Conference visitors this year reported that it would be nice to open the schedule with the current date selected, which Ana already implemented. One of the most important parts of Google Summer of Code is to teach the students open source and technical skills like Ana writes:

One of the best things of working at openSUSE is that I have the chance to work with a lot of intelligent people that come up with amazing ideas.

Visit her awesome blog to read more about her experience.

Rishabh Saxena

The second student working on OSEM is Rishabh Saxena from India. Rishabh works on an online payment feature for Conference tickets. He is integrating active merchant, which is a simple payment abstraction library, in to OSEM. He writes about the challenging but rewarding code review process and visiting the openSUSE Conference in Nuremberg on his mid-term blog.

Nishanth Vijayan

Although Nishanth Vijayan`s project is under the FOSDEM organization, he is the third student working on OSEM this year. While OSEM is an openSUSE project, FOSDEM wants to improve and extend OSEM for a more general use. This is a fine example of collaboration between open-source organizations. The goal is to implement a Revision History page so that organizers and admins are aware of all changes made to the data.


In his blog, he describes the reasoning behind the project and explains several implementation details and decisions.

Matheus Fernandes

Matheus Fernandes is a student from Brazil’s capital Brasília and this summer he works on “Improving the UI of Portus.” So far, Matheus already fixed many issues in Portus’ user interface. In his personal blog, he also reports about some difficulties he encountered while improving Portus tables and search filter.

Joaquín Yeray

Joaquín Yeray is from the most beautiful island of Gran Canaria and works on an alternative YaST Module to manage update-alternatives in openSUSE.


In his blog article, he describes the development process he uses together with his mentors Ancor and Josef. This includes daily meetings and developing a UI mockup and requesting early

Microsoft broke my father's computer: it made him update to Windows 10, when Windows 10 can not use two of 3 USB ports. Ouch.
Now it seems Google is trying to break my LG E720 cellphone. I did the right steps: it is running Cyanogen. One method is "we have great update for google Talk". Unfortunatelly, update is 20MB or more, basically filling internal flash and making phone unusable. And you can't disable update completely, you can only avoid clicking on it.
Now, Google seems to have invented new method of breaking my phone: Google Play Store started activating GPS. It does it on background. I tried downgrading to factory version of the play store, and not accepting its terms and conditions, but somehow I think it will come back.
Google Play Store definitely behaves like malware now. Unfortunately, on Android, it is hard to tell if malware-like behaviour is intentional by Google or if I have some third-party malware on the phone, too.

18 July, 2016


Hi! Do you know what is Rails? Do you also know what is an RPM? And more important, are you looking for a job?

If your answer is "yes", "yes" and "yes", check this job offer


We are looking for you!

Machinery Team: Hello!

11:33 UTC

We have created this blog to keep you up to date about news regarding Machinery!

So what is Machinery about?
Machinery is a command line application for creating descriptions of Linux systems and working with them.
You can use it to get insight into existing systems, to store and track their state, or to create new systems based on existing ones.
Machinery provides powerful views of individual and comparisons between systems.
It can also export descriptions to other tools for installation, migration, image building, containerization, or cloud deployment, and provides defined interfaces to work with system descriptions from your custom tools.

Originally, the project was initiated by SUSE inspired by the idea of a universal system description. A system description describes the content of a system. It can be stored, compared to other descriptions, analyzed, modified, or used to replicate a system from a description. You can call it "offline systems management".
A detailed explanation, including a fancy video, can be found at our homepage.

Machinery is an open source project, the source code and development is managed on Github, which means you are welcome to participate at any time!

16 July, 2016

Michael Meeks: 2016-07-16 Saturday.

21:00 UTCmember

  • Off to Aldeburgh, worked in the car on partner agreement pieces. Great to see B&A had a lovely relaxing time on the beach with them. Home late. More admin bits.

So I updated debian on my N900, because having different version on phone and PC sucks.
It booted, after I added "rw" to kernel command line, which is small miracle.
But X are without usable mouse, without panel, and without reasonable keymap. In particular, I don't have numbers, or any symbols besides ',.<>'. But I have root shell. Now I need to enable remote access somehow... which will be fun because sshd disappeared.
emacs to the rescue. By editing existing script, I can get access to characters such as '/', and launch telnetd. Installing sshd was easy with nmtui. Good.
Now, it seems something changed in the X land, and "xinput --set-prop --type=int 8 249 0 1" no longer works, which means touchscreen is
"upside down". If you know the replacement commands, let me know...

15 July, 2016


Today, for once, I want to write about something else than just weekly reviews: how to ensure your application shows up in the Software Centers.

openSUSE currently ships two ‘Software Centers’. These programs make installing/removing of *applications* – things the USER actually cares for, easier. They both use the paradigm of ‘application stores’, that many users are well used to. (for reference, the two SCs currently are ‘KDE Discover’ and ‘GNOME Software’; they both use the same underlying technology * metadata, called AppStream).

Every now and then, some packagers reach out and ask why their application does not show up. There can be several reasons, but I want to try to explain the most common ones, that are likely to solve your issue > 90%.

NOTE: I will based the blog on example packages that have failures at the time of writing this post. This will obviously not valid for a long time and you won’t be able to ‘just reproduce’ what is written here. In order to reproduce the issues, you need to install the package “appstream-glib”.

The two most common issues are:
1) Packaging errors: the ‘icon’ file can’t be found
2) Metadata errors : The appdata file is invalid

Category 1 – packaging error

(I used openSUSE:Factory/python3-veusz)

Get the current binaries from OBS in order to reproduce the issue and inspect the packages
$> osc getbinaries openSUSE:Factory python3-veusz standard x86_64
$> appstream-builder --packages-dir=binaries --include-failed --verbose

The interesting part in the log file is:

      <veto>Has no Icon</veto>

While inspecting the rpm (easiest: unrpm veusz3.rpm) we can find that the .desktop file references an icon named ‘veusz3’, but this icon is actually not part of the veusz3.rpm package. As such, the builder is arguably right and there is no corresponding icon in this package (the icon is shipped in python3-veusz, which in turn is a dependency to veusz3, which is why on installed systems the issue does not surface).

Solution: put the icon where it belongs. Note: it must be a FILE inside /usr/share/icons/hicolor/ and NOT a symlink pointing somewhere outside this tree. This is due to the way the builder extracts files: only known directories are extracted to avoid issues with huge rpms.

Category 2 – Invalid metadata

(I used openSUSE:Factory/wxMaxima)

Same thing, we start getting the built rpms in order to analyze them:
$> osc getbinaries openSUSE:Factory wxMaxima standard x86_64
$> appstream-builder --packages-dir=binaries --include-failed --verbose

The issue seen in the log is not really different to before:

      <veto>Has no Icon</veto>

Once you understand how the information is gathered, you will see that the resulting error makes sense, even though it’s not always very helpful.

A bit of background then: For an application to show up in the Software Center, they need to be described in an AppData file. This file is part of the package and in case of wxMaxima is called /usr/share/appdata/wxmaxima.appdata.xml. The appdata.xml references

  • Update from La Mapería

    La Mapería is working reasonably well for now. Here are some example maps for your perusal. All of these images link to a rather large PDF that you can print on a medium-format plotter — all of these are printable on a 61 cm wide roll of paper (or one that can put out US Arch D sheets).

    Valladolid, Yucatán, México, 1:10,000

    Ciudad de México
    Centro de la Ciudad de México, 1:10,000

    Ajusco y Sur de la Ciudad de México, 1:50,000

    Victoria, BC
    Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, 1:50,000

    Boston, Massachusetts, USA, 1:10,000

    Walnut Creek
    Walnut Creek, California, USA, 1:50,000

    Butano State Park
    Butano State Park and Pescadero, California, USA, 1:20,000

    Provo, Utah, USA, 1:50,000

    Nürnberg, Germany, 1:10,000

    Karlsruhe, Germany, 1:10,000

    That last one, for Karlsruhe, is where GUADEC will happen this year, so enjoy!

    Next steps

    La Mapería exists right now as a Python program that downloads raster tiles from Mapbox Studio. This is great in that I don't have to worry about setting up an OpenStreetMap stack, and I can just worry about the map stylesheet itself (this is the important part!) and a little code to render the map's scale and frame with arc-minute markings.

    I would prefer to have a client-side renderer, though. Vector tiles are the hot new thing; in theory I should be able to download vector tiles and render them with Memphis, a Cairo-based renderer. I haven't investigated how to move my Mapbox Studio stylesheet to something that Memphis can use (... or that any other map renderer can use, for that matter).

    Also, right now making each map with La Mapería involves extracting geographical coordinates by hand, and rendering the map several times while tweaking it to obtain just the right area I want. I'd prefer a graphical version where one can just mouse around.

    Finally, the map style itself needs improvements. It works reasonably well for 1:10,000 and 1:50,000 right now; 1:20,000 is a bit broken but easy to fix. It needs tweaks to map elements that are not very common, like tunnels. I want to make it work for 1:100,000 for full-day or multi-day bike trips, an possibly even smaller scales for motorists and just for general completeness.

    So far two of my friends in Mexico have provided pull requests for La Mapería — to fix my not-quite-Pythonic code, and to make the program easier to use the first time. Thanks to them! Contributions are appreciated.


Dear Tumbleweed users and hackers,

My personal feeling was playing tricks on me: this week felt like much less happened in Tumbleweed than it should. While checking the released snapshots though, I had to see that we published a total of 5 snapshots – so all seems fine and it’s just my perception. The snapshots taken into account for this review are 0707, 0709, 0710, 0712 and 0714.

Things that were shipped as part of those snapshots:

  • Kernel 4.6.3 (some people are confused about different rebuild counters between i586 and x86_64)
  • Python 2.7.12 – helping keep you safe
  • python-requests was downgraded to 2.9.1: helping the docker team to catch up
  • Shotwell 0.23.2 – Upstream is alive again
  • libsmbios 2.3.0 – with SMBios 3.0 support
  • libvirt 2.0 (updated from 1.3.5)

Still quite a list…

The next snapshot is already building (a big surprise is ready for you) – and much more is in Staging areas:

  • Plasma 5.7.0 – Will be in 0715+
  • KDE Framework 5.24.0 – Also part of 0715+
  • KDE Applications 16.04.3
  • TexLive 2016 – it does cause some troubles
  • Kernel 4.6.4 – just because we can
  • Freetype 2.6.5 – upsteam disabled the new hinting mode again due to regressions

That should do for now – Seems the rainy season brough some of our contributors back inside.

14 July, 2016


Tumbleweed-blackThe last update provided on Tumbleweed was almost a month ago and a lot has happened since then.

Besides the release of a an Alpha 2 for openSUSE Leap 42.2 and the five-day openSUSE Conference in Nuremberg, Tumbleweed snapshots have been rolling along with 10 snapshots since the last update, which highlighted the addition of GNU Compiler Collection 6 as the default compiler for Tumbleweed.

The latest snapshot, 20160710, brought a major release for python3-setuptools to version 24.0.2. Systemd also added some subpackages and python3-numpy squashed some bugs.

Recent snapshots brought LibreOffice 5.2, Mesa 12.0, Kernel 4.6.3 and PulseAudio 9 to Tumbleweed.

Plans for future snapshots have Freetype 2.6.5, disabling a new subpixel hinting mode that was added to version 2.6.4, but it shouldn’t be long for that option to be re-enabled in a future Tumbleweed snapshot.

As for Plasma 5.7.0, the version is still in staging and needs some bug fixes before it will be released.

The planned release in November of the next openSUSE Leap version will have GNOME 3.20, Plasma 5.6.4 and KDE Framework 5.23. The Linux Kernel will be 4.4.

13 July, 2016

Michael Meeks: 2016-07-13 Wednesday.

21:00 UTCmember

  • Mail chew; back to back interviews; partner and customer calls and admin.

idnes.cz: they put moving advertisment on that their web, making browsers unusable -- they eat 100% CPU and pages lag when scrolling. They put video ads inside text that appear when you scroll. They have video ads including audio...  (Advertisment for olympic games is particulary nasty, Core Duo, it also raises power consumption by like 30W). Then they are surpised of adblock and complain with popup when they detect one. I guess I am either looking for better news source, or for the next step in adblock war...
...hmm. Perhaps time to disable javascript for such pages? No. Javascript is needed for video play back. But this seems to do the trick:


Ok, seems Richard Stallman was right once again, and non-free javascript is a problem. News websites now commonly serve javascript that goes against interests of users.
Now, disabling javascript completely solves the problem, but it also breaks video playback. Is there time to create whitelist of reasonable javascript code?

12 July, 2016

Michael Meeks: 2016-07-12 Tuesday.

21:00 UTCmember

  • Mail chew; worked through the day on OpenCL validation before use. Cleared some of the admin backlog in the afternoon, up rather late unwind SEH hiding the crashes we want to detect to disable mis-behaving drivers.


Dear Facebook. I'm aware that your Facebook lite is only 1MB. It is also dangerous spyware. You try to push it to me every time I attempt to use m.facebook.com. Would not it be nice if you avoided pushing your spyware to phones that can not handle it? Yes, that's right, your spyware requires too new android, so my phone is actually immune from it.

At least N900 seems tu be immune from this problem, you don't even try to push your crap there. Good.

Ivaylo Dimitrov got camera to work on N900. Great. Unfortunately... there's works and works.
Working /dev/video* devices does not mean you get useful photos easily. I managed to get flash and autofocus hardware to work... But that still does not mean useful photos.
It seems that http://fcam.garage.maemo.org/fcamera.html is the best way to get the photos. Now... having phone act as a ssh server on local network, with gcc and development tools installed is very convenient... but sometimes you forget that this is not a powerful machine you normally work at.
Oh and BTW... is someone maintaining fcam-dev? Last update in svn is in 2011... I guess I'm maintaining it now...

Auto exposure is quite tricky to do right, and fcam-dev relied on some kernel patches to provide adequate performance. (If someone has pointer to the patch, that would be nice, BTW.) But... people were taking photos before auto exposure was available. And n900 has light sensor, so we can actually use it to bootstrap the auto exposure, making it slightly faster. Seems to work now. I had auto focus working with extremely ugly hacks... but I guess it will be easier to just let user focus manually. The camera is small enough that it should be feasible.

I played with the camera cover, and if you open it in the dark, it starts the flashlight (because that's what you probably want). If you open it with enough light, it will start camera for you. I feel proud.

N900 is a "little" loud in headphones. And it still plays PCM when mixer is set to 0. Weird. But probably topic for another investigation.

Charging (etc) on N900 is still funny. If you poweroff while charging, it will keep charging. That's probably a Linux bug. Charge counter (battery percent) are "kept" even if you replace the battery. Ouch. (So you replace empty battery with full one and still get empty reading. I guess normal people don't have 3 batteries for their phones?) That may be a hardware bug.
You can set charge voltage to more than 4.2V. That will make battery catch fire. I wonder what it is useful for, I guess when you want to have fun on the airplane? /sys/class/power_supply/bq24150a-0/registers is not exactly one value per file. Not sure about mode. model_name is definitely not one value per file.

dx.com 406496 : USB power meter. Seems to work quite well (I compared amper meter with other one, and they agreed +- 10%, so numbers do not look completely useless), and is very useful for debugging power issues. But it seems that USB power supplies often provide about half of their rated current...


Over the last few months, we have received a lot of questions and requests regarding increasing spam comments on SUSE Gallery. After much thought and consideration, we have decided to disable the comment functionality on SUSE Gallery as of today. You will still be able to read already posted comments. We apologize for any inconvenience this transition causes.

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