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Six Clicks: The best Chromebooks for school

Practical Technology - Mon, 11/08/2014 - 2:21pm
Chromebooks have proven to be wildly popular in schools. More than a million Chromebooks were sold to schools this spring alone. For schools, Chromebook math is easy. In Google’s Chromebooks for Education program, each device can cost as little as $279 and they’re easy to manage from a centralized console. For school districts the real […]

Rackspace: One IaaS too many?

Practical Technology - Wed, 06/08/2014 - 10:03pm
For years, Rackspace was known as one of the foremost Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) cloud companies. Now, they’re out of the pure-play IaaS business. What happened? It is more than a little surprising. I mean, not only was Rackspace one of the first IaaS cloud companies, but it, along with NASA, also helped create OpenStack, the hottest […]

Bad Microsoft Android patents may lie behind Samsung lawsuit

Practical Technology - Wed, 06/08/2014 - 9:59pm
At this point, it’s hard to say exactly what’s going on in Microsoft’s patent contract dispute with Samsung. The two companies may just be fighting out their contract terms or it could be the first shot at Microsoft’s Android patent portfolio. Microsoft’s heavily redacted lawsuit was filed on August 1st in the US District Court […]

Docker comes to openSUSE

Practical Technology - Wed, 06/08/2014 - 9:58pm
Docker is more popular in enterprise data centers and clouds now than ice-cream on a hot summer day in a day-care center. So, it comes as no surprise that openSUSE, SUSE‘s community Linux distribution, has adopted Docker as well. Docker comes to openSUSE. More>

Apple and Samsung drop all patent lawsuits outside the US

Practical Technology - Wed, 06/08/2014 - 3:24am
Apple and Samsung agreed on Tuesday to drop their patent lawsuits outside the US. But their patent wars aren’t over yet. The two technology giants will continue to battle on within the U.S. courts system. Apple and Samsung drop all patent lawsuits outside the US. More>

Linux Foundation’s free online intro to Linux class opens its doors

Practical Technology - Sat, 02/08/2014 - 2:12am
Do you want a good reason to learn about Linux? I’ll give you one: According to Dice, the leading career site for technology and engineering professionals, nine out of ten IT hiring managers are looking for Linux pros. The best way to learn Linux is to download a distribution, like Linux Mint. and start working […]

Apple appears to have built its own content-delivery network

Practical Technology - Fri, 01/08/2014 - 9:36pm
As usual, Apple has nothing to say about its latest operation: the creation of a content-delivery network (CDN) for its software updates and audio and video content. Dan Rayburn, executive VP for StreamingMedia and Principal Analyst for the research firm, Frost & Sullivan, make a compelling, fact-based argument that Apple is already operating its own […]

BadUSB: Big, bad USB security problems ahead

Practical Technology - Thu, 31/07/2014 - 9:32pm
It’s a common scene from TV: Our hero sneaks into the villain’s office, plugs in a USB stick and — flash! — all the secret plans to conquer Chicago are sucked down into the thumb-drive. The only fiction is how fast it takes to download data. In the real world, office data thieves walk out […]

LibreOffice 4.3: The best open-source office suite gets better

Practical Technology - Wed, 30/07/2014 - 9:31pm
Ever since LibreOffice split off from the troubled OpenOffice in 2010, this open-source office suite has gotten better and better. With this new release from The Document Foundation, LibreOffice 4.3 has established itself as the best non-Microsoft office suite. LibreOffice 4.3: The best open-source office suite gets better. More>

Six Clicks: The best Linux desktop environments

Practical Technology - Sat, 26/07/2014 - 9:44pm
Unlike Windows or Mac OS X, Linux offers a wide variety of desktop environments. Here are my picks of the most important of these PC interfaces. Six Clicks: The best Linux desktop environments. More>

Homeland Security gets into software security

Practical Technology - Thu, 24/07/2014 - 9:42pm
PORTLAND — No, I am not making this up. At OSCon, The Department of Homeland Security (DHS), best known to you as the people checking up on you between the airport parking lot and your flight, quietly announced that they’re now offering a service for checking out your open-source code for security holes and bugs: the […]

Oracle Linux 7 released

Practical Technology - Wed, 23/07/2014 - 9:41pm
Oracle has supported Linux almost from day one. But it wasn’t until 2006, when Larry Ellison got into a disagreement with Red Hat, that Oracle decided it had to have its “own” Linux distribution — a Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) clone, Oracle Linux. It’s eight years later, and Oracle is still copying RHEL with its […]

Drag-and-Drop Cloud Orchestration with Ubuntu Juju

Practical Technology - Wed, 02/04/2014 - 4:47pm
Canonical, the Ubuntu Linux and Juju Development/Operations (DevOps) program parent company, is turning Juju into a tool that makes setting clouds up  a drag-and-drop operation. Drag-and-Drop Cloud Orchestration with Ubuntu Juju. More>

The Spam Battle Report 2014

Practical Technology - Mon, 31/03/2014 - 9:56pm
Let’s start with the good news: According to Kaspersky, in 2013, the proportion of spam in email flows was 70%, which is 2.5 percentage points lower than in 2012. The bad news is that spam that does get through is far more dangerous. According to John Levine, chairman of the Internet Research Task Force’s Anti-Spam […]

WebScaleSQL: MySQL for Facebook-sized databases

Practical Technology - Fri, 28/03/2014 - 10:40pm
In a Facebook engineering blog, Steaphan Greene, a Facebook software engineer, announced the creation of a new MySQL branch: WebScaleSQL. This is a version of Oracle’s MySQL for gigantic database loads. WebScaleSQL: MySQL for Facebook-sized databases. More>

Verizon jumps deeper into open source

Practical Technology - Wed, 26/03/2014 - 10:01pm
Napa Valley, CA: We all know Verizon uses open-source operating systems and software in its products and services. As I write this from the Linux Foundation‘s Linux Collaboration Summit, I have a Verizon-enabled, Android-powered Droid 4 smartphone in my pocket. But, Verizon is now becoming a major working partner in open-source communities. Verizon jumps deeper into open […]

Mozilla hires new CEO who will focus on Firefox OS

Practical Technology - Mon, 24/03/2014 - 6:38pm
Mozilla, the company behind the popular Firefox Web browser, has been searching for a new CEO since Gary Kovacs, who came on-board in 2010, decided to leave almost a year ago. Mozilla has finally picked a new leader, former CTO Brendan Eich. With him comes change. Mozilla’s job number one will not be its Web […]

No Android for Obama yet, sticking with BlackBerry

Practical Technology - Mon, 24/03/2014 - 6:25pm
It’s no secret that BlackBerry is one sick company. Once the very definition of the corporate smartphone, now even BlackBerry’s CEO is calling the company’s survival a coin-toss. But BlackBerry will continue to have one famous, loyal customer: President Obama. No Android for Obama yet, sticking with BlackBerry. More>

Taking Red Hat Linux to the next level

Practical Technology - Mon, 24/03/2014 - 6:23pm
If you’re a system administrator, what you really want is a stable operating system with long-term support, such as Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL). If you’re a system programmer, what you really want is the latest and greatest program. What to do! Taking Red Hat Linux to the next level. More>

Linux and botnets: It’s not Linux’s fault!

Practical Technology - Thu, 20/03/2014 - 11:35pm
I couldn’t blame you, if — based on recent headlines such as “Linux worm Darlloz targets Intel architecture to mine digital currency” and “Botnet of thousands of Linux servers pumps Windows desktop malware onto web” — you thought Linux was as full of holes as Windows XP. If you take a closer look, you’ll find […]

OpenDaylight Project finds industry wants open-source SDN

Practical Technology - Wed, 19/03/2014 - 11:33pm
It’s not too surprising that members of the Linux Foundation’s OpenDaylight Project believe that the networking industry thinks open source is the future for software-defined networking (SDN). After all, OpenDaylight is an industry consortium of technology powers, such as Brocade, Cisco, and Microsoft, devoted to open-sourcing SDN and Network Functions Virtualization (NFV). The Project’s survey […]

Chrome OS security holes found, patched

Practical Technology - Tue, 18/03/2014 - 8:10pm
Linux is very secure. Google’s Linux-based Chrome OS, with its auto-updating and security sandboxing, is even more secure. But, neither is perfect. At Google’s own Pwnium hacking contest and HP Zero Day Initiative’s (ZDI) annual Pwn2Own hacking contest, three new sets of security problems were found in Chrome OS… and then immediately patched. Chrome OS […]

Google free public DNS services were briefly corrupted

Practical Technology - Mon, 17/03/2014 - 10:35pm
Without the Domain Name System (DNS), we’re all lost on the Internet. DNS provides the service that translates our human readable Web addresses such as to their real, but mysterious Internet Protocol version 4 (IPv4) addresses, such as or IPv6′s 2001:4860:4860::8888. The problem with this master yellow pages directory to the Internet is […]

OpenStack’s top operating system: Ubuntu Linux

Practical Technology - Sun, 16/03/2014 - 4:01pm
While digging into the last OpenStack User Survey, I found that Ubuntu Linux was the most popular OpenStack operating system. No matter if users had dozens, or thousands, of CPU cores in their cloud, most preferrred Ubuntu. It was followed by the Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) clone CentOS, which is now part of the […]

25 Years: How the Web began

Practical Technology - Fri, 14/03/2014 - 3:41pm
When I was a young man, we had it rough. We used to have to get up out of the shoebox at twelve o’clock at night and lick the road clean with our tongue. We had two bits of cold gravel, worked twenty-four hours a day at mill for sixpence every four years, and when […]


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