The most noteworthy enhancement in the upgraded Protecode System 4, Protecode Inc.'s open-source license management solution, is full support for the Software Package Data Exchange (SPDX) standard. Sponsored by the Linux Foundation, SPDX is an effort to create a standard format for communicating the components, licenses and copyrights associated with a software package. Protecode says that System 4's ability to read and generate SPDX information eases license information exchange across the software supply chain and allows for a simpler license compliance process. System 4 now also includes Code Administrator, an application that facilitates requesting, analysis and approval of open-source and other third-party software within an organization. It ensures that only a well-understood, preapproved set of software packages of specific versions with defined use cases are deployed.
Nimbula has unveiled the new version 1.5 of Nimbula Director, which the company says is the first cloud operating system that's capable of supporting a geographically distributed cloud. Nimbula Director helps enterprises and service providers build powerful private, hybrid and public cloud infrastructures. Nimbula Director abstracts the underlying technology to present a coherent view of a completely automated compute and storage cloud. This one-stop virtual data-center management solution isolates customers from the operational and hardware complexity associated with deploying a private or public cloud. The software can manage many geographic locations of a multi-site cloud from a single view, which allows end users to access any resource worldwide and deploy their workloads to any site in a self-service manner with a single login.
Cheap is good, but free is better, and the latter is what you'll pay for Akiri Solutions' DevBox-EZ, a new virtual appliance that offers all the tools necessary for implementing software development projects as well as simplifying and accelerating the migration to Git. The free version is modeled on Akiri's popular DevBox solution. DevBox-EZ, says its developer, “is up and running within just a few minutes and provides shared Git repositories, bug tracking, automated backup, file sharing and project-based built-in wikis”. Integrated bug and issue tracking eliminates the need for the hassle of a separate tool. The automated backup can be scheduled at any time with a click of the mouse, and project-based built-in wikis that help ensure important project knowledge can be captured easily. The file-sharing capability simplifies the painstaking process of adding or deleting users and managing permissions versus using FTP sites or shared file servers.
Messrs. Tridgell, Allison and the rest of the dedicated Samba team have been forging ahead with a slew of new features and functionality, culminating in a recent major new version 3.6 release. Samba, of course, is the famed Windows interoperability suite of programs for Linux and UNIX. Most notable in Samba 3.6 is the first free software implementation of Microsoft's new SMB2 file-serving protocol. The brand-new asynchronous server architecture allows Samba's new SMB2 server to double the performance of some network applications when run with Microsoft Windows 7 clients. In addition, the print subsystem has been rewritten completely to use automatically generated remote procedure calls and provides greater compatibility with the Windows SPOOLSS print subsystem architecture. Other features include improved clustered file server support, simplified identity mapping and greater reliability, among others.
A Linux geek's reference shelf without a book on shell scripting is painfully lonely. If your books are experiencing this loneliness, consider picking up Steve Parker's new book Shell Scripting: Expert Recipes for Linux, Bash, and More. This Wrox title is billed as “a compendium of shell scripting recipes that can immediately be used, adjusted and applied”. With this book, Linux expert Steve Parker shares a collection of shell scripting recipes that can be used “plug and play” or easily modified for a variety of environments or situations to avoid re-inventing the wheel. The book covers shell programming, with a focus on Linux and the Bash shell; it provides credible, real-world relevance, as well as including the flexible tools to get started immediately.
All right geeks, let's drop everything and talk Christmas presents! Have you dropped any gift hints yet? Good, because good things (sometimes) come to those who procrastinate. We suggest requesting the gift of art, specifically art that a computer nerd can love and appreciate. We recently stumbled upon the whimsical robot sculptures from New York City artist David Lipson. Lipson assembles these one-of-a-kind robots from random new and old objects. All are inspired by Lipson's love of tin toy robots, sci-fi movies and retro design. Each artwork is sold exclusively at Animazing Gallery in New York City, as well as via the gallery's Web site.
It's easy being green with BlackSky Computing's Apollo Enterprise HPC Storage System, a massively scalable storage architecture that packs 180TB in a 4U chassis while maintaining a light footprint. Apollo can be expanded to support a single filesystem of more than 2 Petabytes “with no degradation in performance”, says BlackSky, and it can work with HPC data sets up to 80Gb/s, making the system reportedly “four times faster the I/O and one-fourth the price of the leading competitors”. BlackSky built Apollo because all others failed its own internal needs, which include the following requirements: tremendous capacity at low-price/TB, proportional network bandwidth in and out of the device that will cripple HPC applications if not done correctly and expandability under one filesystem to very large volumes. Other features include full redundancy and a Web-based UI.
Get smart and ward off malware by thoroughly understanding it and those who make it by reading Practical Malware Analysis: The Hands-On Guide to Dissecting Malicious Software. The new book, authored by Michael Sikorski and Andrew Honig and published by No Starch Press, provides a rapid introduction to the tools and methods used to dissect malicious software, showing how to analyze, debug and disassemble these threats safely. The book goes on to examine how to overcome the evasive techniques—stealth, code obfuscation, anti-debugging, encryption, packing and others—that malware authors employ to thwart analysis attempts. Key chapters include a lab at the end, which reviews important concepts from the discussion in the context of real-world malware examples. Both beginners and veterans alike will find the book useful.