Windows 10

Microsoft's Windows 10 recorded a huge again in June haven added more than a percentage point in share, with the now-obsolete Windows 7 falling by almost the same margin.

While Windows 10 added 1.1 percentage points, according to Net Applications, to reach 58.9% of the worldwide OS share last month, which represented 68% of all Windows' editions. The latter percentage for all Windows editions, 68% now puts the operating system on track to reaching a 70% share of Windows within next 60 days.

The percentage of only Windows PCs running Windows 10 was significantly larger than the percentage of all PCs because Windows doesn't power every system.

As at June, Windows OS was running on 86.7% of the world's PCs, with same fraction as in May; but a record low for Microsoft's Windows in the previous month, as Linux surged by a remarkable 1.5 points to end at 2.9% in April, the highest since October 2017, and Windows accounted for 86.9% of global OS share, a decline of 2.3 percentage points.

Why Windows 7 fall doesn't always mean a gain for Windows 10?

Though majority of the world's personal computers are running on Windows, with Net Application stats putting it at 86.7% of the world's PCs in June, the same fraction as in May; but the remaining 13.3% is shared across macOS, Linux or Chrome OS.

Given the so-called zero-sum game, and as operating system share is often perceived, if any OS goes down, another must have gone up, so it could mean major advances by rival operating systems, such as Apple's macOS which climbed by eight-tenths of a percentage point to end at 9.8% in April, its highest mark since 2019.

Now, Windows 7 has for the second straight month lost share, falling in June with nine-tenths of a percentage point, and dropping to 23.4% of all PCs and to 26.9% of all Windows, the lowest since January 2011.

Windows 10 is still on the rise

Windows 10 recorded 1.1 percentage points growth in June to reach 58.9% of global OS share last month, and represented 68% of all Windows' editions. And these numbers were all records for Windows 10, putting the operating system on track to crossing a 70% share of Windows within next 60 days.

Albeit, the two-month run of Windows user share normalcy: where Windows 7 loses share, and Windows 10 picks it up, was in contrast to what's the case earlier this year.

Meanwhile, analysts strongly believes that Windows 10 will pass 70% of all Windows by the end of August 2020 and within a year, will reach nearly 85% share.

Microsoft's Windows 10 on track to reaching a 70% share of all Windows editions


Versatile Video Coding (VCC) has been announced by Germany’s Fraunhofer, one of the world's leading developers, which claimed around 50% compression without losing video quality.

Also behind the popular music encoding format, MPEG-3 before the widely used video formats H.264 (AVC) and H.265 (HEVC), Germany’s Fraunhofer is perhaps the world’s most important pioneer in digital media compression. And directly responsible for shrinking media from discs into files that perfectly-fit on smartphones.

VVC has been dubbed H.266, a direct sequel to the “high-efficiency video coding” (HEVC) standard that’s been in use since 2013. While HEVC was considered to be impressive for its time at cutting down file sizes, VVC is perceived as a “quantum leap" in coding efficiency, with around 50% compression without compromising on the visual quality.

How H.266/VCC effect 50% compression of data requirements

H.266/VVC makes transmission of video in mobile networks more efficient, as the previous standard H.265/HEVC requires ca. 10 gigabytes of data to transmit 90-min UHD video, this new technology requires only 5 gigabytes of data to achieve the same quality.

Albeit, H.266/VVC was developed with high-resolution video content in mind, the new standard is more beneficial when streaming 4K or 8K videos on flat screen TV. Though, H.266/VVC is more ideal for all types of moving images; ranging from high-resolution 360° video panoramas to screen sharing contents.

This quantum leap in coding efficiency offered by H.266/VVC, will make the use of video to increase worldwide. And the increased versatility of H.266/VVC makes it more attractive for a broader range of applications within the transmission and storage of video.

What's next for H.266/VVC?

Fraunhofer has planned a uniform and transparent licensing model based on the FRAND principle to be established for the use of standard essential patents related to H.266/VVC.

The chips required for the use of H.266/VVC are currently being designed, and the head of the Video Coding and Analytics department at Fraunhofer HHI, Dr. Thomas Schierl announced that “this autumn Fraunhofer HHI will publish the first software for both encoder and decoder to support H.266/VVC.”

Versatile Video Coding: New Video Encoding Promises 50pct Compression

Project Freta

Microsoft has launched a cloud-based service for free Linux Forensics and Rootkit Malware Detection, dubbed Project Freta, which aims to provide automated full-system volatile memory inspection of virtual machine (VM) snapshots.

Project Freta, which is an offshoot of Microsoft Research, is a roadmap toward trusted sensing for the cloud that would allow enterprises to engage in regular, and complete discovery sweeps for undetected malware.

While snapshot-based memory forensics is in its second decade, still no commercial cloud has yet provided customers the capability to perform full memory audits of thousands of virtual machines (VMs) without a priori forensic readiness and intrusive capture mechanisms.

Why Project Freta?

Project Freta, which is named after Warsaw's Freta Street, the birthplace of the famous French physicist, Marie Curie, who brought X-ray medical imaging to the battlefield during World War I, is a step toward trusted sensing for the cloud.

It is a project designed from the first principles to render evasion technically infeasible by driving the cost of sensor evasion as high as possible in many cases.

And with modern malware as complex, sophisticated, and designed with non-discoverability as a core tenet, Project Freta intends to help automate and democratize VM forensics whereby every enterprise or user can sweep volatile memory for unknown malware with only the push of a button, without requiring complicated setup.

Getting Started with Project Freta

Project Freta is open to anyone with Azure Active Directory account, or a Microsoft Account, and users are able to submit memory images (.vmrs, .lime, .core, or .raw files) via online portal or an API, with a detailed report generated that delves into different sections (kernel modules, in-memory files, and potential rootkits) which can be exported via JSON format.

It currently supports over 4,000 Linux kernels, with Windows support in the pipeline. While the online analysis portal can be accessed here, with full documentation for Project Freta available here.

Project Freta: Microsoft's Free Linux Forensics and Rootkit Malware Detection

Google Chrome

Google's Chrome browser becomes the third browser ever with over 70% in June, joining the ranks of Netscape Navigator and Microsoft's Internet Explorer, which once dominated the browser landscape.

The data published by analytics company, Net Applications, in their NetMarketShare report for June shows Chrome's share rising to four-tenths of a percentage point to end at 70.2%. The browser added 3.6 percentage points to its share since January, which helped it to set another record held by only two other browsers in the history of the Internet.

Opera browser also became the only other browser to end the first half of 2020 on a positive note haven gained about one-tenth of a point in the period.

Chrome as third browser to reach this Milestone

Chrome has led the industry effort to modernize the web, with Google as the undisputed champion of modern web standards in its effort to make it to work across the different browsers, which dates back to the early days of the browsers when the standards were often ignored.

Now, Chrome is used as Microsoft's Internet Explorer (IE 6) was back in the days, when developers primarily optimize for IE and leave out later tweaking for rivals.

And the breaking of the 70% share bar, makes Chrome the third browser to reach this milestone, after Netscape Navigator and Microsoft's IE in the 1990s. While Microsoft literally controlled the way that millions of people accessed the web back then, but IE ignored the web standards at the time, which set Microsoft and developers on a path of collusion for years to come.

Microsoft makes a comeback with Edge

Microsoft's adoption of the Blink rendering engine forked from WebKit, used by Google Chrome, is perhaps the company's biggest move to improve its market share and position its browser to deliver better performance.

Now, Microsoft's Edge and IE, combined to post a rare increase in share; their combined number climbed one-tenth of a percentage point in June to 12.6%. And the growth was on Edge, recording two-tenths of a point to reach 8.1%, which is a huge gain for the five-year-old browser.

Edge's share for June is the seventh straight month of increase for the new browser. While the month moved the 12-month total to more than 2 percentage points.

Chrome joins the ranks of Netscape Navigator and IE with latest milestone

KDE Plasma desktop

MX Linux is renown as a lightweight, stable, and fast GNU/Linux distro, with Xfce desktop and Debian upstream; though in comparison to popular desktop environment like GNOME or KDE, Xfce edition isn't as customizable and visually appealing.

Now, the MX Linux team is working on a new official KDE Plasma desktop environment edition for the first time, while the team has also released the first Beta of MX Linux 19.2 with KDE 5.14.5 for testing.

The upcoming MX-19.2 KDE will allow users to enjoy the Debian-based, systemd independent MX Linux with beautiful and highly customizable Plasma desktop environment. And MX-19.2 KDE comes as a 64-bit only version with Advanced Hardware Support (AHS) enabled; the KDE Beta includes the usual MX tools, snapshot technology and antiX-live-usb-system.

What's new in MX Linux ISO For KDE Plasma Edition

MX-19.2 KDE is a 64-bit only version with Advanced Hardware Support (AHS), which similar to the standard Xfce release, but KDE Beta also includes the antiX-live-usb-system, usual MX tools, and snapshot technology.

MX Linux KDE customization

Other new applications included are: Firefox 78, GIMP 2.10.12, VLC 3.0.11, Thunderbird 68.9, Clementine 1.3.1,LibreOffice 6.1.5 and many more.

The earlier released MX Linux 19.2 in the ‘Patito Feo’ series is based on Debian Buster 10.4, with Xfce 4.14 desktop environment and some bug fixes and other minor updates.

How to Download the MX Linux ISO For KDE Plasma Edition

The ISO image are available for download here, but if you want to try out MX-19.2 KDE Beta, you should bear in mind that it surely contain bugs. So, you should not install it on you main machine or use this beta edition as a daily driver.

The beta has also some known issues, but which can be configured manually, like the set up for a wireless network connection, where you'll need to edit the connection profile and check “All users may connect to this network” to have it properly setup! If you experience any other bugs, you can report to the MX dev team at

MX Linux 19.2 KDE Plasma Edition: Highly customizable desktop environment

Microsoft Innovation

Microsoft has launched a new portal to showcase its research projects, dubbed Microsoft Innovation, which details about the fusion of art and science, biological computation, the next-generation of AI and creating planetary computer.

While Microsoft research in artificial intelligence (AI) is dated back to over two decades, though restricted to internal deployment, now the company is working to bring it to everyone through simple, yet powerful online tools.

The company in the new portal, has created interactive web pages to give users a better idea of what the projects is all about. The future wearables, for instance, is described as a smart scarf fitted with various sensors which changes color based on the user’s immediate situation. It also emits different colors based on the quality of the environment of the user or a brighter light at night.

Microsoft created a plug-and-play platform called Project Brookdale which allows fabric designers to create such smart wearables without any coding skills.

AI at Scale: The Next Generation AI

Microsoft envisages how computers can more fully understand the world around us in ways that extend our capabilities and amplify our ingenuity with the AI at scale aspect.

With computers now perfect at learning from huge amounts of data, efficiently organizing and retrieving all the information, and rapidly processing them to derive solutions. And humans are now much more effective at solving problems requiring judgement, empathy and creativity.

Therefore, for computers to augment humans imagination and inspire us to innovate, there is need to translate raw data into a deeper understanding of human experience. That future is a lot closer than you might think, with this high ambition to enable the next generation of AI experiences, by training computers to become a more natural extension of ourselves and empower us to achieve more.

The company also talks about other futuristic technologies that you’ll probably only imagine, for instance, talking to plants. And of course, Microsoft has been working on Project Florence for a couple of years, along with Helen Steiner, that will allow people to text something like “Good Day” to a plant and perhaps get a response.

Microsoft Innovation showcases Future Technologies from alternative perspective

openSUSE Leap

The openSUSE project is responsible for the development of popular Linux distributions, Tumbleweed and Leap, with openSUSE Tumbleweed as a rolling release distribution, while Leap follows a regular release model with fixed lifetime.

Now, the team has announced a new stable version of openSUSE Leap 15.2, including several security updates, bug fixes, new tools, and features, which is coming as a successor to the previous Leap 15.1 and also serve as a regular release that comes with a maintenance life cycle of 18 months.

openSUSE Leap is perhaps the best Linux-based operating systems for AI programmers and developers, as Leap 15.2 has further added a number of AI, ML and Container-based tools, especially for data scientists and developers working in the fields of Machine learning (ML).

What's new in openSUSE Leap 15.2 Release

Besides openSUSE Leap 15.2 bringing a number of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine learning (ML) tools, especially for researchers, and developers, with the TensorFlow framework for deep learning, ONNX format for AI models, PyTorch ML library for computer vision and natural language processing, and Grafana and Prometheus for analytical experts.

It makes Kubernetes an official package, allowing developers to easily automate deployments, scaling, and management of containerized applications. Additionally, it added Helm package manager which helps developers and system administrators to manage Kubernetes applications.

Find the other new additions below:

  • Linux Kernel 5.3.18
  • SUSE Linux Enterprise 15 Service Pack 2
  • GNU Compiler Collection 9
  • CUPS 2.2.7 modular printing system
  • Sway 1.4 tiling Wayland compositor
  • DNF package manager 4.2.19
  • Firefox ESR 68.5.0
  • Mozilla Thunderbird 68.5.0

It also include improved compatibility with WSL2, easier scripting using Snapper tool and improvements to YaST. The YaST Partitioner is perhaps the most powerful tool used to configure all kinds of storage technologies in Linux.

How to Get Started with openSUSE Leap 15.2

openSUSE Leap 15.2 is now available for download, and if you are already running openSUSE you can easily upgrade to the latest version by booting from the DVD/USB and choosing upgrade, or carry out ‘Online Upgrade’ with a few commands, which Online Upgrade instructions are available here.

For choosing media, the DVD/USB Stick is recommended as it does not require a network connection during the installation and contains most of the packages available in the distribution.

Meanwhile, the Network CD/USB Stick is recommended for users with limited bandwidth of internet connections, as it only download the packages they want to install, and likely to be less than 4.7GB.

openSUSE Leap 15.2 Release: Brings ML, AI and Container Technologies

Mageia 8

Mageia is a GNU/Linux-based operating system forked out of the erstwhile Mandriva Linux, which can be installed on PCs either as main operating system, or alternative system, as one of several pre-installed systems (dual boot).

While the first ISO test release which showcases all the changes in the upcoming stable Mageia 8 has been announced by Donald Stewart, as Mageia 8 Alpha 1. The update is available to early testers to help with the development of a stable final release of Mageia 8.

The large scale updates to all packages as well as features are implemented to improve on what Mageia already offered, with the latest stable release of the Mageia project, Mageia 8, haven previously spent over a year in development and the final release scheduled for September 18. And it will get security updates and bug fixes for 18 months.

What's new in Mageia 8 GNU/Linux?

Mageia 8 is a major release that comprises several new features and updates to all packages, with the core changes, including new Linux Kernel 5.7.4, which brings new features and support for several new hardware, such as new exFAT filesystem driver.

While all packages will now support Aarch64 and ARM v7 architecture in Mageia 8; with new versions of several core packages also added such as Chromium 81, Firefox 68.9, glib 2.31, gcc 10.1.1, LibreOffice 6.4.4, Plasma 5.19.1, GNOME 3.37, Xfce 4.15.2 and rpm 4.16. And the updated rpm package manager comes with several improvements, such as improved transaction speed and automatic SSD detection.

There have also been many improvements to the installer, which now offer better support for F2FS and Nilfs2. Both in the live and classical environments getting improved with the use of ZStd compression, which will give faster boot and installation times.

How to Get Started with Mageia 8 Alpha 1

For those that want to give Mageia 8 a spin, they can jump in and test it straight away, through the images which can be downloaded here. But as always recommended with pre-release images, you should use your best judgement.

The ISO images are the same as in Mageia 7, it offers installation media for both 32 and 64bit systems, with 64bit live images for Plasma, GNOME and Xfce, as well as 32bit live image for Xfce.

Mageia 8 GNU/Linux Operating System: Upcoming Features and Release date


A new variant of ransomware, dubbed EvilQuest has be discovered that targets Apple macOS via installed pirated apps. According to researchers at K7 Lab malware and Malwarebytes, the new ransomware variant is packaged with legitimate apps, which upon installation, disguises as Google Software Update or Apple's CrashReporter.

EvilQuest comes with the capabilities of persistence, keystrokes logging, reverse shell, and stealing from cryptocurrency wallet-related files. It joins a few strains of ransomware that have exclusively targeted macOS, with others on the list including KeRanger and Patcher.

The ransomware appears to be trojanized versions of another popular macOS software like Mixed In Key 8 and Ableton Live, which are all distributed via popular torrent sites.

How EvilQuest infiltrates Apple macOS

EvilQuest uses a sandbox check to detect sleep-patching and equipped with anti-debugging logic, the malware program does not run under a debugger, which helps to disguise the malware source, as the malicious behavior can't be immediately associated with any recently installed program.

EvilQuest ransomware

The ransomware is also able to kill any security software, including Avast, DrWeb, McAfee, Kaspersky, Norton, Bitdefender, and Bullguard, that would normally detect or block malicious activities on the system, and set up system persistence using daemon property list files ("") and launch agent to automatically restart itself each time the user logs into Mac.

At the last stage, it launches a copy of itself to start encrypting files and counting cryptocurrency wallet ("wallet.pdf") with other keychain related files before it eventually displays the ransom instructions to user to pay $50 within 72 hours or lose the locked files.

How to Mitigate against EvilQuest Ransomware

As always, the best way to avoid the consequences of ransomware is to have a good backup of important files, and keeping at least another copies of all important files, which must not be saved or attached to your Mac.

While cybersecurity researchers are working to find a weakpoint in the encryption algorithm of the malware to create a decryptor, it's highly recommended that macOS users should create necessary backups to avoid any data loss.

Apple macOS targeted by new Ransomware via Installed Pirated Apps

Nitrux 1.3.0 release

Nitrux is a unique Linux desktop distribution based on Ubuntu with beautiful desktop environment, and also offer support for portable universal application format along side a package manager.

While Nitrux 1.3.0 is the latest version of the Linux distro, with several bug fixes, new hardware support and performance improvements. Nitrux 1.3.0 also introduced a new AppImage of Wine for running Windows apps on the Linux system.

Along with latest versions such apps as Inkscape (v1.0) and Firefox (77.0.1); the list of the new additions to Nitrux 1.3.0 can be found below.

What's new in Nitrux 1.3.0 Release?

Nitrux 1.3.0 brings update to the GTK theme, now looking more like Plasma color scheme and Kvantum theme, also the default font has been changed from Chivo to Fira Sans for a modern look with better readability.

And there is new Day/Night wallpaper plugins to help simulate background color according to daylight, along with the default wallpaper Opal, Nitrux 1.3.0 bring more wallpaper options to the default selection.

Nitrux 1.3.0 Wallpapers

The visual changes include the upgrade of the KDE Plasma desktop to new version 5.19.2, KDE Framework (5.71.0), and KDE Applications bundle (v20.04.02). It has also given a revamp to the Simple Display Desktop Manager (SDDM) theme, lock screen, and Plasma splash.

Furthermore, Nitrux 1.3.0 features Linux Kernel 5.6.0-1017 which brings new performance enhancements and hardware support, including a new AMD TEE driver, VirtualBox Guest support for shared folder, and support for Amazon Echo speakers, WireGuard VPN, and USB4. It has also upgraded NVIDIA driver and libraries to version 440.100, which ensures better support for proprietary NVIDIA graphics drivers.

How to Download & Install Nitrux 1.3.0

The new point version, Nitrux 1.3.0 is now available for download, with the ISO images, if you want to give it a try!

However, after downloading the file, you need to create a Bootable USB, as all you have to do is to boot from your USB device.

Nitrux 1.3.0 Release: Linux distro with support for portable universal app format

Windows file recovery

Microsoft has released a new Windows 10 File Recovery software called Windows File Recovery, that aims to help users to quickly recover files via the Windows 10 command line.

While there are plethora of third-party recovery apps for Windows like WinPassKey, EaseUS and Recoverit from Wondershare, with different processes for file recovery. But certainly, Micrsoft is looking at a native solution as that would always have an edge over any third-party solution, by the release of Windows File Recovery app.

It works for all recovery scenarios including: deleted files, corrupted drives or even cases of accidental wiped disk.

What's Supported on Windows File Recovery App?

Windows File Recovery App work with internal drives, such as SSDs, external HDDs, SD cards, and USB devices. While the default mode only supports NTFS-formatted storage media.

Windows file recovery app

It is capable of recovering files such as photos, videos, and docs, with support for common file formats, like JPEG, PNG, PDF, MPEG, MP3, MP4, Office Files, etc. Also, it works with other file systems such as exFAT, FAT, and ReFS when Signature Mode is enabled.

Windows file recovery command

Where to get the Windows File Recovery app?

Windows File Recovery app is available for free on the Microsoft Store. But it requires Windows 10 2004 (19041) or higher version, and to run the app, you should use the below syntax:

winfr source-drive: destinat

Microsoft had earlier introduced a native file recovery tool for Windows 10, which if everything turns out as expected, may eventually replace other existing recovery apps.

Windows File Recovery App: Microsoft's new Windows 10 files recovery software

Rolling Rhino

Ubuntu rolling release is one of the development cycle, unlike the LTS (Long Term Support) release, that continuously gets new changes or package updates.

While the most popular Linux distribution, Ubuntu requires that users download and install the new release versions, and also need to set it up to get all the new updates.

But a new command-line tool known as Rolling Rhino released by Martin Wimpress, Ubuntu Desktop head, can now convert Ubuntu’s daily build image to a “rolling-release” and also keep track of all changes in devel series.

How Rolling Rhino recreates Ubuntu Rolling Release

The command-line tool, Rolling Rhino turns Ubuntu’s daily build image into a “rolling-release” while keeping track of all the changes in devel series.

Ubuntu rolling release

Ubuntu Linux system when converted into a rolling release, syncs with the Ubuntu Development Branch of subsequent series, and gets all new changes and packages without the need for users to download the new ISO images.

And the best part, Rolling Rhino doesn't only work for Ubuntu desktop, but also all other official Ubuntu flavors, including: Kubuntu, Lubuntu, Ubuntu Budgie, Ubuntu Kylin, Xubuntu, Ubuntu MATE and Ubuntu Studio.

How to get Started with Rolling Rhino

Rolling Rhino, currently can't detect PPAs or desktop meta-packages, so if you want to use the command-line tool, you need to migrate your PPAs and fix any associated issues that may occur when using repos from the development branch.

And users of Rolling Rhino are bound to get bugs or errors from all new changes or packages, which is perhaps the main reason why Martin stated that Rolling Rhino is only intended for Ubuntu developers and experienced users.

Additionally, Rolling Rhino lacks support for normal or LTS version of Ubuntu, as such, you'll need to download and install the daily build image of the Ubuntu desktop to create Ubuntu rolling release.

Rolling Rhino command-line tool converts Ubuntu to Rolling Release

Black and white photo

Almost everyone has that old black-and-white photos that are timeless, which they would love to have them reprocessed to modern color photos. Such reprocessing, albeit are often costly, but colorizing your old family pictures can give them a complete new lease of life.

That's why we've put together this in-depth guide to help you do just that, at no cost, irrespective of your photo-editing ability level.

Image Colorizer is a great utility AI tool that can colorize your old black and white photos instantly using deep learning technology. It helps to bring a splash of new life to your old and historic photos and requires no Photoshop skills and all for 100% free!

Unique Features of Image Colorizer AI Tool

Image Colorizer utilizes trained AI systems to recognize old images and choose the appropriate and best strategies to restore the color details of old photos. Find some other unique features of Image Colorizer below:

  • AI Technology: Image Colorizer is based on AI technology, which trains the system to better colorize the black and white photos in just a few seconds.
  • Easy to Use: You don't need to use Photoshop to colorize black and white photos anymore with all the hassles and difficulties. Simply upload your old photos and have the AI system to do the job.
  • High Quality Results: The AI system could easily scan your photos and choose the appropriate way to colorize your photos and images with high quality guaranteed.
  • Privacy Protection: All uploaded images and photos are deleted every 24 hours. Therefore no photos are stored and used for any other purpose without your permission.
  • 24/7 Support: You get 24/7 support whenever you encounter any problems or need suggestions. What's more, when you are getting it all for free!

There is absolutely no need to use manual approach as you can automatically colorize your photos or images using Image Colorizer without sacrificing the image quality.

How to colorize old photos on your phones using Image Colorizer

Simply download and install Image Colorizer on your iOS or Android device, and upload your old black and white photo to the server for reprocessing!

Step 1: Upload Your Old Image

Upload old photo

Step 2: Image Colorizer processes Your Photo

colorizing old photo

Step 3: Download Your New Color Photo

Download color photo

In conclusion, it's never been this easier to do photo colorization, thanks to Image Colorizer AI Tool and, of course, there is no more need for Photoshop after all. Just download and use the best Image Colorizer App now!

Image Colorizer: New AI Tool for Automatic Colorizing of Black and White Photos

Cryptojacking Malware

Docker is a popular service for packaging and deploying software applications; but lately, malicious actors are beginning to target its exposed API endpoints with malware-infested images to mine cryptocurrencies and facilitate distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks.

While the purpose of Docker images is to generate funds by deploying cryptocurrency miner using Docker containers and to distribute these images leveraging the Docker Hub repository, according to Unit 42 researchers.

Docker containers offer a convenient way for packaging software, as evident by its increasing popularity and adoption rate, combined with coin mining capabilities, which makes it a huge target for malicious actors to compute resources for cryptojacking.

How Malicious actors spread the Cryptojacking Malware

The authors behind the malware images uses a Python script to trigger the cryptojacking operation and takes advantage of network anonymizing tools like ProxyChains and Tor, which enables them to evade network detection.

Cryptojacking Malware

And the mining code image exploit the infected systems to mine the blocks, using the processing power of the system. With the already taken down Docker Hub account, azurenql, consisted of eight (8) repositories that hosted six malicious images capable of mining the privacy-focused cryptocurrency, Monero.

This particular account have collectively pulled over two million times the images hosted since the start of the campaign in October 2019, and one of the wallet IDs earning more than 525.38 XMR ($36,000).

How to Mitigate against the Cryptojacking Malware

As Docker presents a renown platform-as-a-service (PaaS) solution for Linux and Windows which allows developers to package, test and deploy their applications in a contained virtual environment that isolates the service from the host system.

Therefore, the security best practices recommended are such as: Avoid pulling or using base images from untrusted repositories and install the latest apps and threat definitions on the Networks Firewall.

Cryptojacking Malware from Docker Images spreading via Docker Hub

Windows vulnerability

The Windows group policy object (GPO) mechanism was reported to have some vulnerability which permits standard user in a domain environment to perform a file system attack, which in turn, allow malicious actors to evade security solutions, and result in severe damage to an organization’s network.

This vulnerability impacts Windows systems, from 2008 or higher and capable of escalating its privileges in a domain environment.

Though, Group Policy updates don't happen in an instant by default, as usually it takes time to propagate over a network, which is more reason Windows includes a tool called GPUpdate.exe for running request on GPO updates from the domain controller.

How the Group Policy vulnerability can be exploited by an attacker

The group policy mechanism is used by admins to enforce policies across a managed environment, allowing admins to essentially do anything they want with GPOs, ranging from disabling Windows Defender and firewall to installing software and printers.

While the Windows’ group policy mechanism is considered a relatively safe way to distribute settings on a domain environment, from printers to backup devices, it needs to interact with many other components. And these many interactions result to potential vulnerabilities.

GPO vulnerability

The bane, however is that a group policy update can be requested manually by a local non-privileged user, which if there is a bug in the group policy update process, can be triggered by an attacker to make a potential attack easier. Instead of having to wait for the 90 minutes (which is the default time period to push group policy updates on a domain environment), an admin could force it immediately.

And the local group policy service, which is named gpsvc, needs to be privileged to carryout its duties, as it runs in the context of NT AUTHORITY\SYSTEM. Therefore, if an attacker manages to find an unsafe file operation, it could easily reparse to another file using a file manipulation attack.

How to mitigate against the risks of the Group Policy vulnerability

The flaw, marked as CVE-2020-1317, affects the most basic mechanisms for centrally managing the settings of Windows PCs and users in Active Directory environments, known as Group Policy.

Microsoft has issued a patch to fix the Group Policy vulnerability that could allow compromised non-privileged user accounts to place malicious DLLs on a system. The company, however failed to disclose further information in its advisory about the severity of the flaw, aside what the researchers from CyberArk who discovered the vulnerability, has already stressed about its seriousness.

Hackers exploiting the Group Policy vulnerability in Windows system

Go language

Generics, which programming allows for the representation of functions and data structures in a generic form, could arrive in Go 1.17, due for release in August 2021.

While the plan to introduce generics to the programming language was initiated by the Go project developers with a draft for type parameters to replace contracts with interface types.

The developers also introduced a transition tool to enable the translation of generic code. As the authors of the design draft discovered that the difference between contracts and interface types was a bit confusing, so they eventually dropped the contracts plan.

What generics can bring to Go language

The most important capability of generics in Go is to write functions like Reverse without minding the element type of the slice. Then developers can write the function once, also write the tests, put them in a go-gettable package, and call them up whenever they want.

Even better, since this is open source, someone else can also write Reverse once, and it can be used by others to implement theirs.

Given that Go language has two general-purpose generic data structures built into it: slices and maps. With slices and maps able to hold values of any data type, and static type checking for values stored and retrieved. The values stored are not as interface types.

What's the next step for Generics in Go language?

The Go project developers released an updated design draft for type parameters on June 16, which draft replaces contracts with interface types. And the type parameters are now constrained by interface types, while interface types can include type lists, albeit only when used as constraints.

They promise to continue to adjust it as they learn more, from their experiences and that of the community, what works and what doesn’t. If they reach that goal, then it’ll be something that can be proposed for future versions of Go. Hopefully, the generics capability will potentially arrive with Go 1.17 in August 2021, if all goes well.

Go language moving forward with Plans to introduce Generics

GPS Alternative

China has completed and fully launched its home-grown Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) known as BeiDou.

While GPS has gained huge popularity as the industry-first navigation system, Europe (Galileo) and Russia (GLONASS) are also working on their own respective global navigation systems. Even India is working on its own navigation system called NavIC to cater for the Indian Subcontinent navigations.

GPS which is also known as GNSS refers to NAVSTAR GPS, owned by the US Government and was originally created for the US defense forces, but afterwards, was opened for public use.

BeiDou Navigation System as credible GPS Alternative

BeiDou consists of 35 navigation satellites in total, which have been deployed in three phases, namely: BeiDou-1, BeiDou-2, and BeiDou-3, with the first launch on October 30, 2000.


The satellites launched as BeiDou-3 are highly advanced than the previous phases, and capable of providing higher bandwidth as they are fitted with atomic clocks for precise time measurements and navigation services.

BeiDou navigation services were opened in China back in 2012 and the global launch followed in 2018; the service as at 2019 already has about 400 million users worldwide.

Growing Competition in the Navigation technology landscape

Apart from China, Russia (GLONASS), India (NavIC) and Europe (Galileo) are already working on their global navigation systems to cater for the respective regions.

What this means is that the days of over reliance on US NAVSTAR GPS are slowing coming to an end. Meanwhile, the US isn't relaxed, as they are also busy with upgrading their own navigation system with the deployment of GPS Block III, a pool of about 10 satellites.

The GPS Block III satellite is scheduled to be launched on June 30 with the help of Space X Falcon 9 rocket.

GPS Alternative: China completes "BeiDou" Global Navigation Satellite System

macOS Big Sur

Apple at its WWDC Event unveiled macOS Big Sur, which is the next update to the iconic desktop operating system, with several new enhancements coming to it's native Safari browser.

While the major security enhancements include new "Privacy Report" feature in the toolbar that gives users insight on how websites are using their personal information, and also, the number of web trackers that have been blocked. Apple users can also choose when and which sites can use a Safari extension.

Additionally, the browser tabs have been redesigned for easy navigation with Safari becoming much faster and more powerful, and displays favicons of websites by default to easily identify tabs, which gives users a means to quickly preview a page by simply hovering over the open tab.

How Extensions support for Safari has been Improved?

The Mac App Store has a new category for extensions that includes top charts and editorial spotlights.


And Apple users can now bring over extensions from other major browsers, and also give the extensions access for only a day, on certain website, or for all website.

Safari's inbuilt Native-translation capabilities

There is new native-translation capabilities now built into Safari, with the browser able to detect and translate an entire webpage into seven (7) languages.

Also, Apple has introduced a customizable Start Page with background image support which extends to iCloud Tabs and Reading List. Besides, Safari is also getting faster, even as Apple claims it's now 50 percent faster than Chrome in loading frequently visited sites.

Apple unveiled macOS Big Sur with big updates to its native Safari browser

Facebook AI

Facebook has launched a new technology which creates 3D models of human photos, dubbed PIFuHD, that works through multi-level architecture based on deep neural network to allow users create fully-detailed 3D models of a photograph.

While the PIFuHD technology which stands for Pixel-Aligned Implicit Function for High-Resolution 3D Human Digitization will be useful in automated image digitization in fields like medical imaging and virtual reality.

The 3D image conversion demo has been made available on Google Colab for users to try out the new technology, but as it's still in initial phase, there are few limitations, for instance, the technology currently can't accept images of over 1K resolutions.

What's the underlying technology behind PIFuHD?

Pixel-Aligned Implicit Function for High-Resolution 3D Human Digitization (PIFuHD) involves end-to-end trainable refined framework for implicit surface learning for high-resolution 3D human photo reconstruction at 1K image resolution.


The technology is perhaps one of the most revolutionary achievements of 2020 as it is capable of changing the way virtual reality is perceived and work in the areas of medical imaging.

Though, there are still some limitations in the new technology, as currently, it can't accept images with resolutions greater than 1K and it first translates the image into the front and back perspective to deliver the 3D figure in high resolution.

What's the Future projections for PIFuHD?

The major breakthrough behind this technology is the accurate predictions based on context, albeit the memory limitations in current hardware is a huge challenge presently.

PIFuHD technology, however will get to an advanced level, whereby changes will be made in the hardware and such memory limitations will be a thing of the past. If you wish to give the new technology a spin, you can get more information about it from this Facebook research resource.

What is PIFuHD? Facebook’s New Technology for creating 3D Models from Photos

Text Fragments

Google is prepping a new hyperlink model that will permit Chrome users to hyperlink not just a web page, but also to any particular textual content on a web page, which is robotically highlighted.

The new model is referred to as “Text Fragments” and it's more like an anchor hyperlink, but can be created by anybody and with highlighting feature. While the capabilities are already supported in Chrome since version 80, Google is looking to bring it via Chrome extension which makes it easier to create, and works for everyone using Chrome.

The company has submitted a proposal of the new concept to the W3C and hopes other browser vendors will also undertake to implement it, albeit the hyperlinks are backward-compatible.

How the Text Fragments hyperlink model works?

The process for Text Fragments is within the string “#:~:textual content=” which the textual content need to match, and full hyperlink would always appear like this: common breeding practice for pet dogs is mating between close relatives

If you copy and paste the above URL into Chrome, the browser will open Wikipedia’s dog page, and scroll to the primary textual content that matches “A common breeding practice for pet dogs is mating between close relatives,” and highlights it. But if the textual content does not match anything, the page will still load all the same.

The backward-compatibility is as a result of browsers assist of the quantity signal (#) as a URI fragment, which it uses for anchor hyperlinks. And if you paste the URL right into a browser that does not support the assist, the page will still load, and the quantity signal will simply be ignored as an anchor hyperlink.

What's the Drawback of the Text Fragments model?

The only drawback of this model is that it implies you can have areas in a URL, a webpage or discussion board, which you possibly can hand-code the hyperlink with a href tag regardless of the non-HTML and it will still work.

Although, for messengers and social media which do not enable code or use automated URL parsers, things can get a bit more sophisticated. As each URL parser treats an area as the top of the URL, so you'll have to make use of the percent-encoding to switch all of the areas with the equal “%20.”

But, the new Chrome extension, known as “Link to Text Fragment” which is also available on Github will put a brand new entry in Chrome’s right-click menu. So that users can simply spotlight textual content on a web page, right-click and hit “Copy hyperlink to chose textual content.” And just like magic, a textual content fragment hyperlink will find itself in your clipboard.

With this, all of the textual content encoding will be done robotically, so that the hyperlink will work with most websites and messengers.

Google's push for new hyperlink model via Chrome extension


Robolinux is a unique Linux distro that let users run Windows alongside Linux OS without dual-booting, and create a virtual machine of Windows XP/7/10 using VirtualBox.

While the latest release of RoboLinux v11.02 highlights the introduction of the new inbuilt Robo UNTRACKER installer app, which app if installed in any Linux distro will make it impossible for the PC or laptop to be tracked.

RoboLinux 11.02 is based on the long-term Ubuntu 18.04, even though Ubuntu 20.04 LTS was released months ago; it is surprising that RoboLinux chose 18.04 when developers already found instability issues in 20.04 codebases. Albeit, RoboLinux 11.02 comes with the upgraded Linux kernel version 5.3 bringing the latest hardware support.

What's new in RoboLinux 11.02 Release?

RoboLinux 11.02 comes bundled in three editions with desktop environments, including: MATE 3D, Cinnamon, and Xfce; with several applications like Thunderbird, Deluge Torrent client, VLC, Audacious, Firefox, Simple Screen Recorder, and Stealth VM, among others.

The major highlight of RoboLinux 11.02 remains the introduction of the new Robo UNTRACKER installer app, which changes MAC address every time there is system reboot. Thus generating a completely new random, untrackable, and totally anonymous data packets over the internet.

Additionally, RoboLinux 11.02 upgraded Linux Kernel version 5.3 means that all the features as follows are also included: Support for AMDGPU Navi, and Radeon RX 5700. And Turing TU116 support in Nouveau, with 16 million new IPv4 addresses. Intel HDR display support for Icelake, Geminilake and Compute shader support in Broadcom V3D driver.

Getting Started with RoboLinux 11.02 Release

For existing users of RoboLinux, you can easily upgrade to RoboLinux 11.02 by clicking on the auto-upgrade button on the main menu. While for a fresh installation, you can download the ISO images from the official website, with the installation guide available here.

You can also install the UNTRACKER app on other Systemd-based Linux distributions, with instructions available here on how to install and activate the Robo UNTRACKER app.

RoboLinux 11.02 Release: Debian GNU/Linux OS oriented towards Windows users

JavaScript Standard

The latest standard for JavaScript, ECMAScript 2020 was formally approved on June 16 by ECMA International, and the ECMA technical committee overseeing the specification.

While ECMAScript 2020 introduces some new features ranging from the import() facility for loading modules and the BigInt type for working with arbitrary precision integers.

The proposal also adds an import(specifier) syntactic form, which acts in many ways to return a promise for the module namespace object, created after fetching, and evaluating a module’s dependencies.

What's new in ECMAScript 2020?

The matchAll method for strings, String#matchAll which produces an iterator for all matched objects generated by the global regular expression is another important new feature.

If a developer, for instance, has either a sticky or a global regular expression with multiple capturing groups, and the developer wants to iterate through all the matches, there are currently several options but with limitations. String#matchAll addresses the issues by providing access to all the capturing groups and won't visibly mutate the regular expression object.

ECMAScript 2020 brings multiple of other new features, including:

  • globalThis provides a universal way to access the global this value.
  • import.meta is a host-populated object in Modules that contain contextual information, which serves as a JavaScript metaproperty for host-specific metadata.
  • Dedicated export * as ns from ‘module’ syntax to use with modules.
  • Standardization of for-in enumeration order, which partially specify enumeration order in JavaScript.
  • Nullish coalescing is a value selection operator for handling cases involving property accesses, with a syntax feature for working with “nullish” values (null or undefined).
  • Optional chaining offers property access and function invocation operator that short-circuit the value to access/invoke if null.

Additionally, there is a new Promise combinator, dubbed Promise.allSettled, that does not short-circuit. It returns a promise that's fulfilled with an array of promise state snapshots, but only after the original have settled, that is, it has been either fulfilled or rejected.

ECMAScript 2020 specification is developed on GitHub with the help of the ECMAScript community and there are several ways to contribute to the development of this specification as enumerated here.

ECMAScript 2020 introduces new BigInt type for working with Arbitrary precision integer


FreeBSD is an open-source Unix-like operating system from the Berkeley Software Distribution, which serves as operating system for powering modern servers, desktops, and embedded platforms.

While the release engineering lead at FreeBSD, Glen Barber, has announced the fifth and final version 11.4 of the FreeBSD 11-STABLE branch, with the new FreeBSD 11.4 bringing several changes to userland applications, hardware, and device drivers.

FreeBSD 11.4 now includes support for renaming ZFS bookmarks, along with improved latency of synchronous 128KB writes to increase 15 to 20% performance.

What's new in FreeBSD 11.4 Release?

While FreeBSD has supported the ZFS filesystem longer than any operating system, the additional support for renaming ZFS bookmarks, will help to further enhance its functionality in FreeBSD 11.4.

FreeBSD 11.4 has also added JMicron JMB582, D-Link DWM-222 LTE dongle, JMB585 AHCI controllers, and Intel Cannon Lake PCH, among hardware support it offers. Furthermore, several utility software has been upgraded to bring new functionality to the operating system.

The camcontrol utility, for instance now includes support for AMA (Accessible Max Address Configuration) and block description, with usbconfig utility adding the detach_kernel_driver command. And the jot utility now allows an endless stream of random data in the specified bounds and YPMAXRECORD value increase in yp subsystem for Linux compatibility. You can get the full list of new features from the official release notes.

How to Upgrade to FreeBSD 11.4 Release?

FreeBSD 11.4 release is available for armv6, amd64, i386, powerpc, powerpc64, sparc64, and aarch64 architectures. If you are new to FreeBSD, you can download the ISO images of FreeBSD 11.4 for a fresh installation from here and the in-depth installation guide is available here.

For existing users of the previous version of FreeBSD 11-STABLE branch, you can easily upgrade your system to FreeBSD 11.4 using the freebsd-update utility.

FreeBSD 11.4 Release: What's New and How to Upgrade your software?

IoT vulnerabilities

The security researchers at JSOF, an Israeli cybersecurity company discovered 19 flaws, many of which are classified as critical, which they dubbed Ripple20, that are affecting millions of IoT devices across several vendors.

The vulnerabilities reported in early 2020 have a ripple effect across the embedded supply chain, including several consumer products like IP cameras and printers to specialized inter-connected devices used across business organizations such as video conferencing systems and enterprise systems.

These systems are at risk due to the embedded TCP/IP library with flaws that allow for remote code execution over the network which could result to a full compromise of the affected devices.

How the 19 Flaws in TCP/IP software library was Discovered

JSOF collaborated with security researchers from IoT vendors and visibility firm Forescout in identifying potentially vulnerable products by using TCP/IP signatures in its knowledgebase of embedded devices.

The researchers also worked with the critical infrastructure arm of the US Cybersecurity (ICS-CERT) and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), in order to notify and confirm the affected products and vendors.

The vulnerabilities are all memory corruption issues stemming from errors in the handling of packets sent over the network via different protocols, including IPv4, IPv6, ICMPv4, IPv6OverIPv4, UDP, TCP, ARP, DHCP, DNS or the Ethernet Link Layer. While two of the vulnerabilities were rated 10 which is the highest possible severity score in the Common Vulnerabilities Scoring System (CVSS).

And from their findings, all products from 11 vendors have been confirmed as vulnerable, which products include infusion pumps, UPS systems, networking equipment, POS systems, IP cameras, building automation devices, and ICS devices, and the researchers believe the flaws could impact millions of devices from other vendors.

Efforts to Mitigate against the Flaws in TCP/IP software library

JSOF in partnership with Forescout have developed signatures based on traffic patterns that could be useful in identifying potentially vulnerable devices.

And they've also brought a lot of open-source intelligence gathering by way of analyzing legal and copyright documentation of products, to discover mentions of Treck in stack traces and debugging symbols on firmware analysis or relationships between the developer and various vendors.

Forescout has subsequently added the detection capability to its own IoT visibility and management products, with JSOF planning to release some of the information so that organizations can develop own scanning and monitoring capabilities for their networks to identify devices that might be at risk of Treck library to isolate them.

The researchers have also contacted affected vendors, including Schneider Electric, HP, Intel, Rockwell Automation, Caterpillar, Baxter, and Quadros, all of which have acknowledged the flaws and have taken an assessment of their products. Also, CISA has advised affected organizations to perform proper analysis and risk assessment before deploying defensive measures.

Ripple20 Flaws leaves millions of IoT Devices vulnerable to attacks

Go language

Google's statically typed, compiled programming language, Go is similar to C, syntactically - but with memory safety, structural typing, garbage collection, and CSP-style concurrency.

Now, the next version of the language, Go 1.15 beta, offers smaller binary sizes via an enhanced compiler, and the runtime and linker have been improved with the forthcoming release. While the final release is due for August, with about five percent reduction in typical binary sizes in Go 1.15, compared to Go 1.14.

The reduction is as a result of elimination of more-aggressively unused type metadata and certain types of garbage collection metadata.

How Go 1.15 Achieved Compiler Improvements?


The compiler improvements were achieved by the toolchain mitigation of Intel CPU erratum SKX102 on GOARCH=amd64 in aligning functions to 32-byte boundaries and padding the jump instructions.

While the compiler’s -json optimization logging now reports large copies qual to or as greater than 128 bytes, and provides explanations of escape analysis decisions. Albeit, the padding also increases binary sizes, which increase is more than compensated for by the binary size improvements. Go 1.15 brings a -spectre flag, though seldomly needed, to the compiler and assembler to enable Spectre CPU vulnerability mitigations.

And the Go 1.15 compiler rejects //go: compiler directives which have no meaning for the applied declarations, and reporting of a “misplaced compiler directive” error. These directives were previously broken, and were silently ignored by the compiler.

What are the Major Improvements in Go 1.15?

Besides the compiler improvements, the runtime allocation of small objects now performs better at high counts and has lower worst-case latency. Furthermore, the non-blocking receive on closed channels now perform as well as non-blocking receive on open channels.

Also, the Go linker has witnessed substantial reduction in linker resource usage; that for a set of large Go programs, linking is 20 percent faster and uses 30 percent less memory on average, and for ELF-based operating systems on AMD64 architectures, with more modest architecture/OS improvements.

The Key to the improved linker performance are the newly redesigned object file format and revamping of internal phases to boost concurrency.

If you wish to get started with Go 1.15 beta, it can be downloaded from the official website and you can refer to the release notes for further guidance.

Go 1.15 beta focuses on Runtime, Compiler and Linker improvements

Chrome browser

Google will commence the blockade of notifications from sites that it believes misuse or abuse the privilege of notifying users, starting with Chrome 84.

While Chrome 84 is scheduled to be released on July 14, the new browser's abusive notification protection will only affect "permission requests" newly sent from abusive sites, not those that have been unwittingly agreed to prior to this release. However, Google is looking to expand the anti-notification defense to even already accepted notifications in the future.

It will affect sites that Google thinks traffic in notifications to trick users, with such sites' notifications going to be scaled back to what Google defined as its "Quiet UI" and a Chrome warning informing the users that the website may be trying to coax them into accepting future notices.

Why the blockade of Website's abisive notifications?

According to PJ McLachlan, a Google product manager, the issue of abusive notification prompts are among the top user complaints received about Chrome.

And such abusive notifications include two broad categories: permission request issues, which is intended to mislead users, usually to allow further notifications, and notification issues, an even more nefarious notification that aid phishing attacks, linking to malicious software or trying to fake system alerts or messages.

Google claims that a large portion of such notifications actually originate from a very small number of abusive sites.

How to ensure your Website is not flagged?

Those websites that Google deems as abusive in their notifications will first be notified by email at least 30 days before Chrome begins to enforce the new rules.

In which interim, the affected sites will be given the chance to prove or mend their actions and then be able to resubmit application for review.

Google has detailed its Abusive Notifications Report here, with the mechanism it will use to highlight bad actors and the review process for site owners.

Google to target Websites for abusive notifications starting with Chrome 84


CentOS is a free, community-supported Linux distribution that provides a computing platform compatible with its upstream source, Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL).

The third iteration of CentOS 8 series, version 8.2 (2004) has been released superseding the previous CentOS 8.1 (1911). While CentOS 8.2 is rebased on the newest RHEL 8.2 source code, which makes it fully compatible with upstream RHEL 8.2 and also benefits from all the major changes.

Along with several improvements from RHEL 8.2, CentOS 8.2 now includes the latest versions of Python 3.8, GCC Toolset 9.1, and Maven 3.6, all developer tools.

What's new in CentOS 8.2 (2004) Release?

Besides acquiring several improvements from RHEL 8.2, CentOS 8.2 has added setools-console-analyses and setools-gui packages for analysis of SELinux-policy and data-flow inspections.

And some CentOS packages have been modified, including apache-commons-net, anaconda, basesystem, cloud-init, cfirefox, grub2, httpd, kernel, ockpit, dhcp, thunderbird, yum and PackageKit. It has also added extra packages that aren't part of upstream RHEL 8.2 and removed some packages as well.

Some of new packages included in CentOS 8.2 are as follows: centos-indexhtml, centos-logos, centos-obsolete-packages, centos-release, centos-backgrounds, elrepo-release and epel-release.

How to Upgrade to CentOS 8.2 (2004) Release?

For existing CentOS users, the upgrade to new CentOS 8.2 (2004) update can be initiated on your system if you run the command as follows:

sudo dnf update

But for new users, you can download the ISO images for CentOS 8.2 from the CentOS mirror repositories. And note that the images are available for three architectures: aarch64, ppc64le, x86_64. If you are a system administrator, you can easily customize system-wide cryptographic policies with the updated crypto-policies.

CentOS 8.2 (2004) Release: What's New and How to Upgrade?

Dart language

The general-purpose programming language developed by Google, Dart is easy to learn, scalable and deployable everywhere; now it has sound null safety in the works.

While null safety help developers avoid a class of hard to spot bugs when they opt for it, their codes are made non-nullable by default, meaning that the values cannot be null unless specifically made to be so. With null safety, the runtime null-dereference errors turns to edit-time analysis errors.

Dart’s null safety which is still in preview, is perhaps the biggest addition to the programming language since the release of Dart 2 in August 2018.

Overview of the Dart’s sound null safety

Dart's sound null safety analyzes code, to determine that a variable is non-nullable and ensures that it's always non-nullable. The compiler can then produce smaller and faster code as it doesn't need to add checks for nulls when it already knows a variable is not null.

As null safety is backward compatible, it will serve as an optional feature, allowing developers to be able to adopt it whenever they’re ready and the Dart core libraries have also been migrated to use null safety.

The fundamental design of Dart's null safety includes the fact that developers must explicitly note that a variable can be null, or it'll be considered non-nullable. And it is incrementally adoptable, with tools made available to help with migration.

Getting Started with Dart’s sound null safety

If you want to test the Dart’s sound null safety feature, it is currently available for testing in this version of DartPad, and also due in a production-ready Dart release by the end of 2020.

The null safety version of DartPad is the first in a series of code examples designed to illustrate the new syntax and coding patterns for null safety.

And each snippet starts off in a bad or broken state. Therefore, you’ll probably encounter warnings from the Dart analyzer, or the code probably won't compile. But by simply following the instructions and making some edits to the code, you can be able to update each snippet to a working state.

Dart Programming language null safety make codes non-nullable by default

Escuelas Linux OS

Escuelas Linux is an educational OS based on Bodhi Linux which comes with a great amount of educational software, and supported across almost all computers, including 32-bit systems.

While Escuelas Linux is a low-resource distribution, which uses Enlightenment as graphical interface, with RAM and hard disk requirements all very low, making it even possible to install on computers with at least 512 MB of RAM and 40 GB of hard disk space.

The latest Escuelas Linux release, version 6.9 includes major software updates and bug fixes; though primarily targeted at Spanish-speaking students, it also has support for English language.

What's New in Escuelas Linux 6.9 Release?

Escuelas Linux 6.9 features the latest Moksha desktop environment along with new set of themes, coupled with the major highlight of the current most popular video conferencing app, Zoom, supported by default.

Also, you can now choose Audacity as an available option to open MP4 files.

It has all the important software such as Firefox, Chrome, Adobe Flash, Blender, Geogebra, LibreOffice and Inkscape updated to its most recent versions. And Escuelas has fixed the bug in OpenShot video editor that allows openning of your projects in the OpenShot directly from the File Manager.

How to Upgrade to Escuelas Linux 6.9?

For existing users, who are upgrading from the previous version of Escuelas Linux, you can simply update your system by using the packages in Files -> actualiza-update.

While for fresh installation of Escuelas 6.9, download the ISO image from the official website which is available for both 32-bit and 64-bit systems. Also, you can download the installation manual to boot it from your VirtualBox or dual boot with Windows. If you encounter anything difficulties, there is an official guide available here.

Escuelas Linux 6.9 Release comes with tons of Educational Apps by default

TransCoder AI

Tanscoder AI is a neural transcompiler developed by Facebook researchers, which can easily convert source code from one high-level programming language to another.

While the migration of existing codebase to a more modern language requires huge amount of resources, both in manpower and finances; making use of transcompilers can help to eliminate the amount of expenses involved in rewriting the codes from scratch.

The neural transcompiler, TransCoder AI can convert codes between high-level programming languages such as C++, Java, and Python.

How Accurate is TransCoder AI?

Facebook researchers have trained TransCoder AI using a publicly available code within over 2.8 million open-source repositories on GitHub to focus on code translation at the very functional level.

TransCoder AI Accuracy

While for the evaluation of the performance of TransCoder AI, the researchers chose 852 parallel functions in C++, Java and Python from a popular platform that teaches coding through problems and offering solutions in different programming languages, known as GeeksforGeeks.

The above two data were used to develop a new metric called “computational accuracy” to check if translated functions generate the same outputs with the inputs as it did in the original source language.

And the accuracy level in results obtained by TransCoder AI during conversion of codes from C++ to Java is 74.8%; C++ to Python is 67.2%; Java to C++ is 91.6%; Java to Python is 68.7%; Python to Java is 56.1%; and Python to C++ is 57.8%!

Why TransCoder AI for the Conversion of Programming Languages?

As the migration of existing codebase to a more efficient language requires a huge amount of resources, making use of transcompilers can help to eliminate the amount of expenses involved in rewriting the codes.

But neural transcompilers are quite difficult to build in practice as a result of the fact that source and target language have differences in syntax, standard-library functions, variable types, and platform APIs.

TransCoder AI will help to tackle these challenges with an unsupervised learning approach, which can run with a minimal amount of intervention to find hidden patterns in data sets and outperform rule-based baselines by a wide margin.

TransCoder AI: Facebook's Code Converter for high-level Programming languages