PCIe 4.0

Version 4.0 of the PCIe computer bus standard will arrive in 2017 according to PCMag.

Version 4.0 of the PCIe specification, which will introduce greatly increased speeds as well as other improvements intended to make it viable in a wider range of applications, is slated to be released in early 2017. PCIe 4.0 will essentially double the interconnect performance bandwidth of the current 3.0 specification, from 8 gigatransfers per second (GTps) to 16GTps. In addition, it introduces new technologies to enhance power efficiency: the use of an L1 substate that drastically lowers power use in idle mode; half-swing and quarter-swing, which cut power consumption by 400mV and 200mV, respectively; and high-speed data transfer bursts with minimum idle power.

Microsoft PowerShell Released

Microsoft loves Linux. And Open Source. That wasn’t always the case back then. From Ars Technica:

Microsoft today released its PowerShell scripting language and command-line shell as open source. The project joins .NET and the Chakra JavaScript engine as an MIT-licensed open source project hosted on GitHub. Alpha version prebuilt packages of the open source version are available for CentOS, Ubuntu, and OS X, in addition, of course, to Windows. Additional platforms are promised in the future.

Digital Ocean Snapshots

Digital Ocean snapshots are no longer free. Starting October 1, 2016, Digital Ocean will start charging for snapshots at 5 cents per GB. Here are some of the highlights:

Starting October 1, 2016, we will begin charging for snapshot storage at $0.05 per gigabyte per month. This will first be reflected in the invoice posted to your account on November 1, 2016. Like other features, snapshot storage uses hourly pricing, and size is calculated from a compressed version of the snapshot—not the total disk space allocated to the Droplet. Also, you can now take Droplet snapshots without having to power off the Droplet. You can see this in action by taking a snapshot of a Droplet while it’s still running. Over the coming weeks, we will update the Snapshots page to show the costs associated with your snapshot storage more easily and we’ll also send another reminder before charges begin on October 1, 2016. Be sure to see your usage on the Snapshots page and delete unused snapshots to avoid any unexpected charges.

Debian Turns 23

Debian is 23 years old. From Debian’s site:

Today is Debian’s 23rd anniversary. If you are close to any of the cities celebrating Debian Day 2016, you’re very welcome to join the party! If not, there’s still time for you to organize a little celebration or contribution to Debian. For example, you can have a look at the Debian timeline and learn about the history of the project. If you notice that some piece of information is still missing, feel free to add it to the timeline. Or you can scratch your creative itch and suggest a wallpaper to be part of the artwork for the next release. Our favorite operating system is the result of all the work we have done together. Thanks to everybody who has contributed in these 23 years, and happy birthday Debian!

Fuchsia

Google is working on a new operating system called Fuchsia. From the Verge:

Google appears to have started work on a completely new operating system, but no one knows quite what it’s for. The project’s name is Fuchsia, and it currently exists as a growing pile of code on the search giant’s code depository and on GitHub, too. The fledgling OS has a number of interesting features, but so far Google has yet to comment on its intended function. All we really know is that this looks like a fresh start for Google, as the operating system does not use the Linux kernel — a core of basic code that underpins both Android and Chrome OS.

PXE Server

How to install a PXE server courtesy of OSTechnix:

If you’re a System administrator, you happen to install many operating systems very often on your lab or workplace. Sometimes, you might fed up with installing OS on multiple systems everyday. Wouldn’t be better if you could install OS on multiple systems at a time? This is where PXE server comes in handy. PXE, abbreviation of preboot execution environment, allows us to deploy operating systems on multiple systems automatically at a time in the network. Also PXE server helps you to install an OS in a remote system that doesn’t have any options for CD/DVD or USB drives.

Amazon Prime Planes

Amazon planes just got a new coat of paint. If you’re not aware, Amazon has leased 20 cargo planes, back in March 2016, from a Wilmington, Ohio company called Air Transport Services Group. In addition to its own fleet, Amazon relies on UPS, Fedex and USPS for the delivery of the products it sells online. The new paint have the words “Prime Air” emblazoned on them. This is in addition to a fleet of drones Amazon plans to use in metropolitan areas.

espn.com

If you’re a sports fan, you probably have visited ESPN’s website. I’ve always wondered why the website redirects you to espn.go.com every time you typed in just espn.com. Well, say no more. It now works. Sort of. Most websites have dropped the www altogether, but ESPN.com decided to keep theirs. So, www.espn.com it is.

The Modern Olympics

The Olympics is really, really old. It goes all the way back to the Greek antiquity – 776 BC to be precise. But who gets the credit for starting the modern Olympic games? Apparently, it was through the efforts of a French named Baron Pierre de Coubertin. He was tired of seeing France lose wars, so he started the the revival of the Olympics. The first modern Olympic games were held in Athens in 1896. Read more about the Olympic revival from this article from Deadspin.

Is Tor Secure?

The Onion Router, otherwise known as Tor, is a free browser that can help you defend against traffic analysis and network surveillance which threatens personal freedom and privacy. It gives you anonymity by bouncing communication around a distributed network of relays run by volunteers all around the world. It prevents somebody watching your Internet connection from learning what sites you visit, and prevent sites that you visit from learning your physical location.

Is it bulletproof? No. There are some nodes that collect data as reported by ExtremeTech.

Reasearches have reported that 110 live nodes in Tor are “misbehaving” by collecting data on the connections that pass through it. The purpose of this collection is unclear, and there seems to be some variation in what the nodes are collecting. Some are much more sophisticated and are pulling in data that could be used to identify users. Others seem to just be tracking statistics. The most likely scenario is that some computer science researchers are running studies on Tor, which involve collecting some data. At the same time, law enforcement is running similar nodes that are trying to unmask users of illegal “hidden services” that are hosted in Tor. The Silk Road was one such hidden service.