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Developer of the month:
Each month we feature one developer and explain his contributions to the community. Development is a lot of fun and it doesn’t take much to get started. If you’re tempted to join the team, don’t hesitate to follow our development on http://github.com/linuxmint and come and chat with the developers at #linuxmint-dev (irc.spotchat.org).
This month’s “developer of the month” is: esteban1uy, 13 years old!
Don’t be fooled by his age, he’s new in the development team but he did 3 really cool things this Summer. Have a look:
- First, he helped people on the forums troubleshoot a bug in Cinnamon 1.4 which made the desktop crash when using LibreOffice. The developers were running out of ideas, people didn’t know what to do so esteban1uy led the investigation, spent a lot of time talking to people, learnt about debugging C code and finally found the cause of the problem. A week later he had a patch ready, muffin was upgraded and people’s desktops didn’t crash anymore… that was on the forums and it made people very happy 🙂
- Then, he made Cinnamon2D happen. The development team had given up on using llvmpipe. He led the R&D on software-rendering, clutter configuration, and came up with the idea of removing shadows… It’s a bit technical to describe in simple terms, but although he didn’t implement Cinnamon2D, it wouldn’t be in Cinnamon 1.6 if it wasn’t for him (note that Cinnamon2D is there for troubleshooting, there’s still a lot of work to be done before it enables anyone to have a decent Cinnamon desktop using software-rendering).
- Right now, he’s working with dalcde on “bumpmaps”. The gaming industry calls this “tessellation”. The idea is to give artists the ability to define transparent textures which look a bit like sculpted glass. For instance, a honeycomb bumpmap would make your menu look like that:
Bumpmaps will come in Cinnamon 1.8. If you see esteban1uy, don’t buy him a beer, that would be inappropriate, but don’t hesitate to give him a pat on the back.
News and summary:
- In its October 2012 issue, Linux Format ranked Linux Mint as the “Best Distro 2012”.
- Very few announcements were made during the summer but a lot of work was done in preparation for Linux Mint 14. MDM received important bug fixes, compatibility with all GDM themes and support for user lists and user “faces”. Nemo was announced as the new Cinnamon file browser and received a lot of usability improvements. Cinnamon itself is getting ready for a massive 1.6 release and a huge number of new features. MATE continues to impress with an even more polished 1.4 release. All of these technologies are significantly ahead of the versions used by Linux Mint 13 and the gap between now and the end of November, when Linux Mint 14 is out, means they can mature and receive bug fixes to ensure a stable and impressive release.
- There are now less LMDE mirrors than before but they sync the entire 600GB LMDE archive, including “latest” and “incoming”. This, along with a new feature in LMDE which tests the speed of each mirror and interactively asks the user which one to use when the list of mirrors is changed, should guarantee a better upgrade and better speeds than previously observed with UP4. Update Pack 5 itself is almost ready and received positive feedback from “incoming” testers.
- This release cycle was a breath of fresh air for the development team. The ability to rely on Cinnamon, MATE, Xfce and KDE and the limited scope for regressions coming from upstream allowed us to spend more time and focus in development. With UP5, Cinnamon, MATE, MDM and Nemo almost ready, we’re switching focus towards mintInstall and Jockey (which is being replaced upstream and which features we’d also like to see working in LMDE).
- Finally, we received a lot of donations despite the summer holidays. Many thanks to all our sponsors, partners and donors!
Really amazing! Congratulations to everybody for the progress made on Cinnamon and Linux Mint in general, and, of course, a special thanks to Esteban for all the work he has done so far (yikes!).
Really looking forward to use Cinnamon 1.6 and take a look to all of Esteban’s contributions to the proyect.
Amazing work so far, trully deserved “Developer of the Month” title.
Once again (never too many), congratulations, Esteban. You earned it 🙂
Best Distro 2012… WOW… Congratulations…
an amazing round of good news all together but may i highlight esteban’s most deserved title 🙂 KUDOS to you sir!
I’m very impressed with the bumpmaps
Well done esteban1uy
Things just keep getting better.
Would also like to mention ‘Schoelje’s” excellent work on his “Unofficial LMDE KDE”..:)
Things just keep getting better.
Would also like to mention “Schoelje’s” excellent work on his “Unofficial LMDE KDE”.. 🙂
13 years old, wow. This kid is going places, congrats to him. And congratulations on this awesome project. Best distro indeed, and I’m not even being biased! Can’t wait for upcoming releases.
First, I’d like to congratulate esteban. Next, I’d like to say that I really like the format of this Monthly stats post. Finally, I’m really excited for Mint 14 because of all of the new features (considering all the work that’s been done so far, the amount that will be done by November will be awesome).
Excellent work, kid.
This Minty Town has got a new deputy, and his name is “Esteban the Kid,” shooting the bugs out from the shadows and making sure our streets are safe again for Mom & Pop to use their LibreOffice.
And you have learned a valuable programming lesson (one the G3devs apparently still haven’t learned):
Always initialize your variables!
Clem, if you ever need a President for Linux Mint I believe you already have him. ESTEBAN FOR PRESIDENT!
Is anybody here surprised that Linux Mint got voted best distro?
The next LMDE upd5 is going to be BIG!
Linux format… the october 2012 issue??
… this is still september, you know…
They probably release a month in advance. Some magazines seem to do that for some reason…anyways I can confirm its not a typo as even their website is advertising the october issue is out.
Esteban’s username ends with “uy”. — Uruguay!
Really nice going!
Reminds me of a fellow who voluntarily improved e-mail a lot for a browser company*, and eventually was hired by them, at least in part because he knows assembler, which no other developer did. He fixed bugs that couldn’t be fixed in a higher-level language.
*Can’t say which; NDA.
Midnight hacker (white hat) in 1960
Clem, excellent job of promoting the future of open source!! You are giving the community exactly what it needs, a means of taping innovation. You are a thought leader!! Keep up the good work.
Mint is a shining example of a continually evolving and improving Linux distribution made possible through innovation, creativity, organization and community participation. Congratulations to you all!
“In its October 2012 issue, Linux Format ranked Linux Mint as the “Best Distro 2012″.
What about the safety of Linux Mint ???. Yes! You probably have some in the test group who speak and read Swedish. The security is not good.
Edit by Clem: The author is wrong on two points here. First, he implies that Linux Mint 13 MATE Edition is not secure because it comes with Samba installed by default. This is an OS which primary audience is for home users and samba lets them share files on the network. Of course, if you think that’s a problem or if you’re interested in deploying a server you can remove Samba. The second point where the author is wrong is when he says Samba cannot be removed because it’s a dependency on mint-meta-mate. Like all “meta” packages, mint-meta-mate defines the set of packages which are installed by default. Arguably it could simply “recommend” them and not “depend” on them, but anyone with basic understanding of how APT works will feel free to remove them. Finally, it is true, Mint isn’t as secure as Ubuntu or Debian, but not for the reasons mentioned here. Mint is a more stable and less secure distribution than most simply because it filters security updates and doesn’t recommend users upgrade to the very latest when it comes to packages. In Ubuntu for instance, the update manager will harrass you with intrusive popups and suggest you upgrade everything until you’re up to date. If you compare this to Mint.. it means the average Ubuntu user will probably apply security fixes more quickly and more often than the average Mint user but he’ll also suffer any regression that come in these upgrades more quickly and more often than his Mint counterpart. There’s a trade-off and different choices were made. Our target audience is primarly composed of desktop users who are behind a NAT-firewall-home-router. With this in mind we chose to favor stability over security when it comes to upgrade policies. The Linux Mint update manager reflects this decision and this policy in Linux Mint by filtering updates per stability level. So to summarize, yes, it’s good for Samba to be installed by default, of course you can remove it if you don’t like it, but you’re right when you say that Mint isn’t as secure as Ubuntu.. although for most people stability and regressions are far more relevant. Think of the last time you were attacked by a hacker and the last time something broke after an update.
Awesome news! And Esteban sounds like a prodigy if he is doing all with only 13 years of age. Really impressive!
But could I ask you guys if there’s going to be improvements to the Software Manager in Mint 14?
Edit by Clem: I can’t promise anything, but we’re early in our development, glebihan is already working on it and Vincent compiled an exhaustive list of ideas (coming from the community website) related to mintInstall.
Nice to hear Clem! I am just speaking in a user perspective but it would be great if Mint would be the first distro implementing a software manager that would update the non-system related packages.
At least it would stick perfectly with your policy of manual update between versions. The system packages would need to be manually updated but the non-essential packages (like Libre Office, GIMP, etc) would be updated in the software center.
If I recall correctly (and someone in the publishing business can confirm this, please!), the month named on a monthly magazine means it needs to be removed from the shelves (sold or returned to publisher or whatever) by the end of that month. It is quite common to see the October issue of a magazine come out early (very early) in September.
Perhaps another reason is to make sure that the folks waiting at the other end of the slow boat voyage overseas still get their issue by the 1st of the month shown on the cover.
On the other hand, it does make for an awkward appearance when the “breaking news” in the magazine occurred over two months before the “publication date”!
Now, to be back on topic:
First, thanks for the update, Clem. Mint is in good hands. And thanks for the contributions, all those listed. I’m overdue for my next one…..
And — well done, esteban1uy! I only wish I were “young” enough to have learned x86 assembler. All my assembly programming was with MC6800 / MC6809. However, my career might’ve been WAY different if IBM had chosen Microware Systems Corp. and Motorola for the IBM PC over Microsoft and Intel! I always did like OS-9 better than DOS, OS/2 or Windows.
BTW, if you want to know where MS gets their great ideas — every time I right-clicked something in Windows 95 and selected ‘Properties…’ I remembered that, before Win95, I right-clicked in OS/2 and selected ‘Settings…’.
Well … I am a bit confused about this :
“This release cycle was a breath of fresh air for the development team. The ability to rely on Cinnamon, MATE, Xfce and KDE and the limited scope for regressions coming from upstream allowed us to spend more time and focus in development.”
Does this mean that there is going to be a LMDE KDE edition ?????
Edit by Clem: We’re considering it.
Congrats Linux Mint Team.
Personally I think that samba should not be used. The SMB/CIFS protocol suite do have far to much baggage.
While the samba team focus on compatibility with Microsoft software, other protocols are free to focus on functionality speed and security. NFS, OpenAFS and Ceph all have merits that Samba are far from achieving, simply because they are free to evolve of their own.
The only true advantage of Samba is that Windows clients do not need to install additional software. However installing NFS or OpenAFS clients on Windows ain’t that hard.
Instead of Samba we should look into how to leverage the work done by NFS, OpenAFS and Ceph into FOSS-based networks. And how to use the Windows NFS and OpenAFS clients to make Windows workstations fit into such a network.
What do these technologies lack compared to Samba. Lets take a look on that and figure out how to add that functionality to the FOSS ecosystem. Lets assume that building a Windows installer for a FOSS network client is far less work than providing compatibility with Microsoft’s proprietary protocols.
Worst case scenario: We have to discard the existing protocols and redesign something more modern. This may also be a best case scenario, because it will allow us to maximize speed, memory consumption and CPU usage. However the most important part is that it enables us to minimize code redundancy. We would have a good and fast RPC layer that takes care of all common tasks including ACL:ing.
Just keep going with Cinammon !
Cinammon is the only choice for me !
On every other window manager i have tearing without compiz.
But with cinammon i dont have tearing and i have full fps on 3d games.
I like cinammon cause it works perfectly !
I’ve put the linux mint logo on the menu button , and i moved the bar on the top of the screen , i have added a dock (awn).
Added a script to nautilus so i can have wallpapers changed automatically etc etc. It works fine !
Very best Linux Mint – congratulations ! (I have Maya)
17 / Edit by Clem
good security mean also stability!
i take all the updates from ubuntu and i can tell you that the system works better with new updates. so there is any stability problem or regression and nothing was broke!! if you want to know how many attacks against private computers are today read the reports. anyway over 50% are full with viruses, rootkits etc.
please write somewhere how to remove or disable samba because i don’t need to share any dates. security is very very important this days!!!
for a new software manager you have the best on linux deepin. there is any better and you don’t need to reinvent the warm water. you tell me that security is not so important but if i want to install something is necessary to write everytime the passport. mint has resources because linux has and could be the best but you need the will to do it.
Schoelje for president!
Where is your “donation button”?
Best LMDE edition yet.
Congratulations, Clem and team, for all the fine work that you have been doing.
For myself, I usually remove Samba shortly after installation as I use Linux, not a Microsoft product, and there has been no loss in function in any applications on my system. If anything, there may have been a slight increase in speed.
In LMDE I use Synaptic Package Manager to remove:
Just those 3 Samba programs are removed but the related libraries are needed for other things. It is not sensible to remove the following Samba and Samba-elated libraries. Do not remove:
Note that removing libsmbclient (lib samba client) also removes:
and many more necessary applications, so best to leave that library alone 🙂
For many people. there may be reasons to keep Samba but I do not know of any for myself. It would be interesting to read comments from others about how they find Samba useful. I am always ready to learn.
Again, thanks a lot, Clem. Although I talk here about removing Samba, this is in no way a criticism of Mint. It is easy enough to remove and a Linux personal user choice.
Best Wishes Mint.
By the way, this may help someone who wants to plays Shogi.
A bug was submitted in June that the game of Japanese chess Shogi would not open on Maya Mint 13 Mate (Bug #1014821).
The problem in loading the program is one a missing xfont; once the font is installed, no problem.
To play computer Shogi, the user needs to install the following programs and dependencies in Synaptic Package Manager:
and the game works immediately.
And last but not least, Congratulations to esteban1uy.
Know that there are people all over this planet who are pleased at your success.
May you live long and prosper, young man, and use your skills to improve our world.
For it needs a bit of help right now 🙂
Tesselation is a whole other thing: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bkKtY2G3FbU
And bumpmaps are, atleast in the 3D space, a part of the 2D texture which makes the object look as if it has more geometry than it actually has by defining how light reflects off of it: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bump_mapping
@everybody:Thank you so much for your kind words.
@clem: Thank you!!! I’m still a little stunned because I’m absolutely sure that ANY developer in your team is a hundred times more talented than me.
@Rovanion: You’re right, the most appropiate name would be “non-procedural tessellated displacement maps” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Displacement_mapping), but I think that Clem chose the words “tessellation” and “bumpmaps” to describe the effect just because they are a little more common.
“good security mean also stability!”
Linux Mint is very good. Therefore, I note that there are flaws in the security of Linux Mint. You should deal with the issue as a positive criticism. Linux Mint has many beginners. Therefore, Linux Mint meet all beginners with respect and not to assume that everyone has the knowledge. Leaving Linux Mint so open to attacks is damned careless and shows absolutely no respect to any beginner. Here rests a heavy responsibility on the developers to find a good mix between security and functionality. Is it just ignorance. I don`t hope so otherwise it’s more serious problem.
English is not my language. I try to explain myself as good as possible.
To those jumping to the conclusion that Mint is not secure,
Please explain why Mint is absolutely not secure?
I thought Clem laid the issue to rest with his edit about the article. He quite clearly said that Mint is not “AS” secure as Ubuntu. This is not an absolute lack of security, rather a relative lack of security–relative to Ubuntu at least. In reality, it represents a very small compromise to security, but benefits the user in some very helpful ways–namely, not being presented with as many system breakages.
In reference to finding “a good mix between security and functionality,” I think Clem explained that that’s exactly what he has attempted to do. “Mix” is synonymous with “compromise” in this context. Clem made choices that yield a more pleasant experience out of the box. He has never been ambiguous about his efforts in this regard. We can’t have everything, so we compromise, or make choices that try to make the most amount of people happy and secure–relatively speaking. NOTHING IS ABSOLUTE.
Besides, no matter how “secure” updates might be, there is always someone who can hack into whatever they want, if they really want to. I hate to be cynical, but evil always seems to be one step ahead of good in this regard. In other words, we are ALWAYS on the defensive against security issues. This does not mean we throw our hands up and give up on trying to offer a relatively secure approach to updates. But it is what it is. Clem has clearly mentioned his position on security updates, and it is simply another viable approach. I feel confident that if there were better ways to be more secure, and less intrusive to the user experience, Clem would most certainly implement the better approach.
In the end, it is simply unfair to Clem and his team to give the impression that Mint is absolutely not secure. Incredibly few things are absolute–meaning that the great majority of things are the opposite–or relative.
Please discuss the issues as they truly are. We all have particular things that we would like to see improved, but presenting the issues in a highly exaggerated way is annoying, and worse than that, it doesn’t paint an accurate picture. This actually would be treating beginners with the greatest amount of “respect.” After all, they are beginners. Why reduce their knowledge right out of the box?
“In the end, it is simply unfair to Clem and his team to give the impression that Mint is absolutely not secure. Incredibly few things are absolute–meaning that the great majority of things are the opposite–or relative.
Please discuss the issues as they truly are.”
= ========= =
Yes, I agree with you, in any desktop environment there always has to be a compromise between security and ease of use. The only safe way to use a home computer is never to go online and never to insert a foreign body like a flash drive, a dvd or cd 🙂
For myself, the reason that I don’t use Samba is that it is unnecessary to my requirements – I believe it helps users who dual boot with MS Windows (i.e. cross platform compatibility for file sharing) but I just multi-boot Linux, mostly using LMDE – and none of the applications I use need it. Samba is an extraordinarily busy application, forever trying to make contact with something or other, and so removing it from my set-up makes sense. One less drain on the memory. Other people will have different needs.
dd in post #26 said: “please write somewhere how to remove or disable samba because i don’t need to share any dates.” So I posted to explain how easy it was to remove Samba in Synaptic Package Manager if the user feels he/she doesn’t need it. It is no more difficult than removing VLC or Leafpad or any other application. Like me, I think that dd had no need to share data with Microsoft machines, and so asked about how to remove Samba. It was a reasonable request.
A quick search online with Duck Duck Go and Google throws up no scare stories about Samba, which is a good sign. The general view of online experts would appear to be that it is safe. By the way, to show how some people need it, an interesting post about Mint and Samba can be found at:
Re security, my own future hope for Mint is that one day the team would create their own firewall, or incorporate Firestarter or a similar firewall program into LMDE, one that the user can chose to be outbound restrictive by default and let the user whitelist traffic. That is no easy matter on the default firewall ufw that comes with Mint. For myself, I use Firestarter which is a clever and friendly firewall GUI but support for it has been non-existent in Ubuntu and Ubuntu-based systems including Mint Main Edition, so the user needs to alter configuration files in order to get it to work. However, Clem and the team do an extraordinary amount of work and I guess to ask for a Mint firewall is asking a lot of them.
a good mix between security and functionality it’s a short term dream. security means also functionality because it’s a part of it. there is any problem with the updates from ubuntu. on the contrary! kubuntu with all the updates is working better than mint kde. i can tell the same about mint 13 cinnamon. people with old computers could have problems with new features or drivers but not everybody have in use such a thing. in conclusion i have no problem with this as long as i can have all the updates. i’ll have nothing against samba if this prog could be disabled or removed but i don’t know how. the method from 28-gee7 is not working for me because i don’t know how to keep the dates needed. synaptic wants to take everything out. in some cases for beginners it’s better to install than uninstall something.
mint team should inform people about some problems and give us a solution if there is one. so nobody is speaking or asking for perfection but for things are possible and to write how to take out this prog is possible. nothing is absolute is another discusion in neo-hegelian terms. 🙂
instead of samba will be 1000x better to have ofris or gofris installed by default because with this progs everybody can test everything without problems. for beginners means a possibility to avoid x new installations. samba around the computer could be an experince. 🙂
another project like ofris/gofris
Maybe Clem, or another more skilled user will explain how to safely remove Samba for those of you who view it as a security risk. And for those users, I wish the best. That’s obviously important to them.
But I feel that the key point of my post is still being missed. It’s fine that Kubuntu is working better than Mint-KDE with updates. Again, that is specific to your experience, and perhaps the experience of many others. This still does not disprove or invalidate in any way what Clem tried to explain about Mint’s position on security and updates. Mint is still relatively secure, while offering a better OVERALL out of the box experience, then even Ubuntu in many cases–but not all. This is why I say nothing is absolute in regard to this discussion.
As far as absolutivity and relativity–our understanding of both ideas are ABSOLUTELY key in any argument. This is in the real world context, and not any particular flavor of such. Because so many people don’t understand the overwhelmingly simple meaning of these words, and how they relate to one another, the comments that people make are so very often misunderstood, and improper conclusions are drawn. I’d be willing to bet lunch that someone will take what I just posted way out of context, thereby proving my point.
I would donate to Linux Mint if there were a way to donate via mail.
I do not use PayPal. Never have. Never will. Since Wikipedia has a
mailing address for donations, I send my donations, that would have gone to Linux Mint, to Wikipedia.
Good evening all over the world.
I’m from Greece.
I want to say a big hank you, because you are doing so great work on Linux.
Unfortunately, here in Greece the thinks are so difficult, that we, i, can’t give not even a euro, not to pay you, but to help you to keep on.
God bless you.
*I want to say a big thank you
(forgive me for my English)