Linus Torvalds Announces First Linux Kernel 6.0 Release Candidate

Aug 16, 2022 - 12:44 PM - by Reverend
Two weeks have passed since the release of Linux kernel 5.19, which is also the last kernel release in the Linux 5.x series, and the opening of the merge window for Linux kernel 6.0.

Now, the merge window for Linux 6.0 is now officially closed and the first Release Candidate (RC) milestone is ready for testers and bleeding-edge users who want an early taste of what’s about to be included in the final release, which is expected in early October 2022.

According to Linus Torvalds, all the big changes have been merged and Linux kernel 6.0 looks to be another fairly sizable release with another great set of improvements for AMD GPU users. About 60% of the release is new and updated drivers for better hardware support, but there are also architecture updates, filesystems and tooling improvements, as well as random changes all over for a performance boost.

As mentioned before, the final Linux 6.0 kernel release is expected in early October, either on the 2nd or the 9th, which depends entirely on how many Release Candidate (RC) milestones will be announced until then, something only Linus Torvalds knows.

Until then, if you want to take the upcoming Linux 6.0 kernel series for a test drive against your hardware, you can download the first Release Candidate (RC1) build right now from the kernel.org website. Keep in mind that this is a pre-release version so don’t install it on a production machine.

9to5Linux
  0 Replies | 55 Views


WhatsApp will soon let you slip out of group chats undetected

Aug 11, 2022 - 7:08 AM - by Reverend
WhatsApp is launching a new feature that will allow users to leave lengthy group chats without alerting others to their exit.

Currently, pulling out of a WhatsApp group chat can be an awkward affair as everyone in the chat is informed when you leave.

Soon, however, instead of notifying everyone in the group when someone leaves, only the admins will be informed. The feature will start rolling to all WhatsApp users this month.

It is part of a handful of measures the encrypted messaging platform is taking in an effort to enhance privacy. Another tool announced by the firm will let users conceal their presence so that others can’t see they’re online.

WhatsApp is also testing a setting that stops contacts from screenshotting “View Once” messages, which can’t be accessed again after initially being opened.

CNBC
  0 Replies | 198 Views


Microsoft fixes Windows 11 encryption bug that can lead to corrupted data

Aug 11, 2022 - 7:04 AM - by Reverend
Microsoft has acknowledged a severe bug in Windows 11 and Windows Server 2022 that results in data damage for devices equipped with processors supporting the newest Vector Advanced Encryption Standard (VAES) instruction set.

Only newer CPU generations support VAES instructions, including Ice Lake, Tiger Lake, Rocket Lake, and AMD's upcoming Zen 4. You can also manually enable them on early Alder Lake processors on certain motherboards, although Intel has physically fused off AVX-512 entirely in newer CPU revisions.

Microsoft claims the problem stems from the new code paths added to SymCrypt (Windows's core cryptographic function library) that take advantage of VAES instructions. Specifically, the affected machines use either AES XEX-based tweaked-codebook mode with ciphertext stealing (AES-XTS) or AES with Galois/Counter Mode (GCM) (AES-GCM).

The company initially addressed the data corruption issue in the May 24 preview release and the June 14 security update. However, these patches introduced a massive performance penalty for AES-based operations, with some functions reportedly taking twice as long. In Microsoft's testing, slowdowns occurred in Bitlocker and the Transport Layer Security (TLS) protocol, with disk throughput also affected, especially for enterprise customers.

Fortunately, Microsoft's newest updates resolve these performance regressions. Users can receive the new patches automatically via Windows Update or download them directly from Microsoft's Update Catalog.

TechSpot
  0 Replies | 167 Views


Twitter: Someone Exploited a Zero-Day to Access User Data

Aug 08, 2022 - 7:06 AM - by Reverend
Twitter has confirmed that someone exploited a zero-day vulnerability to access user data.

The company says in a blog post about the incident that the vulnerability in question "allowed someone to enter a phone number or email address into the log-in flow in the attempt to learn if that information was tied to an existing Twitter account, and if so, which specific account."

Twitter says the flaw was introduced in a June 2021 update, disclosed by a security researcher in January, and then patched later that month. "At that time," the company says, "we had no evidence to suggest someone had taken advantage of the vulnerability."

Now that's changed. BleepingComputer reports that someone exploited this vulnerability to scrape information about 5.4 million Twitter accounts—including the phone number or email address discovered via this flaw as well as publicly available data—before it was patched.

Twitter says it "learned through a press report that someone had potentially leveraged this and was offering to sell the information they had compiled" in July. The company then reviewed a portion of the data being sold and confirmed that it was legitimate.

"We will be directly notifying the account owners we can confirm were affected by this issue," Twitter says. "We are publishing this update because we aren’t able to confirm every account that was potentially impacted, and are particularly mindful of people with pseudonymous accounts who can be targeted by state or other actors."

Twitter officially recommends "not adding a publicly known phone number or email address to your Twitter account" if you're using a pseudonym. That advice can't be applied retroactively, however, and Twitter regularly pushes users to connect their phone numbers to their accounts.

PC Magazine
  0 Replies | 175 Views


YouTube testing 'pinch to zoom' feature for Premium users

Aug 05, 2022 - 7:07 PM - by Reverend
YouTube has quietly introduced an experimental feature called pinch to zoom exclusively for Premium users, Android Police has reported. It lets you zoom into the video player and then pan around to look at different parts of the screen, both in portrait or full-screen landscape view.

If you're a Premium user, you can try it out by tapping your profile photo and hitting "Your Premium benefits," opening the "Try new features" section and enabling the zoom function. It might take a while for the feature to kick in, but once it's active you can zoom in at up to 8x.

In the past, YouTube tested interesting features like picture-in-picture with random users and beta app testers. In 2020, though, it launched experimental features for Premium users, letting them try out new options before anyone else. Several experimental features have made their way to the Premium app, including easier playlist management and browser-based voice search. The new feature will be available until September 1st and is only supported on Android devices for now.

Engadget
  0 Replies | 313 Views


Intel to Unveil Wi-Fi 7 in 2024, Will Double the Speed of Wi-Fi 6E

Aug 04, 2022 - 7:29 PM - by Reverend
Intel is hard at work on the next generation of Wi-Fi standards, according to a report from Korea IT News. Wi-Fi 7 will replace the current Wi-Fi 6/6E as the latest standard when it debuts in 2024. It theoretically allows for data transfer rates that are more than twice as fast as those with Wi-Fi 6E. Intel says it plans on submitting its plans to the Wi-Fi Alliance in order to gain certification. Once that occurs, it will offer it in mobile products first, with desktops to follow. If all goes according to plan, it should be hitting major markets by 2025.

Wi-Fi 7‘s actual name is 802.11be. The new standard will boost data transfer rates from ~2.4Gb/s to ~5.8Gb/s according to Intel. The maximum transfer rate for the access point will skyrocket from ~9.6Gb/s to ~36Gb/s as well. Naturally, these are all rough numbers, and various factors are involved in determining wireless network speeds. Still, it represents a notable leap forward compared with Wi-Fi 6E. Intel says it’s designed on the foundation of Wi-Fi 6E, but offers improved performance, lower latency, and more reliability. Like Wi-Fi 6E it allows for operation in the 6GHz band. However, it introduces three ultra-wide channels at 320MHz, which are twice as wide as before. This allows for more data to be included in each transmission.

Another feature that helps increase bandwidth is 4K Quadrature Amplitude Modulation (QAM). This is a big upgrade over 1024-QAM (1K QAM) found in Wi-Fi 6. The much-older Wi-Fi 5 standard only offered 256-QAM. It allows for higher peak data transfer rates and a more reliable signal.

Multi-Link Operation (MLO) is also a key feature of Wi-Fi 7, and it allows for a simultaneous connection to two frequency bands at once. It will let people connect to both the 5GHz and 6GHz band. The access point can then intelligently switch bands according to traffic, or use both bands at the same time. Typically uncontested bands deliver maximum performance. This is why 5GHz is usually better for performance than the congested 2.4GHz frequency (design differences aside). With Wi-Fi 7, you will be able to use both uncongested frequency bands at once, which should allow for noticeable performance improvements.

ExtremeTech
  0 Replies | 285 Views


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