Tasker: Total Automation for Android

The Register

India explores blockchain-powered voting but not to enable online elections

3 hours 2 minutes ago
Verifying wandering voters in the world’s largest and most complex elections is the aim

India has pondered how blockchain might enhance its elections with a high-level online gabfest concluding that the technology might have a role in making it possible for more voters to cast their ballot in more places around the nation.…

NCC Group admits its training data was leaked online after folders full of CREST pentest certification exam notes posted to GitHub

16 hours 6 minutes ago
'Inhouse crt rigs to solve... book before ur exam' as firm claims 'some' of the content wasn't theirs

Exclusive British infosec biz NCC Group has admitted to The Register that its internal training materials were leaked on GitHub – after folders purporting to help people pass the CREST pentest certification exams appeared in a couple of repositories.…

Planet Ubuntu

Jonathan Carter: GameMode in Debian

15 hours 29 minutes ago

What is GameMode, what does it do?

About two years ago, I ran into some bugs running a game on Debian, so installed Windows 10 on a spare computer and ran it on there. I learned that when you launch a game in Windows 10, it automatically disables notifications, screensaver, reduces power saving measures and gives the game maximum priority. I thought “Oh, that’s actually quite nice, but we probably won’t see that kind of integration on Linux any time soon”. The very next week, I read the initial announcement of GameMode, a tool from Feral Interactive that does a bunch of tricks to maximise performance for games running on Linux.

When GameMode is invoked it:

  • Sets the kernel performance governor from ‘powersave’ to ‘performance’
  • Provides I/O priority to the game process
  • Optionally sets nice value to the game process
  • Inhibits the screensaver
  • Tweak the kernel scheduler to enable soft real-time capabilities (handled by the MuQSS kernel scheduler, if available in your kernel)
  • Sets GPU performance mode (NVIDIA and AMD)
  • Attempts GPU overclocking (on supported NVIDIA cards)
  • Runs custom pre/post run scripts. You might want to run a script to disable your ethereum mining or suspend VMs when you start a game and resume it all once you quit.

How GameMode is invoked

Some newer games (proprietary games like “Rise of the Tomb Raider”, “Total War Saga: Thrones of Britannia”, “Total War: WARHAMMER II”, “DiRT 4” and “Total War: Three Kingdoms”) will automatically invoke GameMode if it’s installed. For games that don’t, you can manually evoke it using the gamemoderun command.

Lutris is a tool that makes it easy to install and run games on Linux, and it also integrates with GameMode. (Lutris is currently being packaged for Debian, hopefully it will make it in on time for Bullseye).

Screenshot of Lutris, a tool that makes it easy to install your non-Linux games, which also integrates with GameMode.

GameMode in Debian

The latest GameMode is packaged in Debian (Stephan Lachnit and I maintain it in the Debian Games Team) and it’s also available for Debian 10 (Buster) via buster-backports. All you need to do to get up and running with GameMode is to install the ‘gamemode’ package.

GameMode in Debian supports 64 bit and 32 bit mode, so running it with older games (and many proprietary games) still work. Some distributions (like Arch Linux), have dropped 32 bit support, so 32 bit games on such systems lose any kind of integration with GameMode even if you can get those games running via other wrappers on such systems.

We also include a binary called ‘gamemode-simulate-game’ (installed under /usr/games/). This is a minimalistic program that will invoke gamemode automatically for 10 seconds and then exit without an error if it was successful. Its source code might be useful if you’d like to add GameMode support to your game, or patch a game in Debian to automatically invoke it.

In Debian we install Gamemode’s example config file to /etc/gamemode.ini where a user can customise their system-wide preferences, or alternatively they can place a copy of that in ~/.gamemode.ini with their personal preferences. In this config file, you can also choose to explicitly allow or deny games.

GameMode might also be useful for many pieces of software that aren’t games. I haven’t done any benchmarks on such software yet, but it might be great for users who use CAD programs or use a combination of their CPU/GPU to crunch a large amount of data.

I’ve also packaged an extension for GNOME called gamemode-extension. The Debian package is called ‘gnome-shell-extension-gamemode’. You’ll need to enable it using gnome-tweaks after installation, it will then display a green controller in your notification area whenever GameMode is active. It’s only in testing/bullseye since it relies on a newer gnome-shell than what’s available in buster.

Running gamemode-simulate-game, with the shell extension showing that it’s activated in the top left corner.

Ubuntu Blog: Kubernetes 1.19 release candidate available for testing

16 hours 30 minutes ago

The Kubernetes 1.19 release candidate is now available for download and experimentation ahead of general availability later this month. You can try it now with MicroK8s.

To get the latest Kubernetes on your machine, install MicroK8s and get a lightweight, zero-ops K8s cluster in no time:

sudo snap install microk8s --channel=1.19/candidate --classic

Or install from https://snapcraft.io/microk8s  and select 1.19/candidate

You can install MicroK8s on Ubuntu and all major Linux distributions or on Windows and macOS using native installers.

For any questions or support requests on Kubernetes and MicroK8s,  contact us or find our Kubernetes team on Discourse or Slack (#microk8s).

The Fridge: Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter Issue 643

1 day 8 hours ago

Welcome to the Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter, Issue 643 for the week of August 2 – 8, 2020. The full version of this issue is available here.

In this issue we cover:

The Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter is brought to you by:

  • Krytarik Raido
  • Bashing-om
  • Chris Guiver
  • Wild Man
  • And many others

If you have a story idea for the Weekly Newsletter, join the Ubuntu News Team mailing list and submit it. Ideas can also be added to the wiki!

Except where otherwise noted, this issue of the Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 License

Kubuntu General News: Kubuntu 20.04.1 has been released today, featuring the beautiful KDE Plasma 5.18 LTS

4 days 10 hours ago

The Kubuntu Team is happy to announce that Kubuntu 20.04.1 LTS “point release” is available today, featuring the beautiful KDE Plasma 5.18 LTS: simple by default, powerful when needed.

As usual, this point release includes many updates, and updated installation media has been provided so that fewer updates will need to be downloaded after installation. These include security updates and corrections for other high-impact bugs, with a focus on maintaining stability and compatibility with Kubuntu 20.04 LTS.

More details can be found in the release notes: https://wiki.ubuntu.com/FocalFossa/ReleaseNotes/Kubuntu

In order to download Kubuntu 20.04.1 LTS, visit:

Download Kubuntu

Users of Kbuntu 18.04 LTS will soon be offered an automatic upgrade to 20.04.1 LTS via Update Manager/Discover. For further information about upgrading, see:


As always, upgrades to the latest version of Kubuntu are entirely free of charge.

We recommend that all users read the 20.04.1 LTS release notes, which document caveats and workarounds for known issues, as well as more in-depth notes on the release itself. They are available at:


If you have a question, or if you think you may have found a bug but aren’t sure, you can try asking in any of the following places:

#kubuntu on irc.freenode.net

Ubuntu Blog: Next WSLConf date set, CFP now open through 15th August

4 days 14 hours ago

WSLConf is the first and only community conference dedicated to Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL).

Canonical proudly sponsored the first WSLConf in March 2020. Since then Ubuntu 20.04 on WSL 2 has arrived and support for AI/ML workloads is available in Windows Insiders.

With WSL growing, WSLConf community organizers did not want to wait another year to gather the community together. WSLConf is returning in September 2020 in virtual form, as microWSLConf.

microWSLConf will feature a virtual hallway track for unscheduled conversations by attendees and breakout sessions for affinity groups.

The schedule for microWSLConf has been broken into two shorter sessions expanding the geographic reach of the virtual conference to Europe, Africa, and Asia.

Session One

NYC: September 9 9pm-12am
SEA: September 10 6pm-9pm
LON: September 10 2am-5am
HKG: September 10 9am-12pm Session Two

NYC: September 10 10am-1pm
SEA: September 10 7am-10am
LON: September 10 3pm-6pm
HKG: September 10 10pm-12am

microWSLConf is still accepting presentation proposals through 15 August. Submit a presentation proposal at wslconf.dev.

Planned speakers to date include:

Hayden Barnes
Engineering Manager for Ubuntu on WSL at Canonical
Microsoft MVP

Nuno do Carmo
Analyst, Ferring Pharmaceuticals
CNCF Ambassador, Docker Captain, and Microsoft MVP

Carlos Ramirez
CEO, Whitewater Foundry, publishers of Pengwin and Raft

Mario Hewardt
Principal Program Manager, Microsoft, for Sysinternals for Linux

Kohei Ota
Solutions Architect, Hewlett Packard Enterprise

Jérôme Laban
Chief Technology Officer, Uno Platform

Carlos Lopez
Business System Analyst, Conduent, and SQL Server expert
Microsoft MVP

Join the WSLConf Telegram chat.

All the streamed content from the first WSLConf is available on the Ubuntu YouTube page:

Ubuntu Blog: The State of Robotics – July 2020

4 days 22 hours ago

We know a lot of you are on vacation so we’ll keep this month’s State of Robotics edition short and sweet.

Try out the Hello World of ROS

Looking for an easy way to get familiar with ROS 2? We recently published a few helpers on how to simulate robots with turtlesim to help our readers get a rolling start on ROS2.

For something that carries a little more punch, follow our tutorial on simulating a TurtleBot3. TurtleBots not only have the standard array of sensors and actuators, they also work with tht ROS navigation and Simultaneous Location and Mapping (SLAM) packages.

Overall these packages can be an excellent way to learn more about autonomous robotics!

Get involved with the ROS security community

What does it mean to “secure a ROS robot”? Canonical is working with the Center for Internet Security (CIS) to address exactly that question.

CIS has a long and successful history of creating community-consensus best practice recommendations for security. The first CIS benchmark for ROS is currently under consideration and covers Melodic running on Ubuntu Server 18.04.

Want to get involved? You don’t need to be an expert in security or in robotics. We’d love to have your help to define the recommendations for ROS. Send us your insights on common sense security settings that prevent abuse of robots in the field. 

Join the call to define the industry best security practices for the next generation of robots.

Robotics Rewind

The Ubuntu Robotics team has been busy working to make robotics more approachable and stable on Ubuntu, and sharing all the work with the community.

Recent initiatives include getting up and running with ROS 2, software development for ROS and building snaps for your robot. We’ve published over two dozen articles & videos on these topics, so in case you may have missed them, take a look at our recent recap.

Remembering Grant Imahara

On a more somber note, Grant Imahara – a beloved icon of the robotics community – passed away from brain aneurysm this July. Imahara was 49. And 2020 just won’t take a breather.

An avid roboticist, Imahara was most famous for being the energetic host of MythBusters and the operator of R2D2 in the Star Wars prequels. Here is a tribute that the folks over at Discovery made for Grant and all his contributions to the robotics community. 


For all the makers and hackers out there, if you have an open-source project or initiative you’d like us to showcase in this monthly series, shoot us a message on robotics.canonical@canonical.com. We’ll take it from there.

That’s it folks, enjoy your downtime and stay safe in August!

The Fridge: Ubuntu 20.04.1 LTS released

5 days 9 hours ago

The Ubuntu team is pleased to announce the release of Ubuntu 20.04.1 LTS (Long-Term Support) for its Desktop, Server, and Cloud products, as well as other flavours of Ubuntu with long-term support.

As usual, this point release includes many updates, and updated installation media has been provided so that fewer updates will need to be downloaded after installation. These include security updates and corrections for other high-impact bugs, with a focus on maintaining stability and compatibility with Ubuntu 20.04 LTS.

Kubuntu 20.04.1 LTS, Ubuntu Budgie 20.04.1 LTS, Ubuntu MATE 20.04.1 LTS, Lubuntu 20.04.1 LTS, Ubuntu Kylin 20.04.1 LTS, Ubuntu Studio 20.04.1 LTS, and Xubuntu 20.04.1 LTS are also now available. More details can be found in their individual release notes:


Maintenance updates will be provided for 5 years for Ubuntu Desktop, Ubuntu Server, Ubuntu Cloud, and Ubuntu Core. All the remaining flavours will be supported for 3 years. Additional security support is available with ESM (Extended Security Maintenance).

To get Ubuntu 20.04.1 LTS

In order to download Ubuntu 20.04.1 LTS, visit:


Users of Ubuntu 18.04 LTS will soon be offered an automatic upgrade to 20.04.1 LTS via Update Manager. For further information about upgrading,


As always, upgrades to the latest version of Ubuntu are entirely free of charge.

We recommend that all users read the 20.04.1 LTS release notes, which document caveats and workarounds for known issues, as well as more in-depth notes on the release itself. They are available at:


If you have a question, or if you think you may have found a bug but aren’t sure, you can try asking in any of the following places:

#ubuntu on irc.freenode.net

Help Shape Ubuntu

If you would like to help shape Ubuntu, take a look at the list of ways you can participate at:


About Ubuntu

Ubuntu is a full-featured Linux distribution for desktops, laptops, clouds and servers, with a fast and easy installation and regular releases. A tightly-integrated selection of excellent applications is included, and an incredible variety of add-on software is just a few clicks away.

Professional services including support are available from Canonical and hundreds of other companies around the world. For more information about support, visit:


More Information

You can learn more about Ubuntu and about this release on our website listed below:


To sign up for future Ubuntu announcements, please subscribe to Ubuntu’s very low volume announcement list at:


Originally posted to the ubuntu-announce mailing list on Thu Aug 6 17:31:55 UTC 2020 by Łukasz ‘sil2100’ Zemczak, on behalf of the Ubuntu Release Team

Podcast Ubuntu Portugal: Ep 102 – Jornalista Pintor

5 days 9 hours ago

O Diogo está em parte incerta, e o Carrondo noutro fuso horário, mas o PUP must go on! Esta semana trazemos actualidade do final de Julho e a já tão falada aplicação de rastreamento covid… Saúde para todos e fiquem com mais 1 capítulo desta aventura.

Já sabem: oiçam, subscrevam e partilhem!

  • https://9to5linux.com/meet-ubuntued-20-04-an-educational-ubuntu-flavor-for-kids-schools-and-universities
  • https://discourse.ubuntu.com/t/ubuntu-education-ubuntued/17063
  • https://9to5linux.com/meet-ubuntu-retro-remix-an-ubuntu-distro-to-turn-your-raspberry-pi-into-a-retro-gaming-pc
  • https://ubuntuunity.org/
  • https://rastreamento.pt/
  • https://ansol.org/STAYAWAY-COVID
  • https://www.humblebundle.com/books/raspberry-pi-raspberry-pi-press-books?partner=pup

Podem apoiar o podcast usando os links de afiliados do Humble Bundle, porque ao usarem esses links para fazer uma compra, uma parte do valor que pagam reverte a favor do Podcast Ubuntu Portugal.
E podem obter tudo isso com 15 dólares ou diferentes partes dependendo de pagarem 1, ou 8.
Achamos que isto vale bem mais do que 15 dólares, pelo que se puderem paguem mais um pouco mais visto que têm a opção de pagar o quanto quiserem.

Se estiverem interessados em outros bundles não listados nas notas usem o link https://www.humblebundle.com/?partner=PUP e vão estar também a apoiar-nos.

Atribuição e licenças

Este episódio foi produzido por Diogo Constantino e Tiago Carrondo e editado por Alexandre Carrapiço, o Senhor Podcast.

A música do genérico é: “Won’t see it comin’ (Feat Aequality & N’sorte d’autruche)”, por Alpha Hydrae e está licenciada nos termos da [CC0 1.0 Universal License](https://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/).

Este episódio e a imagem utilizada estão licenciados nos termos da licença: Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0), cujo texto integral pode ser lido aqui. Estamos abertos a licenciar para permitir outros tipos de utilização, contactem-nos para validação e autorização.

Lubuntu Blog: Lubuntu 20.04.1 LTS Released!

5 days 13 hours ago
Thanks to all the hard work from our contributors, we are pleased to announce that Lubuntu 20.04.1 LTS has been released! What is Lubuntu? Lubuntu is an official Ubuntu flavor which uses the Lightweight Qt Desktop Environment (LXQt). The project’s goal is to provide a lightweight yet functional Linux distribution based on a rock-solid Ubuntu […]

Ubuntu Blog: Set up Collabora Online on the Nextcloud Ubuntu Appliance

5 days 16 hours ago

Alongside five popular software projects, we recently launched a new initiative called Ubuntu Appliances. A portfolio of software that allows users to turn a Raspberry Pi or an Intel NUC into a secure, self-hosted device. The initial launch included the Nextcloud Ubuntu Appliance. An application that enables you to host your own cloud, on your own hardware. In this blog, we discuss the benefits of the Nextcloud Appliance, and the addition of Collabora Online for use on the Intel NUC. To get set up, follow our extended tutorial, or, to install Nextcloud on Raspberry Pi or in a virtual machine, head to our website for instructions.


As more of our lives go online into the cloud, more of our data lives on other people’s hardware. This can raise privacy and security concerns as families, businesses and enterprises come to rely on clouds to house their data. You can share and effectively lose total control of your data. The Nextcloud Ubuntu Appliance is the solution to get back control of your privacy, running your own cloud, on your own hardware.

For home or for work, the Nextcloud Ubuntu Appliance lets you host your own cloud that’s kept up to date without you having to manually configure anything. Store your data, your documents and your photos on your own hardware and control access to it from your workstation or your phone. With Nextcloud, you can manage calendars, answer email, share documents, keep notes and more. Follow our tutorial and hook it up to some external storage for a home cloud experience that you control. For more details on Nextcloud specifically, check out their blog about the benefits of Nextcloud as an Ubuntu Appliance.

Collabora Online

Once your Nextcloud is up and running you’re going to want to write, share and work on documents. Then sharing documents using the same big tech companies you’re avoiding in the cloud defeats a lot of the purpose. Nextcloud gives you control of your files and communication, but working with documents, is just as important. Collabora Online is a suite of office applications that you can use with your Nextcloud Ubuntu Appliance to edit and collaborate on your own server. 

Collabora Online is built-in to the Ubuntu Appliance. A LibreOffice-based content office suite similar to Microsoft Office, it lets you edit and create office documents in Nextcloud, on your own hardware, under your control. It’s all open-source, always improving and as more features come to Collabora, they come to the Ubuntu Appliance so you can benefit from them right away. You can read what they have to say about it in their blog about Collabora Online coming to the Nextcloud Ubuntu Appliance

Ubuntu Appliances

IoT devices and smart appliances are becoming increasingly popular and more present in our daily lives. Unfortunately, such devices have a well-earned reputation of being insecure and not standing the test of time. The software goes out of date and unmaintained, and the hardware is niche and is quickly forgotten. Putting a lot of IoT devices in your home can have a real risk associated with them. Ubuntu Appliances mitigate that risk and bring you the software you want, on trusted, popular hardware as production-grade appliances.

The Nextcloud and Collabora Online software is supported and maintained by the upstream community. That software is packaged as a snap so when a new update or feature is ready, it can be sent straight to the device.  And you can install it on any certified Ubuntu hardware, like a Raspberry Pi or an Intel NUC. Right now Collabora Online will only work on the Intel NUC. To do so, follow the tutorial and get your appliance up and running.

What’s next?

We want to give publishers and developers a platform to get their software in the hands of their users. A stage and a secure, production-grade base to projects like Nextcloud. There are no restrictions on who can make an Ubuntu Appliance; all you need is an application that runs on a certified board, and to let us know

All that’s left to say is to try it out. Instructions to get set up with the Nextcloud appliance are all on our website. For a NUC all you’ll need is:

  • Two USB 2.0 or 3.0 flash drives (2GB minimum)
  • An Intel NUC with BIOS updated to the latest version (update instructions)
  • A Mini HDMI to HDMI cable
  • A monitor with VGA or HDMI interface
  • A VGA or HDMI cable
  • A USB keyboard and mouse
  • A network connection with Internet access
  • An Ubuntu 20.04 LTS desktop image

Similar instructions for the Raspberry Pi or to try Nextcloud in a VM can be found on the appliances website. Once you’re up and running, have a look at the other appliances in the portfolio too. To tell us what appliances you’d like to see next, just start a thread.

Ubuntu Podcast from the UK LoCo: S13E20 – Bananas on board

5 days 17 hours ago

This week we’ve been building Monster Joysticks and playing Red Alert. We discuss the proliforation of Ubuntu Remixes, bring you some GUI love and go over all your wonderful feedback.

It’s Season 13 Episode 20 of the Ubuntu Podcast! Alan Pope, Mark Johnson and Martin Wimpress are connected and speaking to your brain.

In this week’s show:

That’s all for this week! If there’s a topic you’d like us to discuss, or you have any feedback on previous shows, please send your comments and suggestions to show@ubuntupodcast.org or Tweet us or Toot us or Comment on our Facebook page or comment on our sub-Reddit.

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