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News in General

 New URL for LG

Linux Gazette now has its own domain name! Check out http://www.linuxgazette.com/ as another way to get to LG.

Other LG News While we do not mail issues of LG to our readers--it's just too big--we do have an announcement service. Write lg-announce-request@ssc.com with the wordsubscribe in the body, and each month you will receive an e-mail notice when we post Linux Gazette.

Our ftp site will now contain each issue after Issue 9 in its own gzipped tar file. Issues 1 through 8 will be together in one gzipped tar file.

 Cool Linux Sites of December!

Check out the two cool Linux sites of the month!

The Rat Pack Underground Network is a must-see. This URL has some practical stories about using Linux to solve "real-life" problems and much more.

The Eyes on the Skies Robotic Solar Obsevatory and BBS page contains an internet-accessable robotic solar telescope and BBS system built by Mike Rushford. You can actually control your view of the sun by controlling a telescope from your browser! The telescope control pages are served by a Linux system that is called Eyes on the Skies.

 Stand Up and Be Counted

The Linux Counter is a serious attempt to count users in the Linux universe. At the moment, more than 53.000 people are registered with the counter, coming from more than 130 different countries. The counter has been recently updated and given a new Web interface and forms design, and is now able to give you the ultimate Linux counter gimmick: The Linux REGISTRATION CERTIFICATE! This little GIF image, with your personal registration number on it, ready for insertion in your Web page, is available for you at the price of filling out the registration form. Older, registered users can go to http://counter.li.org/update.html, enter their registration key, and get it there.

Come on folks--STAND UP AND BE COUNTED!!!!

 Virtual Services HOWTO

Check out the new HOWTO on virtual services which includes a section on virtual mail services as a whole. Go to http://sunsite.unc.edu/mdw/HOWTO/Virtual-Services-HOWTO.html The author would like your comments on the HOWTO in order to keep it on track, you can reach him at brian@nycrc.net

Software Announcements

 Eiffel Special

In celebration of the 200,000th Eiffel Professional license, ISE is making available special limited time offers for new purchases of the Eiffel Professional Licence and upgrades from Personal Eiffel.

FREE Upgrade to Eiffel Professional license with NEW Java Interface (see offer for full details)

Eiffel Professional Suite $495

Eiffel Client-Server Suite $795

Eiffel Cross-Platform Suite $895

Eiffel Enterprise Suite $1195

A special bonus runs with each of the above which includes a free upgrade to the next release, a free O-O book and 15% off any ISE training session up to June 1998. The Enterprise Suite also includes a free year of maintenance and support from the date of purchase.

 O'Reilly "Animal Book" Contest

Readers of the "Animal Books" by O'Reilly now have a chance to see some wild animals close up, courtesy of computer book publisher O'Reilly & Associates. O'Reilly has launched the In a Nutshell contest, with the prize being a trip for two to the San Diego Zoo and Wild Animal Park. Readers of O'Reilly's bestselling In a Nutshell quick-reference books can find entry forms at their favorite bookstores. Completed entry forms must be received by December 31, 1997, and the winner will be chosen on January 30, 1998.

Official In a Nutshell Contest Rules:

 Help with JWP

There is a Windows application, called JWP -- a Japanese Word Processor. This package was written by Stephen Chung, and as a GNU product it is freely distributable. JWP comes with its own fonts and its own Front End Processor (FEP) which means it is useful on English-only computing systems. It is also integrated with Jim Breen's EDICT Japanese-English dictionary. Unfortunately, JWP is only available for Windows right now, which is locking out a lot of people under other platforms who might benefit from it. As Stephen is quite busy with full-time work and maintaining the Windows versions (he's developing version 2.00 now), there is an attempt being made to go ahead and port to X-Windows.

This project will never get off the ground without volunteers. any interested X-Windows developer who wants to make a contribution both to the GNU and Japanese-speaking communities is invited lend a hand with this exciting project.

The JWP-Port Project home page contains more information on the JWP package as well as the JWP-Port project itself. If you are interested, please visit the page at http://qlink.queensu.ca/~3srf/jwp-port.

 Perfect Backup+ Personal Edition

Unisource Systems, Inc. announced today the release of the famous PerfectBACKUP+ Personal Edition, a fully functional version of their best-selling PerfectBACKUP+ V5.5. Having received continued and tremendous support from the LINUX community, and in recognition of LINUX becoming our #1 best-selling platform we are giving something back. The PerfectBACKUP+ Personal Edition is unrestricted and free to anyone. Its freely redistributable and can be use for either private or commercial use.

Information about, and the program itself can be obtained from http://www.unisrc.com.

 86Open Project

A group which includes some of the key developers of Unix operating systems on Intel architecture computers have agreed to work on a common programming and binary interface. At a meeting held mid-August at the head office of SCO, participants achieved consensus on a way to create software applications which would run, without modification or emulation, on the Intel-based versions of:

The goal of this effort is to encourage software developers to port to the Unix-Intel platform by reducing the effort needed to support the diverse mix of operating systems of this kind currently available. The specification, called "86open", will be published and freely available to any environment wishing compliance. It involves the use of a standardized 'libc' shared library of basic functions to be provided on all systems. This library will provide a consistent interface to programmers, hiding the differences between the various operating systems and allowing the resulting binary programs to run unaltered on any compliant system. Whenever possible, it will be consistent with The Open Group's Single Unix Specification.

Each participating operating system will be free to implement the 86open library specification on its own. However, the reference implementation will be based upon GNU's 'glibc' version 2, ensuring that it will remain open and freely available. The actual list and behavior of the 86open functions is presently being determined.

Participants in the meeting, who will be involved with the ongoing evolution of the 86open specification, include people deeply involved with the operating systems mentioned in this project. The 86open steering committee, a core of this group which will assemble the work and produce the final specification, comprises: Marc Ewing, Dion Johnson, Evan Leibovitch, Bruce Perens, Andrew Roach, Bryan Sparks and Linus Torvalds

For more information, contact 86open@telly.org or check http://www.telly.org/86open.

 Clobberd 3.2

Clobberd 3.2 (Clobberd-3.2-RELEASED.tgz) has been released on to the following sites:

Clobberd is a user/resource regulator that allows Operators to monitor and track users Total Time, Daily Time, Expiration time, Total network usage and Daily network usage (to name a few) in an effort to limit or cost resources that the user uses. Clobberd effectively "meters" resources, and compares them to any limits/conditions you impose. The third version now has the ability to monitor users on a network rather than a single host.

 Corel Video Network Computer News

When Corel Computer Corp. formally unveils its Video Network Computer later this month, the machine will be running Linux, an operating system that is becoming an increasingly prominent force in workstations linked to corporate intranets.

Linux is a compact, efficient, easier-to-use and free version of Unix. A growing number of corporate MIS groups, as well as software developers and systems integrators, are choosing Linux over 32-bit Windows platforms, especially for Internet applications. At some sites, Linux actually is displacing Windows.

That is what happened at Unique Systems, Inc., a software developer in Sylvania, Ohio. The company, which puts together accounting systems for small and midsize companies, was using Microsoft Corp.'s Office 95 internally but was plagued by software crashes and other problems. "It really irked me," Unique President Glenn Jackson said.

The company tested Applix, Inc.'s ApplixWare office suite on Intel Corp. computers running Linux. Users got nearly all the functionality of Microsoft Office and were able to import all Office files easily into ApplixWare - at much lower cost and with far greater reliability than with Office, Jackson said.

"Linux is the true competitor to Windows NT in the long term," said Dave Madden, senior product manager at Corel Computer, a subsidiary of Corel Corp., based here.

Linux has a number of key features NT lacks. For example, Linux is a multiuser system and runs on a wide range of processors _ from Intel 386 to 64-bit Reduced Instruction Set Computing chips _ and on multiprocessor computers. The Linux kernel is less than 2M bytes.

Linux has other key attractions, according to Jon Hall, executive director of Linux International, a trade group that promotes the software. Linux is free, and users have access to all the Linux source code, which means they can make whatever changes they need. Commercial Linux versions from companies such as Caldera, Inc., of Provo, Utah, and Red Hat Software, Inc., of Research Triangle Park, N.C., range from $49.95 to $399 and usually come with additional software and technical support.

The free version of Linux is crammed with utilities and connectivity software. "One of the things that makes Linux so attractive is how much software you get with it," said Dave Parker, a senior software engineer at Frontier Information Technologies, a division of Frontier Corp., a Rochester, N.Y., telecommunications company. "Linux will connect to anything."

Much of the free software is available under the "GNU public license," which is administered by the Free Software Foundation.

For example, TCP/IP and a Web server are built in, and Linux can run DOS applications. It includes X.11 support, so it can host or access Unix applications.

Linux supports the Microsoft Server Message Block protocol, so it can serve Windows files.

It also supports AppleTalk for Macintoshes. Using optional software, it can even run Windows applications. Cal-dera's commercial OpenLinux adds Novell, Inc. NetWare connectivity.

Frontier Information Technologies' Green Bay, Wis., site is using several Caldera Open- Linux servers as specialized gateways, directory or naming servers and firewalls.

This seems to be an increasingly common practice at big corporate sites, said Dan Kusnetzky, director of operating system research at International Data Corp. in Framingham, Mass.

Unknown to senior MIS executives, operations staff are deploying Linux servers in a range of intranet applications, he said.

Published in Linux Gazette Issue 23, December 1997

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