DVD-based Clean Room for PGP and PKI

There is increasing interest in computer security these days and more and more people are using some form of PKI, whether it is signing Git tags, signing packages for a GNU/Linux distribution or just signing your emails.

How many mobile phone accounts will be hijacked this summer?

Summer vacations have been getting tougher in recent years. Airlines cut into your precious vacation time with their online check-in procedures and a dozen reminder messages, there is growing concern about airport security and Brexit has already put one large travel firm into liquidation leaving holidaymakers in limbo.

Let's Encrypt torpedoes cost and maintenance issues for Free RTC

Many people have now heard of the EFF-backed free certificate authority Let's Encrypt. Not only is it free of charge, it has also introduced a fully automated mechanism for certificate renewals, eliminating a tedious chore that has imposed upon busy sysadmins everywhere for many years.

These two benefits - elimination of cost and elimination of annual maintenance effort - imply that server operators can now deploy certificates for far more services than they would have previously.

Can you help with monitoring packages in Debian and Ubuntu?

Debian (and consequently Ubuntu) contains a range of extraordinarily useful monitoring packages.

I've been maintaining several of them at a basic level but as more of my time is taken up by free Real-Time Communications software, I haven't been able to follow the latest upstream releases for all of the other packages I maintain. The versions we are distributing now still serve their purpose well, but as some people would like newer versions, I don't want to stand in the way.

Avoiding SMS vendor lock-in with SMPP

There is increasing demand for SMS notifications about monitoring alerts, trading notifications, flight delays and other events. Various companies are offering SMS transmission services to meet this demand and many of them aggressively pushing their own proprietary interfaces to the SMS world rather than using the more open and widely supported SMPP.

WebRTC and communications projects in GSoC 2016

This year a significant number of students are working on RTC-related projects as part of Google Summer of Code, under the umbrella of the Debian Project. You may have already encountered some of them blogging on Planet or participating in mailing lists and IRC.

Working to pass GSoC

GSoC students have officially been coding since 23 May (about 2.5 weeks) and are almost half-way to the mid-summer evaluation (20 - 27 June). Students who haven't completed some meaningful work before that deadline don't receive payment and in such a large program, there is no possibility to give students extensions or let them try and catch up later.

Every project and every student are different, some are still getting to know their environment while others have already done enough to pass the mid-summer evaluation.

PostBooks, PostgreSQL and talk

PostBooks 4.9.5 was recently released and the packages for Debian (including jessie-backports), Ubuntu and Fedora have been updated.

Postbooks at in Rapperswil, Switzerland is coming on Friday, 24 June. It is at the HSR Hochschule für Technik Rapperswil, at the eastern end of Lake Zurich.

LinuxWochen, MiniDebConf Vienna and Linux Presentation Day

Over the coming week, there are a vast number of free software events taking place around the world.

I'll be at the LinuxWochen Vienna and MiniDebConf Vienna, the events run over four days from Thursday, 28 April to Sunday, 1 May.