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Einsendefrist für den OSBAR 2017 endet morgen!

Der Open Source Business Award, kurz OSBAR, ist der Innovationspreis des Open Source Business Alliance Vereins. Auch in diesem Jahr werden wieder innovative und interessante Open Source-Projekte gesucht, die sich für diesen Preis bewerben wollen.

Ich freue mich sehr, dieses Jahr Teil der Jury zu sein und bin schon sehr auf die Einreichungen gespannt. Am 16.11. findet in Berlin der Open Source Day (ODS) der OSB Alliance statt; dort können die Bewerber ihr Projekt persönlich vorstellen. Anschließend läuft die Bewertung der Einreichungen. Am 6.12. werden dann im Rahmen der OPEN-Konferenz in Stuttgart die Gewinner bekannt gegeben.

Die Teilnahme ist sehr einfach und ist eine tolle Gelegenheit, den Bekanntheitsgrad eines Projekts zu steigern. In diesem Sinne: mitmachen, man kann nur gewinnen!

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Installing Microsoft Visual Studio Code on Fedora Linux

I never thought I’d ever say this, but I must admit that I have become quite a fan of Microsoft’s Visual Studio Code IDE, which is available for a wide range of platforms, including Linux.

However, the installation user experience was still somewhat arcane – one had to manually download the RPM package from their web site to install the software. Once a new version was available, the user receives a notification within the application, which redirects him to the website for downloading and updating the latest RPM manually again.

Therefore it didn’t take long for the community to request the creation of a dedicated yum repository, to keep the package updated automatically.

This issue has now been resolved: a yum repo has now been created. Until github issue 20895 has been fixed, this still requires setting up the required repository configuration manually though, but hopefully this will be addressed soon as well.

Until then, here’s how to enable the yum repo on Fedora Linux (Fedora 25 in my case):

Create a file /etc/yum.repos.d/vscode.repo with the following content:

[code]
name=Visual Studio Code
baseurl=https://packages.microsoft.com/yumrepos/vscode
enabled=1
gpgcheck=1
gpgkey=https://packages.microsoft.com/keys/microsoft.asc

Now you can install the package with the following command:

$ sudo dnf install code

Upon the first run, you will be requested to import the GPG build key used for signing the package.

Once a new updates becomes available, running dnf update will pull and install the updated package automatically.

Thanks to the developers at Microsoft for making this step much easier now!

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Enabling scroll wheel emulation for the Logitech Trackman Marble on Fedora Linux 24

Update: this solution does no longer work on later versions of Fedora that switched to Wayland instead of X.org by default. If you don’t want to switch back to X.org and you’re using the GNOME desktop environment, you can enable scroll wheel emulation as outlined here.

I’ve been struggling with this for quite some time now, but I finally figured out how to enable scroll wheel emulation for the Logitech Trackman Marble on Fedora Linux 24.

Previously (when I was using Ubuntu Linux), I had a small shell script that defined the required xinput properties. However, this did not work on Fedora, as they use the new libinput framework.

With the change to the libinput subsystem, you can now enable this behavior by creating a file /etc/X11/xorg.conf.d/10-libinput.conf with the following content:

Section "InputClass"
 Identifier "Marble Mouse"
 MatchProduct "Logitech USB Trackball"
 Driver "libinput"
 Option "ScrollMethod" "button"
 Option "ScrollButton" "8"
 EndSection

Magically, this function got enabled as soon as I saved the file, without even having to restart X! I’m impressed.

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Summarizing last year’s achievements and highlights

A while ago, I concluded my first year in the openATTIC-Team at it-novum. We’ve gone through a lot of changes and I am quite proud of what we’ve achieved so far. In many ways, we’re starting this project and product from scratch, and I’m excited to be able to contribute to this effort with my experience from past jobs, and to help shaping the future direction. I feel grateful for having a very enthusiastic and supportive team. It’s also quite satisfying to observe how the seeds that we planted slowly come to fruition, as the project begins to gain traction with a growing user base and developer community.

For more details on some of the key highlights, please see my blog post on the openATTIC blog.

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signoff.py: A Mercurial hook to automatically add a “Signed-off-by:” tag line below your commit message

The openATTIC project is currently transitioning to adapting the patch contribution signoff process initially established by the Linux Kernel developers, in which every commit message is “signed” with a special Signed-off-by: tag line, that certifies that the patch contribution meets certain criteria with regards to ownership/copyright and licensing.

The git distributed revision control system (DVCS) used by the Linux Kernel and many other projects actually provides an option --sign that can be passed to the git commit command, which will add the Signed-off-by: line at the end of the commit log message automatically.

However, the openATTIC code base is managed using the Mercurial DVCS, which currently does not offer the same functionality out of the box. Fortunately, Mercurial is written in Python and is very extensible: it is possible to extend its functionality and modify the workflows via Hooks and Extensions.

Much to my surprise, I was not able to find an existing plugin or extension that provides this functionality. So I took this opportunity to hone my Python skills and wrote one myself – signoff.py is a simple Mercurial hook, that will automatically add the signoff tag line below the commit message. Currently it is pretty rudimentary, I still need to read up on how to convert it into a proper Mercurial extension that extends the existing hg commit command, so the signoff process can be enabled by passing it as an option.

To enable it, dowmload the file and save it as signoff.py into the .hg directory of your Mercurial repository and add the following to .hg/hgrc:

[hooks]
precommit = python:.hg/signoff.py:sign_commit_message

If you have any suggestions or ideas on how to improve it, please let me know!

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Conference report: OpenStack Summit 2015 Tokyo, Japan

I finally got around to write down my impressions and notes from the OpenStack Summit 2015 in Tokyo, Japan. You can find my conference report on the openATTIC blog. Enjoy!

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Blogging on the openATTIC Community Blog

In case you were wondering why there were so few posts on this blog in the past weeks: since we’ve set up a dedicated blog for openATTIC, a lot of my recent blogging activity has taken place there. You can find all my posts using the Posts by Lenz Grimmer view.

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Video of my German talk “Flexibles Storage Management unter Linux mit OpenATTIC” now on YouTube

Back in September, I attended the Kieler Linux Tage, to talk (in German) about how to manage storage on Linux using openATTIC.

The presentation was recorded and the final result (in 4K) can now be viewed on YouTube. I hope you enjoy it!

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Slides of my German talk “Flexibles Storage Management unter Linux mit OpenATTIC” now on SlideShare

Last week, I attended the 13. Kieler Open Source und Linux Tage (KieLux) in Kiel, Germany, to give a presentation (in German) about “Flexibles Storage Management unter Linux mit OpenATTIC. I had an audience of ~25-30 people, a video recording of the session (in 4K!) will be published shortly. I had a great time at KieLux and learned a lot in the other sessions I attended. It was also nice meeting new people and touching base with long-time acquaintances again. Thanks to the KieLux organizers for arranging this event and for inviting me!

My slide deck is now available from SlideShare. Enjoy!

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Slides and Video of my talk “The Evolution of Storage on Linux” at FrOSCon 2015

Last weekend, I gave a presentation titled “The Evolution of Storage on Linux” at this year’s FrOSCon 10 conference (Happy Anniversary!). In case you have missed it, you can find the slides and video recording below. Thanks to the FrOSCon team for having me, it’s always a pleasure to be there!

Unfortunately I had some technical issues in the beginning and was somewhat too ambitious with regards to the topics I wanted to cover, so I ran out of time. There is simply too much cool stuff happening in the storage space – but I hope that the audience still enjoyed it!

Slide deck:

Video: