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I am Eric Hameleers, and this is where I think out loud.
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May 2016
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RSS Alien's Slackware packages

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RSS Alien's multilib packages

RSS Slackware64-current


Open Source on another level

This blog centers about Linux and Open Source software with occasional side trips to brewing and cooking.

Today I want to raise your attention to a whole new level of “Open Source”.

Logo BrewDog, a UK brewery which soon celebrates its tenth anniversary, has decided to “open source” all of their 215 beer recipes. From their original and still extremely popular (and tasty) beer “PUNK IPA“, moving on to “Hops Kill Nazis“, “Doodlebug” and finally arriving at their latest “Jet Black Heart” which was first brewed last month (!)

Dubbed “DIY Dog“, the two founders have released a big PDF file containing the recipes of every beer the company ever created in their history, appropriately scaled down for 20 liter brewing volume – catering to their intended audience of home brewers.

And not just the recipes, but the PDF also contains an itemized list of the equipment you’ll need to brew like a pro and comes with lots of advice on the side.

Their blog says it all: “We have always loved the sharing of knowledge, expertise and passion in the craft beer community and we wanted to take that spirit of collaboration to the next level. So here it is. The keys to our kingdom. Every single BrewDog recipe, ever.

Way cool. A daring move which should be met with lots of respect.

Beta 6 for my Live ISO images

blueSW-64pxYesterday  I uploaded new ISO images for Slackware Live Edition, release “0.6.0“. Then I waited a bit before writing this article to allow the mirrors to catch up with the 8 GB of new files.

Check out my previous articles about Slackware Live Edition for more background information and read the README.txt file provided with the “liveslak” sources to get a grasp on a more technical level of how this all works.

What’s new in 0.6.0?

Still working towards a stable 1.0 release, I think I am mostly there feature-wise and I would like to see bug reports so that I can be sure that a future stable release is going to be enjoyed by everyone – seasoned or aspiring Slackware user alike. If I am not at version 1.0 by the time Slackware 14.2 is released, that event will trigger a Live Edition v1.0 for sure! But we’ll get there before Pat :-)

The persistent USB variant of Slackware Live is what most people are probably going to use. But the ISO on DVD or a read-only stick is just as awesome, because that variant will be particularly interesting for people who are demo-ing Slackware (because they are new to Slackware or because they want to see how slackware-current performs). For this new beta, I have focused on fixing all the small bugs I ran into, but here are some of the highlights in terms of new functionality:

  • You can now use an encrypted container file to store persistent data. The “” script was extended with a new “-C” parameter that allows you to specify a size for this LUKS container file, quite similar to what you already could do for a LUKS encrypted homedirectory. The data on your persistent USB Live will be safe from people who steal the stick from you.
  • A hard disk installer was added to all Live variants except the minimal XFCE. As far as I am concerned, the XFCE version is nice to run as a small Live OS but unsuited for hard disk installation. This works straight from the DVD, and also in USB versions.
    You will be able to install the latest Slackware64-current, or the Plasma5 or Mate version to your computer’s hard drive, in the background while you are working/playing in your Live Desktop.
    From within the Live environment (either at the console or in an X terminal in your running Desktop Environment) you can call “setup2hd” which will guide you. The script is a modified Slackware setup as known from the official install media, but it has already made the choice of package SOURCE for you. Note that you are responsible for partitioning your hard drive before you call “setup2hd”. This aspect is no different from the regular Slackware installer.
    The “setup2hd” script will install all the active Live modules to your hard drive (this encompasses all “system” modules, and furthermore including modules in addons/” and “optional/” which you enabled).
  • Documentation was added. A README.txt file contains all the details of using the Live Edition, as well as technical background on how the liveslak scripts do their work.
  • Customizing the Live Edition has been made easier. You are no longer tied to the choice of “SLACKWARE”, “PLASMA5”, “KDE4”, “XFCE”, “MATE” or “CINNAMON” when generating a new ISO variant. A “custom” variant with its own custom name and custom post-install configuration is now also possible.

Download the ISO images

I have created ISO images for the SLACKWARE, XFCE, PLASMA5 and MATE flavours using the latest Slackware64-current packages available (Tue Feb 23 19:31:59 UTC 2016) as well as latest Plasma 5 and Mate releases.

You can find the ISO images plus their MD5 checksum and GPG signature at any of the following locations – look in the “0.6.0” subdirectory for ISOs based on the liveslak-0.6.0 scripts. I made a symlink called “latest” which will always point to the latest set of ISO images:

These mirror servers should have synchronized by now.

The ISOs have two user accounts: root (with password ‘root’) and live (with password ‘live’). My advice: login as user live and use “su” or “sudo” to get root access (note: “su” and “sudo” will want the live password!).

The ISOs are able to boot both on BIOS-based computers (where syslinux takes care of the boot menu) and UEFI systems (where grub builds the boot menu, which looks quite similar to the syslinux menu):


Have fun! Eric

KDE 5_16.02 for Slackware-current

plasma5_startup I have uploaded a new ‘ktown’ package set. KDE 5_16.02 contains the latest KDE releases: Frameworks 5.19.0, Plasma 5.5.4 and Applications 15.12.2. I had been sitting on this for a few days, and was waiting for Pat to release his own new batch of updates for slackware-current. With a fresh kernel and glibc in -current and new Plasma5 packages, it is almost time to create new ISO images for the Slackware Live Edition. More about liveslak in the next post.

What’s new in KDE 5_16.02?

  • Frameworks 5.19.0 is an enhancement release. See .
  • Plasma 5.5.4 is an incremental bug & stability update for the 5.5 series. See .
    • Note that these Plasma 5.5.4 packages were already released in ‘ktown‘ on February 4th as an incremental update.
  • The Applications 15.12.2 is a bugfix release. For a full list of changes to applications, read this page.
    • The ‘kjots’ package was added. This used to be part of KDEPIM and has now been released as a separate tarball.
    • KDE Telepathy is still missing the graphical voice&video chat application ‘ktp-call-ui’. At least, it is missing a stable release. I used a git snapshot to compile a package now that it finally has a new maintainer who finished the port to KF5 (KDE Frameworks 5). Inclusion of a stable release of ‘ktp-call-ui’ is expected in Applications 16.04.

I am preparing ISO images for the new 0.6.0 (Beta6) release of my Slackware Live Edition. These ISOs are based on the latest Slackware64-current. The PLASMA5 variant contains my KDE-5_16.02 packages. You can play-test the new desktop in a Live OS without the hassle of installing it to your hard drive (although that will be possible).

Installing or upgrading Frameworks 5, Plasma 5 and Applications

You can skip the remainder of the article if you already have my Plasma 5 installed and are familiar with the upgrade process. Otherwise, stay with me and read the rest.

As always, the accompanying README file contains full installation & upgrade instructions. Note that the packages are available in several subdirectories below “kde”, instead of directly in “kde”. This makes it easier for me to do partial updates of packages. The subdirectories are “kde4”, “kde4-extragear”, “frameworks”, “kdepim”, “plasma”, “plasma-extra”, “applications”, “applications-extra” and “telepathy”.

Upgrading to this KDE 5 is not difficult, especially if you already are running KDE 5_16.01. You will have to remove old KDE 4 packages manually. If you do not have KDE 4 installed at all, you will have to install some of Slackware’s own KDE 4 packages manually.


If you are using slackpkg+, have already moved to KDE 5_16.01 and are adventurous, you can try upgrading using the following set of commands. This should “mostly” work but you still need to check the package lists displayed by slackpkg to verify that you are upgrading all the right packages. Feel free to send me improved instructions if needed. In below example I am assuming that you tagged my KDE 5 repository with the name “ktown_testing” in the configuration file “/etc/slackpkg/slackpkgplus.conf“):
# slackpkg update
# slackpkg install ktown_testing (to get the newly added packages from my repo)
# slackpkg install-new (to get the new official Slackware packages that were part of my deps previously)
# slackpkg upgrade ktown_testing (upgrade all existing packages to their latest versions)
# removepkg xembed-sni-proxy ktux amor kde-base-artwork kde-wallpapers kdeartwork (they don’t exist in the repo anymore)
# slackpkg upgrade-all (upgrade the remaining dependencies that were part of my repo previously)

And doublecheck that you have not inadvertently blacklisted my packages in “/etc/slackpkg/blacklist“! Check for the existence of a line in that blacklist file that looks like “[0-9]+alien” and remove it if you find it!

Recommended reading material

There have been several posts now about KDE 5 for Slackware-current. All of them contain useful information, tips and gotchas that I do not want to repeat here, but if you want to read them, here they are:

A note on Frameworks

The KDE Frameworks are extensions on top of Qt 5.x and their usability is not limited to the KDE Software Collection. There are other projects such as LXQT which rely (in part) on the KDE Frameworks, and if you are looking for a proper Frameworks repository which is compatible with Slackware package managers such as slackpkg+, then you can use these URL’s to assure yourself of the latest Frameworks packages for Slackware-current (indeed, this is a sub-tree of my KDE 5 “testing” repository):

Where to get the new packages for Plasma 5

Download locations are listed below (you will find the sources in ./source/5/ and packages in /current/5/ subdirectories). If you are interested in the development of KDE 5 for Slackware, you can peek at my git repository too.

Using a mirror is preferred because you get more bandwidth from a mirror and it’s friendlier to the owners of the master server!

Have fun! Eric

Multilib updates and more still to come

You will have noticed the update of slackware-current today. There’s a new kernel (4.4.2) and an updated glibc which addresses CVE-2015-7547.

So I took the opportunity to upload my multilib version of the glibc packages for slackware-current. I also updated my set of “compat32” packages and am compiling a glibc for Slackware64 14.1 at the moment. This will be uploaded when ready (tomorrow).

Official download locations for multilib on slackware-current:


Have fun! Eric

Security update for Chromium 48

chromium_iconGoogle released an update for Chrome/Chromium – their version 48 of the browser is now at “48.0.2564.109“. The chromium sources are still not available six days after the announcement, even though the official Chrome binary distributions were available right from the start. I think that this is inexcusable for a big company like Google, but this is not the first time that their autobots falter and no one cares enough to fix the release process. Notwithstanding some complaints by fellow application packagers.

So for this release I switched to the “chromium source tarball” git repository to get a tarball and compile some Slackware packages.

This chromium release addresses a couple of security issues with the following CVE numbers:

  • [$7500][546677] High CVE-2016-1622: Same-origin bypass in Extensions. Credit to anonymous.
  • [$7500][577105] High CVE-2016-1623: Same-origin bypass in DOM. Credit to Mariusz Mlynski.
  • [$TBD][583607] High CVE-2016-1624: Buffer overflow in Brotli. Credit to lukezli.
  • [$1000][509313] Medium CVE-2016-1625: Navigation bypass in Chrome Instant. Credit to Jann Horn.
  • [571480] Medium CVE-2016-1626: Out-of-bounds read in PDFium. Credit to anonymous, working with HP’s Zero Day Initiative.
  • [585517] CVE-2016-1627: Various fixes from internal audits, fuzzing and other initiatives.

Get my chromium packages in one of the usual locations:

The widevine and pepperflash plugin packagess for chromium can be found in the same repository.

Have fun! Eric