Author Archives: alienbob

Disney+ finally works on Linux!

A little more than three weeks after the new Disney+ movie streaming service went officially live, the Disney company has added Linux support to their Widevine DRM protection. No more “Error 83”. No more need to install the Windows version of Chrome in Wine. Watching your favorite movies is now possible in the native Linux browsers – both Mozilla and Google based. Firefox will download the Widevine CDM (content delivery module) automatically, Chrome has the support built-in and for my Chromium package and other Chromium-based browsers you;ll have to install my chromium-widevine-plugin package.

I guess that a sufficiently large group of Linux enthusiasts have been complaining. And with success!

Enjoy! Eric

November ’19 release of OpenJDK 8

icedteaToday, icedtea-3.14.0 was released. IcedTea is a software build framework which allows easy compilation of OpenJDK.

The new IcedTea release will build you the latest Java8:  OpenJDK 8u232_b09. This release syncs the OpenJDK support in IcedTea to the official October 2019 security fixes that Oracle released for Java. The release announcement in the mailing list for distro packagers has details about all the security issues and vulnerabilities that are addressed.

I have built Slackware packages for the new Java 8 Update 232 and uploaded them already. Please upgrade at your earliest convenience. Java is still widespread which makes it a popular target for vulnerability attacks.

Here is where you can download the Slackware packages for openjdk and openjre:

If you want to compile OpenJDK 8 yourself you will need apache-ant as well, but otherwise the openjdk/openjre packages have no external dependencies.

Note about usage:

My Java 7 and Java 8 packages (e.g. openjdk7 and openjdk… or openjre7 and openjre) can not co-exist on your computer because they use the same installation directory. You must install either Java 7 or Java 8.

Remember that I release packages for the JRE (runtime environment) and the JDK (development kit) simultaneously, but you only need to install one of the two. The JRE is sufficient if you only want to run Java programs (including Java web plugins). Only in case where you’d want to develop Java programs and need a Java compiler, you are in need of the JDK package.

Enjoy! Eric

Slackware Live Plasma5 edition ISO available (based on liveslak 1.3.3)

Yesterday I uploaded a new DVD-sized ISO for the Plasma5 variant of Slackware Live Edition based on the liveslak scripts version 1.3.3. The ISO contains Slackware-current “Tue Nov 12 23:08:45 UTC 2019” with my KDE-5_19.11 and boots a Linux 4.19.83 kernel.

Download this ISO file slackware64-live-plasma5-current.iso preferably via rsync://slackware.nl/mirrors/slackware-live/ because that allows easy resume if you cannot download the file in one go.

Liveslak sources are maintained in git. The 1.3.3 release has some fixes for PXE booting older hardware.
If you want to read about what the Slackware Live Edition can do for you, check out the official landing page for the project, https://alien.slackbook.org/blog/slackware-live-edition/ or any of the articles on this blog that were published later on.

Extensive documentation on how to use and develop Slackware Live Edition (you can achieve a significant level of customization without changing a single line of script code) can be found in the Slackware Documentation Project Wiki.

Have fun!

Plasma 5 for Slackware – November ktown release

Dear all, today I released KDE-5_19.11 and it comes with some upgrades to official Slackware packages. Don’t worry – Pat Volkerding kindly added the shared libraries of the official Slackware packages to aaa_elflibs, so if you have been updating your Slackware-current installation properly then nothing will break when you update Slackware’s exiv2 and LibRaw packages to the newer versions contained in the November release of ‘ktown‘.
Official Slackware package updates for exiv2 and LibRaw will come sometime soon, but it will require Pat to recompile several other packages as well that depend on exiv2 and/or LibRaw. I needed the new exiv2 to compile the latest digikam, so I was pleased with Pat’s cooperation to make this a smooth ‘ktown‘ upgrade for you.

The packages for KDE-5_19.11 are available for download from my ‘ktown‘ repository. As always, these packages are meant to be installed on a full installation of Slackware-current which has had its KDE4 removed first. These packages will not work on Slackware 14.2.

What’s new in the October 2019 release

This month’s KDE Plasma5 for Slackware contains the KDE Frameworks 5.64.0, Plasma 5.17.2 and Applications 19.08.3. All this on top of Qt 5.13.2.

Deps:
This month’s updates to the ‘deps’ are: qt5 and PyQt5.
Fresh additions are: LibRaw and exiv2. These are stock Slackware packages and the two are being upgraded ahead of Slackware, so that the Plasma5 packages can pick them up. Pat added the shared libs for the older releases to ‘aaa_elflibs’ so that none of the Slackware packages will break when you install this month’s Plasma5 packages.
And I have removed qt5-speech because I overlooked that this is already part of the big qt5 package.

KDE$:
I rebuilt kdelibs in the KDE4 section, just like Pat did for Slackware. This removes hardcoded TLSv1 allowing TLSv1.1 and TLSv1.2.

Frameworks:
Frameworks 5.64.0 is an incremental stability release, see: https://www.kde.org/announcements/kde-frameworks-5.64.0.php.

Plasma:
Plasma 5.17.2 is a an incremental bug-fix release in the 5.17 cycle of the KDE desktop environment. See https://www.kde.org/announcements/plasma-5.17.2.php

Plasma-extra;
In plasma-extra I updated latte-dock.

Applications;
Applications 19.08.3 is a stability and bugfix update for the 19.08 cycle, see https://www.kde.org/announcements/announce-applications-19.08.3.php

Applications-extra:
In applications-extra I updated digikam, kile (finally 3.0 beta 3!), kstars and kdevelop-pg-qt, kdevelop, kdev-php, kdev-python. Due to the new exiv2 and LibRaw I rebuilt krename and krita.

Telepathy:
KDE Telepathy is no longer part of my ‘ktown’ distribution of KDE Plasma5.

Where to get it

Download the KDE-5_19.11 from the usual location at https://slackware.nl/alien-kde/current/latest/ . Check out the README file in the root of the repository for detailed installation or upgrade instructions.

Development of Plasma5 is tracked in git: https://git.slackware.nl/ktown/ .
A new Plasma5 Live ISO will arrive later this week (hopefully… I have some stuff high on my TODO list) and you will find it at https://slackware.nl/slackware-live/latest/ (rsync://slackware.nl/mirrors/slackware-live/latest/)

Have fun! Eric

No Disney+ on Linux

With the new version 4.10.1582.1 of the Widevine DRM plugin package for Chromium that I uploaded today (chromium-widevine-plugin) I really hoped that this would fix the playback error on Linux of the new Disney+ streaming service.

As you may know, Disney is preparing for the official launch of its movie streaming service this week tuesday, 12 November. But we in the Netherlands could enjoy a free test period of two months before the go-live and so I watched several episodes of the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. series and the Captain Marvel movie, casting from my phone at first but now via an official app on my smart TV. The bad performance of the app and frequent freezes of the video streams have largely been taken care of and fixed during the test period. If you are a fan of the Disney and Fox movie portfolio or enjoy the Marvel and Star Wars movies, then I guess this new platform is for you. It’s still rather limited in scope of course.

Worse in my opinion is the fact that Disney did the Linux community a disservice. The streaming of video does not work – on any browser. The web site works fine, you can browse and explore, but video playback is not possible and an annoying “Error 83” appears instead.

I had subscribed to Disney+ for the free trial straight away on day one. My son was very pleased with that… and when I noticed that their site would not work on my Linux desktop and laptop I assumed this was a beta issue and that it would get fixed. But then the weeks passed and nothing changed.
First online reports of the Linux incompatibility were reported by a dutch Fedora packager. Another dutch tweaker found out that this is caused by a too restricted setting of the DRM for Disney+. Disney uses Widevine as its DRM provider, just like Netflix, Amazon and others. But they cranked up the security level to a value which is not supported on the Linux platform – although it works just fine on Android.

By now the Disney+ streaming service is about to become available world-wide… and Linux support still has not been fixed. My advice is to refuse to pay for a subscription and instead file complaints with Disney that they ignore a large chunk of potential customer base.

Go and write a letter of complaint and make the Linux fans be heard!

Eric