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09 Jul 2018
A bug filed on Ubuntu Launchpad in the middle of June has just been made public. The bug in question appears to allow anyone with physical access to the computer bypass the lock screen by just removing the hard drive. The bug was tested on Ubuntu 16.04.4 and it’s unclear whether it affects other versions of Ubuntu or other distributions but there’s an almost certain chance it affects other distributions based on Ubuntu 16.04, such as Linux Mint 18.
The attack works in the following way, a user boots into Linux and opens up their programs and files, then the machine is suspended and it goes into low power mode and writes the state of the machine to memory. At this point an attacker can remove the hard drive and wake up the system; now they’ll either see the lock screen and be able to enter any password to gain access. They might try the password and be denied access at which point they can fast press the hardware shut down button and gain access, or no lock screen will appear but instead the screen will be black and the previous steps can be attempted.
Discussing the bug, Marc Deslauriers a security engineer at Canonical said:
“We're unlikely to fix this, since having physical access means an attacker could simply access the hard disk directly or replace the password on it and unlock the computer.”
Another user suggested that the screensaver software could handle the problem:
“I believe that screensaver should handle exceptions in the underlying libraries in such a way to prevent unauthorized access even if underlying library is faulty.”
If it’s the case that the screensaver package can be updated to fix the issue, a fix might be able to be applied upstream as it is used in Debian too.
13 Jul 2018
Steam admits that its previous manner of displaying all upcoming releases chronologically failed to get users to use that list for discovering new games to play. That is why the digital distribution service has rolled out what it calls "a smarter, more tailored list" as part of its Upcoming Releasespage.
Called "Popular Upcoming," the new tab is meant to improve the way upcoming games are shown on Steam's front page. For instance, it lists titles based on user interest measured during the game's pre-release stage. Steam gauges the fans' interest by gathering data through wishlists, pre-purchase, and the past titles of the developer or publisher.
Users will also see a dedicated page of recommended titles once they click on the "See more" button found at the bottom of the Popular Upcoming tab. This filtered page contains curated game titles based on the users' unique preference.
Additionally, in the Upcoming Releases page, users will see a roster of featured upcoming games from developers or publishers they follow and the games they have included in their wishlist. It's worth noting that this new change does not remove the list of all upcoming releases but complements it with a curated list that takes into consideration a game's popularity.
On the other hand, Steam says the Upcoming Releases page won't be displaying games users are not interested in or downloadable content for titles they didn't purchase.
13 Jul 2018
Almost a month after its previous driver release, AMD has come forth with the Radeon Software Adrenalin Edition 18.7.1 driver, bringing a healthy performance boost to the four-player cooperative shooter, Earthfall, as well as various bug fixes.
Earthfall launches out of early access on July 13, and RX Vega 56 users will see performance boosts of up to 28% with this driver, while RX 580 8GB owners will receive up to 22% extra frames. Beyond that, up to 27% additional performance is expected for those with the lower-end RX 560 4GB graphics cards.
Note that while AMD only mentions three of its products, the boost in performance should apply in some form to the entire GCN line-up of the company.
Here are the bug fixes that this driver delivers:
Fortnite™ Season 5 may experience an application hang on some Radeon graphics products when throwing stars are visible on screen.
Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice™ may experience flickering or corruption on some Radeon graphics products.
Display modes may sometimes appear as not available when setting resolution or refresh rates of a display.
CorelDraw™ may experience slower than expected performance.
Memory clocks may remain at higher than expected values on some displays after changing resolution or refresh rates.
Some displays may exhibit black screen flickering when booting to desktop when using DisplayPort.
And here are the known issues that the company is working on resolving:
Virtual Super Resolution settings may not retain after updating to this Radeon Software release.
Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus™ may experience an application crash when disabling Asynchronous Compute via game settings.
Graphics and memory clocks may remain at higher than expected values after watching a video or using Windows DVR while in game. A workaround is to reboot the system.
Cursor or system lag may be observed on some system configurations when two or more displays are connected and one display is powered off.
Radeon WattMan gauges may report as zero on secondary graphics products in multi GPU enabled system configurations.
The Radeon Software Adrenalin Edition 18.7.1 driver is available for download via the Radeon Settings interface on Windows, or via the links listed in the official release notes found here.
13 Jul 2018
Windows 10 introduced a dark theme to desktop versions of Windows back in 2015, and apps built on UWP have, for the most part, supported the setting. Win32 apps, however, haven't done the same and even Microsoft's own File Explorer is only now starting to receive the dark treatment.
It appears that Mozilla's Firefox browser could be one of the first major apps to add support for the setting, however, as the team behind it recently shared that the Nightly release channel will now respect the light/dark setting of Windows 10.
Naturally, the feature will only work if you're using the default Firefox theme, and custom themes will be unaffected by the Windows setting.
The Nightly release channel of Firefox is not recommended for regular users, but you can download it from Mozilla's websiteif you're interested. It will probably take some time for the feature to make it to the beta, and subsequently the stable channels, but it's good to know the feature is coming at some point.