LWDW 216: Welcome KNOME

KDE and GNOME join forces to bring you KNOME! Kernel 5.6 nukes Intel wifi, a new app for controlling RGB on Linux, and a chat with Kim McMahon, Director of Marketing for the Cloud Native Computing Foundation.



04:47 Introducing KNOME.
07:22 Kernel 5.6 wifi issues.
12:12 Paragon exFAT FUD.
14:52 Linux antivirus.
17:32 OpenRGB.
22:02 Open source fonts.
25:42 Cheap Linux USB MIDI
29:02 Interview: Kim McMahon, Director of Marketing for the Cloud Native Computing Foundation.
36:27 Bigscreen Pi
40:37 Emails


  • Yes, it’s K. 
  • The nome is silent. 
  • https://twitter.com/gnome/status/1245291449312088064?s=20
  • The flexibility and customization of GNOME paired with the stability of KDE.
  • With the combination of the expertise of both GNOME and KDE developers, they’ve managed to reduce the number of bugs to effectively 0.
  • Coming soon to mobile. 
  • This was a fun April Fools joke to wake up to.
  • I like the DVD screensaver link :-D


Kernel 5.6

  • Linus is the “social distancing champ” who championed working at home and online.
  • Linux kernel 5.6 has been released, despite the world pandemic.
  • And as we had talked about in January, this release sees the inclusion of the loved Wireguard VPN.
  • And what Linux kernel update would be without more hardware support, including:
    • Early support of USB4.
    • Support for the MX Master 3 mouse and other wireless Logitech products.
    • And more support for AMD GPUs, NVIDIA GPUs, and the Intel Tiger Lake chipset.
    • Also improvements in AMD Zen temperature/power reporting. 
  • Hello kernel level exfat support. 
  • btrfs now has -o discard=async, which groups together and schedules TRIM calls.
  • No more need for scheduled fstrim because you are using btrfs and it’s already knackered. 
  • CH341 regression fix that reimplements line-speed handling for USB. 
  • Intel wireless doesn’t work (at all?) on 5.6.
  • They dropped some bits to quell a security vulnerability and judging by the fix: https://git.kernel.org/pub/scm/linux/kernel/git/netdev/net.git/commit/?id=be8c827f50a0bcd56361b31ada11dc0a3c2fd240
  • It seems to affect only the iwlmvm driver, which to be fair does include a ton of cards:
  • I’m running it right now on Jackbox because compiling a kernel is fun and easy! 


Paragon exfat FUD

  • Oh nice, that’s some early 2000 era FUD. 
  • “Please don’t use the open sauce one, buy our proprietary implementation instead!”


Linux viruses 

  • Hahahaha, no. 
  • When Red Hat and System 76 say “no, just follow good practices” and Symantec says “yes, buy our product”, I think that really does speak for itself.
  • Remember to always keep your systems updated and only run root when absolutely necessary.
  • Yes, IoT is an issue because they usually are running old and outdated software and kernels that are harder to update, or impossible because of proprietary blobs.
  • The biggest problem with IoT is people leaving the default credentials unchanged.


Open RGB

  • Looking forward to playing with this one driver to rule them all RGB customizer for all my keyboards and mice with bling bling!
  • I have used the OpenRazer driver on my older BlackWidow Chroma Keyboard with great success, but this one may work with many more models.
  • I like that this is being built for Windows, as well.
  • Hopefully, it will make RGB software less of a vector for spreading malware.
  • I’m not saying I’ve been asked about Razer’s RGB Chroma on a work laptop, but with people working from home a lot more, it may very well happen.


The tale of Fonts

  • Remember the days of buying font packs?
  • I love the title of this article, and it is so true:  “Open Source Fonts Are Love Letters to the Design Community.”
  • You no longer have to spend $100s and even $1000s to buy font packs, like I have in the past.
  • As an animation and graphics teacher since the early 90’s, I have been tasked to find “freeware” fonts for my students to use, and now it is so much easier as those “freeware” fonts are now open sourced and more plentiful.
  • And a result of open sourcing the fonts, greater variety, flexibility and customization.
  • The Google Fonts were definitely the stimulus from the “freeware” to open source font paradym.
  • The Ubuntu font family was one of the first to be open sourced.
  • I liked Droid Sans.



  • When I came across the New USB IN-OUT MIDI Interface Cable Converter to PC Music Keyboard Adapter Cord I wanted to know one thing and one thing only. 
  • Where did they source sparkly USB cables in 2020? 
  • Sadly my search yielded nothing so I decided to order a set of these silver music noodles in hopes they could Linux.
  • Why yes they did, mostly. 
  • Smurfbox review will be posted in the next few days for Patreons. 


Cloud Native interview

  • SCaLE 18x interview with Kim McMahon, Director of Marketing for the Cloud Native Computing Foundation.

Slice of Pi

Plasma Pi


  • KDE, running on a Pi, with Mycroft for voice controls…
  • Anyone else thoroughly amused by these?
  • KDE is running on mobile and quite stable.  So I guess so? ;-D


HDMI Choices

  • The sad truth is any time you need more than one HDMI or SDI port they got you. 
  • That narrows the field down to 2 players, Blackmagic & Magewell. 
  • The Magewell Eco is the best solution but only if you have a free M.2 slot. 
  • Outside of that, the Decklink Quad from BM. 


MIDI Madness


  • Part of the adventure of buying $6 anything is finding out if it works. 
  • And that seems logical considering how many sellers have the same product. 
  • The time needed to “fix” a bad set vs. spending $20 on a good one. 

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