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Fedora 31 will reach its end of life next Tuesday
by Paul Hill
The Fedora Project has announced that Fedora 31 will reach its end of life on 24 November 2020. The announcement comes just weeks after the launch of Fedora 33 which included GNOME 3.38 and BTRFS as the default file system.
After next Tuesday, Fedora 31 will stop receiving vital security updates leaving your system open to exploitation as new vulnerabilities are discovered. To make sure that your system stays protected, you should upgrade to a later version; to do this, simply open Software and go to the Updates tab, there you should see a bigger banner offering you a Fedora upgrade.
Once you begin the upgrade with this method, the required files will be downloaded and then your system will ask to reboot to install the files in a similar fashion to how normal updates work. When the upgrade is complete, the system will automatically reboot into the new release.
In the Fedora documentation, it says:
If you do not want to upgrade your system, you also have the option of downloading a fresh copy of Fedora 33 which was released last month. Whether you upgrade your system or do a clean install, ensure that you’ve backed up all of your important files.
Linux Mint 20 upgrade path opens up for existing users
by Paul Hill
Clem Lefebvre, head of the Linux Mint project, has announced that users on Linux Mint 19.3 (64-bit) can upgrade to version 20 without doing a clean installation. The option is helpful for those who don’t want to re-install and re-configure their systems but it also comes with more risk than doing a clean install.
According to the announcement, only users with a 64-bit Mint installation will be able to upgrade, this is because Linux Mint 20 is only available for 64-bit systems. If your computer is running a 32-bit version of Mint 19.x you can keep it till it expires in April 2023.
If you want to upgrade, the Linux Mint team has put together a handy upgrade tutorial which will guide you through preparing your system, the upgrade process, and the minimal clean-up required post-upgrade. If you’re intent on upgrading, be sure to read the appropriate release notes before cautiously following the upgrade instructions.
As mentioned earlier, Linux Mint 19.x releases are supported until April 2023 which is still a long way off so don’t be in a hurry to upgrade if everything works for you.
Just tripped over this - and darn near face-faulted. It is (right now) one of the cheapest upgrades to a 5G-capable phone; it comes unlocked, and it does NOT cost $500 - despite it being from (of all folks) Samsung. It's the Samsung S20 5G (upgrade from a working Galaxy S7) for $489USD from Samsung.com's Samsung Unlocked group.
Why I qualify - I went sideways from the S7 to my Pixel 3a last year; I have kept the S7 up; it still works fine, and is my 3a's backup.
The SIM issue - What issue? The S7 I left, the Pixel 3a, and the S20 5G take the same-size SIM. Further, I use T-Mobile's towers (which means I can use T-Mobile's mmWave 5G - which said Samsung supports). Had I been still on Verizon's network (which said S7 came from) I would be out of luck (since Verizon uses a different sort of 5G); however, I moved from one carrier to the other due to LTE - not 5G, issues. (Tracfone uses the networks of both carriers, and permits movement from one to the other via SIM swapping at no charge.)
The flaw - Yes; there is a flaw. I can't get the phone in black. (My 3a is in black.) However, I CAN get it in PRODUCT (RED) - at no extra charge. (Usually, this colorway costs extra.)
Basically, this will be a better backup (phone). (Remember, the Qualcomm S7s are out of upgrade options and are stuck on Android 8; the S20s, however, ship with Android 10 out of the box; even if 5G is not an issue; it's still a better backup phone than the S7 would be.
GCHQ: It's time to ditch Windows 7 if you want to stay safe online
by Paul Hill
The UK’s GCHQ has warned that people should stop using Windows 7 for internet banking and emails from Tomorrow. Microsoft will be ending its extended support for the operating system which was launched back in October of 2009. According to The Telegraph, more than 440 million people around the world are still using Windows 7.
Windows 10 Home, the edition aimed at casual users, costs $139/£119 if you purchase it from Microsoft’s website. The firm recommends that users jump to Windows 10, however, if you're still on Windows 8.1, that will be supported until 2023.
Commenting on the discontinuation of support for Windows 7, a spokesperson from the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), which is part of GCHQ, said:
Similarly to Windows XP, Windows 7 has been one of the people’s favourite releases of Windows. It came after the heavily delayed Windows Vista which had a bad reputation at launch because of its performance on computers back then. Microsoft was offering free upgrades to Windows 10 several years ago to those on Windows 7 and Windows 8.1, however, there were still a lot of holdouts who decided to stick with Windows 7 – many of those will have to decide what they’ll do from tomorrow.
While your computer should run Windows 10 well if it could handle Windows 7, you may find that some of your hardware is incompatible. In order to keep that hardware out of a landfill for a bit longer, you could try out a lightweight Linux distribution such as Lubuntu, an official Ubuntu flavour, or Linux Mint 19.3 Xfce.
Source: The Telegraph
Virgin Media customers receive free speed boost with M100 package [Update]
by Paul Hill
Virgin Media has announced that more than a million customers will receive a free boost to its M100 broadband package. The rollout, which begins today, will see customers receive an average download speed of 108Mbps – that’s twice as fast as the UK average.
If you’re one of the eligible customers for the speed increase, Virgin Media will send a notification to you once the upgrade has been completed. As this is a gift to users, those eligible will not have to pay any more money than they’re currently paying. It said many customers could see their download speeds double and even increase fivefold for those with lower speeds.
Commenting on the news, Annie Brooks, Executive Director of Connectivity at Virgin Media, said:
With the M100 connection, Virgin Media customers will be able to download an HD film (5GB) in just over seven minutes, while Fortnite on Xbox (31.4GB) will download in less than 45 minutes. As more people shift to streaming for TV and game consumption faster internet speeds will be necessary.
Update: Virgin Media provided Neowin with the following comment about the upgrade: