Article from Issue 263/2022

In the news: Kali Linux 2022.3 Released; 14" Pinebook Pro Linux Laptop Ships; OpenMandriva Lx ROME Technical Preview Released, Linux Mint 21 Now Available; Firefox Adds Long-Anticipated Feature; and System76 Oryx Pro Laptop Refreshed with a New CPU.

Kali Linux 2022.3 Released

Kali Linux has been one of the most widely-used penetration testing Linux distributions on the market. With a vast number of preinstalled tools available, security experts and pen testers can use the platform to uncover just about any vulnerability or weakness on your network.

The 2022.3 release, has a few new tricks up its sleeve, including a new VirtualBox image format, weekly images, and build scripts (so you can roll your own); new NetHunter updates; and five new tools, which are BruteShark (a network analysis tool), DefectDojo (an open source application vulnerability correlation and security orchestration tool), phpsploit (a post-exploitation framework), shellfire (a tool for exploiting LFI/RFI and command injection vulnerabilities), and SprayingToolkit (a tool for testing password spraying attacks).

Another addition to Kali Linux is their new Discord server (Kali Linux & Friends) (, where the community can chat in real time about Kali Linux. According to the Kali Linux blog, the Discord server is "a community server, all with common interests. We do not have the goal to get as many users as possible, instead, we are growing a place for each other to help one another. We are focusing on quality not quantity."

Finally, there's also a new Test Lab Environment, where you can create a test bed to learn, practice, and benchmark. To make it easier to build a test lab, the developers have packaged DVWA (, to practice with some of the most common web vulnerabilities, and Juice Shop (, which encompasses vulnerabilities from the entire OWASP Top Ten.

Download a copy of Kali Linux 2022.3 ( and read the official release notes ( to find out more.

14" Pinebook Pro Linux Laptop Ships

After a lengthy shipping delay caused by COVID-19 limitations in China, the ARM-based 14" Pinebook Pro laptop is available again from Pine64. The device ships with a 64-bit Dual-Core ARM 1.8GHz Cortex A72 and Quad-Core ARM 1.4GHz Cortex A53, with a Quad-Core MALI T-860 GPU, 4GB LPDDR4 dual-channel system DRAM, and 64GB eMMC 5.0 internal storage.

The Pinebook Pro 14" audience mostly focuses on those who want to experiment with Linux on ARM devices. In fact, Pine64 goes so far as to say, "Please do not order the Pinebook Pro if you're seeking a substitute for your X86 laptop, or are just curious and you're ordering it with an intent to file a return/refund return request. These pre-orders are meant for enthusiasts familiar with the ARM architecture and interested in the PineBook Pro for this specific reason."

Other specs for the laptop include WiFi 802.11 AC, Bluetooth 5.0, one USB 3.0 and one USB 2.0 type A, one USB type C port, microSD card, headphone jack, built-in mic, full-sized ANSI (US-only) keyboard, multitouch trackpad, 9600mAH battery, a 14.1" IPS LCD display (at 1920x1080), and a 2.0-megapixel front-facing camera.

You can learn more about the Pinebook Pro 14" and purchase your own from the official Pine64 site ( Currently, the Pinebook Pro 14" laptop costs only $219.99, and the company makes zero profit from the devices, as the laptops are offered as a community service to the Pine64, Linux, and BSD communities.

OpenMandriva Lx ROME Technical Preview Released

Once upon a time, I hung out with the Mandrake Linux team at a Linux convention. That was back in the late 1990s, and things have changed quite a bit since then. Mandrake Linux ceased being developed in 2011. Arising from the its ashes, OpenMandriva, a fusion of the Brazilian Connectiva Linux and Mandrake, has since flourished.

Recently, the OpenMandriva developers have announced the latest technical preview release of their Lx ROME distribution, which is a rolling release take on the open source operating system. One thing of note is that the developers have switched off the auto-updater tool for ROME because they've been making some major changes to the tool-chain/system packages in the Cooker branch. These changes have resulted in updates being unsafe (which is why the tool was shut off).

So, for those who want to get a taste of what's coming up for OpenMandriva Lx ROME, the technical preview is a great source.

The biggest changes coming to OpenMandriva Lx ROME include Python 3.11, Java 20, kernel 5.18.12 (which is a Clang-built kernel), the latest KDE software (Plasma v5.25.3), /usr merge (which is a major change for the Linux filesystem hierarchy), Btrfs and XFS support have been restored, DNF 5 and zypper are both available, and over 31,343 bug fixes have been applied.

Download a copy of the OpenMandriva Lx ROME technical preview from SourceForge ( and read this official OpenMandriva blog post ( for more information about the preview release.

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