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Access your Android device from your PC with this open source application based on scrcpy.

 

 

In the future, all the information you need will be just one gesture away, and it will all appear in midair as a hologram that you can interact with even while you're driving your flying car. That's the future, though, and until that arrives, we're all stuck with information spread across a laptop, a phone, a tablet, and a smart refrigerator. Unfortunately, that means when we need information from a device, we generally have to look at that device.

While not quite holographic terminals or flying cars, guiscrcpy by developer Srevin Saju is an application that consolidates multiple screens in one location and helps to capture that futuristic feeling.

Guiscrcpy is an open source (GNU GPLv3 licensed) project based on the award-winning scrcpy open source engine. With guiscrcpy, you can cast your Android screen onto your computer screen so you can view it along with everything else. Guiscrcpy supports Linux, Windows, and MacOS.

Unlike many scrcpy alternatives, Guiscrcpy is not a fork of scrcpy. The project prioritizes collaborating with other open source projects, so Guiscrcpy is an extension, or a graphical user interface (GUI) layer, for scrcpy. Keeping the Python 3 GUI separate from scrcpy ensures that nothing interferes with the efficiency of the scrcpy backend. You can screencast up to 1080p resolution and, because it uses ultrafast rendering and surprisingly little CPU, it works even on a relatively low-end PC.

Scrcpy, Guiscrcpy's foundation, is a command-line application, so it doesn't have GUI buttons to handle gestures, it doesn't provide a Back or Home button, and it requires familiarity with the Linux terminal. Guiscrcpy adds GUI panels to scrcpy, so any user can run it—and cast and control their device—without sending any information over the internet. Everything works over USB or WiFi (using only a local network). Guiscrcpy also adds a desktop launcher to Linux and Windows systems and provides compiled binaries for Linux and Windows.

 

Installing Guiscrcpy

Before installing Guiscrcpy, you must install its dependencies, most notably scrcpy. Possibly the easiest way to install scrcpy is with snap, which is available for most major Linux distributions. If you have snap installed and active, then you can install scrcpy with one easy command:

 

$ sudo snap install scrcpy

 

While it's installing, you can install the other dependencies. The Simple DirectMedia Layer (SDL 2.0) toolkit is required to display and interact with the phone screen, and the Android Debug Bridge (adb) command connects your computer to your Android phone.

On Fedora or CentOS:

 

 

$ sudo dnf install SDL2 android-tools

 

On Ubuntu or Debian:

 

$ sudo apt install SDL2 android-tools-adb

 

In another terminal, install the Python dependencies:

 

$ python3 -m pip install -r requirements.txt --user

 

Setting up your phone

 

For your phone to accept an adb connection, it must have Developer Mode enabled. To enable Developer Mode on Android, go to Settings and select About phone. In About phone, find the Build number (it may be in the Software information panel). Believe it or not, to enable Developer Mode, tap Build number seven times in a row.

 

developer-mode.jpg

 

For full instructions on all the many ways you can configure your phone for access from your computer, read the Android developer documentation.

Once that's set up, plug your phone into a USB port on your computer (or ensure that you've configured it correctly to connect over WiFi).

 

Using guiscrcpy

When you launch guiscrcpy, you see its main control window. In this window, click the Start scrcpy button. This connects to your phone, as long as it's set up in Developer Mode and connected to your computer over USB or WiFi.

 guiscrcpy-main.png

 

It also includes a configuration-writing system, where you can write a configuration file to your ~/.config directory to preserve your preferences between uses.

The bottom panel of guiscrcpy is a floating window that helps you perform basic controlling actions. It has buttons for Home, Back, Power, and more. These are common functions on Android devices, but an important feature of this module is that it doesn't interact with scrcpy's SDL, so it can function with no lag. In other words, this panel communicates directly with your connected device through adb rather than scrcpy.

guiscrcpy-bottompanel.png

 

The project is in active development and new features are still being added. The latest build has an interface for gestures and notifications.

With guiscrcpy, you not only see your phone on your screen, but you can also interact with it, either by clicking the SDL window itself, just as you would tap your physical phone, or by using the buttons on the panels.

 guiscrcpy-screenshot.jpg

 

Guiscrcpy is a fun and useful application that provides features that ought to be official features of any modern device, especially a platform like Android. Try it out yourself, and add some futuristic pragmatism to your present-day digital life.

 

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Published in GNU/Linux Rules!

linux-16 (1).jpg

 

Linux has come a long way since 1991. These events mark its evolution.

1. Linus releases Linux

Linus Torvalds initially released Linux to the world in 1991 as a hobby. It didn't remain a hobby for long!

 

 

2. Linux distributions

In 1993, several Linux distributions were founded, notably DebianRed Hat, and Slackware. These were important because they demonstrated Linux's gains in market acceptance and development that enabled it to survive the tumultuous OS wars, browser wars, and protocol wars of the 1990s. In contrast, many established, commercial, and proprietary products did not make it past the turn of the millennium!

 

 

3. IBM's big investment in Linux

In 2000, IBM announced it would invest US$1 billion dollars in Linux. In his CNN Money article about the investment, Richard Richtmyer wrote: "The announcement underscores Big Blue's commitment to Linux and marks significant progress in moving the alternative operating system into the mainstream commercial market."

 

 

4. Hollywood adopts Linux

In 2002, it seemed the entire Hollywood movie industry adopted Linux. DisneyDreamworks, and Industrial Light & Magic all began making movies with Linux that year.

 

 

5. Linux for national security

In 2003, another big moment came with the US government's acceptance of Linux. Red Hat Linux was awarded the Department of Defense Common Operating Environment (COE) certification. This is significant because the government—intelligence and military agencies in particular—have very strict requirements for computing systems to prevent attacks and support national security. This opened the door for other agencies to use Linux. Later that year, the National Weather Service announced it would replace outdated systems with new computers running Linux.

 

 

6. The systems I managed

This "moment" is really a collection of my personal experiences. As my career progressed in the 2000s, I discovered several types of systems and devices that I managed were all running Linux. Some of the places I found Linux were VMware ESX, F5 Big-IP, Check Point UTM Edge, Cisco ASA, and PIX. This made me realize that Linux was truly viable and here to stay.

 

 

7. Ubuntu

In 2004, Canonical was founded by Mark Shuttleworth to provide an easy-to-use Linux desktop—Ubuntu Linux—based on the Debian distribution. I think Ubuntu Linux helped to expand the desktop Linux install base. It put Linux in front of many more people, from casual home users to professional software developers.

 

 

8. Google Linux

Google released two operating systems based on the Linux kernel: the Android mobile operating system in mid-2008 and Chrome OS, running on a Chromebook, in 2011. Since then, millions of Android mobile phones and Chromebooks have been sold.

 

 

9. The cloud is Linux

In the past 10 years or so, cloud computing has gone from a grandiose vision of computing on the internet to a reinvention of how we use computers personally and professionally. The big players in the cloud space are built on Linux, including Amazon Web ServicesGoogle Cloud Services, and Linode. Even in cases where we aren't certain, such as Microsoft Azure, running Linux workloads is well supported.

 

 

10. My car runs Linux

And so will yours! Many automakers began introducing Linux a few years ago. This led to the formation of the collaborative open source project called Automotive Grade Linux. Major car makers, such as Toyota and Subaru, have joined together to develop Linux-based automotive entertainment, navigation, and engine-management systems.

 

 

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Source: Opesource.com 

Author: Alan Formy-Duval

Marielle Price

 

Published in GNU/Linux Rules!
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