Adventures In Computing

June 24, 2009

David Versus Two Goliaths

Filed under: Gnome, GNU/Linux, KDE, Kubuntu, Linux, Ubuntu, Windows, Windows XP — Normand Bissonnette @ 1:21 pm

Apple will release its OS X 10.6 “Snow Loepard” in September and not long after, on October 22nd, Microsoft’s  Windows 7 will be released. A week later Ubuntu 9.10 “Karmic Koala” is scheduled to be unleashed. We all know that Windows 7 will be used by more people than Ubuntu and OS X but will it be a better operating system?

I have tried the beta & the release candidate of Windows 7 and from what I have seen it is a far better OS than the doomed Vista. I do not own an Apple computer so I have not tried OS X. For those users that are still using Windows XP and do not want to leave their comfort zone, October will be a great month for updating to Windows 7, so save up your money kiddies because a full fledged copy of Windows 7 will cost you between $49.99 and $199.99 US, if you believe the rumours flying on the web. OS X is reported to cost $29.99.

I have chosen Ubuntu almost 3 years ago and I will keep on using it. I use Ubuntu, Kubuntu and Ubuntu netbook remix. I use Ubuntu more often but I seem to prefer the feel and look of Kubuntu. I prefer the professional look of KDE 4.2.4 over gnome 2.26, that is my opinion and we are all allowed to have opinions. One of the advantages of Ubuntu is that it is free.

I will not run out and purchase a copy of Windows 7 when it does come out in October and chances are that I will not purchase a Mac just to try out OS X, but I will update my Ubuntu 9.04 to 9.10. I hope more people try Ubuntu and stick with it because it is a great operating system with a lot of advantages over the other two I have mentioned.

As a member of the Ubuntu community I must, as we all should, help new users with any problems they may have switching from Windows and OS X. We must be patient if we want Ubuntu or any other version of GNU/Linux to make it in the mainstream. It can be done, strike that, it will be done. All we need is educating the general public and perseverance.

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November 25, 2008

Banshee 1.4 And iPods Are Like Mixing Oil And Water: It Does Not Work!

Filed under: 64bit, Banshee, Gnome, GNU/Linux, iPod, Linux, Ubuntu, Ubuntu 64bit — Normand Bissonnette @ 4:47 pm

I’m not a happy camper as I am writing this.  I simply wanted to add some music to my iPod.  Gtkpod froze and my computer was heating up.  Must be a bug.  Rhythymbox works but I decide to try Banshee 1.4, Bad idea!  I am able to load new music fine.  I unplug the iPod after it says that I can disconnect it.  No music on the ‘pod.  What is going on?  Plug the iPod and I can see the music so I disconnect it once more and still no music.  I restart the ‘pod by pressing the “Menu” and “Select” buttons simultaneously.  The iPod restarts, still no music.  I am pissed off!

I connect the iPod back to the computer and  I “Drag’N’Drop” the songs, all 11016 of them, on my laptop.  I don’t feel like pulling out all my CDs and ripping them again so that I can place them in the ‘pod.  I boot Windows XP from the only computer that I own which still has Windows on it and do a factory reset on the iPod using iTunes.

I spend several hours, over several days loading up my iPod with music.  I used Rhythymbox Music Player to load the music in the ‘Pod.  I have to mention that this post has been written in three steps:  the first paragraph was written when my iPod “lost” all of it’s songs two weeks ago.  The second paragraph and the first sentence of the third paragraph was written a week later.  The rest was written today the day I published the post.

I now know that Banshee 1.4 is the culprit in losing all the songs.  I taught that maybe gtkpod was since it had frozen and I had to terminate it because my computer was overheating.  It took all my courage to try uploading songs in my iPod using Banshee and it worked but when I eject the ‘Pod it says that I have “0 songs”.  I know for a fact that I have 11037 on it since I just loaded 21 songs using Banshee 1.4.  Damn, damn, damn.  I plugin the iPod to my laptop.  I launch Rhythymbox.  I see all 11037 songs.  I play one of the songs I just uploaded using Banshee.  It plays fine.  I unplug the iPod and low and behold all my songs are there.  I am so glad, that I am glad, that I’m glad; to quote Cream.  I must dig out their CD and add that song to my iPod.  So I have learned that I cannot use Banshee as my all purpose music player/iPod loader.  I must keep on using Rhythymbox.

I really liked Banshee 1.4 but I cannot use it because of this problem.  If you do not have an iPod I whole heartily recommend it, but if you do I cannot recommend it. Apparently I am the only person that has this problem since I cannot find anybody else on the web with the same problem.  I wonder if it is because I have the 64 bit version of intrepid installed?

If you know of a solution please leave a comment, thanks.

November 11, 2008

Ibex Quite Mundane To Install

Filed under: 64bit, EeePC, Funny, Gnome, GNU/Linux, Humor, Humour, KDE, Kubuntu, Linux, Ubuntu, Ubuntu 64bit — Normand Bissonnette @ 5:52 pm

I have installed Ubuntu 8.10 code name Intrepid Ibex on three computers. I upgraded two computers from Ubuntu 8.04. I installed Kubuntu 8.10 on a computer. No major situations to report. It has become very mundane to install Ubuntu or even upgrade. There is no reason for the regular Joe not to install Ubuntu on their “Windows” computer. Come on haven’t you heard we are living in a new era first Barack Obama was elected president of the United States, now switch to Ubuntu!

I have two computers that I still have not did the upgrade; the eeePC, I’ll do it when I can spare time. The other I will not upgrade until the gpac package is fixed. I use this computer to remux HD movies so that my Xbox 360 can play them and with mp4box that is included in the gpac package available with Ibex I cannot remux the HD movies 😦

I almost forgot to mention that I have installed the 64 bit version of Ibex on most of the computers. 32 bit computing is so twentieth century 🙂

On an other note here is a great Matrix/Windows parody, I know that most of you must have seen it, this is for those who haven’t, enjoy.

July 13, 2008

Goodbye Kubuntu, Hello OpenSUSE

Filed under: Elive, Gnome, GNU/Linux, GoblinX, Hardy Heron, KDE, KDE 4.0, Kubuntu, Kubuntu 8.04, Linux, Ubuntu — Normand Bissonnette @ 5:14 pm

I removed Kubuntu 8.04 KDE 4 remix and installed openSUSE with KDE 4.  My first impression was:  Wow this looks great.  OpenSUSE looks very polished compared with Kubuntu.  Everything works as it should,  I am impressed.  I have been using it for a few days and I was thinking off going back to Kubuntu because I know it better and can get things done faster with it until today.  On my Kubuntu box with KDE 3.5.8 I can’t get my Kafeine player to do anything.  This bug only affects Kubuntu, why?  I tried every fix I could find on the net, nothing works.  OpenSUSE works, why not Kubuntu?

I decided to keep openSUSE 11 KDE 4 on one box, Ubuntu on the laptop, Ubuntu on the eeePC and on the last box I’ll be getting rid of Kubuntu 3.5.9 and going with something else.  I am debating between GoblinX and Elive.  Both of them have new releases this week and I have been waiting for both of them to try them out.  One of them will be left on a computer for longer than a few days, I don’t know which one yet but I will find out pretty soon.

I really like Ubuntu they have a fine product but I cannot use Kubuntu anymore or until Canonical decides to put more resources towards it.

June 22, 2008

Avant Windows Navigator on The eeePC

Filed under: Asus, Avant Windows Navigator, EeePC, Gnome, GNU/Linux, Hardy Heron, Linux, Ubuntu, Ubuntu 8.04 — Normand Bissonnette @ 11:22 am

I decided to try Avant Windows Navigator on my laptop and eeePC.  I sort of like Apple’s dock.  After working with it on my laptop for a day I installed it the eeePC.  I figured that it would give me more real estate on the small desktop. It did.  Do I like it or not?  That is the question.

I was undecided if I wouldawn keep it or not on both computers until I tried to play video on the eeePC.  The eeePC froze!  I could move the mouse but if I clicked on something nothing happened!  At first I didn’t know what was the cause but when I asked myself what did I change that could have caused this to happen the only answer I could come up with was Avant.  Before I removed Avant I had to make sure that was the cause.  After I turned off the computer by holding down the power button, I turned it back on and tried the video again and it froze.  Turn off, turn on computer quit Avant Windows Navigator tried video and it works perfectly like before.  I knew then without a doubt that Avant was the problem.  I decide to turn avant back on one more time and try playing video before taking drastic measures.  The eeePC froze again.

I had to make a decision.  Do I keep Avant or not.  If I keep it on the eeePC I have to spend sometime trying to fix it so that I can enjoy video on the small PC or completely forget watching video on the eeePC.  I chose the easiest option for myself, I removed Avant from the eeePC.  I did not like it enough to convince me to invest the time debugging it.

I do not have this problem with my laptop, so as I am writing this it is still on that computer.  I have been using it for that last few days and will leave it on for at least a complete week before I make my final decision if I keep it or not.  At the moment I don’t see any advantage to keep it maybe I will change my mind later on I have been known to do that at times.

Banshee Media Player a Winner Without DAAP

Filed under: Banshee, Exaile, Gnome, KDE, Kubuntu, Rhythymbox, Ubuntu — Normand Bissonnette @ 12:12 am

I have tried Banshee 1.0 as my music player for a few days and I would use it as if I could play music from another computer on it but since DAAP does not work I have to pass.  On my Ubuntu laptop I have tried Rhythmbox, Exaile and now Banshee, I always go back to Rhythmbox, in my case it pretty much does whatever I need.  On Kubuntu computers I of course use Amarok.  I hope that the Banshee developers can fix the issues they have with DAAP because they have created a winner.

I keep all my media on a server so that I can access it from any of my computers. I need a player that has DAAP capability.  Exaile sometimes acts up when I try to import music from the server.  Well that’s my two cents worth.

May 17, 2008

Back To Firefox

Filed under: Epiphany, Firefox, Gnome, GNU/Linux, Linux, Ubuntu, Ubuntu 8.04 — Normand Bissonnette @ 6:22 pm

After a few days of using Epiphany on my laptop I decided to go back to Firefox 3. I can live without all the extensions but I can’t live with the random crashes. While using Epiphany with several tabs open it crashes for no reason. As I stated in the last post Firefox 3 beta 5 freezes but not as often as Epiphany crashes.

Ideally I would prefer to use Epiphany because it is the web browser designed specially for gnome, but because of an annoying bug I have to use something else. Once the bug is fixed I won’t hesitate changing back to it.

May 14, 2008

Epiphany in Ubuntu

Filed under: Epiphany, Gnome, GNU/Linux, Hardy Heron, KDE, KDE 4.0, Konqueror, Kubuntu, Kubuntu 8.04, Linux, Opera Browser, Ubuntu, Ubuntu 8.04 — Normand Bissonnette @ 12:49 am

I have written about browsers before. Now that I am using the newest versions of Ubuntu, it is time to speak about them once again. In Ubuntu Firefox 3 beta 5 is the default web browser. Before I updated my Ubuntu computers I was using epiphany. The reason I was using Epiphany because I found it faster than Firefox and less memory use. The only issue I have with Epiphany is less extensions than Firefox. I had run the Betas of Ubuntu and had freezes and crashes both with Firefox and Epiphany. When I did a fresh install of Ubuntu on three computers, I decided to give this newer version of Firefox a chance. After two weeks I’ll be going back to Epiphany. Firefox still freezes and I prefer the feel of Epiphany, maybe I’ll go back to Firefox once they are done testing it and are in the official release.

In my Kubuntu installs I am using Konqueror. I had said that Konqueror is slow. Not anymore, Konqueror is faster than anything I have tried. I don’t know what the did but it worked. I do have issues with the KDE 4 version on Konqueror, such as not being able to play streaming audio. I have no such problems with Konqueror in KDE 3.5.9. At work I have installed Safari from Apple to give it a go, but I haven’t done any thing with it yet.

I haven’t been using Opera since updating my computers, but as soon as I finish this post I’ll be installing it on the KDE 4 computer and hopefully It’ll have streaming audio working. I’ll let you know.

April 30, 2008

Hardy Install Fest

Filed under: Gnome, GNU/Linux, Hardy Heron, KDE, KDE 4.0, Kubuntu, Kubuntu 8.04, Linux, Ubuntu, Ubuntu 8.04, Windows, Xubuntu — Normand Bissonnette @ 2:24 am

heronThe Heron was released last week and I haven’t said a word about it.  Well I have a bit busy installing it on several computers. I have installed Ubuntu on three computers. I have installed Kubuntu on two computers, one with KDE 3.5.9 and the other with KDE 4.0.2.  All went well with the installations except for a stupid mistake I made because I was not paying attention.  I accidentally erased a drive containing data that I wanted to save.  I checked of ext2 instead of ext3 on this drive and lost all the information on it.  I was fairly pissed off at myself at the time but there is nothing I can do now.  What is done is done.

One of the installs was for another co-worker and I am glad that I did not have to install Windows again. GNU/Linux is a pleasure to install whilst Windows is hard work to install.  By the end of the weekend I have two more installs to do and then I rest for a while.

If you haven’t tried Ubuntu/Kubuntu/Xubuntu/Mythbuntu/…buntu now is the time.  It is a great distribution.

April 5, 2008

Hardy Heron Another Step Forward For Linux

Thursday after work I updated my laptop from Ubuntu 7.10 to Ubuntu 8.04 Hardy Heron beta.  Everything went fine with the update.  I like the neHeronw Clock in which we get the weather and we can add cities from different time zones.  Transmission is the new bit torrent client, I haven’t tried it here But I had used it when I was running Elive on one of my computer.  I beleive that the powers that be who decides which applications should be installed by defaults, should look at Deluge as the bit torrent client of choice.  It is a full featured client and it is easy to use.  About two minutes ago I started using Gnome-do and I like it very much.  It is sort of like Katapult on the KDE desktop.  There are still some bug, like no hibernation on my laptop & Epiphany crashes for no apparent reason.  It is going to be a fine release once all the bugs are worked out.  If you are adventurous install it now but if you want to wait until it is perfected you only have to wait until April  24 2008.

After the seeing how smoothly Ubuntu was updated on my laptop, I decided to update my Kubuntu 7.10 to 8.04 beta.  I already am using the KDE 4.0.3 version of Kubuntu 8.04 so the next step was the KDE 3.5.9 version of Hardy Heron.  This time the update was very painful.  I had to install it from scratch after the update because I could not do anything with it.  Thank God for live cd’s because there were some data that I had not backed up before attempting this update.  From what I have been experiencing Kubuntu is buggier than Ubuntu.  The KDE 4 version of Kubuntu has less bugs from my experience.  Everything will be fixed by April 24th and both Kubuntu distros will be great.

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