Tag Archives: Ubuntu

Ubuntu Headed to the Clouds?

Hmm… I should have seen this coming.

Friend Alain Baudrez wrote a fabulous review of the upcoming “Unity” Ubuntu. Reading it and seeing the screenshots that he provided immediately struck me that the folks at Ubuntu are aiming for the clouds… cloud computing, that is. We’ve ranted… er, I mean discussed this here before, if you remember.

Head In the Clouds and Head In the Clouds Follow-up

I’m still a firm believer in keeping my head (and my data and apps) on my own desktop on my own media on my own systems. I just don’t trust cloud security at this time. Yeah… I keep my money in a bank. I even do online banking. However, since I rarely have more than $18.53 in any of my accounts, what’s the risk? But man! I don’t want to lose those tin-foil hat designs or my mp3s. You know what I mean?

Read Alain’s article, though… good stuff.

Until next time…

~Eric

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Mandbuntu 11.0 – Duck à l’orange

On the heels of the recent news that Mandriva is up for sale comes a whisper of a rumor from an insider source at a large Linux software company.

Unsubstantiated rumor from a reliable source (Canonical’s Assistant Night Custodian, Ross Foss) names Canonical as the new owner of the French company Mandriva, S.A. The source goes on to say that Canonical’s founder and benevolent-leader-for-life, Mark Shuttleworth has already ported a combination Ubuntu-Mandriva distribution to be offered in next few weeks. Reportedly, the name of the new mutant distribution will be Mandbuntu 11.0 – Duck à l’orange.

Insider sources also reveal that Mandbuntu will have a hybrid package management system known as urp-get. It’s a combination of apt and urpmi. It’s supposedly one of the most innovative new changes in this new distribution. It will follow the apt-get format for installing and updating from the command line. The GUI frontend is known as Ducknaptic, and can be found in the main menu.

Mandbuntu will initially ship with only one desktop environment/windows manager, the newly reconfigured (just for Mandbuntu) DuXfce. Rumor again informs us that a KDuxE version will be available soon. More rumors from lower level custodial crew claim that the French duck dish theme will continue. The next version will probably be Mandbuntu 12.0 – Peking Duck.

The future is looking just ducky! Stay tuned…

~Eric

Note: The above is for laughs, folks… in case you didn’t realize that. There is no truth to any of the above article. Ross Foss is a fictional custodian.

Alright. We’re Going In…

I downloaded it last Thursday, but I’m just now getting around to installing Kubuntu 10.04.

I started my Linux Adventure four years ago with Ubuntu 6.06. That was an outstanding version, but Ubuntu has come a long way since then, folks. I’m really looking forward to having an Ubuntu variant of some sort on my system again. It’s been a while. I install it all the time for friends and family, and on the systems that I refurbish and give away. However, I haven’t had a working installation of Ubuntu on my system for a couple years or more.

Another reason I need to install it is because — AH! The burn just finished and the disk spit out for me — Uh, where was I? Oh yeah… another reason I need to have a running copy on my own system is because a lot of my converts ask me questions that are difficult to answer without a little show & tell. That’s hard to do without a working install of that OS. I’ll fix that later tonight, though.

I’m going to install over my existing PCLOS-Phoenix installation. PCLOS is cool, but I already have an installation of the main branch (Mandriva) of that baby on my system now. I prefer main branches when possible. I’d gone about as far as I could playing around with PCLOS, anyway. It may end up on my system again, sometime. You never know with me.

Debian controls my boot hard drive’s MBR, so that means I’m using legacy GRUB to boot Slackware, Debian, CentOS, Arch, soon-to-be-Kubuntu, Sidux, and Mandriva. Oh, and a crippled (no network access) WIn XP Pro SP3. Legacy GRUB is up to the task. I’ll move to GRUB2 eventually, just not today. I will manually create a menu.lst entry to boot the new Kubuntu installation. No tribbles at all, folks… done it a thousand times.

Well, let me slam that baby into the system while the disk is still warm. I’ll be following up here in a few days to let you know how things are going. Those of you keeping track know that I’ve had issues with KDE 4. I’m hoping the folks at Canonical got it right in this version of Ubuntu. If not, I’ll be depending on Gnome, Xfce, and LXDE to save the day again. I’m thinking positive thoughts about it, though. All will be well. All will be well. All will be well. I sound like Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz, huh?

There’s no place like home! There’s no place like home! There’s no place like home!

Heh!

Well, I’m off to play with installers and partitions and stuff. Yeeeee-hawwww!

Adios, pardners…

~Eric

Adenda: Kubuntu installation failed. Three up, three down. Three attempts = three failures. You’re OUTTA’ here! I don’t know why it failed and I don’t care. I’m downloading Ubuntu 10.04 right now, so the follow-up to this article will be about my install of Ubuntu. Kubuntu is a drink coaster now.

Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx

The new Ubuntu is out. Everyone and their mother’s uncle is posting about it. I’m a mother’s uncle. I suppose I’ll post about it, too.

The folks over at Canonical have released the much anticipated Ubuntu 10.04, the Lucid Lynx. You can run right on over to your favorite server and grab yourself a copy right now. I’ve got mine! I downloaded Kubuntu 64 bit. Oh boy!

This is an LTS version too, folks. Good stuff! LTS = long term support. If you’ve been wanting to give Ubuntu a try, now’s really a good time. The Ubuntu gang have been working diligently on this version. It promises to be faster, sleeker, steadier, prettier, and just plain gooder than previous versions. Like the laundry soap folks learned a long time ago, the words “new” and “improved” can really sell some product.

You know a few years ago a group by the name of Queensryche did a really great song called Silent Lucidity. Here it is for your listening pleasure while you’re downloading Ubuntu. You are downloading it by now, right? Aww… c’mon. What are you waiting for? Christmas? Anyway, check out Queensryche at Youtube:

There you go… music to download by. Think of it as a public service from Nocturnal Slacker and Lockergnome.com. We aim to please.

So, about this Ubuntu… I downloaded the Kubuntu (with KDE desktop environment) version because I want to try KDE 4 again. Many of you who know me or have read my rambling here and elsewhere may remember that  my hot and steamy love affair with KDE went into the toilet when 4 came out. I’ve yet to get a stable installation of KDE 4 working on Slackware, Mandriva, CentOS, or Arch Linux. I’m not happy about it. I thought maybe Ubuntu can get it right with 4.4. We’ll see. I’ll probably plow my Mandriva partition under and plant Kubuntu there… maybe later this weekend.

Hey! Did you hear? Joe “Zonker” Brockmeier has Seven Reasons to Upgrade to Ubuntu Lucid Lynx. Don’t short change the Zonker now… read all seven. They’re pretty good reasons… except for reason #4, maybe. That just might be me, though. This crotchety ol’ geek don’t care about that social web stuff… Skitter, SpaceNook, and carp like that. If it’s your thing though, go for it!

Speaking of space… Did you know that even in the deepest space the temperature is still a couple degrees above absolute zero (-273.15 Celcius). Cool, huh? It’s because of the remnant heating caused by the background radiation left over from the Big Bang. Now you know.

Enjoy your new Ubuntu! I now leave you with this…

~Eric

Get Slack!

The oldest Linux distribution in existence is Slackware. It’s about time that I actually posted something about my favorite Linux distribution on this blog.

Like most X-MS Windows users, I did not come to Slackware directly. I took a round-about route through a few other distributions first. The very first distribution of Linux that I installed on my machine was Ubuntu 6.06 “Dapper Drake”, an impressive offering from Mark Shuttleworth and the Canonical folks. I still have a copy of it on CD. It was impressive to this frustrated MS Windows user. It was also like having a lifeline thrown to me as I was drowning in frigid North Atlantic waters.

Once I began to expand my Linux horizons, I found out there were other Linux’s out there. How cool is that? I was used to only a few MS Windows… 3.1, 98, ME, XP, etc. Here I find that there are many… and I do mean MANY different Linux variations out there in the wild. I wanted to try ’em all. I was searching for “my” Linux. I think it’s something most geeks do when they first come to Linux. It’s a right of passage, maybe?

Linux tends, like all things from brands of catsup to the cars we drive, to develop loyal followers. While Slackware may be my favorite Linux distribution for my own reasons, that doesn’t by any means rule out my like for other distributions. I think ALL things Linux are COOL! I don’t care what distribution you run. If it works for you, it’s the best one out there. Slack works for me… so does Debian or Arch or… you get the idea. I do love Slackware the best, though. It has an attitude that appeals to a biker, I think… simplicity, strength, stability.

Richard Hillesley in his excellent article at ITPro entitled Slackware Linux – Less Is More writes:

Slackware isn’t for everyone, and will never win the race for the Linux desktop, where fancy gizmos, music players, office suites and games are at a premium, but works for users who want “a system that makes a good server – where you aren’t even required to install X if you don’t want it – or a good desktop workstation if you do a full installation with KDE” or Xfce or Fvwm or Windowmaker or Fluxbox.

Much truth in that statement, folks. Slackware is definitely not for everyone. If you’re GUI dependent, Slackware can be difficult. Many customizations and setups that you would normally do in a graphic environment in say MS Windows or Ubuntu, you’ll need to learn to do by editing a text configuration file using a command line editor in Slackware. It’s not that it’s difficult. It’s just that a lot of folks don’t like non-graphic computing. I can understand their feelings. It’s a personal preferential choice, for sure. I’ve gotten so that I can do things much faster at the command line than I used to be able to in the graphic environment. Of course, I’m a relatively fast touch typist, too. That helps. Hunt & pecking on the command line is SLOWWWW!

Hillesley continues:

The asset most valued by the Slack user, and most often claimed for Slackware Linux, is system stability. If you install Slackware on a backroom server you expect it to stay there, and be unnoticed.

And this is no baloney, friends. I’ve had Slackware crash due to an application caused issue, but NEVER because Slack itself destabilized. It is the proverbial ROCK. I use it on a personal work station, but it’s uniquely suited to server duties because of that legendary stability.

Hillesley covers a bit of Slackware history in his article:

Slackware took its name from the mythical J.R. “Bob” Dobbs, the charismatic leader and figurehead of the Church of the Subgenius, whose message to the peoples of America was to “Get Slack”.

I’ve read a lot of stuff about Slackware over the years. Richard Hillesley’s article is one of the best I’ve ever read. If you have a few minutes and a hot cup of coffee next to you, give it a read.

I’m running Firefox in Slackware right now to write this article. I’ve been a Slacker for nearly four years now. I have other Linux distributions on my systems, but Slackware is my Linux now. Ubuntu was that cute girl at the bowling alley that I had the fling with way back when. Debian is an X who I keep in touch with. Arch is a sweetheart from the office. Sidux, CentOS, and those others are occasional flings, but Slackware is the girl I always come home to.

Have FUN with it!

~Eric

Ubuntu – Leading Contender In Linux World?

Probably not. However, Ubuntu may be the leading contender when it comes to luring frustrated Windows users into trying Linux.

Why is that? Well, I’ll tell you my theory on why Ubuntu is doing all it can to suck in frustrated MS Windows users. Firstly, you have to understand a few realities about Linux. Ubuntu is NOT the only Linux operating system out there. It’s not the oldest (Slackware). It’s not the fastest (SLAX or Puppy run in RAM). It’s not the the …est anything, except maybe mostest cunning.

There are many Linux distributions out there in the world; some are free (as in beer), some are free (as in speech), some are commercial products (you pay $$$ for them), some are hybrids or combinations thereof. The point here being that there is no ONE Linux to rule them all. The Linux that rules them all is the one chosen by you to use as your primary operating system on your computer.

Ubuntu was created by and is maintained/distributed by a for-profit company called Canonical, which was created by an young entrepreneur bazillonaire named Mark Shuttleworth. Shuttleworth is not a student of Gandhi or Mother Teresa. I’d have to pigeon-hole him with Warren Buffet or Donald Trump, actually. He’s out to make a buck, in plain-speak. He has a game plan, too.

My theory on what Shuttleworth had in mind…

Mark was sitting around one day, sucking down a brew or two, wondering what he could do to make his next bazillion. Well, he’s a bit of a nerd anyway, so it should probably have something to do with computers. Hey! That Gates and that Jobs fellow seemed to do well for themselves, right? Here’s the problem, though. Mark can’t easily piggy-back on either Microsoft’s or Apple’s operating system to make a buck, so what to do?

AHA! There’s that open source operating system out there that no one knows much about. It’s called Linux. Mark figures he can find (or steal away) a bunch of Linux gurus to help him write a new Linux distribution. Initially, he’ll give it away to all comers. He’ll set up and maintain a huge support and community system. He’ll make his Linux distribution as point & click easy as Microsoft’s or Apple’s product. Since Linux is inherently more secure than MS Windows, he can even use that as a selling point.

Alrighty, we’re down the road a bit now… say 2015. Ubuntu has developed a rather large user base. Lots and lots of X-MS Windows users have jumped ship on Cap’n Gates and now run Ubuntu exclusively. This is the time for Shuttleworth and Canonical to stop offering Ubuntu for free. Now you can buy it at Best Buy or Amazon. He’ll charge for support and updating, too. Will folks pay? If Ubuntu can be sold for 1/2 to 1/3 of what MS Windows (whatever version) is going for at that time, yes. There’s a good possibility that folks will pay for it.

New users won’t know really anything about Linux. They’ll only know Ubuntu. They were point & click zombies when they were using their Windows and they’ll be point & click zombies when using their Ubuntu. They read their FWD porn and joke emails from friends and family, they surf a few websites, they might even pay a bill or two online. That’s all they really use their computers for, anyway. That is Shuttleworth’s potential paying customer pool, folks.

Can it really happen? Ya’ never know…

Don’t get me wrong, folks. I think Ubuntu is a great Linux distribution. It’s based on one of my favorites… the rock solid Debian GNU/Linux. Ubuntu is great for introducing folks to Linux. It’s the distribution I use to install for “curious” friends and family members who hear me talk about running an operating system other than MS Windows. This article is not about bashing Ubuntu or anything, actually. It’s just a speculation on the inner workings of the mind of a man who obviously likes to make money.

Just wanted you to understand that. Try Ubuntu, by the way. You might like it.

Have FUN!

~Eric

Addenda: A member (lewmur) at Scot’s Newsletter Forums – Bruno’s All Things Linux, where I’m an Admin, posted a link to this very interesting article about how Canonical may be proposing to make some $$$…

Will 12,000 Cloud Computing Deployments Lead to Profit?