Tag Archives: linux

Two weeks of Ubuntu 7.10

The on-board soundcard on my wifes old machine stopped working and I used it as an excuse to make a new box for her.

Her needs are rather limited. Work processing, mail and web-browsing. She does have an IPod, but detests iTunes.

Currently she’s running Word 97 on Windows 2000.

So she gets the retired web-server. A bit noisy, but I can switch the low-noise PSU from the old one when I get the time.

I’ve moved her domain to google apps, and I simply setup a IMAP account and copy all her old mail to googles server.

Copy all her documents to a usb stick, where she will keep them, as she also needs to edit them on the labtop and office PC.

Ask if she wants to keep bookmarks. Answer is no.

Install Ubuntu 7.10, on the old one. No problems.

Add the essentials like flash and stuff (so that the kid can play online games on it)

Insert USB stick to check that it works. Works and auto-mounts.

Add IMAP account to thunderbird.

Show her around, explain about the lag of drive-letters, give short OpenOffice.org demo.


Two weeks later her only complaints are about the clipboard. You have to middle click on the mouse when copy/pasting from firefox to OpenOffice. If you open a document in OOo, copy something, close the document, create new document and … the content on the clipboard is gone.

There simply isn’t an excuse good enough, that this hasn’t been fixed years ago. Add a unified clipboard to X or something.

Ubuntu 7.10 Gutsy Gibbon

I’ve been trying out the last few Ubuntu releases. Ubuntu 7.10 looks even better and the installation was really easy.


  • I’ve some kind of keyboard issue. Sometimes it seems lazy (1-2 seconds delay), other times it gave me 3-5 repeats of the typed character (old logitech PS/2 keyboard).
  • It couldn’t find my second monitor. Detection of the primary monitor, a Dell UltraSharp 2407WFP-HC, (including resolution and refresh rate) worked great. The new live resolution changes stuff, is great. Welcome to windows 2000! 😉
  • Detection of any but the basic buttons on the mouse where, still, not detected (like “back”). Amazing. This is such basic functionality…
  • My main applications is Adobe Lightroom. It’s a windows application, and Wine has had some bad issue with it. With this release it has gotten a lot better. It’s actually possible to start Lightroom, it just can’t load an existing image database (needs to be on a local drive, and I think it sees the wine mapped drives a network drives), and can’t display images when they have been imported. And it take a year to start – you can actually see it draw the GUI elements, it’s so slow.
  • Disc partition tool takes 3-4 minutes to detect the two hard drives in my machine. Actually crashed once.
  • Compiz Fusion looks nice, but seems rather useless, and all the window flip-flopping becomes tiring really fast.
  • Hardware on my desk that’s useless under linux: Creative Web-Cam, Huey Pro screen calibration, Dell x51v PDA.
  • NTFS R/W support works great!
  • Looks good. Starting stuff like firefox etc. was fast.
  • I had to open a shell terminal once – when I edited the grub boot managers menu, to changed the default item to windows. Didn’t edit xorg.conf once.
  • Migration of windows users is a really cool idea. Could be taken further… (option; “share setting with windows”, or “copy from windows”. Use these setting in Wine for drive mappings, and for firefox/thunderbird settings including add-ons).

All in all, it looks good. I’m sure the minor issues could be solved. To bad about the “deal breaker” with Lightroom.

Ubuntu Linux ready for the Desktop? NOT!

To balance my recent Vista exploits, I decided to try out the latest Ubuntu Linux. I downloaded version 6.10 and burned a CD. The Ubuntu cd is a “live-cd” which means that you can boot on the CD and run the operating system without installing anything or changing your current installation. Here’s what happened:
Continue reading

Setting up a Debian 3.1 Sarge LAMP Box – Part 2

Please read part 1 first.

Securing the beast

Now I’m getting close to wanting to move the box to a server room. That means that it’ll be directly connected to the internet, with no router and no nating. It will be attacked. A lot. If there’s any obvious hole in it’s defences, it will get owned.

I’m not a security expert, but I do know that there’s no such thing as absolut security. You just secure the box as well as possible, with the resources you are willing to use. It’s a compromise between usability, resources and security.

I see security as a triangle between, keeping the machine up to date, making sure that the installed programs are setup as secure as possible and keeping an eye on the box for strange behaviour (did somebody get through).

When you look at the security page at debian.org, all it tells you is to keep the packages up to date. I’ll start by looking at that.

Continue reading

Setting up a Debian 3.1 Sarge LAMP Box – Part 1

This is my own personal notes on how I set up my new server box. It started out as my notes on how to turn a debian 3.1 Sarge installation into a LAMP box. At the moment it’s a rather detailed dummy’s and/or beginners step-by-step guide to making a LAMP box.


More on what LAMP is at wikepedia

Now Sarge 3.1 is a bit old at the this time, and a new version is just around the corner, but then I’ll learn how to upgrade a debian box when that happens.

I’ll try and be as detailed as possible. I really hate those how-to’s that go “they you press Y,, then N, and then… [do something that might as well be magic, unless you are a guru]”. I’ll try and link to the place where I picked up a bit of knowledge or the idea for doing something.

I’m not a linux wizard. I’ve been running a FreeBSD for a long time, as my webserver, but I can barely keep that alive and malware free. I’ll be trying to set up this box, so that it keep it self up to date and as secure as possible.

Now be aware that this is not the most clever, fast or secure way of doing this – this is just the way that I did it using the bit information that I could find on how to do what I wanted. Some of the stuff that I do is redundant and is redone later. Sometimes several times.

If somebody feels like added comments that tells how things can be done faster, better, more secure I’ll appriciate it and probably incorporate it into the doc.

(feel free to make comments on gramma and spelling – I’ll fix it and then delete your comment. I do appriciate it, it’s just kind of off-topic for the blog)

Continue reading