Category Archives: Linux

I Downloaded Transformers [2007] DvDrip [Eng] aXXo Using The MPAA University Toolkit

The MPAA has their own flavor of Linux… if you can call a few quaint additions a new flavor.

It’s actually a decent LiveCD, since it’s based on Xubuntu. With a python script and an MPAA-branded version of ntop, the distribution actually “phones home” to check to make sure it has the latest version, but other than that, it seems like it’s pretty harmless.

So what’s the first thing a guy needs to do? Mark my territory. Continue reading

Hauppauge WinTV-HVR-950 – Does It Work In Linux?

Black Friday was good to me. I visited about a dozen different stores and ended up getting better deals than I had originally expected. I tend to be one of those so-called “bad customers” who leverage price matching guarantees to their fullest potential. I ended up scoring a HDTV for under a grand less than I would have paid for it the day prior, and since they had to order it, no HDTV love for two weeks.

Enter the Hauppauge WinTV-HVR-950 USB HDTV Tuner to the rescue. Continue reading

Acid2 Test – Firefox 3 Beta 1 vs Phoenix 0.1, Firebird 0.6 and Firefox 2

Have you ever heard of the Acid test for browsers?

Acid 2 is the worst case senario to test web standards compliance. Looking at the source code, it’s by far one of the most convoluted (yet perfectly web compliant) pages I’ve ever seen. I was digging around the Mozilla ftp site and found a really old version of Firefox, called Phoenix and snagged that as well as Firebird.

Phoenix begot Firebird, and Firebird begot Firefox – the browser we all know and love.

Let’s take a look at the results: Continue reading

Unreal Tournament 3 – Linux Client Delayed

I’ve gone and done something I really regret – this afternoon I went and purchased a video game that doesn’t support Linux. Not on purpose mind you. And I’ve purchased games in the past that don’t have a native Linux client, but run really well under Wine.

I bought the Unreal Tournament 3 Collector Edition… which came with the Unreal Anthology, which is semi-useless to me – I already own all the games included. I knew beforehand that the client wouldn’t be on the DVD in the box, but I’d need to go and find it somewhere online. Continue reading

Awn with OSX Stacks… Hopefully This Week!

I was amazed when I saw this (forget where), had to go and hunt it down… turns out, Wim Wauters, aka SilentStorm on the Avant Window Navigator Forum is releasing this absolutely FANTASTIC goodie to the public very soon, hopefully in a few days.

I’ll definitely be keeping an eye out for this… stacks for my iPhone makes it easy to keep things decluttered, I’m sure this will have the same effect for my Linux machine as well.

Kudos to Wim, as well as Timon – the original author of Stacks for AWN.

screenshot2.png

So, so sexy…. ahh.

Linux/Unix Censorship on Digg.com?

Every Thursday, for the last 10 weeks straight I’ve been providing a quick synposis on the top 10 or 15 stories on the most popular topics on Digg.com in the Linux/Unix section. Not anymore… not Digg anyways.

This isn’t gonna be a rant, just the facts. Of the last ten articles I’ve written, all of them have been buried.

Two of them were buried even after hitting the front page. Continue reading

Fedora 8 : At This Pace, Linux On The Desktop Is Going Nowhere Fast

Fedora, in their infinite wisdom, decided it would be a great idea to make it difficult to install proprietary codecs, drivers, and much more due to vague licensing issues that may exist. Let’s talk about what doesn’t work by default in the latest version of Fedora.

WARNING: STRONG LANGUAGE AND OFFENSIVE SEXIST ALLITERATION AHEAD

Fedora helpfully provides a list of “Forbidden Items” that are not included with the distribution, nor are they easily obtained for a Linux neophyte. I’ll list them here:

  • MP3 Support (In any application)
  • nVidia Graphics Driver
  • ATI Graphics Driver
  • NDISwrapper network driver
  • Real Media (and Player)
  • DVD Playback
  • Cryptography
  • Sun’s Java
  • VMware
  • Flash Player
  • Acrobat Reader

If that wasn’t enough, on that same website, the fine chaps at Fedora attempt to insult our intelligence by offering ridiculous alternatives, here’s the best example:

fuck-fedora-up-their-stupid-ass.png

Are they serious? Who in their right mind would suggest using the Ogg Theora codec to watch a DVD?

I think the suggestion is taken out of context. This is what it should actually say:

Fedora Suggests: Use a broomstick dipped in Icy Hot to sodomize yourself.

The new “Codec Buddy” in Fedora 8 (aka Codeina) appears to be a get rich quick scheme hatched by Fluendo, the 3rd party vendor behind the program. Hmm… the name of the company sounds like the word “innuendo” – that’s catch! Their motto should be something like this:

“We snatch your cash when you wanna watch some snatch.”

The total price of all the codecs provided: WMA, WMV, ASF, MPEG2, MPEG4, MP3, AC3… all for low, low price of somewhere around or near $50 US Dollars after exchange fees. Buy the Complete Set of Playback Plugins for the i386 architecture now, and you only pay two easy payments of fuck right the hell off, and feel free to eat some shit pie if you decide to switch to 64-bit, because you’ll need to buy them all over again.

Codeina Screenshots:

codec-installer.pngscreenshot-codeina.pngscreenshot-codec-installer.pngscreenshot-getting-plugins.png

What is the solution? Glad you asked. Thankfully someone who doesn’t have their head firmly lodged up their ass over at Livna.org decided to build a most excellent package repository. This collection of useful software provides things like fglrx, gstreamer-ffmpeg, gstreamer-plugins-bad, gstreamer-plugins-ugly, lame, libdvdcss, madwifi, ndiswrapper, ntfs, and nvidia just to name a few.

Unless you’re intimately familiar with these names of things that “just work” in other Linux distributions, it’s everything that Fedora wants to charge you $50 for, plus dozens more codecs and drivers that makes your system be able to do things with your computer. You can’t do small things like oh…. connect to the internet, browse the web, play DVDs or music, or even play some video games.

Fedora isn’t all bad, by the way.

review-time-640.pngI believe a quick review is in order to restore my karma. Time to get the testbeds ready!

For a Linux enthusiast like myself, I’m not gonna lie, Fedora is an excellent distribution. Installing is a simple affair, configuring all the junk that they leave out is relatively simple (once you find it), and it’s got some really sweet features that are just icing on the cake. The small things are what matters most. If you’re familiar with any Gnome-based distribution, you’ll be right at home on Fedora.

The bonus feature that many reviewers may gloss over is the fact that Redhat Enterprise Linux (RHEL for short) is based on Fedora Core 6. Familiarity with RHEL can be a determining factor in hiring for a job. In fact, I think I’m going to run Fedora 8 until CentOS 5.1 is released and give that a try. CentOS is the free version of RHEL.

Without more from me, let’s see tons of screenshots of the installation:

Two things stand out to begin with. First, dictionary word password warning – not a bad idea. Then, the desktop changes colors based on what time it is.

Neat! Notice the system time in each of those screenshots… morning, noon, evening, night. The colors change in incremental values, but that gives you a pretty good idea of how it works. I love it. Whoever thought of this is worthy of a pat on the back… and certainly worthwhile for people who don’t get out much.

The package manager is useful, but generally I prefer a command line.

screenshot-package-manager.png

Firefox dies a slow death and requires manual installation of Adobe Flash Player:

screenshot-plugin-finder-service-failed.png

A built-in firewall and SELinux policies are pretty smart to keep around if you’re operating in a DMZ or with hacker-magnet ports open to the world.

screenshot-firewall-configuration.pngscreenshot-firewall-configuration-startup.png

Other than previously discussed above, Fedora is a very solid distribution. Once it’s up and running, it’s great. It’s stable, feels faster and snappier than Ubuntu (especially in Firefox), and has nifty little things like PulseAudio installed by default which is pretty snazzy. Another thing – if you’re looking for pre-built proprietary software packages, RPM is pretty much the standard for companies to provide.
screenshot-pulseaudio-volume-control.pngscreenshot-pulseaudio-volume-control-1.pngscreenshot-pulseaudio-volume-control-2.png

PulseAudio is a very welcome inclusion, but I’m not quite sure how Fedora expects people to be listening to multiple audio streams at the same time without any audio codecs – nevertheless, a very nice addition.

Updated Gnome 2.2 features like leaving a message for someone when a PC is locked are pretty groovy as well…

locked-leave-a-msg.pngleave-a-msg-type-in.pngmsg-recd.png

In the end, Fedora is great for a geek like me, but quite possibly the least favorable choice for someone who isn’t very familiar with Linux.

If you’re ever up Fedora creek without a codec, make sure you bookmark this page.

I feel so much better now.

Digg “Linux Nation” for Thursday November 8th 2007

For the 9th week in a row… Seven more days pass, 15 more stories from the Digg Linux/Unix section. I like doing this piece every week… I actually missed a few of these. Maybe I don’t pay enough attention to what’s popular… I tend to spend more time in the upcoming section on Digg since that’s mildly more interesting in general.

1. How to tell if a web site sucks, a flowchart
I love this flowchart.. I’m sure this website is NOT Brain rot, Web 2.0 fluff, a fanboy site, but unfortunately I might be a “Newb ego blogger,” since my picture is in the sidebar – does it make you wanna hurl? If not, fsckin.com is the real deal. What I’m not sure of is why this is in the Linux section at the number 1 story with over 3500 diggs. Hmm. Strange.

2. BBC admits massive underestimate of Linux users
I’ll forgive them, since they greenlighted Dr. Who for yet another season.

3. Introducing the real 3D Compiz!
This is sweet! Using red/blue glasses you can view your desktop in true 3D.

4. Firefox 3.0b1 has NOT been released.
It’s actually “Firefox 3.0 Beta 1 Release Candidate 1.” Who knew?

5. Turn Your Old PC into a Webapp Monster with gOS
Lifehacker quotes me in this, so it’s worth reading. I really like gOS, I ran it for about a week and had no big problems with it, other than the fact that it’s designed for a Linux neophyte. http://www.fsckin.com/2007/11/03/interview-with-gos-founder-linux-for-human-beings-who-shop-at-walmart/

6. Linux.com :: When open source projects close the process, something’s wrong
Somewhat boring nerd drama… KDE had icons STOLEN!!!!!1111 from their public SVN repo, that were licensed under both LGPL and CC, and they cry about it. Secondly, the GIMP UI brainstorm is like throwing a penny in a wishing well. The developer mailing list shows how absolutely patheticly prepared they are for new developers to join the team. http://lists.xcf.berkeley.edu/lists/gimp-developer/2007-August/018376.html It’s just rotten how badly this would-be volunteer gets completely shot down… and he doesn’t come back for more.

7. Ubuntu: Just how popular is it?
Nobody knows in the end… but it’s more popular than anything else. Go figure.

8. Why Linux Will Succeed On The Desktop
From the article: “I believe Linux will become the de-facto standard desktop operating system. Though it’ll take a while for many users to break free from ties to Windows, there is good reason to believe that this day will come.” – Nicholas Petreley

9. We’re only Human after all: a review of Ubuntu 7.10 Gutsy Gibbon
YARoU (Yet Another Review of Ubuntu) – Two weeks late.

10. Anatomy of the Linux File System
Boring… I buried this.

11. Lego-like computer building blocks run Linux
This is really cool… worth reading.

12. Ubuntu – Outside the Sandbox
Daddy runs Ubuntu and gets quizzed by geek son.
What did you like most about using Ubuntu Linux? I didn’t really find it to be any different than using Windows.

13. Up close with the Eee PC user interface
A neat video of the Eee PC UI… Blimblam!

14. Ubuntu to get visual refresh with Hardy Heron
Ok, ok… I give up, more crap about the new theme for Ubuntu 8.10. I wonder how many times this is going to be dugg before it actually is released? I bet something like once a week.

15. Linux Game Company Opens Doors
Hmmm… I think this should have been buried.. this looks totally bunk… some bullshit get rich quick scheme… they’re trying to raise $40 grand for a 2D space shooter? Lame!

Your Mother Warned You About Using Plugins For gedit

Users of any Gnome-based distribution are probably familiar with gedit, the basic text editor with a few sweet additions, such as multiple file editing with tabs.

Even regular users of gedit may not even know that it has a plugin system, or of the availability of the gedit-plugins package which is maintained by the gedit developers.

The plugins are not included by default in most pre-packaged distributions.  It’s probably not something that most users would take advantage of.  It weighs in at a paltry 2MB, but for most Single-CD-ROM distributions, that’s the difference between fitting on a CD or moving up to a DVD.

Here’s a screenshot of the way gedit comes looking out of the box:

gedit-original.png

Here is the gedit your mother warned you about (with an appropriate metacity theme applied):

gedit-mother-warned-you-about.png

WOW!  Talk about a whole new look! Is that really gedit?

I’m amazed that this kind of functionality existed in “plain old gedit!” Some of these features I discuss below are simply turned off by default, others are enabled by installing gedit-plugins

Let’s focus on the important changes I’ve made that you can see right off the bat:

  1. Sidebar File List
    Once we have more than about 8 files open at a time, using the tabbed system becomes really clunky. This solves that problem
  2. Terminal emulator at bottom
    Whoa.  This alone is going to save so much time! In the past month alone I’ve installed a dozen or so programs from source – this is going to make it stupid easy to follow along in a README file while typing in commands to install a program.
  3. Syntax Highlighting
    I often code my own HTML when writing a new post instead of using a WYSIWYG editor – there is syntax highlighting for damn near every language I can think of off the top of my head – from Ada to XML – it’s probably there.
  4. Highlight Current Line, Line Numbers and Bracket Highlighting
    See in the picture, the cursor is at the end of the line 109. Notice on line 99 the open bracket for that hunk of code is highlighted?. Snazzy.
  5. External Tools – If you’re a developer, all you need is a picture to see how awesome this is.
    external-tools.png
  6. Snippets
    Depending on what language markup you are using, snippets can be used to make repetative tasks very easy to complete. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve added html code to an image tag to make it so it loads in a lightbox – I’m not going to need to do that again!
    snippets.png
  7. Color schemes. This is built into gedit by default, no plugin needed here, but changing the color scheme can help focus on whatever is being worked on at the time and increase productivity.

gedit-plugins can use your help! Stop by the #gedit IRC channel on irc.gnome.org and make some suggestions.

If you found this article helpful, feel free to speak up and leave a comment.  Remember, always wear protection.