Nothing But the Truth

December 13, 2008

For my birthday, the Boss Mom and the Boss Dad (the lovely Lettuce’s parents) gave me an Ion usb turntable.  We haven’t had a working turntable in the house since around the time we moved to Buffalo.  The plan is to digitalise the 800 or so l.p.’s we have. And in case anyone was wondering, the turntable is plug and play in Linux

Tonight I rediscovered one of my favie albums – “Nothing But the Truth” by  Ruben Blades. Although Blades is mostly known for his Spanish language music (mostly Afro-Cuban and jazz),
this album was in English and more rock-oriented.

If my memory serves me correctly, I think I became aware of “Nothing But the Truth” because of Lou Reed’s contributions to the album. He co-wrote and produced several songs. My favorite of the Blades/Reed songs is “Letters To the Vatican” with one of my favie Lou Reed lyrics “Dear Pope, send me some hope or a rope to do me in”

Oh, yeah, Elvis Costello is another of Blade’s songwriting partners.

Walt Not Walt Begats Linux Not Linux

August 12, 2008

I’ve decided to start a Linux-oriented blog because I’ve been writing a lot more about Linux here than I first imagined.

I will continue to write about “my own personal ‘I'” here.

opensuse e17 and SOAD updates

July 26, 2008


I’m still farting around with the opensuse e17.  I’ve discovered that the x-cursor is present but invisible on the entrance login.  I’ve tried changing themes.  No luck.  And I’ve also substituted the x-cursor for the e-cursor.  Again with no luck.  If memory serves, these e17 packages were built in a gnome environment so perhaps the KDE-ness of my original install might be the problem.


I finally got around to burning a copy of the SOAD iso.  No luck.  It just won’t successfully boot into any mode text or gui.  I checked the md5 sum and it was ok.  I even burned another copy just in case the cd-r was defective but no luck.   It either hangs or seg faults or both.  I was looking forward to farting around with it.  But, alas, no.

Good bye KDE4, Hello E17

July 20, 2008

I’m a big fan of enlightment dr17 and I’m writing this from a box running elive. I’ve been farting around with running e17 on my opensuse 11.0 install using the enlightenment metapackage and instructions found here here

I found that things worked better once I removed all the bits of KDE4 that I could find and ended up installing some gnome bits automatically chosen by the package manager. I also installed esound since I was having sound server issues with just alsa.

I’m using entrance even though I have mouse cursor issues (it’s not there) at the login screen. While it isn’t a priority problem and affecting usage, I do intend on figuring out why this is happening.

dmitry_serpokryl is the person responsible for the the metapackage for opensuse 11.0 and I think he did a great job. He’s also created an opensuse E17 live cd which he calls “SOAD” (Suse On Active Diet) which I intend on trying in the near future.

OpenSuSe Not!!!

July 3, 2008

OpenSuSe 11.0

I’m a distrowhore. Not as much as I used to be before I started working for RGIS again a year ago in February. Nowaways, I ain’t got time to mess around or even fart around. Since 2000, I think I’ve farted around with over 100 different distro releases. I’ve even run Yellow Dog, Mandrake, and Slackintosh on an iBook.

Because I’ve not tried anything SuSe flavored since before Novell gobbled it up, I decided since this was a slow week at RGIS to give the KDE 4 version of OpenSuSe 11.0 a try.

Alas, I wasn’t very impressed. I found it hard to use and counter-intuitive. But it did look great. Others have dissected OpenSuSe 11 in a much more technical matter than I. This is the punter’s eye view.


Unlike any other distro that I have used, I couldn’t figure out how to change from the wired NIC to the wireless NIC. I could get the wireless NIC to work with ndiswrapper but I could not switch from eth0 to wlan0 with the KDE Network Manager applet. Yes, I know how to do that from a shell. If I wanted to do command line, I would still be using Slackware. I’m a lazy sod.


I could grow to like it. My favie windows manager right now is e17 on Elive Debian. But the box the Lovely Lettuce uses runs KDE 3.5 and PCLinuxOS. Historically, I tended to prefer KDE over Gnome (I like the endless config options) even though I tend to like Gnome apps better.

KDE 4 feels like a new desktop in KDE drag. Even if it looks the same, it just doesn’t feel right. But then I think of the difference between e16 and e17, for all practical purposes the only thing that is the same is the name.

I like change or I wouldn’t be farting with 10 different distros on one box.


For legal reasons, OpenSuSe doesn’t include much multimedia support. One can d/l such stuff from OpenSuSe repositories once the distro is installed if one clever enough.


OpenSuSe 11.0 isn’t the distro for me. But I’m weird. I strongly suspect, nay, I know, that i am not the target audience for the distro.

Sharing is Fun

June 21, 2008

Well, I finally did it. I managed to get the new-upstairs-box running Elive/Debian to share its wireless internet connection to another computer via a wired NIC.

I tried using Firestarter with no luck. Its internet connection wizard wasn’t very wizardly. My guess is the script gets confuzzled by any NIC that isn’t ethX. I reckon some Linux geeks can’t imagine why anyone would one to have a box with wireless share the connection with another computer using a wired NIC. I reckon they must enjoy running a couple hundred feet of Cat 5e wire through the walls and floors of their homes so they can have a couple of boxes connected to the interwebs at the far end of the house.

I relied primarily on this and this for information. One warning, make sure that you have a dhcp server installed and that ip forwarding is enabled. I think that the Ubuntu forums assume anyone trying to share an internet connection would know to do that.

Update 2008/06/22: I had to uninstall Exalt, the E network manager, to maintain a persistent connection. For some damn reason, ever so often, Exalt would decide that the wired NIC was the default internet connection and hilarity (no working internet or sharing) would ensure. Using network-admin to restart the NICs temporarily overrode Exalt. Once I got rid of Exalt and rebooted (yes, I know; but I’m lazy), no more problems.

ffmpeg is my friend.

June 11, 2008

The Lovely Lettuce and I both love this song:

Today I finally got around to stripping the audio from the original avi that Lettuce posted to Youtube and creating an mp3 of the song with ffmpeg.

Elive Screenshot

June 10, 2008