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Free as in beer

I still haven't fully paid Paul for it yet (more money soon okay Paul) but I've finally got the laptop I bought off him set up pretty much the way I want. Dual-boot between Linux Mint Fluxbox & Windows XP SP2 (stripped down with nLite).

Just some notes on stuff I did with Linux to make things work:

  • This is an older, automated python script for getting Broadcom wireless chipsets working. This worked for my Broadcom bcmwl15 chipset.

  • Newer fix by same author, very early release so quite buggy

  • Another way, more hands on, to fix Broadcom wireless chipsets.

  • Don't forget to install wicd and gnome-power-manager to your startup script.

  • A way to get more advanced options for your Synaptics touchpad. Basically: Add 'Option "SMHConfig" "on"' to your xorg.conf file, and install qsynaptics. For fluxbox you need to add 'qsynaptics --restore' to your startup script (~/.fluxbox/startup). Used to turn off touchpad scroll & tapping.

  • Fantastic and quick guide to enabling special buttons on your input devices (keyboard, mouse, etc). The script provided for mute/unmute didn't quite work as my Master control under amixer doesn't show under mono:. In the process rediscovered sed and regexps.

  • K9Copy: Not a fix per se, but dammit if it hasn't been the easiest to use DVD ripper/converter yet. Frankly, it just works. Click, click, click - 700mb avi with japanese audio and english subtitles. Done. My only KDE app.

  • I got rid of most of my KDE apps because the application messaging system - dcopserver - kept throwing up weird errors. As far as I can tell all you can do is log off and log back on again, or do some in-depth analysis of WHY. Exaile works fine in place of Amarok; katapult gave me hassles about dcopserver, and the alternatives to katapult just aren't ready for prime time. (Gnome-do has about a million dependancies, and doesn't work. Gnome-launch-box doesn't work for me either)

  • Downloaded, compiled and installed the newest version of tilda (again, yakuake is a KDE app). 0.9.5 I think it is. Little more stable.

The rest is all fairly straightforward.

Oh and drunken watermelon FTW. =)


( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 24th, 2008 04:28 am (UTC)
hmm. and people wonder why linux hasn't hit the mainstream yet .. :P
Jan. 24th, 2008 07:38 am (UTC)
Asus Eee PC is mainstream enough for me. What about the XO Laptop? The chumby?

This way of using linux will never really become mainstream. If you installed ubuntu or the "regular" linux mint, it'd be a more comfortable journey from Windows. (I only found out about linux mint after reading a forum post where a guy installed it on his household shared pc to stop his flatmates from downloading stupid things while surfing for porn. Apparently they didn't even notice the difference)

One of the things that really irked me about ubuntu was that openoffice.org was tied to quite a few core ubuntu/gnome packages. The same with a few other apps, like Evolution mail and mplayer. Other than that, it works quite well.

I tried vanilla Debian but it requires waaaay too much work even for me. Plus the download: 3 dvd's? Sheesh, nobody needs that much crap.

I do like tinkering around with it, finding things that work and don't work. And k9copy is so damn good.
Jan. 24th, 2008 01:32 pm (UTC)
you were prepared to go through all that but vanilla debian was too much? thats .. well it's a little strange.
Jan. 24th, 2008 01:33 pm (UTC)
oh, everything you really need is on the first cd anyway, i only ever download that or the 160 meg netinst.
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )


Steve P

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