Wednesday, June 24, 2009

My 5 Minute Review of MS Windows 7.

So yesterday I started playing with virutalbox and for some odd reason decided to try out MS Windows 7 in it. Actually, I do know why I was trying it out. First, I've heard alot of great reviews for it even from Linux users and was curious. In addition, it was suppose to have lower resource usage then Vista (which I've never used) and wanted to see how true all of this was. Finally, another reason to giving MS Windows 7 a test run was that I'm sure my wife would be eventually using it and I would inevitably be supporting it to some degree.

So, all this being said, here is my 5 minute review of MS Windows 7.

The Good
The installer has been simplified, which make Windows just as easy to install as most Linux distros. Good job Microsoft for doing some catching up. In general, it did seem to run "lighter" then even MS Windows XP. Finally, I like the KDE4 look and feel.

The Bad
The task bar. It's too big. I can't tell the difference between the quick start laucher icons and the minimized windows icons. Actually, I think if you launch a quick start app you don't get a new task. Minimized windows are icon only, no text. This made things frustrating because I wasn't familiar with the icons. I couldn't find an option to change this. Finally, I tried to install AVG anti-virus and it wouldn't install.

Well, that's pretty much all I had time for. If I'm bored I may boot up the WM again and get back to you with something a little more in depth.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Command Line Webite

Shortly after I got married my brother purchased the domain as a birthday present. We used this site as a family website to post pictures and other family related stuff until my wife discovered blogger. The family site got neglected as blogger took over the role and purpose of the old site. So, I still have the domain and decided to turn it into a Linux command line site.

It's a complimentary site to this blog, focusing on getting things done on the desktop linux command line. It still needs alot of work and I will fix it up and add to it as time allows. Please feel free to offer suggestions or contribute as you so desire. Hopefully, it will of use to someone out there.

Here's the link.


Friday, June 12, 2009

The Application Named After Me.

There's a Jared application. It's used to edit MS Windows registry. Okay, I wish it did something cooler, but I'll take what I can get.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Is Slackware worth it?

Last night I installed rtorrent on Slackware current on my Pentium M 1.4 Ghz laptop and this is how it went.

rtorrent is not a main Slackware package, so I went in search of a SlackBuild. I easily found the rtorrent SlackBuild and downloaded it and read the README file. It was dependant upon libtorrent ... no problem there was a SlackBuild for that too. libtorrent was dependant upon libsigc++ ... no problem, Slackbuild had it available. So far, no big deal. libsigc++ installed with no problem. I was not so lucky with libtorrent.

libtorrent had problems with the build. After googling, I found it needed a patch. Since I have no clue as how to apply a patch, I had to google how to apply a patch to the source code. After a few attempts, I finally got it.
I then turned my attention to rtorrent and began the build process... fail! After googling some more, I discovered it too needed a patch. Of course, I was now a patch applying guru and was good to go on my first attempt.
I then compiled and waited and waited as the gcc compiling "screen saver" scrolled pass my terminal. Over an hour later, I had rtorrent installed. Awesome!

I then re-booted and went into my Debian Sid partition on the same machine and did:

aptitude update
aptitude install rtorrent

In just over a minute I had rtorrent installed.

So, is Slackware worth it?

rtorrent is a low resource ncurses bittorrent client. Is my performance on Slackware for this applications really going to be that much better then on Debian? I doubt it. My time is precious. Granted I did learn how to apply a patch, but if I stick with Debian, I will probably never have to apply patches.

As I've previously stated, I like Slackware, but I'm nearly a week into installing it on my laptop and I'm still configuring it. I tried to install wicd and thought everything went well, but I can't get it going. I still need to build the lastest SlackBuild and can't even begin to imagine how long that will take to compile. While on the other hand, I had Debian configured in 2-3 hours. With all this being said, I really like Slackware but I can't seem to really adequately explain why.

So maybe you can help me come to terms with my fasination with this distro. Is Slackware worth it and why? Why do you like Slackware?

Monday, June 8, 2009

Slackware Current vs. Debian Sid

I have an older laptop which I try to be very respectful of it's limited resources. Since I have alot of respect for both Debian and Slackware, I wanted to see which would provide me with the best results on this laptop. I like to have fairly up to date packages, so I installed Slackware 12.2 and upgraded to current. I also installed Debian Lenny and upgraded to Sid. Both are running on the same machine. I disabled gdm login on Debian so it would boot to a command line prompt. Each were installed with default settings and respective upgrades. I also installed the latest KDE 4 packages in each branch and loaded the same 3 desktop widgets.

Here's the set up.

Intel Pentuim M 1.4 Ghz
768 mb RAM
Intel 855 Video card (shared 8 mb RAM)
Asus Motherboard

Boot time grub to login
Slackware 49 Sec
Debian 36 Sec

RAM used at login (no X)
Slackware 161 MB
Debian 77 MB

Time startx to full KDE 4
Slackware 25 Sec
Debian 35 Sec

RAM used at full KDE 4
Slackware 425 MB
Debian 729 MB

If course I'm going to tweak things from the default install and turn off services that I don't use. One final note, I did notice that Debian seems to run pretty hot on this laptop. Maybe I can fix that with some tweaking.