Wednesday, May 20, 2009

I've been busy, computer stuff.

So one of the things I wanted to do when I created this blog, was make it more professional than my live journal account. That failed. But I do tend to try and cover an array of things here, besides just working out. Which is what lead to those other two posts earlier. The ones about U-verse and Knoppix 6. I took longer entries that I saw people going to via google (in my site tracker report) and made 2 condensed versions so they wouldn't have to hunt through longer posts for them.

Two weeks ago, my laptop at home suffered bad things when I tried to upgrade my installed version of Sidux to the latest version via apt-get dist-upgrade. It resulted in me having no GUI to use. All the data was still on the drive, and as long as I didn't want to do anything that required a Grapical environment, I was ok. Sadly that made surfing the web and watching videos hard.

To fix it, I bought a new hard drive. 320gig for about $70.00 USD + shipping. After installing it, I tried the latest CD ISO of Sidux, only to have it do the same thing up the software upgrade. No GUI. Next I tried Gentoo, after 2 failed installs I said screw it. Then I tried something else, I don't remember, and didn't care for it either, so I tried Gentoo again. 2 more installs later, I finally had a working system. As long as I didn't want to use a GUI. Trying to install the GUI would cause the system to shut down. It'd be in mid compile, and the next thing I know, it's turned off.

So I went back to Debian, haven't ran straight Debian for a while. Set up and encrypted hard drive, which is nice, and Debian so far is the only one I've seen that give the option on install. Of course it took about 5 hours to erase and encrypt the drive. I got a working system, with a GUI, but didn't like that some of the software was old. Debian Lenny had verison .8 something of VLC, and Open Office 2.4. Which trying to upgrade to 3.0 was what caused the problem to start with on the laptop.

I told the system to update itself to the Unstable branch, I tend to run something based off Unstable or Testing anyway, and it removed my GUI and wouldn't give it back. I got the Debian Testing Nightly build install, and it installed fine. I told it to install KDE, my preferred GUI. It did. KDE 4. Which was ok, because I wanted to try KDE 4 out.

I don't like KDE 4. It's too Vista like for my tastes. I don't see why they have to chase what Microsoft is putting out for the GUI. I can't turn off Plasma (or if I can, I haven't found out how yet) so I can install non-Plasma themes from the theme site. I don't like the desktop widget. I like to store some files on my desktop. It's the way I am. They're files I refer to regularly, things like what episode is next in a series I'm watching, a list of commands, etc. I don't like the bars at the top of the windows, I'd like to change those. And lastly, I don't care for the slowness. Even scrolling / page up / page down in Ice Weasel (Debian's Firefox fork) is slow. It shouldn't be and wasn't under Gnome.

I'm thinking of installing XFCE and LDXE on the thing and see how those deal. I also have to find a way to get my old data off the old hard drive. I've gotten most of the tweaking done though.


Anonymous said...

OT: Are you on sherdog s+p forums?

Chris J said...


Never heard of it.