Ubuntu Linux

Well, after a recommendation from Chris, I downloaded the Live CD version of Ubuntu 5.04 (Hoary Hedgehog) Preview. I booted into Gnome, and everything worked. Very impressive.

I’m downloading the full install now. Thanks for the recommendation Chris, and I’ll let everyone know how the installation goes. Goodbye to CentOS!


CentOS 4 Installation

I just installed CentOS 4, and here are my initial findings.

I’ve been pretty impressed so far. CentOS is basically the same thing as Redhat Enterprise, so packages are compatible. CentOS uses yum instead of up2date, which makes me happy. yum is one of the most important things to happen to Redhat in recent times.

CentOS 4 includes kernel version 2.6.9-5.0.3.EL by default. The 2.6 kernel supposedly has performance advantages over 2.4, so I look forward to playing around and seeing if there is a big difference.

CentOS also ships with SELinux, but I disabled it because I’ve heard that it causes compatibility issues with many software packages.

I ran into a few problems during installation. Here’s the list of problems and how I fixed them. This installation was on a Dell Inspiron 600m with a Pentium M 1.6 GHz processor, but should apply to any Centrino laptop.

1) Intel PRO/Wireless 2200BG – ipw2200 – doesn’t work after install.

The driver for the ipw2200 was installed by default, but it didn’t work initially. I was able to trace the problem down to missing firmware. I’m guessing that they didn’t include it for legal reasons.

In order to get the ipw2200 working, you need to download the firmware from the Intel Pro/Wireless 2200GB SourceForge project. The version you need is v0.6-v0.16 firmware.

After downloading the file, type in the following commands as root:

tar -zxf ipw2200-fw-2.0.tgz
mv *.fw /lib/firmware/
rmmod ipw2200

Then, wait a few seconds, and type:

modprobe ipw2200

And you should be good to go! You may have to configure the interface, but I’ll assume for the moment that you know how to do that.

2) XMMS doesn’t have MP3 support.

Yes, if you’ve run Redhat anytime within the past few years, you know that Redhat doesn’t ship MP3 support with its operating systems. So, you need to download the package xmms-mp3. As of this writing I didn’t find a Enterprise 4 package, so I just used the Enterprise 3 package from rpm.pbone.net.

Just type in the following command as root after downloading:

rpm -ivh xmms-mp3-1.2.10-9.2.1.el3.rf.i386.rpm

3) No Microsoft fonts are included.

Unlike SUSE, Microsoft fonts are not included by default. So, what I did is download an RPM provided for Fedora Core 3 by mjmwired.net.

After downloading the RPM, type in the following commands as root:

rpm -ivh msttcorefonts-1.3-3.noarch.rpm
/etc/init.d/xfs restart

I hope this helps! I’ll continue to play around and update if I find any additional quirks.



Utah Law Requires ISPs to Block Content

March 4, 2005 — (WEB HOST INDUSTRY REVIEW) — According to reports, the Utah Senate approved legislation last week that would require Internet service providers to block access to publicly accessible Web sites that host pornographic content and are considered to be harmful to minors. The legislation would reportedly create a public list of Web sites to which ISPs would be forced to deny access. ISPs that do not comply with the blocking requirements of the law would face criminal charges.

Internet service providers, according to reports, oppose the bill and analysts are concerned that the wording of the legislation is confusing and vague enough to go beyond Internet service providers and potentially affect email providers, search engines and Web hosting companies. Advocacy groups however, support the bill.

Reports say Utah Governor Jon Huntsman is expected to sign the bill. He has until March 22, 2005.

I’m sorry, but this is one of the most ridiculous things I’ve ever heard. How can you expect ISP’s to block content? This better be thrown out.

Wireless USB Set To Kill Off Bluetooth

Wireless USB Latest News about USB products will be in the shops by Christmas, and the widespread adoption of the technology will rapidly kill off Bluetooth Latest News about Bluetooth, Intel (Nasdaq: INTC) Latest News about Intel has claimed at its Developer Forum in San Francisco.

The wireless USB protocol will be completed by the end of March, and the access controller specification should be approved by the end of the year. Wireless USB is designed to be used at ranges of less than 10 meters and will allow peak data speeds of 480 mbps.

“In the next 12 months we will see wireless USB products in the retail sector,” said Kevin Kahn, senior fellow at Intel.

“Many companies are ready to adopt this stuff and start shipping it. Multiple silicon builders are around to provide a healthy competitive market as well.”

Kahn demonstrated a USB dongle that fits into a standard USB 2 port and would make any machine with a USB port capable of using the device. Over 200 companies are due to bring out wireless USB devices.

Key to the uptake of the new technology is ease of use. Bluetooth has turned off many users due to compatibility problems, but USB is well understood and some analysts rate it as the most successful interface in the world.

“The general consumer doesn’t have a clue,” said Jeff Ravencroft, technology strategist at Intel. “Thirty percent of returns to technology retailers are because of set-up problems. If it isn’t easy to set up this isn’t going to happen.”

This sounds interesting. I never played around with Bluetooth, but just about everything I use runs on USB. Wireless USB could potentially pose security risks, which I’m sure will be discussed as the technology becomes available in the stores.

CentOS 4 Released

The CentOS team is pleased to announce availability of CentOS 4.0. Major new features include the Linux 2.6 Kernel, SELinux, udev replacing the /dev system, Xorg, MySQL4, CyrusIMAPD, Gnome 2.8 and KDE 3.3. These improvements along with many more are detailed in the release notes available online (http://mirror.centos.org/centos/4/os/i386/RELEASE-NOTES-en.html)

Two architectures are complete with more on the way.

Now available CentOS 4.0 i386.
Now available CentOS 4.0 IA64.

Very good stuff. CentOS is an excellent substitute for RHEL. Downloading from the University of Tennessee mirror works best for me usually.