Saturday, December 27, 2008

Death Note...

No, I'm not talking about the TV/Manga series...I'm talking about this blog. As of a month ago this blog was converted into an "archive" of my old posts and I moved my blog on to Wordpress...

Here's the new link---> Ubuntu Dawn

So, come on! Visit my new blog! Although this one won't be closed down I won't update it anymore. :-)

See ya in Wordpress!
Read full post here!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

The new Xorg . . .

Well, as the post title implies, there'sa new Xorg in Ubuntu Intrepid, and basically it sucks! Heh! Let me explain.

This new Xorg apparently uses Xrandr 1.2 and now it's a lot easier to use dual-monitors on an extended desktop scenario, but sadly they removed the "Input" section of the Xorg.conf file and even if it still exists on your Xorg.conf it'll be ignored. Now the Input devices are controlled by another file, which looks like a letter soup, so I won't bother to post the location here so you can see it.

As far as I've experimented Wiimotes, Synaptics touchpads and other input devices are harder to configure, or not configurable at all. I made a post about how to use your Wiimote in Ubuntu as a Multimedia Controller and/or a mouse...well, now that';s gone until we find a way to make the new Xorg play nice with uinput, which is a very important part of the wiimote-in-ubuntu stuff.

Synaptics touchpads, found in a wide variety of laptops like Apple MacBooks, Toshiba Satellites, and so on, are now harder to configure. Back in Hardy you could just pop an "options--" statement below the "Input Device" section and you could even make your scrolling circular instead of vertical/horizontal. Pretty cool options, the circular scroll was just like the iPod clickwheel, very fun to use.

Anyways, I'll post back when I find something new about this new Xorg and how to make it work with input devices like it used to.

Read full post here!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Intrepid Is HERE!!!!!

Last Thursday Intrepid Ibex 8.10 officially came live! And I must say I'm impressed by all the improvements it has over Hardy Heron! I won't go into much detail since I've already covered all of this before, but if you guys have any questions about it's improvements and features don't hesitate to post it below! Happy INTREPID!!!
Read full post here!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Rubber Rebels!

video

Here's is a video I made back in high school. It looks crappy because I converted it from .3gp to .avi. 3gp is a cellphone format with poor quality video and low resolution. Anyways, it's in spanish and below I'll add the translation.

I might have to redo it to make it look fresh and clean again. This video is very very old and was made in Windows Movie Maker...go figure why it looks choppy.

ENJOY!

TRANSLATION:

"In a world of broken bones and dislocated backs,
a small group of demented people are not scared to do this..."


*VIDEO RUNS*

"DON'T TRY TO DO THIS AT HOME!!! The STUPID and DANGEROUS and so are the stunts!
Brought to you by: La Rampa Inc. and Anti-Mias Club!"


La Rampa Inc and Anti-Mias Club were organizations made by a group of friends for different purposes...not disclosed on this post.
Read full post here!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Fix SpellCheck in Firefox and OpenOffice.org!

I'll make this quick. Remember back in Windows how everything you wrote incorrectly in Office Word got underlined in red? Well in OpenOffice.org and Firefox that doesn't happen automatically. You'll need some packages first.

Simply go to Synaptic and search for:

myspell


Now check among the results for the ones that end on "en' or "es"(for spanish).

Check all that apply, reading carefully their descriptions and making sure that they're the languages you'll need. Then hit "Apply", install all the needed dependencies that Synaptic is gonna ask for by hitting "OK" on the pop-up window, and wait for it to install. Once done fire up your Firefox and/or OpenOffice.org! You know get the red lines below the wrong words and you'll also get the spelling suggestions!

Hope this helps someone!

Oh, and tomorrow is the great day!!!! Tomorrow October 30, 2008 Ubuntu Intrepid Ibex 8.10 goes officially live!!! I'll be making a special post for tomorrow (hopefully)!

Read full post here!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Solutions For Mediaphiles!

"Yeah, how do you even rip CDs and encode videos with Ubuntu?! This can't be! I'm going back to Window$!!" Hold it right there partner! Ubuntu has some cool programs you'll love for doing common things we normally did back in Window$.

Once of these things is ripping audio CDs to the computer's HDD. Back in Windows there are tons of thousands of programs that do this, and most of them are worth $40.00+ and people end up downloading them from somewhere, illegally of course. Well, here in Ubuntu we don't have the need to pirate programs.

If you want a good CD ripper just go to Synaptic and search for:

sound-juicer

This little program (found in Applications>Sound & Video>Audio CD Extractor) rips your music and converts it to WAV, MP3, OGG and others. After ripping the music just sync it with your mp3 player (gtkpod-aac for iPods and as of other mp3 players you're on your own. I don't have any other mp3 player which I can test. I do know that iPod Classic 160GB, iPod Nano 1st gen 4GB and iPod Shuffle 2nd gen 1GB work perfectly in gtkpod, if you have a Zune...well...you're pretty much alone in the dark since no one can make a Zune work with Linux this far...go figure.)

And what if you want to convert videos for your iPod?...SIMPLE! just follow my instructions on how to install ffmpeg and winff found here.

I won't go into much detail here because these programs are pretty easy to figure out. But if you encounter any problems or you have questions, just post them on the comments section! I'll be happy to help!

Read full post here!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Create your own ringtones!

Well, actually this is not an "Ubuntu-Exclusive" but I think you guys should know.

Let's say you have a cool song and want to have a ringtone of it on your cellphone...Prepare yourself, if you buy it from your carrier you'll end up paying $3.00+ for the song and the Internet time you use to download it to your cell.

Well, there's an easy and inexpensive way to do this...and it's called "Audacity"! No, no need to take out your credit card, Audacity is absolutely free and it's a very handy program for all your music-editing needs, not to mention that it is available on the repositories.

Let's stick to the topic here. To make a ringtone simply choose your favorite song.

Now open up Audacity by going to Applications>Sound & Video>Audacity.



Click File>Open and then select the song you want to ringtonify...




Now with the cursor in Selection mode select the part of the song you want for your ringtone by dragging the cursor.



Fiddle back and forth with Play and Pause and make sure that the selected area is exactly how you want it. Once the area is selected click the "Trim" button (check the picture below to see the location of the button).






Now switch the cursor to Time Shift Tool. And drag the chosen part to the start of the timeline.



Now switch back to Selection mode. And select the areas where you might want to add an effect, like Fade IN or Fade OUT. For these effects select the beginning of the song (where you want the fade to take effect). Now click on Effects and select Fade In from the dropdown list.




For fade out do the exact same thing but selecting the end of the song and then Fade Out on the dropdown.

And DONE! You now have a freshly baked ringtone for your cellphone! Now simply go to File> Export and give it a name and a format on the new window. Select Mp3 Files on the dropdown on the bottom of the window.

And now all you need is aBluetooth adapter or a card reader to send it to your cellphone. I won't be going into great detail here because every cellhpone works different. In my case I use both Bluetooth and a card reader 9sometimes) to sync my new ringtones to my LG Shine CU720.

Anyway, I hope this was helpful and I hope I was clear enough! Remember to post comments!

NOTE: You can do the exact same thing in Windows. Audacity is multi-platform!


Read full post here!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

My Art v2.0 (The Power Of Inkscape!)

I've talked about Inkscape before, and I must reemphasize . . . IT ROCKS!!! I made some new pictures on it, and they were completely made from scratch. Keep in mind I'm just an Inkscape-noob...I still have tons to learn. Anyways I hope you enjoy my pictures! Please note the details on the pictures, check out the gradients and shades. Some of the pictures might need a little fixing here and there, but they look cool (I think/hope).

One of my firsts... My Toshiba Satellite A135-S4527 (posted on a previous post)



Then my ESP LTD EC-1000 (still needs some fixing around the body shape and binding)


Then...Wall-E!!!!



And the newest one...Stitch!!! (This one might need some scaling and polishing)



I hope you guys liked my pictures! I'm really loving this whole Inkscape stuff! And I deeply encourage you to try it! If you like photography and drawing then Inkscape is for you!



Read full post here!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Request Section!

Yep, you read right. I was thinking that I've never seen a blog with a request section ever before, probably because that's what discussion forums and IRCs are for. But anyways, I wanted to know what you guys want my next post to be about! If you have a question, suggestion or need a tip/trick just post it in this post as a comment and I'll do whatever I can to make a post about your request! Remember that I talk/write spanish too, so if you need help in spanish just ask!

I hope tons of people comment here! Let me know what you guys need to know!
Read full post here!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

The Time Is Near. . .

YEEEAAAHHH!!! In 15 days the new and improved Ubuntu Intrepid Ibex 8.10 is coming home! I know I've been talking a lot about this lately, but today I want to help Toshiba Satellite owners with some bugs that were found in hardy...and luckily have been fixed in Intrepid!

Well, mostly Toshiba is not very friendly with Linux, at least on some models that use Atheros and Intel hardware. As I've stated before I own a Toshiba Satellite A135-S4527, and I must add it is a very nice laptop for the price. But with Ubuntu it tends to get a little freaky.

First off, the sound is extremely low or non-existent, and if you use the common fix found in other blogs and forums, chances are the headphones won't turn off the internal speakers when playing sound. Well, I have just the thing for you!

Simply fire up a Terminal and type:

gksudo gedit /etc/modprobe.d/alsa-base/

Once inside that document that will open go to the very bottom and type this in.

option snd-hda-intel model=lenovo


Now hit "Save" and close gedit. Now check that in Sound Control (double click the speaker icon on the notification area) and make sure HDA Intel (Alsa Mixer) is selected as the playback device, and that the PCM and FRONT levels are all the way up. Also check that the Headphones switch (in the Switches tab) is ticked. Reboot and you should have sound!!!...but a very harsh and tinny sounding one though!...

To fix this issue you must play around with PulseAudio...and since I'm gonna reinvent the wheel here you can check this great tuitorial psyke83 published on the ubuntuForums!

Ok, another issue that Hardy had was a violent overheating whenever the laptop got busy...I never guessed how the heck to fix that completely, but here is a sweet fix!

Open a Terminal and type:

gconf-editor

Now go to "Apps>gnome-power-manager>ui" and check the unchecked box that says something about the processor. Now you can go to the Power Manager in System>Preferences and decide the processor speed policy...to avoid overheating make it "Based on processor load" and that should cool it down quite a bit! Thank God this was fixed in Intrepid...no need for this fix since the Power Management on Intrepid is a whole lot better and keeps the laptop ice cold!

Another few fixes are:

- No more proprietary/restricted drivers for Atheros Wi-Fi cards.
- Xorg now uses Xrandr and that helps speed up the dual-monitor process. Now you can use the laptop's S-Video and VGA outputs with ease! (Still under testing though).
- The video resolution improved quite a bit, now the screen looks more crisp than on hardy.
- The overall system performance and stability feels stronger and a whole lot smoother.

These last fixes were made on Intrepid Ibex, almost no way to make them on Hardy, since they're very difficult.

Anyways, if someone has questions, suggestions or corrections for this post, just let me know by posting a comment below!
I hope this has helped someone!

Read full post here!

Monday, October 13, 2008

My Art!

That's right, my art...in Inkscape! I'm a complete noob in photo-editing, let alone svg-making. I'd like to show you guys my Toshiba Satellite Loading Ubuntu picture! It was completely created by me except for the Ubuntu logo.

I'd like to know what you guys think! Let me know through comments below! It's a little wobbly, but it's my second svg creation (the first one was this blog's header). So remember leave a comment if you wish, I'll be very grateful!

Note: The following picture is in .png format. Feel free to use it if you want!

And now without further ado...



Read full post here!

Multimedia Fixes for Hardy and Intrepid!

Ah, multimedia...who doesn't enjoy a nice DVD movie, or a relaxing thrash metal/screamo CD...um...bad example...lol! Anyways, if you're a music/video lover like me, you'll probably be very, very disappointed when you first fire up Ubuntu.

This is because Ubuntu can't come bundled with mp3, DVD encoding/decoding/playing features by default due to copyrights and stupid laws. Anyways, this can easily be solved in a few steps...So come on, let's try it out shall we?...

First, once you have a fresh install of Ubuntu running, and you want mp3 and music playback in general you must make sure your sound and video cards are being used correctly. Once you have everything set, you should open Synaptic (System>Administration>Synaptic package manager". Then search for:

ubuntu-restricted-extras

Install it and then your music, java and flash should work. But DVDs are still missing, or at least they play choppy and gross...Don't panic! Since you already have Synaptic open search for:

libdvdcss2
libdvdread3

and install them. (A faster way to install these packages is by typing: sudo apt-get install ubuntu-restricted-extras libdvdcss2 libdvdread3 in to a terminal.) Once you've installed those two, it might be a good idea to reboot the computer. Everytime you install or remove packages, programs and things that have something to do with configurations you must restart to avoid ugly messes.

Ok, now that your computer rebooted, it might be a good idea to install VLC via Synaptic. This little program can cover all your music, video, DVD needs in a neatly and smooth way.

These fixes work on both Hardy Heron and Intrepid Ibex, I've tested both versions and I can assure you these fixes work. But in case they don't just post as comment below and I'll be more than happy to help. So don't be shy!

Hope this helped someone! NOTE: I've covered all of this before, I just wanted to compile everything in a single post to help people find the answers to their questions quicker.

Read full post here!

Ubuntu Dawn's New Header!

Hi all! I wanted to let you know that after many many hours of meticulous searching and Inkscaping I managed to make a new header for the blog! This is my first photo-job and I think I did it good, did I? I concentrate more on music and video...

You can let me know how it looks by voting on the Poll located on the sidebar! Let me know what you think by posting comments in this post! I hope everyone likes it! At least I do! Heh!

And by the way, a great program I found that you might want to use is Inkscape. That's an awesome vector graphics editing/making program which I dare to say it's a whole lot better than Adobe Illustrator! Not to mention it's free and open-source! Go check it out and play with it! I tried it yesterday and instantly loved it! I'm gonna make some graphics and icons to put on the blog, so stay tuned for upgrades/updates!

Remember I want to know what you guys like and dislike about my blog, but please be nice! I hope everyone comments on this one!

Read full post here!

Friday, October 10, 2008

A Few Intrepid Fixes!

Well, as I've said before I'm running Intrepid Ibex and there are a few bugs going on. I found a few bugs more, but luckily they can be fixed, at least until the big and shiny Final Release comes out!

Ok, first, remember cGmail?...well sadly it doesn't play nice with Intrepid and doesn't want to autostart with every session. But I found a rather easy workaround for this. Simply go to System>Preferences>Sessions and click "+Add" then on the pop-up windows that'll show you just type:

Name: cGmail
Command: cgmailservice
Comment: Yay!!! cGmail works again!!!


And you're good to go! It's worth noting that if you just type "cgmail" on the command box, you'll only get an instance of cGmail's preferences at startup. It's important to put "cgmailservice" (without quotes) on that box!

Another thing about Intrepid is that Compiz comes bundled with it...and I really don't remember if it also did on hardy, but anyways, you'll get all the Compiz goodness but no way to activate and modify plugins and effects...Have no fear! Just open up a Terminal (Applications>Accessories>Terminal) and type this in:

sudo apt-get install fusion-icon


And then add it to Sessions like you did with cGmail, but in the command box type:

fusion-icon


This way you'll get a neat icon on your notification area that lets you modify effects and it'll startup automatically on each session...cool huh?!

And last but not least! If you're having Multimedia trouble like not being able to play DVDs or Mp3 files, just go to Synaptic and search & download:

"ubuntu-restricted-extras", "libdvdread3", and "libdvdcss2".

Or optionally open up a Terminal and type:


sudo apt-get install ubuntu-restricted-extras libdvdread3 libdvdcss2


This is exactly the same thing you should do on Hardy too! Gladly it works like a charm here on Intrepid as well!

Well that's it for today! I hope this helped someone out!

Have a nice weekend!

Read full post here!

There I Went Again!

I just couldn't resist and after long hours of putting everything back together on Hardy, I went crazy and reformatted everything to put Intrepid Ibex BETA back into place! And I must say I LOVE IT!!! But there are still some major bugs...

I'll post the good things first...which will probably be "spoilers" for you guys, but I can't keep all this goodness to myself!

First, I was very happy to know that the updates were fixed and my wireless internet kept working even after updating network-manager (which was the culprit of last time's disaster). Then I went into more detail and was even happier to know that I won't need btnx anymore! My mouse is fully recognized! (Logitech V220) Everything works including horizontal scrolling, which was useless on Hardy unless I had btnx installed. Btnx is still not in the repos so that's why I haven't talked much about it, and I guess I won't. If you want more info about how to install and use btnx check this tutorial made available on Ubuntu Unleashed!

Now, the sad/bad stuff...

Mac4Lin is currently almost completely useless, anything apart from the cursors won't work (at least with the provided Installation Script, I haven't tried it with the old fashioned manual installation way).

Another thing that ticked me off is that Compiz wants to play rough with Intrepid. I tried to activate the Magnifier plugin in Compiz which I've always used, and Compiz unleashed a violent rampage against my video driver and Ubuntu in general and kept kicking me out to the GDM Login screen...I had to fix that manually with a LiveCD and tons of seek&destroy. I had to erase Compiz configurations through the LiveCD and reinstall it once inside Intrepid again.

Anyways, those two are my main concerns right now, but I know they'll be fixed in the final release! So I don't worry too much! There are also a lot of small bugs and crashes everywhere, but it's nothing hard to overcome.

So I hope you guys enjoyed my post and that you keep enjoying Ubuntu Hardy and very soon Intrepid Ibex...coming soon to a computer near you!

Read full post here!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Fresh Install or Update...?

This is a question everyone has made to him/herself while working in Ubuntu. But what should you do when upgrading from one Ubuntu version to another...?

In my personal case I always format everything and make a freash and clean install to avoid conflicts and unwanted data-loss. Anyways this is something everyone should decide personally, but I'll give you some tips and hints on what you should consider before deciding.

First, updating from one version to another of Ubuntu could be dangerous for older computers which might crash on the process. Maybe some package is removed and replaced with something else it shouldn't be, or maybe some configurations are replaced, making some hardware useless until you find what was changed exactly.

Second, making a fresh install requires you to delete all of your data and formatting your HDD, which means you must make a backup of all of your important data and configurations! But this way you can be sure that everything should work nicely and smoothly, obviously after making the necessary fixes and changes like on any Linux Distribution install.

Third, updating takes a whole lot of time because everything should be downloaded and then installed by the Update Manager...which could be done even easier by downloading the .iso for the Ubuntu site and letting the LiveCD work its magic on the installation.

These are at last 3 facts that should be considered by any Ubunturero. In my case (like I mentioned above) I rather make a fresh install and forget about hunting for missing stuff inside the Fylesystem (which can be frustrating and time-consuming). But that's up to you guys! Hope this was helpful!

Read full post here!

My Intrepid Disaster!

Well, as many of you know Ubuntu 8.10 Intrepid Ibex is around the corner and the BETA is already out! So, what about this post's title?... A few days ago I saw the announcement of Ubuntu 8.10 Intrepid Ibex Beta1, and since I can't wait for it to be released I went and downloaded it! Being kinda pushy, I went and formatted my hard drive and installed the BETA...And this is where the story begins...Sunday night, and I was running the Ubuntu 8.10 LiveCD happily, I installed and everything when smooth. During the LiveCD run I saw some awesome changes that were totally worth taking a look at, and I'll mention some of them.

First off, one of the first things I noticed was that Synaptic got a facelift! It now has a neat "Quick Search" textbox on top in which you can input the name of any program you're searching for and Synaptic will run through the database and show you the most relevant entries! The "Search" function is still available and takes a deeper dig into the database.


Then I went to "Hardware Drivers" and I saw that restricted drivers for Atheros Wi-Fi cards (like the one on my Toshiba laptop) have been changed for a native Linux Driver, tested by the Ubuntu developers. Which worked great until the Update Manager jumped on the screen and told me to install 68 updates, which I did, and when I restarted the internet connection was down...so I poked everywhere from my modem to my router and everywhere in the Ubuntu Network Tools...and nothing worked! Seems like one of the updates killed the driver and the connection kept being disconnected. After this huge frustration, and unwilling to check each update one by one, I decided to go back to Hardy until the final release of Intrepid. Right now I'm still fighting with the configurations and packages for my laptop...but it's kinda fun!

Anyways, back to Intrepid. Before the disaster struck, I went through some stuff I use often, and I was very pleased with the speed and reliability of the system. Another change worth noting is Gnome 2.24 which comes with tons of updates and bug-fixes! Works very smoothly!

Nautilus got a few fixes too and they added a Tab system for it, just like the one of Firefox so now you don't need to open a windows for every operation...just open them on tabs! And they also added "Eject" buttons for removable devices on Nautilus' sidebar.

As for everything else, it seemed a whole lot nicer and shiny. I won't spoil any more surprises for you guys, you either have to download the BETA or wait until October 30! Anyways, I hope you enjoy Ubuntu Intrepid as much as I did and will in 23 days!

Read full post here!

Friday, October 3, 2008

A little video to help you relax...

So, the battle keeps going on and on...what's better XP/Vista or Linux Ubuntu...

Let's watch a little video to help us relax and decide which one is better! Just and watch and let me know in the comment section what you think! The videos are not mine by the way! I just copy/pasted them from YouTube!



And another one just in case you haven't decided yet! (This one is narrated!)



So...do you still want Vista on your computer?...

Read full post here!

A little note!

Just the let everyone know, I moved the poll to the end of the page! If I leave it on the sidebar it'll keep getting scrollbars and that sucks! So, scroll down to the bottom and vote!!! ;-)
Read full post here!

Friday, September 26, 2008

Some Digital Storage Tips and Tricks!

Digital Storage...Hard Disk Drives, Flash Drives, CD/DVD+/- RWs, Media Cards (SD, xD, CF, ProDuo...), Flash Memory... and so on. These can go from 64MB to 1TB...in fact the smallest drive you can find right now is 256MB-512MB. Anyways, these devices are our friends when it comes to storing music, pictures, movies, and so on...

But "How can I get the most of my "friends" in Ubuntu?" you might ask. Well, I'll show some neat stuff you can do to get the most out of these devices.

- Remember back in Windows, when you had to defragment your drives every week or so...well now that you've seen the light you DON'T need to do that again ever! In fact, there's not even one defragmenting app in Linux, so bye-bye defrags! And why is this so good? Because you won't waste valuable time that can be used to surf the web and visiting this blog *wink-wink* in stupid defragmentation. So that's one tip for 'ya! Don't bother with defrags anymore, drives in Linux work smarter and a lot faster too! It's great!

- But what if you want to make, delete, resize or change a partition? "Break in the ton of useless and dangerous programs!...WRONG! There's a neat little app in Ubuntu called GParted (which can be easily found and installed in Synaptic and then accessed by going to System>Administration>Partition Editor) that'll cover ALL of you partition needs. **WARNING** This is a very powerful program, and can potentially harm your data if you don't know what you're doing. If you want to work with partitions you MUST backup everything that's important for you. If you resize or move a partition and there's an error in the drive the data can be damaged or lost, so make a backup first! Deleting and changing partition types means you'll delete everything on the partition or the drive, so be careful with this!
This program can also be found in LiveCD mode which is used exactly as the Ubuntu LiveCD, except it'll just have GParted running. You can download it here! The LiveCD is used when you want to delete your Home/Boot partition, or basically the partition Ubuntu is in. This is fairly useless sometimes because the Partitioner you use to install Ubuntu in the Ubuntu LiveCD is GParted...So it's basically a matter of choice.

-What if you want to COMPLETELY DELETE files? Well, you don't need to use any special apps or programs. basically there are lots and lots of programs that'll recover your data, and there's basically no way to totally destroy old data, but since you don't need to delete any files to oblivion you might want to stick to the easy stuff. So to avoid having your Trash folder full, you can simply press "Delete" when holding "Shift" and voila! The files will be deleted and will not go into the trash folder. This is usefull to get rid of files you know you'll never need again, and when this is done, the only way to retrieve the data is to use one of those flashy and expensive DataRecovery Programs. And this is also very useful to save up space.

- Always Unmount your drives! Go to Computer and select the drive, right-click it and press "Unmount Volume", or go to the desktop and look for the device shortcut. Avoid data loss this way!

- If you want to have complete compatibility with Ubuntu, you should format your drives to ext2, ext3, FAT16 or FAT32. EXT partitions are Linux-native and won't work with Windows, so if you have a dual-boot scenario or your drive is shared between Windows and Linux you might want to format it to FAT16/32. Avoid NTFS at all costs! It'll be buggy and very hard to handle with Linux apps. In my personal scenario, I use ext3 on my Hard Drives, and FAT32 on my Flash Drives. I want my Flash Drives to be as multi-platform as possible, while keeping my HDDs to my Ubuntu laptop. I had an external HDD formatted to NTFS and the speed rate of data transfers between my laptop and the HDD was never over 11 mb/s...now with the same drive formatted to Ext3 the speed rate tops the 19mb/s in most cases and most of the times is around 21mb/s...cool, huh?

Well, this were my HDD tricks! I hope you guys liked them! I'll post some more as they come to me! Happy weekend!


Read full post here!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Cool Programs You Might Need v2.0

Here's another list of somewhat common, but very useful programs!

gtk-recordmydesktop (Available in Synaptic) - Neat and tidy utility to record your desktop's activity. This is a great program to show off your Compiz effects to your friends!

VLC (Available in Synaptic) - Great, lightweight and almost perfect media player. I said almost perfect because somehow it reads almost any format on known to man and several known to monkeys! It's great and easy to use!

FFmpeg (Available in Synaptic) - **For best results add the Medibuntu repositories before trying to install ffmpeg. The instructions are pretty easy to follow** This is one of the most comprehensive video format converters found in Linux. This is a command-line tool!

WinFF (Found here!) - This is the Graphical User Interface for FFmpeg which make slife a whole lot easier!

Audacity (Available in Synaptic) - Great music editing program! It's a great option to make ringtones on Linux since most Windows-based ringtone-makers don't work on Wine.

That's it for today! Hope this helps someone!

Read full post here!

Open-Source Firmware For iPods!

Well, this has been debate that has been going on and on for years now. People like iPodLinux, but sadly the webpage has been taken down, it just gives and Apache error and never loads. So I was frustrated one night looking for another open-source firmware and I came across Rockbox. And man, is it a great firmware!

So I got to work almost instantly with the automatic installer/Rockbox Utility they provide on the site, but apparently it doesn't work for Ubuntu 8.04 and iPod Nano (which was the iPod I used for this experiment). So the instructions are pretty easy to follow, all you have to is go here and search for your mp3 player (yep not only iPods) and read the simple instructions. I do have to point out though that when you extract the .rockbox folder you MUST have "hidden folders" as viewable items (once you open up Nautilus and navigate to your mp3 player's root folder (where the rockbox folder should be extracted) press CTRL+H and you should see a .rockbox folder.) It's worth noting that if you fil to this step you'll never see the folder anywhere you extract it to. Also remember that folders that start with a "." are hidden by default, so if you want to see any hidden files or folders you have to enable the view of hidden folders.

Ok, now that you read the instructions and extracted the folder you're ready to go! I won't go into great detail on how to install it because the manual is pretty self-explanatory, so there's no need to reinvent the wheel. The only part of the manual that it's blurry is the fact that the extracted Rockbox folder is hidden and I already cleared that out.

I installed it on my 1st gen iPod Nano and it worked great! Not a problem in sight! In fact it sounds a whole lot better now, and the shuffle setting is a lot more shuffly...no more repeated songs over and over on the same playlist. And incredible as it may sound, the battery lasts longer than with the Apple Firmware. So it IS a good firmware =).

Note: There's still no support for newer iPod models or iPhones. For a list of current supported devices click here!

Enjoy!

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Sunday, September 21, 2008

Pimp My Ubuntu!

Hey guys! I know that many of you are wanting to have custom wallpapers and themes on your newly discovered Ubuntu desktop. Well, I have great news for you! There's a great webpage called Gnome-Look.org which is one of the greatest places to find themes, wallpapers, GDM themes, Splash screens, desklets, icons, mouse cursors, sounds and everything else you might want to use for pimpin' out your Gnome desktop in Ubuntu!

Go check it out! It's a great place to find Gnome goodies! And the best part is that it's free! And it's updated very often! So you'll have new stuff almost every day!

Let me know what you think!
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Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Fundamental Differences v2.0

As I promised, Fundamental Differences v2.0 is here! Ok now, I'll be talking a little bit about the less known differences between Ubuntu and Windows (any version in this case).

  • Free Professional Programs - Huh?! YES! Professional, as I stated on an earlier post, there are open-source programs that can deliver results as good as any $500-$2,000 program. People are scared of Open-Source , but as I said before, as long as you're careful about where you download your programs, Open-Source can be your friend! I call him OSsie ... LOL!
  • Frequent Bug Fixes And Updates- "Ha-Ha! Windows has Automatic Update!" So?...Ubuntu has UpdateManager which is responsible for automatically notifying you, downloading and installing ALL programs installed by/through Synaptic...TAKE THAT MICROSOFT! And the best part is that these updates and fixes are released almost daily!
  • Schedules Releases - "OMG Windows has new releases too!" ... Wrong! People that know computers have come to learn that Microsoft just puts new crap on their old crap. They keep adding "features" to the same OS we've known and hated since 1995 (Windows 3.1 and lower were kinda different programming-wise). Since Windows 95 we've been buying "new Windows" versions, which are everything but new. Vista added a bunch of new stupidities that ate half the RAM and VideoRAM in utter dumbness. Ubuntu has new releases and versions every six months. Granted it looks almost the same every new release...but the kernel is constantly being devloped and updated, unlike Windows.
  • Minimal System Requirements - Wanna see sparks and flames fly? Try to run Vista on a 500mhz processor with 64mb of RAM, it won't even let you start to install it. Ok, so people buy new PCs every year, but not everyone can. Some people only have older PCs which are enough for them. Ubuntu has a very low requirement to be ran in a desktop or laptop, and even the Recommended requirements are low in comparison with Vista's whopping 1.5Ghz processor, 1GB RAM, and 138mb video card "minimum requirements".
Ok I'm gonna end this post here before I start to hate Windows even more! ;-D!!!
Have fun reading! And I apologize if someone is offended by my sincerity about Windows-hatred!

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We're Almost There!

Yeah! Ubuntu 8.10 Intrepid Ibex is near! Let me explain a little about the version numbers first.

Linux Ubuntu is scheduled to have a new release every six months. The first Ubuntu version was 4.10 in October 20, 2004...what does this mean?...

The first number means the year of the release, and the second number means the month of the release. And since Ubuntu is released every six months you won't see anything besides X.04 (meaning April) or X.10 (meaning October).

Ok! Now we know that Ubuntu 8.10 means the second release of the year 2008, or the October 2008 release! And I CAN'T WAIT!!! This new release promises to be one awesome improvement over 8.04! It has...........oh well, I'm gonna let the pro developers tell you the news about Ubuntu 8.10 Intrepid Ibex! Looks cool, huh?

The greatest thing about Ubuntu is that unlike Windows, everytime it gets a new release/version, it's almost completely sure to say it will work better than the last version! Like XP to Vista upgrades, right?...WRONG! ;-)

Sometimes there are a few bugs and disturbances that might arise with a new release on certain computers, but it's never something impossible to overcome! So with a little reading and brain-power, as well as the necessary fixes the new release will work better than the last one!

Now, Intrepid Ibex looks awesome and all, but it's still in Alpha 5 state...so it's not stable nor recommended to be used on "non-developer" computers. If you want to use Ubuntu on the day-to-day basis wait for the final release, scheduled for October 30, 2008!

And if you're reading this and wondering what do you need to run Ubuntu, you'll find this System Requirements table very handy!


Desktops & Laptops
Servers
Required Recommended
Processor
300 MHz(x86) 700 MHz(x86) 300 MHz (x86)
Memory
64 MB 384 MB* 64 MB
Hard Drive Capacity
4 GB 8 GB 500 MB
Video Card
VGA @ 640x480 VGA @ 1024×768 VGA @ 640×480

*This table can be found in Wikipedia.
**Note: Although this table says "(x86)", 64-bit Ubuntu is also available. But I haven't used it yet.

Once you meet the minimum requirements you'll be good to go! But the "Recommended" System Requirements are even better of course! Keep in mind that Ubuntu might run ok, but some programs have their own System Requirements and might need more out of your computer.

So, we learned a few new things, haven't we? I bet you can't wait for October 30 either! I'm very excited about this new release and I hope for it to be the best so far!

Stay tuned!!!

Read full post here!