Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Ubuntu pt 3 : The VNC bug

There seems to be a VNC bug. My keyboard was garbled. eg when I type asdf I get abfs.

There is a hack to fix it located @

Look for what the poster wjs writes.

Ubuntu part 2

Ok in this session Im going to configure essential services that I need. This includes
  1. Firestarter - a firewall
  2. ssh/scp - remote sessions and remote file transfer
  3. svn for remote computers
  4. basic http server
1) Firestarter. I already installed it, I want 1114 and 1115 for Azureus. I want 80 for webserver, 22 for SSH. 443 because I intend on putting https sometime soon. All done with an easy GUI.

2) ssh/scp. Ready from startup

3) K, I have to install svn server first. Use synaptic for subversion and subversion-tools... check, copy in a tgz I created from my old repo and do a checkout on the code... check. I have to fool around with svnserve.
Ok I created an unpriveledged user called svn and a group called svn. added my normal uname to the group and changed permissions on the repositories to 'chmod g+rx -R *' I can checkout fine, and cannot commit which my normal user... which is what I wanted

Now I want to figure out how I can submit as the svn user..... --username doesn't work like I thought. Ok... the commit plan is to co as svn 'svn svn+ssh://svn@ change' then svn diff > patch.txt the changed work, then patch -p0 < patch.txt... after that I can commit from the change repo :)

Next step is to allow anonymous access.... inside each repo is a conf/svnserve.conf file... add the line anon-access = read.

4) Basic Http server is ready from install :)

Ubuntu 8.04

My friend Cesar just asked me to continue blogging... right now Im just setting up my PCs, but in order to accommodate him, I may as well blog about what I am doing. Seeing as its Open Source stuff, I even get to make my way onto the SeneBlog (Chris Tyler's Seneca Planet).

Before I get started, let me make a plea to someone like Andrew Smith, or Cesar, or perhaps even myself to set up a Planet for the Seneca Alumni. I would like to read my friends blogs even if they are no longer specifically writing about Open Source stuff. Another plea to Andrew specifically is to keep cranking out the blog postings... I really love it when you have a new article. Grumble Grumble is my fave.

Anyway, onto installing Ubuntu 8.04. Dont be alarmed by the lack of grammar in the next few paragraphs, I write in my patented "stream of thought" method which needs no grammar.
I pop in the disk and get on my way... Lets check the CD to make sure there aren't any errors... OOPS 22 files are in error... lets try again -> still 22. Ok lets download a new iso (FYI: i got the first one via bittorrent... second one via http) and check that... 0 errors. Great. Lets begin the install

I speak English, I live in Ottawa... Oh Noes Ottawa isn't a city recognized by the Ubuntu installer... grumble:( Ok I guess I'll say I live in Montreal, its only 2h away.

Guided-use entire disk for my partition... erase that nasty Windows XP install. Set up my account details, and let the installer do its magic. Im actually surprised I didn't get to say which packages I wanted, but whatever.

20 minutes later... (while playing NINs new free online single Discipline)

Alright, first boot, lets see how this goes. Uname,Pword.... Hmmm something funny, the screen is at the wrong resolution. A "glxinfo | grep render" shows that direct rendering is not enabled (I have a 7600GS Nvidia card on this machine). A few seconds later a pop-up shows on my screen saying something about restricted drivers... click the button enter the password for sudo and chose to enable the nvidia card in an easy to use GUI. Machine is dling the driver, installing, and requires a reboot. After the boot the resolution is nice and glxinfo shows direct rendering, glxgears @ initial window size shows ~3000fps woohooo!

Alright, now for installing the software I want. Open up Synaptic, lets install
  • Sun Java JDK6
  • Azureus for sailing the seven seas (yarr!)
  • flashplugin-nonfree (the real adobe)
  • doxygen
  • apache2
  • php5
  • mysql-client & mysql-server
  • openssh-server
  • firestarter
  • g++
In total, there is 306MB of data to download... this may take a while. While its downloading, lets surf the Google Images for a nice background. Lookiee here, FF3.05b. Ok that was quicker than I expected. Lets go for some Gnome themes from GlossyP is my fave, so lets install that. For login Managers I picked the Brasillinux Eye, the Gnome Zen, Devils Candy and Falling Angel (my all time fave), put them on rotate so I have a nice variety whenever I use this machine. Still 5min left for my application installs.

And there you have it... a nicely set up Ubuntu Machine in < 1.5h. Stay tuned to part2 where I configure different things:)

Thursday, April 24, 2008

The Move

So we loaded up the truck and moved to Beverley... Ottawa that is. Piles of Snow, Political Stars.

I've been packing and packing, and finally I've moved in to my new Condo... its f'ing sweet. A large living room, huge bedroom with walk-in closet, 2 bathrooms (one is only toilet & sink... other has bath/shower), a solarium (maybe I grow things soon?), and an office... yes I have a freaking office dude!

Hardwood floors all around, which means I have to put little felt things on all my furnature. Speaking of furniture...

I have a new couch, loveseat, and a big fluffy chair, and a 50" TV (1080i... not P) all total $2800. It was a good price for having only 2 hours to shop (had to shop for furnature on the weekend didn't have much time). I have a big Queensized bed too.

My other furniture such as the desk, the sectional, my dresser etc should be coming really really soon, once its here I will be able to complete my move:)

Good Times in the O-town.... Ohh yeah Bell Express View too -- GO HABS GO.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Last Exam

Its all over but the crying. Time to move!

Friday, April 11, 2008

Schools out forever

A forgiveness ... this post isn't specifically about Open Source (although mandrake and gentoo are two major actors in my tale)... i just know that my Open Source label will provide me with an audience.

Today was my last day of class -- ever. I'm remarkably sad. I may yet return to school someday, but the kindergarten -> Job lifecycle is complete for me.

This tale is about my experience with Seneca College.

I've learned a great deal with Seneca. C++, OOP, .NET, UML, DirectX, Open Source, how to integrate yourself into a business, what business wants, etc. While I'm not sure how much was curriculum, and how much was personal interest, I am definitely a programmer able to enter the work world and be productive because of the guidence Seneca has given me. Even if Seneca's curriculum did not directly educate me on all matters (eg. Seneca is in no way responsible for me knowing how to install various Linux distros on machines... perhaps the curriculum should look into this... perhaps the various install-fests are all that is needed) it certainly provided me with a good environment in which to foster my self interest.

I'm going to answer questions in this post which I should have spoken up @ a meeting I had with my schools chair & a government deputy minister.

Why did I come to Seneca all those years ago? How come I pursued a degree at a community college rather than somewhere like the UofT?

1) After working at a deposit broker for 2 years doing SQL-like procedural code, I realized how really little I understood about computers -- although I claimed to know a lot. I had just been experimenting with Mandrake Linux and Gentoo and found it so nifty... I could run a webserver on my own machine awesome!!! I could compile my own hardware kernEL AWESOME!!!

2) I needed out of my hometown. I lived with my parents in a big old country house, and life was pretty sweet. My girlfriend had a car and would come pick me up, then give me armloads of candy and we had a lot of fun. but I still needed out. I needed my own life and my own things and I was not willing to settle.

3) I knew that a University would creditialize me better, but I wanted to learn real practical things. I was not really interested in my employability, rather than what cool computer things I could do for myself. eg I want to make video games, just not necessarily for a living (although it would certainly be cool). I knew Seneca to be the best college in 'learning cool things.' The UofT degree certainly turns more heads than Seneca... but I wanted the Seneca curriculum (sans business classes)

4) One Profs website claimed he hated haircuts... I hate haircuts too, obviously I am meant for this school.

Now, there was a little bit of vanity in wanting a Degree rather than a Diploma (BSD is rather similar to the diploma offerings from Seneca... you can think of the BSD as 25% harder/longer than the CPA specialization), but I also knew that I would be more employable with the BSD.

To be honest, Im not sure if I should have. Certainly the extra difficulty brought out something more in me, and I therefore learned with more intensity... but some of the subjects of the BSD are just plain uninteresting to me. For example, I really dont care about my business classes, other than the base fundamentals, I dont particularly want a job where those skills are needed. The business classes are a major factor in BSD differentiating itself from CPA though. Perhaps I would have been happier to drop these business classes and have a more enjoyable club life. I had far too much homework for the linux club which is just hanging out with other nerds who also like linux... the social aspect would have been nice, but I've only seen my highschool buddies a double handful of times over the past 4 years I was in Toronto :( .

However I am surely making more money in the future... which is important to me NOW at the end of the journey than it was at the beginning ... because of BSD.

Thats why I came to Seneca. It seems to have been a good choice.

Anywho, I want to give a thank you to my Profs, McIntyre, Letterio, Leung, Samuel, Boychuk, Czegels, Lennon, Cullen, Adames, Norman, Onzekizologlu, Anastasiade, Roy.

I specifically want to single out three Profs

Szalwinski: For having a truely heroic work ethic, and providing a role-model image for how to get work done.

Weaver: For giving me a really, really cool job, and introducing me to mind-blowing C concepts. Allowing me to flourish as a programmer. For hating haircuts.

Humphrey: For showing me the open source way. For letting me choose between safety and dreams... twice.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Mac Keyboard Layout: Just a rambling.

Went to school today without my laptop, and I used the schools desktops in Windows.

Dang I wish there was some way of converting a windows machine keyboard layout into mac keyboard layout.

If you dont know Apple uses the "cmd key" (labeled with the apple logo... similar to the key labeled with the windows logo on a normal keyboard) for pretty much everything, and for everything that doesn't use the cmd key, you can use a program like QuickSilver or Butler to do a user defined mapping.

I use these commands regularly
Cmd+Q - Quit the Appliciation
Cmd+W - Quit the current user interface/tab (doesn't close the application, but closes the GUI your currently looking at)
Cmd+F - Find (in most apps)
Cmd+T - new tab
Cmd+Alt+Right/Left - move tabs in Firefox
Cmd+Shift+[/] - move tabs in (Dang this should be exact same as FF... I should Quicksilver this ... oh well Im too lazy to switch and I've memorized the motion already)
Cmd+N - New thing (like new document in Pages, or New Window in FF)
Cmd+E - QUICKSILVER - New Finder
and so on...

Most importantly, Cmd+c/Cmd+x/Cmd+v/Cmd+s for copy/cut/paste/save!

Anyway... I like the mac keyboard layout, its superior to the windows one I think... but its hard to switch back to Windows. I just wanted to complain!