Monday, October 17, 2005

Ku-bun-tu, My Lord, Ku-bun-tu...

Yee-ha! Got Kubuntu Linux up and running this weekend, and did away with three years of Mandrake /Mandriva Linux. I probably should have been doing my 3,500 word essay for Management Theory, but what ya gonna do...

For those not in the know, Kubuntu is part of the Ubuntu Linux project, currently storming the world. Started in South Africa, Ubuntu is giving many new users their first taste of Linux goodness. It is a breeze to set up - so much so that it's release codename is 'Breezy Badger'. I had the choice between moving to Slackware (ultimate control, but unwieldy and arcane) or one of the newer lightweight distro's like Yoper, Xandros and Ubuntu. And given that I needed to be able to type up a report on my fully functioning computer this week, I chose to take the path of least resistance.

I must admit, I was sceptical at first. You see, Mandrake was derived from Red Hat Linux, which had a certain way of doing things that I liked. The filesystem layout was logical, and fairly standard. Ubuntu and Kubuntu, on the other hand are based on Debian, another popular distro, but one which uses a different filesystem structure. It uses a different packaging system, too. However, Ubuntu and Kubuntu have excellent package managers which take care of everything for you, including updates and upgrades to the operating system itself. So there's no need to stress.
No more beating your head against the screen because gcc can't find your lib-xyz!

Also available are the 'Live' discs. These are bootable CD-ROMs that allow you to 'try on' Ubuntu or Kubuntu without actually having to commit and install them - no risk, no obligation.
As many of you will know, I'm no fan of Microsoft and their monopolistic attitude. Now would be the ideal time to give Linux a try. If you go to the Ubuntu web site mentioned above, they will even send you a copy of both the install and live versions for free! I refer to an earlier post, and leave you with this question:

Will you be shelling out the likely NZ$700 or so for Windows Vista upon its release?

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Artful mess

Mess is a consequence of creative thinking. That's my story and I'm sticking to it. My room looks like it's been ransacked by a horde of delinquents. I know where everything is though: Under a pile of stuff.

Got the Manic Street Preachers' most recent album "Lifeblood" on sale, having heard only "The Love of Richard Nixon". Some great songs on there, definitely worth a look-in.