Friday, April 10, 2009


After I have been running WinXP inside Vbox for sometime now there have been several other advantages.
1. 'Efax' does not support linux. There is something in efax that is tied up with the IE framework.
2. Remote login to work as the Juniper client at work doesn't support a linux login client.
3. iTunes as mentioned below.


I recently got the iPhone 3G but unfortunately Amarok didn't support it so I had to find a iTunes workaround. Wine didn't look like it would do it either so my only option was go through a Win installation.
There was an iso of WinXP which I had from long back and so I got VirtualBox running and and booted Win up within a 5gig virtual paritition. There were lots of issues initially with initial Vbox not supporting USB at all but got around them by getting the latest debpkg (Thanks Alok) and applying the 'Apple Inc' USB filter. Now everything has worked without any issues so far. Am only waiting for the latest firmware update from Apple 3.0 to see if this was the most foolproof situation.


Having a large HDD with a ton of movies on it I wanted something that would have provided a better choice than using the Svideo connector to play movies on the TV.
This is where mediatomb came in. Its basically a mediaserver to host anything and stream it thru wifi to the another device which recognises media servers (PS3 in my case). Had some discussions with Dhake around this and now that everything is up and running, can browse through the entire video library more effeciently than even blockbuster/family video.
I still have retained my membership at blockbuster though as I rent games from them.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

The Switch

One of the ways to make a windows user switch over to using Linux is by letting him just look at the feel of the interface. Introducing someone to linux and presenting them with a terminal to work on directly will provide a very intimidating view of linux.

For most Windows users the Mac represents one of the best user interfaces they have seen. However they do not make a switch to the Mac as there is still tons of software which isn't fully compatible with it. I been fortunate enough to use a Mac during my research assistantship days in Rolla. The lab only had Mac's to work on. I had never worked on a Mac before and used to experiment quite a bit with it. The GUI for the Mac was just too good. It was intuitive to such an extent that a kid could use it without any problems. However there was still something missing. The number of apps for Windows was huge compared to the Mac and also gaming hadn't taken off for the Mac. (Yes, dual boot may be the solution but then that defeats the whole purpose of taking a Mac.)

I had tinkered a bit with the KDE and GNOME desktop environments for Linux and had found them to be really easy to use. Also I was quite confident that this time around was the right time to make the switch as after this I probably wouldn't have got the patience or the time to experiment with Ubuntu.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Open forum

The best thing about being into linux is that since its based on the free movement there are tons and tons of people to help out there. While working with linux in India wasn't always the best way to get things done as wifi access still has time to catchup over there.

In the US its a totally different scene though as whenever you encounter a problem or want some specific function to do you can just jump online into a forum and check it out over there because chances are that you may not be the only one having a query. This is the help that no windows manual or helpdesk can ever provide. You have average people, newbies helping each other out.

Since my days with Mandrake and Fedora I knew that online forums were the sort of place where one would get pretty much everything to be asked for. So I had absolutely no qualms about making my switch to Linux from Windows. The support system made the difference.

Friday, May 2, 2008


I recently got myself a dell preloaded with ubuntu (gutsy gibbon) instead of windows (vista,xp). (Why? because I didn't want to spend on something that I could have got a pirated copy off and also because I had heard some good things about these ubuntu-d dell systems.)

My previous experience with Linux has been Mandrake and Fedora Core 2. (For those who are wondering now what am talking about, Mandrake and Fedora are Linux distributions.) Ubuntu was totally new to me and I have been using it for the past week now. It has been quite an experience using Ubuntu and I doubt that I'll be using Windows as my main OS anytime in the future now. I have got almost all the stuff that I would need running on Ubuntu.

All I'll say in the end is if you have the patience then Linux is the way to go. Everything one may need is out there, you just need to wade through it a bit.