Hannah Montana Linux review

By popular demand, I downloaded, installed, and worked with the new Hannah Montana Linux distribution, and decided to post a review of this product, as well as some tips and tricks on how to get the most out of this niche Linux distro.

To aid the reader in following this review visually, I have taken numerous screenshots and included them here.

Downloading

I was able to download the ISO for HMLinux from the Sourceforge homepage of it. I downloaded “v2″ of it, using Bittorrent. It downloaded quite rapidly, only taking 15 minutes or so, leading me to believe that it is well-seeded as a torrent.

The ISO is a combination LiveCD and installation CD. I think it’s nice when distro developers/packagers do this, as it gives one the chance to see if the distro is going to work on one’s hardware simply by booting from the CD, and making that determination BEFORE one actually has to install anything to the hard drive.

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Fluxbox on Ubuntu: two more problems, two more solutions

Continuing with my attempt to document the problems I’ve run into running Fluxbox on top of Ubuntu 9.04 and their solutions, I figured I’d present two more things I’ve encountered and resolved since the other day’s rather annoying touchpad fiasco.

These two were both relatively little things, but they’re the kind of things that tend to drive me nuts. The first was a problem with the screen automatically locking (using Xscreensaver‘s built-in lock function — even though I had all such functions disabled), and the second was an issue with sound being muted and the master volume being set to 0% every single time I rebooted — necessitating my manually unmuting it and raising the volume if I wanted sound every day.

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How to disable the touchpad in Ubuntu

As I had mentioned in yesterday’s post about configuring Fluxbox on Ubuntu 9.04 on my old Toshiba laptop, I had one nagging issue I couldn’t figure out, namely the rather simple fact that the touchpad wouldn’t stay disabled.

I know this isn’t a big deal for most people, but for me it’s a rather vexing one, and it bothered me that I had to manually do so every single time I logged in.

So this afternoon I took a deep breath, did some more Google searching on the subject, and arrived at an overly-complex (but doable) solution.
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Now using Fluxbox on Ubuntu 9.04

Even though the jury’s still out on my opinion of Ubuntu 9.04 on my laptop, I finally had enough of GNOME today and configured Fluxbox on it and set it as my default window manager.

I’m running into some weirdness with that even, however, which may color my opinion of Ubuntu as a result… things that I’m not accustomed to fighting with when using Fluxbox.

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The most useful Linux resource on the web

When I first started using Linux, I came to the table with a grounding in old command line Unix, and a few solid years under my belt managing a couple of Ultrix boxes where I used to work.

So I knew the basic set of commands, the Bourne Shell (or the basics of it, at least), and the general architecture the more Unix-like distros follow.

However, when I started using Linux, I was trying something well outside of my experience and knowledge: I was using it as a desktop OS.

Needless to say, I spent a lot of time searching the internet every time I had a problem or a question. In all that searching, I came to find one particular locale that always seemed to have the answers I was looking for.

It was called (and still is) LinuxQuestions.org. LQ is a massive forum, with subforums for the more popular distributions, and (in my experience) a very friendly, welcoming atmosphere for Linux users of all experience levels.

I know that in the fend-for-yourself world of Linux and open source software it can be kind of lonely out in the cold when you just CAN’T get whatever that is you’re working on to just WORK, damn it!

Do what I do. I go to LinuxQuestions.org and use their search page, and 9 times out of 10 I find what I’m looking for without even having to post my question.

So I think it’s worth giving the community at LQ some love, because they have been an invaluable resource for me in my years of using Linux at my primary desktop operating system, and I’m sure they can be for you too.

Will ARM processors be competitive?

I just ran across this blurb about an ARM-processor based netbook and it got me thinking.

I’ve been skeptical of ARM-based netbooks. While lauded for their low power consumption and versatility, because they’re mostly a PDA/cell phone/router type of CPU, I have trouble envisioning an ARM netbook as being very comparable in performance to one running, say, an Intel Atom.
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My initial thoughts on Google Chrome OS

Last week, as a big surprise to some, but as a long-expected move to others Google announced that they would be releasing their own operating system.

There has been a lot of buzz in the past few days as a result, mostly about netbooks, about Microsoft, and (not surprisingly) about Linux.

It’s too early, I think, to be making a huge deal out of this. Let’s step back a bit and take a look at the situation.

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