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Linux Mint 14 KDE Release Candidate on Gateway NV79 laptop

My old Compaq desktop recently decided that Microsoft Vista was no longer welcome. I mean, Vista just wouldn’t boot. Linux booted fine, but no amount of reinstalls, tweaks, etc. would get Vista going. I needed Vista only for the purpose of running a Microsoft Access database. So, I decided that this was as good of an excuse as I was going to get for buying myself a decent laptop.

I thought I would try to get something with Intel based cpu and graphics, since everything I currently used had older Nvidia graphics, and AMD processors. I just wanted to see how Linux and Intel get along. I should have studied up on things a bit more before buying!

I purchased a used Gateway NV79 from Ebay, with Intel i5 cpu, and ATI Mobility Radeon HD graphics. Windows 7 works beautifully, Linux, not so much…

I tried the following Linux distributions…

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Linux Mint 14 64bit Cinnamon: no backlight on monitor after bootup

Siduction 12.2.0 -rc2 64 bit: no backlight on monitor after bootup

OpenSuse 12.2 rc 64 bit: no backlight on monitor after bootup

Antix 12: monitor backlight worked, but wireless network wouldn’t.

Rosa 2012 64 bit: no backlight on monitor after bootup

Kubuntu 13.04 alpha 1 64 bit: no backlight on monitor after bootup

Fedora 18 beta 64 bit: no backlight on monitor after bootup

Chakra 2012.12 64 bit: don’t remember for sure, but I think the monitor worked, but the wireless didn’t.

And FINALLY… I discovered the download for the upcoming Linux Mint 14 KDE version, and… everything works, once it is fully installed. The laptop monitor backlight did NOT work while running from the live-dvd, meaning that I had to shine a flashlight on the monitor to see what was going on during installation. That’s a little tricky… because it’s easy to lose track of your cursor… but once installation was complete, and I rebooted from the hard drive, everything works beautifully. Well… as long as I don’t close the laptop lid. Then the backlight goes off, and I have to get the flashlight and log out of the desktop and log in again, and the backlight comes back on. (Edit, 2/28/13: I’ve since discovered that Ctrl>Alt>backspace, which logs out of KDE, will bring the backlight back on, and allow me to log in and get to work. I am still using this installation, and am quite happy with it, and with the new laptop!)

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Posted by on December 15, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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Promises, Promises: Hebrews 10, 11, 12

I very much enjoyed sharing this talk earlier this evening with our Wednesday night Bible study group. Promises, Promises: Hebrews 10, 11, 12

 
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Posted by on October 31, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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Stick-to-it-iveness

Created this on http://www.bighugelabs.com, from my daughter’s octo-pic from Florida Aquarium.

stick-to-it-iveness

Stick-to-it-iveness (Any old sucker can quit!)

 
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Posted by on October 25, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

Double Adirondack chairs

Beautiful set of double Adirondack chairs!

I saw these at the Bok Tower Gardens “Boktoberfest” this morning. Very cool! “Only” $450! Time to fire up Sketchup and draw up some plans…

 
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Posted by on October 20, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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A new Linux convert…

I recently had the pleasure of helping an older friend set up his laptop with Linux Mint 13. He experienced some terrible virus problems with Windows XP, and was very eager for whatever I could do to prevent that from ever happening again. It took quite a little while to get him going on the new system, mainly due to his badly ingrained habits and poor understanding of good practices, but now that he’s been using it for a month or so, he’s humming along quite happily! If I can convince him that he no longer needs to keep PAYING for Juno email, I’ll consider it “mission accomplished.”

 
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Posted by on September 27, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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Linking in Linux: a real timesaver!

I recently discovered a Linux feature that had escaped my notice for nearly a decade: the use of links.

While installing a new OS (Bodhi 1.2, I think it was), I was wishing for a way to keep my data safe on a separate partition while still having easy access to it from within my new installation. I knew there must be a way. I decided to play around with linking.

First I learned the hard way. For example, if I wanted my new OS to link to my .mozilla profile on the data partition, I would first remove the new OS’s /home/les/.mozilla file, (rm /home/les/.mozilla), and then create the link like this: ln -s /home/les/.mozilla /path-to-my-existing-.mozilla-profile. When I did this, to my utter amazement, Firefox opened up on my brand new OS with all my bookmarks, history, personas, etc.! Next I tried the same with /home/les/.thunderbird, and guess what… it brought in all my mail, account setups, etc. Now I was excited!

Finally, I discovered the easy way to do this. Normally I use KDE’s Dolphin filemanager, and I set it up with the split window option like so:

My Dolphin setupI navigate the left pane to my new OS’s /home/username folder. I navigate the right pane to my /home/username folder on the partition that contains my data. Then on the left pane I delete the empty folders that I won’t be needing, for example, Documents. Then in the right pane, I select the Documents folder and drag it to the left pane. I am then given the options “Move here/Copy here/Link here.” I select “Link here,” and it creates a link to the Documents folder on my Data partition! No more waiting while thousands of documents are copied to the new OS! This has worked like a charm, and even though it exposes the lack of depth in my Linux geekiness, I just had to share it. Perhaps someone else will be spared the multiple hours of copying files that I have wasted in the last decade!

 
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Posted by on September 26, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

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