now it really works

While I said quite early on that I had Ubuntu Feisty running in 64-bit, it wasn’t until today I got things really how I liked it. My earlier Perl problem was due to a broken gcc setup; all is happy now, and all the modules I’ve ever used are built and running as expected.

The one thing I’ll probably never get going is Citrix Metaframe presentation client. There’s no AMD64 package for it. I’m hardly heartbroken, as I still have two machines on which it runs just fine.

that was (fairly) easy

Upgraded Ubuntu from Dapper Drake to Edgy Eft last night … and it was surprisingly painless. Sure, it took all night to download, and it did require me to fiddle about using the wireless access point as an ersatz eth0 to get ndiswrapper happy, but I’m not complaining.

I’m still not running in 64 bit though, as I don’t know if there are drivers for some of my cards in AMD64. It’s not a priority, though — everything’s adequately fast as is.


I’ve finally re-resuscitated the Thinkpad T21 into a basement server. Quiet it isn’t (its fan cooler and hard drive are loud), but it just works. It used to run OpenBSD, but now it’s running Ubuntu Server. I really tried to like OpenBSD, but it was a bit too spartan for my tastes.

back to 32-bit

I think I’ll have to install Ubuntu for i386 on the Sempron box, as too many hardware things don’t work. At the moment, I’m stuck with unaccelerated graphics and wired etherent; the via graphics driver isn’t yet 64-bit clean, and none of my wireless adaptors have 64-bit drivers, either.

Maybe at the next release I’ll go 64-bit.

the computer does work

Picked up the new computer from Canada Computers yesterday. High-end it isn’t, but it’s more than adequate. It’s an AMD Sempron 3000+ (on a Foxconn K8M890M2MA-RS2H motherboard), with 1GB RAM, 80GB SATA disk and a DVD±RW drive. There was change out of $400, including tax.

It’s running Ubuntu for AMD64. While there are a few things I don’t have configured, it was all installed in under an hour. It reminds me a bit of OS X. There’s one thing it does better than the Mac; it knows about duplex printers, and assumes you want to be able to print duplex. Under OS X, you have to choose two-sided every time you print. Thanks to Davey for originally putting me on to Ubuntu. My life’s too short to mess with linux configs.

Now I need to move the old hard drive over as a spare, and fit the various cards from the old machine.

it lives … IT LIVES!!!

So my mini-ITX box arrived yesterday. Catherine was out this evening, so I set to building it. Can’t be too hard, I thought …

That was at about 19:30. You wouldn’t believe how hard it is to fit all the gubbins a computer needs into a box about half the size of a shoebox. It didn’t help that the Travla C138‘s case fan cable is too short to reach the SP 13000‘s fan connector. It also didn’t help that the DVD adaptor’s audio cable doesn’t look like anything I’ve seen (or have to hand). And it really, really doesn’t help that the volume of internal cables in the box is only very slightly less than the total volume of the case itself; judicious squtcha, squtcha‘ing on the ATA cables was required to get everything in. I can tell you, there’s not an earthly chance of getting a PCI card in there, unless it’s a very tiny one that doesn’t mind getting bent out of shape.

With much apprehension, I turned the system on, and stuck the Ubuntu liveCD in. Wouldn’t you know, it all booted fine:

ubuntu liveCD running on my new Mini-ITX

Sure, the resolution wasn’t great, and the timezone’s wrong, but I was expecting horrible POST feeping at best. All the hardware was found correctly, and the screenshot was transferred by USB key, which automounted to the desktop. Phew!

Thanks to Davey Laporte for the Ubuntu CD. It certainly saved my soy-bacon.