Tuesday, February 06, 2007


Well, I decided to give PCLinuxOS 2007 Test Release 1 a shot. (I've been running PCLOS 0.93a, the current (previous) release.) Texstar decided to give us a Test Release (often knows as "Release Candidate 1") since the changes between 0.93 and 0.94/2007 were so great.

I had intended to stick with 0.93a until 2007-Final was released, but everything I was reading looked so good. I knew there were some bugs, but I decided to take the plunge, anyway. And I'm glad I did! The live-CD booted up fine, and everything I played with seemed to work okay, so I hit the "Install" button.Now even my poor old system is running Beryl, with 3D effects as good as, or better than, anything found in MS-Vista. I've got cutting-edge versions of my favorite software, and everything "just works". The PCLOS Beautification Project has worked wonders, unifying icons, splashes, and the like with a clean "PCLinuxOS" theme.

I love this system, and the final release can only get better!

Saturday, January 27, 2007

It's Official!

I am now a 1Lt, USAF (Retired).

I went down to the Base Personnel Office (or whatever the USAF calls it these days) yesterday, and got my new ID card, and went to the vehicle registration office and got a new officer's decal for my car.

Even though it actually took effect last fall, I hadn't bothered to get in to take care of the paperwork. After all, who cares what my ID says as long as I am paid correctly. ;-)

Friday, January 26, 2007

Windows Vista: Wow

Wow - It costs HOW MUCH???

Wow - Look at those hardware requirements!

Wow - It won't let me make a remix CD of my own CDs!

Wow - It won't let me convert my DVDs to play on my iPod!

Wow - What a piece of crap!

(You didn't expect me to LIKE Vista, did you?)

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Bye-bye, Mandriva ...

Okay. One of the reasons I didn't post for a while there was that I was busy looking for a new Linux distro to use. Those who know me know I've been sold on Mandrake/Mandriva since it first forked from RedHat. Mandrake 7.2 was the version that convinced me that Linux was a serious operating system. I've still got my original boxed set for Mandrake 8.1. I installed 9.0, 9.1, 9.2. All wonderful. Mandrake 10.0 is the distro that convinced me that I didn't need MS anymore. Madnrake 10.1 and 10.2 didn't disappoint. Mandriva 2005LE, the first version after the merger with Conectiva, was excellent. (Yeah, it was 10.2 repackaged, but still.) I installed Mandriva 2006, and was deleriously happy. Then, in the fall of 2006, I installed their latest effort: Mandriva 2007 Powerpack.

It had a lot of pretty eye-candy. Lots of nice bells and whistles. The "starry-eyed penguin" of 2006 was thankfully gone, and a nice, professional-looking background was the default. But after the initial euphoria wore off, I noticed niggling little problems. Even after I installed the devel sources, I had trouble compiling things. KVirc, for instance, took a lot of tweaking to get right, that I hadn't had to do in 2006. lm_sensors didn't want to install correctly, and sensors-detect didn't seem to work right. A variety of small, niggling problems that made me less than happy. So I started on a quest.

I had always kept a spare partition available for testing other distros. Now it got a workout. I tried Suse. I tried Fedora. I tried Mepsi, the Ubuntu family, Debian. I even dabbled with Gentoo, and Slackware. But none of them gave me that nice, comfortable feeling I had always gotten from Mandrake.

About ready to give up, I remembered a young man, nicknamed Texstar, who had been one of my favorite Mandrake "extras" developers. His rpms were considered to be second to none, and were always as good as, if not better than, the official repositories. He had forked his own distro from Mandrake 9. PCLinuxOS. An unimaginative name, to be sure. Still, this was Texstar's work. It HAD to be pretty good, right? So I downloaded the latest release: 0.93a, an installable live-CD. I burned it, and booted it up. When it came up, my first thought was, "I'm home."

My primary boot partition now holds PCLinuxOS, and I don't see myself ever leaving. Not as long as Tex and his "Ripper Gang" remain responsive to his customers. And he has promised to keep providing the best distro he knows how to make, so I should be happy for a long time to come.


Well, I *thought* I was going to do better. I tried. Really I did. But when I went to save my latest post, it accidentally wiped it out!

That'll teach me to write things in KWrite first, so I can save my own copy, and then justy paste them here.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Okay ... Maybe Not ...

I guess I wasn't really *back* as I indicated in my last post.

I need to try harder to actually post things here, instead of just thinking about it, and then forgetting when I get the chance to sit at the computer.

I'll try to do better, honest!