Sunday, 23 June 2013

Get an up to date version of Clementine for your Debian based setup

My favourite linux audio player is Clementine.

You can get this in the debian repositories but its a bit out of date: but there is an extra repository which is much more up to date and works a treat with debian,  here.

So just update your sources.list and off you go.

Get an up to date version of XBMC on your debian rig

I am a big fan of the latest version of XBMC : frodo (version 12).

If you are using an Ubuntu based distro then you can get hold of this latest version with no problems.

If,  however,  you are using a Debian based distro,  such as the excellent SolydXK or the also excellent Crunchbang then you are stuck at version 11.  Apparently debian did not like some of the non FOSS eliments used in the newer version so its not in their repos.  I make no critisism of Debian for that,  that is their philosophy and they are entitled to it.

If,  you are still after version 12 on a Debian distro: what to do:

Well....head over here

Quite a bit of that page is in German,  but fear not,  the important bits are in English as well.

I tried to set this up under Crunchbang a little while ago and had no success,  but yesterday I tried again with SolydXK and it seemed to work just fine.

This is what I did.....

wget -O - | sudo apt-key add -
sudo su -c 'echo "deb wheezy main non-free contrib" > /etc/apt/sources.list.d/oppxbmc.sources.list'
sudo su -c 'echo "deb-src wheezy main non-free contrib" >> /etc/apt/sources.list.d/oppxbmc.sources.list'
sudo aptitude update 

Update: May 2016

These days life is a little easier for those who wish to mix a bit of debian with XBMC (nowadays Kodi).

When I build machines for those very new to linux who need reliability above all I now use MX-15.  It uses the stable debian repos by default and yet it has the latest version of XFCE (4.12 at time of writing) powering things.

I recently had a brief forum exchange on using Kodi in MX-15.  It turns out if you want to do this: don't enable the debian multimedia repos as they carry an old version of Kodi.  I had done this and also given the debian multimedia repos a higher priority: so when I searched in Synaptic for Kodi all it found was the old version.

MX-15 now carries version 16.0 of Kodi in its stable repos,  and 16.1 in its testing repos: so you can have the best of both worlds.

Consistent mouse cursors with XFCE

This is one that has annoyed me for quite some time: so when I finally found a solution I was delighted.

The issue is that when you change your default mouse theme under XFCE it does not appear to change completely: run firefox for example and take your cursor up to the top of the window and you will find that the cursor changes back to its old default.  All rather annoying....

However: thanks to the good people at makandra a solution is at hand:

Go to your terminal and type this in:

sudo update-alternatives --config x-cursor-theme
You can now choose to assign the theme globally.

You will need to log in again for the changes to take hold: but at last, consistency is yours!

Sunday, 24 March 2013

Setting up a website for a friend

My English House

For the past few days I have been working on setting up a site for a friend of mine.  He wants to do some additional work as an English tutor working over the internet giving lessons via Skype.

I decided to  use blogger and a nice template: and so far things are going well.

Here is a link to the site : its also under links on my homepage.

If anyone has any suggestions on site design etc: please go ahead and let me know. 

Saturday, 23 March 2013

Xubuntu: adjust screen brightness

Xubuntu: adjust screen brightness

install xbacklight (sudo apt-get install xbacklight) and try:

xbacklight -set 50

Linux menus and the Windows Start Key

Linux menus and the Windows Start Key

Linux distributions like Ubuntu open the main menu with Alt+F1 instead of the Windows key that most new Linux users would be expecting, but it used to be simple to change the shortcut key. Since Ubuntu 9.10 the process isn’t so obvious, but we’ve got the instructions for you.

Set up a Fog server for open source image deployments

Set up a Fog server for open source image deployments

Credit for the below should go to the Spiceworks user who posted this on the Spiceworks forum some while ago.  Its a great guide and I always turn back to it when setting up a Fog server.

Change the kernel that Fog clients use for PXE boot

Change the kernel that Fog clients use for PXE boot

We recently tried to use FOG to image a Dell Latitude E6510, and had problems due to the kernel that FOG was pushing to it. The kernel didn't support the Intel 82577LM Gigabit NIC. Here are the steps I
took to change the kernel to one that supported the NIC.

Enable remote access to server manager for 2008 servers

Enable remote access to server manager for 2008 servers

1.    Log on as an administrator to the remote server by using the console or by using Remote Desktop Services.
2.    Open an elevated Command Prompt window.
3.    At the command prompt, type the following command, and then press ENTER:
winrm quickconfig
4.    Connect to the remote server by using Server Manager.

You do not have to restart the remote server.

Viewing ESXI Host messages

Viewing ESXI Host messages

Navigate to: (using the example of the support server, substitute IP address of server in question) and then enter in root and password for local root user.

Wednesday, 20 March 2013

My current favourite distros

Here are my current top 4