Mini-Review: Ubuntu Intrepid Ibex 8.10 on the PlayStation3

Review
So I finally joined the masses in next-gen console gaming nirvana when I finally bought myself a 40GB PlayStation3 that I got cheap at a Big W clearance sale for AUD$398! After playing a couple of games, one of the next things I did was to partition the hard-drive and install the PPC version of Ubuntu 8.10 onto it. This is a quick run-down of my experience installing and playing with it. (more…)
Read More

HowTo: Get SigmaTel STAC 9200 chipset audio working in Ubuntu Intrepid

Tutorials
I was asked to rebuild a friend's old Medion laptop - you know, those ones Aldi used to sell for peanuts. It's an AMD Turion64 based machine with NVidia GeForce Go 6100 gfx and SigmaTel STAC 9200 "High Definition" audio and a 1280x800 display. I have to admit it's not a bad little machine. Anyway, the default installation of Ubuntu Intrepid picks up everything except the Fn keys, wireless LAN adapter and the audio. The wireless LAN adapter has proven to be a bit of a challenge, so if I suss it out, I'll write up about it later. Fn keys I'm not really fussed about (and neither is the laptop's owner), but we needed the audio. (more…)
Read More

HowTo: Install OpenOffice.org 3.0.1 in Ubuntu Intrepid 8.10 right NOW rather than wait for Ubuntu Jaunty 9.04

Tutorials
OpenOffice.org 3.0.x has been out for awhile now, but unfortunately did not get released in time to be included with Ubuntu Intrepid 8.10 back in October 2008, so Intrepid shipped with OpenOffice.org 2.4.1 instead. Bummer. OpenOffice.org 3.0.x will be included in Ubuntu Jaunty 9.04 in April 2009, but as some people have noticed, there are some useful features in OpenOffice.org 3.0.x (such as much improved Word doc importing) that can make waiting another four months seem like a bloody long time to upgrade. You want 3.0 now, not in four months! So for the impatient among you, here's the most painless and easiest way to upgrade your OpenOffice.org to 3.0.1 without having to deal with downloading individual packages or TAR archives from the OpenOffice.org website, or manually having to satisfy…
Read More

HowTo: Rip a Blu-ray movie using an LG GGC-H20L Blu-ray drive with Ubuntu

Tutorials
The Blu-ray disc format has brought with it the ability to easily provide the next generation of High-Definition 1080p movie content. There's just one problem - Ubuntu and Linux in general has no official support for Blu-ray, and its encryption scheme is vastly different to that of DVD - it's not just a simple case of installing a library like the libdvdcss2 library for decrypting DVD's - the protection is done both at a software and hardware level. This article discusses how I used my recently purchased LG GGC-H20L Blu-ray ROM drive to successfully read and watch movies using Ubuntu Intrepid. (more…)
Read More

Mini-review: LG GGC-H20L Super Multi Blue Blu-ray Disc & HD DVD-ROM Drive on Ubuntu

Review
Optical storage certainly has come a long way, and with each new advance brings new affordable hardware to help nudge it along. The HD-DVD and Blu-ray disc formats brought along with it the ability to store and distribute high-quality, full high-definition 1080p movies. Unlike when DVD first appeared, and probably thanks to the battle that was waged between the HD-DVD and Blu-ray formats, the provision of high-definition media and associated players has dropped in price rather dramatically to drive acceptance. I have a fairly large original DVD collection, but I am a quality freak and in light of high-definition releases, I loathed the idea of buying a DVD version of a given movie knowing that for about the same price I can buy a high-definition version. So I decided to…
Read More

HowTo: Pair your Bluetooth mobile phone with Ubuntu Intrepid for file transfers etc.

Tutorials
While connecting a Bluetooth mobile phone to Ubuntu was not terribly difficult, Ubuntu Intrepid brings with it a new Wizard for connecting all manner of Bluetooth devices without the user having to touch the command line at all. So, to that end, here is an update to my previous HowTo for connecting a Bluetooth mobile phone to Ubuntu Gusty or Ubuntu Hardy. (more…)
Read More

HowTo: Setup your Nokia N95 mobile phone as a Mobile Broadband Device via USB in Ubuntu Intrepid

Tutorials
As most of you are aware now, Ubuntu Intrepid sports a funky new Network Connections manager that allows you to easily and effortlessly setup new ethernet devices, VPN connections and as a boon for laptop users, Mobile Broadband. The idea behind Mobile Broadband is to take advantage of cheap 3G or HSDPA Broadband adapters so you can connect to the Internet while on the move. Less widely known is that you don't actually have to use these devices to get Mobile Broadband on the go. You can use your own 3G or HSDPA mobile phone if packet data is enabled on your phone plan. I have previously covered how to do this via Bluetooth and fiddling around with RFComm configuration and PPP chat scripts, but NONE of this is needed…
Read More

HowTo: Get spell-check working in Evolution again after upgrading to Intrepid

Tutorials
I finally got around to installing the final release version of Ubuntu Intrepid on my main desktop with only minimal issues that were not show-stoppers. One in particular was that Evolution was now marking every single word I wrote as being a spelling error when there were no errors at all. Luckily, this one is easily fixed. Go to Edit->Preferences, and the Preferences window appears. Now click on the Composer Preferences icon on the left and then click on the Spell Checking tab at the top. You will now see the available languages to do spell checking with. At least one of them will already be checked. The issue is that despite the option being checked, it's not actually checked internally within Evolution. All you have to do is un-check…
Read More

Ubuntu vs Vista Resource Usage

Misc, Review
Everyone always rambles on about how much of a resource hog Windows Vista is compared to Linux, so I figured why not find out exactly how much of a hog it really is? For this comparison, I have pitted the following versions of Ubuntu and Vista against each other: Microsoft Windows Vista Ultimate with Service Pack 1 and all system updates to 29th October 2008 Ubuntu Linux 8.04.1 Hardy Heron with all system updates to 29th October 2008 Ubuntu Linux 8.10 Intrepid Ibex Release Candidate with all system updates to 29th October 2008 (just for kicks) The tests would be simple. A fresh vanilla install of Ubuntu and Vista doing four of the most common things a typical user might do everyday: Nothing View a web page Listen to an…
Read More

HowTo: Setup your own local Ubuntu repository mirror.

Tutorials
While Ubuntu's updates are nowhere near as bad as dealing with Windows updates, it can still be annoying to do a fresh install of Ubuntu and then have to download 300MB's worth of updates, especially if you have a slow connection, or perhaps you're in a remote location and don't have an Internet connection. How do you update machines then?? Why not setup your own personal local Ubuntu Repository? Here's how to make one to use either on a personal web server or carry with you on a portable USB (or similar) hard-drive. (more…)
Read More