Showing posts from October, 2007

Fluxbuntu--login manager followup

I just did some poking around and discovered that Fluxbuntu uses SLiM for login management. I don't know much about SLiM, but knowing this much is a good thing.

Fluxbuntu--first impressions

I downloaded the latest Fluxbuntu over the weekend and gave it a very quick spin. Here are some very hasty first impressions.

The worst news is that I could not get this "Gutsy Gibbon" Fluxbuntu release candidate to install on my old laptop. I haven't been able to get the "Gutsy Gibbon" release of Xubuntu to install on that laptop either. In both cases the problem is the same: the installer (after booting from the CD and prompting me for a bunch of info) cannot find a valid CD drive when it comes to doing the actual install work. I guess this is a typical example of Linux's hardware temperamentalness. The weird thing is that I have no problem installing older versions of Xubuntu on the same machine. Gnarly.

Anyhoo, I instead installed Fluxbuntu using Qemu (via Qemu Manager) on my workhorse laptop (1.7 GHz Intel Centrino with 1.5 GB RAM). The emulation was set up to use 128MB RAM, so this should give a reasonable idea of what would happen in a slim system. Doi…


The Fluxbuntu project has released a candidate "Gutsy Gibbon" (7.10) version of their Ubuntu-based "lightweight, productive, agile, and efficient" distribution. If they've done their homework, they may have made my little odyssey moot. You will recall that I started this whole adventure because I wasn't able to find a light-and-lean Linux distribution that floated my boat. I will download the ISO over the next few days and let you if Homer is headed back to Ithica.

Diverge, diverge

I'm noticing some strange behavior with my Openbox+ROX+fbpanel setup. In particular, when you restore windows after hiding them with fpanel's "show desktop" button, they come up in a strange way. It's pretty much not acceptable behavior ... So I am back to considering IceWM+ROX and Fluxbox+ROX.

There are a few more things that need to be ironed out with the Fluxbox setup (e.g., getting CPU and net transfer metering setup ... using Conky? Slit-widgets?). I like Fluxbox's aesthetics and aesthetic opportunities better than anything I've seen with IceWM, but I am not convinced as to its usability. I think ultimately some user testing will be needed to determine whether an IceWM or a Fluxbox-based solution will be best.

Converge, diverge

Things were beginning to converge and congeal up until last week, but now they have begun to diverge again.

First, I was settling on a solution using an Ubuntu/Xubuntu command-line system as the base. But I am running into some difficulties with some of the non-standard ways that Ubuntu/Xubuntu handles some things--having no real "root" for starters. This is making it harder to get e.g. sound going in this context.

So... now I am working with a minimal Debian install in the hopes that it will be less irregular and more completely documented. (Ubuntu/Xubuntu doesn't need to document a lot its inner workings because they wrap those workings in GUI goodness. It's only to people with geek interests like me that it matters.)

Another alternative I am considering is starting with a full Xubuntu install and then stripping away the heavy bits and replacing them with lighter ones. But I think I am going to try working with building up a command-line based Debian install first. If…


My "short break" from making entries is going to be longer than I expected. I've been hammered with an especially demanding course load this term and so I won't have much time at all for anything else!

I will try to add what wisdom I have collected so far when I can, but I think it will take a while before I have the mental space to collect additional thoughts.