I’m in the midst of trying to get VMWare Player installed and pointing at the Vista side of things so I never have to boot into Vista natively again…I can (hopefully) just run it in VMWare’s Player from now on. The problem is that it is taking forever to get things installed. Here’s one crucial step that I needed…took me forever that I had to use sudo to get the installer to work:
My Ubuntu Installation
9. Installing VMware Player
VMware Player is a free software which enables you to run Windows on your Linux PC. This needs an existing virtual machine which can be created with the non-free VMware Workstation, with the free QEMU and with the free VM Builder.
Note: VMware Workstation installs also the VMware Player so these steps are only needed if you don’t have a VMware Workstation installed.
VMware Player 2.x is not yet available for Ubuntu as a .deb package so you need to install it manually. Start by fetching the required .tar.gz file from the VMware Player download page.
# tar xzf VMware-player-2.0.1-55017.i386.tar.gz -C /tmp
# cd /tmp/vmware-player-distrib
# sudo ./vmware-install.pl
UPDATE: Abort! Abort! Abort! I tried all manner of drivers on the Vista side, but I could never get VMWare or VirtualBox to boot my Vista partition as a virtual hard drive. I did, however, succeed in borking my Vista partition twice such that it would blue screen upon start up and then retry. Luckily, I was able to get into the Vista partition via Ubuntu and get things back to normal again.
Man, I feel downtrodden…no AWN curvy dock and now no raw disk action on the Vista partition. Sigh…maybe one day I’ll have my dock and my partition virtualization goodness.
I need Ubuntu tutorials.
Oh, thank you very much.
I need a dock, and here’s a nice post on getting one….tonight, it’s Ubuntu time again.
UPDATE: Unbeknown to me, you need compiz running to make this work. I tried to install the curvy awn dock (http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=572019), but got denied when I tried to start the thing up. Damned you compiz!!
It’s been a while since I’ve been over on the Ubuntu side of the house. Aside from the (I hate to use the word, but there is nothing else really suitable) drama at home, I had a midterm last week and decided to go Vista for it. Why? For the most part, it had to do with several episodes of wifi/firefox conniptions that Ubuntu had the last few times I used it. I’m not sure what happened each time, but the computer just had hardcore lockups each time. I mean, no mouse, no ctrl+alt+backspace, no nada. Since my midterm was a one time deal, meaning that if something bad happened during the test, I would not be given a second chance to open it and try again, I had to choose Vista since it’s been stable. I was disappointed for choosing Vista, but I just couldn’t afford another lockup during something as important as a midterm. Anyway, I’ll have to go back and see if I can dig a little to find out what really happened during these particular bad episodes.
So now that things are looking rather stable on Ubuntu, I figure I’d get cozy with OpenOffice.org. I currently have 2.3 installed and the OxygenOffice extensions added to it. So far, I’m a happy camper. I think the big test will come when I try to write a longer document like a research paper or something in Writer and migrate my master budget spreadsheet over to it. At any rate, I can already see why Microsoft must be shaking in their boots. They’re under siege by two competitors (OO.org and Goog docs) that are both free and for the most part, get the job done. I’d really love to see some sort of syncing between OO and Goog docs though. Not sure how this would work, but I do know that I need something offline for Goog docs and hope they figure out something soon (gears, anyone?).
Last night, I decided to give Gimp a try and see if I could make some simple graphics in it. After struggling with looking for various options and palettes, I took a little break to find some tutorials. I stumble upon GimpShop which makes the options and layout a bit more like Photoshop and thus got me started finally. Soon after I started working on some stuff for New Years, I realized that there weren’t very many fonts that came with Ubuntu. A quick search yielded CrunchBang ~ 465 Free Fonts for Ubuntu. There are some really nice fonts in this pack and I recommend picking it up if you’re on Ubuntu.
Also I figured out if you do Alt+F2 to bring up something akin to Windows+r(un) and type “fonts:///”, you’ll get to your fonts folder. I still haven’t figured out where this folder actually lives in the tree structure, but it must be around somewhere.
I finally have gHamachi and the underlying Hamachi working on my Ubuntu setup. It mostly just worked, but was a pain in the arse at some points. Anyway, I realized that I didn’t know how to make things startup automatically in Ubuntu. In Windows, of course, you drop a shortcut to whatever you want running in the “Startup” folder under Start Menu->Programs->Startup. What’s the equivalent in Ubuntu (or Linux generally) for that matter?
According to the CompuTech Group, it looks like dropping something in /etc/init.d is the equivalent of the Windows Startup folder. Anyway, I hope I can get gHamachi and Pidgin to autostart upon login.
Here’s to tinkering…
Happy Gutsy Gibbon Day. Today Ubuntu 7.10 went out the door. I went to check my Update Manager and boom! I found nothing. What?!? Surprise!
Apparently, I’ve been running the final build and have just been baking on it for a few days. Anyway, my day to day home computing has finally gone Microsoft-free. I still have good old Vista there for a few things like using MTP to transfer stuff to/from my array of portable devices and installing stuff on my WM6 phone. I’ve tried to get Rhythmbox to see my Sansa Connect, but it refuses to give me the love. Oh well…I suppose there will have to be more debugging. Also, my built-in webcam doesn’t seem to work either. Another “oh well” since I don’t ever use this feature figuring that I’m not much to look at to begin with
I hope everyone has had a nice ride thus far…I hope to be along for the Linux for the long term.
So I decided to give Hamachi a whirl on good ol’ gutsy–I think I’ll abbreviate that GOG–and it took some doing. Hamachi is a neat app that creates a virtual private network–that’s VPN to you acronymoholics–with other computers on your network. What can you do with said VPN? Well, for one thing, you can access the files you have at home when you’re out and about. You can also do a VNC or remote desktop session. While I found this to work, it was less than ideal since my upstream speed at home is very slow and is probably being hammered by Mozy trying to suck 50GBs or so of data through a coffee-stirrer-sized data pipe. Man, I wish I was in Korea or Japan…anyway.
To get Hamachi working, I had to use the following tip:
While I found the whole thing very helpful, I wish that the folks who give help would explain how they tracked these issues down in the first place. What the heck is “upx” and why did I have to use it on the hamachi executable? Also, I found that putting hamachi and ghamachi into the /usr/bin folder made them behave proper. Why? I’m not 100% sure but I figure that’s where executables should go. Anyway, I’m off to google upx and /usr/bin to see what’s up there.
I’ve been looking for a way to secure my communications when using free wifi at various locations. The closest thing I have so far is to use my work’s VPN solution which should encrypt things on the laptop before transmitting to the hotspot. However, I remember reading something about a local VPN solution where you create a VPN network on your laptop and then connect to this VPN on the same machine. The encryption occurs on the machine and allows you to avoid sending all of your traffic through your work network. Unfortunately, I lost the link. But I did come upon Hamachi (again). I’m already a user of the LogMeIn free which is a very cool solution for getting at your home PC. Currently I use it to manage my finances (my Vista server at home also run office 2007 with a password protected xlsx file that has my budget, projections, etc) among other things. This allows me to login to my home PC, update my budget and do other quick things like make sure Miro is downloading torrents and that Mozy is running backups.
Unfortunately the free version of logmein does not allow file access. To get around this, I would log in to my home PC via logmein and copy what I needed to my ftp directory that sits on my ReadyNAS. Then I would use FireFTP and connect to the ReadyNAS and grab what I needed.
Apparently, Hamachi allows me to directly browse the files on my Vista server from just about anywhere. And it’s pretty secure to boot. I haven’t quite figured out how to get to my ReadyNAS directly through this method and not sure that it is solvable since it requires the hamachi client to make the handshake. At any rate, I can always drop back to my previous solution in the event I need to access to it.
I was able to run Remote Desktop directly to the PC without going to the logmein route. While that sounds awesome, it was rather slow even at a toned down color depth. Logmein still rocks for this purpose. At any rate, Hamachi can act as a nice backup in case the logmein plugin or java app barf (as I’ve experienced a few times in the past).
Now, if only I can figure out how to create that local, in-laptop VPN…