Where Linux is headed in 2008

InformationWeek has an e-mail interview with the creator of Linux, Linus Torvalds to get some perspective on what lies ahead for Linux in 2008.

The creator of Linux is excited about solid-state drives, expects progress in graphics and wireless networking, and says the operating system is strong in virtualization despite his personal lack of interest in the area.

Heres one of the questions:

InformationWeek: Where will the Linux kernel gain added strengths in 2008?

Torvalds: We really are pretty much all over the map. One of the fun things about Linux, and certainly the thing that has kept it interesting over almost two decades now, is how different people have different goals and the hardware keeps changing under us too.

So a lot of the effort ends up being hardware-related. Both in terms of peripheral drivers and simply in platform changes. The bulk of the kernel really is about hardware support, and that alone keeps us busy. The situation in graphics and wireless networking devices — both of which have been somewhat weak spots — is changing, and I suspect that will be a large part of what continues to happen during 2008 too.

One of the things I personally am really interested in is the move over to SSD [solid-state drives] disks. I’m a huge believer in [reducing] latency, and some of the better SSDs are changing the whole game when it comes to access latency, which in turn has potentially big impacts on the kernel — and while they are currently expensive enough to be a pretty minor player, that is certainly looking to change in 2008 and later.

And you already mentioned virtualization. It may not be my favorite area, but it’s certainly a happening one ;)

But in the end, a lot of this is just a huge amount of individually small changes that may not be even interesting on their own – what is then really stunning is how big a difference all those small not-so-interesting changes make when you put them all together.

In other words, I’m a huge believer in the “99 % perspiration, 1% inspiration” rule. It’s a lot of hard — but happily, mostly interesting — work, and there is seldom, if ever, any single big silver bullet. So 99 % of all the real work that will go on during 2008 is just more of the same, and that’s really the important part!

Read the rest of the interview..

15 Signs that you are addicted to Linux

Here are 15 signs that you are addicted to Linux…

  1. You bring a live CD with you whenever you’ll be using a computer away from your house.
  2. You subscribe to a Linux magazine such as Linux Journal, Linux Mag, or Linux Format
  3. Every time a friend or relative complains about their computer being slow due to spyware, adware and viruses, you tell them to install Linux.
  4. You want a Penguin for a pet.
  5. You understand what the command “mv windows /dev/null” means.
  6. Your home page is http://www.google.com/linux
  7. You subscribe to my RSS feed.
  8. You own a RTFM coffee mug.
  9. You participate in System Administrator Appreciation Day.
  10. You hang out on Freenode.
  11. You are a member of a local Linux User Group.
  12. You have installed Linux on your mom and dads computers.
  13. You know the African definition of the word Ubuntu.
  14. You know who Linus Torvalds is.
  15. You know who Hans Reiser is, and what he is accused of.

Can you think of anymore? Leave a comment and share with everyone.

Alternative Linux Desktops

Theres a great article by Jack Wallen that covers two alternative Linux window managers, Fluxbox and AfterStep.

Desktop customization in Linux is very flexible; from the ultra-modern KDE and GNOME window managers to with the likes of Fluxbox and AfterStep, there’s a Linux desktop to suit everyone. Jack Wallen covers some of your Linux desktop options.

Read more..

How to install Fedora 8 Desktop

This document describes how to set up a Fedora desktop – including how to enable special mouse buttons, improve laptop support (depending on your model), set up printers (especially HP) and the usage of Compiz Fusion. The result is a fast, secure and extendable system that provides all you need for daily work and entertainment.

This howto is a practical guide without any warranty – it doesn’t cover the theoretical backgrounds. There are many ways to set up such a system – this is the way I chose.

Read more..

The Linux Foundation Survey

I urge all of you to head over here to fill out the survey. The more people who participate in this survey, the better.

The Linux Foundation Linux Desktop Workgroup is conducting a survey.

The information from this survey will assist the Linux Foundation Desktop Linux workgroup to focus on areas of development that are important to you. The results of this survey may also be valuable to your business. Once you complete the survey, you will be able to view the current aggregated public results of the survey.

The 2007 Linux Desktop/Client Survey asks you to answer a few questions based on your company’s desktop/client plans and not necessarily your personal desktop usage.

If you provide contact information at the end of the survey, the survey results and analysis will be sent to you when the survey is complete. Note: contact information is not a required entry and your contact information will not be published or shared.

Adding shortcuts to the right click menu in Ubuntu

If you’re like me, you like the option of being able to open certain applications on the fly, simply by selecting them from your right click menu. It is possible to add your most used, or any applications to the Ubuntu right click menu with a tool called Nautilus Actions.

1. The first thing you need to do is install the Nautilus Actions application:

sudo apt-get install nautilus-actions

2. After it is installed, navigate to your System > Preferences menu and select Nautilus Actions Configuration

Adding Shortcuts to the right click menu in Ubuntu

You should now see the Nautilus Actions main screen

Adding Shortcuts to the right click menu in Ubuntu

3. Click the Add button and you should see the Add a New Action screen

Adding Shortcuts to the right click menu in Ubuntu

4. Fill out the Menu Item & Action properties with whatever you would like in your right click menu. Above, you can see I am using VLC as an example.

Next, click on the Conditions tab.

Adding Shortcuts to the right click menu in Ubuntu

5. Under the Conditions tab you need to make sure that Both is selected under “Appears if selections contains”.

Next, click on Advanced Conditions

Adding Shortcuts to the right click menu in Ubuntu

6. First, uncheck the “File / Local Files” box. Second, in order for the menu items you add to appear every time you right click, you will need to add a blank entry under the Advanced Conditions. To do this, click on the + and erase “new-scheme” and “new-scheme description” so that both entries are blank.

7. Click OK.

8. You now have added your first right click menu item. In order for the item to appear on your right click menu, you need to restart the nautilus daemon.

killall -HUP nautilus

Now you should be able to see the VLC media player on the right click menu.

Adding Shortcuts to the right click menu in Ubuntu

To continue adding more items to the menu, repeat steps 3 through 8 until you are satisfied.

Quickzi: Stop Syslog from putting –MARK– in the logs

By default, the syslog daemon will place –MARK– messages in your /var/log/messages log file every twenty minutes. This can get annoying and eventually lead to a waste of space. Heres a quick tip on how to stop syslog from putting –MARK– in the messages log.

  1. Edit the syslogd file. (In Ubuntu, this file is located in /etc/default/syslogd – on some other distributions, you’ll want to edit whatever file starts up the syslog daemon.)
  2. Locate the following line that starts with:

    SYSLOGD=”"

  3. Modify this line to read:

    SYSLOGD=”-m 0″

  4. Restart syslog:

    /etc/init.d/sysklogd restart

Cheers!

Quickzi: Get rid of the Ubuntu splash screen during boot

Ubuntu Boot Screen

Have you ever wondered what goes on behind the Ubuntu splash screen during the boot process? You know, the screen that has the orange progress bar and the Ubuntu logo. You may want to see if anything is failing during the boot process, or you may just want to see exactly what takes place behind the scenes. If you’re curious, theres a quick and easy way to get rid of it.

Get rid of the Ubuntu Splash screen temporarily:

  1. Reboot your computer
  2. Hit “Esc” when prompted in order to enter the GRUB menu.
  3. Select the proper kernel and hit the letter “e” to edit.
    Ubuntu Grub Menu
  4. Arrow down to the Kernel line, and hit the letter “e” again.
    Ubuntu Grub Menu
  5. You should see the last few words in the line. Remove the words “quiet splash” and hit enter.
    Ubuntu Grub Menu
  6. Hit the letter “b” to boot the kernel without the Ubuntu splash screen. Below is what it will look like.
    Ubuntu Grub Menu

Get rid of the Ubuntu Splash screen permanently:

  1. From the command line, edit the /boot/grub/menu.lst file. Near the bottom of the file, you will find some lines similar to this:

    title Ubuntu 7.10, kernel 2.6.22-14-generic
    root (hd0,0)
    kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.22-14-generic root=UUID=xxxx ro quiet splash
    initrd /boot/initrd.img-2.6.22-14-generic
    quiet

  2. Change the above to look like this:

    title Ubuntu 7.10, kernel 2.6.22-14-generic
    root (hd0,0)
    kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.22-14-generic root=UUID=xxxx ro
    initrd /boot/initrd.img-2.6.22-14-generic

  3. Save the file and exit.

Cheers!