Tag Archives: Dell

1 day with Ubuntu 8.10 Intrepid Ibex

My hardware

  • Dell Inspiron 1525
  • Intel Core 2 Duo T8100 processor
  • 250GB 5400RPM SATA hard disk
  • 4GB RAM
  • Intel graphic card

Live CD boot

I put my cd in and boot the live environment (I found it a little bit slow but that’s not a problem since it’s a live…), everything is perfectly configured and working, with a few clicks I join my wireless network, check google.com home page just to be sure the connection is working and start the installer.

My partition schema

  • sda1 – 2GB – SWAP
  • sda2 – 10GB – root partition (with Ubuntu 8.04.1 installed)
  • sda3 – all the remaining space – /home


I start the Ubuntu installer, fill in all required data, tell the system that I want to format my sda2 partition and mount it as the root (“/”) and to mount my sda3 partition as /home (without formatting it). A few more clicks and the system was installing, time to take a coffee.

Here comes a problem, I’m back from my coffee and I see no installer on my screen, it’s crashed! So I’m launching it again, retype my info but I can’t see my partitions anymore…


Relaunching the installer, filling data and start the installation process, it’s about to finish when it crashes again, I take a look here and there in the logs and see that’s something about the migration assistant (actually I have nothing to migrate, I’m using my old home directory…).

Rebooting again…

I remember that’s possible to launch the installer disabling the migration assistant thus I open a terminal and type:
sudo ubiquity --no-migration-assistant
and do it all again, this time everything goes fine and I can boot my wonderful Intrepid from my disk.

Note: it seemed to me that this installation bug was not reported before so I did it.

First feeling

Since a first sight there are not so many differences from hardy, I know there are a lot under the hood so I start playing around.

There nothing to say, everything is working wonderfully, from Firefox to Evolution, Pidgin and everything else, I love the updated Gnome and what comes with it.

There’s a really notable thing: Intrepid a perfectly working audio system without having to hack Adobe Flash settings (remember that Flash 10 is available now and I strongly suggest you to update it), PulseAudio seems to be really mature now and that’s great!

I also love the improvements to totem, Gnome’s media player, which now supports subtitles and seems to work just better with video media (also if I still have to use VLC to have full DVD support, let’s hope for a future version to fix this).

Intrepid comes with OpenOffice 2.4.1, I would have loved to see the brand new OpenOffice 3.0 but actually it does no change my life because 2.4 does everything I need in a great way! Anyway if you want you can check why it was not included and how to install it with with ease.

I like the guest session feature (also if I think that it would be nice to start a guest session from the GDM login manager, now it’s possible only if you’re already logged in) and the new shutdown menus.


At the end of the day I can say that Ubuntu 8.10 Intrepid Ibex is really rock solid and it’s absolutely easy to use also if you’re a newbie I’m going to suggest the upgrade to all my family’s PCs/notebooks.

Yes, I ran in the that installation bug (and a few other ones I’ll tell you later) but it’s a thing that could happen only to a few people and I could avoid it just upgrading instead of reinstalling everything but I wanted a fresh start.

What I didn’t like

  • obviously the installation bug but again, it could happen only to a few people
  • My webcam isn’t working with cheese but anyway it’s perfectly working with Skype and I don’t ever actually need Cheese
  • It seems to me that it’s a little bit slower than Hardy, I mean, the boot is lightning fast GDM is slower to start and the graphic environment (compiz included) seems not to be smooth as before. I also noticed that gedit (the Gnome text editor) takes ages to load but it’s a know issue and it could be solved just disabling the file browser plugin.


9.5/10, go download it as fast as you can! :-)

recordMyDesktop audio troubles with Hardy

A few days ago a bought a new laptop: a DELL Inspiron 1525 (T8100 processor, 4GB RAM, 320GB hard disk). I chose it because all hardware (except the wireless card) is Intel based (audio/video) and I like Intel’s policy about open source drivers.

Everything is working smoothly, I had to configure nothing! Compiz works wonderfully and everything else too.

But here comes a little problem, I need to create screencast, the built-in mic is not so good thus I plug-in an external mic and start gtk-recordMyDesktop.

Ugly surprise, the audio is choppy and I can’t get it to work… I tried some workarounds found here and there but none is working :-(

Another problem, when I record a long screencast, gtk-recordMyDesktop hangs during the export phase.

I didn’t experience none of these troubles with my old laptop (DELL Inspiron 6000).

Can someone point me in the right direction?

Dell Ubuntu PC now out, prices comparison

I was looking at the Dell Ubuntu PC page and I was counting in my mind… there was something strange about prices, later I found this really good comparison.

Talking about the inspiron model, Ubuntu costs 80$ less than Vista Basic, but Ubuntu PC has Intel graphic while Vista PC has ATI X1400, there’s a price difference between the two cards which turn down the price difference on the whole PC to about 30-40$.

Anyway at least a big step it’s done and buyers can be sure about hardware compatibility and (personal note) the Intel graphic cards do their job the right way (and have open drivers, thank you Intel for that)!

Dell and Microsoft/Novel, WTH is happening?

Taken from this article on businessweek:

Dell Inc. has agreed to work with Microsoft Corp. and Novell Inc. under an alliance the rival software makers formed last year to make it easier for the Windows operating system and the increasingly popular Linux system to work together

Dell surely have its own reasons to choose Ubuntu for the desktop and Novell for the server but… could it be that Microsoft was not too happy for the Dell/Ubuntu partnership […]?

Why Ubuntu wins in enterprise partnerships?

Dell (ubuntu-pc) and Intel (ubuntu mobile) have just signed some sort of partnership with Canonical/Ubuntu, but I’m asking myself why now and why Ubuntu?

I think the answer is composed by two parts:

  1. Ubuntu has a solid company behind (and also a big community, but NOT ONLY a community)
  2. Ubuntu was created in the name of freedom (I hope the trademark issue will be resolved in the near future)

We also had other big Linux companies such as Red Hat and Novell but the real difference between them and Ubuntu is freedom, Ubuntu has always released every part of its system as free software, unlike the others did.

Well, actually there’s also debian which lies behind Ubuntu and that’s a good thing but I don’t really think Dell and Intel cares about debian

I think Dell and Intel care about interacting with a big company and not just with a community, wich would not help maintaining a solid relationship with business based target, but they also care about trusting in the products, and what’s better than free software? Free licenses give partners a major stability about the future for fund investments for the many reasons we all know.

That’s why Ubuntu wins the race, now all the others should adapt their business and re-enter the race

Dell selling Ubuntu-PCs, who’s next?

If you read any news website in these days you already know that Dell officially announced that will (in the next few weeks) start selling Ubuntu (7.04 feisty fawn) based PCs.

That’s wonderful, you know what I think about that

Now? What will other distributors do?

It seems that Toshiba is already thinking to linux-PCs, now I’m reading that HP could do the same.

Nice to see all this movement around Linux hu? I’m pretty pleased about that, we’ll still have to wait a lot to see linux-PCs in the mall near home but… when it will happen we’ll have a stronger Ubuntu, more interested people (and companies) and thus more developers and people will start asking: «hey what’s that Linux?» and so on.

Good times are coming for the free software :)