Ubuntu 9.10 on MSI Wind

Apparently it just doesn’t work.

There’s a bug in the uvcvideo driver that kills the other USB ports, and causes suspend and hibernate to fail. You can apparently fix this by being ninja and hitting fn+f6 before it loads, but I’m not that good, so I just blacklisted uvcvideo. If you’re having the same problem, you can stop the driver from loading by blacklisting it.
sudo gedit /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist.conf
and add the line
blacklist uvcvideo
anywhere in the file (to the end would be easiest, so if there is a fix you’ll be able to find it & unblacklist it). Of course, this disables the webcam. On one hand I’d been using 8.04, which also lacked (native) driver support for the webcam, so I don’t feel like I’m missing anything really (after I reinstalled the OS I didn’t bother recompiling the driver, so I’ve been without it for a while). Still rather annoying, and I can’t tell if they’re working to fix it or not -but I certainly hope so.

The other main issue I had was a very, very annoying bug in the screen brightness. On startup, and whenever I adjusted the brightness, it would oscillate between the set brightness and a level or two below, making the screen flicker. There was apparently some magic where you could hold your right mouse button down for a while & it’d stop, but I’m not doing that every time. The fix mentioned in the release notes worked for me, which was to “edit /etc/default/grub and add nomodeset to GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX, then run sudo update-grub“. Restarted, and there was no flickering. I could change my brightness, and no flickering. What a relief. I have yet to figure out if doing this has any negative effects.
Positives and some screenshots…

Housekeeping

Over the past few days I’ve been poking around here updating a few things, and generally making things more shiny (I hope). The biggest change is that I’ve moved the blog down to the root directory, that is, to see this page the URL used to be redradar.net/wp/, and it is now just redradar.net. /wp/ will still get you where you want to go, but if you’re linking here I’d appreciate if you would update your links. Thanks!

WordcampNYC I also finally got around to making a blurb for the slide-down header thing, and will continue to add in sharing links. All this housecleaning isn’t just because I’m avoiding schoolwork, surprisingly enough. November will be a busy month, so I’m preparing. I’m going to be attending WordCamp NYC, and I plan on releasing post-from-site v 2.0 sometime before then*. I’m excited for wordcamp, not just because it gives me an excuse to go into NYC (for someone who grew up on LI I didn’t go nearly as much as I would have liked), but also because of the tracks – they’ve got an advanced developer track & a hacker room. Also I’ve never been to a developer conference, so it’ll be a new experience (though I guess it’s not strictly a dev conference).

*Hopefully the week before. New features will be multiple file uploads, submission using AJAX, and better support for internationalization.

In other geekery, I got my windows 7 key, so I can install that whenever I get a chance, and Ubuntu 9.10 is coming out soon so I’ll have to install that too… Now I’m not sure if I want to leave my old laptop alone, just update the Ubuntu partition & leave XP, and install Win7 on my Wind. Apparently it can handle it? So says a few reviews of the beta, that’s all I get from a quick google search. And then there’s the question of whether I want to dual boot Win7/Ubuntu there… Decisions, decisions… Whatever I do, I’ll make sure to post about it here.

I did say adventures, didn’t I…

So, I guess I’m learning a few things as I go along in developing pfs. And I mean things I know in theory – like not to release something that’s not properly tested – but for some reason don’t think about when I’m working. Doesn’t help that I don’t really know anyone who’d be a tester for me. But anyway, its undergoing a big(ish) update now – added tag support, image placement (via a fake tag), potentially the ability to upload multiple images, potentially integration with the media gallery (these haven’t been implemented yet, so they might be next release), a version-number system that actually makes sense, and a few stupid fixes. I like the ‘template system’ suggested in the comments, maybe for v2.0. Thanks for all the suggestions and downloads, by the way!

Also a learning experience is trying to balance having a ‘real’ job (recent grad, what can I say) with doing on-the-side plugin stuff, with having time to be social and sleep/eat. And not spending all my waking time on the computer. I know it’s possible, but finding the right balance is difficult.

Noteworthy things: I recently installed a few new programs (on ubuntu) – exaile and gnome-do. Gnome-do is shiny, not sure how much more useful it’ll be than the generic run-app dialog, but I like the fact that it gives my windows button something useful to do. Exaile initially seems like any other music player, though it has an odd method of organizing my music – which isn’t to say I don’t like it. I went from iTunes to Rhythmbox, which both use panels of genre-artist-album. So anything different is interesting. Anyway, the bit I just discovered and like best? The ‘dynamic’ option to extrapolate a playlist based on the current song (via last.fm) Great for me, since I’ve got like 15GB of music (not that that’s an excessive amount, but it’s enough that I forget what I have).

As far as firefox plugins, I’m probably late in getting on the bandwagon for Firebug, but it’s also incredibly useful – specifically the item layout bit, and the network analysis.

I don’t think I’ve added anything awesome to my windows computer lately. I freaked out a little because I only had 1GB of hd space left, so I may be removing the Ubuntu partition on that laptop. I don’t use it anymore, not now that I’ve got another laptop that’s strictly linux.

I’d also like to eventually finish the new theme idea I have for this site, but it’s relatively low priority, so. We’ll see – the idea is continuing the alien-abduction theme, but a different setting. I should maybe get on designing a logo too. Branding and SEO-type things are much lower on my priorities list than maybe they should be.

Final test before release

This post is the last test of PFS before release. If you’re reading it, then v1.6.20 should be available for download sometime tomorrow (Saturday). Some new things:

  • Proper image support
  • Ability to create custom links for posting to individual categories (like suggested here)
  • Better documentation and cleaner code

Probably more things too, but it’s near 3am and I can’t think. So, look for the release tomorrow!

pfs update

Image support is nearly done. I’m glad WP is so well documented, it makes things like this much easier. I’d love to get the uploader working all AJAX-y, but I’m less confident in my ability there. So perhaps I’ll learn, and get back to it.

Support for making ‘Post to X category’ links is now coded and will be tested soon.

Theoretically none of the changes in wp2.8 should break pfs, but I’ll install it and test this weekend. I’m also considering installing BuddyPress and forking pfs for it after a suggestion in the comments.

This last week’s been somewhat hectic – I was moving into my new apartment. I finally got all my furniture (though the bookcase has yet to be assembled), and I can get back to normal life. On a somewhat unrelated note, Ubuntu Netbook Remix? Not really worth it. Continue reading “pfs update”