I Used To Be Hardcore

I used to be hardcore…

I ran Slackware when it was on 400 floppies.  I ran the 1.x kernel.  I hacked channels on efnet in IRC for bragging rights.  I waited all day long for wavs to download from a BBS.  My game of choice used to be a MUD.

We grow up, we move on, and we get accustomed to a new standard.

It’s like that isn’t it?  As time goes on, the standard is raised higher and we grow accustomed to a base level.  Much like the 2.4 kernel was for Linux…it really moved things forward from previous kernels.  It’s like the high jump in track and field…jumping 5’8″ isn’t that big of deal…but once you hit 5’10” and above, you’re sailing.

Linux has had a new standard go into effect in the past few years…mostly since 2007 and the 2.6.18 and above kernels.  We’ve come to expect more from our operating system and for good reason.  I for one, am glad that the standard is raised a notch with each iteration…it gives us something to aspire to.  It gives us measured steps from which to guage ourselves by.  Hopefully, with each step forward, improvement comes without regression.

Lately, I’ve become concerned about regression.  I’ve noticed quite a few major distributions are not able to boot a standard Dell Latitude laptop…some taking as long as 20 minutes to boot (yes, 20 minutes…I’m looking at you Fedora 10).  I can’t help but wonder, are we taking steps backwards?  Is this the portion of time where we take one step backward followed by 2 steps forward?  Or is this the time where the kernel becomes TOO big?  I hope it’s the former.  And I hope that my concern is misplaced.

Thinking of all these things and what I’ve become accustomed to…I don’t feel hardcore anymore.  And then I go and hack a python script to update twitter because I can and all is right again…I might as well be riding a Harley.

Just a few thoughts on this sleepless night…

Install the Latest Kernel in PCLinuxOS

Do you run PCLinuxOS 2007 or Minime 2008 and would you like to take advantage of the latest kernel for PCLinuxOS?  You can do this by enabling the ‘testing’ portion of the repository.

Read about Repository Control in PCLinuxOS

You’ll be looking for the ‘sections’ blank when viewing repository details and you’ll just need to add ‘testing’ to the end of the line (don’t replace the entires there already).  Once that is done, click the reload button in Synaptic and allow it to refresh your local rpm cache.

Click the ‘search’ button and search for the keyword ‘kernel’.  Look for the highest number of kernel that is returned.  At the time of this writing, the kernel was the newest kernel for PCLinuxOS (it has .27 patches all over in it…so it’s quite a nice kernel).  Click and install that kernel and allow it to select any packages it needs to install.  Once installed, you can remove the word testing from the repository (this is recommended to prevent your system from downloading ALL testing packages/updates) and click the reload button for Synaptic.

Reboot and choose the new kernel on your grub menu.  Test things to see how they work.  If everything is good to go, congratulations!  You’ve just installed the latest kernel in PCLinuxOS.

To make this kernel the default one, you can use the PCLinuxOS Control Center and Change the Way the System Boots.  I’ll cover this in a later post.  Hope this helps a few of you out there.  I know it is often asked on IRC.

Slackware 10.2 Tips and Tricks

Want to Install the 2.6.13 Kernel is Slack but don’t know how? Ask and ye shall receive!

First, mount the CDROM…in my case, it is /dev/hdb

mount -t auto /dev/hdb /mnt/cdrom


mount -t auto /dev/cdrom /mnt/cdrom

Next, let’s install that Kernel! Insert Slackware Disc 2…then issue the commands below.

installpkg /mnt/cdrom/linux-2.6.13/kernel-source-2.6.13-noarch-1.tgz


installpkg /mnt/cdrom/linux-2.6.13/kernel-modules-2.6.13-i486-1.tgz


installpkg /mnt/cdrom/linux-2.6.13/kernel-headers-2.6.13-i386-1.tgz


installpkg /mnt/cdrom/linux-2.6.13/kernel-generic-2.6.13-i486-1.tgz


installpkg /mnt/cdrom/linux-2.6.13/alsa-driver-1.0.9b_2.6.13-i486.1.tgz

Continue reading “Slackware 10.2 Tips and Tricks”

Information Week Slams the Kernel…Finger Lickin Good.

Information Week, who strive to be at the forefront of business innovation through technology, have recently lashed out (subtly mind you) at Linux…specifically the Linux Kernel.

The article is entitled, “The Linux Kernel’s Fuzzy Future” and they are oh so careful not to directly bash anyone or anything. However, it is obvious that they are trying to show that the kernel “ain’t no Microsoft” (thank God for that…we’d all be broke). These types of articles are normally known as FUD when directly attacking different parties. They are spread across the internet through syndication and other means to spread fear, uncertainty, and doubt (Hence, FUD). In this case…the FUD is only a thin coating and you barely notice it…but it’s there.

Here’s the problem with ebusiness sites and corporate news portals critiquing Linux and open source in general…Linux is not Micro$oft, and Micro$oft isn’t Linux. End of story. So should Linux be viable for business? Who cares? Linux is free and designed for the community…not for the business.

My reasoning comes from this notion…how can you compare something designed to be free for all developing at the leisure and pace of thousands of developers worldwide…to something designed to be closed source developing on the backs of some choice employees…it really is apples and oranges. Micro$oft needs deadlines and roadmaps to live…because without it…we’re left wondering when the next patch for this or next security pack for that will be out.

With Open Source…there is no NEED for roadmaps. The next patch to a security flaw…the next update…will be out within a few hours in most cases. Why? Because worldwide there are hundreds of thousands of developers communicating simultaneously toward a common goal. I don’t think there is a single company that can actively compete against that. I also highly doubt if any major business has seen the speed at which a project can develop when it is open sourced.

So this article strikes a nerve, albeit very craftily and indirectly, with me. Take it or leave it, my two cents on the matter.



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