[rescue] Sun Kit Needed for EE Student Here

Don Y dgy at DakotaCom.Net
Fri May 5 06:13:08 CDT 2006

Charles Shannon Hendrix wrote:
> Wed, 03 May 2006 @ 20:40 -0700, Don Y said:
>> Yup.  Hence, keep focused on why you *got* the machine in the first
>> place (i.e. which applications you *were* planning on running).
> Well, this is one reason why I am very dead set against mandatory
> licensing of software.
> It's the surest way to lose the ability to keep a machine running at its
> original job when the manufacturer arbitrarily decides you need to upgrade.

I've grown so tired of having to keep legacy tools available
for "future reference" that I now have explicit language
in my contracts *limiting* the amount of time I will keep
a given toolchain available to them (unle$$ they would like
to make other arrangement$ to do so!  :> )

>>> In the UNIX world, Gnome tries hard to fullfill that role...
>> I was going to suggest KDE, as well... (below)  :>
> I just switched to KDE after using Gnome for 2 years.  It was a quest to
> try and live with it, submit bug reports, etc.
> I hated KDE a few years ago, but 3.5 is quite usable and I find I can
> get a lot of work done with it.
> It is a pig, but I find it a much more disciplined project than Gnome, far
> fewer bugs, and a more pragmatically focused.

I live without a "desktop".  Most of what I do on these boxes
is write or test code.  So, simple xterms and/or emacs windows
are enough for that.  E.g., I can start a psql session from
within a text window without needing a GUI to talk to the
server, etc.

It just makes things a LOT simpler to do -- and keep running!
And, lets me do a lot of work on very small (quiet) machines
without running the electric meter like a toy *top*!  :>

> One thing I have found lately is that the quality of the fonts when KDE is
> running is making it hard for me to go back to vanilla X window managers,
> because they don't have support for that.

Huh?  How does the font support relate to the window manager?
I have my xterms set up with a selection of fonts that I like
(I run a font server), emacs has fonts appropriate for that,
the window manager uses yet another font for window decorations,

> It's not just fonts, but widget layout in the applications looks a lot
> better too.
> Overall, KDE works, doesn't crash, and doesn't get in my way.
> Also, while it does use a lot of memory, it reaches a plateau and
> doesn't tend to have memory leaks.
> With Gnome, it just eats memory until I run out, and has bugs that interfere
> with getting work done.

Ah, those aren't BUGS... they are placeholders for future FEATURES!

> I'm really still waiting to see a desktop that I really like, and KDE is
> as close as I've found so far.
> I would like to get a Mac, but I don't have the budget for it.
>> Exactly.  I.e. my Windows machine is stuck in W98-land.  The
>> apps that it runs suit me just fine.  I have no need to upgrade
>> to the latest feature (bug) set for each of those applications
>> (with the attendant increase in resource requirements without
>> accompanying BENEFIT increases).
> Personally, I found Win98 runs quite a bit slower than Win2k on my hardware,
> and Win2k is more stable.

Yes, I have heard that as well.  But, much of the software that is
installed on it is from that era -- or *roughly* the time of W2K's
release.  That's when I finally got p*ssed enough at the cost
of maintaining a MS OS that I "just said 'No'".  Some of the
CAD applications were written to run better on W2K but I
have resisted the temptation to move to W2K mainly because
of the time involved in doing so *and* the uncertainty of
wondering how much I was going to *lose* in the process.
But, the VW320 issue has forced my hand...  :-/

> It was a pretty painless switch for me. Of course, I don't depend on Windows,
> so app breakage was not a big issue, and nothing I had failed to run on Win2k
> except Word Perfect 7, which I no longer have a need for.

I already know some photoshop plugins "have issues".
And, I suspect any of the language tools will also be
problems (i.e., support for the debuggers).

> I also play games, and Win2k is much better for that than any of the DOS
> based Windows.  In fact, a lot of games simply won't work on pre-Win2k.

*gasp*  "games"???!  :>  Perish the thought!!  :>

>>> I obviously need to move...
>> Trust me, this is the WRONG time of year to be considering
>> that!  :>  (we're already flirting with the century mark...)
> Well, I was just lamenting the lack of findable computer hardware around here.
>> Exactly.  No need for "religion".  Get what you need to do
>> the job most effectively IN YOUR ENVIRONMENT.  I'm annoyed
>> at how few non-Linux users I run into locally (I run other
>> *BSD's, no Linux).  
> To be fair, Linux runs faster and has better support on PCs than the BSD
> systems. I also don't have the problems other people on this list report.

Dunno.  I have been steadily discarding PC's and run *BSD on
non-PC's, for the most part.  Though I opted to install NBSD
on the AViiON 3000 (essentially an SMP PC) and haven't noticed
any problems thus far (though I don't beat on my machines
very hard...).

> Linux RAID and LVM work very well, and filesystems like XFS and JFS are nice
> to have, and ext3 with journaling and btrees is very nice as well.
> Even still, I would rather run NetBSD on my desktop, but the hardware support
> just isn't there.
> It is mostly nVidia graphics support that I miss with BSD. I find the nv
> driver so slow I just can't use it. It's truly horrible if you try to use
> anything that requires XRender or OpenGL support.
> Hopefully the driver situation will change.

I suspect more of an issue for you since you use KDE (than it would
be for *me* given the tools that I use, here).  I am quite happy
working on a *monochrome* X terminal most of the time -- it uses
far less power (i.e. throws off fewer BTUs!) and has a delightfully
crisp display (if all you are doing is writing code!).  If I
want eye candy, I use a color terminal or move to a console
on another machine (Solaris, Windows, etc.).  I haven't yet
been able to adapt to LCD's (I have a couple stashed in a
closet for the day when I *do*  :<  )

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