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Xubuntu - First Impressions

Discussion in 'Linux / Unix Discussion' started by juice142, Dec 11, 2007.

  1. juice142

    juice142 Megabyte Poster

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    Ok folks, as requested by Freddy in this post:

    http://www.certforums.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?p=190011&posted=1#post190011

    I'm going to bend your ears about my Ralink RT2500 wireless pcmcia card and xubuntu, but first I'd like to waffle on about my first foray into the world of Linux.

    Following John Bradbury's terrific series of videos on installing ubuntu into VMware (http://www.certforums.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=21173&highlight=ubuntu) I thought 'that looks a laugh, how hard can it be?' and jumped in at the deep end.

    So, I downloaded ubuntu 7.10 (Gutsy Gibbon, how apt for my 'created by Directors' Bitter' figure), burned the iso to CD and chucked it into VMware server. Blimey, yes it was that simple! I should say though that I've now got plenty of experience with Windows in VMware, so using it is no longer a problem (thanks again Phoenix!)

    Not content with that I wanted the experience to be as 'real' as possible, so VMware tools needed to be installed to achieve that 'full screen' moment. Now, as a total ubuntu n00b this proved to be a bit of a sod, but after a few Google sessions the job was done. I can't find the bloody link now, which is a bit of a pain in the posterior because no sooner did I get it all working the installation had a wild attack of the updates and next time I booted it up it had lost its memory as far as the VMware tools were concerned and lost the lot. Little tinker. :rolleyes:

    'Bollox to it.' Says I, and off to work on other more expensive and proprietary products (you know who) I went.

    Now, I got given, free and gratis, a rinky dinky little Dell Latitude LS with (so it said) 128MB RAM and a Pentium III horse&cart Mhz processor. First up, XP went on and (not surprisingly) nearly killed it dead. Everything worked but it took a week to realise you wanted it to do something.

    'Aha' thinks I, sometime later, 'designed for W2K it says, so W2K its gonna get!' Started the install and half way through it prompts for the SP2 disk. Bugger that, I've got SP4 on my flash drive, cancel, moan, cancel, moan, CANCEL YOU SOD! That's better, on with the install. The install completed, I installed SP4 everything worked apart from the updates and a big fat 'cannot find such-and-such.dll on boot. Bollox again. :x

    So I changed allegiance again :rolleyes: and decided to throw xubuntu at it because it uses the Xfce GUI which is less demanding than Gnome (wow, I sound like I know what I'm talking about. I don't!) But first... yep, I upgraded the RAM. Now this was an odd one. XP and W2K both reported 128Mb, as did (does) the BIOS. A 64MB SODIMM came out (!) a 256MB jobbie went in and... it reported 128MB. Flashed the BIOS and.. YES! It still reports 128 MB! If I say bollox from now on, I'm saying it like Blackadder the Forth saying 'Bob' if you know what I mean :blink

    Undaunted :x, I downloaded xubuntu, burnt it to CD etc etc. It would boot from the live disc but not do anything else, not even install. (you can fill this bit in, just make it sound like Blackadder)llox.

    Back to the download site and, like a shining jewel in the navel of Bernard Manning, there it was. The alternative download that only needed 64MB to install and 128MB to run. So, I downloaded etc etc and chucked it up the CD drive. (I thought about leaving a cliffhanger here a la Flash Gordon but I'm not that cruel). And a shining star arose in the east, camel dung was in the air and a baby started to cry. Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh, the bloody thing installed! :ohmy

    So I danced around the fire widdershins at midnight dressed only in my birthday best and gave thanks (by chanting his name at the top of my voice) to the great Pagan god of IT, OO'Ufukka.

    My housemate (not in IT) was not impressed. It's a gas fire. 8)

    The rest has been great fun, much easier than I thought, I've been looking forward to coming home these last few nights and having a play setting it all up. There's loads of stuff to help with this on Google, but now we (finally) get to the point.

    I purposefully bought the Ralink RT2500 'cos it's supposed to work with Linux, and it does, to a point. Xubuntu recognises the card and the driver does all the right things. It prompts for the Essid, wants me to enter the WPA key and asks whether I want to go DHCP or DIY. I enter all the info and... sweet Fanny Adams. It won't connect. Bob.

    If I do a lspci -v the result is:

    02:00.0 Network controller: RaLink RT2500 802.11g Cardbus/mini-PCI (rev 01)
    Subsystem: Giga-byte Technology Unknown device e831
    Flags: bus master, slow devsel, latency 64, IRQ 10
    Memory at 14000000 (32-bit, non prefetchable) [size=8k]
    Capabilities: <access denied>

    See, we got there in the end! :biggrin

    Thanks guys,

    J.
     
    Certifications: BSc (Hons), A+, Network+
    WIP: 70-270, MCSA
  2. ffreeloader

    ffreeloader Terabyte Poster

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    First.

    Run lspci -v as root. You will get a lot more info.

    Second.

    Are you attempting to connect to a secure wireless network? If so, what are you using for security?
     
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  3. grim

    grim Gigabyte Poster

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    i was gonna start my own thread but i'll just stick it in here :)

    i've pretty much done the same, i've downloaded and installed various distributions of linux but then never managed to use it thoroughly enough so im pretty determined this time.

    i choose ubuntu 7.10 which would be a dual boot with vista. First off installing wasn't too bad, i thought i would try to manually configure it but i was given a list of partition types which it didnt like the options i was choosing so went for the guided option instead. it installed fairly quickly and then needed 190mbs worth of updates doing which downloaded and installed ok. i was also able to get online straight away too without any configuring of any network settings. I then changed the wallpaper and power management options which was easy too. Next is where all the problems start, first off firefox wont let me log into forums dispite trying various fixes and re-installing twice, amsn downloaded and installed fine. I actually thought this was quite a nifty program so i then moved on to getting the sound working so i went to youtube to test it out. The video didnt load and asked me whether i wanted to check for codec updates to which i choose yes. My system then became pretty much unresponsive and had to do a hard reboot, which i thought was bizzare especially as i was under the impression linux was supposed to be stable. any way after the reboot amsn decided it no longer wanted to work and stayed in offline mode. have tried various fixes but still doesn't work, so i'm now using pidgin which is ok but not as nice as amsn. Next my terminal decided to stop working, the icon in the menu disappeared saying cannot find directory so i had to reinstall that. also had a probelm with ubuntu booting in different resolutions but i've managed to sort that too.

    all in all i've had a mixed experience with ubuntu, at times i think i could use this every day as it feels really nice and has a lot of functionality with lots of programs already installed but then randomly programs seem to stop working and it takes forever trying to fault find. I've still got a lot to learn and many things to try but so far when it's working it works well but when it doesn't it becomes very frustrating.

    grim
     
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  4. juice142

    juice142 Megabyte Poster

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    I thought I already ran lspci -v as root, is root different to the 'user account' that I created during install? The result I included in my first post was copied from the laptop, there's lots more stuff there as well, including the video and sound cards which also have <access denied> next to them.

    Yep it's secured with WPA and MAC filtering. I've tried with the filtering off and no joy but I can't as yet see a way to turn off the WPA or WEP on the router (Billion 5200g). That's my next step.

    Cheers,

    J.
     
    Certifications: BSc (Hons), A+, Network+
    WIP: 70-270, MCSA
  5. tripwire45
    Honorary Member

    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

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    Unlike most "Linuxes", you don't create a root account when you install *buntu. You are forced to exclusively use the sudo system which allows your "ordinary" user account to acquire root rights on a temporary basis (just type "sudo" ahead of any root command you want to issue). You'll be prompted for a password but it's your own user password so no worries there.

    On a related note, i've been running Ubuntu 6.06 on both my "production" home PC and as a vm in VMware for quite awhile and was thinking of upgrading to 7.10. I posted my query on the Ubuntu forums, figuring they could give me the inside track on any "gotchas" involved and their advice was that unless I was experiencing some sort of problem, to just wait until Hardy Heron was released in April 2008. Here's the link:

    http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=636077
     
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  6. juice142

    juice142 Megabyte Poster

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    Thanks Trip, I'll try that when I get home if I have time, and post the results.

    Out of interest, do you have wireless set up on 6.06? After trawling the net for a while there do seem to be a few people having trouble with 7.10 and wireless. I wonder if I installed an earlier version it'd work... hmmm, it's free (sorry purists, I mean as in cheap) so why not try?

    I'm liking this Linux thang! :biggrin
     
    Certifications: BSc (Hons), A+, Network+
    WIP: 70-270, MCSA
  7. tripwire45
    Honorary Member

    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

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    I had 6.06 running on my dell laptop before the display decided to go toes up. I had a pcmcia wireless NIC for the laptop. When I blew away XP Pro and installed Ubuntu 6.06, wireless "just worked". I guess I was one of the fortunate ones.
     
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  8. Ginge2k7

    Ginge2k7 Bit Poster

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    After a week of using Xubuntu, i havent logged into Windows once! I'm like a child with a new toy :) i have another thread about my journey on the software forum, probably not the best place for it but I'm new to all this
     
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  9. greenbrucelee
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    greenbrucelee Zettabyte Poster

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    I also downloaded ubuntu but I couldn't get into it at all. It was pointless having it on my computer I wasn't uising it for anything so it got wiped.

    I might try again in the future if I find I have a use for it.
     
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    WIP: 70-620 or 70-680?
  10. ffreeloader

    ffreeloader Terabyte Poster

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    Hey guys,

    I'll be back in the morning and give you some answers. Right now I'm beat. I had a long day today and had to do a lot of driving in heavy fog. I'm just too tired to do much of anything tonight. It's only about 7:15 p.m. my time, but I'm headed to bed as soon as I eat some supper.
     
    Certifications: MCSE, MCDBA, CCNA, A+
    WIP: LPIC 1
  11. Theprof

    Theprof Petabyte Poster Forum Leader

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    Guys I started with debian and I got to admit, I messed up so many times. Everytime I read about some tweaks or optimizations or cool looking apps, I try to install them and some how end up with a fubar'd system. I must of reinstalled Debian 5-7 times over a period of a week lol. However I did learn quite a bit also in that one week so I am getting better and better at it. Just have to keep at it. Also it's a good idea to get a good book that you can use a reference if you're serious about learning something like linux. I know it helps me a lot.
     
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  12. grim

    grim Gigabyte Poster

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    i sorted my amsn problem, was because i tried customizing it and it was causing it to crash. had to delete the configuration file and start again. i spose f00cking up is the only way to learn :D

    grim
     
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  13. ffreeloader

    ffreeloader Terabyte Poster

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    Wow. Was today a day. I spent it running the wife from one doctor's appointment to the next.

    She went to work but said she wasn't feeling good. At 10:00 she called me crying and asked me if I'd take her to the doctor. I spent the rest of the day taking her from one doctor to the next as each would check her out and refer her to another one. She's loaded up on pain pills now and has some more doctor's appointments tomorrow as well as going in to get an ultrasound.

    Sure hope they get this figured out soon. Anyway, when I am done running the wife around and get my work done I'll be back and help.
     
    Certifications: MCSE, MCDBA, CCNA, A+
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  14. juice142

    juice142 Megabyte Poster

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    Sorry to kear that Freddy, I hope your wife gets better soon. There's no rush with this at all, I'm just playing around at the moment so take your time mate. Thanks for your help so far.

    All the best,

    J.
     
    Certifications: BSc (Hons), A+, Network+
    WIP: 70-270, MCSA
  15. tripwire45
    Honorary Member

    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

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    Wow! All that and no one knows what's wrong with her? That's terrible. I hope things work out ok, Freddy.
     
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  16. juice142

    juice142 Megabyte Poster

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    Ok fellas here's the result of the sudo lspci -v command:

    00:00.0 Host bridge: Intel Corporation 440BX/ZX/DX - 82443BX/ZX/DX Host bridge (rev 03)
    Flags: bus master, medium devsel, latency 64
    Memory at f8000000 (32-bit, prefetchable) [size=64M]
    Capabilities: [a0] AGP version 1.0

    00:01.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 440BX/ZX/DX - 82443BX/ZX/DX AGP bridge (rev 03) (prog-if 00 [Normal decode])
    Flags: bus master, 66MHz, medium devsel, latency 128
    Bus: primary=00, secondary=01, subordinate=01, sec-latency=64
    Memory behind bridge: fe400000-febfffff
    Prefetchable memory behind bridge: f6000000-f7bfffff

    00:07.0 Bridge: Intel Corporation 82371AB/EB/MB PIIX4 ISA (rev 02)
    Flags: bus master, medium devsel, latency 0

    00:07.1 IDE interface: Intel Corporation 82371AB/EB/MB PIIX4 IDE (rev 01) (prog-if 80 [Master])
    Flags: bus master, medium devsel, latency 64
    [virtual] Memory at 000001f0 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [disabled]
    [virtual] Memory at 000003f0 (type 3, non-prefetchable) [disabled]
    [virtual] Memory at 00000170 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [disabled]
    [virtual] Memory at 00000370 (type 3, non-prefetchable) [disabled]
    I/O ports at fcd0

    00:07.2 USB Controller: Intel Corporation 82371AB/EB/MB PIIX4 USB (rev 01) (prog-if 00 [UHCI])
    Flags: bus master, medium devsel, latency 64, IRQ 10
    I/O ports at fce0

    00:07.3 Bridge: Intel Corporation 82371AB/EB/MB PIIX4 ACPI (rev 03)
    Flags: medium devsel, IRQ 9

    00:0a.0 CardBus bridge: Texas Instruments PCI1211
    Subsystem: Dell Unknown device 1225
    Flags: bus master, medium devsel, latency 168, IRQ 10
    Memory at 18020000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=4K]
    Bus: primary=00, secondary=02, subordinate=05, sec-latency=176
    Memory window 0: 10000000-13fff000 (prefetchable)
    Memory window 1: 14000000-17fff000
    I/O window 0: 00001000-000010ff
    I/O window 1: 00001400-000014ff
    16-bit legacy interface ports at 0001

    00:0d.0 Ethernet controller: 3Com Corporation 3c905C-TX/TX-M [Tornado] (rev 78)
    Subsystem: Dell Unknown device 00a5
    Flags: bus master, medium devsel, latency 80, IRQ 10
    I/O ports at fc00
    Memory at fedfec00 (32-bit, non-prefetchable)
    [virtual] Expansion ROM at 18000000 [disabled] [size=128K]
    Capabilities: [dc] Power Management version 2

    00:10.0 Communication controller: Agere Systems WinModem 56k (rev 01)
    Subsystem: Actiontec Electronics Inc Unknown device 2500
    Flags: medium devsel, IRQ 3
    Memory at fedfe800 (32-bit, non-prefetchable)
    I/O ports at fcc8
    I/O ports at f800
    Capabilities: [f8] Power Management version 2

    01:00.0 VGA compatible controller: Neomagic Corporation NM2200 [MagicGraph 256AV] (rev 20) (prog-if 00 [VGA])
    Subsystem: Dell Unknown device 0005
    Flags: bus master, fast Back2Back, medium devsel, latency 128, IRQ 10
    Memory at f6000000 (32-bit, prefetchable) [size=16M]
    Memory at fe400000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=4M]
    Memory at feb00000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=1M]
    Capabilities: [dc] Power Management version 1

    01:00.1 Multimedia audio controller: Neomagic Corporation NM2200 [MagicMedia 256AV Audio] (rev 20)
    Subsystem: Dell Unknown device 0080
    Flags: fast Back2Back, medium devsel, IRQ 10
    Memory at f7800000 (32-bit, prefetchable) [size=4M]
    Memory at fea00000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=1M]
    Capabilities: [dc] Power Management version 1

    02:00.0 Network controller: RaLink RT2500 802.11g Cardbus/mini-PCI (rev 01)
    Subsystem: Giga-byte Technology Unknown device e831
    Flags: bus master, slow devsel, latency 64, IRQ 10
    Memory at 14000000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=8K]
    Capabilities: [40] Power Management version 2

    Cheers,

    J.
     
    Certifications: BSc (Hons), A+, Network+
    WIP: 70-270, MCSA
  17. ffreeloader

    ffreeloader Terabyte Poster

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    juice,

    Run lsmod and see if the rt2500 module is being loaded. That's the name for the "driver" for that card in Linux.
     
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  18. ffreeloader

    ffreeloader Terabyte Poster

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    LOL. My first Debian install, woody, took me 3 tries to get a working install. I still have the cd's if you'd like to try it. The installer only asked about a hundred or so questions during the install process.

    And, yes, just like Windows, sometimes screwing up and starting over is the best way to learn. I've learned more from my screw ups than from the things I've done right.
     
    Certifications: MCSE, MCDBA, CCNA, A+
    WIP: LPIC 1
  19. ffreeloader

    ffreeloader Terabyte Poster

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    Well, we still don't know what was causing all the pain, but she is starting to feel better after a few days on pain killers. I'm thinking it's some kind of "female" problems as she had a urinary tract infection about 3 or 4 weeks ago that was so bad I had to take her to the emergency room at about 11:00 on a Friday night. She's complained of not being right ever since, but there's no sign of infection anymore so who knows?
     
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    WIP: LPIC 1
  20. juice142

    juice142 Megabyte Poster

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    Thanks Freddy, I'll give it a go.
     
    Certifications: BSc (Hons), A+, Network+
    WIP: 70-270, MCSA

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