Tips, Techniques, Examples about my favorite musical instrument, the Twelve-String Guitar.

If you play guitar check out Playing Technique, or Strings / Setup. There are also some interesting posts about guitars at, you guessed it, Guitars.

If you want to spread your musical talents around, you will find some good info at Recording.

Marketing - meh - I'm probably the world's best bad example. Although you could find funny stuff there.

I've made some music videos through the years, and you can find them and other interesting music at Music I Like, Music I Play.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Hello ma 'buntu, so long fedora!

OK, I've been pretty faithful to Fedora for a long time, from the tail end of my career as techie, then boss of techies, and finally clueless boss of smart-asses. I liked Fedora: cutting-edge, always willing to test the margins.

You get in this mode and life-force things that just shouldn't be allowed, creep into your narrow focus. You find yourself struggling more with the software. It used to be fun figuring it out at 2am while the web site was crashing and the boss was calling (techie's have their own kind of fun). Life was good when you slept and dreamt through the solution to a coding problem.


Now that I've become normal, at least for a musician, I like to use the machine to compose, to play, to record and edit. And it is here, I fear, that Fedora and I must part. Fedora 9 worked okay, and had a promise of an ALSA sound system with unified drivers that would make it all run perfectly. Help was on the way!

Fedora 10 worked a little worse as we moved into feuding sound systems. Pulse seemed to be taking over, but often didn't play nice with ALSA. OSS, the old system, seems to be making a comeback. Give us a break! You needed special stuff to get YouTube to play sound. You needed to get used to skipping to listen to Amorak pulse. Luckily Audacity seemed to work OK.

Fedora 11 just hit town. Oh crap! YouTube only plays sound when Pulse is removed and ALSA is the main engine. ALSA seems to sort of work ok with Amarok. Audacity is a disaster: it starts and stops randomly. Trying to do track on track lasts for 6 tenths of a second. It's repeatable - you can look it up on the forum. Plug ins work every other time. In between times, they corrupt the file.

Time to try the distro that announces itself with tropical drums. We all have rhythm.

This is my third day on Ubuntu and it's been a happy three days. Everything works. Lots of it work better than you expect it to. For example, the third party NVidia drivers were suggested after the install when I wanted to check the Display. They downloaded, installed, and set up moderate screen effects. These screen effects are really nice. Just subtle little touches.

I had some crashes bringing over KMail. I suspect that the Kmail support files are out of sync with the older version in Ubuntu. No problem, I switched to Evolution which is already supported by default and functions almost exactly the same. I googled a clunky way to migrate old email, and it took only a few minutes.

Audacity works fine, plug ins and all. No skipping.

VMWare server was a pain with Fedora because they change the kernel every time the temperature changes a few degrees (I know, I know, it's cutting edge). VMWare needs to be rebuilt whenever this happens. So far Ubuntu's had only been one change since the distro was built.

All in all, this as been the third day and I'm really pleased with the distro. Except for Kmail, it works at least as good and I'm pleasantly surprised once in a while at some of the neat extra features. I've heard about Ubuntu a long time. Glad I got a chance to use it.

1 comment:

dadgadjohn said...

Welcome to the 'buntu family.

No distro is perfect, but Ubuntu has been "Just Working" for me since 2006.

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