Tag Archives: ubuntu

Random Ubuntu Support Calls

Ok it’s been an odd morning.

This morning i got a phone call on my home line from some old man wanting help with his ubuntu install, well more to the point is that he wanted to format ubuntu and start again.  After asking a couple of questions about what he wanted,  I told to format the drive and do a fix MBR in windows is probably abit more complex than he wants, and since he was dual booting that he should just continue to launch windows instead.

His orginal problem was he couldn’t get on the internet at the time, It didn’t click at the time when he said he was with optus that the reason he couldn’t get on the net is the weird way that optus modems are setup.

After talking to him for a while i finally got around to asking how he got my number because it was becoming more clear i didn’t know the guy.

Apparently he found my ubuntu wiki page https://wiki.ubuntu.com/Gabz and assume I could help him looked up my phone number in the address book since my last name isn’t very common my home (parents house) is the only listed number.

So this was the first time i’ve been rung by a 85 year old man wanting to know how to fix ubuntu. It was an odd experiance.

If how it all ended, was well I got over the slightly weird feeling told him to keep ubuntu there, since he mentioned he lived in Toronto (NSW) we exchanged email address and I sent him the link to Westlakes Linux Learners

Anyone else recieved random phone calls asking for linux help ???

Acer Aspire One

Christmas was very good to Gabz, he scored Wii controllers, remote control helicopters and of course what this post is about, a new netbook, namely a Acer Aspire One, Linpus 512 Mb Ram 8 Gb SSD.

Impressive Parts

  • Size, Weight and Keyboard.
    It’s small like you would expect but the keyboard is easier to type on that the XO olpc which is the only other netbook sort of thing I’ve gotten to play with. It’s really light weight and the battery is giving me 2.5 hours.
  • Boot time – Linpus got one thing right 14 second boot time from cold boot it also does hibernate but that isn’t really any slower than a cold boot.
  • 3G Modem support. If your 3G modem is made by Huawei (Optus, Vodafone or 3 ) then your in luck once you download the software from the acer site the Huawei modems work great. They even use the same software as you would under windows so you can still send those SMS messages. only extra step is making a new profile for your modem.

    Mobile Partner
    Mobile Partner
  • If the 8 Gb SSD Isn’t enough for you, you can expand with a SD Card they even merge the 2 drives together to appear as a single drive.
  • Also the webcam is builtin, the Mic is placed well and once you download Skype from the acer website it works great.
  • If you brought the extra USB DVD-RW like I was given you be pleased to know that under Linux you have DVD playback out of the box. Also the DVD-RW DL powers just from the USB port so no extra cables needed.

Unimpressive Parts

  • LINPUS ! – For starters it’s based on Red Hat (Fedora) being a Debian guy I find this to be a negative.
    Limited Range of Software, Acer isn’t supporting much they have an Acer game installed which is trial ware. Not really impressed that the full range of linux software isn’t easily available on this distro.
  • Security ok when you start linpus for the first time, you set the root password. Ok fair enough but there is no User password. Which is ok by it self. But guess what the user has no password but has Full SUDO rights ?! So if you ever want to change the root password on any linpus Acer try “sudo passwd”

    Root Password changing
    Root Password changing

Basically I’m very happy with this Netbook, and most of my problems will be solved in the coming weeks when I get Ubuntu on to this netbook. Though I would love a way to decrease the Ubuntu boot to the 15 second range.

Shutdown Icon on desktop (Gnome)

Ok after several thousand Google searches. credit to this post for having what i wanted

I finally found what i needed. the command to bring up the shutdown options in gnome.

I wanted to do what alot of other people have wanted to do is put a big arse shutdown button on the desktop for those computer users which can’t find the little one hidding in the right of your screen.

plenty of misleading post about a short cut to “sudo shutdown -h” but that’s not what I wanted.

gnome-session-save –kill

Is the magical code you need to make it work.

how to make the shortcut that’s easy right click on the desktop “Create Launcher..” click.

Name: shutdown Command: gnome-session-save –kill Comment: anything you like.

And you can click on the icon and try and find a new one.

Then you are done a nice shutdown button for all your blind users.

Installing JMP on ubuntu

In order to do my stat2000 labs i need to use JMP, the university gives out copies of JMP out to students on some sort of site licences, the instructions where to go down to uprint and pick up a disk for a small fee ($5). I went down got my disk took it home, and too my disappointment it was only the windows version. JMP is multi-platform as shown by the System Requirements

A couple emails later to lecturers then he emailed desktop services, i got a email saying that they have a license file for me and a disk with the Linux installer.

Which brings the next problem the linux installer really is only a Red Hat installer. And my linux of choice is of course ubuntu.

gabriel@ubuntu1:/media/cdrom$ ls -la
total 506854
dr-xr-xr-x 10 root root 4096 2008-03-06 12:07 .
drwxr-xr-x 5 root root 4096 2008-03-13 16:57 ..
-r--r--r-- 1 root root 10 2008-03-06 12:07 cd.id
dr-xr-xr-x 2 root root 2048 2008-03-06 12:07 fonts
dr-xr-xr-x 2 root root 2048 2008-03-06 12:07 java
-r--r--r-- 1 root root 29142815 2007-09-29 04:46 jmp-base-al-7.0.1-1.i686.rpm
-r--r--r-- 1 root root 54675183 2007-09-29 04:46 jmp-lang-deDE-7.0.1-1.noarch.rpm
-r--r--r-- 1 root root 54591039 2007-09-29 04:46 jmp-lang-enUS-7.0.1-1.noarch.rpm
-r--r--r-- 1 root root 54693795 2007-09-29 04:46 jmp-lang-frFR-7.0.1-1.noarch.rpm
-r--r--r-- 1 root root 119767152 2007-09-29 04:47 jmp-lang-jaJP-7.0.1-4.noarch.rpm
-r--r--r-- 1 root root 92146971 2007-09-29 04:47 jmp-lang-koKR-7.0.1-3.noarch.rpm
-r--r--r-- 1 root root 106242682 2007-09-29 04:47 jmp-lang-zhCN-7.0.1-4.noarch.rpm
-r-xr-xr-x 1 root root 5241003 2007-09-29 04:48 jmp-setup
-r--r--r-- 1 root root 2477691 2007-09-29 04:48 jmp-setup-al-1.2-3.i686.rpm
dr-xr-xr-x 2 root root 2048 2008-03-06 12:07 media_data
dr-xr-xr-x 3 root root 2048 2008-03-06 12:07 order_data
dr-xr-xr-x 3 root root 2048 2008-03-06 12:07 product_data
-r--r--r-- 1 root root 11536 2007-09-29 04:45 ReadMe.html
dr-xr-xr-x 8 root root 2048 2008-03-06 12:07 Resources
dr-xr-xr-x 3 root root 2048 2008-03-06 12:07 tools
dr-xr-xr-x 2 root root 2048 2008-03-06 12:07 unixODBC

So we have a random binary jmp-setup and some rpms.

So we start with the rpms i think. Start be installing alien
sudo apt-get install alien

The next setup is moving the files off the cd-rom on to the hard drive as alien needs to be run where you have read write access.

We convert the following rpms.

sudo alien jmp-lang-enUS-7.0.1-1.noarch.rpm
sudo alien jmp-setup-al-1.2-3.i686.rpm
sudo alien jmp-base-al-7.0.1-1.i686.rpm

Install your new debs using dpkg

sudo dpkg -i jmp-setup-al_1.2-4_i386.deb
sudo dpkg -i jmp-lang-enus_7.0.1-2_all.deb
sudo dpkg -i jmp-base-al_7.0.1-2_i386.deb

I located JMP in my /opt/SAS/JMP7 folder.

I ran sudo ./jmp and yay it showed up in well outdated qt goodness..3.3.8 but the next problem was the license file, i copied and pasted it over from the email i was sent and added it but apparently it’s invalid. Of course having to run jmp as root isn’t ideal but it’s better than rebooting to windows.


After reading the License file again there where 2 lines which looked odd 32 and 33, they started the line with a * instead of a space like all the other lines. i deleted these leading *’s and what do you know the file worked fine i now have a working version of JMP installed on ubuntu.

No Problems found yet but i haven’t started my assignment.