Shape of things to come

Some of the people involved with linuxbasix in the past wonder if there’s interest in reviving the community. kwisher has a poll up in the forums here. If you think reviving the community is worthwhile, you can add a comment to the forums post.

There’s also the #linuxbasix channel on, where you can have real time interaction to discuss this. Use your favorite irc client or freenode’s web interface to their irc network here.

Bye, all

Got an email today from knuckle that he (as the domain owner) decided to archive the web site. Thanks for reading, thanks for contributing and hope y’all think what was done with was valuable.

Merry Christmas and something to look forward to on Friday Dec 27, 2013

Well, let’s see how this works. Maybe someday I can figure out how to correctly put a title on this.

This is in the nature of a test post. I have some access now and (here it comes) intend to post maybe once or twice a week.

First thing to throw out is: coming up starting Fri Dec 27 2013 is 30c3, the Chaos Computing Club’s 30th congress|conference.

Violet Blue’s post on links to the page where the schedule is available in various formats.
Glenn Greenwald to deliver keynote at 30C3 hacker conference for her article, and Schedule 30C3 for, yes, the schedule.  If you use korganizer, as I do, grab the .ics file (iCalendar on the linked page), and import the .ics into korganizer.

tbh, most times I find video a waste for things like keynotes, and I try to get an audio file instead of video. If there’s only video and no audio, it’s trivial to create one with avconv.

Another reason I listen instead of watching is what I’ve mentioned from time to time: I work 3rd shift and have hours available when I can listen. I don’t have any way I can watch.

I don’t know if I can enable comments to this post. I know when some of us were posting before, comments were off. Personally, I want comments on. Comments off on a blog seems to me like typing something in irc and having everyone in the channel on /ignore, but maybe I can’t change that, maybe it’s whoever controls the site controls commenting. I do see that I can’t add a category for this post (I’d like to categorize this as ‘worthalisten’), all I can do is select Podcast, Shownotes, or Uncategorized. I did ask a while ago about changing the footer ‘© 2013 LinuxBasix. All rights reserved’ to ‘cc-by-sa’  but nothing’s changed yet.

Merry Christmas.

If I can’t turn comments on, catch me in irc in #linuxbasix on (nick chattr). I’m not one for forums, so I don’t have a forums account on

I previewed this and comments are off. I don’t see any way in the Add New Post page to turn them on. Not what I’d prefer, since comments off makes the blog ‘here are my thoughts, and you don’t get a chance to tell me what you think, so don’t even try’.

— chattr (who will try not to use the first person singular so much next time)

So, you’ve decided to run linux….


So, you’ve installed linux and you’ve run into a problem. What do you do? Where do you go? There are plenty of resources and a myriad of websites to visit. Sometimes the search for help can be both frustrating and overwhelming. So here are some suggestions. I’m not going to tell you to read the f’ing manual. There is some important info in them make no mistake but most of us are impatient and to tell you the truth I’ve only read the manual maybe, MAYBE twice. Depending on the distro, I would suggest checking out the distros official forums. Most major distros have really good forums. I use centos and they have a very active forum. Two of the most popular distros LinuxMint and Ubuntu have very good forums and you can usually find your answers there. Next if you are unable to find what you are looking for there, check the wiki. Again a lot of real useful info there. Another avenue is web search. Lastly, when the above fail, head over to IRC for some real time help. When looking for help either on IRC or web search or any search be sure to include at very minimum – distro, hardware and problem item. More info always makes helping you solve your problem easier and quicker. Say for example the Banshee music player does not work you need to provide the following info:

What distro are you running? Ubuntu 12.04, Slackware 14, Fedora 18, etc
What version of the app are you using? You can find this info by choosing Help in the application menu and looking for the About Banshee
Because this is a music player people will want to know are you using Pulse audio or Alsa?
You may also have to provide some hardware info too. Laptop, Desktop, Tablet? Speakers – internal, external?

The above is not an exhaustive list, it is just a start but hopefully you get the idea. Provide as much info as you can.

Lastly when going on IRC and asking for help, please, please, please be patient. Some IRC sites have over 20+ people, not everyone is paying attention to the main “room”, it may take a few moments for someone to see a question has been asked. Be assured someone will eventually take the ball and run with it.

There are so many other avenues you can go when seeking help if you have some of your own, feel free to share and I’ll post it on this site.

I do want to pimp out one help site worth checking out and has been a great source for answers over the years and that is the grand daddy of all forums, that is This is possibly the oldest help forum out there for linux. If you run into a problem you can most likely find the answer there.

OpenStack from Scratch

If you are in the Boston area, tomorrow is the monthly gathering of the Boston Linux Unix group. Details from the website below:

OpenStack from Scratch

Date and Time

Wednesday, August 21, 2013 from 6:30 pm to 9:00 pm


MIT Building E-51, Room 335


Federico Lucifredi – flucifredi acm org


Federico talks about OpenStack


Details to follow

About Federico Lucifredi

Federico Lucifredi is the maintainer of the man suite, the primary documentation-delivery tool under Linux, a graduate of Boston College and Harvard University, and the Ubuntu Advantage Product Manager at Canonical. As a software engineer-turned-manager at the Novell corporation, Federico was part of the SUSE Linux team for five years, overseeing the update stack of a 150 million dollar maintenance business. Previously, Federico has been a CIO and a network software architect at technology and embedded Linux startups, and he has spent two years teaching in Boston University’s graduate and undergraduate programs, while simultaneously consulting for MIT. He is a frequent speaker at user group and conference events, notably the Linux Foundation’s LinuxCon, LinuxWorld, the O’Reilly Open Source Convention, and the IMPlanet conferences, where he was a panelist representing the Jabber community. Federico is a recognized expert in computing performance issues, and consults pro-bono with Standard and Poor’s clients interested in Free/Open Source Software technical and strategic issues. He participated in the GPL v3 drafting process in the large-corporation panel.

CentOS 6.4 that is my final answer!

I can’t believe we’re already at the tail end of August! This past Summer has been eye opening for many reasons. I will elaborate in future posts. First up, CentOS. I have been mulling over this question for quite some time. A couple years back I set up some friends with Linux Mint 10. Over the years it has been a fine distro but only recently we’ve had to start considering alternatives. At first I was hoping to stick with Linux Mint it is a really solid distro and I really liked the Mint community. What I had to really focus on was this. People who use computers casually do not like change. They also don’t understand why operating systems need to change. We’ve seen the fallout from Window 8, even when Windows 7 first came on the scene a few years back, the change was very minimal but for basic computer users it was a huge change. I guess what I’m getting at is, after much consideration, I will be suggesting CentOS for new users from here on out. The most compelling reasons are 1. Current release is supported until 2020. 2. The desktop is the venerable gnome 2.3 Those are the two largest reasons. The beauty of linux is that you can make the distro as exciting as you want but with CentOS you start with a very basic desktop with only the apps you need to get going. You are not paralyzed by the vast application options on a default install. The only criticism I’ve heard about using CentOS is that you are using an older linux kernel but I have to tell you, I have not heard a good arguement of why this is a problem. The other reason why I am choosing CentOS is that this is still an enterprise OS and what this means is that you don’t necessarily get the latest and greatest. In terms of the constantly changing world of Firefox updates/upgrade things tend to break, in CentOS, you don’t get the upgrade until it has been thoroughly tested. Currently I am running 6.4 with Firefox at version 17. This distro is rock solid and I urge you to heavily consider making this your new distro.

Linux for the rest of us…


For most of the long time listeners of Linuxbasix, we are well aware of Linux for the rest of us. I would like to take a moment to urge all of the folks who have supported and listened to Linuxbasix to make the migration over to Linux for the rest of us. Why? The upcoming shows will be very, very basic. I want to stress basic. This is largely in response to a demo I attended last week. The demo was for a linux distro and when the day was done, the folks who were shown what a linux distro could do, were largely impressed but the drawback here, it might as well have been a magic show. While explanations were given in very laymans terms, the audience was far from computer literate. Not a criticism, just a fact. So while our listeners are more than welcome to continue listening to the show, our content is going to be from the start. I have been wrestling with the format of the current show and I have segments still yet to air (soon). I think our long time listeners will be better served by the Linux for the rest of us show. On a side note, if you can support the ACF please consider doing so –

Out and about


So now that we are firmly set in Summer, there has been little time to dedicate to linux things. That being said, it looks like we’re on for the Northeast GNU/Linuxfest next April 5/6 2014 at MIT. Jonathan was giving a presentation at the Boston Linux Unix group and prior to that Gerry Feldman gave us a tour of what MIT had to offer in terms of space. Needless to say we were both blown away! Each room is equipped with dedicated seating with a counter so you can set your laptop while listening to a talk. You can take advantage of the free wifi. The rooms are fully equipped with overhead projectors and webcams. In short it is the perfect place for us. We’re really excited to get this going for next year. Details will be coming shortly on the NELF site. This coming Wednesday, Jonathan and I will be in Boston for a demo of Sonar for the Easter Seals Foundation. This could be a huge opportunity for Jonathan and will very much put Sonar at the forefront of linux distros for the blind. More to come on that front on Wednesday. As for Linuxbasix, I’ll be focusing a lot on Centos in the upcoming show. The videos will finally be posted tomorrow evening.

Just added – links to Linuxevents


Ok, I can’t promise that the events I listed will be anything like a Brazilian Carnival I can guarantee you will learn something. Anyway the links are above in the menu titled – Linux Events!

Happy 4th!

american eagle photo: AP American-Flag-Eagle_zps4005acdd.jpg
So, with a hot dog in one hand and a hot dog in another and a hamburger in my heart, I am The American! Of course I’m referencing the latest BUGLE PODCAST. If you haven’t heard episode 240, you’re missing out. Funny, funny show! Well, looks like we’ve got some surprises coming in the near future. Among them, look for a segment from the FSF! We are also going to be adding three new segments to the show. More to come in the next three days. That being said, today is going to be a hot one so stay in the shade, keep the grill going and if you’re not near any water, every town has a pond you can swim in. Except maybe not in Camden N.J. I think the only thing to come out of Camden and then went back just as quickly as he broke out was Dwight Braxton but I digress. Happy 4th and remember to be nice to British people today after all no one needs to be reminded of an empire lost!