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Author Topic: kulturedyobbo introduction  (Read 1298 times)

Offline kulturedyobbo

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kulturedyobbo introduction
« on: October 25, 2015, 02:50:39 am »
Hi all.

I have been a Linux user since 1999 and have just started using Sparky Linux early this month, and for the most part find it a delight to use with its very slick performance.

One thing I tried fro the first time ever was to use the open source nouveau video driver instead of the proprietary nvidia one as in other distros I had issues with the nvidia driver, especially in regards to applications running in wine. Now these applications under wine, such as the astro application “Nasa’s Eyes” runn perfectly. In the case of Goolge Earth (as Goolge-Earth for Linux has been broken for years), I find I can install the latest Goolge Earth for Windows in wine, which under nvidia could fail. In the past I found nouveau had no 3D accleleration/direct rendering, and so google-earth would run but very slow. Now it runs perfectly under nouveau.

The general running of the OS feels slick and fast. Chromium is my main browser and I am finding it running so much faster with no flash. If I come across the odd site where I have to use flash, I view it in iceweasel where I have the adobe flash plugin installed. However, I find with Youtube in chromium, I am not missing flash which in other distros, the pepper-flash plugin had caused my chromium browser to lock up when I had many tabs (like 30+) open. Sparky with chromium, handled over 45 tabs no problem.

I have found some minor issues though. When installing Sparky from the live DVD, I had to connect my laptop directly to my modem. My wifi device is “Broadcom Corporation BCM43225 802.11b/g/n (rev 01)”, and the packages for it to run were installed such as b43-fwcutter, firmware-b43-installer and firmware-b43legacy-installer. The problem I discovered after installation was that the wrong module, namely “b43” was blacklisted. The module that needed to be blacklisted was the “wl” module. Then when I enabled/unblacklisted b43 along with all the other modules previously blacklisted in /etc/modprobe.d/broadcom-sta-common.conf such as brcmsmac, ssb, cordic, mac80211, cfg80211 it works.

The other annoyance was with Desktop management in XFCE. I was not able to initially use one of my countless digital camera photos as my background. Only when I copied whatever photo I wanted to use as my desktop to a folder it recognizes such as say “desktop-base”, could I use that photo as my desktop. When I open up a folder from my ~/Pictures folder and sub-folders, it sees the photos but they are “greyed out” and unable to be added to my desktop. The fix I have used is OK for the time being as a stopgap, but is not desirable as a permanent fix.

The only other one is with an ancient astro application called “starplot”. Its development has ceased since 2007 but it is still in the Debian repo. When I install it with apt-get and run it from the command line I get the error message
“*** Error in `starplot’: free(): invalid pointer: 0x00007fa0711c6f50 *** Aborted.

I then tried compiling it, but after running it from the command line I get a similar message:

*** Error in `/usr/local/test/bin/starplot’: free(): invalid pointer: 0x00007f1fa7207f50 *** Aborted.

I am using in Sparky gcc compiler version 5.2.1 20151003 (Debian 5.2.1-21). The solution I found was to compile starplot on my Neptune Linux partition, and copy over the Neptune install to my Sparky partition. In Neptune, my gcc version is 4:4.7.2-1 which is essentially Debian Stable. Sparky I realize is based on Debian Testing.

One last thing. When I installed Steam (I am installed Sparky 4.1 from the DVD), I found it would not run. However, after visiting an Ubuntu forum, I found that executing the following command from the command line:

LD_PRELOAD=’/usr/$LIB/′ DIAPLAY=:0 steam

that steam would work. I have written this command into a script which is executed by clicking onto my edited steam shortcut.

I must emphasize however that these are minor issues. Overall, I very happy with Sparky and its slick performance. The ability to use the open source driver to avoid issues with the nvidia driver, such as with wine apps, but still have proper direct rendering is a major attraction for me along with the much better performance with my chromium browser. All in all a great distro!