16 November 2007

My (difficult) Ubuntu life so far

WHILE awaiting the Ubuntu Gutsy Gibbon installer that Dom Cimafranca offered, I deliberately spent most of the week logging into my Dapper Drake system, eschewing the Windows I knew practically all my computing life.

For instance, early today, I composed my Vox Bikol column for the week in OpenOffice Writer, emailed it through my Gmail account via Firefox, and uploaded it to my Blogger site.

I have also resolved my printing problem -- in fact, I let out a loud, triumphant cry when I finally did so -- with my Konica Minolta PagePro 1400W laserjet after tracking down Manuel Schiller's PagePro 12xxW printer printer drivers for Linux, downloading and finally installing it -- but not after overcoming side issues related to the absence of a compiler and make commands in my system.

But I still have problems with the Canon LBP-800 network printer in the office. The appropriate PPD driver -- courtesy of Massimo Del Fedele -- has been installed, which means I will be able to use it as a local printer. But network printing appears to be impossible, as this note from the Open Printing database of the Linux Foundation shows.

The driver issue I mentioned previously involving my Conexant modem remains unresolved to my satisfaction: after finally tracking down the correct driver, the modem has been detected, the process of logging in and out takes place quite seamlessly, but it is mostly an exercise in futility with connection speed capped at 14.4 kbps. Linuxant, the outfit which developed the driver, will only remove the restricted if one coughs up $20 for the license.

But what currently stumps me is my inability to play a simple VCD movie, notwithstanding the updates I made on the VLC Media Player that I downloaded, either as a synaptic package or through the Terminal. The same holds true with the WMV videos I have in my hard drive, which are practically useless in an Ubuntu environment.

Truth to tell, I am being frustrated by twists and turns of my Ubuntu experience thus far in trying to duplicate what I can do, and actually do and enjoy with Windows. Which actually makes me pine for the ease and simplicity of XP, its bugs, worms and viruses notwithstanding.

I am not exactly a techie, and I am not conversant at all with Linux. But having used a lot of DOS line commands and the WordStar word processor before Windows 3.1 came about, I can follow basic instructions on how to go about with Linux line commands in the Ubuntu Terminal.

I can only imagine how a total newbie will manage in the face of these difficulties.

But I have not given up yet: I love my "Dawn of Ubuntu" wallpaper, and I only hope Gutsy will live up to expectations.

10 comments:

Dominique said...

Sent the package last Friday, via JRS, along with a little extra ;-) Hope you like it.

kablog said...

Hi Willy,

Almost all "first times" are difficult. Event then, they are often the most remembered.

Welcome to Linux world!

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