VMWare, finally

Posted by : Rob Stevens | Saturday, November 26, 2005 | Published in

I managed to get VMWare Workstation running on my Suse box last night. I've been trying to get it to work for a few days, but it kept telling me that it was incorrectly configured. The version I was using (5.0.something) didn't have the right kernel module included so it was trying to build its own (which I suspect wasn't compiling properly and was probably what was causing my problem), so I had a look on the VMWare site and found they had released 5.5.something, so I got that, ran the installer, ran the config script, and it worked :). I can now run a fullscreen Windows XP system on top of my Linux system, which is nice. Totally unnecessary, but nice :). I think I'll give Solaris a go next - I like playing with different OS's so it'll be nice to be able to do so without fear of damaging other installs on a real machine.

Suse 10 is definitely growing on me.

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Rome Journal

Posted by : Rob Stevens | Friday, November 25, 2005 | Published in

I found Rome Journal when I was hunting around looking for just this sort of thing - an blog done by some who's moved to Italy, particularly Rome. I'm interested because that's just what I want to do.
I love Rome. I've been there twice and have left both times wanting to live there. Almost anyone who's ever been to Sunderland can probably appreciate me wanting to flee the place - It's not nice, unless you enjoy cold, wet, grubby, charv infested pits - and Rome is top of the list of places to move to. I don't know why so many towns in the UK are so ugly - you can head across the channel to France and even the little, non touristy towns have nice old stone buildings and a fairly pleasant atmosphere, but here we seem to take great delight in tearing our nice old buildings down and replacing them with glass and steel monstrosities that look pretty crap now, and in 30 years time are going to look appalling. Did we learn nothing from 60's architecture?

In Rome I love how you can wander down the back streets and even the scruffy ones still have nice buildings, and that you can turn the corner anywhere and bump into a random statue or fountain that hasn't been smashed or graffitied or anything, and has stayed that way for a long time. Things like that end up destroyed in minutes where I come from...
I love the narrow streets and lanes that seem to have just been plonked down without any sort of planning, the cafe's and restaurants, and the feeling that you're wandering around somewhere that has some culture, whereas Sunderlands idea of culture seems to be the mould growing behind the nearest kebab shop.

Last time I went to Rome (in March this year) Marie, my girlfriend, and I spent 4 days there. In the mornings we went and did the tourist bit (the forum, the coliseum, etc) and in the afternoon we would wander around the city centre looking at things until we were comletely lost and our feet hurt, and then we would find the nearest bus that would take us back to the main station. It was a great way to explore the place, I just wish we'd had longer to do it. We didn't see much in the way of nightlife because we were so knackered after all the walking around we did, so that's something I want to check out next time we're there, and I'd also quite like to go to one of the outdoor operas.

Hopefully I'll get to move there for a while in the not too distant future, but until then I'll just have to make do with occasional trips and blethering about it on here.

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Podcasts

Posted by : Rob Stevens | | Published in

There's a hand-full of pocasts I've been trying to listen to lately (I say trying because I stick them on my ipod, and then it takes me at least a week to get around to listening to them :P). I quite like the idea of podcasts - find a subject you like, put it on your mp3 player and then slump and absorbe. Much less effort than reading a magazine or whatever (and cheaper in the case of Linux mags which are about £6 a pop at the moment, probably because of the DVD full of crap that I don't want, and could get from the internet if I did, that they insist on gluing to the cover) and quite often covering stuff you wouldn't find in most magazines.
The 2600 shows (Off the Wall and Off the Hook) which talk about communications, technology, hacking and civil liberties, amongst other things. Recently they ran a series of shows recorded by one of their presenters, Emanuel Goldstein, while he was doing a round-the-world trip, without getting on a plane, which was pretty interesting.
Another show I like is This Week in Science (TWIS) where the presenters talk about any science related topics they've dug up during the proceeding week. Topics can range from reports of discoveries of beneficial effects from illegal drugs (things like ecstasy possibly helping people with alzheimer's) through to fish parasites that chew away and then act as their hosts tongue. Lovely eh?
A few more that are worth a mention are This Week in Tech, which as the name suggests, is a run down of the weeks interesting tech related stories, which fairly often seems to turn into a bunch of people trying to talk over the top of each other :P but is generally pretty interesting, The Linux Link Tech Show for more techy goodness, and T.W.A.T. Radio which attempts to put out short daily shows about technology, computers and hacking.
There's lots of crap to wade through in finding decent podcasts (I suppose everything is interesting to someone) but I tend to find something that looks worth listening to every couple of weeks. All I have to do now is get around to listening to them...

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Distro Hopping

Posted by : Rob Stevens | | Published in

I've been playing with a couple of different Linux distro's - I have Suse 10 on my main machine which seems ok, but the sound's a bit flakey (its the second time I've installed it - the first time the sound stopped working unless I ran alsaconf everytime I booted) and I'm not sure I like the package management system as much as apt, which is what I use on the other distro I play with, Mepis. I was using SimplyMepis 3.3.2 before I installed Suse, but after the latest dist-upgrade it started locking up fairly often, which is why I decided to switch for a while. I'm currently downloading the first test release of Mepis 3.4, so I'll see what thats like...

*Edit: Got my sound working ok on Suse - found the solution here

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