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Messages - rssapphire [ switch to compact view ]

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General Software Discussion / Re: Is it time to move beyond Cygwin/X?
« on: December 12, 2007, 11:51 AM »
Xming works well for me.

General Software Discussion / Re: Virtual Desktop suggestions?
« on: December 03, 2007, 07:17 AM »
Currently, I'm looking at VirtualBox which runs on all the OSs, but this is not true of them all. Also thinking I will make Linux the base OS since I have more confidence in its security and insulation from threats and that will be the OS most used for internet etc.

That's what I did in late October and after a few initial problems getting some KDE applets to work in Gnome (my solution, don't autostart them as autostarting them would mess up Gnome every few reboots), I found it works well. I'm running XP in VirtualBox's seamless mode. It has a few minor issues (for example, it needs something besides the taskbar displayed or it does not play well with Compitz Fusion -- I display a PowerPro minibar), but works nicely and seems faster than VMWare every was. All the XP Windows display in the same virtual desktop. You can't scatter them between virtual desktops, although I suspect you will be able to with a future version of VirtualBox.

VirtualBox doesn't do DirectX so it can't run many Windows games. I'm not much of a gamer, so this isn't an issue for me. My favorites seem to run well enough in WINE.

General Software Discussion / Re: Maybe Vista doesn't suck?
« on: November 30, 2007, 07:46 PM »
For example there has been / is still a hot debate going in the Linux  community because it was suggested the kernel needed DRM measures for this very same functionality. Unless I've been mistaken.

It will not happen -- or if it does someone will fork the kernel and produce a version without all that DRM crap. Servers don't need it and many workstation/desktop/laptop users don't watch DVDs (let alone HD-DVDs) on their computer. (They have a TV for that. Bigger screen. More comfortable seating. Etc.) If there were a HD-DVD ready DRM-ed to the gills Linux kernel today, I doubt many would use it.  That's the beauty of open source, stuff like this can't be forced on those who have no use for it and do not want to pay the price in CPU cycles and RAM just to have it there.

Developer's Corner / Re: Software Copy Protection Questions
« on: October 04, 2007, 08:44 PM »
But that is not what I wanted to discuss in this thread. Ranting about how software protection is a load of shit, isn't answering my question.

It wasn't so much a rant about the evils of software protection (I don't even think it is evil in general, just often very poorly implemented), but making the point that one important (and often overloaded by programmers, IMHO) part of selecting what software protection a game is going to use is knowing the specific market the game is going to target so the target market's tolerance for software protection hoops to jump though can be factored into the decision.

Developer's Corner / Re: Software Copy Protection Questions
« on: October 02, 2007, 04:30 PM »
You have to decide what line of business you are in:
1. Are you making games to sell to honest people?
2. Are you making free puzzle games for crackers?

You also need to decide if your game is aimed at hardcore gamers or more casual gamers.  Hardcore gamers will put up with all sorts of copy protection annoyances to play a game.They be happy to reboot with a special configuration that excludes the drivers they need to get work done (like a virtual CD driver or a macro program), allow special "protection/license" services to run even when they aren't playing the game, etc. But the more of that crap there is, the less likely a more casual gamer is to buy and play the game.

I'm a very casual gamer. I can only squeeze in a few hours a week max for playing games. Before I buy a game, I try to carefully research it to be sure it:

a) installs completely on my hard drive. I don't want to have to hunt up and insert the CD when I have time to play. If the game wants the CD inserted just to prove I bought the game (and will not work easily with Game Jackal), I don't buy it. After all, people who don't buy the game but get a cracked version off the net don't have to keep the CD handy, so why should those of us who pay for the game to have to do so? (Quizzes requiring the manual are even worse.)

b) does not keep anything running on my system when I am not playing the game. Sorry. Your protection services do not need to be always running and eating eating my memory and my CPU cycles. Start them with the game and stop them (and remove them from memory) immediately when I exit the game.

c) works with whatever drivers and always on software I want to use. I need a virtual CD for work. It's not coming off to play a game just to make copy protection happy. The same with macro programs, VMware network drivers and the like. If I have to reboot in some special configuration to make the copy protection happy, I'm not buying the game.

d) has NO rootkits or other hidden crap that could mess over my system and not even leave me a clue it is running.

e) uninstalls ALL copy protection when I uninstall the game.

f) does not need to "call home" to allow me to play (unless it is being played multiplayer from a central server, of course). "Calling home" to authenticate once the first time I play after installing the game is fine, but needing to do so after that is out.  I'm not paying to be tracked by some business with a non-negotiable, change at any time privacy policy.

Hardcore gamers will put up with all this and more, of course. Those of us who squeeze in a few hours a week for games generally will not. I admit I'm more strict than a lot of people, but the more hoops the copy protection makes people jump through to play, the less likely more casual gamers are to buy the game.

General Software Discussion / Re: Stay Away From Microsoft VISTA
« on: September 11, 2007, 08:55 PM »
Exactly, a car can be compared to a computer in that, the longer you keep it, the more it costs to maintain. For a computer, the longer you keep it without upgrading, the more of your TIME it takes to maintain.

My current computer is 4 years old. It takes about the same amount of monthly maintenance time today that it did the month I bought it. I don't expect this to change much.

General Software Discussion / Re: Stay Away From Microsoft VISTA
« on: September 11, 2007, 08:53 PM »
I had a few apps that did not play well, I cut them loose after a reasonable amount of time after Vista's launch. Reasonable being 2 months.

I still have programs from the 1990s I use. They do the job. They are paid for (both in money and in time to learn them). In some cases they work better for my needs that the latest and greatest versions. In one case, there is no replacement. It does not make good business sense to cut loose something paid for that gets the job done well just because there is something new out there. I run applications on my systems to get my work done. I select my operating systems to run the applications I need -- not the other way around.

Get on down the road, take the time to get familiar with Vista, spring for new hardware if what you use is not supported in Vista. But get with the 21st century.

I run XP and Kubuntu 7.04, both released in the 21st century. :) However, I still prefer books to e-books even though printed books are so 15th century. Just call me a Luddite.

I'm searching a tool, which acts like a "email-filter-rules" but on the filesystem level.

Googling for "folder watcher" turned up this commercial Program ($24.95). I know nothing about it other than what little info I saw on the web site, but it looks like it might do what you need:

For me, the perfect world would be windows + linux in something like parallels, so that i could take the best of both worlds.

That's what I do now. I run "XPLInux": Linux in a VMWare virtual machine running on XP with a X-server also running on XP so I can run programs on the VM but display them on my Windows desktop.  See this thread for more: "XPLinux" Running Windows XP and Kubuntu on one joint desktop

I'm not sure when Nick is going to get back to TopStyle. He said that he's been away from it for a while but wants to get back to it as soon as he can.

His blog says he has started work on 3.5 (which will mainly be bug fixes and Vista updates) and that they are looking to hire someone to take over the program. I'm not getting my hopes up.

i.e. They want you to buy Dreamweaver...

I'd buy Dreamweaver (reluctantly, given the price) if it would make me more productive than Homesite does. I like some things about Dreamweaver, like the CSS handling in CS3; but overall my productivity goes down with Dreamweaver. So I guess I'm stuck with Homesite until I can't make it run anymore or Nick Bradbury decides to add a bunch of Homesite's HTML-authoring features to Topstyle.

I used to use Allaire HomeSite as an HTML editor.

I still am. I keep trying other HTML editors (from freeware to every new version of Dreamweaver), but always end up going back to Homesite 5.5. It hasn't been updated in 4 years or so, but it is still has the feature set I need.

I have just installed and am now running version .125 alpha.  I am getting similar behaviour - when I double click on a name in the main display the Find and Run application goes to the small window and stays - I have to press the close 'X' in the upper right corner of it's window.  It launches the program correctly, and I do NOT get this behaviour when I use a function key to launch or cursor down to the program name and press ENTER.

While trying to help Mouser track this bug down by trying older versions this morning, I stumbled on to what may be the problem (when I accidentally deleted my FARR .ini file instead of the FARR .exe).  FARR regenerated a default ini file -- and suddenly worked again.  By going through and modifying the default ini it generated one item at a time until FARR broke, I discovered that if I set Inactive Memory Use (In the General Tab) to either Minimal or Average, I got the weird selection with mouse behavior. When left Inactive Memory Use in the default "Stay in Memory Longer" setting, FARR works just like it is supposed to.  You might check this on your system.

Why use VMWare when you can use colinux?

I have never been able to get colinux to work reliably on my system. There's always some major problem. For example, the latest version works fine for a (variable) while then starts writing to the disk and will not stop without a forced reboot (the hold down the power button type).

can you work on a project (the same files) using both unix and win then ? (cygwin can)

To expand on this a bit....

I've been experimenting this afternoon with a way to create icons for Linux programs on the windows desktop (via a Perl daemon program on the Linux VM and an autohotkey program the icon runs that sends a filename to be launched to said daemon via tcp). It's not ready for prime time yet, but I have it working well enough that clicking the icon on the Windows desktop starts the Linux program. Better yet, if you drag a file (from the windows drive) to the icon, it starts the program with that file as a parameter. For example, dragging a text file from Windows Explorer to the Kate icon opens  Kate (running in the VM) on my Windows desktop with the text file from my windows drive open and ready for editing.

Summary for quick review, understanding & implementation: (your post is hard to scan quickly for info)
  • Get a PC (with >1 GB RAM)
  • Install Windows XP SP2 (Vista untested)
  • Install VMWare (workstation or server)
  • Install Ubuntu/Your flavor of unix in VMWare
  • Setup VMWare networking correctly (How?)
  • Install X-server for windows (xming)
  • Setup your win X-server to use VM ubuntu (How?) (this is the innovative part!)
  • Install KDE Kicker? to launch apps from windows

RAM: It will work with under one meg of memory -- just not well enough to use full time (IMHO). Before I upgraded to one gig, I ran Kubuntu Dapper Drake in a 256 meg VM with 768 megs of RAM. Windows graphics programs had trouble. I expect any heavy ram user Windows program would.

Networking: "How" depends on your setup and your choices. For mine (wired home network with a D-Link Router), I set up bridged networking in the VM. I ran the VM and booted Linux so D-Link would get the VM's MAC address and assign it a dynamic IP.  I then went into D-Link's Admin area and associated that IP permanently with the VM's MAC address (making it effectively static without having to manually fiddle with the Linux networking setup -- linux is still using out of the box dhcp, it just always get a fixed IP address assigned by the router).  There are a least a dozen different ways to set something like this up with VMWare. :(

[X-server setup] This sounds hard, but it really isn't. You create a shortcut to Xming with the long line of paramaters I listed (put a space after the ....exe and paste them in.  Drag the shortcut to your startup folder so it starts with Windows and it is ready to go.

So is that all correct? Any better ideas? or want to flesh it out more... to make it like a guide... :)

Pretty much: It does need fleshing out and alternatives explained. I'll be working on that for my new XPLinux web site -- and posting an condensed update here.

Anyway after reading your post i revisited powerpro & tlb...
didn't see anything very useful with TLB... maybe i just don't know how to use it or how it is better than the default quick launch

For most people, it may not be better. TLB is just far more configurable that putting a folder in quicklaunch. I would not like my system as much without it. Your mileage may vary, of course.

as for powerpro, it interferes with stroke it... and it's cumbersome and complicated to use... i am sure it's great once setup correctly, but setting it up correctly takes ages!

LOL. Powerpro is one of the most complex Windows utility programs around. I really don't notice the complexity much as I started using the program with the old Windows 3.1 version (then called Stiletto) about 15 years ago. The feature set and complexity has increased slowly over the years, making it much easier to learn.  This does not help someone just picking it up today, however.

Feel free to take this post, expand on it and put it in the 1st post :)

Thank you! I will do that ASAP.

Also i had a question about your setup then.... where do you install the applications you want to use? in the VM or windows?

Linux programs are installed in the VM. You can run synaptic in Windows (via the VM) to install just about anything you like.

and what is the real benefit? can you work on a project (the same files) using both unix and win then? (cygwin can)

Using VMWAre Workstation you easily can. I have both of my disk drives set up as shared. From Linux they show up as /mnt/hgfs/win and /mnt/hgfs/old. I can easily work on a file stored on my real drives with a Linux program. I do it all the time. (I don't know if VMWare server has this ability.)

The main advantages over Cygwin is the huge number of Linux programs available for immediate use and the fact that they are running on a real Linux system.

Why not use a dual screen setup? With Linux on one and WinXP on the other?

Lack of space for a second monitor, unfortunately. :(

Another interesting setup would be to have th LiveCDS boot in windows itself, so you can have risk-free linux when you want.... and if on flash drive then you can save data  too...

You can't use Windows and Linux programs at the same time that way. However, that's a great way to try Linux and I always keep a Linux LiveCD on hand for trying to repair borked Windows setups -- or least getting all the new since my last backup data off the drive if only a complete reinstall will repair Windows.

Why bother with SSH encryption when you're running the X server on the same machine as the VMware guest, though? Why not just connect directly?

This works for all programs on my system and connecting directly did not work with some Gnome/GTK programs. I'd just get a window full of gray. Someday when I have time I'll try to see what the problem is. However, I really did not notice much speed difference between a SSH connection and connecting directly -- which sort of amazed me.

Something that looks very interesting is parallels coherence...

It seems to only work for Macs running Windows in a VM -- but even I ever get a Mac, you can bet I will be giving Parallels a hard look.

Ooh.. nice. I may try this sometmie! Though I do like Compiz Fusion alot and I doubt it would work this way.
-Laughing Man (July 11, 2007, 12:23 PM)

You're right. It won't work -- at least not on my setup. I'm not sure it work would with any form of X-forwarding unless Compiz Fusion was running on the client system as the forwarded windows are displayed by the client's X-server.

Could you help the ignorant among us and tell us how you set up running Linux and Windows on the same desktop.
-Carol Haynes (July 10, 2007, 12:49 PM)

I'm going to assume you have VMWare Workstation (although you should be able to get this working with the freeware Player or Server as well) and that you have a wired network using a D-Link Router.  With luck I will not leave out any important steps.

1) Install VMWare.

2) Download the ISO for the Ubuntu variant you want to install. I used Kubuntu.

3) Create a VMWare virtual machine (I gave mine 384K of RAM and a 20 gig drive -- you don't want to go much smaller on the RAM, at least until after installing Linux) with the Ubuntu ISO mounted as the CD-ROM.  I used bridged networking to give the VM its own IP address on my home LAN.

4) Boot The VM and install Ubuntu.

5) Activate sshd in the new Ubuntu install. Be sure it is set up to forward X.

6) Using your router, assign a static address to the VM -- I just permanently assign the IP the router initially gave it. (If you don't have a D-Link router, this step can be much more complex.)  Reboot you VM and be sure Linux is using the assigned static IP. For these notes I'll assume

7) Optional: Create a new account in the Linux VM to use when you log in from windows. For these notes, I'll use "xplinux" for the username and "badpass" for the password. Log in to this account at least once from the VM before using it so it is completely set up.

8) Install Xming on your XP (the font package too) and be sure it is running.  I start mine with these switches:

:0 -dpi 85 -ac -clipboard -c -multiwindow -reset -terminate -unixkill -logfile Xming.log

9) Install PuTTY on your Windows machine.

10) Use plink.exe from the command line (or run box) to connect to your running VM:

C:\Program Files\PuTTY\plink.exe -ssh -X -C -pw badpass [email protected] kicker

This will run the "Kicker" bar and it should appear (probably over or under your windows taskbar)

Hey, what skin is that? I like it

It's the Ecliz_Deluxe_Tranz scheme of the Ecliz_Deluxe2 skin for Windowblinds.

i changed a couple of things that could have revived this problem, but the absolute easiest way for me to fix it is if someone knows an older version that doesn't exhibit this behavior.

I'm pretty sure it was .120 or .121 that worked fine as that's when I posted a message that the problem was gone. There were several autoupdates after that before I had to select an item other that the first one, so I'm not sure when it actually broke again.  (I have FARR set to give highest scores to a directory of shortcuts to my most used programs and files so most of the time what I want is the first item and I just hit enter.)

after double clicking to launch a result?

Exactly. I double-click to launch a result and FARR doesn't go away completely. If shrinks to just the search area (and will not accept any input into the edit line, even though the cursor there is flashing away)

does it matter if you are launching a file result or an alias?

Aliases that launch something have the problem.  The run alias, for example.

remind me again the details please

I hit alt-space to bring up FARR. I type text and double-click on Textpad in the result window.


Textpad opens as expected, but the FARR window does not go away, it just shrinks, shedding the results, and just showing the edit line for entering a search term. The cursor is flasshing in the edit line, but you can't actually type anything. You can manually close the window -- which seems to be the only way to make it go away.


v2.00.125 is now up with a lot of bugfixes.
bugfixing will continue on the way to official public release this month.

Sadly, I have to report that the bug that has the FARR window remaining on the screen (collapsed back to just the search edit line without results) after selecting a result with the mouse is back in .125. :o

Version 2.00.121 - July 1st, 2007 - ALPHA PREVIEW RELEASE

Mouser, this is the first new version I've tried since .100. You've fixed the problem I was having making a selection with the mouse instead of the keyboard. FARR now goes away after making a selection either with the mouse or keyboard just like it is supposed to.  Thanks!

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