Monday, November 05, 2007

To Be Fair: Ubuntu warns you


Suspend to RAM with fglrx

  • Attempting to suspend to RAM using the proprietary fglrx ATI video
    driver from the restricted component will hard-lock the system due to
    changes in the kernel's memory allocator (which will be the default in
    Linux 2.6.23) that have not been followed by ATI in a timely fashion;
    this is the vendor's responsibility and is beyond our control due to
    the proprietary nature of the driver. Workarounds include using Ubuntu
    7.04, avoiding suspending to RAM, or using the free ATI driver. Bug #121653\


What I really really really wish is that the upgrader would have went "Oh no, Bug #121653 found. Do you *really* want to continue this upgrade <N/y>"

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Gutsy Gibbon, Suspend to Ram: Support More Open Source

Great page on how to compile your kernel so that you too can use Gutsy and get Sleeping and Hibernation to work.

So I've been fighting Gutsy Gibbon for 4 eight-hour days. What is my fight about? Well it turns out that my laptop uses ATI drivers for it's GL graphic goodness. Gutsy comes shipped with Compiz AIGLX support, in hindsight being something more of a requirement. In any case, when one enables the proprietary (8.37.something) driver it all works brilliantly. Screensavers are fast, you can draw your gnome-terminals with flare and true compositing. It's just so dang pretty. Oh and cairo-clock pops up and wiggles.

It all goes swimmingly until you decide to sleep for the night on your laptop. Then the real fun begins. What happens, you might ask? Well the computer drops to a black screen with a blinking cursor followed by perpetual darkness. Never reaching that happy "I've suspended my operation, boss"-pulsing light that says you can pack up and go home without concern of heat damage or what have you, you are stuck watching and waiting.

Why is this? Well day 1 I thought it was just slow, so I decided to hit the power key until it turned off. Day 2, mostly the same thing. Day 3 I found out about SLUB.

What's SLUB? Well It's a neat way of doing things in the linux kernel that Gutsy, but not feisty, has. Technical, I know, but it turns out that the fglrx driver was designed to work on the old (read: feisty) version which was called SLAB. The end result is that when it is time to sleep things don't talk to each other correctly. This, in turn, means one of two things: fancy graphics or use of the open source driver.

The current open source driver "ati" on this laptop quickly showed me the reason why people make sure that important hardware is fully supported before buying into any one machine. When "ati" is coupled with the AIGLX-compiz set up, it doesn't draw fast, scrolling in firefox causes the load on the machine to go to 100% (seriously, scroll down a page, watch your CPU report you are using 100% of it), move something left or right and it's like you are back in 1999 on a video card with 4M of memory.

So, faced with this evidence I decided that, well, there had to be some forum goers that would have the exact (read: simple to give to a new user, or implement as an old one) solution. Well, the above link is as good as it gets. You either recompile your kernel to use SLAB (and lose the AIGLX fun), use the Open source driver or get graphic goodness and never be able to have sessions saved between power events.

Now why am I mentioning this? Is this just a "Ubuntu sucks" rant? No. What the real problem is that the driver from ATI is a superb piece of work, useful in all ways, but it's closed source. The bug post on launchpad for Ubuntu rates this getting fixed as a wishlist because it relies entirely on ATI going in and getting a new SLUB-enabled version posted for them to integrate into the operating system. If it had been entirely open source, someone could have taken it and recompiled it to be SLUB using (or altered the source if needed) and the release would have been flawless.

Me, I'm stuck thinking "Keep gutsy for the updated packages or blow away 3 years of ubuntu install for Debian, or install Feisty".

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Thursday, October 04, 2007

It's coming!

on the 18th you too can have a copy of Ubuntu Gutsy Gibbon (7.10). It stands to be put well together and it's linux.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Monday, August 20, 2007

4th ed

Jeff reports that some of the items that are in line, but might be changed for D&D 4e.

Magic is no longer Vancian. Yay! No more X spells of lvl 1. Wait, wasn't that almost a character feature of the magic system anymore? I mean I lived with this for 20 years.

No official setting as yet.

Oh hey, it might still be Open. Which is a big yay!

Thanks for good information and a fair perspective.

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For when you have a hunkering and an altoid tin

Awesome, thanks Make Magazine!

Find it here

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Sunday, July 22, 2007

Greasemonkey hot.links

Greasemonkey GMAIL loving! also don't forget to visit

Lots of fun to be had in firefox.

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ScribeFire is pretty dang cool. It's a plug in for Firefox that lets you post your blogs from inside the firefox browser without having to go to the control panel and clicking post new. Also allows for technorati tags. So far the only thing that didn't work right away was dragging and dropping a link from the url to the post area locked it up.

Let the fun begin.

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Monday, July 09, 2007

Want a big feed of Warcraft Podcasts?

This is the rss feed : here .

It has Warcraft Chronicles, The Instance, and World Of Warcast.

Love all these podcasts, and after fighting yahoo pipes for a few, I figured this would be a great way to aggregate it all together for a person.

If anyone has any other podcast feeds to add, comment or mail me. I can squeeze two more in and then I'll have to do *very little* extra to get even more in....

Update: Thanks Wowexplorer RSS FEED

Sunday, July 01, 2007


Hungarian bookshelves:

The best part is, there is now a CRAFT Magazine (which is awesome so far), a MAKE Magazine and a HACKS magazine. I'm in DIY heaven.

And you know what is the best part of the diy pages all around? The fact that it really does show that you can do this stuff. It's not like you have to be a super genius with a glue gun and a mider saw and faked your way through a project. These are things *you* can do.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Opera 9 and the Flickr Badge

Sorry if you can't see the badge on the right. It *really* should have worked.

On an aside I am going to code up a jabber bot, using ruby Jabber bot. Much excitement. I've signed up a new bot account on