The Haus

Wednesday, June 30, 2004

While We're Talking About Cool Toys...

I'm a sucker for those live-CD versions of Linux--throw in a CD and boot a working Linux system which runs right from the disc (Knoppix is a longtime favorite). I'm also a sucker for live-CD versions of Linux which run from mini-CDs or bootable business cards. Unfortunately, while I've had 15 of those little CDRs for quite a while, I've also had a hard time finding a version worthy of a disc.

But now I've found just what I'm looking for: SLAX. Oh yeah--I run Slackware at home, and now I can run it anywhere else. Burn SLAX to a mini-CDR and off you go. It's pretty complete: it has X capability with fluxbox and even KDE, it has Konqueror, some editors and VNC capability too. Unfortunately it's missing some stuff I'd like, namely development tools.

Still, the SLAX website has some information on rolling your own version. Now that's going to be a fun project: a mini-CDR version of SLAX customized to my own taste.

NVIDIA Linux 1.0-6106 Drivers

NVIDIA has released new 1.0-6106 drivers for x86 and AMD64 Linux systems. It even includes a pretty slick settings program that is released under the GPL! This version supports NVIDIA's latest GeForce 6800 GPUs, PCI-Express, 4K stacks in the 2.6 kernel, and other groovy things. I'm hearing rumblings about speed improvements over the 1.0-5336 drivers too. I will find out for myself! Thanks Linux Games.

Monday, June 28, 2004

VNC: Coolest . . . Software . . . Ever

Just when I thought I pretty much had been as amazed by the open-source community as I was going to be (what with KDE, OpenOffice, Mozilla, and Linux itself), J.t.Qbe turned me on to some software that blew me away. That software? RealVNC. It allows any Win32, Mac, or *nix computer running their server to be controlled by another Win32, Mac, or *nix computer using their viewer. Setup was ridiculously easy. I tried the server on my kids' Win98 box and could completely control it from my Slack 10 box over the network. Far too cool, and it's free in every sense of the word. Check it out.

The Master comments: I've used TightVNC extensively myself, and it is another great open-source version of the VNC protocol and client. It's also got some sweet server extensions. Either one of these is really good stuff when you need remote control.

J.t.Qbe comments: I like some of TightVNC's features, but for some reason it's slow as molasses over my LAN. I'll have to give it some more time.

This afternoon I had to go over to my sister's to help her with her broadband router setup. I couldn't resist: I set up some port forwarding on my own router and then used VNC from her house to my Linux box at home. It was a bit laggy, but still quite workable--and far better than it was years ago when I used it over a 28K dialup line.

Real to GPL Helix Player

Real Networks announced that they will be adding the GPL as a licensing option for their Helix Player. No, this doesn't include the RealAudio/Video codecs, but still. I downloaded and installed the RealPlayer beta, which is based on Helix code but includes the Real* codecs. It's pretty impressive. It's light years ahead of the earlier Real8/9 alphas and infinitely less annoying than that awful realOne thingy. Thanks Slashdot. Ars Technica also has an interesting blurb about it.

No Old News

Recent Headlines

January 5, 2015: It Returns!
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