Episode 073 – . (Dot)

Posted by Tony on March 3, 2013 in Show-mp3, Show-ogg |



MP3 format (for Freedom Haters!)
OGG format (for Freedom Lovers!)
Total Running Time: 1:34:49

Un-edited Live session – http://youtu.be/cc8B6KE5Zw4

Contact Us:

show (at) smlr.us or the Contact us page


Kernel News: Mat
Time: 11:05
Distro Talk: Tony
Time: 13:10
Mary Distro Review
Time: 28:00
Tech News:
Time: 50:30
The Toolbox
Time: 1:04:14
Is it Alive? – Mary
Time: 1:11:25
Listener Feedback
Time: 1:21:34
Outtro Music
Time: 1:12:17


Tony Bemus, Mat Enders, and Mary Tomich
Intro Sound bite by Mike Tanner

Kernel News: Mat

Time: 11:05

Release Candidate:
No release candidate this week.


Stable Updates:
On Wed, 27 Feb 2013 09:31:47 PST
Greg Kroah-Hartman released kernel 3.7.10
With 79 files changed, 572 lines inserted, and 470 lines deleted

On Thu, 28 Feb 2013 06:11:06 PST
Greg Kroah-Hartman released kernel 3.8.1
With 191 files changed, 1647 lines inserted, and 991 lines deleted

On Thu, 28 Feb 2013 08:20:18 PST
Greg Kroah-Hartman released kernel 3.0.67
With 63 files changed, 572 lines inserted, and 240 lines deleted

On Thu, 28 Feb 2013 08:21:01 PST
Greg Kroah-Hartman released kernel 3.4.34
With 104 files changed, 806 lines inserted, and 557 lines deleted

Kernel Developer Quote:
No kernel developer quote this week instead let’s talk about the new kernel.org website.  It is very snappy looking an much more user friendly I recommend you go check it out.

Distro Talk: Tony

Time: 13:10


  • 2-24 – Superb Mini Server 2.0.3 – Slackware-based distribution for servers
  • 2-25 – Tails 0.17 – Debian-based live DVD focusing on user’s privacy and anonymity while browsing the world wide web
  • 2-25 – Manjaro Linux 0.8.4 – Arch-based Linux distribution with a choice of Xfce, Cinnamon and Openbox desktop user interfaces
  • 2-27 – Clonezilla Live 2.1.0-26 – live CD with specialist open-source tools for disk cloning tasks
  • 2-27 – Zorin OS 6.2 “Core”, “Ultimate” – Although both are based on Ubuntu 12.04, only the “Core” variant can be had for free while the “Ultimate” edition, with extra tools and enhancements, is a commercial product that cost €10 to download.
  • 2-28 – Grml 2013.02 – Debian-based live CD with a collection of specialist GNU/Linux software, tools and scripts designed for system administrators
  • 3-01 – aLinux 15.0 – independently developed distribution (formerly known ad Peanut Linux) designed for ageing computers and featuring the KDE 3.5.10 desktop
  • 3-01 – OS4 13.3 – Xubuntu-based desktop Linux distribution
  • 3-01 – Linux Caixa Mágica 19 – Portuguese Linux distribution based on Ubuntu and featuring the latest GNOME 3 desktop
  • 3-01 – Parted Magic 2013_02_28 – Linux-based live CD with open-source tools and utilities designed for disk management and data rescue tasks
  • 3-01 – Quirky 5.4.91 – minimalist distribution that attempts to explore new avenues and implement unusual ideas.
  • 3-01 – Linux From Scratch 7.3 – a book of instructions on how to build a base Linux system from scratch
  • 3-01 – Puppy Linux 5.5 “Wary”, “Racy” – “Wary” and “Racy” editions, special Puppy builds targeting (not only) older computer systems

Distro of the Week: Tony

  1. openSUSE – 1699
  2. Debian – 1758
  3. Ubuntu – 1856
  4. Mageia – 1909
  5. Mint – 3905

Mary Distro Review – Porteus Linux

Time: 28:00

Every few weeks, I seem to find a distro that’s interesting to explore. For the most part, the distro I review this week falls into the category. Yes, there were a few things that did not go according to plan and I’ll talk about them. Porteus Linux is a live, Slackware Linux-based distro that weighs in at a slim 228.4 MB. In a previous incarnation, Porteus was known as Slax Remix, after the other live Slackware Linux-based distro.

The Vitals:
Name: Porteus Linux (http://porteus.org/)
Maintainer: A group of developers
Distro Latest Birthday: 2/20/2013
Derivative: Slackware
Kernel: 3.7.8
Review Desktop: RazorQT 5.0

Live Environment:
During the boot to process, which is fairly quick, I notice right away that Porteus is not going to be your daddy’s kind of distro. During the initial phase of the boot, Porteus inserted eight modules into the mix – kernel, core, xorg, razor, apps, you get the picture. Yes, Porteus is a modular-based distro. like building block you can add or take away. I plan to discuss this aspect of Porteus’ configuration later.

The distro boots fairly quickly to a standard Razor-qt desktop. I have icons for my home folder and the Razor-qt Configuration Center. Like Salent, there’s a futuristic-looking analog clock and a single panel spanning the bottom of the screen.

Graphics: ( i915)
Wireless:  (iwl3945)

The Defaults
Browser: Firefox
Office Suite: None, but AbiWord is installed
Mail Client: None
File Manager: SpaceFM

The first thing that catches my eye is the Porteus Package Manager tool. The PPM installs and upgrades your Porteus system through the Porteus module repository. In addition to Porteus’ repository, you also have access to the quick switch dashboard, which allows you to switch between repositories for Porteus, Slackware, Slackbuild, Salix, Alien, and Debian. Simply click the repository and download the database and you’re ready to modularize and install software. I even found dropbox-client in the alien repository—but no Klatuu. Sorry…!

While running the live CD I installed a couple of modules and everything worked as advertised.
The process is straight forward: a) Select app from list; b) Satisfy dependencies (done by database); c) Download parts; d) modularize. It also appears that you can bundle groups of apps together but when I did that a message appeared saying that Porteus didn’t support merged modules. It was confusing to have that option and not support it.

The Install Process:

Porteus’ premise is portability, thus it’s not designed to be installed to a hard drive, although it is possible. Instead a method to install to a USB thumb drive is provided via the Porteus System Centre

which is spelled the cosmopolitan way—re, in the live CD environment. This tool also provides configuration access for a number of system areas including Security, Boot, Changes to Porteus (due to its modularity), and general system settings (keyboard, language, time, etc.).

During the install access you can access Gparted to prepare the thumb drive if needed via a button below the list of available install locations. After the drive is prepared and the files copied to it, you simply reboot to load Porteus from the thumb drive—or not. Unfortunately I initially experienced difficulty trying to set up the thumb drive and only installed it once out of six times from the first CD I downloaded. The single time I was able to get Porteus running, it was easy to boot and fast. The other five times, not so much. I would try different combinations of settings, format parameters, boot flag, install bootloader. I don’t necessarily blame Porteus but it was frustrating. Kind of like looking in the window of a candy store but it’s closed. The second CD was better –the first time I tried it, it worked.

Installed Environment:

The first thing I did was update Razor-qt’s session configurator to accommodate my left-handed mouse. Adding a xmodmap setting (xmodmap -e “pointer = 3 2 1”) to the autostart section took care of it quickly. As an aside, I contacted the Porteus project about adding this option to the Porteus System Centre and it sounds like that may happen in the next release

My testing included installing several programs: — Scribus, Inkscape, Ardour, and a couple of others from Debian. As noted earlier, Porteus installs apps and programs via a modules. After you build the module, it’s stored where you’ve indicated at the start of the process. Modules are activated or deactivated via the PPM or by right-clicking to an Open… menu and selecting the appropriate option. After activation, the activated program should appear in the launch menu and they did for the most part but there were a couple of times when the module just did not appear for me.

I had no problem getting them to run in the live environment; it was only in the USB installed environment where I experienced difficulty, although I am happy report that Super TuxKart compiled to a module, was listed in the menu and ran as expected

Porteus System Information – all system information from kernel to chassis is stored and accessible here. Also included is a reporting capability so that information can be dumped into a file for future use.

Magic Folders – Porteus also uses magic folder which you to save changes made to a folder in your live file system to a specific folder (or .dat image file) on another disk—hard disk, USB flash drive, or other media. Think of it as a paired folder that mirrors another folder you’ve identified. I think of it as dropbox for localhost. You can also create more than one magic folder. Since it uses the UUID to track locations, the underlying device can be moved, plugged in later and regardless of the partition it is.

Other interesting Programs: Porteus includes several utilities that help users manage their system.

Porteus Save File Manager – This tool helps you manage your “savefile” which is required when you’re saving changes on FAT or NTFS file systems. Also allows you to encrypt the file and resize it if needed.

Porteus Mount Manager – Mount LAN share, local or remote ISO file, or storage partition. Also supports unmounting of said location.

syncBackup – Front end of rsync for backup purposes. It’s from Darhon Software and is available from the Darhon web site (http://darhon.com/) I did not have time to test this package but it does have rpm and deb packages.

SpaceFM – a multi-pane file manager. Useful if you are working across multiple directories. Allows for one-click operation. No option for vertically oriented panel if you’re using three.

Uget – A robust download manager. (http://uget.visuex.com/)

Cmake – the cross-platform, open-source build system, designed to build, test and package software. CMake is used to control the software compilation process. (http://cmake.org)

Manage printing which opens to the Cups web page on localhost. From here you can manage your


I found Porteus to be a very interesting Linux distro, despite the issues I experienced. Its solid toolbox of innovative utilities kept me busy and engaged with this distro.

I give it a 2.95—less than three only because of my module difficulties. Despite that, I encourage people to try this distro.

Tech News:

Time: 50:30

Is Samsung Giving Google An Anxiety Attack

Samsung currently sells approximately 40% of devices running Anroid worldwide. Is Samsung going to rear up and cut into Google’s advertising revenue. That may be why Google is meeting with other manufacturers at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain. Google hopes new devices from manufacturers like HTC Corp. and Hewlett-Packard Co. will keep Samsung in check. Neither Google or Samsung will talk openly about the situation. Last years numbers tell the tail. Samsung shipped 215.8 million devices to Apple’s 136.8 million iPhones. That gives Samsung 39.6% of the global market to Apple’s 25.1%.

Debian Has A New Trademark Policy

The Debian Project announced a new trademark policy. All Debian logos and trademarks can be freely used for both commercial and non-commercial purposes. They wish to encourage use of it’s marks in any way to promote Debian and free software. The Debian Project Leader, Stefano Zacchiroli, is a big proponent of the change. It allows for all sorts of comercial use with the only caveat being that how much of the sale is going to Debian as a donation. With the upcoming release of Wheezy they are encouraging vendors to produce merchandise using the upcoming release’s artwork.

DHS Keen On Open Source

Richard Spires, Chief Information Officer at the Department of Homeland Security, wile speaking at a hearing on the Federal Information Technology Acquisition Reform Act said officials should look to open source technology whenever possible. Several industry groups have alleged that there is an Open Source bias in the legislation. Rep. Darrell Issa, Calif., author of the bill, deny’s that there is any bias in the bill. He goes on to say it only instructs agencies to consider open source software and tools as one option. Open source is present across much of Homeland Security’s technology portfolio, Spires said, and the agency expects to use more open source in the future.

Free onsite and offsite backup

Is it time for Oracle to donate MySQL to Apache?


Official Ubuntu Rolling Release Proposal


A Guide to Identifying the Right Open Source CMS for You


The Toolbox

Time: 1:04:14


When making a new screen I like to use the following command:

screen -AdmS [name the screen]

Let’s look at what those options do:

-A = Adapt the sizes of all windows to the size of the current terminal. By default, screen tries to restore its old window sizes when attaching to resizable terminals. This option overrides that default behavior and makes screen resize to your terminal window.
-d = Thi option basicly checks to see if there is a screen already running and if there is it detaches it instead of making the screen. If no session can be detached, this option is ignored.
-m = In combination with the -d option it starts the screen in detached mode rather than imediatly attaching to it it.
-S = This option allows you to give your screen session a name. This name will replace the tty.host portion when doing a screen -ls with the name you chose, so it will give you [pid].[name].

There are many morre options like to power detach and reattach to screens that were not detached from, like if you unexpectedly lose your ssh connection.

To find the currently running screens use this command:

screen -ls

To reattach to a running screen I use:

screen -r [name of screen]

Inside screen there are controls for controlling screen. I only use two:

Ctrl+a then d (detaches the screen you are in but leaves running whatever you had running)
Ctrl+a then k (kills the screen you are currently in including any jobs you have running inside that screen)

There are many, many more you can find out what they are by issuing:

Ctrl+a then ?

Go experiment and enjoy!

Is it Alive?

Time: 1:11:25

During this segment of the show, I challenge Mat and Tony to identify whether a Linux Distro is alive or dead? Every other week, I twist the concept for our game show and challenge Mat and Tony to decide if the named entity was a Linux distribution or something else. Previous twists have include whether the distro was French, Ubuntu-based, a super hero, or my favorite twist, a bar drink. I’ll have a Liquid Lemur with my chips, please.

This week is not twist week, so the task is very simple. Is it alive or dead…

Zeroshell is a Linux distribution for servers and embedded devices aimed at providing the main network services a LAN requires. It is available in the form of Live CD or Compact Flash image and you can configure and administer it using your web browser. The main features of this Linux distribution for Network Appliances are listed below:


MAT: Alive
TONY: Alive

ZoneCD – The Public IP ZoneCD was a re-mastered variant of the Morphix CD and a bootable CD with a collection of GNU/Linux software pre-configured to create a WiFi gateway

MAT: Dead
TONY: Dead

ZerahStar – ZerahStar Zesktop was a research and development project of ZerahStar, a Singapore-based Linux company. Its goal was to achieve a totally automated computing system that is capable of maintaining and fixing itself without any need for human intervention.

MAT: Dead
TONY: Dead

Zentyal (formerly eBox Platform) is a unified network server that offers easy and efficient computer network administration for small and medium-size businesses. It can act as a gateway, an infrastructure manager, a unified threat manager, an office server, a unified communication server or a combination of them

MAT: Alive
TONY: Alve

ZenCafe was a desktop Linux distribution designed specifically for public Internet cafés. Based on Slackware and Zenwalk Linux, it includes auto-recovery features, Internet café billing and management software, and other graphical system administration tools.

MAT: Dead
TONY: Alive

ZENIX GNU/Linux was a Linux distribution based on Linux From Scratch. It was built directly from scratch to stand for a reliable Server OS. ZENIX consists of a basic system and some additional packages. A single package will provide a full server environment for a specific need, such as DNS server, web server or mail server.

MAT: Dead
TONY: Alive

Mat: 5
Tony: 4

Listener Feedback:

show (at) smlr.us or 313-626-9140
Time: 1:21:34

Outtro Music

Time: 1:12:17
Liber 777 – (Thelemic interlude) by Lith Ah

This content is published under the Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

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