miércoles, 18 de abril de 2018

Elive 3.0 is ALMOST here!

Elive's latest beta, 2.9.90, was released a couple of weeks ago. 
According to the description, this is the last beta before the official release of version 3.0.

I have been waiting for Elive for quite a long time.
My first contact with it was through a live CD of version 2.0 Topaz in 2010, when I had recently migrated to Linux.  I was truly impressed by the beauty and polish of the distro.  I never installed it, though.  I was put off by the fact that it was the only distro that could not be installed unless one paid for an installing module.  Back then, I assumed that free software had to be "gratis".

After paying for several Mandriva Powerpacks, I decided that I wanted to give Elive a chance.  The project, however, had entered a slow-development phase. 

Years went by and by before I installed Elive for the first time, which finally happened in 2014, with beta 2.3.9.

It was great until I installed beta 2.7.6 in 2016.  Then, I got an Enlightenment problem that prevented me from having a functional desktop, so I stopped using Elive until version 2.9.20 came along and fixed the problem.

Then, in 2018, I installed beta 2.9.26.

Later, I downloaded beta 2.9.42 and stored it but, when I finally decided it was time to install it, I visited the Elive page and discovered that 2.9.90 was here already.

So, I guess I will save my money to support the release of version 3.0.  It has been a 4-year wait, but I think it will be worth it.

miércoles, 14 de marzo de 2018

Still no luck

They were supposed to come fix the internet problem today.
Of course, that did not happen.

In the meantime, Elive has reaches beta 2.9.40 (I'm using 2.9.26), I need to upload material for online classes and I have to help my daughter with her own online platform at schoool.

This does not look good...

lunes, 12 de marzo de 2018

Third Week without an Internet Connection

They are repairing all the structural problems in the roof and walls of the building where I live.  That is certainly great, but they had to remove all cables up there, which means I have been without a connection for more than 18 days.

Of course, hot-spot from the phone helps to check one thing or the other, but I need to start working...

Still, I could be far worse.

Bear and grin, bear and grin.

sábado, 10 de febrero de 2018

Seven Days with Elive 2.9.26 (Beta)

If there is a distro release that I have been waiting for, that is surely Elive 3.0.

I had Elive 2.9.8 Beta installed, so I used the same partition for this upgrade.  After downloading the image of this new beta (2.9.26) and copying it to a USB drive with ROSA image writer, I was ready to test it.  I wanted to see if this distro is OK for a rather non-technical Linux user like me, who has not used the Enlightenment DE regularly.  I also wanted to see its Japanese IME capabilities.

When I installed version 2.9.8, I encountered a frustrating problem: There is an issue with my graphic card. The distro booted correctly, but, when I installed it, the DE froze and complained about Enlightenment crashing because of a module problem.  However, one can circumvent this by booting the distro using the "graphics problems" option, so, after it is installed, Elive works perfectly.  Although the Elive installer bypassed that situation this time because it remembered my settings (awesome!), Megatotoro, who performed a clean install, was not that lucky and stumbled with the issue. 

This is Elive 2.9.8, a previous release
Once in the DE, one can see the beauty of this distro.  It is fast and very stable and the live wallpaper and menu both look classy.

I added iBus IME with Synaptic to try the Japanese capabilities of this beautiful distro.  The results are more than satisfying!

iBus Japanese IME with Anthy

As promised, the clock is sitting on the desktop and one can re-position and re-size it. Clicking on it displays the calendar, as usual.  I resized the clock and moved it to a different position.  Then , I resized the pager (yes, Elive gives you 12 virtual desktops by default) and changed some of the wallpapers.  Contrary to KDE's Plasma, which ditched multiple wallpapers to favor Activities, Enlightenment lets you have independent wallpapers.

A significant detail is that, in Elive, you will not find a launcher button on the lower left corner.  As a matter of fact, you will not find it anywhere: it simply pops up wherever you click on the screen.

I could add the Insync application to sync files with Google Drive in a snap.  Adding the printer, however, was a different story.

Even when I got the drivers for the Epson XP-231, getting the multifunction printer to work was not easy.  Elive has a graphical printer administrator, but, after dectecting the USB printer and selecting the driver, the tool does not continue when you press "next."  To solve this, I added the printer using CUPS (with Firefox).

So, the printer worked, but, as in Fedora 26, I haven't been able to get the scanner to work yet. That and the fact that the GRUB fails to see some of my distros: Mageia, OpenMandriva, and Fedora.  It sees PCLinuxOS, PiSi, and PicarOS Diego. I suppose that is a problem derived from having a hepta-boot laptop.  Still, I recovered my other distros with Super GRUB, a nice piece of advice that Thanatermesis, the developer of Elive, gave me.  (Yes, the support of this distro is immediate with a chat room where the developer himself kindly helps you).  Aside from those two problems, the distro is working as a final release, not a beta.

I guess that one can also speak about the installer and how helpful it is.  I mean, while it basically does everything and tells you about the process in great detail, a window with a Mario game for you to play for a while opens... That is something I have not seen in any other installer.  You cannot play for a long time, though, because the installation is quite fast. 

One has to learn certain tricks, like adding users to a group with Terminology, the colorful terminal, or where files are stored.  Understanding what .edj files are will surely be useful, too.  But that comes later... First, one needs to play with this distro to see and enjoy all the possibilities.
This string of buttons is hidden in the border. I am still learning what the buttons do.

All in all, this distro is a keeper.  I will keep supporting it to see the final release.

viernes, 2 de febrero de 2018

January 2018 is gone

January 2018 is gone.
It was a pretty hectic month for me... so much, in fact, that the 31 days passed and I could not post a single entry on this blog.

It is not that there were not interesting topics to write about.  I could have posted, for example, about the release of the Elive beta 2.9.22, which promised Korean and Japanese support. However, I could not even get the release.

Or I could have posted about LibreOffice, or Firefox Quantum, or the Microsoft-wants-Valve horror...

To be honest, January flew.  I was busy with a writing project on the first two weeks of the month.  Almost simultaneously, my daughter started her summer courses in preparation for her new school.

The weather got crazy and temperature dropped.  I got sick.

Then, during the third week, more courses.  And another writing project with a very close deadline popped up. I had a relapse on the last week.

Now, I am getting better and January is gone, so this is my first post of the year:

The beta 2.9. 26 of Elive is now available!

According to the release announcement, this new version includes:
  • Greatly improved designs for clock and battery, clock is shown by default, the battery includes intuitive colors useful for show the status
  • Improved initial configurations for hardware accelerated features with optimal autodetections and skipping in not supported ones like virtualmachines
  • Lock screen: greatly improved design and a small fix included for wrong passwords attempts
  • Massive rewrite of keyboard bindings greatly improved for a stable and productive system, all the media keys from special keyboards are assigned to the best launchers and features
  • Desktop application launchers improvements, fixes and new includes, a new application is included to restart to a new clean desktop configuration, improved ebook support
  • Persistence: improved speed disabling some disk usage
  • Public folder sharing fixed
 I am presently downloading it.

(Interesting... My last post of 2017 and the first post of 2018 are on Elive...)


domingo, 31 de diciembre de 2017

Elive 2.9.20 and Happy New Year!

2018 is about to start... It is only five minutes for a new year to begin.

I should have posted this entry before, but I wanted to post something nice to say farewell to 2017.

Elive will be my last post of the year.

Elive is a beautifully polished Debian + Enlightenment Linux distribution  The version Topaz 2.0 (released in 2010) blew my mind with its beauty and modest resource requirement.  Therefore, I have been waiting for this distro since I discovered it, back in 2010, when I began exploring Linux.

However, it has been a long wait.  Most distros have a rather predictable release cycle, but Elive 3.0 has been in the making for more than seven years.

I installed the 2.3.9 beta back in October, 2014 to my ZaReason Strata.  It worked nice despite the distro was far from finished.  However, when I upgraded it to a newer version (2.7.6, I think), Elive gave me an Enlightenment error that prevented the distro from entering the desktop, a situation that repeated with the next beta release, so I had to say good-bye to this beauty.

But I want Elive.

When the beta 2.9.20 came out on September 1st, I had a hunch.  That day is my daughter's birthday...

I downloaded it and, this time, Enlightenment did not crash.  Elive installed easily and kept all of my personal configurations, which simplified everything for me.

The live wallpaper, the animated menus, the bottom dock, its overall simplicity and resource frugality... there are many reasons why this is project caught my eye.

I know that many complain about having to pay for an installer module.  But this project really needs an economic push.  I have never seen a distro this functional and beautiful.

HAPPY 2018!!!

sábado, 30 de diciembre de 2017

December Distro Upgrades and Headaches

This month, I have been trying to fix certain weird issues that ocurred after upgrading Fedora 26 to 26.

The first problem was that, because of space, I had to do a fresh install, so my Mageia GRUB2 was replaced.

Luckily, the problem was not that hard to solve.  Getting my scanner to work was more complicated, but I solved it by getting the iscan bundle from Epson.


OpenMandriva is giving me headaches with some packages that have an invalid key signature or something... Because of that, LibreOffice is not working properly, I guess..

I reinstalled the distro several times and, when I try to update the packages via OMV control center, the first error message I get reads:
 "Sorry, the following packages cannot be selected:
- gdb-headless-8.0.1-2-omv2015.0.x86_64 (due to unsatisfied urpmi-debuginfo-install)"

I tried to avoid that package and then I get a more worrisome message saying that the package systembase-minimal has an invalid key ID signature.

I have also tried upgrading using the CLI with no luck.

Discover alerts me of 469 packages that must be upgraded.  I will try upgrading from Discover to see what happens this time.

Discover installed 177 packages, but stopped. Let's try again with the pending 269...

No luck.  We go back to 469 packages to install.