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  1. #1

    Default any ubuntu users here?

    Hi, I'm just getting started with ubuntu and wondering how many other ubuntu users are here. I'm no stranger to unix/linux, just to this distro.

    dd

  2. #2

    Default Re: any ubuntu users here?

    Played with it a little bit. Trying to get my linux skills up to speed...

  3. #3

    Default Re: any ubuntu users here?

    I use it on a few servers, my laptop and my htpc.

  4. Default Re: any ubuntu users here?

    i use it on almost everything but my gaming pc and my fileserver

  5. #5

    Default Re: any ubuntu users here?

    I've got a removable WD USB HD that has Ubuntu installed on it and I run it off my laptop. Lots of people told me to just dual boot but that takes more HD space on my LT and introduces other possibilities like a HD failure taking down both OSs.

    This way, I have both isolated yet I can still swap files between the two and not lose any functionality. I will admit, it's a bit slower because of the USB speed limits but it's a great solution for my needs. I love having both OSs at my disposal.

    Funny thing is, I've just picked up a new MacBook pro and I don't even like logging into my windows machine now.

  6. #6

    Default Re: any ubuntu users here?

    It is a good OS for browsing the internet and basic word processing (from what I've been using so far)

  7. #7

    Default Re: any ubuntu users here?

    I run Ubuntu 9.04 from the Installation CD. Use GIMP to enter text on pictures mat. Only thing stopping me from using the OS full time is my other software which only runs on MS Windows.

  8. #8

    Default Re: any ubuntu users here?

    I've been thinking about using Ubuntu to set up a HUGE server. I would like it to be a file, print, email, backup storage server as wells as a media server (storing and streaming all my music and movies) and to top it all off, I'd like it to be my DVR.

    Anyone ever use Ubuntu for this? What was your experience? Do you know of any guides and/or books for doing this? How easy would it be for an average to above average Ubuntu user?

  9. #9

    Default Re: any ubuntu users here?

    I like Ubuntu so far. I have it installed on a few machines and in VM Ware on the Windows box. One of the easiest distros I've used.

    Jethrol, I am thinking of doing something similar. If I run across any good resources I'll let you know, and you let us know how it turns out if you start that project. I will say that I have heard a few people say that Ubuntu would not be their first choice for a file server (we're running everything off CentOS at work), but it may be better than some of the others with the audio and video support. That's just from hearsay and my limited knowledge and experience though.

  10. Default Re: any ubuntu users here?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jethrol View Post
    I've been thinking about using Ubuntu to set up a HUGE server. I would like it to be a file, print, email, backup storage server as wells as a media server (storing and streaming all my music and movies) and to top it all off, I'd like it to be my DVR.

    Anyone ever use Ubuntu for this? What was your experience? Do you know of any guides and/or books for doing this? How easy would it be for an average to above average Ubuntu user?
    install mythbuntu - About Mythbuntu | Mythbuntu

    then enable the rest of the common ubuntu server stuff -
    Turn your Mythbuntu box into a file server | DevNotes
    [SOLVED] Printing in Mythbuntu? - Ubuntu Forums
    etc..

    Cpu/memory-wise you *can* do all of that on one box with no problem, the OS can handle it, but maintenance-wise it would be a nightmare to maintain on *any* OS.

    Unless you're using an ancient Printer with zero network capabilities, you don't really need a "print server" anymore. A plain old pc connected to the network with print sharing works fine.

    A MythTv box is already a media server, as well as a file server, you just need to enable file sharing, like you would with any other box.

    An email server is a different animal. First, you need to make sure the smpt, pop3, imap, ssmtp, imap4-ssl, impas, ssl-pop3 ports are all open on your internet connection.. If you're on Cox, about half those aren't open and Cox won't enable them unless you switch to a business account. I don't know about AT&T, or Sprint, or Verizon, or whoever else, but I'm sure they all have similar restrictions.

    Once the port nonsense is worked out, you've now got a machine that you will *constantly* have to update with spam filters, virus blockers, account OS updates, sychronizations, indexing as malboxes grow larger and larger, etc.. many of which are dependant on the OS of your email systems on the local machines throughout your network.

  11. #11

    Default Re: any ubuntu users here?

    Thanks for the great info fuzzytoad! And after rereading your post, perhaps the email server isn't the best idea.

    I must have been really tired last night because I didn't even think that my new printer is just another device on my network...even has wireless access so a print server isn't needed.

    Anyways thanks again for all the great info.

  12. #12

    Default Re: any ubuntu users here?

    I use Ubuntu everyday as my development machine for work. I don't use it for hobby stuff though (PVR, file server).

    I am curious about it though. Has anyone setup Ubuntu as a file server for DLNA, so the a PS3 can stream from Ubuntu (and it handles the transcoded video/music when needed).

  13. #13

    Default Re: any ubuntu users here?

    I actually prefer Linux Mint ..it has all of the codex's in it..and it us Ubuntu under the cover..

  14. #14

    Default Re: any ubuntu users here?

    Quote Originally Posted by fuzzytoad View Post
    An email server is a different animal. First, you need to make sure the smpt, pop3, imap, ssmtp, imap4-ssl, impas, ssl-pop3 ports are all open on your internet connection.. If you're on Cox, about half those aren't open and Cox won't enable them unless you switch to a business account. I don't know about AT&T, or Sprint, or Verizon, or whoever else, but I'm sure they all have similar restrictions.
    On their support page Cox residential only claims to block port 25 (SMTP), but a check of my connection shows that they also block 110 (POP3) and 143 (IMAP4). They do not block 465 (SMTP-SSL), 587 (SMTP-SUB), 993 (IMAP4-SSL), or 995 (POP3-SSL). Having port 25 blocked pretty much renders the rest of it moot though. Cox business doesn't block any ports but is pretty pricy.

    I used to run mail for all my personal domains over a Cox biz connection from my home for a while, then from a dedicated server I rented elsewhere. I switched over to Google Apps and I'm quite happy with it. The Standard Edition is free for <=50 users per domain.
    Quote Originally Posted by fuzzytoad View Post
    Once the port nonsense is worked out, you've now got a machine that you will *constantly* have to update with spam filters, virus blockers, account OS updates, sychronizations, indexing as malboxes grow larger and larger, etc.. many of which are dependant on the OS of your email systems on the local machines throughout your network.
    I'm not sure how such things are handled in the Ubuntu repositories, but running a debian-stable setup with antivirus/antispam updates coming from debian-volatile was pretty hassle-free with cron-apt.

  15. Default Re: any ubuntu users here?

    Quote Originally Posted by Eep View Post
    I'm not sure how such things are handled in the Ubuntu repositories, but running a debian-stable setup with antivirus/antispam updates coming from debian-volatile was pretty hassle-free with cron-apt.
    yep! vanilla debian is my OS of choice for any sort of hands-off server. That's what I use for my dns and file server.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: any ubuntu users here?

    What's a good way to learn how to set up Ubuntu, like knowing how to install programs on it and so forth?

  17. #17

    Default Re: any ubuntu users here?

    Trial and error unfortunately.

    The install is simple.
    Then open up the googles and search. Let's say you want a http proxy on your machine.. search for Ubuntu HTTP Proxy Install. It will pull up some stuff, pick your favorite. Then at the command line do "sudo apt-get install squid" .. Then you have to read how to configure the .confs and all that.. restart some services and it should work. You want a visual diff tool "sudo apt-get install meld". It pulls them from the main repository. Which is nice..

    This is the only reason linux won't really make a play into user space. No one wants to become and expert on all the inner workings. IMHO.

  18. #18

    Default Re: any ubuntu users here?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bunty View Post
    What's a good way to learn how to set up Ubuntu, like knowing how to install programs on it and so forth?
    Ubuntu is documented pretty well. For that particular question, here are a couple of references from the official doc to get you started:
    Adding, Removing and Updating Applications
    Applications in Ubuntu

    People on the user forums (Ubuntu Forums) are usually quite willing to be helpful if you run into a problem, but most will expect you to have consulted the available documentation as a first step.

    Quote Originally Posted by JohnDenver View Post
    This is the only reason linux won't really make a play into user space. No one wants to become and expert on all the inner workings. IMHO.
    I feel like you're comparing apples to oranges here. Installing and properly configuring a full-featured piece of server software like squid isn't a 5 minute affair on any platform, and absolutely shouldn't be attempted by anyone asking the question "how do I learn how to install programs?". That is a end user request. "How do I select, install, configure, and admin an http proxy?" is not.

    Just because squid is "free" software and can be installed in a couple of mouse clicks in synaptic by anyone with keyboard access doesn't mean that it should be. There's a lot of great free server software out there like squid/apache/postfix/etc. that can make great alternatives to ISA Server/IIS/Exchange/etc. Free software is much easier for the average person to acquire do to the (lack of) cost, but it is often just as hard to configure as proprietary software. Both Microsoft and package maintainers for distributions do the best they can to start with reasonable defaults, but at some point you have to take responsibility for educating yourself on the job and the product if you want to be a server admin. None of that is necessary to have a great desktop experience, however.

  19. #19

    Default Re: any ubuntu users here?

    Quote Originally Posted by Eep View Post
    None of that is necessary to have a great desktop experience, however.
    I think you have a Linux chip on your shoulder. I didn't expect squid, apache, or any other *server* application to be simple. However, it is *MUCH* simpler on Windows (gasps) and intuitive. An icon and a right click are (here, I go losing my l33t cred again), very useful.

    No one should have to be "server admin" experience level to use applications. But Linux apps pretty much ignore that. Granted, I use Linux every day of my life and have for many many years... but I still get into situations where manpages don't really help and it requires some research, where on windows for the same software bundle, I would right click, see the options and pick one. A good example is Clearcase source control software. On windows, I need to add a file? If I get confused, have a hangover, or just up way too early without cofee, I can right click and see a "Add to..." Sitting at a command prompt in Linux, I would do a "ct ........" and not know which one to use. I can do a "ct -help" and look through a zillion lines of text until I find it, risking typing the command incorrectly, then having to ct -help again.. repeat until the brainfart is over and I can continue. I use windows Clearcase as well, and it is entirely better. Hell, comparing two file on Windows is beatiful, on Linux it is like using a mainframe. Text diffs defeat me something fierce.

    Same goes for finding some software to record MP3 streams. On Windows I have tons of GUI filled, easily installed, applications to use. Setup on Linux, of even finding the right software, is a bitch.

    There is no way around it. It isn't apples to oranges, you just picked my squid example. And even that, I think is a punt. On Windows I want to install a quick and simple FTP server so my friend can download some files from my PC? EEEAASY. There are nice GUI apps that you can select the folder, select a user name, password, port.. start. On Linux? Well, there are plenty of options, but none that quick, simple and user friendly. How about setting up DLNA sharing so your PS3 can see your Ubuntu machine as a media server? On windows it is pretty damn easy, Media Player even tells you how to do it. On Ubuntu, it requires a lot of searching to find the right software -- but I suppose you would call this admin space, not user space. I contend that you don't have to be an Admin to want to use server software and that is what you fail to see or just don't want to admit.

    There is one thing that people LOVE, and that is anything free. Watch people at a grocery store grab stale cheese cubes from under a dirty plastic lid, just because it is free. They wouldn't pay any amount of money for those cubes and even would think it is disgusting if it weren't free. Yet people don't use free Linux very often... why? Because the burden of ease is greater than the love for free. Period.

    I am a Ubuntu user and lover, but not the apologist. I use Ubuntu on my personal laptop, but I have a Windows 7 partition as well, since some things just work better on Windows.

  20. #20

    Default Re: any ubuntu users here?

    Quote Originally Posted by JohnDenver View Post
    I think you have a Linux chip on your shoulder.
    Haha, not in the least. In fact, I currently make my living as a sysadmin in an environment that is primarily Windows. In the past I've also run Linux, Mac, and Solaris networks professionally. In my spare time, I've futzed around with *BSD, Tru64, IRIX, even Plan 9. I'm kind of an OS & random hardware junkie. :P

    As such, my philosophy on the matter is "use the best tool for the job". I've got several computers at home, but the one I use the most is my Macbook Pro running OS X. Why? Because for the things *I* spend the majority of my computer time doing, it's the best fit. I can run Lightroom/Photoshop and all the GNU goodies natively, and virtualize the setup I run at work in case I get a random "HALP!" call while traveling or just want to do some "what would happen if..." tests.

    Quote Originally Posted by JohnDenver View Post
    Yet people don't use free Linux very often... why? Because the burden of ease is greater than the love for free. Period.
    Ehh, I would say that the biggest reason most people aren't interested in Linux is that when they buy a computer from Dell, HP, Sony, etc. it comes with Windows pre-installed. When someone has already paid for something and it's already there, set up and ready to use, there's little incentive to search for alternatives. It's the same reason so many people use the crappy photo software that came pre-installed on their computer, or on the disc in the box with their photo printer or digital camera. There are plenty of superior alternatives, both free and non-free, but that one magically appeared there so why bother looking for something to replace it?

    Another reason is familiarity (and this ties in with your "ease" reasoning, though it's before the fact vs. after the fact). Since Windows has the lion's share of the business desktop market, that's what most people with desk jobs are sitting in front of for 8+ hours a day. When those people go home, they have a world of kids, pets, volunteer committments, housework, exercise, etc. to deal with, and most of them are fully disinterested in putting in the time to learn another OS unless it is flat-out impossible to do what they want to do on what they already have going.

    I think exploring Linux is a great choice for a technically-inclined person interested in exploring what else is out there. Developing a familiarity with other operating systems is very helpful because it helps distinguish general principles from the specificities of a particular implementation. Ubuntu in particular has done a lot to make the process less daunting by creating a polished install process, a full-featured desktop setup that is updated regularly, and a friendly community to offer support when things go badly. It is leaps and bounds ahead of what was available a few years ago in terms of accessibility and usability by someone who isn't a CLI jockey.

    Do I see Linux growing to a point where it achieves majority marketshare on the desktop? No. I don't see that in OS X's future either. They both have their place and utility though, both of them continue to improve, and I don't see either going anywhere anytime soon.

  21. #21

    Default Re: any ubuntu users here?

    I tend to agree with you eep but I think there are additional factors contributing to people not moving to Linux.

    1) Games. The best games are on a PC and with the new Intel macs, they're starting to have options for the mac also. Linux doesn't really have any AAA titles. Being a geek, I love Linux but I love games more so I always find myself heading back to my widows machines.

    2) People are scared of what they don't know. They're scared that they'll permanently screw up their computers and they don't know how to make a system "safe" to play around with....no do they want to spend money for this when they can just jump on the computer they know.

    3) Not as many people know Linux so finding help is some what daunting to the average person. They can't really ask their friends and if they happen to know a techie, that person may not be into Linux. If people get stuck while using Windows, fugeddaboutit, they they're using a mac...well there's a genius that they can go talk to. If it's Ubuntu, well the community is awesome but most people won't go there and most people won't know someone local...so they're really stuck.

    Anyways, Ubuntu is awesome and has gone a really long way to making people feel comfortable about using Linux. I just can't wait till the Ubuntu stores start showing up.....now wouldn't that be cool?!?

  22. #22

    Default Re: any ubuntu users here?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jethrol View Post
    1) Games. The best games are on a PC and with the new Intel macs, they're starting to have options for the mac also.
    Unfortunately, the graphics card upgrade situation with Macs is as craptastic as it ever was. This is probably my #1 beef about them.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jethrol View Post
    2) People are scared of what they don't know. They're scared that they'll permanently screw up their computers and they don't know how to make a system "safe" to play around with....
    I can personally relate to this a lot. Even once I was pretty comfortable with the software side of things, I was very intimidated by the hardware side. Initially I was afraid to even add/replace RAM because I was afraid I was going to break something, lol.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jethrol View Post
    I just can't wait till the Ubuntu stores start showing up.....now wouldn't that be cool?!?
    That would be really fun, especially for the community aspect. It would be awesome if they had a little "coffee corner" or something where you could show up and geek out with other people.

  23. #23

    Default Re: any ubuntu users here?

    Quote Originally Posted by Eep View Post
    That would be really fun, especially for the community aspect. It would be awesome if they had a little "coffee corner" or something where you could show up and geek out with other people.
    Yeah you know...I've often thought a large computer store with a coffee shop and an open area for LAN parties/classes/computer clubs and those sorts of things would be a fun place to hang out.

    Unfortunately when I've gone to big LAN parties here, there are just a lot of annoying and rude kids. Not really the demographic this store would be targeted for....more for the working adults that want to hang out and discuss computers and all that.

    Add in a Ubuntu section with Ubuntu gear, knowledgeable help and a non-competitive atmosphere where people help each other simply for the sake of helping others, sounds really cool to me.

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