As I wrote a while ago I’ve been using Linux 100% now, no more Windows for work. Things have been going well since the switch and even though Wine won’t run a few apps I need Windows for work provides terminal services for access.
Every week their seems to be something new when it comes to supporting applications at work. That is not suppose to be my main job these days but when the phone rings it’s hard to say “sorry call Support”. So when the question came yesterday, “what does this cryptic error message mean other than the xml data is bad”, I turned again to open source software to provide an answer.
At first I thought it was odd being asked to trouble shoot an issue this way but I’m always up for a challenge. So to answer the question I needed to validate the data against the xml schema. The schema I did not have, those who were asking the question did … which is why I thought it was odd. So I asked for the schema and set off to find a tool to do the validation. Most browsers today will parse xml which is very helpful to identify illeal characters and tags that aren’t closed. However validating against schema is another story.
After some googling and checking both Screem and Geany, as I use both, I came across MLView. A simple little gui that can create, modify and validate xml documents. It installed in 30 seconds and a minute after that I had my answer. BTW -Their was nothing wrong with the data it was the transport.
It’s refreshing to know that solutions to problems are but a click away where in many instances others have already created something to meet the same challenge. The web is a wonderful tool, open source makes it that much better.
Earlier this year, after the motherboard went bad in the laptop (v2000), I reverted back to the I200 that I loaded Debian on. Since 2005 I’d been using Ubuntu and before that it was Red Hat all the way back to the 6.0 days. So switching distros was no big deal and in a way I was looking forward to it after getting the motherboard replaced. Ubuntu is based on Debian too so it wasn’t a big switch just more raw and makes the experience different. So when the latest version was released seemed reasonable I give it a try, and earlier this week I did,
From a user perspective the biggest change is the polish on the UI, with Compiz direct integration it has come a long way in a short time. So far I’m pleased….. and why I didn’t partition /home by itself all these years I’ll never know. Live an learn I guess. Oh and no special configuration after the fact audio, video, networking, all worked out of the box. At this pace interesting times are ahead.
With the next version of Ubuntu to be releasted in a few days thought I’d go ahead and load it on an extra drive for kicks. What’s nice about this version is the iso is a Live CD which you can then install. I had to do a double take at first when I took the default option on boot and we went straight to the desktop. The install was quick and immediately prompted for 70 plus updates. All major hardware was recognized and no special configuration was required. How cool is it when stuff works !!
The only quirk at the moment is the Alt key on the right side of the keyboard doesn’t seem to be working. A quick change of the keyboard identification didn’t help so I may need to check on that. Otherwise it’s all good.
A new version of Ubuntu was out on June 1st, Dapper Drake. Eager to load and check out the new bells and whisles I downloaded he iso, burned it to a CD and loaded last night. I had a little trouble getting the install to complete but that was due to X hanging. A quick check of help on the CD, prior to install, pointed me to pass vga=771 as an intall option. After that it was smooth sailing. It’s hasn’t been 24 hours yet but so far so good. I don’t have everything loaded and still have Breezy on my 60GB drive just in case.
So far only two issues and I seem to remember them from loading Breezy, no WEP on my on board wireless NIC and only a default contact list in Evolution. I can deal with those as they are not critical and I know the Evolution contacts are there as I copied the entire folder over before running. More than likely it’s the same problem I noted in a previous post just have to apply it. If all goes well the plan would be after getting everything up on the alternate drive take the 60GB and load XP then Dapper and dual boot. I have yet to do one of those as I’ve not really come across a need for it but now might be as good a time as any. Certainly would benefit my preperation for the LCP1 exam.
Two weeks ago I upgraded to the current version of Ubuntu, 5.10 Breazy Badger. After backing up mail from .evolution, themes from .themes and personal files, by burning them to a CD, I booted the 5.10 CD and in 30 minutes I was up. Once loaded it took about another 30 minutes to move files off the CD and get mail and theme the way I wanted it. So far it has been great.
The complete list of enhancements is here but I can say right off the bat wireless is better. Kismet was an easy install and config as well as Ethereal. Battery management does not appear as good but I also have not tweeked any settings yet, just what ever was set by default. That is minor however.
OpenOffice 2.0 is a welcomed addition over version 1.1. If I could only use the machine for work, that would be perfect. Until then, for reasons I don’t need to go into here, I’ll keep the XP Pro desktop around and continue to use Ubuntu for personal use.
But imho for the flavors I have tried (RedHat, Fedora, SuSe) Ubuntu takes the cake.