mintCast 332 – Thunar Storm (mp3)

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First up, in our Wanderings, I go on a LMDE tour, Tony Hughes becomes a model, Moss learns more about Grub, Tony Watts plays some music, Bo considers a pfSense deployment, and Joe gets caught up on shows.

Then, in the news, Linux Mint Monthly news comes out, F-Droid gets some money,and Thunar and Java get updates.

In security, Zoom doom.

Bi-Weekly Wanderings:

  • Leo
    • Got an XM8500 thanks to the suggestion by Oliver Kelly. Should be here in about 24 hours… which is just a little late for the show. Oh well, plenty of time to test! 
    • Have been on LMDE4 for about two weeks now.
    • Made a couple of appearances on BDLL to talk about LMDE4. Always a good time over there.
  • Tony H 
    • So all this lockdown stuff is getting serious over this side of the pond. The police now have powers to fine people ignoring the new regulations, otherwise I am helping a couple of friends who are vulnerable with shopping.
    • So Linux-wise, I have been playing with LMDE4 and shared some of my experiences with it on BDLL this last 2 weeks, with Leo and Joe. I will talk more of this later. 
    • I have been using some of the extra time I have, as I can not go to the Gym at the moment to do some more cooking and last week I made sauerkraut, I just love it. Home made has the health benefits you don’t get with the jars from the supermarket as they are pasteurised which kills the beneficial bacteria.   
    • Continuing to play with my diecast models currently taking the models apart and paint stripping in preparation for repainting outdoors when the weather improves as the paint fumes are very strong and even my little paint booth extractor does not completely cure the issue.  
  • Moss
    • I’m learning more about Grub and EFI. It will probably take a couple more weeks at least before I can talk about it and sound intelligent but I’ll try. I’ve gotten quite a bit of help from Andreas in the Ubuntu Podcast Telegram group and from Londoner and cryptodan in the DHD Telegram group. There will be some of this down in Vibrations.
    • I attended a filksing in Denver via Zoom, hosted by my oldest friend, Blind Lemming Chiffon. There were a total of 11 people in attendance. I used my Kudu and was going to use the Manjaro installation but the app they wanted me to download was not in a format I could use (I never was good at installing from tar.gz files). So I opened up KDE neon and ran it from there. There were no issues with software or hardware; the Kudu really is a better machine than my Galago Pro, and I would be using it for this podcast if I had another 17” laptop for travel. Back to Zoom, I definitely noticed a huge difference between an online meeting and an in-person meeting; when you’re performing in front of an audience, there is some kind of energy exchange with your audience, and it just isn’t there with your audience on screen.
    • I tried installing Mullvad on OpenMandriva using the RPM package created for Fedora users, and found it had several dependencies missing. 
['\n Problem: conflicting requests\n - nothing provides libnsl needed by mullvad-vpn-2020.3.0-1.x86_64\n - nothing provides dbus-libs needed by mullvad-vpn-2020.3.0-1.x86_64\n - nothing provides libXScrnSaver needed by mullvad-vpn-2020.3.0-1.x86_64']
    • I’m not sure how to go about adding these; I can try the usual installation processes, but don’t know what to do if that fails.
    • I installed Ubuntu Mate 16.04 just for the halibut. It was interesting to see Kernel 4.4 again. After a few days, I attempted to upgrade to 18.04 using the normal upgrade path… it took a very, very long time and I had to leave it running to go to work. When I came home, it hadn’t quite reached halfway and had frozen. I couldn’t unfreeze it, so I rebooted, and it didn’t boot anymore, so I reinstalled it. I was just going to leave it alone, but after input from the DHD Telegram group, I tried it again last night, and experienced the same issue although at a later point in the files installation procedure than before. The drive has no issues I can find; either I have a bad ISO burn or my machine is subtly damaged. I installed Manjaro on it after that happened, and it installed cleanly and runs.
    • BUT, just before the show, I decided to replace KDE neon on my Kudu with Linux Mint 19.3 Mate. Everything installed fine. Then I went to check my other boots;. there are a total of 3 distros on this machine: OpenMandriva 4.1, Manjaro, and now Mint. OpenMandriva booted fine. But when I selected Manjaro on the Grub menu, the screen went black and there was no further disk activity — I couldn’t even do a three-finger reboot, I had to hold down the power button. I talked to the members of the Telegram group, and other than one person saying that he felt Grub Customizer broke it (unproven since 2013), I got no help. I went back into Mint and ran “sudo update-grub” but that didn’t change anything. I will reinstall Manjaro after the show today.
    • We’re getting ready for the next Distrohoppers’ Digest this Thursday the 9th of April. I think I have a pretty good review of Manjaro ready. I’m also using OpenMandriva more and coming to terms with it much better than anything I’ve used which is not apt-based.
    • And I’ve just found Linux Mint Telegram group, apparently not related to Mint in any way. It’s a smallish group. But it has allowed me to expose our podcast to another group of probably-interested people.
    • We are almost done reading Grave Peril. We have the next book queued up already. I’m disappointed in the use of magic to stop bullets — it’s not like Frank Triggaltheron’s trick in Demon Squad, but an actual force field, and, being an experienced magic user, I don’t find that realistic. Otherwise, we are greatly enjoying the books.
    • Work goes on, I’m apparently “essential”. How nice! I feel like almond oil. I worked several weeks at 5 days, last week at 4 days but only 27 hours and next week I’m back to 5 days, 36,5 hours. I’m supposed to be part time, 3 days per week, but as stated far too often I need the money. They are reducing hours — we have to stay open but are not making much in sales and the store has to justify employee expense. My mother is about the same, et cetera.
  • Tony Watts
    • Have been away last couple episodes due to all time consumed by multiple music projects.  But all music gigs and rehearsals are now on hiatus, obviously.  
    • Had the last week off from work, have done some home home maintenance (stained the deck, cleaned out the garage, yard work…)
    • Got a little bit of motorcycle riding in
    • Have been enjoying the live videos from other musicians
    • Gearing up for doing some audio/video recording at home
      • Had to figure out how to get audio and video hardware on same machine
      • Am able to use both an old 8mm camcorder and phones for webcams
    • New headphones!! – Audio Technica ATH M50x 
      • purchased renewed on Amazon, 100 bucks
    • Helped pick out new laptops for friends
      • Thinkpad T450s – $220 and came with a dock and bag
      • Asus ASUS VivoBook S512 S15
        • I7, 16GB RAM, 2GB dedicated Geforce MX250, 512GB SSD
    • Finally tried out Maru OS on the Nexus 5x
      • Finally did not have to purchase cables etc special for trying this out, which I did not want to do
      • Overall – I was really impressed! Desktop performance was really not bad considering the phone hardware and running Android and Debian simultaneously
      • Desktop spins up INSTANTLY and is ready to use
      • Some oddities
        • Sound does not work from the desktop – phone audio comes through TV, Debian audio does not
        • Can only use Maru on the nexus 5x by casting to Chromecast – this is a limitation of the phone hardware, because the phone’s USB C port is USB 2.0 and does not support HDMI
      • Conclusions: 
        • I do not personally have a use case for this and honestly am hard pressed to think of one – but I think it is amazing.  I don’t think this is replacing a laptop for anybody just yet.  
        • I can see where it might be convenient to use Maru on the go (SSH into something or do a quick task – if you happen to have the right cables/peripherals but not a laptop…)
        • Would love to see continued development on this project
  • Joe
    •  The time at home has allowed me to catch up on TV shows
      • Batwoman
      • Doctor Who
        • Really improved on the last 4 episodes
      • Black Lightning
      • Flash
      • Macgyver
      • If I run out of current tv shows I will go to some classic standbys
        • Doctor Who
        • Red Dwarf 
        • Almost Human
        • No Ordinary Family
    • Couple of movies
      • Aladin 
      • Gemini Man
      • Glass
    • Listening to Kim Harrison’s The Hollows
      • Good series with really long books and a lot of them so it is taking some time to get through the whole thing
      • But I am finding excuses to listen to other things between books
      • Mostly metal and podcasts
      • So may move on to something else and come back
    • Also with the WFH it is kinda difficult to listen to long format as
    • Still playing a lot of Borderlands 3 
    •  Need a new project.
    • Installed a few new typing applications on my son’s HP Mini
      • Hopefully he likes them. 
      • Could not find a decent voice dictation program that could be installed
    • Installed Docker on the Fedora machine
      • Sudo dnf install docker-ce containerd.io grubby
      •  sudo grubby –update-kernel=ALL –args=”systemd.unified_cgroup_hierarchy=0″
      • sudo usermod -aG docker $USER
      • Sudo systemctl enable docker
      • I had tried another workaround where I created the cgroups system folder and mounted it to the correct location but this required I reinstall the docker images every time
    • Then did an install of rsync using RPM 
    • Cron setup to move files
    • Also setup steam streaming
      • Seems to work.  I will need to test more before I can give 2 thumbs up 
    • Still having trouble setting up automatic sshfs using network status
      • It worked on mint and should work the same on fedora.
    • Trying out p3x onenote
      • Browser version of OneNote in an easy package.  
      • Can also use Word from the same install.
      • May be able to use instead of having to install windows on the kids devices.
      • Not going out of my way to remove windows but it will allow for another option.
      • Not so much a fan of the web version of onenote but it is still interesting
    • Got Berryboot working on the Pi 4 but with the 2 versions of Raspbian that I used no audio device would work.  Not even USB sound cards
    • Switched back to the other SD card and was able to get Netflix working with audio.  Which is cool.  
    • The viewing angle on my repurposed laptop monitor is a bit too narrow so I am going to look for other solutions.  I do have a smaller 15 inch laptop that doesn’t power on anymore so I may use that if the angles are better.  

The News: 

    • Linux Mint News for March 2020 (Thanks Dale and Londoner)
      • LMDE3 will EOL on July 1st, 2020
      • Mint 20’s name will be Ulyana
      • Better indicator notifications in the system tray for Electron apps. (Whosy in Telegram may benefit from this.)
      • Better Nemo performance gained by lazy loading thumbnails.
      • Warpinator is still progressing and needs a new name!
      • New color tweaks in themes
      • I WOULD GUESS: released sometime in early June.

Security Update: 

Announcements: 

  • Our next episode will be at 2 pm Central US time, 7 pm UTC, April 19, 2020. That’s 8PM British Summer Time. Thanks Londoner, I hope I got that right. 🙂

Wrap-up:

Before we leave, we want to make sure to acknowledge some of the people who make mintCast possible … 

  • Hobstar for his work on the new logo
  • Josh for all his work on the website
  • Hacker Public Radio for the Mumble server we are using to record
  • Bytemark Hosting for hosting mintcast.org and our Mumble server
  • Archive.org for hosting our audio files
  • The Linux Mint development team for the fine distro we love to talk about.

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