mintCast 337 – Bread Winner

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First up, in our Wanderings, Dale’s been driving, Dann’s been migrating, Leo’s been checking out the beta, Tony Hughes spreads the car love, Moss is doing double-duty distrohopping, Joe reads again

Then, in the news, Linux Mint 20 is in beta

In security, you gotta be brave to use Brave

BI-WEEKLY WANDERINGS: 

  • Dale
    • I started out two weeks ago in Calexico, California.  I drove to Piedmont, South Carolina.  Then drove to Mountain City, TN.  From there I drove to Charlotte, NC.  I left Charlotte and headed for  Kingsport, TN.  I then drove to Nashville, TN.  From Nashville, TN I drove to Groveport, OH.  From there I drove to where I parked my truck.  Then I took an Uber home.
    • This past week I took my car to the dealer for service.  My friend called me after she walked out of work and found her car was making a grinding noise.  I helped her get it towed to a local shop.  Ironically she had an appointment for her car the next day.  I hung out with her the next day so she wouldn’t have to sit in the waiting room for many hours.  They finished her car and took her to pick it up.
    • The remainder of the week.  I spent doing research on Window Managers for my appearance on mintCast.  I watched YouTube on my Roku and chatted on Telegram.  I also installed my usual month of updates on my Solus Plasma, two Debian servers and Linux Mint on my spare laptop.
  • Dann
  • Leo
    • Updated to kernel 5.7 on my desktop the day after release.
      • Didn’t notice much of a difference in performance. Maybe a slight improvement in games but I don’t have numbers or anything.
    • Updated to 5.4 on my laptop now that it’s officially available in Mint 19.
      • The battery improvements I felt while testing out Ubuntu and Kubuntu 20.04 are back! My aging battery cells appreciate it.
    • Waited patiently as the ISO images were syncing to the mirrors. Grabbed it the first minute it was out.
      • Wanted to figure out to what extent snapd was disabled.
      • My fix was picked up by OMGUbuntu.
    • Staying home. More.
  • Tony H
    • I have been doing much the same as I said last show, the weeks since lockdown are starting to merge into each other and repeating each week.  
    • Trying to help out family, I sent a distant cousin who has learning difficulties as a result of a brain tumor when he was 18 months old, his mom told me that he loves cars and will love to see my collection when he can visit after this is all over, so I sent him a couple of models to add to his collection in the meanwhile, his mum said he was delighted to get a personal package and to find the cars inside, she sent me a picture of him playing with them with his other models. 
    • Making my own Elderflower herbal infusion, we have many wild elder trees within walking distance of our house so I picked a bag full during the week and did the infusion, with a little ginger extract this is delicious. 
    • I joined the BDLL Euro meeting last night, and as Leo was being talked about managed to get him to come and join in the meeting.
    • Today my personal hairdresser cut my hair, (my wife) I trimmed my beard myself a couple of weeks ago but I hadn’t had a hair cut since before christmas and missed the opportunity before lockdown so I was well overdue.
  • Moss
    • Been spending a fair bit of time in the Linux Mint Telegram group, run ably by J Arun Mani. I opened my mouth, as I often do, on the topic of not being able to fit more than one distro on a USB stick… and they gave me a solution. So I’ve been playing with that solution quite a bit… and you’re going to have to wait until Check This Out to find out what it is.
    • I’m so much ready for the next episode of Distrohoppers’ Digest that I’m doing two distros. My reviews have been fairly short anyhow, and KDE neon did not give me a lot of unexpected positives to report on. 
    • We had a power outage on the 10th, which showed that one of our little APC UPS units is in need of replacement. Another $50 out the door!
    • My wife’s M570 Logitech trackball started dying on her. I had promised to send a used M570 to a cousin who is poorer than us for over a year, and we’re doing OK now, so I bought one for him and one for my wife. It took less time for my cousin to get his by about 4 days even though they were ordered within minutes of each other.
    • I’ve been playing with Pearl OS 9, a name change from the previous version, Pearl Desktop 8… it’s based on Ubuntu 20.04, with a few Mint tools thrown in and some links I’d rather do without. It’s kind of odd, they want it to look exactly like old MacOS, and they pull that off rather well, but then have a base wallpaper that looks like it was made from a kid’s block drawing program. But the extra wallpapers fix that easily. 
    • I went to order a PineTab, and my wife didn’t understand what I was ordering and said we didn’t have the money. Next day she okayed the purchase — and the site had closed the order window. Whine.
    • I enrolled in an online class to learn HTML5 and CSS. I can do the class for free, *if* I complete it by July 31; if I want a certificate, I’ll have to pay for it, but they gave me a 15% off coupon…
    • My wife received her Permanent Resident Green Card. So she doesn’t have to recertify for 10 years. Due to Covid-19 and mass defections and firings at INS, we didn’t have to go in to a center for an interview, the nearest such center being Memphis, a 5-hour drive. And in The Dresden Files, we’re deep into the 5th book.
  • Joe
    • Read the Iron Druid series again
      • Takes about a week for me to get through but there was also a lot of music and podcasts during that time frame
      • The series really starts out well and then slides slowly down hill in quality
      • I stopped at the last book
    • Codex Alera by Jim Butcher
      • A good series that seems to get more complex as it goes on in much the same way as wheel of time
    • Hardware fun all around
      • Think I had mentioned last time around that I traded a pair of the Crushers for a HP TouchSmart with a broken screen
        • Well when Dustin was getting it ready for shipment another issue came up.
        • I did get the laptop but it would not power on.  No light when it was plugged in.
        • I took it all the way apart and removed the CMOS battery and reseated the power port. Then put it all back together
        • It still did not power on but I was getting a capslock blink code which indicates a bad motherboard
        • There was soda on the motherboard and I did go through with IPA and cleaned the whole thing up.  It looked pretty good and I had high hopes for it working. But no such luck
        • Also swapped the RAM so I could verify that it was not something simple
        • So with a bad motherboard and a shattered screen the cost of fixing it comes out to about the same as it would cost me to buy another one used.
        • So the best thing to do is use it for parts 
      • I had also commented last show about the low quality of my in-ear drivers and that I wanted to try a couple of things out while maintaining MMCX modularity
        • I ordered 2 possible solutions and both have worked out pretty well and sound quality is very improved.
        • Solution 1 was TIN Audio T2 HiFi 2DD Double Dynamic Drive MMCX in ears. A ready to go solution that I did not mind spending 50 dollars on because of how much time I spend with earbuds in
        • The quality is better but even with a good seal it was not that much of an improvement
        • The 2nd solution was a bit more custom.  I did my research to find some well-rated in-ear headphones and the 1more triple drivers kept coming up and I was able to find some broken ones on eBay for 15 dollars.
        • Also ordered a couple of different mmcx conversion solutions but I ended up using the CIEM-to-MMCX converters and some 3D printed end caps and tension relievers.  The CIEM connecters are basically two short prongs which were somewhat easy to add wires to but not many of the potential solutions I saw had any type of tension relief and I am hard on headphones so I designed my own.  It worked really well
        • The sound quality is incredible for in-ears.  On par if not better than the cans that I have
        • Very happy with the end caps that I designed and the modularity of the device
        • So happy with the overall quality that I purchased 1more triple driver bluetooth neckbands on eBay also broken for 18 dollars.
        • These would not turn on but came with all the accessories for the headset.
        • Wanted to try and do the battery fix but impossible to take apart without damaging.
        • Tested out a different adapter.  This was made for flush mounting on the earpieces but that means getting it right the first time and having no room for mistakes.
        • Instead I printed a tension relief adapter and cover and soldered onto the cable
        • Incredibly tiny solder points about 1mm apart
      • Also troubleshot and worked on a balance issue on the custom built XB700s more details available on the linux lugcast podcast if you want to hear about that process.
        • I am thinking there is some board damage or water damage that I have not found
        • Because there is also some issues with mic, even after doing a full swap
      • Never buy Insignia headphones.  I don’t care how good the price is.  They are going to suck and fall apart and be impossible to work on.
    • Worked some on my Raspberry Pi 4 to get it working properly again.
      • Was having a bit of trouble with the unifying receiver but it turned out to be an overheating issue so a usb extender fixed that problem
      • 3D-printed some stackers for the 2.5 inch drives that I have so that they could be put together and still allow for air flow.
      • I have a 7-port powered hub that I was using to power them but it did not have enough power throughput to keep all of them running so I am using the ThinkPad docking station that I have that has a very robust power supply.
    • Have been having trouble getting CURA to see my 3D printer when it is hooked up by USB.  A mostly new control board for the printer along with a new USB cable
      • lsusb sees the serial device and I have added the group permissions for dialout group.  
      • I am able to see the output from the printer using the Arduino IDE but CURA does not see it all. 
      • Someone mentioned that I could run Octopi from the Pi zero, so I may get that set up as I have a couple of them just sitting around.
    • Found some non optimized scripts on my server that was causing it to crash in the middle of the night so i can put off purchasing a new machine for a while longer.
    • De-oxite

THE NEWS: 

SECURITY UPDATE:

Announcements:

The next show will be Sunday, the 28th of June at 7PM UTC, 2PM US Central Time, 8PM British Summer Time

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.

2 Replies to “mintCast 337 – Bread Winner”

  1. Travelinrob

    MultiSystem is the software I have used for years to create multi-ISO USB drives. Leave it in French (the developers nationality) to copy the terminal commands, and then you can switch it to English or your preferred language on the right side, if you want to read everything. You can even add a Windows ISO, including the Acronis boot ISO or something. It doesn’t accept every ISO, but the project is still active and I see updates come through Update Manager. For example, I am pretty sure I have never had Elementary OS boot to the desktop. Maybe you can figure out why… Overall, though, it’s been pretty reliable.

    A couple of tips once you are running the software are to click the eyeball to see more options. You can drag each ISO one at a time and enter your password each time in the terminal window that pops up, or you can click the white arrow in the green circle near the bottom to double-click select a bunch at once. Sometimes it gets confused and improperly names things. But, once all of your ISOs are loaded, double click in the area where the titles are and you can rename each one. I do this to make it more human readable with spaces, etc. For example, I’ll change something like neon-user-2020…iso to ‘KDE Neon 2020xxxx”. Unfortunately, I think you may have to rename them one at a time and every change you make you have to wait for it to do it’s thing. The other thing I do is change the background image for the grub menu page through the settings. It’s tricky though. I think you need to change the image to 640×480 or set the number of pixels. I forget now since I have been using the same image for years. I just remember it not being simple, but it looks nicer to me than the default.

    http://liveusb.info/dotclear/index.php?pages/install

    PS I’m sure they would appreciate a donation if you like their software.

  2. Travelinrob

    Sorry, there’s one thing I left out. If you are using Mint, I think you only need to run install steps 3 – 6 of the 7. The first and last are for Debian exclusively, and the second turns on the Universe repositories.

    Cheers!

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