Pausing the Linux rebuild

I was all ready to crack open the HP Envy 15 laptop this afternoon, pull the 250 GB NVMe M.2 SSD and replace it with a 1 TB model. While in there, I planned to replace the battery, which has a dead cell. But I decided to press “pause.” I started running Linux on this particular laptop in 2019 (??) with Debian Stable (then Buster), replacing it with Testing (Bullseye) maybe a couple of months ago.
Read more →

Backups in Linux: I keep it simple

The next step in putting a new hard drive into my laptop is to make a full backup of the /home files. I haven’t done a full-image Clonezilla-style backup in a long, long time, and I do recommend it it you have a spare drive and a lot of spare time. Instead I just back up my user files. I have two working Linux computers right now, and if I need to rebuild one, I can do a reinstall and get my preferred applications set up fairly quickly.
Read more →

Reinstalling a Linux computer system: Step by step

I’m about to put a new hard drive and battery in my main laptop, a 2017 HP Envy 15. Whenever I make a change like this, I like to be ready with backups, Linux install images on USB drives and whatever tools and parts I might need. I’m not as worried about running into problems because I now have a very decent second computer — the 2011 27-inch iMac running Debian Buster — if the laptop isn’t ready right away, I’ll still be able to work.
Read more →

The new Debian Bullseye desktop background just moved onto systems

Read more →

I’m not opposed to nonfree firmware in Debian, but I removed it, and my laptop still runs fine

The debate over whether to include nonfree firmware in the Debian installer has emerged from the depths of the debian-devel mailing list under the title “Making Debian available.” The gist of this extremely long e-mail thread (and Debian is a mailing list culture, despite attempts to pull it into the 21st century is that the Debian Project is hostile to new users because its standard install images do not include nonfree firmware, and installations on most laptops will go poorly because the Linux kernel and free firmware might not support their WiFi or display systems.
Read more →

How this Debian Stable user ended up with Google Chrome from Google’s repository

Update: On Jan. 1, 2021, an updated Chromium package moved into the Debian Stable repository. Hopefully it will also become part of the Testing repo and appear in the next Debian release. The original post follows: I guess I knew that the Chromium web browser — the code from the open-source project that is still coded by Google people but isn’t fully Googled— was very out of datein the Debian Stable repository.
Read more →

Writing in git vs. blogging

Any of us who have been blogging over the past 10 or more years has written hundreds or maybe thousands of posts. I’m pretty sure I have at least a couple thousand. But blog writing and other writing are different. A blog tends to say “this is now, things below this are in the past, things above this will appear in the future.” It’s reverse-chronological. That’s not a horrible thing.
Read more →

Ruby gtk3 GUI applications ARE cross-platform

I’ve been intermittently struggling and totally forgetting about the best way to create cross-platform GUI applications. I’ve veered between Tk for Ruby or Python, JavaFX and Qt. I recently stumbled on GTK3 in Ruby, and I’ve been going through a couple of tutorials in an attempt to figure it out. Since I’m back on Debian Stable for 90 percent of my computing, I figured I’d give GTK3 a try. I knew that you could run GTK apps in Windows (and presumably also on MacOS), but maybe I’d have to resort to exotic packaging to make it happen.
Read more →

Printing in Debian 10: CUPS isn’t in the default desktop if you forget to check the box during installation

I haven’t had the occasion to print anything in Debian 10 Buster in the couple of weeks that I have been running it, but today is the day. I knew from the release notes that Debian 10 included “driverless” printing, but I couldn’t find any printers in GNOME Setings, even though I have a wireless printer on my local network. The reason? I didn’t have CUPS. I had forgotten to check the “print server” box during my installation.
Read more →

Debian 10 Buster with GNOME 3: I didn’t expect it to be this fast, but that could be the SSD talking

I don’t know how much of it is Debian 10 and how much is swapping a 5400-RPM hard drive with an M.2 NVMe SSD, but my 2-year-old laptop is FLYING now that I’ve ditched Windows 10 and the 1 GB magnetic drive that came with it. And this is with GNOME 3. The stock or lightly/heavily-favored desktop environment in Debian, Fedora and Ubuntu looks great, runs with no hesitation (in constrast to Windows 10) and doesn’t have me thinking that I need anything else for speed-related reasons.
Read more →

Set umask in vsftpd so incoming files have 644 permissions

Read more →

File permissions and ownership that make Ode’s Indexette work on a Debian Buster server

This was easier on Hostgator, where everything is “owned” by my user account and everything works. To get Ode addins to work, the /data directory is owned by my user and is in the www-data group. The /data/addins/state directory has the same ownership and permissions (755). The /data/addins/state/Indexette directory is owned by www-data and is in the www-data group and has permissions 755. The files created by Indexette in /data/addins/state/Indexette are aux_index_file and primary_index_file.
Read more →