April 12, 2008

440 words 3 mins read

Ubuntu 8.04 Day 2

I’m writing this towards the end of my second full day of use on Ubuntu 8.04 Hardy Heron (Beta 5) on the Dell Precision M6300. (You know I just write all this out so its easier to google). I have to say that everything is going relatively smoothly. I’ve got a few different bits I’ll run down for everyone.

Kernel — Last night there was a new kernel pushed out ( 2.6.24-16 ). I installed and rebooted per normal — except my machine didn’t come back up. This, of course, caused me more than a little concern. I rebooted several times — but it simply didn’t work. So I gave up and booted back to the last working kernel (2.6.24-16). Today there were more kernel related updates, so I installed them and tried them out. This time the machine booted — but failed to start the X server properly. So once again back to -15 . This is a development build — so its not surprising that this might happen. No harm, no foul.

Hibernate — Now I’ve always thought that Linux’s support for niceties like suspend and hibernate were lacking at best. Not that this bothered me. Regardless, my view will be changing as hibernate works like a charm.

PulseAudio — This was one of the major features that I really wanted to try out. I spent a little while setting it up properly and tinkering — and it works. I have to say I’m amazingly impressed. I’ve got multiple audio streams!!! I can play a game and listen to music at the same time, or I can mute music and watch a youtube video. So glorious. On top of that its got a network streaming functionality. You can send and receive audio streams across the network to other PulseAudio systems. I tested this briefly and it worked as advertised. I could send the audio (all the systems audio) across the network from my laptop to the machine hooked up to my sound system. This is going to be an amazingly handy feature down the line.

Volume Control — This is the one problem I have right now. I’m not sure if it is the laptop or Hardy. Basically when the volume is at 100% — its very loud (as it should be). At 70% is whisper quiet. At 50% it is dead silent. This is annoying. Granted the sound works, so I’m grateful of that — but I’ve lost that fine granular volume control. I’ve been hunting for ways to fix it — but no dice so far. I even posted on the Ubuntu Forums with no luck.