{February 16, 2008}   opensuse livecd

this post is really just an excuse to see whether clee’s fixed the title thing. :)

anyways, I tried out the opensuse livecd (vesion 1.0.61) last night, and it was… odd. I was too tired to poke around much – I just wanted to have a backup run overnight – so I only really noticed negative things. sorry.

the cd does seem clearly meant to just show off kde4. it’s not meant to be a rescue cd or anything, but since I was just dd’ing a partition I managed to get the job done. I do have other cds with me that are actually meant for this purpose, but I wanted to kill two birds with one stone here.

what I noticed first was that konsole crashed when I tried to run it. it would not run… and the crash handler was awol too. that was the first clue that my trying to use the cd to get things done was a bit silly :) I had to run xterm, and it was butt-ugly :P honestly, it does *not* look that ugly on my hard drive. maybe that’s just because the scrollbar is hidden and I have a pretty green theme.

then I noticed that there were no little icons showing up anywhere for my hard drive. nothing in dolphin at all…. media:/ doesn’t exist (I forget, was it one of the ones kde4 had to disable because it was broken?) – but when I plug in the external drive it’s picked up by solid. funny though, mount point folders aren’t treated as special. I couldn’t find anywhere to click to get the properties of a mount point (free space etc) which is a shame.

so I went to manually mount the laptop hard drive, and saw this:
linux@linux:~> ls /dev/hd*
ls: cannot access /dev/hd*: No such file or directory
^^yes, really. my hard drive mysteriously turned up at sda somehow. as for the cd drive… no clue. didn’t try to track it down.

the strangest thing is that wireless (ipw2200) failed. I’ve never had a wireless problem with this laptop before. never ever. I’ve no idea what the cd could have done differently… maybe it uses a buggy version of the driver or something?

I noticed that the system generally isn’t set up for non-root maintenance. this is the one thing that actually bugs me, because it makes me wonder if an actual suse install would be the same way. sudo is included and worked, but tools like ifconfig are in sbin. that might seem like a good idea – until someone just wants to know whether eth1 exists or not. or wants tab completion with sudo. I ended up su’ing, and while the bring red prompt is nice, I’d really rather be using sudo.

as for kde4 itself… well, I seem to take it for granted now. when I needed a calculator, I immediately rightclicked on the desktop and dragged one over from the appletbrowser. no, no krunner calculations for me – I like my calc to stay on screen. :)

oh, and the bootloader screen was quite pretty. hooray for screen resolution options. in general I wasn’t frustrated too much by the cd, which is pretty good considering I was half asleep and I was *very* irritable yesterday.

so in general… I was using the cd for something it was entirely not intended for, and ran into a fair bit of weirdness along the way. :) perhaps tomorrow I’ll try running it again and actually play with the shiny kde4 programs it has – I don’t have all of kde4 installed here, so there’s probably lots I’m missing out on.

ack, lost track of time! now I’ve gotta hurry and get my room cleaned. checking out today.

sandsmark says:

About the sd*-thingy, afaik the kernel went over to standardise all storage under sd, instead of using hd for some, and sd for the rest.
Also, your wireless needs some microcode uploaded to it to work, which the opensuse probably didn’t include for rather obvious reasons.

FYI, the sda/hda thing is probably due to a newer kernel or at least newer libata-based drivers being used, which always use /dev/sd*.

Anonymous says:

The sudo thing, hard drive labeling and ifconfig positioning sounds like you have never used any other distro than Ubuntu before.

Karsten says:

Hey, most of these “downpoints” are present in all big linux distributions.

-> missing ipw2200 firmware due to non-OSS nature
(needs to be fetched from online-repo…)
-> since kernel 2.6.22 (if i am not mistaken) all storage devices are /dev/sd*
-> and many other distributions handle the /sbin stuff the same way

RB says:

you should use ‘ip’ instead of ifconfig. ip lives in /bin

Chani says:

RB: thanks, didn’t know about that command.

didn’t know about the sd thingy either. me and my poor dying laptop… looks like I’m pretty out of the loop when it comes to non-kde stuff these days. ah well – I’ll have plenty of time to do some distro sampling in march and find out what’s changed.

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