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grantm (164)

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Just a simple [] guy, hacking Perl for fun and profit since way back in the last millenium. You may find me hanging around in the monestary [].

What am I working on right now? Probably the Sprog project [].

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Journal of grantm (164)

Saturday July 26, 2008
05:59 PM

Hardware fun

[ #37020 ]

My 4 year old Acer laptop died the other day. It just seems to be the hard drive but I had been thinking about replacing the machine anyway. I don't have the budget for anything flash and I needed something quick(!) so I ended up getting another Acer (Aspire 5920).

The machine came pre-installed with Windows Vista so when I powered it on I was prompted to "complete the installation process". That entailed answering some questions and waiting while updates were downloaded and of course rebooting a couple of times.

I don't actually have any desire to run Windows (except maybe for portability testing) so my next step was to download and install Ubuntu Hardy. Surprisingly, downloading a 700MB ISO, installing Linux and downloading updates took less time than "completing the Windows installation process". We're getting closer to a "just works" experience. Video (with fancy compositing effects) and wireless networking worked without any fuss at all. Audio works too but strangely only through the headphone socket, not through the built-in speakers. As it happens I generally only use the headphones so making the speakers work isn't a big priority.

Before my hard drive died, I had just started putting together an 'analysis' of how the teams in the HackOff event solved each of the questions. After various setbacks, I hope to return to that task in the next couple of days. After that's done I really hope to have time to look at my embarrassingly long RT queues.

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