Fine software projects, news and thoughts from the Linux world.

Debian changes default desktop environment from GNOME to Xfce

Almost in silence, Debian oldtimer Joey Hess made a commit that will switch default desktop task from GNOME to Xfce in Debian's forthcoming 7.0 Wheezy release. And that was an excellent choice, if I may add!

Configuring Firefox to use Transmission-Daemon for Magnet links

Create a shell script /usr/local/bin/magnet containing:

/usr/bin/transmission-remote --add "$1"

chmod +x /usr/local/bin/magnet

In Firefox go to about:config

Right-click on any link and select "New->Boolean".

Boolean name: network.protocol-handler.expose.magnet
Boolean value: false

Right-click on any link and select "New->Boolean"

Boolean name: network.protocol-handler.handler.external.magnet
Boolean value: true

Restart Firefox


VMware Workstation 8.0.1 vs Linux Kernel 3.2.0

The patch attached to this blog post is needed to successfully run VMware Workstation 8.0.1 on the current Linux kernel 3.2.0-rc2. So, it will be needed for the final 3.2 release, too. If you need instructions how to apply the patch please consult my other blog entries. Have fun!

VMware Workstation 8.0.0 vs Linux Kernel 3.1.0

VMware Workstation 8.0.0 won't work on Linux Kernel 3.1.0 out of the box. But, some clever guy coded a very neat script that you can use to patch the workstation in a few easy steps:

$ cd /tmp
$ wget
$ chmod +x
$ su
# ./

That should patch the modules source, recompile it and start the vmware services. I've also attached the courtesy copy of the script to this article, in case the remote location becomes unavailable.

Have fun!

VMware Workstation 7.1.4 vs Linux Kernel 2.6.39

VMware Workstation 7.1.4 worked correctly on kernel 2.6.38, e.g. the modules built without problems.

Unfortunately, it's not working correctly anymore, after you upgrade to the latest linux kernel 2.6.39.

How to shut up Python deprecation warnings

I don't know why Python applications are so verbose with deprecation warnings. Either the apps should be fixed, or the system should be configured to not emit those pesky warnings in production. Since the former is not happening, I found a way to do the latter. So, if you are sick and tired of warnings like this:

/usr/lib/pymodules/python2.6/rdiff_backup/ DeprecationWarning: os.popen2 is deprecated. Use the subprocess module.
stdin, stdout = os.popen2(remote_cmd)


Debian wheezy: Perl 5.12, X Server 1.10, Nvidia 270.41.06, Java 6.25, Glibc 2.13

This past week has been quite turbulent for Debian wheezy. Mostly because of the great Perl upgrade from 5.10 to 5.12. This included rebuilding of hundreds of Perl modules to play well with new version of Perl. Most of the time I had all this stuff put on hold, and only yesterday have I found guts to digest all 300 of new packages. For one day I was without trusty pidgin, but today even that popular messenger has been recompiled to work with Perl 5.12.


Firefox 4 about:memory

You blame Firefox 4 to be a memory hog? Check it out first by typing about:memory in the address bar. You'll get a nice detailed report of your browsers memory usage. While it's not guaranteed you'll understand every statistic available in the report, you can at least peek at the overall memory use, and see how much it's fragmented by comparing "memory mapped" and "memory in use" numbers.

Debian wheezy: GCC 4.6 now default

GCC 4.6 is now the default compiler in wheezy. This is what gcc --version says:

% gcc --version
gcc (Debian 4.6.0-6) 4.6.1 20110428 (prerelease)


Debian wheezy: lots of fixes, new stuff

This last week has been fun. Lots of stuff has been fixed. Let's start with the packaging system...

The packaging system



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