December 6th Meeting Report * UbuntuStudio * xfce 4.10 * Other Topics

Clint started off the meeting with some comments on the current state of the deskop by referring to an article by Steven_J._Vaughan_Nichols who comments on both Windows 8 and the amount of dislike of the Gnome 3.0 based desktops OSs are Leaving the User out of the User Interface. The article mentions the KISS principal, Keep it Simple which is leads us to tonight's presentation on UbuntuStudio XFCE. Following up the Nichols website comments with a visit to an article on Fedora 18 how how it is going to include the Gnome 2 based Mate desktop as well as other desktop alternatives to Gnome 3 including XFCE. Two key features standout in the new Fedora 18 Beta Clint then started his presentation on UbuntuStudio 12.10 Quantal Quentazl with xfce 4.10.. UbuntuStudio uses the XFCE 4.10 foundation desktop which was brought over from Xubuntu and various applications of "artisitic" value were added. Clint then took the group through the tour available on the UbuntuStudio website which shows off the various programs available for the specific contents areas of Audio, Graphics, Video, Photography, and Publishing. UbuntuStudio has its own kernel (lowlatency) version 3.5 for running realtime applications such as audio playback and jack. Why Clint recommends it: There is quite a bit of Gnome in this distribution and in his being a Red Hat instructor, it has many of the same tools as Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.3, the current Enterprise linux used by corporations and government that he uses in his work. It has the overall Gnome look and feel but with less overhead, very fast and lives up to its moniker of "The Low Cholesterol Desktop". Clint then demonstrated some of his favorite utilities available on the UbuntuStudio desktop, starting with Nautilus. He first showed how to configure Nautilus preferences for the view in setting it to the list view and adding the location to list of columes in the list view. He also demonstrated how to use the search feature in Nautilus by doing keyword searches for documents, files, and directories containing those keywords which is where the location column comes in handy in locating the actual file being sought. He then demonstrated the gnome-disks utility for managing the hard drive as well as usb connected devices. Two other gnome related features including Open Terminal from the desktop and gedit where among the top of his list of favorite features. He demonstrated the gnome SystemMonitor tool and showed what information was availible using this tool including performance and disk resources plus being able to manage processes running on the system. He then mentioned and demonstrated serveral major applications on UbuntuStudio including LibreOffice Writer, Gimp 2.8, and Darkroom. All of these opened quickly and were robust in there use as different operations were demonstrated. In conclusion, Clint made reference to its 18 Months official support as a derivative of the Ubuntu, supported by Canonical as part of the Ubuntu family. Ubuntu Studio is a registered trademarks of Canonical Ltd. Documentation is available at, accessible from the help button UbuntuStudio Information on main menu. Release notes are at After his presentation, Clint showed Linux Mint 13 XFCE for comparison where he had installed the newest 1.1 version of Darktable with its new mapping feature inaddition to the lighttable, darkroom, and tethering features in 1.05. Bit a flash back as we zoomed in on Boise and saw the old airports of by gone days being shown inluding Strawberry Glen Airport (Glennwood at the River), Bradley (now the backside of the Fairgrounds where you could buy a brand new Cessna 172 in its showroom), and Floating Feather Aiport on the old Highway 55 where Clint reminised about working summers with the mechanic Mac who was certified on those old Pratt & Whitney rotary airplane engines and the old Ford Tri-Motor cargo plane that was there and sported 3 of those engines. Linux Mint 13 is many of the same features available with UbuntuStudio but it is not quite as "snappy" in its performance on the same hardware. Clint then demostrated the Mondo/Mindi command lines which provide the ability safely backup systems and actually perform what is termed Disaster Recovery (DR) for short in restore systems to new hardware. This freely available opensource tool is from HP and used internally at many of their sites around the world for disaster recovery scenarios. Clint demonstrated using the Mini tool for creating boot recovery iso for UbuntuStudio using the 3.50 Linux Kernel and then used Mondo to create the actual backup files. Being an HP "product", it is well documented. Sources of documentation: Clint spent a little time at the end of the meeting in demonstrating the terminal command line, proper use of the superuser (root) sudo command on Ubuntu, cd command, command options and arguments, and the command history stack including the control-R for searches. Member Ed then took the floor in asking about others's experiences in building systems and particularly system boards which led to a discussion of system boards and mini-systems. Our next meeting will January 3rd, agenda yet to be determined.