Saturday, August 25, 2012


Caution: Do not read any further if you are not a computer nerd. 

My home desktop computer was assembled from parts bought from NewEgg in the winter of 2007.  At that time, it was a top end machine.   1.5 GHz duo-core. 6 Gb ram.   I started out using it as a Hackintosh, but eventually decided that I like Ubuntu better, and I've been using it that way ever since (I think the killer app that got me to switch was NXfree remote desktop -- which is amazing if you have never used it.).   Since I bought it, it has required a new power supply, and a new graphics card, and I inserted two more disk drives for good measure.   On the whole, though, it is still running extremely well.  I didn't expect it to last five years, and although I probably should upgrade to a new motherboard sometime soon, it is running so well, I really don't see the need yet. 

Although I admit to being a computer nerd, I don't want to spend too much time tweaking my system.  So I don't upgrade to the bleeding-edge version of everything.  Instead, I stick with stable versions for a while and only upgrade on occassion.  I've been running Ubuntu Lucid 10.04 Long-Term Support for several years, and although I admit I've been itching to try 12.04, I dutifully followed the instructions "LTS users are recommended to wait until 12.04.1 before upgrading".    Finally this week 12.04.1 was released.  

Last night I got home from Trieste and started the upgrade process.  I went to bed as the computer downloaded files for several hours.  I woke up at 7 am, clicked OK a few times as I ate breakfast and packed for my next trip, and by 10 am, I had a working version of 12.04.1 !

There are probably a few things broken by the upgrade -- but so far remarkably few.  My main complaint so far is the unity interface -- I realize these things require some getting used to.  However, I can't imagine getting used to a transparent dashboard that is completely unreadable.  Does anyone know how to make it opaque?  (I have a hack that does this already, but there must be a better way). 

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