4 years and 1 month later

Yes, it’s been quite a long time since I’ve posted to this blog ! Mostly because of other priorities in my personal life (kids, house, etc…) which even made me stop having a fixed desktop computer at home.

But now I have more and more the idea to revive this blog. Not only to speak about my hobbies but also about professional life and sometimes maybe my rants because there is some stuff really pissing me off which I think is worth sharing 🙂

If you’re still following this blog after such a long time, don’t hesitate to leave a little comment, it will give me even more motivation to resurrect this blog with some new, fresh ideas.


Now on linux-planet !

I’m really happy to be now aggregated on linux-planet !

I own two blogs : this one and one in french. My french blog is aggregated on planet-libre which is a quite known planet website, at least for the french-speaking linux community.

Planet-libre is a blog aggregator mostly oriented toward advanced users : technical tips, posts about distribution evolution, software installation and configuration tutorials… and there was no equivalent to planet-libre in english (or at least, planet-libre administrators have not found any).

That’s why linux-planet has just been launched ! There’s not many aggregated blogs currently, but I’m pretty sure it will grow very fast : planet-libre is already aggregating 235 blogs with more than 6000 articles (which are only french speaking !).

If you own or know someone owning a technical blog, think about aggregating it on linux-planet !

How to make 6 months of your life vanish

I own a mobile 500GB USB disk manufactured by Lacie and use it to put all my photos, so that I can both save disk space on my laptop and can easily share photos with someone else. A few months ago, my girlfriend bought a new laptop with Microsoft Vista included and yesterday, while I was busy with mine, she asked me if she could have a look at our photos.

Of course I said yes.

Lacie 500G mobile disks are pre-formated as FAT32. A nice filesystem as any OS can use it read/write, and it’s rather fast if you don’t need to manage access rights. But the vendor has decided to ship its drive with an auto-launch first-time wizard reformatting your disk as NTFS in order to, in their own words, optimize the drive. Linux don’t care about auto-launch things but Vista just does.

Of course, my girlfriend knows nothing about FAT32, NTFS and what’s behind the words “drive optimization”.

Hit next… hit next… hit next…


The good thing is that I’ve made two backup DVDs of the photos I’ve made during the first 2 years of my son. But I’ve lost all the photos since then (he’s now 2 years and a half). I’ve also tried to recover photos from the disk (thanks to photorec), but only recovered a very minor part of all my photos.

In essence, I’ve lost 6 months of photos, including birth photos of my little girl (now 3 months old).

I’m happy I’ve made some backups, but should make them more often and especially after exceptional situations like… your child birth. A good rule of thumb for managing personal photos is “have two copies of your photos anytime”.

Posted in Life. 13 Comments »

KDE 4.3.1 !

"About" dialog

"About" dialog

Helio striked once again 🙂 We now have official KDE versions before they are even announced (yes this link is broken at the time I’m writing, but it’s my guess for the announcement page) on kde website.

Many many thanks !

My biggest problem being now that I can’t tell (because I don’t know) the new features/bugfixes on this blog… 🙂

My first bug

Yes ! I’m not a maintainer, but yesterday was the first time I got a bug assigned to me for the stable 2008 Spring ! I still don’t understand why as I didn’t upload the package to Mandriva and was not the last one to make a modification in this package, according to the changelog.

Whatever, I’m glad it has been solved in less than a day and this is thanks to the reporter which actually gave the solution in the bug report and Adam which uploaded the package and made some clever modifications to the SPEC.

The only thing needed was a rebuilt from the svn repository which fixed the compilation problem. The package is now in the official update repository.

Enabling metacity compositing manager

I’ve just switched for a few days to GNOME and I remembered a discussion about activating metacity compositing manager. I haven’t found the information I was looking for on the Internet, but Olivier told me his “Jus de cuisson” mentioned a discussion thread back in January.

I eventually found the discussion thread, but what was stated was wrong (well, it was probably true when the message was sent, but not anymore) : the compositing manager is not enabled by default.

The compositing manager doesn’t give you as much effects and eye-candies as compiz, but it’s enough for a daily and professional usage. Here’s the list of things enabled with the compositing manager of metacity (quote from Frederic Crozat):

-Composited managed desktop (some applications might use it, like transparent applications such as gnome-terminal and probably others)
-brand new alt-TAB with screenshot of applications and highlight of to-be-focused app
-nice shadow around windows (now, you can have an idea on the initial design of Ia Ora window theme 🙂
-NO openGL required !!

So, here’s how you can enable it (should work with any distro using a recent enough metacity) :
gconftool-2 --type bool --set /apps/metacity/general/compositing_manager true
To disable compositor :
gconftool-2 --type bool --set /apps/metacity/general/compositing_manager false

Some nice server installation howtos

I recently discovered a very nice site hosting a lot of interesting Howtos (mostly for servers configuration) : HowtoForge. You’ll even find a dedicated Mandriva section and a forum. Have a nice browsing…

Everything you always wanted to know about your IP address

Want to know if you’re blacklisted somewhere ? Want to know what could people find out, just by knowing your IP address ? Just curious ?

Check out www.robtex.com ! (and for a good laugh, read the disclaimer)

Hardware4linux : more than 1500 systems reported and ranked based on their compatibility

www.hardware4linux.info website has now reached 1500 reported Linux systems. It can now be considered as a serious user database which grows everyday and allows everyone to compare objectively support of its various peripherals with the other users.

All components of the system are inserted into the database and can both be ranked and commented so that you’re even able to give little tips like “my SD card reader isn’t working about of the box, but by using X or Y, it’s working perfectly”.

So don’t hesitate to :

For those interested, here’s my laptop configuration.

It’s possible as well to subscribe to the comments RSS feed.

Ah, one last word : try to be fair. Reporting something is working perfectly out-of-the-box (rank “5”) and then indicating in the comments that it doesn’t work, it’s giving wrong input to the database and it won’t help anyone…


Just a very small note about one website I’ve just discovered and one I already knew.