I spent quite a bit of time running Google Chrome/Chromium on both Windows and Linux, but between feeling uncomfortable giving away so much data to Google (when logged in on Chrome) and how well Firefox performs on Linux (which is very well from what I can see), I now use Firefox about 99 percent of the time in Fedora 20.
But on my Windows 7 work machine, which is a more powerful (quad-core AMD to my laptop's dual-core, with 8 GB of RAM to the laptop's 4 GB), I flip it, using Chrome about 99 percent of the time.
So I've been switching it up to see how I might like using more Chrome in Linux and more Firefox in Windows.
I'll keep it short. There's nothing about Chrome on my laptop in Fedora 20 that makes me want to use it. It's no faster and no more stable. And SELinux doesn't much like it (and I get warnings).
I spent the whole day yesterday in Windows 7 on my big box running Firefox (version 27 on both machines for the record) for everything. It was measurably slower, and I had a few periods of non-responsiveness, especially with my customary 15-20 open tabs.
This means I'll be sticking with Firefox on my Linux-running laptop (and for my personal use, where I'm not so crazy about Google spying and Chrome on my workplace desktop, where I'm already using Google Apps and am not doing any personal business (and could care less if Google knows about my web use as it relates).
So I heard about an update to Skype for Linux (thanks, OMG!Ubuntu) that is supposed to fix some general noise and PulseAudio issues.
Since Skype's RPM for Fedora doesn't set up a repo, I had to download a new RPM from Skype and install it.
The new package, Version 188.8.131.52, runs as well as the old one. That means it fixed none of the audio issues I'm having, which include occasional noisy audio and intermittent lack of audio. The commonly accept fix doesn't help me, either.
Luckily I rarely use Skype, and usually only as an IM client, so I'll live.
For the freedom-lovers in the room, I did install the Ekiga softphone package in Fedora, and it kind of, sort of works. But the UI is HORRIBLE, and I doubt a non-geek could ever make it work. I need a better SIP package, and I'm open to suggestions.
I'm on the fence on this Skype fix for Linux distributions that use PulseAudio:
If you are packaging Skype for your distribution, you need to change the Exec line in your Skype .desktop file as follows: Exec=env PULSE_LATENCY_MSEC=60 skype %U If you are a user, and your distribution doesn’t already carry this fix (as of about a week ago, Ubuntu does, and as of ~1 hour from now, Gentoo will), you need to launch Skype from the command line as follows: $ PULSE_LATENCY_MSEC=60 skype
Using rootly privileges, I made this change in my
/usr/share/applications/skype.desktop file. It worked some but not all of the time. I'm more troubled by PulseAudio's use of CPU when I'm running Skype in the background but not actively using it.
I eventually reverted this fix in my
/usr/share/applications/skype.desktop file and am doing OK with the regular
Exec=skype %U line that is the default in my Skype installation.
Maybe it's the company I keep (on Twitter and the Fedora Planet anyway), but I keep hearing about Docker and its use of Linux Containers to deliver stand-alone applications:
Docker is an open-source engine that automates the deployment of any application as a lightweight, portable, self-sufficient container that will run virtually anywhere. Docker containers can encapsulate any payload, and will run consistently on and between virtually any server. The same container that a developer builds and tests on a laptop will run at scale, in production*, on VMs, bare-metal servers, OpenStack clusters, public instances, or combinations of the above. ... * Please note Docker is currently under heavy developement. It should not be used production (yet).
Is it possible to synchronize a local filesystem (really a directory and everything below it) with a filesystem/bunch-of-directories-and-files on a server with an ftp client application like FileZilla?
What I'm looking to do is create files and directories on my local drive and then use the client application to automatically (or at least semi-automatically) upload those new items to the server without me having to "drag them over" in the FTP client. I want to keep both directories in sync, much like Dropbox does, but without a third-party service in the middle, and without needing to upload the whole directory and contents, but just the changed/new items.
On the FileZilla forum, it is suggested that the tool for this job is not ftp but rsync.
I use rsync all the time for my local backups, and I'm not terribly well-versed in using it with ssh over the network, but I will look into this and see what I can come up with.
To make a long story I don't yet understand a whole lot shorter, rsync works in one direction, Unison in both, which can be better for backups when things are potentially changing on both server and client (or server and server, for that matter).
Problem with Unison: You must have Unison on both systems, and my shared hosting account's CentOS box doesn't offer it. It does have rsync, so I might have to go with that. Or I could just continue with my current arrangement of either working with the server's filesystem mounted over sftp most of the time, pushing local files over sftp some of the time, and using sftp to pull down backups on a regular basis.
Possible solution -- Csync: Rob suggests in the comments below that csync could work for this task. It only needs to be on the client side, and it both pushes and pulls files.
I've already installed it, and I'll look into making it work.
What I'm trying to do is keep filesystems in sync across different systems where there are potentially new and changed files on both sides.
Keep track of all Steve's development on his GitHub page, which I'm putting here more for me than for you.
I don't have time to look too deeply into this, but if you love the idea of analog synthesizers with gobs of patch cords going from one module to another, you may love vModSynth. Just look at the screenshot above (click it for a full-size view).
As developer Rafał Cieślak says:
vModSynth allows you to play with a modular synth on your computer. You are free to choose any modules you wish, you can connect them however you want, and you will hear the result immediately. The synthesizer intentionally resembles the look of a modular synthesizer (I was inspired by modules manufactured by synthesizers.com), and it imitates behavior of one.
While I continue to use Gmail for my work e-mail -- a decision enforced by my employer's move to Google Apps for Business, I've been seeking solutions for my personal e-mail that include less back-end effort and more flexibility on my part -- plus no spying/marketing in exchange for the service.
My chief concerns:
The third point in this list means that while I maintain a Mozilla Thunderbird (or in my case the Debian-rebranded Icedove) mail client on my Linux desktop, I'd much rather use webmail day to day and only use a desktop client application for occasional archiving.
Webmail isn't just a Gmail/Yahoo Mail/Hotmail thing. Anybody with a mail server can offer webmail to their users. There are a number of different client applications out there, but my favorite is Roundcube, which I use with my shared-hosting account from Hostgator.
Just today I noticed that Roundcube got a nice new look that coincides with a new release of the platform.
It's nice, to be sure. I love the look and functionality of Roundcube. But what I'd really like in Roundcube is the ability to create and deploy filters. It's on the roadmap. With filters, I really could leave Gmail behind.
I know that Horde offers a filtering option, and I probably should give it a try. But I really like Roundcube ...
I haven't used OwnCloud much over the past few months. And I let my installation get old.
I just did an upgrade from 3.0.2 to 4.5.0 in a single operation. OwnCloud is complicated: The update consists of 4,562 files.
Once the files transferred, the system didn't work. But the fix was easy: OwnCloud 4.5.0 requires PHP 5.3. My shared hosting account defaults to PHP 5.2. PHP 5.3 must be called in the .htaccess file. I was doing that in version 3.0.2, but part of my upgrade included a new .htaccess file from OwnCloud.
I went into .htaccess, added my hosting provider's recommended code to invoke PHP 5.3, and OwnCloud 4.5.0 began working immediately.
One of the things about 4.5.0 that I'm most excited about is the ability to upgrade OwnCloud from within the application itself. Sure beats transferring 4,562 files over FTP.